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Monday, May 01, 2006

Post draft analysis

--posted by Tony Garcia on 5/01/2006

I'm not one to get caught up in the draft hype. Why watch it when you can get more information Monday morning? The excitement? There's more excitement watching curling or cricket (that one's for you Marty).

But I do like the post draft analysis. This year is the first in a long time that my team has been given above a C+. According to the Sporting News Dan Pompei the big winner in this year's draft is...with the only A+.... Yep, the Green Bay Packers were given the best draft day grade.
With linebackers A.J. Hawk and Abdul Hodge, the Packers have the beginnings of a defense that could dominate the NFC North for years.
The Packers had a ton of picks this year (12). And their #1 pick was A.J. Hawk (OLB, Ohio St.)

My team got a B+. I have to agree. They did some great things with their picks. Their first pick helps last year's #1 pick (Alex Smith, QB): Vernon Davis (TE, Maryland). Helping a new QB develop only improves an anemic offense. The card on Davis:
Hands: Has soft hands and catches the ball well. Is a tenacious receiver. Has a big vertical leap. Wins jump balls and makes acrobatic catches.
Patterns: Has a great understanding of the passing game. Knows how to beat man and zone coverage. Has elite speed for the position. Can stretch defenses but is willing to play in short and intermediate zones. Can turn short routes into long gains. Excels at running routes.
It was obvious that the priority in San Francisco is to fix the broken offense in hopes of occassionally outscoring opponents, patch up the defense enough to limp towards another draft day and then beef up the defense next year. The Niners picked up 1 TE and 3 WR in the first 5 picks.

Finally, the rating for the hometown team, the Vikings, is a C.
Outside linebacker Chad Greenway should help, but the Vikings probably could have gotten center Ryan Cook and QB Tarvaris Jackson much later than the second round.
Three 2nd round picks...and I think they blew it. That's just my opinion. I agree that a decent backup QB could have been taken later, Jackson may have been available even a little bit later. The recurring post-draft criticism for the Vikings seems to be they take players about 2 rounds earlier than they should...and it sounds like that trend continued this year.

I am excited for this coming season. I think at this point 6-10 would not be unreasonable and watching a powerhouse rebuild is exciting.


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