This is a combination of the biggest reaches, worst scheme fits, and just general draft buffoonery that the 32 NFL teams engaged in during the 2013 NFL Draft. Obviously calling a 7th round pick a bust would be hard but some picks that were made on the last week of April caused me to scratch my head instantly. With other picks, the more I thought about them the more confusing they were. Still others were only ultimately confusing when you stack them up side by side against others.
12. Ace Sanders WR Jacksonville Jaguars (4th Round, 101st overall, South Carolina)
Six. That’s the count of WR’s under 5’10" that have more than 2,000 career receiving yards, since 2000. It would be hard to label a 4th round pick as a reach but I think this one qualifies. Your quarterback has difficulty targeting and hitting big tall receivers, so what makes you think he can find the 5’7" option? I realize that they made a big point about drafting SEC talent after Geno Smith failed to do so for so many seasons but please stop over compensating.
11. Knile Davis RB Kansas City Chiefs (3rd Round 96th Overall Arkansas)
Jamaal Charles, Shaugn Draughn, Cyrus Gray, now Knile Davis? Fast and often injured is apparently the Chiefs taste in running backs. Knile is not really all that different but to spend a third round pick with so many other pressing team needs is a bit confusing…add to that the fact that Davis fumbles as often as Bryce Brown and this selection is a head scratcher.
10. A.J. Klein LB Carolina Panthers (5th Round pick 148 Iowa St.)
Love the player – hate the landing spot. It’s a confusing move to bring in Klein, even in the 5th round after Luke Kuechly last season. Kuechly is an every down linebacker in the middle and Klein really lacks the speed to shift outside. Even if he had it that looks like Thomas Davis’s job..oh and if you're thinking he’ll backup Kuechly: they signed Chase Blackburn to their roster.
9. Le’Veon Bell RB Pittsburgh Steelers (2nd Round Pick 48th overall, Michigan St.)
I had a feeling this might happen with Bell. Some games at Michigan St. he looked unstoppable, some games he looked horrid. Some team was likely to overvalue based on the few dominating games. He is inconsistent because of his lack of vision. I realize Pittsburgh needed an every down back but just because he’s a big bruiser does not mean he’s an upgrade.
8. Kyle Long OG/OT Chicago Bears (1st Round 20th Overall Pick, Oregon)
Four career starts..four? If this guy's name is Kyle Lurman not Long he goes on day 3. Family connections have some value for adjusting to life in the NFL but not that much. Long is a good athlete but this reach is a bit ridiculous. If family connections are all it takes Jordan Rogers should have gone in round one and he has more than four career starts. Taking someone in round 1, particularly in a draft this deep at offensive line, means you should be sure about them as a starter. Kyle may not be long enough to play tackle so that would hurt his value if he can’t make it on the edge. Long could very well be a success but he’s clearly over valued solely based on who his father and brother were.
7. Earl Watford OG Arizona Cardinals (4th Round 116th overall James Madison)
Watford is about as confusing a pick as was made. He’s far too underpowered to start right away and they make this pick after selecting Johnathan Cooper (which I liked) in round 1. It is all in all a confusing pick, as their bigger needs were at tackle and center along the offensive line and several better candidates were available even in round 4.
6. Duron Harmon S New England Patriots (Round 3, 91st Overall Rutgers)
A real head scratcher, Harmon was a reach for most people. To top that off Harmon would seem to have nowhere to play with new SS Adrian Wilson and FS Devin McCourty looking like locks to start. Last year's rookies Nate Ebner and Tavon Wilson would also seem to be ahead of Harmon on the depth chart.
5. Christine Michael RB Seattle Seahawks (Round 2 , 62nd Overall Texas A&M)
Probably the most confusing pick of day 2 to me. You have Marshawn Lynch, are high on Robert Turbin then draft Michael who got stuck in the coach’s dog house last season and fell asleep while being interviewed during the NFL combine. They could have used options for an outside wide receiver, a backup QB, a tight end, guard, or right tackle. Lots of available options at any of those positions at the tail end of round 2 and they grab a 3rd running back with a questionable work ethic?
4. Bjoern Werner OLB Indianapolis Colts (1st Round 24th Overall FSU)
Intriguing. You aren’t high on Dwight Freeney or Robert Mathis because you feel they are really 43 defensive ends trying to stand up as 34 OLBs. Yet you pick Werner who seems almost ideally suited as a strong side end in a 43 and has no experience dropping into coverage. Going beyond that he doesn’t have the first step explosion one would expect in a pass rush 34 specialist. All this while your cornerback opposite Vontae Davis is….Greg Toler? With the Bucs giving up the mantle of the league’s worst pass defense in 2013 have we found their replacement? If Davis goes down this is your worst pass defense.
3. Barkevious Mingo OLB Cleveland Browns (1st Round 6th Overall LSU)
A guy admits to taking "taking plays off" at LSU and produces just 4.5 sacks his final season, comes out early and you make him a top 10 overall selection? I can’t think of an NFL player who said he took plays off in college and made an All-Pro list. Most of them simply bust, and with so many holes on their team Cleveland had a plethora of options to choose from and chose the laziest player left on the board.
2. Dion Jordan LB Miami Dolphins (1st Round 3rd Overall, Oregon)
Jordan is a huge risk, much too pricey to give up a second round pick and your first rounder to move up for. He participated in under 50% of Oregon’s defensive snaps last season and had a very pedestrian five sacks. None of the pass rushers selected in the top 10 had more than 5 sacks last season which exposes how raw athletic ability can sometimes overcome good sense and judgment. Bust percentages in round 1 spike for edge rushers who lack production. Maybe Jordan will be the exception he certainly could be, but if I want to give up my first two picks I’d rather have someone with athletics and production to be an NFL impact player. To make matters even more confusing, the Dolphins are penciling him in at defensive end, which means either Jordan, Cameron Wake, or 2010 1st round pick Jared Odrick will be a substitute player. You also have to question the wisdom of using their first two picks on defense, yes they signed Dustin Keller and Mike Wallace this offseason, but if you really wanted to support Ryan Tannehill offensive line or a skill position player would have made a better choice for either pick.
1. Geno Smith QB or Sheldon Richardson DT (2nd Round 39th overall and 1st Round 13th overall)
I cannot figure out which of these picks I hate worst, however both of these picks would seem to tell me the Jets don’t get it. Yes Mark Sanchez was terrible, but literally for large stretches last season the best WR was Chaz Schilens. Stephen Hill has one more year of development and Santonio Holmes should be back but TE Jeff Cumberland is a pretty bad option. Behind those two receivers it's pretty pathetic and getting worse, their running backs even with Ivory are still bottom 25. Unless your quarterback is Tom Brady or Drew Brees, you need elite offensive weapons. The Jets don’t even have good ones, so you go from Mark Sanchez who needs a lot of help on offense to Geno Smith who will need a lot of help on offense and you don’t get him weapons? What is your plan - to tank next season and draft Bridgewater? Maybe, but he still wouldn’t have any weapons. I don’t care how good either one becomes, neither pick seems to make much sense to me. The Jets scored under 20 points in 11 of their 16 games last season and their defense is not good enough to compensate. They could have secured the services of Tyler Eifert and Eddie Lacy, they are also paying Mark Sanchez too much to cut him and have a team that lacks overall leadership, something that Geno Smith lacks as well. My bold prediction: the Jets finish 32nd on offense and below Buffalo in the AFC East Standings.