‘Twas The Night Before The Draft!
This is like Christmas Eve for the Guru (and the true NFL fan). The Gridiron Guru has been quietly watching the wire, keeping an eye on all the news and player movement, and preparing to tell you what to watch for in tomorrow’s draft. First, a couple of ‘told-you-so’ gloats:
1) The Guru told you before the 2005 season began that Brett Favre would be back for the 2006 season. If only Brett and Deanna would have read my articles last year they would have saved themselves 6 months of toiling over the decision. Tune in this August and I’ll tell you whether 2006 will be Brett’s swan song (here’s a hint: don’t bet on it).
2) The Guru told you that the Chargers would not go into 2006 with both Drew Brees and Philip Rivers at QB. I was right! What not even the Guru could have predicted the recently lobotomized Charger brain-trust would show Brees the door and go with Rivers as their franchise passer. What are they smoking? I have one thing to say: 2005 Buffalo Bills! (as in they showed Drew Bledsoe the door and suffered miserably with J.P. Losman). And as a post-script: The SAINTS? Drew Brees what were you thinking? That’s where QB’s go to die! Fire the agent, Drew. He’s sold your soul.
Now, on to the draft. Who should your team take? Which of the ‘Big Three’ QB’s will go first and which will slide? Who will be the guy in New York sitting on camera nervously through pick after pick waiting to hear his name? Well, let me tell you.
Texans – USC RB Reggie Bush
Saints – VA OT D’Brickashaw Ferguson
Titans – USC QB Matt Linert
Jets – NC DE Mario Williams
Packers – OSU LB A.J. Hawk
49ers – OR DT Haloti Ngata
Raiders – TEX QB Vince Young
Bills – MD TE Vernon Davis
Lions – TEX DB Michael Huff
Cardinals – VAND QB Jay Cutler
Rams – VT DB Jimmy Williams
Browns – NCS LB Manny Lawson
Ravens – USC OT Winston Justice
Eagles – UF WR Chad Jackson
Broncos – USC RB Lendale White
Dolphins – CLEM DB Tye Hill
Vikings – FSU DT Broderick Bunkley
Cowboys – FSU LB Kamerion Wimbley
Chargers – FSU DB Antonio Cromartie
Chiefs – SC DB Jonathan Joseph
Patriots – FSU LB Ernie Sims
49ers – OSU LB Bobby Carpenter
Buccaneers – UM WR Sinorice Moss
Bengals – ALA LB DeMeco Ryans
Giants – UM OT Eric Winston
Bears – OSU DB Ashton Youboty
Panthers – MEM RB DeAngelo Williams
Jaguars – UT DB Jason Allen
Jets – MINN RB Laurence Maroney
Colts – OK OG Davin Joseph
Seahawks – OSU DB Donte Whitner
Steelers – OSU WR Santonio Holmes
A couple Guru Gimmes to take to the bank. There is no Ryan Leaf among the Big Three, however, there is no Peyton Manning among them either. The best bet of the three is actually the one who will be taken last of the three, Vandy’s Jay Cutler. I think Dennis Green will be the one to snatch him up. The Jet’s blow it by not grabbing him with their early pick (would that surprise anyone?). Best pick of the first round: Patriots and Ernie Sims (or whoever gets Ernie Sims). This guy will be the next Derrick Brooks. The biggest reach of the first round will be anyone who reaches for USC underclassman Lendale White. I bet Denver will be the team to do it. Last year they reached for Maurice Clarett and busted on him. They will want to redeem themselves by taking another project, only this time seeing it work out.
Picking the draft isn’t a science, as one or two surprises will change everything on down the line. But this should give you a good marker on the top 32 players. The Guru hath spoken! See you Monday to review the first round.