Monday, April 27, 2015

The 2015 NFL Draft

Only a couple of days to go until the NFL Draft.

The NFL and the need for SOMETHING to talk about in the spring has managed to get this thing into one of the bigger sports soap operas around.

Every year now mock drafts and analysis by "experts" whip things up into a frenzy. Last year it was the saga of Johnny Football. This year it's a tale of two quarterbacks.

The two quarterbacks are Jameis Winston from Florida St. and Marcus Mariota from Oregon.

Winston is physically everything you want in a QB. He's 6'4", 230 lbs and has a BIG arm. He's got a National Championship under his belt and comes from a school which runs a pro style offense. Draft 2015 compares him to Eli Manning which, given the two Super Bowl rings Eli has, ain't a bad comparison.

That's the good news.

On the other side of the coin, like Eli, he's known for forcing the ball into impossibly tight windows leading to a lot of interceptions and he's not really very mobile so he's not going to be able to scramble around and extend the play.

That's the bad news.

The ugly news is Winston has a penchant for getting into trouble off the field. It's unclear whether he's actually a problem or just has a knack for attracting trouble. Either way this isn't what you want to hear when you're shopping for a franchise quarterback.

Mariota is 6'4" and 220 lbs, and can throw and run. Draft 2015 compares him to Colin Kaepernick which, given Kaepernick's inconsistency last year, could be good or bad.

Coming from a spread offense Mariota could have some issues fitting into a pro style offense right away unless he ends up in Philadelphia with Chip Kelly who is in the process of changing the NFL offensive culture. Mariota played for Kelly at Oregon so that would be a match made in heaven for the Eagles and a potential nightmare for the rest of the NFC East.

Off the field he's just about perfect. No problems, no troubles and he even helps little old ladies across the street.

The consensus of opinion is that Tampa Bay, with the 1st pick, is going to take Winston. Tennessee has the 2nd pick and has been shopping around for a trade.

Teams that have been mentioned, besides the Eagles, are the Chargers, Jets and Browns.

I don't see the Browns giving up on Manziel just yet so I don't think they're going to pay the Titan's price. I don't see the Jets ponying up either. The Chargers and the Eagles maybe.

The Chargers would probably offer Phillip Rivers plus draft choices and the Eagles Sam Bradford or Mark Sanchez and draft choices. Rivers would be the better deal than Bradford or Sanchez but I'm betting Chip Kelly of the Eagles is willing to offer more in the way of draft picks.

If they don't make a deal, the Titans should take Mariota themselves and keep working the trade angle. Either way, Mariota is the 2nd pick.

The Jaguars have the 3rd pick and will probably take a defensive player. Either DE Leonard Williams of USC or Dante Fowler Jr. of Florida. My be would be Leonard Williams.

The Raiders have the 4th pick and I'm betting they'll look for a WR to give Derek Carr an additional weapon. That could be either Amari Cooper from Alabama or Kevin White from West Virginia.

The Redskins have the 5th pick and will probably take whichever defensive standout the Jaguars didn't take.

The Giants have the 9th pick and it will depend upon who's still on the board. Way to much could happen to make any predictions.

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