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Old 01-18-2005, 06:39 AM  
PatriotofMaine PatriotofMaine is offline
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Middle backers for the 2005 draft....

Which of these guys do we like in:

1. The first round
2. The second round
3. The 3-6th rounds
4. 7th or RFA.

Analysis: This is a pretty deep group of inside linebackers with a lot of abilty to be outstanding NFL players. Leroy Hill is very talented but right now the position he will play looks a little cloudy. He might be too small for middle linebacker. Crowder is a special talent.

1. Channing Crowder, 6-2 245, Soph*, Florida
Crowder is an elite linebacker, with size, speed, toughness and pedigree, as the son of former NFL player. His father Randy was an All-America tackle at Penn State and played for the Miami Dolphins and Tampa Bay Buccaneers. He's (Channing) 20 years old and draft eligible* having spent a year out of football working as a car washer enrolling late while recovering from a torn ACL suffered in his high school senior year. When it was finally his time to get on the field, he was suspended for the San Jose State opener because of misdemeanor battery charges. When he got a chance to play in 2003 he tore up Gator opponents as one of the SEC's best linebackers making 106 tackles only playing in 11 of the team's 13 games. Crowder was named to The Sporting News All-Freshman team, the Rivals.com All-America team, the Scripps/FWAA All-America team, Second-Team All-SEC (Coaches), and was dubbed The Sporting News SEC Defensive Freshman of the Year. Crowder was having an awesome 2004 season, but on 30 October 2004, in a 31-24 loss to Georgia he left the game on crutches and a cast covering his right foot, but the Gators can look forward to having their leading tackler back on the field for their bowl game. Even though he only played in 7 games this year (2004), he still finished with 69 total tackles, 2 sacks and 1 INT. Will his past legal problems and injuries haunt him in the NFL Draft? Maybe, but when he is on the field there is no questioning his ability.

2. Barrett Ruud, 6-2 243, SR, Nebraska
A great, physical all-around player who stops the run well and makes big plays in the backfield. Selected as second team All-American from Phil Steele’s 2004 College Football Review. Very experienced 3-year starter, recorded 149 tackles and 14.5 tackles for loss last year (2003). Ruud is one of the best tacklers in college football and a great run plugger. He is very under rated and should climb up a lot of draft boards with good post season workouts. A virtual tackling machine, great insticts and determination, he finished the 2004 regular season ranked 7th in the entire country in total tackles with 125.

3. Odell Thurman, 6-1 225, JR, Georgia
Odell is a little under sized and he is only a junior but boy is this guy talented. He recorded 121 tackles last year with 18 tackles for loss. He was a first-team All-SEC selection last year and this year he is first team SEC and a Street & Smith’s and Walter Camp Football foundation honorable mention All-American. Odell is very quick and has excellent diagnostic skills. Odell hits like a ton of bricks and should hear his name called early in the 2005 Draft.

4. Kirk Morrison, 6-3 240, SR, San Diego State
Very hard hitter and excellent tackler. After redshirting his freshman season, he came on like a gang buster. He finish second on the team with 69 tackles, and he's been best defensive player on his team ever since. He has registered an amazing 281 career stops, 31 tackles for loss, five interceptions. He was a First-Team CFN All-America selection in 2003 and a Mountain West Defensive Player of the Year. He would've been a high round draft pick if he had decided to come out last year. Had a great senior campaign, finished with a whopping 72 solo tackles and cemented his position as an elite NFL prospect.

5. Lance Mitchell, 6-3 247, SR, Oklahoma
Lance was by far the best middle linebacker in the nation heading into the 2003 season but suffered a devastating knee injury (tore ACL) and missed the entire year. Lance has all the skills you could ever want, he has prototype size and speed and he is an incredible athlete. He played linebacker and running back in high school, he had one game in high school where he ran for 250 yards and six touchdowns with only 12 attempts! He rushed for more than 3,000 yards as a senior (9.6 yards per carry) and 36 touchdowns. He started out in Junior College and was a first team juco All-American, he recorded 80 tackles, and five sacks, one interception and one fumble return for a touchdown as a sophomore. Oh he is used to winning, he led his juco team to a 24-0 mark during his career with two California state junior college titles and a pair of JC Gridwire national championships. That means he has only lost 3 games since high school. He originally signed with Florida and was attending classes there when it was learned that Southeastern Conference rules would not allow him to participate and subsequently transferred to Oklahoma where he just tore up the NCAA. As a sophomore in 2002 he was voted All-America second team (CNNSI), Big 12 Newcomer of the Year (ESPN.com), All-Big 12 second team (Kansas City Star, Fort Worth Star-Telegram), All-Big 12 honorable mention (AP), consensus Big 12 Defensive Newcomer of the Year. He produced on the field and led his team in tackles with 124; he had more solo (87) and assisted (37) tackles than any other Sooner and was the team leader in tackles for loss with 19 for 46 yards. Lance recorded the seventh best TFL total for a season at OU and equals the highest total ever for a Sooner linebacker. He led the team with four fumbles forced and had more tackles than any junior college transfer in OU history (bettered the 97 posted by Torrance Marshall). All this and he only played one year! OK I will say it now, if Lance returns to pre injury form he will be a top 15 selection in the 2005 NFL Draft.

