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Ohrnberger: A Tale of Draft Perspective

Discussion in 'Patriots Draft Talk' started by patchick, Jul 25, 2011.

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  1. patchick

    patchick Moderatrix Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Rich Ohrnberger gets beaten up a lot around here as a bad draft mistake. Not without reason; he was drafted in round 4, has done precious little in 2 seasons, and was waived outright at the start of last season.

    This morning I was contemplating what constitutes a "mistake" in a draft process that's by its nature imprecise. It made me wonder, who should the Pats have drafted instead of Mr. Ohrnberger?

    I looked back at the 2009 draft, and found the 18 offensive linemen were drafted after him, a plethora of choices. And not one of them is a regular NFL starter today.

    Not. One.

    What's more, none of the 4 lineman drafted before Ohrnberger are starting either. You have to go all the way up to the #78 overall pick, Louis Vasquez, to find a starting OL.

    That's 23 consecutive OL picks from the mid-3rd on. The huge majority were cut in their first 2 years, a handful are out of football, not one is starting. That's just how the draft is.
  2. Snake Eyes

    Snake Eyes Rookie

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    IMO a "mistake" constitutes an error in the judgment/selection process, which is different than a pick simply not working out.

    Take TFB for instance, the Pats where very hesitant to pick him because Michigan wasn't high on him. I think basing your judgment of a player on other people's judgement of him is very stupid, I believe in going by one's own conclusions.

    Then we can take Maroney, many people here would have preferred Jones-Drew, also look at the Brandon Tate/Mike Wallace question, why were those decisions made? For me, the fact that Tate was injured and would need to spend a year on IR means his value drops a bunch, if 1 of 5yrs on a rookie contract is gone that means a value decline of at least 20%, likely more because even under the best circumstances people are never 'quite the same' after a ligament tear.
  3. Armchair Quarterback

    Armchair Quarterback Rookie

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    #37 Jersey

    They essentially traded a solid football player in Ellis Hobbs to acquire Ohrnberger and the LS Ingram. Neither player has done anything of note to help the Patriots.

    Ohrnberger was drafted to play Center for the Patriots, problem is Koppen's biggest weakness is strength and getting tossed around by Defensive lineman and Koppen is bigger than Ohrnberger.

    While the OL drafted after Ohrnberger may not have devoloped into starters,
    Louis Murphy and Austin Collie were drafted right after him and they also played a position of need. They also presumably had a higher upside at their position than Ohrnberger did at his. At the time of the of the draft I wanted the Pats to draft one of them at that spot instead of Ohrnberger. I didn't like the pick at the time and he has done nothing yet to prove that perception wrong.

    I think they highly overvalued him in the 09 draft. Call it what you want.
  4. captain stone

    captain stone Rookie

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    No Jersey Selected

    I wanted Bill to take Lawrence Sidbury as a DE-to-OLB convert. His measurables, intelligence & character told me that he stood a better-than-decent chance of making the transition to the 2-point stance.
    Lawrence Sidbury - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    Check out his 10-yd split; that's Clay Matthews explosive, only bigger & stronger.
    Sidbury also would've helped make up for the dumbass mistake of bypassing Connor Barwin
    in favor of Ron Brace.

    Plan B would've been FB/TE James Casey, a bigger, more athletic version of Garrett Mills.
    Unlike Mills, however, Casey had actual experience playing in the backfield, both running & blocking.

    And if Bill hadn't already taken Brandon-Bethel Tate-Johnson,
    I wouldn't have been upset if he had taken WR Austin Collie at 123.
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2011
  5. cstjohn17

    cstjohn17 PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #54 Jersey

    I call this tool the Sliding Impact Scale Of Death (SISOD), it rates the potential of a player making an impact on an NFL roster by round drafted. I will work to quantify it but essentially it proves that draft picks are overrated.

