Friday, April 24, 2009

Mock Draft Action!

The surprisingly nine-and-six Pirates haven't broken our hearts yet but when they do (scheduled for, what, now? Like mid-May?) it'll be time to turn my attention back to whatever the Steelers are doing or, as the case will probably be, not doing. This weekend, though, is the NFL Draft, which seems to become more and more of an event as sports networks try to fill a gaping, football-shaped hole in their programming grids with offseason proceedings and fans try to fill a similarly gaping, similarly football-shaped hole in their hearts with the human resource transactions of a curiously antitrust-exempt sporting industry.

I'm pretty sure that mock drafts between January and April make up 30 to 40 percent of the exponentially exploding quantity of data available to the human species, but against any reason or need I've tried my hand at my own. Results below. Note that because I don't follow the college game I really don't have an informed perspective on any of the prospects. Also, in keeping with the spirit of the Mock Draft I've decided to use only Mock Players. Nonetheless I expect my first-round predictions will hold up about as well as anybody's.

* * * * *

1. Detroit Lions: LawFontayne Jonesmith (RB, Eastern State University)
The Lions won't be able to pass up the most exciting athlete in this year's draft. Scouts breathlessly project Jonesmith to sustain nagging ankle injuries in his first two seasons and be outperformed in the long term by up to three undrafted free agents in his rookie class.

2. St. Louis Rams: Brooster McAphee (OT, University of Texarcana)
Embracing the latest conventional wisdom on player valuation, the Rams will spend the second overall pick in the draft on standout left tackle McAphee, then trade him to the New York Yankees for two class-AA pitchers with career WHIPs under 1.00.

3. Kansas City Chiefs: Brent Brett (projected DT, City University of Waco)
Brett's first-day draft prospects have skyrocketed after an impressive workout at the NFL Combine, despite his having no previous playing experience in, knowledge of, or apparent interest in football.

4. Seattle Seahawks: Ramesh Chang (RB, University of Burlingham)
Chang, a draft-eligible junior, has shown exceptional quickness and agility in three collegiate seasons and is predicted by scouts to run almost 60% as hard once given a guaranteed contract worth millions of dollars.

5. Cleveland Browns: Gaston Borregard (OT, Bayou College)
This unanimously high-rated offensive lineman is a veritable monster at 6'9", 375 pounds, with pointed teeth and deformed, clawlike hands.

6. Cincinnati Bengals: Harbison Baldbull (OLB, Benjamin Harrison University)
The only exceptional linebacker in this year's class, Baldbull would be one of several good potential pickups for the Bengals, who will look to this draft to address glaring deficiencies in their offensive line, defensive line, linebacker corps, defensive backfield, coaching staff, front-office management, and fan base.

7. Oakland Raiders: Joseph Merman (QB, Warren Jeffs University)
Picking up this powerful left-hander will address the Raiders' most pressing need, that being owner Al Davis' deep-seated psychological need to sign a mediocre quarterback with a cannon arm.

8. Jacksonville Jaguars: Artoo Duggetts (OT, Stapford)
Unlike other collegiate wrestlers turned offensive linemen, Duggetts is a veteran of three WWE Friday Night SmackDown events.

9. Green Bay Packers: Acco Brands (ILB, University of Northern Arkansas)
Though undistinguished and undersized, this linebacker's name nonetheless will be conspicuously present on many teams' draft boards on Saturday, as he coincidentally shares his name with a major whiteboard manufacturer.

10. San Francisco 49ers: Taylor "Tiny" Tyler (DT, Wadsworth College)
Tyler has rung up a number of gaudy accomplishments within his small school's division, though the 49ers will be horrified to discover in training camp that the 5'4" defensive lineman's college nickname is not ironic.

11. Buffalo Bills: David "Ruby" Ruebinger (ILB, Irish University of Bend)
The perseverance shown by this small but determined linebacker has warmed the hearts of NFL scouts of all ages, although some have cooled to him since his disastrous missed tackle on the first and only play of his college career cost his team the Rose Bowl.

12. Denver Broncos: Buster Pickins (QB, University of Southeastern California)
The Broncos will react to seeing the draft's consensus best quarterback fall all the way to number twelve with pure, almost childlike delight, which will seem poignant in retrospect when they bench Pickins, following six sporadically competent rookie starts, in favor of a graying free-agent veteran.

13. Washington Redskins: Duaner Billiams (WR, Burlingham State)
Billiams, an exciting but undisciplined 6'5" receiver with poor ball control skills, will sell more replica Redskins jerseys than would a badly needed pickup at one of several unglamorous positions.

14. New Orleans Saints: Dannquayle Hobbs (CB, Indiana University of Indiana)
Hobbs is an impressively speedy, ball-hawking defensive back whose hands are only slightly bad enough for him not to be a wide receiver instead.

15. Houston Texans: Elishah Walker (QB, West Texas International University)
A classic pocket passer with slightly above-average downfield vision, Walker projects as a middle-aged former NFL journeyman who writes inspirational Christian novels.

16. San Diego Chargers: Christian Cho'aculua (OT, Molokai College)
Cho'aculua is not the most athletic left tackle in the draft but he's an intuitive player whose long arms should allow him to corral defenders at the line of scrimmage -- although some scouts believe that physical asset will be offset by his freakishly stumpy legs.

17. New York Jets: Hayao Tamagunagi (projected G, Izutsu stable)
Casual NFL observers' frequently asked question, "Why don't they use sumo wrestlers for those big football players?", will finally be answered when Jets owner Woody Johnson drunkenly calls in his first-round pick from a Benihana restaurant outside of Newark.

