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LBs, DTs, and New England's Recent Draft History.

Discussion in 'Draft Zone' started by dwmyers, Mar 21, 2006.

  1. dwmyers

    dwmyers Well-Known Member

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    This may be more of an augh! to those who think that great 3-4 defenses are made with LBs drafted #1. But as a counterexample, I'm doing to use the New England Patriots. Not a bad team, known to win a Super Bowl here and there, and this list, courtesy of http://drafthistory.com, is the Pat's draft by round for the past ten years. Linebackers are highlighted in bold, defensive linemen are highlighted in italics.

    url = http://www.drafthistory.com/team-round/patriots.html

    2005 -- 32 Logan Mankins G Fresno State
    2004 -- 21 Vince Wilfork DT Miami (FL)
    2004 -- 32 Ben Watson TE Georgia
    2003 -- 13 Ty Warren DT Texas A&M
    2002 -- 21 Dan Graham TE Colorado
    2001 -- 6 Richard Seymour DT Georgia
    1999 -- 17 Damien Woody C Boston College
    1999 -- 28 Andy Katzenmoyer LB Ohio State
    1998 -- 18 Robert Edwards RB Georgia
    1998 -- 22 Tebucky Jones DB Syracuse
    1997 -- 29 Chris Canty DB Kansas State
    1996 -- 7 Terry Glenn WR Ohio State
    1995 -- 23 Ty Law DB Michigan
    1994 -- 4 Willie McGinest DE USC
    1993 -- 11 Drew Bledsoe QB Washington State
    1992 -- 13 Eugene Chung T Virginia Tech
    1991 -- 11 Pat Harlow T USC
    1991 -- 14 Leonard Russell RB Arizona State
    1990 -- 8 Chris Singleton LB Arizona

    So, where are all those stud linebackers NE drafted in the first? If anything, the Pats have a first round preoccupation with defensive tackles..something I wish good ole Jeff n Jerr n Bill could take a notice of.

    David.

    :confused:
  2. Rack Bauer

    Rack Bauer Federal Agent

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    Those guys were DTs in college, 2 of them are now DEs.



    So in reality, they've drafted 1 DT and 2 DEs (all starters now) in the first round of the last 6 drafts.
  3. dwmyers

    dwmyers Well-Known Member

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    Richard Seymour was the best defensive lineman of a class of great defensive linemen, and he can play anywhere on the front he wants, more or less. He has started at DT in his career at New England. Ted Washington was part of the reason he moved outside. Ty Warren came out to mixed reviews the year he was drafted by New England, and he may have been drafted to be a defensive end. Vince I think took Washington's place as a nose tackle for New England.

    Willie McGinest has been a hybrid DE/OLB through much of his career. Some other researcher can try to divine the intent of the Pats in drafting him.

    More importantly, however, how many starting linebackers for the Pats in 2001-2005 did they draft in the first round?

    Depending on whether you count McGinest, it's either one or none.

    How many starting linebackers for the 2005 Pittsburgh Steelers did they draft in the first round?

    none.

    And I'm saying this not because I think, oh, A.J. Hawk and/or Bobby Carpenter wouldn't be bad picks, but ..

    I keep thinking things like..

    Joey Porter, 2nd round, Colorado State..

    Ted Bruschi, 3rd round, Arizona DE..

    Mark Anderson, projected 2nd-3rd round, DE Alabama..

    If the power of the 3-4 is that it can take 2nd and 3rd round draft picks at DE and turn them into linebacking stars, shouldn't we be exploiting this?

    David.

    :bang2:
  4. Clove

    Clove Shrinkage

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    Mark Anderson and Stanley McClover will be excellent picks in the 3rd and can come in and dominate within 2 to 3 years.
  5. MiStar

    MiStar New Member

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    It doesn't mean much, since so few teams have been running 3-4 in the past 10 years. Not to mention the fact that there's little incentive to draft a linebacker when you've already got the best LB corps in the NFL in Bruschi, McGinnest, Vrable, and Co.

    Now Dallas has Ware, James, Ayodele, and a vacancy. You better believe that we need a first day Linebacker.

    Coincidently, NE just lost McGinnest and as a result, I also think that they will be drafting a linebacker on the first day.
  6. Clove

    Clove Shrinkage

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    The fight for Lawson/Carpenter/Wimbley will be huge.
  7. Rack Bauer

    Rack Bauer Federal Agent

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    I don't think Seymour ever started at NOSE GUARD for the Pats. He still plays DT when they play a 4-3.

    He was drafted to be a DE. No doubt about it. And he had a rough rookie year, happens all the time.


    McGinest only played DE in their 4-3, not their 3-4.



    They already had good LBs, why would they draft more that early?

    The cowboys don't already have a good group of LBs. Therefore this comparison is completely invalid.



