NFL Draft Diary

By YoungArnold

Okay, so what I am going to attempt to do here is a running diary of sorts while I watch the First Round of the NFL Draft tonight.  I have no idea how it’s going to work out, but it should be fun.  Enjoy:

7:54 – I finally get around to flipping on Draft Coverage.  I begrudgingly decide to watch ESPN’s coverage, to start off with anyway.   They’ve only been covering the Draft since the minute Super Bowl XLVI ended, so I figure anything they say won’t be anything different than the things they’ve been saying for the last two-plus months.

7:56 – Noticed we have our first trade of the evening!  The Browns have moved up from #4 to #3, presumably to acquire Alabama RB Trent Richardson.  They give the Vikings their #4 overall pick, plus their 4th, 5th, and 7th round picks this year.  Were they that paranoid the Vikes were going to trade with someone else?  Probably.

7:57 – That Browns trade is historic.  It’s the first time in probably 43 years that the Browns have actually traded up in the Draft.  Congrats.

7:58 – Chris Berman is yelling.  Ughhhhhh….. time to go to see how the NFL Network is presenting thngs.

 

7:59 – I will grading the goings on as I see fit on the fly.  I’ve never done one of these things before, so we’ll see how it goes.

8:00 – After seemingly four months of hype, it finally is about to start.  Finally.  And yet we already know the top three picks.  #Drama.

8:00 – There is no way I’m going to be able to sit down and watch this for three-plus hours.  Thank God for DVR.  Seriously, there has to be a hall of fame somewhere for the guy who invented it.

8:03 – and here comes the Chancellor himself, Roger Goodell, to a chorus of boos from the hostile NYC crowd.  He declares the draft open.  The Colts are on the clock.  The crowd cheers.

 

8:04 – I WONDER WHO THE COLTS WILL TAKE??

8:05 – I like the fact that Rich Eisen is explaining that they won’t show prospects on their cell phones, as they show Andrew Luck on his cell phone.

The Indianapolis Colts select Andrew Luck, QB, Stanford

You can’t go wrong here.  This is the prototype QB they envision as the next evolution of Peyton Manning.  There’s nothing to criticize here.  The Colts still have a lot of work to do in terms of building a credible offense around him, but they have the key piece… a piece they envision as their starting quarterback for at least the next decade.

Grade:  A

8:07 – Why is the crowd booing Mr. Luck?  Radio City hates everyone.  They’re probably loudmouth NY Jets fans.

8:08 – I WONDER WHO THE REDSKINS WILL TAKE??  #excitement.

8:10 – Deion Sanders has taken a break from getting mugged by his estranged ex-wife in his bedroom to interview Luck on stage.  He’s excited.  We’ll be hearing that word “excited” a lot tonight.

The Washington Redskins select Robert Griffin III, QB, Baylor

Much like Luck, you can’t go wrong with the Heisman Trophy winner.  Mike Shanahan has been starving for a QB he can mold into an all-pro.  RGIII is just that.  They lack the offensive weapons (seriously, how old is Santana Moss now?), but RGIII seems like a perfect fit in the Nation’s capital, and considering the ransom the ‘Skins paid the Rams for this pick, he better be.

Grade:  A

8:13 – RGIII gets a much bigger pop from the crowd compared to Luck.

8:13 – Eisen just said that the Browns have already submitted their pick.  Are they so paranoid that they’re gonna lose the card somewhere in between?

8:14 – RGIII is rocking a slick powder blue suit.

8:15 – I’m still kind of baffled by this Browns’ trade.  I know they had 13 picks in this draft, but to give up a 4th, 5th, and 7th to move up one spot seems kind of steep, especially considering all the holes they have to fill.  It seems as if they did it out of fear that the Bucs would move up.

8:16 – Deion interviewing RGIII, and we see RGIII’s killer Redskins striped socks.  That kid has all the makings of a superstar.  Luck might be more polished right now, but if things fall right for Griffin and the Redskins, then the potential is seemingly infinite.

8:18 – A commercial.  Good, I can check the Rangers-Sens score real quick

8:19 – 1-0 Blue Shirts.  This pleases me, considering I picked them to win the Stanley Cup.

8:20 – Back to the Draft.

