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March 18, 3:00 PM ET
Chat with Tim Graham

Tim Graham
  (2:59 PM)

Good afternoon. Hope everybody had a great St. Patrick's Day and a blemish-free day one of the NCAA tournament.

Tim's Alpaca (via mobile)

Dude, how can you be chatting when the NCAA tourney is going on? I should lock you out.

Tim Graham
  (3:00 PM)

I demand you open your books.

Gim Traham (breadocide@gmail.com)

If you were Jeff Ireland and you were on the clock with the 15th pick, who would you take? Ingram? Reach for a QB? Pouncey? Consider all options, even trading back to recoup a 2nd round pick. Is there anyone you see being able to help the hapless Dolphins that seems like a 'sure thing'?

Tim Graham
  (3:02 PM)

I'm not a huge proponent of drafting running backs in the first round. Quality runners are available all sorts of places, and they're not as integral as they used to be. If Mike Pouncey still is on the board, that would be my pick. The Dolphins need to cement their interior line.

Reasonable (Miami)

If the Dolphins pick DL first this year, can I officially be bored?

Tim Graham
  (3:02 PM)

I heard they're looking closely at a player named Jar-Kendall Starksfordrick.

Cameron (Greenville,NC)

Are you chatting and watching the tourney at the same time? Multitasking perhaps?

Tim Graham
  (3:04 PM)

Perhaps ... We'll see how many questions come in before I determine how quickly I pull the plug today. In addition to the tourney, I'm guessing a lot of folks are licking their St. Paddy's wounds.

Steve (Livermore, CA)

Why doesn't Mike Tannenbaum get more credit for his excellent drafts with the Jets. In the 5 drafts he's run, he's added cornerstones D'Brick, Mangold, Revis, David Harris, Keller, Sanchez, and Greene - not to mention quite a few other contributors. I'll put that group up against anyone else's haul over the last 5 years.

Tim Graham
  (3:05 PM)

As much as Jets fans might want to forget him, Eric Mangini had a lot of say in those drafts. But I agree with you: Mike Tannenbaum has overseen a fine operation.

Tim Graham
  (3:07 PM)

Here's a story I wrote on that subject last year: http://www.espn.go.com/blog/nflnation/post?id=23051

WyattBurp (Chicago)

Miami has new coaches: DC Mike Noland and OC Brian Daboll. What are your expectation of them for the season (if we have one)?

Tim Graham
  (3:08 PM)

After two weeks of awful questions with flawed premises, I wonder about your authenticity.

JR (Tampa Bay)

Tim, how does the lack of a CBA affect trading draft picks? I know that Belichick likes trading down every year, so it'll be interesting to see how he reacts.

Tim Graham
  (3:09 PM)

Picks may be traded, but not players.

Will (Modesto, Ca)

Why is the Mr. Goodell telling the players to come back to negotiations? When it seems to me like the owners are the ones being shady about the showing the books thing, if they are really not making money then prove it to us all right? It really makes me sad that they are ruining one of the best sports of this day over money. Something that we as fans make them a lot of and most of us don't make a lot of yet we still buy their product. The NFL should take 4 of that 9 billion and give it to charity and tell the players and owners "There now cry about not making money.". Thanks and keep up the good work!

Tim Graham
  (3:11 PM)

When you interviewed for your job, did you get to see the books? I'm a big union guy (in general, not specifically the NFLPA), but I don't think workers have any right to see the books. Owners don't even want other owners to see their teams' books.

WyattBurp (Chicago)

Don't understand your response. Someone must be using my name. I'm only interested in getting answers to questions, OK?

Tim Graham
  (3:12 PM)

Mike Nolan (not Noland) was Miami's defensive coordinator last year.

Tim Graham
  (3:13 PM)

And this is what you asked last week: "Afternoon, Tim! I'm a Detroit Lions fan (in the wrong city). The Dolphins have a new OC Brian Daboll from the Vikes. What's your opinion of him?"

Tim Graham
  (3:13 PM)

And this: "Hey Tim! What do you think DC Mike Nolan will do with the Dolphin's defense?"

