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Thursday, April 29, 2010

The NFL Draft Recap

The NFL Draft is like Christmas for football fans. It's a time for fans of even the lowliest of teams to hope for a complete turnaround with all the college stars their team takes to jump onto the field and be heroes from the very first game. Usually that doesn't happen. But that doesn't mean that we can't dream... With no further adieu I give you my breakdown of each team's draft from this past weekend. These grades are absolute and there is no room for argument. At all. Unless Tebow takes the Broncos to the 2011 Super Bowl. Then Denver will get a B.

Arizona Cardinals - B
Really liked their first two picks of Williams and Washington. Williams will help stuff up the middle and keep blockers off of the speedy Washington. Schofield and Skelton were also great value picks. If either works out this will be a great draft.

Atlanta Falcons - C+
Weatherspoon is a great pick up but after him there seems to be a lot of depth selections. Nobody really stands out as contributing right away. Peters and Franks could see some time in the first year but they didn't really take any shots in the later rounds. Mike Johnson and Kerry Meier have a good chance to develop into contributors down the road. If both Johnson and Hawley the Center they drafted can find their way into the starting lineup this will be a solid draft.

Baltimore Ravens - A+
Incredible draft. They manage to get a great pick with nearly every selection. Even the giant OL they took at the end has potential due to his size, improved coaching, and no need to jump right in. Kindle, Cody, Dickson, Pita, Reed, Jones... wow. Jones was probably a top 5 DT until his injury which he should definitely recover from.

Buffalo Bills - B
Solid overall draft. They instantly added some electricity to an otherwise sputtering offense but I felt that they could have gone even further with another RB or WR prospect. Easley could develop nicely but he doesn't really seem to have star potential which is what Buffalo really needs in my opinion. They added some much needed depth to both of their O and D lines. Plus took a shot in the later rounds on Troy's Levi Brown who some scouts had ranked rather highly.

Carolina Panthers - A-
Getting Jimmy Clausen where they did instantly made this a good draft. Taking Tony Pike later really says something about their confidence in Matt Moore. Taking three WRs might seem like a lot but considering that the corpse of Mooshin Mohamed is still their only other receiving threat next to Steve Smith it's clear that the position really needed to be addressed. Both mid round defensive picks of Norwood and Hardy have the ability to contribute right away and could turn into some serious steals.

Chicago Bears - D
The Bears came into the draft hampered by their trade for the league leader in interceptions last year and didn't come out much better. Major Wright probably has the chance to battle for a starting role right away and Wooten is a local kid who has a ton of potential. Hopefully his penchant for inconsistency isn't augmented by hanging around another talented but inconsistent pass rusher named Julius Peppers. The rest of their draft is for depth. Fortunately the Bears didn't really have any holes to fill and were already good enough to just draft backups...

Cincinnati Bengals - A
This was a great draft all the way through. Gresham will be an immediate upgrade and help both the running and passing game. Dunlap is probably the biggest boom/bust prospect in the draft and after taking an almost identical pick in Michael Johnson of GT last year, they know what they are getting into. Shipley will see the field in the first year and could become a great slot receiver for Palmer. Ghee is a 6' corner with tremendous speed. Muckleroy is an underrated workhorse LB. Then adding a project WR in Briscoe and some depth along both lines is always a good move.

Cleveland Browns - A
They almost get this A by default. If they didn't pick Colt McCoy when they did I would have given them an F. Were they totally set to have Jake Delhomme and Seneca Wallace as their QBs? Who are they kidding? All of their picks seem pretty solid. Haden, Ward, and Hardesty should all see pretty immediate playing time. Getting some depth in the defensive backfield and along the lines is something that you can probably tell I favor. I do really like the late round pick of Carlton Mitchell. I was really surprised that he fell that far.

