Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Draft taking shape

With the way the draft is taking shape, it could behoove the Steelers to trade down out of the first round and acquire more picks.

Because this draft is so heavy on defensive line prospects – many scouting services have 13 or 14 defensive linemen in their top 35 – there could be good value had in acquiring a player at that position in the second round.

There are also so few top-notch players at the positions the Steelers need the most - defensive back and guard - that moving up to grab one of the top guys will likely cost too much.

Teams that have similar needs and higher first-round picks will surely gooble those players up early.

So instead of taking a chance on cornerbacks Brandon Harris or Aaron Williams in the first round – both have flaws – why not move back 10 or so slots, assuming you can find a partner, and take Curtis Brown, Ras-I Dowling or Rashad Carmichael instead?

Or maybe a talented defensive lineman – Cameron Heyward – is still on the board and you take him and grab a corner later in the second round.

They have flaws as well, but you're not spending first-round money on them to acquire second-tier talent.

And any additional picks you acquire can be used to possibly move up in the third round to add some offensive line talent.

16 comments:

Steve-O said...

Dale,
I have to say my first instinct when I read your posting was to dismiss your opinion as nonsense. But after I thought about it, it actually makes sense. If a top tier Offensive Lineman isn't available to the Steelers at 31 then there are enough good (but not great) DB's and DL's to pick in the 2nd round so why not shift the 1st round pick into the 2nd round and try to move up in the 3rd round. Obviously there are a lot of variables that make this a loose plan at best but I like your thinking.

Dale Lolley said...

This is a value-driven draft. And, with the lockout, it's going to be difficult for a rookie to start - unless the need is so great that it can't help but happen. Might as well stockpile. And if a rookie does start for you, all the better.

datruth4life said...

With a trade out of the first round in mind, my new Steelers mock draft:

2. G/T Ben Ijialana, Villanova
2. CB Ras-I Dowling, UVA
3. NT Kenrick Ellis, Hampton
4. CB Curtis Marsh, Utah State
4. LT/RT Derrick Newton, Arkansas State
5. ILB Kevin Sheppard, LSU
6. DE David Carter, UCLA
7. S/CB Byron Maxwell Clemson

datruth4life said...

With the trade in mind, here is my updated mock:

2. G/T Ben Ijialana, Villanova
2. CB Ras-I Dowling, UVA
3. NT Kenrick Ellis, Hampton
4. CB Curtis Marsh, Utah State
4. LT/RT Derrick Newton, Arkansas State
5. ILB Kevin Sheppard, LSU
6. DE David Carter, UCLA
7. S/CB Byron Maxwell Clemson

Dale, thoughts?

Vaflyer said...

Dale,

Didn't know where else to put this...

Saw this in Post Gazette:

"Tomlin said he would not close the door on Colon playing guard (provided he does not leave as a free agent)"

That would give us Pouncey/Colon/Adams. If we can't run behind that we will never run the ball. Chances of that move happening especially considering the fact that Guards don't get paid like Tackles do....?

Anonymous said...

Colon should play left guard, he would be sick at pulling and run blocking and Kemo sucks if yinz havent figured it out yet

Starks - Colon - Pouncey - Foster - Adams

draft a OT to groom

Alex K said...

I would be hesitant to trade back too often. Everytime you trade down the players become more of a gamble. Its a risk reward thing.

I wouldn't trade out of the first round unless I got someone's first round pick from the next season for the pick.

Anonymous said...

With a rookie wage scale likely coming, there is more incentive than ever to take best player available and not worry too much over value.

Vaflyer said...

Trading out of the first round gives you a couple of things:

1. Typically it gives you an extra player. 2 players, although probably a lower grade, instead of 1. Woodley was a 2nd round pick...anyone have problems with getting 2 more Draft picks like him??

2. It gives you better cap flexibility. No first round money can make a difference.

3. If there is no player with a first round grade who you don't want to pay first round money, you move down and get something else.

Dale Lolley said...

What you'd likely be looking at is a move back of five to 10 spots for somebody who wants to jump ahead of one of the teams in the second round to get a player they need/covet.

