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Mike Mayock interview(long) (1 Viewer)


…An Interview With:


THE MODERATOR: Mike is a former draft

pick of the Pittsburgh Steelers and played for the

New York Giants for a couple of years and has

made a career as a broadcaster for CBS, ESPN

and now NFL Network the past three years. We

bill him as our draft guru, he’s covered the

Combine for us and Senior Bowl and has been

on college football his entire career with us. So

without further ado, Mike, I'll turn it over to you.

MIKE MAYOCK: Thanks. I'm going to

throw it open to you in a second. Really, I have

not done a formal mock draft. I reveal that next

week, seven, eight, nine teams, four nights in a

row on our Total Access show at 7 PM ET. I'd be

happy to talk about any player in the country you'd

like to talk about. I'd be happy to talk about any

teams you'd like to talk about. Really, the floor is

yours, go ahead.

Q. I don't know if you just heard there

was a trade where the 49ers acquired a second

first round pick, so they have 6 and 22 right

now. What would you anticipate a trade ten

days before the draft to acquire a second first

round pick would mean?

MIKE MAYOCK: For the 49ers, you


Q. Yes, for the 49ers?

MIKE MAYOCK: It's kind of interesting,

because what Denver did there, kind of anticipated

that from a couple of teams in that 20 to 30 range,

with the theory being in this draft this year, there's

a vast similarity between the picks, say, between

20 and 40. There's an awful lot of good depth in

there and a lot of teams have talked about moving

out of there and talked about trying to stockpile

picks. So it didn't surprise me at all Denver chose

to do that especially with their extra first round pick.

As far as the 49ers in, my head at No. 6 I

think they are going to go after the tight end,

Vernon Davis, who would immediately help that

football team given the fact that they have average

wide receivers and a young quarterback. I think

that would really help them. At No. 22, I think

because there's depth at the corner position in this

draft, I think there's a good chance that they are

trying to move up and make sure that they can get

one of those corners that's going to come off the

board between 20 and 30.

Q. Would you anticipate that they could

use those two picks to move up into the

top three or four?

MIKE MAYOCK: I think what they are

trying to do is not package them and move up.

The reality is, I think trying to move up from 6 to

pick a player at 3 or 4, you're going to have to give

up that other first round pick and maybe a little bit

more. I think they have got multiple needs that

have to be addressed and if they were able to

come away with Vernon Davis at No. 6 and a top

corner at 22, I think they would be real happy.

Q. In the context of the spread option

offense, do you see a number of teams actually

incorporating part of that offense in the NFL?

Part of the conversation was that is team that

innovation is moving up from the high school

and college ranks to the NFL; whereas, 15

years ago, it was the opposite.

MIKE MAYOCK: I really don't see that as

happening. With Vince Young, I think a team is

probably going to try to take advantage of what he

does athletically, but that spread option offense is

an incredibly simple offense. And from a defensive

perspective in the NFL, I think the last thing you

want -- and I could give you the names of 31

defensive coordinators that would love Vince

Young to run the ball 15 or 20 times a game.

Q. You're rating of Cutler as the No. 1

QB has drawn some controversy. What is it

about him that you rate him or what did you

see at the Combine or Senior Bowl to back

your rating?

MIKE MAYOCK: I got a phone call back in

September from a guy who is a good friend of

mine, a high ranking scout in the NFL, and he said,

"You'd better throw some Vanderbilt tape on." This

is back in September. He said, "Tell me if I'm

seeing this right or if I'm off base but I think this kid

would be special."

I threw on a couple of September tapes and a

couple of his junior tapes and I fell over. I couldn't

believe the arm strength, the release, the

toughness. What really stood out to me and this is

all the way back in September now, the fact that he

stood in there, got smacked in the face and

consistently delivered the football.

My perception on this kid is biggest arm in

the draft, quickest release in the draft, he's a

three-time captain, he's a smart kid, he's a tough

kid. Does he have some technical issues that he's

got to clean up? Absolutely. But I have watched

every one of his game tapes. Senior Bowl to me

reinforced the arm strength and the difference

between him and everybody else. And he's more

athletic than people think. So I don't take anything

away from Leinart or Vince Young, who are very

special in different ways. But I think four years

from now, you're going to look back and see that

this kid is the best of the three.

Q. This is a bit of a risk by you, but are

you concerned that if this doesn't pan out the

way you see it that it could affect your

credibility going forward or are you that

comfortable with your analysis?

MIKE MAYOCK: I'm not concerned in the

least. I'm the guy that last year thought that Aaron

Rodgers was going to fall to 24 and I got laughed

at pretty heavily the week before the draft. And

Aaron Rodgers fell to 24.

So to me, compared to that, this is nothing.

What I'm telling people is what I truly believe. And

he might not be the first quarterback to go, I'm not

trying to say he's the first one off the board. What I

am tying to say is that I think he's going to be the

best pro.

Q. Do you think that Vince Young's

choice of representation has hurt him at all or

will hurt him at all?

