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  1. #1
    kevoncox's Avatar
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    The Myth of the Can't miss OL prospect

    I have gotten tired of hearing the same factless argument presented again and again that states that OL is the safest way to go in the NFL draft prospect. If anyone bothered to do any research on this subject, they would see it's not so clear cut. I believe that all positions are subjected to the same level of Boom/Bust potential. The difference is that teams are quicker to give up on WRs than OTs due to the need of cohesion on the line.

    I believe that you rally cannot tell a bust from a boom for 3 years. Some players shine early and fad, others are late bloomers. For this reason, I will start with the 2009 nfl draft. I will go back to the 2003 draft and gauge the players drafted in the first and the bust boom rating.

    2009
    OT
    Pick Name Bust/Boom
    2 Jason Smith Bust
    6 Andre Smith Bust
    8 E. Monroe Bust
    23 M. Oher Boom


    WR
    Pick Name Bust/Boom
    7 Heyward-Bey Bust
    10 Crabtree Bust
    19 Maclin Boom
    22 Harvin Boom
    29 Nicks Boom
    30 Britt Boom


    2008
    OT
    Pick Name Bust/Boom
    1 Jake Long Boom
    12 Ryan Clady Boom
    14 Chris WIlliams Bust
    15 Branden Albert Bust
    17 G. Cherilus Bust
    21 Sam Baker Bust
    26 D. Brown Boom

  2. #2
    i_bleed_purple's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kevoncox View Post
    I have gotten tired of hearing the same factless argument presented again and again that states that OL is the safest way to go in the NFL draft prospect. If anyone bothered to do any research on this subject, they would see it's not so clear cut. I believe that all positions are subjected to the same level of Boom/Bust potential. The difference is that teams are quicker to give up on WRs than OTs due to the need of cohesion on the line.

    I believe that you rally cannot tell a bust from a boom for 3 years. Some players shine early and fad, others are late bloomers. For this reason, I will start with the 2009 nfl draft. I will go back to the 2003 draft and gauge the players drafted in the first and the bust boom rating.

    2009
    OT
    Pick Name Bust/Boom
    2 Jason Smith Bust
    6 Andre Smith Bust
    8 E. Monroe Bust
    23 M. Oher Boom


    WR
    Pick Name Bust/Boom
    7 Heyward-Bey Bust
    10 Crabtree Bust
    19 Maclin Boom
    22 Harvin Boom
    29 Nicks Boom
    30 Britt Boom


    2008
    OT
    Pick Name Bust/Boom
    1 Jake Long Boom
    12 Ryan Clady Boom
    14 Chris WIlliams Bust
    15 Branden Albert Bust
    17 G. Cherilus Bust
    21 Sam Baker Bust
    26 D. Brown Boom
    How exactly do you define bust/boom? Guy like Sam Baker is definitely a decent OL, Even Cherilus isn't bad, especially considering he's a Lion. Oher is more of a Bust than Baker, especially considering all the media around him.

  3. #3
    Purple Floyd's Avatar
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    Another thing to look at is those early 1st round tackles that have been great players don't necessarily mean the team is going anywhere. Both Cleveland with Joe Thomas and Miami with Jake Long are prime examples. Two LT's taken early that are quality players but obviously it didn't take the teams to another level.

  4. #4
    smegmavike is offline Coordinator
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    Quote Originally Posted by Purple Floyd View Post
    Another thing to look at is those early 1st round tackles that have been great players don't necessarily mean the team is going anywhere. Both Cleveland with Joe Thomas and Miami with Jake Long are prime examples. Two LT's taken early that are quality players but obviously it didn't take the teams to another level.
    That is why I favor taking an impact player with the highest pick and looking for a very good lineman in the second, third , or fourth round. Waiting until the 5th, 6th, or final round seems like neglect.

  5. #5
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    I think you have to stay true to your talent evaluations. If they are just the best LT in this draft, then maybe that person isn't worthy of a #3 pick, but if he grades out at the highest level irregardless of comparable draft prospects than a #3 pick may be warranted. Same with Claiborne, Blackmon,....

    I believe that at every position in the NFL has only a few truly elite players and all of those positions can give a significant advantage if they truly are that much better than everyone else. With a #3 pick, that's what you should be able to get. The position is not as important to me as getting that truly elite player. Everyone around them is instantly upgraded.

  6. #6
    kevoncox's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tastywaves View Post
    I think you have to stay true to your talent evaluations. If they are just the best LT in this draft, then maybe that person isn't worthy of a #3 pick, but if he grades out at the highest level irregardless of comparable draft prospects than a #3 pick may be warranted. Same with Claiborne, Blackmon,....

    I believe that at every position in the NFL has only a few truly elite players and all of those positions can give a significant advantage if they truly are that much better than everyone else. With a #3 pick, that's what you should be able to get. The position is not as important to me as getting that truly elite player. Everyone around them is instantly upgraded.
    Truth.com

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by i_bleed_purple View Post
    How exactly do you define bust/boom? Guy like Sam Baker is definitely a decent OL, Even Cherilus isn't bad, especially considering he's a Lion. Oher is more of a Bust than Baker, especially considering all the media around him.
    Both guys almost got benched and eventual regained their starting jobs.

  8. #8
    i_bleed_purple's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kevoncox View Post
    Both guys almost got benched and eventual regained their starting jobs.
    Nobody's expecting they start hot day one, but both have developed into decent players. That's th epoint of drafting. It's ideal if they can be plugged in on day one, but that can't always happen.

  9. #9
    jessejames09's Avatar
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    On the flip side how many viable LTs in the league today weren't drafted in rounds 1 or 2?

    Eric Winston (3rd), Doug Free (4th) and Donald Penn (UDFA) are who come to mind for me, not exactly an elite list

  10. #10
    Purple Floyd's Avatar
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    The LT's and where they were drafted from the last 20 SB winners.

    2010- GB: Clifton 2nd round. 47th pick.
    2009- NO: Bushrod 4th round 125th pick.
    2008- Pitt: Starks 3rd round. 75th pick.
    2007-Giants: Diehl 5th round. 150th pick.
    2006-Indy: Glenn. 1st round 19th pick.
    2005-Pitt: Smith 2nd round 38th pick.
    2004-NE: Light 2nd round 48th pick.
    2003- NE: Light 2nd round 48th pick.
    2002- TB:Oben 3rd round 66th pick.
    2001-NE: Light 2nd round 48th pick.
    2000- Bal: Ogden 1st round 4th pick.
    1999-St louis: Pace 1st round 1st pick.
    1998-Denver:Jones UDFA
    1997- Denver: Zimmerman 1st round3rd pick ( signed as a FA from the Vikings)
    1996-GB: Michels 1st round. 27th pick.
    1995-Dallas: Tuinei UDFA ( signed as a DT)
    1994- SF: Wallace 4th round 101st pick.
    1993- Dallas:Tuinei See above
    1992- Dallas: tuinei See above
    1991-Wash:Lachey( 1st round 12th pick ( Signed as a FA not drafted by)
    1990-Giants: Elliott 2nd round36th pick.

    So in looking at the data there are only 2 SB winners in the past 20 that had a top 4 LT that they drafted themselves. A few other teams acquired LT's that were drafted that high but they were later on in their careers. This was actually higher than I thought but it still goes with my assertion that LT's can certainly be gotten in the later rounds.

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