Archive for the ‘Groves’ Category

2008 NFL Draft Preview- NY GIANTS ON THE CLOCK

April 25, 2008

1) NEEDS. The biggest offseason losses were Mitchell and Wilson. So LB and S are the biggest needs. Reese picked up Danny Clark and Sammy Knight to enable FLEXIBILITY in going after as much VALUE as possible. Those acquisitions are not long term answers, so you still have to expect the Giants to target those positions early. Reese is smart- he gets stopgaps so that he can maneuver on draft day.

2) Which returning starter is the WEAKEST LINK on DEFENSE? S James Butler. Butler is an overachieving UFA. While he is a competent tackler, his lack of speed is consistently a liability. The Giants can AND NEED to improve here.

3) Which returning starter is the WEAKEST LINK on OFFENSE? LT David Diehl. It pains me to say this because I am such a huge Illini fan, but I think that makes my objectivity even stronger here. David Diehl is an unbelievable 5th Round draft choice who has not missed a start in FIVE seasons (86 consecutive starts). Great Guard. Weak tackle. Too vulnerable on the edge. Second in the league in sacks allowed in 2007. Abused by Adalius Thomas in the Super Bowl. Reese loves Diehl for his work ethic and durability, but he’ll be pragmatic and draft a LT HIGH. VERY HIGH.

4) PICK #31. Ultimatenyg’s expert draft analyst is “Wonder.” Wonder dissects the first round like this…You can easily see

6 OL (Long, Clady, Albert, Otah, Williams, Cherilus)
2 QB (Ryan, Flacco or more likely Brohm to GB)
3 DT (Dorsey, Ellis, Balmer)
4 DE (Gholston, Long, Merling, Harvey)
5 DB (100% RCromartie, McKelvin, Jenkins, combo of 2 from Flowers/Talib/Cason/Phillips)
2 LB (Rivers, Mayo)
4 RB (McFadden, Mendenhall, Stewart, Jones)
2 TE (Keller, Davis)
4 WR (BUFFALO????+TENN+PHIL+WASH+DAL???? taking Thomas, Sweed, Hardy, Kelly)

That adds up to 33 players for 30 spots before the Giants pick. This means that at worst you could end up with LB Quentin Groves from Auburn or Safety Tyrell Johnson from Arkansas State. Wonder loves Groves. There is volatility in the pick but the upside is a total home run, great value at #31. On Johnson, he is a very good pick at #1, he STARTS AT SAFETY ON OPENING DAY and would not be able to get out of the starting lineup for years to come. Two keys before the Giants pick… who does Buffalo take at #11. Wonder thinks it is quite possible that they take WR Devin Thomas, and if they do it is CELEBRATION TIME IN EAST RUTHERFORD, because that means an extra team taking a WR and leaving a great oppty for other players to fall to the Giants. Second key… If Denver does NOT take Mayo it is possible he could fall all the way to the Giants.

The draft is loaded with Offensive Tackles; Gosder Cherilus (Boston College) can fall to #31 simply because there are 5 OLinemen rated above him by consensus.

WR James Hardy (Indiana) may somehow fall to #31, that is another Wonder steal at that slot. Take the tall 6’7″ Hardy and now you can definitely trade Shockey, says Wonder. The same argument is even easier to see if TE Keller falls to #31.

5) PICK #63. Wonder has Bryant, Avril, Nicks and Barrett as potentially there and representing value for the Giants at this spot. My favorite is Barrett, because this is a Safety at the right spot and right time. He can get the help of Knight, does not need to be an immediate starter, he’s a good quality pick that matches need and lastly you are not wasting a first rounder on a position like Safety. If the Giants are keyed on getting interior DL help (it depends on their outlook for Jay Alford), then Bryant is your answer.

6) PICKS ON DAY 2. Wonder offers the following Day 2 names as players representing value in later rounds: Carl Nicks, Chris Johnson, Jamaal Charles, Jordy Nelson, Curtis Lofton, Cliff Avril, Jeremy Thompson, Kellen Davis, Mike Pollack, Chilo Rachal..one may be available in 3rd round if LUCKY…but..you also have Patrick Lee, Marcus Howard, Justin King (steal !!)…after that you have guys like Tyvon Branch, Donnie Avery, Brad Cottam, Eddie Royal, Jeremy Zuttah, Craig Stevens, Tom Zbikowski, Terrell Thomas…Mike McGlynn…ALL would have great value anytime after round 3…total speculation as what to expect, and who will fall in 5-7….have to wait until AFTER the first day is over to have any clue…

7) There are a few potential first rounders that Wonder says to avoid. They are LT Chris Williams, S Kenny Phillips, LB Dan Connor, WR Desean Jackson, TE Fred Davis and WR Malcolm Kelly.

