Reporting Justin Pawlowski
Don’t forget to party with The Commish Thursday (4/25) and Friday (4/26) at Ferg’s Sports Bar near Tropicana Field for the NFL Draft! Both nights, The Commish will be on the air live starting at 7:00.
1. Ryan Nassib – Syracuse
2. EJ Manuel – FSU
3. Tyler Bray – Tennessee
4. Geno Smith – West Virginia
5. Matt Barkley – USC
Commish’s Comments: Let’s start by saying that this is a BAD YEAR FOR QUARTERBACKS. All of these quarterbacks are no better than 2nd round prospects. I went with EJ Manuel near the top because of his versatility and because he has the highest ceiling of any quarterback in this draft. I mean, if every QB in this draft has faults, maybe the guy with the highest ceiling should be the most attractive. Yes, I know Manuel is inconsistent, but so is EVERY other quarterback in this class…including Geno Smith. Geno Smith has as much bad film as he does good film. Nassib and Barkley are solid quarterbacks maybe best suited for a timing/accurate type of offense. I wonder if Landry Jones goes sooner than we all think. Bray won’t go as high as his ranking because of questions surrounding his maturity, but he is the most gifted passer in the draft.
1. Johnathan Franklin – UCLA
2. Eddie Lacy – Alabama
3. Le’Veon Bell – Michigan St.
4. Christine Michael – Texas A&M
5. Marcus Lattimore – South Carolina
Commish’s Comments: Solid group of backs, but no one is elite except a healthy Lattimore. Franklin has grown in popularity the more people find out about him because he is an all-around back. Michael is talented, but has character concerns. Bell could be a great grab in this type of NFL because of his ability in the pass game. Obviously, Lacy is solid overall, but he just does not have the burst or speed to be elite.
1. Tavon Austin – West Virginia
2. Justin Hunter – Tennessee
3. DeAndre Hopkins – Clemson
4. Cordarrelle Patterson – Tennessee
5. Keenan Allen – Cal
Commish’s Comments: The only surprise here might be Hunter and Hopkins. Hunter is big with top notch speed. Hunter is a big play type receiver. Hopkins runs great routes and has some of the best hands in the draft.
1. Tyler Eifert – Notre Dame
2. Travis Kelce – Cincinnati
3. Zack Ertz – Stanford
4. Gavin Escobar – San Diego St.
5. Vance McDonald – Rice
Commish’s Comments: I went with Kelce as my 2nd tight end because I believe he is the most balanced tight end in this class. I like his attitude and confidence on the field and that he plays with a chip on his shoulder. Eifert is a playmaker in the pass game. Ertz is a tight end that plays more like a big receiver.
1. Luke Joeckel – Texas A&M
2. Eric Fisher – Central Michigan
3. Lane Johnson – Oklahoma
4. DJ Fluker – Alabama
5. Justin Pugh – Syracuse
Commish’s Comments: While others are jumping to Eric Fisher, I stick with Joeckel as my top tackle because he is excellent in pass protection and did it against SEC competition. Fisher is very good and aggressive especially as a run blocker, but it is a passing league and I think Joeckel is a better pass protector. 3 offensive tackles might go in the top 4 picks.
Interior Offensive Linemen:
1. Chance Warmack – Alabama
2. Jonathan Cooper – North Carolina
3. Kyle Long – Oregon
4. Larry Warford – Kentucky
5. Travis Frederick – Wisconsin
Commish’s Comments: If you want power, you go with Warmack. If you want athletic and a guard that can pull, you go with Cooper. Both should be very good pros.
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