An NFL Draft Blog

An NFL Draft Blog
Formerly known as the player rater.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

New Orleans Saints- 2010 Draft Review

The Saints had a solid draft. I just loved the Jimmy Graham pick, for I thought he was extremely underrated (I forgot to make him an honorable mention in the Demaryius Thomas article), but even people who didn't think he was too underrated can't deny he was great value at pick 95. Al Woods was a bit of a reach at pick 123 (I didn't bother to scout him), because he has marginal numbers, but that was the only pick I had a major issue with. Overall, the Saints had a solid draft.

Patrick Robinson
Florida State
Robinson has excellent physical tools, but he is the kind of player that will just drive coaches insane. He provides outstanding athleticism and solid size at the corner position, but he makes so many on-field mistakes. He seems to commit countless penalties, and he is frequently way to aggressive and completely undisciplined in coverage. He simply tries so hard to make an incredible play that he will miss some of the easy plays. And it's got to drive his coaches up the wall. Robinson frequently seems to leave his man a little too early on play action passes and he gets called for a fair amount of pass interference penalties. Robinson needs to play a lot and he needs a lot of seasoning from coaches, but if he works hard on refining his discipline in coverage, he will be a great player for years to come.

Charles Brown
I always thought that Charles Brown was really overrated. Most people considered him a late-first to early second round prospect, but his athleticism is average, he lacks strength, and he just wasn't all too productive at USC. I never really understood the appeal, and I probably would have had made him an honorable mention in the Gerald McCoy article had he not fell this far. I should acknowledge that he was okay value at pick 64, and that's why I don't have any issues with this pick. In the minds of most people, Brown was one of the bigger steals of the draft and the Saints were lucky to find him this late. And I will concede, this was a solid pick. Brown is a very smart blocker with natural instincts. Solid value at pick at pick 64.

Jimmy Graham
I have seen probably a thousand college football games over the year (200 this year alone), and of all the tight ends I have ever seen, I think it would be fair to say only one tight end I have ever seen can probably match Graham physically (Greg Olsen), and one tight end can beat Graham physically (Vernon Davis). Davis might be the best athlete ever to put on a football uniform (253 pounds, 4.39 40 yard dash? You have got to be kidding me), but Graham is up there among the best athlete's in the game right now (6'6, 260, 4.53 40 yard dash is spectacular in it's own right). Former Miami power forward Jimmy Graham has blocked a lot of shots over the years, but he hasn't caught a lot of football's. Why? This was his first and only year of NCAA football, after playing basketball for years with Miami. At this point in his young career, Graham is the most raw prospect I have ever seen. Some scouts say Graham doesn't play with much intensity. I don't think that is a fair thing to say. Right now, Graham doesn't know how to play football. He hasn't been a great success in his one year at Miami, missing lots of blocks and dropping a fair amount of passes. I remember from the ACC tournament about 1 and a half years ago (I always liked to watch Jack McClinton) that Graham is one intense, tough, person, growing up on the streets, being abandoned by his mother and father numerous times, and getting adopted (hearing that story is how I remember him from two years ago). Graham seems like a different person on the football field; less intense and less tough. But from what I have seen, Graham just doesn't know how to play football, and he can't do anything on the football field with any confidence or swagger, because he comes across as really scared of making some mistake on the field. He really uses just awful technique when he is run blocking and he is a pretty at catching passes. If he can have some successful blocks, even if it's in a practice, after being coached up a little, I think he'll show lots of confidence and intensity on the field. Right now, it compares to a kid loving baseball but being scared of the ball. If he can get over it, he will be a great player. Graham is a natural athlete with great fluidity and solid strength. But he is a terrible route runner, he uses awful blocking technique, and he has poor hands. Excellent player and outstanding value at pick 95.

Matt Tennant
Boston College
Tennant fits the ideal mold of an overachiever on the offensive line in every way shape or form; he has no athleticism, so he plays center or some other interior line position, he lacks strength, but he is just he takes natural angles to opposing defenders, he makes brilliant blocking decisions, and he plays with high intensity. Because of the lack of a need of athleticism and strength at the center position, Tennant might be an average starter at the NFL level, but that's still a low ceiling for  the 3rd, maybe 4th, center drafted in any draft class. A solid player, and decent value at pick 158.

Sean Canfield
Oregon State
Canfield was solid value this late in the draft. Canfield has very little arm strength, size, and mobility, but he is a smart quarterback with solid accuracy that will bode well in the Saints offense. Canfield's accuracy and solid production was enough to get him drafted, but it probably isn't enough for him to do much in the NFL. Solid value at pick 239.

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