Posted by Walter
17. Jacksonville Jaguars - Reggie Nelson, S Florida
Although there has been some talk of Nelson sliding down draft boards I simply cannot fathom the Jags passing on the dynamic Gator safety. At this point in the draft Nelson is one of the only, if not the only, player who can come in and make an immediate impact. And while the Jags may have more of a need for offensive playmakers, they have too many good, young players to go in that direction with this pick. Nelson projects as a safety and would be actually be an uprgrade of the departed Deon Grant, and would compliment incumbent, yet oft injured, Donovan Darius nicely.
FF- I can get on board with this. We have a young offense, although two mediocre quarterbacks. But we could use some more help in the secondary, and the rest of our defense has been pretty solid. Also, I'll take the local hero.
18. Cincinnati Bengals - Lawrence Timmons, LB Florida State
Traditional thinking tells you that this simply HAS to be a defensive pick. Although there were some reports yesterday saying that Marvin Lewis was nothing short of enamored with Ted Ginn, I simply cannot see the Bengals using this pick to strengthen their already stacked receiving corpse. With several solid defensive back prospects still on the board I could see Cinci going in that direction, but they had a ton of bad luck with linebackers in the past year and need help there. Timmons gets the nod over Beason because he is a true outside prospect, whereas Beason projects as more of an inside player where the Bengals have already invested a first day pick when they took Ahmad Brooks in the supplemental draft.
FF - Does he play defense? Yes. Does he have an extensive rap sheet? No. Well, those are pretty much my two criteria. Our defense was deficient against both the run and pass, so a linebacker should help in both respects. Although, I don't remember Timmons from that defense, the guy I recall is Buster Davis, so that makes me nervous.
The Cincinnati Kid - Cincinnati needs to take the best available player from one of three positions: cornerback, linebacker, and defensive tackle (in order of need). The Bengals had the worst-ranked passing defense in the league, and they allowed the most first downs, so I don't know as much about Timmons as I do about Alan Branch, who would probably be a more popular pick here. If Leon Hall could fall here, that would be fantastic. I've never been a huge fan of guys who move up from combine results, so I have that reservation about Timmons, as well as another possibility, Darrelle Revis. All in all, I'm happy with this pick.
19. Tennessee Titans - Ted Ginn, WR Ohio State
If the Titans look up at #18 and still see Ted Ginn on the board they might start doing backflips. Ginn fills two major needs for the Titans: a playmaking wideout for Vince Young, and a dynamic kick returner to fill in for the dismissed Pacman Jones. Furthermore, the Titans are able to fill these needs without looking desperate, which is what they'd be if they reached for either Revis or Houston at this pick. Ginn represents tremendous value, and while Tennessee still has a gaping hole in the defensive backfield, Ginn solves at least two other problems for the team.
FF - Maybe? I mean, we do need a wide receiver. And we do need a good kick returner with Pacman on the wrong side of the law. On the other hand, I think Ginn is a bust in the making. So we just spent a first round choice on a kick returner. I think I just threw up in my mouth.
20. New York Giants - Chris Houston, CB Arkansas
Speaking of doing backflips, the Giants know Leon Hall will be gone by their pick, but with the next two corners available to them this late they could not ask for better options. The Giants pass defense was abysmal last season, and they badly need an infusion of young talent. Houston gets the nod because of his unreal triangle numbers, but also because he is a much better man to man coverage guy that Darrel Revis. Revis is a bit more physical, but the G-Men love to play man coverage when they can and Houston simply fits their scheme better.
FF - YES YES YES! We are fucking desperate for help in the secondary. We were pathetic back there last year, and it cost us again and again. Getting the second CB off the board at #20 is a huge bonus. Couldn't be happier.
21. Denver Broncos - Darrel Revis, CB Pittsburgh
Ever since the tragic death of Darrent Williams, the Broncos have been telling everyone who will listen that they have had sufficient depth at the position to fill his spot without spending their first pick on a DB. Well, whether that is the case or not I simply do not believe Shanahan will pass on Revis this late in the first round. Revis is a physical corner, who is best in zone coverage and is a real asset in the run defense. In other words, if you were to create a perfect corner to play opposite Champ Bailey you'd end up with someone who looked a lot like Revis. In fact, I wouldn't be shocked if Revis was the top corner on the Broncos draft board. There is no way they'd pass him up at this point.
