Tag Archives: Mock Draft

BTL NFL Draft Primer: Todd Gurley vs Adrian Peterson

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by Daniel Visconti

As a season ticket holder for UGA, over the years I’ve had the privilege of watching a future superstar in the NFL every Saturday at “Between the Hedges” in Athens, GA. This incredible athlete jumped over defenders, ran over defenders, ran past defenders, jumped into the end zone from the six yard line and soared past the goal line, complete a 60 yard pass, return kickoffs for touchdowns, and so much more. If it isn’t obvious enough, my favorite player that has ever played at UGA (at least up to this moment in time) is without a doubt Todd Gurley. I had the pleasure of watching one of the most dynamic athletes I’ve ever seen every Saturday. Honestly, even though Nick Chubb is a Heisman Candidate for the 2015 season, you can’t replace a playmaker/athlete/leader like Todd Gurley.

On April 16th, Todd Gurley had his knee medically inspected by the NFL combine doctors. The NFL combine doctors gave Gurley two thumbs up in regards to his progression and when that news spread around the league, everybody’s “Mock Draft” drastically changed. I’ve personally never seen anything like that before. According to the NFL combine doctors, Gurley’s knee will be 100 percent by the time practice starts. Once this news broke out, Gurley went from a late first round pick/early second round pick to a top 10 pick in the draft.

A lot of people might call me crazy, but I want to compare Gurley’s collegiate career to that of Adrian Peterson’s. After doing hours upon hours of research, the similarities between the two phenom’s are mind blowing. Below, I have listen the pros and cons of Adrian Peterson along with his size and speed, and compared the numbers directly against Todd Gurley’s numbers. Once you’re done looking at the comparison, the main question I bet you’ll walk away with today is, “Will Todd Gurley be the next Adrian Peterson in the NFL?” Only time will tell.

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• Adrian Peterson- Junior at Oklahoma
• Height- 6’1
• Weight- 220 lbs.
• 40 yard dash- 4.37
• 71 percent of rushing yardage after contact
• 1 receiving touchdown/0 kick-off returns for touchdowns
• Fumbled 17 times out 747 total carries
• Voted second in the Heisman Race
• 42 touchdowns/747 carries
• Average Yards per Carry- 5.4

Had one of the greatest freshman rushing seasons of all-time in 2004. Almost single-handily led the Sooners to a National Championship, only to fall short to the Pete Carroll led USC Trojans at the height of their dominant CFB reign in the mid-2000s. Injuries continued to plague Peterson throughout the remainder of his CFB career. Even leading into the draft where a broken collarbone lead to doubting one of the draft’s most unquestionable talents.

Draft: 1st round, 7th overall of the 2007 NFL draft by the Minnesota Vikings. After the likes of Jamarcus Russell, Gaines Adams, Levi Brown and LaRon Landry.

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• Todd Gurley- coming out of college, the follow are Gurley’s physical attributes.
• Height- 6’1
• Weight- 233 lbs.
• 40 yard dash- 4.43
• 61.9 percent of rushing yardage after contact
• 6 receiving touchdowns/2 kickoffs returned for touchdowns
• Fumbled 3 times out of 510 cares.
• Was the favorite to win the Heisman before his NCAA suspension
• 39 touchdowns/510 carries
• Average yards per carry- 6.4 yards

**All six NFL Media analysts who have posted mock drafts project Gurley to go ahead of WISC RB Melvin Gordon — including one mock that has him going No. 6 overall

**NFL Network Analyst Brian Baldinger believes Gurley is the most talented player in the entire draft.

**The evaluator said Gurley rates as the best prospect the league has seen since Peterson came out of Oklahoma.

**To conclude this blog, my prediction is Gurley will be a top 5 back in the league his rookie season. Trying to top Adrian Peterson seems absurd, but if anybody has the talent to do it, it would be Todd Gurley.

Prediction: I believe Todd Gurley will be the 9th overall pick in the 2015 NFL draft by the New York Giants.

