Tuesday, April 29, 2008

NFL draft report card: A for Affort!

Websites dedicated to analyzing and grading the NFL draft are the third most common on the Internet trailing only those featuring porn and those promoting gold and agriculture stocks to Canadian retail investors. So why would I, with my humble little column, dare enter the fray? Good question. Firstly, that's a stupid question and secondly, I have an edge. While most of the analysts focusing on the draft spend countless hours poring over tapes, stats, Wonderlic scores and criminal background checks I have the advantage of having very little time, experience or resources. Most of the acknowledged experts who preview, and then review, the draft are usually made to look like absolute fools once those selected actually start playing (assuming they ever make an NFL roster. I'm looking at you Oakland Raiders!) so perhaps the time has come for a whole new approach. Without any further ado, here goes...

The first ten picks were not made by the Buffalo Bills so I'm going to venture a guess that there were a couple of decent picks, presumably the Falcons and Lions made bad choices (Lions weren't even in the top 10. Shows what I know) and that Howie Long's son is ridiculously overrated just like his Dad was. Beyond that, who cares (you read the not Bills part, right?). At number 11 we have the 87.5% Buffalo/12.5% Toronto Bills. They addressed one of their two glaring needs with...

CB Leodis McKelvin of Troy. This pick was a homerun and here's why:
a) Have you ever met someone named Leodis you haven't liked?
b) Helen of Troy was hot but couldn't run a sub 4.5 40. McKelvin of Troy can. Best of both worlds.
c) Insurance for the Bills in the return game and immediate help in nickel and dime packages even if he isn't ready to start across from Terrence McGee. By midseason our starting corners will be just Leodis and Terry McGee. La dee da, da da da da da da da.

A new favorite at all-girls summer camps

Picks 12 through 40 were again made by other teams that I couldn't have cared less about. A handful of guys from big name schools picked too high, two or three guys who will be in NFL Europe by 2010, the Lions presumably picked up another couple receivers and the first Kentwan ever selected in the first round. It's a big day for Kentwans everywhere. With the 41st pick, the Buffalo Bills selected:

WR James Hardy of Indiana. Another one knocked out of the park by the Bills brass. I immediately went searching for a Hardy jersey on eBay only to find a bunch of obscenely expensive t-shirts. Let me get this straight, there are t-shirt with tattooish patterns and rhinestones that sell for over $200...to men?! You idiots. You've seen this movie before with that last incarnation of "Hardy" t-shirts. It was called Von Dutch. Now you can find all the trucker hats you want on the TJ Maxx clearance tables beside the poker chip sets and martini shakers. Anyways, Hardy is exactly what this team needs. The shady past is hopefully fully in the past. Besides, there have been some truly awful receivers who were choirboys. Michael Irvin went to the Hall of Fame with his fur coat, coke and hookers in hand.

42 through 71 more of the same. Why can't you guys just go on auto-draft so we can get to the Bills next pick. Finally (a day later!!!!) we get back to Buffalo at 72.

DE Chris Ellis of Virginia Tech. Defensive end....Pass rush specialist....Va. Tech....name that doesn't clearly denote whether he is white or black.....Bruuuuuuuuuuuuuce!

Blah, blah, blah on to pick 115 and the highlight of round 4.

CB Reggie Corner of Akron. You know when someone says "____ is my middle name" to indicate some sort of interest or aptitude. Well, Reggie Corner has them all beat. Corner is his last name (his middle name is lockdown) and yes, if you're wondering, he is a Corner of the Lancashire Corners. They've been proud corners for generations, going back to the late 18th century. Unfortunately, Johnny Pass Catching Tight End decided against entering the draft this year.

116 through 131 went by without a German or anyone who graduated with a degree in Pharmacology selected. I wonder what Mel Kiper thinks of that! Whatever he thinks he'll be proven wrong in less than 18 months so I guess it's irrelevant. At 132, the next member of the future Super Bowl champions is:

TE Derek Fine of Kansas. I'm pretty sure he was the bass player on their 5th and 6th albums. Unfortunately he had nothing to do with "Carry on my Wayward Son". Still, a valuable addition to the thin tight end ranks.

