Few things tick off a fan base more than watching their team misfire in the draft. There were plenty of curious decisions in Thursday’s first round, and some of those calls led to immediate second-guessing.
But there were also some individuals who had a tough Thursday night, whether they were added to teams with less-than-ideal systems, outed themselves on Twitter or got drenched in boos.
10. Buccaneers: The Bucs missed the playoffs due to a tiebreaker, but they aren’t on this list for their own decisions, though the selection of Adrian Clayborn could be very hit or miss. Rather, the Saints and Falcons really improved and took a giant step ahead of the Bucs with their first rounds.
9. Von Miller: Miller’s talent, character and work ethic are undeniable, but he seemed like a much better fit to play outside linebacker in a 3-4 system. The Broncos are making the switch to the 4-3, so it’s unclear if Miller will stay at outside linebacker — and thus, limiting his pass-rushing ability — or switch to defensive end.
8. Chiefs: The Chiefs have some big needs on both sides of the trenches, and they could have addressed one of those needs with the 21st pick, either by taking Boston College tackle Anthony Castonzo or one of the draft’s better defensive linemen in Cam Jordan or Phil Taylor. Instead, the Chiefs traded down and took wide receiver Jon Baldwin, who isn’t going to help the trenches.
7. 49ers: They took a really good talent in Aldon Smith, who projects as a much better 4-3 defensive end than 3-4 outside linebacker, and Smith even admitted as much. The 49ers weren’t really in the most enviable position with the seventh pick, but other players seemed like a better fit, such as Robert Quinn or Prince Amukamara.
6. Seahawks: James Carpenter? With the 25th pick? Interesting play, Pete Carroll. Interesting play, indeed.
5. Reggie Bush: Apparently, New Orleans is only big enough for one Heisman running back. Bush tweeted, “It’s been fun New Orleans” after the Saints selected Mark Ingram. Bush’s status with the Saints was up in the air anyway due to his big contract, but he lost a lot of PR points due to the tweet.
4. Roger Goodell: Predictably, the commish was booed loudly and consistently throughout the night. He handled the situation pretty well, actually, but the fans let their displeasure show.
3. Vikings: They panicked and took Christian Ponder with the 12th pick, and there wasn’t another quarterback taken after him in the first round. Being aggressive is one thing, but don’t be too aggressive 20-30 picks too early after a handful of elite defensive players fell into your lap.
2. Da’Quan Bowers: Thirty-one teams passed on Bowers in the first round. On the conservative side, 21 teams outside of the top 10 didn’t like his medical reports. That’s a bad sign for his career longevity.
1. Bengals: Rather than writing a book about the Bengals’ failures, check out my statistical analysis that proves that drafting a wide receiver in the top 10 won’t equate to winning, or listen to the NESN.com podcast on the subject. Simply, the Bengals should have picked a defensive player or accepted Atlanta’s huge trade offer. A.J. Green
should be an outstanding player, but he won’t turn that franchise around.
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