BTL’s Fantasy Football Preview-Part 1- QBs

It’s the most……wonderful time……of the year

The Beginners Intro (seasoned vets can skip ahead)

The fantasy football season is in full swing. We have terms thrown around like mock draft, sleeper, bust, value and crazy deep (nod to matthew berry). As a football purist since 1995 and a die-hard Packers fan for that time, I knew vaguely what fantasy football was about. But as I said earlier, I was a purist. If you’re not rooting for your own team, you’re not a real fan! All that changed in the summer of 2009 I was introduced to my first league by my friend James. He had finished last in his league the year before and wanted me to co-own his team to help him. I had no idea what I was doing but I knew the league well enough to be an asset that year. The rest, as they say is history. I was hooked. I started my own league (4 years running now) with my best friends and have joined countless others. Spreading the word about fantasy football to me is like spreading the gospel to others. I try to encourage as many people as possible to try it at least once. More often than not, it sticks. And why you ask? Its the fundamental principle of control. As fans of teams, we love them to death, but we have no direct control over the games’ outcome. That concept rings true in fantasy, our level of control is increased. We decide what players are on our team, we decide who starts and who sits. If a certain player goes off, well goddmanit it’s because I started him, and not because this certain player is an elite level athlete with off the charts skill sets. Simply put, fantasy football removes the fan hat and puts on the GM cap, we’re in control.

BTL’s Draft Strategy/Positional Strategy 


The Draft. it’s probably the most memorable and also crucial part to your fantasy season. Its a time when you, preferably, gather all of friends around for a live draft. Team jerseys being worn, laptops out, the beer cold and the shit talk flowing. It’s also the birth of your team that you will be managing for the next 3 months for pride and maybe some Benji’s if so fortunate. Anyways every year a player will have a draft strategy they will abide by. Some go by what the experts pass down through popular opinion. Others craft their own strategy, while some mix and match pieces of advice from all comers. Two things to remember here; 1) Be prepared, it’s just like an exam, not being prepared generally means poor performance. 2) Have fun, it’s your team, go by your instinct. While competitive, fantasy football is suppose to be about enjoyment. On to the preview:

(FYI, all advice is for a standard 10 team league)

Quarterbacks: “Good things come to those who wait”

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After a couple years of deviation from the norm in the fantasy QB draft strategy, 2013 returns the QB spot to a position of VALUE. It was sexy to pick a QB in the 1st rd in 2011 and 2012. But in the span of two years, the market has been flooded with gobs of talent. In two years we’ve seen Cam Newton, RGIII, Andrew Luck, Russell Wilson and Colin Kaepernick all be viable top 10 fantasy QBs. Now while we still have the elite tier of Rodgers, Brees, Manning and Brady. The youngsters plus the emergence of Matt Ryan as a possible top 5 producer makes the position probably the top value in fantasy.

Now while our mock drafts and ADP’s (average draft position) suggest it is wise to wait. That doesn’t mean you should let Rodgers or Brees fall out of the 2nd round. Manning out of the 5th so on and so forth. But if you decide to wait on a signal caller, the choices in round 4 and beyond are enticing for one reason. RUNNING YARDS. The league has never had more running/mobile QBs than it does right now.

Think about it, the difference between Matt Ryan and Cam Newton. Yes Ryan threw 32 tds (4 pts/each in standard leagues) compared to Newton’s 19. But Newton also had 8 rushing touchdowns (6 pts each). The X-Factor, Ryan’s rushing yards, 141 and 1 TD. Newton put up 741 and 8. Ryan will average less than a 1 pt/game rushing output, while Newton’s per game rushing totals put him at a 4.6 pts/game output. While Newton doesn’t make up for the passing stats of Ryan, he more than smashes Ryan in every run category by a country mile. Ryan or Newton? I’m going Newton everyday and twice on sunday.

So if you do decide to wait on a QB, make sure you grab one the will run the football. Newton, RGIII, Wilson, Kaep and even Luck will provide you with more total value than say a Ryan, Brady (this year), Romo or Rothlisberger. An extra 3-4 pts a game from your QB can be the difference between a win and a loss. Choose wisely.

