A Scout’s Take: 15 Thoughts on the 2012 NFL Draft

6) Jared Crick has become the forgotten man in this year’s draft class, kind of “out of sight out of mind”. Crick tore his pectoral muscle in early October and hasn’t been heard or seen from since. However, after watching some more game film of him this week it’s easy to see why many draft experts had him ranked in the first round coming into the season. Crick is a versatile defensive lineman who plays with great strength. He profiles best as a 3-4 DE and will attract a lot of interest between the end of round 1 beginning of round 2.

7) If you are an NFL team who needs OT help it’s going to be tough to find it this off-season. The free agent market is absolutely barren with regards to reliable OT’s and there isn’t a whole lot of depth at the position throughout the draft. Breaking the OT position into tiers Matt Kalil comes first then Riley Reiff and Jonathan Martin. After Martin comes off the board, Mike Adams will likely follow closely. But after that, it’s wide open. After round 3-4 I don’t see many quality OT prospects remaining on the board. Teams will have to use their first round pick on one of the top 4 tackles in this years draft if they are looking for immediate help at the position this off-season.

8) When it comes to scouting, projecting and trying to evaluate which teams will take which player no position is harder right now than DE/OLB. With so many teams switching between 3-4 to 4-3 looks and vice versa, and each team having different requirements for drafting the position it’s tough to project who fits who. I’m not a person who likes to project players based on changing a position. If a DE hasn’t played OLB before I don’t like to project them there. Players like Nick Perry and Vinny Curry fit that category this year. Neither has player OLB in college, but many project them there. It’s a tough position to grade accurately when scouting the draft.

9) With the new CBA in place I think will we see a lot more teams trying to trade up into the top of the draft. The past few drafts have been met with so much uncertainity and such big cap hits, that it really discouraged most teams from moving up in the draft. Now that there is somewhat of a slotting system in place for draft picks, teams won’t have to shell out the tens of millions of dollars in guaranteed money to picks in the top five. A team like the Patriots, who have had plenty of draft capital in the past but may have been discouraged due to the money they have to commit, may have a better chance of moving up this year if there is a player they covet at the top of the draft.

10) The top two QBs are etched in stone. Andrew Luck will go #1 to the Colts and Baylor QB Robert Griffin III will go shortly after. The next two QBs off the board are likely to be Texas A&M’s Ryan Tannehill and Ok St. Brandon Weeden and no two players bring more differentiated opinions than these two. Tannehill is projected to go top 15 by many and out of the first round by many others. Weeden on the other hand is seen as a possible late first round pick to a forth round pick on some boards. I believe Tannehill has all the tools to be a successful NFL QB, good arm strength, athleticism, mobility and size.

I do however believe he needs to sit for at least two full years and learn an NFL system and the intricacys of the QB position. Tannehill played WR up until his junior year so he is relatively new to the position. Weeden on the other hand is a pretty polished QB prospect. He can struggle with his decision making at time, but the major question with him is going to be his age. Weeden will be 29 years old during the season. I believe Weeden could help an NFL team within a year, however I just can’t see a team drafting a 28 year old QB in the first round. If I were a betting man today I would bet Ryan Tannehill ends up going in the top 15 and Weeden goes mid second round.

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9 Responses to “A Scout’s Take: 15 Thoughts on the 2012 NFL Draft”

  1. HDHorvath says:

    u do an great job. research and insight sound superb and your writing is excellent. keep up the good work! Go Pats. Thx

  2. ObserverCollege says:

    You’ve been drinking the Kool-Aid on the two Eagles. Kuechly didn’t “accomplish” anything. He was a MAC-level safety who FRANK SPAZIANI turned into an award winning linebacker. Spaziani schooled Nick Saban on the Awards Banquet Circuit–beating out TWO of Saban’s 5-star proteges for the Lombardi, Butkus and Nagurski awards. That’s the mark of a great coach–he’ll take his’n and beat yours’n, and take yours’n and beat his’n. Kuechly was merely the vessel for Spaziani’s confirmation as the best BC coach in 15 years.

    Too bad the rest of former coach Jagodzinski’s recruits can’t seem to listen. People like this author keep telling Fletcher he’s a bump-and-run corner, so he gets a big head and doesn’t listen to a coach trying to protect him in a soft zone. Unlike Kuechly, who at least was smart enough to realize Coach Spaziani had schemed a Heisman campaign if he did everything correctly (although the Lombardi et al isn’t bad). If Fletcher had actually listened to his Head Coach, he’d have been a first-team All-American playing classic soft 2-deep zone. Instead, Fletcher sits home on Combine weekend wondering where it all went wrong.

  3. TD says:

    If there is quality and depth in this draft at DLine & WR, why the hell should BB use those 1st rounders at the end of the round?

    It may shake out that guys available in most of the 2nd round are as good of football players as anyone available at end of round 1.

    I say trade both 1st rounders for extra 2nd rounders and/or 1st/2nd rounders next year. More than likely BB can get DL’s, DB’s and a WR in rounds 2-3 that would be there at the end of round 1.

    I would expect BB to get a #2 and/or #3 WR in free agency. We also need some return guys, mostly kickoff returners.

  4. Jim R says:

    Looks like a lot of quality wr’s and Corners can be had after round 3 . That being the case. first 3 rounds DT, DE,OL and LB. You have to figure they will address WR and Safety in FA. They will not keep all 5 picks. Trade up, down and all around to get some extra goodies for next year.

  5. TD says:

    A Guard going top 10? A team could be looking at what N.O. got in 1997, Chris who?

    If this draft is indeed deeper, then I would expect BB to deal both first rounders if possible for more second and third round picks. I’m sure last year he really wanted to deal the first pick in round two.

    Nice to see the Jets get burned by the strategy of getting top priced mercenaries and trading most of their draft picks in order to move into higher spots start backfiring. For those pulling their hair out over BB’s picks, investigate the hit ratio of draft picks for the Jets.

  6. MJP says:

    Awesome job man, I agree on a lot of these issues. One topic I’ve been hung up on is Michael Brockers being the #1 overall DT. It should be noted that I have only seen him in a few games and I’ve only been able to dig up two other full games of his.

    Point being that I don’t see it with Brockers, at least not to the degree that most people do. He gets pushed around a lot, he doesn’t stand up to double teams like he should, he doesn’t rush the passer like he should and I would bet most of his TFL’s were not of his singular doing…I believe that Defense created most of the hype around him.

    I do see his physical attributes being utilized when he stunts or pushes the pocket to get his hands into passing lanes but that’s about it, there’s nothing really dynamic about his game right now that would inspire me to use anything more than say the 25th pick on him…(he looks more like Tyson Jackson than Richard Seymour).

  7. Rick says:

    lol cool face at number 8!

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