View Full Version : ESPN: Round 2 Player Selections Review

04-23-2010, 10:53 PM
Round 2
1(33) St. Louis Rams Rodger Saffold OT Indiana
What he brings: Saffold really jumped out at us during the East-West Shrine Game. He didn't show elite power and doesn't have as much athletic ability as some of the other tackles in this class, and he'll have to move from the left side to the right side, but Saffold also has the awareness, foot work and size to become an effective starting right tackle. He's an excellent value in the second round.
How he fits: After drafting Jason Smith to be the left tackle of the future, the Rams look to be set for a years to come. Saffold playing on the right side will allow the Rams to use Alex Barron, who really struggled versus power in pass protection, as a backup. There is still some upside in backups Eric Young and Phil Trautwein, so the offensive tackle unit looks to be secure, which is definitely a good thing for Sam Bradford.

2(34) Minnesota Vikings (from Detroit) Chris Cook CB Virginia
What he brings: It's hard to fine corners above six feet because they generally have a tough time sinking their hips and changing directions, but much like Miami's second-round pick last year, Utah's Sean Smith, Cook is fluid enough to stay at corner. We were impressed by his standout showing at the Senior Bowl this year and he's the highest-rated corner left on our board.
How he fits: Antoine Winfield and Cedric Griffin are good starters for the Vikings, but Griffin is coming off an ACL injury and taking Cook will enable the Vikings to bring Griffin back slowly and allow Benny Sapp and Asher Allen to be relied on as backups. Corner was one of the Vikings' major needs and now they have a stable group to rely on. Cook will also add size and ball skills to this Vikings' secondary.

3(35) Tampa Bay Buccaneers Brian Price DT UCLA
What he brings: Price moves very well for his size and the potential to become a disruptive upfield run defender. He can also make an impact rushing the passer, though he's never going to put up huge sack numbers. The concern is that he must put forth a more consistent work ethic on and off the field.
How he fits: This defense was last in the league against the run last year due to its small front that was beginning to show signs of aging with Chris Hovan and Ryan Sims. Price can now team with first-rounder Gerald McCoy and last year?s third-rounder Roy Miller for a good, young three-man rotation. McCoy is likely to play nose tackle in this system with Price playing the three-technique. This was the Bucs' single biggest need and they obviously realized it because they addressed it two times in the first two rounds.

4(36) Kansas City Chiefs Dexter McCluster RB Mississippi
What he brings: McCluster didn't run as well as expected at the combine, but on film and at the Senior Bowl he looked explosive. He is an instinctive runner who reaches his top speed quickly and a reliable receiver who can produce after the catch.
How he fits: This wasn't a major need, but in the Scott Pioli's school of thought the offense must have a dangerous third sub back on passing downs and McCluster is a perfect fit. The trio of Thomas Jones, big-play runner Jamaal Charles and McCluster has quickly made Charlie Weis's offense much more dangerous moving the football and scoring points.

5(37) Philadelphia Eagles (from Washington) Nate Allen S South Florida
What he brings: Allen needs to be a more consistent tackler and take better pursuit angles in run support, but he has the potential to excel in coverage. Although he's 6-foot, Allen is fluid enough to match up with slot receivers in man coverage. He also has the range to play a centerfielder-type role and plays the ball well.
How he fits: The Eagles definitely needed a safety as they try to replace Brian Dawkins. Allen may not be the physical presence Dawkins was versus the run, but he will be an improvement providing versatility in pass defense. He will be an improvement over Quintin Demps, Macho Harris and Marlin Jackson, who's coming off his second ACL injury in two years. Quentin Mikell is tough and a consistent, blue-collar player, but Philly needed a good pass-defender next to him. Sean Jones is gone to Tampa Bay and this very possibly could be an upgrade over him.

6(38) Cleveland Browns T.J. Ward S Oregon
What he brings: Ward has had some problems staying healthy, and he has not shown enough to lead us to believe he can develop into a playmaker at the NFL level. Still, Cleveland got a very sound football player. He is a tough run-stopper and can hold his own in coverage. In addition, he has excellent instincts and work ethic.
How he fits: The Browns are clearly upgrading their pass defense after finishing near the bottom of the league in passing yards allowed. They needed a ballhawking safety because Brodney Pool is gone to the Jets and Abram Elam is better near the line of scrimmage than as a single-high safety. Mike Adams will be a serviceable backup, while Nick Sorenson and Ray Ventrone can battle for the remaining special teams spot.

