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Expectations for our draft class..

 
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iRobot


Joined: 17 Nov 2011
Posts: 789
Location: Mesa, AZ
PostPosted: Mon Apr 29, 2013 2:16 pm    Post subject: Expectations for our draft class.. Reply with quote

1. Jonathan Cooper, OG, North Carolina
2. Kevin Minter, ILB, LSU
3. Tyrann Mathieu, CB, LSU
4. Alex Okafor, DE, Texas
4. Earl Watford, OG, James Madison
5. Stepfan Taylor, RB, Stanford
6. Ryan Swope, WR, Texas A&M
6. Andre Ellington, RB, Clemson
7. D.C Jefferson, TE, Rutgers

Here is my thoughts on the draft class and what we can expect from Day 1 this season..

1) Cooper -
I expect an immediate starting role for Cooper, and I would think it would be in place of Snyder but Cooper is used to being a left guard and I wonder if the regime will want to move Colledge to the right to allow Cooper to come in where he naturally fits.

2) Minter -
Minter will get a chance to start early since Washington is serving a 4 game suspension. If he does well enough to supplant Brinkley, I would expect the tandem to be Washington and Minter as of week 5. Minter is a good thumper in the middle but watching the Alabama tape, I noticed he at times got washed out of plays and I wonder if he will get better immediately with some grooming from coaching and advice from Washington.

3) Mathieu -
Mathieu may get a chance to start early and often. I expect a role as Khodder has projected where he's brought in during nickel situations as a slot cover guy, and he will be tested greatly in our division. Harvin and Austin will be possible assignments for him when Peterson is covering other WRs. Safety is a spot that will be dynamic in training camp as guys compete for positions there but I do not for see it being Rashad and Yeremiah in the back because neither of those two have strong cover skills.

4) Okafor -
Fighting for a spot against Alexander and Schofield, Okafor also has to make the transition from 4-3 DE to 3-4 OLB, like Acho before him. Acho will be able to help the transition but Okafor still has to show that he can cover and do more than just bull rush to try to get to the QB. I don't think he starts early but earns some rotation reps and could take over opposite of Acho by late season.

4) Watford -
I see Watford as a depth guy and development project this season. I don't expect him to start, barring any injuries, but many around the draft community thing he is a small school guy with BIG time potential. Seth Cox (SethCoxFB on twitter) says that Watford is basically Cooper-lite and needs some time to develop.

5) Taylor -
Taylor has a real shot to earn time as a 2nd or even the top back in rotation. Mendenhall was signed to be the primary but Taylor will push for the job. I don't know how the running back situation will shake out but I have expectations of the depth chart that I will lay out next.

6) Swope -
I don't think Swope supplants Roberts on the depth chart. I think Swope gets time in 4-wide sets, with Floyd/Fitz on the outside and Swope/Roberts in the slot. Swope provides a sure handed WR option who is smart enough to come back to the QB when pressure presents itself.

6) Ellington -
Ellington is basically Ryan Williams but without the injury history. He struggled senior season with hammie injury but doesn't have the knee history that Williams has. I expect both Taylor and Ellington to make the roster and Fonzo/WiPo could likely be gone. The only person who MAY be in their corner is Keim as everyone else has no real ties to Fonzo/WiPo.

7) Jefferson -
Development depth guy who may only make practice squad. Great upside from what I read but needs time.

Anyone else have more information or expectations that myself?
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DJ_Fka


Joined: 13 Jan 2009
Posts: 5154
Location: Brisvegas, Land Down Under
PostPosted: Mon Apr 29, 2013 5:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

First 4 start, due to holes and injuries on this team.

Watfrod sits and learns like potter, expect midseason starting for him at earliest.

Swope is 4th WR, better hands than Doucet, quicker too, love this pick.

Taylor is in the mix for RB, future starter, depends on Rashad really, $2.5 mil gets you a starting spot i believe.

Ellington is 3rd down or 5 WR player, also returns kicks. He shines in 2014

Jefferson is project, with upsude.
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Boise&cards Fan


Joined: 03 Dec 2010
Posts: 3121
PostPosted: Mon Apr 29, 2013 5:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Jonathan Cooper: I expect him to start day one at LG with College moving over to RG.

Kevin Minter: Starts day one until Washington comes back and maybe takes over next to him depending on play.

Tyrann Mathieu: I think he starts day one at FS.

Alex Okafor: Starts the year as the back up but by end of the season is starting on the other side of Acho.

Earl Watford: Finishes the year as the starting RG over College over takes it next year.

Stepfan Taylor: Will finishes the year as the number 2 or even the number 1 RB depending on injury for the number 1 spot.

Ryan Swope: Number 4 WR that they tell to run straight down the field.

Andre Ellington: Starting Kick returner and finishes as the number 3 RB. Could land at 2 depending on injury to Mendenhall.

