Ott’s 2012 draft winners

By on April 30, 2012

Well the 2012 NFL draft is over, the majority of the undrafted free agents have been acquired and it’s time to reflect on what turned out to be a very eventful couple of days. To say one team did better than any other is hard to do but there are a few that stand out to me. In no particular order these are the teams that I feel had the best draft weekend.

Detroit Lions

The Lions addressed a ton of concerns this year and set themselves up to compete for a Super Bowl run. Riley Rieff will start right away and help protect Mathew Stafford from getting beat into the ground. Ryan Broyles is PERFECT complement to Megatron. After that is was all defense to combat the pass, with teams like Chicago and Green Bay you need as much depth at DB as possible and the Lions did just that.

Houston Texans

I’ve always said Wade Phillips is a Defensive genius, but a horrible head coach. Houston needs to do whatever it takes to keep him there, and drafting guys with tons of upside and fit the Wade mode will be a good start. Whitney Mercilus in the 1st and a steal in the 4th with Jared Crick make an already scary defense even more imposing. Andre Johnson has great help at Wide Receiver with the addition of DeVier Posey and Keshawn Martin. Matt Schaub gets more protection with Brandon Brooks and Ben Jones. With the Colts and the Jags not standing a chance it looks like a pretty easy path to the Division title.

New England Patriots

Chandler Jones, Dont’a Hightower and Tavon Wilson can all play multiple positions, and that’s the Patriot Way. All 3 will make an impact, they may not start right away but by seasons end they will and they will help push the Patriots DEEEEEP into the playoffs. Alfonzo Dennard better grow up fast, he has a great chance to contribute to a great team. Many people had him in the 3rd to 4th round and because of his off the field issues he dropped to the 7th round. Bill must really like what he sees on the field and thinks he can be molded into a starter. You can’t doubt the Pats, as much as you want to, you can’t.

Pittsburgh Steelers

I really hate to write this, it’s a double edged sword here.. 1st off I am a Browns fan and giving this team any credit goes against every moral fiber of being a Browns fan and knowing that not one Steeler fan can read makes this almost not worth writing,  but I must give credit where credit is due. The Steelers did a ton to improve an aging team that seems to be trying to find its personality again. Ben Roethlisberger has more protection than a germaphobe on a date with a hooker. David DeCastro is an absolute monster at Guard and Mike Adams at tackle will keep defenses from pouncing on Ben like they have done for the past 2 seasons. Sean Spence is disruptive and athletic; Aladeda Ta’amu is a huge hulking presence to defend against the run. Chris Rainey is not a starter and you can’t say he is just a running back; he is a Sproles type threat that will help on the run, pass and special team’s side immediately. Lastly they went out and signed an undrafted free agent with the hardest name to pronounce, folks I’m glad to introduce you to Ikponmwusa Igbinosun… no really that’s his name.

Jeff Fisher and cast did an amazing job of adding instant impact players. Michael Brockers to anchor the Defense with Chris Long and Robert

St. Louis Rams

Quinn. Brian Quick is a 6’5” 220 pound tank of a target at Wide Receiver and Chris Givins is a deep speed threat for Sam Bradford to toss the ball to, both guys will help instantly. Isaiah Pead taking the ball when Jackson sits doesn’t give the defense a break at all. Rams have an offense now, again. Janoris Jenkins and Trumaine Johnson will both be starters by the end of the season and be beasts, you can count on that. Undrafted free agent Sammy Brown signed with the Rams and this guy is just a sack machine. Jeff Fisher may have a better team here than he did when he left the Titans. Special note, the Rams also signed an undrafted Free agent with the best name in the draft, and his name is T-Bob Hebert.

Cincinnati Bengals

4 instant starters to a team that played well last year only makes matters worse for teams like the Browns, Steelers and Ravens. Kirkpatrick, Zeitler, Still and Sanu will make an immediate impact. Physical freak George Iloka at Free Safety is another name to watch but getting Dan Herron in the 6th round is almost unfair, yet another guy in a draft that will come in and help out. Big Wild Card prospect Vontaze Burfict was signed as an undrafted free agent and if he can understand he has a chance of a lifetime and play to his ability this could be another case of high risk higher reward.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Although they didn’t land Trent Richardson the Bucs had a great draft. 3 new starters in Mark Barron, Doug Martin and Lavonta Davis will improve both sides of the ball. Najee Goode could sneak into the starting line up by the end of the season as well. This defense is going to be fast, hard hitting and imposing, the offense also added weapons with the addition of Wide Receiver Eric Page from Toledo, he may not be a household name but he has a knack for making great catches and should help what was a stagnate offense last year.

2 Franchise players, 5 new starters, yes I said 5, Weeden at QB, Richardson at RB, Schwartz at RT, Johnson at OLB and Smelley at FB.  TONS of

Cleveland Browns

depth on defense will be hard to ignore as will the new and improved offense. Benjamin adds the much needed deep threat at wide receiver and Ryan Miller adds the depth on an already good offensive line. Billy Winn in the 6th round is great addition as well; he will give the defense a solid 2nd option behind Rubin. The only question is John Hughes in the 3rd round… I guess we will need to wait and see why the Browns felt like he was a necessity.

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