As the great Vince Lombardi once said, “What the hell’s goin’ on out here?”
That’s pretty much how I was feeling while watching the NFL draft this year. I’m not sure which one is more unlikely, successfully predicting the NFL draft, or the Boston Red Sox winning the World Series this year (I couldn’t help myself). The first seven picks of the draft were all offensive and/or defensive lineman. I’m not sure if that has ever happened before, but I don’t really feel like looking it up. Either way, it’s rare.
With that being said, there are a few draft choices that I really don’t understand and need to vent to you all about. Prepare yourselves.
First off, let me just say that there is a reason the Chiefs have had four winning seasons since 2000. It’s because of their choices, such as taking Eric Fisher first overall, instead of Luke Joeckel. Don’t get me wrong, Fisher is a great player, but he’s no Luke Joeckel. Sure, Fisher may be a little faster, but can someone please tell me the last time speed was correlated with the success of an offensive lineman?
Joeckel graded out better, protected the Heisman trophy winning quarterback all season, played against better competition (including dominating Alabama) and was predicted to be the number one pick all the way up until the Chiefs took Fisher, instead.
I don’t understand it at all. But hey, I guess that’s why I’m the one writing this column and not the one making the draft picks, right? Time will tell though if they made the right choice or not.
Before I begin my next rant, I would first like to apologize in advance to my father and my high school football coach, Coach Capaccio, for what I’m about to say. You see, both of them are huge Buffalo Bills fans (I know, I feel bad for them, too).
Like the Chiefs, there is a reason the Bills have been one of the most embarrassing teams to watch for the majority of the last decade. Teams don’t stay that bad unless there is clearly something wrong with whoever is calling the shots. For example, whoever was behind the idea of taking EJ Manuel with the 16th overall pick in the entire draft needs to be fired immediately.
Now, they definitely needed a quarterback, that’s for sure. But why take Manuel? Why not Geno Smith? Actually, that’s beside the point, though. Maybe they thought Manuel fit their system better, which is fine, I guess.
The point is, why take him 16th overall, when he most likely would have been there when they had their second round and maybe even their third round pick? The guy graded out at just over a 68. By the way, that’s 68 out of 100, in case you were wondering if maybe the scales are different when grading NFL prospects. I’m not sure how the grading scales work in Buffalo, but here at Maryville College, and everywhere else across the country, a D plus isn’t too hot. Once again, what the hell’s going on out here? I’m getting worked up just writing about this.
Excuse me while I go shove my face in a pillow and scream as loud as can. Okay, I’m back. I’m sure as much as my pops and Coach Capaccio want to love and agree with this pick, there is no way they do. How could they? The Bills missed out on improving that God awful defense that was ranked 22nd overall last year by passing up on actual first round talent like Jarvis Jones, Eric Reid or Shariff Floyd while still getting Manuel later in the draft. I feel bad for all you poor Bills fans.
Moving on, I want, better yet, I need to address something that I feel very strongly about. When looking at the Steelers’ draft, I am very pleased with how my team made out. We addressed two of our top needs in the first two rounds with Jarvis Jones (thanks, Buffalo), the outside linebacker from Georgia, and Le’Veon Bell, the monstrous running back from Michigan State.
In the third round, though, I was really hoping and praying we would tackle our need for a cornerback by making a move for Tyrann Mathieu, instead of taking Markus Wheaton, a receiver from Oregon State. Now, I know there is no way to predict he would go to Arizona at pick 69, but, in my opinion, Mathieu was one of the top five defensive players in the entire draft.
If you look at his film from two years ago, the guy was, and still is, an absolute stud. To be honest, I don’t really care about his questionable history. You think Coach Tomlin can’t scare some sense into him? Ike Taylor on one side and Tyrann Mathieu on the other would be pretty great. Instead, the Steelers wait until round five to take some scrub cornerback from Illinois. Wheaton better be damn good, that’s all I’m saying.
Before I wrap this up, I want to end on a good note by commending some teams that I feel made some great choices. First off, congratulations to St. Louis for making a move in the first round and drafting, in my opinion, the best and most explosive offensive player in the draft, Tavon Austin. Frankly, I got tired of seeing the Rams embarrass themselves week in and week out last year on the offensive side of the ball, so I’m hoping Austin can stop the torture.
Next, the Jets finally did something good for the first time in, well, possibly ever, when they drafted Dee Milliner, the Alabama cornerback. I believe he’s got the ability to come in and fill Revis’ shoes without any issues. Not only that, but the Jets finally drafted a QB that can actually play the position.
Geno Smith was a great pick up for them and should be announced the starter as soon as he steps on the practice field. Furthermore, I want to thank every team in the NFL for proving me right by not taking T’eo in the first round. I have no problem with him going 38th overall to the Chargers.
Finally, I want to sadly congratulate the Arizona Cardinals for drafting the biggest steal in the 2013 draft, Tyrann Mathieu, who is most likely going to play free safety for them. Well played, Arizona.