Tomorrow is truly one of the great days of the year. The NFL Draft. It's a day of sitting around, cursing, watching insane New Yorkers, Mel Kiper Jr., weird interviews, even weirder picks, and trades that don't make sense. Then people get way to excited about it all, start making bold predictions, and the true is, the draft two years before is the draft that actually matters, and this draft still needs two years to really make a difference in the NFL. But nonetheless, here are my predictions for the first 18 picks.
1) San Francisco – Alex Smith – Everyone says he's the slightly better of the two QBs. SF picks him or trades him, but he's going #1. Let me put it this way, Smith ends up costing himself money if he doesn't go #1. Agents aren't stupid remember. Maggs is going to get $75 from the Tigers and maybe play three games for them. Edwards just doesn't make sense in the end either.
2) Miami – Ronnie Brown – The real question is, does someone trade up for Edwards here? If that's the case, and I think it may be but I'm not sold on it yet, then this draft goes to shit. But I think in the end, Miami can't find anything, and takes Brown.
3) Cleveland - Braylon Edwards – They like him a lot, I doubt they panic and switch with the 'Fins. If someone moves up for Edwards, then I have no clue what they'll do here. None. If that were to happen and the Browns were to say, "you know what, we've messed up so many high first round picks, we're just not going to draft this year", I would nod my head and say, good move. But I think Miami ends up taking Brown, and Edwards goes to the Browns.
4) Chicago – Cedric Benson – This draft is just insane, the top two teams drafting have no clue what they're doing, the team drafting #4 is either totally lying about Benson or in love with him. I have no clue what the Bears do here, everyone says they're in love with Benson. I'm not sure. They could take the Caddy or Williams here trying to get someone, anyone interested in Benson, but that doesn't seem very likely since Benson isn't rated my many teams as the second or best back. So I think they really do like Benson, and take him.
5) Tampa Bay – Carnell Williams – And they do cartwheels all the way to St. Pete.
6) Tennessee – Antrel Rolle – I hate it when you've got two players of the same position who are about the same when it comes to 'ranking' them. Everyone thinks player A is that little bit better, and then on draft day player B is taken and Andera Kramer interviews the head coach and we get something like "We liked this guy more" and everyone looks dumb for picking the other guy. But Rolle played the U and I think if it comes down to someone from the U or any other school in the nation, take the guy from the U (but USC is going to test this
theory next year). As for them taking a QB, don't people realize that Billy Volek isn't a bad QB?
7) Minnesota – Mike Williams – And to think other wise is nuts. Williams is going to be a good to great WR, the guy from South Carolina has Donte' Stallworth written all over him. The Vikings know this. You don't draft Stallworth #7.
8) Arizona – Adam Jones – Let me put it this way; I was too young to really remember the Pac-Man craze. Jones is younger than me; calling him Pac-Man is a joke. With that cleared up, it's a shame they hired Dennis Green because if anyone else was in Arizona right now, this pick would be Alex Baron or Troy Williamson or some other guy the would reach for and didn't really need. But Green is here now, and I'm not sure what they'll do. Something that makes sense… what does this team need though? You'd figure QB, but no one has them taking a QB, so Jones is the pick. But if they take Rodgers, remember you heard it hear first, just the experts talked me out of it.
9) Washington – Aaron Rodgers – Rodgers is falling… do they take him? Or maybe the take the other Rodgers (Carlos) but I think yes, Aaron, I think they realize that he's probably a better player than Campbell, they take him and wait and see where the rest of the first round plays out at #26. They may also trade up with someone like the Vikings before and take Rodgers to make sure they land him. Trying to figure out what the Redskins are doing is like trying to figure out what the Cardinals used to do. So we've got that going for us in terms of the new insane franchise in the NFL, but since they spend money they're always a little bit better than the Cards. I also wouldn't rule out Pat Tillman here since I'm sure Snyder would do anything for a little media attention.
10) Detroit – Derrick Johnson – Two things about this pick:
1) Johnson will either go to the Lions at 10, or they won't draft him and he'll slip… this is the pick of the draft that everyone agrees on, and either everyone is right or everyone is wrong. Has anyone seen a mock draft where Johnson doesn't go to the Lions?
2) I'm still disappointed that Detroit isn't spelled DetRIOT or that we haven't changed the spelling of riot to roit. There's still time.
11) Dallas – Shawne Merriman – I don't really care to be honest. I'm not sure there is a city I hate more than Dallas and the teams that play in Dallas. Dirk makes it okay, but that's it. Everyone else I'm not a fan of. Thumps down to Dallas because I said so. Houston is a close second.
12) San Diego (from the NEW JERSEY Giants) – Marcus Spears – But I'm guessing, they could go with Demarcus Ware who may be a better fit… if Johnson is still here they take him, but I say Spears. He's a beast
and preformed great at the college level. Seems like a poor man's Richard Seymour waiting to happen.
13) Houston – Troy Williamson – This will be the Texans first draft without having the worst name in sports (thank you Washington Nationals!) and they pick Williamson after the run of tweener LB/DEs… though maybe they take Ware here. I have no clue, but Williamson sounds good.
14) Carolina – Alex Baron – Considering that most of their line is on 'roids, it seems to me that getting a guy that probably is not is a good idea. That said, there might be nothing more anti-climatic than drafting an offensive lineman in the first round. Either that or watching a Boston College vs Notre Dame game.
15) Kansas City – Erasmus James – And we have a steal! We have a steal! Erasmus, maybe the best player in college football last year, goes fifteen because he got chop blocked in the Purdue game. This guy played like a top five pick last year, but a bad hip a few years ago and a cheap block in a Big Ten game has him drop? And the funny thing is, if Surtain doesn't get traded, he probably continues to fall. Plus Erasmus wins the "guy I'd most want to be in this years NFL draft" if for no other reason than to be able to say this some day:
Person – "Mr. James?"
Me as EJ – "Call me Erasmus."
Yep, let's add Erasmus to the list of names I'd love to name my first-born male children (with Teemu, Jean-Yves, and Jesus) but my wife will never let me.
16) New Orleans – Carlos Rodgers - But seriously does anyone care? They and the Falcons were in the same place five or six years ago, no one cared who they drafted who was on their team… they were the two
most bland and character lacking teams in all of sports (did anyone have any feeling either way towards these two teams?). Then the Falcons drafted Vick and we all care. The poor Saints. No one cares. They could draft George W. Bush and still no one would care.
17) Cincinnati - TRADE - They're trading this pick and this is the point in the draft where someone moves up and takes someone a little high, and Berman goes 'Wow' and Mel Kiper Jr looks down at the desk, shakes his head, and goes "I wouldn't have done that if I was Team X". Since I've got to put someone down, Dan Cody. Then again this could go the other way and Mel gets all excited and it's Demarcus Ware.
18) Minnesota - Demarcus Ware – But no! Ware goes to the Viks at 18! And Mort looks around and goes, 'I can't figure this one out', and Mel goes, 'well they must think he can get bigger' and Berman is murdered by a Jets fan… I really don't care any more.