Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by Poll, Jun 23, 2006.
Liked the story, especially about Levi Jones (trying not to be a homer about Mankins) but to pick D Brick as a player leading the group is crazy.. The guy has the tools but never has played a down..
having Mankins as my binkie, I was satisfied with his level of play last year especially in light of not having veteran Matt Light next to him for essentially the season.
with, hopefully, a fully-healed Light back, a fully-healed Dillon back and a potentially explosive Maroney in the backfield, we will see the kind of running attack this year I was hoping for last year.
It is just a relief to be able to hope that Brady won't get hit as much. His O-Line was good in 2001, getting worse by the game in 2002, couldn't run block in 2003, in 2004 they were so bad that in many games Brady had to hand off to Corey and thank god for Dillon's big year because Brady was getting killed. Last year Brady couldn't hand off the ball and was 'pressured' on every play in many games, which means 'hit' late.
I can't stand when people bring up the stat about Brady's O-Line being #6 in sacks given up. That's because Brady gets smacked hard to the ground AFTER releasing the ball. That stat is a great example of how misleading stats can be.
They're doing every position, take a look, Seymour was named the elite DE.
Good find. Thanks.
Bruschi was also named one of better LBs.
Even though I think D'Brick is going to be a very solid player in the league, he shouldn't be on that list, having never even suited up for a game before. Mankins, on the other hand, could be our best offensive lineman early in the season, even if Light and Koppen are healthy and playing. He's that good.
Would be nice if it turns out that way. Even if he is a stable rock for the next 5-6 years I am happy about that as well. One thing about BB and SP, they miss on very few first day draft picks- especially 1st rounders. So I hope Mankins continues that trend. Peter King said in this past Tuesdays MMQB, that he scored our 2001 draft low because you are EXPECTED to hit on your 1st round picks (Seymore). Plus Matt Light in the 2nd (rest was crap). But Peter doesn't give enough credit were credit is due. If you don't hit on your first (as BB / SP have done time and time again), there are significant costs to pay. 1) the $$ for the 1st round bust. 2) the $$$ for the Free Agent (three years later) to fix the problem the bust was supposed to fill. 3) loss of productivity from the player that you COULD have taken ie. Seymore over Sullivan - case in point.
I have seen it argued that Bioli is good at drafting because they hit with the first two picks, and save their misses for the less important picks. They got two starters in the 2001 draft and only average 2.5 starters per draft, so it was fairly close to their other drafts.
I'm happy getting 2.5 QUALITY starters per draft, and I think we did better and better as time goes on, which is important. Bioli just needed some time to get up to speed, and their continuity helps.
Sharp insight, Sunny!
I hadn't been conscious of just how much a bad early pick can cost.
Truth is, they haven't missed with a first round pick yet, and only one second was really a miss (Bethel - Klemm doesn't count because they were working with Bobby Grier's scouting information). If all you do is hit on your first and second rounders reliably, you'll always field a competitive team. When you mix in some nice finds from the 4th round and later, you're playing for championships regularly. There can really be no doubt that great teams are built in the draft.
So true especially due to the salary cap structure. Can't just buy your way out of bad drafts (not long term anyhow) like you can in baseball. I did an informal quick analysis of BB / SP drafts a few months ago and I was amazed how they routinely hit on their first day selections. Not all are starters mind you, but even making the team gives depth at a cheap cost. In the middle rounds , we seem to be at the NFL average which I read somewhere was about 50/50% (or somewhere in the ballpark -alittle less probably - don't shoot me). So BB / SP didn't seem so impressive there I remember thinking when I did my calculations and compared to the NFL average. Then again - with the Pats having a solid 'middle class' and being yearly contenders with good depth- to have the same odds of making the team as the NFL average, that is not too shabby. But what really amazed me was their late round picks. Those averages were quite low I remember - something like 15-25%. BB / SP not only beat the average but they occastionally found real quality starters - diamonds in the rough if you will. Kevin Faulk, Patrick Pass, Dan Koppen, David Givens, ..etc. ..much higher than the NFL average in this short period of time (last 7 years). Oh yes, there was also some late round QB drafted as well named Bradley ? I think he stayed on the team for a number of years as well. Grin.
