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April 3, 12:00 PM ET
Chat with Matt Williamson

Matt Williamson
  (12:00 PM)

Here we go!

Zach (Spokane)

Dumervil exited Denver, but as a Broncos fan im really not that upset because he was just awful against the run. Dont you think drafting a young pass rusher and having Ayers in there on run downs would be more affective than the overpaid Dumervil?

Matt Williamson
  (12:01 PM)

Depeends who they get so late in the draft. I agree with that Elvis couldn't stop the run at all-better suited a little further away from the ball. I also think Ayers is an underrated overall player.

Squall (Balamb Garden)

I can't imagine the Cardinals putting a ton of faith in Carson Palmer to be their man of the future. Ditto Bills/Kolb, although he could have more upside. Instead, I think these moves are a way of hedging bets, where one or both teams can feel more comfortable taking a young QB without pressuring him to start right away (Geno or Barkley to AZ, Geno or Nassib to BUF). Sound right to you?

Matt Williamson
  (12:04 PM)

It does...it also screams that this rookie QB class is junk-and next year's is supposed to be far better. I like both moves though, even though I am not enamoured with either Palmer or Kolb...but both go to better systems for their talents. Palmer will wing it-and Arians will let him. Plus, now Zona can really use their resources on OL (& maybe OLB/S). As for Kolb, BUFF's system is predicated on getting it out very quick and their protection is decent...he doesn't handle pressure well and won't be under NEARLY the onslaught he was with in Zona-and he didn't play terrible for the Cards early in the year.

Chris B. (Bozeman, MT)

Matt, what are you rocking out to today and tell me what the Vikes do at #23 & #25?

Matt Williamson
  (12:05 PM)

Slacking a little...need to put the tunes on now! As for Vikes, I see it this way: Assuming Cooper and Warmack are gone, I think they MUST go WR with one of those two picks (K Allen?) and best D player available after that. Grab a 1st round WR and then go D (plus one OG) all through the draft at every D position

Derek (San Francisco)

What do you think about the two moves the 49ers made this week? McCoy and Nnamdi.

Matt Williamson
  (12:08 PM)

I did a phone interview on Nnamdi last night-check it out, I Tweeted (@WilliamsonNFL) the link today. Better fit for sure for Nnamdi in SF than Philly...no doubt. McCoy is like A Smith Lite Lite...odd that they didn't get another CK type QB, but obviously Harbaugh can play it anyway he wants. Not big on McCoy, but he is an upgrade and like SEA now, if their starting QB goes down, those teams can still grind out 13-10 wins.

Mike (Brooklyn)

Which inexplicable faller does Jerry Reese snatch at 19? How about Jarvis Jones?

Matt Williamson
  (12:09 PM)

Not sure Jones falls THAT far. How about Eifert? Big Eifert fan here. They don't use first rounders on OL, but one of two OGs? Vaccaro?

Dave (Columbia, MD)

True or False - Brady and Manning have lost the deep ball threat, and teams will continue to expose this, like the Ravens did in the playoffs.

Matt Williamson
  (12:10 PM)

True...but not super easy to exploit it, as they are just so precise with their timing, reads and accuracy...more so with Manning in terms of losing it than Brady IMO

Jim J. (Cleveland Ohio)

Matt first off, pop 5150 in and think of those Summer Nights.....Brownies taking DB with #6 pick? How far could they drop in 1st round and still get a good quality starter at DB (plus pick up an extra pick)?Thanks

Matt Williamson
  (12:11 PM)

5150 is def good stuff...Milliner would be ideal. There will be high end Safeties available for CLEV in Round 2. This draft shapes up well for CLEV...Geno?

Eric (Bordeaux, France)

M-Dub, What did you think of the CB free agent class this year?Are the Bucs right to wait for the draft? Will Revis fit their system?

Matt Williamson
  (12:12 PM)

Oh I think Revis ends up there in TB. I feel like TB would have gone out and grabbed a UFA if they didn't feel they had a deal in place more or less. Then, draft a CB in round 2 or 3 as well

joe (uk)

whats your team in the writers draft thing? anyone got a better one than you?

Matt Williamson
  (12:14 PM)

I am pretty happy with it. My picks in order were: Big Ben, M Kalil, H Nicks, Kyle Williams (BUF DT), Vollmer, Phil Taylor, Harrison Smith, T Cole, Troy P, Michael Floyd...not bad!

