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The cases for and against Tony Ugoh

I saw this post about Tony Ugoh on ESPN and thought it should be put up for review. For Niner fan draftnicks the careers of Ugoh and Staley are linked through the 2007 draft when we traded-up with New England for the Staley pick, then traded down with Indy giving them #42 with which they picked Ugoh.

Some who didn't like the 2007 deals would often post that we should have passed on trading up for Staley, kept our original 2008 #1, and taken Ugoh at #42.

ESPN takes a long look at Ugoh . . . his toughness is repeatedly questioned . . .

Posted by's Paul Kuharsky
When I spent time with the Indianapolis Colts during their minicamp, one name was at the top of my list to investigate: Tony Ugoh.

I'd heard middling-to-bad reviews for the left tackle as I worked my way around the division in 2008. I came to view him as a question mark.

Drafting UConn running back Donald Brown will affect the Colts' ground game, as will an overall healthier offensive line. Battling a right knee issue last season, Ugoh was part of the injury brigade. But he was also on the bench for a while even when the team deemed him well enough to play. Better, more consistent play from Ugoh might prove to be a key to Indianapolis' season.

As I asked the Colts about him, much of what they said struck me as if we were chatting inside a courtroom, not a locker room.

And so, I present to you, the case against Ugoh, and the case for him.

Rest of the ESPN article . . . .
They both young and still inconsistent. I can't question Staley's toughness, and strength but it's not like I see him mauling a lot of folks especially in the run game. Neither of them have that mean streak that you see out of Clady. I guess looking back and being technical about it the Niners could have got the same player at 42 that they traded up to get in the draft. But I'm not gonna pretend that it really bothered me at the time or does it really bother me now.
I remember people being upset with the pick because the Niners could have taken Ugoh instead.

Looks like things are working out to well for Ugoh in Indy.
I, for one, wildly applauded it then. (A minority opinion, at the time, for sure.)

Ugoh played well his rookie year. Wonder what happened.
Tony Ugoh living up to his name?
Posted by Gregg Rosenthal on August 10, 2009 6:53 PM ET
Protecting Peyton Manning's blindside is one of the more important gigs in the NFL.

It's certainly one of the vital spots on the Colts, and that's why Indianapolis traded first- and fourth-round picks in 2007 for the right to draft Tony Ugoh with the No. 42 overall pick.

The plan was for Ugoh to learn from three-time Pro Bowler Tarik Glenn, then man the spot indefinitely once Glenn retired.

Unfortunately for the Colts, Glenn wound up retiring immediately. Even worse, Ugoh isn't panning out.

In a quiet move Monday, the Colts installed Charles Johnson as Indy's first team left tackle. Johnson, a sixth-round pick in 2006, was returning for his first day of practice after missing the offseason with shoulder surgery.

Caldwell indicated the move wasn't temporary, implicitly saying that Ugoh's career isn't going as hoped.

The move to acquire Johnson could down as a rare black mark against G.M. Bill Polian, who has replaced starters through the draft as well as anyone in the league.

From the sound of it, Polian might be looking for a left tackle again next April.

i also appluaded the deal in 2007, loved it then, and love it still, we got a franchise LT IMO for years to come. And yup, a guy from a smaller school like Central Michigan can be a franchise player, just ask Mississippi Valley State's Jerry Rice,
Yeah, too bad it wasn't Ugoh that we gave up to select Staley. We gave up the next years 1st rounder. A pick that could have been used to select Ryan Clady.

Ryan Clady was good enough to be a legitimate Pro Bowl player as a rookie (although didn't due to Pro Bowl politics). Giving up 0 sacks over an entire season. Staley in his second year was one of the most sacked OT's in the game.

Now I like Staley, and don't hate the pick. But looking at just Tony Ugoh is a fallacy of logic when considering the opportunity cost of selecting Joe Staley.

Ryan Clady is the more comparable player, and viewed from that light, it was not a good move

For the record we traded our 2nd Round pick to Indy so they can select Ugouh. They gave us a 1st for the next years draft where we selected Kentwan Balmer.

Because we traded our first to NE so we could draft Staley, NE used our pick to take the DROY in Mayo. The draft we could have drafted the kid from Boise.
The draft is such a crapshoot at pretty much every round that you've got to be happy when you've picked up a solid player, and Staley definitely is that. As such, I view Staley as a bird-in-the-hand kind of guy and I am completely cool with that.
Originally posted by ninerlifer:
For the record we traded our 2nd Round pick to Indy so they can select Ugouh. They gave us a 1st for the next years draft where we selected Kentwan Balmer.

Because we traded our first to NE so we could draft Staley, NE used our pick to take the DROY in Mayo. The draft we could have drafted the kid from Boise.

I am aware of that.

What many on this board have said however is that we should not have made the trade at all and simply selected Ugoh with our second round pick.

We would then have had Ugoh AND the our own first round pick the following year instead of the Indy pick we used on Balmer.

Personally, I am and have been fine with the Staley trade from day one.

[ Edited by Marvin49 on Aug 10, 2009 at 17:08:23 ]
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Fist of all there was no way of knowing at that time that we would be in a position to select a LT like Clady the following year. That's part of the risk you take in making a deal like we did.

Second there was no guarantee we would have been able to get Ugoh had we not traded up for Staley. Indy could have jumped in front of us to assure the selection.

It's easy to look back now but at the time the deal made sense for them just like how at the time Carolina dealing into our 2nd round pick this year for Everette Brown made sense for them.

Bottom line is Nolan, Scott & staff had Staley rated higher than Ugoh and rated as a first rounder thus why they jumped up for him. They were looking to add a LT due to all the injury woes that we had been dealt with JJ and they got their man. The draft is all about risk vs rewards, we took a chance and at the end of the day you have to take chances if you want to win.
I still think it was a mistake. It's one thing for a perennial playoff contender to make that risk, but we weren't that. McCoughlin should be thanking the stars that we won a couple of meaningless games in weeks 15 and 16 otherwise he would be known for trading away his shot at Matt Ryan.

That being said the pick panned out for us so all is forgiven.
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