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The F@#* it MOCK


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1. Brandon Pettigrew, TE, Oklahoma State 6'5'' 265 lbs.

NFL Analysis: Relegated to blocking throughout much of his early career due to the Cowboys' focus on other playmakers, Pettigrew is more NFL-ready than most recent collegiate tight ends. Prototype size for the position, with impressive strength on his frame. Good overall musculature, yet has the frame to add additional mass. Physical and determined as a run blocker. Good initial pop and has the lateral quickness and upper body strength to sustain his blocks. Seems to enjoy the physical nature of blocking. Presents a large target to the quarterback and has strong, secure hands. Looks the pass in and quickly turns up-field to generate positive yardage after the catch. A mismatch for defenders due to his size and athleticism. Bullish runner who will drag defenders for extra yardage. Reliable target who rarely drops passes ... Nice understanding of feeling soft spots in coverage ... Has solid speed and makes things happen after the catch ... Very good blocker who puts a lot of effort into this area ... Uses his hands well in pass protection and run blocking ... Can beat the jam and is physical on the line of scrimmage ... Displays good athleticism on jump balls ... Great overall skill set. A nagging ankle injury robbed him of the opportunity of breaking out as a senior, but the natural hands, rare athleticism and brute strength demonstrated throughout his career are the traits scouts look for in a complete tight end. Had an arm span of 34 7/8 inches and a hand span of 10 3/4 inches at the combine.

My Take: This year's TE class is short on scheme specific talent for the Falcons' offense, and the lack of suitable value at the other positions for the #24 spot (I think Cush, Matthews and Hood will all be gone) make Pettigrew the likely choice. Similar to Ryan last year, Pettigrew is simply way beyond his peers in the draft in terms of complete, all around game. Players like Coffman, Ingram, Nelson, Cook and Beckum are all H-back, overgrown receiver types that are extremely limited in their in-line blocking capabilities. I think Pettigrew represents potentially the best Need/Value pick at this point for the Falcons.

2. William Moore, S, Missouri 6'3" 219lbs.

NFL Analysis: An exciting talent with eye-popping athleticism, Moore flashed more potential than production switching between strong and free safety early in his career, but then exploded onto the scene in 2007, intercepting eight passes and establishing himself as one of the elite playmakers in the country. Has a history of turning INTs into TDs, with four of his 11 career picks returned for scores. Despite earning first-team All-Big 12 honors as a senior, Moore struggled early in the year before picking up his play. Scouts love his athleticism and mentality as a ball-hawk...Well-built athlete with a prototypical blend of size, speed and instincts. ... Fast and agile enough to be a true centerfielder in coverage, as well as possessing the explosiveness to be an intimidating hitter over the middle. ... Reliable open-field tackler -- has rare body control to break down in space and make the reliable tackle. ... Reads the quarterback's eyes and can close on the ball. ... Led the Big 12 and broke the school single-season record with eight interceptions in 2007. ... Showed his toughness by playing through a torn labrum for much of the 2007 season. ... Experienced at both safety positions. ... Dynamic athlete who should improve as he gains more experience.

My Take: Moore seems to be the type of athletic, 'hybrid' or 'interchangeable' safeties that TD covets. Scouting DBs is TDs forte, and I think the extra focus that the Falcons' spent scouting the DBs at this year's combine might have been an effort to prove that Moore was the best fit for the improving secondary, and capable of being a playmaker that the Falcons' desperately need. Moore is something that Atlanta's D hasn't had in years - A big hitter who puts the fear of god into receivers who are coming across the middle. If this is TDs guy, and he is the playmaker that you can see here:

or here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GWRY-ixLBTA...feature=related on YouTube, I think somewhere in the 2nd round would be just about the right pick to use for TDs Safety of the future. Moore's playing time will come most probably in tandem with Coleman for now, and then with Decoud in the long-term.

3. Lawrence Sidbury, Jr. DE, Richmond 6'2'' 266 lbs.

NFL Analysis: Solidly built athlete with room for additional mass, especially in his upper body. ... Long arms. ... Flashes initial quickness off the snap to pressure the outside. ... Good lateral quickness to redirect back to the inside if he senses the tackle leaning outside. ... Good spin and reverse spin move to clear the offensive tackle quickly. ... Good hand placement and use of leverage to bull rush the tackle into the pocket. ... Can close quickly with an open lane. ... Good effort in pursuit. ... Can break down in space to make the clean open-field tackle. ... Flashes some explosiveness as a hitter. ... Helped himself with a solid week of practice at the East-West Shrine Game.