7(39) Tampa Bay Buccaneers (from Oakland) Arrelious Benn WR Illinois
What he brings: Benn's production suffered because of inconsistent quarterback play. He doesn't have great top-end speed and needs to work on his route running, but he is still a good value here. He has the strength, athletic ability and hands to develop into an effective No. 2 wideout who can make the occasional play downfield and produce after the catch.
How he fits: Despite the trade for Reggie Brown, the wide receiver corps still needed big-play ability badly. Brown has been very inconsistent and Michael Clayton is more tough than dangerous. Maurice Stovall is a downfield high-point player, but Benn will provide more dynamic play in time. He may need time in terms of route running, but he undoubtedly gives them another weapon.

8(40) Miami Dolphins (from Seattle through San Diego) Koa Misi OLB Utah
What he brings: Misi is going to make the transition from defensive end to outside linebacker, but we believe it will be a smooth transition. He has experience rushing the quarterback out of a 2-point stance and we had many chances to see him move in space at the Senior Bowl, where he had a strong week. Although he doesn't have elite measurables, he is tough enough to set the edge against the run and he is a dynamic pass-rusher.
How he fits: Miami's two most productive pass-rushers at the linebacker position -- Joey Porter, who had nine sacks, and Jason Taylor, who had seven -- are gone. Cameron Wake provides a lot of pass-rush upside, but still needs a lot of grooming. Misi's transition from defensive end to outside linebacker will improve the team quickly versus the run and, the Dolphins hope, in time against the pass.

9(41) Buffalo Bills Torell Troup DT UCF
What he brings: Troup is a reach at this point but he has the potential to become an excellent nose tackle in a base three-man front. The 6-foot-2 lineman has a low center of gravity and he can get under opposing offensive linemen, and he is big and strong enough to hold his own when teams run at him.
How he fits: Coach Chan Gailey wants to switch to the 3-4 defense and Troup will serve as the nose tackle of the future. Kyle Williams is a very tough, scrappy playe, but lacks the natural bulk and size of a natural first- and second-down 3-4 nose tackle. Troup will likely fill the early-down role with Williams subbing on longer passing downs.

10(42) New England Patriots (from Chicago through Tampa Bay and Oakland) Rob Gronkowski TE Arizona
What he brings: The biggest concern with Gronkowski is his durability; he missed all of the 2009 season with a back injury. On the other hand, if stays healthy he has the potential to develop into a complete tight end. He can make plays down the seam, get open underneath and walls off defenders as an inline blocker.
How he fits: The addition of Alge Crumpler will help the club offset the loss of Benjamin Watson to Cleveland and Chris Baker to Seattle. But the Patriots still needed a physical, early-down blocker that could also stretch the field. Despite his injury history, Gronkowski's all-around ability should fit what the Patriots needed. This was a good value pick at this spot.

11(43) Baltimore Ravens (from Miami through Denver) Sergio Kindle OLB Texas
What he brings: Kindle is another talented prospect with durability concerns. His stem from a knee injury. On the other hand, Kindle is an explosive pass-rusher and athletic run defender on film. He needs to get a bit stronger at the point of attack, but there's a lot to like about his upside.
How he fits: Kindle will provide good depth at the outside linebacker position for the Ravens' 3-4 defense. The Ravens have good starters in Jarret Johnson and Terrell Suggs, but Kindle will be able to spell these players more and more as they age. This was not a big need for the club, but he fits their defense very well.

12(44) Oakland Raiders (from Jacksonville through New England) Lamarr Houston DT Texas
What he brings: Houston turned a lot of heads with a strong showing in the BCS championship game. He is quick for his size and shows good strength at the point of attack. Although he lacks great closing speed, he is relentless in pursuit and rushing the passer.
How he fits: The Raiders certainly needed defensive tackle help. Gerard Warren is gone and the team had no proven backups to replace him. Houston will compete with Tommy Kelly and Desmond Bryant for playing time. His excellent pursuit effort and quickness will be an upgrade over William Joseph and Chris Cooper. Defensive tackle was becoming a weakness for this club and this is an upgrade.

