The only no - brainer part of this pick is what year of his career to take this beast. I choose to take the Lawrence Taylor of the 1986 NFL season within which he recorded 20.5 sacks and was named league MVP. He then led the Giants to victory in the superbowl over Elway and the Broncos.
Before I attempt to justify this pick, I feel it is worth noting that I am Irish; have never played an organized game of American football; and the first game I ever watched from start to finish was the 2002 superbowl between NE and Saint Louis. As such, I was really hoping that I wouldn't have to pick first and could see the discussion and debate around the first few to provide me a crutch before I made my decision. While I have picked up a little bit about the history of the game and it's players over the past few years, relative to everyone else in this process my overall understanding of the game's history will be lacking.
The obvious way to go with this pick is clearly to just pick a franchise QB and be done with it. And while that seems easier to justify, I believe that there will be QBs available when I pick next that I can conceivably win a superbowl with. And therefore, I choose to do something that won't be possible with that pick in all likelihood - take who I perceive to be the most dynamic defensive player in the modern era.
Taylor's statistics and achievements are available to view in the wiki link above with more info here and I won't restate them again in this thread. As you all will know, he is credited with revolutionizing the linebacker position and forcing offenses that faced him through the eighties to limit their playbook and line up a certain way solely to stop him crunching their QB multiple times a game. Taylor was a phenomenal athlete who played the game with a crazy intensity. Whatever about his off the field problems - he was a leader and game changer on it.
I think he will give me great flexibility to build my defense around and I would go so far as to say that even if I tank every other pick on that side of the ball - I'm still going to cause offenses problems because I have a big threat player out there who is going to get to the ball and **** up what you are trying to do numerous times a game. Of course there is so much that goes into being a great defensive team, but finding ways to get pressure on a QB and maybe rattle his skull a couple of times seems so vital. Ultimately I can't think of a single defensive pick available who will more ably help me in that regard.
And finally, with this pick I am making the first guy into my lockeroom a winner who will do everything on the field to make a play. At the end of this process we will all have put together squads that have great athletes from top to bottom. I feel that having championship personallities and mentalities in your team who know what it takes to win and can inspire those around them should have some value when we come down to the final evaluation.
Round 1 pick number 2 I am going with Peyton Manning.
I will be taking him in his absurd year of 2004 where he put up a 121 passer rating with 49TD passes.
Besides actual stats, other factors that make me chose him is, this family has been put on this planet to produce hall of fame quarterbacks.
6-5 QB with great field vision.
I did want to go with a QB for my number 1 pick as I think it will set a good foundation for players around. I feel his character will be great in the locker room. We will need a real star QB to gain the respect of the kind of talent we are going to have on these teams and Manning will command respect.
The kind of player you love to hate because he's so damn talented and so damn sexay. Brady finds ways to win games and in a league with the best of the best I feel like I need a star QB to build around. Last season was pretty surreal for the Pats both in their winning streak and the absurd stats put up by the team.
50 TDs (besting Manning's 04 season by 1)
4,806 yards passing (3rd best in a single season)
117.2 Passer rating (2nd only to Peyton's 04)
Once Manning was selected I think that this pick was a no brainer. I will gladly fill my stadium with females longing for Brady and males rooting for a proven winner who will get the job done.
With two of the top QB's and the best defensive player off the board, I decided to take the most versatile offensive player available. While there is certainly something to be said for building around a QB (and I did heavily debate this), I think there's just as much to be said for taking the best RB available.
In 2006, LaDainian set the still-standing NFL record with 28 rushing TD, and also added 3 receiving TDs for a total of 31 to eclipse the Rush+Rec TD record. If that weren't enough, he also tossed two touchdown passes. He led the league with 1,815 rushing yards, and caught 56 balls for 508 yards. Combined, this brings him within 1 yard of an all-time top-5 yards from scrimmage season. He accounted for 145 yards/game from scrimmage on his own.
In a draft like this, nearly all the teams will have very skilled players at all offensive positions. One of the big differences between the good and bad teams will be the ability to put the ball in the end zone against elite defenses. I love #21 in the red zone.
