Jason Taylor to the fins?

April 3, 2009

Not so fast. 

It has been a pretty rampant rumor that Taylor is destined to go back to Miami, however the dolphins have stated they prefer to wait until after the draft to make a move.  While Taylor has made it clear he doesn’t want to take part in an offseason program, that doesn’t mean he won’t sign with another team (the pats?) before the Dolphins are ready to bring him back in. 

Jeff Ireland has admitted there is an obvious possibility that Taylor could return to Miami however he would not state how much interest Miami actually has in that scenario.  In my opinion I don’t see him heading back to Miami unless he is willing to lower his salary demands. 

And just to fan the flames of Taylor to Miami a sure thing,  it has been reported that the former feud between Parcells and Taylor has been completely forgotten and no longer any issue.  Though I’d much rather see Taylor in a Patriots uniform… I’d also like the Redskins to be exposed for the completely wreckless franchise they are.  Giving up a high draft pick for a guy they cut after one, piss poor year, before he heads back to his former team and resumes dominating. 

When will Dan Snyder realize what it takes to build a quality franchise?

My guess?  The same time Al Davis no longer looks like he wants to suck the blood straight out of your neck.

Straight out of 30 Days of night, Raiders Al Davis wants you to know he knows how to build a team!

Straight out of 30 Days of night, Raiders Al Davis wants you to know he knows how to build a team!


Blue Dock Mock 22-32

April 3, 2009

Finally the last piece of our mock.  Though there has been quite a lot of activity (the cutler trade and raji smoking the reefer) berman and myself have agreed we would not change our drafts at this point. 

There are scorpion bowls at stake here so this is serious business.

22 Minnesota

Alex – Hakeem Nicks, WR, North Carolina

Their defense is top notch, and after missing on Troy Williamson and the jury still out on Sidney Rice, they need to give themselves one more weapon for an offense that has let the team down despite the presence of Adrian Peterson.  Whoever wins the “QB competition” (Sage, no doubt) needs another target to throw to.  If the passing game can become a factor, it will allow Peterson to run wild.

While there is risk that Nicks is already overweight and lacks top-flight speed, he has sure hands and had outstanding numbers for the Tar Heels.  His Junior season, he had 68 receptions for 1,222 yards and 12 touchdowns.  This is a high-risk, high-reward pick for Minnesota but I think it will pay off.

Andy –

Percy Harvin, WR, FLA –
Minnesota is in desperate need of a playmaker.  Harvin will provide that spark this team has been missing and immediately give Minnesota a threat other than ALL DAY Adrian Peterson.

 

23 New England

Alex – Clay Matthews, OLB, USC

With a need at the position and the family pedigree, Matthews is the pick for the Patriots.  Critics point to the fact that he didn’t start for the Trojans until the third game of this season, but that sort of stuff doesn’t bother Belicheck (remember a certain Trojan that didn’t start for them at all?  Bill does.)  Matthews only received one scholarship offer coming out of high school, and had to work hard to walk on at USC.  Belickheck loves hard workers more than he cares about statistics.  Matthews is a smart, sure-tackling prospect that will fill a need and contribute early in his career for the Patriots.

Andy – Clay Matthews, OLB, USC –
Though I could see Cushing or Laurinitis being the pick here, I’m going with Matthews.  Matthews has the bloodlines to be great, and most likely a more than adequate knowledge of the nfl ways.  Something Belicheck will love to work with.  The rumors regarding the steroid use could stir this up a bit, but I’m not buying it yet.

 

 

24 Atlanta

Alex – Vontae Davis, CB, Illinois

Freak of an athlete, just like his brother Vernon.  But like his brother, he might just be an athlete and not a football player.  He can contribute in the return games, and shows the ability to play a good corner.  Whether or not it translates to the NFL is the question.  Strong tackler who can become what DeAngelo Hall  was supposed to be, a shutdown corner.

The only other option here is if a tackle drops or possibly Brandon Pettigrew, the TE.

Andy – Brian Cushing, OLB, USC –
Loss of Boley and Brooking in the offseason makes this an easy pick for Atlanta.  However, Pettigrew could also be the pick here, giving Ryan an added threat over the middle. 

