Friday, February 16, 2007

There will be a million pointless mock drafts posted online between now and mid-April. All of them will be pointless and a waste of time. I know I shouldn't pay any attention to them, but just like staring at car accidents and reading tabloids at the supermarket, I just can't help myself. I ripped a Yahoo! mock draft for being ridiculous, but ProFootballTalk's Mock Draft 1.0 is much more realistic. ProFootballTalk says the Packers will take N.C. State's DT DeMarcus Tyler. That is possible and a good need area to fill despite the progress shown by DTs Cullen Jenkins and Corey Williams late in the season, but it is unlikely GM Ted Thompson would let California's RB Marshawn Lynch slip past them. Even if the Packers resign RB Ahman Green and keep RB Vernand Morency, Green is almost past 30 and Morency had some problems with fumbles and staying healthy. Lynch might not be needed for 2007, but he could be the heart of the offense by 2008.

One thing that surprised me in both mock drafts was the high rankings given to Michigan's DT Alan Branch and Arkansas' DE Jamaal Anderson. I watched most of the games played by the Wisconsin Badgers last season. They were a great overall team and they had a great offensive line. Not all of their linemen are going to play in the NFL, but they all have NFL size and are well coached. The Wisconsin offensive line was outplayed only twice last season; at Michigan and in the Capital One Bowl against Arkansas. Wisconsin managed just enough offense to win their bowl game, but it wasn't created by the offensive line. Anderson and his teammates dominated the Badgers O-line. LT Joe Thomas played well, but he was the exception. The only reservation with Anderson, and maybe with Branch too, is that they appear to be great players but they are definitely playing alongside some good-to-great players too. Are they really that good or are their teammates helping them look that good?

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