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Bloggers mock draft pick #18

March 17, 2010 By: Admin Category: Draft/Free Agency

Yesterday, I announced that Steelers Today was participating in a mock draft among bloggers.  The San Francisco 49ers were on the clock, and my pick was after theirs.  Well, the San Francisco 49ers surprised me and picked Taylor Mays.

Here is a recap of the picks so far.

No Logo Needed’s 2010 Mock Draft Among Blogs:

1. St. Louis Rams: Joe Sports Fan
Ndamukong Suh, DT, Nebraska

2. Detroit Lions: The Wayne Fontes Experience
Gerald McCoy, DT, Oklahoma

3. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Bucs Central
Russell Okung, OT, Oklahoma State

4. Washington Redskins: The Curly R
Trent Williams, OT, Oklahoma

5. Kansas City Chiefs: Chiefs Report
Bryan Bulaga, OT, Iowa

6. Seattle Seahawks: Dave Krieg’s Strike Beard
Sam Bradford, QB, Oklahoma

7. Cleveland Browns: No Logo Needed
Eric Berry, DB, Tennessee

8. Oakland Raiders: Just Blog Baby
Bruce Campbell, OT, Maryland

9. Buffalo Bills: Buffalo Sports Now
Jimmy Clausen, QB, Notre Dame

10. Jacksonville Jaguars: Black and Teal

Rolando McClain, LB, Alabama

11. Denver Broncos (from Chicago Bears): Bronco Talk

Mike Iupati, G, Iowa

12. Miami Dolphins: Playoff Bound Sports

Earl Thomas, S, Texas

13. San Francisco 49ers: Niners Nation
C.J. Spiller, RB, Clemson

14. Seattle Sehawks (from Denver Broncos): Dave Krieg’s Strike Beard
Charles Brown, OT, USC

15. New York Giants: Ultimate NYG
Sergio Kindle, LB, Texas

16. Tennessee Titans: Music City Miracles
Derrick Morgan, DE, Georgia Tech

17. San Francisco 49ers (from Carolina Panthers): Niners Nation
Taylor Mays, S, USC

I came into this draft hoping to take an offensive tackle.  But with 5 offensive tackles off the board, and the guard that I was also interested in gone as well, I just can’t see spending a 1st round pick on the 6th best offensive tackle.  I really like center Maurkice Pouncey out of Florida, but I can’t justify taking a center with the 18th pick.  So offensive line will have to wait.

To my great surprise, the top cornerback in the draft is still on the board.  Joe Haden is a very enticing pick, regardless of his 40 time at the Combine.  The Steelers’ secondary looked pathetic last season, and the cornerbacks looked more pathetic than the safeties.  Everyone knows that the Steelers’ cornerbacks didn’t record an interception until the final game of the season.  That’s almost unheard of in the NFL.

Most readers who offered suggestions on who I should select were united in their opinion that Joe Haden was the logical pick.  I understand that logic.  I really do.

CB Joe Haden

But the Steelers selected two cornerbacks (Joe Burnett and Keenan Lewis) in the draft last year.  Moreover, there are a lot of talented cornerbacks in this draft, and I am certain that one of them will be available when our second pick comes around.  Kyle Wilson, Perrish Cox, Patrick Robinson, Dominique Franks, Syd’quan Thompson, and even Donovan Warren would all be upgrades over William Gay (Actually, my grandmother would be an upgrade over William Gay).

But there is another player who dropped into the Steelers’ lap who I believe will prove to be even more valuable.  The single hardest position to find in the draft is nose tackle.  With more teams converting to the 3-4 defense, nose tackles are going to be even more difficult to draft in the future.  But fate has allowed the best nose tackle in the draft to fall to pick 18.   He can sit and learn behind Casey Hampton without being pressured to have to start right away.  Then he can gradually displace Hampton and become our nose tackle for the next decade.

That was my logic.  Sooooooo………….

With the 18th pick of the 2010 Mock Draft Among Blogs, the Pittsburgh Steelers select:

****Dan Williams, NT, Tennessee****

NT Dan Williams

The Atlanta Falcons and its representative, The Falcoholic, are on the clock.

I know that many of you hate this pick and wanted to see me take Haden.  So let me know what you think.  If you think this was an idiotic pick, tell me why.  But for those of you who have never left a comment here on Steelers Today, we don’t allow name-calling.  Only intelligent comments allowed around here.  So pick my logic apart.    But explain WHY you think I should have taken someone else.  Support your argument with sound reasoning.  I’m all ears.