 

 

25 Miami

Alex – Alphonso Smith, CB, Wake Forrest

This senior is the career leader in interceptions for the Demon Deacons, with 21.  He’s an athlete that would fit in on a defense that lacks skill in the defensive backfield.  Parcells will like that he doesn’t just cover the pass, but will come up to stop the run too.  After having solidified the safety position, cornerback is the biggest need on this team, especially given the talent the AFC East has at WR.  If Miami wants to keep contending, they need to make a pick like this.

Andy – Vontae Davis, CB, Illinois –
The Dolphins would probably like to take a WR here but the value of grabbing Vontae Davis this late is too much to pass on at another very weak position for the over achieving Fins. 

 

 

26 Baltimore

Alex – Darius Butler, CB, UConn

While they have a need at WR, this division is based on defense.  He started for 4 years and is a ball-hawk.  He is fast and can make big hits, a staple of the Ravens D.  After losing McCallister and Rolle, the Ravens need to add depth to the position.  Butler will instantly start at nickel and could push Fabian Washington in a year.

Andy – Kenny Britt, WR, Rutgers –
Baltimore is another one of many teams that need a solid WR.  Britt probably isn’t the playmaker they desperately need, but he will help improve a weak crop of wr’s that the Ravens currently have.

 

 

27 Indianapolis

Alex – Evander Hood, DT, Missouri

A continuous weak spot for the Colts defense, they need to address the defensive tackle position.  After giving up a league worst 167 yards per game and 5.1 yards per carry, Hood is a much needed pick.  He is a strong, physical tackle who can also help with the pass rush.

Despite the loss of Marvin Harrison, the Colts must address their defense and Hood is the perfect person to help.

Andy – Peria Jerry, DT, Ole Miss –
The Colts desperately need a run stopping DT.  Peria at this point in the draft is a great value for the colts and they will jump on the chance to draft him.  Though if gone, look for the Colts to spoil the golden boy (Peyton Manning) with one of the WR’s.

 

 

28 Philadelphia (from Carolina)

Alex – Knowshon Moreno, RB, Georgia

They need reassurance behind Brian Westbrook, who hasn’t been able to hold up and is turning 30 this year.  While most people predict a bigger back to compliment Westbrook, I think the Eagles need to get his replacement.  Moreno is fast, able to hit the cut-back, and can catch passes.  The fact that he faced the nation’s top competition in the SEC ensures he’s ready to face the NFC East.

Andy – William Beatty, OT, UCONN –
Philly needs help on the line.  Andy Reid is doing his best to convince everyone that they are set with the moves they have made on the offensive line this offseason.  They however, are most likely a smoke screen.  This is a definite need area for the Eagles.

 

 

29 New York Giants

Alex – Kenny Britt, WR, Rutgers

New York picks the hometown kid from Jersey.  The Giants have a good and deep defense, and despite the loss of Derrick Ward, have depth at running back.  With the uncertainty regarding Plaxico Burress, the Giants need to find help for Eli.  Since they can’t make him grow some balls, they can give him a big target to underthrow on the field.

At 6′3, Britt can give them the tall receiver they lost in Burress.  He’s a tough guy who can withstand a big hit, an important characteristic needed in the NFC East.  With his size, he is a red zone threat.  The Giants have to go receiver with this pick, but you can never rule out defensive line depth, where they already have 100 guys.

Andy – Robert Ayers, DE, Tennessee –
This is a great value at this point for the G-Men who are always looking for a defensive playmaker.  Though I made this pick before they released Plax, and without a true #1 WR on the roster, I would not be surprised to see them grab a WR.

 

 

30 Tennessee

Alex – Percy Harvin, WR, Florida

One of the most explosive players in the draft, Harvin can contribute to the team in many ways.  The receiver corp is still weak, despite the signing of Nate Washington from Pittsburgh.  Washington is a deep threat, and they need a sure-handed receiver to do the little things.  Harvin does it all, making all the catches while still being able to go over the top.  The only question is if any of their quarterbacks can get the ball to him.

Also, he’ll provide them an explosive option in the return game, which they’ve lacked since PacMan made it rain.  The only knock on him is his size, which has caused him to get banged up in the past.  But Tennessee isn’t a pass-first team, so they can afford to take a risk on him.

