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Draft Theory - Mismatch at the Line of Scrimmage

Discussion in 'Patriots Draft Talk' started by Box_O_Rocks, Apr 6, 2007.

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  1. Box_O_Rocks

    Box_O_Rocks PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I was playing with draft data in response to posts in Ken's hypothetical query thread and noted that BB drafts three positions consistently, DL, TE, and RB/FB http://www.patsfans.com/new-england-patriots/messageboard/showpost.php?p=394821&postcount=40. My analysis looks at these three as "mismatch" positions; DL by forcing double-teams, TE & RB/FB by redirecting LBs, lead blocking, or freeing up an OL to shift power to the point of attack by blocking on the backside. The only non-mismatch position drafted in round one is Mankins, and if you credited him with being a OT then you also had a potential mismatch position.

    First question, how does a player at a specific position create a mismatch? My thoughts:
    DL - occupy two or more blockers.
    TE - challenge LB and S in the passing game, serving as an extra blocker for run or pass.
    RB/FB - challenge LB and S in the passing game, serving as an extra blocker for run or pass.
    OT - blocking the edge rusher one-on-one to free up an interior OL for blitz pick-up and put the TE/RB into the pattern.
    OC/OG - blocking DL one-on-one.
    OLB - occupy two or more blockers.
    ILB - fill rush lanes quickly, direct the defense.
    QB - quick release, good field vision, good decisions.
    WR - force double-teams in the secondary, block LB and S in the run game.
    S - playing up in the box, or having the speed to come up quickly and fill rush lanes, directing the secondary.
    CB - handle #1 WRs in man, filling rush lanes quickly.

    BB drafts DL in rounds 1 & 2 29% of the time, he drafts WRs 21% and OT 21% http://www.patsfans.com/new-england-patriots/messageboard/showpost.php?p=394299&postcount=23. Overall, he drafts DL in 86% of his drafts, TE 86%, RB/FB 71%, DB 86% (CB & S). Each draft, he is looking to find players who can help create a mismatch at the line of scrimmage in the 1st round (Mankins being the anomoly, but you could call him a talent mismatch vice position), overall he is looking to create competition and depth in the secondary and backfield - presumably trying to find talent mismatches (Ty Law/Kevin Faulk) for further depth.

    Second question: Does the mismatch apply more to the run game then the passing game? My thinking is it affects both, but shades toward the run game.

    It would seem a first round draft pick would need to be a player who either through position or natural talent creates a mismatch at the line of scrimmage. When looking at first round prospects it would seem reasonable to target players who create talent mismatches, and do it at mismatch positions; I would define mismatch positions as DL, TE, RB/FB, and maybe OT. A WR or CB can create a mismatch through natural talent, but the position does not aid the run game as naturally as do mismatch positions.

    Example: Who is more likely to win a battle at the line of scrimmage, OG or ILB? In the open field the LB has the edge, but the line of scrimmage is most often an enclosed space where the OG would have the edge. So if you were drafting in round one, you'd say that by position an OG creates more value through the mismatch advantage over an ILB.

    Example: A real life example would be Greg Olsen, he's a TE which is a natural mismatch position, but he's a converted WR whose blocking will do little in the run game. Since he does not create a mismatch in the run game, he would grade out of the first round. Let's look at a similar case whom the Pats did draft, Ben Watson. Ben was drafted at #32 after Vince Wilfork had been drafted at #21. The first player chosen was a natural mismatch and a talent mismatch, the second player was a natural mismatch with developmental talent taken at the very end of the round. Daniel Graham was taken at #21, he probably was considered a better blocker given how quickly he developed here.

    So, does any of this make sense? If you had to weigh the relative value of say Brian Leonard and David Harris, which creates the greater mismatch at the line of scrimmage? Who is the better mismatch, Drew Stanton or John Beck? Reggie Nelson or Josh Gattis? I'm getting dizzy, must be time for more meds.
     
  2. dryheat44

    dryheat44 Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    You're making my head hurt. Are you sure you're not overthinking things?
     
  3. Box_O_Rocks

    Box_O_Rocks PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Always, but I'm sick, lame, and lazy for awhile and it's a slow football period.
     
  4. DaBruinz

    DaBruinz Pats, B's, Sox PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I think this makes a LOT of sense. And it would explain why BB didn't take Lawson last year and took Maroney instead.
     
