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Old 04-29-2007, 03:30 PM    (permalink
TigerBait45
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This has been a pretty weak draft for us.

Meachem was a pretty bad pick, even if we did need a WR. Poz was still on the board, as was Chris Houston and Greg Olsen. I was really hoping for Poz here, or maybe Olsen.
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Old 04-29-2007, 03:45 PM    (permalink
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We just took Marvin Mitchell, ILB, Tennessee in the 7th round.
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Old 04-29-2007, 03:48 PM    (permalink
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Just looking at what could have been in this draft makes me sick.

In my opinion, this is the best draft that we could have had:

1.27 - Paul Posluszny, LB, Penn State
3.66 - Marcus McCauley, CB, Fresno State
3.88 - Quinn Pitcock, DT, Ohio State
4.107 - Doug Free, OT, Northern Illinois
4.125 - Josh Beekman, OG, Boston College
5.145 - Ben Patrick, TE, Delaware
7.220 - Chris Leak, QB, Florida


I guess I'm going to have to keep trust in Mickey and Sean, but this really seemed like a poor draft overall. Maybe reached on too many small school guys, and definitely did not address the defense enough.
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Old 04-29-2007, 03:49 PM    (permalink
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Marvin Mitchell, ILB Tennessee.

He was Scott's 11th ranked MLB, we might have gotten a steal. At the least I think he can contribute on special teams.

Quote:
Has very good size and bulk. Is strong and powerful. Active and aggressive with a good motor. Reliable tackler and a big hitter. Stout at the point. Excellent run stopper. Plays with a nasty demeanor. Really emerged in '06. May have upside.
wonder what UDFAs we'll bring.
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Old 04-29-2007, 04:07 PM    (permalink
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Auron View Post
Marvin Mitchell, ILB Tennessee.

He was Scott's 11th ranked MLB, we might have gotten a steal. At the least I think he can contribute on special teams.



wonder what UDFAs we'll bring.
He won't even make the team if Scott's analysis is correct. Some of his weaknesses (according to Scott) are:
- below average speed
- not athletic
- not very instinctive
- subpar in coverage
- questionable work ethic
- character issues

Doesn't sound like much of a steal to me.
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Old 04-29-2007, 04:16 PM    (permalink
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Originally Posted by TPFKA#1SaintsFan View Post
He won't even make the team if Scott's analysis is correct. Some of his weaknesses (according to Scott) are:
- below average speed
- not athletic
- not very instinctive
- subpar in coverage
- questionable work ethic
- character issues

Doesn't sound like much of a steal to me.
Could be a reserve LB, 2 down thumper similar to Danny Clark. I've read about the character issues but I think they did their research on him or else they would've passed.

there was probably a few other guys to take a late round flyer on but atleast they Drafted some front 7 help.
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Old 04-29-2007, 05:02 PM    (permalink
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here is PFW's take on Mitchell....

'Tennessee ILB Marvin Mitchell gives the Saints a lot of size inside at a position where they want to get better. He is an instinctive, short-area plugger who does not have great speed to get outside the tackle box, but can clog up the middle, play off blocks and make plays tackle to tackle.'

http://profootballweekly.com/PFW/NFL...ound7Picks.htm

sounds good, and if his charcter problems were that bad....Payton would of passed on him...easily.
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Old 04-29-2007, 06:09 PM    (permalink
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Obviously he won't make a Colston type impact, let's face it we're not going to be able to find Colstons in the 7th round every year.

Maybe he can surprise and make the team and contribute, if he makes some sort of impact I think it'll be a success for a 7th rounder.

Overall it's easy to criticize the Draft right now, we did pass over some highly rated players in later rounds. However it's tough to grade a Draft class a few hours after the Draft, we have to see how the players fare on the field before we can draw conclusions. A lot of people were upset with last years Draft after the first round as well, so I'm going to reserve judgment on this class until I see them on the field.
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Old 04-29-2007, 06:54 PM    (permalink
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The 2007 NFL Draft is over and the UDFA negotiation/signings probably have already started.

As a conclusion to the Draft here are the Saints' selections.

