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Mock Draft Live Blog

Hello everyone,

We are about to get under way. Stay tuned for the latest news……

The Rams are on the clock:

1# St. Louis Rams:
Sam Bradford, QB, Oklahoma

The Lions are now on the clock:

2# Detroit Lions:
Ndamukong Suh, DT, Nebraska

The Bucs are on the clock:

3# Tampa Bay Buccaneers:
Gerald McCoy, DT, Oklahoma

The Redskins are on the clock:

4# Washington Redskins:
Trent Williams, OT, Oklahoma

The Chiefs are on the clock:

5# Kansas City Chiefs:
Eric Berry, S, Tennessee

The Seahawks are on the clock:

6# Seattle Seahawks:
Russel Okung, OT, Oklahoma St.

The Browns are on the clock:

7# Cleveland Browns:
Joe Haden, CB, Florida

The Raiders are now on the clock:

8# Oakland Raiders:
Rolando McClain, LB, Alabama

The Bills are on the clock:

9# Buffalo Bills:
CJ Spiller, RB, Clemson

The Jaguars are on the clock:

10# Jacksonville Jaguars:
Tyson Alualu, T, Cal

******TRADE*****

The 49ers are on the clock:

11# San Fransisco 49ers:
Anthony Davis, T, Rutgers

******TRADE*******

The Chargers are on the clock

#12 San Diego Chargers:
Ryan Matthews, RB, Fresno St.

********TRADE*********

The Eagles are now on the clock:

#13 Philadelphia Eagles:
Brandon Graham, DE, Michigan

The Seahawks are on the clock:

#14 Seattle Seahawks:
Earl Thomas, S, Texas

The NY Giants are on the clock

15# NY Giants:
Jason Pierre-Paul, DE, South Florida

The Titans are on the clock:

16# Tennessee Titans:
Derrick Morgan, DE, Georgia Tech

The 49ers are on the clock:

17# San Fransisco 49ers:
Mike Iupati, G, Idaho

The Steelers are on the clock:

18# Pittsburgh Steelers:
Markuice Pouncy, C, Florida

The Falcons are on the clock:

19# Atlanta Falcons:
Sean Witherspoon, LB,  Mizzou

The Texans are on the clock:

20# Houston Texans:
Kareem Jackson, CB, Alabama

The Bengals are on the clock:

21# Cincinnati Bengals:
Jermaine Gresham, TE, Oklahoma

*******TRADE******

The Broncos are on the clock:

22# Denver Broncos:
Demaryius Thomas, WR, Georgia Tech

The Packers are on the clock:

23# Green Bay Packers:
Bryan Bulaga, T, Iowa

**********TRADE*******

The Cowboys are on the clock:

24# Dallas Cowboys:
Dez Bryant, WR, Oklahoma St.

******TRADE*******

The Broncos are now on the clock:

25# Denver Broncos:
Tim Tebow, QB, Florida

The Cardinals are now on the clock:

26# Arizona Cardinals:
Dan Williams, DT, Tennessee

The Pats are on the clock:

27# New England Patriots:
Devin McCourty, CB, Rutgers

The Dolphins are on the clock:

28# Miami Dolphins:
Jared Oderick,  DT, Penn State

The NY Jets are on the clock:

29# NY Jets
Kyle Wilson, CB, Boise St.

*********TRADE********

The Lions are now on the clock:

30# Detroit Lions:
Javhid Best, RB, Cal

The Colts are on the clock:

31# Indianapolis Colts:
Jerry Hughes, DE, TCU

The Saints are on the clock:

32# New Orleans Saints:
Patrick Robinson, CB, FSU

That’s it for tonight, check in tomorrow for a recap of round two and three.

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A real winner.

It’s been a very interesting topic lately. Now it’s our turn.

Should the Steelers trade their franchise QB?

The answer: Maybe

There are several different aspects to this. Like who would trade for him, what would a team give up for him, who would replace him and how would a suspension effect everything?

