Caps drop to the Habs; Bruins face Flyers, gain “Home Ice Advantage”

The Capitals were beaten tonight by the B’s rivals, the Montreal Canadians. Game 7 proved to be nothing short of a Jarislav Halak target in a Caps shooting range, and the only one that hit was a mere flesh wound. Halak made 131 saves out of the last 134 shots he faced in the final 3 games of the series. The Habs blocked over 40 shots in Game 7, and played what they called a four defenseman system. As shocking as this series was, it is no shock that a first place team went down, as the hockey world has been graced with the likes of the San Jose Sharks for the past two years, not to mention the Bruins injury ridden collapse last season. This year, both the Sharks and the B’s have advanced, which means Pennsylvania will have to wait for the B’s until Game 3, because versus the Flyers, the will have home ice advantage. I made a claim that the B’s would need to secure 6th place to properly set a path to the Cup. This has remained the one aspect not to go completely over my head so far in the playoffs, and I believe home ice will be an epic intensity booster and physical advantage for the Bruins. The number one key to beating the Flyers will be the physicality and Tuukka being able to man the five foot radius in front of his net.

The Flyers bring with them a couple of the biggest assholes in the NHL, and if you do not know them yet, or hate them with a furious passion, you will immediately, after Game 1. (May 1st, 12:30 PM, NBC) Daniel Carcillo and Chris Pronger. I would list one more, but Ian Laperriere is out. I would also elaborate, but they do not deserve my attention. Just watch and wait.

The Flyers also bring more talent, goal scoring, skating and forechecking than the Sabres, in the form of Daniel Briere, the former Sabre great, Captain Mike Richards, and currently on fire, Claude Giroux. Both Simon Gagne and Jeff Carter are declared injured and out indefinitely. Trust me that this is a very good thing. Jeff Carter was an on the fence alternate for Team Canada, and Gagne is a sleeping Giant. They will both remain sleeping throughout this series. The last notable mention is a man Rask will never invite over for Christmas dinner, or whatever the equivalent is in Finland, and that is Scott Hartnell. Hartnell can be remembered best from this past season as being the reason Thomas was out of position when the Flyers scored in the Winter Classic. Hartnell is the Lion King of the physical jungle war played out by the Philadelphia Flyers, however the Bruins are a close second to this physicality, and proved themselves worthy enough to skate and hit with any team left in the playoffs. There will be many blocked shots, many after whistle scrums, punches thrown, plenty of tip in goals, plenty of powerplay opportunities and penalty kills, and we will all have to “bear” witness to yet another goaltenders duel. Rask has proven that he can carry the B’s on his dainty, 6′ 3″ high shoulders, so who will he be going eye to eye with, staring down 178′ feet away, game by game, period by period, starting in goal for the Flyers? Woonsocket, RI native Brian Boucher. Some Boston and RI natives may remember Boucher as a Mount Saint Charles Mountie, leading them to one of their many championships over the past couple of decades. The NHL remembers him as the man who stole the starting position from one of my favorites, John Vanbeisbrouk in 2000 for the Flyers, and after 8 years away from Philly, he makes his epic comeback and “gets hot in goal, at just the right time” earning the starting job yet again. The season series between these two teams is 2-2 with Boston outscoring Philly 11-9, winning the last two games, including a 5-1 blowout where Boucher got kicked in the second, and the game of the year, the OT winner Winter Classic at Fenway. This season has been defined by that Jan. 1st game, as it was their final January accomplishment before their “season ending” 11 game win-less streak. Their season however, continues, and even I chewed many criticisms and doubts throughout the past month and a half, as a result. Boucher is, in leimens terms, a journeyman. Boucher has not established dominance, like Rask has, and did not have to fight as hard through the 2010 playoffs, yet, as Rask has. I give Rask a heavy advantage, and if Miller can be beaten, and the Sabres can be humbled, the B’s have the best chance they have had in the past decade, where a second round victory has eluded them so successfully, to advance to the third round.

Obvious Key Players for the Bruins:

Satan and Ryder: These two gentleman must continue offensively.

Sturm: He has to show up. If he does not, Julien will sit him. Remember I said that.

Bergeron, Kreijci, Savard: Centers must touch the puck before the above scorers can score. Powerplays will define this series, and these men will define these powerplays.

Boychuck and Chara: They need to own the defense, and continue to block shots. Blocked shots will block goals. Hockey is very easy. No other defenseman in these playoffs for the B’s, has shown me anything. I am worried about the integrity of our defense. I have always been worried about this. I want to be proven wrong.

Lucic: Fight everyone, hit everyone, and put at least one player on IR. Do not get suspended!…but do not let up.

Rask: He will not fail, contrary to my own prior beliefs. Rask is not Carey Price.

I look past the Flyers for a second, not to “jinx” the B’s, but to express a slight disappointment towards the draw. If and absolutely when the B’s finish the Flyers in 5, the Penguins or the Canadiens wait. Fading chants of “We Want Cooke..”, ringing still in TD Banknorth, will be answered, and if they aren’t, the second greatest rivalry left in sports will be revisited. Throughout this series, and beyond there will be plenty to discuss. Julien will prepare his boys physically, and mentally, and upon Savard’s return, the offense will be primed and ready to send Boucher back home, to see the team he followed as a kid, parading the Cup up and down the streets of Boston.

Bruins in 5, Savard returns to Boston

Penguins in 6, Cooke returns to Boston

Playoff Hockey starts up again tomorrow.

Do not ignore the West.

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Bring On LeBron

Despite the best efforts of the officiating crew tonight, the Celtics made sure they would not be returning to Miami for Game 6.  The Green cooled the Heat winning 96-86 in a game they pretty much controlled throughout.  The old phrase, "be careful what you wish for because you might just get it" does not apply here.  They want LeBron.  The Celtics showed that tonight and possibly for the first time since the first 10 games of the season.

Tonight reminded me of watching the Celtics of 2008 with Ray Allen scorching the net for 24 points, Paul Pierce doing what he does best in creating offense for himself, and I do believe that the old KG might just be back.  Rondo played out of his mind finishing 2 rebounds short of a triple double.

This is the first time in 3 years that the Celtics were able to close out the opening round in less than 7 games.  For that, I am extremely grateful.  I do believe that the rest they will have before facing the LeBron’s is of the utmost importance going into the Eastern Conference semifinals.