#27 Robert Meachem, WR, Tennessee
#66 Usama Young, CB, Kent State
#88 Andy Alleman, OG, Akron
#107 Antonio Pittman, RB, Ohio State
#125 Jermon Bushrod, OT, Towson
#145 David Jones, CB, Wingate
#220 Marvin Mitchell, ILB, Tennessee

http://www.neworleanssaints.com/news...articleid=3435
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Old 04-29-2007, 07:32 PM    (permalink
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Auron View Post
Overall it's easy to criticize the Draft right now, we did pass over some highly rated players in later rounds. However it's tough to grade a Draft class a few hours after the Draft, we have to see how the players fare on the field before we can draw conclusions. A lot of people were upset with last years Draft after the first round as well, so I'm going to reserve judgment on this class until I see them on the field.
I actually was really happy with last year's draft. Obviously I was thrilled with Reggie Bush, but I was one of the (I'm guessing) few who also loved the rest of the draft. I thought Roman Harper, much like his Alabama teammate Demeco Ryans, was an underrated defensive leader who overachieved and got the absolute most out of his just average athletic ability. I thought Jahri Evans and Marques Colston were both nice sleepers, although there was no way to know that they'd ever be this good, especially this early. I loved Mike Hass, who I thought would be a very solid #2 possession WR (I'm still sad that we didn't keep him around). I liked OT Zach Strief as an underrated, hard working guy with a lot of experience in a major conference, and saw him as a very good backup -- same goes for DE Rob Ninkovich. I thought the Saints had a very good draft last year and that they were unfairly criticized by a lot of people, including Scott.

However, this year's draft was pretty sub par; borderline terrible, considering the players available that we could have picked at each spot. I had warmed up to the thought of taking a WR in the first, but ONLY if guys like Poz and Houston were off the board, which they were not. Poz would have been excellent for our defense. I'm OK with Usama, but he needs just as much developing (possibly more) than the guy I thought we should have drafted, the equally physically talented (with better size) Marcus McCauley. I'm a little baffled by our choice of Usama Young over McCauley. Alleman should replace Jamar Nesbit sooner than later, but Quinn Pitcock would have been excellent value as well as a big need position with that pick. I like David Jones a lot in the fifth, but our CB corps is suddenly pretty crowded -- I expect Jason Craft will get cut, but is Jones really better for us than Craft right now? It's an okay pick, but I wish we would have gone DT instead. Mitchell, although he's only a 7th round pick, DOES have character issues and I can't believe Payton drafted him -- I'd be willing to bet he's cut before opening day.

The only pick I really LOVED was Bushrod. He's got all the tools to develop into a very good OT. His skillset might actually make him very well suited to play LT, which would allow us to move Brown back to RT when Stinchcomb is gone in 2 years. 1 out of 7 (IMO) is pretty bad.

I sure hope all these picks prove me wrong. If this group turns out as good as last year's, I will never second guess Payton and Loomis again.
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Old 04-29-2007, 08:02 PM    (permalink
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I share your concerns, and in the end this Draft will be the ultimate test for the coaching staff and their ability to develop players. They felt confident enough to take the small school guys with potential and develop them.

Are there some things I would've changed? Definitely, but I'm not a scout and don't do nearly as much research as the pro scouts do.

I guess now it just becomes a waiting game. In the end though I think we did upgrade the Offensive line significantly and we should be reaping the dividends of it in a few years, and we added athletic youthful CBs as well that can learn for a while.

If Poz turns out to be a stud LB, or Houston turns out to be a premier CB. Then yes I will have big time regrets, but right now no one has proven anything. In the end I think the coaches chose to Draft for the future, rather than come away with immediate impact talents as they felt the current roster was sufficient enough with the Free Agency upgrades. I don't quite agree, but the FO hasn't done anything to make me think they've set the franchise back yet. I wouldn't rule out Meachem having a big time impact either, WRs coach Curtis Johnson sounded very high on him in interviews.
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Old 04-29-2007, 08:29 PM    (permalink
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Don't know if this will make anyone feel better but our 2 CB draftees were on SI's Hidden gem watch.

SI.com
Quote:
Usama Young/CB/Kent State: An all-Conference pick at Kent State last season, Young was snubbed by the major postseason games and did not receive an invite to the combine. Yet almost two dozen teams showed up at his pro day to watch the 196-pound Young run 4.4 seconds in the 40. Since then Young has visited 11 franchises and will work out for four other teams next week. Given a free-agent grade at the start of the year, Young could slide into the draft's first day.

