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which LB (1 Viewer)

Broken

Footballguy
I have a pick coming up in my Dynasty Rookie draft and am looking at LB to fill a need. I have narrowed it to Tatupu or Fincher. It looking at depth charts and reading all I can find it appears that NO is a mess at LB with the possibility of no less than 5 or 6 LB's competing for 3 starting spots. In Seattle Lofa only has Niko in front of him , Niko being a 4th round rookie from last year that filled in for injured starter. General opinion seems to be that Lofa was a reach in round 2 at only 5'11" , 226 (still bigger than Zack T) but he has a high motor and a great head and anticipation for the game. Fincher , while a 3rd round pick, seems to be thought of in high regard (6'1" , 241) but no one seems to state why. I am leaning Lofa but would like some opinions. Also, in our league MLB & WLB are much better points generators than SLB. Morrison (Oak) and Blackstock (Arz) are also still available but Morrison looks like he has a greater task unseating MLB Danny Clark and Blackstock is slated for SLB and would have to beat out K Dansby.your thoughts are appreciated.

 

Los Gigantes

Footballguy
I have a pick coming up in my Dynasty Rookie draft and am looking at LB to fill a need. I have narrowed it to Tatupu or Fincher. It looking at depth charts and reading all I can find it appears that NO is a mess at LB with the possibility of no less than 5 or 6 LB's competing for 3 starting spots. In Seattle Lofa only has Niko in front of him , Niko being a 4th round rookie from last year that filled in for injured starter. General opinion seems to be that Lofa was a reach in round 2 at only 5'11" , 226 (still bigger than Zack T) but he has a high motor and a great head and anticipation for the game. Fincher , while a 3rd round pick, seems to be thought of in high regard (6'1" , 241) but no one seems to state why. I am leaning Lofa but would like some opinions.

Also, in our league MLB & WLB are much better points generators than SLB.

Morrison (Oak) and Blackstock (Arz) are also still available but Morrison looks like he has a greater task unseating MLB Danny Clark and Blackstock is slated for SLB and would have to beat out K Dansby.

your thoughts are appreciated.
In a dynasty, many prefer to draft the better talent over the better situation. Fincher is the more talented inebacker, with greater athletic ability. The saints are also very high on him. Either this year or more likely in 2006, courtney watson will be moved to WLB (his more natural position) and Fincher will play MLB. Tatupu is a smart gutsy player that plays above his physical talent level. He's the kind of guy I like to root for, but he may just not be physically gifted enough to succeed at the next level. Given Seattle's DL issues, the LB'ers may have to absorb a ton of blocks. Look for their DB's to get a ton of tackles, making Boulware and Herndon strong DB choices if you have or can trade for them.

 

Weiner Dog

Footballguy
Pre-draft, Tatupu wasn't touted. However...on draft day, things changed. The Hawks traded UP in the draft to nab him in the 2nd. There were rumblings that other teams were trying to do the same. For whatever reason, Tatupu was a prized player by at least one team on draft day.I would draft Tatupu before Fincher in a heartbeat. Both players are in similar situations, but the Hawks obviously saw something they liked...and will give Tatupu every chance to show they were correct with their pick.

 

helix

Footballguy
Pre-draft, Tatupu wasn't touted. However...on draft day, things changed. The Hawks traded UP in the draft to nab him in the 2nd. There were rumblings that other teams were trying to do the same. For whatever reason, Tatupu was a prized player by at least one team on draft day.