There is plenty of reasons to be optimistic as a Celtic fan.  The Big Three are playing great, Rondo is running circles around the opposition, and the defensive intensity is slowly coming back.  Glen Davis has picked up from his sensational playoff a year ago albeit in different ways.  I have loved watching him step in front of anyone driving to the basket and drawing a charge.  Tony Allen has provided an energy off the bench as well.

Looking ahead to the LeBron’s, this series has the makings of an instant classic.  The experienced Celtic squad against the heir apparent seeking his first ring.  The Celtics have shown that they do in fact remember how to play competitive basketball.  This is very encouraging.  However, I think everyone is going to need to step their games up another notch in order to take down Cleveland.

As much as I want to see Rasheed Wallace plant his fat, lazy ass on the end of the bench for the whole series, I’d be remiss if I said the Celtics didn’t need him.  The Celtics need the flashes and glimpses that Rasheed showed periodically throughout the season in this series.  I also think Doc may have to call upon Marquis Daniels and Nate Robinson to provide some production off the bench.  After all these upcoming games are by far the biggest of the year.

The Celtics did anything but limp into this series with the Cavs.  They need to keep the momentum going and take at least 1 out of the first 2 games in Cleveland.  I know they can do this I know they will do this. I am pumped.

In closing, as Red loved to hear, "LETS GO CELTICS!"

Bruins defeat Sabres, Head to Pennsylvania

In the 2009 NHL playoffs, the Bruins lost chemistry, lost man power, and regressed. Progress, the ability to learn and adapt, to come back from being down, to win at home, to score on the powerplay, to score at all, are all attributes the Bruins were able to find, and at precisely the right time. Success in hockey is matched only by speed, physicality and the ability to win in streaks. No team in the NHL is riding a faster horse, and in taming a division rival, a Vezina Trophy Winner and U.S. Olympian, a team that belongs next the dentist elf, teeing off on the Island of Misfit Toys, shuts everyone up, and conquers their fears, and their own misfortunes. When the Ducks rode J. S. Giguere to win the Cup, they were the least likely team, with the least likely hero, at just the right time. The Bruins played an extremely weak, late game defense, and made plenty of stupid mistakes. There is so much to take out this past series that was good, but more to criticize. I will analyze what they need to improve upon, and what they need to keep going in full force, when the draw is set, and their Pennsylvanian foe is confirmed. For now I will simply list my Top Three Stars of this past series, and the two stand outs who disappointingly made it into my Dog House.

Top Three Stars:

3) Miroslav Satan: For scoring the two most important goals of the series, making himself available and displaying a level of patience, which desperately needs to be matched by fellow European centers Sobotka and Kreijci, appearing just on the cusp of this list. He is playing at a mid-season level, and is proving to be the steel of the year for the B’s, and the main reason the Trade Deadline moves look only sub par, compared to an epic failure.

2) Johnny Boychuk: Some people need a warm glass of milk to go to sleep. I only need that hit on Ellis, by defenseman, “How much wood could a Boychuk chuck if a Boychuk could chuck wood?” Johnny Boychuk, and his shoulders made of concrete and brawn. He lifted his game, along side and along with Zdeno Chara, to a level which dwarfed that of Wideman’s, Ferrence’s, McQuaid’s and Hunwick’s efforts. I predicted greatness for this kid, and I believe next year we will have that elusive second, top-tier defenseman, the Bruins have needed since the departure of Bourque and Sweeney. (I ignore Seidenberg until he truly becomes a Bruin.)

1) Tuuka Rask: Julien’s Guide to Rask Management! I can not say enough about the journey I have taken with Rask this season. My love of Tim Thomas forced me to continuously push back, and until that final victory this season, I will continue. The diving save in Game 4, the solidity and poise displayed in Game 5 and in the victorious Game 6 and forcing me to chew my words, are all accomplishments in their own right, however winning the series, earning every save, and every minute, proves me wrong, and pleases me more than anyone. Tim Thomas is a humble man, and will admit with me, and with the rest of the would be speculators that Tuukka Rask is not only the future, but he is the present, and he is the missing link for the Bruins’ success. A hot goalie, at the right time, beating the best goalie, with a battered defense in front of him, was always out of the realm of possibilities for this Bruins team, until now.

 

Dog House:

Dennis Wideman: There is not much to explain, except for the fact that he brought down a defense, volatile to failure. Wideman’s give away in Game 6 is the tip of the iceberg that has been a completely disappointing season. Andrew Ferrence may have had a worse series, however Wideman makes me cringe every time he handles the puck in his end, and that is not a healthy relationship. I want him gone next season, but for now, I can only hope he improves.

Marco Sturm: If there is any Bruins forward I would sit upon Marc Savard’s return it is Sturm. He couldn’t hit the ocean, and the blade of his stick played like dynamite. Putting him on the first line lead to no success, and he is a hinderance to a very present and solid offensive force. Who knew? If and when he steps it up, the Bruins will be that much better.

 

Claude Julien proved something to the Bruin’s fans, and to his team, by convincing them to play his system, and coaching it in such a way as to lead to success. The system allowed adaptability yet left room for reckless and exciting playoff hockey. Lucic “did” hit everything this series, and we must now wait until the weekend, until we can let him out of his cage, yet again.

I digress until the draw, and leave you utterly impressed, and anxiously waiting.

Watch 4/28, Canadiens vs. Capitals, Game 7   !!!

Time for Reflection

Thankfully, the 2011 draft is only 362 days away (pending some craziness involving the Collective Bargaining Agreement) and quite frankly I’m pumped.  It is pretty safe to say that my mock draft flopped, but it’s equally as safe to say that anyone that created a mock draft didn’t do so wonderfully either.  Before I start preparing for the 2011 NFL Draft, it is important to first consider what occurred in the past three days and take a little time to reflect.

There was a whirlwind of excitement surrounding the Patriots’ draft heading into Thursday night.  With 4 picks in the first two rounds they were certain to improve their team drastically.  But, coach Belichick certainly wasn’t content with staying put.  He moved all around the draft board and ended still with four picks in the first two rounds (different spots than before), but also picked up an extra second round pick for the 2011 draft (they now have two first rounders and two second rounders).  Here is a breakdown of each pick:

1st Round (27th Overall) – Devin McCourty, CB, Rutgers
The numbers: 5’10” 193lbs.  40: 4.38.  BP: 16 reps

-Drafting a cornerback in the first round was certainly a shocker with needs at so many other positions.  Also, anytime a players position includes special teamer (McCourty position is listed as      cornerback/special teamer) I question his status as a first round draft pick.  I gave the Pats a low grade for their round one selection and I stick behind that.  McCourty has a ton of upside, but his ability to contribute immediately doesn’t look promising.