David Jones/CB/Wingate: Playing only two seasons of high school football, Jones has recently attracted a lot of attention from the NFL. His playing skills are only surpassed by his character, as scouts rave about his work ethic and dedication. Four teams brought Jones in for a visit. He is likely to be drafted in the middle rounds.
and Drafted 2 second day guys that Gil Brandt thought were in the top 10 of players not Drafted on Day 1.
NFL.com
Quote:
Here are 12 players from my top 100 who didn't get taken on Day 1:

* Antonio Pittman, RB, Ohio State (47)
* Tanard Jackson, CB, Syracuse (60)
* Doug Free, OT, Northern Illinois (77)
* Paul Soliai, DT, Utah (78)
* Antonio Johnson, DT, Mississippi State (80)
* Josh Beekman, G, Boston College (82)
* David Clowney, WR, Virginia Tech (88)
* Leroy Harris, C, North Carolina State (89)
* Jay Moore, DE, Nebraska (90)
* Michael Coe, CB, Alabama State (95)
* Jermon Bushrod, OT, Towson (96)
* Allen Barbre, OT, Missouri Southern (100)
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Old 04-29-2007, 09:01 PM    (permalink
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I'll give my write-up about the draft later but I'll mention two things: 1) I am NOT happy with the players we selected and 2) we went a little too heavy on the small school prospects.
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Old 04-29-2007, 09:04 PM    (permalink
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Supposedly the Saints signed their first UDFA in Pittsburgh Panther QB Tyler Palko. If this is true, I would absolutely love it.
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Old 04-29-2007, 11:33 PM    (permalink
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Yeah, I'm going to have to agree with diabsoule...way too heavy on the small schools. I would also like to state that we went WAY too heavy on offense. I thought that we would be heavy on defense. The Pittman pick was a shock...I thought that we would be moving up for a quality Lb.

I'll give a C- on our draft. We passed on a lot of position players that could have contributed immediately in improving our defense.
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Old 04-30-2007, 01:37 AM    (permalink
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Yeah, I'm going to have to agree with diabsoule...way too heavy on the small schools. I would also like to state that we went WAY too heavy on offense. I thought that we would be heavy on defense. The Pittman pick was a shock...I thought that we would be moving up for a quality Lb.

I'll give a C- on our draft. We passed on a lot of position players that could have contributed immediately in improving our defense.
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Old 04-30-2007, 03:01 AM    (permalink
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Any Chance Meachem will start? With Brees accuracy, his combination of size and speed could be deadly.
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Old 04-30-2007, 05:09 AM    (permalink
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Any Chance Meachem will start? With Brees accuracy, his combination of size and speed could be deadly.
I think that's exactly why he was taken, if he wasn't going to start and be the #2 WR I don't think we would've used our 1st rounder on him.

I don't know if he'll start opening day, he'll still have to win the job in camp and prove he's ready to start like Colston did last year but I'd say there's a good chance he starts on opening day.
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Old 04-30-2007, 05:56 AM    (permalink
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Quotes from the newest Saints.

Jermon Bushrod - Link
Quote:
It's awesome," Bushrod said. "It's going to be an extreme pleasure to block for a guy like Drew Brees and open up holes for a guy like Reggie Bush. I'm definitely excited."

"I hope it answers some questions for guys who have professional aspirations and don't get recruited by big-time schools," Bushrod said. "If I work hard enough, I'll have a job in the National Football League for a while," Bushrod said. "That's going to stay in my mind every single day."
Andy Alleman - Link
Quote:
Alleman was equally excited about his new team, and the fact the MAC was heard from loud and clear in the draft.

"That's awesome," he said. "I think it just goes to show there's talent in the MAC. Some guys get overlooked [like Young], and guys like me who switch positions can still emerge as talents. I think I'm in a great situation with an up and coming team."

One reporter was asking me about moving from defense to offense in college and all kinds of other stuff and I was like, `None of that matters. I don't care. I'm going to be playing with Deuce McAllister and Reggie Bush. I'm ready to play some football. Let's go, man.' I was fired up. I still am.
Robert Meachem - Link & Link
Quote:
"Every coach who had contact with him said he was an A-plus character guy," Loomis added. "He impressed us at the combine with his interview and we brought him here to interview with us and he was very impressive."

Beverly Meachem says her son's recently established Follow Your Dreams Foundation can provide opportunities not only for young Tulsans, but also for New Orleans children who were affected by Hurricane Katrina."

