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NFL Draft Review (Part 4 of 8)
by Brett Berliner (NFL)
Posted on June 16, 2006, 8:22 AM

Chicago Bears

2 42 Manning, Danieal S 5-11 201 Abilene (Christian)
2 57 Hester, Devin WR 5-11 189 Miami (Fla.)
3 73 Dvoracek, Dusty DT 6-3 305 Oklahoma
4 120 Williams, Jamar ILB 6-0 250 Arizona State
5 159 Anderson, Mark DE 6-4 258 Alabama
6 195 Runnels, J.D. FB 5-11 235 Oklahoma
6 200 Reed, Tyler G 6-4 315 Penn State

Best Pick: Mark Anderson, DE, Alabama. Sometimes, I just don't get the NFL draft. With all the hype lately on

undersized, speedy pass rushers who can get to the QB, and as good at that as Mark Anderson is, he was slotted as a second

round pick, a place I found very reasonable for him. I hadn't ruled out Anderson slipping into the first round as teams

worked him out and watched his film. A very disruptive player with great speed and good moves like this guy rarely falls out

of the first day, so consider me shocked when I found out Anderson was still available on day two, and that he fell to the

fifth. The Bears have made a living out of grabbing guys like Anderson late and coaching them into stars, so don't be too

shocked when the Alabama grad turns out to be another Adewale Ogunleye, at least in production if not in name. I know a lot

of Bears fans are really unhappy about Danieal Manning, but I like the move. For one, Manning can play both corner and

safety, just like Charles Tillman, so it gives Da Bears some flexibility in their secondary, and really solidifies it,

combined with the addition of Ricky Manning Jr. Manning, most don't know, was a big time recruit at the University of

Nebraska, and he's got all the talent in the world, he just comes with minor baggage. I like him better at corner than

safety, but we'll see how the Bears feel. Jamar Williams is a classic plugger, but he's not a slug on the field, he can

really move. If Lance Briggs decides to move on after this year, I think Williams could fill in without much dropoff. He's

a big guy, but he showed me his pursuit skills are better than reported whenever I watched the Sun Devils play.

Worst Pick: Devin Hester, WR, Miami. Apparently, the Bears are the only team who don't realize that their offense was

holding them back and needed an immediate influx of talent. There's no denying that Hester is skilled - he's fast, athletic

and deadly with the ball in his hands. So what's the problem? Hester can't be described as anything but RAW. He's fast,

but he hasn't done much of anything on the field beyond returning kicks, and he's also very tiny. Will he eventually develop

into an explosive receiver? Probably, although I like him more at corner. Will he have an instant impact in the return

game? Most definitely. But for now, he's a long way away from being a contributor at receiver. I understand the idea that

very few people have the speed and athleticism Hester does, but at this point, another super raw receiver isn't going to help

the Bears. I know that Chicago's offense hardly utilizes the tight end, but with Leonard Pope available, I can't believe

they passed him up. He would have helped their receiver problem immediately, while providing strong blocking in the run

game. I'm aghast he fell so far, but even more that the Bears passed him up for Hester. I heard rumblings that they would

have taken him had he fell one more spot in the third, but they shouldn't have even waited that long to consider him. Dusty

Dvoracek is a good player with a great work ethic who has anger management, drinking and steroid abuse issues in his past.

He's a great talent.. but not the kind of person you want to throw third round money at. If he can stay clean, though, this

is a major steal. I like J.D. Runnels and Tyler Reed okay, but they aren't going to contribute to the solution of Chicago's

anemic offense anytime soon.

Overall: Honestly, the Bears did an okay job of picking, specifically their fourth and fifth round picks, but their

instant impact guys are all defense. I know 'defense wins championships', but being able to score helps, too. I thought the

Bears needed much more offensive help than they got, and it looks like they're setting themselves up to be one of the

league's best defensive teams. Who knows, maybe it could pay off in a way similar to the Ravens' 2000 team. I just think

SOME sort of balance needs to happen - the Bears have a good set of running backs, a good (but aging) offensive line, and now

a QB I really like, in Brian Griese. They have the potential to have a good offense, but they could really use a pass

catching tight end, a possession receiver and some youth on the line. They didn't add any of these, and really, it leaves me

scratching my head. Final Grade: C-

Detroit Lions:

1 9 Sims, Ernie OLB 5-11 232 Florida State
2 40 Bullocks, Daniel SS 6-0 213 Nebraska
3 74 Calhoun, Brian RB 5-9 202 Wisconsin
5 141 Scott, Jonathan OT 6-6 314 Texas
6 179 McCann, Alton 'Dee' CB 5-11 198 West Virginia
7 217 Matua, Fred G 6-2 307 Southern California
7 247 Cannon, Anthony OLB 5-11 227 Tulane

