Chat with Todd McShay
Welcome to SportsNation! On Friday, Scouts Inc.'s NFL draft expert Todd McShay stops by to chat about the draft.
McShay joined ESPN in 2006 as a football analyst, providing in-depth scouting information on college football players across the country, including the nation's top NFL Draft prospects. He is a year-round contributor across ESPN's multiple platforms, including SportsCenter, ESPN Radio, ESPN.com, ESPN The Magazine, ESPNU and ESPNEWS.
Send your questions now and join McShay Friday at noon ET!
Todd McShay (12:02 PM)
Thanks for joining on Tiger Woods Day. It's been a while since I've chatted. Good to be back. Plenty to discuss; from the all-star games wrapping up to our recent position overviews on SportsCenter (bizarro Draft Lab) to the upcoming NFL Scouting Combine. Let's hit it...
At this point in the process, do you think any of the 1-2nd round projected WRs can improve their stock at the combine? If so, who? I feel like Golden Tate definitely can with a good workout.
Todd McShay (12:07 PM)
Dez Bryant is locked in as the first WR and should be gone in the first 12 picks. After Bryant is where it gets interesting. A. Benn isn't going to wow NFL brass at the combine but he's a good player. If he runs in the low 4.5's and has good agility drill times, I think he's the second WR off the board -- late in Round 1. I think two WR's that will improve their stock are Mike Williams, who quit the Syr team but is supremely talented, Texas' Jordan Shipley, faster than people think, and Ohio's Taylor Price, who doesn't have great production but is a bigger target expected to run in the 4.3's
Do you think Earl Thomas will fall Down so the Texans can get him if not besides Taylor mays who will the Texans go for?
Todd McShay (12:10 PM)
I'm a big fan of Earl Thomas. I have never thought there's a big gap between him and Eric Berry -- and I think Eric Berry is a top 10 pick. Thomas could fall to Houston for two reasons -- his lack of size and the position he plays (DS). I wouldn't take Mays at No. 20 if Berry and Thomas are off the board. I would look at others like RB CJ Spiller, DTs Dan Williams or Brian Price, or possibly even a CB like Boise State's Kyle Wilson.
Phoenix (Lanai City)
Hi Todd, if the Dolphins don't get a WR in the first round, who could they get in the 2nd round?
Todd McShay (12:13 PM)
Unless Dez Bryant falls to Miami at 12, it should look to fill another need in Round 1 and look for WR help in Round 2 -- as you are indicating, Phoenix. Plenty of Round 2 WR talent, including GT's Demaryius Thomas (he could fall now because of the injury), Kansas' Dezmon Briscoe and ND's Golden Tate
Ronnie James (Omaha)
How many 3-4 nose tackles do you expect to go in the first two rounds? Lots of teams seem to need one.
Todd McShay (12:18 PM)
Good call. It's a coveted position right now due to much demand and insufficent supply. The top two DT's -- Suh and McCoy -- are not suited for that role. I think Tennessee's Dan Williams is capable, but that's not the only role he can play. The next best two are UNC's Cam Thomas (fast rising, possibly 2nd round -- watched him more on tape this week and think he's vastly underrated) and Alabama's Terrence Cody (overrated but will come off the board in Round 2 because of the supply-demand issues).
Todd McShay (12:20 PM)
Sorry. I just sent out my first Tweet ever (McShay13). I'm clearly not making a smooth adjustment to the whole social media thing...
Mike Mac (Brookline, MA)
Who uses more hair product? Steve Lavin or your boy Kiper?
Todd McShay (12:21 PM)
I would go with Lavin. If you've noticed, Mel has sort of chilled on the gel thing recently. I keep needling him that he's holding out for a "gel deal". Not sure the real reason why, though???
Any coners the Colts that can grab in RDs 3-5 that may also be a capable return man?
