Round 1(#3 Overall): Drew Brees Round 2(#30): Reggie Bush Round 3(#35): Darren Sproles Round 4(#62): Tony Gonzalez Round 5(#67): Steve Smith Round 6(#94): Michael Floyd Round 7(#99): Ben Tate Round 8(#126): Josh Gordon Round 9(#131): Danny Woodhead Round 10(#158): D'Qwell Jackson Round 11(#163): Sean Lee Round 12(#190): Jared Allen Round 13(#195): Harrison Smith Round 14(#222): Vontaze Burfict Round 15(#227): Jarius Byrd Round 16(#254): Chandler Jones Round 17(#259): Alex Smith Round 18(#286): Zach Sudfeld Round 19(#291): Cleveland Browns DEF Round 20(#318): Knile Davis Round 21(#323): Greg Zuerlein Round 22(#350): Manti Te'O Round 23(#355): Ziggy Ansah Round 24(#382): Tyrann Mathieu
Yahoo Draft Grade: A+
Draft Analysis: Best Overall Pick--Drew Brees (Round 1 #3). Brees is the only real QB in the NFL capable of putting up 5,000+ yard and 40+ TD seasons consistently. Furthermore, he will now be reunited with HC Sean Payton and his arsenal of weapons led by Colston, Graham, Sproles, and Moore. When Ballers hesitated a bit at #2 I was nervous but he took Rodgers and I got my guy. On a week to week basis he is good for +5 alone when compared to the opposing QB in the weekly match-up.
Best Value Pick--Zach Sudfeld (Round 18 #286). Sudfeld has lit up Pats camp this summer. Nicknamed "Baby Gronk" at 6'-7" 260 Lbs he should be in for a featured role in the Pats 2-TE offense with the loss of Hernandez. Best case scenario is that Gronkowski is put on the PUP list missing the first 6 weeks of the season allowing Sudfeld to be the main TE. Worst case scenario is that he lines up in the Aaron Hernandez role in the Pats offense with Gronk in 2 TE formations. Either or as an 18th round pick its one hell of a value.
Potential Break-Out Player--Michael Floyd (Round 6 #94). Floyd was held back last year in his rookie season by Ken Whisenhunt and a horrible array of QB's led by Kevin Kolb/John Skelton/Ryan Lindley. Even so he put up good numbers down the stretch in 2012. This year he gets a HC who loves the vertical style of offense in Bruce Arians and a strong-armed veteran QB in Carson Palmer. With Larry Fitzgerald running underneath routes and drawing the coverage his way look for Michael Floyd to catch his fair share of home run passes. An 80 catch, 1,100 10 TD type season is not out of the question.
Could Surprise--Ben Tate (Round 7 #99). Arian Foster has been run into the ground by HC Gary Kubiak leading to multiple nagging injuries throughout his career and into this pre-season. This year Kubiak pledges to truly rotate his backs allowing Foster to hopefully be healthy down the stretch. The last time that happened Tate ran for 972 yards on 175 carries. If Foster goes down for whatever reason for a period of time Ben Tate becomes RB Gold. If Foster holds up Tate still will be used regularly in the name of 10-15 carries per game as well as garbage time if the Texans hold a large lead. I expect Tate to put together another season like he had in 2011 with the possibility of even breaking the 1,000 yard mark in his contract season.
Biggest Reach--Chandler Jones (Round 16 #254). D-lineman can be found on the waiver wire on a weekly basis and rarely do they contribute many points anyway. Jones needs to have 10+ sacks to make this pick worth it. Overall, not worth the selection in Round 16.
Boom or Bust Player--Josh Gordon (Round 8 #126). New OC Norv Turner loves big, physical, fast WR's and Gordon definitely fits the mold but he is under a 2 game suspension and still battles immaturity issues. Last year he put up 800 yards on 50 catches to go along with 5 TD's in his rookie season catching passes from a real raw rookie QB in Brandon Weeden. This year look for Weeden to come into his own and for Norv Turner to call Gordon's number often. The sky is the limit but the worst case scenario is that he is either suspended again or falls into the doghouse.
IDP Gold--Waiting on IDP's still didn't hurt my overall IDP roster. Acquiring stud, tackling machine LB's in Sean Lee and D'Qwell Jackson as late as they were picked was an absolute coup. Add to the mix Jared Allen, Harrison Smith, Vontaze Burfict and a trio of rookies in Manti Te'O, Ziggy Ansah(who many compare to JPP), and the Honey Badger-Tyrann Mathieu....and all of a sudden this IDP unit looks top notch. Word out of Cardinals camp is that Mathieu is a total stud. He has behaved admirably and looks in top form,always around the ball,as their starting FS as well as either KR or PR. As a 24th round pick the Honey Badger is an absolute steal.