Best Pick: Brian Calhoun, RB, Wisconsin. Calhoun is a beast. Ignore his measured size - he can take a hit and run

through it. Ignore his timed speed - he's got the quickness to bounce it outside and take it to the house. Calhoun is a

classic 'gamer'. I don't think that there was any doubt he was the fastest back, by far, in the Big Ten last year, and so

while at the combine, he ran a very poor score and it may have dropped him, it's ludicrous. It's nuts that he isn't even

going to need to start in Detroit, and they're going to be better for it. Shouldn't have slid so low in the least. Daniel

Bullocks is a kid I'm a fan of. He's another.. he doesn't test off the charts, but during a game, there's few I'd rather

have back there for my team. I also definitely liked Fred Matua - he isn't as good as his more highly regarded teammate

Deuce Lutui, but I thought he might be a late first/early second day pick. He's good enough to start in this league for a

long time. Jon Scott was one of the most overrated players in the nation until draft day, where he went exactly where he

should have. If he develops into a nasty player he could be a good one.

Worst Pick: Ernie Sims, LB, Florida State. I actually like Sims and I think he could be a strong starter in the NFL,

someday. Right now, though, he's got a lot of questions - he's undersized, he has a history of concussions and he doesn't

take on blocks very well. Linebackers in the cover 2 that Detroit is going to run don't really need to, but every time I saw

Sims play, he would just get ENGULFED against lineman - I'd like to see him use his hands to break a block, period. The next

time will be the first. However, if he stays healthy and improves his technique, there's no reason he can't turn out to be

as good as Derrick Brooks - but even Brooks was taken quite a bit lower than this, and coming into the pros, he was less of a

question mark. I like Sims and if I was forced at gunpoint to predict his NFL career, I'd say 10 strong years and a Pro Bowl

or two, but I could see a Hall of Fame Career just as easy as a five year flameout.

Overall: The Lions did okay, I'd say. I'm not in love with any pick but the Calhoun one, but they laid a nice

foundation. They've always done well on draft day under Matt Millen, but the players they get never develop, so in that

sense, it's a wait and see deal. How long has it been since the Lions found a steal on day two? I can't think of anybody

they've brought in late that developed into a solid starter. But you can tell this draft was the brainchild of new coach Rod

Marinelli, because, well, they didn't take Santonio Holmes. Final Grade: B

Green Bay Packers:

1 5 Hawk, A.J. OLB 6-1 247 Ohio State
2 47 Colledge, Daryn OT 6-4 298 Boise State
2 52 Jennings, Greg WR 5-11 196 Western Michigan
3 67 Hodge, Abdul ILB 6-0 235 Iowa
3 75 Spitz, Jason C 6-3 304 Louisville
4 104 Rodgers, Cory WR 6-0 187 Texas Christian
4 115 Blackmon, Will WR 6-0 199 Boston College
5 148 Martin, Ingle QB 6-2 219 Furman
5 165 Moll, Tony OT 6-5 308 Nevada
6 183 Jolly, Johnny DT 6-3 318 Texas A&M
6 185 Culver, Tyrone FS 6-0 196 Fresno State
7 253 Tollefson, Dave DE 6-4 255 Northwest Missouri State

Best Pick: AJ Hawk, LB, Ohio State. Did you think anything else? If anything, you shouldn't be shocked in the least,

if you know me. Hawk is the surest thing I've seen in football in years. Some positions are hard to project to the NFL - LB

is not really one of them. Guys who run well, take on blocks well, tackle well, hold the line well and read plays like 10

year veterans usually make it.. so.. I think Hawk will be okay. I liked a LOT of Green Bay's picks, specifically their first

day, where nearly the only thing they did wrong was to dump Javon Walker, but I'll concentrate on their picks. Daryn

Colledge, nicknamed 'The Polar Bear', is a good player who is probably GB's left tackle of the future. He's athletic and

intelligent and is great for the new zone blocking scheme they're going to be installing. Abdul Hodge was the second best

ILB in the draft, and it wasn't a huge difference between him and D'Qwell Jacons. He's quick and a sure tackler -

undersized, maybe, but he plays way bigger than his size. Every time I saw Iowa play, I came away more impressed with Hodge

than Chad Greenway, by far, so for him to be there this low is great. Greg Jennings is a decent pick - initially, he was

probably more of a third rounder, but reportedly his workouts were fantastic. He's not of prototype size or speed but he has

nice hands and can take a hit. He isn't going to be the explosive receiver Javon Walker was, but he'll help. I even liked

a lot of the Pack's second day - specifically their fourth round. Cory Rodgers didn't run too well at the combine, but he

plays fast in pads, and Will Blackmon, if he moves back to corner, probably is skilled enough to have been a second round

pick. I also was a big fan of Ingle Martin. He was beaten out by Chris Leak at Florida but went elsewhere and destroyed the

competition. He's got a decent arm, is intelligent and mobile and really fits the mold of the developmental QBs the Pack

always bring in (Brunell, Aaron Brooks, Hasselbeck, Craig Nall). Johnny Jolly is a nice developmental DT prospect.