My Take: Amazing combine performance aside, even though DE is a somewhat deep position for the Falcons, Sidbury could not be ignored if he really is still available at this point.

4. Dannell Ellerbe, WLB/MLB, UGA 5'11" 238lbs.

NFL Analysis: Exploded onto the scene in 2007, going from a backup weak-side linebacker who finished the 2006 season with seven total tackles to a second-team All-SEC pick in leading the team with 93 tackles and finishing second with 12 tackles for loss. He started at each of the three linebacker positions in 2007 and was credited by some for having a similar lightning-rod affect on the Georgia defense that running back Knowshon Moreno had on the offense…Well-built athlete with the frame to add additional mass. ... Versatile defender with experience at all three linebacker positions. ... Aggressive to attack the line of scrimmage in run support. ... Good speed to the outside to meet the back at the edge. ... Reads his keys quickly and puts himself in position to make the play. ... Good overall athleticism. ... Among the better linebackers in the country in pass coverage. ... Gets good depth on his drops and reads the quarterback's eyes. ... Good short-area quickness and balance in coverage. ... Can beat blockers to the action due to his lateral agility and aggression. ... Effective blitzer who combines his explosiveness with legitimate hand technique to disengage from blockers. ... Flashes explosiveness as a hitter.

My Take: Being familiar with Brian VanGorder's schemes from his time in college under VanGorder disciple Willie Martinez, Ellerbe presents the quintessential Cover 2 linebacker; he can read, react and burst explosively at the right moment to make the big play. Not the best timed speed, but plays plenty quick with the pads on. Love the coverage ability he possesses (no more freebies on 3rd and 16, Arizona).

5. (Raiders): Jonathan Luigis, OC/OG, Arkansas 6'2" 308lbs.

NFL Analysis: In a very deep center class, Luigs is still considered by many to be the top prospect. Had an arm span of 31 1/4 inches and a hand span of 9 1/4 inches at the combine. Prototype size for the position. Rare athleticism. Good burst off the snap and can block on the move. Quickly moves his feet to get the appropriate angle on his man. Gets to the second level quickly as a run and pass blocker. Good initial quickness as a pass blocker. Settles well and plays with good balance. Equally effective snapping in the shotgun or traditional quarterback exchange. Cerebral player who makes the line calls and adjusts well to unexpected blitzes and defensive alignments.

My Take: In what has been described by most experts as a "best in a decade class of centers," wouldn't it be wise to try and cherry pick a potential steal like Luigis in the middle rounds. As he seems to be more of a smart player than a mauler, I think he will fall, especially after Mack, Unger, Wood and Caldwell all had extremely impressive combine performances. The most consistent criticism regarding Luigis surrounds his overall brute strength, which seems to make him a prime candidate to back up McClure for a season while working through a year of an NFL strength and nutrition program.

5. Terrance Knighton, NT, Temple 6'3" 323 lbs.

NFL Analysis: Knighton's large body and fair athleticism is coveted by NFL scouts. Teams looking for a one-gap 4-3 nose tackle will be most interested in Knighton. Good height, length and girth for his position. ... Better-than-expected straight-line speed and change-of-direction ability, able to sniff out and disrupt screen plays. ... Will chase plays downfield. ... Strong upfield rush, either up the shoulder of his defender or splitting double teams. ... Uses his long arms to wrap up in the open field or track down ballcarriers coming through the hole. ... Flashes violent hands, especially when his man retreats off the snap in passing situations. ... Active knocking down passes and blocking field goals because of his push, arm length and large hands. ... Keeps cut blocks off his knees. ... Athletic enough to quickly jump on loose balls and get down quickly in short-yardage situations.

My Take: Knighton would provide a great depth pick-up to ensure that we aren't left hanging if Trey Lewis' knee can't hold up. Seems like the big, long armed playmaker that Ray Hamilton likes on the defensive line, one he could teach to use his long arms and strong hands to keep offensive linemen from getting inside/under his pads.

6. Lydon Murtha, RT/RG, Nebraska 6"7" 310 lbs.

NFL Analysis: Murtha is a prototypical smart, big and strong Nebraska lineman Prototypical height for right tackle spot. Short steps and quick set-up in pass protection. Uses his length and kick-slide to stone outside pass rush moves. Comes out of his stance adequately, and can get movement in short-yardage situations. Sustains blocks inside through the whistle. Latches onto defenders at second level. Can get the inside shoulder of tackles to keep them from run plays going away from him. Sells the bootleg.

My Take: I just can't see us investing a higher pick than this one on offensive lineman other than a potential McClure replacement. Murtha had the single most impressive combine of just about any prospect, in terms of pure measurables and improved skill set since the end of the season:

Combine 40 Time: 4.89.