Sullivan was drafted two years later. The more apt comparison would be, say, Seymour over David Terrell, who was generally considered the pick the Patriots should've made... at the time.
Here's a layout of what has happened over the last few years for the Pats drafts. I did only 2001 thru 2005 since 2000 was probably not a BB/SP full scouting and evaluation effort:
First, the 1st round draft picks are the most important overall for the Pats. You only have to look at the players selected in rounds 1 thru 4. There are as many or more starters in the 1st round alone as there are altogether in rounds 2 thru 4.
!st round: ALL 6 on the team and ALL starters: Seymour, Warren, Graham, Wilfork, Watson, Mankins.
2nd round: ALL 5 on the team and 3 starters: Wilson, Branch, Light and Bethel Johnson and Marquise Hill.
3rd round: Only 4 picks but 3 still on the team. Potentially two starters in the future: Hobbs, Kaczur, and Gus Scott. Obviously Hobbs and Kaczur were important contributors and starters with the injuries last year. Brock Williams is gone.
4th round: Gets MUCH more problematic. That's why rounds 1 thru 3 are so crucial. Only 4 out of 9 still on the roster - less than 50%. But, 4th round is still important. Jarvis Green and Asante Samuel are important players. Klecko and Sanders are perhaps borderline - but there have been any number of borderline players who became really important contributors later. Players who didn't work out: Davey, Cobb, Haloway, Kenyatta Jones
To say again, the first round is the most key evaluation for how successful teams are in drafting. The thing that so many teams seem to do is to take some risk on their first round pick and/or perhaps do a not-so-good job of determining if the 1st rounder will be a solid starter for the team. And that's the critical aspect - your first rounder MUST be a solid multi-year starter. You can't argue with the Pats success in doing that. So many media types don't see to get that and will moan that they didn't pick a higher profile 'superstar' player. But how many teams have gotten bit on those players. You must get solid value for the pick and the Pats do that.
Second round is obviously highly important also. Some of the draftnik analysts say you get your best dollar for performance value from high second round picks - but again presuming that you pick a player who will give you multiple years of solid and mostly starting contribution. The Pats are for sure batting over 50% in the second round (with all 3 of those players solid starters) while school is still out on on Bethel Johnson and Hill.
The Pats haven't had all that many 3rd round picks and those most recently. So it's a little hard to tell yet. But it looks promising - David Thomas this year will be an important factor in figuring out how well they have done in the 3rd round.
A lot of fans get all excited about 4th thru 7th round picks, but it's a real toss-up as to whether you get players below 3rd round. The best evaluation of how good a team is in drafting in the lower rounds is probably whether they end up with a few solid contributors from these lower rounds - perhaps 1 a year.
2001 - none
2002 - Green (4th), Givens (7th) - good year !
2003 - Koppen (5th), Samuel (4th), Banta-Cain (7th), Klecko (4th)
2004 - bust
2005 - Sanders (4th), Claridge (5th), Cassel (7th) - who knows yet
You get the feeling that the Pats aren't hitting a lot of winners lately in the lower rounds. I wonder if that's just the odds showing up or if they should change their evaluation criteria for the lower rounds - perhaps back to how they did it in 2000 (Brady & Pass), 2002, or 2003.
A good summation bee, but I must object to your characterization of Davey...a three year reserve QB out of the 4th round is a successful draft. Any player that makes the roster out of the draft is a win, a second day player making the roster is a drafting success. Davey played his assigned role on the team and made the roster - that says it all on a Belichick coached team.
I agree. Even Kenyatta Jones contributed on the field, so it's hard to call him a flat out bust. Brock Williams and Hakim Akbar were both injury busts in that draft, so it's hard to really count them against the Pats track record too. It seems like the first two picks of every draft are successful for this regime, and they hit on 2 or 3 more in the rest of the draft. I bet if you averaged out the number of contributing players per draft, it'd be in the high 3s, say 3.8 or so per draft. That's outstanding.
Yes, Jones made the roster, a successful draft. If someone else beat him out later, it is still a success since you obviously need continuous improvement at every position to be championship contenders.
