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Revisiting the 2007 Draft

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The ESPN article that is up today inspired me to revisit what all the experts had to say about the 2007 Draft... Some of the comments are most interesting...

Redrafting the players from 2007, Kiper has 4 current Panthers (Johnson, Beason, Olson, Kalil) all going in the first round of the redraft...


So I decided to dig and see what kind of grades were given out (and other various interesting comments):

John Clayton:


Lane Kiffin and Al Davis: They had to take a quarterback. The franchise was set back by not taking Matt Leinart or Jay Cutler a year ago. The 31-year-old coach and the ageless Davis played catch-up Saturday. They had to take JaMarcus Russell instead of playing around with second- or third-round prospects. Getting TE Zach Miller in the second round was the right call, too. The Raiders topped the day off by acquiring quarterback Josh McCown and wide receiver Mike Williams from Detroit for a fourth-round choice. McCown, who comes to the team on a one-year contract, can carry the team into the season as the starter, buying Russell time to learn the offense and feel comfortable in the NFL. The Raiders’ quarterback problems will be solved for the start of the 2007 season with McCown, and hopefully in the future with Russell.

Sean Leahy / USA Today


– Oakland: They got their big cat, JaMarcus Russell, and swung a deal with Detroit for Josh McCown to have a veteran QB ready for September. Then they got two more players (Zach Miller at tight end and Quentin Moses at defensive end) who should be able to start this year.

Mike Tanier of Football Outsiders

Best picks

Brady Quinn, QB, Browns

Quinn had a rough afternoon. When the Dolphins dissed him with the ninth pick overall, Commissioner Goodell sent him to a special isolation room so that gawkers couldn’t watch him squirm on two television networks. And by the way, Aaron Rodgers wants to know where that isolation room was when he slipped to the Packers two years ago.

Quinn is a lifelong Browns fan who was coached at Notre Dame by Charlie Weis, a long-time colleague of Browns coach Romeo Crennel. He’s NFL-ready in terms of work habits, footwork and game knowledge. He needs to work on his timing, but that’s a correctable flaw. By 2009, Quinn will be a Pro Bowl-caliber quarterback.

If you don’t believe the scouting, believe the numbers. The Football Outsiders Quarterback Projection System believes that Quinn will be successful. The system is rarely wrong.

Charles Johnson, defensive end, Panthers: Mike Rucker is coming off an injury and is on the downside. Julius Peppers’ contract will be up soon, and he’ll command ten cement mixers full of $100 bills on the open market. Johnson, a natural run defender with a good bull rush, is built to play on the strong side, where he can defeat tight ends and stuff ballcarriers. Until he settles into a starting job, he’ll play an important role as a rotation lineman. Rucker and Peppers can blow up any offensive line in the league when they are healthy and fresh. Johnson will keep them healthy and fresh.

Worst picks

Calvin Johnson, WR, Lions

Chris Rock used to do a routine about the tiger that attacked Siegfried and Roy. “That tiger didn’t go crazy,” Rock joked, “That tiger went tiger.” With the second overall pick, Matt Millen didn’t do something stupid. He did something Matt Millen. Johnson is a great prospect. With him and Roy Williams at wideout, the Lions will field the best possible Jon Kitna-helmed offense. Exactly how far do you think that will get them?

Biggest surprises

Adrian Peterson, RB, Vikings

Chester Taylor ran for 1,200 yards last season, so you might be wondering why Minnesota went this way. Wonder no more. Football Outsiders ranks Taylor as just the 33rd-best running back in the league based on DPAR, a stat that analyzes performance on a play-by-play basis. Long story short: Taylor is a nice complementary runner, but there is some fluff in his 2007 stat line. Peterson is a great runner with a long injury history and little experience as a receiver. Taylor is a good receiver who can be effective for eight carries per game in relief of Peterson. Sounds like a good platoon arrangement.

Michael David of Football Outsiders


Ryan Kalil, the excellent center from USC, lasted all the way until the 59th pick, when the Carolina Panthers chose him. Although he’s a bit on the small side, Kalil is a technically sound player and a good locker room presence, and he was expected to be taken much earlier.


USC wide receiver Dwayne Jarrett represents good value with the 45th overall pick. Jarrett will be a solid addition to the Carolina Panthers’ offense because he runs good routes and has good hands, and he’ll work well with both quarterback Jake Delhomme and the current pair of receivers in Carolina, Steve Smith and Keyshawn Johnson.

Rick Gosselin / Dallas News

Carolina Panthers Grade A

The Panthers had the best second round, grabbing two cornerstones of Southern California’s three-year national championship push in Jarrett and Kalil. The arrival of Johnson begins the rebuilding process up front.


Carolina Panthers: GRADE: B

I’m not enamored with linebacker Jon Beason, but he has the ability to be a team leader because he has a great attitude. I do like the fact that Carolina traded down to get Beason even though the Panthers were very high on him. The Panthers did a good job in the second round, getting WR Dwayne Jarrett and center Ryan Kalil. I thought Georgia defensive end Charles Johnson was a steal in the third round. Ryne Robinson was one of the better returners in the draft; Dante Rosario is a backup tight end; Tim Shaw, at worst, is a backup linebacker, and C.J. Wilson could be a decent backup cornerback.

Tom Weir / USA Today

2 Stars (out of 4)

Carolina **

Biggest offensive need was TE, and the Panthers passed up Greg Olsen. But LB Jon Beason was surprisingly available for the 25th pick. Second-round pick for WR Dwayne Jarrett might have been better spent on a safety.

4 star drafts

Cleveland ****

Getting QB Brady Quinn with the 22nd pick could be the heist of this draft. OT Joe Thomas is a rock-solid No. 3 pick, and CB Eric Wright is a great third-round grab, if his character issues don’t resurface.