2nd Round (42nd Overall) – Rob Gronkowski, TE, Arizona
-The numbers: 6’6” 260lbs.  40: 4.65.  BP: 23

-Gronkowski missed the entire 2009 college football season after having back surgery.  That fact alone scares me, but had Gronkowski not missed all of 2009 he may have been the first tight end selected in the first round of the draft.  He is probably the most balanced tight end in the draft, possessing exceptional ball skills along with great blocking ability.  Day two was off to a great start with this selection, addressing one of the Patriots’ biggest needs.

2nd Round (53rd Overall) – Jermaine Cunningham, OLB, Florida
The numbers: 6’4” 260lbs.  40: 4.60.  BP: Unknown

-Many thought that taking Cunningham with the 53rd pick was a bit high, but he possess the ideal size and athletic ability necessary for the Patriots’ defense.  Cunningham didn’t get much praise playing of Florida’s star-studded defense, but as a three year starter he was a model of consistency.  Cunningham addresses one of the Pats’ biggest needs, and Urban Meyer is one of Belichick’s closest friends so you know that Bill knows absolutely everything about this kid.  Cunningham will get a chance to compete for playing time come June.

2nd Round (62nd Overall) – Brandon Spikes, LB, Florida
The numbers: 6’3” 250lbs.  40: 5.00.  BP: Unknown

-This was my favorite pick of the Patriots’ entire draft.  Spikes caught a ton of flack for running a 5.00 40, but I watched at least ten of his games over the last two seasons and he plays must faster on tape.  He is an ideal fit for the Pats’ defense.  Jerod Mayo can move to the weak side linebacker spot (which will utilize his quickness and sideline to sideline speed) while Spikes can hopefully fill the strong side spot (where his ability to take on lineman, blitz, and stuff the run are key).  The only thing that could hold Spikes up from starting at some point in the 2010 season will be his ability to absorb the playbook.

3rd Round (90th Overall) – Taylor Price, WR, Ohio
The numbers: 6’1” 205lbs.  40: 4.40.  BP: 16 reps

-Another need selection.  Some analysts had Price going as high as late in round two, while others had him supplanted in the third round.  I haven’t watched much tape on Price, but from the little that I’ve seen he displays elite speed, good agility, and great hands.  My concerns are in two areas: low level of competition, and he attended a smaller school.  Ohio certainly doesn’t play at the same level of competition as big schools, which means that Price’s ability could be overvalued.  Also, many small school players have problems absorbing NFL playbooks, and Belichick’s is certainly one of the most complicated.

4th Round (113th Overall) – Aaron Hernandez, TE, Florida
The numbers: 6’3” 245lbs.  40: 4.64.  BP: Unknown

-If there is one thing that Aaron Hernandez can do it is catch the ball and then run with it after the catch.  Hernandez was never, and I mean never asked to block at Florida and that is a major flaw in his game.  Thankfully, Alge Crumpler and Gronkowski are good blockers, allowing Hernandez to use his athletic ability in the pass game.  I think that Hernandez may actually compete with Julian Edelman to play in Wes Welker’s role until he returns from injury.  Another great selection in the fourth round for Bill and company.

5th Round (150th Overall) – Zoltan Mesko, P, Michigan
The numbers: 6’5” 240lbs.  40: 4.79.  BP: 16 reps

-Mesko averaged nearly 45 yards per punt in his senior season at Michigan.  Punter was a huge need for the Pats and Belichick showed once again that he is not afraid to spend a reasonably high draft pick on a special teams player (Stephen Gostowski was a 4th round selection in 2006).  I think the Mesko selection was a great pick and fully expect him to be the starting punter in 2010.

6th Round (205th Overall) – Ted Larsen, C, NC State
The numbers: 6’3” 304lbs.  40: 5.19.  BP: 26 reps.

-Larsen was wildly considered as the third best center in this draft and was expected for be an early 5th round pick.  He played defensive tackle for his first two season as NC State before switching over to center.  Larsen is still raw, but a few season of seasoning behind Dan Koppen and Larsen may be a force to reckon with in the NFL.

7th Round (208th Overall) – Thomas Welch, OT, Vanderbilt
The numbers: 6’7” 307lbs.  40: 5.42.  BP: 29 reps.

-Welch has played both right tackle and left tackle at Vanderbilt.  He is a mean run blocker and is very strong with a huge frame.  His pass blocking footwork is skeptical and he is a bit stiff, but he certainly provides some depth behind Light, Kaczur, and Vollmer for the Pats.

7th Round (247th Overall) – Brandon Deaderick, DL, Alabama
The numbers: 6’4” 314lbs.  40: 5.08.  BP: Unknown

-Similar to the relationshop between Urban Meyer and Bill Belicheck, Nick Saban is also a close friend of Bill.  Saban is one of the few college coaches to have implemented a 3-4 defensive scheme.  Deaderick played the 3-4 end at Alabama, which will certainly help with his learning curve.  But, he will have to compete for playing time behind newly acquired Gerard Warren, Mike Wright, and Ron Brace among others.

7th Round (248th Overall) – Kade Weston, DL, Georgia
The numbers: 6’5” 316lbs.  40: 4.99.  BP: Unknown

-Belichick stayed true to his philosophy, grab your skill position players early in the draft and then add depth to your two lines later in the draft.  Weston has ideal size to play the 3-4 end, but will have a lot of competition to just make the team.

7th Round (250th Overall) – Zac Robinson, QB, Oklahoma State

The numbers: 6’3” 214lbs.  40: 4.68.  BP: Unknown

-Zac Robinson showed flashes of brilliance throughout his career at Oklahoma State.  Robinson doesn’t have a cannon, but he has enough zip on the ball to make all of the necessary throws.  His accuracy is scarce at points, but improving his mechanics and footwork will go a long way towards improving that.  Robinson will press Brian Hoyer for that backup quarterback spot, but I see him spending 2009 on the practice squad.

I was certainly disappointed in the first round selection that the Pats made, but I think their picks on day two and three, and their accruement of draft picks for next year leave me energized for the 2010 NFL season and beyond.  They addressed almost all of their team needs in the draft, but don’t expect Belichick to sit back and relax.  Look for some undrafted free agents to be picked up within the next couple of weeks.  Then we can all look forward to the position battles once minicamp and training camp roll around.