"I saw the New Orleans number pop up on my phone, and I knew," Meachem said during a teleconference at the New Orleans Saints' team headquarters. "I'm just so excited, this has been really emotional."
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Old 04-30-2007, 07:05 AM    (permalink
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Anyone know which numbers our selections will wear? :)
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Old 04-30-2007, 10:22 AM    (permalink
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We'll know by training camp if Meachem will start or not in my opinion. And, as much as people are crapping on our draft class right now.. it's easy to do that right now. Maybe in the middle of the season or late in the season we can go back and discuss how badly we drafted, but for right now I'm just going to wait and see how it turns out. Who knows, we could have another stellar class like last year.
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Old 04-30-2007, 12:45 PM    (permalink
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Meachem's got great potential. I think if he works hard he can be a really good receiver, and just the compliment to Colston that we need.

I've kinda warmed up to the pick, but man Poz would've looked great in a Saints jersey.
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Old 04-30-2007, 02:33 PM    (permalink
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TigerBait45 View Post
Meachem's got great potential. I think if he works hard he can be a really good receiver, and just the compliment to Colston that we need.

I've kinda warmed up to the pick, but man Poz would've looked great in a Saints jersey.
I agree that Meachem could become an excellent player but I wanted Poz and thought he'd be an excellent addition to our defense.

Here's hoping for Dan Connor or James Laurenitas next year.
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Old 04-30-2007, 02:36 PM    (permalink
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Interview with Sean Payton that someone at WDZ posted. He talks about the Draft class. He answers questions about the Pittman pick, and small schoolers.

Quote:
Opening Statement And Day Two Recap: With Antonio Pittman, we were looking at the board last night and you're trying to look at your best graded players. I think that's something you always try to do, especially as you go into the second day. He's someone that has been a consistent performer who has been durable. He was a guy that stood out a little bit. We moved up a little to get him.

Jermon Bushrod is a small school player who is a tackle right now and could potentially play guard. He played tackle and we'll bring him in as a tackle. In the case of these next two players (Bushrod and David Jones), we have worked these guys out recently. Doug Marrone and Rick Reiprish went to Bushrod's workout back at Towson. He's someone who you see athleticism in and has some upside. We felt that he had value at that time in the draft and we went ahead and made that decision.

In David Jones' case at Wingate, when we went to work out Usama Young at Kent State, we had also worked out David. He is another smaller school player with a lot of solid measurables and production. We're currently organizing the busy time that occurs right after this draft in acquiring free agents as well. It gets crazy here in the next couple hours as you go from a draft mode to a recruiting mode.

Q: Where do you see Pittman falling in a puzzle that includes Reggie Bush and Deuce McAllister at running back?

A: You can't have enough of these runners. We'll figure out his role down the road. More importantly, we just felt that he was a back that you looked at from a value standpoint, you study where you have the magnets a little higher. He was one of those players. Well sort through all that. Right now obviously we have a great deal of confidence in Deuce and in what he brings to the table and the same thing with Reggie. He's a young back in day two that appealed to us and nothing more than that.

Q: Doesn't this make him a good candidate to make the team since you usually only keep three running backs on the roster?

A: There's no set formula for how many halfbacks you keep. We'll let the competition play out. I'm sure he's looking to come in and make a favorable impression and certainly he's competing for a spot as all these guys are. I think it's important to pay attention to find good football players rather than say we're going out to get the defensive tackle we need. We're trying to find guys that we feel have a chance to make the team. In his case, that was the reason for the selection. We're excited to have him.

Q: Is there a reason why Pittman lasted to the second day?

A: You're asking what you think his weaknesses are. I think that a lot of it is in the eye of the beholder in terms of what teams are looking for. In that position, there was a few of them taken. I think (Michael) Bush from Louisville went fairly soon before him and all of a sudden a couple of guys fall off the board. Whether it was that people felt like he played with a real good surrounding cast and that he was a product of the offense, I'm not certain. We try to evaluate the player, go by what we see and then put a grade with that evaluation, starting with the area scout, going to Rick Mueller and Rick Reiprish and then the position coaches here. Myself and Mickey (Loomis) look at the player. You try to come up with what you think the player is and why a player like that went to round four. It's a good question. I don't know specifically how to answer it other than we were glad he was still there when we picked. When you get into that second day, you target a few guys. You hope maybe you move up. If those guys that you target aren't available, maybe you back up a little bit. We did that a year ago in round four if you recall when we actually targeted a tight end that Houston selected and when that took place, we moved back a little bit with Philadelphia and acquired Hollis Thomas. Then, we were able to select Jahri Evans. There's no science to it, you're just trying to identify some guys that you feel like in that room, you're excited to bring into that organization and that you feel are going to represent this team well and have a chance of making the team. Hopefully these guys take advantage of that opportunity. They're two weekends away from starting their competition and evaluation. He's a player that does have productivity at a high level of play in a good offense. We're excited to have him.