FF - Ugh. This pick depresses me. It's a good selection, but the situation surrounding it is just plain sad. RIP Darrent.
22. Dallas Cowboys - Anthony Spencer, DE/OLB Purdue
Word is that the 'Boys want to trade out of this spot. And they might just do that. But if not, Purdue's Spencer would be an ideal fit. The Cowboys actually do not have many immediate needs. In fact, in my view the only players left on the board who could come in and start right away are Spencer, Joe Staley and possibly Justin Blalock. From his days in San Diego we know that Wade Phillips loves to pressure the passer from the edge. He has Demarcus Ware already doing a decent Shawne Merrimen impression, but he still needs to find someone to fill the Shaun Phillips role. Spencer, a fellow Boilermaker, reminds me a lot of Phillips and can definitely fill that role in Phillips' scheme.
FF - Really? I feel like we've been drafting small DE/LB's for a couple years now (Canty, Ware) and I'm just not sure when it's all going to stop. Maybe this year our defense will decide to show up for a full season.
23. Kansas City Chiefs - Joe Staley, OT Central Michigan
This would be an outstanding pickup for the Chiefs who have gone from having the top offensive line in all of football, to one of the worst in a mere two years. Well that will happen when you lose two of the best to ever play their position in consecutive seasons (first Willie Roaf and then Wil Shields). Staley is clearly the third best tackle prospect in this draft, and he could end up being the best player in a few years. Staley is a tremendous athlete, and while he lacks polish, he has more raw potential than any tackle since John Ogden. He will need some seasoning, but the Chiefs desire to trade star back Larry Johnson seems to indicate that they may not be expecting to compete right away.
FF - Well, we lost a pair of Hall-of-Famers, so taking the OL with the best upside in the draft makes a ton of sense. Our team went totally in the wrong direction last year, but if we can continue to block for Johnson, it's probably our best shot at doing anything.
24. New England Patriots - Aaron Ross, CB Texas
Classic New Englad pick. Ross is a heady but talented player, who is very polished and ready to play right away. In my opinion Ross has the best footwork of any defensive back in this draft. The only reason he will last this long is that he really does not have tremendous timed speed. The Patriots have never shied away from a player for that reason and I see no reason for them to start now. Seeing as they play primarily zone, Ross's skills are a perfect match for the Patriots, and he could develop similarly to Ty Law and end up being that type of player. Plus, Belichick has to know that if he passes on Ross he may end up with former assistant Eric Mangini on the division rival Jets.
FF - Take the best player available, as always. Look, if Asante wants to be a bitch and threaten a hold out, we can, and will replace his ungrateful ass.
25. New York Jets - Alan Branch, DT Michigan
The disappointment of missing out of Ross will sting, but not for too long. Alan Branch is a tremendous consolation prize for Mangini and Co. Despite his draft board freefall, Branch brings a physical presence to the interior of a defensive line like no other player in this draft. I should say, however, that Branch doesn't really strike me as a nose tackle. He is at his best when he has one gap to play and can take on two blockers in protecting that gap. He may struggle initially on the nose. Of course, this pick wreaks of Vince Wilfork slipping to New England a few years ago, and that has worked out great for everyone involved.
FF - Do I love Branch? Maybe not. Do I love getting a top ten guy who slipped all the way to 25? You bet I do. He fills a need on our team, and he fills it with some serious mass. Great pick!
26. Philadelphia Eagles - Jarvis Moss, DE Florida
Another perfect fit. Moss is a super athlete, and the comparisons to former Gator and current Eagle Jevon Kears are not all that far off. Andy Reid has done a great job drafting in recent years, but the one area he has struggled with has been the defensive front. Brod Bunkley has shown very little, and developmental end picks like Jerome McDougle and Trent Cole have not established themselves. Moss is the type of athlete that can step in right away as a situational pass rusher while he learns the ropes from Kearse. As an added bonus, Moss is athletic enough to be able to drop into coverage, something that is often asked of Eagles ends in Jim Johnson's heavy zone blitzing scheme.
