You don't get to make picks with hindsight. It's a universal truth.
But, you can mock where you think guys will go (last year, Marty
Hurney's entire draft appeared to revolve around targeting various
players at different levels, culminating in the trade that sent this
year's 3rd away).
This will be a potential exercise in dissuading a WR pick, certainly.
But it's simply a way of showing that you have to make choices, and that
principles can go out the window when you demand that a luxury comes
first in the grocery bag and your credit's low.
Using this as a guide:
and projecting those values as actual picks, the ideal is to choose
only from what's behind your pick (i.e., you pick 14, you see Chance
Warmack was "taken" at 7, so picking him is not an option) without
necessarily looking to see who makes it to 44. So, each pick you see
at 44 is technically uninformed. Each scenario will list in groups of
picks, but I won't know what I can pick afterward.
Scenario 1, OL-first
14. DJ Fluker, RT - I'm most convinced this will be where we go, for
now. He'll be there, he fits, he provides high value compared to FAs
and he has a nice mix of supplanting strength with filling need.
44. Jesse Williams, NT - ideal to have him fall. I love the
rugby-backgrounded Williams, a strong, tough, fast NT who could be a
terror and who I have higher than this.
108. TJ McDonald, S - I like McDonald (or the more SS-styled Shawn
Williams) here for size/speed and decent instinct. Either would have a
year to make something happen.
Jordan Reed, TE - a 'move' TE in the Aaron Hernrndez mold.
(OR Akeem Spence, DT; Alvin Bailey, G; Leon McFadden, CB - any of those
OVERVIEW: I like it. is it big school heavy? Sure. It's safe, too.
It would make Carolina a better team, though, no question.
Scenario 1a, OL-first
14. DJ Fluker, RT - Since this is a likely pick, I wanted to duplicate
this to have two options in the second.
44. Johnathan Banks, CB - if you ignore NT from scenario 1, Banks is
similar to Xavier Rhodes in lankiness, and Banks is a ballplayer, but
the difference is he's still growing into himself (needs bulk, and plays
high, not as physical). They have a year to get the puppy out of this
108. Akeem Spence, DT - squatty NT who has to pull pad level down.
OVERVIEW: Decent value. Some worry at NT.
Scenario 2, The One Steve Smith Will Be Volatile About
14. Codarelle Patterson, WR - this is tougher without it being Tavon
Austin, everyone's flavor du jour. There's plenty to like about
Patterson as a prospect, but he'll probably only help you minimally
(he'd be a 4th option at WR, at best, so you're probably getting 100
snaps/10 catches out of him).
44. Jesse Williams, NT - a vital need.
108. Chris Faulk, OT - decent motor RT with massive size, bt is a
wildcard since he has legitimate health issues. You have to take an OL
here, if you go luxury, then DT.
OVERVIEW: Relies a bit on luck, and doesn't look so productive at
Scenario 2a, The One Steve Smith Will Be Volatile About
14. Codarelle Patterson, WR - another run at this one, to mock out the
2nd and 4th another way.
44. Larry Warford, G - a plug-in RG. It's tough to have to choose
between OL and DL for the luxury of Patterson.
108. Spence - you're getting a more limited NT because you're moving
need down the list.
OVERVIEW: I almost like the other one better. Williams/Warford could
be a wash but Faulk has more upside.
Scenario 3, The Obvious
14. Sheldon Richardson, DT - it fills a need in a lot of ways and so
many internet sources just put the guy here. Provides plenty at UT, not
a lot at NT.
44. Warford - it just makes sense behind a DT pick, to pick the OL. A
CB pairs well, you can
108. See 1a. You have options (including another OL or DL, or new
needs) because you provided the greatest need/value combo. This option
probably does still shade a NT higher on the list.
OVERVIEW: Flexible for the 4th, which is ideal. I still have
reservations on Richardson's consistency, but not effort obviously.
Scenario 4, The Cloud
14. Xavier Rhodes - an impressive cover guy, he fits Ron Rivera's
personal MO at corner. He'd replace what Chris Gamble was, add size,
and so on.
44. Jesse Williams - still could be Warford, but I like the NT more.
108. Alvin Bailey, G - you probably still need the guard here with this
OVERVIEW: I like this more than I expected. Wouldn't complain.
Scenario 5, The Wildcard
14. Jarvis Jones, OLB/rusher - not a lot of people pushing this as an
option. A 3-4 nod, this would be the type thing that could also mean
pushing Greg Hardy inside sometimes in base defense. Makes Carolina
light and fast, and there's a couple of Giants analogies (Matthias
Kiwanuka, and adding more DEs whenever possible). But, it's weird
nonetheless. Jones can play legit 4-3 LB at times too, but let's say
that's covered for the moment.
44. Warford - this time, you more or less have to go OL (Jones isn't
going to help you stop the run like Williams, but he does move a guy
inside, so any NT is definitely going to have fewer snaps)
108. Spence (or maybe Montori Hughes, since you can take a greater
chance) - the DL roleplayer you want here.
OVERVIEW: I'd be shocked, but I like the potential (a fast penetrator
outside for zone read is intriguing, as are the pass D options).
So it's a delicate balance, and absolutely, it's need based (and
doesn't look so far in the future). But, it's harder to find that BPA
early doesn't tie your hands later.
Apologize for the lack of input on a 5th rounder. I don't know those
guys as well, but based on this list, who I'd prefer in that range would
*David Quesenberry, OT (very athletic at combine) or Reid Fragel, OT
*Nick Kasa, TE (massive, but quick)
*Joe Kruger, DE
*Earl Wolff, SS
*Kwame Geatthers, NT (tons of size, good pedigree, project)
I don't even pretend to know if those are truly realistic values. I
picked the GBN list without a look - sure, in some cases the value is
weird. Of course, if everyone knew exactly how the draft will go - and
it absolutely will shock some people tonight - you'd be able to do this
much better. But no one knows that.
I also used 44 as a constant. I used it as a need. It doesn't have to
be that way - you could pick Fluker or a DT, 44 as a luxury, then 108 as
a need again - but the value wasn't there for WR (Keenan Allen went, and
Stedman Bailey would be fine after, but I just didn't feel that). So
it became a question of "Do I pick BPA at 14, or at 108?" based on these
scenarios. Clearly, you're going to have better players to choose from
at 14, so BPA is a better philosophy there. But it comes at a cost.