Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Preview to NFL Draft!

Hello all. With the NFL draft approaching, I thought now would be a better time than ever to talk about prospects. Every year, the media is always focused on the headline players that go in the top 10 or 20 picks. Often overlooked, I like to talk about the underrated guys. These players have all the potential to be just as good as the “star” players. Why am I so confident? Here is a look at my track record:

2010- my top 5
1. FS Major Wright- Florida
2. QB Colt McCoy- Texas
3. WR Eric Decker- Minnesota
4. WR Emmanuel Sanders- SMU
5. DT Geno Atkins- Georgia

2013 analysis: Sans McCoy, each one of these players is a starter in the league. I thought Atkins was underrated, but never expected him to be the all pro, top five defensive player that he is today. Sanders, meanwhile, has been a productive slot receiver for the Steelers and looks to continue that trend in the upcoming years now that Wallace is gone. I predicted him to be right around where he is Decker, of course, had a monster year for Denver but has been “a solid #2 wideout in the league.” That is the exact quote that I used to describe his potential in 2010. McCoy, of course, seems to be the bust on the list although he was a starter for Cleveland not too long ago. I expected more out of him though as he was a great quarterback for the longhorns. Many people around the NFL still don’t know who Major Wright is but he has maintained his underrated status. He was the starting free safety for the Bears last year and, just like in college, prevented deep passes better than almost anyone in the league. He has been solid. Overall, I got pretty lucky with the Atkins and Decker picks but I shined light on some underrated players who turned into great players in the NFL.

2011- my top 5
1. CB Richard Sherman- Stanford
2. QB Christian Ponder- Florida State
3. RB Ryan Williams- Virginia Tech
4. DE Allen Bailey- UMIAMI
5. DE Muhammad Wilkerson- Temple

2013 analysis: I did not do as well with this class as I did the previous year. Wilkerson has actually become a solid NFL player, but I kind of cheated because he wasn't all that underrated. Although, he went later than I predicted him, so I guess that is the definition of underrated. Nonetheless, he is one of the best players on the Jets. Allen Bailey hasn’t reached a high level of success either, playing mostly as a backup for Kansas City. There is still time for him but he hasn’t impressed me the same way he did at Miami. Williams has the potential to be very good but, just like at Virginia Tech, injuries have kept him out of the spotlight. What saves me with this class are my top two guys. Ponder is a starter in the NFL and led his team to the post season last year. He has not put up the numbers that others have but I will go to my grave with the words I wrote in 2011, “he is the best QB in his class.” Sherman is one of my favorite players in the NFL mostly because of the way I praised him coming out of Stanford. I said, “put him in the right defense, and he can be a top 5 corner in this league.” And that has happened exactly as I planned. So, not a bad class, but not nearly as good as what I predicted a year before.

2012- my top 5
1. WR Mohammad Sanu- Rutgers
2. WR Stephen Hill- Georgia Tech
3. OT Jonathan Martin- Stanford
4.  LB Lavonte David- Nebraska
5. DE Vinny Curry- Marshall

2013 Analysis: It is too early to predict anything about these guys yet but I will say that all of them are off to great starts in their young careers. Sanu and Hill are big targets who got injured this year. Martin and David were solid and Curry is a rising role player

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