  5. Fencer

    Fencer Veteran Starter w/Big Long Term Deal

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    I think BB's strategy has a tremendous amount to do with mismatches and double-teams. If you force a double-team to neutralize a player, you're ahead on the rest of the field.

    In particular, I think he expects a WR to be able to beat a DB one on one, but a pair of DBs to be able to shut down a WR. Anything which deviates from that is goodness.

    And a fundamental precept of the 3-4 is to have 3 guys offsetting 5 as much as possible. Another precept is to force the offense to set up pass-blocking against an LB and then have him drop into coverage, wasting their blockers.

    I don't think you're going to succeed in grading a lot of positions high or low by this standard; BB thinks that way all over the field.
     
  6. Box_O_Rocks

    Box_O_Rocks PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    He surely does, but three maybe four positions seem to create mismatches more easily than the others. The trick is to estimate how this mismatch can be created, do you draft the top ILB and create a mismatch? Or do you draft the top WR to do that?

    BB hasn't missed in the first round yet, and he seems to have done that by drafting at two positions DL and TE, we also have Mankins and Maroney as examples to consider. Since BB took RB/FB in 5 of 7 drafts, doubling up once in his very first NE draft, he feels a need to acquire backs. I've tried to analyze that by calling RB/FB a mismatch position, which may be wrong, but it's a thought. Mankins is a seriously good OL who can play OT or OG.

    If we are trying to guess who he might take in round one, who creates the greatest mismatch potential 'at' the line of scrimmage - with the primary emphasis on run?
     
  7. DarrylS

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    BOR looks like you have finally gotten into BB's head, this premise makes about as much sense as anything else when it comes to draft time. There is a lot of posturing,bringing in different players etc. but bottom line is that we never know till that Saturday afternoon, when they make the final decision. I have felt all along, that the pundits who are choosing an O tackle might be right, because we can never have enough depth at this position. When your reserve tackle is a first round pick, you have created a serious mismatch.
     
  8. Fencer

    Fencer Veteran Starter w/Big Long Term Deal

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    I don't wholly buy either the emphasis on "at the line of scrimmage" or "against the run".

    I do think it's fair to emphasize "a large fraction of all downs". So maybe a CB isn't that important on what turn out to be running plays, while a TE is important pretty much all the time. But again, I think you've asserted some specifics that, at least to me, are pretty non-obvious.
     
  9. Mainefan

    Mainefan Rotational Player and Threatening Starter's Job

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    I agree...this is a new (to me) way of looking at the draft and at BB's strategy. Now, Box, can you apply it to this year's draft, to see which players might rank high on the Patriot's board and why? If you've cracked the code, you'll be the first, and some of those unexpected picks will start to make sense.
     
  10. stinkypete

    stinkypete In the Starting Line-Up

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    I think this is the thought process Belichick goes through when picking from a group of players of equal value.

    When Watson was picked, the other guys were were looking at included Karlos Dansby, Ricardo Coclough, Sean Jones and Chris Snee. As fans, we neglected to consider Watson because he didn't fill a "need." A fast TE, however, creates a mismatch, particularly against a cover 2 defense. Combining a fast recieving TE with a solid blocking TE (Graham, Brady) creates a "double mismatch" in that there is one TE pass protect or free up a tackly, and another to draw the LBs or S.

    If Belichick has proven one thing over the years, it is that you do not need a stud at every position. We will always have JAGs in our rotation, and Belichick will continue to give us draft-day "surprises" that are confounding because they don't fit a need.

    I think this also explains BB's tendency to convert DE's rather than drafting a college LB. By selecting a DE with the physical tools to also play LB, you create a mismatch in felxibility of defensive allignments.
     
  11. dryheat44

    dryheat44 Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    Well, in this day and age of specialized defenses, it's pretty hard to dictate a blocking matchup -- ie it's possible for the defense to scheme to avoid a particular situation, so the chess game continues.

    I feel that really there are five areas for mismatches, and they all exists due to a combination of superior athleticism and versatility.