I would draft Tatupu before Fincher in a heartbeat. Both players are in similar situations, but the Hawks obviously saw something they liked...and will give Tatupu every chance to show they were correct with their pick.
:goodposting: Tatupu by a wide margin-

 

Bob Magaw

Footballguy
tatupu was the subject of the in-depth profile in the first pre-season ear to the ground installment... i drafted both he & fincher in several drafts... imo he has clearer path to starting (i expect him to beat out niko)... watson is pretty talented, & while i think he may be a more natural WLB & fincher brings a more physical dimension, no guarantee that fincher gets a crack if watson & bockwoldt do well at their respective positions... from ETTG... Lofa TatupuIt was fashionable in the wake of the recent draft for pundits and wags to criticize the Tatupu pick as a multi-round reach. Yet clearly the Seahawks saw something in the former point-man for the USC two-time National Champion defense that others didn't... they gave up TWO fourth rounders to move up nine spots just past the middle of round two. What was it the Seattle personnel gurus saw, and why did so many other scouting departments overlook him? To answer the latter question, look no further than his measurables. They are average and his computer numbers don't "compute"... they are refractory to pigeon-holing within current accepted size and speed conventions within the scouting community. In this respect he is a lot like Dolphins MLB Zach Thomas, who is a failure as a physical specimen and workout warrior but a spectacular success as a football player. PLAYERS MAKE PLAYS. Back to the traits that appealed to Seattle so much they had to have him... compelling them to give up so much to guarantee securing his services. Aside from robust production (he led the Trojans in tackles his last two seasons), USC and ex-NFL HC Pete Carroll observed that Tatupu's background and former experience as a star prep QB gave him an advantage in terms of his encompassing understanding of offenses, what they are trying to do to defenses and how they go about it. He has almost telepathic recognition skills and the ability to diagnose plays. Teammate and All-American DT Shaun Cody noted that he was calling out all of Oklahoma's plays before the snap in the Orange Bowl blowout (he led the team in tackles with 12). Though an "intangible" and difficult to assign a quantitative measure to like a 40 time or vertical jump, having a knack for predicting what play has been called and knowing how it will unfold based on tendencies results in some very tangible consequences... being in the right place at the right time. >From the high price paid by the front office and coaching staff, Tatupu is expected to be given every opportunity to win the starting job in camp (he was already running with the first team defense in mini-camp). If so, he has the hidden and inner qualities to be a star at the next level, if not the obvious external traits of more heralded LBs Derrick Johnson, Barrett Ruud, Odell Thurman, Channing Crowder and Kevin Burnett. It is hard to overstate how much of an equalizer those inner qualities can be (2004 Defensive Rookie of the Year Jonathan Vilma is not the biggest, fastest or strongest LB, but is lauded for his spooky instincts, off-the-charts football IQ and coach on the field leadership). In the end, possession or lack of these hidden qualities could play the biggest role and be the largest determinant in how this class ultimately shakes out. Seattle DC Ray Rhodes said it best in a post draft interview... “The one thing that really stood out to us... is that when you talked to the players on that football team, the No. 1 thing that all the guys mentioned, from the defensive linemen to the defensive backs, was that Lofa was the leader on that defense... We want to bring in good football players, smart players and guys who love the game. He is one of the kids who really loves the game.”from an nfl.com survey of rookies (including stud IDPs thomas davis, marlin jackson, david pollack/odell thurman & tatupu... it seems to amplify what we are hearing about his intangibles & coach on the field football smarts...ROOKIE REVIEW "Now that minicamps and OTAs have all but wrapped up, initial rookie reviews are in. There are lots of thumbs up from Carolina to Seattle. CAROLINA'S T.D. The Panthers have their own T.D., trying to achieve some of the greatness that Tony Dorsett and Terrell Davis once did. Panthers safety/linebacker/defensive force Thomas Davis, the draft's 14th overall pick, has already proven to the Panthers he can help at all those positions. The Panthers plan to play Davis at strong safety on run downs and linebacker on passing downs -- basically wherever they can to maximize his versatile talents. At Georgia, the Bulldogs did the same thing, and Davis thrived. Wherever Davis lined up during the Panthers minicamp and OTAs, he ended up all over the field. Expect him to be on it a lot this season. THE MAGICAL MARLIN After all the years of needing help at cornerback, the Colts finally have gotten it. First-round pick Marlin Jackson was the Colts' rookie star at minicamp and OTAs, which concluded June 9. Jackson was aggressive, intelligent and picked up the defense as if he belonged in it. Colts defensive backs coach Alan Williams was really impressed with Jackson, as was anyone else who studied him. It would hardly be an upset to see Jackson force his way into the starting lineup. Plus, Jackson is going to have a major advantage in his rookie season. He is going to get to practice every day against Marvin Harrison, Reggie Wayne and Brandon Stokley, three of the league's best receivers. Those practice sessions will serve him well in games. MURPHY'S LAW With Packers wide receiver Javon Walker holding out and with Robert Ferguson nursing a tight back, Green Bay's rookie second-round pick Terrence Murphy was able to get plenty of extra reps at the Packers' minicamp and OTAs. What the Packers saw, they loved. Murphy had more power than the Packers expected; his routes had a great tempo and they think he can be a factor in the offense this season. One Packers front-office member also pointed out that, at this time last year, the team had Murphy rated as the top senior wide-receiver prospect. But last season at Texas A&M, Murphy lost some fumbles and some confidence. His confidence should now be coming back. FOR STARTERS Most teams are fortunate to have one rookie starter. The Bengals may have two in a single unit -- linebacker. After watching his rookies in minicamp, Bengals coach Marvin Lewis said he expected Cincinnati's first-round choice David Pollack and second-round choice Odell Thurman to be opening-day starters. It's no surprise that Pollack will be starting at strongside linebacker; the Bengals cut Kevin Hardy, who started at that position last season. But Thurman's expected promotion would be something of a surprise. He would be replacing last year's third-round draft choice, Landon Johnson, who led Cincinnati in tackles. Either way, the Bengals will be deeper and better at linebacker. ANOTHER IMPRESSIVE USC LB When the Seahawks traded up in the second round to grab USC linebacker Lofa Tatupu with the 45th overall pick, some NFL personnel men felt that Seattle reached. But after watching Tatupu in minicamp and OTAs, the Seahawks think they've reached greatness. Tatupu picked up the Seahawks defense so quickly that he actually was allowed to call all the team's defensive signals during practice one day. He knew not only his assignments, but his defensive teammates' ones, too. Rookies aren't supposed to be able to do that."

