This time last year I was getting the itinerary to fly on Dan Snyder’s private jet and attend the NFL draft live in Radio City Music Hall. (One of the coolest experiences of my life!) This year the NFL draft wont be as exciting watching from my couch and waiting until Friday for the 51stpick for the Redskins to be on the clock.
The mock drafts have the Skins filling the safety position first. Even with salary caps the one thing Redskins fans can always count on is never knowing what Snyder will pull out of his bag of tricks. So until Snyder’s magic show begins, I’ll be rooting for the VOLS.
The University of Tennessee has several prospects that defined a season full of making great plays and a season full of dropping routine passes. Untimely, WR Cordarrell Patterson will be a first rounder (or he is projected to be) and the VOLS should see other alum drafted as well.
The controversy over Cordarrelle Patterson is that he only spent one year of playing at the college level for the University of Tennessee under Dooley’s debacle of a program. The lack of having a real coach or even a full SEC college football experience has left CP’s raw talent still untapped making him a risk and steepens the margin for being a draft hit or miss. Personally, I hope CP turns out to be a stud (just as long as he doesn’t end up in a Eagles jersey). He is an electric player to watch. He’s still a kid, he needs a solid foundation to mature and ripen, but when and if that happens- he’ll have a winning career in the NFL.
OT Dallas Thomas is projected to be a second rounder along with wide receiver Justin Hunter. WR Zach Rogers is also expected to have his name called.
The one player I was excited to announce that he was forgoing his senior year of eligibility was QB Tyler Bray. Don’t get me wrong, the kid has a cannon and he can hit his targets. But he’s not a mobile QB and with the new hire of Butch Jones’s spread offence it was a win for both Bray and UT. The issue with Bray is that he is a gun-slinging gambler with no protection plan. He called his own shots in the huddle and while he made great plays, he couldn’t win in the SEC and VOLS fans will always remember that he never beat Florida. Great players preform at crunch time and Bray gambled more than he played smart. With the right mentor and someone to beat the cocky-ness out of him, he might be more humble and learn to play with his head and his arm. Bray doesn’t have the Brett Favre charm to pull off being so cocky. The smartest sentence Bray has ever said was acknowledging during Gruden’s QB camp was that Tennessee football was a religion in Tennessee and I’ll support anyone who worships the same sports gods as I do.
I was in Atlanta last weekend and happened to be at the same bar/restaurant as Georgia OLB and first round draft prospect, Jarvis Jones. The server told me he didn’t drink so I sent him a Shirley Temple. To my surprise, he found my joke as funny as I did and even posed for a picture with a VOLS fan. He’s in the SEC family so naturally I respect him and I’m rooting for the coolest dawg I know to hear his name called on Thursday night.
But where will Manti To’e fall into the draft? AJ McCarron’s girlfriend had more airtime during the National Championship game than Notre Dame had possession of the ball. To’s individual performance was a reflection of being exposed by the SEC. To’e was invited to attend the draft, but he declined. I guess he wanted to stay at home and watch the draft with his girlfriend…