Jon (New Canaan, CT)

If you're the Bucs, which CB would you rather have moving forward, D. Milliner or Revis?

Matt Williamson
  (12:14 PM)

Revis. Bird in the hand...even coming off injury. Superstar. I like Milliner, but don't see him even as a Patrick Peterson type CB prospect.

Michael (Cincinnati) [via mobile]

The trade back scenario is popular with the fans, but how far would the Browns have to slide to get that 2nd round pick? We're not talking back to 8 for a 2nd here...

Matt Williamson
  (12:15 PM)

Prob true and who is trading up? I see a Buyers Market for sure for teams looking to move up

Will (Philly)

What are your thoughts on Geno Smith as a prospect?

Matt Williamson
  (12:16 PM)

I see a late first rounder/early 2nd rounder-most years. Has ability for sure, but I have my share of doubts. Erratic accuracy. Plus athlete, but doesn't really use those skills.

Hanson (DC)

Bigger reason Dwight Freeney is still a FA he wants too much money or teams would rather develop a guy than pay for a 1-2 year stopgap?

Matt Williamson
  (12:16 PM)

$$$$

Bernadette (Florida )

Matt when doing your free agent grades do you factor in future flexibility in 2014, 15 etc? I actually really like what Baltimore did this offseason not paying star money to non stars and letting older players go.

Matt Williamson
  (12:18 PM)

Actually assinging a Grade is a very difficult thing to do. For example, OAK had NO cards in their hand, but how can I give them a good grade even if they made all the right moves? I also don't claim to be a capologist and haven't broken down every UFA contract for years to come, but a team like MIA worries me for Living for Today too much. BALT on the other hand was very wise as you mentioned...as usual.

Brian (Texcoco)

the Raider going to trade #3 any possible scenarios?

Matt Williamson
  (12:19 PM)

I bet they would love to. Just need SO much. Fisher, Floyd, Star, Milliner, etc...BTW, I am betting now that Joeckel goes 1 and Floyd goes 2

Jeff (Nashville)

GB is doing nothing in FA, as usual, but also let some key guys go. There are a lot of sneaky holes on that team that Rodgers masks...are they still a SB contender?

Matt Williamson
  (12:20 PM)

DEF some sneaky holes-VERY well put! But they will lock up AR to gigantic (& deserving) money...but I hear ya-couldn't add one OL to the mix?

Joe (Baltimore)

Letting go of half their team in order to pay Flacco $120mil was "very wise"?

Matt Williamson
  (12:21 PM)

As opposed to asking one of us to play QB? Don't discredit the addition of guys like Canty, Huff and Dumervil too...not their fault that Birk and Ray hung it up either. Plus, get Webb back and I have to think they get more from Ngata and Suggs next year. Bet the D is better in 2013.

Ruth (Alaska)

Where do you think a potential landing spot for Antoine Winfield is? Would have said SF before they brought in Nhmadi... maybe GB?

Matt Williamson
  (12:22 PM)

SF would have been fantastic...better player right now than Nnamdi, but Nnamdi is more suited for all the man coverage SF plays. Not seeing the fit right now-but can't see him going to a bottom feeder team. Maybe back to Minny?

Jacob (NYC)

Will the Ravens win the division again? I think they have clearly passed the Steelers, and the division will be between the Ravens and Bengals. Your thoughts?

Matt Williamson
  (12:22 PM)

Right now, I would pick BALT

Bryant (Milwaukee)

With Jennings moving on who becomes the go to guy for the Packers? Cobb will probably lead in catches, but is it possible to see Nelson return to his 2011 production?

Matt Williamson
  (12:23 PM)

It is certainly possible for Nelson. I think Cobb will be a Pro Bowler. Finley isn't a slouch either.

Michael (Cincinnati) [via mobile]

Hard to recall a SB winning team dumping so much in one offseason only to fill 3/4 of the spots through FA.

Matt Williamson
  (12:23 PM)

Very true...I can't argue that one bit

Awayne (Indy)

Colts draft pass rushing OLB,CBG,,or best player that doesn't play QB to build talent on a roster that is still thin on difference makers?

Matt Williamson
  (12:25 PM)

Not that DHB is fantastic, but I think you take WR out of the equation now in Round 1. The only O players I would condone or Indy are the two stud OGs, but I bet they are gone. So...that leaves Best D Player available in my eyes. CB seems most likely. Rhodes would be great if there. Trufant?