    1) The RB with the hands or a WR but the balance and legs of a RB, a player you can count on getting open against his man. (Robert Edwards, one of the Faulk twins)

    2) The linebacker so good in coverage that said RB is neutralized, or at least greatly lessened (Ray Lewis, Donnie Edwards)

    3) The tight end that is big enough to block defensive linemen and fast enough to beat coverage of the safety/linebacker (Dan Graham, Keith Jackson, Mark Bavaro)

    4) The safety with cornerback coverage skills (Eugene Wilson, Aging Rod Woodson and Ronnie Lott...incidently, this is why I prefer not to draft free safety types, but to draft cornerbacks who fall in the draft due to tight hips and slow recovery speed)

    5) The cornerback who can cover, blitz, or help in run support (young Rod Woodson, young Charles Woodson)
     
  12. dryheat44

    dryheat44 Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    I wonder if he didn't have to make that choice again, he wouldn't take Jones. My God, what a player.
     
  13. rookBoston

    rookBoston 2nd Team Getting Their First Start

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    No, the explanation for that is much easier. Lawson wasn't as NFL ready as Moroney.

    There is no question that BB builds his team to create mismatches. He builds a deep and versatile team that can take a lot of different shapes, and game plans to create advantages against his opponent. On D, he deploys his players to take away the 2 or 3 things the other team does best, and dare them to score doing things they dont like doing. Take away the run. Take away the TE. Take away the deep pass. Take away the screen pass.

    The draft strategy then, is to pick smart, versatile players; prefer players who can do everything well, even if they dont do any one thing really well. This contrasts with most other teams, who look for special talent.

    So, BB would pass on a pure pass rushing specialist, because his pass rushers may also have to be able to drop into coverage, read the screen pass or stop the run on any given week. The counter example that proves the point is Tully Banta Cain, who is a fantastic pass rusher, but became a liability on anything other than 3rd down because he was at best mediocre against the run. Not much surprise that BB didn't look at TBC before the 7th. TBC struggled to see the field, and was benched in preference for Alexander in the Indy game. Great in pure pass rush situations, but too one dimensional to get a lot of field time, even after Vrabel moved back inside. Actually, Lawson may have been too much in that mold for BB, too.

    I think the fact that he's selected so many linemen is because those are the easiest to project from the college level to the pros. If you just want to be sure you get a player that will contribute to the team at a high level, it's less risky to take a DT who has been doing exactly what you want to see for four years against top competition. It's harder to tell with skill players.

    Now that the roster has evolved, and both the OL and DL seem stacked with young talent, those positions will be hard (not impossible) to upgrade in the draft. So, RB in the first, last year. And this year could be just about anything.

    I continue to believe that BB would have drafted Bobby Carpenter last year, if he'd lasted to #21. This year, my money is still on Posluszny, for many of the same reasons: productivity, leadership, work ethic, versatility. He maybe does not have the same level of athleticism that Willis has, but he is more bookish that Willis-- and that's perfect for a bookish coach.
     
  14. Box_O_Rocks

    Box_O_Rocks PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    By all means, it's a theory and hole poking is encouraged. I reached the conclusion of "at the line of scrimmage" with "an emphasis on the run game" by looking at the limited data of first and second round draft selections.

    BB has taken three WRs early, but always in the second round. WR indirectly affects the line blocking.

    He has taken 3 OTs early, one at the last selection of round one and the others in the second round. OT in today's NFL is first a pass blocker and secondarily a run blocker. What's notable is his sole first round OT was considered the top technician of his class and was moved inside to OG where run blocking is slightly more emphasized.

    Watson was #32 and was a poor blocker, Graham was #21 and most likely a top flight blocker in college to develop so quickly into the dominating blocker he is. Again, TE's are primary run blockers, not pass blockers.

    There appears to be a trend here, with the emphasis on blocking, or countering/absorbing blockers at the line (the DL). None of the three starting DL are record setting pass rushers, they are great run stuffers. OLB is the primary pass rush position on the Pats, the backfield disruptors, none have been taken in round one to date, so I've discounted them as a mismatch position in my thinking so far.

    With limited data to go with my limited intellect, I look at those players chosen in rounds one and two, as well as his overall selections in New England, and see at the line and run as a point of emphasis.

    Gotta get to the Post Office so I'll try to accept Maine's challenge of divining what players BB might take in round one in a bit.
     
  15. sebman2112

    sebman2112 In the Starting Line-Up

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    I think at RB one of these mismatch players happens to be Lorenzo Booker.