13(45) Denver Broncos Zane Beadles OG Utah
What he brings: Beadles lined up at tackle at Utah but he's going to have to move inside to guard to succeed at the NFL level. We saw at the Senior Bowl that he clearly doesn't have the athletic ability to hold up outside, but he has the mean streak, power and enough agility to become an excellent starting guard.
How he fits: The Broncos needed both numbers and skill on the interior of their offensive line. Though Beadles played offensive tackle at Utah, he will compete inside with Seth Olsen and Russ Hochstein, who is coming off ACL surgery. Beadles will beat out Dustin Fry and Matt McChesney to make this front stronger and tougher, which is what coach Josh McDaniels desires.

14(46) NY Giants Linval Joseph DT East Carolina
What he brings: Joseph doesn't have great explosiveness and he needs to learn to play lower, but he has above-average athletic ability for a 328-pound defensive tackle prospect. His upside alone makes him a good value here.
How he fits: The team finished middle of the pack in rushing yards allowed and was not an overly stout group. Fred Robbins left for St. Louis as a unrestricted free agent and Chris Canty has produced very little as a high-priced defensive lineman. Barry Cofield and Jay Alford are sound defenders, but the Giants did need help at defensive tackle.

15(47) Arizona Cardinals (from Tennessee through New England) Daryl Washington OLB TCU
What he brings: Washington can have some problems anchoring when teams run at him, but he reads his keys, locates the ball quickly and can beat blockers to the point of attack. He also tackles well. In addition, he has the potential to be a three-down linebacker who doesn't have to come off the field in passing situations.
How he fits: Arizona made a big splash by signing the demonstrative Joey Porter for sacks and toughness, but they still needed outside pass-rushing. Sack leader Bertrand Berry is no longer with the club and Clark Haggans is slowing down with age. This was a good pick. The Cardinals get a physical, young pass-rusher who can also set the edge versus the run.

16(48) Carolina Panthers Jimmy Clausen QB Notre Dame
What he brings: There are concerns about Clausen's ability to attack the middle of the field. He just throws too many jump balls. In addition, there are concerns about how his demeanor will go over in an NFL locker room. On the other hand, he has the arm strength, size and, without question, confidence to develop into an effective starter. He doesn't have to worry about making the transition to an NFL offense, either, after playing for Charlie Weis at Notre Dame.
How he fits: Not only did the Panthers have only two quarterbacks on the roster, they also needed a quarterback with high-end potential to become the starter. Matt Moore performed well when given the opportunity, but Clausen's overall talent and upside were exactly what the Panthers needed, especially at this spot in the draft. The Panthers were accustomed to having a demonstrative quarterback in Jake Delhomme and this may very well be the younger version.

17(49) San Francisco 49ers Taylor Mays S USC
What he brings: Safeties with Mays height, weight and speed are rare. He is a big hitter, can punish wideouts over the middle and also line up in the box as a run defender. The problem is, despite his limitations in coverage despite his range. There is some tightness in his hips, he lacks elite instincts and, most importantly, doesn't play the ball well.
How he fits: Dashon Goldson pleasantly surprised the club in 2009, but strong safety Michael Lewis is getting older. Backup Mark Roman is no longer with the team, leaving the club without reliable backups or future starters. Mays' physical presence and ability to run the alley will impact offensive game plans and improve this defense quickly.

18(50) Kansas City Chiefs (from Atlanta) Javier Arenas CB Alabama
What he brings: Arenas doesn't have the size or speed to develop into a starter on the outside. Still, he boasts the quickness and fluidity of an effective nickel back. There's a lot to like about his willingness to play the run and ability to deliver the big hit. He's also an effective return man with good vision and excellent balance.
How he fits: Arenas will likely step in immediately as the team's starting nickel corner. Mike Richardson and Maurice Leggett do not have the short-area quickness and man coverage ability of Arenas. Additionally, Arenas will likely be the Chiefs' punt returner. The club was 30th in the league in defense, making Arenas -- or any defender, for that matter -- a good pick.

