Let me preface this by saying hello to everyone. It's been a while, but it's good to see everyone still around making this place great. It looks wonderful!
Going into the draft this year, I was more than anxious with the top 10 pick and seemingly lackluster draft class. There are very few marquee-can't miss prospects. That said, however, the talent level from picks 1-100 really isn't as disparaging as most years. Teams drafting in the 20's will have an excellent chance of landing players of equal or greater value (in the future obviously) as teams drafting much higher. Which is why I am disappointed the Packers have a high pick this year, where there is little to be gained from having it.
That said, TT is usually looking to stockpile and trade down... which I usually do not like. I don't think he will be able to do that this year considering both the current economic status (a top ten pick garners a ton of guaranteed monies) and the perceived lack of depth in this years class. The only way I can see him dropping down in the draft is if Mark Sanchez somehow falls past Seattle at 4 and then Jacksonville stays put at 8. I really feel the Jets or the Skins will try making a move to the upper half of the top ten to make a move on Sanchez if he falls past Seattle. If there were a year where I would want TT to trade down, this would be the year. So Seattle, if you're listening, please pass on Sanchez and allow someone to move down with GB.
Now, considering the chances of GB moving away from the number nine slot are pretty slim, who's gonna be there for my guys to take? Well there are no guarantees for sure, and I'm usually surprised at who TT decides to pick, so finding who will be there and who he will take is an unusually difficult task. All I can do is give it my best with a mini mock (top ten) followed by my top 5 available and who I would like to see taken.
1) Detroit - Matthew Stafford: I do not like this pick if I'm a Lions fan. Top 10 QB's are 70 percent likely to fail in the league. Detroit is not exactly a nurturing environment, and the team as a whole is really terrible. But he's already signed and ready to go!
2) St. Louis - Jason Smith: Again, another pick I do not like very much. Not so much because of the position, but because I think Eugene Monroe is going to be a better pro. I'm not an NFL scout though.
3) Kansas City - Eugene Monroe: Everyone and their mother have Aaron Curry going to KC here. While that would be a solid pick, I feel the run on OT's is going to start early and run hard. Don't be surprised to see 3 in the top 10 today.
4) Seattle - Mark Sanchez: I would not be surprised if Seattle takes Michael Crabtree here to play opposite of TJ Houshmandzadeh (sp?) and shore up a glaring decade long weakness in one off-season, but the appeal of taking maybe the most talented QB in this draft as a future replacement to an aging Matt Hasslebeck might overrule the coup.
5) Cleveland - Michael Crabtree: While I don't think WR is Clevelands biggest concern (IE Defense), someone of this talent level cannot drop much farther than the top 5. Aaron Curry is probably who they should take, but the possibility of losing Braylon Edwards might sway them into taking the best offensive player in the draft.
6) Cincinnati - Aaron Curry: High character players are what Cinci needs to build their team around. Aaron Curry is both that and the best defensive player in the draft. If he slides to 6 the Bengals just got a steal.
7) Oakland - BJ Raji: Best DT in the draft bar none. Also some possible character problems, which Al Davis usually doesn't mind. Would not be surprised to see Jeremy Maclin taken here.
8) Jacksonville - Jeremy Maclin: Best WR on the board that can also step in right away with special teams. Jville might be pressed to look at Malcolm Jenkins or Brian Orakpo, but I think they will be drafting offense with their first pick.
And now for the Green and Gold. With the number nine pick, there are still several good prospects. TT usually doesn't draft for need, but fortunately for us the need positions also happen to carry the best available players. Here is a list of 5 players I want the Packers to consider taking. (In no particular order, I would be happy with any of these players).
1) Michael Oher - OT - Mississippi: This kid had an ultra-tough upbringing and an ultra-late start to football. He has an incredible work ethic and brings strong leadership and character. He is still a little on the raw side compared to some other players at his position, but he should turn out to be a pro-bowl caliber OT.
2) Aaron Maybin - DE/OLB - Penn State: An explosive first step is what sets this guy above the others in his class. He's a real tweener that should be able to play the 3-4 OLB position. It's always something of a gamble converting players from college to positions they've never played before, but I think his talent and on-field intelligence should prove a smart pick.
3) Malcolm Jenkins - CB/FS - Ohio State: The best secondary player available in the draft would add immediate depth to a sold secondary, as well as provide insurance for aging DB's Al Harris and Charles Woodson. Very safe pick.
4) Brian Orakpo - DE/OLB - Texas: Probably the most physically gifted defensive lineman in the draft reminds me a lot of DeMarcus Ware and even a little bit of Julius Peppers. If he can play at even 75 percent of one of those guys, he's a solid pick. His work ethic is second to none, which I love.
5) Tyson Jackson - DE - LSU: Green Bay has a desperate need for a prototypical DE in their 3-4 defense. Jackson is the only player in this entire draft that fits that mold. His combination of size and quickness is impressive to say the least.