Draft Grade: B

Did You Just Question my Fanhood?

There are many great sport cities around with a lot of loyal fans. There are also a lot of what we call in the "biz"  bandwagon fans. They only root for the good teams and only when they are winning. There are crazy fans, die-hard fans, fans of all ages, colors, and creeds. However there are only 4 cities where REAL fans dwell: Boston, New York, Chicago, and Philly.

What about LA or Miami? People who live in LA or Miami only go to games so they can say they sat next to Jack Nicholson or they took a cell phone picture of J-Lo’s ass. Don’t even get me started on that damn Rally Monkey! Why not Pittsburgh and their terrible towel?  They got the terrible part right but they should replace the word "Towel" with the word "Idea".

In other cities all around they have all these gimmicks to get fans to cheer louder, wear the same color, or even just go to the sporting events.

In the real sport cities, we don’t need to be told to cheer loud. As a matter  of fact, maybe we do because instead of cheering we’re to busy telling the opposing player how much he sucks or the nasty things we want to do to his mother. Go to Fenway and you’ll hear it. In the real sport cities you don’t need to hand out free shirts to get us to wear the same color. Go to a Celtics game all you see is green and white. We don’t need a Bat Night, Poster Night, or a Bobblehead night. All we need is a night. 

You could go tell an Eagles fan and say the team bus just crashed  all the players died, and the only people available to play are the cast of High School Musical. They wouldn’t look at you funny or say "Oh my God how did this happen?" They would say "Ok the games still at 1 right?" Go up to the Yankee fan and give him thunder sticks to bring into the stadium. I bet you he will take those thunder sticks from you, but he wont be bringing them into the stadium. Oh no, he’ll be bashing you in the face with them. If  you presented the Cubs fans the Rally Monkey there would be a lot of animal cruelty arrests.

In  Boston, New York, Chicago, and Philly we don’t need gimmicks. We need good beer, good sports, and seats near the bathroom. We don’t have thunder sticks. We have loud mouths. We don’t need to stage a "White out"  or a  "Blue Out." We’re coming to the game in the team colors anyway. We don’t need you to tell us to cheer "DE-FENSE" or "LET’S GO REDSOX" or tell us to clap. We’re gonna do it anyway.

This is what I think is lost in all the other cities. This is what sports needs to get back to around the country. It’s not about Rally Monkeys or "Mannywood" or which celebrity is at the game. It’s about the game and the amazing athletes you’re about to watch. And the thrill of athetic competition. So the next time you go a game and you see a fan with an air horn or a thunderstick…beat them with it.

Review of Round 1 & Remaining Draft Expectations

The first round of the 2010 NFL Draft, as always, was 32 picks of unpredictable selections, trades, rising players, and falling talent.  By pick 7 I knew that my mock draft was soon headed for disaster (although I’m pretty sure that my 7 correct picks equaled that of Mel Kiper and Todd McShay).  Every year I like to think that teams will actually draft players that fit their system and address their needs.  But, every year teams jump up and drop down and end up selecting guys that in many cases just don’t fit what that particular team is trying to do.  Here are some of my thoughts about the first round:

-Sam Bradford #1 was a necessary pick for the Rams and I think he will play a key role in the future of their franchise.

-The Chiefs made the best selection in the first round.  Berry was considered as one of the elite players in this draft.  He can cover and hit.  He is an intelligent kid and pairing him with Brandon Flowers in that secondary will vastly improve the Chiefs defense.

-The Oakland Raiders finally made a pick that wasn’t exceptionally stupid, although I still think an offensive tackle was the way to go.  How do you expect Jamarcus Russell to not be terrible when you cannot give him time to throw?

-No wonder why Jacksonville cannot sell tickets.

-San Diego jumped up way to high to get Ryan Mathews.  I understand that he was the highest rated running back on their board, but I am convinced he would have been available at pick 18, or at least somewhere around there.

-Josh McDaniels said that Demaryius Thomas reminds him of Brandon Marshall.  Josh, you jumped dumped your best offensive player because of issues you were having with him, but they drafted a guy that plays just like him on the field?  I question his decision making (although the Tebow pickup was huge for Denver).

-The Dallas Cowboys draft yet another wide receiver with character issues.  Are any of you truly surprised?  I’m just shocked that a guy with talent compared to Larry Fitzgerald dropped that far for just chillin’ with Deion Sanders.

-And the New England Patriots continue to baffle with their drafting scheme…

First Round Winners

Seattle Seahawks (selections: Russell Okung, OT Oklahoma + Earl Thomas, S Texas)

Russell Okung, in my opinion, was the best tackle in the draft.  I thought they would snag Trent Williams with the 6th pick to address their biggest need, but Washington picked Williams and Okung fell right into Pete Carroll’s lap.  Then, at pick 14, Earl Thomas (a top 10 talent) was still available and the Seahawks did not hesitate to take the best player available when safety was not one of their biggest needs.

Grade: A

Detroit Lions (selection: Ndamukong Suh, DT Nebraska + Jahvid Best, RB Cal)

Ndamukong Suh was undoubtedly the best player in this draft.  The economics of the first pick forced the Rams into taking a quarterback, and allowed the Lions to grab the most talented player.  Defensive tackle was the biggest need and they got the most talent at the position.  Then, the Lions traded up with Minnesota to grab Jahvid Best.  With Kevin Smith’s injury issues and mediocre production, Best will provide them with a great change-of-pace option with the ability to be an explosive player (if he can stay healthy).

Grade: B++

San Francisco 49ers (selections: Anthony Davis, OT Rutgers + Mike Iupati, G Idaho)

The common theme here is that teams with two picks in the first round displayed the ability to capitalize on their picks.  The 49ers were rumored to be interested in a quarterback, but Singletary and company decided to give Alex Smith a chance (which I believe the deserves) and surround him with some young and talented offensive lineman.  Singletary also went a long way in changing the philosophy of his football team.  Davis and Iupati are both punishing run blockers, so Frank Gore and Glen Coffee’s role in the run game will certainly expand, while Mike Crabtree and Vernon Davis will look to flourish off of play-action passes.