Andy – James Laurinaitis, ILB, Ohio State –
Laurinaitis plays with his heart on his sleeve.  The Titans organization loves that…unless it’s their franchise qb…and he’s threatening to kill himself.  They don’t like that.

 

 

31 Arizona

Alex – Beanie Wells, RB, Ohio State

I personally like Donald Brown more, but Beanie is the pick here.  Whisenhunt has been dying to have a strong, physical running game since he arrived a few years ago.  Edge already has his bags packed and we saw that Timmy Hightower is not the answer as the primary back.  Beanie was a physical player at Ohio State, sometimes so much that he got hurt more often than he should.  He doesn’t catch passes, but Hightower can pick up those responsibilities.  Beanie can give the Wiz the punishing, downhill runner he’s been craving.  In addition to his strength and toughness, he has top-end speed in the open-field.  It’s scary to think how good this offense could be with a good running game.

Andy – Chris Wells, RB, Ohio State –
Hightower is not the answer for the future, and it will be damn near impossible for the Cards to pass on Beanie at this point.  They have a lot of other need areas and would probably like to see a defensive playmaker at LB or DE fall to them, but the elite prospects at those positions should be off the board here.

 

 

32 Pittsburgh

Alex – William Beatty, OT, UConn

After losing Marvel Smtih to the 49ers, Pitt will draft for offensive line depth.  But I think Beatty can push Willie Colon or Max Starks for the job if they struggle like they have in the past.  Beatty was the key to the nation’s leading rushing offense at UConn in 2008.  Also a very good pass rusher, he will give the league’s most sacked passer more time make a play.  Although that doesn’t mean that Big Ben won’t keep holding the ball too long and getting hit.

Andy – Alphonso Smith, CB, Wake Forest –
They need an OT, but after the large amount of OT’s that have already been drafted, I don’t anticipate Pitt reaching for one here unless it’s someone they really like.  Look for them to replace the loss of Mcfadden with a very physical player who fits well with the Steelers mentality.

 


Burress Released; Now What?

April 3, 2009

Today the NY Giants released Plaxico Burress, after a tumultuous season which ended with Plax shooting himself in the leg.  Per reports, NY offered Burress a restructured contract that would have addressed the team’s grievance against the gun-toting receiver and ensured he stayed on the roster for the upcoming season.  Plax declined and the team immediately cut him.

Quick summary of events that led to this:

  • Plax missed several practices after signing a brand-new long-term contract, encurring fines.
  • Plax arrived late for several other practices, encurring fines.
  • Police were called to Plax’s home due to a domestic dispute, no charges were filed.
  • Plax shot himself in the leg at a club in late November.  The team suspended him for the remainder of the season for “conduct detrimental to the team”
  • NYG withheld $1M bonus due in December, citing the suspension as just cause.
  • Burress is currently negotiating a plea agreement with the state of New York due to several gun charges.

New York never wanted him back.  That was obvious from day one.  They always left the door slightly open for a return, but it never seemed that management wanted him to return.  Perhaps they grew wary of his actions after several indiscrestions.  From the sounds of it, the restructured contract ensured the Giants would keep the $1M they withheld from him in December.  Coach Coughlin was sick of dealing with the immature Burress.

So that leaves us here:  What does Plax do now?

He got his trial for gun charges suspended, most likely to negotiate a plea deal.  The max jail time is 3.5 years, and reports say that he is trying to avoid jail time.  Legal experts say that jail time is a guarantee and NY prosecuters are not expected to do the star any favors.  NY has some of the most strict gun laws in the country and they are said to want to make an example out of Burress.  But for the sake of arguement, let’s assume he’ll see the football field at some point in ’09.  Where does he end up?   Here’s my take:

  • Chicago – Their only early pick in this year’s draft is in the 2nd round.  They need help at WR, but also S and CB.  Their receiver corp is terrible and they just spent a bounty on Cry Baby Cutler.  He needs someone to throw to and Burress is still a great receiver.
  • Baltimore – Ray Lewis killed 2 people at a Super Bowl party and he’s the face of the franchise.  Maybe Plax can become “born-again” after giving himself a flesh wound.  The Ravens have a strong veteran system set-up that might be able to keep him in check.  And Flacco’s targets are still not that great so he could use him.
  • Philly – The team says they are set at receiver, but anybody who’s seen them knows that McNabb needs a big target.  They never effectively replaced Owens from the Super Bowl season.  Curtis and Jackson are good players, but they are tiny.  Burress is a 6’5″ beast.  The Eagles are always in contention every year, so they can afford to sit and wait for Burress to get back on the field, after jail and a Goodell suspension.
  • New England – Just kidding, but I’m waiting for the media to suggest this and run with it.  Aren’t the Pat’s linked to every star in the league, just because we’re nasty?  We piss excellence, and every player wants to play for us.  The media will point to Moss and Corey Dillon as the fact that Belicheck can change troubled players.  Let’s get this straight;  they didn’t shoot anyone, let alone themselves.  This is not happening.
  • Maimi – A real possibility.  They have a need for a big receiver opposite Ginn.  I could see them signing him to a one year contract with stipulations forcing Burress to behave to get paid.  Would Parcells do it?  Maybe, because he’s not coaching “the player” in this scenario, so he can pass the buck.  Burress’ only hope would be that Ronnie Brown is throwing it from the Wildcat, because Chad couldn’t hit him deep to save his life.
  • Bengals – Burress has the rap sheet and character issues required for consideration by the Bungles.  Yeah they signed Coles, but since when has common sense ever entered Cincy’s mind?  Exactly.
  • Jacksonville – It seems as this is the 10th consecutive year they’ve needed a number 1 receiver.  They have several needs and this could fill one.  But who knows what they’ll do?  Del Rio got rid of lots of bad chemistry players this off-season and after being burned by signing Jerry Porter last year, they are trying to avoid that again.
  • Oakland – Al Davis likes speed.  He doesn’t care about character.  Plaxico has lots of one and little of the other.  I think its a match made in heaven.  Especially because Goodell probably never wants to see Plax play again (he hates thugs) and Big Al hates the league.  Davis can give the league the finger while actually improving his team.  This needs to happen.
  • Dallas – Nope.  While any other year this would be a possibility, I think that Jerry Jones is actually giving this “team chemistry” thing a try.  I wouldn’t rule it out down the line though.
  • Tennessee – A forgotten team.  They need help at receiver and Plax fits the bill.  But coach Fisher values character and I think he’d be hesitant to get involved with him.  But he’d fill a need.

Quick hits:

  • Michael Vick says he was immature to engage in dog-fighting and it was irresponsible to kill dogs.  Seriously?  Immaturity is showing up late to work, handing in homework late, paying a credit card bill late.  It is not buying a compound for the sole reason to breed and fight pitbulls.  Irresponsible to kill dogs?  This guy has obviously not learned anything from his time in jail.  He’s still a sick S.O.B. and he won’t play in the league this year.  There’s no way that Goodell gets burned by this d-bag again.  But he will play in 2010 and there will be bidding for his services.  He had skill, we’ll find out if he still has it next year.
  • Cutler has beef with his new offensive coordinator, Ron Turner.  Apparently when Turner was the head coach at Univ. of Illinois and Cry Baby Cutler was a senior in h.s. he was promised a scholarship.  And then Illinois landed another qb and rescinded the offer.  That’s Cutler’s story.  Turner denies ever offering him a scholarship.  I love this already.  Cutler is a bitch and he needs drama.  Keep it coming big guy
  • What’s with the drug test results getting leaked? Raji was leaked yesterday, and now Cushing and Matthews have supposedly popped positive.  While I think they are completely wrong to have tested positive in a test they knew was coming, I think the league has a serious problem on their hands.  These test results are not supposed to be public knowledge.  Medical information should be confidential and most definitely not released to the media.  Especially before the teams get the official reports.  The league needs to fix this immediately.  But the players should never have tested positive in the first place.
    Update – Cushing and Matthews apparently tested positive for steroids, while Raji, Vontae Davis and Percy Harvin have tested positive for marijauna.  If true, all are idiots.  College players are expecting a drug test at the combine.  It is incredibly dumb to engage in these decisions.  That said, at least Cushing and Matthews partook in something that will benefit them.  Steroids at least make some sense.  But weed?  How is that helping anybody?  Dumb, dumb, dumb.