MIKE MAYOCK: I don't know if it will hurt

him at all. Major Adam has some -- inaudible -- of

feeling. I know he's got one of the Philadelphia

Eagles -- I believe Sheldon Brown --

Q. Michael Lewis.

MIKE MAYOCK: Michael Lewis, I

apologize. My question about representation has

been that I didn't understand what he was doing in

that ESPN Made For Television Skills Contest. To

me that was a situation where he had absolutely

nothing to gain and everything to lose. I thought

he showed poorly in that skills competition. Yet, he

wouldn't work out at the Combine in front of 32

NFL head coaches and general managers. I

thought they were inconsistent and curious

decisions. Now what happens going forward as far

as negotiated contracts, I have no idea.

Q. Speaking of people who have

different opinions than you about Cutler,

obviously this is the first year NFL Network is

going to be side-by-side doing the Draft itself,

will you feel some competition with them or

Kiper in particular in terms of trying to make a

mark as these two different entities present the

same event simultaneously?

MIKE MAYOCK: I've had that question a

bunch in the last couple of weeks, and the reality

to me is -- I'm a football guy. I'm the son of a

coach, I love the game, I love watching tape. I

have so much respect for what ESPN has done the

last 26 or 27 years. I feel Mel Kiper the last 12 or

14 years, I have a ton of respect for Mel. We are

going to do things a little bit differently in general.

I'm going to do things a little bit different

specifically. It's just going to give the viewer

another option. The viewer can watch both and

choose. I don't feel any kind of competition

individually whatsoever.

Q. I don't know if this is in your

wheelhouse or not, but the big increase in

salary cap this year, there's a lot of numbers

being thrown around, especially from Bush's

camp on how much of a signing bonus he may

be due, and if the Saints hold onto their No. 2

pick, what kind of money are they looking at?

MIKE MAYOCK: If we are talking salary

caps and bonuses, I'm going to defer on this one.

Q. Can you tell me what your opinion is

on Marcus Vick, obviously as an athlete and

what he can do, and also with the baggage that

he brings into the draft and where do you think

he might fall to?

MIKE MAYOCK: That was well said. I

believe that as far as an athlete and a football

player, he's not as good an athlete as his older

brother. He's not as dangerous a runner as his

older brother, but he's got a little bit better innate

feel for the pass game than his brother had at this

time in his career.

Having said that, the term "baggage" you

used is a good one. I think there's a trend in the

NFL away from bad character guys, especially

because the teams that are winning a lot of games

like New England, Pittsburgh, Philadelphia,

Carolina, are typically character teams.

So I think teams are shying away from

those kind of guys. So I think Vick is going to be a

guy that if he had perfect character off the field,

you'd be talking about a late first day kind of

prospect. But given where he is, I think you're

talking about six, seventh, round, at best, and

maybe a priority free agent.

Q. What sort of players do you see

available for the Browns? They may take a 12.

MIKE MAYOCK: I played for Romeo years

ago. He was a special teams coach for the Giants,

and he's got that 3-4, Bill Belichick, Bill Parcells

philosophy. Despite the fact that they have got

McGinest in free agency, they are both old. I think

you are looking at either an outside linebacker like

Kamerion Wimbley from Florida State, I call a

poor man's DeMarcus Weir (ph) or perhaps a nose

tackle like a Haloti Ngata from Oregon. I think

those are the type of players that Romeo will be

looking for, he and Phil Savage, at No. 12 in the

first round.

Q. There's some thought maybe the

Cowboys might draft a quarterback even

though they have Tony Romo and Drew

Henson. What are your thoughts on the

quarterbacks after the Top 3, and the viability

of the Cowboys taking any of those guys, and if

you could also hit on what you think of this

class of wide receivers coming in, as well.

MIKE MAYOCK: I'll do that backwards.

The wide receiver class I've been expecting a little

bit of an attrition given the fact that last year there

were six, and the year before there were seven

that went in the first round. This is the payback

year with an awful lot of those under classmen

coming out, especially at the top end. I see two

wide receivers, Holmes and Chad Jackson as

definite first rounders, with Sinorice Moss a

possibility; I've got him on the cusp of the first and

second round. In a normal year, I wouldn't have

him in the first round. I think there's some pretty

good second and third round values at the wide

receiver position.

Regarding the Cowboys and the

quarterback situation, you know, given the

commitment to Henson and what Parcells thinks

about Romo, would they get a developmental

guy -- I'll tell you a guy that's moving up charts a

little bit is Kellen Clemens from Oregon. Got hurt,

missed a lot of his senior year. He's thrown the

ball extremely well on his pro day. A guy like

Campbell or Tarvaris Jackson from Alabama

State who is kind of raw; I think they are two logical

guys, and Clemens is a third or fourth rounder in

my opinion. Tarvaris Jackson a fourth or fifth

rounder. Clemens could step in earlier. Tarvaris

Jackson is a developmental guy.

Q. Did you say that you rate Jay Cutler

as the guy going to be the best pro of the

quarterbacks in draft?

