Mock Draft FINAL (Ginger King)

Let’s get it on!

Round 1 Team Pick Position
1 Cleveland Browns Sam Darnold (USC) QB
2 New York Giants Saquon Barkley (PSU) RB
3 New York Jets Baker Mayfield (Oklahoma) QB
4 Cleveland Browns Bradley Chubb (NC State) DE
5 Denver Broncos Quenton Nelson (Notre Dame) OL
6 Indianapolis Colts Minkah Fitzpatrick (Alabama) CB
7 Tampa Bay Bucs Derwin James (FSU) S
8 Chicago Bears Roquan Smith (Georgia) LB
9 San Francisco 49ers Mike McGlinchy (Notre Dame) OL
10 Oakland Raiders Vita Vea (Washington) DT
11 Miami Dolphins Tremaine Edmunds (VA Tech) LB
12 Buffalo Bills Josh Allen (Wyoming) QB
13 Washington Redskins Da’Ron Payne (Alabama) DT
14 Green Bay Packers Calvin Ridley (Alabama) WR
15 Arizona Cardinals Josh Rosen (UCLA) QB
16 Baltimore Ravens D.J. Moore (Maryland) WR
17 Los Angeles Chargers Josh Jackson (Iowa) CB
18 Seattle Seahawks Denzel Ward (OSU) CB
19 Dallas Cowboys Courtland Sutton (SMU) WR
20 Detroit Lions Harold Landry (Boston College) DE
21 Cincinnati Bengals Frank Ragnow (Arkansas) OL
22 Buffalo Bills Marcus Davenport (UTSA) DE
23 New England Patriots Leighton Vander Esch (Boise St.) LB
24 Carolina Panthers James Daniels (Iowa) OL
25 Tennessee Titans Billy Price (OSU) OL
26 Atlanta Falcons Isaiah Wynn (Georgia) OL
27 New Orleans Saints Lamar Jackson (Louisville) QB
28 Pittsburgh Steelers Rashaan Evans (Alabama) LB
29 Jacksonville Jaguars Jaire Alexander (Louisville) CB
30 Minnesota Vikings Will Hernandez (UTEP) OL
31 New England Patriots Christian Kirk (Texas A&M) WR
32 Philadelphia Eagles Mike Hughes (UCF) CB

Instant Analysis:  Alright, alright, alright.  My final mock draft.  Changes galore.  A lot of noise about Baker to Cleveland at #1, but I just don’t buy it.  This has smokescreen written all over it, trying to get the Jets to trade up for Broadway Baker.  If Cleveland stays put, this pick has to be Darnold.  He’s the most complete package of all the quarterbacks in the Draft.  Maybe Roid Rage will have the balls to go with Baker (he’s still living off his fame of DHB at 7) but my money’s on the Browns picking the surest thing.

While I think the Browns will use smart money, I don’t think the Giants will.  Smart money says take Bradley Chubb, shore up your defense, and then take a running back in the second or third round.  However, I think the Giants are going all-in.  By that, I mean give Eli Manning the last remaining offensive piece for one more run (let’s be honest, Eli’s got 2 at least two years left, he’s 37 people, that’s not old (neither is 39, btw)).  Gettleman wants a gold jacket player…that’s Saquon.  Yes, yes, I know, you can find great value at running back in later rounds.  Le’Veon Bell (2nd Round), Shady McCoy (2nd Round), Alvin Kamara (3rd Round), and last year’s leading rusher, Kareem Hunt (3rd Round).  However, there’s also Todd Gurley, Ezekiel Elliott, and Leonard Fournette, all picked in the Top 10 and all of whom instantly elevated their team to the playoffs.  Yes, you could take Chubb, and then hope that Sony Michelle or Derrius Guice are there in Round 2.  But fuck it, throw caution (reason and logic) to the wind and roll them dice!

Can you imagine???

Elsewhere, both Josh Rosen and Josh Allen slip out of the Top 10, but not too far.  Bills Mafia will have no problems with Josh’s tweets, and will welcome him with open, drunken, arms.  Also, if the Bills can get Davenport at 22, that would be an ideal first round.  I think Arizona is as far as Josh Rosen will fall.  My concerns with him are less his millennial outlook on life (read: spoiled brat hated by his peers) and more about his injury history.  Two concussions in a year and shoulder surgery.  That’s what’s going to make him fall.

