Tuesday, March 22, 2011

The Mocks of 2011 suggest a great rivalry

So, my friends at the Bleacher Report sent me a morning NFL update, as they always do, and this one contained about 50th Mock Draft I've seen this season. What did it indicate?

Well, there were two points of interest for me in this and numerous other mocks:
  1. The 49ers select Patrick Peterson, CB LSU
  2. The Rams select Julio Jones, WR Alabama
That has been one of the premier street-fights in NCAA football over the past three seasons. If the Mocks are correct. It will continue and intensify in the Pro ranks. We'll see these two beat on each other twice per year for God knows how long.

The reasoning is pretty simple in both cases. In Peterson's case, the reasoning goes like this:
  1. Patrick Peterson is possibly the best athlete in the draft
  2. Corners are undervalued, and never go that high.
  3. He made a 9 on his Wonderlic, sliding him down a bit
  4. The NFL is about to tamper with his value as a returner
  5. Ergo Patrick Peterson slides to 7 where the 49ers cannot pass
In the case of Julio Jones, the reasoning goes like this:
  1. Julio blew up the combine
  2. Julio either broke his foot at the combine, or before the combine (accounts vary). While this makes his performance all the more amazing, he now has a medical red-flag. Minor though it may be, it will not be ignored.
  3. Julio is the clear #2 WR behind B.J. Green
  4. Julio dropped some passes in college. Shame, shame.
  5. The top 10 is jammed with teams that need QBs and defense.
  6. There is only one very likely spot in the top 10 where a WR will go (Cleveland)
  7. Julio is likely to slide to 14 where the Rams have a desperate need.
Of course, there are exceptions to this pattern. Some think Peterson will go as high as #1. I think that is bloody unlikely; wishful thinking really. It's either QB or DT for the Panthers. Forget everything else. Nobody else is truly in the running.

Some think the Washington Redskins will select Julio Jones at the #10 spot. I think that is bloody unlikely; trade stimulus talk to be frank with you. I think some Redskin fans are signalling this to see if they can pimp the Rams for some picks.

Why do I say that about the Skins? I'll give you two reasons. Few, if any NFL insiders think the Skins will select an offensive player in this years draft. Shanahan has a serious political problem and liability on his hands. He inherited a good 4-3 defense. He arbitrarily blew up the ship and went 3-4 when he did not need too. His defense is now at the bottom of the barrel. This literally spoiled the honey moon. Shanahan created some very, very, very angry Redskin fans with this one move. If that defense doesn't get up off the carpet and show some life in 2011, Shanahan could be in some danger.

I will bet you dollars to donuts that the Redskins go defense in 2011. I'll bet they do it in a big way. As Mike Lombardi says, they have a 3-4 defense, and they do not have 3-4 personnel. This is the Redskins' most serious problem. It's even worse than their QB situation, which is now sitting at #2 slot. Only after this can we begin to discus the subject of a WR. Julio Jones at #10? Nope.

Can you imagine Patrick Peterson and Julio Jones in the NFC West, playing for bitter rivals? One thing is for sure: This would be good for business.