Jets 2011 NFL Draft Talking Points

Muhammad Wilkerson was picked by the Jets in the first round. I love the pick. There were other options, but none fit into the 3-4 like Wilkerson. Muhammad is an inside pass rusher, something hard to find in a 3-4. He can be what Trevor Pryce was in his prime for Baltimore. I still by my grade of a B+ for him.

Kenrick Ellis, a nose tackle, was picked in the third round. We have documented Ellis’ off the field problems, but there is no doubt this guy is a monster. If all the charges against him are dropped, this is a great pick. I’ll give the pick a B for now.

Bilal Powell, Gang Green’s fourth round pick, was the cause of much debate earlier today. Where does he fit in? It’s simple. With LT and McKnight both question marks, this is simple insurance for now and the future. Between him, Greene, and maybe McKnight, consider the running back position locked up for the future. I don’t see how that’s a bad thing. It’s a B- pick in my opinion.

Jeremy Kerley was an interesting fifth round pick. He is a kick and punt returner, something the Jets need desperately. If Brad Smith isn’t back, Kerley can play a similar role to what Smith did last season. This could end up being a very good late round pick for the Jets. I can’t complain about wide receiver depth, with three wide receiver free agents for the Jets. I give the pick a B-.

Greg McElroy came next in the seventh round. This is my favorite pick of the draft. McElroy is a National Champion quarterback from Alabama. He was projected to as high as round four in some mock drafts. There are some question marks about his arm strength, but the kid was pumped to be a Jet and looked thrilled to get a chance to play for this organization. Talk about a value pick! I give this pick an easy A.

Scotty McKnight was the Jets’ other seventh round pick. If you haven’t heard, the guy is good friends with Mark Sanchez. It’s a nice story, but there were much better prospects on the board. He could have been signed as an undrafted free agent. I’m not going to lose sleep over this pick, but I can’t give it higher than a C.

Overall Draft Grade: B+

I can’t complain about this draft. As a matter of fact, it’s my favorite in recent memory. The only comparable one would be the 2006 Draft, which I loved at the time. Obviously, that one ended up well. Who came out of it? D’Brickshaw Ferguson, Nick Mangold, and Leon Washington. I can only hope this year’s Draft will have similar results.

Could this be the next great Jets running back?

Evaluating the Giants First Three Picks

With 3rd rounds concluded and the final 4 rounds (5 more picks) still pending, the Giants shocked many fans including myself on their picks. Before I breakdown each pick, I would like to point out that the Giants drafted quality players with their picks. With that being said, here is my evaluation for each player:

Round 1: Prince Amukamara-CB: A projected top 10 player who I had rated at 13 on my board. I understand the Giants picking Amukamara, based on his talent level and also a need at CB. However; if the Giants wanted a CB, I would have considered Jimmy Smith. In my opinion, Smith is equally athletic to Amukamara, but is more physical. With the abundance of quality WR’s in the NFL and many who will be facing the Giants in 2011. Smith would have been the better choice.

Round 2: Marvin Austin (DT): I can not argue with this pick at all. Austin is a top notch DT who could have gone in the late 1st round to early 2nd round.  In my mock draft, I had the Giants drafting a RB (Ryan Williams) , which would have been a quality pick as well. With Barry Cofield status unknown and the slow development of Linval Joesph, this pick makes alot of sense.

Round 3: Jerrel Jernigan (WR): Despite the lack of production in kickoffs and punt return, I feel the Giants could have addressed this area in the later rounds. The Giants re-signed Hixon to fill this need, so I am disappointed with this pick. I think Jernigan is a talent player, but again, using a 3rd round pick for him was unwarranted. My only conclusion with this pick is that Steve Smith may not be recovering as well as expected and Jernigan becomes an insurance policy as a replacement in case Smith doesn’t get healthy. If that is not the case, I would have concentrated with the 3rd round pick on an OLB or TE. Players like Chris Carter (OLB) and Mason Fraser (ILB) or perhaps Luke Stocker (TE). The Giants still need to address the OL with the later picks and I sincerely hope they acquire at least 2 OL with their remaining 5 picks. In my next post, I will evaluate the Giants remaining draft picks.

