As the season progresses our needs as a team become more obvious. We need an offensive coordinator more than any positional need. Last year we went 10-6 with a good O-coordinator who was constantly at odds with our head coach. In the end of the year stretch the offensive play calling was more and more called into question. In the playoff game against Baltimore, early it looked like we had a legitimate chance of winning. Jamal Charles tore through the Ravens Defense for a long score. After that we mysteriousily started trying to pass the ball, and proceeded to get whacked. Our stingent defense became more porious and allowed a large margin of defeat. If you don't control the clock and manage games, even the best defenses will get beat.
All in all, we had a good season and it seemed we were poised for greater things in 2011. We all see what a few injuries to key players can do and the glaring holes we still have. These glaring holes among others include: O-Line, Quarterback, and Depth. We probably can name a few more but lets stick with depth for a second. Green Bay suffered numerous roster casualties last year but they were overcome by their great depth and a star quarterback. With that being said I like our depth at reciever but the TE position might need to be addressed this year, along with safety and running back. I know everyone wants the next great quarterback, and most of us are ready to sacrifice much more than neccesary. I want Barkley, Luck and maybe Griffin; but are we being to closed minded?
I am not going to throw out statistics on 1st round quarteback success because you never know what is going to happen. If Joey Harrington or David Carr was drafted by an organization with better quarterback coaching they could have had success. If Tom Brady was drafted by the Lions instead of the Patriots, I doubt that Detroits offensive line would allow Brady to become the prolific passer he has developed into.
So this is my mock draft based on needs, low risk, low expectations we might all be able to agree on. We won't draft a quarterback 1st round. Why? We won't be in position to get who we want. If we trade up, great. Odds are not good though.
1st Round: Jonathon Martin, LT/Stanford. We get the cornerstone LT that has helped Luck himself become successful. This pick allows us flexibility. He can play LT or RT and we can move Brandon Albert if neccessary.
2nd Round: Dontari Poe, NT/Memphis. Massive! 6'5 350lbs, in the mold of Haloti Ngata. He can replace the stop-gap veteren Kelly Greg and competes with another Powe, Jerrel Powe. If they both play well, not only will they rotate, they will play together in base defenses in obvious running downs, goal line sets. Projected to be in the third round, but come April his stock will soar like an eagle.
3rd Round: Nick Foles, QB/Arizona. Protypical size 6'5 230lbs, overshadowed by a bad team. This kid can be dominant given the right tools. We improve the line, we also have five potentially dominant receiving threats with the return of a rehabed Charles, Moeaki and newly re-signed D. Bowe. The lowered expectations of a 3rd rounder can help Foles in his development, Cassel or Orton in their mentorship and Stanzi for competition. Best case scenario, we get a great QB or trade foder for future 20132014 picks. Low risk, high reward.
4th Round: Kevin Zeitler, OG, Wisconsin. 6'5 315lbs. Part of a dominating Wisconsin o-line that paved the way for the run game, helping Montee Ball find the endzone 38 times. This pick adds depth and competition to the O-line and helps Kansas City regain a top rushing attack.
5th Round-7th Round: We will have at least 4 picks between the 5th and 7th round including compensatory picks. I see us drafting RB, Safety, defensive front seven and possibly a tight end. I dont know any true sleepers but those of you interested in more choices here is a few links I browse now and again:
Finally here is another mock draft I considered:
1st Round: Riley Reiff, T/ Iowa
2nd Round: Coby Fleener,TE/ Stanford or Montee Ball, RB/ Wisconsin
3rd Round: Dontari Poe
4th Round: Michael Brewster, C/ Ohio State
5th Round : Brock Osweiler, QB/ Arizona State: Athletic: Played Basketball, huge 6'8
6th - 7th Round: Frontseven, Secondary and RB.