MIKE MAYOCK: Yeah, I've been on the

record since September saying that he's the best

quarterback ultimately out of this draft class. Every

tape I've watched -- I've watched too much tape of

these three quarterbacks, and nothing's changed

my opinion throughout the whole Senior Bowl,

Combine, Pro Day.

I'll tell you how bad it is, guys. I was

watching Pro Day workout tape this morning, and

just to see if I'm missing anything. The bottom line

to me is Cutler, he's going to be the best pro.

Vince Young I have reservations on, not because

he's a great athlete and a great kid, and I could

care less about the wuderlick. But I do have a

concern about whether or not he'll ever get to the

next level as a sophisticated NFL quarterback.

And in 40 Super Bowls, there's never been a

scrambling quarterback that's won a Super Bowl.

Matt Leinart, I have a ton of respect for,

given the fact that he understands when and

where to throw the football. As a former defensive

back, those guys always scared me. He's got

average arm strength, great leadership, great

touch and accuracy. But for a Top-10 pick, I want

my Top-10 quarterback to have a better arm than


So in kind of a quick snapshot, that's my

overview of the three quarterbacks.

Q. One more question about these

quarterback I'd like to say that Roger Staubach

was a bit of a scrambler and he won the Super


MIKE MAYOCK: I would say that he

developed into a throwing quarterback and a

passing quarterback over time. But you're right

because that was his nickname, Roger the


Q. So back to Vince. I still have issues

trying to understand how Cutler is going to

outdo Vince in coming a quarterback because

it reminded me of some of the argument with

some of the quarterbacks, got so much hype

and never pan out. Can you give me

something with a little more meat on why Vince

isn't going to pan out compared to Cutler?

MIKE MAYOCK: Sure, I'd be happy to.

I've watched every coach's tape of all three

quarterbacks --

Q. In college --

MIKE MAYOCK: I'm trying to project it for

you into the NFL. I don't have any other tape that I

can watch other than their college tape. I watched

Vince Young, what I see is a very simplified

offense, that right option offense. He's got one,

maybe two reads; if it's not there, he tucks the ball

and he goes. Now, when that internal clock of his

goes off and he's in the pocket, whether that

pocket has broken down or not, he's out the gate.

And I can put some Ohio State tape on for

you and I can show you where the pocket is

perfect, but he will not look for a secondary or third

receiver, because that clock has gone off in his

head and he says, it's time to get out of here.

When a defense forces him to pull the ball

down and not scramble for big yardage, his

efficiency goes way down. So in my opinion and

this is really the crux of it, if you've got a Top-5

quarterback, or just Top-5 pick in the Draft at any

position, if you miss with that pick, you set your

franchise back three or four years, given the salary

cap structure. It's even more so at the quarterback

position. So you can't afford to miss.

When I look at Vince Young if I'm a

general manager, I'm not telling you that I don't

think -- he probably will go 3 to Tennessee. But

my point is if I'm the general manager, I'm not

pushing all my chips out to the middle of the table

and betting my franchise on this kid turning into an

advanced throwing quarterback in the NFL. I could

be wrong, but that's my opinion.

Q. Are you saying, then, that the NFL

does not want to teach a quarterback; they

want to bring in someone they can just plug in

right away?

MIKE MAYOCK: No, I'm not saying that at

all. I think that hopefully you get the best tutelage

in the world in the NFL, especially the quarterback

position and especially with a high draft pick. What

I'm saying is that some players are not able to

make the transition from runner to thrower, okay.

Some players are. Steve McNair has become a

great NFL quarterback who I respect as much as

any player in the game. Steve Young went from a

scrambler to a passing quarterback late in his

career and that's when they won Super Bowls. So

guys can develop.

I just look at Vince Young, and my

personal opinion is, if I had, again, to bet my

franchise on him, I'd be uncomfortable doing that.

And I think some teams will look at a Matt Leinart

and say, I feel a lot more comfortable there

because he comes out of a pro-style attack.

There's no fear of the unknown. He's been

coached by Pete Carroll, it's a pro-style attack, he

knows where and when to throw the ball, he can

look off a free safety, he can dunk to a third

receiver. So these are all factors going through

those coaches and general managers' minds that

have Top-10 picks. You've got three potential

franchise quarterbacks who all should go in that


Q. You mentioned Sinorice Moss on

the cusp of the first round; who at the

University of Miami who is most likely to be a

first rounder, and who projects the best pro

career in your opinion?

MIKE MAYOCK: Out of the University of

Miami, the kids that I really like, I like Rocky

McIntosh a lot, the linebacker. He's had some

durability issues. He's another kid that's on the

cusp of that first, second round. I think if he stays

healthy, he's got an opportunity to be to be one of

those typical Miami linebackers,

sideline-to-sideline, make plays.

Eric Winston is a guy that I have criticized

this year with the caveat that I thought he was a

tremendous tackle before he got hurt and that

knee operation. And typically I believe it takes you

two years to come back fully from that. So this

year was the first year. I had him projected as a

first round left tackle prior to the injury. I've got him

as a second round right tackle right now. Now,

he's the kind of kid with his athletic ability that

could end up an all-pro. I thought he struggled

with speed this year. He's got 32-inch arms which

is not good for a left tackle; that's three or four

inches shorter than what they would like. But he's

a kid that I think has tremendous upside because

he's a former tight end with great athletic ability.