Grade: B++

Arizona Cardinals/Indianapolis Colts (selections: Dan Williams, NT Tennessee / Jerry Hughes, DE/OLB TCU)

The reason that I put these two picks together is because they both displayed the same philosophy in yesterday’s first round: Sit in your spot and select a player that fits your scheme and addresses team needs.  The Cardinals got very lucky that Dan Williams fell all the way down to them at 26, but they were desperate for a nose tackle and ended up with the best one in this draft.  During the draft yesterday, one of my colleagues (my close friend Chris Veltri) told me something that makes a ton of sense.  He was explaining that every year, teams similar to the Colts that consistently pick in the bottom of the first round, just wait around in their slot and wait for guys to slip through the cracks and slide down the draft board.  Jerry Hughes, Donald Brown (2009), Anthony Gonzalez (2007), and Joseph Addai (2006) were all players taken pick 27 or later that have provided great value for the Colts and contributed to their success.  The ability to get value from guys that fall down draft boards is what keeps the Colts picking in the later part of the first round every season.

Grade: B+/B+

First Round Losers

Buffalo Bills (selection: C.J. Spiller, RB Clemson)

Don’t get me wrong, C.J. Spiller is a great player and I thought he was actually worthy of a top ten pick.  Sadly, the Spiller and Bills marriage just doesn’t make any sense to me.  Spending roughly 9-10 million dollars a season on a third running back is outrageous.  Now, reports are surfacing that the Bills want to trade Marshawn Lynch.  Lynch’s value immediately just took a two round hit.  Pre-draft Lynch may have been able to warrant a late 2nd round or third round pick.  Now that teams know Lynch is expendable, he may be worth a fifth rounder.  Questionable move for the Bills and unless they grab Clausen in the second round, Chan Gailey’s time in Buffalo may be short lived.

Grade: D-

Jacksonville Jaguars (selection: Tyson Alualu, DT California)

The Jacksonville Jaguars cannot sell tickets and their games therefore get blacked out.  Tebow was an option just solely to sell tickets.  I though Dez Bryant was an option just to get the fans excited.  Even a great pass rusher would have some people want to buy tickets.  But no, the Jaguars draft a defensive tackle that they could have gotten at the end of the first round, if not in the second round with the tenth pick in the draft.  Are you kidding me Jacksonville?  No wonder why you cannot sell tickets!

Grade: D-

New England Patriots (selection: Devin McCourty, CB Rutgers)

A very taboo move I am making right now, calling out the always right coach Belichick.  McCourty is a decent player, but you know that you’ve made a questionable first round pick when on the radio the name the player’s position as “cornerback/special teamer.”  Belichick cherishes McCourty because he can play”4 downs,” which means he can play on defense for three downs and will then contribute on special teams.  I don’t disagree with the McCourty selection, but I do disagree with the placement of the selection.  The Patriots have major needs at outside linebacker, wide receiver, tight end, running back, offensive line, and defensive line.  The only position they may not have a major need at is cornerback.  Now, the Pats have the ability to address those concerns with their abundance of picks in the second round, but it wouldn’t surprise me if Belichick continues to baffle and avoid the obvious needs.

Grade: C-

Remaining Patriots’ Picks and Possible Selections

Round 2, pick 12 (44th overall) – from Jacksonville – Golden Tate, WR Notre Dame
Round 2, pick 15 (47th) – from Tennessee – Ricky Sapp, DE/OLB Clemson
Round 2, pick 21 (53rd) – assigned – Alex Carrington, DE Arkansas State
Round 3, pick 26 (90th) – from Dallas – Aaron Hernandez, TE Florida
Round 4, pick 15 (113th) – from San Francisco through Denver – Lonyae Miller, RB Fresno State
Round 6, pick 21 (190th) – assigned – Danny Batter, ILB South Dakota State
Round 6, pick 36 (205th) – compensatory – George Selvie DE/OLB South FloridaRound 7, pick 22 (229th) – assigned – A.J. Edds, OLB Iowa
Round 7, pick 24 (231st) – from Philadelphia through Denver – Shelley Smith, OG Colorado St.
Round 7, pick 40 (247th) – compensatory – Doug Worthington, DE/DT Ohio State
Round 7, pick 41 (248th) – compensatory – Trindon Holliday, WR/KR LSU
Round 7, pick 43 (250th) – compensatory – Daryll Clark, QB Penn State

2010 NFL Mock Draft Final Version by: “The Better Looking Mel Kiper”

DISCLAIMER #1: The team needs are based on Scouts Inc. projections, which can be found on ESPN.com.  I would love to go through every team’s depth chart and determine their team needs on my own, but I actually have some productive things to do with my time.

DISCLAIMER #2: Contrary to what they may lead you to believe, these so-called “experts” actually usually only predict around 30% of first round selections correctly.  So, don’t rely completely on the bullshit that they feed you.

DISCLAIMER #3: These draft projections are based on trades, free agent signings, injury updates, and any other relevant information as of April 22, 2010.  So if anything happens in between now the start of the draft (which it inevitably will) that I did not account for, then I’m sad to say I have yet to refine my future predicting skills.

DISCLAIMER #4: As my man Kanye West once eloquently said, “It’s what you all been waitin’ for ain’t it?”

  1. 1. St. Louis Rams – (TEAM NEEDS: QB, CB, WR, DT)

This pick is pretty much a done deal but there are two things that I am skeptical about.  First, Sam Bradford was very reluctant to agree on a deal before the draft.  This tells me one of two things: either Bradford is attempting to be a complete asshole and squeeze every penny possible out of the lowly Rams or he is pulling an Eli Manning type move and will eventually refuse to play for St. Louis.  Either way I think that the new ownership of the Rams need to draft a franchise quarterback to put their faith behind and to give the fans at least something to root for.  With the first pick in the 2010 NFL Draft, the St. Louis Rams select…

Sam Bradford, QB Oklahoma

  1. 2. Detroit Lions – (TEAM NEEDS: CB, DT, SS, OLB)

The lions could not have hoped for a better situation to occur.  Arguably their biggest need is a defensive tackle and Suh seems to be a can’t miss prospect.  There is a lot of speculation about the Lions attempting to grab Haynesworth from the Redskins, but I think that Detroit has too many needs to start giving up draft picks.  With the second pick in the 2010 NFL Draft, the Detroit Lions select…

Ndamukong Suh, DT Nebraska

  1. 3. Tampa Bay Buccaneers – (TEAM NEEDS: WR, DT, DE, CB)

