Everyone is pumping Johnny Manziel. Ian Rappaport’s story on NFL AM today has unnamed insiders projecting that Johnny Football as a top 10 pick next week’s Draft with the Texans, Jaguars, Browns, Vikings or Buccaneers the likely takers.
Whoa! Four of those teams are on the Redskins’ schedule. How likely are the Redskins to face off against Manziel? Not as likely at Rappaport suggests.
Hog Heaven ranked 2014 opponents by first round Draft order and then looked at Eric Galko’s Mock Draft Update on Optimum Scouting to guess at players those teams might take.
A couple of things become clear when you look at Galko’s list.
The sharps think Cleveland will take Manziel. Galko has him selected No. 26 overall through a mock trade he baked into his list. Galko and others suspect J.Football will not be the first quarterback selected.
The sharps have a high regard for offensive linemen, defensive ends, wide receivers, cornerbacks and safeties over quarterbacks in this Draft.
Galko envisions Draft Day swaps that are not yet real but that are plausible. We reflect that in the table below by showing an extra first-round pick for Houston and Jacksonville and with San Francisco swapping for Oakland’s No. 5 overall slot.
Pay attention to this one. Accumulating first-round picks instead of shedding them could be an accelerating trend. You will never hear Hog Heaven knock the trade that landed RGIII in DC, but it did not position Washington to take max advantage of the rookie pay scale in the 2011 CBA.
New England builds it entire roster strategy on accumulating picks. Teams could not afford to use multiple first-round picks before the rookie pay scale. Now perhaps they can.
I hope we never see a Bruce Allen front office shed picks the promiscuous way that Shanahan, Cerrato, Gibbs and Snyder have since 2000. The Optimum Scouting mock is a fun way of seeing how the trend may play out.
Here’s a table of Washington’s 2014 opponents ranked by their Draft order and the mock draft selection. Anything can happen, but there is no reason to buy the Manziel hype.
|OPPONENT||DRAFT ORDER||MOCK PICK, COMMENT|
|Houston||No. 1, No. 29 Mock trade with NE||Jadeveon Clowney, DE (#1), Blake Bortles, QB (#29) Clowney is the consensus No. 1 pick. I keep thinking that owner Bob McNair has not forgotten when Mario Williams was his consensus No. 1 pick and how that turned out. Will he repeat the move? No guarantee Manziel slips into this slot.|
|St. Louis||No. 2, No. 13||Greg Robinson, OT (2), Odell Beckham WR (13) If Coach Jeff Fisher kicks himself for not taking RGIII in 2012, he might bust a Manziel move with the pick acquired from the Redskins, of all places. Does not seem to be his style, though.|
|Jacksonville||No. 3, No. 25 Mock trade with SD||Khalil Mack, OLB (3), Teddy Bridgewater QB (25) Boring. Who do the Jaguars think Manziel is, Tim Tebow? If any team needs a playmaking spark plug, it’s the Jags.|
|San Francisco||No. 5, Mock trade with Oakland||Mike Evans, WR This mock has a Manziel receiver selected before Manziel himself|
|Tampa Bay||No. 7||Taylor Lewin, OT Lovie Smith will hold off until 2015 or 2016 to find his QB. Fans may not be that patient.|
|Minnesota||No. 8||Darqueze Dennard, DB The Spartans in me will be glad to see Denard land in the top 10, but will the Vikings really pass up a QB?|
|Tennessee||No. 11||Anthony Barr, OLB Jake Locker’s “prove it” year|
|NY Giants||No. 12||Eric Ebron, TE Giants will not use this pick on a QB. Period.|
|Dallas||No. 16||Kony Ealy, DE Some are trolling “Manziel” and “Dallas” in the same sentence, but the ‘Boys need defense.|
|Arizona||No. 20||Derek Carr, QB Can sit behind Carson Palmer for a year or two.|
|Philadelphia||No. 22||Bradley Roby, CB Not using this pick to replace DeSean Jackson is another statement of Jackson’s value to the Eagles. Correct decision?|
|Indianapolis||None||The Colts traded its 26th overall pick to Cleveland for Trent Richardson. Johnny Manziel may or may not be on the schedule, but Andrew Luck certainly is.|
Galko sees OT Cyrus Kouandjio (Alabama) as the Redskins first pick in the Draft, second round, 34th overall.
WARNING: Hog Heaven keeps reminding readers that it’s NFL Lying Season. Every team hides its strategy in the lead-up to the NFL Draft and well they should.
It’s not in any team’s interest to share what they know, but the media trolls “sources” to give its audience the scoop on what their team will do on Draft Day. As fans, we eat this up instead of treating GMs as lying liars who lie before Draft Day. None of them participate in a Mock, so take everything you hear as hype.