Q: What did you have him graded at?

A: I'm not going to get into the specific grade, but it would have been a lot harder for us to maybe take a first day running back because there were a number of guys rated at equal or higher value. We probably wouldn't have been in the market to take a running back. When the first day ended and you looked at how they were stacked. he along with a couple of other players were sitting above the pack. That was the reason for the selection.

Q: Does Pittman return kickoffs?

A: I don't know that it was the reason for the selection. He'll need to be able to contribute in some way, shape or form on special teams. I don' know if returning kickoffs will be something that we envision him doing. We'll see.

Q: Did you envision selecting a running back today for depth purposes?

A: I think it's one of those positions where you have to be careful that you don't get caught short. It's a tough position to play in our league. It's tough because it's a long season. Even for the guys that are bigger in stature, it's 16 regular season games and the preseason. It was a matter that we saw a guy that we had put a pretty good grade on that we felt would give us depth at the position. We'll see how he fits. When we drafted him today a little while ago, it wasn't like we had a whole role for him spelled out in the offense. It was us drafting a guy that we think is a hard worker who wants to come in and compete for a position on the team.

Q: Did the drafting of players from smaller schools such as Hofstra and Bloomsburg last year make it easier to draft some of your selections from smaller schools this year?

A: I think that when you draft a smaller school player you don't downgrade them, but you look at the level of competition and say that's a disadvantage for that player because he's not playing an SEC schedule, Big Ten or Pac-10 schedule. You want to see that player excel at that level and play real well. You try to factor that in to some degree and yet you're still evaluating the player himself. In Jermon Bushrod's case, we're looking at him specifically, grading his athleticism. How tough is he? What's his production like? Do we feel like he can transition into our offense? He's a guy that we'll begin developing and begin working with. I think really when we drafted Jahri last year and a lot of those guys in the second day such as (Marques) Colston and Zach Strief were not drafted to come in and become starters. We drafted them to come in and develop them. Hopefully you are able to hit on some of those players and last year we were able to hit on a few of them. Jahri ended up starting every game for us, Colston the same way with the exception of a few games because of injury and Strief played when we needed him at Tampa. I think you look to find football players who can compete to make your club and if you're able to get production out of them in their rookie season, all the better.

Q: Is the fourth round of the draft usually the cutoff towards drafting while looking at a need?

A: I think what you're hoping to find is a grade and a need. That's what you're looking to find. When you're able to match that you feel good about your selection and fortunately for us, when the draft started yesterday, there were a handful of areas that we thought that we might be able to address in this draft. We haven't gotten them all. We move forward and you hope you're drafting the best football players at those selection spots and not just grabbing players you think you need. When the draft started in the first round, I don't know that we would have said receiver is the direction we were planning to head. In Robert's (Meachem) as a player, as well as a couple of other players that we put in a cloud, and said these are guys we would potentially move up for. Robert fell to us at 27. That selection was a pretty easy one to make and we were excited to make it.

Q: Did the success of Colston and Evans last year make it easier for you to feel good about drafting players from smaller schools?

A: I think that you have to be careful that you're not trying to create or duplicate something. Each case is different. I think we try to take an unbiased look at these guys and ask if they fit what we're looking for and if they have the character we're looking for. Are they tough? Are their work habits what we're looking for? Do they have the traits and athleticism at the position that we're looking for? Whether it's at Michigan or at Wingate, you're really trying to evaluate specifically the level of the player, but the level of competition does have to come in and lean towards the larger school player because of who he's facing. You're looking for the smaller school player to play at a high level more consistently because of who he's going against. You factor that in. That's where it's at. These guys become magnets after you've evaluated them. You understand that when they're at a smaller school, you're going to expect more from them on film than if they're from a big school. Obviously you're looking for production regardless of who you're grading. It worked out this way and it worked out that some of these players we drafted today and yesterday were from smaller schools. I think the Wingate and Towson players are from smaller schools than even the guys we drafted from the MAC Conference yesterday. That learning curve will be steep for these guys. The quicker they get in here and get adjusted, the better off they'll be.