Tampa Bay and second year head coach Raheem Morris lucked out big time with the selection of Bradford first overall.  It looked like Tampa Bay might have missed out on one of the big guys had they possibly gone one and two, but at least in this mock draft, McCoy is falling to three.  The Bucs may give a good look at either Eric Berry or Dez Bryant with this picked because of their immense level of talent, but filling a need with a possible Warren Sapp type guy is that best decision.  With the third pick in the 2010 NFL Draft, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers select…

Gerald McCoy, DT Oklahoma

  1. 4. Washington Redskins – (TEAM NEEDS: LT, RB, RT, QB)

I think that dealing away Haynesworth is becoming more and more of a possibility for the Redskins.  An overlooked acquisition of Adam Carriker for the Rams helps them out in the 3-4 front with Carriker having the ability to play the end. Dealing Haynesworth would almost certainly land them another first round pick, where they could look to address a skill position, but for now protecting their new franchise quarterback is their biggest priority.  With the fourth pick in the 2010 NFL Draft, the Washington Redskins select…

Russell Okung, OT Oklahoma State

  1. 5. Kansas City Chiefs – (TEAM NEEDS: LT, NT, FS, OLB)

Trent Williams of Bryan Bulaga seem to be the two trendy picks here.  Now I know that Pioli is a Belichick guy and that they like to build through the trenches.  I know that Pioli very rarely if ever drafts a skill position player this high in the draft.  I know that Pioli will undoubtedly be looking to move down a couple of spots and grab an offensive tackle there.  But, I also know that Eric Berry is the best remaining player in the draft and his talent level in undeniable.  With the fifth pick in the 2010 NFL Draft, the Kansas City Chiefs select…

Eric Berry, S Tennessee

  1. 6. Seattle Seahawks – (TEAM NEEDS: OT, DE, CB, WR)

The Seahawks are in a predicament at this first pick.  I know that Pete Carroll wants to draft Dez Bryant badly.  He loves playmakers and this is exactly what Seattle needs.  But, T.J. Houshmandzadeh is still around and that allows the Seahawks to look for a wide receiver in the early part of the second round.  Since Walter Jones recently announced his retirement the Seahawks are now very desperate for a left tackle.  Trent Williams is a great athlete and will be a good left tackle for many years to come.  With the sixth pick in the 2010 NFL Draft, the Seattle Seahawks select…

Trent Williams, OT Oklahoma

  1. 7. Cleveland Browns – (TEAM NEEDS: QB, WR, CB, S)

The toughest pick in the draft to predict is seven to Cleveland.  I’ve never had to deal with Mike Holmgren calling the shots like he is now.  I think Cleveland’s first priority will be to move down.  San Francisco is a team that strikes me that would look to jump up to seven and grab Clausen.  But, I’m not getting into making mock trades because then this draft will become a complete mess.  There are several players here that could go and all have about the same grade.  Earl Thomas, Jimmy Clausen, C.J. Spiller, and Dez Bryant are all possibilities.  With the seventh selection in the 2010 NFL Draft, the Cleveland Browns select…

Earl Thomas, S Texas

  1. 8. Oakland Raiders – (TEAM NEEDS: QB, OT, DT, WR)

Jimmy Clausen to the Oakland Raiders just doesn’t sound right in my mind.  I don’t think that ol’ Al Davis has given up on Jamarcus Russell yet (plus he still has a ton of money invested in him) and Al wasted a draft pick on a terrible wide receiver last season.  There are no defensive tackles left worthy of a top ten pick.  Therefore, I need to rely on some inside information (and the fastest 40 time at this players position) to make this official.  With the eighth pick in the 2010 NFL Draft, the Oakland Raiders (screw it up again and) select…

Bruce Campbell, OT Maryland

  1. 9. Buffalo Bills – (TEAM NEEDS: QB, OT, NT, WR)

I think the NFL should give the Bills twenty minutes to make this pick, ten minutes to recover from the Raiders making such a terrible pick, and another ten to realize if they don’t take Jimmy Clausen then they are pretty damn stupid.  With Bulaga still around the Bills will certainly take an extra look at him.  Nose tackle is also a serious need, but you just can’t pass on a quarterback that played for three years in an NFL type system and has a cannon for an arm.  With the ninth pick in the 2010 NFL Draft, the Buffalo Bills select…

Jimmy Clausen, QB Notre Dame

  1. 10. Jacksonville Jaguars – (TEAM NEEDS: FS, C, QB, WR)

I simply have no idea what the Jaguars are going to do with this pick.  Their biggest need is at safety, but Eric Berry and Earl Thomas are off of the board.  Tim Tebow is always a possibility because he can sell tickets for a team that desperately needs it.  But, I think in order to capitalize on their high draft position as well as generate some excitement for their team, the Jaguars need to take a serious look at Dez Bryant.  Their only productive returning wide receiver is Mike Sims-Walker and I doubt he can replicate his production from 2009.  Bryant gives them a playmaker to take some pressure off of Maurice Jones-Drew.  With the tenth pick in the 2010 NFL Draft, the Jacksonville Jaguars select…

Dez Bryant, WR Oklahoma State

  1. 11. Denver Broncos (from Chicago) – (TEAM NEEDS: WR, ILB, G/C, QB)

The Jags taking Dez Bryant was a blessing in disguise for the Broncos.  In my opinion, there was no way Denver was selecting the Oklahoma State wide receiver.  They just dumped their best offensive weapon because of character issues, so why would they spend a first round pick on picking another wide receiver with more character issues.  Rolando McClain is the best inside linebacker in this draft by far, and his addition to an already young Broncos defense makes them a team to fear in the near future.

Rolando McClain, ILB Alabama

  1. 12. Miami Dolphins – (TEAM NEEDS: WR, FS, NT, OLB)

A lot of speculation here surrounds the Dolphins picking up Dez Bryant if he is still around, or even a rush linebacker like Derrick Morgan.  Bill Parcells taught Bill Belichick many things that he knows, and Parcells (along with Belichick) knows that strong offensive and defensive lines.  The Dolphins are currently without a nose tackle and, while attempting to run a 3-4, that is a serious problem.  With the twelfth pick in the 2010 NFL Draft, the Miami Dolphins select…

Dan Williams, NT Tennessee

  1. 13. San Francisco 49ers – (TEAM NEEDS: OT, FS, OL, OLB)

Mike Singletary might drop his pants out of pure excitement if Bryan Bulaga falls to the 49ers at pick 13.  The 49ers had to pray that one of the three big offensive tackles (Okung, Williams, or Bulaga) fell to them or they might have to stretch for Anthony Davis, OT Rutgers.  With two first round selection, the 49ers can address a need on the defensive side of the ball at pick 17.  With the thirteenth pick in the 2010 NFL Draft, the San Francisco 49ers select…