Oakland ****

Having passed over Ben Roethlisberger, Philip Rivers, Matt Leinart and Jay Cutler, the Raiders finally recognized the importance of a QB, and took mighty-armed JaMarcus Russell. TE Zach Miller was s-l-o-w at the combine but has excellent hands. RB Michael Bush gives them another option in the backfield. Oakland is hoping the acquisition of WR Mike Williams from Detroit eases the loss of Randy Moss.

Tampa Bay ****

The defense got the talent infusion it needs, with DE Gaines Adams, second-round DB Sabby Piscitelli and third-round LB Quincy Black. An additional second-round pick added G Arron Sears to a developing O-line.

The Sporting News


Carolina Panthers. The Panthers had a strong draft by emphasizing college productivity over workout numbers. OLB Jon Beason should start as a rookie, and WR Dwayne Jarrett will get playing time and make big plays in the red zone.

Vic Carrucci

Carolina Panthers: After a mostly quiet offseason, the Panthers made a fairly noticeable splash in the draft. They worked out a deal with the New York Jets to trade down from the 14th to 25th overall spot and got former University of Miami linebacker Jon Beason, who at the very least is a nice insurance policy given Dan Morgan’s repeated concussions but who should prove to be much more. Former USC receiver Dwayne Jarrett, the second-round pick, is an exceptional talent for the Panthers to acquire with the 45th overall choice. Jarrett isn’t particularly fast, but he knows how to get in the end zone with the ball in his hands. He had 41 receiving touchdowns in only three seasons with the Trojans. The Panthers picked up an extra second-rounder that they used on another former Trojan, Ryan Kalil, arguably the best center in the draft and someone who also should help bring much-needed help to their offense. In the third round, they found the eventual replacement for defensive end Mike Rucker in Georgia’s Charles Johnson.

Former GM Charley Casserly

Carolina Panthers

The Panthers made what turned out to be a good move in trading back in the first round and taking linebacker Jon Beason. They were able to move back to get a good player and pick up an additional draft choice. I liked Beason and thought he was the second-best linebacker, next to Patrick Willis. I like center Ryan Kalil where they got him the second round. I know one team almost took him in the first. He is a good technician who fits best in a zone-blocking scheme, which is what Carolina runs.

I am not as high on Dwayne Jarrett as others, because he has limited speed. He does give you size and will replace Keyshawn Johnson as a size receiver in the lineup, but I do not know if that is a positive because he still lacks speed. But if he can block and make plays in the red zone, that would complement Steve Smith. I liked their next two picks for the value they paid: DE Charles Johnson (third round) for his pass-rushing ability and Ryne Robinson (4th round) for punt returns.

Pete Prisco

Carolina Panthers

Best pick: Getting receiver Dwayne Jarrett in the second round will prove to be a steal. He plays much faster than his 40 time.

Questionable move: Using a fourth-round pick on 5-8 receiver Ryan Robinson, who is really just a return man.

Second-day gem: Sixth-round pick Tim Shaw was a quality linebacker at Penn State. He’s a little stiff, but in the sixth round he makes sense.

Overall grade: B+. Their first three picks — Jon Beason, Jarrett and Ryan Kalil — were outstanding. If fourth-round pick Charles Johnson can help the pass rush, this will really be a special draft.

Paul Zimmerman / Sports Illustrated


Somehow the Panthers found the line in the supermarket that says Value. They were thinking of LB Jon Beason, who might be their man for the Dan Morgan role, at their 14th spot, but then they traded down and got him anyway. WR Dwayne Jarrett, their second rounder, was projected to be a low first. Lots of catches, limited speed, but that’s OK, he’ll get his share of grabs in the Carolina system. And Ryan Kalil is a polished and battle-tested center, much better than low in the second, which was where Carolina found him.

John Czarnecki of FoxSports.com


Czar’s breakdown: Like Buffalo, Carolina’s first three picks were rock solid and all three of them figure to be big contributors as rookies. Miami linebacker Jon Beason didn’t test very well, but he’s a tremendous football player. Beason could start. In the second round, they grabbed two USC players in receiver Dwayne Jarrett, who is no Mike Williams, and center Ryan Kalil, who some experts pegged as a first-round prospect. Jarrett should learn a lot from Keyshawn Johnson, a former Trojan, in Charlotte. Kalil was the draft’s best center and fills a huge need. Penn State inside linebacker Tim Shaw started his college career as a running back and finished it as a 237-pound defensive end. Shaw is a total football player who should fit in somewhere on that Carolina defense.

Mike O'Hara / Detroit News

Carolina Panthers: B

They filled a need at linebacker with Jon Beason. Offensive coordinator Norm Chow got two of his former Southern Cal players from in the second round — WR Dwayne Jarrett and C Ryan Kalil. LB Tim Shaw of Penn State was a fifth-round steal.

Lots of other intersting reading on what they had to say about the other teams and how they drafted...


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Looking back at draft analysis made right at the time is always good for a laugh or two :lol:

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Yeah, I remember people on the Huddle freaking out when I suggested we should trade up for Peterson if he got in range.

In this place's defense, most people were lusting after Willis pre-draft

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Yeah, I remember people on the Huddle freaking out when I suggested we should trade up for Peterson if he got in range.

In this place's defense, most people were lusting after Willis pre-draft

and I think Peterson had a nasty injury his Junior year ?

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and I think Peterson had a nasty injury his Junior year ?

Broke his collarbone but he made it back for the Fiesta Bowl.

By overtime he was back to his dominating self, which I believe played a large role on Boise State going for the now famous Statue of Liberty 2 point conversion.

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