Let’s take a look:

Who would trade for him?
A two time super bowl winning QB just entering his prime doesn’t usually hit an open market. But when you get two rape accusation, that kinda changes things. Pretty much every team that doesn’t have a star QB should go after him. If Ben can get his head back on straight, he can pretty much bury this all and win more championships ala Kobe. So if a team would make a move forward, trade for him and hopes everything pans out, it could one of the best moves in the history of the NFL. There is a plethora of teams that could use Roethlisberger’s talents: The Rams, The Panthers, The Raiders, The Bills, The entire NFC West, and even the Vikings. Pretty much any team that doesn’t have a QB named: Manning, Brady, Brees, Romo, Rogers,  Sanchez, Flacco or Ryan.

What would a team give up for him?
Now this could be the most interesting piece to this complicated puzzle. What would be a good price for a QB with his talents? The accusations will lower the price, but not by that much. The Steelers still know what they hold in their hands and if they do make a move, they will receive a hefty deal in return. Now it all depends on who would make a play for Roethlisberger, but no matter what, the Steelers will receive nothing less than one first rounder. Take the Raiders for instance. Nnamdi Asomugha and the Raiders first pick this year would be a good deal. Or the Rams, Steven Jackson, the first overall pick and a third rounder would be an option.

Who would replace him?
As of now, nobody on the Steelers could replace Roethlisberger. Batch and Dixon are not the Steelers future. They would have to trade for one or most likely go looking in the draft.  Don’t be surprised if they move up or decide pull the trigger on McCoy or Tebow at 18 out of sheer panic. Who would the Steelers use as trading ammo? Harrison? Polamalu? Highly doubtful. The draft might be the only way, but the might have to wait until next year to address it. A year lead by Dixon, even though it sounds ridiculous, could be the QB of 2010 for the Steelers.

How would a suspension effect everything?
The Rooney’s said they were going to discipline Roethlisberger on their own terms, but that won’t be the case if he is playing for an other team. Big Ben can run from the Rooney’s but he can’t hide from the commish. Roger Goodell could decide to slap a huge suspension on Ben at any time. Look for anything between 4 and an entire season as punishment. If  Ben plays for another team, the suspension would only effect a small time with his new team. Ben would be able to get control of his life and restart in 2011. It would be totally different of he were to suspended while still on the Steelers. Things could grow stale and their relationship could get sour quickly. No matter what, a suspension will play a major role in this soap opera.

Stay in tune with all the biggest stories by following us on twitter @footballnjunk

Check in next Thursday with a live blog of the NFL draft.

The Final Mock Draft

With the draft just a week away (okay, 8 days, we just couldn’t wait anymore), here is our final mock:
1. St. Louis: Sam Bradford, QB, Oklahoma
2. Detroit: Ndamukong Suh, DT, Nebraska
3. Tampa Bay: Gerald McCoy, DT, Oklahoma
4. Washington: Russel Okung, OT, Oklahoma St.
5. Kansas City: Bryan Bulaga, OT, Iowa
6. Seattle: Eric Berry, S, Tennessee
7. Cleveland: Jimmy Clausen, QB, Notre Dame
8. Oakland: Trent Williams, OT, Oklahoma
9. Buffalo: Anthony Davis, OT, Rutgers
10. Miami: Brandon Graham, OLB,  Michigan
11. Denver: Dez Bryant, WR, Oklahoma St.
12. Jacksonville: Jason Pierre-Paul, DE, South Florida
13. San Francisco: Joe Haden, CB, Florida
14. Seattle: Charles Brown, OT, USC
15. New York Giants: CJ Spiller, RB, Clemson
16. San Francisco: Sergio Kindle, OLB,  Texas
17. Tennessee: Rolando McClain, MLB, Alabama
18. Pittsburgh: Mike Iupati, OG ,Idaho
19. Atlanta:Derrick Morgan, DE, Georgia Tech
20. Houston: Kyle Wilson, CB, Boise St.
21. Cincinnati: Taylor Mays, S, USC
22. New England: Dan Williams, DT, Tennessee
23. Green Bay: Bruce Campbell, OT, Maryland
24. Philadelphia: Sean Witherspoon, MLB, Missouri
25. Baltimore: Earl Thomas, S, Texas
26. Arizona: Jermaine Gresham, TE, Oklahoma
27. Dallas: Terrence Cody, DT, Alabama
28. San Diego: Jahvid Best, RB, California
29. New York Jets: Golden Tate, WR, Notre Dame
30. Minnesota: Brian Price, DT, UCLA  (*Tim Tebow, QB, Florida) It’s just so hard to choose.
31. Indianapolis: Everson Griffin, DE, USC
32. New Orleans: Ricky Sapp, DE, Clemson

