Most experts will say you know what you have in a player once they've been in the league for 3 years. So, I went back and looked at the 2005 draft to see what I would do differenltly knowing what I know now.
The first thing that stood out to me was how bad the first round of the draft was. There were quite a few busts in this one.
Alex Smith #1
Cedric Benson #4
Adam Jones #6
Troy Williamson #7
Mike Williams #10
And those were just the top 10 busts. Take a look at that first round and you'll see more misses than hits.
Which brings me to the next thing I noticed, Dallas did REALLY well in this draft. At #11 we took Demarcus Ware, one of the game's best defensive players. At #20 we took Marcus Spears who, despite not lighting the world on fire, is solid and starting. We found Kevin Burnett in the 2nd round, Marion Barber III and Chris Canty in the 4th round and Jay Ratliff in the 7th.
All of this led me to question, if GM's could do this draft all over again, what would the 1st round look like?
I've gone through and picked out several players from that draft who have at least had some success in the NFL. I'll admit the list isn't comprehensive and, since I can't watch game film on every team, is probably lacking in the OL/DL positions. But I welcome anybody to add to the list if they feel it neccessary.
I've listed their original draft position as follows, Round.Selection. For instance Justin Tuck was taken with the 10th pick in round 3, so he is listed as 3.10 Justin Tuck. Keep in mind there are compensatory selections so there are some odd picks such as 6.39 Derek Anderson.
1.2 Ronnie Brown RB
1.3 Braylon Edwards WR
1.5 Carnell Williams RB
1.8 Antrel Rolle DB
1.9 Carlos Rogers DB
1.11 Demarcus Ware LB
1.12 Shawn Merriman LB
1.13 Jammal Brown OT
1.20 Marcus Spears DE
1.24 Aaron Rogers QB
1.25 Jason Campbell QB
1.27 Roddy White WR
1.28 Luis Castillo DT
1.32 Logan Mankins OG
2.4 Barrett Ruud LB
2.9 Michael Roos OT
2.10 Kevin Burnett LB
2.11 Corey Webster DB
2.12 J.J. Arrington RB
2.13 Lofa Tatupu LB
2.19 Nick Collins DB
2.23 Roscoe Parrish WR
2.30 Bryant McFadden DB
3.1 Frank Gore RB
3.2 Oshiomogho Atogwe DB
3.10 Justin Tuck DE
3.19 Chris Henry WR
4.1 Sean Considine DB
4.5 Kyle Orton QB
4.8 Marion Barber RB
4.9 Brandon Jacobs RB
4.29 Darren Sproles RB
4.31 Chris Canty DE
5.9 Dan Orlovsky
5.10 Trent Cole LB
5.21 Gerald Sensabaugh DB
6.5 Bo Scaife TE
6.39 Derek Anderson QB
7.4 Reynaldo Hill DB
7.10 Jay Ratliff DT
7.16 Matt Cassell QB
For simplicity's sake, I'm just going to put the draft order according to 2008 regular season winning percentage. NOT taking playoffs or trades into consideration.
1. Detroit Lions
2. Kansas City Chiefs
3. St. Louis Rams
4. Cleveland Browns
5. Seattle Seahawks
6. Cincinnati Bengals
7. Jacksonville Jaguars
8. Oakland Raiders
9. Green Bay Packers
10. Buffalo Bills
11. San Francisco 49ers
12. Denver Broncos
13. Houston Texans
14. New Orleans Saints
15. San Diego Chargers
16. Washington Redskins
17. Arizona Cardinals
18. Chicago Bears
19. Dallas Cowboys
20. New York Jets
21. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
22. Philadelphia Eagles
23. Minnesota Vikings
24. Atlanta Falcons
25. Baltimore Ravens
26. Miami Dolphins
27. New England Patriots
28. Carolina Panthers
29. Indianapolis Colts
30. New York Giants
31. Pittsburgh Steelers
32. Tennessee Titans
Hey we're all bored waiting for the draft this weekend, this should be a fun way to waste a few minutes, or at least it was for me!
Here's my picks:
1. Detroit Lions - Aaron Rogers - Lions get their QB of the future
2. Kansas City Chiefs - Demarcus Ware - Chiefs instantly improve their defense
3. St. Louis Rams - Shawn Merriman - Rams can't pass up physical freak of nature
4. Cleveland Browns - Derek Anderson - for some reason their fascination with Anderson continues
5. Seattle Seahawks - Frank Gore - replacement for Shaun Alexander
6. Cincinnati Bengals - Chris Henry - because they're the Bengals
7. Jacksonville Jaguars - Michael Roos - maybe a bit of a reach but this draft is short of good tackles.
8. Oakland Raiders - Roddy White - you know how Crazy Al loves speed
9. Green Bay Packers - Justin Tuck - QB was a temptation here (since Aaron Rogers is already gone) but they go with a pass rusher instead
10. Buffalo Bills - Barrett Ruud - Bills are happy to get underrated LB at this spot.
11. San Francisco 49ers - Brandon Jacobs - tough choice here for the 49ers, lost out on Gore but get a bruiser in Jacobs.
12. Denver Broncos - Marion Barber III - really wanted Jacobs, but are still ecstatic to get Barber here.
13. Houston Texans - Braylon Edwards - Have drafted DL last couple of years, but they give Andre Johnson some help here.
14. New Orleans Saints - Ronnie Brown - pickings are starting to get really slim. Brown is a good fit here.
15. San Diego Chargers - Jay Ratliff - Chargers take an overachiever who can help at several DL positions.
16. Washington Redskins - Matt Cassell - Redskins are jumping in the aisles that Cassell fell to this spot. But is he a one-year wonder?
17. Arizona Cardinals - Lofa Tatupu - Cards continue to try and improve their yound defense.
18. Chicago Bears - Kevin Burnett - Bears take a LB with range and cover skills.
19. Dallas Cowboys - Gerald Sensabaugh - 'Boys really want to trade this pick, but can't. They panic and take the best player at a position of need.
20. New York Jets - Kyle Orton - bit of a surprise, but he's proven he can win in the NFL.
21. Tampa Bay Buccaneers - Darren Sproles - reminds people in Tampa of the Warrick Dunn days.
22. Philadelphia Eagles - Carnell Williams - want to give McNabb weapons on offense but the best WR is taken. Take a risk that Williams will recover from injuries.
23. Minnesota Vikings - Jason Campbell - Vikes wave goodbye to the T. Jackson era.
24. Atlanta Falcons - Logan Mankins - Falcons have good QB/RB combo, need an Oline to protect them.
25. Baltimore Ravens - Luis Castillo - try to clog up the middile for their LB core.
26. Miami Dolphins - J.J. Arrington - Lost Ronnie Brown a few spots earlier. Arrington has some potential.
27. New England Patriots - Carlos Rogers - Patriots get good value here.
28. Carolina Panthers - Chris Canty - versatile DL adds depth.
29. Indianapolis Colts - Trent Cole - go with a pass rusher to compliment Freeny.
30. New York Giants - Corey Webster - Giants take a player who they didn't expect to be available at pick 30.
31. Pittsburgh Steelers - Marcus Spears - not flashy, but dependable.
32. Tennessee Titans - Roscoe Parrish - Instantly becomes best WR on the team (and that's not a good thing)
Ok, I tried to pick these picks as if I were the GM's for this team. Which means I overvalued players, picked for need, or just plain screwed up (cause that's what usually happens). Anyways, you may not be smarter for having read and/or participated in this, but at least you are now a few minutes closer to draft day!