In Week 11, Rookie Value Clear
So after 11 weeks of fiddling, we at Redraft Headquarters believe we have the top of the first round about right based on actual performance on the field, not predraft hype. Lots of running backs and wide receivers up high. Three linebackers, although one got hurt. The player with the biggest gripe would be the Redskins' Chris Horton, who got jobbed out of millions of dollars because NFL personnel folks decided he was a seventh-round pick. The biggest busts are all on the defensive line, where enough money is being wasted to bail out a small nation.
The talent at running back was validated again by the Denver Broncos last week. Not only did the third-best Arkansas running back in the draft, fullback Peyton Hillis (seventh round, 227th overall), score two touchdowns for the Broncos, but another Denver rookie fullback, Spencer Larsen (sixth round, 183rd), became the first player in franchise history to start on offense and defense (middle linebacker).
As always, your Redrafts are welcome in the comments below.
Redraft: QB Matt Ryan. If Roddy White catches that pass on third down, the Falcons beat the Broncos last Sunday and Matt Ryan is hosting "Saturday Night Live."
2008 Pick: OT Jake Long. Dolphins are still going to need to draft a quarterback next spring.
2. St. Louis
Redraft: OT Jake Long. Would have been a great No. 2 pick.
2008 Pick: DT Chris Long. Rams were down 40-0 at the half against the Jets two weeks ago. They were down 35-3 at the half against the Niners on Sunday. Long's stats from Sunday: no solo tackles and one assist. Again, he was playing the Niners.
Redraft: WR DeSean Jackson. Let's all pretend that god-awful 13-13 tie with the Bengals never happened, shall we?
2008 Pick: QB Matt Ryan. Taken by Dolphins in Redraft at No. 1.
Redraft: RB Matt Forte. Even in a 37-3 shellacking by the Packers on Sunday, Forte (Chicago, second round, 44th) had 64 yards rushing and 40 yards receiving.
2008 Pick: RB Darren McFadden. He played for the first time in four games (turf toe) but had just 13 yards on three carries.
5. Kansas City
Redraft: WR Eddie Royal. The former Hokie (Denver, second round, 42nd) is up to 56 catches.
2008 Pick: DE Glenn Dorsey. After Kansas City lost 18th of last 19 games, Dorsey opined: "It always comes down to a couple of plays that we should have made that end up determining the outcome of the game." Actually, it always comes down to Dorsey not playing well enough to deserve all that money he's getting.
6. New York Jets
Redraft: LB Jerod Mayo. The 10th overall pick (New England) was credited with 20 tackles last week against Jets. It's a good thing Redraft Headquarters has the NFL Network in the employee lounge.
2008 Pick: DE Vernon Gholston. In same game, Gholston had zero solo tackles. He has only four all season.
7. New Orleans
Redraft: LB Curtis Lofton. The Oklahoma product (Atlanta, second round, 37th) was only so-so against Denver, but the Falcons were close enough to win.
2008 Pick: DT Sedrick Ellis. Still not himself after knee injury.
Redraft: RB Chris Johnson. Two poor statistical games in a row for Johnson (Tennessee, first round, 24th), who was held to 64 yards in victory over Jaguars. Defenses are making Kerry Collins beat them. And he's doing it.
2008 Pick: DE Derrick Harvey. Speaking of Collins, Harvey somehow managed to go sackless again, even with the immobile quarterback whipping the ball all over the place.
Redraft: LB Keith Rivers. Out for the season because of a broken jaw but played well enough for a horrible Bengals team to keep spot.
2008 Pick: Rivers.
10. New England
Redraft: RB Steve Slaton. The Mountaineer (Houston, third round, 89th) might only be the third- or fourth-best running back in this draft, and on Sunday he had 156 yards rushing against the Colts.
2008 Pick: LB Jerod Mayo. Taken by Jets in Redraft at No. 6.
Redraft: T Ryan Clady. Boise State beast (Denver, 12th overall) is 10 for 10 in starting games for the Broncos.
2008 Pick: CB Leodis McKelvin. A huge night returning kicks with 98-yard fourth-quarter touchdown in loss to Browns on Monday. But you don't spend the No. 11 pick on a kick returner. He has to learn how to cover.