Wait, you mean people will hold you accountable for things you say online? I’ll be right back…

Ok folks, that’s it from me.  Time to go to my war room dive bar and get ready with some game tape chicken wings and Coors Light.  We’re hours away from the biggest (non-sporting) sporting event of the year!  We’ve been so geeked up about the actual draft, we forgot to even mention that it’s in Dallas!  You know Jerrah will spare no expense…at the very least expect a Rhinestone stage and (multiple) Elvis impersonators.

Mock Draft 1.0 (Roidrage)

I know I’ve got my work cut out for me to catch up with Ginger King, but don’t be fooled, despite the 1.0-tag this is like my 17th rough draft.  The Big Board is set, but there is so much fluidity and fragility in sorting out the noise and honing in these mocks.  Let’s get right to it:

Round 1 Team Pick Position
1 Cleveland Browns Myles Garrett (Texas A&M) DE
2 San Francisco Mitchell Trubisky (UNC) QB
3 Chicago Bears Solomon Thomas (Stanford) DE
4 Jacksonville Jaguars Leonard Fournette (LSU) RB
5 Tennessee Titans Mike Williams (Clemson) WR
6 NY Jets Jamal Adams (LSU) S
7 Los Angeles Chargers Reuben Foster (Alabama) LB
8 Carolina Panthers Christian McCaffrey (Stanford) RB
9 Cincinnati Bengals Derek Barnett (Tennessee) DE

The future Face of somebody’s Franchise

10 Buffalo Bills Gareon Conley (OSU) CB
11 New Orleans Saints O.J. Howard (Alabama) TE
12 Cleveland Browns Malik Hooker (OSU) S
13 Arizona Cardinals Patrick Mahomes (Texas Tech) QB
14 Philadelphia Eagles Haasan Reddick (Temple) DE
15 Indianapolis Colts Jonathon Allen (Alabama) DT
16 Baltimore Ravens Kevin King (Washington) CB
17 Washington Redskins Marshon Lattimore (OSU) CB
18 Tennessee Titans Tra’Davious White (LSU) CB
19 Tampa Bay Bucs Garett Bolles (Utah) OL
20 Denver Broncos Charles Harris (Missouri) LB
21 Detroit Lions Corey Davis (Western Michigan) WR
22 Miami Dolphins Jarad Davis (Florida) LB
23 New York Giants Jabrill Peppers (Michigan) S/CB
24 Oakland Raiders David Njoku (Miami) TE
25 Houston Texans Zach Cunningham (Vanderbilt) LB

HYBRID

26 Seattle Seahawks Ryan Ramcyk (Wisconsin) OL
27 Kansas City Chiefs Deshaun Watson (Clemson) QB
28 Dallas Cowboys Obi Melifonwu (UConn) S/CB
29 Green Bay Packers Joe Mixon (Oklahoma) RB
30 Pittsburgh Steelers Takk McKinley (UCLA) DE
31 Atlanta Falcons Cam Robinson (Alabama) OL
32 New Orleans Saints Dalvin Cook (FSU) RB

Instant Analysis:  Why wouldn’t the 49ers take Mitch?  New GM, new Coach who fancies himself a QB-guru and a Depth Chart populated with the likes of Brian Hoyer and Matt Simms.  Yikes.  What, I’m suppose to believe they are going to wait around to hopefully land Kirk Cousins.  Yeah, no.  They lock up their Franchise QB right out of the gate and have the rest of the draft to go BPA.

Obviously, I’m not a big believer in Ohio State CB Marshon Lattimore;  he plays too stiff and I will struggle with faster WRs at the next level.  That said, he could easily land in the top-10.

I have no idea where to slot Jabrill Peppers.  He is a tremendous athlete and a really good pure football player.  But where exactly do you play him?  I think he’ll go in the 20-30 range as a luxury pick for some team.

If you’re keeping track at home: that’s 2 RBs in the Top 10 (4 total in the 1st Round);  1 QB in the Top 10 (3 total in the 1st Round).

Oh, this guy sneaks into the backend of the first:

Go down swinging!

There’s no sugar-coating this.  This is disgraceful.  Just awful.  If a team drafts him, regardless of the round, or signs him as an UDFA, there is going to be a backlash.  Your PR department will be working some overtime.  Buuuut, our attention span is short and talent has a way of helping us “forgive and forget”.  Talent-wise, Mixon is a Top-10 pick, so I feel the end of the first already has a hefty discount baked in.

NFC CONFERENCE CHAMPIONSHIP

It's go time!

It’s go time!