Marvin Austin

Knicks looking to acquire Chris Paul or Dwight Howard?

Appropriately, Chris Paul and Dwight Howard finished their seasons an hour apart Thursday night, both of their teams exiting in the first round of the playoffs. That immediately kicked off speculation on whether the Hornets and Magic will attempt to trade their point guard and center, respectively, next season before they reach free agency in 2012.

The Knicks better hope not.

After dealing most of their assets in the Carnelo Anthony package in February, the Knicks likely will be ill-equipped to muster up a suitable package to land Paul or Howard via trade. Like they wished with Anthony, the Knicks must hope Paul and Howard reach 2012 free agency, when they will have plenty of cap spaceTeam president Donnie Walsh’s hopes of Anthony staying the course did not materialize. Anthony decided he did not want to test 2011 free agency because of fears of the new and yet-to-be determined collective bargaining agreement. The Knicks would have had maximum cap room this summer but were forced into the Anthony trade, costing them Danilo Gallinari, Raymond Felton, Wilson Chandler, Timofey Mozgov, Anthony Randolph, their 2014 first-round pick and two second-round picks.

Left to wheel and deal next season is Chauncey Billups’ $14.2 million expiring contract, rookie guard Landry Fields whomever the Knicks select with the 17th pick in the upcoming draft. That’s not much, and the cupboard of additional first-round picks is bare. The Knicks are not permitted to deal their 2013 first-round pick since they no longer possess their 2012 pick (Houston property) and 2014 selection (Denver).

Paul, who last July at Anthony’s New York wedding toasted to a union with Anthony and Amar’e Stoudemire, sounds as if he could be willing to stick it out next season in New Orleans, despite a shaky ownership situation in which the NBA owns the team. After the Hornets were eliminated by the Lakers, Paul said the club is “definitely serious about winning” and praised the administration and coaching. He clearly is a fan of Monty Williams.

“In the past, we had GMs and coaches that didn’t communicate, so not only do they communicate, they know basketball,” said Paul, who recently suggested he would think about heading back to his native North Carolina and play for Michael Jordan’s Bobcats. But the sentiment is he would prefer New York and make good on his wedding toast.

Paul’s agency, CAA, which also represents Anthony, figures to want to steer Paul to New York and must realize the advantages of doing so as a 2012 free agent.

Howard is a different story. He has given no signals the Knicks are a preferred destination, complaining about the cold weather. During breakup day yesterday, Howard was asked if he needed to play in a major metro market to maximize his visibility. Howard’s answer did not reflect well on the Knicks’ 2012 chances.

“The biggest market of all is outside of the United States,” said Howard, referring to China and India, where he visited on promotional tours. “In today’s NBA you can get anything you want [in endorsements] and you don’t have to play in a big market.”

Obviously  the Knicks should do everything they can to acquire either Paul or Howard.  If they could somehow get both, that would be unbelievable.  But unfortuantely, the cap will only allow them to barely get one.  If I had to choose, I’d take Chris Paul.  Dwight Howard is one of my favorite players, but you need that star point guard to run the show.

Take your pick.

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4/21/11

4/28/22 -coverage of the NFL draft’s first round.

Giants Fill Need in Third Round

The Giants took Wide Receiver Jerrel Jernigan from Troy in the third round Friday night. I believe this is an outstanding pick by Jerry Reese. The Giants have been lacking a return man and an elusive guy with the ball in his hands. Jernigan reminds me of a poor man’s Desean Jackson, in that whenever he has the ball in his hands defensive coordinators hold their breath. The G-Men already have budding star Hakeem Nicks and solid possession receiver Steve Smith on the outside, so Jernigan won’t be asked to do much in the offense other than screens and quick slants.