 
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Bloom

Moderator
I have them ranked right next to each other in my top 100 - i dont think you can go wrong with either. tatupu does have a clearer path to the job, but to me that is offset by the bust risk because of his size.

 

Bob Magaw

Footballguy
there seems to be some confusion about tatupu's size (speaking for myself, not bloom here)...at sc he was listed about 226, than 240 at the combine... maybe he was pumped up with protein shakes, & it won't be viable, "good" weight he can carry throughout season?seahawks site lists him at 6'0" 238.saints site lists fincher at 6'1" 238.the little film highlights i saw, it did appear fincher plays bigger, tatupu may have had slightly better feet.

 

Bloom

Moderator
there seems to be some confusion about tatupu's size (speaking for myself, not bloom here)...

at sc he was listed about 226, than 240 at the combine... maybe he was pumped up with protein shakes, & it won't be viable, "good" weight he can carry throughout season?

seahawks site lists him at 6'0" 238.

saints site lists fincher at 6'1" 238.

the little film highlights i saw, it did appear fincher plays bigger, tatupu may have had slightly better feet.
my impression is that tatupu's main weakness is that he might be too small to deal with the traffic that gets run at an MLB - i think tatupu is fantastic at slipping/avoiding blocks, but Im not sure how he'll do if he has to constantly take blockers head on. If Marcus Tubbs steps up and consistently draws double teams, thatll go a long way towards making tatupu a stud IDP - however, beyond tubbs, im not even sure that seattle has any DTs that are even average. If they are letting O-lineman and lead blocking FBs gets to tatupu, his playmaking ability will be seriously neutralized - seattle's DT play is a huge key to tatupu's fortunes, because i think he will be in trouble when plays are run right at him unless the DTs effectively clog up the middle.
 
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