D.C Jefferson: Beats Dray out for the number 3 TE spot and comes along slowly as a TE.
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love2theOLINE


Joined: 14 May 2008
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 29, 2013 11:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I can see all making the 53. Cooper, Minter, Matthieu, Okafor, and Taylor will all start at some point. The rest will see play time.
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mtdowner


Joined: 30 Jan 2013
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 30, 2013 7:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't really see DC Jefferson making the roster. He doesn't really seem like a natural pass catcher and is still extremely raw.

What is the most running backs we would carry on the roster? 4? Our current back situation looks like this:

Rashard Mendenhall
Ryan Williams
William Powell
Alfonso Smith
Stepfan Taylor
Andre Ellington

So that means two of these guys aren't making the cut, right?
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LuckyNumber11


Joined: 01 Aug 2011
Posts: 5249
Location: Nebraska
PostPosted: Tue Apr 30, 2013 7:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

mtdowner wrote:
I don't really see DC Jefferson making the roster. He doesn't really seem like a natural pass catcher and is still extremely raw.

What is the most running backs we would carry on the roster? 4? Our current back situation looks like this:

Rashard Mendenhall
Ryan Williams
William Powell
Alfonso Smith
Stepfan Taylor
Andre Ellington

So that means two of these guys aren't making the cut, right?


I'd say 4 plus a practice squad. I like Powell but I think he's the odd man out
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mtdowner


Joined: 30 Jan 2013
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 30, 2013 7:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Boise&cards Fan wrote:
Jonathan Cooper: I expect him to start day one at LG with College moving over to RG.

Kevin Minter: Starts day one until Washington comes back and maybe takes over next to him depending on play.

Tyrann Mathieu: I think he starts day one at FS.

Alex Okafor: Starts the year as the back up but by end of the season is starting on the other side of Acho.

Earl Watford: Finishes the year as the starting RG over College over takes it next year.

Stepfan Taylor: Will finishes the year as the number 2 or even the number 1 RB depending on injury for the number 1 spot.

Ryan Swope: Number 4 WR that they tell to run straight down the field.

Andre Ellington: Starting Kick returner and finishes as the number 3 RB. Could land at 2 depending on injury to Mendenhall.

D.C Jefferson: Beats Dray out for the number 3 TE spot and comes along slowly as a TE.


I think many of you are underestimating how difficult it will be for Mathieu to transition into the NFL, especially at FS. He hasn't played football in over a year and played corner when he did. Patrick Peterson struggled his rookie year quite a bit early on and if it wasn't for his punt returns we probably would have said he had a pretty poor season. I think Mathieu definitely has a place on our defense but we might not see it until later on in the season.
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DJ_Fka


Joined: 13 Jan 2009
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 30, 2013 9:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Safety is easier to learn than corner.

Free safety even more so

He is smart enough and the schemes will be tailored to get him on the field quickly.

Remember we got rid of Kerry Rhodes
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khodder


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 30, 2013 11:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

DJ_Fka wrote:
Safety is easier to learn than corner.

Free safety even more so

He is smart enough and the schemes will be tailored to get him on the field quickly.

Remember we got rid of Kerry Rhodes


Yeah that is not exactly true. In terms of safety you need to read both receivers, your teammates around you and the quarterback.

I don't think Mathieu "starts" a game this season. He will see action in some sub-package looks and will be used a lot on special teams; but I think we go with Johnson and Bell as our starting safeties and given our depth at corner now (Even if the overall talent in not that great) it will be tough for him to get a look in as a traditional player. He will play a niche, in the box rover defender in some sub-package looks.

I think the only guy who starts from minute one is Cooper. Minter will likely start the first four games with Washington out, but he will also face a stiff challenge from Reggie Walker. I have talked about Mathieu and Okafor is more likely to be a 3rd down pass rusher and subpackage pass rusher than he is the transition to starting OLB.

Watford is stepping up a lot in compeition. He has some pretty refined technique, but there is still some development to go there. He is however playing in a position where the competition to start along with Cooper should be very open. He has shot, though a long one, to start early this year.

They you get into the 5th/6th/7th round players who are all guys who have limitations or are "project" players. Taylor has played behind some tremendous OL's in college and his YPC dipped this past season under 5 YPC (most elite college backs sit around 5.5-6+) when you put him against and athletic NFL caliber defense he was contained, this year vs Notre Dame it took him 28 carries to 102 yards. He is however a workhorse power back; but do we really have a spot for that on the roster if Mendenhall proves healthy? Interesting to note Taylor had 40+ receptions this year and nearly 400 touches. I like Ellington and I like he does not have a huge amount of tread on his tires. An elusive back who can catch out of the backfield and possibly return kicks could be valuable. I really like William Powell to knock one of these two guys down to the PS.

Swope is going to be a 4/5 receiver in an offense that rarely uses more than 3 and Jefferson is going to be in a huge battle to make the roster.
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