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New York Fan in South Jersey Daily Headlines

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Friday, April 2, 2010

Kelvim Escobar needs to retire, three reason why


You have to love the drama that is the New York Mets. The Mets have become the official daytime soap opera of SNY. The ladies that read this may understand a little better, so may a few of the guys who have nothing better to do in the afternoon. Come on, admit it, some of you guys out there watch the soaps.

The latest episode of 'As the Mets limp', is brought to you by SNY, and unofficially by Ace Bandages. In this episode, Kelvim Escobar gets a little character development. Escobar was signed early in the off season by the franchise. He arrived with much fan fare and, of course, was optimistic and welcomed just as optimistically.

Since that honeymoon press conference, he has not been considered close to baseball ready. We are just two days away from opening day, and the pitcher they signed to be the gap to Francisco Rodriguez for this season, all season, is now just beginning to throw. This is another reason to consider the Mets amazing. No one else would have signed this player. No one else would've considered it until he could throw and do so effectively. Not the Mets, though, my friends.

He went from having a weak and unresponsive throwing shoulder, to proclaiming that he will retire if he's not healthy by April 1st. That was the earliest April Fools joke I've ever heard of, and he sure got one over on the Mets fans and the Mets brass in their wallets. They don't see it like that however, that may be even sadder.

When asked of his opinion on how the Mets feel about his rehab, Escobar says of Omar Minaya and Jerry Manuel,

"They always tell me not to worry, they don't want me in April or May, because that's not when you win the World Series. (They tell me) they need me for a long time, to take my time and not rush myself, to be patient about things."

That's wonderful. The truth is, games are won and lost in April, May and June too. If a team loses enough of them in that time period, that team doesn't have a chance to get into the playoffs and guess what Mets brass? No World Series. Another poorly thought out concept by this franchise, like so many others before.

They never gave Escobar the proper physical, if they had they would've known he was no where close to ready and may never be anywhere close to being able to produce this year if ever again. That is a massive slip up by the Mets organization and their medical team. The same type of slip up that led to the wonderful transaction of J.J. Putz last year. Need I say more. A similar situation. We all know how that turned out, right?

It is with this in mid that I wish to make a radical suggestion. Kelvim should just retire already. Stop teasing himself and the Mets along with their fan base that he may one day get healthy enough to throw a pitch in a Mets uniform. It is the right decision for him and for the Mets. That means it will be the right decision for the fans too.

He signed a guaranteed contract. It was only for $ 1.25M, this year. It is an example of how they spend their money. They passed on Beimel, Mahay, Gaudin and several others because they felt that they had their set up man. They don't right now. Not in him anyway, and they may not even get it from him ever. I have three good reasons why he needs to call it quits now.

First, he could retire now, knowing that he has made more than enough money throughout his career to be able to live off of his reputation and contracts for the rest of his life. He could parlay that career reputation into some business adventure or a job in the media. He may even be able to properly rehab, without rushing, and come back in a year or so.

If he does that he could be in a better position to prolong his career and continue being the productive player that he is used to being, but it will take some time. That is something the Mets really don't have. At least Omar and Manuel don't anyway. Escobar was Omar's decision, as was Putz before him. The track record is beginning to pile up against them.

Second, the franchise should convince him to quit to save face. By convincing him to retire, they can end this experiment of the weak arm wonder mending and the bad press it's giving them. They, also can allow the roster vacancy he leaves to open up the potential for another player to step into the majors.

Imagine if this bullpen has Igarashi, Mejia or Takahashi in the bullpen and are able to call up Ike Davis or Chris Carter due to the extra roster spot. They are already deep enough in the bullpen with the exception of a lefty specialist if Feliciano becomes the 8th inning guy.

Otherwise, they don't need another questionable arm convoluting the bullpen question. If Omar and company can convince him to do so, and whoever takes that roster spot produces, the brass can boost their reputations and save face. By saving face, they can save their jobs.

