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Drafting For Need...building For Defense And So-Called 'experts'


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Pittsburgh found out what drafting for need gets ya back in '83. You wind up with Gabe Rivera instead of Dan Marino.

Hometown kid was passed over even though Rooney wanted Marino. Noll insisted they build the defense and wanted Rivera.

Paul Zimmerman, "Dr. Z" should have been sued for malpractice when he expressed skepticism that Miami's coaching staff could "fix the problems with him (Marino)"

Worried about Don Shula & staff? Lmao

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Chuck Noll was as much an authority as Don Shula. If I had a coach who won three Super Bowls and he suggested that his biggest need is defense, I'll give him the benefit of the doubt. And BPA is always going to be weighted by need. Otherwise, some years teams would draft seven players at the same position because they were the best available.

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If we were not drafting for need, we would take Sammy Watkins.

White, Jones, and Watkins lined up on scrimmage would give the secondary chills.

It would, omg it would. But...I wasn't saying we shouldn't go OT or DE @6 in this draft. I just thought it was interesting. Take for instance if Tru was a miss instead of a hit. It's all a gamble, and Marino is representive of 20/20 hindsight.

Just something I saw on TV, thought it was interesting because I hate drafting for need as a general rule, but also love defense, so I could have made that pick, same as Noll, LOL

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I think there are examples of both philosophies working very well......but really, I think they're integrated for almost every team. Part of defining who you think the best players are is how they fit in with your team and if they fill a need.

I dont think you can go pure need or pure BPA....youve gotta work the two together. Thankfully, this year has a ton of overlap between the BPA and the players we need. So I'm confident we're going to get a good player at a position that can help us immediately.

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Chuck Noll was as much an authority as Don Shula. If I had a coach who won three Super Bowls and he suggested that his biggest need is defense, I'll give him the benefit of the doubt. And BPA is always going to be weighted by need. Otherwise, some years teams would draft seven players at the same position because they were the best available.

Too funny, Imwas typing kind of the same thing at the same time :)

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Is there any team out there who consistenty draft 100% based on BPA, irrespectve of their need?

Is there anyone out there who honestly thinks that the colts should draft a QB in the 1st round if he is BPA, even though they have Luck, and even if the 2nd BPA - rated ony marginally lower - fits their biggest need? What if the BPA when they pick in rounds 2, 3 & 4 are also QB's? Should they take them all if they can't find someone to trade down, and just ignore their needs?

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Is there any team out there who consistenty draft 100% based on BPA, irrespectve of their need?

Is there anyone out there who honestly thinks that the colts should draft a QB in the 1st round if he is BPA, even though they have Luck, and even if the 2nd BPA - rated ony marginally lower - fits their biggest need? What if the BPA when they pick in rounds 2, 3 & 4 are also QB's? Should they take them all if they can't find someone to trade down, and just ignore their needs?

QB is probably the only position that can be excluded. Take for instance, what if 3 OTs, Mack and Clown are gone by 6? A dunderhead draft for needs guy says Barr or Donald. A wise man drafts Watkins. They dont pass on a talent like him just because they think a 33 WR might have more than a couple years left. The Falcons organization has found itself with a weak roster because of a needs based drafting philosophy. Sure we migh still have holes, but not near as many as we do now.

There are teams that draft for need over 50% of the time and that's not the way to get it done. You don't pass up a hot redhead you know is killer in the sack just because you like brunettes and think she might be ;)

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Is there any team out there who consistenty draft 100% based on BPA, irrespectve of their need?

Is there anyone out there who honestly thinks that the colts should draft a QB in the 1st round if he is BPA, even though they have Luck, and even if the 2nd BPA - rated ony marginally lower - fits their biggest need? What if the BPA when they pick in rounds 2, 3 & 4 are also QB's? Should they take them all if they can't find someone to trade down, and just ignore their needs?

True, but if you exclude QB, which you have to, a lot of teams lean way more toward BPA, and others way more toward need.

The Ravens often take a guy when they already have a good starter at that position, knowing if it's DL, LB, RB, WR, TE, etc., there's plenty of rotation anyway.

In that vein, DT, DE, OLB, CB, LB, S, OT, WR, TE, RB could all be needs.

A top DT that can penetrate is helpful and prepares you for Babs getting older and Peters being injured.

A top DE is an obvious need, but even a 3-4 DE who can penetrate would make a huge difference.

There's a good chance neither of those are even options for the FO.

OLB, OT, Sare obvious.

CB is an area that could be fortified. I like our CB's, but we're relying heavily on 2 2nd year guys and then journeymen. A top talent like Gilbert could enable a lot.

A lot of people aren't for TE, but replacing the bulk of our 3rd down conversions is pretty critical. Further, there aren't many good passing teams without a seam stretching TE. It doesn't need to be a guy like Tony, but a guy who can keep the safeties honest in the middle of the field is a big deal.

RB gets a guy in who can take snaps from Quizz and let Jackson remain fresher, while helping solidify the position as both Jackson and Quizz will be gone next year.