Dallas Cowboys - B+
Bryant, Lee, and AOA were all very solid picks and should compete for starting positions this year with potential to be stars. In my opinion they should have gone after some higher graded Offensive line prospects but it would have been hard to Jerry to pass on a guy like Bryant. He really wants to find his next Michael Irvin.

Denver Broncos - C+ - B
This seems like a pretty good draft when you don't consider Tebow. Obviously he will be a question mark on everyone's mind until he shows us exactly how good he can be. Thomas could be great but he was taken before Bryant who is great. Oh and they traded away Marshall who is great in the NFL for a could be great guy in college. ?. Other than that... it seems like they grabbed a number of good pieces. Decker was a stud in college and should develop well in the pros pending QB play. Cox could be a good player if he keeps the off field stuff in check. The three O lineman should really help bolster that part of their offense and help keep pressure off of whatever developmental QB ends up playing.

Detroit Lions - A-
How can you go wrong with the House of Spears and Mr. Best? Two fantastic additions. Suh will be great from day 1 and Best is every bit as talented as Spiller but probably a bit quicker. Spievey looks like the physical corner that Detroit's secondary so badly missed the last two years. Fox could develop to be the eventual replacement for Backus (hopefully sooner than later for Stafford's sake.) Unfortunately they felt they had to trade up just a few spots to nab Best rather than sit and wait for their spot at the top of Round 2 thus missing out on a few picks later on in the draft, which they need so desperately. They could have used that on another defensive prospect or two.

Green Bay Packers - C-
For some reason Bulaga was always described as missing a step and a developmental guy but he was supposed to be a top OT? He was dominated by Graham in the Michigan game. Unfortunately he was in a tough spot because the O line was very clearly their biggest need. Neal could be great but he feels like a reach. Burnett should be a solid Safety but he was at least drafted around where he was projected. Quarless has a lot of potential but never really starred in college. When he made a play he looked great but he so often disappeared entirely it's hard to say that he commanded attention.

Houston Texans - C+
Their draft looks decent across the board. Nothing really stands out as a huge move to take the next step. Jackson seems like he should become a starting corner in his first year. Tate will end up getting some carries in Houston's RBBC program. The rest of their picks seem like backups to me. Maybe some of them could develop into starters but nobody they selected looks like they have star potential.

Indianapolis Colts - C
Jerry Hughes is going to be a stud rotating into their DE mix which should panic OTs in their division. Their second rd pick of Angerer is solid but he doesn't feel like a Colts linebacker. He should be a contributer for year to come though. After those guys it looks like they went for a lot of depth. Which I guess you can do when you are the Colts. However, I would have invested some picks along the Oline to help keep P E Y on his feet at the end of the season.

Jacksonville Jaguars - D+
The Jags used the first 4 of their 6 picks on their D line. Which is a strategy that could pay off but seems to be really over doing it in one draft. Alualu will probably be a very solid starter for a while but grabbing him so early was probably a bad move. They almost definitely could have traded back for an extra pick or two, still gotten him, and used those extra picks to fill some of the many holes they have across their roster. Lane is another guy that has gotten a lot of hype throughout this draft process and if those two guys pan out, this grade improves greatly but throwing all their eggs in the defensive line basket like this doesn't seem like the best drafting strategy.

Kansas City Chiefs - A
The Cheifs had a phenomenal draft top to bottom. Berry is going to be a stud from Day one. McCluster should help open up their entire offense by creating mismatches wherever he lines up and generally being a threat that the d will have to account for. Areanas has playmaker ability as a CB and KR. Asamoah could be a steal in the 3rd Rd. Moeaki was a stud when he was healthy. He and McCluster should really help keep the pressure off of Cassel. I'm not saying they'll be a playoff team but they'll be a lot closer to .500.