While the AFC may be a foregone conclusion (Roid Rage does his best, but if even he is picking the Patriots, then it’s a sure thing), the NFC is wide open.  Both teams are playing top level football.  The Falcons dismantled the Seahawks last week, and Green Bay won an instant classic against the Cowboys (thank you).  Is there any doubt that kicker is the most intense, pressure-packed job in all of sports?

Wait, can we talk about that Dallas/Green Bay again for a second?  That’s everything you want in a game.  Home team down 15 in the fourth quarter, they claw back, tie it up, and then Green Bay hits a pair of 50+ yarders.  And that throw and catch.  Hot damn.

Damn.

Damn.

The best part?  All of these videos (and believe me, there are tons of them)

Seriously, I could (and did) spend a whole day watching the misery of others passionate football fans commiserate a loss.  What does that say about me?  And then seeing this tweet from Skip Bayless, sad, sad, Cowboys homer.

Is there anything more annoying than a pompous sports writer who won’t accept defeat?  Joe Buck?  Just kidding Joe, we love you.

We love you, Joe!

We love you, Joe!

Anyway, let’s get right to the matchup, which should be a good one.

Green Bay at Atlanta (+6), Sunday 3:05 pm

Three words:  Bet.  The.  Over.  What’s that, you say?  The O/U is 61?  I don’t care.  Bet.  The.  Over.  Need proof.  In each of their last 5 games, Atlanta and Green Bay have scored at least 30 points (Atlanta topped 40 twice).  Not surprisingly, the teams are a combined 10-0 over those games.

And the scoring will not let up come game time.  Forget what you’ve heard that defense wins championships.  Both teams are ranked in the 20’s in overall defense.  Sure, that’s a risky strategy that’s ultimately unsuccessful, regardless of the sport (see 2016 Golden State Warriors), but hey, it’s worked so far for both teams.  Why stop now?  Ride that pony.

Get it?

Get it?

On paper, the edge goes to Atlanta.  They have the most offensive balance (read:  they actually have a running game).  Don’t call Devonta Freeman a change of pace back.  He’s a legit #1 back, and he and Tevin Coleman form the best 1-2 punch in the league.  That keeps the defenses up front, which opens up the passing game for Matty Ice (it’s cool to call him that again).  And that passing game is more than just Julio Jones, although you don’t really need much more.  Mohammed Sanu is a solid #2, and we love what Taylor Gabriel brings.  He’s the real X-factor in their offense, and he tied with Julio for most receiving touchdowns.

For Green Bay, it’s all about Aaron Rodgers.  Everyone wants to talk about his home life, and his estrangement from his parents (note:  I’d choose Olivia Munn over my family too), but Aaron Rodgers is the hottest quarterback in the game.

Totally worth never talking to your parents anymore.

Totally worth never talking to your parents anymore.

The Packers are riding an 8-game winning streak, during which Rodgers has thrown 21 touchdowns passes and only 1 interception.  Daddy may not love him anymore, but who needs your parent’s approval with numbers like that.  Papa don’t preach!

Replacement Dad.

Replacement Dad.

Oh yeah, these two played each other, Week 8, in Atlanta.  The Falcons won 33-32, on a late touchdown pass to Sanu.  Green Bay was up for most of the game, but Atlanta scored with 31 seconds left to squeak out a one point victory.  In that game, the Packers shut down Julio, who only had 3 catches for 29 yards.  The Pack will have to contain Julio again.  He’s got to be doubled plus you got to keep Clay and linebackers up front to respect the run.  That will leave lots of open space in the middle and one-on-one coverage for Sanu and Gabriel (nerd alert:  I love the chess match aspect of the NFL).

So who will win?  This one is tough to call, but there’s a reason we’re paid the big bucks.  To make these sorts of decisions.  Because we’re super reliable.  Like, it’s 3 in the morning.  Do you know where our kids are?  Probably at the neighbor’s house.  Anyway, we just can’t trust the Falcons.  Kyle Shanahan already has one foot in San Fran (good luck with that clusterfuck of an organization) and [NFL conspiracy theory alert] what better way to get ratings up than to have the Packers back in the Super Bowl, the beloved franchise from the heartland.  The Machine’s money is on Green Bay to win straight up.  But if you want a real bet, keep reading.

Bet of the Week [only true gamblers need read on]:  Tease the Packers and the over.  Then you get Green Bay +13 and O/U 54.  For the truly degenerate devoted, tease the Packers and the under too (+13 and O/U of 68).  Print that money, homie.  Not to toot our own horn (read: totally tooting that shit) but if you’ve been betting on our playoff picks, you’ve been cleaning up (you’re welcome).  We were 2-0 last week ATS (and straight up).  Time to start making that money!  That deck ain’t gonna pay for itself.