WR is a need because the team as currently constructed has one area they're "great" and that's the passing game. They have an injured WR, an aging WR, and depth underneath consisting mainly of guys who aren't matchup beaters and have little chance to develop into a starter. Taking a WR would be a very prudent move. A tall guy who can play some slot would alleviate the transition from Tony, give breathers to Roddy and Julio, and be great injury protection, as well as allow Roddy to move in to the slot in the next couple of years and prolong his career.

So, it all depends on how you define your needs. Teams like the Ravens would take any one of these positions if the player is really the best on the board, knowing they're all needs in the next 2 years. The Falcons tend not to. They tend to fill in gaps because they leave gaping needs (positions where there aren't even NFL journeyman level players).

If an OT and WR are radically better in the 2nd and 3rd than a DE and LB, we should be set up such that we can take them, since both would make the team better, and taking the best players increases your odds of a hit.

In this draft, DT and WR seem to be a lot deeper than other positions, particularly WR...so it would be a shame to miss out and then have to take an inferior one next year because we've left ourselves hamstrung.

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Teams have a limited number of draft picks and limited amount of cap room to build a team and address needs with. When you have major needs, you have to use your resources fill them. If you invest your resources in areas where you are already say strong, your weakness will end up going unaddressed. If you don't address your biggest needs you won't get better, no matter who you draft.

For us, we can draft as many WR, CBS and QBs as we want on the basis of them being BPA, but if we don't invest enough to fill our OL and DL needs, this team will remain in the cellar. The valuable FA's have already been snapped up for this year, so if we don't try to address needs in the draft, the chances are that those needs will go unaddressed for a year, with no guarantees that adequate talent will be available - or that we will have the cap space in future - to address them in free agency next year.

The reality is that most draft picks take 2-3 years to develop anyway, so patience is needed. Most fans look only at the here and now, whereas a good GM will look a few years ahead, hoard picks and will plan for future FA losses and retirements by draft for needs at least a year ahead.

No team drafts consistently on the basis purely of BPA irrespective of need. There are still occasions where team will go for BPA irrespective of need in a particular pick. They may do it because the BPA is head and shoulders is so much better value that the players who fit their needs, or they may see a future need in that position 1-2 year down the road, or because they think they can address that need later in the draft or in some other way (e.g. a cheap veteran FA, who can do a job for 1 year).

Most teams draft "BPA at a position of need" in the early rounds. however, as you go later in to the draft, the chances of finding guys who are good enough to address major needs fall very steeply, so it makes more sense to place more emphasis on BPA than need the later you get on to the draft. Even in the 3rd/4th rounds, the chances of players becoming starters, let alone good ones, is less than 50%.

It also depends how you define "need". IMO WR isn't a need for us, in spite of Roddy's age. We already have a great future WR in Julio Jones, and a 1,000 yard #3 in HD. You don't need 2 great WR's. Most teams don't have an elite WR, and many do well without having one. Another top 10 WR would be a luxury pick, not a need. Similarly, whilst there might be sense in searching for a 3rd/4th CB in the mid rounds of the draft, it's not a need.

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It also depends how you define "need". IMO WR isn't a need for us, in spite of Roddy's age. We already have a great future WR in Julio Jones, and a 1,000 yard #3 in HD. You don't need 2 great WR's. Most teams don't have an elite WR, and many do well without having one. Another top 10 WR would be a luxury pick, not a need. Similarly, whilst there might be sense in searching for a 3rd/4th CB in the mid rounds of the draft, it's not a need.

I think I'm speaking of the draft in general, and you the top 10 pick (I did mention Gilbert, so the confusion is probably on my part), so maybe that's our discrepancy.

WR is a great example of a position that good FO's would fill in this draft with a guy who dropped to the third round. I agree completely we don't need a top 10 guy, that would be silly. But this would be the exact time to get a guy to injury proof you and to develop into a legit outside threat over the next year or so.

Most good passing teams have 4 legitimate threats in the passing game, and we simply don't. I agree completely it's not the primary need. My point is, if we come down to a pass rusher in the 3rd who has little chance of development, or a WR in the 3rd, who's really an early 2nd round talent (and this is very possible in this draft) taking the "Maponga level" pass rusher is how franchises get worse over time.

We should have taken a RT and FS in free agency, and we'd be much more freed up to take the best players. You and I agree generally, and agree that the trenches need to be addressed early. But to be able to keep addressing those, you have to add 2nd, 3rd round talent to your skill positions, so they can develop and you don't let a gaping need open up there that has to be filled with a first.

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If we were not drafting for need, we would take Sammy Watkins.

White, Jones, and Watkins lined up on scrimmage would give the secondary chills.

No. Personally I see Watkins being overated, but fortunatly for the Falcons, the teams needs are all filled with the best players in the draft. Clowney and Robinson, or even Aaron Donoldson would still be better selections than Watkins any day of the week.

You would think this fan base would realize by now you win in the trenches.

Edited by Objective Critic
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