Originally posted by MadDog49er:So now you're saying the Niners shouldn't have taken Fleming in the 5th round because he's not gonna start? He's just a special teams guy? Just how many fifth round picks are expected to be starters as rookies in the NFL? That doesn't sound like a very sound basis for your continued criticism of the Fleming pick.
Patience, grasshopper. Been very busy with other obligations the last couple days. I did have Fleming as a fifth rounder, not in my grade, but in where I felt some team would grab him. Not sure if Baalke was channeling me, but he should have dialed during the first round,
As for Fleming's position, teams varied on where they saw him on their roster. Some would have put him inside, some outside. Running a 34 team, you usually do not draft OLBs who are 6'1", so his height and weight measurables really fit inside for most squads. That being said, it appears the team intends to put him on the outside, which means he will get zero playing time behind Smith, who isn't going anywhere for a long time, Brooks, who just signed a long term extension, and Haralson, who should still be competing for major playing time, since he has been the starter in this defense for some time,
To maximize value for the pick, a team really wants to get the best talent at the best value in the draft in the neediest area that fits your scheme. Fleming is a guy who will Be a core special teamer, but that position for that talent in that position in the draft was not a good option. The teams still needs help in the secondary, has a TE in the last year of his contract, has a NT in the last year of his contract, has no rotational players at DE right now, and is still lean at center/guard.
Just how many NTs or DEs or Cs or Gs play special teams? Not many. And not many TEs play special teams either. Not when there's a mobile and hostile ILB, OLB, or FB who can fill the bill. And the Niners got a secondary guy, Trent Robinson, a guy you actually like, so your reasoning there seems a little hollow.
Looks like Fleming was drafted primarily for ST, and has the versatility to play OLB and maybe ILB if need be. He's 6'2" and 245, ran a 4.55 at his pro day, and appears to be a good character, gold helmet, football player type. Not a superstar, but not a "D": pick either. .
Bottom line, you had Fleming listed at #168 on your board, the Niners took him at #165, but you still give them a "D" for the pick. Seems, at the least, inconsistent on your part.
[ Edited by oldninerdude on May 1, 2012 at 9:37 PM ]