• One of the unknowns on the Giants over the last couple years has been James Brewer. People wondered how much worse Brewer could be than David Diehl, and would have been willing to give him a shot. It appears the Giants may not think very highly of Brewer after drafting Justin Pugh and clinging onto Diehl for at least one last season.
• Tommy looked at new Eagles WR Ifeanyi Momah. Momah is 6’7, 240 and runs a 4.45. Being super tall and fast doesn’t guarantee success in the NFL (ask Ramses Barden), but it will be interesting to see how Chip Kelly tries to use Momah.
• A few of my favorite draft hauls around the league (in no particular order):
I did a three-part series on the Redskins’ first pick (which was in the second round), NC State CB David Amerson. His game tape (or YouTube tape or whatever) was about as fun to watch as any player I’ve seen this offseason. The difference between his 2011 season and 2012 season was night and day, and I don’t just mean that in terms of his production. He has 13 INTs in 2011, and that number fell off to 5 in 2012. 5 INTs is still pretty freaking good, as long as you’re not gambling on everything, which Amerson was.
But for me, the biggest difference was his willingness to be physical in 2011. In 2012, he shied away from contact like a timid version of Asante Samuel. It was downright strange how different a player he was. Here’s the series:
There were 4 players drafted in the top half of the 1st round whose stock was helped immensely by competing at the Senior Bowl. Three of them were in the top 5. Eric Fisher and Lane Johnson absolutely dominated during the week of practice, and Ziggy Ansah looked like the best player on the field during the game itself, while showing flashes of brilliance during the practices. Those three players were drafted 1st, 4th, and 5th, respectively. Would those players have been drafted that highly if they skipped the Senior Bowl. Hell. No. EJ Manuel, meanwhile, was the MVP of the game, although I think he was helped more by his interactions with various teams during his stay in Mobile. Manuel was drafted 16th overall by Buffalo.
There were 7 players who were healthy, but declined invites to the Senior Bowl. An argument could be made that at least 3 of them may have been hurt by that decision:
Did it hurt him?
Unlikely. In theory, he could have killed it down in Mobile and helped himself, but ultimately he was the 3rd RB drafted (a good spot for him), even ahead of Eddie Lacy.
Leaning toward yes. As noted above, Eric Fisher, Lane Johnson and Ziggy Ansah went to the Senior Bowl and helped their causes immensely. We’ll never know if Lotulelei could have done the same. Lotulelei is extraordinarily quick for his size. The knock on him is that he didn’t always anchor well in the running game against doubles. The week of practices in Mobile would have played to Lotulelei’s strengths.
Emphatic yes. Smith wasn’t such a great prospect that he could let his game tape stand on its own. The unwillingness to compete down in Mobile was a red flag, plain and simple. He had the chance to show that he was clearly the best QB among the group who did compete, but he squandered that opportunity. EJ Manuel, however, wisely did not stand on his game tape and was eventually drafted 16th overall.
No. There was no way Te’o was going to expose himself to a swarm of media in the wake of the whole “catfishing” thing, which was fresh news at the time. NFL teams undoubtedly understood that decision.
Maybe. Warmack was the 2nd guard drafted. If he goes down to Mobile to compete, perhaps he puts any doubts about him to bed. Although in fairness, going 10th overall as a guard isn’t too shabby.
If there are flaws in your game, NFL scouts are probably going to find them on your tape anyway. If you’re invited to the Senior Bowl, you may as well just go and compete unless your game tape is so obviously good that you can afford to stand on it. Otherwise, it’s a red flag. Geno Smith found that out this year. Hopefully it’s a lesson learned for players who are presented with the same decisions next year.
Former NC State and newly minted Washington Redskin CB David Amerson is one of the most fun players to watch on tape from this draft class. He’s a terrifying playmaker and yet an absolute liability simultaneously. Here were Amerson’s career stats at NC State:
Note the ridiculous 13 picks in 2011. That lead the country in 2011, by a lot:
He also has great size, and outstanding measurables:
There is a great site by the name of NEPatriotsDraft.com, which does a great job aggregating undrafted free agent information from around the league. As teams continue to sign undrafted free agents, they’ll update their lists, so go there to see who else may have signed.
So far here is who the NFC East teams have signed, according to their site. Just to note, every year UDFA information tends not to be 100% accurate for varying reasons, so just use this as a loose guide to who each team was able to sign:
Throughout the draft, I wrote my initial thoughts for each pick. I’ll have a lot more on each teams’ draft in the next few days, but for the purpose of putting the initial thoughts all in one convenient place, here they all are:
Joe Kruger, DE, Utah: Kruger is a player my “podcaster in crime” Tommy Lawlor has been talking about for weeks. Here is what Tommy wrote over at Scouts Notebook:
Joe Kruger (6-6, 269) is just the opposite. I like him quite a bit as well, but Kruger is just 20 years old. He is scratching the surface of how good he can be. Kruger only started 14 games in his 3 years at Utah. I currently have him slotted as a 5th rounder, but it wouldn’t surprise me to see him even go in the 4th. Kruger is tailor-made for the 3-4. He can bulk up to 285 and carry it well. He’s a good athlete and has some pass rush ability. Really good potential, but will need some time.
Kruger is the younger brother of Paul Kruger, the former Raven and current Brown. This is the 2nd defensive lineman the Eagles have added in this draft, after Bennie Logan in the 3rd round. The Eagles depth chart along the DL should now look something like this: