Monday, February 23, 2009

On NFL Combine, Manny Harris And World Baseball Classic

Some opinions on what has transpired on the NFL’s scouting combine so far:
- I don’t believe there is an offensive left tackle worthy of the first overall selection. Jason Smith from Baylor isn’t nearly the run blocker Jake Long was at Michigan, nor did he workout as well as Long or Joe Thomas, the left tackle from Wisconsin, the year before at the combine (Thomas ran a sub 5.0 40-yard dash). Few other than draft geeks even knew about Smith a month ago. He was a converted tight end from high school. Virginia’s Eugene Monroe is a superior pass blocker, but not a great run blocker. Both are legitimate Top 15 picks in the draft, but taking either one first overall is anything but a safe pick.
- Seems like USC quarterback Mark Sanchez has done well. His throwing has been good and he’s been pretty athletic in drills. He runs well, as does Georgia’s Matthew Stafford. Kansas State’s Josh Freeman has shown some athleticism.
- Ohio State’s Beanie Wells looks really good in the drills. Bet his stock rises as the draft nears.
- The injury to Michael Crabtree is not going to drop him that far down in the draft. He will still go in the Top 5. But it will probably stop the possibility a team like Oakland would want to trade up to No. 1 overall with the Lions for Crabtree. There is a lot of depth at the wide receiver.

Random Thoughts

- Manny Harris is a terrific talent, but his inconsistency might prove to be why Michigan doesn’t make the NCAA Tournament this year. A key for the Wolverines’ basketball future: How much Harris learns from it.

- A reason not to like the World Baseball Classic: The Tigers can’t decide whether Justin Verlander will be their opening day starter because he might be involved in the World Baseball Classic.



Blogger Fred Brill said...

Pat this is one of the main reasons why the World Baseball Classic is not so classic. It occurs at the wrong time of the year!

I think it's safe to say that aside from the Cuban squad - most of the best players on each squad entered around the world are MLB players.

Therefore I do not understand why this was the timing chosen for this event. I would have suspected a post-World Series time slot would not only have fit the leagues schedule better - but also the peak fitness of the athletes, and would have captured the not-yet-cold enthusiasm of MLB fans.

If it were Soccer - and so many world premier leagues posing schedule conflicts - then I could see the drift in timing. But there the International team is more important than the club teams.

This is not so in baseball.

Not to say South American and Asian leagues - as well as some European legues are not important - but the single premier baseball league - THE BIG LEAGUES - is the globally unquestionalbly the MLB.

12:39 PM 
Blogger maddog52 said...

I tell you book I really think the Lions should talk about and try there hardest to get someone else interested with that number one pick. I personally would like us to go defensively in the first round or in the trenches. Either way we do it I don't care. I still think we'd be best server to wait on QB. Of the three I liked Freeman thus far. If I had to choose.

That lost To Iowa yesterday was a real kick to the groin. Manny Harris is a good talent, but very sloppy/wild. I also think lucas-perry who had so much potential early on has really disappeared during Conference play. I say if the Wolverines want to sniff the dance they must when 2 of 3 and go close to the end of the big ten tournament.

On the Pistons. I think it is obvious. 1. Rasheed is done. He isn't even trying out there. His attitude clearly has rubbed off on the majority of guys. 2. A guy who I think should be on the block next year cause you can get a replacement at the SF. Is TP. that guy is so inconsistent. He shows flashes, but he dissapears way to much. 3. Personally I don't think neither guard can play defense. 4. Fans we just need to be patient it will work itself out. I expect trades to be made this offseason. Other then Boozer there is nobody else that I could see as really helping.

1:59 PM 
Blogger Barry said...

Hey Pat, Verlander if available should be the starting pitcher. This guy is a star. How many pitchers in the MLB has a 98 m.p.h fastball and two change-up one at 92 m.p.h and the other at 83 m.p.h and an outstanding breaking ball. That what Verlander has to get back too. There is only one Jack right? Whoever call the pitches last couple of years did a very poor job. Verlander and other pitchers must know what opposing hitters hit best and what pitches they do not hit. If opposing hitters cover the outside of the plate better then the inside than go inside more often and then allow then really hit a outside pitch well off the plate and vice versa. Tiger hitters have to wait for their pitch, no sense swinging at a pitcher pitch like a splitter in the dirt.

3:57 PM 
Blogger Glen J Stroup (WiredTiger) said...

I would love to see them work the WBC into the All Star break. All the MLB guys would be in peak form. It wouldn't take much to expand the All Star week out to fit the classic in every 4 years.

9:50 AM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

A few random thoughts myself.. If you reference decades of tailgate talk you are likely to find a glaring reason why the Lions have been so disappointing over the years. It is the reason why they were called the Lie-downs. That is THEY COULD NOT SCORE IN THE RED ZONE..for nearly 2-decades. This is why Millen always went with point getters in the draft early on. Well this past 0-16 year and last year, we scored in the red zone....alot! We still can. How many games did we have with 17-points or more? The problem is the defense allowed alot more scoring. To me, the draft choices are easy this year. Draft a D 1-2-3. Inside Line, Outside Linebacker, big time Safety.

10:21 PM 
Blogger Pat Caputo said...

Fred Brill,
To me, it's like Bud Selig is trying to force-feed the WBC to the world. There is not a lot of buzz about it. Doubt there ever will be. It certainly does seem to draw a yawn from the players.

5:43 PM 
Blogger Pat Caputo said...

Great points Lucas-Perry and Rasheed. Lucas-Perry looked like he was going to really have an impact on Michigan's season, and he did - for awhile. His fade has hurt the Wolverines. Rasheed melted down again the other night.

5:45 PM 
Blogger Pat Caputo said...

Well, the USA team didn't pick up Verlander, so it isn't an issue. The fact it could have been is an issue.

5:46 PM 
Blogger Pat Caputo said...

The Lions have had 10 first round draft choices in the last nine drafts and taken one defensive player. Says a lot about their plan, which obviously didn't work.

5:47 PM 
Blogger Pat Caputo said...

Glen J. Stroup (Wired Tiger),
I just don't see how they could fit all that baseball in at the midseason. Seems no time is a good time.

5:50 PM 

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