Posted on: April 25, 2009 6:13 pm
Had to run to do another radio spot, but am back... The Broncos added a pass rusher, but not one of the USC linebackers I had mentioned. Tennessee's Robert Ayers is an interesting player, whose inconsistency throughout his career I find a bit disturbing. There is no denying his upside, however, and he fills a clear area of need for the Broncos.
The Browns have played the board beautifully so far and have three players available to them at #19 that many would have thought they'd consider at #5 -- WR Jeremy Maclin, RB Beanie Wells, and OT Michael Oher -- who is the unofficial "winner" of the last man standing in the Green Room...
The Browns are moving down again and the Eagles are now on the clock. This could be the RB, Wells...
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 24, 2009 9:00 pm
One of the more enjoyable aspects of this gig is talking to some of the high profile players on their "Road to the Draft." I've been fortunate to follow Wake Forest linebacker Aaron Curry and Texas defensive end/outside linebacker Brian Orakpo throughout the Combine, Pro Day, NFL Draft experience and tried to highlight some of the highpoints in a series of articles on their journey.
The third of the four-part series with Brian Orakpo was posted today, but with so much going on, the article is a little difficult to find.
For those interested, here is a link to copy and paste for Brian's take on the numerous private workouts and team visits he's had over the past month. He's flown all over the country (Denver, Washington, Houston, Kansas City, and Cleveland) over that time and has gave me some interesting details on differences with how some teams chose to work him out.
The phone call he received from Gil Brandt is an interesting one, as well...
Check it out: http://www.cbssports.com/nfl/story/
Posted on: April 2, 2009 10:58 pm
I believe the opposite.
In doing what many veteran league officials say is the cardinal sin of the NFL -- losing a young, franchise quarterback -- the Broncos have put themselves in the tougher position.
If they take full advantage of the two first round and third round picks they received for Cutler, perhaps this move doesn't come back to haunt them.
History is on their side in some ways, as the last trades to involve this many high picks occurred when the Saints and Vikings essentially traded their futures for the rights to Ricky Williams and Herschel Walker. I don't have to tell you how those trades turned out.
In reality, however, the marginal success rate of first round picks makes this quite the gamble on the Broncos' part. They had an established quarterback. Now, they're likely to enter next season with their season riding on the erratic play of Kyle Orton and Chris Simms.
With five picks now within the top 84, Josh McDaniel is building this team like the Patriots have done -- via the draft. The Broncos have given themselves the flexibility to do whatever they'd like in this draft and an awful lot of flexibility in next year's, as well.
They'll need it, because in many ways, they're starting from scratch.