The Cleveland Browns select Trent Richardson, RB, Alabama

This is the guy they foresee as the next Adrian Peterson.  He’s a weapon the Browns oh-so-desperately needed.  And considering the brutality of the AFC North, he seems ideal for Mike Holmgren’s Cleveland Browns.  The one glaring drawback though, and it’s that it’s Cleveland… and God hates Cleveland.

Grade:  B+

8:23 – I seriously don’t know why these guys all bear-hug the Chancellor on stage.  Do they not realize he’s gonna fine the bejeezus out of them for not wearing the proper shoelaces or something dumb like that.

8:24 – Minnesota did not trade down from #4, and their pick is already in.  We have draft gridlock!

 

8:25 – WE HAVE A TRADE!!!  The Jaguars move up to #5 from #7 in a trade with the Buccaneers.

8:26 – Richardson has two kids, aged 3 and 5.  He’s 21 years old.  Hmmmm.

8:27 – The Future Los Angeles Vikings decided to hang on to their #4 pick.  It’s either the tackle from USC or Wonderlic All-Star Morris Claiborne.

The Minnesota Vikings select Matt Kalil, T, USC.

The smarter of the two possible players they could have taken here.  If they want to move forward with Chistian Ponder at QB, then they need someone to protect his blindside and they have that now in Kalil.  His brother is the starting center in Carolina, and he comes from an offensive-line factory in USC.  He’s huge, he’s talented, and should bode well when he goes back to his college stomping grounds in a few years when the Vikings move to Los Angeles.

Grade:  B+

8:29 – While typing up that little ditty on Kalil, I heard Mike Mayock refer to someone as a “pocket rocket”.  Insert your own conclusions with that one.

8:30 – The Jags also gave up just a fourth-rounder to swap first-round picks with Tampa.  Cleveland gave up 3 additional picks to move up one spot.  Hmmmmm….

The Jacksonville Jaguars select Justin Blackmon, WR, Oklahoma State

This comes as a little bit of a stretch, and it breaks the heart of the St. Louis Rams.  I thought they’d go with Claiborne, but Blackmon is the best WR in this draft.  It give the Jags a deep-threat, which is something they sorely need.  I don’t think Blaine Gabbert is the long-term solution at QB there, but Blackmon can be at very worse a very good receiver, which is something the Jags haven’t had since the days of Jimmy Smith & Keenan McCardell.

Grade:  B

8:35 – I switched back to ESPN, and now it’s telling bme the Cowboys are up at #6.  What?

8:35 – Sure enough, the Cowboys trade up to get the Rams’ #6 overall pick, giving the Rams #14 overall plus their 2nd round pick.  This screams Morris Claiborne.  That would explain the chorus of boos overheard shortly before Jacksonville’s pick.

8:37 – Jacksonville gives up a fourth-rounder to move up, yet Dallas gives up a second-rounder to move up here.  They must really want Claiborne.

The Dallas Cowboys select Morris Claiborne, CB, LSU

Described as a shut-down corner in the mold of Derrelle Revis, he’s a huge piece the Cowboys less-than-mediocre defense sorely needs.  He’s an incredible ball-hawk, and he plays the position like a wide receiver.  He’s not as electric in the return game like his college teammate Patrick Peterson, but he’s a better lockdown corner.  He should mesh well in Rob Ryan’s defense.  However he allegedly bombed the Wonderlic test, which could be a red flag.  His tackling is suspect, but all-in-all a very solid pick for Big D.

Grade:  B+

8:41 – The Buccaneers are on the clock, for now anyway.

 

8:41 – Ed Werder is reporting live from Dallas.  Is there anything this guy reports on for ESPN other than the Dallas Cowboys?  It’s like he’s Pedro Gomez’s long-lost cousin or something.

8:42 – Mel Kiper’s hair is thinning, so he has to overdo it on the gel.  I think his hair gel is made out of the tears of those fans whose teams constantly bust in the first round.  Looking at you there, Oakland.

8:43 – Speaking of Oakland, the first round tonight isn’t nearly as fun since the Raiders don’t have a first round pick (or a second-rounder for that matter).  I’m gonna miss Al Davis and his crazy draft shenanigans too.  Remember Darrius Heyward-Bey?

