Gandhi mock draft

Krangodnzr

Captain of Team Murray
Joined
Jul 21, 2002
Posts
35,463
Reaction score
32,249
Location
Orange County, CA
#104 gave me problems. With the pick right after me, Jaylen Wright got drafted, and it didn’t take long before the same happened with Renardo Green, Caelen Carson, and Javon Baker. That meant that I did not know what to do, as I only had a few players ranked for that area. They were:

Andru Phillips, cornerback, Kentucky.

The highest ranked player on the Cards board. He plays zone coverage very well, but can also play some press-man, preferably as long as it is as a nickel back. He doesn’t have the size to play on the outside.

Josh Newton, cornerback, TCU.

He does everything well, but nothing extraordinary. He would be a nickel back, and might be a very good fit.

That was it. Other players that I thought about:

Gabriel Murphy, edge rusher, UCLA.

He plays with good technique and a big arsenal of moves. Seems like he has gotten some tips from Laiatu Latu. But I have a big problem with edge rushers with short arms.

Mohamed Kamara, edge rusher, Colorado State.

Very explosive and hand technique. Highly productive. But the same issue as with Murphy. The lack of length bothers me.

Jaheim Bell, H-back, Florida State.

Petzings offense works so much better with a H-back slash fullback. Bell have been used in every possible way in Florida State’s offense, and he have great YAC abilities.

Will Shipley, runningback, Clemson.

Not great between the tackles, but very good receiver and running to the outside. Would be a good fit.

Two of them were ruled out immediately, while I believe that both Bell and Shipley could very well be there later and would be massive reaches here. I tried my best to trade down but could not find a trade partner.

#104 – Andru Phillips, cornerback, Kentucky.

In the end I decided to go with the highest ranked player. And it is not like the Cards cannot use better cover guys, even after I selected McKinstry. Phillips would also surely play the nickel back, but that is fine, as I see McKinstry as a clearcut #1, and Murphy-Bunting is best on the outside. But the defense needs pretty much everything, and Phillips would definitely raise the level. I like Phillips’ game. He is clearly best in zone defense, but he does play very physical and instinctive. His obvious role would be kind of what Jalen Thompson is playing, but Rallis can figure that out.
Another tough decision.

Of that group, for me it's between Kamara and Philips.

Kamara was top five (I think he was fourth) in total pressures. What's impressive is that you see him win with both speed to power and pure speed rush. He knows how to set up tackles. He's also a decent athlete. I would definitely bet on him in the third to fourth round area if I haven't found a pass rusher yet.

One thing I have looked at with the current Cardinals roster is that I don't think there is really any room to draft multiple edge guys because the Cardinals have a bevvy of mid tier guys and it would be a wasted draft pick if you aren't convinced that the edge guy you are drafting is better than one of the guys in the roster.

Philips is a good athlete and fits a huge need. I think at this point there is probably a clearer path for playing time.

From the draft scenarios I've run, it seems like the sweet spot for CB is either 66 or 90. I think in reality though it's 66 because some of the guys I want at 90 are probably going earlier.
 

Krangodnzr

Captain of Team Murray
Joined
Jul 21, 2002
Posts
35,463
Reaction score
32,249
Location
Orange County, CA
Is this being run on a website that we can see? It would be interesting to see all of the picks to understand who has been drafted. #104 was your first pick that I didn't love, but I honestly don't really love any of the guys you mentioned (I've seen Bell, Murphy, and Kamara ranked much lower on boards). Of the list, I'd probably have gone with Shipley, but there are other RBs I like better. Not that I do much in-depth scouting or anything though. You seem to put a lot more time into it than I do. I do a lot of simulators and read their write ups as I go to get a feel for the players, but nothing more than that.
Kamara is a beast. Go dig into his tape. If you're just looking at 2023 tape, he's one of the single most intriguing defenders in the nation.

BUT...he's a bit older (23) and he played at Colorado State. Granted CSU has produced Joey Porter, Clark Haggans, and Shaq Barrett, so they have a history of producing players at edge.

If you go and watch Latu tape, Gabriel Murphy really pops too. You very often see Latu and Murphy meeting at the QB. Murphy is just an average athlete though, so you're betting on his technique which was very good at the college level. Murphy looks like a guy who will have a long career as a rotational edge and special teamer.
 

gmabel830

It's football season!!
Joined
May 8, 2011
Posts
12,627
Reaction score
7,363
Location
Gilbert, Arizona
Another tough decision.