We talked about Sinorice Moss, very

similar to his brother, doesn't have as much

production coming out of Miami as I'd like to see.

And Orien Harris is another kid that not many

people talk about, defensive tackle, could be a 3-4

defensive end. I see him as a second round pick

also, and maybe third round pick just because of

his return. Devon Hester is another kid with

tremendous potential. I don't know what the heck

position they are going to put him at but you know

somebody is going to draft him because of his

capability as a return guy. So he's another second

or third rounder and that's kinds of an overview of

the Hurricanes draft picks early on.

Q. What the Ravens might do at 13, will

they trade that or will somebody be there that

they just can't refuse?

MIKE MAYOCK: The Ravens at No. 13, a

lot of people are trying to talk about Winston

Justice. I don't see them being interested in

Winston Justice. I think a defensive tackle like

Haloti Ngata could slide to them and I think he

would be a guy given the fact that they lost

Cablioto (ph), I think he's a guy if he would be a

guy if he was sitting there at 13 they would be all

over him.

Outside of that, there's a lot of talk about

whether a quarterback will slide, and if the

quarterback, one of those three quarterbacks slid

like a Leinart or a Cutler, what would they do at

that point. I know or I believe that they are also

preparing for that eventuality.

Q. What do you think about the special

teams players, kickers and do you think any

will go on the second day or all be free agents?

MIKE MAYOCK: I always tease that I

don't really think they are even athletes so I don't

even evaluate them. I've got about three really

good friends that are special teams coaches in the

league, and to be really honest with you, I'm

scheduled to talk to them next week. I'd be lying if

I told you I knew anything about the punters or the


Q. Could you talk about Ernie Simms

and maybe the linebacker group in general?

MIKE MAYOCK: Absolutely. I really

believe that Ernie Simms is the most explosive,

through-the-hips athlete in this draft. As far as an

outside linebacker is concerned, everybody has

got A.J. Hawk penciled in. I think Simms has the

most upside of any linebacker in the draft. Do I

think he's going to be exposed occasionally as a

rookie? Yes, he'll over pursue, get fooled on

play-action. But when he gets there, he's an

explosive hitter, he's going to make plays and I

think he can have the kind of impact early in his

career that a Derrick Brooks or a Jonathan

Vilma did.

So I'm a big Ernie Simms guy with the

caveat that he passes his medical because he's

got a history of concussions. The other for sure

first day outside linebacker is Chad Greenway

from Iowa. He can run, but didn't run as well as

people expected at the Combine but he's athletic,

6-2, 243, he's got tremendous upside. I don't see

him getting past Minnesota at 17.

Then the three outside linebackers that I

have on the cusp of 1 and 2 are Rocky McIntosh

from Miami, DeMeco Ryans from Alabama and --


Q. Do you believe that the New Orleans

Saints are going to draft Matt Leinart even

though they agreed to terms with Drew Brees?

MIKE MAYOCK: I think they are doing a

good job for keeping everything which they would

love to do. If they stay at No. 2, I don't believe it

will be a quarterback. I believe it will either be

Mario Williams or D'Brickashaw Ferguson. My

belief on Williams, even though they already have

two good defensive ends. I do believe that's a

good chance that Cutler could slide to No. 10. I

don't think he'd get past Arizona at No. 10, though.

Q. The Eagles are at 14 in the first

round and 45 in the second. Who do you think

might be there and how would you describe the

players you think might be there?

MIKE MAYOCK: I might tell you one thing

but Andy Read is going to tell you another. He's

an inside-out believer, and at 14, with Jon

Runyan's age, with Tra Thomas's history of

durability concerns, I think if Winston Justice is

there, he's real logical. I think a defensive tackle is

logical, Ngata or Bunkley. My guess is Bunkley

is gone in the Top 10. Ngata probably doesn't get

past Baltimore at 13, so they would have to trade

up. I would like to see them look at Santonio

Holmes. I think they need a playmaker on

offense, but I don't think they are willing to do that.

Defensively, I'd love to see them look at an

Ernie Simms or a linebacker, but again that's not

the Eagles' way. So I think they are going to focus

on Winston Justice or a defensive tackle. But

they are the general needs, whether it's at 14 or

45, that they have got to take care of, and you

might see them go with a running back a little

further down, I believe they three fourth round

picks. Gerald Riggs is an interesting guy who was

hurt most of his senior year, bigger back and might

satisfy a need in the fourth round for the Eagles.

Q. Justice has come out and said that

he's every bit as good as Ferguson, but do you

believe that's true or there's not much that

separates them?

MIKE MAYOCK: With all due respect to

Winston Justice, he didn't prove it on a

snap-by-snap basis throughout his career. So my

reaction is he's every bit as talented physically as

D'Brickashaw Ferguson, but he's inconsistent

and has a certain immaturity about him right now.