Finally, is the age old question of going out on top or ending with a crash. He's earned his share of accolades. It's not like he has never won a title, or as if he's never performed well on the big stage. He has had a good career and has been in the playoffs. He's been a consistent player for a few years and has built the reputation of a winner.

If he tries to make it back at some point this year, he may do so, but it may be a terrible career in a Mets uniform and will hurt that reputation. If he allows his ego to get in his way, he could damage his career's perception and therefore, his financial future. If he decides to fade away, he'll probably be remembered as consistent and productive at a high level.

If he then returns in a year or so, healthy, he will be considered courageous and be honored for the effort. He will be praised for a comeback. If he fails at it, at least he was healthy. The Mets signed him, trusting him to eventually be healthy. They were taking a chance. I'm sure they knew that, but they did it anyway. I applaud the attempt, but at some point they also have to be realistic.

They must realize that the options in their current bullpen and in the minors waiting for various injuries to open up a spot for them, are better options than Escobar. However, until the Mets management does open their eyes and come to the reality of the situation, we will still be tuning into the latest episodes of 'As the Mets limp'.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Players think Reyes is being babied


Today is April fool's day. If anyone out there isn't familiar with that unofficial and ridiculous holiday, let me explain. It is a day to play practical jokes on the gullible people you encounter throughout your day. This is a day that will undoubtedly release so many off the wall stories.

I would revert back to an old saying: 'Believe half of what you read and none of what you see". I, however, would take it to the extreme today and not believe 90 percent of either of them. In fact, I swore to myself that I may not even write today. So much for that. It is with that concept in mind, that I swore I wouldn't write today unless I felt that it was believable and from accurate sources. This is both of those.

According to Yahoo sports, an unknown player on the New York Mets commented to Mike Puma of the NY Post, that the team is 'babying Jose Reyes'. If this story is true, it to me, is revealing of the Mets locker room. It tells me two things.

First, some players are not accepting of his condition. This in and of itself can be a horrible thing, but it tells me something else also. Second, the players are not on the same page with the owners. That may be just as bad. Both of those lead to division, my friends. That division causes jealousy, hatred and resentment toward one another. It is something that would rip a team apart. It would force them to play as individuals and not as a team.

Any group of players, playing as individuals is doomed to fail. If the players, or at least some of them are not understanding or patient with his condition it may cause Reyes, himself to respond by pushing harder and overexerting himself for the sake of the few compassionless ones. This would most surely hurt him in the long run.

It would lead to all types of injuries and poor play just because his ego allows him to try to prove something. Never mind his playing career, it may jeopardize his health and eventually his life all because of ego. That speaks volumes to me of where particular players stand on matters of truly caring about a human being. Whether intentional or not, this is most definitely a technological Freudian slip.

The second point, may be a little deeper. I believe it was said in an interview with Jeff Francoeur, that the Mets wanted classy guys for the organization. That is why they chased after Jason Bay. That is the page that the owners and rest of the brass are on. It would appear that it is not the page the players are on. That team division or disunity wins last place in any league where I come from.

If they wanted stand up guys, they need to penalize the player who stood up and didn't allow his identity to be revealed. Maybe then, the players would understand that they have to be held accountable for not only their words, but their image as well. They are a reflection of the team and therefore, a representative of it. They can't afford to spout off at the mouth like verbal diarrhea. They are ambassadors not only to the Mets in general, but to the sport of baseball as a whole.

That is the deeper issue to this point. It stems from some current players not completely understanding or caring about that. The health of the sport. It is an important issue that goes far beyond the reaches of one comment or one story that breaks as a result of such a comment. It is telling. The sheer thoughtlessness is telling of the mindset of the average player. That is what is so very disheartening to me about this.

It is a revealing statement that the player didn't even have the character to be revealed over because he probably knew the outcome. Then why say it to begin with? Why say something that you may realize while you're saying it could cause irreparable damage to your peer and your employer? Isn't it bad enough this team can look foolish on their own? Does this player really need to make them look even more so? On April fool's day, no less?