Of that group, for me it's between Kamara and Philips.

Kamara was top five (I think he was fourth) in total pressures. What's impressive is that you see him win with both speed to power and pure speed rush. He knows how to set up tackles. He's also a decent athlete. I would definitely bet on him in the third to fourth round area if I haven't found a pass rusher yet.

One thing I have looked at with the current Cardinals roster is that I don't think there is really any room to draft multiple edge guys because the Cardinals have a bevvy of mid tier guys and it would be a wasted draft pick if you aren't convinced that the edge guy you are drafting is better than one of the guys in the roster.

Philips is a good athlete and fits a huge need. I think at this point there is probably a clearer path for playing time.

From the draft scenarios I've run, it seems like the sweet spot for CB is either 66 or 90. I think in reality though it's 66 because some of the guys I want at 90 are probably going earlier.
Kamara has great production, but has limited size and overall traits and was able to overpower lesser competition in college that will be a lot more difficult in the NFL. I like him, but as I said I've seen him ranked much lower (toward the bottom part of the top 100 vs the top part).
 

Krangodnzr

Captain of Team Murray
Joined
Jul 21, 2002
Posts
35,463
Reaction score
32,249
Location
Orange County, CA
Kamara has great production, but has limited size and overall traits and was able to overpower lesser competition in college that will be a lot more difficult in the NFL. I like him, but as I said I've seen him ranked much lower (toward the bottom part of the top 100 vs the top part).
His workout was fairly good though. Ran a 4.56 40, solid vert at 34.5", and good broad jump at 10'3". And his ten yard split at 1.58 seconds is near elite. Solid bench at 23 reps

He tested better than Latu in every category and had similar production.

So he's probably going higher than mock drafts have him posted for the past few months. A guy who looks good on tape, produces at an elite level, and tests near the top of his group is going to go higher.
 
OP
OP
Gandhi

Gandhi

Hall of Famer
Joined
Feb 17, 2007
Posts
1,893
Reaction score
2,524
Location
Denmark
Is this being run on a website that we can see? It would be interesting to see all of the picks to understand who has been drafted. #104 was your first pick that I didn't love, but I honestly don't really love any of the guys you mentioned (I've seen Bell, Murphy, and Kamara ranked much lower on boards). Of the list, I'd probably have gone with Shipley, but there are other RBs I like better. Not that I do much in-depth scouting or anything though. You seem to put a lot more time into it than I do. I do a lot of simulators and read their write ups as I go to get a feel for the players, but nothing more than that.

I was sure I had posted the link in the original post. :bang: Sorry about that.
 
OP
OP
Gandhi

Gandhi

Hall of Famer
Joined
Feb 17, 2007
Posts
1,893
Reaction score
2,524
Location
Denmark
One thing I have looked at with the current Cardinals roster is that I don't think there is really any room to draft multiple edge guys because the Cardinals have a bevvy of mid tier guys and it would be a wasted draft pick if you aren't convinced that the edge guy you are drafting is better than one of the guys in the roster.
Isn't that the same for all draft picks, Krang? I mean, I am almost certain that I am going to take an edge rusher more at some point, since I am not at all satisfied with the current group (outside of Ojulari), and I feel confident that whoever I choose is better than what they have now. But I could say the same for everyone I have drafted so far.
 

Krangodnzr

Captain of Team Murray
Joined
Jul 21, 2002
Posts
35,463
Reaction score
32,249
Location
Orange County, CA
Isn't that the same for all draft picks, Krang? I mean, I am almost certain that I am going to take an edge rusher more at some point, since I am not at all satisfied with the current group (outside of Ojulari), and I feel confident that whoever I choose is better than what they have now. But I could say the same for everyone I have drafted so far.
But it's not. CB essentially has two NFL players. The DL still needs a few more players.
 
OP
OP
Gandhi

Gandhi

Hall of Famer
Joined
Feb 17, 2007
Posts
1,893
Reaction score
2,524
Location
Denmark
But it's not. CB essentially has two NFL players. The DL still needs a few more players.
Yes, but that was why I wondered when you said that the Cardinals don't need more edge rushers, since they already have many.
 
