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2010 NFL Draft Preview

Thursday night is the 2010 NFL Draft and the third year of the Smitty and TD connection. There are of course many others involved in turning the Falcons’ franchise around but we will stick with those at the top for the moment. The current path has looked promising with the addition of Matt Ryan in year 1 and Peria Jerry in year 2. Year 1 gets most of the attention due to the fast start and quick production while Year 2 was riddled with injuries. Regardless of the stance you take, one must not forget that the 40+ curse ended late last season (like really late).

As we prepare for the new season, both sides are the ball are possible within this year’s draft. The hole filling began with free agent signing of Dunta Robinson. We are a team that drafts on need and the current pressing needs are:

  • Outside Linebacker (OLB) – Mike Peterson was great last season providing veteran leadership, but his age is a factor and the Falcons have slowly tried to remove the Over 30 Club from the team as needed. Peterson won’t be with us many more years and that needs to be addressed.
  • Defensive End (DE) – John Abraham was a beast two seasons ago and one of the main reasons why the defense looked better than it was in 2008. 2009 was a different story and caused the secondary to be called into question on numerous occasions. We all know that Brent Grimmes just can’t do this every week. Well, maybe I believe he can.
  • Offensive Lineman (OL) – One must commend Paul Boudreau for what he has put together in order to protect Matty Ice. However, continuing the improvement is a need and possible that it will be addressed in the draft (most suggestions currently are later rounds).

Due to work and other commitments, I haven’t been able to perform my research on this year’s possibilities. I can only provide my quick impression based on what I do know and what names have popped up.

  • Brandon Graham, DE, Michigan – A majority of the mock drafts out there have the Falcons picking Graham with the number 19th overall pick. Seems like a good fit as Defensive End is the MAJOR hole in my eyes. With a strong rushing attack, the secondary will seem stronger and hopefully turnovers will increase. We have the interior of the line set with Peria and Babs. Now to just fill the outside and provide opponents with the real choice: real or artificial turf. Here’s someone’s version of his highlights.
  • Taylor Mays, S, USC – Yes, I know what you are thinking here. Mays is a safety and that was not a need list. True. But I’ve heard that some teams are interested in moving Mays to the LB position because he does not have the top level speed to play safety in the NFL. He does have the speed to be a great linebacker and who doesn’t love a good hard hitting player?
  • Sean Weatherspoon, LB, Missouri – In every mock draft that doesn’t list Graham, Weatherspoon’s name is the next to pop up. I wish I had more to go on here but the limelight is always around the probable pick (see Graham) or the sexy pick (see Mays). I guess this highlight video will have to do the talking for me. I’d be happy with him.
  • Demaryius Thomas, WR, Georgia Tech – I’m only listing this pick as it just popped up as a possibility on one of my favorite NFC South blogs. I don’t know how I feel going after a WR with the first pick and no second round pick. There are more pressing needs at the moment. I could see this happening if we trade Jenkins for the second round pick. Highlights are here.
  • C.J. Spiller, RB, Clemson – The man is a human highlight machine. Some say Reggie Bush. I say something better. Sure we have Norwood, but his durability has been called into question. If Norwood can’t stay healthy, then there really is no change of pace option in the backfield. I only take this pick if he is available. No trading up for this one. It’s just a sexy pick.

As for the other Draft expectations?

  1. Who is this year’s cryer? I would assume Tebow due to prior evidence. However, I think it could be Eric Berry just for the fact that he should be the number 1 overall pick and no one will take him. Everyone feels that a safety is not worth that high of a pick which means he will fall and could fall fast and hard.
  2. Please someone make certain that Jimmy Clausen stays off camera. He has one ugly mug, but I can’t hold it against him. It does run in his family.
  3. Can Oakland out do itself this year with its first pick? I’d bet on it.
  4. Will the new prime time airing of the draft really help the ratings that much? Of course they will, but will it really help me staying up so late watching the draft on delay due to timing?

Check back after the draft for full list of Falcons draft board plus any UGA players that were taken too.

Posted under Sports


Will Says:
April 21st, 2010 at 8:24 am

Nice write up.

First, it remains to be seen how successful the Jerry Pick (like “cherry pick”, get it?).

Second, who in their right mind would trade a 2nd Round pick for Michael Jenkins?

Third, if you have concerns about the durability of Norwood then Spiller probably isn’t your man.

Fourth, I believe Jimmy is the last Clausen (I couldn’t confirm this) so we can all start poking at our eyes with dull butter knives.

Fifth, I don’t like the new format for the draft and probably will pay little to no attention to it this year.

The end.

Kyle Says:
April 22nd, 2010 at 6:49 am

Here’s my darkhorse pick : (TE) Jermaine Gresham, Oklahoma. You heard it hear first

Ben Says:
April 22nd, 2010 at 6:50 am

Kyle, I have heard that suggestion. Just don’t know if I buy it enough.

Will, I’ll let you know if the new format makes things better or worse. I’m already hating it since I’ll be on delay out here in order to watch it all.

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