After all these years, after all the whining I’ve done for the Broncos to pick a defensive tackle in the first round, they finally went and did it.
So you’d think I’d be excited as hell.
I'm only halfway there, and perhaps it's not because I'm so down on Sylveser Williams, as much as I was hoping the Broncos would move up and grab Star Lotulelei or Sharrif Floyd as they fell down the board.
After years of unmet expectations that the Broncos would take a defensive tackle atop their draft classes, they finally did so on Thursday night, when it was least anticipated. Denver went with a former reclamation project at #28, stealing North Carolina defensive tackle Sylvester Williams.
Williams played only one year of high school ball, and when no colleges came calling on the recruiting trail, he assumed his career had come to an end. So he traded the gridiron for working in a factory making radiator parts for trucks.
Updated 4/27/13 11:51am ET
Ted Bartlett evaluates draft-eligible prospects in his spare time, among a number of activities he pursues, including managing an accounting team, golf, studying for the CPA exam, insulting various religious figures in writing, and generally, staying ahead of more than a few curves. During the 2012 NFL Draft, he wiped the passion off of Jeff Legwold's face by nailing the Derek Wolfe pick, when Jeff had never even heard of him. Ted also focuses on the NFL's business and legal environment, offensive and defensive schemes, going off on unrelated tangents, and all 32 teams in the NFL. Follow along as he offers his instant analysis of tonight's NFL Draft.
As we often do on the most news-heavy of days, we'll be tracking pre-draft speculation here. It will be updated throughout the day, so check back often!
I'd say 50-50 the Broncos trade back. They do not have a trade in place now. Probably not until the 20s will trade calls get serious.— Mike Klis (@MikeKlis) April 25, 2013
Updated 6:27pm ET
After watching film until I had become one with the monitor and clicker, I finally threw in the towel as far as writing full pieces on the draft. As is ever the case, there were a few people I couldn’t get to and several stories that asked to be told, but I lost the race with time and health. Here are some of the players that I still thought were worth writing about:
Living out here in California, I watched a lot of Datone Jones’s work for UCLA. He's a very impressive player, and his physical skills are not in question. He’s got a decent explosion, he’s got good size and strength, and his technique is coming along well. I like him. Some mocks have linked him to Denver, and with good reason, especially following the Dumervil departure debacle.
I bomb atomically, Socrates’ philosophies and hypotheses can’t define how I be dropping these mockeries.
Happy Tuesday, friends, and welcome to my fourth annual Rational Actor Mock Draft. This has tended to be the only bit of mockery that we do at IAOFM each year, and there’s a simple reason for that – any douchebag with a keyboard and Kiper-style hair cream can do a mock draft, and most of them do. Then they each do 64 versions of it throughout the spring. NFL mockeries comprise about 13% of the internet this time of the year.
Well, this is different. In this exercise, I play the GM of each team, and do things that are rational for the situation each team faces. Basically, Mel Kiper started jocking my style with this last year, and he did it again this year. His is only three rounds, though, and mine is four.
DT Sharrif Floyd (6), QB Tyler Bray (68), LB Kiko Alonso (104)
The Browns strengthen their defense with the selections of Floyd and Alonso. I think Floyd could pair with Phil Taylor and really make them difficult to run against inside. I also see Floyd as giving them some interior pass rush that they haven't really had in a long time.
Bray is talented, and I think he's an excellent fit for Norv Turner's downfield throwing offense. He just needs to grow up, and learn to be a professional. The word out of Knoxville is that he was an entitled glory-boy diva there.
OT Eric Fisher (5), DE Tank Carradine (36), CB Blidi Wreh-Wilson (65), OG David Quessenberry (128), RB Christine Michael (132)
For the Lions, this is a needs-based class that manages not to really reach anywhere. Fisher and Quessenberry can start on their OL right away, and help protect Matthew Stafford, who they've allowed to get hit way too much.
Carradine isn't the pass rusher that Cliff Avril was, but he can play LDE for the Lions in base situations, at least.
Wreh-Wilson is a good player to add to their CB mix, which has a bunch of nickelback types at this point.
Michael has talent, but the reputation of being an unfocused clown. He should fit right in with the Lions.
Margus Hunt, aka ‘The Eastern Block’, is one of the most colorful stories in this year’s draft. His journey from being a Estonian junior track and field champion to a potential NFL defensive end is compelling.
Hunt also has the kind of body that’s often referred to as a ‘freak of nature’ - he’s 6-8 and 277 pounds, has an 92-inch wingspan, runs like a safety, and is incredibly athletic. He’s also very new to the sport, having only begun his training in it in 2009. He has a reputation as one of the hardest workers around.
When I turned on the film, Hunt’s good and bad sides quickly became crystal clear. Eventually, two contests really stood out in my mind. His good side was clearly demonstrated in the 2012 Hawaii Bowl against Fresno State; the 2012 game against TCU showed off his weaknesses.
As they look to fill the void created by Elvis Dumervil's departure, it was reported last week that the Broncos have been researching Florida State defensive end Cornellius "Tank" Carradine.
But if Denver is to acquire the pass rusher, they may have to move up from the #28 pick, following an impressive workout today by the 6-4, 276-pounder.
His senior season was cut short by a torn ACL suffered in late November, but an intense rehabilitation with the same trainer who helped Adrian Peterson to his remarkable 2012 comeback season has Carradine nearly back to form.