Posted Tue May 12th by Mr.East
Editor’s Note: East’s article was originally published Monday just before news broke that Shannon Sharpe had been elected to the Broncos Ring of Fame. I wanted to make sure his piece got some time at the top. Great job East!
Like I said before, Draft grades are useless. I don’t believe in grades until a few seasons have passed. However reflecting on who was picked and why is a legitimate idea. Now that finals are over and I can’t sleep in past 9:30 a.m. anymore I’m ready to bang out some posts.
37. Alphonso Smith
Pros: The guy is a playmaker, you can’t question that. His press conference was very impressive. At his size he is a perfect nickel corner and with the talent around him he could be dangerous. If he was two inches taller he would have been a top 5 pick. As a sophomore at Wake Forest, Smith only started 3 games but tallied four sacks and three interceptions. The next year he lead the NCAA in interceptions with eight, and registered seven the next. Smith has shown great instincts to be a great corner at the next level. Denver needs a player who can turn over the ball outside of Champ Bailey, who gets thrown away from quite often. Karl Paymah wasn’t cutting it at all as a backup corner so it can’t really hurt to try Alphonso Smith. Take a look at his highlights, the guy plays like he’s a linebacker at times.
Cons: Obviously his size, being 5’9 doesn’t exactly help you in the NFL. Many analysts have said that he is too big of a gambler on the ball. Smith says himself in his press conference that he doesn’t consider himself a gambler because he calculates the risk before he takes it. However, a risk is a risk, and the formula is different in the NFL. Smith may have had a prolific career at Wake Forest but he’s still a developmental player. Smith is a first round prospect but it still trading next year’s first for him was a questionable call. I understand not wanting to spend the money signing four first rounders within two seasons, but why not Chicago’s pick? Does McDaniels have that much faith in the team this year? Josh McDaniels has said numerous times that he’s looking for players with certain ‘skill sets.’ This explains the mentality of Denver’s draft decisions.
Good Value: No
- At this moment in time this isn’t a good value. Obviously if Smith ends up being a huge impact to the secondary then this will definitely change. The real question isn’t if Smith is going to be a great player, it’s what is the value of the draft pick Denver gave up?
Good Pick: Yes
- The depth at corner is more shallow than most think. If Andre Goodman and Bailey are hurt, and their both 30, the starting corners are Jack Williams, Josh Bell or Smith, who all have no NFL interceptions. Another thing to consider is that Williams and Smith have no starts as well. Adding depth at corner wasn’t such a bad idea and when you’re number one guy is still on the board with the Patriots who are picking soon, it’s not too bad of an idea to get him.
48. Darcel McBath
Pros: McBath is yet another player who possesses a ‘skill set’ McDaniels is looking for. McDaniels likes players who have performed, McBath was highly prolific in college racking up 214 tackles and 12 interceptions, two for touchdowns. McBath is coming off a great senior year where of seven interceptions where both of his touchdowns come from. Much like Alphonso, McBath has playmaking abilities, one of his pick sixes was during their bowl game against Mississippi. In his senior year McBath had become a strong vocal leader of the team and will definitely learn a speech or two from Brian Dawkins. Where you will mostly see McBath playing is on special teams. McDaniels either was trying to instantly improve special teams with this pick or get another Mc on the team. Denver’s special teams last year was atrocious, hopefully with players like McBath Denver won’t have to fight out of their own five yard line.
Cons: McBath isn’t exactly the best when it comes to coverage, due to his average size he tends to get beat by bigger, stronger, and faster receivers. Play analysis is another weakness for McBath, he tends to bite on play fakes and cannot redirect himself very well. Proper tackling is an issue as well. Hopefully leadership behind Brian Dawkins combined with competition from Josh Barrett McBath will have a better chance to develop.
Good Value: No
- McBath would most likely have been there in the third round where Denver had two picks. McDaniels doesn’t exactly like to play the waiting game.
Good Pick: Yes
- McBath will instantly improve the special teams area. At his presser McBath talked about how loves to play special teams and expects to have an impact there this season.
64. Richard Quinn
Pros: One of the best blocking tight ends in the draft, and he fits very well into McDaniels scheme. Quinn is also an absolute workhorse. Daniel Graham is turning into a better receiver so Quinn could see more playing time if Tony Scheffler ends up somewhere else. Quinn should learn well underneath the tutelage of Graham. Although Quinn only caught 12 passes at North Carolina he impressed scouts very well during receiving drills.
Cons: Obviously he only caught 12 passes in college. Even if Quinn turns out to have great hands in the NFL he won’t do much after the reception due to his speed and lack of elusiveness. I’m not exactly sure why Denver traded back into the second round to grab him too.
Good Value: No, but not as bad as you think.
- Trading up into the second round for a blocking tight end? Very strange. At least the trade value wasn’t atrocious, Denver’s two thirds for Pittsburgh’s 2nd and 4th, not exactly a big deal. DT Jarron Gilbert, DT Roy Miller, DE Michael Johnson, and DT Alex Magee were still on the board. All of those defensive players are prospective busts, this is an example of how McDaniels won’t reach on a need. Some say that Quinn was a reach, but take this into consideration, the Steelers were in fact eying Quinn. This makes sense because the Steelers really need to protect Big Ben and Quinn is a low second round prospect. Perhaps McDaniels and Brian Xanders knew something we all didn’t and they liked Quinn enough to make sure he didn’t become a Steeler.
Good Pick: Yes
- Quinn is great person, and a good football player. He will bring in his workhorse ethic and eventually do very well for Denver.
The second round did not exactly go as everyone expected. The fans would of much rather seen Ron Brace at 37 than Alphonso Smith. In the end though I was pleased with getting a playmaker like Smith, a special teams beast like McBath, and an outstanding tight end that will work his butt off in Quinn. Obviously I would have hoped to see more defensive line action, but the players I mentioned that were left on the board could possibly be huge busts and Denver can’t afford any of that this season. What do you all think? Air it out!