Draft Defense Early&Often
Join Date: Oct 2004
10. CLEVELAND BROWNS
AHMAD BROOKS ILB | Virginia | Scouting Report
At first glance one might assume the Browns will be looking for offensive help early on, but upon closer examination that probably won't be the case. The team has some playmakers at wide receiver in Braylon Edwards, Antonio Bryant and Dennis Northcutt, plus they have Kellen Winslow II coming back from injury next season as well. At quarterback the team will likely want to give Charlie Frye a shot at the starting job, while Reuben Droughns has been very solid as their starting running back. Keep in mind that Romeo Crennel is a defensive coach and right now they just don't have the personnel to run his 3-4 scheme, which is where Brooks would come in. It isn't often you see a talent like Brooks come along and if not for an injury that kept him out of the first half of the season he probably would be mentioned as a possible Top 3-5 overall pick. With his blend of size and speed Brooks is a rare difference maker on defense and just to give you an idea of what a phenomenal athlete he is Al Groh actually had him returning kicks for the Cavs at 6-4 and 249 lbs. One of the keys to any good 3-4 defense is great linebackers and Brooks fits the mold perfectly. Whether it be on the inside or outside, this guy is an impact player.
11. OAKLAND RAIDERS
CHAD GREENWAY OLB | Iowa | Scouting Report
In the past two offseasons the Raiders have focused their attention in the draft and free agency on the defensive line and secondary, but the linebacking corps still needs quite a bit of work. Basically the Raiders have as little talent on the outside as anyone in the league so to be able to land a top talent like Greenway here would have to be considered a coup. Considered a potential Top 5-10 overall pick coming into the year, Greenway has had a nice season but it is obvious all the losses the Hawkeyes endured up front last year have affected him. His loss is the Raiders gain though as it allows them to get excellent value for the pick while addressing their most glaring need. If they opt to go in a different direction the line could still use some help as Warren Sapp and Ted Washington aren't getting any younger and their depth at end is shaky at best. The secondary also has some question marks and despite a lot of young talent they may want to bolster that unit as well. One thing is for sure, all of Oakland's resources this offseason should be devoted to the defensive side of the ball because even after adding the best receiver in the game and a top running back they still didn't have enough offense to overcome a defense that would seemingly give up 51 points for every 50 they scored.
12. ST. LOUIS RAMS
MARCEDES LEWIS TE | U.C.L.A. | Scouting Report
What was once the "Greatest Show on Turf" has slowed down a bit in recent years and with Mike Martz likely having coached his last game for them the team might be moving in a slightly different direction. No one can scoff at their offensive production, but one position they really haven't utilized throughout the years is the tight end, in large part because they haven't had a dynamic pass catcher there. Well that would all change with this pick because Lewis is like a wide receiver in a tight ends body with the size, speed and athleticism to stretch the field and open things up for others. The other positions they could consider are all on the other side of the ball, with defensive end and the secondary most likely. Leonard Little still has something left in the tank but Tony Hargrove hasn't performed up to the teams expectations and his defensive end spot could certainly be upgraded. In the secondary the team used a number of high picks on corners and safeties in last years draft with mixed results. They have a number of solid players in the deep patrol but lack a true impact player so if they had the opportunity to bring in a stud at either corner or safety it might be hard to pass up.
13. BUFFALO BILLS
HALOTI NGATA DT | Oregon | Scouting Report
Last offseason the Bills lost mammoth defensive tackle Pat Williams as a free agent and as it turns out they probably miss them even more than they thought they would. Sam Adams still has something left in the tank but he isn't getting any younger and guys like Tim Anderson and Justin Bannan just haven't gotten the job done. Enter Haloti Ngata, who at 6-5 and 338 lbs. has a freakish blend of size, speed, strength and athleticism. In fact, there is a chance he could be long gone by this point because based on upside and potential he would rate as one of the premier players in the entire draft should he come out early. Their other major weakness is on the offensive side of the ball at left tackle, where Mike Gandy leaves a lot to be desired as Jonas Jenning's replacement. If by some chance a top offensive tackle fell into their laps here that could be the direction they opt to go, but defensive tackle is every bit as big of a need and to land a supreme talent like Ngata this low could turn out to be a steal. Either way look for them to focus on bringing in a big nasty to upgrade the trenches very early on, but whether it is on the offensive or defensive side of the ball remains to be seen.
14. DETROIT LIONS
MATHIAS KIWANUKA DE | Boston College | Scouting Report
After using so many recent first round picks on the offense (Joey Harrington, Charles Rogers, Roy Williams, Kevin Jones, Mike Williams) it is high time the other side of the ball was shown some love. James Hall has emerged as a good young pass rusher at one defensive end spot but Cory Redding is more of a backup and can certainly be upgraded. The man they call "Kiwi" is an imposing physical presence with excellent athleticism who excels at terrorizing opposing quarterbacks. Adding a premier pass rusher like Kiwanuka could take the entire Lions defense to a new level and give them one of the best young units in the league. Offensive tackle could also be a consideration here if they want an upgrade from Kelly Butler on the right side. If they can somehow get a shot at a top quarterback like Leinart or Young they might have to jump at it since it's become painfully obvious that Joey Harrington is not going to get the job done and that Jeff Garcia has very little left in the tank. Based on their options at this point though Kiwanuka is the best fit in terms of both need and value so he is the choice, finally giving the defense a premium talent through the draft.