OP
OP
Gandhi

Gandhi

Hall of Famer
Joined
Feb 17, 2007
Posts
1,893
Reaction score
2,524
Location
Denmark
I had hoped to get an edge rusher at one of the next two picks. I think it was horrible last season, and I only have hopes for Ojulari. Gardeck have been a personal favorite since he came into the league, but it is not like he cannot be upgraded. I have given up on Zaven Collins, and Dimukeje is what he is. Cam Thomas is a bad fit, and we’ll see with Tyreke Smith. I am not keeping my hopes up, though.

However, two players I had hoped would be available here were Jalyx Hunt out of Houston Christian (wild what he has become after only two years at the position – huge potential), and Javon Solomon (highly productive), but no, both got drafted not long before. Which meant that I did not see any valuable edge rushers at this spot.

My targets were largely the same as with the last pick, since as mentioned, they were ranked a lot lower on the Cards board at that point. They were:

Josh Newton, cornerback, TCU.

I simply just like his game. After drafting McKinstry and Phillips it makes little sense, especially since I don’t think his game translate well to playing safety, but as my highest ranked player, I did consider him.

Jaheim Bell, H-Back, Florida State.

Great fit, interesting player.

Will Shipley, runningback, Clemson.

I really like his game, but no, other targets make more sense to me.

Tahj Washington, wide receiver, USC.

The role of small speedster is up for grasp now. Wonderful fit.

Fabian Lovett, defensive tackle, Florida State.

After drafting Jackson and Carter, defensive tackle is not the priority. Having said that, I really like the fit.

Since there was only one pick between this one and my next, obviously I would get at least two of the mentioned targets.

#136 – Jaheim Bell, H-back, Florida State

A fullback or H-back is essential in Petzing’s offense, and Bell is the best in the draft. He has been deployed as everything from tight end to H-back to runningback to fullback to slot receiver, but to me, his best position is either as a fullback or H-back. He has said himself that teams have talked to him about making him play fullback fulltime, so I am not that crazy on this projection.

Bell is very dangerous with the ball in his hand, and his present alone will cause confusion among the defenders, which is one of his main purposes. The offensive scheme is about creating unrest and worry for the opponent, and having multiple options for both run and pass helps that (think Andy Janovich with Kevin Stefanski or Kyle Juszcyk with Kyle Shanahan), and that is what Bell can do.
 
OP
OP
Gandhi

Gandhi

Hall of Famer
Joined
Feb 17, 2007
Posts
1,893
Reaction score
2,524
Location
Denmark
One pick between my last and this one, so I obviously had the same potential targets.

#138 – Tahj Washington, wide receiver, USC.

This guy is a wonderful fit for a west coast offense that Petzing wants to run. Washington is a slot receiver only, but that is fine. This pick is for a very specific role (which, by the way, is how I think very good team drafts), and I don’t see that player on the roster. I guess that Rondale Moore could play the role, but he obviously underachieved for several years. Washington gets a lot of yards after the catch as he has good vision and is very elusive, and he is more than willing to get hit by running into traffic. He is also surprisingly good at blocking, considering his size, so he can really help the run game as well.
 

Krangodnzr

Captain of Team Murray
Joined
Jul 21, 2002
Posts
35,463
Reaction score
32,249
Location
Orange County, CA
One pick between my last and this one, so I obviously had the same potential targets.

#138 – Tahj Washington, wide receiver, USC.

This guy is a wonderful fit for a west coast offense that Petzing wants to run. Washington is a slot receiver only, but that is fine. This pick is for a very specific role (which, by the way, is how I think very good team drafts), and I don’t see that player on the roster. I guess that Rondale Moore could play the role, but he obviously underachieved for several years. Washington gets a lot of yards after the catch as he has good vision and is very elusive, and he is more than willing to get hit by running into traffic. He is also surprisingly good at blocking, considering his size, so he can really help the run game as well.
If it were between Washington and Bell, I'd go Bell because I believe he adds a weapon to the two and three TE groupings that Petzing likes to run.
 
OP
OP
Gandhi

Gandhi

Hall of Famer
Joined
Feb 17, 2007
Posts
1,893
Reaction score
2,524
Location
Denmark
What about Dortch?
He is one of my favorites, Garth, and I truly hope that he will play a role next season. I just don't think his skillset fits the same as Washington's. To me, Dortch is actually not an obvious fit, but I hope that he overperforms.
 