Scott (Northglenn, CO)

I think the Broncos eventually sign a Freeney or Abraham, but not til late..assuming this, I think they still draft DL and RB first 2 picks. Would you rather have Lacey/Margus Hunt or Damontre Moore/Johnathon Franklin?

Matt Williamson
  (12:26 PM)

I agree on Abraham, or more likely, Freeney. Very attractive spot for free agents now. I like Franklin, but really prefer Lacey for the Broncos-think they need the power RB to complement Hillman. I also see Hunt best as a penetrating DE in a 3-4 and Moore best as an OLB in the 3-4.

Marcus (Pa. Raider)

Matt, Matt Flynn, is he someone the Raiders can build around or just a stop gap? Can he beat out Terrell Pryor? Keep up the good work!

Matt Williamson
  (12:27 PM)

Pure stop gap, but he fits the Raiders scheme better than Palmer and more importantly, he is cheaper. The front office was also familiar with him from their time in GB together

Jeff (NY)

Do you think that Rams should take either Warmack or Cooper at 16 if either available rather than Austin or Patterson? Think Rams need more help on OL than another young receiver

Matt Williamson
  (12:28 PM)

I very much agree and prioritize the Rams needs as: 1. S 2. OG 3. WR...if either of the stud OGs are there and STL passes, I will be critical for sure. Lots of good Safeties in this draft, so they can prob wait until Round 2 if need-be

Chris (New Orleans)

Who should the Saints draft at 15 in Rd.1? Who are they more likely to draft at the same spot? So many needs on defense but Coach P. has heavy focus on Offense.

Matt Williamson
  (12:29 PM)

I am not sold on the OT situation, but not one ther worth that pick. Otherwise, doesn't it have to be D? Sure, another WR would be great, but that secondary needs attention in particular.

Hanson (DC)

Should more coaches try and get talented players and adjust the scheme to fit the personnel or should they still be trying to find the guys that best fit the system.

Matt Williamson
  (12:31 PM)

I feel like, esp on D, the scheme fits are being more and more blurred and coaches are adjusting better now than in recent memory for players-more specifically, I feel like players that have great versatility and can align all over the place are particularly coveted and better utilized. The guys that do just one thing well (Pure 3-4 NT or pure run stopping 4-3 MLB for example) just don't give coaching staffs enough flexibility. Credit Belichick for being ahead of his time on this btw.

Luke Hancock (Waterdown, Ontario)

I've seen a mock draft with DJ Fluker at #12 for the Fish? I don't see how that makes sense considering he's strictly a RT and it doesn't seem they have much trust in Martin playing LT. Thoughts?

Matt Williamson
  (12:32 PM)

Too early for Fluker there...not buying that at all

John (Wisc)

What position do you feel the Packers should draft in the first 3 rounds?

Matt Williamson
  (12:33 PM)

Would like to see them add two prominent OLinemen and another RB with size. Are they sold on Perry? OLB wouldn't be a terrible idea

David (Halifax)

You mentioned the Raiders have so many holes to fill and thus would benefit from trading down. What about the Eagles? I know you were high on their offseason so far so do you think they should stay put?

Matt Williamson
  (12:34 PM)

I love where they are sitting. Feel like they have a strong roster without one massive need. Therefore, should be able to hang and just snap up the best player available-great situation to be in, esp that high in the draft. But of course, they can listen to offers too-everything has a price

Matt Williamson
  (12:35 PM)

"Momma is going to make all of your nightmares come true. Momma is going to be put all of her fears into you..."

Chris (New Orleans)

Doesn't it seem counter productive that in today's League a team needs a "franchise" QB but then has to pay so much for that QB that the other balance of the team's needs are degraded?

Matt Williamson
  (12:36 PM)

Yeah, I hear ya...it is a problem. One guy just takes up too much of the pie. Think about what a HUGE advantage SEA and SF have right now: They have great young QB that doesn't cost anything!

Scott (Northglenn, CO)

Broncos and Chiefs..best 3 WR set vs. the best trio of CBs? ...if Dunta plays CB...

Matt Williamson
  (12:36 PM)

Yeah, I will give you that!

joe (uk)

After Peterson, Rodgers and Johnson, who are the second best QB, RB and WR's in NFl?

