But Work Ethic, as the Old Ones say, moves Mountains, that Diagnostic Capacity, applied relentlessly enough for long enough, can dramatically improve Processing Speed, and that Erik James Manuel commands such a powerful combination of Passion, Work Ethic, raw, vibrant Determination, and genuine intellectual Diagnostic Capacity that I believe that, when all is said and done, he's going to overcome his deficiencies and be a resounding Success.
I consider this Pick to be an egregiously Expensive one ~ I gave'm a 2nd/3rd Round Grade ~ but would nevertheless stipulate that there is every reason to hope that the Bills not only get their entire Money's worth for the Pick, but reap a considerable Profit: I have nothing but good impression of the kid, and my objections are based solely on Valuation. I had precisely the same impression, last Year, when the Fish selected Ryan TanneHill of Texas A&M ~ to whom I'd given a 3rd Round Grade ~ @ #11: I loved the kid ~ just thought the Price was a bit Expensive.
2 ~ FL Robert Woods of Southern California @ #41. Two Thumbs Up!! I gave'm a 1st Round Grade!!
Robert Woods didn't have anywhere near as big a Junior Year as he did as a Sophomore, due to an Ankle Injury that cost'm the whole Summer, and due to the Ascension of Marquis Lee, and that seems to've hurt his Stock.
And I find it interesting that most folks are now describing'm as a SlotBack, now, just because it's his last Position.
And of course his pedestrian Long Speed doesn't make hearts quiver.
The truth is that he can play all 3 Positions, and play them well.
I'm calling'm a Flanker, because that seems to be his best Position at the next level.
Robert Woods could very well prove to be the very best in an extraordinarily deep and talented Class.
And he is ready to start today.
3 ~ MF Kiko Alonso of Oregon @ #46. Excellent Pick. I gave'm a 2nd Round Grade.
Alonso combines tremendous Processing Speed with extraordinary Range and outstanding Verticity in Pass Defense.
He lacks substantial Core Strength, so you can run at him with some success, and he isn't the most disciplined guy in the world, but there is legitimate All Pro Potential, here, and he is precisely the kind of MidFielder you want in the 21st Century: A guy who can Rapidly Read & React to decipher what the Offense is doing, who can quickly cover a lot of ground in Run Defense, and who can actually Flip Hips and run with SlotBacks, FlexBacks, & Tight Ends.
4 ~ SL Marquise Goodwin of Texas @ #78. Outstanding Pick: I gave'm a 2nd Round Grade.
Despite being used in limited ways at Texas, it's crystal clear to me, after his startling work at the Senior Bowl and the Combine, that Marquis Goodwin will rapidly master the intricacies of complicated Routing at the Next Level.
His Size strongly suggests that he should be a SlotBack at the next level, and I have categorized him accordingly...
But he's so damned Fast and has such explosive leaping ability...that I think that he could not only handle a Flanker's responsibilities, but master them: I believe that His Fusion of tremendous Agility, rapidly ascending Routing Savvy, and World Class Long Speed will soon make Goodwin a phenomenally dangerous Weapon at the Next Level!!
5 ~ SS Duke Williams of Nevada @ #105. Awesome Pick: I gave'm a 2nd Round Grade.
The Tape's a bit thin, I'll grant you, but from what I've seen, Duke Williams is the Real Deal: An Hard Hitting Haymaker with the extraordinary combination of outstanding Agility, tremendous Processing Speed, and Field Vision to stand tall in Coverage against athletic SlotBacks, yet lay the Hammer down in Run Defense when it's called for.
Williams shows a deliciously voracious appetite for Contact, and has delivered some HighLight Reel Hits. But what I like most about'm is his Disciplined approach to the Game. Many HighLight Reel Hitters in this Year's Draft fail dramatically in that regard, but Williams consistently sticks to'is Job and chooses'is Moments.
Williams commands outstanding Verticity to Turn & Burn in Slot Coverage. That alone should put'm on everyone's Radar, but his tremendous Processing Speed, evident in how quickly and consistently he gets DownField to stop Runs, makes him an highly valuable Hybrid in the 21st Century's Game.