Q: What's the balance from trying to pick the best available player and factoring in character?

A: The guys that have the character issues that concern us, we put a color on them (on our draft board), and really we're not taking them. If a guy has issues in round two or round one but he's still there in round four, he still has those same issues that are going to hurt the locker room and hurt the team. There's still a level of responsibility that we feel as an organization we owe to our players in that locker room to bring in the right guys that will put the team first, that want to win, that want to represent this organization and this city the right way.

That being said, you try to research as best you can those character issues in determining whether he's an off the board player or whether it's an isolated incident. There are cases where they are isolated incidents where you look at him and say, 'I think he's a good kid. I think that he made a mistake and I think that he'll fit in just fine.' That's part of the evaluation process and it's not easy.

Q: You didn't work out Pittman individually other than at the combine?

A: There wasn't any private additional workout. He was a little bit more of a high-profile player from the standpoint of the program he was at and the Combine. So, unlike a few of these guys he was a guy we spent time watching, graded, and then moved on.

Q: What intrigued you about David Jones and did you know where Wingate was before today?

A: He's a guy that has some measurable that we felt were intriguing. He ran well; he tested well; and in the workout last week - when we came back and finished that workout and the Kent State workout, we felt like we had a couple of smaller school players who had size and athleticism that played well on tape and felt like maybe in the second day - or late in the first day in Usama's case - that we'd have someone there. Fortunately for us, we were able to see them in person and they ended up in a position for us to select them. You don't read as much about these guys or hear as much about these guys, but he's another cornerback who will have a chance to compete and that's all we tell them. 'You have a chance to compete and make the team,' and I think these players understand that.

These are guys that we targeted as guys that we thought had a chance after that first group of corners went, you start getting into your second tier. These guys were in that clump.

Q: You mentioned defensive tackle as a need. Was the field just too thin when the time came for you to pick?

A: Obviously the grade didn't match the round. There are a number of positions you'd like to become younger at, but we weren't just going to go look for a defensive tackle and draft one to fill that. So you keep going and you keep moving.

Q: Did you learn anything from last year that helped you with your draft process in your second year?

A: I don't know how much we changed. Certainly there are some things that might be a little different. The biggest change was where we were selecting and how that changes the dynamics of the draft. It really is much different - obviously with the first pick more than anything else. You spend a little more time on that first round than you might if you're picking earlier, but the process was very similar and we've still got some time to go here as we finish up. Last year we found our punter at the end of the draft, so this is an important part - as important a part of the weekend as yesterday's first round because there are a number of these players. I can think of Hollis Thomas back in Philadelphia as a guy that signed, not even on Sunday night but Wednesday night after the draft. David Patten received his first opportunity when it came after no one called him. There are a number of players who for whatever reason have kind of fallen through the cracks that end up making rosters as free agents. Tony Romo was a guy in Dallas that we signed after the draft. So I think you try to do your homework as best as possible and look at some of the characteristics that stand out; there may be some tie to a coach or something that leads you towards a player. I can think of a handful of guys and I think that's important about today, whether it's a seventh round pick or you're recruiting them afterwards as a free agent, we'll be busy doing that for quite a while today.

Q: Were you concerned that teams would play you differently if you didn't get a guy like Meachem who could hurt them over the top?

A: I didn't feel like the selection of Meachem was something that we did because defenses were going to change against us next year. I felt like the selection of Meachem really had to with us thinking, 'Man, this guy's still here and he's a guy that we didn't like - we really liked - at receiver.' Devery gave us a ton of speed and gave us a lot of big plays - he led the league in yards per reception a year ago. I'm biased toward big receivers - Marques Colston has good size and speed, Devery is the same way, and Meachem has good size as well. He was a player that we felt with our grades was a first mid-first round pick that we felt at 27 we had him and a few other players that might be available at 27. With him being available, I don't think there was one bit of hesitation or discussion - it was something that was clearly the direction we were going to go in at that time. It was about a good football player that we were ready to take.

Q: Of the two cornerbacks that you've drafted, is there anybody on the team or anyone you've coached that they remind you of?

A: That's a good question. I don't know that I could answer it right now. I'd like to see these guys go through a couple workouts and then you might be able to draw an analogy - I like doing that, though.

