Greetings everybody. Thanks for joining me. Eight days to go until the draft. Looking forward to it.
Ashley, do you think it is time for the Steelers, Giants, and Chargers to seriously consider looking into getting their next franchise QB? Not so much get rid of who they have now, but get someone who could seriously take over in 2 or 3 years?
Yes, and I'm quite sure that those teams you mentioned are in that mode now. They're not pushing Rivers, Roethlisberger or Manning out to the door, but it would be foolish not to plan for the future. That's what savvy GMs do. The other thing is that last season proved how invaluable serviceable backups are. Green Bay wasn't prepared for Aaron Rodgers to miss significant time and it nearly cost them. Chicago was prepared.
Will the Atlanta Falcons Draft Jadeveon Clowney
Great question. If they are planning on it, they certainly aren't saying and I've been asking. But it wouldn't surprise me to see that happen, not necessarily at No. 1 but if Houston passes they could move up to No. 2. St. Louis GM Les Snead used to work for Atlanta GM Thomas Dimitroff. They trust each other. That matters. And Clowney would fill a huge need for the Falcons.
Hey Ashley, what's the deal with the delay between the season and the draft? Does it have to take place three months after the season has ended? Is this the NFL trying to steal the NBA's playoff thunder?
The NFL claimed there was a scheduling conflict, which is why they pushed the date back two additional weeks. Believe that if you want. The NFL wants to take over the entire sporting calendar and they are doing a fantastic job of it. But yes, it has been an interminable wait. Coaches and GMs absolutely hate it, too. As do I.
Maclin doesn't seem too upset that Jackson is gone, how much truth do you think there is to the statement that teammates aren't that upset he's gone? Also, do you think Maclin can be a legit number 1 or do the Eagles need to draft that guy? Thanks!
Maclin heaped praise on Jason Avant and said next to nothing about Jackson. He hadn't even talked to Jackson since the Eagles cut him. What does that tell you? That tells me he isn't broken up about it. And from what I've heard, he's not the only one. And yes, I think he can have a huge season, but the Eagles need a speedy guy on the outside, too. I would imagine they will pick a WR high in the draft, but it is tough to count on a rookie WR to have a big year. There is a learning curve there.
Which team that needs a quarterback gets one this year that will be a starter on his next contract?
That is a fantastic question, and that's the thing about this quarterback class. There isn't a no-brainer among them. And let's remember that success isn't determined by the player alone. It is all about the system he gets brought into, the coaching he receivers, the talent around him on both sides of the ball. I'm actually writing about this for later in the week. So to answer your question, I'd have to know where they're going. Some coaches simply are better teaching the quarterback position than others. That will matter.
Hi, Ashley. Do you predict any major trades in the first round of the draft? Which teams are most likely to trade up?
I think there could be a lot of movement. I wouldn't be surprised to see Houston trade down. I wouldn't be surprised to see Atlanta move up, as I mentioned. St. Louis is almost a lock to make a trade, given their history under Snead and Jeff Fisher. So those are good places to start.
Ashley, would you be willing to offer your opinion on the Donald Sterling decision by the NBA? Do you think the NFL would be as effective in handling sensitive racism matters like what happened with the L.A. Clippers and their owner?
I thought it took a lot of courage for Adam Silver to do what he did, and I was very proud of him for doing it. I had a conversation earlier today about the second part of your question, whether Roger Goodell would make a similar decision. I'm not sure. This isn't apples to apples, but the league had an opportunity to make a statement when the whole Riley Cooper situation occurred last summer, and they didn't do anything. Obviously Cooper isn't Sterling, who has a long history of being repugnant. So to answer your question, I don't know what Goodell would do. I would hope he'd do the right thing.
It's a fascinating topic, IMO.
The NFL won't get into the same situation that the NBA was in and therefore wouldn't have to handle that situation.
I hope not.
