2010 Draft Diary: Rounds 2/3

NFL DRAFT

Welcome to Day 2 of the 2010 NFL draft. The Rams have just been placed on the clock. Today the analysis may not be as in depth as the picks will be coming off the board quite a bit faster. The Rams still have a lot of needs, so it wouldn’t be a surprise to see them trade down.

The big fish still on the board are Jimmy Clausen and Sergio Kindle. Those are the players who unexpectedly tumbled out of the first round. The Rams seem to be waiting until the last minute hoping someone will give them a king’s ransom for the pick. Given that they’ve had a full day to field offers, they should have worked something out by now.

PICK NUMBER 33 — St. Louis selects: OT Roger Saffold from Indiana.

Good, good pick. Alex Barron is the kind of LT who would get a franchise QB killed. He certainly contributed to Marc Bulger getting his brains beat in the last few years. Alex Barron led the NFL in penalties and allowed his QB to be splattered on the turf 22 times. Hopefully Saffold is ready to start from day one because they’ll need him.

The Vikings need to take Clausen here. Brett Favre will not play forever, and as long as Minnesota is a good team they won’t have access to top level QB’s in the draft. Don’t look a gift horse in the mouth Minnesota.

PICK NUMBER 34 — Minnesota selects: DB Chris Cook from Virginia

And a bit of a reach. He was thought of as a late 2nd, early 3rd pick. Again all of the talking heads are very positive. I think their drinks have been spiked with lithium. Cook does fill a need as Cedric Griffin is by far the weakest link on that defense. QB’s completed 69.9% of their passes when they threw at Griffin. Unfortunately for Viking fans I think they’ll be using Cook to replace Antoine Winfield rather than Griffin.

PICK NUMBER 35 — Tampa Bay selects: DT Brian Price from UCLA

Oh my. Tampa Bay came into this draft with a dire need for defensive tackles. They’re walking away with two good ones. Chris Hovan and Ryan Sims can pack their bags. Kiper is correctly pointing out that the Bucs have poop on a plate as their wide receivers. Good pick, but perhaps Golden Tate would have helped Josh Freeman out a bit more. Michael Clayton, Maurice Stovall and Reggie Brown are the current top 3 WR’s. Ouch.

Now will KC reunite Clausen with Charlie Weis? Seems like a perfect spot for him.

PICK NUMBER 36 — Kansas City selects: RB Dexter McCluster from Mississippi

Now, I like Dexter McCluster. He was the most talented player on the field in several games I watched last year. He’ll be a good back that can give you 10-15 great plays a game. But what is Kansas City thinking? That’s the same thing Jamaal Charles gives you and they acquired Thomas Jones in the offseason. Ok, let’s just pretend that your Offensive line is not an atrocious mish-mash of misfits who crippled the offense last year. I don’t see that plan backfiring at all. C Rudy Niswanger, RG Mike Goff, RT Ryan O’Callaghan and LT Branden Albert are all very poor players right now. LG Waters is average and nearing the end of his career. But no, you’re good KC. Stand pat!

PICK NUMBER 37 — Philadelphia selects: S Nate Allen from South Florida

This addresses Philadelphia’s need for a Safety. They have to be happy he was here for them to snag. He should take Macho Harris job without too much trouble.

Steve Young and Mel Kiper are about to start throwing haymakers over the term “ready to play.” Steve Young seems to think there’s no such thing and Mel wants to rip off Young’s toupee and stomp on it for being a nit-picky prick.

PICK NUMBER 38 — Cleveland selects: S TJ Ward from Oregon

Amazing. Jimmy Clausen’s fall has reached epic proportions. I can’t help but think the Browns have their eye on a QB in the 2011 draft.

This pick is a rather large reach as not many people expected him to go in the second round. Safety does fill a huge need for the Browns. Assuming Ward is ready to play, they’ll need him. Not a bad pick, but it’s astounding that they are going to stand pat with Seneca Wallace and Jake Delhomme. They’ll be picking in the top 10 next year if they stick with their QB’s.

And we have a trade! The Bucs are back on the clock. They have to be addressing their wide outs…right?