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Pittsburgh Steelers mock draft analysis

April 22, 2009 By: Admin Category: Draft/Free Agency

April 22, 2009
By Donald Starver

With only 3 days remaining until the 2009 NFL draft, fans are searching for any final clues that may help them determine who their favorite team is going to draft.  Traffic at mock draft websites is at an all-time high this time of year.  Fans seem to think that mock drafts may have some insight that will tell them who their team is going to select (they don’t).

With that in mind, I’ve decided to make your lives a lot easier.  Rather than allow you to spend countless hours scouring the millions of mock drafts that are out there, I’ve done the heavy lifting for you.  I’ve studied every mock draft in the HailRedskins mock draft database and the Walter Football mock draft database.  If you haven’t visited these excellent sites, I recommend that you do so.

There is a lot of overlap in the websites that are listed.  However, Walter Football’s database contains 250 mock drafts while Hail Redskins only has 228.  Therefore, I chose Walter Football’s mock draft database as the data source for this analysis.

I have cumulated the results of all of the mock drafts listed in Walter Football’s mock draft database, and am reporting the results for the Pittsburgh Steelers.  Some of the mock drafts in the database were eliminated because they were too old to be considered valid.  I immediately eliminated any mock drafts that were done prior to the Super Bowl.  Afterall, how good could a mock draft be if it didn’t even reflect the correct draft order?  Additionally, I eliminated all of the mock drafts that had broken links.  Lastly, Walter Football’s database includes several mock drafts that are clearly intended to be jokes.  Those were also eliminated from my analysis.

Once I had eliminated all of the mock drafts that I considered to be invalid, I was left with 189 mock drafts.  Those 189 mock drafts were the basis for this analysis.  It was a lot of work compiling 189 mock drafts, so I stopped at the 1st round.  Here is what the mock drafts think the Steelers are going to do in the 1st round of Saturday’s draft.

By far, offensive line was the position that the mock drafts thought the Steelers were going to select in the first round of the draft.  126 mock drafts (66.7%) had the Steelers taking an offensive lineman in the first round.  Defensive back got the next highest number of votes with 33 mock drafts (17.5%) predicting that the Steelers would take a DB.

Here is the breakdown by position:

Position/# of votes/% of votes
Offensive line/126/66.7%

Defensive back/33/17.5%

Defensive line/21/11.1%

Wide receiver/7/3.7%

Running back/2/1.1%

Four of the top 5 vote getters were offensive linemen.  This should come as no surprise, given the problems the Steelers’ offensive line had this past year.  The top vote-getters were as follows:

Name/position/# of votes/% of votes
Alex Mack/OL/52/27.5%

Max Unger/OL/22/11.6%

Eben Britton/OL/18/9.5%

Sean Smith/DB/9/4.8%

William Beatty/OL/9/4.8%

Alphonso Smith/DB/7/3.7%

Jarron Gilbert/DL/7/3.7%

Vontae Davis/DB/5/2.6%

D.J. Moore/DB/5/2.6%

Eric Wood/OL/5/2.6%

Darius Butler/DB/4/2.1%

Tyson Jackson/DL/4/2.1%

Phil Loadholt/OL/4/2.1%

Robert Ayers/DL/3/1.6%

Hakeem Nicks/WR/3/1.6%

Fili Moala/DL/2/1.1%

Michael Johnson/DL/2/1.1%

Evander Hood/DL/2/1.1%

Kenny Britt/WR/2/1.1%

William Moore/DB/1/0.5%

Patrick Chung/DB/1/0.5%

Louis Delmas/DB/1/0.5%

Ron Brace/DL/1/0.5%

Troy Kropog/OL/1/0.5%

Jamon Meredith/OL/1/0.5%

Lesean McCoy/RB/1/0.5%

Beanie Wells/RB/1/0.5%

Percy Harvin/WR/1/0.5%

Darius Heyward-Bey/WR/1/0.5%

While 2 mock drafts had the Steelers taking a running back in the first round, I just can’t see that happening.  Rashard Mendenhall was drafted in the first round last year, and the Steelers are very solid at running back with Willie Parker, Rashard Mendenhall, and Mewelde Moore.

