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NFC West Draft Picks: Cardinals, 49ers, Rams, & Seahawks

Discussion in 'Draft Day Zone' started by Hostile, Apr 1, 2009.

  1. Hostile

    Hostile Tacos are a good investment Zone Supporter

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    Arizona Cardinals Draft picks

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    Round 1...#31... Chris "Beanie" Wells RB Ohio State

    Overview

    Regarded by many as the most powerful tailback in college football, that title came with a hefty price for Wells during his three years at Ohio State. Even though he suffered from a rash of injuries - a left ankle sprain, a right wrist sprain and a thumb fracture in 2007; a right foot sprain, turf toe, a hamstring strain and a concussion in 2008 - he only missed three games while compiling enough rushing yardage to rank fourth on the school career record list.

    Following in the footsteps of Archie Griffin, Keith Byars and Eddie George, Wells had big shoes to fill and lots of veteran depth to move past on the roster before he was given his opportunity. Being one of 11 children, he was used to being patient waiting for his time to come.

    Wells was just the seventh player in school history to rush for more than 3,000 yards in a career (3,382). His average of 93.94 yards per game rushing was the third-best mark in Buckeyes annals. He tied Keith Byars (1982-85) for third on OSU's all-time record chart with 17 100-yard rushing performances. In his first season as a starter, he amassed 1,609 yards on the ground in 2007, the fourth-best season total by an Ohio State running back.

    At Garfield High School, Wells was a Parade All-American and named the nation's top running back as a senior, rushing for 2,134 yards and 27 touchdowns on 223 carries (9.6 avg) in 2005. As a junior, he rushed for 1,939 yards and scored 20 touchdowns. The 2005 National Player of the Year scored three touchdowns on his way to being selected Most Valuable Player of the U.S. Army All-America Bowl.

    Wells was Ohio State's first commitment to its 2006 recruiting class, enrolling at the university in time to compete in 2006 spring practice. He rushed for game-high 48 yards on 11 carries in the spring game, but found himself listed behind Maurice Wells and Antonio Pittman on the depth chart entering the season.

    Despite playing as a reserve in all 13 games, Wells finished second on the team with 576 yards on 104 carries (5.5 avg) and seven touchdowns. Fumble issues saw his playing time decrease as the season progressed.

    As a sophomore, Wells took over the tailback position, starting all 13 games despite battling a nagging ankle sprain all campaign. He was also hampered by a late-season fractured bone near his thumb that would require surgery after the season. The second-team All-American still produced the fourth-best season in school history, as he amassed 1,609 yards on 274 attempts (5.9 avg), finding the end zone 15 times.

    Hoping to become more mobile, Wells shed more than 10 pounds from his frame before the 2008 season opener, but was limited in his off-season training program and missed the bulk of spring drills while recovering from thumb surgery. In the season opener vs. Youngstown State, he was carted off the field with a right foot sprain (also suffered from turf toe) and would miss OSU's next three contests. Upon his return, he was forced to wear an offensive lineman's high-top cleats, but called them "cement shoes," as they hampered his cutting ability.

    Later in the season, Wells had a hamstring issue to deal with and later missed a portion of the Fiesta Bowl with a concussion. He still led the team in rushing with 207 attempts for 1,197 yards (5.8 avg) and eight touchdowns, as his average of 119.7 yards per game ranked sixth among the nation's running backs. He also more than doubled his receiving output, catching eight passes for 47 yards (5.9 avg).

    High School

    Attended Garfield (Akron, Ohio) High School, earning Parade All-American honors...

    Named the nation's top running back as a senior, rushing for 2,134 yards and 27 touchdowns on 223 carries (9.6 avg) in 2005...As a junior, Wells rushed for 1,939 yards and scored 20 touchdowns as a junior...The 2005 National Player of the Year scored three touchdowns on his way to being selected Most Valuable Player of the U.S. Army All-America Bowl.