PICK NUMBER 39 — Tampa Bay selects: WR Arrelious Benn from Illinois

A nice aggressive move by Tampa. They saw a player they liked and went back into the second and got him. He easily becomes the best WR on the Bucs roster.

PICK NUMBER 40 — Miami selects: LB Koa Misi from Utah

Great pick. This addressess Miami’s biggest need – OLB. Misi is a good fit for them. He’s not going to be a big sack threat but he should be a solid player who can see the field early. It’s not like there’s anyone in his way with Jason Taylor and Joey Porter gone.

We’ve now reached the point of the draft where the picks aren’t important enough to interrupt their interviews and rambling arguments.

PICK NUMBER 41 — Buffalo selects: DT Torrell Troup from Central Florida

The Bills got a nose tackle to help their transition to the 3-4. It’s a sensible pick. Kyle Williams is smallish for a nose tackle and Troup has experience tying up blockers in college.

PICK NUMBER 42 — New England selects: TE Rob Gronkowski from Arizona

Tight end is a major need for New England. Alge Crumpler is all they really have and well, old gray mare ain’t what she used to be. Gronkowski should start immediately so long as his back really is fine.

Teams are really drafting for needs at this point, and doing a rather good job of it.

PICK NUMBER 43 — Baltimore selects: LB Sergio Kindle from Texas

Finally, someone takes the plummeting Longhorn. Kindle has fallen due to concerns that he may need microfracture surgery and may miss the season. Baltimore is gambling here, but he has a huge amount of talent. If he is healthy, Baltimore should be charged with grand larceny. He can push Tavares Gooden to start on the right side right away.

PICK NUMBER 44 — Oakland selects: DT Lamarr Houston from Texas

Steve Young seems to be under the impression that this will make the Raiders have a good defense this year. Sorry, Steve. But two rookies does not a defense make. Houston will probably start out in a rotation with Tommy Kelly and Desmond Bryant. It’s a decent pick by Oakland, but I’m surprised that Al Davis was able to resist Bruce Campbell here. He has measurables, Al! Measurables!!! Another pick has passed without Oakland adressing its biggenst need in OT. At a certain point all that will be left is projects who won’t provide any immediate help.

PICK NUMBER 45 — Denver selects: OG Zane Beadles from Utah

Denver will definitely use Beadles as a Left Guard. They’re set with Ryan Clady and Ryan Harris at Tackle. Beadles is a four year starter who plugs a gaping hole on the inside for Denver.

PICK NUMBER 46 — New York Giants select: DT Joseph Linval from East Carolina

Umm…Linebacker? I think the Giants are planning on pioneering the 6-1-4 defense. They have only one starting quality linebacker in Michael Boley (and even that is being generous) but now have a roster stuffed with defensive linemen (Osi, Kiwi, Tuck, Cofield, Robbins, Canty, Pierre-Paul). I get it. The Giants know what side of the bread they’ve got buttered and want to keep it that way. But at some point don’t you need someone with a pulse to replace Antonio Pierce?

We have another trade. The Cardinals are on the clock. We may finally see a QB!

PICK NUMBER 47 — Arizona selects: LB Daryl Washington from TCU

But it was not meant to be. Washington should be an upgrade over the recently signed Joey Porter who is well past his expiration date. Washington is a good pick for the Cardinals.

PICK NUMBER 48 — Carolina selects: QB Jimmy Clausen from Notre Dame

Carolina has gotten an absolute steal. Insurance in case Matt Moore doesn’t pan out in the form of a highly accurate QB who will have a chip on his shoulder. I’m amazed Clausen lasted this long. Great pick. A lot of people irrationally dislike Clausen, but every time I saw him play he was making accurate throws and dragging his team into games that the rest of the team was doing its best to lose.

PICK NUMBER 49 — San Francisco selects: S Taylor Mays from USC

Great value here. Mays is an upgrade at either Free Safety or Strong Safety for San Francisco. Michael Lewis and Dashon Goldson are both poor players. Mays’ speed and hitting ability will be a welcome addition to San Fran, even if he has some deficiencies in coverage. Mike Singletary is trying to create a team that will leave opponents battered and bruised after a game. Mays will give him that.

