Eighteen short days until the draft, so it's time for yours truly to start devoting days and nights to draft education. I started with a conversation with
1. "This is by far the worst year for the top 10 that I've seen. Down around 18, 20, you'll get every bit the player you'll get in the top 10 for a third of the price.''
2. His gut feeling is Detroit's taking Georgia quarterback
3. "I can't bang the table for Stafford the way I did for
4. Mayock, if he had his choice of first-round picks for talent and value, would be around 22. "The value in this draft is at 15 and beyond.''
5. He says eight or nine tight ends will be drafted in the first three rounds. He loves the best of the bunch, Oklahoma State's
6. He likes
7. He thinks Wake Forest linebacker
8. He's scared of
9. Of the elite quarterbacks, he likes USC's
10. If you need a cornerback in this draft, sit it out. There are no corners even well above average, never mind great.
A year ago, Mayock told me he liked Ryan, who played four years at Boston College, more than he'd liked any quarterback to come out in years. Not the case with the three early entry passers this year -- Stafford, Sanchez and Kansas State's
Now onto your e-mail for the week:
Players are paid their salary in 17 game checks starting the first week of the regular season. In the preseason, veteran players get $1,425 per preseason game week -- $1,225 for the practice week, plus $200 per game. The league will say the players are getting 60 percent of the adjusted gross revenue, regardless of how and when it's paid. That's true, but the point players will make if the schedule's expanded to 17 games is a simple one: I'm playing 60 more plays, and I don't care what the accountants say -- I want one-seventeenth more money than I was making to play 16 games.
Different stories there. Cutler's a 25-year-old franchise-quarterback type, and that profile of player NEVER comes on the open market. Owens is divisive and old, and nobody wanted to give up anything to acquire him -- then pay him as a franchise receiver. Burress is probably not even playing this year; who'd have given the Giants anything for a guy who might go to jail for two or three years? Moss: Remember what sort of damaged goods he was with the Raiders? He was quasi-boycotting games and practices, and the Raiders were desperate to get him out of town.
I don't think McDaniels knows who he likes right now because he wasn't studying rookie quarterbacks with Cutler on the roster. My feeling is McDaniels will use his first two picks on defensive players, which he should do, with leaks all over the field on D.
It wasn't that Bowlen's feelings were hurt, but rather he felt an employee should show some very small amount of respect to the man who owns the team and signs his paychecks, rather than ignoring him for weeks on end. In the end, Cutler got what he wanted. I'm sure he regrets some of the things he did, but in the end the painful stuff got him what he wanted -- a trade. At least I think that's what he wanted. You never know with some of the weird crap he was saying late in this episode, like telling
I'll have to think about that one. At first blush, I'd say I could think of two.
Well, if you have a strong feeling about one of these guys being a franchise quarterback, of course you take him. But that would mean seven teams in front of you, including at least two with major quarterback needs long-term, would have passed on the guy you're sure is a surefire superstar. I don't think there's a no-doubt starter at the position in this draft.
The Super Bowl, with an extended season, will be contested on the second or third Sunday in February.
Yes, we do have a people problem. But one of the jobs of the government is to protect citizens from things that can hurt them. We're obviously not doing a good enough job of protecting our citizens from obtaining guns, because dangerous citizens seem to obtain them easily, day after day in this country.
Let's get the excess guns out of society first -- or at least try. Then we'll move on to the next murderous weapon.