OP
OP
Gandhi

Gandhi

Hall of Famer
Joined
Feb 17, 2007
Posts
1,893
Reaction score
2,524
Location
Denmark
My next pick was not that long after (24 picks) my last, but Will Shipley had been taken, so I did not have any of my previous targets left. That is because I have changed my opinion with DT Fabian Lovett since my last pick. Not that I have changed my mind about him, but because I think another type would be better, as Lovett might be a bit too alike to what they already have. As mentioned earlier, a quality rotation on the d-line is important for the scheme, and in that regard, it might not matter much if players are the same types, so that they can replace each other without a change in play style. But on the other hand, it could also be a strength if Rallis can mix and match the three on the field during the game. I choose the latter.

My next primary target was tight end Tip Reiman, Illinois. Tight ends are a big part of Drew Petzing’s offense, and I really like Reiman. I don’t even think there is any doubt that he is the best blocking tight end in the draft, and I think he could be well utilized as a pass catcher. However, he was drafted two spots before I came up.

Now my targets were:

Jaylen Harrell, edge rusher, Michigan.

There is something to work with there. His tools are rare to find toward the bottom of round five.

Javion Cohen, offensive guard, Miami.

Truth be told, he was the highest ranked, so I “had” to consider him, but in reality, it was not more than a quick thought.

Khristian Boyd, defensive tackle, Northern Iowa.

This is the guy that made me change my mind about drafting Lovett. Boyd offers more pass rush than Lovett (a more powerful bull rush), and he gives versatility in that he can play the true nose tackle, but also kick out as a 5-tech (defensive end in a 3-4).

I did consider trading down a bit, since I have several team fits left, but in the end, it was actually a pretty easy decision. Harrell is significantly higher on the board than the next best edge rusher, and I feel like the need is bigger at edge rush than defensive line (after the selections of Jackson and Carter that is). I could see Boyd being there in the 6. round, as we are now in the stage of the draft where everyone’s board are different because it is almost exclusively about team- and scheme fit. In that case, I certainly might take Boyd, but for now I go in a different direction as I don’t want to risk losing him.

#162 – Jaylen Harrell, edge rusher, Michigan.

As I wrote above, there is something to work with here. Not that Harrell has been a monster at Michigan, but his level of play has a good floor as he has been steady and reliable. He also has the size and length you would want in an edge rusher. He has a quick first step, is powerful, can bend the edge. Not a great athlete, but a fine one.

In the Cards’ scheme he would most likely be the SAM (the Haason Reddick-role) and could be a quality backup to Ojulari. Is Harrell better than Zaven Collins, Dennis Gardeck, Dimukeje, and whoever else they have thrown out there? I don’t know, but I certainly think the potential is bigger.
 
OP
OP
Gandhi

Gandhi

Hall of Famer
Joined
Feb 17, 2007
Posts
1,893
Reaction score
2,524
Location
Denmark
Round 6

Since Boyd got taken earlier, this was an easy pick. I did not consider trading down, and did not consider any other target.

#186 – Dylan McMahon, center, NC State

This might be my favorite fit-pick. McMahon’s enormous obstacle is that he is too small to play in the NFL, and he doesn’t look like someone who can gain a lot of weight. He is short, has short arms, lack power in his body. Everything else, though, screams a much higher draftspot than this, and a wonderful fit for an outside zone-scheme. He is a great athlete and moves both sideways and in space with ease. He is very coordinated, and clearly plays with a high playing-IQ.

You could argue that I should have drafted him before, now that I like him so much, but I don’t know if he will ever play in the NFL. He did play a lot for NC State – both guard and center – but obviously everyone is big, fast, strong in the NFL, whereas it is a little different in the ACC.

I was pleasantly surprised of Froholdt last year, and I don’t see the necessity to upgrade. However, McMahon has the potential to be great if he can overcome his disadvantages.
 

Krangodnzr

Captain of Team Murray
Joined
Jul 21, 2002
Posts
35,463
Reaction score
32,249
Location
Orange County, CA
Round 6

Since Boyd got taken earlier, this was an easy pick. I did not consider trading down, and did not consider any other target.