8:44 – Has it really been ten years since the Bucs won the Super Bowl?  Damn.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers select Mark Barron, S, Alabama

The Bucs clearly were coveting Claiborne, but with him gone they went with the next-best DB on the board.  He’s a great match-up guy though, and he was a two-time captain at Alabama.  There is nothing wrong with this pick at all.  It filled a glaring need for the Bucs as they look to improve under new coach Greg Schiano after a very disappointing 2011 season.

Grade:  B

8:48 – And now it comes to Miami, who for lack of a better term has been a trainwreck so far this off-season.

The Miami Dolphins select Ryan Tannehill, QB, Texas A&M

Okay, the Dolphins needed a QB (among many other things), but Tannehill is clearly a reach.  I understand QB is the most important position on the field, but he played more games at wide receiver in college (30) than he did at QB (19).  He’s athletic, smart, and he’s got a very strong arm, but he’s definitely going to be a work-in-progress.  He struggled against elite competition in college, and if the Dolphins insert him as their starter in Week One, it will probably be a spectacular disaster.  One thing going for him though is that his college coach, Mike Sherman, is now a part of new coach Joe Philbin’s coaching staff.  Philbin did help develop Aaron Rodgers in Green Bay, so take that for what it’s worth.  Still though, this is a big reach for a seemingly desperate franchise that doesn’t need to be.

Grade:  C-

8:53 – A loud portion of the crowd is yelling “WHAT?” after every sentence Goodell says on stage.  Detroit Larry is probably getting a kick out of that.

8:54 – Carolina’s up.

The Carolina Panthers select Luke Kuechly, LB, Boston College.

I absolutely love this pick.  This kid is just a tackling machine.  He’s the second-coming of Brian Urlacher.  In three years at BC, this kid set not just the school, but ACC record for career tackles with over 700.  That’s just ridiculous production.  He’s going to be a perfect compliment to Jon Beason in Carolina’s linebacking corps.  With Cam Newton on offense, and now Kuechly anchoring that defense, the Panthers are definitely a franchise on the rise.  I’d be willing to bet that he’ll be your 2012 Defensive Rookie of the Year.

Grade:  A

8:58 – And now it comes to the Buffalo Bills.  Since I’m still on ESPN, i’m sure Chris Berman will say something about wagons.

The Buffalo Bills select Stephon Gilmore, CB, South Carolina.

I’m a bit disappointed they didn’t go with Michael Floyd here.  However, this is the third DB taken already in this draft.  Although not as exciting as Floyd would be, he’s still incredibly quick and will do well in the return game.  Buffalo clearly wants to build a rock-solid defense under new coordinator Dave Wannstadt.  They shocked everyone when they inked Mario Williams, and now they look to add a future starter in the secondary.  He’s a smart kid, but he is a bit undersized at only 6′ and 180 lbs.  Buffalo though is a team on the rise and will contend this year in the AFC East.

Grade:  B

9:02 – Mel Kiper was getting quite annoying (SHOCKING!), so we go back to NFL Network to see the Kansas City Chefs are on the clock.

The Kansas City Chiefs select Dontari Poe, DT, Memphis.

I’m upset KC went with him, as I wanted this guy to fall to the Jets later on since he’s going to be the bust of this draft.  Yeah, he put on freakishly absurd numbers at the combine, but when you look at his on-field production you’ll find that there really isn’t any.  Great combine numbers rarely translate to on-field dominance, and if you’re taking a DT at #11 then you’re expecting him to be dominant.  Something like 5 career sacks in 3 years at Memphis??  No way someone who was second-team Conference-USA is worth the 11th overall pick in the NFL Draft.  I could tell by the crowd reaction the    loudmouth Jets fans are happy their loudmouth coach didn’t take him.  The Chiefs hope that somehow he can be the next Haloti Ngata.  The only difference though between Ngata and Poe is that Ngata was actually good in college.

Grade:  D-

9:08 – Had to pause it to catch up on everything.  Again, thank God for DVR.

9:09 – Had to fast forward through these talking heads trying to defend the Poe pick.  In doing so, I missed that apparently the Eagles have traded up to get the #12 pick from Seattle.  They gave up a fourth-rounder in addition.

9:11 – We get back to live coverage to see the Chancellor take the stage once again.