Final Score:  Green Bay 34, Atlanta 30

Insert Farmer's daughter fantasy.

Insert Farmer’s daughter fantasy.

DIVISIONAL WEEKEND – NFC (SATURDAY)

Wow, what a collective dud last week’s wild card games were.  All home teams won easily.  Now, things get a little trickier (unless you’re the Patriots).  Seriously, a 16 point favorite???  I hate New England.  Anyway, let’s look to today’s NFC matchup.

Seattle at Atlanta (-4.5), 4:35 p.m.

Can Atlanta finally translate regular season dominance to post-season success?  Atlanta won 7 of their last 8 and ran away with the NFC South title, and they did it with the one thing this team has lacked in past years:  balance.  You knew Julio would get his…ending the year 2nd overall in receiving yards with 1,409.   But now that have a running threat.  Devonta Freeman is a legitimate running back.  He ran for over 1,000 yards, good for 9th overall.  And, Matt Ryan had a fantasy career resurgence, throwing for 4,944 yards, bested only by Drew Brees.  Take note, NFL:  You have a Top 10 rusher, receiver, and passer.  That equals balance, and balance gets you a bye and a home playoff game.

Change of pace back my ass.

Change of pace back my ass.

You know what also helps?  Scoring a shit ton of points.  The Falcons lead the league averaging over 33 points a game.

Oh yeah, and let’s not forget the defense.  Perhaps more importantly, the Falcons have found balance defensively as well.  Vic Beasley lead the NFL with 15.5 sacks.

Interestingly, the Falcons have not been dominant at home.  They were only 5-3 at home this year, and had a better road record of 6-2.

Seattle has a losing record on the road this year.  However, they are piquing at the right time.  They looked dominant last week in their playoff win over the Lions, and found some balance of their own.  Russell Wilson threw for 2 scores, Thomas Rawls ran for 161 yards, and Doug Baldwin topped 100 receiving yards.  But they will have a much tougher task against the Falcons.  No doubt the matchup of the week will be these two:

The Machine thinks, despite Matt Ryan’s wretched 1-4 playoff record, that Atlanta just has too much firepower for the Seahawks to contain.  The Legion of Boom is down a member, and will have their hands full with Julio and Co.  The spread is set perfectly at 4.5 (it’s like these Vegas guys know what they’re doing).

Final Score:  Atlanta 28, Seattle 24

I love the South

I love the South.

WILDCARD WEEKEND – NFC (SUNDAY)

New York @ Green Bay (-5.5), Sunday, 4:40 pm

Wildcard Weekend ends with the game everyone will be watching.  Both teams enter the playoffs on the rise.  The Giants haven’t been in the playoffs in 4 years, and their defense is poised again to make another run.  Oh yeah, and this guy.

Money!

Money!

Ok one more:

You know he caught that, right?

You know he caught that, right?

If there’s any team hotter than the Giants, it’s the Packers.  At 4-6, the Pack were left for dead and everyone was wondering is this the end of Aaron Rodgers, and when will Mike McCarthy get fired.  Perhaps folks got a bit ahead of themselves, as Green Bay won their final 6 games and clinched the NFC North and a home playoff game.  And Aaron Rodgers threw 40 tds and he and Jordy Nelson are still a lethal 1-2 combo.  Once again, the discount double-check is cool.

Wait, that's not the discount double-check.

Wait, that’s not the discount double-check.

This game is going to be close.  You’ll hear a lot of the “experts” talk about how neither team runs the ball well, but that’s a bit misleading.  Sure, no one on the Giants or Packers ran for more than 600 yards this season, but the running game for both teams has improved as of late.  Last week, the Packers ran for 153 yards.  The Giants ran for 161 yards.  Establishing a running game will be important, as controlling the clock will be key.  In that department, we give the edge to the Giants.  Look out for Paul Perkins, the Giants rookie (5th round) draft pick out of UCLA.  He could be the difference maker.  For Green Bay, converted WR Ty Montgomery has stepped up huge in Eddie Lacy’s absence.

These teams played each other this year (at Green Bay) in Week 5, which seems like ages ago.  The Packers won 23-16, but the game wasn’t even that close.  Green Bay dominated, running for 147 yards, and Rodgers threw 2 touchdowns.  But throw that out the window.  We’re talking playoffs.