So for him to thrive, he needs to get an offensive

line coach that sits on his butt daily and demands

perfection, because he's a talented, talented kid,

but has not shown it on a consistent basis.

Q. Are there generalities you can draw

about the kind of guy Herm Edwards like to

have from his draft with the Jets, maybe

athletes or over guys with size and strength,

that kind of thing?

MIKE MAYOCK: Yeah, I think you can

draw some conclusions from Herm. You know,

Herm is a pretty tough guy, and Herm believes in

mental and physical toughness. Being a former

defensive back, he drafted a lot of defensive backs

in New York, and he did very well with the

defensive backs that he drafted in New York. So I

think that's a trend you're going to see continue in

Kansas City.

I think they have got to start to play some

defense out there if they ever want to get to the

Championship Game. So they need an edge

rusher, they need a couple defensive backs and

they can continue to beef up that linebacker core.

Q. If you were to rank the first round

core as 1, 2, 3, as far as readiness to play, how

would you rank them? You mentioned some

second and third round receivers you thought

were going to be there and be good values at

that point in the draft, could you elaborate on

those guys?

MIKE MAYOCK: Sure. As far as corners

are concerned, I've got 7 potential first rounders,

realistically five of them will go. I think Michael

Huff who can play free safety also is at the top of

most people's boards. I think Jonathan Joseph,

the junior from South Carolina has a love/hate

relationship. You either think he's going to be the

best corner in the draft or you can't stand him. Tye

Hill from Clemson had a tremendous Senior Bowl,

track guy, real quick feet. He could step in and be

that nickel corner that a lot of teams covet right

away. Antonio Cromartie from in Florida State,

he's starting to move up charts. Here is a guy that

started one game in three years, missed all of last

season with an ACL, but he's almost 6-3, 208

pounds ran a 2:4 :40 and they are making him

sound like he's the best DB to come out of there

since Deion Sanders. He's a guy that's going to go

somewhere between 20 and 25 and only has one

start in his career. Williams is an enigma, another

guy that either is a boom-or-bust candidate, either

All-Pro or a washout.

Jennings from Miami who I may have

neglected to mention earlier from the Miami

discussions, he's a first or second rounder with

quick feet, can step in and play that nickel

defender position, as can Richard Marshall from

Fresno. So that's a quick overview of the six or

seven corners but I think Michael Huff will be the

guy to get on the field immediately.

Q. What about those wide receivers?

MIKE MAYOCK: I think a guy that not a lot

of people talk about is Greg Jennings from

Western Michigan, high production, real quick, can

separate. I think he's a tremendous second round

value, nobody is talking a whole lot about him.

Demetrius Williams at Oregon, tall, thin, can

separate another second round player. Maurice

Stovall had a huge senior year at Notre Dame,

played for Charlie Weis this year, just became a

different kind of player dropping 15 pounds. I think

he's kind of a late second round, early third round

guy, 6-5, tremendous red zone asset. And then

Brandon Williams and Brandon Marshall, Brandon

Williams is at Wisconsin, great punt return guy,

and Brandon Marshall is the guy that some scouts

are teasingly calling baby T.O. out of central

Florida. Lit up the whole Senior Bowl and ran

about a 4:55 :40 so he's a big West Coast type of

receiver. I think they are the type of guys that a

guy at Oregon State might ask, they are the guys

that are pretty good values that can get on the field

and get some immediate production.

Q. What do you think of Jason Avant?

MIKE MAYOCK: I love him on tape. He's

taken a beating lately because he ran so poorly in

his Pro Day. He ran between 4-6 and 4-8 and he

had a cast on one hand because he apparently

broke it during the drill. I think he's a disciplined

runner with great hands but there are not a whole

lot of 4-7, 4-8 wide receivers getting drafted high in

this league.

Q. What about the safety coming out of

southern California, Darnell Bing, 6-2, almost

230, what about him?

MIKE MAYOCK: There's some mixed

opinion on him. I don't believe he's a first round

pick. Some people have him as second round,

some people have him in the third round. The

reason they don't have him as high as Huff (ph) is

because he has some coverage issues; he's 225

or 230. I almost think he would be better suited for

weak outside linebacker position, but I think he's

good enough that he can make a living as an

in-the-box, strong safety. He's a tough guy, but he

is a little bit limited on the coverage side. So I think

you're going to see him go kind of mid to late

second round with the possibility of sliding into the


Q. Talking about wide receivers and a

lot of wide receivers in the first round have not

really panned out recently. Is there a reason

behind that, that they are not quite living up to

their billing?

MIKE MAYOCK: I would tell you that you

could pick a couple of names each year that don't

pan out. But I would say the majority of them the

last few years have done okay. There were six

taken last year, seven the year before, I would say

that Reggie Williams has not panned out. I would

say that Rashaun Woods has not panned out.

Besides that, you know, there have not been that

many busts.

But what I would also say is that I believe,

for the most part, it takes a wide receiver a good

two years to get comfortable an NFL offense.