The Philadelphia Eagles select Fletcher Cox, DT, Mississippi State.

I had him significantly higher than Poe, so this is somewhat of a steal for the Eagles.  Their defensive line was atrocious last year, and Cox will improve that drastically.  A very nice pickup for Philly.

Grade:  B

9:13 – Cox hugged the Chancellor for a solid 30 seconds.  That was creepy.  Won’t do anything for him though when Goddell fines him $50,000 for accidentally sacking Tom Brady one day.

9:15 – Arizona is now up, and they have to be salivating over Michael Floyd.  If I were them, I would.

9:16 – Ughhhh… I’ve heard that god-awful Machine Gun Kelly song like three times already during commercials on NFL Network.  What is this, the hype for WrestleMania?  Back to ESPN.

9:16 – And ESPN is at commercial.  Alright.  Hockey!

9:17 – 2-1 Rangers.  I’m cool with that.

9:18 – This draft has gone by pretty quick so far.  Much much better than the days when the first round would last 6+ hours.

The Arizona Cardinals select Michael Floyd, WR, Notre Dame.

With Buffalo going with a DB, Floyd has fallen beautifully into the hands of the Cardinals, and this was the perfect pick for them.  Floyd actually had better combine numbers than Justin Blackmon, and he’ll be the perfect compliment to the all-world Larry Fitzgerald in the desert.  He was tremendously immature early in his career with the Irish, but after a couple of run-ins with the law he got his act together and shined under Brian Kelly his last two seasons in South Bend.  He’s trained with Fitzgerald in the off-season, and he sees Fitz as sort of a mentor, and now he gets to play with him.  If that doesn’t help build the confidence of Kevin Kolb then I don’t know what will.

Grade:  A

9:22 – The Rams have been trading down all night.  They’re on the clock now at #14.

9:23 – A preview for Men In Black III.  Josh Brolin’s impression of Tommy Lee Jones is plain awesome.  Hopefully it’s more like the original and less like the second one.

9:24 – I switch to hockey real quick to see a commercial for yet another movie, The Avengers.  I read an early review of it, and they gave it 7 stars out of 4.  That’s right.  7 out of 4.

9:26 – Nice to see the pace of the draft has slowed.  My fingers hurt.

The St. Louis Rams select Michael Brockers, DT, LSU.

Jeff Fisher always had a great rush defense when he was in Tennessee, and now that he’s in St. Louis he wants to pick up where he left off.  He’s huge, at 6’5” & 322 pounds.  He didn’t have great production at LSU, and would have probably been a top-five pick next year had he returned to school.  However, his presence will help free-up Laurinatis at linebacker.  A solid, but not necessarialy spectacular pick.

Grade:  C+

9:28 – Real quick we come back to Seattle now at #15

                       

 The Seattle Seahawks select Bruce Irvin, DE, West Virginia.

Who?  I’ve rarely heard of this guy.  Jon Gruden says he’s a one-trick pony, but that one trick is tremendous pick.  There were something like 26 prospects invited to New York for the Draft, and Irvin wasn’t one of them.  By most accounts, he wasn’t even predicted to go in the first round.  He dropped out of high school, spent time in jail, got his GED, and eventually wound up at West Virginia.  He must have tremendous upside, but a couple of arrests during his time at WVU (and since the end of this past season) have raised several glaring red flags.

Grade:  D

9:30 – I guess with the Raiders not picking in the First Round, somebody had to take up their mantle and reach for a guy with numerous red flags.  Thank you Seattle.

9:31 – Great, the loudmouth Jets are up.  I’m stunned ESPN hasn’t mentioned Tim Tebow yet.

9:34 – I seriously can not wait to see that loudmouth Rex Ryan thrown out on his arrogant fat ass after the Jets go 6-10 this year.

9:36 – Berman just said the Rangers won.  Yay.  But he’s also just mentioned Tebow 4 times in one sentence.  Gruden is now talking about Tebow.  QUICK.  To NFL Network we go!

9:38 – The Jets’ pick is in.

The New York Jets select Quinton Coples, DE, North Carolina.

Mayock is comparing him to Julius Peppers.  That’s a good thing.  But I don’t really care for the Jets so I really don’t care here.  Just being honest.  He’s a good fit as a rush-end in their 3-4 scheme, but my Bengals are on the clock next.