Todd McShay is explaining how Jimmy Clausen has to be a very happy man right now since he was drafted by Carolina. I beg to differ. He’s going to get a pittance of a contract compared to what he would have had in the first round. I’m betting he’s slightly less than happy. But thanks anyway McShay.

PICK NUMBER 50 — Kansas City selects: CB Javier Arenas from Alabama

After a strong start with Eric Berry the Chiefs are really making some odd picks. Not a knock on Arenas, but the Chiefs have two young, and actually very good corners in Brandon Flowers and Brandon Carr. Meanwhile their O-line is still in tatters, their linebackers are putrid, and they have no quality tight end on the roster. Whistle past the graveyard Scott Pioli.

PICK NUMBER 51 — Minnesota selects: RB Toby Gerhart from Stanford

As a Lions fan, I’m not happy to see this pick. Gerhart is better than this draft position. He’s athletic, fast, and very powerful. If Minnesota’s line could run block worth crap (they can’t contrary to popular opinion) Gerhart could be a force behind Adrian Peterson. Fantasy note: Gerhart doesn’t have experience catching passes which means Peterson will be the primary third down back for the first time in his career. PPR!!!

PICK NUMBER 52 — Pittsburgh selects: OLB Jason Worilds from Virginia Tech

The corners that they like must be already all taken. The Steelers don’t have depth behind James Harrison and Lamarr Woodley. They may have Worilds as Harrison’s eventual successor since Harrison is turning 32 next month. But they still needed a corner. A luxury pick. Pittsburgh was top 5 against the run, had the second most sacks in the NFL (so they applied plenty of pressure) but was still only average against the pass. Woe to the Steelers if they enter 2010 starting Ike Taylor and William Gay again.

PICK NUMBER 53 — New England selects: OLB Jermaine Cunningham from Florida

This is what happens when you stockpile picks. You can lie in the weeds and snag players you want without having to maneuver to get them. OLB was one of the big needs for New England. With Adalius Thomas forgetting how to play football they need bodies at LB. Cunningham should be a servicable player. Probably won’t be elite or get to the QB a lot, but he should make a respectable 3-4 OLB.

PICK NUMBER 54 — Cincinnati selects: DE Carlos Dunlap from Florida

Of course Cincinnati goes for the guy with off field issues. If Cincinnati can get him to play hard he fits a need. Robert Geathers and Jonathan Fanene are sub-par DE’s on an overall respectable unit.

PICK NUMBER 55 — Dallas selects: LB Sean Lee from Penn St.

Bobby Carpenter’s days as a Cowboy are over. Proof that you should not try to be a football player while looking like a woman:

http://www.rotoworld.com/content/playerpages/player_relatednews.aspx?sport=NFL&id=3686

Jerry Jones may have Lee pegged as the long term replacement for Keith Brooking. But he probably won’t see the field right away.

PICK NUMBER 56 — Green Bay selects: DT Mike Neal from Purdue

He’ll move to a DE in the 3-4. The Packers really don’t have any depth behind John Jolly and Cullen Jenkins so this is a sensible pick.

PICK NUMBER 57 — Baltimore selects: DT Terrence Cody from Alabama

Baltimore is going to be enormous up the middle with Terrence Cody, and Haloti Ngata at DT and Ray Lewis behind them. Kelly Gregg is an old 33 so this is a pick that fits a need. Cody won’t rush the passer. He’ll just stand around and take up space. That might sound bad, but that’s actually exactly what Baltimore asks of its DT’s.

PICK NUMBER 58 — Houston selects: RB Ben Tate from Auburn

The Texans get their RB in the third round. The might be a bit of a transition from the offense Auburn ran, but it fills a need to find a bell-cow back to pair with Slaton.

PICK NUMBER 59 — Cleveland selects: RB Montario Hardesty from Tennessee

Since when does Mike Holmgren pass on quarterbacks? They are painfully thin at RB, so passing on Colt McCoy is defensible. But it is still surprising. Hardesty looks to be part of a committee with James Harrison and Chris Jennings. He should see some snaps, but probably not a significant amount immediately.