    Lorenzo is a willing pass blocker with great balance, and footwork. He's also dangerous in the open field, and will play at WR. I think his combination of speed/elusiveness/willingness to pass block/and his ability to play WR make him a mismatch problem for defenses. Really, he's the best third down back/WR in this draft.
     
  16. psychoPat

    psychoPat Role Player PatsFans.com Supporter

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    If my reserve OT is a first round pick,
    he is on the bench mostly
    ... and i am weaker at some other position than i could have been.
     
  17. Box_O_Rocks

    Box_O_Rocks PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Maybe, but look how things have gone at tackle going back to Ashworth going down in 2003, reserve playing time has been pretty steady around these parts. (Gorin, Ashworth, Kaczur, O'Callaghan)
     
  18. VJCPatriot

    VJCPatriot Pro Bowl Player

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    Well IMO if a guy like Carriker or Okoye miraculously drops to #24 then BB will definitely take him. BB loves having weapons on defense, and big strong, disruptive guys like those two are worth their weight in gold. Would love to have Okoye here even if we have Warren, Wilfork, and Seymour, BB would find a way to use him!! Because when you collapse the pocket and chase the QB that does a lot to hide defensive weaknesses in the backfield. Okoye has the size to stop the run, the speed to get after the QB, and purportedly can drop back into coverage. And he's only gonna be 20 when he gets drafted! The upside on this kid is what is exciting.

    http://www.nfldraftcountdown.com/scoutingreports/dt/amobiokoye.html
    http://scout.scout.com/a.z?s=211&p=8&c=1&nid=2448860
    http://www.footballsfuture.com/2007/prospects/amobi_okoye.html
     
    Last edited: Apr 8, 2007
  19. Box_O_Rocks

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    Let's see what we can draft using this theory. Folks are welcome to poke holes in my thinking, theories are only as good as their real world results, I'm just having fun while awaiting the draft and BB's inevitable moves that turn our world upside down. Remember, my premise is the primary mismatch is created on the line of scrimmage in the run game, that being the cornerstone for other mismatch opportunities.

    For a change of pace, I'm going to work off Rick Gosselins top ten list: http://www.dallasnews.com/sharedcontent/dws/spt/football/nfl/draft/gosselin_rankings.html

    First up are the three position groups I've identified as "mismatch" positions (mmp for convenience), 3-4 DE/NT, TE, RB/FB.

    DE/NT: Here are Gosselin's rankings. Let's face it, the top two in each column is going top 16 and would require the Pats to trade up, short of working some deal using Asante I don't think it's very likely and will skip them.

    Defensive End
    1. Gaines Adams Clemson 6-41?2 258
    2. Jamaal Anderson Arkansas 6-5 288
    3. Jarvis Moss Florida 6-61?2 250 - In the Patriots' system he would be an OLB, thus not an mmp. He would require a transition period of 2-3 years, a bit pricey for a round one prospect you would like to contribute early.
    4. Adam Carriker Nebraska 6-6 296 - A classic DE mmp player who, coming from a read/react defense at Nebraska, would see rotational time early competing with Mike Wright and pushing Marquis Hill off the roster. I also think he could be developed at OLB alongside Warren in Willie's old role, but that just makes people crazy.
    5. Anthony Spencer Purdue 6-21?2 261 - In the Patriots' system he would be an OLB, thus not an mmp. He would require a transition period of 2-3 years, a bit pricey for a round one prospect you would like to contribute early.
    6. Victor Abiamiri Notre Dame 6-4 267 - We're now in that hazy top of the 2nd round area. Vic here lacks 13 pounds of Jarvis Green's listed weight and probably could play as a 3-4 DE. The problem is he needs to bulk up, and he makes a transition from his freelance days at Notre Dame. Not a classic mmp talent.
    7. Charles Johnson Georgia 6-2 270 - In the Patriots' system he would be an OLB, thus not an mmp. He would require a transition period of 2-3 years, a bit pricey for a round one prospect you would like to contribute early.
    8. Ray McDonald Florida 6-3 276 - He was 282 at his Pro-day, 3 lbs. lighter than Jarvis and a 1/4" taller. He has the potential to be a 3-4 DE and fill an mmp role.
    9. Lamarr Woodley Michigan 6-11?2 266 - Here is another Pats' OLB candidate, the difference with Woodley is he has played LB in High School and College, a much easier transition. He has the potential to slide into TBC's old shoes and backstop Colvin alongside Seymour. Not a classic mmp, but having a high quality edge rusher as depth creates potential for BB/Pees to develop mismatches.
    10. Quentin Moses Georgia 6-5 261 - In the Patriots' system he would be an OLB, thus not an mmp. He would require a transition period of 2-3 years, a bit pricey for a round one prospect you would like to contribute early.