Bryan Bulaga, OT Iowa

  1. 14. Seattle Seahawks (from Denver) – (TEAM NEEDS: OT, DE, CB, WR)

Seattle was hoping dearly that Dez Bryant would fall to then at pick 14.  Sorry Pete, it’s not going to happen.  But, luckily for the Seahawks, the second best playmaker falls into their laps, and he gets the opportunity to run behind their new big man Trent Williams.  With the fourteenth pick in the 2010 NFL Draft, the Seattle Seahawks select…

C.J. Spiller, RB Clemson

  1. 15. New York Giants – (TEAM NEEDS: MLB, DT, LB, OL)

If Rolando McClain is already selected, than the Giants certainly look to move down.  Their biggest need is clearly at middle linebacker, so I think they look to move down later into the first round, select a defensive tackle, and then somehow maneuver their way into the top of the second round and take Brandon Spikes, ILB Florida.  But, as I said, no way am I going to start making mock trades.  So, the Giants have no other choice but to sure up their offensive line.  With the fifteenth pick in the 2010 NFL Draft, the New York Giants select…

Mike Iupati, G Idaho

  1. 16. Tennessee Titans – (TEAM NEEDS: DE, CB, DT, LB)

Every pick it’s getting a bit tougher.  The Titans lost Kyle Vanden Bosch this offseason and that was a major blow to their defensive line.  I fully expect if Albert Haynesworth gets traded than he will end up in Tennessee, but that still doesn’t solve the problem at defensive end.  Derrick Morgan is another Georgia Tech defensive end full of athleticism and talent (remember Michael Johnson…yea me neither) but Morgan performed well in his workouts, and that usually warrants a first round selection.  With the sixteenth pick in the 2010 NFL Draft, the Tennessee Titans select…

Derrick Morgan, DE Georgia Tech

  1. 17. San Francisco 49ers (from Carolina) – (TEAM NEEDS: OT, FS, OL, OLB)

San Francisco is catching all kinds of breaks in this draft.  First, they get their hands on a top 10 talent at offensive tackle with the thirteenth pick, and now they end up with arguably the best pass rushing DE/OLB in the draft with Jason Pierre-Paul.  Pierre-Paul only played one year of division one college ball, but it was an amazingly productive year.  San Francisco gets that pass-rusher that they have been looking for to help their struggling secondary.  With the seventeenth pick in the 2010 NFL Draft, the San Francisco 49ers select…

Jason Pierre-Paul, DE/OLB South Florida

  1. 18. Pittsburgh Steelers – (TEAM NEEDS: CB, C, G, DL)

If any team is willing to give up a top 10 pick for Ben Roethlisberger, that if I were the Pittsburgh Steelers I would jump all over that.  The Steelers have been most effective when punishing defenses with the run game and then utilizing the play action pass very effectively (aside from the last season or two).  Trading Roethlisberger and beefing up their offensive line would allow the Steelers to get back to that style of play.  But, as of now ol’ Ben is still in town and the Steelers need a corner.  With the eighteenth pick in the 2010 NFL Draft, the Pittsburgh Steelers select…

Joe Haden, CB Florida

  1. 19. Atlanta Falcons – (TEAM NEEDS: DE, OLB, OL, CB)

The Jamaal Anderson experiment was a disaster (I told you he was a 3-4 end) and now the Falcons are right back where they were three drafts ago.  Many scouts project Graham as a better 3-4 rush linebacker than a defensive end.  But, I think his size (6’1”, 250 lbs) actually makes him a better prospect with his hand in the turf in a 4-3.  With the nineteenth pick in the 2010 NFL Draft, the Atlanta Falcons select…

Brandon Graham, DE/OLB Michigan

  1. 20. Houston Texans – (TEAM NEEDS: CB, RB, NT, FS)

My prediction is that the Texans work a deal with the Giants to move up to 15 and pick Joe Haden before anyone else has the chance to scoop him up.  But, Haden is already gone and the Texans are in desperate need of a corner.  Houston’s defense has already supplanted itself as one of the better defenses in the league, but I believe that with some secondary help the Texans will vault themselves to being considered one of the best defenses in football.  With the twentieth pick in the 2010 NFL Draft, the Houston Texans select…

Kyle Wilson, CB Boise State

  1. 21. Cincinnati Bengals – (TEAM NEEDS: TE, FS, DE, WR)

I hate this pick I’m about to make because I feel like I am giving into the trendy pick, which I absolutely hate to do.  But, tight end is by far the Bengals’ most glaring need and Jermaine Gresham is one of the better tight end prospects to hit the draft in the last five seasons.  Taylor Mays gets a serious look with this pick, but Gresham is too good to pass up.  With the twenty-first pick in the 2010 NFL Draft, the Cincinnati Bengals select…

Jermaine Gresham, TE Oklahoma

  1. 22. New England Patriots – (TEAM NEEDS: WR, OLB, ILB, TE)

Sorry Scotty, but Dez Bryant is not even going to come close to falling to twenty-two.  I guess it’s time for plan B.  Brandon Graham is the guy that I would love see fall to the Pats.  I think he is a Patriot type of guy, first guy into the building in the morning and last guy out at night.  But, he too is gone.  I also don’t doubt Belichick’s desire to jump all around the draft board and with three second round picks, there is a serious possibility that New England could jump up to grab a player that they desire (maybe…Eric Berry?).  But, at twenty-two the most reasonable selection is Sergio Kindle.  With the twenty-second pick in the 2010 NFL Draft, the New England Patriots select…

Sergio Kindle, DE/OLB Texas

  1. 23. Green Bay Packers – (TEAM NEEDS: CB, OLB, G/C, OT)

Kindle was the Packers’ guy if he ended up at twenty-three.  Now that he is gone, the Packers can look in a couple different directions.  They have a need at cornerback, not because of lack of talent with Al Harris and Charles Woodson there, but with health (Harris underwent knee surgery and may not be ready for the start of the season) and age (Charles Woodson will turn 34 this season and Al Harris will turn 36).  They also have a need at offensive tackle, not for a starter but for depth and the future.  But, with the loss of Aaron Kampman to the Jags, the Packers’ most glaring need may be at outside linebacker.  Putting the ever-dynamic Jerry Hughes opposite of Clay Matthews and besides Nick Barnett and A.J. Hawk will give the Packers arguably the best linebacking corp. in the NFL.  With the twenty-third pick in the 2010 NFL Draft, the Green Bay Packers select…