6 ~ XE Christopher Gragg of Arkansas @ #222. Tremendous Value: I gave'm a 3rd Round Grade.
God knows: After'is awesome Combine, Chrstopher Gragg isn't flying 18 Million Miles Under The Radar, anymore, but even so, in light of his injurious Senior Year and a veritable Bounty of Tight Ends, Flex Ends, and WingBacks coming OnLine in this Draft Class, his Stock appears to remain startlingly discounted.
Christopher Gragg is a Convertible who moved from Split End to Tight End and projects best as a Flex End and, in my opinion, as a WingBack ~ that's "Hybrid Flex End/WingBack/FullBack/Slot End/SlotBack" to you Earthlings!!
Gragg's Game is unrefined, so he could easily flop. But there is explosive Athleticism to work with, here.
UFA ~ Keith Pough of Howard ~ Phenomenal Value!! I gave'm a 2nd Round Grade!!
Keith Pough...is a Natural Born Leader.
He is blessed with tremendous Agility in all things.
He is blessed with outstanding Core Strength.
He is blessed with Passion...Intensity...RAGE...and sweet LOVE for this Great Game...and for CONTACT.
He boasts outstanding Processing Speed, Field Vision, and Instincts.
He has the Processing Speed, the Burst, and the Lateral Agility & Range to dominate the Range in Run Defense.
And he has the Processing Speed, the Diagnostic Acuity, and the sweet, sweet Verticity to Flip Hips in Pass Defense.
And he loves his Job.
Did I mention that he's a Natural Born Leader??
I'm a big Fan.
UFA ~ DaRick Rogers of Tennessee Tech ~ Magnificent Value!! I gave'm a 1st/2nd Round Grade!!
Rogers is a clear 1st Round Talent who commands an exhilarating fusion of Size, Strength, and Speed.
And he is passionate.
But that Passion has sometimes been egregiously misdirected ~ at Coaches, you see.
And he's something of a Dope Fiend.
He got kicked out of Tennessee, and even then, rumors persisted about his emotional Volatility.
Seems to me they ought to let the guy smoke a Reefer, now and then.
My Take: We're looking at explosive, dominant UpSide, here.
Multiple Pro Bowl UpSide.
And UFA's don't Get Paid until they Rock & Roll ~ and behave themselves ~ for 4 Years at the Pro Level.
That, Ladies & Laddies, is what I call a Favorable Risk/Reward Ratio.
Their most important Pick ~ #16, obviously ~ was in my view a dramatic Reach, and I think that they would've been much better off picking any one of at least a dozen Players, and then scooping up Sean Renfree & Ryan Griffin on Day 3. Investing so much Draft Capital in a Work In Progress like Erik James Manuel is a risky Proposition.
But pulling in no less than eight Day 1 & Day 2 Prospects ~ in my considerably unqualified view, mind you!! ~ is nothing short of Spectacular. And that Trade Back with the Rams was an excellent one.
New EngLand Patriots ~ B-
Buffalo Bills ~ A
Miami Dolphins ~ D
New York Jets ~ C
PittsBurgh Steelers ~ D-
CleveLand Browns ~ B+
Cincinnati Bengals ~ B+
Baltimore Ravens ~ A
OakLand Raiders ~ A+
San Diego Chargers ~ D
Kansas City Chiefs ~ B
Denver Broncos ~ D
Planet Hoosten ~ B+
JacksonVille Jaguars ~ B+
Tennessee Titans ~ C
Indianapolis Colts ~ A+
Philadelphia Eagles ~ D-
Washington RedSkins ~ B+
Dallas CowBoys ~ C
New York Giants ~ D
Detroit Lions ~ B+
Minnesota Vikings ~ F-
Chicago Bears ~ B
Green Bay Packers ~ A
Seattle SeaHawks ~ A
San Fransisco Miners ~ A+
Saint Louis Rams ~ A-
Arizona Cardinals ~ B
Atlanta Falcons ~ C+
Carolina Panthers ~ C-
New Orleans Saints ~ A-
Tampa Bay Buccaneers ~ C-