    Round 2...#63... Cody Brown DE UConn

    Round 3...#95... Rashad Johnson S Alabama

    Round 4...#131... Gregory Toler CB St Pauls

    Round 5...#167... Herman Johnson OG LSU

    Round 6...#204... Will Davis DE Illinois

    Round 7...#240... LaRod Stephens-Howling RB

    Round 7...#254 (Compensatory pick)...Trevor Canfield OG Cincy
  2. Hostile

    Hostile Tacos are a good investment Zone Supporter

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    San Francisco 49ers Draft picks

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    Round 1...#10...Michael Crabtree, WR, Texas Tech

    6’ 3” 214 lbs.
    Texas Tech
    Sophomore (eligible)
    Strengths: Hands, concentration, routes, blocking
    Weakness: elite speed, one read scheme

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    Every year, the elite college players are labeled, “the next (fill in the blank per position)” and the hype gets out of control. Although Michael Crabtree is only a sophomore, he is not immune from these comparisons. Does Crabtree deserve these comparisons after not even 2 full seasons of college football? The answer is yes. With his size and playmaking ability, I envision Crabtree being, “the next Andre Johnson” formerly of the University of Miami and now the Houston Texans Pro Bowl receiver.
    After his breakout (redshirt) freshman year, in which Crabtree grabbed 134 balls for 1,962 and 22 touchdowns, he looks to avoid the sophomore slump that most athletes have. With several games left to play, he already has caught 125 passes for 1,861 and 21 touchdowns. He should easily surpass his gaudy freshman year stats, and continue to re-write the record book for NCAA receivers.
    His numbers are in no small part due to the type of offense he plays in. The Red Raiders have always had a gun slinging style that will inflate any QB/WR duo’s stats, but Crabtree seems to be more special than just another “system receiver”. Similar to the University of Hawaii or University of Florida receivers, Crabtree only has to make one read and get to a spot. He very rarely faces the dilemma of reading the defense and having to combat not only a corner, but a safety over the top and a outside linebacker taking away the inside routes. With the spread the Red Raiders use, Crabtree usually has soft zone coverage on him, with the defenders having to keep their eyes on the field rather than the talented #5.
    This is not a glaring weakness, of course, as most receivers come into the NFL only making 1-2 reads at most. Due to his success early on, he seems adaptive and a quick study, so his weaknesses can be hidden in the right scheme. Although he is fast, he is not a “blazer” which pro teams covet in today’s track race that is the NFL game. When 300 lbs. defensive linemen are running 4.7 seconds in the 40 yard dash, speed is a survival trait, not a perk.
    Crabtree’s ability to catch the ball with his hands effortlessly is one of several key indicators that he will be not only a high draft pick when he leaves Texas Tech, but a successful pro. Too many receivers catch with their bodies, which leads to more drops in today’s game. His tenacity, that reminds me of Hines Ward, is also an impressive attribute. He is a tireless blocker, whom seems to enjoy the redemption of punishing the defenders on the few plays he is not involved in.
    The real question is not if Crabtree will be a successful pro, but when will he become one. With his offensive teammates either in their junior or senior years, Crabtree should really look into entering the 2009 NFL Draft. He is eligible, has put up great stats and although I am a HUGE advocate for players staying all 4 years, he should leave Texas Tech. Although they are having an amazing season, most of their linemen are seniors as well as their QB, leading rusher and second leading receiver. Crabtree will be starting over, which will unfairly affect his draft position. If he does come out this year, look for him to go in the 1st round between selections 11 -18. He is the best pure receiver in the draft, so he may go in the top 10.
    UPDATE:
    As most people know, Crabtree had surgery on his foot to repair a stress fracture by inserting a screw into this foot. A lot of questions about his speed (rumored to be 4.6) and his height (was listed at 6’3”, is actually 6’1”) are slowly making teams wary of selecting him high. If you read the updated honors (below) he has received the last 2 years, he seems like a lock to be selected in the Top 5. If you watch tape on him, this also confirms a Top 5 selection as he constantly finds ways to get open and score.
    While multiple mock drafts’ have Crabtree only slipping to possibly number 8, which is not bad considering the above concerns. Still, regardless of where he goes in the 2009 NFL Draft, he is the biggest question mark. Can he elevate his game like he did in college? Will he be able to make the transition from a spread offense to a traditional pro-style offense? Does he have the speed to separate from NFL defenders? These are normal question that are asked of any NFL wanna-be receiver, but the Combine and Pro-Days are suppose to quill those worries, which Crabtree did not participate in.
    I think one of the Ohio teams (Bengals and Browns) grabs him based on need and potential. The answer is just a few days away.