Ed Hochuli (Chat Ref)

Tim, I think you should just end the chat right there. The clock reads 0:00 and you scored on the last play.

Jeremy (Louisville, KY)

Mark Schlereth said it best. "It is awkward for employees to see owners' books, but the owners asked them for a partnership, and in a partnership you see one anothers financial information."

Tim Graham
  (3:15 PM)

That's a good point. The owners do come off as hypocrites in that regard. But they don't have any obligation to divulge their financials.

Doc Holliday (Tombstone)

Come on, now, Wyatt. Leave Mr. Graham alone. *cough cough*

Will (Rochester)

With you suggesting Steve Johnson is better than Lee Evans do you think Johnson will start seeing more coverage from the opposing teams top corner?

Tim Graham
  (3:18 PM)

Lee Evans still must be accounted for because he's such a deep threat who can blow the top off a defense. I don't see defenses leaving him in one-on-one situations. That'll help Steve Johnson continue to thrive on the other side.

Ralph Wilson (Buffalo)

Tim, I'm got an inside scoop for you. We're going to use replacement players. I'm tabbing you and that Pete Kuharsky fella to man the safety positions. I'll FedEx a contract this afternoon...

Tim Graham
  (3:19 PM)

That's an unfortunate strategy because owners can't use replacement players when they're locking out the union. Replacements can be used only in a strike situation.

James (WNY)

Tim, how about a hockey question.There's a lot of optimism here in western NY with the new ownership of the Buffalo Sabres, do you share in that? Give me your odds of at least one Stanely Cup in the next 5 years?

Tim Graham
  (3:21 PM)

The enthusiasm from new owner Terry Pegula will make the team much more interesting when it comes to offseason and deadline acquisitions. That element always was missing in the past. The owners' deep pockets also create some excitement, but the Sabres still have to operate under a salary cap. They still need a lot of help on the ice, particularly at center.

Ted Striker (Cockpit)

McCargo worse than Maybin? Surely, you can't be serious!

Tim Graham
  (3:21 PM)

I mean it. And stop calling me Shirley.

Rango (Gore Verbinski's Condo)

What would you say the biggest needs are for the AFC East teams and where do you peg the likelihood they can or will be adequately addressed in the draft?

Tim Graham
  (3:23 PM)

That could take a while to answer, but I did write a story on team needs within the AFC East: http://espn.go.com/blog/afceast/post/_/id/25970/afc-east-draft-season-who-needs-what

Tim Graham
  (3:24 PM)

Most of them can be addressed in the draft, but free agency has to play a role. For instance, will the Jets need a receiver? With Santonio Holmes, Braylon Edwards and Brad Smith not under contract, it's hard to predict now.

Scott (Northglenn, CO)

Tim Graham chat...looks like I picked a bad day to stop sniffing glue.

Tim Graham
  (3:25 PM)

No, I don't think I'll ever get over Macho Grande.

Will (Rochester)

Do you see Randy Moss back in a Pats Jersey next year? If not will he be in any jersey?

Tim Graham
  (3:26 PM)

No, and yes. Somebody will give him a shot.

Jeremy (Louisville, KY)

Real quick, I'm goin in the kitchen for a snack. Oreos or cheese-its??

Tim Graham
  (3:26 PM)

Cheez-its. All day.

JR (Tampa Bay)

It's a day late, but what's the best St. Patrick's day song to drink to in your opinion?

Tim Graham
  (3:27 PM)

Never been a big St. Paddy's day guy. I'm more of a year-round drunk.

Will (Modesto, Ca)

Why do people always talk about the Phins taking J. Long over M. Ryan, but nobody says a thing about the jets trading up to get Mediocre Mark Sanchez when they could have stayed right at their pick and got a much better QB in Josh Freeman? Who went at the Jets original pick at 17.

Tim Graham
  (3:29 PM)

Because the Dolphins owned the No. 1 pick, making it a clear-cut either-or discussion. The Jets obviously identified Sanchez as their guy. Had they waited until 17, there would be no guarantee Sanchez or Freeman would be on the board. When the Dolphins picked in 2008, everybody was guaranteed to be on the board.