In my opinion, all of the other positions that received votes are a possibility.  We all know that the Steelers aren’t going to draft a quarterback or tight end in the first round, regardless of who is available.  We also know that they aren’t going to draft a special teams player (unless it is a wide receiver who also returns kicks or punts).  Beyond this, nobody knows what the Steelers will do.

I have learned over the years that trying to predict who the Steelers are going to draft is nearly impossible.  They play their cards very close to the vest, and they almost never do what fans expect them to do.  Nevertheless, I hope that this analysis may have added some insight into what we are likely to see on Saturday.

Go Steelers!!!!!!

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The Steelers are on the clock

March 25, 2009 By: Admin Category: Draft/Free Agency

Steelers Today has been participating in a mock draft among bloggers. 31 picks have been made, and the Steelers are on the clock.

To see all of the players who have been drafted so far, click here.

Many of the players that fans want the Steelers to take like Tyson Jackson and Alex Mack are already off the board. So, who do you think the Steelers should select of the players who are still left?

I have to make my selection by tomorrow morning, so let me know what you think.

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The folly of the mock draft

March 19, 2009 By: Admin Category: Draft/Free Agency

March 19, 2009
By Donald Starver

Several readers have written to me and asked when I’ll be publishing my 2009 NFL mock draft.  The answer is, “never”.

It’s not that I don’t enjoy mock drafts.  I do.  In fact, I agreed to participate in a bloggers’ mock draft, and I’ve been posting the results of that mock draft here on this website.

The problem that I have with mock drafts is that most fans don’t understand how useless they really are.  I don’t want to add to their confusion by posting my own useless mock draft.

The fundamental fallacy of mock drafts is that they pretend to be something that they are not.  Most mock drafts pretend to have a good handle on how the upcoming NFL draft is going to play out.  Draft pundits like ESPN’s Mel Kiper Jr. and Todd McShay spend countless hours touting their predictions as though they have access to some crystal ball that the rest of us aren’t privy to.  Even more worrisome, some of them even make you pay money to get access to their “forecasts”.  Why would I pay money for something that, by definition, is bound to be inaccurate?

This same flawed thinking makes its way to message boards and fan forums all over the internet.  Fans argue and debate about what order players will be selected in.  Some fans become so adamant about their opinion that terms like “moron”, “idiot”, and “#$*@$%!!” are used to describe anyone who disagrees with them.  If only they understood how silly this is.  But of course, the irony is lost on them.

Mathematically speaking, arguing about mock drafts is illogical.  In fact, it’s downright stupid.

If you look at the number of possible permutations for just the first round of the NFL draft, you’ll quickly realize that predicting it correctly is extraordinarily unlikely.

One of my favorite football websites, Cold, Hard Football Facts, did an analysis of how some of the top draft “experts” did on their 2008 first round NFL mock drafts. They found that Mel Kiper Jr. only got 22.6% of his first round picks correct.  That means he got 77.4% wrong.  That’s right, 77.4%!!  I don’t know of any profession where you can be wrong 77% of the time and be considered an “expert”.  Heck, even the weatherman is more accurate than that.

Mel’s partner in crime, Todd McShay, also got 77% of his picks wrong.  That’s not an indictment of Mel or Todd.  Most mock drafts did even worse than that.  The know-it-all on your favorite message board probably got less than 15% of his picks right last year.  But of course he’ll never admit that.

I’ve even seen sites that do 7 round mock drafts.  The folly of this boggles the mind.  There are 224 picks in the standard 7 round NFL draft.  There were also 28 compensatory picks in 2008, taking the total number of players drafted to 252.  Accurately predicting the order of selection for 252 draft picks is a mathematical impossibility.   In fact, most 7 round mock drafts were 100% inaccurate on their picks beyond the 2nd round.  But statistically speaking, that result is to be expected.  Your time would be better spent trying to predict the next Powerball jackpot than trying to predict who your favorite team will select in the 7th round.

In my opinion, mock drafts fall into the same category as those psychic hotlines that were popular back in the 90′s.  They’re fun, but there is almost no chance that they will accurately predict the future, so they should come with a disclaimer that says “for entertainment purposes only”.

I don’t have a problem with discussing the draft.  Guessing who your favorite team will select can be lots of fun.   Should your team select an offensive player or a defensive player?  Will your team take the guy with superstar talent but off-field issues?  Will your team draft a franchise quarterback?  Will player X reach his potential?  These are all fun questions to discuss.