19(51) Minnesota Vikings (from Houston) Toby Gerhart RB Stanford
What he brings: Gerhart is view as a powerful downhill, between-the-tackles runner. He runs hard with good balance and reads his inside backs well. However, he's not a one-dimensional guy. He has the lateral ability and burst to bounce runs outside.
How he fits: Gerhart will fill Chester Taylor's spot as the Vikings' second running back. He will take some of the workload off Adrian Peterson and very likely extend Peterson's career. These two backs will combine to be two of the toughest runners on any one NFL team. The Vikings now have both big-time explosiveness and and short-yardage power.

20(52) Pittsburgh Steelers Jason Worilds OLB Virginia Tech
What he brings: Worilds has substantial durability concerns that stem from chronic shoulder problems. However, he is a versatile third-down player; he as an array of pass-rush moves and has ample experience dropping into coverage. He has some problems when teams run at him, but he strong enough to set the edge at outside linebacker.
How he fits: Despite having LaMarr Woodley and James Harrison, two of the best outside 3-4 linebackers in the game, the club needed depth and youth as these guys get older. Worilds is the prototypical Pittsburgh outside linebacker and will supplant Andre Frazier and Patrick Bailey soon. This was a pick for the future.

21(53) New England Patriots Jermaine Cunningham OLB Florida
What he brings: Cunningham is a reach here in terms of value. He has the natural ability to develop in to a productive outside linebacker in a base 3-4 scheme. On the flip side, he's coming off a disappointing senior season and there are questions about his maturity and overall football character.
How he fits: Outside pass-rush improvement was a must for the Patriots. Tully Banta-Cain had a solid year with 10 sacks, but the absence of Derrick Burgess does hurt. Adalius Thomas has not been what the team had hoped, nor has Shawn Crable to this stage. More upfield push and quarterback pressure is what Cunningham will have to provide.

22(54) Cincinnati Bengals Carlos Dunlap DE Florida
What he brings: Dunlap is another Florida player with a great deal of upside who is hindered by maturity issues. He has experience lining up at defensive tackle and defensive end, and while he projects as a staring defensive end he can also move inside to rush the passer. If he realizes his potential he'll be a steal here. He is worth the risk at this point in the draft.
How he fits: Antoine Odom was the team's most productive pass-rusher and he's coming off an Achilles? injury. Second-year player Michael Johnson needs to step it up from his rookie season. The team needed another force at defensive end that can play on all three downs and not force the team into sub-packages to get to the quarterback. The defense was certainly a strong suit last year, but additional pass-rush will make them even better.

23(55) Dallas Cowboys (from Philadelphia) Sean Lee ILB Penn State
What he brings: Lee doesn't have great size for an inside linebacker and he has some durability concerns stemming from a past knee injury. (He missed the entire 2008 season.) Still, on film he is arguably the most instinctive linebacker in this class. He locates the ball quickly, rarely gets caught out of position and he tackles well. He's also excellent shedding blocks despite his lack of size.
How he fits: It was expected Dallas would pick an inside linebacker fairly early. Keith Brooking teamed with Bradie James for a good inside tandem, but Brooking won't last forever. He will supplant Bobby Carpenter as the third inside linebacker for Dallas. He will have time to develop in this defense.

24(56) Green Bay Packers Michael Neal DT Purdue
What he brings: Green Bay got excellent value yesterday in OT Bryan Bulaga, but the Packers clearly reached to get Neal. He has some problems anchoring when teams run at him and he is too much of a straight-line pass-rusher. However, he does have enough initial quickness and uppe-rbody strength to develop into a disruptive defensive lineman.
How he fits: This is a pick for the future. Neal will project from a 3-technique in a 4-3 to 5-technique in a 3-4 as insurance for Johnny Jolly, who will need resigning. They hope he will be a similar player to Cullen Jenkins and will certainly be more reliable and healthy than Justin Harrell has been. This was not one of their bigger needs at this time of the draft and makes for somewhat of a surprising pick.

25(57) Baltimore Ravens Terrence Cody DT Alabama
What he brings: Cody has the bulk and athletic ability of an elite nose tackle prospect. The problem is his stamina. He wears down far too quickly and needs to be rotated out of the game frequently.
How he fits: Kelly Gregg has had injury issues the last couple of years and the club recently lost Justin Bannan to Denver and Dwan Edwards to Buffalo. This was already a good defense without Cody, but his presence will make them even tougher to attack with the running game. Cody and Haloti Ngata will often line up alongside each other and form one of the biggest tandems in the league.