Grade:  C (?)

9:41 – going back to ESPN now that their love-affair with the New York Tebows has ended.

9:42 –  halfway through the first round in a little over an hour and a half.  Nice.

9:43 – What’s better than one Game 7 in the Stanley Cup Playoffs?  TWO Game Sevens!!  1-0 Devils.  I don’t care about this series though.  The Florida Panthers have no business being an NHL franchise.  Move them to a city that would care, like I dunno, maybe HARTFORD.  #WhalersForever!

9:44 – I should mention by now you should follow me on twitter at @YoungArnold

9:45 – The Bengals had two rookies in the Pro Bowl last year.  Impressive for a franchise whose first-round picks blow up in their face (or tear their knees to shreds)

9:46 – This is the pick the Bengals acquired from Oakland as part of the Carson Palmer trade.  Hopefully they don’t draft like the Raiders here.

The Cincinnati Bengals select Dre Kirkpatrick, CB, Alabama.

A two-year starter at ‘Bama, and another Nick Saban DB.  The Bengals did need a corner following an injury-prone season from Leon Hall, and Kirkpatrick will hopefully fit the mold.  You really can’t go wrong here, and as a fan I’m happy with the pick.

Grade:  B-

9:49 – Someone awhile back used the term “sexy” to describe a pick.  A draft pick is not sexy.  A football position is not “sexy”.  I cringe every time I hear one of these numerous talking heads say something like “Oh, he wasn’t the ‘sexy’ pick here” or something like that.  Listen to me right here right now.  The word “sexy” should only be used to describe a beautiful woman.  THAT’S IT.  A 340 pound offensive lineman is not “sexy”.  Please, just stop.  Thank you.

9:52 – The Chargers are on the clock.  GO CHARGAHS GO.

The San Diego Chargers select Melvin Ingram, LB, South Carolina.

A perfect OLB/DE for the Chargers.  He can play virtually anywhere in the front seven, and did that frequently at South Carolina.  He was probably the top overall prospect on the board at this point, and the Chargers did well by snapping him up.  They have a defense in dire need of improvement, and to take someone as versatile as Ingram they are clearly aiming to shore up a defense in a division that Peyton Manning is now calling home.

Grade:  B

9:56 – It’s gonna take a long long time to format this thing out so that’s it’s readable.  Stupid Open office.

9:58 – Da Bears are up at #19.  Probably another defensive pick.

The Chicago Bears select Shea McClellin, DE, Boise State.

Here’s another guy who can play linebacker as well as a rush end.  He’ll be an excellent fit in Chicago with is unique skill-set.  He’ll get to learn from one of the best in Brian Urlacher, and the Bears will love his motor and his knack for tackling.  Can’t go wrong.

Grade:  B-

10:01 – ANOTHER TRADE.  For the first time ever, the Bill Belichick and the Patriots trade up to #21.  They’ve already singled out who they’ll take, before the Titans’ pick at #20 has been announced.  That trade though is with the Bengals.  I wonder what they picked up to give the Pats #21?

10:05 – There’s been a run on defensive players.  Somehow, I’m thinking we’ll see another one coming up with Tennesee.

10:06 – Jon Gruden thinks everyone needs a pass rusher.

The Tennessee Titans select Kendall Wright, WR, Baylor.

So much for another defensive player here.  The Titans had other needs, but they did need to add a weapon or two for Jake Locker.  Small, but consistent and productive.  He was RGIII’s go-to weapon at Baylor, and as a four-year player in Waco his maturity should help a team with an incredibly immature WR in Kenny Britt.  Not necessarily the biggest need like I said, but servicable and should be productive.

Grade:  C+

10:09 – to loud boos, the Patriots are making their pick.

The New England Patriots select Chandler Jones, DE, Syracuse.

The Patriots were in desperate need for a pass rusher, and Jones definitely fits the bill. He’s quick and powerful, and under the tutelage of Belichick should blossom into a starter rather quickly.  He did miss a good chunk of time at Syracuse with a knee injury though, which hurt is draft-stock.  However, if he stays healthy, my gut is telling me the Pats may have found a gem.

