Here is that awesome Huddler's post:
I just think if Claiborne is off the board (and I do think he'll be off the board and will be going to Tampa) we will either take Kuechly or trade down. Just my opinion though...
Now, my reaction to the actual pick?
To be honest, as much as I like Kuechly and his potential, I was still hoping we would trade back and get more picks or Claiborne, Blackmon, or Kalil would've dropped.
The real reason I'm not in love with this pick is because as a fan, I want to assume that Beason and Davis will be back 100% and play through an entire season. That is far from a guarantee. Also, those disgustingly huge craters in our defense known as DT and CB were a much bigger priority to me.
If we get Jenkins tomorrow, I'd be happy with what we've done so far, but still feel we could've done much better.
Here is why despite the awesome player I think Kuechly will turn out to be for us, I think we could've done much better:
1) Unless Kuechly turns out to be a superstar, and the best LB out of this draft, the pick was wasted value. Why? Because if he turns out to be an average-good player, we could've traded back, picked up multiple picks and drafted a guy like Zach Brown or Kendricks, who could be just as good or better.
2) What if Beason and TD return to 100% this season? By no means can we count on that, and that is why I think this pick came to fruition. But, if both these guys come back healthy and play entire season without any major injuries, where does Kuechly fit in? Is he better than James Anderson? I don't know, but for this coming year, I doubt it.
3) Even if Kuechly turns out to be the best LB out of this draft, as I think he can be, this pick is representative of one of my biggest gripes with Hurney. He has historically drafted heavily from specific positions and neglected others with any significant upgrades until they already set us back. For example, how many years did we have an opportunity to draft a legit safety (who played safety in college) or a WR in the first but passed it up for a position that was of much lesser priority? After years of misses under Hurney, we finally hit on two WRs two drafts ago with LaFell and Gettis.
We have repeatedly tried to get cute with safety and so far, we've struggled there as well. Not to write either of those guys off, but they have not proven to be worthy starters on a consistent basis. And problems with that position go back to Minter's playing days, as we always lacked a solid complementary starter next to him.
Too often, I think Hurney abides to the "don't draft according to need" rule he has set for himself, as he believes if you draft off of need, you end up reaching and that's when you make mistakes. But by following this mandate, Hurney too often drafts at positions that are already full of talent when healthy and neglects the same weak positions year in and year out. This is what concerns me and why I feel we haven't strung together consecutive winning seasons, at least since he's been here.
Although all of that sounds extremely negative, I'm excited about his potential and ability to step in immediately and be an impact player. I certainly hope he will be, but now I have mixed feelings about what to do at the LB position. How do all of these guys fit together? And I have very little confidence in what is left at DT as far as bringing what we need to the table. CB isn't as bad as it looks, especially if Hogan comes in healthy and plays up to what many of us expect... Not to mention all of the rumors of how we are interested in Jenkins. That could be a whole lot of awesome...
In conclusion... Great pick with huge potential to be a rare talent at LB. Concerns? May be too deep at LB and too thin elsewhere, especially if Beason and TD come back. Regardless, Kuechly has to outplay one of the starters to live up to the value of the pick.
Who should we look at with tomorrow's first pick?
Stephen Hill, Jerel Worthy, Janoris Jenkins.
Flame away or discuss.