    Defensive Tackle
    1. Alan Branch Michigan 6-51?2 324
    2. Amobi Okoye Louisville 6-2 302
    3. Justin Harrell Tennessee 6-4 300 - A classic DE mmp player who could see rotational time early competing with Mike Wright and pushing Marquis Hill off the roster.
    4. DeMarcus "Tank" Tyler North Carolina State 6-2 306 - A potential NT with his 44 reps at 225 during the Combine. Where this kid runs into problems is off the field, he has enough caution flags for the Pats to pass on him.
    5. Claude "Turk" McBride Tennessee 6-2 277 - We're fully back into the 2nd round now. McBride is a classic Jarvis Green fourth man specialist and was used that way at Tennessee. He's a team leader and thrives on different challenges, he might better be used as an OLB candidate with his outstanding change of direction numbers. But as an OLB he'd be a true reach in round one.
    6. Paul Solaia Utah 6-4 344 - Now we're talking mmp! At 344 he jumped 29 1/2" in the vertical and his 10 yd split put him in the lower third of the ILBs. He has the size to play NT, and like Vince he could slide out to DE. Considered to be a third round candidate by many pundits, he nevertheless has raw talent that would have him fighting LeKevin Smith and Marquis Hill for playing time.
    NFLDraftScout.com has all of the following players drawing 2nd Day grades so I'm going to stop here.
    7. Cliff Ryan Michigan State 6-21?2 310 -
    8. Antonio Johnson Mississippi State 6-3 310
    9. Quinn Pit**** Ohio State 6-21?2 299
    10. Ryan McBean Oklahoma State 6-4 286

    Next up Tight End: I was reminded last night that many find the idea of letting BB draft a TE in round one frustrating, perhaps pickets outside Gillette will cool his ardor. :D

    1. Greg Olsen Miami 6-51?2 257 - May fall to 24, the issue is he's a converted WR and thus not a mismatch blocking for the run game. While Watson is reported to have run in the 4.4's at Georgia, Olsen's Combine 40 is faster then Ben's and his 3-cone is much better. Like Watson you might not take him with your first round one pick, but you might your second, using his speed and size in the middle to create mismatches while developing his run blocking.
    2. Zach Miller Arizona State 6-4 256 - Another converted WR, one who most expect to go in the second round. He is reported to be a better blocker than Olsen, but that's not saying much. He doesn't have the speed to create mismatches in the passing game.
    The following players carry third round and later grades.
    3. Scott Chandler Iowa 6-7 270
    4. Ben Patrick Delaware 6-3 252
    5. Martrez Milner Georgia 6-31?2 252
    6. Matt Spaeth Minnesota 6-7 270
    7. Kevin Boss Western Oregon 6-61?2 252
    8. Daniel Coats Brigham Young 6-21?2 257
    9. Michael Allan Whitworth 6-6 255
    10. Dante Rosario Oregon State 6-3 244

    My third mmp grouping is RB/FB: BB has only taken Maroney in the first round, but has taken a RB or FB in 6 of 7 drafts. Peterson is an easy top 10 projection so I'll ignore him.

    Runningback
    1. Adrian Peterson Oklahoma 6-11?2 217
    2. Marshawn Lynch California 5-11 215 - I doubt he slides to 24, but if he did it would be another draft steal, pairing two fast, powerful RBs in the same backfield. Lynch is also a more proven receiver than Maroney and could take some reps from Faulk forcing teams to play the pass game the way they do when Kevin is in.
    None of the following RBs are likely to sniff the first round.
    3. Kenny Irons Auburn 5-101?2 203
    4. Chris Henry Arizona 5-11 230
    5. Antonio Pittman Ohio State 5-101?2 207
    6. Brandon Jackson Nebraska 5-91?2 210
    7. Tony Hunt Penn State 6-11?2 233
    8. Michael Bush Louisville 6-1 243
    9. Lorenzo Booker Florida State 5-10 191
    10. Kolby Smith Louisville 5-11 220