    And? We aren't the Steelers. Completely different team with completely different needs.
  8. dwmyers

    dwmyers Well-Known Member

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    Well, if Nors is correct, Super LBer Shanle is all the ILB we evar need, so in theory, our starting lineup is Ware, James, Shanle and Ayodele ;).

    I don't think I'm complaining about first day linebackers. There is no evidence that good 3-4 teams shun first day linebackers. I'm suggesting that there may be other needs as important in the first round as a linebacker. Nose tackle, for one, is lacking in depth, and we still have a special teamer plugged into the free safety slot.

    David.
  9. Rack Bauer

    Rack Bauer Federal Agent

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    Just cuz you have a great need for something doesn't mean the player you take in the first round cures that need. There are no DTs (nose guards) worth taking at our spot in the first round.


    The value for our pick will be at LB. Possibly WR.
  10. dwmyers

    dwmyers Well-Known Member

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    I'll disagree on this. I don't like any of the WRs this year, thin class, bad value. As far as DT/LB go..

    * Carpenter seems to be projected as an end-of-round pick, usually in the same range as Gabe Watson. Pretty boy Lawson is all over the map, but the median of his pick range is also late first round. Kamerion Wimbley is also all over the map, and I'd guess is valued anywhere from mid first to late second..

    * Pat Kirwan has quoted at least one GM who said he'd love to have 4 picks in the range 15-60. That seems to be the "value plateau" in this draft. If true, then trading down to about 25 shouldn't hurt us much.

    * The DTs of interest are late first rounders, just like the LBs we seem to covet. What's more, Nick Mangold, a C, comes into play late in the first round. If Larry Allen has indeed been traded, late first round isn't a bad place to pick up a guard.

    It makes sense to me to drop 7 places or so and wait and see. The LB corps this year is deep and you can get good LB candidates well into the late second round, perhaps early third.

    I will say this: I think we're overvaluing the LBs we can rationally get and I think that affects a lot of the thinking here. When you can't get the very best linebackers, sometimes splitting hairs gets you into a state where (shades of the past) you trade up for a marginally better candidate when there was a more solid one available when you trade down. As an example, think Ed Ekuban and Pat Kerney a few years back. Neither of these guys were in Jevon Kease's league and he would have been worth trading up for. But not Eb, and I don't think 18 is where I'd draft any of the LBers this group has been salivating over.

    In the best of all worlds, a RB will drop, someone will covet the RB and we can trade down into the late first.

    David.
  11. Rack Bauer

    Rack Bauer Federal Agent

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    I said "Maybe WR". Santonio Holmes is a possibility.


    DT will not be the value pick at 18. Not unless Ngata drops that far.


    You mentioned a lot about "late first round". We don't have a pick in the last first round. Our pick is at #18. LB will be the value pick there.


    Carpenter is well worth that pick, if he's healthy. He didn't suffer the kind of injury that would be cause for alarm (of reinjury).


    "It makes sense to drop 7 places or so..."

    How we gonna do that? Click our heals together and come up with some kind of trade down chant? You have to have a willing partner. It's not as easy as just wanting it to happen.

    However, if we could do that, I agree that is the best way to go. The bad thing is those teams in that range will likely trade down, not up, if they trade at all.

    And I don't think we're overvaluing LBs at all. I think you're undervaluing LBs.
  12. dwmyers

    dwmyers Well-Known Member

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    You can think it all you want. You've stated that Carpenter is worth a #18. But out of curiousity, how universal is that kind of ranking?

    Does Mel Kiper rate Carpenter in his top 25?

    Often, that answer has been no. Last I checked, he has Carpenter at #25.

    Does the War Room rate Carpenter in the first round?

    Well, he's right at the edge, at #32.

    On Great Blue North's top 100, Carpenter ranks as #38.

    I would suggest that people who have more at stake at this than you or I do really don't rate Carpenter as 18th best..but in any event, it doesn't matter what either of us think, it's Jeff Ireland and Jones and Parcells who will decide who they want even if we puke at their choices.

    David.
  13. Rack Bauer

    Rack Bauer Federal Agent

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    So I should base MY OPINIONS on the opinions of others?

    If it's ok with you, I'll base MY OPINIONS on what I see the players do on the field, not on what someone else says the did on the field.


    The fact that you rely on others' opinions to form your own is proof of your ignorance.


    Bobby Carpenter is very much worth the #18 pick.


    Now instead of telling me what others have to say about him, why don't you tell me why YOU don't think he's worth that pick based on what YOU have seen of him.
  14. Bigdog24

    Bigdog24 Well-Known Member

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    The Draft is nothing more than a crap shoot, I.E. Look at Brian Bosworth

    Football players are just that players, They have to have heart and soul to play not someone looking for the money or a free ride. Distracted with glamour and enterainment.

