Monday, April 14, 2008

The NFL Draft - Expecting the Expected

Who doesn’t love the draft? Huh? I believe it has to be the best fucking day on the planet for football fans, other than the super bowl, of course. You’ve done your reading, you’ve looked over three million mock drafts, you’ve bought your awful box of SAGE low series (ill get to that in a second), and you have finally settled on that one guy you want to collect.

The funny thing is that if I had more than 3 readers, I would say that 90% of my readership doesn’t follow even one step of the above. Most people just collect the guy that suits up for their favorite team. I do most of the above until I realize that the Vikings guy is really the only one I will follow. Then, after resigning myself to the cruel fate of following a draft pick that most likely wont amount to anything, I finally jump ship and wind up on the bandwagon of the most popular guy of the year.

I know you are asking yourself after this amazing lead in, “WHO DO YOU THINK I SHOULD COLLECT?”

Well, since you asked, here is who I think are good bets for the BEGINNING OF THE YEAR:

Mcfadden, Ryan, and Mendenhall are all DUHs, but I wouldn’t put it past DeSean Jackson, Brian Brohm, or one of the other receivers to make a significant push for the collector’s heart. Just a word to the wise though: McFadden wont have the O-Line that All Day had with the Vikings, as the Raiders or whoever drafts him probably didn’t acquire the talent there to make a first year guy a huge deal. The Vikings had just ridiculously overpaid for Hutchinson, gotten Tony Richardson, and already had Chester Taylor and Bryant McKinnie, so there wasn’t as much pressure on Peterson to make a splash because we already had the pieces in place for a good running game. With the other teams, that probably isn’t there.

As for Ryan, he will probably either start for a god awful Dolphins team, or he will ride the pine while he learns the NFL style offense. This means we are looking at a Brady Quinn or JaMarcus Russell type of year for him as well as most of the QBs. Remember, its going to be at least 3 years before anyone’s investment pays off, so be cautious about keeping your stash of pulls when you could sell them for serious coin at the beginning of the year. Also remember: ALL JERSEY CARDS ARE EVENT FUCKING USED!

Go ahead, buy a few, or you can just send your money to me - its pretty much same thing.

If you are looking for a guy who will make a difference in his team right away, you are stuck with middle first round backs and receivers (Jackson and Sweed), O-line top draft picks (Long), or the same for defense (Long). The reason for the first mention is because teams that draft in the mid to late first round have more of a team in place to establish a rookie guy with little knowledge (see Addai and Maroney). Jackson has been know to have a typical me-first attitude, and should end up with a good team - maybe the Vikings - so maybe he would be the best person to throw 50 bucks at. With the Longs, stay away from the OT and focus more on the DT guy. Some defensive guys carry a big stick in the hobby, and the defensive Long may be a good bet to be the defensive star of the draft much like Willis was last year.

To the lovers of Press Poop and SAGE:

Obviously, the first few series of cards like SAGE and Press Pass are some of the worst possible cards to invest in because they never hold any value once actual cards come out. If you find yourself itching for wax to bust of the new guys, wait for DLP’s Prestige, Elite or even Classics, because they are the first licensed cards and may actually hold some value. I heart Classics very much because they are usually the first mid end product with the draft picks in their team jerseys. Of course the pics were taken at the Rookie Premiere piece of shit, but they don’t include relics in the cards – so im cool. The good thing is that the designs for DLP look better and better every year while Topps and UD fight each other for who can create the worst looking cards on the planet. Both Topps and UD have a new draft product coming out right after the big day, so the collectors will most likely salivate over them (I think they both look awful). What collectors don’t realize is that both companies now have to lose a later product to cover it. Topps already had draft picks and prospects, but UD will have to dump one of the later issues because they never had stuff out after the draft before.

This card looks better than Jessica Simpson at a Cowboys game

Either way, this year seems to be a little less star-studded, but more balanced in terms of players for the first rounders. We can expect a lot of middle of the road rookies with not many that truly have what Peterson had last year.

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