    Round 2...#43... Traded to Panthers

    Round 3...#74... Glen Coffee RB Alabama

    Round 5...#146... Scott McKillop LB Pittsburgh

    Round 5...#171 (Compensatory pick)... Nate Davis QB Ball State

    Round 6...#184...Bear Pascoe TE Fresno State

    Round 7...#219... Curtis Taylor S LSU

    Round 7...#244 (Compensatory pick)... Ricky Jean-Francois DT LSU
  3. Hostile

    Hostile Tacos are a good investment Zone Supporter

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    St. Louis Rams Draft picks

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    Round 1...#2... Jason Smith OT Baylor

    Senior

    Height: 6' 5"

    Weight: 305 lbs.

    Strengths: Athleticism, feet, height, long arms

    Weakness: Strength, technique, weight

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    Baylor’s towering LT Jason Smith might be Buffalo’s Jason Peters Light. A former TE (6 catches for 70 yards as redshirt freshman), Smith has become one of the top offensive tackle prospects in the 2009 draft with a stellar career and a brilliant 2008 season. He has three years of starting experience at tackle for Baylor and has been selected as a Coach’s All-Big 12 Conference1st Team this year after being an honorable mention All-Big 12 last year despite missing five games with an MCL sprain.
    Smith is arguably the most athletic lineman available in the 2009 NFL Draft and could have an immediate impact on a line next year. He could play LT or LG in a zone-blocking scheme possesses the speed to get out and move to the second level very effectively. His days running routes is evident in his ability to pull and trap and his awareness of where the ball is going on screens. His speed and long arms make him an explosive weapon in space against linebackers and safeties. Technique wise, he has made huge strides this year as well.
    A good line coach will smooth out his game and should find a Pro Bowl caliber player when he’s done. Smith is a better run blocker right now than he is against the pass, but the talent is there for him to get much better with NFL caliber coaching.
    He doesn’t have the natural strength of most NFL linemen and even though he has bulked up to around 305 pounds, he needs to pack on 10-15 more pounds of muscle. He’s good with speed but has some trouble with power against the pass and lacks much of a punch right now. He sets up quickly in pass protection, but hasn’t yet mastered pushing guys outside the pocket as rushers have success getting under his pads due to his height. Smith still plays to upright at times. His footwork has gotten much better with another year of experience, but he just doesn’t have the lower body strength necessary to blow NFL defensive linemen up at this point.
    A masher and mauler Smith is not, but he is perfect for a zone-scheme where he’ll be able to get out and move a lot and hide some of his strength issues until he’s able to bulk up. He has the frame to hold another 10-15 pounds with out losing much in athleticism. Smith has come a long ways technique-wise in 2008 and has seen his stock skyrocket over the course of the year from a 2nd or 3rd round pick into a solid early to mid-first round pick who could go much higher if he tests well at the Senior Bowl and the NFL Scouting Combine. I wouldn't be surprised to see him as a top 10 pick in the 2009 NFL Draft. Comparing him to Alabama's Andre Smith, he doesn't have the strength or power, but slides better, and comparing him to Virginia's Eugene Monroe, he stays on his blocks much longer. Smith is very similar talent wise to last year's (2008 NFL Draft) OT Chris Williams from Vanderbilt, who was selected in the first round (14th over-all) by the Chicago Bears.
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    Round 2...#35... James Laurinitas LB Ohio State