Matt Williamson
  (12:37 PM)

Hmmm...I think I still take Brady. Big L McCoy fan here and I bet he EXPLODES (take note for fantasy) this year, but A Foster is a heck of a player too, so give me Foster for today. At WR? I still take Fitz narrowly over AJ Green.

Brad (Beverly, Ma)

Tannehill #1 overall if he were coming out this year?

Matt Williamson
  (12:39 PM)

Well, depends. As a prospect coming out of A&M, I liked Tannehill (really liked him if you remember) more than any of these QBs for sure. But does that version of Tannehill go first overall? Maybe. Does today's version of Tannehill go fist overall? No question!

Brian (Fishers, IN)

Any thoughts on who the Chiefs draft? Does the situation with Brandon Albert have any effect on their draft strategy?

Matt Williamson
  (12:39 PM)

Would be blown away if they didn't take Joekel (or Fisher).

Larry (NH)

Good sign for NE that Amendola is already in Cal working out with Brady and Hernandez?

Matt Williamson
  (12:40 PM)

Can't be a bad sign, right? But also not surprising...no one questions that group's work ethic

Mark (Dallas)

Something tells me Belichick trades out of the back of the first round to a bad team for a third rounder and 1st next year with the purpose of trying to land Clowney.

Matt Williamson
  (12:41 PM)

Seems like something that guy might do! My only hesitation to your theory is that team needs WRs and a guy like Hopkins could be quite attractive late in Round 1.

Scott (Northglenn, CO)

Who has a bigger year - Jared Cook or Jermichael Finley? Bot so uber-talented but...eh underwhelming...

Matt Williamson
  (12:42 PM)

Give me Finley-much harder to take Finley away in GB's O than Cook in STL's...plus, AR vs. Bradford isn't even close

Bryant (Milwaukee)

One of GB's sneaky holes has been safety with the team never being able to replace Nick Collins successfully. Can McMillian be that guy? or is S early in the draft a possibility?

Matt Williamson
  (12:42 PM)

Another S would be welcome-no doubt, but I was impressed with McMillian

Branden Albert (Kansas City)

Will the Dolphins trade for me, or am I going to be Dwayne Bowe episode 2?

Matt Williamson
  (12:43 PM)

Would you rather give up a 2nd for Albert or nothing for Winston and move Martin to LT (which is frightening)...or, trade that 2nd and 1st to move up for Lane Johnson? All are appealing and I bet one happens. They do have 2 2nd rounders.

Harry (Babylon, NY)

Do you think we will begin to see teams even well set at QB start taking an additional QB in the draft in order to have flexibilty (cap, injury insurance, etc.) in the future?

Matt Williamson
  (12:45 PM)

Maybe and I see where you are going...example: Balt or Dallas could have let Flacco/Romo walk and done a ton to help their roster if they had Steve Young or Aaron Rodgers waiting in the wings as a young replacement. Sounds great, but there is still a QB shortage and how many coaches/GMs have the job security to "Waste" early picks on QBs that hopefully don't see the field?

joe (uk)

I think jamall charles is better than foster and mccoy but fair enough

Matt Williamson
  (12:46 PM)

JC is great and should be a real weapon with Reid, esp as receiver. I can see where you are coming from. Close call.

Matt Williamson
  (12:46 PM)

Also...quite curious about this Spiller fella in BUFF!

Sean (Los Angeles)

Don't you see Winfield landing in Seattle to replace Trufant in the nickel? He is great in the nickel and a very sure tackler... fits perfectly.

Matt Williamson
  (12:46 PM)

Geez...does he ever...now that just wouldn't be fair

Darrell (Washington)

Do you see Kyle Long as potentially being able to transition to RT in the NFL? He looks like he has the size, speed and footwork. Where do you see him going?

Matt Williamson
  (12:47 PM)

Top 50 pick, if not earlier. Begin his career at OG and then to LT. BTW, he was a fireballing pitcher before playing football...can you imagine standing in the batters box against that dude?

Al (Wausau, WI)

Lane Johnson would be a fabulous pick for the Dolphins! If I were Jeff Ireland, I would have no problem moving up to get him, even if it costs a #1 and a #2.