Miami Dolphins - B
They sured up a lot of positions with aggressive players that all fit the "love football" "high motor" mold that Parcells loves. Odrick, Misi, Jerry, and Eds are all very good prospects that should crack the starting lineup soon and stay there for a long time. Odrick could become a stud in their 3-4 system. The rest of their guys might not project to probowl guys but that isn't what Parcells likes. He goes for the hard working top notch talent that doesn't scream stardom. I really like the Eds pick, I think he is going to be a very productive LB for them in a year or so.

Minnesota Vikings - B-
Not a bad draft overall but felt that they reached for Cook. He is a good prospect but the 5th overall corner at the 34th overall position seems to be a bit high considering he wasn't exactly a shut down guy in college but projects to develop into one. I'm a huge fan of Gerhart but I'm not sure how he fits into their offense. I'd think a McCluster type or change of pace guy would have been their move but I guess trying to take on the combo of Purple Jesus and Gerhart will take it's toll on defenses by the 4th quarter. Griffin dropped pretty far for his level of talent but I've heard that he really bombed his combine interviews which seems almost impossible to do for a DE. How dumb can you really be? The pick-up of Joe Webb will be a great back up to Tarvaris Jackson if Favre doesn't come back. This is why they get a B-. Not a bad draft but they have a huge hole at QB should Favre decide he is done. Why didn't they just take Clausen at 34 and let him develop if Brett comes back or fight to start with Sage and T-Jack.

New England Patriots - B-
The Pats had a good draft top to bottom but they set themselves up to have a fantastic draft and from the looks of it really missed the ball on their 2nd round picks. McCourty should be a great Pat. Gronk should be a good TE for them if he gets/stays healthy. But Cunningham and Spikes are pretty questionable 2nd Rd picks in my opinion. Both had great careers as Gators but I'm not sure they project that well to the pros. It seems like they could have gotten better talent at those positions in a pretty stacked 2nd round. Price could be their new #2 receiver if he plays well in camp. Not bad for a 3rd Rd pick. Hernandez could be the pass catching TE threat if he beats out Gronk and whoever else the Pats decide to keep at TE this year. ZRob is a great late pick to help back up Brady. He has all the tools and intangibles but definitely isn't ready to step in day 1 and be the man anywhere.

New Orleans Saints - A
The Saints really did a nice job of finding contributors all the way through this draft. Basically everyone they drafted has the ability to see the field this year in either a starting role or in some sort of rotation. Robinson joins an already young and talented CB group. Charles Bown could win the starting job at Tackle if he plays well in camp. Al Woods will be in the DT rotation this year. Jimmy Graham, the converted basketball player, is a bit more of a project because he has only played football for the last year or so but has the ability to learn from another TE from the U, Jeremy Shockey.

New York Giants - B
The Giants really put together a solid draft this past weekend by selecting good developmental players all at areas of need. The very clearly moved to improve their D and although maybe only Dillard and Jones have a chance to crack the starting lineup right away their other selections JPPman, Linvas Joseph, and Petrus all should see some time in rotation in year one. JPPman and Jones could turn into stars in a few years if things turn out well for the G'men.

New York Jets - B-
The Jets picked a few good players, 4 total, due to some trades over the past year or two in building a very real contender in the AFC West. However it was more a story of who they got rid of during the draft rather than who they picked up. The Jets traded Leon Washington and released Alan Faneca. It would be a stretch to think that McKnight and Ducasse can step in for those guys right now. Maybe in a year or two but the Jets seem ready to win now and it was surprising to see them part with those talented players at this stage. Wilson will join Revis and Cromartie to form a very very formidable CB group and allow Rex to dial up some serious blitzes.

Oakland Raiders - B+
The Raiders made some great selections in this year's draft which all still kept to the Raiders strict formula of bigger + faster = better. McClain will start from day 1 and should really help improve their defense as a whole by being able to do anything including lead their entire D. Houston should be very effective this year on their D line. The back to back OTs they got in Valdheer and Campbell could work their way into the starting lineup over the next year or two. Jason Campbell certainly hopes so. He was another great acquisition by the Raiders. J Campbell is a solid QB with plenty of starting experience and will absolutely help the Raiders offense and will certainly be a much more effective leader for the team as a whole. After speedster Jacoby Ford they took 4 more defensive players to help improve the overall talent of their defense and if even one of those guys pans out will have been a fantastic draft.