Worst Pick: Jason Spitz, C, Louisville. I'll admit that I could be very wrong here, as the evaluation of some scouts

I really respect has Spitz as a potential Pro Bowler, but I don't like Spitz too much and I doubt he ever turns into an

impact starter. He's moderately athletic but doesn't play that way in pads, and one just has to look to the South Florida

game last year. Who are South Florida's DTs? Nobody knows. But they constantly pushed Spitz back, killing him at the point

of attack. They took away any run between the tackles and put pressure on Brian Brohm repeatedly. I don't know how Spitz

could have gone in round 3, after watching that game. Tony Moll isn't a favorite of mine, either. He has the story I love

as a lineman - came in at 250 as a moderately athletic TE and put on weight, but he doesn't carry it well. He should be

quicker and likely stronger but he's slightly weak for someone of his size, and his quickness just isn't there. He could be

a nice RT in the zone blocking scheme but I think he's destined for the waiver wire.

Overall: The Packers built a really fine foundation with this draft. They shored up their LB corps (Hawk, Hodge and Barnett? Sick.), helped their OL and added some fine athletes. Although they really need DB help, they can't solve everything in one draft. I would never have dumped Javon Walker for only a second, but hey, that's me. It's going to be a while before Green Bay is a contender again, but a few more drafts like this will shorten the process. Final Grade: A

Minnesota Vikings
1 17 Greenway, Chad OLB 6-3 243 Iowa
2 48 Griffin, Cedric CB 6-0 198 Texas
2 51 Cook, Ryan C 6-7 327 New Mexico
2 64 Jackson, Tarvaris QB 6-2 225 Alabama State
4 127 Edwards, Ray DE 6-5 279 Purdue
5 149 Blue, Greg FS 6-2 215 Georgia

Best Pick: Ray Edwards, DE, Purdue. Edwards should not have fallen into the second day - he's strong against the run and a good pass rusher. I know why he DID fall - he was benched last year at Purdue and left early, and I admit, I don't know why he was benched, but he is in good shape, has good pass rush moves and can fit right in on a DL rotation. He can play. Greg Blue was a decent pick. He doesn't live up to the tradition of badass Georgia safeties (Thomas Davis, Sean Jones), but he runs well for a LB, which is where he'll be moved. I expect Blue to provide strong depth on ST and at LB for a long time. Cedric Griffin was overrated, I felt, but he should develop into a good enough corner that people won't remember he was drafted a round early.

Worst Pick: Tarvaris Jackson, QB, Alabama State. Hmm, I heard this story once, that Jackson was beaten out, badly, at Alabama, by Matt Jones.. who is now a WR in the NFL. Yikes. I like Jackson's potential - he has a big arm, is athletic and throws the deep ball very well. He's actually a (very) poor man's Donovan McNabb, if you want to compare him to a QB. I know he's getting a lot of play as Daunte Culpepper 2, but I think he throws a better deep ball than Daunte. Sounds good, right? Well, not particularly. For one, he is coming from IAA, and there's always questions there - can he read a defense, is he going to be good when the pressure is huge, etc. For that reason alone I slightly favor large school prospects. I think Jackson would have been a nice pick sometime in the fifth round or later. In a few years he could be an impact NFL starter, but the Vikes don't HAVE a few years, they have Brad Johnson, who is THIRTY EIGHT. I still think Johnson could play well this year, but beyond that, no. Jackson won't be ready next year. He needs at least two years on the bench, and even then, he may not be ready. I'm not a huge fan of either guy, but Brodie Croyle and Charlie Whitehurst would have made more sense, considering Jackson is a totally different QB from Johnson, and these guys are more ready, something they really need. I trust Brad Childress, I'm a huge fan, but seriously, what were they thinking here? Greenway is OK. He runs well and is intelligent, but I was always more impressed with Abdul Hodge. Ryan Cook is going to be a great RT someday, but he's not as good as Daunte Culpepper. They took RYAN COOK with the pick they got for Pep? SERIOUSLY?

Overall: Weird draft. I don't see any player beyond Cook and maybe Edwards turning into an impact starter. Jackson has huge potential but he's hugely unproven, Griffin is solid but unspectacular, Greenway is OK (Just OK.).. I dunno. I really can't figure out what they were going for, here, and as a result I'm baffled by the normally solid Minnesota front office. I hope Ryan Cook makes a bunch of Pro Bowls or the Vikes will just look sillier. Here's a hint: he's not as good as Daunte Culpepper. Nutty. Final Grade: D

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