I hope it's a joke. In fact, I'd rather it be a joke so I can still believe that the players in that locker room are decent and thoughtful. If not, then it will be a very long season. Especially if they begin to struggle, then I'll be more interested in what the 'baby' is doing, than the one who thinks he's being treated that way.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

NY Fan's fantasy tips part 3, sleepers and rooks


This is the final part of my fantasy baseball tips series. I would like to discuss the fantasy sleepers and the rookies to watch. Before I can, however, I want to define a 'sleeper'. There are two types.

The first is what I like to call the known sleeper or type 1. It is a player who could be drafted and probably will be. They are not the elite of the league, but they are stars to their local fan base. They could also be players who are not stars, but are better known to the average fan. The second type is what I call unknown sleepers or type 2. They are the players on the rise. The ones who can produce, are going to get the opportunity and are not known to your average fan.

With that understood, let's begin with the everyday sleepers.

1. Robinson Cano, NYY -type 1. His '09 was productive and he has been on the rise for a few years now. Every year he's considered a potential stud, but hasn't panned out until last year. He may finally be getting it. A .320 avg, with 25 hr's and 103 runs scored is just the beginning. He could have a great year and is a top sleeper choice.

2. Ben Zobrist, TB -type 1. He had an outstanding '09 season and was a type 2 sleeper surprise. The stats don't lie, 27 hr's, 91 rbi's. Now the baseball community has him on their respective radars. He is a definite type 1 sleeper now as he will be taking no one by surprise this year. In fact, he will be sought after.

3. Michael Cuddyer, MIN -type 1. His '09 was solid. He had 32 hr's, 94 rbi's and scored 93 runs. He is on a team that boasts Joe Mauer and Jason Kubel. His '10 could be just as good and outside of Minnesota, many people don't know him.

4. Placido Polanco, PHI -type 1. He had a good '09, but not great. His 10 hr's, 82 runs and 72 rbi's were okay, but his new home and the new lineup he is in, will bump them up significantly. In Philly, I expect 15-20 hr's couldn't be out of the question. Also, he could break 100 in rbi's and runs scored easily. He will supply big production.

5. Andre Ethier, LAD -type 1. His '09 stats include 31 hr's and 106 rbi's. A good line for a good young player. He is making his name and his mark very quickly. With Manny Ramirez playing a full season in LA, he could benefit even more.

6. Jorge Cantu, FLA -type 2. I was tempted to name him a type 1, however he is only truly known by fantasy baseball, NL East and Marlins fans. That will change this year. He will be drafted higher this year, but still is a relative unknown to the average fan believe it or not. He had 16 hr's and 100 rbi's last year. He now is a starter and is gaining a level of comfort. Watch out, those numbers should soar.

7. Jay Bruce, CIN -type 2. The statement I made in regards to Cantu could apply to Jay Bruce as well. Only fantasy fans, NL Central and Reds fans know him. He had only 101 games in his first season, but provided 22 hr's and 58 rbi's after his mid season call up. It will be interesting to see what he could produce in a full year.

8. Chase Headley, SD -type 2. Headley is an up and coming hitter that is only really known on the west coast. His stats are deceiving. His '09 included 12 hr's and 64 rbi's. Now that's not very impressive, but could be a sign of things to come. He is still learning to hit and with hitters like Adrian Gonzalez in the lineup, he will only get better.

9. Gordon Beckham, CHW -type 2. Beckham had a good '09 season with 14 hr's and 63 rbi's. He is a solid player with good potential. He could be the true definition of a sleeper. He will have a better season than last year now that he is a fixture in the lineup.

10. Elvis Andrus, TEX -type 2. Andrus is a good, young player with great speed and massive potential. His 33 stolen bases last year are just the start. He is learning to hit and could be an outstanding player in the league sometimes soon. For now, he is worth getting for the runs and stolen bases. Keep your eye out, though, he'll produce more than that before you know it.