Philadelphia Eagles - A
The Eagles did a great job of going after the guys they wanted and maximizing the value potential with each selection. Graham will compete to start at LDE and will hopefully win the job. Nate Allen will also compete for the open Safety job opposite Quinten Mikell and should win that by midseason. After those guys the Eagles stocked their defense with a ton of talent specifically with fast linebackers and pass rushers. Te'o-Nesheim and Sapp will fill out the DE rotation with Sapp most likely working at WLB a little too as a pass rushing specialist. Trevard Lindley doesn't seem like he'll have a chance to start unless he really turns it on with some pro level coaching. Keenan Clayton and Jamar Chaney should really help fill out our LB group along with the acquisition of Ernie Sims. On the offensive side of things the Eagles took a few skill position guys with a chance to see the field a little bit in year one and take over full time roles in the year to come. Kafka is clearly Kolb's backup but look for fans to start chanting for Franz to start after Kevin's first soul crushing interception. Riley Cooper is a great pickup for the Eagles and will help immediately on special teams and give them the bigger receiver that they are really missing in their lineup. Charles Scott is also a bigger guy with the opportunity to develop behind Mike Bell for at least a year. Clay Harbor was one of the most intriguing TE prospects in the draft in terms of size and athleticism but wasn't as highly touted due to playing at a small school.

Pittsburgh Steelers - B-
The Steelers were certainly going after some OLB and DE pass rush help in this draft. After grabbing the top ranked C to help Rothelsomething for the last 10 games of the season they moved their focus to defense. Jason Worilds is a speedy edge rusher who disappeared at times during his career at VT. Emmanual Sanders going so early really surprised me but he does have a lot of big play ability and after losing Holmes the Steelers really needed to find someone to get down the field to take some pressure off of their interim and full time QB after they gave up a ton of sacks in '09. Johnathan Dwyer is a great pick especially in the later rounds. He was the ACC MVP in '08 but slipped due to a slower than expected 40 time and GT's unconventional offensive system. I felt they could have done more along the O line after seeing Big Ben get sacked so often last year.

San Diego Chargers - B+
Biting the bullet to move up and get the top RB in the draft was a great move for SD. Tomlinson was done last year and it really showed. There are still question marks around Sproles ability to carry the load for a full season and Matthews will at the very least be platooned with Sproles immediately. Although their 2nd pick which happened in the 3rd Rd will probably be relegated to special teams for the first year he has a ton of potential. Stuckey was a guy that many people thought could have gone in the late 2nd so getting him in the 4th was a great move. The same thing goes for Cam Thomas. He could rotate into the DT position this year if he shows well over the summer. Crompton is a solid late pick to backup Rivers. He has all the talent but hasn't put it together yet. Maybe after a few years he will and could provide some real value.

San Fransisco 49ers - A
What a great draft by the Niners. They decided to stick with former #1 overall pick Alex Smith and surround him with talent. Most clearly they made 2 huge moves along the O line in the first round with Anthony Davis and Mike Iupati. Grabbing Taylor Mays in the middle of the 2nd was also a great move. Who better to teach the athletic freak how to be a great defensive player than Singletary? The same thing goes for Navarro Bowman. He was a great athletic talent with questionable intangibles. Getting another quick powerful running back in Anthony Dixon and a great blocking TE in Byham makes this offense pretty darn talented.