The 5'9 185 lb Wide-out gives the Giants a home run threat.

2011 NFL Draft Day Two Talking Points

– Tons of drama in Day Two of the 2011 NFL Draft.

– Biggest shock?  Patriots picking Ryan Mallet in the third round.  Tom Brady isn’t going anywhere, but the logic behind this pick is obvious.  To develop a quarterback who can learn tons by watching Brady.  The problem?  It doesn’t make them better this year, next year, or the year after that.

– The Giants selected a DT and a WR.  Jerrel Jernigan will be a decent depth wide receiver and special teams player, but Marvin Austin, the second round pick, can stick as a starter on this team eventually.  Good pick there by the G-Men.

– The Jets used their third round pick on Kenrick Ellis, who  plays like he should be locked up in a prison somewhere.  Oh wait, that description fits him perfectly off the field as well.  Why?  According to Rich Cimini, he faces up to twenty years in prison in an upcoming court case. Obviously a high risk for the Jets, but the dude is an animal. And yeah, I know he is a “typical Jet” to you haters.

– Tannenbaum on Ellis: “Any pick has risk. We did a lot of research on the player. Based on all the info we have, we’re comfortable taking him”

First Round NFL Draft Talking Points

– There were big winners, moderate winner, moderate losers, and big losers in last night’s draft.

– One big winner was the New York Giants, selecting Prince Amukamara 19th overall.  Another big winner were the Lions, snatching up Nick Fairley.  A Avril/Fairley/Suh/Vanden-Bosch defensive line may just be the best in football.  My third big winner comes from the city of New Orleans.  In Cam Jordan and Mark Ingram, the Saints got two quality players in late round picks.

– There were also some moderate winners.  Among these were the New York Jets, the Bills, the Ravens, the Colts, and the Bears.  They all got quality players who could have been taken much earlier in the draft.  If you’ve been following me on Twitter, you know how I feel about Wilkerson.  But I want to specifically talk about the Bills.  They need a quarterback badly.  If Andy Dalton is there when they pick next, take him.

– The moderate losers were the Patriots, Eagles, Dolphins, and Cowboys.  The Patriots lost two years of Richard Seymour to draft an offensive tackle?  C’mon.  And the Eagles could have gotten a star defender, yet they went with an offensive guard who isn’t much more talented than the ones in later rounds.  As far as the Dolphins go, I like Pouncey, I really do.  But you need a quarterback.  Chad Henne isn’t the answer.  As for the Cowboys, Tyron Smith projects to be a great tackle, but is he going to make an impact as much as someone as Watt or Fairley?

– Then there were the big losers.  The Broncos passed up on Marcell Dareus to go strictly for need in Von Miller.  Miller fits the need, but Dareus was the much better player.  The Falcons gave up way to much to move up and select Julio Jones.  He better be the next Larry Fitzgerald.  Then there was the 49ers who needed a quarterback, but passed up on one to reach for Aldon Smith.  A pick later, the Titans passed on Blaine Gabbert for Jake Locker.  Are you kidding me?  At 12 overall, the Vikings took Christian Ponder, who projected to be taken much later.  They could have easily traded down if they really wanted him.  Then came the Chargers who passed on a plethora of great defensive prospects to fill a need at defensive tackle.  Last but not least came the Seahawks, who took a guard projected to be taken much later in the draft.  They could have taken a really good defensive player, yet they passed up on all of them.

– One team you really could put anywhere is the Panthers.  The Cam Newton debate is a crazy one.  I think he, along with Tim Tebow, will be one hell of a player to watch and follow throughout the next few years.

– Overall, it was a crazy first round.  There are still many great players left such as Akeem Ayers, Da’quan Bowers, and Andy Dalton.  Anything can happen in rounds two and three, therefore it will be a great watch tonight.