From the Coach’s Office: Creating a first round draft board

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NFL DraftNow that we have established our philosophy, it is time to construct a draft board.

In order to draft the best player available, you have to rank players according to their ability.  That is easier said than done.  It is difficult to rank players at positions that have very different requirements.  For instance, you have to be able to compare a corner back to an offensive lineman.  Yet that is what you have to do; be accurate in your evaluation and then trust your evaluation process.

Here is a list of the top 24 players in the draft from “my” scouting department.  Since I do not evaluate college players I took lists from Daniel Jeremiah and Gil Brandt of the NFL Network to comprise my first round draft board.  The players were ranked by ability without regard to who may draft them.

I took their top 27 and then eliminated the quarterbacks.  That yielded 24 players.

The Saints should not draft a QB in the first round; none of this class is good enough to use a first round pick much less use the assets to trade up to get one.

Selecting a quarterback is not about selecting one but of selecting the right one.

Here is their list:

1  Saquon Barkley – RB

2  Bradley Chubb – DE

3 Quenton Nelson – OG

4 Denzel Ward – CB

5 Tremaine Edmunds – LB

6  Minkah Fitzpatrick – S

7  Vita Vea – DT

8 Roquan Smith – LB

9 Derwin James – S

10 Marcus Davenport – DE

11 Jaire Alexander, CB

12 Will Hernandez – OG

13  Da’Ron Payne, DT

14 James Daniels – C

15 Sony Michel – RB

16 Connor Williams – G/T

17 Mike Hughes, CB

18 Derrius Guice, RB

19 Leighton Vander Esch – LB

20  Calvin Ridley – WR

21 Rashaan Evans – LB

22  D.J. Moore – WR

23 Taven Bryan, DT

24  Mike McGlinchey – OT

I then took Al Dupuy’s mock draft to simulate the first round selections.  Over the years, Al has been incredible in putting his mock drafts together.

Al Dupuy’s Mock Draft 2.0
1. BrownsSam DarnoldQBUSC
2. GiantsSaquon BarkleyRBPenn St.
3. Jets (from Colts)Baker MayfieldQBOklahoma
4. BrownsBradley ChubbDENorth Carolina St.
5. BroncosJosh AllenQBWyoming
6. ColtsMinkah FitzpatrickCB/SAlabama
7. BuccaneersDerwin JamesSFlorida
8. BearsDenzel WardCBOhio St.
9. 49ersRoquan SmithLBGeorgia
10. RaidersTremaine EdmundsLBVirginia Tech
11. DolphinsQuinton NelsonOGNotre Dame
12. Bills (from Bengals)Calvin RidleyWRAlabama
13. RedskinsVita VeaDTWashington
14. PackersJosh JacksonCBIowa
15. CardinalsLamar JacksonQBLouisville
16. RavensMike McGlincheyOTNotre Dame
17. ChargersWill HernandezOGUTEP
18. SeahawksDarius GuiceRBLSU
19. CowboysCourland SuttonWRSMU
20. LionsDa’Ron PayneDTAlabama
21. BengalsOrlando BrownOTOklahoma
22. BillsRashaan EvansLBAlabama
23. PatriotsMarcus DavenportDETexas San Antonio
24. PanthersD. J. MooreWRMaryland
25. TitansHarold LandryDEBoston college
26. FalconsTaven BryanDTFlorida
27. SaintsChristian KirkWRTexas A&M
28. SteelersLeighton Vander-EschOLBBoise St.
29. JaguarsMaurice HurstDTMichigan
30. VikingsCarlton DavisCBAuburn
31. PatriotsD. J. CharkWRLSU
32. EaglesKolton MillerOTUCLA

Whenever a player is selected you scratch them off your draft board.  After the first 26 selections, here is how the draft board looks.

Al Dupuy’s Mock Draft 2.0Draft Board

1  Saquon Barkley – RB

2  Bradley Chubb – DE

3 Quenton Nelson – OG

4 Denzel Ward – CB

5 Tremaine Edmunds – LB

 

6  Minkah Fitzpatrick – S

7  Vita Vea – DT

8 Roquan Smith – LB

9 Derwin James – S

10 Marcus Davenport – DE

11 Jaire Alexander – CB

12 Will Hernandez – OG

13  Da’Ron Payne – DT

14 James Daniels – C

15 Sony Michel – RB

16 Connor Williams – G/T

17 Mike Hughes – CB

18 Derrius Guice, RB

19 Leighton Vander Esch – LB

20  Calvin Ridley – WR

21 Rashaan Evans – LB

22  D.J. Moore – WR

23 Taven Bryan – DT

24  Mike McGlinchey – OT

1. BrownsSam DarnoldQBUSC
2. GiantsSaquon BarkleyRBPenn St.
3. Jets (from Colts)Baker MayfieldQBOklahoma
4. BrownsBradley ChubbDENorth Carolina St.
5. BroncosJosh AllenQBWyoming
6. ColtsMinkah FitzpatrickCB/SAlabama
7. BuccaneersDerwin JamesSFlorida
8. BearsDenzel WardCBOhio St.
9. 49ersRoquan SmithLBGeorgia
10. RaidersTremaine EdmundsLBVirginia Tech
11. DolphinsQuinton NelsonOGNotre Dame
12. Bills (from Bengals)Calvin RidleyWRAlabama
13. RedskinsVita VeaDTWashington
14. PackersJosh Jackson*CBIowa
15. CardinalsLamar JacksonQBLouisville
16. RavensMike McGlincheyOTNotre Dame
17. ChargersWill HernandezOGUTEP
18. SeahawksDarius GuiceRBLSU
19. CowboysCourland Sutton*WRSMU
20. LionsDa’Ron PayneDTAlabama
21. BengalsOrlando Brown*OTOklahoma
22. BillsRashaan EvansLBAlabama
23. PatriotsMarcus DavenportDETexas San Antonio
24. PanthersD. J. MooreWRMaryland
25. TitansHarold Landry*DEBoston college
26. FalconsTaven BryanDTFlorida
27. SaintsChristian KirkWRTexas A&M
28. SteelersLeighton Vander-EschOLBBoise St.
29. JaguarsMaurice HurstDTMichigan
30. VikingsCarlton DavisCBAuburn
31. PatriotsD. J. CharkWRLSU
32. EaglesKolton MillerOTUCLA

*  Players selected that are not on our draft board (4)

After pick 26, here is who is left on our board

11 Jaire Alexander – CB – Louisville

14 James Daniels – C – Iowa

15 Sony Michel – RB – Georgia

16 Connor Williams – G/T – Texas

17 Mike Hughes – CB – UCF

19 Leighton Vander Esch – LB – Boise St.

This is where you have some wiggle room.  How close are the players rated to each other?  While Jaire Alexander would be the best player available, if this group is tightly bunched, you may skip him to go to a position of need.  However, if there is a distinct separation, you go with the best player available.

The biggest problem with Jaire Alexander is that he is not from Ohio State.

Try this exercise with your own draft board.  In that way you can make an intelligent decision with your choice.

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Rick Gaille

Rick Gaille

CCS/WGSO Analyst

Rick Gaille was involved in athletics his entire life, first in the arena as a competitor, later on the sidelines as a coach and later analyzing sports for Crescent City Sports and WGSO. As a competitor in golf, Rick was LSUNO’s first athlete, first 1st team All-American (1970) and first three-time All-American (1970, 1971 and 1972). During those years, (LS)UNO…

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