Bill Polian sees Shane Ray as the next Robert Mathis

AP

The man who drafted six-time Pro Bowl pass rusher Robert Mathis says there’s a player in this year’s draft who will be the same kind of player: Shane Ray.

Ray, the Missouri pass rusher who’s widely viewed as a Top 10 talent, reminds former Colts General Manager Bill Polian of Mathis more than any other player.

“When I see him I see Robert Mathis,” Polian said of Ray on ESPN. “Near a Hall of Fame player. People who don’t like him are going to say he’s narrow of build and therefore can’t stand on the line of scrimmage, and that’s fine. I don’t want him to stand on the line of scrimmage, I want him to go chase the quarterback, and he’s about the best in this draft at doing that.”

There have been conflicting reports this week about the foot injury Ray suffered in Missouri’s bowl game and whether Ray will need surgery. Polian said Ray’s injury is similar to turf toe, and that when Polian was running draft boards, he didn’t move players down for turf toe injuries.

“There is no long-term lingering issue with turf toe, not like a knee injury. You recover from it, you’re back, and you’re ready to go. I would not move him. I’d be praying that he’d come to me,” Polian said.

There are obvious differences between Ray and Mathis, namely that Mathis was a little-known player out of Alabama A&M whom Polian stole with a fifth-round pick. But Polian said Ray and Mathis are similar as athletes. If they’re similar as NFL players, Ray surely belongs near the top of the first round.

40 responses to “Bill Polian sees Shane Ray as the next Robert Mathis

  1. Shane Ray is a flat out stud with a mean/nasty streak. He grew up in KC and made us Mizzou fans proud. We are rooting for u Shane.

  2. “There is no long-term lingering issue with turf toe, not like a knee injury.”

    Ask Deion about turf toe. Or Jon Ogden. Or Jack Lambert. Or Jack Hamm. Or Orlando Pace. Or Walter Jones.

    Then ask Dr. Bill how many times he had to recover from a serious injury.

  3. nobody cares about what Bill Polian thinks. He’s a dinosaur who hasn’t done anything good since he was giftwrapped Peyton Manning, if he had any eye for talent he would not be unemployed

  4. 1/3/2012-
    Since 1998, the year Peyton Manning was drafted, the Indianapolis Colts have had 109 draft selections—enough selections to fill two NFL rosters.

    Instead of building a good team, or at the very least building a good team around Peyton Manning, the Colts have squandered their selections—and there’s no more telling statistic of this than the fact that the average lifespan of an Indianapolis draft pick with the team is 2.8 years.

  5. What’s sad about the Colts is that the current GM is doing to Luck’s career what Polian did to Manning’s career. They both lucked (tanked?) into having the #1 overall pick in a year when there was a generational QB prospect. And like Polian, I think Grigson will ride Luck’s coat tails to a long career. Polian was a better GM, but not a great GM. At least he did find Mathis, Freeney, Wayne, etc. Grigson traded 1 1rd rounder to Trent Richardson. That alone should get you fired.

  6. Bill Polian could not build a talented enough, good enough team around the greatest quarterback in the history of the NFL to win more than one Super Bowl. I mean geez … a ham and egger like Big Ben has won two.

  7. Polian was an excellent GM. Much much better than grigson. Yes he whined about the Pats all the time…but can you blame him?? If manning had played even 50% as well in the postseason as he did in the regular season we would be polishing multiple Lombardis in Indy right now…

  8. Dammit Bill, I don’t want his stock going up.. I’m still holding out hope that the Redskins will take a good look at him. We could potentially move down a few spots and get another pick and Ray. Assuming the toe injury isn’t a recurring one, I think he’s going to be the real deal.

  9. If manning had played even 50% as well in the postseason as he did in the regular season we would be polishing multiple Lombardis in Indy right now…
    _______________________

    Manning’s career playoff QB rating is 88.5, which is about the same as Brady’s. Those Colts teams didn’t win more champships because of their defenses. Ironically, Manning’s worst playoff year, statistically, was probably the year they won the Super Bowl.

  10. Even as a player…you have to get lucky with what organization drafts you!

    Anyone can fail if you have wrong leadership, wrong coach, wrong culture, wrong scheme for you, etc.

