Originally Posted by Ungeheuer
That is one random, harebrained analysis. Among other things the whole premise is absurd because the two teams each had several different regimes during that period. So to draw conclusions about a general drafting strategy is a non-starter. What kind of conclusion can one possibly make about the overall tendencies of some random combination of Bobby Grier and Bill Belichick draft picks?
I have to agree. This is further proof that, given a large enough and diverse enough sample size, you can statistically prove anything.
Some of these strategies are absurd. Take players close to the neighborhood? Well that is easily done when you are in the vicinity of the likes of USC, Cal, UCLA and Fresno St. instead of the notoriously apathetic to college sports region of New England. Take players from BSC conferences? Well duh. Don't waste draft picks of P and K? Again, duh.
A better comparison of the drafts of teams like New England and San Francisco would be to debate need vs. value and ceiling vs. security when evaluating a player.
The Niners of the past decade have been notorious for moving valuable 2nd round picks to move into the later parts of round 1 to take borderline talents. These are often panic moves to fill a need. Examples include Kentwaan Balmer, Joe Staley, Mike Rumph, Kwame Harris and Rashawn Woods.
They also have been notorious for overlooking production in round 1 in favor of riskier athletic freak types (which, actually, IS pulling an Al Davis). Examples include Alex Smith and Vernon Davis.
I would say the reason the Niners have failed is because they consistently fail to bring in impact players in round 1. Compare a list 1st round picks on the current roster with first round picks on the current Patriots roster.
Niners: Balmer, Staley, Willis, David, Smith. Of the 5, only Willis and to a lesser extent Staley have had any real impact.
Pats: Mayo, Meriweather, Maroney, Watson, Mankins, Wilfork, Warren, Seymour. Almost every player on the list is a pro bowler or an ascending player. Even the disappointments (Maroney and Watson) have outperformed most of their 49er contemporaries.