Matt Williamson
  (12:48 PM)

Indeed...the problem with that situation is maybe the Winston/Albert fallback plan has dried up. Maybe not, which is prob why they are slow playing this. If they can't swing such a round 1 deal, call KC or Winston's agent.

Harry (Babylon, NY)

Matt - is there a point where the Jets patience with regard to trading Revis will work against them and in Tampa's favor?

Matt Williamson
  (12:49 PM)

Dunno...cause leaving all that available cap room for Revis also makes making moves for TB very difficult too

Timmy (Vancouver )

Matt where can I find your work outside of Insider now that you left that Podcast??

Matt Williamson
  (12:50 PM)

I am still a very busy boy...Twitter is the best for sure. But doing a lot outside of INSIDER for ESPN.com as well

Blueman (Indy)

Everyone know the Cowboys need O-lineman( yes multiple) in this draft, but can they afford to take a guy a rd to soon just because it is such a huge need? The rest of the roster is not exactly overloaded with talent.

Matt Williamson
  (12:51 PM)

Yeah, they are in a pickle...but maybe can at least add one UFA with the money they opened up with the Romo deal.

AJ (Oakland)

Which trade was worse: The Palmer to Oakland trade OR the great Herschal Walker trade to Minn?

Matt Williamson
  (12:51 PM)

Hershall was worse, but not by much. I CRUSHED the Raiders for that trade when it happened....side note: I would have liked to see Cincy take better advantage of that gift they were given

Knish (NYC)

Is B.Albert worth the big money he will ask for if traded?

Matt Williamson
  (12:52 PM)

He is a top 8 or so LT who has gotten better every year

Zac (The Bay)

Saw your DHB comment, I'd definitely agree that he's not terrific but he does have size, speed combo that's sought after in today's NFL. What's evaluation ceiling? Comparison? I think we've seen his basement....

Matt Williamson
  (12:53 PM)

Very well said and he will always be guilty of being drafted too high, which simply isn't his fault. I still think he scares D. He isn't Mike Wallace, but he is MW Lite. Love the fit too.

Justin (SF)

Is Jake Locker a bust?

Matt Williamson
  (12:53 PM)

Strongly considering it. That isn't exactly the most creative O in the league though either.

Blueman (Indy)

Who is the 2nd year player that will make the biggest jump from his rookie season?

Matt Williamson
  (12:54 PM)

B Quick? D Poe? D DeCastro? Who else?

Michael (Cincinnati) [via mobile]

No doubt Cincinnati has failed to capitalize on that trade. With Dalton at the trigger, you are fighting an uphill battle.

Matt Williamson
  (12:55 PM)

Well said...not to mention they still have a TON of cap space to use...the AFC North was for the taking too...shameful

Chris (New Orleans)

Are you surprised palyers such as Harrison, Woodson, Urlacher are still available?

Matt Williamson
  (12:55 PM)

Sorta, but that is what happens in this game. Woodson would be most attractive to me of the three.

Drew (Green Bay)

What teams could go for a QB highly this year that we might not expect? Maybe the Steelers or Bucs?

Matt Williamson
  (12:56 PM)

Not Pittsburgh...certainly could be TBay...Geno if he falls?

Sean (Orlando)

Do you see the 49ers moving up in the draft to get Vaccaro or someone else?

Matt Williamson
  (12:57 PM)

Betting SF is targeting DL, S and TE with their top 3 picks with the fire power to move up for any of their liking....GREAT spot for them to be in, esp considering the depth at those spots

Harry (Babylon, NY)

Which of the old guard contending teams looks like it has the longest road ahead of them?

Matt Williamson
  (12:58 PM)

Pittsburgh? SD doesn't count anymore, right?

Jeff (NY, NY)

What about a 2nd year jump for Q Coples - his play really improved at the end of the year.

Matt Williamson
  (12:58 PM)

Good call..yeah, I am on board with that

Chris (New Orleans)

Matt, how much background research do you do on players? Are you cautious before making neg. comments? Seems like some of the recent comments on draftable players crossed to tabloid vs. sports reporting...

Matt Williamson
  (12:59 PM)

I don't comment directly on personalities...will say things like "By all accounts, X is a hard worker..." But I also don't have tons of buddies in the NFL or talk to many players directly...I just do my thing and make my opinions as players. Of course if someone has well known off the field issues, you can't ignore that.

Matt Williamson
  (1:00 PM)

Great chat-as always. See ya next week!