In hindsight my draft would have been different than Pioli's. Looking at who was available when we picked I feel like I could have gotten better value in several rounds.
I would have thought long and hard about DeCastro as he is the relatively safest pick. History has a way of scaring people and rightfully so. Is Poe going to be the next Ryan Sims? Ultimately, I think the Piloi made the right call. At the end of the day, Poe has more upside than we though Ryan Sims had going in to his rookie year. Many of us warned that his value was a product of one of the best defensive ends in college history in Julius Peppers. Peppers disrupted many plays, forcing the play to Sims allowing his stats piled up. Not only did Poe not have Peppers he didn't have anyone around him. He was asked to get the Defense off of the field by himself and so spent the entire game on the field. In the hindsight first round I am sticking with big Poe!
From here it gets interesting, check it out.
Devon Still went to the Bengals at 89. I love this kid he is going to be an absolute terror and a guy many will look back and think should have went in the first. I wish he had gone to a 3-4 team for my own selfish reasons. Ryan Broyles went next but I wasn't really interested in him. Don't get me wrong I loved watching him in college but his value here is surpassed by a few others. Next up, Peter Konz goes to the Falcons at 87, great pick for them he will be a good player. Then there's mike Mike Adams to the Steelers at 86 and Brock Osweiler to Broncos at 87. I was really sad to see Osweiler go as he would have been strongly considered in the next round. I just want to watch him play. The problem is he is now a bronco and I will never be able to enjoy this activity, my day is ruined.
The good news is that many teams seemed to under value these guys (by only half a round) and Mike Adams was available at 44 and with little consideration for the other guys I like I am taking him. The value is just too damned high. The only reason the he is even available to talk about here is that he made a dumb, immature mistake and poped hot at the combine. With the leadership established in the last few drafts and free agency, I have no problem trying to bring him in for some positive influence. Do not be surprised if he is one of the better Tackles in the league in a few years.
In the third round Pioli nabbed Stephenson. He is a guy I am very familiar with and he is a good player. Those of you that like the pick try not to hate on my Adams pick because he had some similar trouble not so long ago. I won't go into that because people make mistakes and he seems to have grown from it. I just don't see the talent that I see in Adams so I go in a different direction.
The shocker is when I double down on the Dline and take Alameda Ta'amu in the third. He already has the skills we are looking for at the position and he and Poe both can rotate at any position on the 3-4 front. There is a question of conditioning but the guy is a billion lbs, thats going to happen. But fishhooks, if this is a hindsight draft why not just take him in the next round because he doesn't go until two picks later? Well its simple, both guys I want won't be there in the fifth. This is a commonly overlooked aspect in the nature of drafting the guys you want. Sometimes you have to grab a guy higher than the "experts" project him in order to get another player as well.
This brings me to the fourth round. We have flexibility and depth on the Dline now and the rest of our defense is looking ready for a dog fight for the next several years, time to move back to the offense.
The reason I take Ta'amu so early is because of the pick that Pioli makes in the following round. How much do you love the Wylie pick AP? I'm going to bypass the Wes Welker comparison because it's annoying. What I will say is that this guy is quick, fast, awesome...and I'm gushing. In hindsight this is the perfect pick for this spot, unless you wanted to double down again and take Zebrie Sanders here. I loved the idea of shoring up the Offense and Defense Tackle spots for years with minimal worry. In a draft that is not hindsight this is what I probably would have done. Damn you Pioli you made me look like an amateur...oh wait, that's exactly what you are supposed to do.
In fact his 5-7 picks are all around very impressive to me. I would have tried to take Denard at some point but the question is where. I would have had to miss out on Gray or Menzie possibly as I probably would have been too afraid he wouldn't last until our seventh round pick. But hey, this is a hindsight draft and I will keep Gray and Menzie. I am taking Denard in the seven, right before the Pats have a chance at him and pretend I am a draft guru. I know that the kid screwed up but it is the only problem he has ever had and he is a GREAT value at this spot.
So my super hindsight mock draft pans out like this,
Round 1) Dontari Poe
Round 2) Mike Adams
Round 3) Alameda Ta'amu
Round 4) Zebrie Wylie...I mean...Devon Sanders...oh I don't know...
Round 5) I can't argue with the Menzie but if I went with Sanders in the 4th and Wylie fell here he's mine.
Round 6) Cyrus Gray I love this pick too.
Round 7) Alfonzo Denard
I have to give myself some credit here(because none of you will) the guys I wanted went relatively close to where I projected them and I would have ended up with the guys I really wanted in each round. The problem is that I have several hours of YouTube videos ans Saturday afternoons where as Pioli has every snap he wants on tape. He spends countless hours studying these players and lets face it, in the past he has drafted really well.
The only Pili pick that I would have called a "bad" pick, over his time here, is whatshisname McGee. That guy sucked. Yeah I wanted BJ Raji more than Jackson but we are kidding ourselves if we go as far as calling TJ a bad pick. Just because there is someone that we see as more valuable doesn't mean that the other pick has none.
I won't go as far as saying "In Pioili we trust" cause...well I will leave that alone. He has, however, earned a certain amount of deference from me when it comes to "questionable picks" as it is obvious he knows what he is doing. We could always trade him in for Matt Millen who I once heard utter the words, "completions are boring," and I'm only slightly taking that out of context.
I fancy myself a pretty smart football guy but where Pioli has proven his ability to upgrade a roster, I'm just a guy who would rather be fishing.
Thanks for listening