#186 – Dylan McMahon, center, NC State

This might be my favorite fit-pick. McMahon’s enormous obstacle is that he is too small to play in the NFL, and he doesn’t look like someone who can gain a lot of weight. He is short, has short arms, lack power in his body. Everything else, though, screams a much higher draftspot than this, and a wonderful fit for an outside zone-scheme. He is a great athlete and moves both sideways and in space with ease. He is very coordinated, and clearly plays with a high playing-IQ.

You could argue that I should have drafted him before, now that I like him so much, but I don’t know if he will ever play in the NFL. He did play a lot for NC State – both guard and center – but obviously everyone is big, fast, strong in the NFL, whereas it is a little different in the ACC.

I was pleasantly surprised of Froholdt last year, and I don’t see the necessity to upgrade. However, McMahon has the potential to be great if he can overcome his disadvantages.
McMahon met the cheat code of running below a 4.46 in the short shuttle (he ran a 4.33) that predicta success for IOL in the NFL.

Good athlete and solid backup for Froholdt.
 

Ouchie-Z-Clown

I'm better than Mulli!
Joined
Sep 16, 2002
Posts
60,876
Reaction score
53,032
Location
SoCal
Round 6

Since Boyd got taken earlier, this was an easy pick. I did not consider trading down, and did not consider any other target.

#186 – Dylan McMahon, center, NC State

This might be my favorite fit-pick. McMahon’s enormous obstacle is that he is too small to play in the NFL, and he doesn’t look like someone who can gain a lot of weight. He is short, has short arms, lack power in his body. Everything else, though, screams a much higher draftspot than this, and a wonderful fit for an outside zone-scheme. He is a great athlete and moves both sideways and in space with ease. He is very coordinated, and clearly plays with a high playing-IQ.

You could argue that I should have drafted him before, now that I like him so much, but I don’t know if he will ever play in the NFL. He did play a lot for NC State – both guard and center – but obviously everyone is big, fast, strong in the NFL, whereas it is a little different in the ACC.

I was pleasantly surprised of Froholdt last year, and I don’t see the necessity to upgrade. However, McMahon has the potential to be great if he can overcome his disadvantages.
6’3 and 300 sounds pretty close to nfl averages (center: 6’3.75 and 308). A good athlete should be able to MORE than overcome that. Though short arms is a concern for any line play.
 

Krangodnzr

Captain of Team Murray
Joined
Jul 21, 2002
Posts
35,463
Reaction score
32,249
Location
Orange County, CA
6’3 and 300 sounds pretty close to nfl averages (center: 6’3.75 and 308). A good athlete should be able to MORE than overcome that. Though short arms is a concern for any line play.
He has real short arms (31 3/4) and doesn't look bulky. But is athletic and moves really well.

The offense Petzing runs seems to prefer athletes who can pull and move at guard and center. McMahon fits that mold to a T.
 
OP
OP
Gandhi

Gandhi

Hall of Famer
Joined
Feb 17, 2007
Posts
1,893
Reaction score
2,524
Location
Denmark
I had hoped that tight end AJ Barner (Michigan) would be available here, but no, he was obviously not. I would have liked to add one more tight end to Petzing’s TE-heavy offense, and Barner would be a very interesting fit with his current abilities and big developmental potential.

Because of this, I had no clear cut-target, but instead several options. They were:

Fabian Lovett, defensive tackle, Florida State.

I have already explained my hesitation in an earlier write-up. Highest ranked player, though.

Dallin Holker, tight end, Colorado State.

Kind of an alternative to Barner, but then again, not really. I am not sure if Holker is a bit too much the same player as Jaheim Bell, and further, if that would actually be a good or bad thing.

Braiden McGregor, edge rusher, Michigan.

This pick would be almost exclusively about traits. McGregor does have some intriguing upside, but it would most likely take some time to get there. He could be a guy worth taking a chance on here in the sixth round, though.

Ty’Ron Hopper, linebacker, Missouri.

Like McGregor, Hopper is almost a lock on special teams, and thus for that reason alone worth keeping on the roster, which would give you time to develop him. Because he has a huge potential, and he is only available here because he has never been able to put it all together.

Omar Brown, safety, Nebraska.

I would like to get out of the draft with a safety, but I just haven’t been able to find the right match. I really like Brown as a deep coverage-safety.

