Was eyeing both Beckner and Kaitola in the late rounds. Good write up!
by Raven Hawk at Sun May 28, 2023 01:52 PM
After a break, The Best Damn Draft Review (trademark still pending) is back!
1.8 S Timothy "LEEEROYYY" Jenkins
The Santa Cruz secondary is starting a massive rebuild as both long-time starting CBs and starting FS are gone from last season. As luck would have it, the player CC wanted the most in the top of the draft somehow fell to him. Jenkins was an all around stud at Rice earning First Team All-Conference USA honors and despite his slightly smaller size, he wasn't shy sticking his nose in to stop the run.
1.17 RB Devin Castillo
While this wasn't actually a draft pick, trading this pick straight up for one of the top RB in the league was a massive upgrade and definitely worth noting in the draft review. This trade allowed the team to move on from RB Luis Morton, who was hot and cold in his tenure with the Privateers.
2.12 G Peter Williams
Taking the in-state kid who went to California Univ, and was a life-long Privateer fan was one of the most heart warming stories of the draft. This was a deep Guard draft and with Raisor getting a bit long in the tooth, a replacement was needed and this PAC 12 All-Conference road grader stud was an easy choice especially now with Castillo in the backfield. In a surprise move, CC had Peter's dad go to the podium to Peter's surprise and announce the pick. A very special moment indeed for the young man and his family.
2.16 CB Robbie Lincoln
In one the biggest shocks of the draft, surefire 1st rounder Robbie Lincoln fell into the second round and CC wasted no time getting the pick in as he went back to back PAC 12 picks. As stated earlier, the Privateers secondary is in a big rebuild and Lincoln is going to be a key piece of it. Robbie led the PAC 12 in INTs and pass defenses for the last 2 seasons, so the ball hawking skills are there. Questions about his conditioning ability and rather lax run defense support at times came up to cause the fall, but CC didn't seem to mind at all.
3.19 CB Alonzo Daileader
Why look, it's another defensive back! Yes the rebuild is on and CC decided to hammer away at the secondary position this draft. Daileader is a bit on the short side but had a great combine and his production at North Carolina was stellar. He always found himself in the right place at the right time which was what stood out the most on film. In North Carolina's Cheez-It Bowl win vs Oklahoma, Alonzo had a pick 6, a forced fumble and 3 pass defensed in the big upset win. That performance showed he could be big time and solidified his pick here.
4.18 FB Walt Robbins
While scouting Jenkins at Rice, the team notice that their FB Robbins showed a great deal of potential. With getting Castillo, the team realized it needed to up their blocking game. First was G Williams, and now they get another blocker and special teams player to help out. Given that the Privateers didn't have a FB on the roster, that also played a role in the selection.
5.17 P TJ Burnett
Back to the PAC 12 and Stanford with the Ray Guy Award winning punter. TJ did not participate in the Combine as he had an emergency come up. Turns out that emergency was the final campaign session of his year-long DnD group. Punters, what are you gonna do with them? CC is a DnD player as well and completely understood. The on-field product is stellar so nothing more needs to be said.
5.23 DT Randal Bernard
Looking to help shore up the interior run defense to help Bernstein get some breathers as well, the Privateers look to the 6'3" 313lb behemoth from Vandy. Santa Cruz gave up too much on the ground last year and need to get some stops. Plus Randal can contribute on ST, which is always a plus.
6.16 T Rex Lyle
The T position has seen it's ups and downs and last year was a down year for incumbents Rodgers and Aneigh. CC saw a prototypical sized OL with some potential and decided some competition was needed in camp. Rex was a mauler in the run game for Baylor and with Castillo now on board, the run blocking is going to be more of a key than ever before.
7.15 DE Freddie Mahoney
A pass-rushing specialist out of South Carolina, the Privateers hope that he can help what looks to be a poor pass rushing unit this coming season. Freddie is a big boy at 6'6" 293lbs, but hopefully could still give some solid pressure when called on.
7.19 FL Abraham Salo
Abraham has all the tools to be a good WR. He runs great routes on film, able to get separation and seems to not drop the ball. But for some reason, he just hasn't been able to put it all together yet. CC hopes that the veteran leadership and coaching staff can get him to get over that hump.
2067 Las Vegas Rounders Draft Review
Jaylen Donaldson CB North Carolina
5'11" 190 lbs
Las Vegas' secondary has been showing its age since its last championship and it was time to infuse young blood behind the developing front seven. Donaldson's record-tying 20 career interceptions seems impressive considering Dre Bly's record has stood for almost 70 years, but this 20-year-old did it in just 2 seasons. After notching 10 interceptions each of the past 2 seasons, Donaldson fell short of matching Bly's single-season record but inserted his name next to Bly's in the career record book. Questions remain about his ability to provide enough run support at the next level but his ability to generate turnovers is hard to ignore behind Vegas' pass rush threat.