PICK NUMBER 60 — Seattle selects: WR Golden Tate from Notre Dame

Pete Carrol is having an excellent draft. He’s getting quality players at positions of need. TJ Houshmandzadeh (who had an awful year) and Deon Branch were penciled in as the starting WR’s before this pick. Good player to upgrade that unit in Tate.

PICK NUMBER 61 — New York Jets select: OT Vlad Ducasse from Massachusetts

Ducasse will be the eventual replacement for Alan Faneca. Faneca at 33 was by far the worst starting lineman on the Jets last year. Ferguson, Mangold, Moore and Woody all had stellar seasons which made Thomas Jones look good. Faneca is not long for the Jets. He may be released if they can’t trade him. The Jets are doing a stellar job of finding talented players where they can use them. (update: Alan Faneca has, in fact, been released).

PICK NUMBER 62 — New England selects: ILB Brandon Spikes from Florida

Bill Belichick seems to love Urban Meyer’s boys. The one position where you may be able to hide Spikes’ lack of speed is as an inside LB in a 3-4. Gary Guyton now has competition for the starting job next to Jerod Mayo. Bill Belichick is the anti-Al Davis in that he seems to shun measurables in favor of productivity. Gee, I wonder which philosophy works better?

PICK NUMBER 63 — Indianapolis selects: LB Pat Angerer from Iowa

The Colts linebackers are a decent, but not terribly special unit. With Gary Bracket entrenched as the MLB, Angerer will likely be groomed to play Strong side. Probably won’t start in year one.

PICK NUMBER 64 — New Orleans selects: OT Charles Brown from USC

Starting LT Jammal Brown missed the 2009 season with injuries and his replacement Jermon Bushrod is almost as bad a pass blocker as he is a run blocker. He may be young, but he’s also lousy. With Jammal Brown on his way out of New Orleans, the Saints need a guy to step in in case Bushrod doesn’t improve.

A fast and furious round 2 is in the books.

ROUND 3

Deep breath.

PICK NUMBER 65 — St. Louis selects: CB Jerome Murphy from South Florida

When you have this many holes on a team, just about any player fills a need. Ron Bartell and Justin King win my award for “worst starting corner duo in the NFL.” Murphy may see playing time sooner than most other third round picks.

PICK NUMBER 66 — Detroit selects: CB Amari Spievey from Iowa

It was fairly well known that the Lions were selecting a DT, RB and CB in the first three rounds. Opponents had a Passer rating of 107 against the Lions. Needless to say, this is a dire, dire need. Spievey will have a chance to start very soon.

PICK NUMBER 67 — Tampa Bay selects: CB Myron Lewis from Vanderbilt

The corner run continues. Ronde Barber fell apart last year. Tampa Bay has done a solid job in this draft. Two defensive tackles, a receiver and a corner are a good haul that should help slow the bleeding of a defense that hemorrhaged yards last year.

PICK NUMBER 68 — Kansas City selects: OG Jon Asamoah from Illinois

Finally, the Chiefs do something for thier sieve of a line and not a moment too soon. Mike Goff should be the odd man out, though the Chiefs may decide to slide Waters over to Center to make room. But this is only a start. This is a Flinstones Band-aid for a shotgun wound.

PICK NUMBER 69 — Oakland selects: OT Jared Veldeheer from Hillsdale

And what’s left for Al Davis here? A project. Someone who might help down the road, but does little for the 2010 Oakland team. Veldheer is huge (6’8″, 312 lbs) but very, very raw. Looks like Oakland is stuck with its terrible left tackle situation.

PICK NUMBER 70 — Baltimore selects: TE Ed Dickson from Oregon

Todd Heap had an unbelievably effective year last season. But the fact is that he is more prone to injury than Greg Oden. Dickson won’t start right away. He’ll sit behind Heap until he’s ready.

PICK NUMBER 71 — Green Bay selects: S Morgan Burnett from Georgia Tech

Green Bay thumbs their nose at drafting for need. This must be a “best player available” pick since they are fine at safety.

PICK NUMBER 72 — Buffalo selects: DE Alex Carrington from Arkansas St.