Todd McShay (12:24 PM)
Good question, Awayne. This is turning out to be a much deeper CB class than originally anticipated. There are a whole bunch of capable corners that should be available in the third round range -- Michigan's Donovan Warren, Iowa's Amari Spievey, Alabama's Javier Arenas and Oklahoma's Dominique Franks are just a few.
History has shown that if the Steelers fall in love with someone (e.g. Polamalu, Santonio),they'll trade up to go get that player. Based on your recent mock, you've got McClain at 12, Haden at 13, Iupati at 16, which would appear to be players they may like. Do you think it's likely that they'd try to trade up to get one of those-type players, if available around that area? Or do they stick with the best OT, NT, S, etc. available at 18? Thanks for all the draft work - definitely helps fill the void in the offseason.
Todd McShay (12:27 PM)
That's true, Mike. They are certainly a team to watch for trades. I think they're committed to upgrading their OL. So if they move up my guess is it will be for a guy like Oklahoma OT Trent Williams or Iupati. There's going to be an early run on OL. A lot like a 2008 when guys like Duane Brown and Sam Baker got over-drafted late in Round 1. If the Steelers want to avoid over-drafting an OL at 18, they may need to move up a few spots.
Who do you think the Cleveland Browns will take with the #7 pick in the draft. I like Eric Berry out of Tennessee or I would take Joe haden
Todd McShay (12:30 PM)
Two good choices. I also wouldn't rule out DE/OLB Jason Pierre-Paul at this point. Dez Bryant might be in the mix as well, but I don't like drafting WR's that high and Cleveland just spent a pair of second round picks on the position last year.
Todd McShay (12:31 PM)
I'm also interested to see how the Browns handle the QB situation this off-season. Doesn't look like a position it will address in the draft -- at least in Round 1 -- but they've got to get that spot figured out.
Any chance the Packers can get Spiller to fall to them? If not, do they possibly take Javhid Best?
Todd McShay (12:35 PM)
There's a chance. GB picks at 23. Not a lot of teams in the RB market and the RB position has really been devalued in the NFL recently. If it's not Spiller at No. 23, though, GB needs to go in a different direction. Ryan Mathews is a possibility but there are plenty of talented backs to draft in the second-third round range -- Best has too many durability issues to draft in Round 1. Ole Miss' Dexter McCluster, GT's Jonathan Dwyer and Tennessee's Montario Hardesty should all be available in the second round.
Todd McShay (12:36 PM)
Depending who is available, GB would be better off taking an OT (like Bruce Campbell) or a CB (like Kyle Wilson) in Round 1, and then adress RB in the 2nd or 3rd
Marques (Utica, NY )
Do the Jets try to get even better on defense, where they're already good, or bolster a feeble passing attack? Do they put everything into becoming a dominant defense or try and be balanced?
Todd McShay (12:40 PM)
That's a great philosophical question that teams wrestle with on a yearly basis. In this case, I tend to lean towards protecting the investment in Mark Sanchez. He needs weapons if he's going to be successful. I think the team needs to bring in a legitimate threat at WR -- ideally a free agent but possibly a guy like Arrelious Benn or Demaryius Thomas late in the first round. Thomas is injured but he might be a better fit because they need someone that can stretch the field vertically to open up room for the other possession receivers on that team, as well as the run game.
Todd McShay (12:41 PM)
The Jets also need to continue to add to the depth of their offensive line via the draft. Depending on the moves they make in FA, I could easily see the Jets using three of their top four picks on offense -- specifically pass catchers and OL.
What teams would be the best fit for Patrick Robinson?
Todd McShay (12:44 PM)
A team that doesn't need to start him immediately and can work him into the rotation as a sub-package corner. He is as talented as any corner in this draft (aside from Haden). Robinson is just so inconsistent. His technique needs a lot of work and the team that drafts him must believe in its DB's coach, because Robinson needs motivating as much as he needs refining. I'm told there are days he's a great worker and days that he seems completely disinterested... that scares me when we start talking about him as a first-round pick.