Injury washouts arguably should be a neutral score, "Raiders" happen as it were.
You could get fancy with the scoring, assigning a point value for each round, another for each year on the team, and another for starting - too much arithmetic for my limited finger counting, but someone could have fun with a July project.
Actually, the huge surprise to me was that Davey was on the 53 man roster in 2004. The only thing I can think of was that he had some value for the scout team. It really didn't seem like he was even capable of playing any real number of effective passing downs in NFL game play. If he had been the only option to play QB, it would likely have been a disaster. With his 17 attempts in 2003 and 2004 he had 7 completions (about 41%), not that that is much of a sample.
His deficiencies as an NFL QB were for the most part not the type that I would guess could even be coached to get better. A lot of folks wonder if his huge success in NFL Europe shouldn't indicate that he had some potential. The problem is that NFL Europe defenses are such that you can succeed with QB play that is completely useless in the NFL.
I had some very high hopes for Davey (as I suspect most of us do with a lot of the lower round rookies). So, with considerable interest and anticipation, I taped and slow-motioned his game against the Frankfurt Galaxy in week 7 (or 8) of 2004 NFLE which turned out to be a fairly good one to evaluate his capabilities. The NFL Football feed was fairly decent to observe him. I was completely dismayed and disallusioned.
As you slow-motioned his passing plays, you could see a number of critical things.
1. Most critical - as you really watched the plays, you would see that his delivery got the ball to the receiver significantly too slowly. You would notice that the receivers had actually completed their initial route and were looking back for the pass several strides prior to when they get the ball. The only way that Davey was successful in NFLE was that the coverage was nowhere near as tight as NFL coverage. In the NFL, the defensive backs would have recovered to the receiver and his delivery to the receiver would either have been knocked down, or, I think if you looked at the plays, a number of them would probably have been intercepted. In the last quarter, he threw a touchdown to Gessner in the corner of the end zone and Gessner had actually completed his route and was standing still while the defensive back took several strides recovering towards him before the ball got there. Later in that quarter on another pass play, when the Thunder were pinned back to their goal line, the receiver got the ball four strides after he looked back for the ball - and consequently got hit immediately for an incompletion.
It appeared to me that Davey's instinctive pattern that he had developed and played with involved seeing the receiver actually into his final cut path before he released the ball. That just cannot be done in the NFL. My guess is that coaching could not change that pattern. I have to question whether Davey could even read ahead as to where receivers and coverbacks were going to be, much less do more than one read. One of the consequences, also, of this in preseason of 2004 seemed to be that Davey ran out of time with an NFL rush and would take off scrambling. My guess is that he got into that situation much more than a Belichick offensive scheme would operate effectively with.
2. Davey's long throws were much too high in their arc (altho they were pretty). It gave the defensive backs too much time to recover to the receiver. I really doubt that this could have been changed by coaching either.
3. Davey was prone to throw the occasional pass to a fully covered receiver. It was interesting that he could get away with that in the NFLE because he had the 6-5 Gessner who could go up and get the ball anyway even with the defensive backs going up for the ball at the same time. The fact that he did this bothered me - I don't think it was a deliberately thought out execution on his part to get an acceptable completion percentage and low number of interceptions. Presumably he could have been coached out of that, but one would worry about basic holdover instincts taking over in pressure situations.
4. His long balls seemed to be off target a little more than acceptable. eg pass underthrown, sideline pass getting to the receiver just out of bounds, etc. On the other hand, this could just be normal variations that even top quarterbacks experience and might have gotten better with more experience.
5. His passes over the middle tended to be high rather than low. That can be a real problem, although, again, even the best quarterbacks have that problem at times. If his instinct was to throw high though, I doubt
that could have been coached out.
6. He did (a lot of) extra footwork in the process of throwing the ball - even when there was no pressure. That could perhaps have been corrected with coaching. If he hadn't been able to correct that, of course, it slowed him down too much and telegraphed much too much to the cover backs. Even after the extra movement, he still seemed like he threw flat-footed much of the time. If the pocket time he required was as high as I perceived it to be, it was an absolute no-fit for the NFL.
All true enough bee, but as long as he made the roster, he was a draft success.
Separate names with a comma.