With two weeks until the draft, take nothing at face value

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The 2012 NFL draft begins two weeks from tonight.  And so now is as good a time as any to remind anyone and everyone that the stuff that trickles out regarding players a team may or may not be targeting could all be part of a deliberate effort to fool other teams.

Case in point:  The Rams hold the sixth overall pick in the first round.  They have a running back who, while closer to the end of his career than the beginning, still has tread on the tires.  And yet coach Jeff Fisher is creating the impression that the Rams may take Richardson with said sixth pick.

I think he’s a very, very talented player,” Fisher said. “He doesn’t have a lot of wear-and-tear because it’s been a one-year deal for him [as a feature back].  But he’s got great explosion and quickness in the hole and change of direction with the jump cut, and power, and ball security.”

But what about Jackson, a first-round pick in 2004?

“One could make the case that it may be one of those positions that you could consider passing up because of Steven’s presence on roster,” Fisher said.  “I don’t think we can pass on any position at that pick because of our need.”

(So . . . the Rams will be drafting quarterback Ryan Tannehill if he’s on the board?)

Look, the team’s far greater need is at receiver.  And everyone knows it.  And it’s far more likely that Fisher hopes the Browns take Richardson (and not Justin Blackmon) at No. 4 or the Buccaneers take Richardson (and not Justin Blackmon) at No. 5, so that the Rams can then take Blackmon at No. 6.

And if both guys are gone, then Fisher can take a guy like cornerback Morris Claiborne at No. 6, who could be paired with Cortland Finnegan as part of a secondary that will be better suited to deal with the new pass-crazy NFL.

Either way, the Rams have too many needs at too many other positions to devote the sixth overall pick to a tailback who may not be dramatically better than players who can be obtained later in the draft, perhaps with one of the Rams’ two second-round picks.

Indeed, if Fisher were dead set on taking Richardson, Fisher wouldn’t be openly singing his praises.

Unless, of course, Fisher has taken pre-draft subterfuge to the next level, pretending to like a guy in the hopes that other teams will think he actually doesn’t, when in fact he actually does.

My brain hurts after that one.

38 responses to “With two weeks until the draft, take nothing at face value

  1. I still don’t understand why they didn’t trade with the Browns, take Blackmon, take their picks and be happy.

    Instead, they put their future in the hands of a few teams ahead of them.

  2. Two weeks? There has been a year long conspiracy going on where GMs have been trying to convince one another that Andrew Luck will be anything better than Matt Ryan 2.0 in the NFL. And it’s worked.

  3. Tannehill is the big question mark now that Luck and RG3 are penciled in at #1 and #2. What are the Browns, Dolphins, and Chiefs saying about him? Whatever is said, it’s a lie.

  4. That’s why a mock draft is all but useless. NFL teams put up smoke screens and tell you one thing to throw off the other NFL teams. That’s why we wait on the draft.

  5. This is the best report I have ever read!

    Peyton Manning will not have any more injuries.

    The Tuna’s hair is natural.

    Us fan can lie too! 🙂

  6. phailing101 says:Apr 12, 2012 10:06 AM

    I still don’t understand why they didn’t trade with the Browns, take Blackmon, take their picks and be happy.

    Instead, they put their future in the hands of a few teams ahead of them.

    ————-

    According to Mike Holmgren, it’s because the Rams wanted to “screw” the Browns.

  7. I hate that the media thinks “smoke screens” are legit. You think that other teams are going to change their mind on who to draft because another teams coach thinks highly of him? Good joke.

  8. At this point in the pre-draft frenzy you have to relay on the old adage

    Ques “How can you tell if an NFL person is lying?” Answer “Are their lips moving?”

    I don’t believe anything any GM,Coach,Scout says at this point. They are all engaged in ‘draft maneuvering’. I don’t believe any ‘rumors’ that come out about a player at this point either because, more often than not, thay are not true and are simply a tool being used by an agent or team to either elevate a player that they hope a team higher than they are drafts, leaving the real target more likely to be available or an agent is trying to improve his clients draft prospects by lowering another players draft prospect.

  9. The Vikings signed Chester Taylor as a free agent in 2006 and he rushed for over 1,200 yards. They had no need for a running back, but they drafted Adrian Peterson in 2007 because he was too good to pass up. I think the Rams would seriously consider Richardson if he’s there. You take the best player available.

  10. Sheesh. It really doesn’t matter what Fisher hopes for. The Rams pick 6th and will choose among the players available to them. I mean seriously, Cleveland and Tampa Bay really don’t care who Fisher hopes to draft. They choose before the Rams.

  11. rpiotr01 says:
    Apr 12, 2012 10:09 AM
    Two weeks? There has been a year long conspiracy going on where GMs have been trying to convince one another that Andrew Luck will be anything better than Matt Ryan 2.0 in the NFL. And it’s worked.

