Monday, May 3, 2010

Monday Morning Sentimonies: Draft Thoughts

Despite my questionable typing skills and much publicized hatred of mornings, I yet again did my Annual Live Draft Day Blogging. Despite the overwhelming odds against me I’m proud to say that it actually went pretty good overall. There’s a few people I need to thank: Media Consultant for helping me out with the commentary, those of you who followed along and added your own comments and most importantly my girlfriend for brewing the coffee.

There’s also one person I should probably apologize to... Tim Cronk. Turns out that appointing him as my arbitrary player to support this year turned out to jinx him so bad he didn’t even get drafted. My bad.

Now onto the draft results themselves...

Interesting fact, by actually making a first round pick this year Taman doubled the amount of first round selections he has made since 2001.

While it was obvious and decided a long time ago, I still love taking Shomari Williams. He’s a talented, versatile and athletically gifted player who is the perfect fit in the Etcheverry defense. Plus the fact that he’s already signed a 3 year deal shows a big commitment to the Riders meaning we should be able to get full value for the selection. There were plenty of great prospects available in the draft but Williams was by far the player that best met our needs. Let’s just hope he pans out more like our last first overall pick (Scott Schultz) and not like the first overall pick before that (Tyson St. James).

I can’t say the same for the 2nd round selection of Jordan Sisco. Don’t get me wrong, Sisco is a talented player and one of the better receivers in this draft class. It’s not that he’s a bad player, it’s just that I really don’t like using an 8th overall pick on a position that we are already stacked at. Could have made better use of the pick than adding a 6th Canadian receiver in my opinion. I guess Taman is determined to continue the “Buy Saskatchewan” agenda that the previous regime began... or too unfamiliar with how to actually scout to come up with anything better.

Our first pick in round 5, Patrick Neufeld, was a decent use of a late pick. He’s from the U of S which is famous for the OL it produces. He’ll need time to develop but he’s only 21 and has a year of university left . A young, big player with some potential... that’s pretty good for a 5th rounder.

Same goes for our other 5th rounder DL Bruno Lapointe. His draft stocked dropped due to injuries throughout his playing career (makes me wonder why the Eskimos didn’t covet him). If he can stay healthy he is talented enough to develop into a contributor. A riskier pick but again, in the 5th round that’s about as good as you can expect.

Other random thoughts on the draft...
- BC, a team who historically drafts very well, made some questionable decisions. They are in need of Canadian depth now but for some reason used their first 2 picks on players who won’t be available until next if at all. Watkins and Gore are extremely talented but the Lions had immediate needs they chose not to address

- Montreal drafted very well but drafted a record low number of French players. Locals won’t like that... though they are probably currently too busy burning cop cars after the latest Habs’ victory to notice too much right now.

- After telling us all week that they weren’t desperate enough to draft Rob Maver in round 1, the Stamps did just that. They then addressed the holes in their O-line by drafting players with a year of eligibility left (one of which is likely to be drafted by the NFL next year). In the process, Hufnagel managed to make Maciocia and Taman look like good by comparison... which is no easy accomplishment.

- Never thought I’d see the day where Buono and Hufnagel were making the most questionable decisions.

- Winnipeg must have an internal policy against first round picks because they seem to go out of their way to avoid them.

- Toronto surprisingly made really good choices with their many picks... some players that can step in immediately and some future prospects. The only real mistake they made was using a second round pick on Grant Shaw (a kicker/DB) which was way too high. Guess it wouldn’t be the CFL without at least one dumb Argo move.

Yesterday also saw the end of 2 important eras... the end of Jamie the Juggernaut Boreham’s stay in Saskatchewan and the end of Scott Gordon’s career. Given the importance of both these individuals to the Rider Prophet I will have a tribute to each of them tomorrow.

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