Seattle Seahawks - A+
It's hard to say that rookies can come in and make a really big difference to a team in year one but this draft class from the Seahawks really has an opportunity to improve the team. Okung and Thomas are going to start right away and both have the talent to be special players for years to come. Golden Tate could turn out to have an Eddie Royal kind of rookie year if he builds some chemistry with Hasselbeck over the Summer. Thurmond is a very talented CB coming off of a knee injury and should really be able to realize that talent next year which is fine because he'd probably have to learn for at least a year anyway. Kam Chancellor is the enforcer type of Safety that seems almost neccesary with all the high flying passing attacks around the league these days. McCoy is a great all around TE that Carrol should be able to get the most out of after coaching him in college. Even their late round picks Davis, the DE from ASU and Konz the super athletic Kent State WR, have tons of upside. Although they weren't draft picks, the Seahawks acquired Lendale White and Leon Washington in the draft. Although both have talent there was a reason they were picked up for almost nothing. Carrol certainly thinks he can get those guys to prove their former teams wrong and in doing so will really bolster their rather weak existing RB group.

St. Louis Rams - A-
Bradford is going to be a special player for them if they can keep him upright. Picking Saffold at the top of Round 2 was a smart move and with last year's top pick, they should have a much improved line this year. Jerome Murphy has the potential to be a great CB in the NFL. Mardy Gilyard was a great pick at the top of the 4th Rd. Gilyard, Avery, and Gibson should make for a nice young trio of WRs for Bradford. Hoomanawanui should also help keep the heat off of Bradford.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers - A-
The Bucs shored up two positions in this draft absolutely and did a lot of work filling in holes at many other positions of need. Taking McCoy and Price back to back could be questionable but if it works out they'll be in great shape for years to come. They are probably going to ask Price to gain some more weight and be the nose tackle that plugs up the middle. Getting Benn and Williams two super talented WRs with question marks was a great move by the Bucs. These guys both have the opportunity to come in and earn playing time right away and should really try to make a connection with Freeman in training camps. Myron Lewis is another good pickup that can play either Safety or Corner for the Bucs and will probably do both in his first year. Their selection of Dekoda Watson seems like the perfect fit for Tampa speed focused defense. He should be especially effective with those two great DTs in front of him.

Tennessee Titans - B+
The Titans picked up arguably the top DE in the draft with Morgan who should step in right away to replace the loss of both starting DEs from last year. Damian Williams and Kenny Britt should combine this year to turn around the Titans almost non-existent passing game. They then took 3 defensive standouts in a row with Curren, Verner, and Johnson. If they keep hitting the big plays on offense with CJ they'll need all that speed in their defensive backfield in order to prevent teams from trying to strike back with big plays in the passing game. I also love the late round pick of Myron Rolle and couldn't believe so many teams were passing him up. He will be a stud for them.

Washington Redskins - C
After taking Trent Williams at the number 4 overall spot they didn't have another pick until the 4th round and although they should have tried to get some value there because they missed out on rounds 2 and 3 they didn't really do much all day on Saturday. Perry Riley could become a solid middle linebacker if they give him time to learn behind Fletcher. Then the Redskins took a two developmental players that don't really seem to fit. Morris, TE they'll play at FB. Austin, a WR that might be too skinny to get on the field. I do like their moves in rounds 6 and 7 to take Cook and Capers, both lineman, to bolster that atrocious squad from last year.



Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Hello and Welcome

Oh hey!
I didn't know you guys were here.

Welcome to SKOHRboard. I'm SKOHR and will be your guide for the foreseeable future here. As you can see from my picture, awesomeness is just another post away.

This blog will be dedicated to whatever I type in this space. What I type will primarily be focused on things I like/care about such as the NFL, Current Events, Science!, Tech, Horrendous Media Coverage, and other general hilarity.

My perfect grammar won't always be displayed accurately but you'll forgive those errors due to the previously mentioned hilarity. You may not always agree with my ideas but you'll be glad that I had them and then wrote them down because, "Hey, IDEAS!" Anyway, intros are lame so let's start with some posting because if there is one thing the world absolutely needs it's another blog.

Cheers,
SKOHR


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