There's so much more reading; that the defenses,

are so much more complicated. If you're not on

your same page with your quarterback, it doesn't

matter how fast you run and how great your hands

are. So you've got to give them a little type.

Michael Williams is another guy who I did not like

coming out of USC, and he struggled a little bit. So

I would say that -- it really takes two or three years

for these guys.

Q. Any receives coming out this year

that might make an immediate impact?

MIKE MAYOCK: Santonio Holmes has

ability because of his quickness and the run after

his catch ability to make the difference. That's the

key in the NFL. At the wide receiver position, who

can run after the catch, and I think Santonio

Holmes is one of those guys that you can put in

the slot, try to simplify it for him, and let him get

open, get the football, let him break a tackle and


Q. What kind of impact can Vernon

Davis make right away?

MIKE MAYOCK: Special. I'm a big

believer that if you can get a tight end that can

stretch a defense vertically and give you some

blocking on top of it, you can change your whole

offense. Look at Kansas City and look at San

Diego. They have no wide receivers to speak of

that are perennial all-pros, yet they continue to

lead the league in total offense because they have

got great tight ends and great tailbacks. I look at

Vernon Davis and say here is a guy that's

ridiculous, 254 pounds, he's willing to block people.

That's why I think San Francisco is going to take

him at six because they have got average wide

receivers and he can help with young quarterbacks

and he can be a difference maker in the NFL.

Q. The Redskins might be in the market

or a weak side linebacker, you mentioned some

of the round two guys, anybody you think can

step in and play right away for Greg Williams?

MIKE MAYOCK: You're right, they have

one pick, I think of the first 152 picks or so. I think

a guy like Jon Alston from Stanford is the kind of

guy that could play in some Nickel in this case he

will situations for them and help them on special

teams. But beyond that, I don't think they are

going to get a whole lot of help.

Q. What about the Falcons?

MIKE MAYOCK: Atlanta did well last year

with some of those type of players. Michael Bollio

(ph) came in on special teams and then got to play

as a linebacker. Chauncey Davis, another guy like

that. So they have done pretty well with their mid

to late round guys to help them on special teams.

You know, I look at the safety position,

they picked up Lawyer Malloy and Chris Crocker.

Are they going to try to get a young safety -- and

this is a pretty good year for second and third

round safeties. I think a guy like Daniel Bollock

(ph) would help them immensely on special teams

and down the road as a starter.

Q. What about D’Quwell Jackson,

University of Maryland, any talks about what

teams are interested in him?

MIKE MAYOCK: Well, I'll tell you what,

when I put tape on of him, I think he's a first round

pick. I really like him a lot. Got to see him up

close at Senior Bowl. His stock has fallen a little

bit because he did not run that well. And I get

frustrated sometimes because to me he just looks

like a football player and I don't really care that he

ran a 4:07:5. I don't really care at all. I just see a

football player. I think he could slide into the

second round and the nice thing about him is he's

athletic enough as an inside linebacker and could

even stay on the field in nickel situations. He's the

kind of guy that I think could come in and play real

well early on for an NFL team.

Q. Do you see any late round

quarterback that might go and have an impact

in the league in a few years?

MIKE MAYOCK: Yeah, a couple of

interesting guys are Charlie Whitehurst from

Clemson. There's a medical issue on him with his

shoulder but he's a big, good-looking prototype

drop-back passer that can throw the heck out of

the ball with you he's been inconsistent. Croyle

from Alabama is a guy who can be a solid backup

in a certain type of offense, can be a starter down

the road. I already mentioned Clemens and

Tarvaris Jackson, both of whom I like a lot.

Then a couple of interesting kids to keep

your eye on is Darnell Hackney from UAB, reminds

me a lot of the backup down in Jacksonville, David

Garrard (ph). And then there's Bruce Eugene from

Grambling. If he doesn't make it at quarterback he

may make it at guard because he's six feet, 262.

Q. You had mentioned that you have

known Mel Kiper for about a dozen years.

What do you think of the job he does and how

his visibility opens doors for guys like you?

MIKE MAYOCK: I think Mel does a

fantastic job, because it doesn't matter whether it's

the first pick in the Draft or the 247th pick in the

draft, he knows the kid's bio off the top of his head,

and I give him a ton of credit for that. He's

well-prepared and he's been living it, breathing it,

sleeping it since he was a high school kid. So I

respect him and my hat is off to him.

The beauty in what I'm doing right now and

one of the reasons I'm doing it, and I thought of it a

little bit, I wanted to be a playbook analyst and

X&O analyst when I came to this network and they

said, you don't have a big enough name. You only

played in the NFL a couple years and nobody ever

heard of you. When he would like you to do some

college stuff and personnel evaluations. My dad is

a coach, I've been watching tape since I was ten

years old and the beauty of what I'm doing now,

courtesy of Mel Kiper, there are not a whole lot of

coaches and players retiring who want to be in

player personnel. So I've got a little job security


Q. Could this be the year the Eagles

look at some of the quarterbacks?