Benchx225: 25. Arm: 33 7/8.

Potential UDFA:

Spencer Adkins, MLB/WLB, The U:

Amazing Pro Day numbers (4.48 40-yard dash, 30 reps of 225 on the bench and 36.5" vertical), could be the type of player that blossoms with better coaching in the NFL, and better luck in the injury department (see: Frank Gore, i.e.)

· Corey Irvin, DT, UGA:

If his lack of experience somehow keeps him from being drafted, TD should make him an immediate priority. Has the long arms and powerful hands that Ray Hamilton looks for in dominant defensive linemen.

· Jahi Word-Daniels, CB, Ga. Tech:

Limited playing time as a senior (due to injury) killed his draft stock, but this could benefit a team like Atlanta looking to take a flyer on a prototype Cover 2 corner. Good height, strong build and long arms for the position. ... Relatively smooth flipping his hips for his height. ... Opens his hips to run with quicker receivers down the sideline. ... Uses his length to knock away passes in his area. ... Supports the run and attacks screens on the outside, closing quickly to cut down the ball-carrier

Marlon Favorite, NT, LSU:

Plays the three-technique for LSU but will be better covering the A-gaps in the NFL. Even still, NFL teams are still interested in Favorite's active play and run-stuffing ability inside. Active, stout defender with long arms. Uses that length to secure tackles on the line. Chases down the line and hustles downfield after plays. His low center of gravity helps him to get under his man's pads and maintain the line of scrimmage against double teams. Has the strength and hand play to shed blocks and tackle the ball-carrier. Effective spin move when coming after the quarterback. Keeps his eyes in the backfield during the pass rush; will fight until the ball is away. Shows quick, violent hand play at times

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I like the draft very much, though agree with the others that Sidbury probably won't make it that far.

Pettigrew isn't my #1 choice but I am quite felxible and would be happy with him. Moore has been a favourite of mine since before the season even ended, so I like that pick, though again I'm doubtful he makes it to our second pick.

Nice job though.

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I don't like the fact that we tried to improve our run defense until the 5th round. (Sidbury and Ellerbe aren't going to help on run defense anymore the Davis, Anderson, and Abraham are already doing. Ellerbe is a great pick, but he doesn't help us stop the run anymore then Nicholas would.)

If we stop the run, things will go our way more times then not.

I don't think this mock makes us a better team.

I love the Murtha and Moore picks though.

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My take on drafting Pettigrew::

If there is a quality pass rusher like Johnson or English then i think we will pass on Pettigrew since we have ok TE that can be effective. I do think that we will get a TE like the others mentioned that can develop their blocking skills. I do think we would take the one TE that has the most potential to be a good blocker. We do have time to develop those blocking skills. I think that we really want a TE that can stretch the field, that is why we went after LJ Smith, but i think that he wasnt worth his asking price due to his average blocking for the time that he had been in the league and the TEam would rather draft a receiving TE and develop them behind Harstock.

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I don't like the fact that we tried to improve our run defense until the 5th round. (Sidbury and Ellerbe aren't going to help on run defense anymore the Davis, Anderson, and Abraham are already doing. Ellerbe is a great pick, but he doesn't help us stop the run anymore then Nicholas would.)

Well, my rationale was that Nicholas looks to be our guy at the WILL, and his strengths are rushing the passer and being stout against the run (he has deceptively dominating strength in his upper body and hands) and his weakness is dropping back into coverage. Ellerbe therefore brings us someone who can fill in at the WILL in a 3 backer alignment and dominate in pass coverage (no more 3rd and 16 -Ahem-Arizona), and provide the ability to reduce down inside when needed and play the nickle backer spot when called upon. With Wire and Peterson competing to start at the SAM, and Nicholas, Lofton, Ellerbe and possibly James providing the depth of the other two positions.

Don't get me wrong, I've had Hood and Brinkley both in my recent mocks, just like you did, but I think the best Value/Need combo can be met by goint Pettigrew, Moore, Sidbury, Ellerbe and waiting til at least the 5th to try and get a one-dimensional runstuffing NT like Knighton, Dorrell Scott, Sammie Lee Hill, Roy Miller, Vance Walker or Corvey Irvin. I think the best hope for the Falcons' D is that Lewis is healthy, hungry and willing/able to contribute significantly in a rotation with a rookie and possibly Jefferson. If that is not the case, then I think TD will be open to going DT earlier in the draft, maybe even Hood in the 1st. Otherwise, Value becomes just too out of whack in relation to our Need at pick #24 to go DT.

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