    Fullback
    1. Brian Leonard Rutgers 6-11?2 226 - I can feel people cringing at just the mention of his name! :D Pats' fans are divided about Brian's first round potential, he is a power runner with enough shiftiness to make the one cut and gone moves needed behind a zone line. He is a better blocker than most RBs coming out of college and a very good receiver. In terms of mismatches on the line of scrimmage in the run game, he was a difference maker in college and he'll be one in the Pros. Instant mmp.
    2. Le'Ron McClain Alabama 6-0 256
    3. Jason Snelling Virginia 5-11 230
    4. Gijon Robinson Missouri Southern 6-01?2 255
    5. David Herron Michigan State 6-1 239

    Let's recap: Players from the three positions whom I've classified as "mismatch" positions (mmp) whom I think may have a chance to be drafted in round one are: Adam Carriker, Ray McDonald, Lamarr Woodley, Justin Harrell, Paul Solaia, Greg Olsen, Marshawn Lynch, Brian Leonard.

    I'll tackle the other offensive positions, then the other defensive positions, before compiling the lists and putting together a theoretical draft board for round one.
     
  20. Box_O_Rocks

    Box_O_Rocks PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Okay, phase two of my neferious plot to share my insomnia and elevated blood pressure with Patsfan's draftniks, bwahahahaha!

    We'll take a look at the other offensive positions, OT, OG, OC, WR, & QB. I hope no one minds if I just take a pass on K.

    Quarterback: Like every other position on the team, the issue isn't finding a capable starter, it's building quality depth. Russell and Quinn are top 10 prospects so I'll be starting with Stanton.
    1. JaMarcus Russell LSU 6-51?2 265
    2. Brady Quinn Notre Dame 6-31?2 232
    3. Drew Stanton Michigan State 6-3 226 - Here's the deal, this prospect will be the third string QB and be competing for the right to hold Tommy's clipboard. Stanton has the physical tools, the question is his mental tools. Either way, I can't see a player with whom you have mental questions earning a first round grade. On the mismatch side of things, only his ability to play an acting role in practice could help the team adjust to other team's offenses - a tall order for a rookie.
    4. Trent Edwards Stanford 6-4 231 - An oft-injured kid with a decent mind and tool set when healthy, still no mismatch as a rookie.
    5. Kevin Kolb Houston 6-3 218 - Not even close, he has to learn his first new offense since Pop Warner.
    6. John Beck Brigham Young 6-2 215 - A wild card. This is a capable gun slinger who perhaps could challenge Cassell. Still, he's a rookie QB and not a mismatch.
    We're in the second day now.
    7. Jeff Rowe Nevada 6-5 226
    8. Troy Smith Ohio State 6-0 225
    9. Jared Zabransky Boise State 6-2 219
    10. Tyler Palko Pittsburgh 6-1 215

    Wide Receiver: WR and CB are the two positions where BB has come close to the first round without actually drafting #1. It says a lot, but I'm darned if I know what! :p Again, I'm skipping the first two.

    1. Calvin Johnson Georgia Tech 6-5 239
    2. Ted Ginn Jr. Ohio State 5-11 178
    3. Robert Meachem Tennessee 6-1 214 - 6'2" 214 4.4/40, good 3-cone, improved his short shuttle at his pro-day, led the SEC in yards, averaged over 5 catches/game, good run after catch (RAC), good blocker. Most CBs will need help = mismatch. Being a good blocker adds another mismatch dimension in the all important run game. Played on coverage units and has some limited KR time. Being a calf roper is a big plus. A natural talent mismatch prospect.
    4. Dwayne Bowe LSU 6-2 221 - 6'2" 221 4.5/40 at the Combine and 4.4 at his Pro-day, better 3-cone than Meach, iffy short shuttle, averaged 5 catches/gm and over 76 yds. Very good blocker. Limited deep ball range, more of a possession/move the chains type. No fumbles in 45 games - I repeat - no fumbles in 45 games. His blocking creates instant mismatch in the run game.
    5. Dwayne Jarrett USC 6-4 219 - Keyshawn Johnson with more attitude, struggles against press coverage, slow. Very good blocker. His run game mismatch is valuable, but he doesn't carry it over into his primary duty as a receiver, not at the Pro level anyway.
    6. Anthony Gonzalez Ohio State 6-0 193 - Gonzo tries hard as a blocker, but like Meion before him isn't going to get much done. No fumbles in 33 games. It's his quickness that kills the other team's D, he can be developed into a serious mismatch as a receiver, indirectly helping the run game.
    7. Craig Davis LSU 6-1 207 - Some believe best hands in SEC, precise routes, 4.4 speed, very good blocker, PR. The caution flag is courage in crowds...um, a caution flag reaching out of round one is a concern.
    8. Steve Smith USC 5-111?2 197 - Not a strong blocker, decent outside receiver who struggles a little in the middle. 4.4 speed. First round value just isn't there.
    9. Sidney Rice South Carolina 6-31?2 200 - Struggles in the middle...but a good blocker...defenders knock away too many balls for a player his size...special teams...redshirt sophomore = raw. No mismatch.
    10. Jason Hill Washington State 6-01?2 204 - 4.3/40, okay 3-cone, 111/143 career receptions went for first downs, special teams/blocked punts/forced fumbles, good blocker, makes most of his catches in a crowd. The mismatch potential is there.