MIKE MAYOCK: Yeah, I think it's time to

start thinking about that, I agree. They got rid of

Andy Hall, the kid from Delaware they bought into

for a couple of years. I think now is the time or

next year is the time, depending on whether or not

a kid catches their eye they have to start to groom

somebody for a couple of years down the road as

a No. 3, a degree.

Q. Do you have an opinion on Eric

Henderson, defensive end out of Georgia Tech

and where he may land or play in the NFL?

MIKE MAYOCK: Yeah, he is a defensive

end that has some pass rushing playability and

could play some outside linebacker. Most of the

teams I've talked to have got him in the fourth or

fifth round and I think that's probably where he's

going to end up.

Q. Has Vince Young's representatives

hurt his position or is more of that made than

what it is? And are there any guys

like DeMarcus Ware any guys would could

jump up high this year?

MIKE MAYOCK: Yeah, the DeMarcus

comparison is good, I loved him last year. This

year there is a guy who is white hot right now who I

gave a third round grade to and everybody is

telling me he's going to go between 12 and 20 and

that's Manny Lawson from North Carolina state,

the other end besides Mario Williams. I'm not

buying into the fact yet that that's what he is, but

he's a 4-3 defensive end that lit it up at the

Combine at 241 pounds. He ran a 4:40, he's a

work-out warrior. To me, DeMarcus showed me at

Senior Bowl a year ago he was a first round big.

Manny Lawson did not show me that. So it looks

like he's going to be a first round pick. I'm not

buying into it yet.

The other guy that will be a first round pick,

and I believe a good football player is Kamerion

Wimbley from Florida State, hands-down, 4-3

defensive end who will be a 3-4 outside linebacker.

I think he could go as early as number 12 to


Q. As far as Vince Young's

representatives, there's been a lot of talk about

him being inexperienced, have they hurt --

MIKE MAYOCK: I answered this earlier,

but to give you the quick overview I thought they

made some poor decisions early. I don't know why

he went on that ESPN Skills Competition because

he had nothing to gain and everything to lose. But

the reality -- why he would do that and not the

Combine, I thought was inconsistent at best. The

reality is, he threw the ball well at his Pro Day. I

think he's going to be fine as far as Draft day. But

a lot of people in the league right now they he's

going to be 3 to Tennessee.

Q. What about Tamba Hali?

MIKE MAYOCK: I think there was more

media frenzy about Tamba Hali than 100% pure

substance. He's a really good football player that's

a 4-3 defensive end. He's got tweener size. He's

only about 261, 262. He probably can't stand up

and play outside linebacker. He's got a

tremendous first step, he's got a tremendous

motor, but I think he's probably going to be an

early second round pick. I like him a lot. It's just

that he's kind of an outside speed rusher that isn't

as big as people would like.

Q. Do you think Matt Leinart fired Lee

Steinberg, is that going to have any impact --


MIKE MAYOCK: I kind of laugh when I

hear those things about the agent and impacting

his draft status. No, I don't think it will have any

impact whatsoever. People are evaluating based

on his tape, his personal interviews and his


Q. You mentioned the Redskins not

having a lot of picks -- inaudible -- have you

seen a team that doesn't help their depth at all?

MIKE MAYOCK: It's kind of like the old

days with George Allen. I agree with you and I'll

take it a step further. As active as they were in this

off-season and with the amount of money they

spent and I believe overspent on some of those

players, down the road, two, three, four years,

there's going to be hell to pay with the salary cap.

Q. Two questions about Florida State

players, Willie Reed, Leon Washington (ph)

both had injury problems. Your assessment of

where they may end up?

MIKE MAYOCK: Yeah, both of them are

on the rise. Both worked out well at the Combine,

had a good on campus work out. Willie Reed I

think because of his ability to separate in short

areas probably goes in the fourth round, and that's,

without a lot of college production. And Leon

Washington, the tailback, was highly rated going

into the season, a little heavy coming into it, didn't

have as good of a year as he should have. I think

he's probably going to climb back into the first day

and I have him in my third round right now.

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Q: So Mike, what's with that annoying lisp?

MIKE MAYOCK: Yeah, I really suck. I realize that I'm impossible to listen to.

That is some good stuff. Its interesting that this guy, who has looked at all the QB film, as well as Jaworski doing the same thing, has Cutler as the top rated QB. Two guys who have seen all the film both rate Cutler as the best.....

