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2011 NFL Draft Recap

The weekend is over and so is the 2011 NFL Draft. It started as expected with the predicted picks going in the expected directions. It all seemed like it was going to be boring thanks to the lockout and inability to trade players….

…Then the 6th pick in the draft happened.

Player Description

Julio Jones
Julio Jones
WR, Alabama
Round 1, Pick 6 (6 overall)

The Falcons started the Draft at the 27th pick and decided to not stay there long. In my previous post, I stated I wasn’t in favor of trading up for A.J. Green. That’s a good thing because we didn’t offer enough to get Green. Instead, we have Julio Jones. My mouth was stuck open with amazement as I saw the trade begin to take place and the pick was made. Then I saw what we gave up to move up to the 6th slot (Atlanta’s first (27th overall), second (59th) and fourth-rounder (124th) and also Atlanta’s first- and fourth-round selections in 2012).

That’s right. In one single night, I saw the 2011 and 2012 NFL Draft for my dirty birds. Even Roddy White agreed when he tweeted “Well we got julio jones I’m excited…Well I was wrong we give up our draft.” It was a heavy price, but in this single trade we announced to the world that we want to win and win now. We are not building for tomorrow or a few years. We are here for today and now it is time to win. With Jones joining our offense, I expect even more teams to be afraid to face our point machine. I’m just wondering if I’ve now seen the death of my favorite 10-12 play drive offense.

Sure, our major need was DE, but I agree with the explanation given by TD and I trust our front office. Our trio (Blank, Smith, Dimitroff) did what no one else could do and provide back-to-back winning seasons and make a franchise into something it never was before, relevant.

Suggested Nicknames:

  1. The Don (a.k.a. Don Julio)
  2. Lurtz (I know this one is bad, but I can’t help but see the similarities)
  3. January Jones (I reserve this name for his stint and play that will be evident during the month of January)

Akeem Dent
Akeem Dent
ILB, Georgia
Round 3, Pick 27 (91 overall)

I’m always one for adding more depth to our dwindling/non-existent Georgia players, but Dent didn’t seem to fit our team need. He plays the ILB role and we needed more depth at OLB due to the age of Mike Peterson and potential departure of Stephen Nicholas. Coy Wire is another potential player leaving the team but I still believe depth at OLB would have been better when filling the need.

But Dent is not afraid to attack and make a hit. He’s also a good tackler. Some reports have stated he has played the OLB position in the past so he could be a versatile addition to the LB core even if he’s most notably known for being an ILB.

Jacquizz Rodgers
Jacquizz Rodgers
RB, Oregon State
Round 4, Pick 6 (145 overall)

When I saw this pick during the weekend, I didn’t like it. I loved it. One of the other needs going into the next season was at speed RB. Norwood has been injured too often and will probably be gone by the start of the season. Therefore, it is time to try to bring in someone new. Rodgers could be that guy. He’s not super fast, but he is quick and in the NFL quick can get you yards and touchdowns.

Watching him in college (not sure how that happened, possibly a bowl game), but I was mesmerized by his speed and lack of height. I mean, this is a kid that will look up to veteran Brent Grimes, literally. However, this isn’t the first time the Falcons have been using an undersized RB to get something “dunn” on the field.

Suggested Nicknames:

  1. The Quizz Show (Who’s the guy that just blew passed your defense for the gaming score? Answer: J. Rodgers)
  2. Q&A (Sticking with the Quiz theme on this one)
  3. Mr. Touchdown (From his days of playing HS in Texas)

Matt Bosher
Matt Bosher
PT, Miami
Round 6, Pick 27 (192 overall)

This was another pick I questioned for two reasons. First, who drafts a punter not named Ray Guy in any round other than the 7th? Second, we are already set at the Punter position with Michael Koenen, who only 2 years ago set the record for least return yards in a season.

But Bosher not only punted at Miami. He also was a FG kicker and can be potentially verstile at many kicking positions. Worth the pick? Maybe not, but Matt Bryant isn’t around forever and sometimes it can be nice to have a kicker available for a single team for several years. Yes, I’m stretching on this one, but I needed something to say.

Andrew Jackson
Andrew Jackson
OG, Fresno State
Round 7, Pick 7 (210 overall)

Offensive Lineman are always hard to talk about because no one really knows who they are until the screw up. Umm….then let’s look at what ESPN has to say. “Durability is a concern for Jackson and he has physical limitations, but he does have good size potential to go along with an outstanding combination of intelligence, awareness and toughness.”

Not exactly what I want to hear, but I’m not really looking for Jackson to be a full time started. My expectations are for some rotational work or simply depth at the position. If we get that, then I’d say we have value in the pick.

Cliff Matthews
Cliff Matthews
DE, South Carolina
Round 7, Pick 27 (230 overall)

Well, it took seven rounds, but the Falcons finally addressed the defensive end need. This is not the spot you want to fill it, but here we are. Even with my constant viewings of the SEC, I don’t really remember much on Matthews so I will have to default to ESPN’s short piece of analysis “Matthews has the upper-body strength, active hands and motor to provide depth at left defensive end in Atlanta’s 4-3 scheme.”

For the overall grade, I’m going with a C-. With the large amount given up for Jones, I must question the overall draft. If it were not for the Rodgers selection, I’d probably go with an F, but I also have to grade based on production and Smitty, TD, and Blank have delivered. The grade also could have been worse due to the great draft that Tampa Bay and New Orleans had. I’m still swearing over the brilliant first two draft selections by both teams. Sorry Carolina, I can’t give you any respect until Newton shows me his potential reward.

And on a final note, I did find the selection of James Carpenter funny. Mainly because his own coach couldn’t believe it.

UGA Note: The following players were taken in the draft from the University of Georgia.

  • Clint Boiling – Cincinnati Bengals (no one looks happy to go here)
  • Shaun Chapas – Dallas Cowboys (Nice selection)
  • Kris Durham – Seattle Seahawks (I hope he has a nice career there)
  • A.J. Green – Cincinnati Bengals (again, no one is happy)
  • Justin Houston – Kansas City Chiefs
Posted under Sports


Will Says:
May 5th, 2011 at 10:20 am

This draft definitely can’t be graded properly until after next season.

Ideally, I would say, give it 2–3 years but obviously, this is a “Win Now” scenario. Really, if the Falcons don’t compete for the Super Bowl in the next season or two, this could be a draft that sets them back a few seasons.

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