After weeks of speculation, a deal has finally gone through. Early this morning, the Broncos shipped off Marshall for a pair of second round picks in the next two drafts. The entire Broncos organization has been split on this ordeal. It’s obvious that Marshall was the Broncos number one offensive player last year. His stats mammothed those of Royal, Stokley and Gaffney. He won several games for the Broncos on his acts alone. With out his feats the Broncos could have easily been picking in the top 5 this year. On the other hand, he caused a lot of drama in the locker room. His actions proved to be a distraction. He had a hold out in the presason last year. He had a bad attitude towards the end of the season and was ultimately benched for the last game.

This offseason his name has been in the news quite a bit. With him being a F/A and his disagreements with Josh McDaniels. It was inevitable he was out the door. Many teams showed interest, especially the Seattle Seahawks, who flew out Marshall and his then fiancée to Seattle.

While several teams showed interest, there was always one constant problem, no one wanted to give up their first round pick for Marshall. On the last day of eligibility, McDaniels placed a first round tender on Marshall. Meaning, the Broncos would have the right to match any offer from any team, and if they did not, the Broncos would receive a first round pick in return. That really turned off a lot of teams. No one wanted to risk their pick after they saw how Marshall acted in the previous offseason. So after a month of stand still, Marshall signed his tender, hence breaking his bonds and making him available to any team. And it didn’t take long. Only hours after Marshall signed his tender, he was traded to the Miami Dolphins.

So how does this effect both teams? Check out our break down of both the Dolphins and the Broncos:

Denver Broncos-
In a little over a calender year Josh McDaniels has managed to dispose of his star QB and his star WR. He has cleaned house, as some might say, but with no improvement. The Broncos still finished .5o0 last year without Jay Cutler. Now how will they fair with out their best offensive weapon? McDaniels has taken a lot of heat of this whole mess. And…well, he pretty much deserves every bit of it. If Dick Vermeil was a players coach, then McDaniels is the exact opposite. His terrible people skills have…to be quite frankly, pissed off a lot of people. And after this deal, he pissed off quite a few more. Now all this would have been fine if the Broncos made it to he playoffs and won a game. But they didn’t. If they don’t win the division this year, McDaniels time could be up.

Where do the Broncos stand now? Well basically, they have two mediocre QB’s, an overrated RB and no WR’s. Some say that Royal’s sophomore season was a fluke, but maybe it was his rookie season that was a fluke. His play really suffered in McDaniels new system. And by the looks of it, things might not change. On the other hand, some fans say Gaffney could replace Marshall. Well one good game out of 16 doesn’t grant you the title of replacing a pro bowl WR.

If you step back and look at this, there is no way the Broncos go into the season with this group of WR. So what would be the Broncos number one option? Dez Bryant, a Marshall clone in every way. Even down to the attitude. Now you might think, why in the world would the Broncos trade a diva just to draft one a week later? Because this diva is different. He would be a clean slate for McDaniels, no previous rifts, no other impressions on him. If McDaniels wants to be the best coach in the NFL like he acts like he is, then he should be able to handle players like this. And that doesn’t mean trade them off, it means having a good relationship with the player and having that player player play to the best of his ability. Maybe McDaniels would risk his job and take Dez at 11 and turn him into a star. You’ll find out next Thursday.

