Posted on: February 8, 2010 5:28 pm
In my previous post I outlined how the Indianapolis Colts had received so much from their rookies. I made the comparison to the 2007 Giants team that won the Super Bowl at least partially due to the play of their stellar rookie class.
Ironically enough, it was the Saints' rookies that played the larger role in determining the Super Bowl, however.
First round pick Malcolm Jenkins had a strong game after missing most of the past two playoff games with a hamstring injury. His secure open field tackling helped limit the Colts' receivers to quick catches and little yards after the grab.
The most important rookie, of course, was punter Thomas Morstead, the team's 5th round (and final) pick. Not only was it his leg that squibbed the onside kick felt around the world, he also performed well in his normal duty, averaging 44 yards a punt, pinning the Colts inside their 20 and kicking high enough to allow zero punt return yardage from Indianapolis.
Posted on: April 25, 2009 5:44 pm
I like this pick for the Saints. Jenkins can play the cornerback position. Like Moreno a few picks before, I don't care what he runs in shorts, the kid can flat play football. I like the move for the Saints in particular, because Jenkins has the ability to play free safety, as well. Had he been graded strictly as a free safety, he would have been universally viewed as a 1st round pick and the elite prospect at that position.
The Texans are now up. They have clear needs at linebacker and have long been rumored to like both Brian Cushing and Clay Matthews... Each makes sense here, with Cushing being the safer pick.
Posted on: April 25, 2009 5:38 pm
As it turns out, Brian Orakpo's final team visit was the one that mattered most, as he ends up with the Redskins. A good move for a club looking to add a pass rusher next to free agent signee Albert Haynesworth.
The Denver pick was the bigger surprise. Funny, months ago I was told that the Broncos liked Moreno, but really thought that they'd address their running back needs later in the draft. That said, I love Moreno and thought that he was among the more underrated prospects in this draft. Forget the 40 time on Moreno. He's a star and if he had a decent QB behind him, I'd already proclaim him to be the favorite to be the offensive rookie of the year. I'm that sold on him...
The New Orleans Saints are on the clock.
They could use help on the defensive side of the ball and will also consider a RB in Beanie Wells.
I see the possibilities as:
A. Brian Cushing, OLB, USC
B. Malcolm Jenkins, CB/FS, Ohio State
C. Clay Matthews, OLB, USC
D. Beanie Wells, RB, Ohio State
I've consistently projected Brian Cushing here because I thinkthe Saints are higher on him, but if it was me making the pick, I'd take Malcolm Jenkins.
Posted on: April 25, 2009 4:42 pm
Edited on: April 25, 2009 4:46 pm
As expected, the Seahawks took linebacker Aaron Curry with the 4th pick. The Browns were on the clock -- but traded to the Jets.
Looks like the pick, instead, will be the New York Jets taking Mark Sanchez... An aggressive move by the Jets, but one that was necessary considering their lack of talent at the QB position.
The Bengals are now on the clock.
The Bengals have multiple needs. They'll have to consider Michael Crabtree, especially with the loss of TJ Houshmandzadeh and the antics of Chad Ochocinco. Other areas of concern are BJ Raji and OT Eugene Monroe. There is even talk they make take a pass rusher like Brian Orakpo or RB Beanie Wells.
Ultimately, however, I believe the team has locked in on Alabama OT Andre Smith with this pick.
Posted on: April 22, 2009 1:18 am
Edited on: April 22, 2009 11:07 am
With few sure-fire prospects in this draft, many of the teams drafting within the top ten have privately -- and in some cases, publicly -- stated their interest in trading down. Few teams have publicly stated their interest in moving up, but the rarely candid Bill Belichick offered some interesting thoughts on the situation in his annual pre-draft press conference.
I don't think I have ever been in a draft where we've had the potential flexibility that we have this year. Last year, we went in with the 7th pick and 62nd pick and I felt, at that time, it would be hard to move very far from those two spots, and in fact, we didn't. I think this year, if you go by the generic trade charts-the charts everyone uses or has access to-if you just do the numbers we could probably trade a combination of our picks in the first round and get up as high as 10. We already have three picks in the second round, so we could pick anywhere from the beginning of the round until the end of the round and then a couple more picks in the third, so I think it's really important for us to know the value of the board all the way through those first 100 players and be able to know where the opportunities are or aren't, and how we can make the most of them. Again, we don't always have flexibility to trade because you need a partner on that, but I'm sure there will be some discussions there and there already have been with teams that see our multiple picks and have interest in acquiring two for one.
Belichick, of course, is not known for his particularly gabby, often light-hearted and carefree, terrifically insightful comments with media.
With six of the top 97 picks, including three second rounders (34, 47, 58) Belichick's Patriots are in position to do whatever they'd like in this draft, and the reality is, with teams so eager to move out, the Patriots could move even further up than in a typical year.
With a lot of the talk out of New England focusing on cornerback Darius Butler from Connecticut, don't be surprised if the Patriots package some picks and instead move up for Ohio State's Malcolm Jenkins. Jenkins size, physicality, instincts and versatility could make him a perfect fit in New England.
Regardless of who they target, don't be surprised at all if New England makes some interesting, aggressive moves this weekend. For all of the talk that Scott Pioli and Josh McDaniels want to make a splash in the draft to begin their new legacies, Belichick is in better position to extend his own.
Posted on: February 24, 2009 2:13 pm
Scouts would be wise to go back to the film after disappointing workouts from Georgia running back Knowshon Moreno and Ohio State cornerback Malcolm Jenkins. Neither was impressive on the Indianapolis track, but each has proven himself to be a verifiable star against quality competition.
Often it was Moreno who made the biggest plays in critical situations -- not quarterback Matt Stafford -- for the Bulldogs over the past two seasons. Similarly, Jenkins in early season showdown against USC, was arguably the best player on the field.
Each could slip to the point where they're steals...