26(58) Houston Texans (from Arizona through New England) Ben Tate RB Auburn
What he brings: Tate has an excellent combination of size and speed. He also has the potential to become a productive receiver out of the backfield. However, he needs to be more patient and finish his runs stronger, and he is not going to make many guys miss in space.
How he fits: Steve Slaton is coming off a neck injury and fell off last season in his second year to just 3.3 yards per carry. As a result, the Texans finished 30th in the NFL rushing the football. The Texans needed a big, strong, durable back to hit the zone creases created up front, and while Tate may not be the perfect downhill runner to fit this description he will improve the rushing attack.

27(59) Cleveland Browns (from Dallas through Philadelphia) Montario Hardesty RB Tennessee
What he brings:Hardesty runs high and has a history of knee problems, which is not a good thing for a running back prospect. Nonetheless, there is a lot to like about his competitive nature. He has the balance and lower-body strength to consistently pick up yards after contact. He also has excellent top-end speed for a 225-pounder.
How he fits: Jerome Harrison played well down the stretch last season coming back from injury, but he is not an every-down back. Hardesty's combination of size and speed will make him the most logical starter immediately. Harrison will be allowed to be the third-down sub back, and James Davis to be the change-of-pace runner. Newly-acquired Peyton Hillis can continue his hybrid role that he had in Denver. This is a good pick.

28(60) Seattle Seahawks (from San Diego) Golden Tate WR Notre Dame
What he brings: Tate must improve his route-running or he'll have a hard time getting separation at the NFL level. Still, he's not afraid to go over the middle and competes for the ball downfield. After watching him run after the catch, it should come as no surprise that he is a former high school running back.
How he fits: T.J. Houshmandzadeh is easily the most productive and reliable receiver for Seattle. Aside from him, there were a lot of question marks about Deion Branch's health and the playmaking ability of the rest of the receiving corps. Tate's toughness and willingness to go over the middle and run after the catch give him a chance to have an instant impact.

29(61) NY Jets Vladimir Ducasse OG Massachusetts
What he brings: Ducasse is a developmental prospect who will require a big investment in terms of quality coaching and time to develop. Still, he is a good value here because of his size and quick feet. Those traits should allow him to bolster depth and push for playing time at guard. In time, he could develop into a solid offensive tackle.
How he fits: Alan Faneca has been a very good player over the years, but is now 33 years old. Fellow starter Brandon Moore is nearly 30. Ducasse is raw and will have a chance to groom inside behind this duo. He has the upside to possibly move to tackle in time, but he will not have to play early in this offense, which is good considering his level of development.

30(62) New England Patriots (from Minnesota through Houston) Brandon Spikes ILB Florida
What he brings: Spikes' poor showing at the combine and some durability concerns hurt him this weekend, but he is a sound pick here. Spikes is very instinctive both as a run-stopper and in coverage. While he needs to improve his ability to shed blocks, he does a good job slipping them and beating blockers at the point of attack because he gets there so quickly.
How he fits: Jerod Mayo is a good inside linebacker and as he goes, the second level goes. Gary Guyton is an average inside linebacker and lacks the size and brute power of Spikes. The former Gator may have run a slow 40 time but he plays with great leadership and instincts versus the run and pass.

31(63) Indianapolis Colts Patrick Angerer ILB Iowa
What he brings: Angerer is a three-down inside linebacker who can hold his own in coverage and shows above-average closing speed when asked to rush the passer. He needs to improve his power and ability to stack and shed. That said, he is a sound tackler with above-average range.

How he fits: Angerer is a bigger, younger version of Gary Brackett. He's an instinctive guy that plays well in the passing game and will fit the Colts' Cover 2 defense. While Brackett is productive, the Colts need to get bigger and more powerful versus the run.

32(64) New Orleans Saints Charles Brown OT USC
What he brings: Brown is an excellent value here. He is a former tight end who doesn't have elite power, but he is an effective wall-off blocker who shows quick feet in pass protection.
How he fits: This was likely an insurance pick to cover for Jammal Brown at left tackle, who will be tough to resign in a year.

Analysis by ESPN Scouts Inc.