Jerry Hughes, OLB TCU

  1. 24. Philadelphia Eagles – (TEAM NEEDS: FS, OLB, DE, T/G)

The Ernie Sims acquisition was an underrated move considering all they gave up was a fifth and seventh round pick.  Sims will help the Eagles’ desperate linebacking situation, but certainly won’t solve it.  But, I think that there is an outside chance that Sean Weatherspoon falls to Philly at 37 (pick received from Washington for McNabb) and if not they can grab Daryl Washington from TCU, who would fit great into the Eagles’ blitzing defensive scheme.  Selecting Taylor Mays at twenty-four not only fills a major need for the Eagles, but restores some of that defensive toughness that was lost when Brian Dawkins left town.  With the twenty-fourth pick in the 2010 NFL Draft, the Philadelphia Eagles select…

Taylor Mays, S USC

  1. 25. Baltimore Ravens – (TEAM NEEDS: CB, TE, DE, FS)

I know that the Ravens could use a corner, because their corners are apparently unable to stay healthy.  But, I think at pick twenty-five, and with a veteran (and aging) defense, drafting for the future may be the way to go.  The more important position in a 3-4 defense is at nose tackle.  Kelly Gregg is nearing the end of his career and drafting Terrence Cody would give the Ravens an amazingly athletic (and huge) nose tackle that could use a couple of years of seasoning behind a veteran player.  With the twenty-fifth pick in the 2010 NFL Draft, the Baltimore Ravens select…

Terrence Cody, NT Alabama

  1. 26. Arizona Cardinals – (TEAM NEEDS: LT, OLB, QB, ILB)

The Cardinals are in desperate need of an outside linebacker, and it seems as though Everson Griffen has fallen right into their laps.  I question Griffen’s ability to drop back into coverage and I am concerned about the fluidity of his hips.  But, Everson Griffen can certainly rush the passer, and that’s something that the Cardinals need.  With the twenty-sixth pick in the 2010 NFL Draft, the Arizona Cardinals select…

Everson Griffen, DE/OLB USC

  1. 27. Dallas Cowboys – (TEAM NEEDS: S, LT, ILB, WR)

Bruce Campbell’s selection by the Raiders allowed for Anthony Davis to slide his way down to the bottom of the first round.  If Taylor Mays is still around then I think Jerry Jones will seriously consider him.  Also, Jerry Jones needs to consider Demaryius Thomas, WR Georgia Tech because wide receiver (with the depleted production of Roy Williams and the impending free agenct of Miles Austin) has become a need.  But, drafting an NFL ready offensive lineman is the smart choice here.  With the twenty-seventh selection in the 2010 NFL Draft, the Dallas Cowboys select…

Anthony Davis, OT Rutgers

  1. 28. San Diego Chargers – (TEAM NEEDS: RB, NT, CB, RT)

I know Ladanian Tomlinson’s production diminished over the last couple of seasons, but his departure from San Diego leaves a huge hole in the Chargers’ offense.  Terrence Cody may be the selection here if still available, but if not than Ryan Mathews would be a great pickup at twenty-eight.  With the twenty-eighth pick in the 2010 NFL Draft, the San Diego Chargers select…

Ryan Mathews, RB Fresno State

  1. 29. New York Jets – (TEAM NEEDS: S, DE, OLB, WR)

Again, if Taylor Mays is still around than he may be the selection.  But, Mays is gone so the Jets’ attention has to switch to their 3-4 defensive end position.  Jared Odrick may have found himself in the top 15 in a draft that wasn’t so littered with talented skill players, but he has slid all the way down to twenty-nine.  Odrick is a perfect 3-4 defensive end and if he gets into training camp on time he should push for playing time immediately.  With the twenty-ninth pick in the 2010 NFL Draft, the New York Jets select…

Jared Odrick, DT Penn State

  1. 30. Minnesota Vikings – (TEAM NEEDS: OL, QB, CB, NT)

When you get down this late in the first round teams begin to draft more of the best players available than to fill needs.  How Kareem Jackson fell down the board this far is beyond me, but the Vikings could certainly use an underrated young corner if they plan on beating the Saints any time soon.  With the thirtieth selection in the 2010 NFL Draft, the Minnesota Vikings select…

Kareem Jackson, CB Alabama

  1. 31. Indianapolis Colts – (TEAM NEEDS: OT, NT, OL, CB)

Maurkice Pouncey has the talent to be at least a top twenty pick, if not higher.  But, his position rarely warrants a selection that high in the draft.  The Colts offensive line is aging and their production is diminishing.  Indianapolis could not run the ball at all last season (I know they have Peyton Manning, but you still have to run sometimes) and they could use to improve that aspect of their offense.  With the thirty-first selection in the 2010 NFL Draft, the Indianapolis Colts select…

Maurkice Pouncey, G/C Florida

  1. 32. New Orleans Saints – (TEAM NEEDS: DT, OLB, DE, TE)

The Saints desperately need a defensive tackle to play alongside Sedrick Ellis.  Similar to the Jared Odrick situation, Brian Price has middle of the first round talent, but has fallen victim to an exceptionally deep draft.  Price has the ability to come in and compete for playing time immediately.  With the thirty-second selection in the 2010 NFL Draft, the New Orleans Saints select…

Brian Price, DT UCLA

PATRIOT PREDICTIONS:

1st Round (22nd Overall) – Sergio Kindle, DE/OLB Texas
2nd Round (44th Overall – JAX) – Tim Tebow, H-Back/TE/QB Florida
2nd Round (47th Overall – TEN) – Tyson Alualu, DE California
2nd Round (53rd Overall) – Montario Hardesty, RB Tennessee
4th Round (119th Overall) – Dorin Dickerson, TE Pittsburgh
6th Round – Danny Batten, ILB South Dakota State
6th Round (Comp – Jabar Gaffney) – Chris DeGeare, OG Wake Forest
7th Round (PHI – Greg Lewis) – Mike Williams, WR Syracuse
7th Round (DEN – Russ Hochstein) – Trindon Holliday, WR/KR LSU
7th Round (Comp – Heath Evans) – Mike Mclaughlin, ILB Boston College
7th Round (Comp – Lamont Jordan) – Sam Shields, CB Miami
7th Round (Comp – Lonnie Paxton) – Jeff Byers, C USC