Sports Opinion & Analysis

NFL Mock Drafts Are Just Stupid

In NFL on February 15, 2013 at 10:27 am

By Jonathan Danielson

Since the NFL season officially ended when Joe Flacco said he was going to Disney World, every sports journalist on television or the interwebs has become obsessed (like they do every year) with mock drafts. It’s as if every sports writer and broadcaster nationwide puts on their magic fortune-teller hat every January, then think they can see into the future, and the seven rounds of picks that lay there.

On ESPN, Professional Mock Drafters Mel Kiper Jr. and Todd McShay spend their whole life trying to predict who will get taken when, and by whom, months before the draft order is even set. I would be mad at them for this, but really I’m just envious, because who wouldn’t want to get paid hundreds of thousands of dollars to watch football , then go on camera and play make-believe.

Kiper and McShay hard at work the day before the draft.

Kiper and McShay hard at work.

NFL Mock Drafts, or just mock drafts regardless of the sport, are absolutely worthless after guessing who will be taken first. It’s like your March Madness Brackets, in that one upset screws up your entire order, and then all that time and effort was for naught.

Here’s an example:

1. Kansas City Chiefs: Luke Joeckel, OT (Texas A&M)

There is no doubt in my mind that Joeckel will be the first player to come off the board. His sheer size, strength and speed make him the obvious pick for new head coach Andy Reid and his team’s need at protecting the quarterback. Then again, Kansas City also has a lot of questions at quarterback, so I also wouldn’t be surprised if they took Geno Smith from West Virginia instead. Smith is like a faster Donovann McNabb, and a more collected version of Michael Vick. Smith is the obvious choice for the Chiefs with the number one pick. 

2. Jacksonville Jaguars: Bjoern Werner, DE (Florida State)

This is a no-brainer for the Jags. The team has serious needs for their defense, and picking Werner will help shore-up their inability to stop the opposing team’s running game. Then again, the Jags also have questions at the quarterback position. Is Blaine Gabbert really the franchise player of the future, or could they already admit their mistake, if it was a mistake, which I’m not sure if it was, and draft another QB while they still have the luxury of taking anyone at the position, sans Geno Smith if Kansas City surprises everyone (except me) and takes him.

What I’m saying is I could definitely see the Jags drafting Werner, but I could also equally see them drafting Smith, if he’s available, but if he’s not I could just as well see USC’s Matt Barkley being a legitimate pocket -passer for the team. But I also wouldn’t be surprised if NC State’s Mike Glennon becomes a dark horse and jumps this high, or if Arkansas’s Tyler Wilson becomes a dark-dark horse, and surprises everybody, including me, except I just said it.  

3. Oakland Raiders: Manti Te’o, ILB (Notre Dame)

The smart money would have the Raiders talking Joeckel or Werner if available, or even Smith or dark horse Barkley, or dark-dark-horse Wilson, but Oakland will undoubtedly surprise everyone, even me, except I just said it, by reaching way back in our projections and continuing the trend of taking extraordinary high-risk players with personal issues. There is no question this is the path the Raiders will take, unless those other guys are available and they draft conservatively, which I could also see, and if they do that, they would probably take Utah’s Star Lotulelei (DT), Florida’s Sharrif Floyd (DT), Texas A&M’s Damontre Moore (DE), or Georgia’s Jarvis  Jones (OLB). 

4. Philadelphia Eagles: Luis Zendejas, PK (Arizona State University)

Zendejas was the place kicker for ASU from 1981-to-1984, and last played football for the Birmingham Barracudas of the CFL in 1995. He’s really the only person I’m sure will be available at this pick. 

See what I mean? It’s like how fantasy sports are Dungeons & Dragons for jocks, mock drafts are pretend futures trading for fans whose teams were so miserable during the season, they have nothing better to do than think about next season. And what about these professional mock drafters, like McShay and Kiper and everyone else? Well, they’re nothing more than Merril Lynch traders playing around with the hopes and dreams of those beaten down investors. It’s all fun and games until the bubble bursts, and your house gets foreclosed, and you find yourself sleeping under an overpass near a Circle K and strip club, and I don’t even know what the means. What was I talking about?

Oh look, Bleacher Report has the Cardinals taking Eric Fisher out of Central Michigan. Wait, what was I doing again…?

  1. Loved this. Well done, sir. I especially liked the “examples” you gave… though I think you and I are probably the only people who feel this way. People everywhere are going batshit insane over mock drafts.

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