18. Perryville Catbirds: Optimus Washington (OLB, University of Ball)
A talented athlete with a history of legal troubles who could be a valuable pickup for a team willing to keep him on a tight disciplinary leash, Washington was suspended for his entire senior year by the NCAA after his aerospace contracting firm was found to be noncompliant with the Sarbanes-Oxley Act.

19. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: ChuckE Hawster (G, SUNY Utica)
In an unfortunate cross-sport mix-up, Tampa's first-round selection will be assigned to the similarly named Pittsburgh Pirates, with whom he will fight a series of pitch control issues and reconstructive arm surgeries before finally emerging as a below-average Major League middle reliever for several months in the year 2015.

20. Detroit Lions: Toddy Fitzcarraldo (CB/FS, Coast Guard Academy)
The Lions will settle for using their second first-round pick on this very solid defensive back, after trying desperately to trade the pick to the Chicago Bears in exchange for letting Detroit win at least one game next season.

21. Philadelphia Eagles: Morriss the Mule (projected K, Blue Clover Farms)
Morriss' ability to boot a field goal from 80 yards out could transform the very idea of field position, although his eligibility to play requires lobbying NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell to reverse the 22-year-old "Knotts Rule" before the start of the 2009 season.

22. Minnesota Vikings: Chester Le Baron (OLB, University of Moon)
Le Baron is an aggressive, high-motor player capable of a ferocious edge rush, though some team psychologists are troubled by his insistence that he is an anthropomorphic piece of software being forced to live out a football-themed video game by a malevolent "Master Control Program".

23. New England Patriots: Chiz Whiteacre (QB, Louisiana State Omniversity)
The Pats will almost surely look to replace departed backup quarterback Matt Cassel with Whiteacre, an experienced college and high school second-stringer who has not started a game at any level since being trapped behind Bobby Herman, a taller neighborhood friend, at the age of nine.

24. Atlanta Falcons: Brandon St. Ball (WR, City College of Burlingham)
St. Ball is a versatile and iconoclastic athlete who can probably be lured into the NFL with first-round bonus money, although he has unabashedly voiced his preference for accepting an entry-level business analyst position with Accenture.

25. Miami Dolphins: Boje Skrotczak (projected DE, University of Transylvania)
A raw but preternaturally gifted athlete of indeterminate age and national origin, Skrotczak was a three-sport standout at Trans who declared for the NFL Draft after learning that none of those three sports are legal outside of his home country.

26. Baltimore Ravens: Da'Ruckus Manchilde (WR, Northern Viriginia Community College)
Accomplished Ravens general manager Ozzie Newsome will be uncharacteristically passive-aggressive with the 26th overall pick, stating that "I'm not convinced any of these [draft-eligible college players] are exactly what I'm looking for" before snippily telling Goodell after several minutes on the phone to just pick one out for him, as he doesn't even care at this point.

27. Indianapolis Colts: Ralph Waldo Breece (DT, Vermont)
Breece had generated some buzz as one of the hottest defensive linemen in the draft when he declared after his junior year, though he is expected to fall to the late first round after a disastrous workout at the Combine in which he failed the rope climb and could only do a bent-arm hang from the chin-up bar for six seconds.

28. Buffalo Bills: Mitchell Spreddings (SS, AN State)
Spreddings, who earned a B.A. in sociology, will be described by every TV color commentator as "a bright kid" or "a very bright kid" for managing to actually graduate with a B average from a non-bullshit academic program.

29. New York Giants: B'Nard Forster (DE/OLB, Alabama-Mississippi Bi-State University)
The Giants should find a satisfactory replacement for Plaxico Burress in Forster, who, though a defensive player, is projected to miss team meetings throughout the season before accidentally shooting his own leg.

30. Tennessee Titans: Chaucery Quiltlace (DE, Strarthmore College)
Although Quiltlace is the most aggressive, physical defensive lineman in the draft, the consensus among NFL scouts since the Combine has been that he will fall to the late first round due to his disappointingly un-manly name.

31. Arizona Cardinals: Taylor Crispin (RB, West Carolina)
Crispin has shown exceptional stamina throughout his college career but his stock has fallen somewhat since the Senior Bowl, where it was discovered that he is secretly a pair of identical twins who play on alternating snaps.

32. Pittsburgh Steelers: Treat Flitcomb (C/G, Burlingham A&M)
Steelers actuaries calculate that the talent and depth Flitcomb would inject into Pittsburgh's offensive line would singlehandedly raise quarterback Ben Roethlisberger's life expectancy from 37 to 39.

* * * * *

Anyway. Time for me to hustle off to work; Go You Pirates against the Padres this weekend.


Blogger Jack said...

I think this is pretty funny! Which of course supports the theory.

4/24/2009 12:40 PM  
Blogger Jack said...

. . . It also must be said that many of your names don't sound quite as made up as the one belonging to actual Steelers first-round pick Evander "Ziggy" Hood.

4/26/2009 7:51 PM  
Blogger nate said...

And none of those names, including Ziggy's, sound as strange as seventh-round pick A.Q. Shipley looks. No offense to him but the portrait of him that the Post-Gazette has been using looks like Bullet Bill from Super Mario Bros.

4/27/2009 9:16 AM  
Blogger Pete said...

I think it's a shame that none of your fake names have caused any linkbots to advertised salty snacks here yet.

4/27/2009 3:14 PM  
Blogger Mike said...

I still love the Perryville Catbirds

4/28/2009 2:58 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home