Hi Ashley, are you a hockey fan at all? Three Game 7 playoff matchups tonight - might not be anything better in all of sports! Will you be tuning in for any of them?
I love playoff hockey. Don't have a team but I live in Philly and want to see the Flyers advance.
Who will have the better mock draft? McShay or Kiper
Ha. I don't know. Will be fun to watch.
The Seahawks are paying everyone else on the roster, and bringing scrubs like Terrelle Pryor in at a higher, so when are they going to pay Russell Wilson his cash?
Not until they have to. How do you think they have the money to pay those around him?
A real similar situation to the legendary A-Rodg getting drafted late and waiting story would be the Broncos drafting Teddy Bridgewater at 31...PM only has a year or 2 and Bridgewater is getting knocked for a horrible Pro Day, but on tape the dude never gets rattled..
Denver thinks it already has its guy in waiting in Osweiler. But that would be a fantastic situation for Bridgewater. Won't happen though.
Ashley, What are the chances the Bucs move back in the draft, and who might they target? How far would they drop back to get a speed receiver like Beckham or Cooks? Would a move to the mid teens net a 2nd or 3rd in return? Thanks!
From what it sounds like, I'd say the chances of them moving back are slim. They very much sound like they're in the QB derby. Either that or they are throwing out misinformation so that they then can trade back. Who knows. They would have options in the teens to get a receiver, if that's what they decide.
Who would Kevin Costner pick at #1?
Has anybody seen that movie? I haven't. Was it any good?
Are red flags beginning to around Jameis Winston after "crab leg" gate?
Doesn't help. As someone told me about Manziel last summer after the thing happened at the Manning camp: "He's the Heisman Trophy winner. He needs to act like it." Same with Winston.
The Patriots have been scouting QBs. I've got a feeling they think bridgewater will be there. If he is will they take him?
Would be surprised. They will need a backup in 2015, but I don't see BB wanting to carry three quarterbacks in 2014. Could be wrong, but that's my gut.
Ashley, will the Cowboys ever get cap right? Even though the cap is rising, Jerry Jones is continuing to write "rubber checks" with the restructuring of contracts. Brandon Carr is the highest cornerback cap hit in 2014 at $12.2M and Tony Romo is the highest cap hit in the league in 2015 at $27.4M. Jones recently said the Cowboys were going to let free agency come to them this year and build more through the draft; what a novel concept, but his actions speak louder than words.
I think you answered your own question, Shane. Past behavior is the best indicator of future behavior. So unless Jerry Jones changes his philosophy on team building or hires a real general manager, which we know will never happen, then they will continue to be in this problem.
Not that you asked, but I do like the idea of Dallas getting Manziel. Now that would be fun.
Why does it seem like while the NFL is trying to take up the sporting calendar it is actually stagnating in popularity? I Dont think its in decline, but dont see the excitement or growth either....and I live in the football heavy south. College ball reigns and it seems NBA and MLB are growing in interest. Thoughts?
Look at the TV ratings. It isn't even close. And they're consistently growing. As is revenue.
Do you think the incident in Miami will delay Kaepernick getting a deal done before the season, or result in him receiving less money?
Well, all the facts on that one aren't out yet, but certainly it didn't help. When you're the face of a franchise, particularly one about to open a long-awaited new stadium, you can't put yourself in a precarious situation. My colleague Jeff Chadiha had a good column about the Aldon Smith situation last week that is worth a read if you didn't.
Re: Draft Day (the movie): General populace didn't care for it, NFL fans were lukewarm on it, Browns fans probably loved it.
There you go.
With SO many WRs in the draft, I think many teams will take defense/other positions early and wait a lot of them out 2nd-5th rounds...do you think that is possible?
It is a deep draft at WR. Depends on if you want one of the big name guys or not. I think we'll see a lot of them go in the first round.
If you're BB, Bridgewater or Mallet? Who has the bigger upside?
I think he likes Mallet but knows he'll eventually lose him in FA. There are a lot of concerns about Bridgewater, from what I've been hearing.
