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. Browns Sam Darnold QB USC
2. Giants Saquon Barkley RB Penn St.
3. Jets (from Colts) Baker Mayfield QB Oklahoma
4. Browns Bradley Chubb DE North Carolina St.
5. Broncos Josh Allen QB Wyoming
6. Colts Minkah Fitzpatrick CB/S Alabama
7. Buccaneers Derwin James S Florida
8. Bears Denzel Ward CB Ohio St.
9. 49ers Roquan Smith LB Georgia
10. Raiders Tremaine Edmunds LB Virginia Tech
11. Dolphins Quinton Nelson OG Notre Dame
12. Bills (from Bengals) Calvin Ridley WR Alabama
13. Redskins Vita Vea DT Washington
14. Packers Josh Jackson CB Iowa
15. Cardinals Lamar Jackson QB Louisville
16. Ravens Mike McGlinchey OT Notre Dame
17. Chargers Will Hernandez OG UTEP
18. Seahawks Darius Guice RB LSU
19. Cowboys Courland Sutton WR SMU
20. Lions Da’Ron Payne DT Alabama
21. Bengals Orlando Brown OT Oklahoma
22. Bills Rashaan Evans LB Alabama
23. Patriots Marcus Davenport DE Texas San Antonio
24. Panthers D. J. Moore WR Maryland
25. Titans Harold Landry DE Boston college
26. Falcons Taven Bryan DT Florida
27. Saints Christian Kirk WR Texas A&M
28. Steelers Leighton Vander-Esch OLB Boise St.
29. Jaguars Maurice Hurst DT Michigan
30. Vikings Carlton Davis CB Auburn
31. Patriots D. J. Chark WR LSU
32. Eagles Kolton Miller OT UCLA

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 2.0 Draft 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. Browns Sam Darnold QB USC
2. Giants Saquon Barkley RB Penn St.
3. Jets (from Colts) Baker Mayfield QB Oklahoma
4. Browns Bradley Chubb DE North Carolina St.
5. Broncos Josh Allen QB Wyoming
6. Colts Minkah Fitzpatrick CB/S Alabama
7. Buccaneers Derwin James S Florida
8. Bears Denzel Ward CB Ohio St.
9. 49ers Roquan Smith LB Georgia
10. Raiders Tremaine Edmunds LB Virginia Tech
11. Dolphins Quinton Nelson OG Notre Dame
12. Bills (from Bengals) Calvin Ridley WR Alabama
13. Redskins Vita Vea DT Washington
14. Packers Josh Jackson* CB Iowa
15. Cardinals Lamar Jackson QB Louisville
16. Ravens Mike McGlinchey OT Notre Dame
17. Chargers Will Hernandez OG UTEP
18. Seahawks Darius Guice RB LSU
19. Cowboys Courland Sutton* WR SMU
20. Lions Da’Ron Payne DT Alabama
21. Bengals Orlando Brown* OT Oklahoma
22. Bills Rashaan Evans LB Alabama
23. Patriots Marcus Davenport DE Texas San Antonio
24. Panthers D. J. Moore WR Maryland
25. Titans Harold Landry* DE Boston college
26. Falcons Taven Bryan DT Florida
27. Saints Christian Kirk WR Texas A&M
28. Steelers Leighton Vander-Esch OLB Boise St.
29. Jaguars Maurice Hurst DT Michigan
30. Vikings Carlton Davis CB Auburn
31. Patriots D. J. Chark WR LSU
32. Eagles Kolton Miller OT UCLA

*  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 has been involved in athletics his entire life, first in the arena as a competitor, later on the sidelines as a coach and now analyzing sports for crescentcitysports.com and WGSO 990AM. 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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