Grade:  B+

10:12 – The speed of this thing is picking up again.  Here come the Cleveland Browns, back again at #22.  Do they pull the trigger on old-man Brandon Weeden, the former minor-league baseball player who shined as Oklahoma State’s quaterback, or do they go with another pass rusher?  Here comes the Chancellor…

The Cleveland Browns select Brandon Weeden, QB, Oklahoma State.

I guess they decided Colt McCoy isn’t the answer after all.  I’m guessing that since Kenall Wright was off the board, the Browns felt they really didn’t have much to lose with this pick.  The only glaring downside is that he’ll be 29 in October.  However, in college at Oklahoma State he beat every other top quarterback prospect in this draft.  Luck, Tannehill, RGII, Nick Foles, and even Landry Jones.  He beat them all.  His maturity is a huge plus for an organization that could use some of it, and if nothing else it’ll light a fire under Colt McCoy to step his game up.  There will be a quarterback                                   competition this fall in Cleveland, and I’m thinking Weeden will win it.  A risky pick, but could be very rewarding in a very tough division

Grade:  B

10:19 – Awesome display as they pay tribute to the men and women of our armed forces.  The crowd signing along to “God Bless the USA”.  Awesome sight.

10:20 – I had to pause it again to catch up.  The Detroit Lions are now on the clock.

10:21 – It pains me to see Calvin Johnson land on the cover of the next Madden game.  There is a curse, there’s no doubt about it.  Hopefully since Barry Sanders was the unoffical start of the curse when he was on the cover the year he abruptly retired, putting Megatron on it will unofficially end the curse.  Or, it will just double it’s effect, and Johnson will wind up breaking both his legs in a freak lawnmowing accident.

10:22 –  IT’S MEGATRON!!!!!!!!!!!!!  He’s going to announce the pick.

10:23 –  MMMMEEEEEGGGGGAAAAATRRRRRRRROOOOOONNNNN!

The Detroit Lions select Riley Reiff, T, Iowa.

Can’t go wrong with this pick at all.  We all know how injury-prone Matthew Stafford has been in the past, and to take a hoss from Iowa is just what they need to shore up that offensive live moving forward.  Iowa is a factory for farm-strong corn-fed linemen like Reiff, and he will be the bridge as Jeff Sack- I mean Jeff Backus and Dominic Raiola get older.

Grade:  A

10:24 – We’re right back, now with the Steelers.  I can’t call them S**tsburgh, so I’ll refer to them as Poopsburgh.  Screw being professional, I will call them what I want.

10:25 – I am not going to miss Hines Ward.  Not one minute.

The Pittsburgh Steelers select David DeCastro, G, Stanford.

Ughhhh, a great pick for the Steelers.  Projected in some mocks as a top-ten pick, he’s incredibly intelligent with great hands.  He’s gonna be a rock on that line for years to come.

Grade:  for them, A.  For me, F.

 

10:29 – We’re back to the Patriots again here at #25, and the Chancellor’s back.  Wait, they traded with Denver to land it.  What is this, Bizzarro world?  They’ve traded up now not once but twice.

 

The New England Patriots select Donta’ Hightower, LB, Alabama.

The Patriots already grabbed Chandler Jones, and now they move up to land Hightower. I’m sure it’s more than coincidence that they jumped ahead of Baltimore to land this guy, who was coveted by the Ravens.  The Patriots are clearly addressing the gaping holes on their defense, and with Belichick, this guy’s probably gonna be another gem.

Grade:  B

10:35 – I’m a good ten minutes behind live coverage now.  This is the quickest draft in history, despite all the trades.

 

10:36 – I’m still secretly hoping that the Raiders trade into the first round just to take a wide receiver that nobody’s ever heard of whose only claim to fame is that he ran a 4.1 40-yard-dash.

10:37 – As we fast-forward through the commercials to catch up, the Houston Texans are about to pick.

The Houston Texas select Whitney Mercilus, LB, Illinois.

Here’s another hybrid DE/LB than can play numerous positions.  He led the nation in tackles and forced fumbles last season at Illinois, and the Texans clearly envision him as the eventual replacement for the since-departed Mario Williams.  The Texans made the playoffs for the first time ever this past season, but since then they’ve lost not just Williams but also DeMeco Ryans at well.  Mercilus was just a one-year starter for the Illini, but was ridiculously productive and should transition well into Wade Phillips’s defensive unit in Houston.

