The NFL Draft is never short on drama, intrigue, and surprises—just ask Jets fans. However, this year there were a total of eight trades in the first round, two big time prospects left on the board, arguably two players that were reaches, and some predicting the end of the ‘‘mock draft.”
No Love for Courtney Upshaw and Jonathan Martin
Every year highly touted prospects tumble from their projected landing spots in the upper shelves in the draft for no other reason than strange circumstances. Players who are at the top of that second tier of talent fall because of team needs and strange scouting. This year Courtney Upshaw and Jonathan Martin fit that title. Upshaw was a cog on a National Championship defense and a three-year starter at Alabama, but was productive every season. He isn’t a sexy player, just probably one of the most consistent OLBs in the draft, and yet he finds himself the odd man out in the run on Alabama players in the first round.
The same logic can be applied for Jonathan Martin. All he did was protect Andrew Luck’s blind side the last two seasons and is arguably the second best pass protector in the draft this season. NFL teams covet left tackles like the Jersey Shore cast does hair products, so why is Martin is still in the board?
When it comes to evaluating players, fans should tend to give their teams the benefit of the doubt. General managers, scouts, and front office personnel tend to be far more informed than most of us, yet that doesn’t mean that said GM doesn’t need to earn his fan base’s trust. Bears fans would probably apply the latter half of that logic toward their new general manger Phil Emery and his decision to draft Shea McClellin when Upshaw, Martin, Chandler Jones, and David DeCastro were still on the board. Shea McClellin is a good player, however, usually most general mangers need a bit more cache before making a reach on a player when there are other safer options still on the board.
The Oakland Raiders front office can now bask in the glory of no longer being the biggest group of wild cards on draft day. Welcome, Peter Carroll and the Seattle Seahawks. Bruce Irvin can flat out rush the passer, there is no qualms about that; yet making him the 15th overall pick on Day One screams of arrogance. Pete Carroll is entering his third year in the NFL, and while the Seahawks aren’t the easy out they once were, people in the great Northwest have to wonder if all that time in SoCal is finally catching up with him.
Last year the Texans made out with one of the steals in the draft with Brooks Reed. While Whitney Mercilus could be end being another steal—this time in Round One—after one boom year at Illinois, perhaps USC’s Nick Perry would have a smarter pick, or maybe Jonathan Martin to help solidify a line who lost its anchor when Eric Winston went to KC.
The Browns Get Fleeced
Yes, Cleveland got one of the best running backs to come out of the draft in about four years. Yes, if the Browns somehow missed out on Trent Richardson, their fans should have cried conspiracy and handed in their season tickets in protest. However, giving up fourth- (No. 118), fifth- (No. 139) and seventh-round (No. 211) picks to move up one spot in the draft seems a bit like paying retail, no? They get an A+ for being aggressive and getting one of the biggest playmakers in the draft, but somewhere in Minnesota, Rick Spielman dropped the company AMEX for a round of drinks last night.
Maybe the Rams got too cute?
The Rams played the Redskins like fiddle when they forced Washington to part with a king’s ransom to move up and grab Robert Griffin III. However, maybe they got caught reaching into the cookie jar one too many times last night. They were sure Justin Blackmon was going to safely fall into their laps at No. 6 until the Jaguars realized that the only competent offensive player on their team not named named Maurice Jones-Drew was a 5-8 slot receiver named Mike Thomas who gets more attention than Jessica Alba in a bikini. The Rams had a lot of needs, and while I love Michael Brockers and think he’s going to be total stud, the Rams traded out of securing one of the ten best players in the draft.
Fan Hub Action
Michael T Carr May 16th
Another good article, Craig Lowell.
Charlie Lobosco May 1st
This is a very compelling story because Mr. Collins is a very passionate, tough, intelligent, athelete taking on some additional responsibliity to help others as…
Scott Cohen May 1st
Charlie.. very well said.. he does have guts
Scott Cohen May 1st
but it shouldn’t require guts. .like you said it’s nobody’s business but his own
Hisham Zameeth April 30th
best player ever…..
Kareem Musa Mayowa April 29th
We don’t need to be hopeless about the situation bryant his. Because even david villa situation also up to the level of his own to…
Maritess Lim April 28th
I still believe in KOBE’s power…… He is still the best…… He will make it possible no matter what……
mimi_aragon84 April 28th
I feel no pity for him. First of all, it is EAGLE, COLORADO, not Eagleton, secondly he enjoyed success and adulation from fans from 2003…
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