Ashley, do you think Blake Bortles may be available for the Vikings at #8 in the draft?
I'd be surprised.
do you think darelle revis will return to his spot as #1 cb in nfl? He's a year removed from that injury.
Doubtful. But it will be fun having him back in the division, won't it?
Will 2014 be another year of QB drama for the NYJ?
I hope so. No, seriously, the Jets want Geno to play well enough to legitimately be the starter, but as I wrote a few weeks ago, when Vick gets in pads and in preseason games, he usually looks fantastic. Marty Mornhinweg knows that. So they are aware that Vick might be the guy. Does that constitute drama?
How about this wild trade idea: Foles to Houston for their 1 and their 2. Eagles draft Clowney, then Manziel at 22 (or trade up to get him)?
That would be something.
Will the Raiders win 4 games this season after being saddled with the toughest schedule in the league? The football gods are not looking favorably on the Coliseum right now.
They're going to the playoffs, right? Yeah. Not happening. I feel for Raiders fans. And yes, the schedule doesn't look promising, but you never know.
This Browns fan didn't think much of Draft Day. Jennifer Garner on the other hand...
There you go.
What should the Rams do at #2? Believe they will have choice of selecting Watkins, Robinson or hearing they really like Mack. Think they should trade down and accumulate more picks. Thoughts?
I think they'll move down, I really do.
Should the 49ers try to lock Kaepernick down for around $15-$16M a year? Going forward, with the cap rising, seems like it's not implausible that franchise quarterbacks will command in the mid-$20M range. They might be smart to lock him down before the price tag goes up; on a side note, I am sure Newton & Wilson are watching Kaepernick's contract intently!
I believe he wants more than $15-16 million. More like $19-20.
How scary is Ware with Von Miller? Shouldn't that be the best pass rush combo in nfl?
Best pass rush? Not necessarily. Very good pass rush? Yes. Depends on two things: How much does Ware have left and is Miller on the field? The latter is always going to be a concern.
How will the Chiefs fare this year? Could you see them making moves during the draft for more picks?
This is a very important draft for them. They need OL, S, WR, among other positions. If you go back to what the Eagles did when Andy Reid was their coach, it was almost always OL or DL in the first round. He believes in building inside out. We shall see. They should be competitive, but the way they ended last season once the schedule got harder was a cause for concern.
In your opinion, where does the Seattle secondary of the past few years rank among the best of all time?
It has to be up there, right? I would have to study that (I haven't) but they've been so consistently good. And their safeties are new-age safeties, too. They really should be the model.
If Ashley Fox were the GM in that movie it would've done better.
So it would've been better than bad?
Will the Saints defense improve or be enough of a force in Year 2 under Rob Ryan to challenge the NFC West juggernauts?
The bar has been set, right? That's who everyone is chasing. The Saints should be better, but the thing about the Seahawks is their confidence and the brotherhood that Pete Carroll has built there. It's the program. The players love Carroll because he cares about them. And they play for each other. That matters. I was wrong with my SB prediction, as were a lot of people. The Seahawks weren't going to lose that game. They just weren't. I can't imagine that won't be their attitude this season, too.
How much can Champ Bailey realistically bring to the Saints secondary this season?
Not a whole lot. But a great locker room guy and leader.
Out of players you've interviewed or talked to recently, who's the funniest/most charismatic?
Richard Sherman, and it isn't even close.
What are the biggest needs for the Dolphins other than locker stability?
That's a good place to start.
If the Rams can't move back in the draft will they go for Mack? Secondary question, if they drafted Mack could you see them having the best pass rush in the league?
They're pretty good now, don't you think?
Doe's the Superbowl champ come out of the NFC West? Also, do the Cardinals really stand a chance in the West this year?
We don't even know what the teams are going to look like yet. And yes, Arizona does stand a chance.
Alright, folks. Thanks for all of the questions. We will do it again next week.