    __
    Can I borrow your crystal ball, recent lottery winner? Oh wait, you haven’t won the lottery despite the fact that you can see into the future? STHU, idiot.

  12. I think all of this Tannehill buzz is overdone, like the Blaine Gabbert buzz last year. GMs are just trying to rope other GMs into taking a useless but intriguing player so that Fletcher Cox (or Michael Floyd, or Melvin Ingram, or whoever) will be on the board later.

    I wouldn’t be surprised if the Browns take him with their second first rounder.

  13. thankheavenfornumberseven says: Apr 12, 2012 10:51 AM

    they drafted Adrian Peterson in 2007 because he was too good to pass up. I think the Rams would seriously consider Richardson if he’s there. You take the best player available.

    Well Said Leave the depth Chart home

  14. You try to make the case that the Rams #1 need is for WR but then you suggest that after Blackmon is gone they will go with the defense instead. So their #1 need at WR is only for one player?? How about the fact that some consider Floyd higher then Blackmon.

    Wouldn’t the smart thing to suggest be that if Blackmon is taken that they just take Floyd instead?

  15. Weeden’s age is hurting him, but he beat the #1, #2, and #3 projected QB in the draft. As of right now, he is the only QB I feel who is ready to play.

    Tannehill is overblown and I think Griffin will be about as successful as Vick. Luck is for real, but we it will not been seen for a couple of years.

  16. .

    The only certainty of the draft is that the Patriots will trade one of their first round picks (27 or 31) to someone for their first rounder next year.

    .

  17. I totally disagree with this article. If Trent Richardson is at six and he is the sixth best player in the draft, then you take him at six. You don’t pass on him because you already have Steven Jackson. What 90% of arm chair quarterbacks fail to realize is the draft is about the future – not just the upcmoing season. Jackson isn’t going to play forever (and maybe not that much longer). The Rams took a lot of crap for taking Jackson when they still had Marshall Faulk, who went on to play two more years. Botom line, in the first round, you take the best player available, no matter the position.

  18. Fisher screwed the Rams by not taking the Browns offer! Cleveland holds the cards now, and the Rams won’t get Richardson, Kalil, and maybe not even Blackmon!

    I still don’t know why you’d deal with a team in the same conference, that you could “potentially” face in the playoffs! I don’t care who your buddies are!

  19. C’mon it’s obvious that the Rams want Blackmon and are talking up Richardson so the Browns don’t take Blackmon. Rams will get nervous and make a trade with the Browns in order to get Blackmon.

  20. As a diehard Bama fan, if our guys can’t go to the Steelers, I hope for them to go to other solid organizations and good-guy coaches. So neither the Browns nor Fisher would be my choice for Trent. But then I remember being thrilled when Mark Ingram was taken by Sean Payton and the Saints because he’d be in such “good hands.”

    Right. Never mind. Just let the chips fall where they may.

  21. Don’t worry, pft faithful, there will be plenty to talk about after the Vikings totally screw up the draft…

    Wait for it.

  22. sj39 says:Apr 12, 2012 10:06 AM

    Thank God you are here to help us understand all the nuances of the NFL. Without you we would be lost.

    ——-

    Is that some sort of backhanded slam against this website? IF you don’t Like the site, then dOn’t bother to give youR patronage to the sIte. I think this is an interesting clearinghOuse of Information and I’m eSpecially greatful to hAve the opportunity to have hearD the NFL—related opinions of the dedicated writers of this website. They Bring a fresh perspective to A sport that I spend a Great deal of time watching.

  23. ballboy48 says:
    Apr 12, 2012 12:19 PM
    Fisher screwed the Rams by not taking the Browns offer! Cleveland holds the cards now, and the Rams won’t get Richardson, Kalil, and maybe not even Blackmon!
    ————————-

    All I ever heard from Holmgren is that he made an offer every bit as good as the Redskins whatever that means. And, of course, when the Rams made the trade, the only thing they knew for sure is that one of Kalil, Blackmon, Richardson, or Claiborne would be available. Knowing that, they made the trade. It’s silly to say the Browns hold the card when the Rams gave them the cards to play.

  24. Why is it so hard to think Trent Richardson could be the pick here? He’s a better prospect at RB than Blackmon is at WR (Blackmon would not be the top WR in any of the last 3 drafts while TR would be the top RB), Steven Jackson is approaching 30 years old with no one else of value at that spot, and how often do you get a chance to draft a Trent Richardson? A RB of his caliber comes around once every 4 or 5 years. A Justin Blackmon is available every year.

  25. 6ball said:
    “The only certainty of the draft is that the Patriots will trade one of their first round picks to someone for their first rounder next year.”

    Bill Belichick is all about value and, in the past, that was probably true. However, with the new rookie cap, don’t be surprised if he makes both picks.

    Now if another team makes an offer he can’t resist, than he might be convinced to trade one of those picks – but the odds are not as great as they were in the past.

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