Usama's got real good size and tested real well. In Jones' case, I think he provides pretty good stature. I like the fact that they've got good size and I think they will be two young, hungry guys who come in here and want to work and make the club. We'll have a chance to see them at the rookie camp in two weekends.

Q: Do these cornerbacks fit into your man-to-man cover scheme?

A: We run a lot of man. I was reading all this stuff about our man coverage the other day and we play a lot of zone as well. We run a lot of single-safety zone. We don' just sit in one coverage; we play some man principles, but we also play some zone principles and Gary (Gibbs) does a good job of mixing up the coverages. We're not just going to sit in one coverage and I don't know that it would be accurate to say that these guys fit our man coverage scheme because I don't know that you say that we're a man coverage defense.

That being said, when you're evaluating the position you ask, 'How do they fit in man? How do they fit in zone? Can they force the run? Are they good tacklers? Can they make plays?' Those are the things you try to look at and hopefully in these guys we've got some guys that are anxious to compete.

Q: Between the seventh round pick and the free agents, do you expect to bring in a quarterback?

A: We'll see. There are a couple of guys left in this draft that we have decent grades on. I wouldn't count that out and yet we'll have to see how that unfolds. If we're not able to, I'm not going to be real frustrated with that and yet if there's a guy who we felt like we would want to develop, then that's something that we would look at, be it in free agency or in the seventh round.

Q: Looking back to a year ago today, is it hard to believe that Colston nearly went undrafted?

A: Every year there seems to be a player like that. Tom Brady was taken in the sixth round. In Marques' case, he was a big receiver at a small school that had some measurables. I've said before that if we knew then what we know now, we would have selected him in day one. We were fortunate and it was to his credit that he came in... If you guys had seen the rookie camp practice the first day, you'd have been selling your Colston stock at that point. It really wasn't until training camp that you really saw him begin to progress. At that time you saw a guy each day playing consistently well. He really made his impression in training camp. It wasn't just on the first day. If you paid attention to the tapes and the preseason games, his consistency and level of play clearly improved to the point where we had enough confidence in him that he was going to be our starter. He earned that and worked hard to get to that position. That transition to that point is longer for some players than others and it's hard to measure that. If you had a way to where you could see how each of these players is going to transition into our league... that's part of the evaluation and it's not a science either. There's going to be guys that were taken in this first round, in those first 15-20 picks, that never transition. Those are the things that make this thing interesting and exciting.

Q: Troy Smith was just drafted. Was he one of the quarterbacks you were looking at?

A: I think he's a good player. He's someone who obviously had a great college career and played in a real good conference. We're excited that he was drafted for them certainly.

Q: Jahri Evans was a big-time high school player but injuries kept him at a smaller college. Do the guys you've drafted from small schools today have similar stories?

A: Each guy has a different story and some guys don't really develop or mature until later in their careers. The process we're going through now is somewhat similar to the process that the major colleges go through - they try to do their best to hit on the high school players and yet they're not always correct.

As a coach who's spent 10 years coaching in college, there are a number of players who looking back who I would have changed a grade on or evaluated differently, and so it's the same process. Where they end up sometimes is different, but we'll see.
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Old 04-30-2007, 02:50 PM    (permalink
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Quote:
Originally Posted by diabsoule View Post
I agree that Meachem could become an excellent player but I wanted Poz and thought he'd be an excellent addition to our defense.

Here's hoping for Dan Connor or James Laurenitas next year.
Well judging by Payton and Loomis' comments I think the reason they chose Meachem was because they had him graded out significantly better than Posluszny, Houston, and Branch. I would've loved to see a guy like Poz, or Houston but it looks like the Saints staff viewed Meachem as a significantly better value.

Link
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mickey Loomis
In the end, though, Saints general manager Mickey Loomis said the choice was easy:

"He was our highest-rated player on the board when we picked -- significantly," Loomis said. "To be honest, we were surprised when he was available to us at 27."
also a quote from Payton
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sean Payton
He was a player that we felt with our grades was a first mid-first round pick that we felt at 27 we had him and a few other players that might be available at 27. With him being available, I don't think there was one bit of hesitation or discussion - it was something that was clearly the direction we were going to go in at that time. It was about a good football player that we were ready to take.
They had him graded out as a mid first type guy, and their primary strategy was to take the Best players available. So I do understand why they went in that direction.
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