FF - GO GET 'EM! Johnson is going to let this kid loose like a whirlwind on opposing quarterbacks. Let's blitz them back to the stone age. Maybe this is the year where we actually draft a useful DL!
27. New Orleans Saints - Jon Beason, LB Miami
It seems like every year the Saints try and draft and linebacker, and every year they fail. Well you know what they say, fall down seven times, get up eight. Beason is a nice prospect who projects best in the middle, an area of heavy need for the Saints. While his triangle numbers are not outstanding, it's nearly impossible to ignore the success of University of Miami linebackers in the NFL, making this the safest pick for a team desperate for linebacking help.
FF - Our linebackers are an uninspiring lot, so I really love the addition of Beason to anchor things over there. Now all we have to do is avoid the endless succession of shootouts. This year, let's try to win whenever we score 30.
28. New England Patriots - David Harris, LB Michigan
A major reach here, but a guy that the Patriots have to be enamored with. Harris is a classic thumper at inside backer, and projects beautifully next to Teddy Bruschi as a two down inside backer (not unlike Ted Johnson). Moreoever, to a man every Wolverine this past year credited Harris play and his leadership as the reason for the team's turnaround. Harris is exactly the type of hard working, self made player that the Patriots love. That he fills a major need at inside backer makes this a very solid pick, even for a reach talent wise.
FF - With an aging LB corps, this makes a ton of sense. We just turned a weakness into a strength, and having a plug in the middle will really help the run defense.
29. Baltimore Ravens - Justin Blalock, OL Texas
Blalock is a big, strong, mauling offensive lineman, exactly the type that the Ravens love. Best of all, while Blalock projects best as a guard in the NFL, he could actually step in and play right tackle, where the Ravens have a major need after losing Tony Pashos to free agency. While many pundits project USC center Ryan Kalil here, the Ravens have Mike Flynn entrenched as the starter, and Blalock's versatility makes him a much more interesting prospect. This would be outstanding value this late in round 1.
FF - Ugh. The offensive line was the problem last year? Really? We are the least explosive team in history, and we're blaming the line? This is some kind of sick joke.
30. San Diego Chargers - Mike Griffin, S Texas
Griffin is a great fit for the Chargers already loaded defense. With the departure of Terrence Kiel the Bolts really need to add a safety and Griffin is by far the best on the board. As a bonus he is a very smart player, something that was missing from the Chargers last season (especially in their playoff loss to the Pats) and probably cost them a chance to go to the Super Bowl. Griffin is a seasoned player who can come in and start right away.
FF - There are a boatload of talented WR, which would have been the difference for us between a win and a loss against New England, and we take a safety? This just isn't where we fell short. We fell short because no single WR could catch a ball to save our lives. Actually, our defensive backs catching balls is exactly what ended up costing us.
31. Chicago Bears - Ben Grubbs, OG Auburn
If the Bears knew that Grubbs would be available at this pick, they may not be so eager to move up in the draft. Grubbs is the best true guard prospect in the draft, and his athleticism is off the charts for the position. Grubbs would step in and start immediately for a Bears offensive line that could really use some youth inside. With a lot of the wide receivers still available taking one might be tempting, but the Bears actually have a bevy of talent at that position already. Grubbs is not a sexy pick, but he would be outstanding value for the Bears this late.
FF - If we'd had Grubbs would we have won the Super Bowl? No? Then why take him here?! We're so fucking close, and we choose to get better in an area where we don't need as much help. I feel like we're just desperate to cover our ass in the Benson situation.
32. Indianapolis Colts - Dwayne Bowe, WR LSU
After winning the Super Bowl the Colts have the luxury of taking the best player available. Bowe fits that bill, and would team with Harrison and Wayne to form the best wideout trio int he league. With Harrison getting up there in age, and Brandon Stokely departing via free agency the Colts actually have something of a need for a young wide receiver at this spot. Bowe is a physical player who could step in and play the slot right away, and eventually replace Harrison on the outside. An added bonus is that Bowe is tough as nails going over the middle, which would prevent teams like New England from using gameplans centering around bullying the soft Indy wideouts.
FF - Wait, we won the Super Bowl and added a guy with a mid-round grade with the last pick? Yeah, you all are suckers. Can you say "repeat"?