    Impacting and NFL Roster = making team and making some sort of contribution

    Round 1 - 70% chance of impacting an NFL roster
    Round 2 - 50% chance of impacting an NFL roster
    Round 3 - 35% chance of impacting an NFL roster
    Round 4 - 20% chance of impacting an NFL roster
    Round 5 - 15% chance of impacting an NFL roster
    Round 6 - 10% chance of impacting an NFL roster
    Round 7 and UDFAs - 5% chance of impacting an NFL roster

    There are spectacular exceptions (Brady, Welker, etc.) but most draft picks wash out and never have any impact.

    With this lense Ohrnberger has done ok, IMO he is a JAG that could be replaced by 50 other similar players but as a 4th rounder that is what I would expect.
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2011
  6. Armchair Quarterback

    Armchair Quarterback Rookie

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    #37 Jersey

    I would think that a speedy reciever from the SEC or a super productive reciever from BYU might have a better chance than an undersized lineman, who is already at a disadvantage. Right now Ohrnberger has had zero impact on the Patriot roster. Like you said, he could be replaced by 50 other players. I wouldn't consider that in anyway a good pick. I would say even as a 4th rounder, up until now he has not been a good pick.
  7. ctpatsfan77

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    Don't forget that Hobbs was going to cost them about $3M (maybe more) for 2009, which also played into it.
  8. Metaphors

    Metaphors Rookie

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    I see what your are doing here and there are several issues with your approach:

    1) There is a difference between impacting "an" NFL roster and impacting the drafter's NFL roster. For example, Ted Larsen didn't impact the Pats but certainly impacted the Bucs. Is he counted as a hit or miss?

    2) If you run your numbers, you get about 70 impacting drafted players every year. In a league of nearly 1700 roster players, that is only a 4% replacement rate (not counting UDFA) which isn't nearly enough to account for retirements and injuries.

    3) Calculating a percentage of UDFA successes is difficult because there are hundreds of candidates but only a fraction are legitimate options.

    Even taking your numbers as fact, it doesn't support your conclusion. If you need to turn over 10-12 players every year, getting 3-4 impact players (your calculations, which I think is low) on cap-friendly deals is hugely important.

    I think the real conclusion is that drafting WELL is vastly underrated. Missing on day 2 and 3 picks is fairly common...but if you hit on them, it disproportionately affects your team in a positive way. Not only do you get 4 years of cheap production, you get a big advantage on keeping them for their 2nd (prime years) contract. Do this enough (as long as you have a skilled QB) and your roster becomes self-regenerating without the pain of closing windows and mass salary cap purges.
  9. fester

    fester Rookie

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    I think there are two factors going on here. The first is what does "impacted" mean? Does it mean a rookie holds a roster spot on the 53 for the first three years of their career with some time/stats on the active-45? If so, I completely agree with your critique in #2. If "impact" means "becomes a significantly above replacement rate player/better than a JAG" at any point in their career, then 70 non-JAGS drafted per year produces 400 to 500 non-JAGS in the league at any given time as I assume non-JAGs have longer careers on average than JAGs and sub-JAGs.

    And that is the second factor: how are you modelling the NFL personnel pool on a talent/skill/performance level? If one assumes a rather normal distribution, that produces a very different number of JAGS or below than an assumption that talent/skill/performance is a power distribution, than 25% to 33% of the league better than JAG is a very generous assumption.
  10. patchick

    patchick Moderatrix Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Everybody, my point wasn't that there were zero players of any value available in round 4. (Although, captain stone, your examples aren't so persuasive...Sidbury is at the bottom of Atlanta's depth chart and has only 5 tackles in two NFL seasons; Casey's been a JAG depth player, whose role on the Patriots could likely have been to keep them from drafting the vastly superior Hernandez the year after.)

    The point wasn't even to say that Ohrnberger was a good pick -- heck, I never liked the pick myself.

    The point was just that our expectations tend to be drastically out of whack with draft reality. That "spectacular bust" whom some posters here like to call childish nicknames is actually beating the odds by still wearing the uniform of the team that drafted him.

    23 consecutive o-linemen drafted from #79 on, and not one of them a core member of his team's line entering year 3. That really doesn't impress anybody? :confused2:
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2011
  11. Off The Grid

    Off The Grid Rookie

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    #3 Jersey

    Ummm....