BTL QB Ranks:                                                     

1. Aaron Rodgers (2nd Round Value)      

2. Drew Brees (2nd Round Value)

3. Peyton Manning (3rd/4th Round Value)

4. Cam Newton (3rd/4th Round Value)

5. Matt Ryan (5th Round Value)

6. Tom Brady (5th Round Value)

7. Colin Kaepernick (5th/6th Round Value)

8. Robert Griffin III and Russell Wilson (7th Round Value) 

9. Matthew Stafford (8th Round Value)

10. Andrew Luck (8th/9th Round Value)

MikeV87

BTL 2013 NFL Mock Draft-1st Round

I’ve always been fascinated with mock drafts. Every year around March and early April I scour the internet for some expert opinion on who my team might draft. And eventually you read enough of them that you fall in love with a couple type of players that you want on your team. The experts who mock them to your team always know what they’re talking about, and coincidentally, the ones who have that player being taken earlier, have no idea. Well this is my attempt to make you happy (probably false hope) and or piss you off with my mock draft. Either way, don’t act like this isn’t an efficient use of 15 minutes of your day (candy crush can wait). So enjoy my mock draft and watch me be totally wrong on draft day.

Editors note: I will mock by draft order as of 4/24/13. It’s impossible to predict when Jim Harbaugh trades up into the top 10 to get his impact SS or Milliner falls out of the top 5.

1. Kansas City Chiefs OT-Luke Joeckel: After trading for Alex Smith their is no need for Akili Smith 2.0 (Geno Smith). You could argue Eric Fisher here as well but i’m going with popular opinion. Either one upgrades already good Oline unit.

2.Jacksonville JaguarsDE-Dion Jordan: A lot of needs here. If there was a halfway decent QB then it would be a no brainer. But there isn’t so it’s either OL or an impact rusher. I think Jordan gives them the athletic specimen similar to Jason Pierre-Paul on the NY Giants.

3.Oakland RaidersDT/DE-Shariff Floyd: With Richard Seymour leaving, Oakland needs a big bodied athlete to anchor it’s 3-4 defensive end spot. Floyd fits the prototype to a T. The Raiders improved from 29th in defense last year to 18th, the selection of Floyd will only help the Silver and Black.

4.Philadelphia EaglesOT-Eric Fisher: Mainly a value pick here, depending on who you ask, Fisher is at least a top 4 talent (some consider him the best in the draft). And the Eagles can’t go wrong with an Oline-men, especially if Chip Kelly expects to keep Vick upright throughout the remainder of the season.

5.Detroit LionsOT-Lane Johnson: A lot of possibilities here. The sexy pick is Dee Milliner, buts unless he’s Charles Woodson or Champ Bailey (and he’s not) it doesn’t make sense. The need pick would be DE’s Dion Jordan or Ziggy Ansah to replace Cliff Avril. But the smart/unsexy selection is to fortify a massively depleted Oline. You could argue Alabama’s OG Chance Warmack here, he definitely fits the bill. But an elite OT to protect your two biggest investments, Stafford and in turn Megatron, is always a smart move. Don’t F this up Mayhew.

6.Cleveland BrownsDE-Dee Milliner: New Browns GM Mike Lombardi returns to Cleveland since he and Belicheck left in 1995. It’s no coincidence that Lombardi wants to employ his mentor’s 3-4 defense. If Dion Jordan were here, it’d take 2 seconds for that draft card to be turned in. I go with Milliner here because he and Haden would make one of the best young CB’s duo’s in the NFL (it is a passing league). I thought about Ansah here as well but i don’t think he quite fits as a 3-4 OLB. Plus Lombardi already inked Kruger in FA to fill that need. Joe Haden worked out for them, why not Milliner.

7.Arizona CardinalsOG-Chance Warmack: I thought long and hard about the Cards drafting Geno Smith here, but i’m not sold on him. The Cardinals had the worst offensive line in the NFL last year. They gave up a league high in QB sacks (54). In a draft rich with Oline talent, it makes perfect sense to go need and best available here. Warmack gives AZ a strong physical road-grader type guard. He’s NFL ready and has done it against the best of the SEC. Johnathan Cooper is an option here but you’re really just splitting hairs.

