Archive for the ‘Frank Okum’ Category

Inside the mind of a draft guru

April 26, 2008

1) Wonder is getting out the message: “These General Managers and Directors of Player Personnel are simply not ready” for the new time rules that govern this draft. All you have to do is listen to Wonder speak for ~ 2 minutes on the topic to understand why. Your ear goes numb as he rips off 85 things that these GMs have not anticipated. He starts rattling off scenarios at who is available at draft pick #X for team A and then by implication who should be talking to who on Thursday, NOT Friday, and certainly not Saturday when it is TOO LATE. These guys are unprepared. When you think of the myriad angles to plan for, it is very clear these organizations have not planned for them. And now it goes to 10 minutes.

2) Wonder philosophy: (a) he gets a significant amount of his opinion from film (b) he is a VALUE guy. If he knows the consensus #93 pick in the draft is a Future Hall of Famer, he will still go apes**t if HIS team takes him with the 36th pick. “These people do not understand the draft,” says Wonder. “You must pick players you like when appropriate, not just because you like them. Not picking for value is easily the most common draft mistake.”

3) On Cornerbacks: “Revis and Ross are what the new NFL is all about. Press coverage, bump and run, tackling, bigger and stronger guys.”

4) On judging a draft: “You need at least 3 years to judge a draft. Obviously more for a QB. Bryant may be the best NT in this draft and we will need 3 years to judge him. For MLB and RB, all you need is 1 year… either they are good in Year 1 or they don’t have it.”

5) On the draft/coaches dynamic: “There is a sleeper NT Frank Okum (Texas) who will go in the 5th or 6th Round. He has talent, but was out of shape at the Combine. If he loses 30 lbs. and hits the weight room he could be terrific. If he is taken by a softie like Herm Edwards he’ll last 3 days and be out of the league.”

6) On rules changes: “The NFL is so cheap.. no 60 year old refs. This ‘force out’ rule is going to be a nightmare. This covers up pathetic refs who cannot rule on a WR being out or not. The new rule will encourage safeties to drive receivers out of the field of play. Insane. And the ‘icing the kicker’ is ridiculous and should be banned.”

7) On spygate: “Goodell was a moron. Image is everything. The league was made to look very bad. The Patriots should have lost the higher of the 49er/NE #1 pick, so here they are still picking #7.”

8) On rookie salaries: Something must be done about rookie salaries in the Top 10 draft picks, because it is ruining the balance that once existed to help weaker teams get first crack at the best talent. Now they have to pay them an exorbitant amount of money, hurting their cap and making it harder for them to KEEP the successful veterans they need on their roster to be competitive. Of course Wonder has a plan for how to bring it all back in line, but if Gene Upshaw and the Players Union continue to be mindless then none of it really matters.

Wait till this afternoon when the actual drafting begins. Wonder is first getting warmed up. 3PM EST.