Another major thing that I considered before drafting LaDainian: Most defenses will be able to rush the passer, and most will have fat boys up the middle to clog the run. Most will
have a decent secondary, and have pretty good cover linebackers. The beauty of a guy like #21 is that he's so versatile that he can ruin a lot of defensive schemes, even against an all-star lineup of defenders.
Much the same as the #1 overall pick LT on defense, my LT will force defenses into uncomfortable matchups, and will allow my team to be very unpredictable. LT also allows me to be pretty flexible with the way I draft around him.
In conclusion, the guy's awesome, and he's my franchise.
A pretty obvious choice for me here. I had Montana, Manning, and Brady as the top 3 QBs, and would have been happy with any of them. I end up with a guy who won four Super Bowls, earned the nickname "Joe Cool" for his ability to perform under pressure, and was consistently efficient throughout his career. He's the consummate player at the most important position on the field. From here, I can go anywhere with my team.
I'll be taking his 1989 season: 70.2% completion percentage, 3521 yards, 26 TDs, only 8 INTs. His 9.1 yards/attempt led the league, as did his 112.4 QB rating. Even though he was 33, it was his best season statistically, as well as the team's fourth and most dominant Super Bowl victory.
I really want to go with a QB considering my next pick isn't until like 58...
His reign at the top may have been shorter lived than many of the other great QBs who will be selected in this draft but it compares favorably to any of them in terms of brilliance. Two-time league MVP, Super Bowl MVP, highest ever career passer rating, etc.
The thing that really separates Young from the other QB options remaining for me is his scrambling ability. He ran for over 400 yards in a season 5 times in his 4149 career rushing yards is still 2nd all-time for a QB behind only Randall Cunningham. He also holds the record for career rushing TDs by a QB with 43.
Young's 6.8 adjusted net yards per attempt during his 49er years is just ridiculous. For comparison, Montana's as a Niner was 6.2, Manning's career ANY/A is 6.5...
He has three seasons in the top 10 all-time for ANY/A and no other QB has more than one.
Like Nath with Montana I am picking Young at 33. In 1994 he passed for 3969 yards, 35 TDs, 10 Int, 8.6Y/A, 7.5 ANY/A... he won the league MVP and had one of the greatest SB games of all-time passing for 350 yards, a SB record 6 TDs and also lead the game with 49 yards rushing.
This was a really tough pick because there was one player I wasn't expeting to be available, but I still like it.
I'm taking the best defensive player in the NFL modern era after LT. Yes, there are elite pass rushers and cornerbacks, but when it comes to defensive leaders, nobody can hold Ray's jock. He is to my knowledge the only defensive player who has earned the power to call a different play based on his read on the field. Lewis has been the best run-stuffing linebacker in the NFL and is also an elite pass defender, with 25 career interceptions. He hits like a truck, demoralizes opponents, and rallies his own players to perform to the peak of their abilities.
I'm taking his 2001 season, the third of his five straight 1st Team All-Pro seasons (not counting 2002). Ray was 26 that year, in the absolute prime of his career, and he carried the experience of being a Super Bowl champion. Ray's value to my team goes beyond his stats, physical gifts, and career accomplishments. I'm taking him because he is the ultimate defensive player and leader, and with him on the field I'll know I'm just one devastating defensive play away from a game-changing swing in momentum.
Simply put, Reggie White is a beast. During his first eight seasons in the league, he averaged greater than one sack per game, including a remarkable 21 sacks in just 12 games in 1987, the year in which I will be taking him. Twice he was named the defensive player of the year, and he was the all time sack leader when he retired. If you judge all players like you judge quarterbacks, he was a champion, leading to his team to victory in Super Bowl XXXI with 3 sacks.
The old cliche is that the game is won and lost in the trenches, and with a player as good as Reggie White, I believe that is true. All of the great quarterbacks taken so far will find it difficult to play with pressure constantly in their face, and a defense lead by Reggie White will be able to bring this pressure on a consistent basis.
13 time Pro Bowler
8 All Pro selections
198 career sacks
NFL record 9 straight seasons with double digit sacks
2006 Hall of Fame inductee
I had Rice as the #2 player on my draft board behind only LT, and I never ever thought I'd get him at #10. I'll admit it: Part of me wanted Munoz or White to fall to me instead of Rice because I looked forward to debating my pick. With this one, its so cut and dry that its just ridiculous imo.