The Miami Dolphins-
After an amazing season two years ago, the Dolphins kinda ran out of momentum last year. Their “wild-cat” gimmick started to wear off and injuries plagued them. This year they seemed to have all the right pieces for the most part: A new QB, a new DC and a new leader on the defense. One of missing pieces was a solid number 1 WR.  Now they scored big time with Marshall. This makes them 100% more dangerous. With a combination of Williams and Brown running the ball and Marshall catching it, the Dolphins will be very hard to stop offensively this year. Last year Henne showed flashes, but did the best he could with Ginn Jr. catching his passes. Marshall will give Henne more confidence going into his first year as a full time starter. It will be a win-win for both players.

The funny thing about Marshall going to the Dolphins, is the fact just a few weeks ago Coach Sparano said that Marshall wouldn’t be a good fit for the Dolphins. It’s amazing how that can change with a signature on Marshall’s part. So was that all just a bluff on Sparano’s side or did Tuna push for this deal to go through, without Sparano agreeing? Only time will tell.

The other part of this deal is that it allows the Dolphins to pick up their second biggest need. Blitzing LB’s. That can be taken care of at 10 next week. The Dolphins would pretty much have first pick on blitzing players. Guys like: Graham Kindle, Pierre-Paul and Morgan. Any of those guys would be great, but Graham and Kindle would be the best options.

After all the dust settled, two second round picks doesn’t seem like that bad of a price. Last year the Broncos pretty much drafted three busts in the second round, so any thoughts of the Broncos taking those second round picks and drafting a super star could be thrown out the window. The Dolphins escaped with a pretty good deal, a proven player is always better than a shot in the dark with draft, especially with drafting being McDaniels biggest flaw. Now maybe this all changes this year and the Broncos get solid second round talent, it won’t effect the Dolphins immediately. Down the road, maybe.

The Outcome-
So on paper it looks like the Dolphins won in this deal, but “on paper” doesn’t mean crap in the NFL. Unfortunately like everything else in the NFL, we will have to wait until September and on to find out the real winners. But as of right now, Miami has a top 5 WR and the 10th pick and the Broncos have Captain Protein and Jabar Gaffney.

Check in Thursday for more details on this deal and how the Broncos used their second round pick.

McNabb: The aftermath

The dust is starting to settle and things are cooling down. Sometimes when a major trade happens, everyone gets sucked into the minor details and what-ifs. So let’s do the opposite and take a step back and take the biggest look possible.

Here are the major pieces:

The Eagles Organization, The Redskins Organization, The Coaches, The Eagles QB’s, The Redskins QB’s, The Draft,  And the Future.

The Eagles Organization-
It’s blatantly obvious that the Eagles, as a whole, are coming into a new era. The now Dawkins, Johnson, Westbrook and McNabb-less team is changing pretty quickly. They discovered gems with DeSean Jackson, Jeremy Maclin and Kevin Kolb.  The Eagles are getting younger, and fast. The Eagles QB, who ever it might be, will have all the tools he needs to be competitive this season.

The Redskins Organization-
The Redskins have been in a rut lately, they seem to have a lot of talent, but can never seem to pull it together. Last year they signed some big names, drafted a great rookie in Orakpo, yet still had a terrible record. But now bullet proof Jesus is on the horizon and he is ready to throw some tables over. With McNabb at the helm, he should have an immediate impact and make the Redskins a contender.

The Coaches-
No one should question the coaches in this trade. They are some of the best offensive minds in this generation, they know what they are doing. Reid had three QB’s to choose from and Shanahan had, umm, well…..none. So this trade makes sense. Reid has taken some heat for trading McNabb to a division rival, but the NFC East teams are always neck-and-neck anyway so it shouldn’t really matter. They should both have great seasons and their jobs should stay intact.

The Eagles QB’s-
The Eagles were already in a good position at QB with three on the roster. Two probowlers and one up and coming. With McNabb out, reports can make all the rumors they want about a Philly QB controversy, but it is Kolb’s job all the way. Naturally, Vick will get more playing time, but there is no way he will challenge Kolb.  Kolb has a Arron Rogers like feel to him. So look for him to have a similar season as like Rogers first season as a starter. Great plays but a lot of mistakes.

