2011 First Round Draft Notes

I can’t say that I’m happy, but I’ll have to give Cam Newton a chance. I didn’t want the Panthers to take him at number one, but I don’t want him to bust now that he’s “the guy” for my favorite team. I wish the Panthers took a Marcell Dareus or A.J. Green and give Clausen and Moore another shot. After all, it is rare that a QB does well after just one year. It takes time. Smart teams like the Bucs wait three years for their QB, and the Bucs were rewarded when Josh Freeman had the year he had last season.

Newton is one of my least favorite players already, but I can’t deny his athleticism. I just wish he had better footwork and was a better person. Jake Locker deserved to be picked at number eight by the Titans. He was high on their board, fits their system well, and he wasn’t a reach. There are plenty of unintelligent people that dropped Locker from the first choice over Sam Bradford the year before, to somebody values in the late teens. And why? Well, that’s because suddenly mystifying accuracy problems arose. This happens when those said unintelligent “experts” read stats- meaningless in college football- like completion percentage and don’t watch what actually happened. Locker’s receivers were terrible, and he was almost always under pressure due to an incompetent line.

Christian Ponder was a reach at 12, but the Vikings couldn’t risk waiting too long. They made a smart choice because if you think that QB can be the guy, then by all means take him. Bill Musgrave wants to instill a WCO, and Ponder is the most accurate QB in the draft and best suited for the West Coast Offense. Ponder is an early second round talent and would have been most likely off the board by the time the Vikings would pick again.

I don’t like the Saints’ idea to trade up to the first round to select Mark Ingram. You should never do that for a running back. The Patriots accepted the basically free second round choice, and they own the top pick in the second round thanks to another horrible draft-day trade by Carolina the year before. That pick is a highly coveted one, but the Pats should keep the first of their three second round choices to select Da’Quan Bowers. He’s far too talented to pass up on, and he is a first-round talent. The Pats could use a pass rusher like Bowers.

The Falcons did a nice job in trading up to get Julio Jones at number six. They knew that they desperately needed a playmaking receiver, and the choices after Jones were all developmental projects. It wasn’t a reach because a lot of teams near that pick also looked like they really wanted one of only two top receiving prospects. The other guys are all boom-or-bust players or sleepers. The Falcons got their man.

Von Miller will be a good pass rusher in this league, but he is awfully similar to a great pass rusher the Broncos already have; Elvis Dumervil. I would have taken Marcell Dareus in that spot, because the Broncos start the poor Kevin Vickerson at defensive tackle. The Bills gladly picked up Dareus, and he will form a great defensive line duo with Kyle Williams.

I thought Aldon Smith was taken too high. Smith has a lot of upside, but the 49ers would have been better off drafting Robert Quinn and then re-signing Manny Lawson. Quinn and Fairley took big drops, and the teams that took them pounced on both top prospects on the D-Line. While the Rams and Lions are set on the line and have needs elsewhere, they took the best guys available and acquired two elite prospects outside of the top ten.

Prince Amukamara also took a huge plunge, and the Giants finally have a coverage corner. Terrell Thomas is solid, but he’s a physical corner that mainly stops the run. Thomas isn’t really a coverage player. Aaron Ross and Corey Webster are poor corners, so Amukamara will greatly boost a secondary that just couldn’t cover. I love his instincts.