Willie Covington S Georgia Tech
6'0" 204 lbs
What do 2067 1st-round WR's Lukas Cecrle and Bart Anagnostis have in common? Both were shut down by Covington. Georgia Tech doubled Cecrle relentlessly in their blowout win on the road last fall, but it was Covington on the back side of the bracket coverage that made all of the big plays, denying Cecrle on contested balls he was known for converting. In Miami's embarrassing homecoming loss, it was Covington who was deployed in press coverage all day against Anagnostis, limiting him to just 4 catches on 15 targets in Anagnostis' worst performance of the season. It will be interesting to see how Vegas manages to get the Yellow Jacket into the mix amid the crowd they've accumulated at Safety.
Jonah Thomason QB Syracuse
6'3" 222 lbs
It's another 3rd round and another QB drafted by the Rounders. The only difference this year is Harvey McKnight is not leading the quarterback room. That honor goes to last year's 3rd rounder, Dustin Roush. The club named Roush their starter at the end of the press conference announcing McKnight's retirement. It was hardly a vote of confidence since he was the only QB on the roster. Many have proclaimed this class as one of the weakest the CFL has seen in decades, so expectations are not high for any of the 2067 signal callers. Thomason was productive the last 2 seasons as the Orange's starter, but as a 5th year senior his composure was expected. The main concern is Thomason's inclination to run when his first two reads don't pan out. He will need to learn to make all of his reads, as he simply doesn't have the speed to run away from defenders like he grew accustomed to in college.
Ed Hutton C Buffalo
6'2" 288 lbs
TurfToe seemed excited to land Hutton in the 5th round and much like Hutton's transition from high school to college, his size likely had a lot to do with it. Despite starting in the high school All-American Bowl, it was Buffalo who gave Hutton a chance where he was able to add some weight to his 6'2" frame. Hutton was also an alternate for the East-West Shrine Bowl last season yet he was never really in the discussion with the top-rated Centers in this draft. Hutton stands a good chance of seeing significant 1st team reps this season, which is not typical for most 5th round selections.
Charlie Bills WR Marshall
6'0" 197 lbs
Bills is a raw prospect from Marshall where he showed natural ability to extend routes with yards after the catch. He's a raw athlete that has good hands and decent speed that could develop into a special talent at the next level given the time to develop and good coaching. Bills should be good enough to make the Rounders' 53-man roster but he will have to earn each and every snap on Sundays.
Lionel Kaitola ILB Temple
6'0" 228 lbs
Kaitola was a one-man wrecking crew for the Owl's last season. Despite his smallish frame, he captained his team's defense from the middle linebacker position. His athleticism and high energy allowed him to lead his team in both tackles and pass defenses. The Rounders' staff watched Kaitola work out as an inside linebacker at Temple's pro day but saw a safety running LB drills. Whether it was Kaitola skipping the combine or low attendance by CFL scouts at Temple's pro day, Vegas was excited to see Kaitola last until the 6th round, where they think they found a CFL safety. Time will tell.
Abel Beckner RB Iowa
5'9" 208 lbs
The Rounders' 2066 rushing attack featured 2 thousand yard rushers and with McKnight's retirement, there's unlikely to be a move away from the running game. One thing the Rounders rushing attack lacked was speed to the outside. Despite the war room's affinity for runners Joel Sallee (long gone at 1.25) and John Shannon (considered at 1.25), nothing really piqued their interest until the 7th round, when Iowa workhorse, Abel Beckner, was still available. Beckner grades out as borderline 3rd string/practice squad guy, but he will get a chance in Vegas due to his ability to find an extra gear outside and his ability to find the hole in a zone rushing offense. His competition will be undrafted free agents and not incumbents Finley and Gredzinski. If he does well he will earn the right to suit up ion Sundays, but not much more.
Was eyeing both Beckner and Kaitola in the late rounds. Good write up!
by Raven Hawk at Sun May 28, 2023 01:52 PM
Shreveport, LA (AP) - The Shreveport Pride look to come out of their self-acclaimed rebuilding period in 2067. Their wallets are open and cash is being spent. Names of the past have been left in the past - familiar names to the Pride faithful like Nolan Scott, Jared Boyle, Kaleb Olson, Jim Ellison, and Hayden Drake. New names fill the headlines of the Shreveport Times - names like Junior Tripp, Dylan Carlson, Travis Francis, and Dixon Johnston. Johnston was the big news coming in for the Pride, signing a massive 4-Year $136M deal with Shreveport.
Most notably, the Pride have their first new Head Coach in 16 seasons. Edgar Farrior, beloved to the city, was given his walking papers in favor of Irving Arnold who spent his last 17 seasons skippering the Brooklyn Brawlers, with whom the Pride have had extenisive run-ins, tet-a-tet with Farrior. Arnold held the playoff advantage winning 2 of 3 over Farrior and the Pride. The two split the regular season games with 6 wins a piece, but Farrior hold the mantle of the only one of the two to win a Championship, avoiding the Brawlers in the playoffs in 2055, who missed the playoffs that year, with only 9 wins.