15. MINNESOTA VIKINGS
DEANGELO WILLIAMS RB | Memphis | Scouting Report
You can make the argument that no team has been more disappointing this season than the Minnesota Vikings, who had Super Bowl aspirations before falling victim to problems both on and off the field. It is easy to blame the teams drop-off in offensive production on the loss of Randy Moss and while that is a big part of it you'd be remiss not to note the lack of a running game as well. Basically the team doesn't have a runner who they can give the ball to 20-25 times a game and have carry the load. Michael Bennett will be a free agent who is not likely to return, Mewelde Moore is injury-prone and best suited for a 3rd down or situational role, Moe Williams is only a short yardage runner and the jury is still out on Ciatrick Fason. DeAngelo Williams doesn't get nearly the attention he deserves but he is going to be a great NFL running back and would be an excellent fit for the Vikings here. This choice will add balance to their offense, which in turn should open things up in a passing game that hasn't been nearly as potent as it should be considering the talent the team has at quarterback and wide receiver. Linebacker is also a concern, but adding a premier running back would be just what the doctor ordered to restore the luster to what was known as a one of the most dangerous offense in the league not long ago.
16. PHILADELPHIA EAGLES
SANTONIO HOLMES WR | Ohio St. | Scouting Report
At this point it appears safe to say that Terrell Owens will never play another game for the Eagles, in which case there is a major hole at wide receiver for a team that relies heavily on the passing game. Granted they did draft Reggie Brown at the top of round two a year ago and they do have an affinity for Greg Lewis, but they still need one more top talent at the position. Santonio Holmes isn't the type of physically impressive receiver prospect we have seen in recent years like Andre Johnson and Larry Fitzgerald, but he is a big play threat who also does the little things like block and run good patterns. One thing the team lost in Terrell Owens is a guy who had the ability to take it the distance on any play and Holmes can provide that for the Philly offense. In recent years the Eagles front office has done a great job of locking up their young players to long-term deals and using their draft choices to build depth at all positions so really this is a team without many glaring needs, but if you were going to pinpoint one receiver sticks out like a sore thumb and would be the logical direction they would go with this pick. Don't rule out the old "best player available" option either though because Philadelphia is one of the few teams who may be able to realistically go that route.
17. KANSAS CITY CHIEFS
RODRIQUE WRIGHT DT | Texas | Scouting Report
At long last the Chiefs finally decided to address their defense last offseason and while there were certainly improvements there is still work to be done, most notably up front. A big problem this season has been the defensive tackles inability to keep blockers off of linebackers Derrick Johnson and Kendrell Bell, which prohibits them from doing what they do best which is fly around and make plays. Early in his career Rodrique Wright looked like a future Top 5 overall pick, but since then his career has been marred by inconsistency and unmet expectations which is why he is still available this late in round one. Make no mistake about it though, Wright has the ability and upside to become a force at what the pros consider a premium position so at this point he is worth a roll of the dice. Kansas City might also be looking to add a premier wide receiver since Eddie Kennison is getting older and they haven't really had a true #1 for some time now. Overall though the defense is still what really needs to be addressed and they could realistically opt for a lineman, linebacker or defensive back without much second guessing from anyone. Last offseason was a big step in the right direction and one more effort like that could lead to the defense challenging their offensive counterparts for team superiority.
18. NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS
MICHAEL HUFF CB | Texas | Scouting Report
They say that all good things must come to an end and in the case of the New England Patriots age, injuries and free agency might finally be catching up to them and could spell doom for their dynasty. Without a doubt the biggest problem area for the Pats the past couple of years has been the secondary, where they just can't seem to stay healthy, and even though they have done an admirable job of patching holes the best they could an infusion of talent is needed. Michael Huff has been one of the most productive defensive backs in the college game the past few years and has experience at both cornerback and safety, with the physical tools to project to either position at the next level. Whether he would be replacing the disappointing Duane Starks or taking over for Rodney Harrison at safety this choice just makes a lot of sense and would help shore up what has been this teams one glaring weakness for two years now. It also wouldn't hurt to bring in some youngsters at linebacker, especially inside, or along the offensive line but overall this is a franchise that has done a pretty good job of building depth which has helped them become the dominant team they have been. Still, when all is said and done the secondary has to be their major point of emphasis next offseason and a guy like Huff would be a perfect fit.
19. DENVER BRONCOS (f/WAS)
CLAUDE WROTEN DT | L.S.U. | Scouting Report
It is important to give credit where it is due, and the Denver front office deserves some positive notice for the work they did along the defensive line last offseason. When the team brought in four castoffs from a disappointing Cleveland Browns line most assumed disaster was looming, but in fact they have gotten very favorable results from the group. With that said they are still shy on talent up front, most notably inside at tackle where beyond Gerard Warren they have little more than journeymen and average players. Wroten is a player who doesn't get a lot of attention but is quietly one of the better defensive prospects in this draft. Despite his lack of sheer physical tools Wroten is active and very disruptive which could lead to him going much higher than casual college football observers would expect. Adding a pass rush presence like Wroten at defensive tackle would be a tremendous move and give Denver a dimension they haven't had inside for a long time. Of course they could opt to go in alternate directions here but with the way the board is breaking down at this point the run on defensive tackles figures to start right around this general area so the time to grab one is now.
Last edited by Atlas; 11-21-2005 at 11:48 PM..