Todd McShay (12:46 PM)
There are a bunch of teams in the market for CB's in the first two rounds though. Baltimore, Atlanta, Cleveland and San Fran are just a few off the top of my head. As I said before, this is shaping up as a surprisingly deep class, too. Haden is a top-10 talent. After him, Kyle Wilson (Boise St), Robinson, Kareem Jackson (Ala), Devin McCourtey (Rut), Perrish Cox (Okl St) and possibly Chris Cook (UVA) could all come off the board in the first two rounds.
chris (New Orleans)
Todd, give me a few guys to watch in the combine
Todd McShay (12:51 PM)
This is a unique year because so many of the top prospects have things to prove off the field. There will be a lot of buzz about the medical reports when it comes to QB's Bradford, Clausen and Colt McCoy, RB Jahvid Best and TE's Jermaine Gresham and Rob Gronkowski, and even WR Eric Decker (vastly underrated by the way). There will also be a lot of buzz about the interview process with the likes of WR's Dez Bryant and Mike Williams (Syr), DE's Carlos Dunlap (Fla) and Greg Hardy (Ole Miss) and ILB Navarro Bowman (PSU).
Todd McShay (12:55 PM)
And obviously throw in Oregon RB LaGarrette Blount to the interesting interview mix... But in terms of guys that I expect to have big combine showings, here's a list of a few: Maryland OT Bruce Campbell, WVU QB Jarrett Brown, Ohio WR Taylor Price, Ole Miss RB Dexter McCluster, Florida TE Aaron Hernandez, Rutgers CB Devin McCourtey and Texas DS Earl Thomas
Regardless of who else is on the board, if Okung is still there at 6, how could the Hawks pass on him?
Todd McShay (12:57 PM)
I don't think they should pass on the best available OT. It might be Okung. Or it might be Anthony Davis (if Sea is comfortable with his maturity/work ethic). Some teams are in love with Iowa's Brian Bulaga, but I think Okung and Davis are the top two OT's and there's a good chance one of those two should be availabe at No. 6.
Todd McShay (12:59 PM)
It's safe to say the top 2 DTs -- McCoy and Suh -- will be off the board in the top five. That leaves three picks for Seattle to worry about. Tampa is likely going defense -- DS Berry or possibly a DE Pierre-Paul or Derrick Morgan. The concerning spots are No. 4 (Washington) and No. 5 (KC) because Washington has similar needs at OT and QB, and KC is in the market for an OT, as well.
Hayden (Logan, Utah)
who is the hardest hitter in the draft? Bowman?
Todd McShay (1:02 PM)
I could see them taking TE Jermaine Gresham at No. 21 but my gut tells me they'll wait until Round 2 for a TE like Gronkowski, Anthony McCoy or Hernandez. MLB is a need but Alabama's McClain will likely be gone by No. 21. Then it becomes a search for the best available player at WR, DS or defensvie line. It might be Texas DS Earl Thomas.
Nick (Rockport, MA)
Todd please answer a question for a fellow from North Shore Massachusetts!! Who are the playmakers (offense or defense) you think the Patriots should target from their picks in the first 2 rounds?
Todd McShay (1:06 PM)
Of course. Here are some names: WR's A. Benn in Round 1 (but I doubt it) and Golden Tate, Damian Williams (USC), Jordan Shipley (Texas) and Reed (Utah -- could be a steal) in the next few rounds. At CB, I think Kyle Wilson, Devin McCourtey or Kareem Jackson (Saban player) would be great fits late in the first round or in the next couple of rounds look for them possibly targeting UVA's Chris Cook or Alabama's Javier Arenas.
Todd McShay (1:07 PM)
Great stuff today. Thanks for all the questions. Can't believe we got so many with the attention on Tiger Woods today. Sorry we could only get to a handful. Be well, SN. Talk to you soon.