Redraft: RB Jonathan Stewart. The Panther (No. 13 overall) had a career-high 130 yards and a touchdown Sunday against the Lions. And Broncos do need a running back.
2008 Pick: T Ryan Clady. Taken by Bills in Redraft at No. 11.
Redraft: S Chris Horton. The draft's biggest bargain (Redskins, seventh round, 249th) was beaten by another rookie on game-winning touchdown pass Sunday. John Madden still has a man crush on him, though.
2008 pick: RB Jonathan Stewart. Taken by Broncos in Redraft at No. 12.
Redraft: OT Jeff Otah. Appears to be back in top form for Carolina (19th overall), having started twice in a row after ankle injury.
2008 Pick: OT Chris Williams. Slowly rounding into shape after back surgery.
15. Kansas City
Redraft: OT Sam Baker. Played very well for Falcons (21st overall) until back injury.
2008 Pick: OG Branden Albert. Showing some signs of life after slow start.
Redraft: McFadden. Drops here from No. 4.
2008 Pick: CB Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie. Hey, hey, hey!! Two picks against Seattle on Sunday.
Redraft: Ellis. He drops here from No. 7.
2008 Pick: OT Gosder Cherilus. The beat goes on: Julius Peppers whips him Sunday for a hit that caused a Daunte Culpepper fumble. This for almost $9 million in guaranteed money.
Redraft: QB Joe Flacco. We told you we were worried about Flacco facing the Giants. Yes, we'll leave him right here.
2008 Pick: Flacco.
Redraft: CB Brandon Flowers. The Hokie (Kansas City, second round, 35th) has been one of the few bright spots in Kansas City.
2008 Pick: OT Jeff Otah. Taken by Bears in Redraft at No. 14.
20. Tampa Bay
Redraft: CB Aqib Talib. Up and down corner told the St. Petersburg Times that his most-visited Web sites are MySpace and NFL.com. Could have moved up to 16 or 17 by saying washingtonpost.com, Aqib ...
2008 Pick: Talib.
Redraft: WR Donnie Avery. The Houston product (St. Louis, second round, 33rd) had nine catches in blowout loss to Niners and is up to 34 receptions.
2008 Pick: Traded pick to Atlanta, which took OT Sam Baker.
Redraft: RB Felix Jones. Hamstring issues kept him out again.
2008 pick: Jones. Tick, tick, tick.
Redraft: Chris Long. Drops here from No. 2.
2008 Pick: RB Rashard Mendenhall. Out for season because of fractured shoulder.
Redraft: RB Kevin Smith. Central Florida standout (Detroit, third round, 64th) is the fourth-leading rusher among rookies. Plus, we feel sorry for him for being on the Lions.
2008 Pick: RB Chris Johnson. Taken by Jaguars in Redraft at No. 8.
Redraft: CB Leodis McKelvin. Drops here from No. 11 because the Cowboys need a kick returner with Felix Jones out.
2008 Pick: CB Mike Jenkins. Al Michaels summed it up Sunday night by saying he has had "an erratic rookie season to say the least."
Redraft: OT Duane Brown. There was nothing wrong with the Texans' offense in 33-27 loss to Colts on Sunday.
2008 Pick: Brown.
27. San Diego
Redraft: S Charles Godfrey. The Panthers' starting free safety (third round, 67th) had his first career interception Sunday.
2008 Pick: CB Antoine Cason. Chargers pass defense has collapsed. They are last in the league and Cason just isn't doing enough to help.
Redraft: G Jamey Richard. The Colts' seventh-round pick (226th overall) is a reliable role player.
2008 Pick: DE Lawrence Jackson. Clinton Portis is going to leave track marks on his chest Sunday.
29. San Francisco
Redraft: DE Phillip Merling. The former Clemson star (Miami, second round, 32nd) remains solid for Dolphins.
2008 Pick: DT Kentwan Balmer. A nonfactor on a terrible team.
30. New York Jets
Redraft: TE Dustin Keller. We've been killing the Jets for taking Keller here at Redraft Headquarters, but eight catches against Bill Belichick beats a full house and a straight.
2008 Pick: Keller.
31. New York Giants
Redraft: CB Dwight Lowery. The Jets' fourth-round pick (112th) is starting for one of the league's biggest surprises.
2008 Pick: S Kenny Phillips. A quiet day against the Ravens.
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