That is some good stuff. Its interesting that this guy, who has looked at all the QB film, as well as Jaworski doing the same thing, has Cutler as the top rated QB. Two guys who have seen all the film both rate Cutler as the best.....
I have to be honest, I am a long time Cutler basher and my opinion is starting to be swayed.
That is some good stuff. Its interesting that this guy, who has looked at all the QB film, as well as Jaworski doing the same thing, has Cutler as the top rated QB. Two guys who have seen all the film both rate Cutler as the best.....
I have to be honest, I am a long time Cutler basher and my opinion is starting to be swayed.
I still think there is a decent chance that Cutler could bust. First of all, you really don't know what the extra attention of being a top 15 pick will do to him. You can be more sure that it won't negatively affect Leinart and Young because they have been in the spotlight. Secondly, he really is a gunslinger, throw it up for grabs off his back foot kind of guy and as great as Favre turned out after starting like that, there certainly is a chance that Cutler will never be able to get away from that mentality and will become a walking INT machine in the NFL.
That is some good stuff.  Its interesting that this guy, who has looked at all the QB film, as well as Jaworski doing the same thing, has Cutler as the top rated QB.  Two guys who have seen all the film both rate Cutler as the best.....
I have to be honest, I am a long time Cutler basher and my opinion is starting to be swayed.
I still think there is a decent chance that Cutler could bust. First of all, you really don't know what the extra attention of being a top 15 pick will do to him. You can be more sure that it won't negatively affect Leinart and Young because they have been in the spotlight. Secondly, he really is a gunslinger, throw it up for grabs off his back foot kind of guy and as great as Favre turned out after starting like that, there certainly is a chance that Cutler will never be able to get away from that mentality and will become a walking INT machine in the NFL.
You did a good job of summing up my opinion on Cutler. But with Mayock and Jaworski scouring game film and coming to the same conclusion; I have to acknowledge that they may be seeing something that I am not. I have a pretty big ego, but even my ego has to have some limitations.
That is some good stuff. Its interesting that this guy, who has looked at all the QB film, as well as Jaworski doing the same thing, has Cutler as the top rated QB. Two guys who have seen all the film both rate Cutler as the best.....
I have to be honest, I am a long time Cutler basher and my opinion is starting to be swayed.
I still think there is a decent chance that Cutler could bust. First of all, you really don't know what the extra attention of being a top 15 pick will do to him. You can be more sure that it won't negatively affect Leinart and Young because they have been in the spotlight. Secondly, he really is a gunslinger, throw it up for grabs off his back foot kind of guy and as great as Favre turned out after starting like that, there certainly is a chance that Cutler will never be able to get away from that mentality and will become a walking INT machine in the NFL.
You did a good job of summing up my opinion on Cutler. But with Mayock and Jaworski scouring game film and coming to the same conclusion; I have to acknowledge that they may be seeing something that I am not. I have a pretty big ego, but even my ego has to have some limitations.
A man has got to know his limitations. :D I agree and they are certainly much better talent evaluators than I. But I do wonder if people are starting to get the impression that Cutler's "bustability" is less than Leinart's. That's crazy, IMHO. I would venture that he's closer to Young's "bustability" than to Leinart's.

Secondly, he really is a gunslinger...
Why do you say that?
Just watching him and then watching the Arkansas highlight tape. He seldom stepped into the throw, even during the few times he could. And he did seem to throw it up a little more than a good QB would. Now, that Arkansas game was early on (Spet 10th?) and I remember seeing him do that a little bit during the Florida game, but not that much. So maybe it was something he was working on throughout the year?
You can't really judge which one will be better three years from now since they will be on different teams.

If Young goes to Tenn, Leinert to the raiders, and Cutler to the Jets. I'll put my money on Leinert due to Moss/Porter O-Line factor.

If Brady was drafted by the Niners instead of the Pats, would be standing upright today? Would Rattay have at least 1 SB ring in New England if was picked instead of Brady years ago?

Cutler may or may not be a better QB, but whichever one goes to the better team will have a huge head start. Palmer, McNair got to sit and watch before they started. Will these guys have that opportunity?

I must be in the minority as I think Mayock gives some good talent eval insight. I don't always agree with him (and we Southerners have known about Cutler for a while) but I generally enjoy hearing his takes. Most NFL anaylsts are useless. I look forward to having another TV option this weekend.

Thanks for posting.

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I started to pay attention to Cutler about the same time Mayock did, but only saw one game, along with the senior bowl game and practice week, and the combine. Draft Daddy.com has been high on Cutler for a long time too. I was somewhat on the fence with Cutler until I heard Mayock break him down.

While I've had Cutler at the top of my QB list for some time, I also happen to think that Leinart is the least likely to bust. Worst case, Leinart is an average NFL QB, and could be very good. My two concerns with him are arm strength in the NE in December, and this whole "I wanna be a star" , on and off the filed stuff he talks about.

Sure, Cutler could bust.... that's always a risk with ANY QB in the draft. He developed some bad habits, that need to be corrected.... he forced balls, but he had to.... his recievers weren't good enough to get seperation, which is more like the NFL, however. He was usually under a lot of rush pressure, and threw off his back foot as a result, but he had the arm strength to get away with that. Most importantly, he has the fastest release of the QB's. He is pretty mobile, and can run when forced to, but he also uses his size and strength to buy time in the pocket.

Cutler's been beat up at Vandy for 4 years, and only missed one game. He's a tough kid who spent after practice time in the weight room with his O linemen, and never complained about the lack of pass protection. Put it all together, and I think, with some coaching, he is most likely to be the pro bowler from this group, if there is one. I put more wieght on the opinions of guys like Jaworski and Mayock who played pro ball and are tape viewing fanatics.


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