Honorable mention for everyday sleepers: Casey McGehee -MIL type 2. he is a young and solid hitter with good upside, Emilio Bonifacio -FLA type 2. he could be an outstanding leadoff hitter if he learns patience, Daniel Murphy -NYM type 1. if he is the starter than he can develop into a good hitter even if the hr's don't come quickly.

Sleeper starters:

1. David Price, TB -type 1. Price is well known from his over exposure two years ago in the World Series. His first true season was productive having a 10-7 record in 23 starts while tallying 102 k's. This should be a full year and bigger numbers.

2. Kevin Millwood, BAL -type 1. Millwood had a good season with Texas, compiling a 13-10 record, with 123 k's and a 3.67 era in 31 starts. Most of his starts are quality starts of at least 5 innings minimum each. He may get drafted, but it will be late. He's worth it.

3. Rich Harden, TEX -type 1. The man Texas signed to replace Millwood, had a decent to good '09. He sported a 9-9 record with 171 k's. He had a 4.09 era in 26 starts in Chicago's famed, windy Wrigley Field. With the offense Texas possesses, his record could improve.

4. Cole Hamels, PHI -type 1. Two years ago, when the Phillies won the World Series, Hamels was the premier pitcher of the rotation. Last season, he fell to the number two man half way through the year behind Cliff Lee. This year he remains in that role behind probably the best pitcher in the league in Roy Halladay. He had decent numbers last year, a 10-11 record, 4.32 era with 168 k's in 35 starts. He could benefit from the experience of Halladay, but needs to be more consistent, even in Philly's small ball park.

5. Jair Jurrjens, ATL -type 2. Jurrgens is a fantasy sleeper to the core. For the past few seasons, he has usually been undrafted and whoever picked him up benefited. I did last year and he responded with a 14-10 record, 215 innings pitched, 152 k's and a 2.60 era. That's production from a secret workhorse.

Honorable mention: Mike Pelfrey -NYM type 1. If he comes around he could be good, Bronson Arroyo -CIN type 1. he could be traded but either way is solid, Scott Feldman -TEX type 2. had a fantastic rookie year and the sky's the limit.

Sleeper relievers:

1. Leo Nunez, FLA -type 2. Nunez took over as the interim closer last season after a few injuries to others in their bullpen. He never truly relinquished that role. He is now the official closer after a season of 26 saves. That will get you a closer's role. He has a good team around him and can get even more opportunities to produce and improve on his numbers.

2. Jason Frasor, TOR -type 2. He will be competing with Scott Downs for the closer job. He may get his chance at it as confidence in Downs' health is shaken. In limited chances last season, Frasor had 11 saves and a 2.50 era. He is worth keeping tabs on, but maybe not drafting until it is certain who the Blue Jays closer will be starting the season.

3. Joel Zumaya, DET -type 1. Zumaya should be the opening day closer for the Tigers. It will be the first time being named to that role for him. But the Tigers like what they have seen for the last couple of seasons. He notched 1 save and had 30 k's, 34 walks in 31 innings. Not bad, but he needs to improve if he's going to be the elite closer they hope for him to develop into.

Honorable mention: Andrew Bailey -OAK type 2. The south Jersey native had a great season and should be more solid this year, Rafael Soriano -TB type 2 will most likely be the closer and is capable of being a good closer.

Rookies to watch for this year:

1. Carlos Gonzalez, COL -type 2. Gonzalez is a solid left-handed hitter with a potential to be a 5 tool ability player. He will most likely be on the major league roster on opening day. If he starts, he may be worth the pick.

2. Aroldis Chapman, CIN -type 1. Chapman was signed out of Cuba this off season with much fanfare. He is a hard throwing left-hander who has massive upside. He is competing for the fifth starter role, but even if he doesn't get it, he'll probably be in the majors at some point this year. He's not worth a draft pick, but he's worth following.

3. Jason Heyward, ATL -type 2. He is just becoming known to the fans. He will not be unknown for long. His potential power and left handed swing makes him exceptional. He's going to be in Atlanta from the first day.

Honorable mention: Chris Carter -OAK type 2 and has solid potential and he's not the one from the Mets, Jennry Mejia -NYM type 1 due to the fanfare and may be in the majors from the start.