I'm going to steal something Bobbo wrote:
Career leader in Rec (1549, next is 1101)
Career leader in rec yards (22,895, next is 14934)
Career leader in rec TD (197, next is 134)
Career leader in TDs (208, 175 is 2nd)
Career leader in yards from scrimmage (23540, next is 21579 - next closest WR is EIGHTEENTH)
He simply is miles and miles above anyone else at his position. He set the single season mark for rec TDs, and he did it in only 12 games!!
The fact that two of his QBs are thought of to be two of the greatest ever should be a testament to Rice. Some will argue that he was aided by that, and of course he was. However, look at how good Steve freakin' Bono did with him. Or look at how later on in his career he made an average QB into a MVP candidate.
And unlike many of the other top WRs, he has had tremendous team success, has been a great locker room guy, and is tremendously reliable.
I really don't see any downside whatsoever to this pick. He is durable and reliable, he is far and away the best at his position, hes a good locker room guy. What else could I ask for???
His #'s speak for themselves.
He's got the yardage, the TD's, the durability, and the quickest release the game has ever seen (sacked on a lol 3.1% of pass attempts), mostly done with an unspectacular at best supporting cast.
Growing up as a Bills fan in the 80's/90's, I saw other HOF QB's waltz into the toughest stadium to play in January and get beaten like a drum. #13 OTOH showed that he's a tough Pittsburgh boy and can play in whatever elements, putting up 34 points on the board in the snow.
We'll be taking the 1986 season of 61% completions, 4,746 yards, and 44 TD's.
9 time Pro-Bowler
3 time 1st team all-pro
1 time MVP/Offensive POY
'05 HOF Inductee
All conversations about the best corner back of this generation start and end with this guy. The first and only true lock down corner in the modern era. At the peak of his powers QBs wouldn't even bother throwing in his direction and was known for taking way a complete side of the field. Probably one of the best all-around athletes to ever play in the NFL. Besides his cover abilities he was one of the best return men ever and was even called on to make plays as wide receiver from time to time.
8 Time Pro Bowler
6 Time All Pro
NFL Career Leader in Non-Offensive Touchdowns with 19
1994 NFL AP Defensive Player Of The Year.
Member of Pro Football HOF Selection Committee All Decade Team (1990s) at 2 Positions. Defensive Back and Punt Returner
Member of 2 Super Bowl Champion Teams. 94-San Francisco and 95-Dallas
First let me get it out of the way by saying "lol RB in top 15." With that being said there is only one RB that I would ever consider in the top half of the first round, and thats Barry Sanders. The conventional wisdom is that running back is easily the most replaceable and easy to fill position in the NFL, and that conventional wisdom is correct. But there are always a few RB's who are so good, that they are above this common way of thinking. Certain RB's are such an upgrade, are such game changers, and dominant a game to a degree where they are completely above the average, or even the very good running back. No player represents this exception like Barry Sanders, who is without a doubt the most dominant and game changing/dominating running back in this draft.
I was very tempted to draft one of the few remaining top class QB's, but I couldn't pull the trigger. The players I was deciding between were all time greats, but they came with glaring flaws that I felt would have my team playing catchup to the other teams with elite QB's. I think picking Sanders here, even though he is a running back, allows me to be on the offensive in terms of picking the rest of my team and attempting to field one of the best squads.
Barry Sanders played 10 NFL seasons. He made 10 pro bowls, and 10 all pro teams. He was the definition of a player who dominated his position. He did this playing for a fairly average team, and a far from great offensive line. Surround him with talent and he will be an even greater weapon because of the things he will open up for those around him.
I will be taking him during his 1997 season where he rushed 335 times for 2,053 yards and 11 TD's at 6.1! YPC. He also caught 33 passes for 305 yards and 3 TD's.
10x Pro Bowl selection (1989, 1990, 1991, 1992, 1993, 1994, 1995 1996, 1997, 1998)
10x All-Pro selection (1989, 1990, 1991, 1992, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998)
1997 Co-NFL MVP
1997 NEA NFL MVP
1997 Co-PFWA NFL MVP
1989 NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year
1988 Heisman Trophy
2x NFL Offensive Player of the Year (1997, 1994)
I obv wanted Deion Sanders, but with him gone I took the next best cornerback avaliable and one who is capable of shutting down every single reciever in this format.