6. LeRoy Hill, 6-1, 220, SR, Clemson
Hill went from being a bulked up safety excelling on special teams to the one of the best linebackers in the ACC. In 2003 he led his team with 145 tackles and whopping 27 tackles for loss and was named to the All-ACC Team. "Leroy Hill was not on anyone's radar screen at the beginning of last year. He really had been a special teams player his first two years. But, in 2003 he was one of the top linebackers in the nation," said Clemson head coach Tommy Bowden. "Look at all the big plays he made and he was consistent the entire season. Selected as second team All-American from Phil Steele’s 2004 College Football Review. Ranking second in the nation in tackles for loss says a lot about making big plays." Leroy Hill was named the 2004 ACC's Defensive Player of the Year. The senior had a team-high 106 tackles, including 19 for loss, and eight sacks to rank among the ACC and national leaders. He finished with 310 career tackles, 15th-most in Clemson history, despite starting only two seasons. Hill was also named to the 2004 All-ACC First Team. His only weakness is size; he is kind of a tweener and might play outside linebacker or safety in the NFL.

7. Alfred Fincher, 601 240, SR, Connecticut
Speedy tackling machine that seems to have a naturally ability to play the linebacker position. Not the tallest linebacker around, but he fights off blockers and fills the hole incredibly well. He doesn’t just bump you with his shoulder like a lot of these defensive players do these days, but he wraps you up and you don’t break through his tackles. When you watch a Uconn game you hear his name called over and over, he seemingly is in on almost every tackle. Not heavily recruited out of high school, Fincher, a 6-foot-1, 240-pound linebacker from the Boston suburb of Norwood, didn't get an offer from any other I-A schools. "I was looking at Boston College and Syracuse," Fincher said. "They didn't think I was good enough." Fincher is a major sleeper and very experienced, entering the 2004 season He had already appeared in 23 games with 11 starts, made 102 career tackles (65 solo) with 12.5 tackles for loss. This season (2004) he finished ranked 5th in the entire Division I with an amazing 131 total tackles.

8. Boomer Grigsby, 6-1 241, SR, Illinois State
What a small school talent, here is a list of some of his accolades for 2003: Gateway Defensive Player of the Year, 2003 All Gateway first team, Finished second in the voting for the Buck Buchanan Award, IAA.org Defensive Player of the Year, Associated Press First Team All-American, AFCA All-American, The Sports Network First Team All-American, Don Hansen Football Gazette First Team All-American, CSTV I-AA Football All-American, andCollegeSportsReport.com All-American. His only weakness is in pass coverage, he looks a little lost in coverage.

9. Mike Goolsby, 6-4 248, SR Notre Dame
Is entering his fifth season with the Irish. Mike has had some injury problems; he did not see action in 2003 due to a shoulder injury after starting all 13 games in 2002. He has tons of talent and was named to the Butkus Award Watch List in ’03. Lindy's ranked him 12th nationally among inside linebackers at the start of the 2003 season.

10. Liam Ezekiel, 6-1 252, Northeastern
A run plugging force in the middle for the last two years, Liam is preseason candidate for Atlantic 10 Defensive Player of the Year. He is one of the toughest (played the last five weeks of 2002 with a broken thumb) and strongest (400-pound bench) players in NU history. Ezekiel is well on his way to becoming NU’s all-time leading tackler. He is a preseason All-Conference pick and Street & Smith’s All-America selection. He was a tackling machine in 2002 with 145 tackles, which was first in the Atlantic 10 and seventh in the entire nation. He had almost as good of a year in 2003 with 140 tackles and 10 tackles for a loss.