I certainly hope all the info in this series helps someone that it wouldn't have before. Good luck to all of the fantasy baseball players this year. Let's hope for a good and healthy season.

NY Fan in South Jersey's NFL Mock Draft part 6 of 6, picks # 5 - # 1


This mock draft that I have been working on now for nearly a month, is almost at an end. I will be revealing my final five picks in just a moment. Before I do, however, allow me to recap the past five parts of the series which have given us the final twenty seven picks of the first round.

#32 Saints-Sean Lee (LB)
#31 Colts-Dan Williams (DT)
#30 Vikings-Patrick Robinson (CB)
#29 Jets-Taylor Mays (FS)
#28 Chargers-Joe Haden (CB)
#27 Cowboys-Earl Thomas (FS)
#26 Cardinals - Sergio Kindle (LB)
#25 Ravens - Cam Thomas (DT)
#24 Eagles - Brandon Graham (DE)
#23 Packers - Carlos Dunlap (DE)
#22 Patriots - Arrelius Benn (WR)
#21 Bengals - Golden Tate (WR)
#20 Texans - C.J. Spiller (RB)
#19 Falcons - Bruce Campbell (OT)
#18 Steelers - Maurkice Pouncey (C)
#17 49ers - Vladimir Ducasse (OT)
#16 Titans - Jared Odrick (DT).
#15 New York Giants -Rolando McClain (MLB)
#14 Seahawks - Mike Iupati (OG).
#13 49ers - Derrick Morgan (DE).
#12 Dolphins - Anthony Davis (OT).
#11 Broncos - Eric Berry (FS).
#10 Jaguars - Trent Williams (OT)
# 9 Bills -Sean Weatherspoon (OLB)
# 8 Raiders -Russell Okung (OT)
# 7 Browns -Dez Bryant (WR)
# 6 Seahawks -Jason Pierre-Paul (DE)

With that done, let the first five overall picks, and final part of this series, commence.

#5 Kansas City Chiefs, OT -Bryan Bulaga (Iowa). The Chiefs, with a 4-12 record, and their fans had a hard 2009 to endure. The season started with some promise as the team signed their franchise QB in Matt Cassel. This was after his '08 season, nearly taking the Patriots to the playoffs while filling in for Tom Brady.

The team ended their relationship with controversial and ultra successful running back Larry Johnson in midseason. The void that was left by Johnson was ultimately filled by Jamaal Charles. They had a solid year from the receiver core led by the up and coming Dwayne Bowe. The defense has some questions even after resigning Mike Vrabel.

They can't get to the opposing QB, so they may give up big plays as a result. This is a way they could go. By this pick, the defensive players they may be looking into, may be gone. There will still be decent pass rushers available by their next pick in round two. They have another equally important need.

The offensive line can't stop an oncoming pass rush and therefore, Matt Cassel spent too much time on his back and making avoidable mistakes. They need to protect him or they will suffer injuries and ineffective execution. Due to the players they want being off of the board, they will go with a offensive lineman.

Bulaga
may be the best in the draft. He has the size (6'5"), weight (315 lbs) and strength to be an anchor on the blind side for years to come. He is a solid blocker in both phases of offense and has good mobility with strong hands. His biggest problem is speed coming off of the snap. This is workable with time and training. If the Chiefs choose him, they will not regret it. They will have a key component that will be the strength of their line for years.

#4 Washington Redskins, QB -Jimmy Clausen (Notre Dame). The Redskins had a very interesting past season which resulted in drastic changes. Those changes will continue to trickle down into the draft. The team finished 4-12 last season. A record that resulted in the search for a new head coach.

Enter Mike Shanahan, the multiple Super Bowl winning, QB guru. It is a good hiring for the franchise, but a sign of change to come. First the team cut ties with numerous players including Fred Smoot, Antoine Randle El, and Cornelius Griffin.