However, if you are on your favorite team message board, and some know-it-all calls you a “moron” for disagreeing with his “expert prognostication”, don’t engage him in name calling.  Instead, simply sit back and enjoy the irony of the situation.  After all, he has just proven which of you is really the  “moron”.

If we look at our local team, the Steelers, the point gets made pretty clearly.  Which mock draft predicted that the Steelers would select Rashard Mendenhall in the first round last year?  None.  Some did predict that the Steelers would take Lawrence Timmons the year before that, but that is only because rookie head coach Mike Tomlin announced who he wanted long before the draft.  He learned from his error, and won’t be making that mistake again.

Most mock drafts seem to think that the Steelers are going to take Alex Mack or Max Unger in the first round.  Perhaps they will, and perhaps they won’t.  If there’s one thing that I’ve learned about the Steelers, it’s that they seldom do what fans think they’re going to do.  Moreover, even though they don’t do what we expect them to do, the Steelers usually get it right.

Remember, evaluating talent is an inexact science.  Nobody knows how any given player is going to do at the next level.  Look at Oakland Raiders’ offensive lineman Robert Gallery.  In 2004, he was considered the only “sure thing” in the draft.  He was selected #2 overall, and some thought that he might be the #1 overall pick.  Gallery was selected ahead of Larry Fitzgerald, Ben Roethlisberger, Philip Rivers, Sean Taylor, DeAngelo Hall, Shawn Andrews, and Steven Jackson.  It just goes to show that there is no such thing as a sure thing when it comes to the draft.

So go ahead and enjoy the mock drafts.  Continue to watch Mel Kiper Jr. and Todd McShay.  Just remember, they’re for entertainment purposes only.

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2009 bloggers’ mock draft: pick #6

March 09, 2009 By: Admin Category: Draft/Free Agency

Steelers Today has hooked up with 31 other NFL bloggers from around the country to do a bloggers’ mock draft.  All 32 NFL teams are represented in the mock draft.

For more details on the bloggers’ mock draft, click here.

With the sixth pick of the 2009 NFL Draft the Cincinnati Bengals blog Bengal Stripes selects…

Jason Smith, offensive tackle, Baylor

Don’t expect the phone to ring very much in the Bengals’ war room and if it does I don’t expect anyone to answer it.

If Jason Smith falls to Cincinnati at No. 6, there will be no complaints from any coach, player or fan in the Queen City when the Bengals gobble him up.

Ever since the combine, Smith has climbed up draft boards due to his excellent interviews and also because Alabama OT Andre Smith’s early exit from the event last month.

In the 2009 NFL Draft, the Bengals are in a unique position in that they need everything.

However, the team needs an offensive tackle more than ever after cutting longtime starting right tackle Willie Anderson before the start of the 2008 season.

On the other side, Cincinnati’s left tackle Levi Jones hasn’t been the same player fans fell in love with him in the early portion of this decade. Through his first four seasons with the Bengals Jones played in 63 of Cincinnati’s 64 regular season games, including 60 of which he started. The last three seasons, Jones played in 31 of the team’s 48 regular season games and started only 28.

On top of all that, last year’s franchise player Stacy Andrews signed a long-term deal to play with his bro in Philadelphia on the first day of free agency.

If the season would start today, it would appear that 2008 fourth-round pick Anthony Collins would be the starter at left tackle and left guard Andrew Whitworth would probably start at right tackle.

Nate Livings would then take Whitworth’s old spot at guard, with a mystery man filling in at center.

It is pretty obvious that the Bengals o-line is the team’s messiest area.

Getting Smith would instantly would upgrade Cincinnati.

The draft results so far are shown below.  Click on the individual pick to read the blogger’s rationale for his selection.

1. Detroit Lions:  Mathew Stafford, QB (Georgia)
2. St. Louis Rams: Eugene Monroe, OT (Virginia)

3. Kansas City Chiefs: Aaron Curry, LB (Wake Forest)
4. Seattle Seahawks: Michael Crabtree, WR (Texas Tech)
5. Cleveland Browns: Rey Maualuga, LB (Southern California)
6. Cincinnati Bengals: Jason Smith, OT (Baylor)

The Oakland Raiders are on the clock.

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