Champ had a ridiculous 2006 year, and a lot of people at the time thought it was better than Sanders (I don't agree with this tho but regardless it's close). Champ had 10 interceptions which was tied for the league lead. What made this really impressive though is that through the entire season Bailey was only thrown at 35 times that year (slightly over 2 times per game) and only 4 passes were actually completed and none for TD's. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Champ_Bailey
Champ is also a very good tackler and can come up and help on run support. Although worse at coverage than Sanders, he is more of a complete corner who can do everything. I can match him up vs any reciever in this format and feel comfortable even if he has to go 1v1 with no saftey help when i'm blitzing.
Aside from missing out on Champ, Im really satisified with who Im taking now. I think it was important to take a 'special' player in the first round...someone who brings something different that cannot be picked up in the later rounds. Since you only get one chance to take that special player - Im taking the best playmaker of them all....Randy Moss.
Randy is considered the #2 WR of all time in most peoples opinions (hard to argue with what was Jerry Rice and what were his numbers)...but Moss can easily be considered pound for pound the number 1 Wideout of All Time...yes - you read that correctly! Where Jerry had 2 HOF QBs throwing to him during his entire prime, Randy did not...until he finally teammed up with Tom Brady last year...and surprise surprise...broke some records! I can take Randy at any age - cuz he was always lethal, but naturally I must take him (officially) from the 2007-'08 season, when he caught for a record 23 TDs while splitting defenses at will. Was it a coincidence that Daunte Culpeppers career went to ruins after Moss and He parted ways? Absolutely NOT!
Im not trying to conjur up a Jerry vs Randy debate here...but then again - maybe I am.
There are a lot of What-if questions...like what if Moss and Culpepper hadnt had a falling out? What-if Brady and Moss had been teammates from the begining? My point? If Moss ever has a competent QB who can wail it down field (with or without precision)...he will be dangerous...and Im certain I will have no problem picking one up later in this draft.
Also - I didnt find it neccessary to write down all his stats and accolades...you can click on his name above to be directed to his pro-football-reference page. Also - just to make it clear right now - Moss has only missed 3 games his entire career
Ok people, I leave you with the Doylism of the Day: "Moss is the greatest deep threat since Linda Lovelace!"
Last edited by Shark Doctor; 10-07-2008 at 02:43 PM.
I wanted to build my offense around a great LT, and I can't think of a better guy than Ogden to start with. He was an absolute hulk of a man at 6-9 340 lbs, which is why I think him vs. Munoz is debatable. According to what I've seen, Munoz was 6-6 and below 300 for most of his career. Ogden played 12 seasons in the NFL, made the Pro Bowl every season except for his rookie year, and was a first team all pro 4 times.
Let me preface this by saying that I'm possibly the youngest person in this draft at 19, so I haven't been watching the NFL as long as a lot of you guys have, but everything I've read points to Ogden being far and away the best LT besides Munoz in this draft. He was part of a Super Bowl Championship team (although obviously that offense wasn't the reason they won) and also helped a RB have one of the best all time seasons. I feel like he can anchor my offensive line, provide consistently excellent run blocking as well as phenomenal blindside protection. I haven't decided what age to take him at, I might have him be a younger and probably slightly quicker OT, or I might select him to be a more veteran leader of my O-Line.
If I had Elway here, I would've built around him, but I think besides QB, LT is the other offensive position to build around, and I think Ogden is as good a guy to build around than anybody.
Im the greatest. Youre the latest. Welcome to the Legends club.
-Muhammad Ali about Brett Favre
I was originally going to build my team in a different way but Brett Favre is Brett Favre. One of the best QBs of all-time and is still kicking at the ripe age of 39. He holds pretty much every conceivable record for QBs and injuries are not a concern. He can make every throw imaginable and some that arent. Quite Frankly (Hi Steven A) his is the BPA imo.
"He's the best, bar none. Whenever God was making them, He put a little extra in him." Undrafted Player
Honors and awards
Favre won the Associated Press's MVP Most Valuable Player (MVP) Award three times, all in consecutive years (1995, 1996, and 1997; the last shared with Barry Sanders).