And while we’re talking playoffs, the edge goes to the Giants.  In each of their last two Super Bowls, the Giants won on the road in Green Bay.  Who could forget those cheeks?

Ain't nobody got time for the cold.

That’s not normal.

So who wins?  Well, we’ve talk about some of the difference makers…Rodgers, Odell, Jordy, but there’s one guy we didn’t mention yet [cue: Superman music]

eli-manning-playoffs

That’s right.  Playoff Eli.  He will be the difference maker.  The stage is perfectly set for him.  Eli’s had a so-so year, which has led many to questions whether he still has it (or ever had it), and that his role is changing to that of a game manager.  [sidenote: does any two time Superbowl MVP get more shade than Eli?]  But if Eli loves one thing, it’s proving people wrong, and the playoffs is where he’s done that.  Over his last 9 playoff games, here’s Eli’s stats:  15 tds, 4 ints, 8-1 with 2 Superbowls.  Oh yeah, and the Giants were after thoughts in both the ’07 and ’11 Superbowl runs.  We pray, hope, stay up at night wondering whether it will ever happen again, think that Eli’s got some gas left in the tank, and he and his dad bod are ready for another run to glory.

Final Score:  Giants 24, Green Bay 20

Who wants to build sandcastles?  We can use my Superbowl rings as shovels.

Who wants to build sandcastles? We can use my Superbowl rings as shovels.

Wildcard Weekend – NFC (Saturday)

 

Are you ready for some (mildly entertaining) football?

Are you ready for some (mildly entertaining) football?

Hell, yes!  We’re back, and ready to take on the New Year!  Our New Year’s resolution (drink more Coors Light) is going really well.  #achievablegoals.  And the best part about the New Year??? PLAYOFF FOOTBALL!  As usual, Roid Rage will handle the AFC (just put the Pats in already, ok?) which leaves me with the crapshoot that is the NFC.

Detroit @ Seattle (-8), Saturday, 8:15 pm

This is a game of two teams heading in different directions.  Seattle is entering the playoffs on the rise.  Let’s be clear:  Russell Wilson had a down year.  He (quietly) threw for over 4,000 yards, but threw a career high in interceptions, and also had career worst QB rating and QBR.  Reasons vary for why Russell was off this year…but The Machine knows.  Once he got a taste of the high life, his concentration suffered.

Totally understandable

Totally understandable.

But none of that matters anymore.  Except the still banging my super hot wife.  That’s continues to be pretty important.  Anyway, winners of 3 of their last 5 games, Seattle seems to have gotten their old swagger back.

And then, we did it again!

Detroit, meanwhile, got into the playoffs the wrong way.  They had a chance to make their recent struggles disappear last week, with a home game against the Packers for the NFC North.  But alas, the Lions lost (at home), which capped off a disappointing 0-3 end to the season.

Detroit seems to be stuck in the same loop (sorry, I just got done binge watching Westworld).  Every three years or so they get to the playoffs, only to be summarily beaten.  Their last 7 playoff games (dating back to 1993), the Lions are a scrappy 0-7.  Mathew Stafford has played in 2 of those games, throwing for over 300 yards in both losing efforts.  Will the Lions continue in their path of one and done playoff appearances, or will they gain consciousness, take control of their lives, and re-write their story (seriously, go watch Westworld).

If only this guy were still around...

If only this guy were still around…

We’re not buying it.  Although The Machine’s already exposed the fraud that is the 12th Man, Seattle is still tough to beat at home.  They were 7-1 at home on the year, and that one loss was a last second field goal.

Glad they kept the 12th Man an organic, fan-created idea, and didn’t go all corporate.

Here’s another fun fact:  The Lions haven’t won a road playoff game since 1957.  That’s right, since the Eisenhower administration.  And that streak’s not going to end this weekend.  Eight points is a big spread to cover in the playoffs, but we like Seattle’s chances.  Maybe it’s our East Coast bias, or our general apathy for the Mid-West, but it’s tough to get excited for this matchup.  This game will rival the Raiders/Texans for least watched playoff game.

Final Score:  Seattle 27, Detroit 17

Actual footage from last Detroit Lions road playoff win.

Actual footage from last Detroit Lions road playoff win.