8.Buffalo BillsQB-Geno Smith: After releasing Ryan Fitzpatrick, the Bills are in definite need of a quarterback. Geno makes the most sense here. As the consensus top quarterback in the draft, number 8 isn’t a franchise breaker if he fails. He doesn’t have to start right away, they do have Travaris Jackson to groom him. Geno is off the board.

9. New York JetsDE-Ziggy Ansah: The Jets have a lot of needs, QB being the biggest one but that discussion is for another day. WR help would be great as the have NO threat on the outside but that can be had later. I think Rex Ryan gets an infusion of juice in his now dormant pass rush. Getting Ziggy here is a great value for NY’s little brother.

10.Tennessee TitansDT-Star Lotulelei: Once a lock to be a Top 3 pick, health concerns sent him plummeting down the draft board, but it stops in Nashville. Now fully cleared by doctors, Lotulelei possesses the type of bulk and athleticism sorely needed in the Titans front front 4. There could be plenty of other options but Lotulelei’s upside is worth the risk.

11.San Diego ChargersOG-Johnathan Cooper: The Chargers need offensive line help and bad, particularly on the interior. With Bama OG Warmack off the board, UNC Johnathan Cooper would be a fine consolation prize. Cooper possesses the best agility and pass blocking skill of any of the interior lineman. Philip Rivers thanks you.

12.Miami DolphinsOT-D.J. Fluker: And the run on offensive linemen continues (get use to it). He does a little bit of everything and has the NFL size to back it up. With his long arms he is an asset in pass protection but his real skill is run blocking. Miami can look forward to both aspects of their blocking scheme being upgraded.

13.New York JetsWR-Tavon Austin: As I said earlier the Jets need help on the outside. Last year’s group was an abortion and that is putting it nicely. Tavon Austin fits the bill. He’s comparable to that of a DeSean Jackson in size and explosiveness. Giving Butt Fumble (Sanchez) a legitimate WR who can stretch the field might actually turn the Jets offense from unwatchable to just stagnate.

14.Carolina PanthersDT-Sheldon Richardson: Sometimes picks just make too much sense, this one is a no brainer. With Shariff Floyd off the board, Richardson is the best interior one gap pass rusher left. To say the guy is an athlete at 310 lbs is an understatement. Don’t out think the room Carolina, Richardson is your man.

15.NODE-Barkevious Mingo: After a season of completely sucking at defense (worst in NFL history). A pass rusher of Mingo’s talents is just what the doctor ordered. With the Saints going to the 3-4, Mingo gives them the all around package as an edge rusher. Mingo is step one to the Saints defensive overhaul.

16. STLSS-Kenny Vaccaro: The first of the Rams two round one picks, dont be surprised if they trade down *cough* 49ers *cough*. But seeing as I cannot predict that, I have the Rams taking the best SS on the board. Vaccaro is a versatile safety who can be a play-maker in center field, down in the box safety or even cover the slot nickel position. He’ll be a starter for somebody, question is who?

17. PITOLB-Jarvis Jones: Once considered a top 3 pick, medical issues and poor 40 time have sent his stock plummeting. But Pittsburgh is a team that could care less about that, Jones is a football player through and through. Match him up opposite Woodley and “Blitzburg” returns. Manti Te’o is an interesting option here but the void left by Harrison’s departure needs to be filled.

18.Dallas CowboysDT-Sylvester Williams: Another candidate to trade back. Dallas would have loved to have either Vaccaro or Richardson still on the board but both will probably be gone. Best available does not match up to need but I think Dallas reaches here and takes Williams. He is best as a run stopper and that is what Dallas needs to shore up the front seven.

19. NYGTE-Tyler Eifert: The G-Men could have gone Oline here but i can’t see them passing up Eifert as the best available still on the board. Eli and company could become near unstoppable in the two TE sets (Eifert and Myers) with their explosive threats on the outside. This is strictly a value pick, the smart teams always stockpile good players no matter of need.

20. CHIMLB-Manti Te’o: Some picks just make too much sense. Now with Urlacher gone, the hole in CHI Cover 2 is gaping, Te’o fills that need. Yes he’s had his troubles and one bad performance in the NC game but the kid is a 3-down MLB in the 4-3. Say what you will, Chicago would be smart to make this pick.