I highly doubt anyone is giving up next year's first round pick for such a move. You might get an extra third - which would likely be at the top of the third round.

Anonymous said...

The pats have repeated traded back and it has backfired on them the last few years. The steelers generally do well in round 1, do you really want to risk that? Being greedy and trading back is a bad gamble IMHO.

Dale Lolley said...

How exactly has it backfired on the Patriots?
And it's not being greedy. It's being realistic. There's no sense in taking a player at 31 that you could get at 40 or 45. This team has specific needs. In my mind, there's not a lot of sense in taking a defensive lineman in the first round - again - and having him sit the bench for the next two years.

Ziggy Hood would have again been a 10-down per game player had Aaron Smith not gotten hurt last year.

Keisel's coming off a Pro Bowl season. Casey Hampton is still going strong and they'll re-sign Chris Hoke.

If they're going to take a defensive lineman in this draft, it doesn't make a lot of sense to take one in the first round.

But the CB and o-linemen available when they pick may not warrant being taken quite that high.

vaflyer said...

I have to admit the draft this year has me somewhat confused as to what to do. Our 2 big needs...DBs and OL. We do have some other positions I would be willing to draft players at though especially considering what is most likely to be a short workout program for the rookies. I think this means you probably don't get much from them this year anyway.

I could see us doing any of the following in the first year:

1. Drafting Olineman. We saw how good Pouncey has been for us. Imagine if we could do that at ALL or our Oline spots. While I think our starters are pretty well picked for THIS year, getting someone to groom behind Adams or Starks, or picking up a guard should be considered. I like the thought of Colon going to LG and Kemo to RG. Starks/Colon/Pouncey/Kemo/Adams is a pretty large line. I like Foster, J. Scott, and Legs as backups. I would say that leaves 2 spots for the Oline unless we really like C. Scott or Hills.

2. Drafting Dlineman. I look at the D line we currently have and am completely happy with everyone, including Eason, but if you can get a potential starter at NT or DE even if it means not resigning Hoke and cutting Eason, it is a move I think you make for the future. It will be worth it in the long run.

3. Drafting Safety or Corner Upgrade Clark or his backup. More reliable backup for Troy. Even if you still start McFadden this coming year, if you can upgrade Gay or Lewis or Butler, you do it. I prefer to move McFadden to the #3 corner spot where he would actually be pretty good for us I think, but if you can't do it, you don't.

You see here is the problem for me, are there any 1st round talents at those positions when we draft? I just don't know. There might be a DE or NT. There probably will be a MLB where you could get your eventual replacement for Farrior. I just am not sure you are getting what we need out of that first round. I tend to lean your way Dale. Trade back say 5 picks or so, pick up an extra 3rd at the top of the 3rd. It allows you to add 4 players rather than 3 and might get you the same player in the 2nd that you would get in the first.

Anonymous said...

Somebody would have to have really hot hands to give up a 3rd and a second for a 31st pick in the 1st unless they were both late round picks. We would more likely get an extra 4th for trading back a few spots into the 2nd. If we did get a high round 2nd and high round 3rd, we would be foolish not to take it assuming a guy we had to have (Pouncey #2) wasn't available at 31.


Mrs. Isaac Redman

other_patrick said...

Even Value Trades according to current draft trade value charts:

our 1st for Team X 2nd and 3rd
1.31 = 2.17 + 3.17

our 1st for Team X 2nd and 4th
1.31 = 2.7 + 4.7

our 1st and 4th for Team X 2nd and 3rd
1.31 + 4.31 = 2.14 + 3.14

I think you might see the second scenario from one of the teams at the top of the round looking to pick up one of the second tier of QB prospects.

Dale Lolley said...

That was my thought exactly. A team looking to move up to grab, say, Christian Ponder or Jake Locker, after missing out on Newton or Gabbert.
That seems to happen every year. Arizona could seemingly use a QB - even if the Cards eventually sign Mark Bulger as expected.

Oh, and by the way, datruth, Kendrick Ellis got booted out of South Carolina for multiple violations of team rules. You can probably cross him off your list.