    Thats why you can find gold mine in those late round picks, but more often then not there a bust.
  15. burmafrd

    burmafrd Well-Known Member

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  16. dwmyers

    dwmyers Well-Known Member

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    In an argument about draft potential you should base your opinions on facts gathered by experts, unless you're going to tell us you're a professional football scout. And I doubt you are, I doubt you have those kinds of credentials, in which case your opinion, shorn of facts, isn't worth a hill of beans, unless backed by those who actually have credentials. The other option is lots of tape study, but you haven't flashed that either.

    Currently your whole argument is being reduced to nothing more than the assertion that you're right, because you think that your opinion is supreme, and facts shouldn't get in the way. Au contraire. Facts, such as they are, are the only tool we have on which to base this kind of an argument.

    I'll say this: I started with facts. When are you going to actually defend your thesis with facts?

    David.
  17. MiStar

    MiStar New Member

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    Ratings should hardly be considered hard facts. Just because some Joe Shmoe has the time to make a draft related site does not mean that that person has any credentials as a draft analyst. Now if you also supplied a detailed history of their mock drafts/draft boards which would allow us to see what kind of success they have had in predicting teh success of NFl players, then I might be willing to look at the numbers that you've thrown out as something other than utter trash.

    Here's a FACT. I have watched the vast majority of Bobby Carpenter's Games, as an OSU fan. He's proven to me that he can rush the passer, defend the pass, and defend the run all equally well. Outside of Carpenter and Kudla, no one else in the NCAA has proved that they can excell in all three phases of the game that the OLB position in the 3-4 requires. NO ONE ELSE has proven that kind of versatility at the College level.

    That alone makes Bobby Carpenter incredibly valuable. Every other 3-4 OLB prospect, will have to make a very large ajustment at the pro-level and itn't a given that they will all be able to make that transition. That is why Bobby Carpenter is more than worth the 18th pick. Not because someone else said so, but because I watched the games.
  18. dwmyers

    dwmyers Well-Known Member

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    Mistar, my thesis doesn't depend on your opinions of the ratings I quoted. My thesis depends on the fact that at most one successful linebacker for the New England Patriots and the Pittsburgh Steelers was drafted by their original team in the first round. I've then gone on to state that there were many successful linebackers drafted in later rounds, guys like Kendrell Bell, Joey Porter, Ted Bruschi. In fact, very few of the 3-4 linebackers you guys point to as icons started as first round draft choices. The point being, it doesn't take a lot of high end draft choices at linebacker to make a good 3-4 team.

    Rack's counterpoint is that I'm undervaluing linebackers, and then an argument broke out in the margins over the specific case of Carpenter. Thing is, that whole argument about Carpenter is irrelevant to the thesis I've presented.

    Now, a better argument for Carpenter might go along these lines: Yes, there are pundits who value Carpenter as merely a late first round draft choice, but there are other things in Carpenter's resume that make him more valuable to the Cowboys than late first round.. and then you could talk about things like his size/speed ratio, high level of competition, and further you could argue that teams need to evaluate players on basis of their own needs and that in the context of Dallas's scheme and needs that Carpenter is a good fit. This implies a focus on internal evaluation on the part of a club and ignoring how others might value a pick. That's a legitimate approach to the draft; the New York Giants tend to work exactly this way.

    Central to the idea of trading down is that others don't value player X all that much and that some value can be gained by trading down. That implies a lot of things, including a full knowledge of how others might value the target and the relative value of other alternatives, such as Kamerion Wimbley, etc. It's also very true that I doubt the Cowboys are going to hell if they pick someothing other than a LB in the first round. A draft that went something like:

    1. Gabe Watson
    2. Mark Anderson
    3. Kai Parham

    wouldn't upset me all that much (except, of course, I'd prefer to trade down, cause I don't think Watson is worth #18 ;) ). In this context, Hos's suggested trade with Indianapolis is worth considering.

    David.
  19. Rack Bauer

    Rack Bauer Federal Agent

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    First of all, you haven't defended ANYTHING with facts. You've defended your argument with someone else's opinions.

    Second, if I were to defense my argument with someone else's opinions, it wouldn't be my argument, would it?
  20. Clove

    Clove Shrinkage

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    People have their mind made up on Carpenter and Lawson. They can't seem to see beyond that. I love the Gabe Watson pick, yet people would be upset because of what they read about his work ethic. They don't factor in what he brings to the table for anchoring a 3-4 DLine for years to come.

    With that monster in the middle, your Defense turns into an elite defense.

    I've said all along that their are plenty and I mean plenty of OLB/DE in the draft that can give you just as much as Law/Carp or possibly even more.

    It's hard to change the opinions of indivuals who are completely SET in who they like and have seen or read about. You can't convince them of anything else, and that's why alot of people were disappointed about he Kyle Kosier signings. They didn't have them on their list, therefore he was a disappointment.

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