FanPost

Trading Down in the Draft

After going 7-3 and being so close to getting to the playoffs, its clear that we are a playoff team. Like most playoff teams (when healthy), there are only a few glaring (different from general weakness) weaknesses. Obviously, WR and OL are the two biggest concerns. Based on Tice remaining as OC and Lovie's endorsement of Ja'Marcus Webb, OL improvement will likely come internally, from free agency or from later round drafting (barring Emery falling in love with one of the tackles not named Kalil in the draft). That leaves only WR as a huge hole to fill in the draft. After the combine, it looks like Blackmon and Floyd are far and away the top WRs with a huge pool of late 1st round and 2nd round receivers (Wright, Jeffery, Sanu, Randle, Hill, maybe Jones, Streeter, Toon and Quick rounding out the end).

We will likely get a receiver or two in free agency. Which ones is up for debate but the need will be addressed given how many free agent options exist. Since its likely that the top 2 WRs will be gone, we are left with either addressing OL or another position in terms of value at 19. As per above, its unlikely we will take an OL at 19, we are left with the possibility of taking a DE or CB or LB if available. I would be fine with any of those but given the value of how many WRs are available (and that being by far the #1 present and future need), trading back starts to look the best.


As I see from the draft, we definitely need a WR, DE, LB, CB and OL in that order. I say this because we need to keep the defense strong and given the tendencies of Tice and Smith, OL is not that big of a draft focus (at least this year). The top LB, Luchely would be my top pick as he would be a possible heir apparent to Urlacher or Briggs, but he is unlikely to be available. After him, Upshaw is more of a rush linebacker in the 3-4 mold. Then, much like WR, there is a drop-off with about 4-5 prospects who are low 1st and 2nd round talent (Hightower, Burfict, Brown, Lewis).

Also, this talent dropoff is true of CB with Claiborne, Jenkins and Kirkpatrick being the best 3 and a wide range afterwards. I was reading (i cant find the article) that this is a great draft for Cover-2 corners. Corners who are big and good tacklers but not the best man to man or athletic. Though we do play a decent amount of man, those characteristics sound alot like Charles Tillman. Also, S is a possibility for us but even Mark Barron is considered a low first round prospect.

After saying all of this, it looks like (outside of DE), the bulk of the better prospects for WR, CB, and LB lie at the end of the 1st round and 2nd round. If it were possible to trade into the lower half of the 1st round for another 2nd round pick or even into the high 2nd round for two 2nd round picks, I think this would be the most preferable as we would be able to get a good prospect at 2-3 positions of need while not reaching for value.

With 2 3rds as well, all of a sudden we can address alot of depth while getting good prospects at our 'need' positions.

<em>This FanPost was written by a Windy City Gridiron member, and does not necessarily reflect the ideas or opinions of its staff or community.</em>

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