    I feel for any kid drafted to the Browns in this era.

  11. Does he mean the Mathis without “fertility drugs” in his system? Because if that’s the case, then he’s just going to be a marginal player.

  12. Polian is way better than Grigson and I don’t think much of Polian

    a first for trent richardson?

    I suspect when Luck goes to the HOF we’ll all be talking about how many championships he could have won if the Colts hadn’t been such an incompetent organization.

  13. Polian was pretty awful for the most part with the Colts, but it’s a little much to say he’s been a terrible football mind. Let’s not forget he was the architect of those early 90s Bills teams that went to 4 straight Super Bowls. He lost it with the Colts, but for awhile he was brilliant.

  14. My favorite thing bill ever did was trade away Faulk! Then to top it off my stupidly run by ditka saints offered him their whole draft and the next seasons first so they could pick Rickey Williams. So what does that genius do turn down the crazy picks and selects James.

    James was a nice player but not worth 9 picks and 2 in round one!

  15. What are you talking about Bill? Don’t you know that Robert Mathis is too small to play in the NFL.

  16. “My favorite thing bill ever did was trade away Faulk! Then to top it off my stupidly run by ditka saints offered him their whole draft and the next seasons first so they could pick Rickey Williams. So what does that genius do turn down the crazy picks and selects James.

    James was a nice player but not worth 9 picks and 2 in round one!”

    All that, AND an additional 3rd rounder in 2000. God, Ditka was such a joke. That’s easily the worst trade in the history of professional drafts, and there are some bad ones.

  17. I think Ray’s insincts, his explosiveness, and his balance remind me of Mathis. The problem is, his arm length reminds me more of Brandon Graham, where he is going to struggle to disengage or to keep OL out of his body.

    I think he should go in the first round, and I would rather take a chance on teaching him to better use his hands before I would take a chance on Randy Gregory, who not only is a pothead, but keeps dropping weight and has been showing up to workouts in the 225 range. You give Shane Ray the height and length of Gregory, and he is a Hall-of-Famer. Right now, he is the 4th pass rusher on my list, after Fowler, Beasley, and Dupree. Somewhere in the 14-22 range sounds about right.

  18. Why do people get upset when Mathis is associated with PEDs? That exactly he was suspended for after having far and away his best year of his career.

    Don’t buy the story either, Clomid is well known post cycle therapy for a steroid cycle for a long time.

  19. As a Pats fan, Polian drives me nuts. Whiner, complainer, let’s change the rules, it’s all about me, I hate the Pats, etc. That being said, he built teams that went to 5 SBowls. Yes, he only won one, but he ran into some great teams. He’s in the HOF and deserves it. Enough with the revisionist history because he’s a blowhard.

    As far as Mathis goes, he was the size of a small LB. Good pass rusher that could be taken out of the game. The Pats used to run right at him. No thanks in the 1rst rnd. If you get lucky on a 6th rnd flyer, like the Colts did with Mathis, that’s different.

  20. buds4grant says:
    Apr 24, 2015 12:56 PM
    1/3/2012-
    Since 1998, the year Peyton Manning was drafted, the Indianapolis Colts have had 109 draft selections—enough selections to fill two NFL rosters.

    Instead of building a good team, or at the very least building a good team around Peyton Manning, the Colts have squandered their selections—and there’s no more telling statistic of this than the fact that the average lifespan of an Indianapolis draft pick with the team is 2.8 years.

    Right, but they also were in the top 5 of games won during Mannings time.. so there is that… Not to mention the myriad of talent they put around Manning…. Harrison, Wayne, Garcon, James, i mean the list goes on and on … and on Defense they had 2 premier pass rushers, Brackett, Bob Sanders, and always had a better than average secondary. So you can say Polian might not be the best drafter but it looks to me that he wasn’t that bad either… A lot fo his better player came from the later rounds… I don’t think you can blame polian for not winning. I think Manning is a choker. Also considering the average length of a football career is only 3.5 years, your number gets stupid, also adding in 4-7 round picks who half the time don’t make the team the first year…. Try again … Class dismissed

  21. If Giants ran a 3-4, I’d want Ray. He still has a lot to prove. If you read or watched the story on him he is a kid on a mission.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.