    Round 3...#66... Bradley Fletcher CB Iowa

    Round 4...#103... Scott Dorell DT Clemson

    Round 5...#160 (from Falcons)... Brooks Foster WR North Carolina

    Round 6...#196 (from Falcons)... Keith Null QB West Texas A&M

    Round 7...#211... Chris Obogonnaya RB Texas

  4. Hostile

    Hostile Tacos are a good investment Zone Supporter

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    Seattle Seahawks Draft picks

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    Round 1...#4... Aaron Curry OLB Wake Forest

    Height: 6’ 3”
    Weight: 246 lbs.
    Speed: 4.6
    Wake Forest
    Senior
    Strengths: Speed, size, experience, pass coverage ability.
    Weakness: Pass rush skills


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    Meet one of the best linebacker prospects in college football. Entering his senior year he was placed on the Lombardi, Butkis and Chuck Bednarik Award Watch list and probably one of the top 20 prospects for the 2009 NFL Draft. During the 2008 season, he played "lights out" and has elevated his draft stock to a certain top 10 selection. He is the best linebacker in the 2009 NFL Draft hands down. Curry hits like a ton of bricks, is very light on his feet, but still strong, he can run a 4.60 forty yard dash and routinely “power cleans” close to 400 pounds.

    This past season as a senior (2008) Curry displayed world class explosiveness, quick play recognition and flawless tackling techniques. I don't see that he has many weaknesses at all except maybe he needs to develop more pass rushing moves, but he wasn't asked to do that much at Wake Forest. Curry put up some eye popping numbers this past season. He won the coveted Dick Butkis Award as the nations best linebacker and recorded 101 tackles, 15 for a loss, 2.5 sacks and one interception. Just look at the You-Tube video below to see how explosive he is once he gets a football in his hands. (Photo courtesy of Steve Dykes/Wake Forest Athletic)
    Curry has great hands and is very good in pass coverage, two seasons ago as a junior, he set an ACC record 256 yards on four interception returns and returned three for touchdowns. Curry was a Second team All-ACC linebacker as a junior. He recorded 99 tackles and led his team with 13.5 tackles for loss and three sacks during the season. Curry is very under rated and relatively unknown, but draftniks have known him for a couple years and the rest of the nation will soon here his name called in the first round of the 2009 NFL Draft.

    As a sophomore he started all 14 games at outside linebacker and ranked 42nd in the ACC averaging 4.9 tackles per game. He ranked second on the team with 83 tackles and tied for fourth on the team with 8.5 tackles for loss and three sacks. He also displayed his ability in pass coverage breaking up three passes and intercepted one; he also intercepted a pass in the ACC Championship Game and returned it 30 yards.
    As a Red-shirt freshman he started the final 10 games and was named second team Freshman All-American and voted to the ACC All-Freshman Team by The Sporting News. Curry was the team's fifth-leading tackler recording 45 tackles and ranked third on the team with 7.5 tackles for loss.
    Additional Comments:
    Daryl Breault: Curry has really broken out this year, displaying better coverage skills than Rey Maualuga and James Laurinaitis, the top LB coming into the season. He’s a four-year starter and one of the nation’s strongest players. We should see him go in the top 10 as few players get the kind of depth in their drops, can burst to the ball, fight off blocks and power into the backfield like Curry can. The only knock on him I have is that he is not a quick twitch athlete who changes directions very well.



    Round 2...#37... Traded to Broncos

    Round 2...#49 (acquired from Bears)... Max Unger C Oregon

    Round 3...#68... Traded to Bears

    Round 3...#91 (from giants through eagles) Deon Butler WR Penn State

    Round 6...#178... Mike Teel QB Rutgers

    Round 7...#245 (Compensatory pick)... Courtney Greene SS Rutgers

    Round 7...#247 (Compensatory pick)...Nick Reed DE Oregon

    Round 7...#248 (Compensatory pick)... Cameron Morrah TE California
  5. dogunwo

    dogunwo Waves that make you sea-sick

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    So I think the pick of Jason Smith was a good one, but I agree with Kiper, Sanchez was the better selection.

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