11. James Kinney, 6-1 240, SR, Missouri
Selected as fourth team All-American from Phil Steele’s 2004 College Football Review. Had a great year in 2003, was credited with 147 tackles, 7 tackles for loss and named with Second Team Big 12 honors. James has good speed and he is a strong tackler that is adept at fighting through blocks. James is a hard working blue-collar line backer that should make an awesome pro.

Best of the rest
Adam Seward-UNLV
Robert Rodriguez-UTEP
Justin London-UCLA
Lionel Turner-LSU
Pierre Woods-Michigan
Justin Burks, Arizona St.
Nigel Eldridge, UAB
Travis Havner (Jr.), Washington
Martin Patterson, TCU
Robert McCune, Lousiville
Godwin Akinduro, UTEP
David Bergeron, Stanford
Lance Everson, Houston
Marquelle Stinson, Arizona

Source: Consensus Draft Services (used w/permission)
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Old 01-18-2005, 06:52 AM   #2
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1st round? None of them.
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Old 01-18-2005, 07:03 AM   #3
PatriotofMaine PatriotofMaine is offline
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Not even Crowder should he slip...he probably is athletic enough to play outside too.
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Old 01-18-2005, 07:09 AM   #4
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Barrett Ruud had 143 tackles in 04. Where you getting your stats at cause there ****ed up?
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Old 01-18-2005, 07:12 AM
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Old 01-18-2005, 07:14 AM   #5
Saulbadguy Saulbadguy is offline
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Originally Posted by alanm
Barrett Ruud had 143 tackles in 04. Where you getting your stats at cause there ****ed up?
He is still a piece of crap. I hope to god we don't draft him.
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Old 01-18-2005, 07:20 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by Saulbadguy
He is still a piece of crap. I hope to god we don't draft him.
Yeah... He's only a football player so he'd probably fit in well at New England or Buffalo or the Jets where he'll be a Pro Bowler for years to come. Guess we can't have that on the D side of the ball in KC.
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Old 01-18-2005, 07:27 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by alanm
Yeah... He's only a football player so he'd probably fit in well at New England or Buffalo or the Jets where he'll be a Pro Bowler for years to come. Guess we can't have that on the D side of the ball in KC.
I just think he is overrated. I would have taken Demorrio Williams last year, but not Ruud.

Hell, aside from an occasional good DE, NU doesn't produce good defensive players.
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Old 01-18-2005, 07:29 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by Saulbadguy
I just think he is overrated. I would have taken Demorrio Williams last year, but not Ruud.

Hell, aside from an occasional good DE, NU doesn't produce good defensive players.
Their all over the league Saul.
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Old 01-18-2005, 07:32 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by alanm
Their all over the league Saul.
Name a few that aren't DE's. I know about Mike Rucker and Grant Wistrom. Hell even Chris Kelsay isn't bad, I wish we picked him up. But how about defensive backs? Linebackers? DT's?
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Old 01-18-2005, 07:50 AM   #10
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Ruud is the real deal, IMHO, and I will be ecstatic if he lasts to the Pats on the second round. He's not over-rated...the guy is barely getting the love he deserves out there right now, trust me.
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Old 01-18-2005, 07:53 AM   #11
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Quote:
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Name a few that aren't DE's. I know about Mike Rucker and Grant Wistrom. Hell even Chris Kelsay isn't bad, I wish we picked him up. But how about defensive backs? Linebackers? DT's?
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Old 01-18-2005, 07:54 AM   #12
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Odell Thurman is 3rd on your list? You've been talking him up ever since you got here...
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Old 01-18-2005, 08:18 AM   #13
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The positional rankings are compiled differently than the Top 100, with a different set of inputs. I have talked up Thurman, because I am personally high on him...has nothing to do with the official rankings. My opinion is just one of many...thus "Consensus Draft Services."
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Old 01-18-2005, 08:27 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PatriotofMaine
The positional rankings are compiled differently than the Top 100, with a different set of inputs. I have talked up Thurman, because I am personally high on him...has nothing to do with the official rankings. My opinion is just one of many...thus "Consensus Draft Services."
Which confirms what I said about Thurman earlier -- "Consensus" says he's not (right now) a 1st-round prospect...
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Old 01-18-2005, 08:43 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PatriotofMaine
The positional rankings are compiled differently than the Top 100, with a different set of inputs. I have talked up Thurman, because I am personally high on him...has nothing to do with the official rankings. My opinion is just one of many...thus "Consensus Draft Services."
Either that, or these rankings are from the 2004 preseason.
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