Just a quick piece of advice to kick off draft week here at Stripe Hype: lock down your boards. Now.
We have officially passed the point of analysis paralysis regarding the 2009 draft. As I wrote a few days ago, the crazy money that this year’s top picks are going to get has hopelessly skewed all their breakdowns.
Like Matt McGuire said, from now on, no player is good enough. If Jesus Christ descended from heaven and declared himself eligible for the draft, scouts would complain about his lack of ideal height and how that time he turned water into wine, it was only average-quality vino and teams should expect better miracles from the Messiah.
The reality is that the ’09 draft is about par for the course. Every year, you read stories about how there are only a handful of true top-tier prospects; that there are fewer first-round talents than first round picks; and that from late in the first to early in the third is the ideal place to be. This year’s no different.
What is different this year is that, for once, the draft’s strengths align well with the Bengals’ needs. This is a welcome coincidence, since it’s all too often been the case that the draft is weakest where Cincinnati is hungriest for help. That’s how the team ended up with guys like Peter Warrick and Justin Smith, because they reached for the (alleged) best of a weak draft class in order to fill a need.
But the 2009 draft is deep at positions like offensive tackle, center, running back and wide receiver. The Bengals should have no trouble finding starters and solid contributors through the end of the third round. Throw in a fullback from a solid FB class at some point on day two, and all signs point to a team that’s poised to come out of next weekend significantly better than it went in.
So lock ‘em down, stick ‘em in a drawer until Friday, and just sit back and enjoy the frenzy.