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Mocking the real world

Posted by hobsonschoice1 on April 11, 2011 – 7:01 pm

Paul Perillo must have been hit in the head by one of the many line drives surrendered by the Red Sox starters this season.

(With the Patriots Day game a week from Monday morning, the cry now is “One if by Lester, Two if  by Beckett and lights out if anybody else.”)

Perillo is one of the stalwarts of Patriots.com who asked me to participate in the Web site’s 2011 Writers Mock Draft. I’d rather write a mock draft than be in one. In fact, I’d rather get my teeth cleaned, or get a flat tire, or take a drop out of the water at the 14th at Lindale.

You can’t win in a mock draft because it’s all guesswork, but Perillo was nice enough to invite me in and, let’s face it, I’m going to need him in the next week or so when the Bengals.com Mock Media Draft tries to get to the 35th pick in what will no doubt be a festival of phone tag and e-mail angst.

Go to Patriots.com and the first three picks are familiar ones here because they’re the same ones I got last week from Darin Gantt of The Rock Hill Herald and Mike Klis of The Denver Post with Cam Newton and Von Miller, respectively for the Panthers and Broncos. Mark Gaughan of The Buffalo News gave me Alabama defensive tackle Marcell Dareus at No. 3 for the Bills, just like Chris Brown of Buffalobills.com gave Perillo.

OK, so I may be throwing darts here but the Bengals need a QB badly just to line up and who says there is going to be one left at No. 35 that can take an Opening Day snap? Of course, none of them are a very good Opening Day answer, but it is what it is. Like I told Perillo, I’ll take Missouri quarterback Blaine Gabbert but that doesn’t mean Carson Palmer is getting traded.

But maybe someone will be there at No. 35 if the Bengals go elsewhere at No. 4.

According to the Pats’ Mock, only three quarterbacks will be gone in the 32 picks of the first round in Newton, Gabbert and Jake Locker to Seattle, taken No. 25 by ESPN draft analyst Todd McShay. That would leave folks like Arkansas’ Ryan Mallett (too flighty?), TCU’s Andy Dalton (not enough arm strength?), Florida State’s Christian Ponder (too brittle?) and Nevada’s Colin Kaepernick (too raw?).

But however many quarterbacks go in the first round, add one because no doubt Perillo’s man Bill Belichick is waving that 33rd pick around like a coupon book. Figure that pick gets traded to a team that missed a QB in the first round. Like Arizona, Minnesota, Tennessee, Washington just to name a few. Or what if Buffalo, picking behind the Bengals in the second, wants to move up?

So that’s four QBs by No. 34.

And before that, what if somebody reaches in the mid to late first like Miami (No. 15), or San Francisco (No. 20), or somebody like the Cards or Redskins trades down into the first?

It could get thin in a hurry at QB.

There is one school of thought that says there are so many questions about the quarterbacks that teams aren’t going to move up to get one. That they’ll just sit there and take what comes because they don’t want to give up a second-rounder or third-rounder for a gamble pick. One working stat is that 55 percent of the NFL’s starters are taken in the top three rounds.

This is where not having free agency and a lockout before the draft fouls you up. You’d have a pretty good grip on what teams are going to do at quarterback because they already would have signed the veterans so they could get in and learn the playbook as soon as possible.

Finally.

The real world is as daffy as a sportswriters Mock.


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