Originally posted by MadDog49er:
As for my draft board, based on my best player available board, in a straight up, no trade draft, I had:
Round One- Peter Konz, C/G
Round Two- Mohamed Sanu, WR
Round Three- Brandon Thompson, NT
Round Four- Malik Jackson, DE
Round Five- Vick Ballard, RB
Round Six- Antonio Allen, SS
Round Seven- Derrius Brooks, CB
Well just for fun, like we did last year, lets compare your posted "mock" draft to Baalke's actual draft in light of what actually occurred. You and Baalke, "mano a mano". Or "mano a perro" if you prefer.
And since you did not grade Baalke based just on the picks, but threw in trade speculation as well, that's got to apply to your "mock" as well.
Round 1--Peter Konz
. C/G Drafted in the first round by you, but all 32 teams passed on him in the first round and he was taken by the Falcons at #55
. He's 6'5" and 315 out of Wisconsin, and in previous posts you have expressed that you rated him very highly, espcecially at C. In other posts you have been highly critical of Jonathan Goodwin, the team's center who was a two time pro bowler (with the Saints).
Baalke's Round 1 pick was A.J. Jenkins at #30
. A very fast, knowledgeable, productive WR with excellent hands and route running skills. Hard to find fault with taking him at #30, especially when guys like Blackmon and Floyd were already taken. Perhaps this is why you spend so much time with the speculative "they missed on a golden opportunity to move up and take DeCasto" argument. Its impossible to argue that they should have moved back to take Jenkins--since there's evidence that the Rams would have taken him at #33.
So head up, you would have taken a C that was clearly overrated by you, that would have been available in the mid to late second round, and Baalke took an underrated WR just before a rival would have snagged him. Advantage: Baalke
Round 2--Mohamed Sanu
. WR drafted in the Second by you, actually taken in the Third round by the Bengals at #83
overall. He's 6'2" and 215 lbs. A possession type WR, who lacks the speed necessary to be a deep threat, but is very capable of catching in traffic and downfield blocking--characteristics that you have previously posted you believe the Niners value (who wouldn't). Trouble with the pick is that he's really just a mirror image, at best, of Crabtree--who's also 6'2" and 215ish, without the elite speed. Sanu, however, also lacks the extra long reach that Crabtree has.
Baalke used the second round pick, #61, to take LMJ,
an explosively quick RB who adds a speed dimension out of the backfield that the Niners have been lacking for at least the past 8 years. Combined with the speedy Jenkins, the Niners now have two new playmakers who will increase the team's effectiveness on third down and short yardage situations. This will improve the entire OL play by making it less likely that the 5 OL will have to face 8 an 9 man defensive fronts in those situations.
Head to head: Advantage Baalke again. You did not increase the WR depth at all by adding a new or different dimension, but simply got a clone of Crabs.
Round 3--Brandon Thompson
. NT out of Clemson, he's 6'2" and 314 lbs who was taken at #93
by the Bengals. He is, again, a virtual clone of a guy already on the Niners, Ian Williams, who signed with the Niners last season as an UDFA, and played NT at Notre Dame. So you spend a 3rd rounder on a guy who's gonna be fourth on the depth chart behind Sopoaga, RJF, and Williams. Seems like a wasted pick.
Baalke used the Third Round to pick Joe Looney at #117
. He will compete for RG with Kilgore, Person, and Boone, and will, according to Baalke, someday be a starter. Considering the fact that your NT was not even on the board when Baalke selected Looney, the fact that Looney fell a little due to an untimely foot injury (and was actually rated as a second round value), and the fact that this pick addresses a position of actual, present need--
Head to head: Advantage Baalke again.
Round 4--Malik Jackson
. DT out of Tennessee, he's 6'4" and 284, drafted by the Broncos, probably as a 3-4 DE, with the #137
pick overall. Again, he appears to be a clone of a guy already on the Niner's roster, Demarcus Dobbs. If the Niners had taken Jackson he'd be behind Justin Smith, Ray MacDonald, Takuafu, RJF, and Dobbs. In other words, a long shot to even make the roster. Again, why would the Niners want to take him in the Fourth to line up behind all those other DL guys? Seems, again, like a wasted pick.
Baalke used the Fourth round to pick Darious Fleming,
a 6'2", 245 lb OLB out of Notre Dame, at #165
. You described him above as "a good football player, athletic, fast, and productive." He plays ST, and will back up at OLB--where the Niners took a risk last year in carrying only 3 OLB. Fleming fills a need for depth and will contribute on ST. What's not to like.
Advantage: Baalke, again.
Round 5--Vick Ballard
. RB out of Miss. St. who is 5'10" and 219 lbs that was drafted by the Colts at #170
overall. Strong and tough, but no elite speed or explosiveness, he would, again, have to compete with Gore, Hunter, Jacobs, Dixon and Cartwright. Adds nothing that Hunter and Dixon don't already provide, Seems like a wasted pick.
Baalke used the 5th round to take Trent Robinson
, a safety who's projected to backup Goldson and Whitner. Somewhat undersized, he's tough and has excellent coverage skills, and may find his way onto the field in nickel and dime situations, where coverage skills are more important than playing in the box. You gave him an A grade.
Round 6--Antonio Allen
. SS taken by the Jets at #242
overall, in the 7th round. He's 6'1", 210 and has the size expected of a SS. He fell, however to the 7th round, and you're taking him in the 6th. Doesn't appear to be a great value.
Baalke used the 6th round, pick #199
overall, to take Slowey
, a small school OL with excellent strength, speed, and nastiness, who's probably gonna need a year on the PS to get a little bigger. You give him an A grade.
Advantage: this one might be even, depending on how these two guys develop over the next couple years.
Round 7--Darrious Brooks
. CB out of W. Kentucky, he's 5'10" and 192 who went undrafted
. All 32 teams passed on him in all 7 rounds.
Baalke used the 7th round to pick Cameron Johnson at #237
, who surprisingly fell precipitously in the draft, but who appears to offer great value at OLB. You give him an A grade.
Now, if we take the hypothetical "trade up" "golden opportunity" scenario that you use to criticize Baalke, and apply it to your "mock" draft, it just gets worse. You'd have to subtract Konz AND Brandon Thompson, and add DeCastro, leaving you with one guy who might make the team, and start--DeCastro--and five other guys who would struggle to even make the roster.
Your "mock" does nothing to address the now very apparent preexisting problem with the Niner offense--the lack of speed.
Swapping DeCastro in for Snyder is not gonna make the OL better on short yardage downs when faced with 8 and 9 men fronts. The OL last year got swamped and overwhelmed in those situations, frequently. In retrospect, it was the most glaring problem with the team last season. The additions of Jenkins, LMJ, and Looney on the other hand will force defenses to rethink the "stacking the box, run-blitz" attitude after they get burned a few times by Jenkins on a slant, or LMJ out fo the backfield.
Thank goodness we now have a HC who is capable of identifying the problem and a GM capable of addressing it in the draft.
Compare that to Singletary's response to the same problem: "Give me some offensive linemen with bite." Sorta what you're proposing with the "draft Konz" or "draft Decastro" draft strategy. BTW, how'd that turn out for Singletary? Oh, right.
So thanks again for posting this whole "draft grade and analysis" thread. Its been a great way to help think about what Baalke and Harbaugh have done in this year's draft.
[ Edited by oldninerdude on May 3, 2012 at 11:12 AM ]