Grade:  B-

10:39 – Just saw a commercial for the Manchester Derby this Saturday… Manchester United v. Manchester City for control of the Barclay’s Premier League!

 

10:39 – Had to get a soccer reference in there somehow.

10:40 – That reminds me, I was supposed to write something about the EURO 2012 Qualifiers like four or five months ago.  Oops.  I’ll do something once the actual tournament rolls around this summer, much to the chagrin of all the soccer haters that also contribute to this site.

10:41 – Back to American Football, we see the Bengals are back up at #27.

10:42 – Jon Gruden says that Mike Brown has never drafted an offensive guard in the first round before.  Interesting stat.  Says something about the ineptitude of ownership, since the Bengals have never really had a stellar offensive line in, well, ever.

The Cincinnati Bengals select Kevin Zeitler, G, Wisconsin.

Gruden called it, and I really like this pick for the Bengals.  Much like Reiff earlier, Zeitler comes from another offensive-line factory in Wisconsin.  He’s “well-fed”, as Badger fans would say, meaning he’s massive.  He’s going to shore up an offensive line that needs to protect Andy Dalton, as well as block for aging running back Cedric Benson.  Zeitler can do both, and he can do it exceptionally.  Not a marquee pick (I refuse to use the term “sexy” if you didn’t notice before), but something the Bengals needed to do as they look to improve upon a shockingly good 2011 campaign.  And with a guy like Zeitler, who can battle in the trenches in the tremendously tough AFC North, they should be able to do just that.

Grade:  B+

10:46 – Love that the Bengals used their two first-rounders on defense.

10:47 – Here come the Green Bay Packers at #28.  After that performance in the NFC Title game against the Giants, I’m thinking defensive back.

The Green Bay Packers select Nick Perry, LB, USC.

He played defensive end at USC, but can also play outside linebacker and will probably do just that in the Packers’ 3-4 scheme.  For as dominant as Clay Matthews can be for the Packers, the rest of their front seven has been quite suspect and the Pack address that with this pick.  Perry, like Matthews, is a USC guy and the two should mesh quite well in a front seven that will have a lot work to do in the NFC North.

Grade:  B-

10:52 – The Minnesota Vikings have traded with Baltmore to land the #29 pick.  I guess since the Pats beat them to the punch for Hightower, they’ll fall back and accumulate later-round picks.  Not a bad plan, but they are going to have to address the future at linebacker and safety at some point, right?  Ed Reed and Ray Lewis (aka the Wheelman aka the Boogeyman) both can’t play forever can they?

10:53 – Sure enough, Baltimore lands Minnesota’s 2nd-rounder (#35) and 4th-rounder (#98) for giving up #29 here.

10:55 – The Vikings really wish they could draft a new stadium.  The Metrodump is godawful.

The Minnesota Vikings select Harrison Smith, S, Notre Dame.

The Vikings trade up to take….. a white (white-ish anyway) defensive back from Notre Dame?  Interesting.  He’s played a lot there, but I don’t know if he’s worth trading up to get.  He’s productive, and the last decent safety in this draft.  Should be solid, but nothing spectacular.  The Vikings have many more glaring holes to fill.

Grade:  C

10:58 – Two Golden-Domers taken in the first round?  Color me surprised.

10:59 – The Chancellor is back, and the San Francisco 49ers are up.  I’m thinking the tight end from Stanford, Fleener.  Makes too much sense for Harbaugh to pass him up.

The San Francisco 49ers select A.J. Jenkins, WR, Illinois.

The Niners are really trying to give Alex Smith all the weapons possible, and this pick defnitely reflects that.  I’m shocked they didn’t take Fleener from Stanford considering how Harbaugh not only loves athletic, physical tight ends but also the fact that he coached him in college.    Nevertheless, they go with Green here.  Michael Crabtree hasn’t been the beast they have hoped he’d turn out to be, and with the defense pretty well set, this isn’t a terrible pick by any means.  He’s quick, he’s intelligent, and he has great hands.  He was pretty much the entirety of Illinois’ offense last season.The pick is kind of surprising, but not downright shocking.  Already with Vernon Davis, the aforementioned Crabtree, and not to mention the ghost of Randy Moss, the Niners are really hoping Alex Smith will have the weapons to carry them to the promised land.