Isaiah Davis, runningback, South Dakota State.

I especially like Davis as an outside zone-runner, but I am not sure if he brings too much of the same as Connor.

Ryan Flournoy, wide receiver, Southeast Missouri State.

If Flournoy had done in the SEC what he has done at Southeast Missouri State, he would without a doubt have been a second-round pick at the latest. The problem is that he has not done it in the SEC. Intriguing talent, though, and maybe this is the type to take a shot at.

Because of my big uncertainty, I tried to trade down a bit, but I was not able to find a partner. However, since I did have several options, it was not a catastrophe that I could not get out of the spot.

Also, as I mentioned with the last pick, I could easily see some of those players be available at my next pick, just because of the dynamic of the selection process this late in the draft.

#203 – Ty’Ron Hopper, linebacker, Missouri.

In a way this pick reminds me a lot of the pick of Owen Pappoe last year. A player (and even linebacker) that has a lot of intriguing traits and are almost certain on the special teams-unit – giving the position coaches time to develop the player. I would argue that Hopper has even better traits than Pappoe, and I could see Hopper develop into a bigger contributor. I think his abilities give him a chance to become a great coverage linebacker in Gannon’s zone heavy defense. Hopper can easily drop back in coverage, run sideline-to-sideline, come up to make the tackle. He can be a bit slow to get to the ballcarrier, which I interpret as either bad instincts or not being able to read plays fast enough, but both things can be improved with coaching.
 

Krangodnzr

Captain of Team Murray
Joined
Jul 21, 2002
Posts
35,463
Reaction score
32,249
Location
Orange County, CA
I had hoped that tight end AJ Barner (Michigan) would be available here, but no, he was obviously not. I would have liked to add one more tight end to Petzing’s TE-heavy offense, and Barner would be a very interesting fit with his current abilities and big developmental potential.

Because of this, I had no clear cut-target, but instead several options. They were:

Fabian Lovett, defensive tackle, Florida State.

I have already explained my hesitation in an earlier write-up. Highest ranked player, though.

Dallin Holker, tight end, Colorado State.

Kind of an alternative to Barner, but then again, not really. I am not sure if Holker is a bit too much the same player as Jaheim Bell, and further, if that would actually be a good or bad thing.

Braiden McGregor, edge rusher, Michigan.

This pick would be almost exclusively about traits. McGregor does have some intriguing upside, but it would most likely take some time to get there. He could be a guy worth taking a chance on here in the sixth round, though.

Ty’Ron Hopper, linebacker, Missouri.

Like McGregor, Hopper is almost a lock on special teams, and thus for that reason alone worth keeping on the roster, which would give you time to develop him. Because he has a huge potential, and he is only available here because he has never been able to put it all together.

Omar Brown, safety, Nebraska.

I would like to get out of the draft with a safety, but I just haven’t been able to find the right match. I really like Brown as a deep coverage-safety.

Isaiah Davis, runningback, South Dakota State.

I especially like Davis as an outside zone-runner, but I am not sure if he brings too much of the same as Connor.

Ryan Flournoy, wide receiver, Southeast Missouri State.

If Flournoy had done in the SEC what he has done at Southeast Missouri State, he would without a doubt have been a second-round pick at the latest. The problem is that he has not done it in the SEC. Intriguing talent, though, and maybe this is the type to take a shot at.

Because of my big uncertainty, I tried to trade down a bit, but I was not able to find a partner. However, since I did have several options, it was not a catastrophe that I could not get out of the spot.

Also, as I mentioned with the last pick, I could easily see some of those players be available at my next pick, just because of the dynamic of the selection process this late in the draft.

#203 – Ty’Ron Hopper, linebacker, Missouri.

In a way this pick reminds me a lot of the pick of Owen Pappoe last year. A player (and even linebacker) that has a lot of intriguing traits and are almost certain on the special teams-unit – giving the position coaches time to develop the player. I would argue that Hopper has even better traits than Pappoe, and I could see Hopper develop into a bigger contributor. I think his abilities give him a chance to become a great coverage linebacker in Gannon’s zone heavy defense. Hopper can easily drop back in coverage, run sideline-to-sideline, come up to make the tackle. He can be a bit slow to get to the ballcarrier, which I interpret as either bad instincts or not being able to read plays fast enough, but both things can be improved with coaching.
I'm with you that I hope the Cardinals walk away with a safety and a linebacker.