The Machine’s Draft Day Drinking Game

Cheers!Can’t make it to The Machine’s Draft Day Party?  Well, that sucks for you.  But have no fear…we got your back with our play at home game.  How can you make the Draft better, you ask in amazement?  By playing The Big Red Sports Machine’s Draft Day Drinking Game.  It’s fun, it’s easy, guaranteed to impress the ladies, and you can play at home or at your favorite watering hole.  Here are the rules:

1.  Draft catchphrases.  There are certain phrases you only hear during the Draft.  Why?  We don’t know, but we love them.  For this reason alone, we give ESPN the slight lean over the NFL Network for your draft day coverage.  That, and, Kiper.  Duh, winning!

The following phrases are worth a shot of beer:

  • Raw talent
  • Off-the-field or character issues
  • Live arm
  • High motor
  • Straight line speed
  • Great Value
  • Upside
  • Best player available
  • Intangibles or Measurables
  • Trade Down
  • War Room
  • New Regime
  • Read-Option
  • Edge Rusher
  • Gets to the Second Level
  • Quick feet
  • Plays in Space
  • Advanced Stats (*new for 2016)

2.  Videos/references.  Each of these are beer-finishing worthy:

  • Reference to Mel’s hair
  • Player on-stage photo-op with family/entourage of 15+
  • Reference to Cleveland Browns front office ineptitude (cough, Trent Richardson, cough, Brandon Weedon, cough, Johnny Manziel)
  • First shot of Drew Rosenhaus in his newest client’s living room
  • First player to cry when their name is called
  • Reference to when Tom Brady was drafted (we’ll also accept Brady’s Combine picture)
  • Reference to Aaron Rodgers draft day slide
  • Video of Brady Quinn in the green room
  • Video of Bill Tobin’s infamous “who the hell is Mel Kiper?” interview during the ’94 Draft

3.  On the Clock Chug.  When your team is on the clock, you have to finish a full beer before the pick is called.  Note:  if your team trades down, they’re on the clock twice, meaning that’s two full beers.  Cowboy up, it’s the Draft!

Basically, if it doesn’t look like this than you’re probably doing it wrong…..

Beer Chug

Or this:

Beer Chug 2

Mock Draft (Roidrage 3.0)

It's Draft Week!

It’s Draft Week!

Relatively speaking its been a pretty boring week, what with the Chargers not trading their pick.  What, nobody willing to mortgage their future on the arm (or mustache) of Paxton Lynch?!  Luckily for us there are so many wild cards in this draft (Jack, Lynch, any-WR) and unresolved situations league-wide (Mo Wilkerson, Kap, Bradford) that fireworks should be a plenty throughout the draft.

Shave that thing, bro.

Shave that thing, bro.

On to the picks….

Round 1 Team Pick Position
1 LA Rams Jared Goff (Cal) QB
2 Philadelphia Eagles Carson Wentz (North Dakota St.) QB
3 San Diego Chargers Laremy Tunsil (Ole Miss) OL
4 Dallas Cowboys Joey Bosa (OSU) DE
5 Jacksonville Jaguars Jalen Ramsey (FSU) CB
6 Baltimore Ravens Ronnie Stanley (Notre Dame) OL
7 San Francisco 49ers DeForest Buckner (Oregon) DL
8 Cleveland Browns Myles Jack (UCLA) LB
9 Tampa Bay Bucs Vernon Hargreaves (Florida) CB
10 New York Giants Ezekiel Elliot (OSU) RB
Chip Kelly can't help himself. But he might not get the chance; DeForest could be the first non-QB off the board.

Chip Kelly can’t help himself. But he might not get the chance; DeForest could be the first non-QB off the board.

 

11 Chicago Bears Paxton Lynch (Memphis) QB
12 New Orleans Saints Sheldon Rankins (Louisville) DT
13 Miami Dolphins Jack Conklin (MSU) OL
14 Oakland Raiders Leonard Floyd (Georgia) LB
15 Tennessee Titans Darren Lee (OSU) LB
16 Detroit Lions Shaq Lawson (Clemson) DE
17 Atlanta Falcons Reggie Ragland (Alabama) LB
18 Indianapolis Colts Taylor Decker (OSU) OL
19 Buffalo Bills Noah Spence (Eastern Kentucky) DE
20 New York Jets William Jackson III (Houston) CB
floyd01

Mack & Floyd off the edges, lookout!