The Redskins QB’s-
Before McNabb, the Redskins looked dead in the water at QB. Fans wanted Campbell out, Shanny wanted Bradford in and nobody seemed to agree. Now it appears that all controversy is busted with the arrival of McNabb. He will be a surefire starter, it’s now just a matter of who will back him up. Campbell could stick around due to his starting in the past, or Brennan could stay because he is young and could be groomed by Shanahan. But most likely only two will be on the roster by week 1.

The Draft-
It might appear that this deal will alter the draft, but that is not the case. If you check out our latest Mock Draft, https://footballnjunk.wordpress.com/2010/03/22/a-month-away-mock-draft/ , we have the Redskins taking Okung at 4 anyway. The other thing that could change the draft is the placement of Clausen. But we already had him at 7 going to Cleveland. At least from our perspective the draft won’t be strewn apart by this trade.

The Future-
Now how will the future look with this trade? Preseason? Playoffs? Next season? How will all this play out? First off, you have to remember that the Redskins only gave a second this year and a third or fourth next year. So they get to keep their number 4 pick, this would allow them to take a LT easily, to protect their new QB. They can become very successful with this formula. But there is one thing to consider. The Redskins traded their second round pick to the Eagles and Andy Reid is one of the best if not the best at picking up star players in the second round. In the past 4 years he has taken: Justice, Kolb, Jackson and McCoy in the second round. All projected starters this year. Could he draft more stars this year with two second rounders at his disposal? Most likely. Look for him to fill a void at LB and saftey with those two picks.

So in the end, who is the champion of this mega-trade?

How about both?

Both teams look like the have improved. Even if it doesn’t look like it on paper for the Eagles. Shanny has a new QB and an option to upgrade his LT at #4. Reid has a new QB and two second round picks. The actual losers in this deal might be the Cowboys and the Giants as they have to deal with the two teams each twice this year.

Out with old, in with the new.  With the recent cutting of Dallas star Flozell Adams, it dethroned the last LT king there has been in the 2000’s.

Sure there has been decades filled with great talent at left tackle. In the 70’s there was Shell, Wright and Yary and then in the 80’s and 90’s there was Munoz, Slater and Zimmerman. But the left tackles that played in the 2000’s were simply the best group of left tackles of all time. With at least 4 surefire HOF’s and two boarder line, they have to be the best.

Jonathan Ogden-
He was the first ever selection by the Baltimore Ravens and he surely didn’t disappoint. He proved to be one of the best ever by making 11 pro bowls throughout his career. He helped lead the Ravens to their first super bowl in 2001.  His 6’9 345lbs frame imposed defenders, but his quickness was his most amazing ability. He could literally float like a butterfly and sting like a rhinoceros. But due to injury, Ogden called it quits in 2008. He left a legacy bigger than himself in Baltimore.

Orlando Pace-
Drafted as the 1st selection in the 1997 draft, he proved to be one of the most successful St. Louis Rams in NFL history. He only trails Jackie Slater as the best LT in team history. He played a vital role in the “greatest show on turf” days. He blocked for three NFL MVP’s in a row. Kurt Warner in 1999 and 2001 and Marshall Faulk in 2000. He popularized the term “pancake block” for the he way flattened defenders. In more recent years he has fallen from stardom, after a one year deal with the Chicago Bears, he now sits on FA and will most likely retire soon.

Walter Jones-
Walter Jones could very well be the best LT in this group. He is known as one of John Madden’s most favorite players of all time. He even considered him to be the best LT of all time. Jones paved ways for Shaun Alexander, the NFL MVP in 2005. He also blocked for three time pro bowler Matt Hasselbeck. He lead his team to a super bowl in 2006, but ultimately fell short to the Steelers. Now Jones seems injury plagued and sluggish. He sat out 2009 and his future doesn’t look bright in 2010. He posted via Twitter that he was going to retire but is yet to do so officially.

Chris Samuels-
Samuels may not be as top tier as the first three LT’s but he is still one of the best LT’s in the 2000’s. After being drafted third overall in 2000 by the Redskins, he quickly became a starter and a leader for his team. He mustard up 6 pro bowls in his career. He paved the way for star RB Clinton Portis, helping him make two pro bowls. After an injury filled 2009, Samuels decided to retire. He revealed he has been playing with condition called spinal stenosis, yet he still had a  successful career. He now looks forward to a career as a football coach.