Grade:  C+

11:03 – Two guys from Notre Dame, and now two from Illinois?  Okay.

11:05 – The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have traded up to #31, the pick Denver had as part of their earlier trade with the Patriots.

11:06 – Two picks left, and that’s it.  This has been quick.

11:07 – Tampa Bay was probably one of the most disappinting teams in 2011.  I thought they’d be a playoff team and flirt with 11-12 wins, and they fell off the face of the earth.  The scarier thing is that Josh Freeman regressed badly following an outstanding 2010 campaign.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers select Doug Martin, RB, Boise State.

We all know how potent Boise State’s offense has been, and he’s a great change of pace from the brusing style of Legarrett Blount.  He’s not flashy by any means, but as an undersized back with that low center of gravity, he is tough to bring down.  He actually has played on defense as a rush end while at Boise, so you know he’s strong.  He should fit nicely in to Tampa’s new offense under Greg Schiano, and he should help the Bucs bounce back to the form they had in 2010.

Grade:  C+

 

11:09 – Well it’s time for the last pick tonight.  It must suck for those couple of guys still waiting around in the green room.  It has to be a bit embarassing to get invited there only not to get picked on the first night.

11:12 – A commerical for Taco Bell and that Doritos Taco.  Like everything else at Taco Bell, the only thing it’ll be good for is a nice bout of diarrhea.

11:14 – Travis Pastrana is going to do NASCAR.  He’s going from double-back-flipping dirt bikes to driving stock cars around in circles turning left all day.  Sounds like a regression.

11:16 – We’re still behind (thanks one more time DVR), but now your reigning and defending Super Bowl Champion New York Football Giants are about to close the night out.

11:17 – They were dead last in rushing offensive and nearly last in pass defense last year, yet the Lombardi Trophy is back with the G-Men.  Funny how this game works out sometimes.

11:18 – I can’t believe I just realized this, but I think Roger Goodell is a long-lost cousin of Mr. Excitement himself, John Laurinaitis.  Only a couple people I know will get that.

The (World Champion) New York Giants select David Wilson, RB, Virginia Tech.

Incredibly athletic, Wilson will definitely improve the Giants’ abysmal run game.  He’s also a credible threat to catch the ball out of the backfield, giving Eli Manning another weapon at his disposal.  This is a great need pick for the reigning champs as the look to defend their title in 2012.

Grade:  B-

11:20 – Well, I guess that’s it.  For all the hype leading up to this (ESPN), it’s really not that exciting at all.  It’s always fun to look back though at all the busts through the years.  I’m calling it now though, Dontari Poe will be a bust.  I’ve said what I had to on that guy, but someone who didn’t produce on a regular basis at Memphis will be hard-pressed to do so in the National Football League.

11:21 –  Just realized that nobody from Michigan or Ohio State was taken in the first round, yet we saw two each from Notre Dame, Boise State, and Illinois.

11:23 – All that Draft stuff, and I kind of forgot about the other Game 7.  I may not care about either the Devils or Panthers, but damn there is NOTHING more exciting in sports than an overtime Game 7 in the Stanley Cup Playoffs, and that’s exactly what we have here.

11:24 – With the game still going on, I might as well make my game-winner picks.  I’ll take Versteeg for Florida and Parise for the Devils.

11:25 – My pick of Versteeg had nothing to do with the fact he’s the only guy on the Panthers I can name off the top my head.  #Sarcasm

11:26 – I hear loud crowd noise in Florida.  For a hockey game.  Who knew the Florida Panthers had a fanbase?  I didn’t.

11:27 – Anyway, for the sake of all parties involved, on the chance that it goes to triple-overtime I do not intend on staying up until 2:00 am to aimlessly write about it.

11:30 – I guess this is as good a time as any to say good-bye and thanks for reading, so good-bye, and thanks for reading this.  Before I forget though, be sure to follow me on Twitter at @YoungArnold, and while you’re at it also check out BVTSB on Twitter at, wait for it, @BVTSB.  Until the next time though, thanks again for reading!

One response

  1. Pingback: New Content Added: Week of April 22nd | beforevisitingthesportsbook

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