21 Washington Redskins Chris Jones (Miss St.) DT
22 Houston Texans Corey Coleman (Baylor) WR
23 Minnesota Vikings Jarran Reed (Alabama) DT
24 Cincinnati Bengals Josh Doctson (TCU) WR
25 Pittsburgh Steelers Eli Apple (OSU) CB
26 Seattle Seahawks Ryan Kelly (Alabama) OL
27 Green Bay Packers Andrew Billings (Baylor) DT
28 Kansas City Chiefs Laquan Treadwell (Ole Miss) WR
29 Arizona Cardinals Vernon Butler (Louisiana Tech) DL
30 Carolina Panthers Mackensie Alexander (Clemson) CB
31 Denver Broncos Kevin Dodd (Clemson) DE
Laquan opposite Maclin would be.....well, it would be a massive upgrade!

Laquan opposite Maclin would be…..well, it would be a massive upgrade!

 

 

Mock Draft (Ginger King 3.0)

Need more proof of the power of the Draft?  All week, the biggest stories were Kobe’s last game, and Golden State’s quest for 73 wins…until Thursday, when the LA Rams (need to get used to that again) mortgaged the future to move from 15 to 1 in a blockbuster trade with the Titans.  Suddenly, nothing else matters.

Make no mistake:  this trade affects everything.  It ensures that qbs go 1 and 2 in this draft (although Roid Rage and I differ on the order – check out his latest mock).  Biggest winner from this trade:  Paxton Lynch.  With qbs going 1 and 2, Lynch now becomes highly valuable, as the drop off in qb talent after him is significant.  Will he crack the Top 10?  Biggest loser:  Laremy Tunsil.  Plugged in as the number 1 overall for weeks and weeks, Laremy will most certainly fall from the top perch. The question is how far?

And with that, let’s get right to the action.

Round 1 Team Pick Position
1 LA Rams Jared Goff (Cal) QB
2 Cleveland Browns Carson Wentz (North Dakota St.) QB
3 San Diego Chargers Laremy Tunsil (Ole Miss) OL
4 Dallas Cowboys Jalen Ramsey (FSU) CB
5 Jacksonville Jaguars DeForest Buckner (Oregon) DE
[cue Tupac]:  California Love!!!

[cue Tupac]: California Love!!!

6 Baltimore Ravens Joey Bosa (OSU) DE
7 San Francisco 49ers Myles Jack (UCLA) LB
8 Philadelphia Eagles Ronnie Stanley (Notre Dame) OL
9 Tampa Bay Bucs Leonard Floyd (Georgia) LB
10 New York Giants Vernon Hargreaves (Florida) CB
11 Chicago Bears Ezekiel Elliot (OSU) RB
12 New Orleans Saints Paxton Lynch (Memphis) QB
13 Miami Dolphins William Jackson III (Houston) CB
14 Oakland Raiders Sheldon Rankins (Louisville) DT
15 Tennessee Titans Jack Conklin (MSU) OL
16 Detroit Lions Corey Coleman (Baylor) WR
17 Atlanta Falcons Laquan Treadwell (Ole Miss) WR
18 Indianapolis Colts Taylor Decker (OSU) OL
19 Buffalo Bills Emmanuel Ogbah (Ok St.) DE
On the rise.

On the rise.

20 New York Jets Jarran Reed (Alabama) DT
21 Washington Redskins Reggie Ragland (Alabama) LB
22 Houston Texans A’Shawn Robinson (Alabama) DT
23 Minnesota Vikings Chris Jones (Miss St.) DE
24 Cincinnati Bengals Will Fuller (Notre Dame) WR
25 Pittsburgh Steelers Eli Apple (OSU) CB
26 Seattle Seahawks Noah Spence (Eastern Kentucky) DE
27 Green Bay Packers Kenny Clark (UCLA) DT
28 Kansas City Chiefs Vernon Butler (Louisiana Tech) DT
29 Arizona Cardinals Darren Lee (OSU) LB
30 Carolina Panthers Josh Doctson (TCU) WR
31 Denver Broncos Kevin Dodd (Clemson) DE
So much depth at DT.  You can't go wrong.

So much depth at DT. You can’t go wrong.

 

Divisional Weekend – Round 2

NFL DivisionalSeattle (11-6) @ Carolina (15-1), Sunday 1:05 PM

Line: Sea +2.5 O/U 44.0

With all due respect to Russell Wilson, he’ll be the second best quarterback on the field today. If The Machine’s application is approved in time, SuperCam will definitely get our vote for MVP this year. Cam has been putting up ridiculous numbers in the passing (and running) game all season; including Week 6 at Seattle, where Newton threw a 26-yard TD dart to Greg Olsen to cap a come from behind win against the reigning NFC Champs. While Newton was picked twice in that game, he added a rushing TD along with the Olsen score, and, like all season, made big plays in big spots. He is seeing the entire field, spreading the ball to his ho-hum receiving corps, and trusting his freakish athletic ability. He’s been a force at home (to go along with 257 rushing yards + 6 rushing TDs):

homesplitUnfortunately for Cam and the Panthers, they are facing one of the hottest…and easily the luckiest…teams in the league. After being gifted a ticket to the Divisional Round, Seattle is playing with house money, so they’ve got no reason not to play free and loose. Plus, they get BeastMode back, who has a penchant for making game-changing plays in the playoffs.