Scott (Northglenn, CO)

Do you agree with how the Pats are handling Logan Mankins? I don't think his demands are that exorbitant; who doesn't want to be paid if they're good at their job?

Tim Graham
  (3:30 PM)

I don't agree with how they handled him last year, but there's not pity in receiving the franchise tag. That's a boffo payday.

Scott (Northglenn, CO)

Tim, have you ever been in a Turkish prison? And do you think it's more likely fo BB to trade up or down in the draft? They need impact players, not depth, right?

Tim Graham
  (3:33 PM)

I've never been in a Turkish prison, but the Patriots are tougher to get information out of ... I would predict the Patriots trade up because, as Tedy Bruschi recently noted, they have decent youth on the roster. They might not be able to sign all their picks as it is because there might not be enough room on the roster.

Jack (Texas)

who's better: Arian Foster or Adrian Peterson?

Tim Graham
  (3:34 PM)

My preference would be Adrian Peterson.

Kevin (Patriot Nation) [via mobile]

Timmy, have you ever seen a grown man naked ? I hope not. Pats use a 3rd round pick (they have two) on a possible Brady replacement ? I think Hoyer shows some promise.

Tim Graham
  (3:37 PM)

I do spend a lot of time in NFL locker rooms, so the answer to your first question is yes. Not a highlight of the job. ... The Patriots might draft a quarterback, but it's too soon to consider him Brady's replacement. His new contract runs through 2014. Whatever quarterback they draft this year and groom might be gone before he gets that chance. Seems too soon for that to me.

Tim Graham
  (3:38 PM)

Whatever quarterback the Patriots might draft would be as a reliable backup who Belichick feels comfortable enough to use as a starter in case of emergency.

Speculative Science (Underground)

Tim, if an NFL franchise fielded a team consisting entirely of Jack Nicholson at every position, would it immediately become your favorite team of all time?

Tim Graham
  (3:39 PM)

Like the XFL, it would be interesting on opening night. After that? Not so much.

Joey (via mobile)

Tim, I think you're the greatest but my dad says you don't work hard enough on defense. And he says that lots of times, you don't even run down court. And that you don't really try... except during the playoffs.

Tim Graham
  (3:41 PM)

Your dad's right.

Tim Graham
  (3:42 PM)

A few more and then I'll leave everybody to their basketball devices.

Ryan Fitzpatrick (Orchard Park)

Tim, +/- 25 Td's for me this year?

Tim Graham
  (3:43 PM)

Great number. I'll say a tad over.

R ((in CT))

Since basketball seems to be on everyone's mind this afternoon -- select one member from each AFC East team to make your dream slam dunk contest.

Tim Graham
  (3:46 PM)

Brandon Marshall, Darrelle Revis, Steve Johnson ... I'm having trouble with a Patriot. It would be cool if Woodhead could dunk.

KG (NY)

I think the fins should take Gabe Carimi @ 15. The dude is a monster. What do you think?

Tim Graham
  (3:47 PM)

That would be a fascinating pick and would solidify that O-line for many years to come. It would be a surprise, but an intriguing one. I'd be all for it if I were a Dolfan.

Jeremy (Louisville, KY)

how many qb's do you suspect will be drafted within the top 10 picks?

Tim Graham
  (3:48 PM)

Two, Gabbert and Newton.

Jeremy (Louisville, KY)

Carimi may be too tall to play guard for the phins..

Tim Graham
  (3:48 PM)

He can play right tackle on my team. I know they have Vernon Carey, but a Long-Carimi combo for the next eight or nine years doesn't sound too bad, does it?

Jeremy (Louisville, KY)

absolutely not, i wonder if carey would not play hard if they drafted carimi to replace him.

Ryan (Texas)

Better St Patty's day...green beer or Bushmills? And is Ponder's arm strong enough for Rich Stadium winds?

Tim Graham
  (3:51 PM)

Bushmills ... and I think so. I like Ponder's future. He looks like he'd going to be a good value pick for some team.

Tim Graham
  (3:51 PM)

All right, folks. I'm going to call it a chat. Have a great weekend. Enjoy the hoops.