8) Wonder separately points out a scenario in Round 1 where Oakland picking #4 would choose from Chris Long or Gholston, not care who it is, and let time expire to have the Chiefs pay more at #4 and let the Raiders save cap space too. The Top 10 salaries have gotten so out of hand that it is making a mockery of the ‘reward’ you get for picking high. Gene Upshaw and the Players Union are awol.

Summary- LB, S, OT are biggest needs. Groves, Johnson, Mayo, Cherilus and Barrett get the Wonder seal of approval for meeting those needs, if they are available.

Live draft coverage on Saturday and Sunday.

Wonder’s VALUE BOARD

April 22, 2008

The following is Wonder’s VALUE BOARD, with a brief comment on each player. It is NOT A MOCK DRAFT. It is Wonder’s assessment of the best player available. As an example, Wonder does not project McFadden at #1 for Miami and he does not see the Giants necessarily taking Flowers or Talib either. The hope for the Giants is that someone of value AHEAD of those players is available and FALLS to #31… someone like Groves, Hardy or Cherilus. Gosder Cherilus is 6’7″, 314 lbs., switched to LT from RT in his senior year, and if you are not sure if the Giants will have interest… he played for Boston College, aka NY Giants North.

THE BEST PLAYER AVAILABLE, IN DESCENDING ORDER:

1. McFadden– POTENTIALLY biggest game changer
2. Dorsey– ever hear of Warren Sapp?..4-3 ONLY
3. Gholston– most POTENTIALLY dominant DE(4-3 end !!)
4. Jake Long– best OT..and SAFE pick
5. Chris Long– great att,motor,intangibles..(I think 4-3 end)
6. Ellis– undervalued…could be anchor in 4-3
7. Rivers-hard to predict…I think best in 4-3 OLB (TB brooks?)
8. Ryan– good but not great..needs a good team
9. RCromartie– POTENTIAL BEST CB in YEARS
10/11. Stewart/Mendenhall– GREAT value, studs
12. Albert– disagree.think he should be TOP FIVE OG, not OT
13. Clady– little unclear..good body..feet ??
14. Thomas– I believe he WILL be the next TO on good team
15. Balmer– versatile…3-4 NT or 4-3 DT..10 year solid pro
16. Mayo– not sure he can play MLB..but GREAT ILB 3-4
17. Merling– just plug him into a 4-3 DE and let him play
18. Harvey– Beast? or bust? has to play 4-3 DE
19. Otah– MOOSE…if not quick enough, could be a prob
20. Groves– POTENTIAL BEAST (see J. ABRAHAM !!)
21. McKelvin– solid pro
22. Keller– in new pass happy NFL, 60-70 catches/yr !!
23. Jenkins– solid pro
24. Hardy– “small” Harold Carmichael !! RED ZONE !!!
25. Sweed– unclear..but if he learns to go across the middle..
26. Cason– next group of solid cb’s
27. Flacco (THIS MUST BE A NEED PICK..2-3 yrs away)
28. Cherilus– plug him in at RT for next 10 years..
29/30. Brohm/Henne (NEED PICK)- good value /pot..
31. Flowers/Talib (pick one!) for COVER 2

WONDER’S PERSPECTIVE

April 20, 2008

We can guess all day whether Reese is in a position to trade up or trade down. My instinct is to believe that since this draft is deep enough through at least Round 2 (and more likely through Round 3), the Giants are going to sit back and wait for #31. Who is going to be available AND/OR a good pick at #31 for the Giants? WONDER answers that question for us:

Cherilus
Mayo
Groves
Hardy
Baker
Sweed?
Keller

Wonder: “Groves is the best of this lot. Hardy is the steal of the draft.”

There are 7 guys listed here, and most will be gone by the time the Giants pick. Wonder is not a Connor fan. Given my personal preference for a Linebacker, GET GROVES! The Giants have not drafted a LB #1 in 24 years, so it is about freaking time! Plus, as much as I respect Wonder’s alert on a WR like Hardy, I do not like WRs in Round 1. Considering that the gmen just scored with Steve Smith at #2 last year and that they have Toomer, Burress, Jennings, Moss… just draft a WR in ~4th or 5th round (more on that this week) and focus on other areas. ALSO, the weakest link on offense for the Giants is now Diehl at LT, so if the Giants go Offense in Round 1 it should be for a guy like Cherilus before a WR. Defense wins championships and the reason we won the Super Bowl was not because we scored 17, it was because we held the Patriots to 14. Take LB Quentin Groves from Auburn and make the defense better.