Potential Problems--Hopefully the Cleveland Browns DEF led by new DC Ray Horton can get that unit to play aggressive and force turnovers. Bush and Sproles need to each catch 70+ passes and I must have one of either Michael Floyd, Josh Gordon, or Danny Woodhead have a breakout season. Greg the Leg needs to be more consistent and Sean Lee needs to play a full 16 game season.
FINAL DRAFT GRADE: A. I'm going to hold off on the A+ grade that Yahoo gave me but overall this team should be very, very high scoring on a weekly basis. My depth is solid and my potential players all have super high ceilings. Once again...America's Team puts his expert football knowledge to use and drafts a great group of players who will compete for the MHL title.
2012 MHL Draft Sunday August 26th---Drafting #2 overall for the 2nd Year in a Row!
Round 1(#2 Overall): Ray Rice Round 2(#31 Overall): Wes Welker Round 3(#34 Overall): Doug Martin Round 4(#63 Overall): Eric Decker Round 5(#66 Overall): Ben Roethlisberger Round 6(#95 Overall): Jason Witten Round 7(#98 Overall): David Wilson Round 8: Anquan Boldin Round 9: Joe Flacco Round 10: Jacob Tamme Round 11: Kendall Wright Round 12: Houston DEF Round 13: Sean Lee Round 14: D.J. Smith Round 15: Alfred Morris Round 16: T.J. Ward Round 17: Jerod Mayo Round 18: Evan Royster Round 19: Danny Amendola Round 20: Bernard Pollard Round 21: Ndamukong Suh Round 22: Garrett Hartley Round 23: Robert Quinn Round 24: Mike Goodson
DRAFT ANALYSIS: America's Team does it again with quite possibly his best draft ever! Rice and Martin form a dynamic duo of RB's who not only gain yardage but are very capable catching the ball out of the backfield for added points in a PPR league. Both are 3-down backs who will get the goal-line carries for their respective teams. Wes Welker is probably the 2nd best receiver in PPR behind only Calvin Johnson. Eric Decker has earned the trust of Peyton Manning after having worked with Manning since he signed with Denver. Look for Decker to put up 1,200 yards receiving, 100+ catches, and 10+ TD's. Big Ben is surrounded by weapons in Pittsburgh and although he isnt in the upper echelon of QB's, he is in that very next tier. Ben is a gamer and the offense should be wide-open with new OC Todd Haley calling the plays. Just think back to what Haley did with Kurt Warner in Arizona. Waiting in the wings is Joe Flacco who is primed to have a breakout season in a contract year when OC Cam Cameron is finally willing to open the playbook and go no-huddle in Baltimore. Flacco is going to have a career year. The big question mark is the health of TE Jason Witten although in Round 6 Witten was a steal. His injury is a spleen laceration not a ruptured spleen so hopefully adequate rest will get him back on the field soon. Witten has missed only one game in his 8-year career. Even if he misses a few games to start the season, he will be ready in no time as Tony Romo's security blanket. Jacob Tamme is a more than adequate insurance plan. Many publications have Tamme as the breakout TE of the 2012 season playing in Denver with Peyton Manning. David Wilson and Kendall Wright are a pair of very promising rookies who will see the field very often for the Giants and Titans. Anquan Boldin is a true professional who can be counted on for catches, YAC, and TD's. Danny Amendola is a PPR beast as Sam Bradford's main weapon. America's Team rolled the dice with a shaky RB situation in Washington by selecting both Evan Royster and Alfred Morris from Lucifer Shannahan's 4-man backfield. One of the four will have a 1,000 yard season....if its Royster or Morris--look out! The kicking game will be led by the Saints Garrett Hartley. Playing kicker for a team that is always in the red-zone and who plays many games indoors is a recipe for success. The Houston Defense led by Wade Phillips is probably the 2nd or 3rd best overall defense in the NFL. This year they get to feast on division mates the Colts, Jags, and Titans who all play young, inexperienced QB's. IDP is where America's Team gets a slight downgrade yet Sean Lee will soon be a Top-5 LB. From there things are a bit uncertain with a relative unknown in D.J. Smith who will take over for Desmond Bishop in Green Bay, an often dinged up Jerod Mayo in New England, T.J. Ward bouncing back from injury, and Robert Quinn playing on potential. Overall the 2012 America's Team roster, led by a very deep and productive offense, has the potential to be serious players in the MHL once again.
FINAL DRAFT GRADE: A-
Final 2011 roster
QB’s: Cam Newton, Tim Tebow, TJ Yates
RB’s; Adrian Peterson, Ray Rice, Kahlil Bell, Ricky Williams, Sammy Morris
WR’s: Vincent Jackson, Miles Austin, Laurent Robinson
TE: Rob Gronkowski
K: Dan Bailey
DEF: Chicago, New England
DL: Elvis Dumervil, Adrian Clayborn
LB’s: Derrick Johnson, Nick Barnett, Curtis Lofton, Colin McCarthy, Jason Worilds