Another body for the switch to a 3-4. Buffalo is having to spend a lot of picks to make it work. But they have to do it. There’s just no good way to run a 3-4 with 4-3 personnel.

PICK NUMBER 73 — Miami selects: RT John Jerry from Mississippi

Miami wins games in the trenches. Jerry is a massive player who may be played at guard sooner than later. Miami is trying to fortify its strengths rather than patch its weaknesses.

PICK NUMBER 74 — Jacksonville selects: DT D’Anthony Smith from Louisiana Tech

Gene Smith must have a sore arm from all of these reaches. A second DT. It seems Jacksonville had the same draft plan as Tampa Bay…only they want far less talented players.

PICK NUMBER 75 — Chicago selects: S Major Wright from Florida

Chicago? They finally get to pick? The Cutler trade was costly indeed. The Bears needed a safety, and Wright is a player they coveted so smiles all around.

PICK NUMBER 76 — New York Giants select: S Chad Jones from LSU

Right. I’ll stop shining the flashlight on the elephant sized hole in the linebacker corps. Jones looks like someont they’ve brought in in case Kenny Phillips knees aren’t going to last.

PICK NUMBER 77 — Tennessee selects: WR Damian Williams from USC

A little surprising that Tennessee didn’t go for a corner here. Nick Harper was thrown on the scrap heap after a season of playing with his helmet on backwards leaving behind a starting spot that is currently being battled for by Vincent Fuller, Ryan Mouton and Jason McCourty. Kenny Britt flashed plenty of promise last year so this may be an indictment of Nate Washington.

PICK NUMBER 78 — Carolina selects: WR Brandon Lafell from LSU

I think Carolina’s training staff was using embalming fluid to keep Muhsin Muhammad from decomposing on the field last year. Wide out was a major need here. Steve Smith has been without competent help for far too long. LaFell may or may not be the answer, but he’s a willing blocker which is probably why the Panthers targeted him.

PICK NUMBER 79 — San Diego selects: ILB Donald Butler from Washington

Good to see the Chargers address their lackluster linebackers. Stephen Cooper was quietly a terrible player last year. He needs to be pushed to play well. This should do the trick.

PICK NUMBER 80 — Denver selects: C JD Walton from Baylor

This is the second gaping hole that McDaniels has filled on the O-line. The Broncos have no other center on their roster so its a faily safe assumption that he’ll be starting immediately.

PICK NUMBER 81 — Houston selects: DT Earl Mitchell from Arizona

Amobi Okoye hasn’t progressed as Tennesse hoped and Shaun Cody is servicable at best. Houston hopes Earl Mitchell will be able to work his way into the DT rotation. Though he might be a year away.

PICK NUMBER 82 — Pittsburgh selects: WR Emmanuel Sanders from SMU

Sanders will try to adapt to a pro style offense after playing in the spread under June Jones. Sanders is a deep threat that Pittsburgh must be hoping will replace Mike Wallace as Wallace fills the void left by Santonio Holmes.

PICK NUMBER 83 — Atlanta selects: DT Corey Peters from Kentucky

A depth pick. The Falcons are adding depth to their DT rotation along with Jonathan Babineaux and Peria Jerry.

PICK NUMBER 84 — Cincinnati selects: WR Jordan Shipley from Texas

Shipley should be an excellent slot receiver and an outlet for Carson Palmer. The Bengals must see that a QB without anyone to throw to is not the best way to run an offense. Shipley and Gresham should both provide a boost to the passing game, provided they are used correctly. I really like Shipley’s potential as a pro. Good pick here.

PICK NUMBER 85 — Cleveland selects: QB COlt McCoy from Texas

So Mike Holmgren finally gets his man. McCoy is a nice selection this low in the draft. This may be a fortunate landing spot for McCoy. While Cleveland has chewed up and spit out its last few “franchise quarterbacks” that McCoy is only a third round pick should temper fans expectations. Also he will look like an appealing option after Seneca Wallace and Jake Delhomme show the dog pound what they’re capable of. He’ll be a popular man until he takes over the job. Hopefully he’ll be ready when the time comes.