Arnold scrapped the existing coaching staff (with the exception of Trainer, Leland Devine) and replaced them. At Offensive Coordinator he hired Matthew Nakis, the OC from the Arkansas Razorbacks who most notably developed New Orleans' QB Johnny Reid. Nakis brings with him a Texarkana brand of Spread offense that features two tight ends and a side of grits. At Defensive Coordinator, Arnold brought in Damon Hardy, who runs the 4-3 Under. Local critics believe Hardy is filling a gap until Arnold can find the correct fit for the Pride. Hardy was hardly serviceable in Honolulu, but he understands the base 4-3 under, which seems to be the only real qualification he has. At 42-years old, the new Assistant Coach for Shreveport, Patrick O'Neal, looks to be a development project.
Other significant additions to the Pride this season include DE Adrian Strong and SS Damien Wannstedt (acquired in trades with Boston), legendary DE Chester Anagnostis, journeyman QB Mickey Beauregard, veteran CB Joel Lauher, and veteran K Kent Murphy.
Here is a review of the Pride's Draft Picks:
1.04 - LT Kelvin "Beefcake" Barrett
The Kansas Jayhawk joins Shreveport where he is expected to play Left Tackle opposite of Eduardo Wills. With Junior Tripp taking 48 sacks last season, Offensive Line appeared to be a priority for the Pride. Coach Arnold noted that they needed to add a little "Beefcake" to the front line and thus the mantle was placed upon Kelvin Barrett. Barrett is known as a powerhouse with little issue blocking for the run or in pass situations. However, scouts have criticized his endurance noting that he may tire out on longer drives.
2.06 - SS Burt Wooden
With Hayden Drake departing Shreveport to take up residence in Omaha, the Pride had to prioritize the Safety position in the offseason. In addition to drafting Wooden in the second round, the Pride signed Ezra Marriott from the Arrowheads and traded for Damien Wannstedt with the Blizzard. The Wooden name is revered along the banks of the Red River as Burt is the youngest son of Wally "Deep" Wooden (with his third wife, Veronica). Though none of Wally's other children have taken up the mantle of professional football, Burt has thrived. As an oversized Safety at NC State, he was notorious for his ability to walkup up to the line of scrimmage and function as an additional linebacker in short-yardage situations. Expect to see Wooden slide back and forth from linebacker to safety depending on what the situation dictates. He also seems to possess some of his daddy's kick return skills.
3.05 - WR Floyd Lambuth
Another mediocre wide receiver to add to the mediocre WR corps. Lambuth, though adequately sized to play split end, will not test any cornerbacks with his speed. Expect to see him line up in the slot in Nakis' new spread offense to take advantage of his route running and ball catching skills.
4.04 - G Roman Brown
The early retirement of G Robbie Plesko left a big hole on the left side of the line for Shreveport. Shreveport hopes that Roman Brown is the man to fill that hole, but it is apparent their confidence is not fully given as they appear to have employed some contingency plans later in the draft (Shawn Akaka) and in Late Free Agency (Johnnie Owens, B.J. Kirk). Brown is regarded as having good technique, even though his physical skills may not be up to the task.
5.06 - TE David Mast
OC Matthew Nakis describes his spread offense as "Two Tight Ends and a side of grits." David Mast looks to be the grits in this version of the spread offense. He his a pure pass catching tight end. He can stretch the field down the middle, causing coverage mismatches with linebackers and safeties. Alternatively, he can line up wide and cause size mismatches with cornerbacks. We'll see how much playing time he gets behind journeymen Wesson and Morris who start the preseason ahead of Mast on the depth chart.
6.05 - CB Rich "Redline" Russ
Russ got his nickname "Redline" at Syracuse because he is always going full speed. His man-to-man skills are suspect, but he can line up in a deep zone and destroy receivers coming into his zone. These skills also will translate to the position that he is most likely to play on special teams: gunner.
7.04 - G Shawn "Shikaka" Akaka
Rumor has it that the Shreveport war room was considering Akaka with the same pick that they grabbed Roman Brown with. If this is true, they had to be ecstatic when Akaka was still available at 7.04. Dubbed "Shikaka" by his team mates at the Air Force Academy in reference to "Ace Venture: When Nature Calls" Lieutenant Akaka will be serving in the Air Force Reserves while also trying to secure a spot on the Pride's 53-man roster.
We will do a mock draft and go over draft strategy for anyone who has questions.
Great I cant delete. That was my plan. Sorry
by BGBob at Wed May 10, 2023 01:24 PM
I just posted and was able to delete - delete tested good.
by TurfToe at Wed May 10, 2023 01:51 PM
I fully expected Jenkins to be the best of this list but it appears Castillo stole this one.
by TurfToe at Sun May 28, 2023 06:22 PM