Then with the 147th pick in the 5th round the good guys went out and got:

LB Alvin Bowen of Iowa State. An undersized linebacker. You can never have too many of those! I know nothing of him so I'm going to make up something interesting. Alvin speaks Aramaic and once correctly identified the last 23 US Presidents by their handwriting alone. He was stumped by James Garfield who Bowen claimed never used cursive and that the whole test was a fraud. Alvin is clearly someone who doesn't like to lose. That's exactly what this team needs especially on special teams where he is most likely to see the bulk of his playing time.

Round 6 saw the Bills make a pick that seemed a bit strange at first, but there was method to their madness.

RB Xavier Odom of Northwest Missouri State. I immediately thought this guy's name sounded made up and so did his school. It turns out this was a diversion the Bills used to confuse the Patriot spies within the war room. While they were busy trying to figure out who this guy was the Bills were able to write down the names of their next three picks without anyone in New England seeing them. If you rearrange the letters in "Northwest Missouri State" you get "Belichick go F yourself". If the Patriots were smart enough they would have realized the ruse from the start. The Bills have enough running back for three or four teams in the shape of one Marshawn Lynch.

With pick #219 the Bills made a very intriguing selection.

OL Demetrius Bell of Northwestern State. Demetrius' Dad never really identified with his son. "I'm pretty sure he's mine but boy, does he ever look like that mailman". Let me explain that stupid joke, Demetrius Bell's deadbeat dad is multimillionaire Republican, Karl "The Mailman" Malone. Apparently this mailman didn't always deliver when it came to solid parenting or sufficient child support. Hopefully Demetrius, who is (like his father) a ridiculously gifted athlete, can channel the anger towards his deadbeat Dad into becoming a force on the O-line. The Bills best lineman now, Jason Peters, was an even more raw project when he was brought in as an undrafted free agent so there is precedent here.

Anyone not drafted now must really be pissing themselves. Inboxes are being filled with resumes of applicants with half-finished Communications degrees. With the 224th pick the Bills threw a bone to:

WR Steve Johnson of Kentucky. Surprisingly a guy named Steve Johnson from Kentucky has dreads. Apparently he's buddies with Marshawn so he must be amazing.

The Bills last pick was a compensatory pick for losing a free agent. I think the concept of compensatory picks should be used in all facets of life. "Sorry I your stole your girlfriend but hey, you'll get a late 10th round pick to try and replace her". It would certainly take the sting out of life's more traumatic moments. I think this was also the basis of the Marshall Plan but then again history was not my major.

CB Kennard Cox of Pitt. Well Ken, good luck. Guys picked 251st rarely make it but at least you can enjoy a training camp in Rochester. I'm sure they'll let you keep your jersey.

Well that's it. Overall I'd say the draft was perfect. The two glaring needs were met with the first two picks and everything else is gravy. Now we wait. If anyone knows of a way that I can hibernate until two-a-days start, let me know.


Anonymous said...

Personally I'm disappointed the Bills didn't draft any of the following players..for their names alone:
1. Scorpio Babers from Sam Houston State..no need to add a comment for that one
2. Reginal Carrington from SMU..just picture the music from Dynasty blaring through Orchard Park as he takes to the field..
3. Jehuu Caulcick from Michigan State..just thinking how the announcers would try mightily to NOT mispronounce his first name
4. Gosder Cherilus from BC..Gosder??!! Brilliant
5. Timothy Hightower from Richmond..the Police Academy jokes alone make this guy worth the gamble

Josef F. said...

Could you tell me more about this compensatory draft for girlfriends? I assume that for anyone who has their girlfriend stolen, they would get to pick from a pack of 18-21 year old single girls. The catch being that most of the real talent is gone, and you are mostly picking from butterfaces and girls with criminal records...

Now, if we are going to be using football logic in the real world, isn't locking your daughter in the basement the same as using the franchise tag on a potential free agent? Something to think about...

Steve Holt said...

Isn't it a bit soon for "locking your daughter in the basement" references? Josef does have a disturbingly Austrian ring to it.