It also meant the addition of some new faces like Rex Grossman and the previously mentioned Larry Johnson. The signing of Grossman is an interesting one. It may mean that the new regime isn't sold on Jason Campbell. Never mind that they don't have a good line to protect him, his inability to make the needed plays may not only cause the team to draft a potential replacement, but could cost him his immediate job.

Grossman may very well be a transitional move for the team until whoever Shanahan drafts is ready to take the reigns. A new coach almost always takes his own franchise QB, unless they have one already. Rarely will a team have a new coach unless they have struggled. The Colts are one of those exceptions. They are not the norm, however, the Redskins are.

Shanahan takes over the rebuild and will start with a QB that he feels will make the smoothest transition. That whoever is Jimmy Clausen. He has the arm strength to make most throws in the NFL and the experience in a pro-style system at Notre Dame which should all help in the transition to next level. He sees the field well and can fake out defenders well also. He makes good decisions and has the heart of a leader.

His only questions are locker room presence and pocket presence. He must develop and use that head clock that all QB's must possess. He still needs to mature some and develop his personality to be less brash. Otherwise, he could be a good fit if he can slow the game down at the next level. Overall, he has the potential to be an excellent choice.

#3 Tampa Bay Buccaneers, DT -Ndamukong Suh (Nebraska). The Buccaneers had a bad season (3-13) and have fallen a long way from the Super Bowl season and playoff expectations just a few years back. They have several questions. Most importantly is at QB.

Josh Freeman has emerged in the latter part of last season to become the starter. They may give him the job to begin this season and evaluate the position if he falters. It is because of that mentality, that they will not take a QB. They need another wide receiver despite trading for Reggie Brown. They need another LB to go with Ruud.

Even more, they need to have another pass rusher. They currently have Chris Hovan and Stylez White who combined for 7 sacks. They need depth and youth at that defensive middle to pair with Hovan. The other players they may have on their radar could be gone by this pick. They may also be pleasantly surprised that one of the top draft prospects will fall to them here.

That prospect is Suh. He is 6'3", 295 lbs. He has the size, strength, balance and agility to be a force in the interior defensive line for any team that takes him. He is still growing into his frame and will be even stronger as the years progress. His lack of foot speed (5.0 dash) is made up for by his instincts and his intellect on the field. His only downside is that he doesn't consistently maintain his gap assignments.

He can fix this with the right training and experienced players around him to teach him to properly adjust the the next level. He is projected by many to be a perennial pro bowl selection in the years to come. In the right system and the right veterans around him, he will be. This is the team that he can most effectively make an impact with from his first day.

#2 Detroit Lions, DT -Gerald McCoy (Oklahoma). The lovable and laughable Lions had another bad year (2-14) in a string of many consecutive bad years (combined 2-30 in last two years). They drafted a franchise QB in Matt Stafford, who played well but had an injury. He'll bounce back and will be a good player for this team in the years ahead.

They also have a talented WR in Calvin Johnson who is a future pro bowl selection just waiting to happen. They have a decent run game led by Kevin Smith, that could always use some more help, but that is not their biggest hole. The defense is. They don't have an effective pass rush or a solid secondary. The secondary had a few established players on it, but without a pass rush to force the opposition into hurrying the ball, those established players were ineffective.

The pass rush is paramount for this defense and this team for them to have any chance to climb out of the deep and desperate hole they've dug for themselves over the years. McCoy is a step in the right direction. He could go first overall to the Rams, but they have many more pressing questions. He will most likely drop to the # 2 pick.

He is strong and has a consistent motor. He has the size (6'3", 300 lbs) to adjust to the NFL and the instincts to excel in it. He is versatile, playing both end positions and tackle. He possesses good balance and techniques to shed blocks. His experiences on the big stage will help him bring instant leadership and credibility to a young, struggling team.

His weaknesses are few, but the one that stands out is his lack of effectiveness against double teams. He will need help on the front line to avoid repeating this trend, but with an aggressive playcaller in Gunther Cunningham, he should excel here.

