The first round of the draft is tonight, and so, I thought I’d take a quick moment to talk about what might be going on. For the first time in a long time, I won’t have a full first-round mock. To be truthful, with the Cards picking so high, I just don’t know enough of what may be happening after, say, the 10th pick. And I’ve had some other things going on too. Anyway, on to the draft.
OK, here’s what we know:
(See what I did there?)
Here’s what we think we know, based on all the millions of bits of information floating out there, the misinformation floating out there, and the meshing of both which will leave some things happening exactly as expected and others scratching our head (google Tyson Alualu):
1) The Panthers will probably take Cam Newton. 2) The Broncos seem to be leaning to Von Miller, although they seem ready to trade out, and there is scuttlebutt the Redskins might want to trade up for Blaine Gabbert. 3) The Bills seem to be ready to take Miller, or Newton, or Marcel Dareus, depending who drops. 4) Gabbert could fall quickly. 5) The Bengals probably go offense. 6) Most teams in the top five seem willing to trade down, if someone is willing to trade up, which is always the issue. 7) There are so many quarterbacks seemingly equal in stature it looks like the teams that need them are more willing to wait until the top of round two instead of pulling the trigger on one early.
In other words, there’s uncertainty, although it’s a controlled uncertainty in many ways. Said Cardinals general manager Rod Graves, “The top 10 players are the top 10 players. We may have them out of order a little bit from team to team, but you are still talking about the same guys. Beyond that, it’s a little more dicey.” So here are my thoughts on the top five picks:
- Carolina: QB Cam Newton. At this point, it’d be a surprise if it wasn’t Newton, although Dareus could sneak in, I suppose. Newton is anything but a guarantee, but at the same time, it’s a swing-for-the-fences pick.
- Denver: LB Von Miller. Those covering the Broncos seem pretty sure about this, although I get the sense the Broncos would like to trade. Dareus would seem a definite possibility, since new coach John Fox always loved to build up front the best he can and the team is transitioning from a 3-4 to a 4-3 (and Miller doesn’t seem to fit that quite as well).
- Buffalo: DT Marcell Dareus. Miller and Newton have been the two teams linked to the Bills this whole pre-draft time, and in my scenario, both are gone. Would Peterson or Blaine Gabbert be possible?
- Cincinnati: QB Blaine Gabbert. My gut is telling me they go WR A.J. Green, but people closer to the team think they may pull the trigger on Gabbert. I think they may go Green and try and get that second-round QB. Either way, time to find out if Mike Brown is willing to call Carson Palmer’s retirement bluff (although I’m not so sure it’s a bluff).
- Arizona: CB Patrick Peterson. If this is the scenario, I think the Cards would look long and hard at both Peterson and Green. If this is the scenario, the Cards may have some decent trade-down options too. If Gabbert is on the board with Peterson (let’s say Green was Cincy’s pick), that will also give pause, although I personally think defense would win out.
One other thing: A handful of coaches will attend today’s draft party, starting at 4 p.m. at the Great Lawn at University of Phoenix Stadium. They will be assistant head coach Russ Grimm, new defensive coordinator Ray Horton, offensive coordinator Mike Miller and strength and conditioning coach John Lott.
P.S. I love you, Dad.
Tags: draft, mock draft
Posted in Blog | 38 Comments »