Defensively, Seattle is much more average on the road than at home. Cam Chancellor has looked like a liability in coverage, as evident on the final drive last week, where he drew a 19-yard PI penalty only to get torched by Kyle Rudolph on the very next play for 24-yards. That *should* have cost the Seahawks their season. Greg Olsen should see double-digit targets and put up big numbers (he gashed the ‘Hawks this year to the tune of 7/131/1). The Panthers boast a formidable front-seven and a true lockdown corner in Josh Norman. Their athletic line backing corps should be able to contain Russell Wilson and keep him from creating outside the pocket and on broken plays, a lethal facet of his game.

Vegas basically has this one as a toss-up if it were on a neutral field. After facing a tough defense in Minnesota, and traveling across country this week to face the best team in the conference, I think Seattle’s luck runs out in Carolina.

newton gifPrediction: Carolina 20, Seattle 17

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Bengals-ScalpPittsburgh (11-6) @ Denver (12-4), Sunday 4:40 PM

Line: Pitt +7.5 O/U 41.0

If the first game is the “good” than this one promises to be the “bad and the ugly”. The Steelers come hobbling into Mile High to face dead-arm Peyton Manning. Both teams are playing for the right to get whipped by Brady and Company.

Let’s start with the home team. The Broncos formula for winning is simple: play great defense (1st in total defense, allowing only 283 yards/game), run the ball (with the uninspiring duo of CJ Anderson and Ronnie Hillman), and don’t let the quarterback lose the game for you. Peyton Manning, the first ballot Hall-of-Famer, has been physically reduced to a game-manager that got (rightfully) bench for Brock-freaking-Osweiler this season.

If you’re to believe the cockgobblers Nance and Simms, Peyton Manning’s presence sparked the running game in their Week 17 victory over the Chargers. Admittedly, we might have been a few cases of Silver Bullets deep at the time, but we’re not blind. Manning was 5/9 with 65 yards and he was launching ducks all over the field. The spark in the run game probably had more to do with San Diego’s atrocious run defense and less with Manning’s presence. But that’s just our analysis.

I liked the Steelers to represent the AFC in the Super Bowl this year. That was before Antonio Brown was decapitated and Big Ben’s arm fell off.  Adam “Pacman” Jones claimed Antonio Brown (who was clearly knocked out before he hit the ground) was faking his injury (as if the refs needed more justification to throw a flag?!) and predicted Brown would be cleared to play this weekend. Yeeeeah. Pac also thinks his Enron stock will rebound and Jupiter Ascending will take home the Oscar for best picture. We long for the days when Pacman did what Pacman does best: make it ran dolla dolla bills (and bullets) in da club. Already reduced to a running back committee of Fitzgerald Toussaint (sounds like a French painter) and Jordan Todman, Brown’s play-making ability is a huge lose. Pittsburgh will rely on young but capable wide outs Martavis Bryant and Markus Wheaton, while Heath Miller figures to be peppered with short targets.

While Brown’s injury is devastating, Roethlisberger’s busted shoulder is of greater concern. Reports out of Pittsburgh claim that Ben is driving the football with good velocity, but isn’t that exactly what you would expect reports out of Pittsburgh to say? He certainly wasn’t able to throw the ball down the field during the final drive in Cincinnati; a fact that was overshadowed by the Bengals meltdown (with an assist from Joey Porter). This isn’t exactly uncharted territory for Ben, as he annually seems to be a walking infirmary.

So who do you trust more: and banged up Big Ben or going-on-40 Peyton Manning? Manning was no good in cold-weather playoff games in his prime when he had an arm (Eli clearly got all the clutch genes). Despite how decimated the Steelers are, I have to believe they can make enough plays to keep it close. The Steelers could easily lose by a touchdown, so I love getting the ½ point hook. I’m guessing Pacman Jones likes the Broncos to run away with this game in a shootout; so give me the Steelers and the points.

Prediction: Denver 17, Steelers 12

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