Is Bruce Matthews the best ninth pick ever in the NFL draft?
Mel Kiper thinks so.
Kiper ran down his all-time bests in each of the top 10 slots in this Insider piece. I got the special pass code approving me to share this piece:
Greatest No. 9 Pick: Bruce Matthews, 1983
Runner-up: Jerome Brown
You can see the Matthews family legacy on display to this day, but it'll be hard for any heirs to match what Bruce did. A member of 14 Pro Bowl teams, his record of consistency and longevity is the stuff of legends. Matthews was Peyton Manning before Manning ever arrived, starting 229 straight games and playing in 296 games before he finally retired in 2001. Brown was a gifted defensive player and a wonderful personality that we lost too soon.
Matthews just left a two-year stint as an assistant offensive line coach for the Houston Texans to become offensive line coach on the staff of Mike Munchak, his close friend and another Hall of Fame offensive lineman picked in the top 10, eighth in 1982.
Munchak is a runner up for Kiper at No. 8, where Ronnie Lott was the choice.