Ahh that sweet spring breeze: The NFL draft

April 30, 2007 at 9:08 pm (Sports thoughts)

I am not a draft junky. I can’t really comprehend the over-production, over-hype and over-exposure put into this event. The fact that this “sporting event” gets better ratings then the NBA playoffs is embarrassing (FWIW I am not an NBA guy however I am VERY happy about the Lakers stinking it up and the Warriors sticking it to the Mavs). My Sportingnews magazine had back to back cover stories on the NFL Draft, the first one said “Our biggest Draft preview EVER!” And the next week they had another draft preview, as if “the biggest one EVER” wasn’t enough. Ugghhhh.

Nevertheless I am interested in the Chargers and their picks so I provide for you bolt fans my take on this years players.

Round 1- WR Craig Davis.

I am not too excited about this pick. Mostly because I don’t care for taking receivers in the first round no matter how much they are hyped. A quick review of receivers taken in the first round since 2003 shows only 3 out of 17 who presently would qualify as legitimate Pro-Bowl possibilities. Those being Larry Fitzgerald, Roy Williams and Andre Johnson. About half of the receivers drafted in the1st round are guys like Mark Clayton, Michael Clayton and Lee Evans. They could improve, could show star power but are probably going to be journeymen. Then you have a very high percentage of guys who are total busts. Guys like Reshaun Woods, Mike Williams and Roddy White.

So picking a receiver in the first round you have about a 50 % chance of him being decent 45 % chance of him being a bust and 5% chance of getting a star.

I don’t like those odds.

Craig Davis? Don’t know much about him except he was the number 2 receiver on his own team. I do think that the reason JaMarcus Russel was considered so great was because he had two very good college receivers, but it’s possible that they were very good because he was excellent. We’ll have to wait and see, but if Davis’ success was do in part to the skills of his quarterback then Davis will be just fine here in San Diego because we’ve got an excellent QB here already.

Round 2- Safety Eric Weddle

I like this pick a lot. Yes we “gave up” a lot of draft picks to get him, but he was a player the Chargers were obviously very high on. They were high on him for good reason. He’s a football player. He may not have the size, or speed of other guys but he has the intangibles. Intangibles are the greatest quality that any professional can have. I am reminded of the time when Dorothy Gish walked up to me and said, “young man, you have got it.” and uh. It’s a true story.

Where was I? Oh yes. Eric Weddle, if Dorothy Gish were still alive, she’d be walking up to you right now.

Round 3- LB Anthony Waters

This pick is similar to the Cromartie Pick last year. He went a lot lower then he could have gone had he not been injured. Waters, I think is the perfect replacement for Steve Foley. He’ll be starting by the end of the season.

Round 4- TE Scott Chandler

One web site I read about him said he “needs to learn how to block”, another described him as a, “great blocker”. The talking heads in the hollow world of “sports media” are such a joke. None more so then “draft expert” Mel Kiper. If he was an expert he would have a job for an NFL team. He isn’t, he doesn’t. But I digress.

This big tight end is the prototype NFL tight end. Not the Antonio Gates type (those guys are exceptional). But because everybody is looking for the next Gates they pass over guys like Chandler. True tight ends. I see this guy being a solid pro for years to come. Nothing flashy but consistency and quality make up for flashy when it comes to building a championship football team.

Round 5- WR Legeudu Naanee

This is an interesting pick. I would have preferred them picking up another running back at this point but late round wide receivers are a gamble worth taking. If nothing else he may become a valuable special teams guy like Kassim Osgood. Especially since he’s going to be playing behind KO.

Round 7- LB Brandon Siler

I’m shocked that the Chargers could find a quality line backer this late in the draft. Expect this guy to be a Carlos Polk special teams player who can back up occasionally. Perhaps he can mature into a starter. Very solid pick here.

So there you have my take on the draft class of 07. I also anticipate the Chargers picking up a running back in the undrafted free agent category. Probably a guy like Gary Russell form Minnesota (who missed last season because of bad grades) or Germaine Race Pittsburgh State (who played for a division II Team). This type of player will be helpful in case the Chargers decide to move Michael Turner for a first rounder next year.

All told I am excited about the Chargers chances this season, even with a tough schedule I think it’s going to be a very fun season.

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10 Comments

  1. Matt S said,

    Here is the deal.

    AJ Smith and his boys have done enough over the last few years to earn our (as fans) complete trust in regards to player evaluation. If AJ thinks a guy is good, he is good regardless of what Mel Kiper or other “experts” think.

    As long as they draft players in positions that are needed, I trust (because of said track record) the actual players they picked up will meet expectations even if we seemingly do not know much about them.

    We needed reciever help, we got it. We needed safety help, we got it.