    So you're saying that these percentages ~ which you obviously pulled right out'f your @$$ ~ prove that Draft Picks are overrated??? [​IMG]
  12. cstjohn17

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    #54 Jersey

    You are correct sir. I will look into making it more of a data based discussion or least present falsified data to support my theory.
  13. Sciz

    Sciz PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    70% in round 1 is way too high. It's not much above 50, if even that.
  14. ctpatsfan77

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    Of course this is an unaswerable question, but it makes you wonder how much Casey might have contributed in NE given what passed for a TE unit here in 2009.

    [Heck, as I mentioned before, though, the one saving grace of the awful TE unit in 2009 was that it forced BB to completely remake the position in 2010.]
  15. Armchair Quarterback

    Armchair Quarterback Rookie

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    #37 Jersey

    Matt Slauson (pick 193) started all 16 games at LG for the Jets last year. TJ Lang, taken at pick 109 has played in 28 games, starting 5 of them, is the primary backup at 4 OL positions and is expected to be the starting LG for GB if Colledge leaves via FA.

    IIRC he was viewed by most as a 7th rounder/UDFA, the Patriots overvalued him and so far, it hasn't paid off. The Patriots were scrambling for bodies at the end of TC last year and he still couldn't make the opening day roster. Every other team had a chance at him and nobody picked him up.

    He is far from the worst draft pick they ever made but I would hope that they set the bar a little higher than "still wearing a uniform" for a 4th rounder, there should still be decent players at that spot. Ohrnberger doesn't suddenly turn into a good pick because other OL picked in that draft haven't worked out. Maybe he steps it up this year but from what I've seen, they could have done better.
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2011
  16. patchick

    patchick Moderatrix Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Yikes -- I thought I'd reviewed them all, but it seems I missed some! If so, mea culpa.

    Maybe I should say this some more: I'm not saying Ohrnberger was a good pick. Also, I'm not saying he was a good pick. A good pick is not what I'm saying he is. Good, not. No sir.

    Now back to the intended topic: what percentage of late 4th-round picks do you EXPECT to be good?
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2011
  17. jeffbiologist

    jeffbiologist Rookie

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    I've brought up Ohrny more than once on this board. To me it was a very strange transaction from the beginning because of the multitude of moves that they parlayed to get him. We're they right against the cap in 09? I think we could have kept Hobbs considering the turnover we have had at that position since then. Hobbs for a 5th, adding our 5th to get up to the 4th to get Ohrny?? Sounds like the JEST doesnt it?? Targetting ONE player and making multiple moves to get him?? To me its because of the moves that I have expectations not at the spot he was drafted. But this only leads me to laugh further at the lemmings who think that Cannon can step in and do ANYTHING on this team. 5th round picks rarely make this team never mind DO anything, right? Mesko aside, isnt Koppen the last 5th rounder to do anything?? If someone mentions Slater after me on this thread beware....
  18. Sciz

    Sciz PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Cannon also isn't your normal 5th round pick. He's late-1st, early-2nd value if he ever gets on the field at 100% strength for the Pats.
  19. Armchair Quarterback

    Armchair Quarterback Rookie

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    #37 Jersey

    If that was the intended topic, it wasn't mentioned in the opening post. Ohrnberger was brought up specifically by you as was the false premise that not one OL taken after him was a core member of his teams OL.
  20. patchick

    patchick Moderatrix Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    The intent of the post was in its title: perspective. That the vast majority of players taken at that point in the draft make no significant impact. Clearly, in the future I should lead with a thesis statement, like middle school teachers always tell you. :)

    Even given that I overlooked a couple of players, it's still the case that 90%+ of the o-linemen drafted in rounds 4-7 have done little. I'd suspect that percentage holds across all positions -- if anybody has the patience to do the math, I'd love to see it.

    But honestly, I'm still kind of surprised that my OP which led with...

    ...and said NOT ONE SINGLE POSITIVE WORD ABOUT OHRNBERGER lead people to conclude that I thought Ohrnberger was a way awesome pick. Oh well.
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