Justin Houston, #42 above, 6-3, 255, outside linebacker from Georgia, finally decided to come out early and declare for the 2011 NFL Draft… which allows us to prepare our preliminary basket of prospects for Andy Reid and Eagles fans to ponder…
First thing we have to do is get organized… make a list…Since we don’t get a pick in the first round until #23, we have to be prepared for a maneuver by Andy to trade that pick for more choices in the later rounds…So let’s just settle down and make a basket of the top 33 overall prospects, with 3 guys scouted for every offensive and defensive specialty position, and hope that a few of them fall our way. Not all of these kids are household names (yet), but draft guru’s around the nation have created a concensus— these guys are the best players out there:
Nick Fairley, Auburn, 6-5, 300 Stephen Paea, Oregon State, 6-1, 312
Marcell Dareus, Alabama, 6-3, 309
Da’Quan Bowers, Clemson, 6-4, 275 Robert Quinn, North Carolina, 6-5, 270
Adrian Clayborn, Iowa, 6-3, 285
Von Miller, Texas A&M, 6-3, 243 Akeem Ayers, UCLA, 6-4, 255
Justin Houston, Georgia, 6-3, 255
Quan Sturdivant, North Carolina, 6-2, 230 Greg Jones, Michigan State, 6-1, 240
Nate Irving, North Carolina State, 6-1, 232
Patrick Peterson, LSU, 6-1, 222 Prince Amukamara, Nebraska, 6-0, 205
Janoris Jenkins, Florida, 5-11, 185
Rahim Moore, UCLA, 6-1, 195 DeAndre McDaniel, Clemson, 6-0, 215
Quintin Carter, Oklahoma, 6-1, 200
Gabe Carimi, Wisconsin, 6-7, 327 Anthony Castonzo, Boston College, 6-7, 308
Nate Solder, Colorado, 6-8, 315
Ryan Mallett, Arkansas, 6-6, 235 Cameron Newton, Auburn, 6-6, 250
Blaine Gabbert, Missouri, 6-5, 235
Mark Ingram, Alabama, 5-10, 215 Ryan Williams, Virginia Tech, 5-10, 210
Kendall Hunter, Oklahoma State, 5-8, 200
A.J. Green, Georgia, 6-4, 212 Julio Jones, Alabama, 6-4, 220
Justin Blackmon, Oklahoma State, 6-1, 205
Kyle Rudolph, Notre Dame, 6-6, 265 Lance Kendricks, Wisconsin, 6-4, 240
D.J. Williams, Arkansas, 6-2, 260
Okay, there’s our beginning pool of first-rounders, by concensus opinion. The Eagles may pick at #23, or they may trade their later round picks and their Round 1 pick to move up higher in the first round. My guess is Andy will pick at #23 in Round 1, but he has the Round 2 pick (#55), a Round 3 pick (#86) and a Round 4 pick (#103) to play around with… Perhaps more realistically, I think Andy may believe there is more value in the later rounds to be earned by trading his Round 1 pick for extra picks in later rounds. As always, Andy will have us guessing right up to the moment of the pick. He is the master of misdirection…and a great poker player.
But at least now we’re somewhat organized in our preparation for the Draft, and equally important, the Brizer MACH 10 Draft Contest, which is a level of supreme challenge for the personnel acumen of any true Eagles fan.
We’ve only taken a rudimentary step today in creating our basket of the Top 33 prospects for Round 1; now, what happens when the remaining talent pool migrates in to fill the void left by the Round 1 selections is where it really gets interesting…Brizer’s MACH 10 challenges you to correctly predict what college player will be selected by the Eagles in each incremental round of the draft…in other words, predict the 10 players who will be the class of 2011 on the Eagles roster come Spring… It’s a daunting contest, but one that’s fascinating in that moving pools of migrating data in parabolic trends must be accounted for…like trying to measure an amoeba…it’s not easy, but it’s fun to try to simulate the entire Draft process.
We’ll look at some possible 3rd, 4th and later round prospects in a future blurb to help our MACH 10 picture shape up… for now, study your Round 1 and Round 2 prospects, look at the Eagles realistically for personnel needs, and be ready for a pop quiz at any time.