Friday, May 8, 2009

Looking At The 2009 Class And What They Bring To The Table

Before each year comes along, as I have said many times before, people choose their "guys" to focus on for the upcoming year. Most of the time it’s the team you cheer for, other times it’s a prospecting move based on projected production. Based on these types of practices, here are my opinions on which of the 2009 rookies will produce the best results for the people in the second category.

Matt Stafford

I am not of the group of people who says you start an RC quarterback unless you absolutely have to. The Lions may be in that place, but I just don’t see Stafford being all that productive - yet. The Lions are still a god awful team, and although Stafford has Pettigrew and Johnson to throw to now, its not going to help when you don’t have the experience. Ryan was the exception to the rule, so don’t start putting the eggs in this basket until you see some actual stats. If he does start, expect more INTs than touchdowns, especially with the state of the Lions' O-Line.

Mark Sanchez

The Jets are a much, much, MUCH better team than the Lions, but I still put the same predictions on Sanchez. He shouldn’t start right away, but even if he does, he wont have much to write home about. As of right now, I cannot name a single Jets WR without going to first. That will hurt him. A lot.

Knowshon Moreno

If the Broncos still had Cutler, and they somehow managed to get Moreno too, he would be my guy to win rookie of the year for 2009. With Neckbeard at the helm, it’s a little different, though Brandon Marshall should attract a lot of attention. I expect Moreno to have a good year, and possibly still win the hardware, but its been all or nothing these last few years with RC RBs. As of now, his prices are ridiculous, but after they come down, if they come down, don’t hesitate to pick up some stuff if its within your means.

Aaron Curry

Curry could be the next Urlacher, but as a defensive player, his value will never be at the same level as the others. He also wont have many big cards outside of his rookie year, as most of the companies focus on offensive players after the first year. Curry has massive potential, and will most likely be the defensive rookie of the year, but the hobby wont notice him past a few dollars here and there.

Michael Crabtree

Crabtree, right now, is my top candidate for rookie of the year, though the Niners' QB situation is quite scary right now. I still think that he has the tools to be on or above Johnson's level, but without someone to throw him the ball, he wont be anywhere close. Next year when the Niners draft someone high in the first round, things may change. Oh, and just thinking about the fact that the Raiders passed him up for Heyward-Bey still makes me laugh. What idiots.

Jeremy Maclin

Brian Westbrook has been the man to stop in Philly for the last few years, but he is getting on in age and in condition. I would say Maclin should be a great target for McNabb, but he had a number of concerns with route running and other parts of his game that made him less attractive than Crabtree. I say he has an Eddie Royal type season, with some good performances, but he probably wont be the most valuable guy to keep until later in the next few years.

Percy Harvin

All I have heard over the last few weeks since the draft is that Harvin is the most explosive player in the class. Platitudes aside, I think he will be a good contributor as a 3 or even a 2, but he wont be anything special until he gets his brains behind him on the field. He seems like he has amazing talent, but just doesn’t use his head. Kind of like Randy Moss in that respect. We saw what happens when Moss applies himself. He is the best in the game. Harvin could do that, though not in the same expected production pool.

Darrius Heyward-Bey

Don’t even think he is going to be anything worth your time at first. I see Troy Williamson bust potential, but who knows, he could get lucky. I see more of DeSean Jackson's production, at Calvin Johnson's draft pick slot.

Chris Wells

Beanie could be the next Chris Johnson. He has amazing talent, is with a great team with a great line, and most importantly he played against more top talent in College than Brown or the other later backs in the draft. I wouldn’t be surprised if he takes the league for a Johnson style wild ride - that is - if he can stay healthy.

Regardless of who you pick, remember that you should be following the tree of position worth. More importantly, you shouldn’t pay more for a WR than you would for a RB, because in the long run, it will not be a good decision. Also, pick someone you may have a chance to get some stuff of after his rookie year. Usually the companies only pick people who they know are going to bring value to a set, and the fourth round QB you stocked up on now, probably wont have many cards. Anyone else ready for some football??


  1. Well I have to partially agree with you about Sanchez, other than a guy named Jerricho Cotchery, there really isn't much in receivers. Might want to add Dustin Keller to that mix.
    Just to inform you about Jerricho Cotchery..
    Season Team Receiving Rushing Fumbles
    G GS Rec Yds Avg Lng TD Att Yds Avg Lng TD FUM Lost
    2008 New York Jets 16 16 71 858 12.1 56T 5 2 8 4.0 8 0 2 1
    2007 New York Jets 15 15 82 1,130 13.8 50 2 5 38 7.6 16 0 1 1
    2006 New York Jets 16 16 82 961 11.7 71T 6 5 25 5.0 10 0 -- --

    Compare him to Berrian, it is quite similar if not better. They both have had the misfortune of a revolving door of QBs as well.

  2. Don't underestimate the Neckbeard. Sure, I'd much rather have Jay Cutler in a Bears uni but I think Kyle can do pretty well in Denver if the job is his. He's got a couple great WRs and a good TE. If the O-line can hold up for him, he and Moreno could have successful years.

    What about RB Donald Brown in Indy? I don't really know much about him but Indy is well known for making really smart draft choices. This kid could be a nice surprise if he gets any playing time behind Addai.

  3. I dont think Brown will be much of a factor if Addai keeps his legs on him. Otherwise, you could be right.

  4. You underestimate the Lions. Defense is very good, except the line. Offense is very good, except the line. Doesn't make a difference for the 09 RC class, but still.

    It wouldn't surprise me to see Heyward-Bey end up as the best WR in the draft by the end of the season. Dude has lots of doubters to prove wrong and he seems genuinely pissed that people look at him the way they do. I look forward to seeing what he can do.

    I'll be chasing Mike Mitchell. Man, I still love that pick.

  5. I think if you're looking at first round picks to go after (I'm that investor card collector :) - would be Wells, Nicks, Moreno and Britt.

    Wells mostly since he will be in a very productive offense and will have some holes to run through.

    Nicks since he has the opportunity to get throws from Eli and the running game opens it up but you would have to be worried about the fact without a #2 he will easily get doubled if he shows any promise.

    Britt - once again he'll have the opportunity to get open with a solid running game that will dictate 1 on 1 coverage.

    Me - I'll be all over Shonn Green and McCoy since he'll be with Eagles. Obviously Reid is going to run the ball and try to keep Donovan fresh for the end of the year and put Westbrook in 3rd and 2nd and long situations only to keep him fresh and off the IR.

    Over all, not a year to really be collecting cards. Go buy '07 and '08.