Favre was selected to play in the Pro Bowl nine times in his career.
Favre was a seven-time All-Pro selection.
Favre was named to the NFL 1990s All-Decade Team.
Favre received the NFC Offensive Player of the Week honor 12 times.
Records and milestones
Favre currently possesses most of the well-known NFL career records for quarterbacks, including:
Most AP NFL MVP awards: 3 (1995, 1996, 1997)
Most consecutive starts by a quarterback: 257 (279 including playoffs)
Most games started by a quarterback: 257 (279 including playoffs
Most wins by a starting quarterback regular season career : 162 (Regular season record: 162-95)
Most career passing touchdowns: 454
Most career passing yards: 62,590
Most career pass completions: 5,464
Most career pass attempts: 8,882
Most career interceptions thrown: 292
Most career games with at least three touchdowns: 65
Favre is one of only 4 QBs to lead the league in TD passes 4 times.
The others are Johnny Unitas, Len Dawson and Steve Young.
In the playoffs, Favre stands behind only Joe Montana in pass completions, passing touchdowns, passing yards and passing attempts.
In addition, Favre owns a number of team records, having printed his name into almost every passing category in the annals of Green Bay Packers history, most recently setting the team record for consecutive completions with 20 on November 22, 2007, against the Detroit Lions. With 38 "come-from-behind" 4th quarter wins & 2 more overtime victories, Brett Favre is the Green Bay Packers record holder and second only to John Elway's 47 4th quarter or OT "come-back wins", in NFL history.
Imo a great offensive line can make all the difference. it doesnt matter who you have at the skill positions if you dont have a line, and left tackle is obv most important.
walter jones is currently the best LT in football, and many might argue that hes every bit as good as ogden or better. at 6-5 329 lbs he pretty much always physically outmatches his opponents.
he was selected 6th in the first round of the 1997 draft, and was immediately plugged in as starter in training camp. in october that season, he was named the NFLs offensive rookie of the month, something no other offensive lineman has done. he has consistently shut down premiere pass rushers, while also a force in the running game. he is everything you want in a left tackle
8 pro bowls, 4 first team all pro selections
i will take him in his 05 season...when he helped sean alexander run for 1880 yards, 5.1 y/c, and oh ya, 27 touchdowns
Coming from a tiny town in eastern New Mexico, nobody expected Brian Urlacher to be a great football player. He attended the University of New Mexico, where Urlacher flourished as a LB/Safety hybrid.
He was drafted with the 9th overall pick of the 2000 NFL Draft by the Chicago Bears. His first season, he won the Defensive Rookie of the Year Award, and was selected to the Pro Bowl. He has been selected to six pro bowls so far through his career.
My main reason for picking Urlacher is because he was the center of the now-dominant Chicago Bears defense. He is the team's true captain, and has the raw athleticism, combined with field smartness, to be a leader for the defense.
Here are a few more highlights:
* 6x Pro Bowl selection (2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007)
* 4x All-Pro selection (2001, 2002, 2005, 2006)
* 2000 Male Athlete of the Year (UNM)
* 2000 NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year
* 2001 Football Digest Defensive POY
* 2005 AP NFL Defensive Player of the Year
* Defensive Player-of-the-Week (4)
* Special Teams Player of the Week
* NFL Rookie Defensive Player of the Month (10/2000)
* Brian Piccolo Award (2007)
* Led the NFL in fumble return yards in 2001
* Most tackles in a season (UNM)
* Most tackles in a season (Bears)
As I'm only 19, I haven't seen a lot of football (at least not before Super Bowl XXXI), but I truly think that he is an elite linebacker. I will take Urlacher from the 2001 season, when the world was still not used to this monster in the middle.
Arguably the most underrated QB of all time, often dismissed as a "system" Quarterback, Warren Moon is my first pick. The guy put up some undeniably sick numbers consistently throughout his long, HOF career. In addition to his numbers, he's also a proven winner (only QB in this draft with FIVE rings) and an outstanding person and a positive to have in the locker room.
As far as the year/age I'm going with moon, I'll take his 1990 season, when he had one of the sickest individual seasons of all time and was 3 years into a period where he made 8 straight pro-bowls.