He is the best defensive player in the draft, possibly the best overall considering the class. He is the best player on the best position group in the class. For, Detroit, he is a no brainer and an immediate attitude adjustment for a team that needs one.

#1 St Louis Rams, QB -Sam Bradford (Oklahoma). The Rams are the very first pick in this years draft for one simple reason. They didn't trade to get it, they didn't benefit from another team signing one of their own. They were the worst team in the entire league (2-14 record) and there are may reasons why. There are just as many questions.

Steve Spagnuolo is a defensive minded coach. He has had success at this level as a coordinator but is still looking for that success at the helm of a franchise. With that in mind, he was able to add a few former players in Fred Robbins and Kevin Dockery to help that defensive line and the secondary and Darcy Johnson at TE to help block and open up the passing attack.

The rushing attack is fine, led by Steven Jackson, but it is that passing attack that is the key. It doesn't have a clear leader. Therefore, the team does not have a clear leader. They need to find their franchise QB and the ones they currently have are not it. Bradford could be though.

He is a leader with big game experience. He has the height (6'4") to see the field and the accuracy to exploit mismatches. He has a quick release and calmness in the pocket that helps him stay in control. His poise is a major reason to his success at the college level and his competitiveness made him an instant leader on the field.

These are all characteristics that are essential to the pro level. He can use these to become an elite passer in the NFL. He needs to make a few small adjustments however. He has had shoulder injuries in his collegiate career, therefore must prove himself healthy and stay that way. He must feel the pass rush better as a result.

He must make the proper adjustments to dropping back to pass rather than passing out of the shot gun spread formation. If he can make these adjustments, he could be a solid choice for them. He has the most upside of any of the players for this position in the draft. He can arise from this mid talent draft class as the best immediate impact player for his new team.

Let's recap the entire first round then,
#32 Saints-Sean Lee (LB)
#31 Colts-Dan Williams (DT)
#30 Vikings-Patrick Robinson (CB)
#29 Jets-Taylor Mays (FS)
#28 Chargers-Joe Haden (CB)
#27 Cowboys-Earl Thomas (FS)
#26 Cardinals - Sergio Kindle (LB)
#25 Ravens - Cam Thomas (DT)
#24 Eagles - Brandon Graham (DE)
#23 Packers - Carlos Dunlap (DE)
#22 Patriots - Arrelius Benn (WR)
#21 Bengals - Golden Tate (WR)
#20 Texans - C.J. Spiller (RB)
#19 Falcons - Bruce Campbell (OT)
#18 Steelers - Maurkice Pouncey (C)
#17 49ers - Vladimir Ducasse (OT)
#16 Titans - Jared Odrick (DT).
#15 New York Giants -Rolando McClain (MLB)
#14 Seahawks - Mike Iupati (OG).
#13 49ers - Derrick Morgan (DE).
#12 Dolphins - Anthony Davis (OT).
#11 Broncos - Eric Berry (FS).
#10 Jaguars - Trent Williams (OT)
# 9 Bills -Sean Weatherspoon (OLB)
# 8 Raiders -Russell Okung (OT)
# 7 Browns -Dez Bryant (WR)
# 6 Seahawks -Jason Pierre-Paul (DE)
# 5 Chiefs -Bryan Bulaga (OT)
# 4 Redskins -Jimmy Clausen (QB)
# 3 Buccaneers -Ndamukong Suh (DT)
# 2 Lions -Gerald McCoy (DT)
# 1 Rams -Sam Bradford (QB)

There you have it. My opinions on how the draft will shake out. I began this series a few weeks ago. People were calling me crazy for some of my picks. I had this order from day one. People have said I'm nuts for having the Rams take Bradford, especially with Clausen available and the combines and free agency factoring into the equation.

The hoopla of the combines has passed and now the dust is starting to settle. The teams are starting to become a little more predictable. I wrote this order when they were not so predictable. I may be right on many, or wrong on many.

Either way, I will be right on some, just like the so called 'experts' who always make multiple mock drafts. I've made only one. Let the debate begin and we will all see who is closest in April.
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