    We should contend for a Super Bowl next year.

  2. thin air said,

    Go Niners!!!!

  3. Pablo Honey said,

    A couple of notes for you:
    1. Maybe I am mistaken but I believe Waters is an inside LB. I don’t see him replacing Foley because Foley was already replaced by Shaun Phillips. I think Waters is more of a replacement for Randall Godfrey.
    2. Check out Chargers.com. Apparently A.J. sent word out that he will not be trading Turner this year. Could be a ploy to get a huge offer from a team but thats not a typical A.J. move. Expect Turner to back up LT again this year and we will worry about another RB in next years draft.

  4. danielbalc said,

    Touche Pablo. you are correct about Phillips replacing Foley. I don’t know why I always seem to confuse Godfrey with Foley. Maybe it’s because they both happen to be the scariest looking men on planet earth.

    Really funny interview with Anthony Waters on the radio this morning. They gave him the “rookie quiz” asking him questions about San Diego. His response to “who was the greatest Padre ever?” was…. Khalil Greene

    hahaha

  5. danielbalc said,

    If you read my post you noticed that I did some statistical analysis and came to the conclusion that you have a 45% chance of getting a bust by picking a WR in the first round. I based my assessment on my subjective opinion of the perceived quality of each receivers play (no real stats).

    here is the crazy part. some guy on ESPN.com actually did the same kind of study bu using actual stats. What was also crazy about his study is that his sample field came from the years 1989-2003. Mine was from 2003-2006. Well the results were, get this, THE EXACT SAME!!!! This blows my brain.

    check it out for yourself

    http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/page2/story?page=kluck/receivers/070425

    I continue to amaze myself with how right I consistently am.

  6. thin air said,

    Bruce Feldman, a “knowledgeable” college football analyst for espn.com said Weedle was the most underrated guy in the draft and that he was going to be a super pro. We’ll see.

  7. danielbalc said,

    This is a very interesting take on whether or not the Chargers “gave up too much” to get Weddle from TMQ (Tuesday morning Quarterback on ESPN.com is the single best blog of all mainstream internet outlets!)

    Trade Watch How did some draft trades play out on the infamous value chart? The Bills-Lions transaction looks like a value-chart loss for Buffalo. To exchange pick 44 for pick 34, Buffalo gave Detroit pick 74 — a high third-rounder to move up just 10 slots in the second round. The value chart says Buffalo surrendered 680 points to receive 560 points. Comparison says Buffalo was too generous too, since to move up from the 36th pick, in the second round, to the 26th choice, in the first round — also a rise of 10 slots, but to higher ground — Dallas gave Philadelphia choices 87 and 159. But Buffalo really wanted Paul Posluszny and was calling everyone at the top of the second round. There is no obligation to trade; most teams in that area weren’t selling, so the Bills had to make their offer irresistible. If Posluszny is as good in the pros as he was in college, no one will ever miss the third-rounder Buffalo expended. Football pundits said the Chargers gave up too much to acquire the high second-rounder they used on safety Eric Weddle: The pundits said “too much” because San Diego surrendered a low second-round choice, a third, a fifth and a third-round pick in 2008. Actually, by the draft value chart, the Bolts won the trade, obtaining a choice worth 530 points for picks worth 500 points — remember, you must divide by two the value for that 2008 selection, in order to discount to present value. My favorite thing about the value chart is that it assigns absurd pseudo-scientific fractional significance to the concluding rounds. In one of the draft’s final swaps, Jacksonville sent three late sixth-rounders to Atlanta for a fifth-rounder, surrendering, according to the chart, 39.2 points worth of picks for a choice worth 31.8 points.

  8. danielbalc said,

    I also have to post this little stat for you mr. thin air…

    Teams with the Most Busts
    Bears — 8
    Lions — 8
    Eagles — 8
    49ers — 7
    Broncos — 7
    Cardinals — 6
    Patriots — 6
    Rams — 6
    Redskins — 6

  9. thin air said,

    All you need is 1 or 2 gems and wham…next thing you know you’ve won 5 SBs.

  10. danielbalc said,

    WOO HOO! Another Daniel’s Den prediction is realized.

    At the end of this post I said this…

    I also anticipate the Chargers picking up a running back in the undrafted free agent category. Probably a guy like Gary Russell form Minnesota (who missed last season because of bad grades) or Germaine Race Pittsburgh State (who played for a division II Team).

    Then I see the list of Chargers undrafted free agents in todays UT and sure enough there is Germaine Race of Pittsburgh State.

    http://www.signonsandiego.com/uniontrib/20070504/news_1s4agents-a.html

    I’m going to take this prediction a step further and say that Germaine Race makes the team.

    If my predictions keep panning out like this the Padres sure are in for a great season.

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