Flozell Adams-
He is the only LT on this list that wasn’t drafted in the firs round, but that didn’t seem to stop Adams. For the past 12 seasons he has been a great LT for the Dallas Cowboys. His large frame and brute force overwhelm defenders. He is a very explosive player and some times gets in trouble with it. He has received many unsportsmanlike like conduct penalties against him, but that hasn’t seemed top faze him. This past year he appeared to have lost a step and his play suffered. It eventually resulted in his release just yesterday. His future is unknown, some sources place him in Buffalo though.

Willie Roaf-
Now this one is a little more tricky. Roaf is the oldest player on this list as he played a chunk of his career in the 90’s. He was drafted 8th overall in 1993 by the New Orleans Saints, he had a very successful stint with them. Then in 2001 he suffered a season ending injury and was traded to the Kansas City Chiefs. Many believed he was washed up and that he could not compete anymore. He proved them all wrong by returning to his pro bowl form and becoming a dominant left tackle again.  After 13 great seasons, Roaf decided to end his career in 2006 ending on a four year pro bowl streak. He is now a coach at Santa Monica College.

Those are the best Left Tackles to play in the 2000’s and can very well be the best decade of left tackles ever. Now with nearly everyone of them out of football, a new generation of left tackles have been introduced into the NFL. Names like Joe Thomas, Ryan Clady, Jake Long, D’Brickshaw Ferguson and Michael Roos look to lead the way into this new era of left tackles. We will have to wait and see how their legacies pan out.

Bryant VS. Crabtree

BRYANT V. CRABTREE

In 2009 there was Michael Crabtree. The self proclaimed best WR in that years draft. Unfortunately, he fell all the way down to number 10. He felt disrespected and had a hold out. When he did come in, he had a minimal impact and only scored two TD’s.

Now in 2010, there is Dez Bryant, this years self proclaimed best WR in the draft. Even though he missed out last season with an NCAA suspension, he is ranked pretty high up on draft boards.  And a year out of football surely can’t help his chances of migrating over to the NFL easy.

So we have two WR’s, very similar playing style and identical personalities. Both think they are the best and they both act like the best.

If you team these two primma donna’s up who would come out victorious? Let’s take a look:

Michael Crabtree-                                         Dez Bryant-
Size:
6’3  214lbs                                            6’2 224lbs    
Speed: 4.48 40 yard dash                             4.52 40 yard dash
College:
231 rec 3,127 yds 41 td 13.5 avg   147 rec 2,425 yrds 29 td 16.4 avg
Comparison: Reggie Wayne                          Brandon Marshall

Athleticism: Bryant
Physicality:
Bryant
Hands: Crabtree
Route Running: Bryant
Deep Threat: Crabtree
YAC: Tie

Crabtree:
Lankier and more graceful. Has a Lynn Swan type esque to him. Can make difficult catches look breathtakingly easy. would rather run away instead of run through. A definite red zone weapon, can score easily on fade routes. Has faster game speed than track speed.

Bryant:
Rough and tumble. Has great focus and can make a catch with someone in his face. What he lacks in smoothness and gracefulness he compensates with sheer power and willingness. An amazing tackle breaker, he has Anquan Boldin type open space moves.

So in the end, who is the greater?

Put your money on Dez Bryant.

Why?
Because his style of play is more effective. In recent years, the time of the hard hitting safety has really died down. Teams started using smaller, quicker CB’s to keep up with great route running and faster WR’s. Now offenses are adapting by using slightly slower, but bigger and tougher WR’s. Big physical WR’s and TE’s are a hot commodity nowadays.

Guys like Witten, Marshall, Clark, Finnley and Boldin are having really successful careers. And it’s simply because they can over power their defender, Dez Bryant is that type of player. Whoever drafts him this year is going to get a tough, physical player that is willing to bust some heads on the way to the endzone.