View Full Version : Why Bill Williamson is a Terrible Football Writer

06-12-2009, 11:11 AM
Ultimate Building Blocks: AFC West

June 12, 2009 12:05 PM

Posted by ESPN.com's Bill Williamson

As part of our Ultimate Building Block feature this week, below is a look at the 10 AFC West players I would draft if I were building a team to try to win the Super Bowl after the 2010, 2011 and 2012 seasons. The reasoning is based mostly on age and production.

There is some good, young talent in this division. The top five may be as good as any in the NFL. I originally had a list of about 40 players I had to whittle down from.

I have multiple players from the same position, in some cases, because this is a wish list. It's my draft big board. If I wasn't able to draft Philip Rivers, then Matt Cassel was my next quarterback on the list.

G. Newman Lowrance/Getty Images
Nnamdi Asomugha is the highest-paid CB in the league.

You may notice that there are only two defensive players on this list. That's a not a surprise, to me at least, since offense is the strength of the division heading into the 2009 season. Offense dominates this division and it dominates this list.

1 . Philip Rivers, quarterback, San Diego: Quarterbacks are the glue to the team, and Rivers has a chance to be one of the league's best for the next decade.

2. Nnamdi Asomugha, cornerback, Oakland: Shutdown cornerbacks are franchise-type players. Asomugha is an elite cornerback and a special talent.

3. Ryan Clady, offensive tackle, Denver: If Clady were available in the 2009 draft, he may have been the top pick. He was brilliant as a rookie last season and has the makings of being one of the game's best left tackles for the next 12 years.

4. Shawne Merriman, linebacker, San Diego: Merriman could be listed higher next year if he bounces back from a knee injury. He is a premier pass-rusher.

5. Brandon Marshall, wide receiver, Denver: I'm not thrilled with Marshall's injury and off-field history, but he is a dominant receiver. He is already a consistent 100-catch talent.

6. Vincent Jackson, wide receiver, San Diego: Jackson is not quite at Marshall's level, but he's becoming a fine No. 1 receiver. He and Rivers have a special connection.

7. Matt Cassel, quarterback, Kansas City: Cassel likely will not be at this spot next year. The Chiefs quarterback will likely either shoot up the board or fall off it. We're going to see what he can do without the New England system and supporting cast.

8. Antonio Gates, tight end, San Diego: Gates has been dealing with injuries, but he is still a productive player and is a huge weapon for San Diego.

9. Dwayne Bowe, wide receiver, Kansas City: For all of the problems in the AFC West, it does boast some nice receivers and Bowe is one of them.

10. Knowshon Moreno, running back, Denver: I took the rookie over LaDainian Tomlinson and Larry Johnson strictly based on age. Banking on 30-plus running backs (both Tomlinson and Johnson turn 30 this year) is not a prudent way of building a team. I took Moreno over fellow youngster Darren McFadden because McFadden is not considered a three-down back.

The Premise of this ESPN Piece is to take 10 players from the AFC west and make a team out of it. This is the best Team He could make? Monkeys could do better with 10 darts.

06-12-2009, 11:17 AM
he left off champ...

but he made up for it by making Moreno the top back...:thumbs: ...

06-12-2009, 12:12 PM
I think that's an excellent list, I find very little fault with it, 1-5 anyway ???

If there is a fault, it's forcing Moreno onto the list, and assuming Cassel will have similar stats in KC.

Tombstone RJ
06-12-2009, 12:27 PM
I think the list is ok, it's an opinion piece so you can find fault with it. But overall, nothing much to complain about here...

06-12-2009, 12:28 PM
Aren't there at least 11 peple on most teams?

I think I'm confused by the assignment.

06-12-2009, 12:30 PM
I don't have a problem with that list except for #7 and #9.

06-12-2009, 12:31 PM
Aren't there at least 11 peple on most teams?

I think I'm confused by the assignment.

He said it's like a draft board but with only ten players from the AFC West.

Taco John
06-12-2009, 12:38 PM
I think people around here give Bill too hard a time. I think he's actually pretty decent. He might not be Adam Schefter, but who is... Adam Schefter is the Michael Jordan of NFL journalism as far as I'm concerned, and he caught hell here (though much of it was deserved - that food bit was kind of dorky). Bill had some big shoes to fill.

06-12-2009, 12:50 PM
are we really appointing Vincent Jackson the 2nd best WR in the AFC West?

Did I miss something last year? I know he came on a bit the second half of the year but wtf?? Where is all this praise comign from?

Gimme Bowe in a second over Jackson

06-12-2009, 01:09 PM
I think it's a good idea for discussion. I don't know why he didn't just do a position-by-position list.

Here'd be mine based on young age (<=29 yrs old) and injury history:

QB: Rivers...drop off after him is pretty steep, but I guess Orton has the most proven success (esp. considering anemic Chi offensive talent)

RB: Bush, Hillis, Sproles (can't put rookies here IMO)

WR: Marshall, Jackson, Royal, Bowe, Higgins(?)

TE: Miller, Scheffler, Gates (injury history)

OT: Clady, Harris, Albert, McNeil

OG: Gallery, Kuper, Dielman

C: Hardwick...steep drop after him


DE: Castillo, Dumervil, Hali(?)...not much talent in the division

DT: Thomas, Kelly

LB: Morrison, DJ Williams, D.Johnson, Howard, Merriman (injury hist)

DB: Asomugha, Cromartie, Cason, Carr/Flowers

S: No really good young safeties...Page, Barrett/Pollard

06-12-2009, 01:16 PM
Adam Schefter is the Michael Jordan of NFL journalism as far as I'm concerned.

Adam is Kobe ... Mayock is Jordan.

06-12-2009, 01:47 PM
I think people around here give Bill too hard a time. I think he's actually pretty decent.
I agree with this. Bill Williamson really upped his game since going to ESPN and most of what he's put out since then is pretty good. I think he carries a stigma from his time with the Post when he would put out articles about how Champ "is trying to be a great corner" or other such deep reading material.

As for this list I have a problem with Moreno being in a top twenty, let alone a top ten. Any rookie should not be on this list at all. Clady should be number two. He's younger and plays a more important position that impacts the game every down. Dwayne Bowe wouldn't crack my top ten because I need one more year out of him, but Sproles would on account of game changing ability and his special teams threat. I'd put Jackson in Bowe's spot. Cassell is in the same boat as Bowe for me. Merriman I suppose "should" be there but you have to wonder what his knee will look like. Other than that, it's not bad. It's a draft so younger players would be of higher value. That's why guys like Champ and Chambers wouldn't make the top ten.

06-12-2009, 02:04 PM
So as a New GM starting a Team. You would Pick 3 WR, A TE, A QB and RB? Man your going to get killed. The goal was, start a team with only players from you Division. You get 10 players and the rest is street FA.

Bronco Rob
06-12-2009, 02:39 PM
Matt Cassel = Steve Bono/Elvis Grbac Lite.....

Cassel won 11 games with a team that went 17-0 the season before.

At least Bono & Grbac won 13 games with KC........


Tombstone RJ
06-12-2009, 02:40 PM
The concept behind what Williamson is trying to do with this article is a bit confusing. He's saying "these are the guys I'd draft for the 2010-12 seasons, if I was building a team." He then takes certain players out of the equation based on age, and inserts a unknown like Moreno.

The whole premis is a bit silly.

He should say that if he was drafting for the future (2010-12) these are the young players he'd take based on their age and potential upside and then generate a list with players all under the age of like 25-26.