Id personally go safety over LB if I had to choose because I think the cupboard is more bare at safety than LB.
 
OP
OP
Gandhi

Gandhi

Hall of Famer
Joined
Feb 17, 2007
Posts
1,893
Reaction score
2,524
Location
Denmark
Again, I tried to trade down. I had several targets here, so moving down, grapping an extra pick, and get two of those targets would have been great. Unfortunately, it takes a partner, and there was just no one there.

The targets were:

Defensive tackles Fabian Lovett (Florida State) / Justin Rogers (Auburn) / Keith Randolph (Illinois).

What flavor do I want? Lovett is the DT that can do a little of everything in the system. Rogers is the massive nose tackle that would allow McKinnley Jackson to be moved around some more. Randolph is the undersized DT that plays much bigger, like DeWayne Carter. They are the three highest ranked on the Cards board.

Safeties Omar Brown (Nebraska) / Jarius Monroe (Tulane) / Evan Williams (Oregon).

Brown and Williams are the classic deep coverage safeties whereas Monroe is more the aggressive, physical, ball-hawking player.

Edge rushers Braiden McGregor (Michigan) / Jalen Green (James Madison) / Bo Richter (Air Force).

I have had my sight on McGregor for a while as the athletic developmental prospect with a very high ceiling. Jalen Green might have a lower ceiling, but on the other hand he was extremely productive last season, albeit at a lower level (ended as the FBS leader in tackles for loss and was 0.5 sacks behind number one – despite Green playing five games fewer.) He is too small, though. Richter was an unknown to me until some days ago, but he had the third most sack yards, 11th most sacks, and second highest pass rush win rate, only behind Laiatu Latu, in the entire NCAA last season. And then he followed it up with an excellent Pro Day, showing great athleticism. He is also small, though.

Quarterback Joe Milton, Tennessee.

He clearly has some good tools to work with, and maybe you take a wild chance on a quarterback like that late in the draft.

Runningback Isaiah Davis, South Dakota State.

Tight end Dallin Holker, Colorado State.


I described those two at the previous pick.

In the end it came down to need, and a gut feeling about Monroe.

#222 – Jarius Monroe, safety, Tulane.

Monroe was a very good CB for first Nicholls State and then Tulane, but when he got to the East-West Shrine Game he was asked to play safety – and got awarded practice- and game Defensive MVP. Later, he has said himself that he felt very comfortable in there, and that the game slowed down for him.

He plays very physical but is best in a zone coverage system like Gannon use, where he can read the game, use his great instincts, and he might be the one of the best tacklers in the draft.

His ability to adjust to a completely new role – and even being told about it the night before – is very impressive. It backs up the idea that he can used in different ways, and with how interchangeable the two deep safeties are in the scheme, that could be very valuable.

Also, Monroe has extensive experience on special teams.
 
OP
OP
Gandhi

Gandhi

Hall of Famer
Joined
Feb 17, 2007
Posts
1,893
Reaction score
2,524
Location
Denmark
Obviously, I had the same targets for the selection two spots later. This was my last, but since I had several targets, I tried to trade down. New England approach me, but they couldn’t offer anything other than simply trading down, and then a pick for next year (which I think we are not allowed to trade), so I did not even consider it.

#226 – Defensive tackle Fabien Lovett, Florida State.

I strongly considered quarterback Joe Milton, I had focus on Lovett since the fifth round, so this was actually a pretty easy decision. He was easily the topped ranked player on the Cards board.

Lovett had for years shown his strong skills against the run, but at the East-West Shrine Bowl he showed dominant play as a pass rusher. It was a big encouragement to see.

Yes, I already drafted McKinnley Jackson and DeWayne Carter, but the d-line was horrible last season, so major change is needed. I have hopes for Bilal Nichols and Justin Jones, but I would not mind adding three more new pieces, and continue developing Dante Stills, to create a stronger unit. Lovett can play both nose tackle and 5-tech. I truly believe that Jackson, Carter and Lovett are great fits, and that they can produce already as rookie. They are already good at what they will be asked to do, so the acclimatization shouldn’t be that hard. That is, by the way, also why I would not be so hesitant to trust in three rookies on the line.
 
Last edited:
Top