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I'm going to repost the link to my interview with Draft Guru Scott Wright of NFLDraftCountdown.com. I think it's something everyone should check out as he has great insight into this years draft class. Check it out here, and if you don't want to listen to my mindless banter the interview starts at the 18 minute mark. http://fourthdownonwcwp.mypodcast.com/
Some NFL News and Notes while I stream the combine from NFL.com and love every minute of it.
-Thomas To The Cowboys
Interesting fit. He'll certainly get less playing time in Dallas than he would have in N.E. or New Orleans. He's getting decent money (3 million base + incentives) for the amount of snaps he's going to play. Remember Dallas has Akin Aydolye and Bradie James already penciled in as starters.
Thomas is a better fit in Wade Phillips One-Gap 3-4, which is 3-4 defense with 4-3 principles, than he would have been in N.E.
-Grossman resigns with the Bears
Another fit I like. I just don't see Matt Ryan/Brian Brohm giving the Bears any of a better chance to win than Grossman this year. Brining sexy Rexy back gives the Bears some leverage. They don't have to overdraft a QB in the first round and can now have their pick of QB's who will be around in the middle of Round 2 (Henne, Woodson, Flacco.)
So watching the combine drills I really think that some of them have merit and some don't. Things like the "Mirror drill" for offensive lineman where they have to mirror a D-Lineman's moves and act as if they were blocking is telling. Also the 3-Cone drill where they simulate what would be pulling in Run blocking is important. 40 Time I'm Eh about, for an offensive lineman I don't think it means much. Same with bench press, guys with shorter arms are going to be able to do more bench reps but that doesn't necessarily make them a better player, in fact I want my O-lineman to have long arms. For 0-Lineman I look at the 3 cone time as well as how the move their hips.
So who's impressed?
Jake Long is the star of the combine. He's posted great scores in every drill, however I think this is where the combine starts to provide negative impact in a players grade. Long is going to be drafted as a LT. Teams are going to talk themselves into him as LT because he's such a naturally athletic guy. As a LT he's a lot more Robert Gallery than he is Joe Thomas. His best comparison is Jordan Gross, a pro-bowl RT who struggled when moved to the blindside.
I feel bad for Chiefs fans.
Other lineman I like:
Ryan Clady (not working out, best LT prospect)
Carl Nicks (really reminds me of Shawn Andrews, bad body guy with just such a physical presence and ability, I actually think he's more of a G/RT than anything else. I think he would be a great fit for the Jets/Niners if he falls to Round 2.)
Mike McGlyn (not really a stud prospect but certainly a vocal leader. If you watched any of the drills he was the guy "coaching up" all the lineman and thats certainly a nice thing to see. Also when he played the role of the "D-Lineman" in the mirror drill you could tell he was giving it his all and having fun with it. He might not be drafted to be starter but he's versatile enough to play every position on the line, he'll carve out a niche in the NFL.
A weak group of prospects this year. A quick rant though. I hate when analysts knock a TE's blocking ability. I think in past years we have seen high profile TE's who "can't" block drafted (Shockey, Davis) and all of a sudden two years in the league and their dominant blockers. I think that run blocking from the TE position is one of the easiest skills to teach/for someone to acquire. I'll always take the athletically gifted TE over the blocking not athletic TE.
TE's To Watch Brad Cottam (one of my favorite underrated prospects) Kellen Davis Dustin Keller (Buzz guy, had great combine scores) Jemichael Finley