PICK NUMBER 86 — Philadelphia selects: DE Daniel Te’o-Nesheim from Washington

Let’s just call him Dan, ok? Dan comes in with plenty of experience as a four year starter, but it may be hard for him to find playing time behind Trent Cole, Darryl Tapp, Brandon Graham, Jaqua Parker, and Darren Howard. This is a project pass rusher for the Eagles.

PICK NUMBER 87 — Denver selects: WR Eric Decker from Minnesota

Love this pick. After the Tebow madness Josh McDaniels has settled down and grabbed a lot of talented players at positions of need. If not for a Lisfranc injury Decker would have been picked a lot higher. He was massively productive receiver, runs good routes and has good size. The injury is the only thing not to like here. Good to see that McDaniels wasn’t content with Jabar Gaffney starting.

PICK NUMBER 88 — Arizona selects: WR Andre Roberts from Citadel

The Cardinals are thin at a traditional strength – wide out. With Anquan Boldin in Baltimore and Jerheme Urban also gone there’s an opening. Roberts will start out on special teams and given time to develop.

PICK NUMBER 89 — Carolina selects: WR Armanti Edwards from Appalachian State

This is a major, major project. Edwards was the starting QB at Appalachian St. and is is converting to WR a la Hines Ward, Matt Jones, and Antwaan Randle El. He’s 5’11” and definitely not worth a third round pick.

PICK NUMBER 90 — New England selects: WR Taylor Price from Ohio

Price is a receiver who tore up “lesser” competition so there’s some doubt as to just how good he really is. He tested well, and had a very productive college career. Clearly Bill Belichick saw enough.

PICK NUMBER 91 — San Francisco selects: LB Navarro Bowman from Penn St.

This is an odd fit. I’m not sure what the Niners are thinking here, but Bowman is perfectly suited to play for a 4-3 defense, not the 3-4. He’s small to play inside linebacker, and probably isn’t a pass rushing OLB either. The Niners could stand to upgrade Parys Haralson, but I’m not so sure this is the player to do it.

PICK NUMBER 92 — Kansas City selects: TE Tony Moeaki from Iowa

Leonard Pope should not be starting in the NFL. Tony Moeaki should have little trouble taking his job. Good pick.

PICK NUMBER 93 — Cleveland selects: OT Shawn Lauvao from Arizona St.

The Browns may be looking to use him as a guard. Eric Steinbach is terrible and Floyd “Pork chop” Womack is no prize pig himself. (rim shot!) Lauvao may not be ready to start right away, but he may need to be.

PICK NUMBER 94 — New Orleans selects: TE Jimmy Graham from Miami

Following in the shoes of Antonio Gates and Tony Gonzalez, Graham played four years of basketball at Miami and only in his Senior year did he finally play football. The production was underwhelming and he has a long way to go. But it was only a matter of time before someone gambled on his size and athleticism.

PICK NUMBER 95 — Indianapolis selects: CB Kevin Thomas from USC

Kelvin Hayden struggle last year but the Colts didn’t have any better options. Injuries have thinned their secondary of late. Thomas isn’t a threat to start now, but the Colts have a midas touch when it comes to developing corners.

PICK NUMBER 96 — Cincinnati selects: CB Brandon Ghee from Wake Forest

I’ll bet he’s glad not to have to come back tomorrow. The Bengals don’t need a corner but we’re past the “filling needs” part of the draft. From here on its all about finding players with potential that you want to develop. Ghee has a lot of physical ability but very little production to show for it.

PICK NUMBER 97 — Tennessee selects: LB Rennie Curran from Georgia

Curran won’t challenge for a starting spot right away. Tennesse is happy with its linebacking corps. Curran, who led the SEC in tackles, will have to make it as a special teamer while he learns the ropes.

PICK NUMBER 98 — Atlanta selects: OG Mike Johnson from Alabama

With no glaring needs the Falcons are stocking the cupboard. The left side of Atlanta’s line was the source of a lot of their problems running the ball last year but they may be willing to accept that as Justin Blalock and Sam Baker grow into their roles. If Atlanta decides Blalock isn’t cutting it they can have Johnson waiting in the wings.

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