    Offensive Tackle: This is my borderline position where I'm not yet comfortable with calling it a mismatch position, yet a good OT who can contain edge rushers solo is priceless. I'll skip the top two again.

    1. Joe Thomas Wisconsin 6-61?2 311
    2. Levi Brown Penn State 6-51?2 323
    3. Joe Staley Central Michigan 6-51?2 306 - 6'6" 306, 4.8/40, 7 sec 3-cone, it's time to move this kid to OLB or back to TE! Still raw, but a year of study under Dante Scarnecchia behind Light and Kaczur could turn this kid into an All-Pro. He has serious mismatch potential.
    4. Tony Ugoh Arkansas 6-5 301 - Projected inside to OG due to not having quick feet, though I saw him do well against Anthony Spencer in the Senior Bowl. Best known for his run blocking. Track athlete so he can move. Still raw. A year of the Scarnecchia academy for small boys in big bodies and you are looking at a decent OT, if not the mismatch that Staley provides.
    We're already getting to round three here so I'm stopping.
    5. Ryan Harris Notre Dame 6-41?2 305
    6. Doug Free Northern Illinois 6-6 324
    7. Brandon Frye Virginia Tech 6-4 301
    8. Mario Henderson Florida State 6-61?2 302
    9. Jermon Bushrod Towson State 6-41?2 315
    10. James Marten Boston College 6-71?2 309

    Guards: The top three are projected to the end of round one beginning of round two. Looking at their measurables, you have three big road graders, you'd be better off moving an OT like Ugoh inside like with Mankins. None of the rest come close to round one.

    1. Ben Grubbs Auburn 6-21?2 311
    2. Arron Sears Tennessee 6-3 319
    3. Justin Blaylock Texas 6-3 320
    4. Andy Alleman Akron 6-4 305
    5. Allen Barbre Missouri Southern 6-4 300
    6. Josh Beekman Boston College 6-11?2 313
    7. Cameron Stephenson Rutgers 6-3 306
    8. Herb Taylor TCU 6-31?2 297
    9. Manuel Ramirez Texas Tech 6-3 326
    10. Nathan Bennett Clemson 6-4 316

    Centers: Now we're having fun. The Pats are believed to be going to a zone blocking scheme and small/quick OL are the cat's meow in that scheme.
    1. Ryan Kalil USC 6-21?2 299 - Reported to be the best technician in the draft, like Mankins before him he can play two positions OC/OG. He is also considered the top OC for working in a zone scheme...the mismatch is strong in this one Luke!
    2. Leroy Harris North Carolina State 6-21?2 302 - C/G/T he's started all but RT.
    3. Samson Satele Hawaii 6-21?2 300 - Short arms, aggressive blocker.
    We're into the second day now.
    4. Doug Datish Ohio State 6-4 302 -
    5. Dan Mozes West Virginia 6-21?2 293
    6. Scott Stephenson Iowa State 6-3 298
    7. Enoka Lucas Oregon 6-21?2 303
    8. Dustin Fry Clemson 6-21?2 314
    9. Drew Mormino Central Michigan 6-3 299
    10. Kelly Cook Michigan State 6-31?2 291

    My meds are say bedtime, I'll finish later today.
     
    Last edited: Apr 8, 2007
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