The 2009 NFL Draft is less than a day away and the excitement continues to build! Trade talks, different players' draft stocks continue to rise and fall, and war rooms across the NFL are buzzing with activity! I've decided to unveil a list of five players that I think will "bust" and not live up to their hype.
1. Matthew Stafford--QB--Georgia--Let me be the first to say that I like Matthew Stafford and I really liked his game coming out of high school. I kept waiting for him to live up to his lofty billing coming out of high school, in Dallas, Texas, but it never really happened. I hope he does well in the NFL, but my mind is saying since he's going to Detroit he has no chance of succeeding. Sure, $41 million in guaranteed money and being the top overall pick sounds great, but it also comes with great expectations and pressure.
Every year NFL scouts seem to fall in love with the tall, strong-armed quarterbacks and Matthew Stafford is this year's love affair. Every which direction you see nothing but praise for this rocket-armed gunslinger.
Stafford is a pretty solid quarterback, but there's no way I would pick him or Mark Sanchez in the first round. The Lions would be smarter to start building an offensive line in this draft, then take QB Colt McCoy out of Texas or QB Sam Bradford out of Oklahoma next year. The Lions simply have too many needs and drafting a QB when your offensive line gave up 52 sacks last year doesn't make alot of sense to me.
Stafford has an extremely strong arm, but he's never had the accuracy to match it. Ball placement is what the quarterback position is all about and Stafford simply has average ball placement on his throws.
He only completed over 60 percent of his passes during one of his three seasons at Georgia, and he also threw double-digit interceptions each of his three seasons, throwing 13 his freshman year, 10 his sophomore year, and 10 this past year.
To his credit, Stafford made several clutch plays for the Bulldogs over the years--none of them being bigger than the touchdown pass to Mikey Henderson to beat Alabama in overtime in 2007.
The Lions must draft offensive line and a solid supporting cast on the defensive side of the ball--time will tell if they can make me eat my words. For Stafford's sake--I hope they do.
Below are his highlights:
2. B.J. Raji--DT--Boston College--Listed at a behemoth, 6'2, 337 pounds, it's not surprising that big things will be expected from Raji on the next level, because he'll be drafted in the top 10. There are plenty of other nose tackles out there I think are better than Raji, including his teammate Ron Brace and Missouri DT Evander "Ziggy" Hood. There were rumors surrounding Raji about a failed marijuana test at the combine. I'm not sure if it was a team starting the rumor to see if his stock would drop and they could get him at a cheaper spot, but I don't like to hear that.
If anybody fails a marijuana test at the combine--then they must be certifiably insane. You know the test is coming months in advance, so if you can't stop smoking marijuana when there are millions of dollars at stake, what's to stop you from failing tests during the regular season. Doesn't make a lot of sense.
Marijuana rumors aside, Raji is a behemoth of a man and his size is coveted by many teams that want a "space-eater" to clog the lanes in the middle and take on two blockers at all times. Having a guy like Raji would help free up so many other players on a team's defense.
Raji is one of those guys I really can't tell you why I don't like him, but I just don't. Time will tell if the behemoth can control his weight problems and become a force on whatever NFL team he lands on.
3. Percy Harvin--WR--Florida-- The guy is an exceptional playmaker and will be a threat to take the rock to the house as soon as his hands get on the pigskin, but the more I watch Percy Harvin in interviews the less I like him. I think he'll be a locker room cancer and will be detrimental to his team.
Also, anybody who fails a marijuana test before the NFL combine must be an absolute idiot(please see above). I think there will be numerous off-the-field or locker room issues with Harvin.
One of the biggest issues with Harvin is also the fact that he never played an entire 12 game schedule in college football without being injured. What makes anybody believe that he will last 16 games in the National Football League? I have my doubts.
4. Darrius Heyward-Bey--WR--Maryland-- This guy has bust written all over him. His measurables are extremely attractive and he has excellent, vertical, straight ahead speed. I've followed his career pretty closely throughout his college career at Maryland and he disappeared in numerous games. His hands were questionable and apparently the Maryland coaches almost told him to go ahead and focus on track exclusively and to forget about football.
The guy is a solid football player, but there are plenty of receivers that you could choose ahead of him with better hands like Hakeem Nicks of North Carolina.
Scouts are in love with him because of his speed, but fast football players don't always make the best players.
Time will be the judge on Heyward-Bey.
5. Josh Freeman--QB--Kansas State--Freeman is pretty much a more athletic version of Matthew Stafford, tall and strong-armed. It's easy to see why scouts would fall in love with him because they constantly fall in love with tall and strong armed quarterbacks.
Freeman has accuracy issues and didn't do nearly enough at Kansas State to prove to me that he can be a top-notch quarterback in the NFL--let alone be worthy of a first-round draft pick.
He's a reach in the first round and I can't see him doing well in the NFL. Out of all these prospects, I might like Freeman the least. Him and Heyward-Bey battle out for that dubious distinction.
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