21.Cincinnati BengalsFS-Eric Reid: Some could argue that Eddie Lacy would be perfect here and that argument is valid. But Reid brings a more physical presence to the Bengals secondary that would be a better fit. Take Reid now and the Bengals can hit on some of the RBs in the later rounds.

22.STLILB-Alec Ogletree: Once thought top be a lock for a Top 15 selection, character red flags have dropped him into the latter half of the first round. But Jeff Fisher has a history of assuming those risks (Janoris Jenkins anybody?). Red flags aside, Ogletree will give the Rams the athleticism needed to compete with one of the best division in football.

23.Minnesota VikingsCB-D.J. Hayden: With two of the next 3 picks the Vikings can afford to go for both need and value. Hayden is the best player left on the board and will be counted on to fill the shoes left by Antoine Winfield. Some rate him as the best corner in the draft. Either way, at #23, it’s tremendous value. He can do a little bit of everything that is asked of a defensive back.

24.INDCB-Xavier Rhodes: Would have loved to have Hayden fall but Rhodes fits the bill of what the Colts need. While not the do it all corner that Hayden is, Rhodes excels in man press coverage. He has good size and will be a key cog in Pagano’s defense.

25.MINWR-Cordarrelle Patterson: Need and value meet again. Now that the Vikings have replaced Winfield, next is filling the void left by Percy Harvin. Patterson is similar to Harvin in terms of explosiveness. And with his 6’2″ frame, he can be a legitimate target for Ponder on the outside. Patterson should help lessen the pressure AP will face next year.

26.GBRB-Eddie Lacy: I truly think the GB will trade out of the pick and get an additional 2nd rounder because they have multiple needs to fill. Having said that, if they don’t trade, I think Lacy fits the bill. The Packers need a legitimate threat and Lacy gives them that. If he could tear up the SEC, he can give Rodgers an Co. that juice and burst against 6 and 7-man fronts. As the best player left on the board and a need at RB, Ted Thompson would be happy with Lacy.

27.HOUWR-Justin Hunter: The Texans need to find a running mate opposite Andre Johnson. While they would have loved Patterson to fall to them, Patterson’s teammate Justin Hunter will do. While he does have his issues in certain facets of his game. He he has no better role model then Johnson to tailor his game and work ethic after.

28.DENDE-Bjoern Warner: Warner slides in nicely after the departure of Elvis Dumervil. Jack of all trades and master of none, he fits a need for a Super Bowl ready squad.

29.NEFS-Matt Elam: They need cornerback help and Hayden or Rhodes would’ve been nice but they’ll probably be gone by the Pats pick. Secondary help is still a focal point, as the best player on the board Elam can help the Pats in a myriad ways. Don’t be surprised if NE trades down if the two corners aren’t there.

30.ATLTE-Zach Ertz: If by some miracle Eifert fell here, Atlanta would be doing somersaults. But Ertz is a good second option. While there are better players on the board. Ertz total package and heir apparent to Tony Gonzales gives the Falcons A LOT of options on offense. They can afford to wait on secondary and front 7 help. Ertz makes too much sense.

31.San Francisco 49ersFS-Johnathan Cyprien: I’d be shocked to see the Niners picking at #31, they’ll probably move up into the Top 15 (St. Louis) to get their guy. But if they do stay, I see them filling a need with Cyprien. He’s been moving up the charts since his exceptional showing at the combine. He good on the back end and is a good tackler, always an important Harbaugh characteristic. Don’t be surprised if Harbaugh takes his boy Ertz from Stanfordif he’s still there.

32.BALILB-Kevin Minter: If Te’o fell here it’d make a lot of sense. But they need to somehow fill that massive void left by Ray Lewis, or at least try to. Minter is undersized for a ILB but he’s got the athleticism to back it up. Has some character issues but in the right situation, he’ll flourish. Baltimore sounds about right.

There you go folks, my first round mock draft that will be busted like my NCAA bracket by pick 7. Hope you enjoyed it. Shoot me some feedback on your team picks. Enjoy the draft, it’s 5:00 pm on ESPN and NFL Network.

-MikeV87