Regardless of the system, you've still got to make the plays, and Moon sure as hell did that.
* - NFL all time career sacks leader with 200.0
* - 2-Time NFL defensive player of the year (1990 & 1996)
* - 8-Time NFL All Pro (1987, 1988, 1990, 1993-1997)
* - 11 Pro Bowls (1987-1990, 1992-1998)
* - 13 seasons with 10.0+ sacks
wiper and I are both thrilled that Bruce Smith lasted to the 22nd pick and became the first member of our team. In all honesty, I thought about Smith around pick 10 and was very impressed when I looked at his #'s and read up more about his career I became convinced that he probably wouldn't fall to us. If Brett Favre or John Elway had been around, this would have been a more difficult choice but it was made much easier when they both were selected before the 22nd pick.
First off, we'll get out of the way what Bruce Smith is known for and that is being an elite pass rusher. He hold the NFL's all time sack record and is without a doubt one of the top few pass rushers in NFL history. Despite being the focus of many opposing teams game plans, Smith still managed 10 or more sacks every year from 1986-1998 with the exception of his injury shortened 1991 season. Since we are picking Smith as a 27 year old, it is worth nothing that Smith was the NFL's defensive player of the year at the age, notching 19 sacks, 4 forced fumbles and an astounding 101 tackles.
As others have noted, Smith's accomplishments seem that much more impressive when you realize that he played in the 3-4 system for most of his career. During his Buffalo years, Smith never played with another all pro along the defensive line. Smith obviously feels he's the best DE to ever play the game as seen by the first article below.
- "His greatest asset is his ability to adjust, to use his momentum to his advantage," says Cincinnati Bengal tackle Anthony Munoz. "His quickness reminds me of Lee Roy Selmon and Fred Dean, but they were 15 to 30 pounds lighter. You can tell he'd be a great basketball player." -- Anthony Munoz
- "You're talking about a guy who is stronger than a 300-pounder and faster than a linebacker, His speed around the corner is unreal. And if you move out, he'll take one step upfield, spin inside and he's gone. I think he's double-jointed. He'll line up over me, and I'll try to hit him, and there's nothing there—he's going back and coming forward at the same time. I can't even explain it. There's no way a human being should do what he does." -- All-Pro Teammate
If I cannot luckbox into the all-time sack leader, Michael Strahan isn't a bad consolation prize. He holds the single season sack record, thanks to Brett Favre, with an absurd 22.5. Guess which year I want him? One of the greatest defensive lineman of all-time by any measure. Strahan could not only rush the passer, he was strong against the run as well.
Honors and awards:
7x Pro Bowl selection (1997, 1998, 1999, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2005)
6x All-Pro selection (1997, 1998, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2005)
Super Bowl XLII champion
2001 NFL Defensive Player of the Year
2x NFC Defensive Player of the Year (2001, 2003)
NFL Record 22.5 sacks in single season
With my first pick, I wanted to draft a player who could be a cornerstone to a strong defense. Especially with the ridiculous quarterbacks and wide receivers that will be on every team, I felt a shutdown corner would be a good place to start, and there isn't much better than Rod Woodson.
Woodson started his long career in Pittsburgh, which is the era in which I will be taking him (1993). He quickly established himself as a dominant shut-down corner, and one who could also defend well against the run. He had amazing longevity, and throughout his lengthy career was always an incredible playmaker. His 71 career interceptions rank him 3rd all time, and he has the most interception returns for touchdowns and most interception return yardage in NFL history.
Later in his career Woodson converted to safety, and was also a force at that position even as he aged. He won a Super Bowl with the Baltimore Ravens, and is sure to be a first ballot hall of famer when he becomes eligible in 2009. He was elected to 11 pro bowls, the most ever by a defensive back.
I feel like Woodson will give me a chance to compete against the juggernaut pass offenses that are likely to surface in this draft, and also maybe score my team some touchdowns as a bonus.
11x Pro Bowl selection (1989, 1990, 1991, 1992, 1993, 1994, 1996, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002)
9x First Team All Pro (1989, 1990, 1991, 1992, 1993, 1994, 1996, 2000, 2002)
1993 NFL Defensive Player of the Year
Super Bowl XXXV Champ