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Tuesday, May 1, 2007

Draft Day 1: Value Over Need

25. Jon Beason, LB, Miami
45. Dwayne Jarrett, WR, USC
59. Ryan Kalil, C, USC
83. Charles Johnson, DE, Georgia

Coming into this draft, I was dead set against a receiver or an offensive lineman in the first day. Too many other needs, too many things we'd be putting aside. And yet we came up with one of each - and a C/G instead of a tackle, a receiver who can't return punts (though Cam Cameron had a hard time selling that idea anyway in Miami).

At first, it was hard to figure what was happening - a trade was sensible, but not getting a safety in the first gave expectation that one would come. And none ever did. That left the day cloudy, but it soon became clearer that the team had added significant talent.

Jarrett was the top player I had rated at 45. Kalil was undoubtedly the best player and best lineman, a guy I had over the guys who'd already gone at guard (Grubbs, Blaylock) and tackle (Ugoh). The pair were first round talents, one of which we generated out of the trade from 14 to 25.

I had lobbied for Johnson, the end, at 45 once the safeties were gone. I lobbied harder at 59. I was very pleased to see him last after getting a trio of first round talents.

Losing Merriwether, supposedly the other option at 25 if he'd lasted, hurt. We still have no idea what will happen at safety, but the team suggests they have it covered. If they do? They've added excellent value. If you pretend the team took care of free agent needs the way they should've, this is the draft they needed. Needs for the near future at WR and end and an immediate need along the OL were obscured by other concerns. The team got great players at these positions - now the worry lies in fixing the needs they already had.
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