5 at 10: Friday mailbag

5 at 10: Friday mailbag

April 29th, 2011 by Jay Greeson in Sports

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell speaks as former players and NFL draft prospects look on before the first round of the NFL football draft at Radio City Music Hall on Thursday, April 28, 2011, in New York. (AP Photo/Jason DeCrow)

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What a draft (and thanks to the folks for sending in some excellent draft questions late last night) and let's get to the mailbag.

From the newly remodeled "7-Up Stinks Studios" here in scenic Hamilton County, here we go...

Julio Jones, WR, Alabama. (AP Photo)

33wannabe

Alright, the 5-at-10 spent what feels like the last three years talking about this draft. Tells us what you think? And what do you think about the Julio move by the Falcons?

Thanks.

Like Thornton Melon of "Back to School" fame, the 5-at-10 will take the second part first. We absolutely love, Love, LOVE the aggressive move made by the Atlanta Falcons to trade up to No. 6 and get athletic former Alabama receiver Julio Jones.

Was it expensive? You bet - the Falcons sent a first this year and next, a fourth this year and next and a second round pick tonight to Cleveland for the chance to draft Jones, who was arguably the most impressive player at the combine.

Was it explosive? Even more so. Tell us how you would try to defend an offense that has Roddy White and Jones on the outside, Tony Gonzalez at tight end, Michael Turner at running back and Matt Ryan under center. Forget Thomas Dimitroff's time in New England and his comparisons to Belichick - this guy is trying to emulate the early-1990s Dallas Cowboys of Jimmy Johnson and Co.

Plus - and we discussed last Monday on SportTalk and again on our regular Thursday appearance on Chris Goforth's show on 1310 AM - this is an energizing move for the franchise in the eyes of the players and the fans. This puts the Falcons on the Super Bowl short list, and let's see how they react. There are only small windows of time to win championships, and this may be the Falcons' - hey, John Abraha's getting older, this likely will be Gonzalez's last year, etc. As Rocky told Clubber Lang, "Go for it." Or to paraphrase "Dead Poets' Society" - Carpe de-Super Bowl


Jake Locker, QB, Washington. (AP Photo/The Seattle Times, Erika Schultz)

33wannabe

Alright, the 5-at-10 spent what feels like the last three years talking about this draft. Tells us what you think? And what do you think about the Julio move by the Falcons?

Thanks.

33wannabe gets two questions since we got super-ramped about the Falcons answer, and ignored the first part. OK, we're back.

The 5-at-10 loves the draft. You know this.

And Thursday's first round exceeded even our expectations. A lot of picks went as forecast (and even if it was not the player projected, it was at the same position a lot of time).

Here were the surprises for the 5-at-10:

Arizona (good surprise) ignoring need and taking Patrick Peterson at No. 5. Everyone who reads this even semi-regularly knows we think Peterson is the best player in this draft. Sidenote: KNow who else was drafted fifth a few moons ago - yep, Deion Sanders. Primetime.

Tennessee (unknown surprise) drafted a quarterback. It shocked everyone as the Titans played this move exceedingly close to the vest, and apparently they got who they wanted (they had a chance at Blaine Gabbert, who despite being named Blaine ((how many NFL Pro Bowlers are named Blaine)) was the top-rated quarterback on a lot of draft boards). Locker would have been in the running for the top overall choice a year ago before returning to Washington and having a subpar senior year. Truth be told, it was a gutsy pick and we have the early measuring stick by which to grade new coach Mike Munchak.

SEC rules (super, micro-sized surprised; even a negative surprise, if that's possible) since the SEC West had four players form Alabama, two from Auburn, one from LSU and Miss. State. Georgia and Florida also had a player drafted in the first round. That's 10 SEC players in the first 32 picks. Wow.

Christian Ponder going before Nick Fairley (big shocker) when the Vikings picked Ponder 12th and the Lions sprinted to the podium to take Fairley 13th. Ponder has skills, but that was higher than anyone had him projected - and a big part of a successful draft is maximizing pick position by either waiting to select a player later or trading back. Fairley, however, started sliding from No. 8 when the Titans picked Jake Locker, and the knock on him was his work ethic. Well, in addition to costing Fairley some pretty good-sized coin, here's betting that the slide will serve as a big-time chip on his shoulder. And, the middle of the Lions' defensive front is settled for a while with Ndamukong Suh and Fairley lining up next to each other.


Da'Quan Bowers, Clemson (AP Photo/ Richard Shiro, File)

From draftfollower

Who do you like to be the top pick today and what would you call that?

Great question. Let's got with the Top Overall Pick, part deux, and love the fact that Da'Quan Bowers is still there for the Carolina Panthers. You can make an argument that if the Panthers draft Bowers, the first-team All-American from Clemson who led the nation in sacks, they will get the most dominating offensive (Cam Newton) and defensive (Bowers) players from last year's college football season. Nice.

Other names to watch:

Andy Dalton, and if the Panthers may be fielding a few trade offers for the Top Overall Pick, part deux and half of them are probably in an effort to get Dalton, the former TCU quarterback who graded higher than Christian Ponder.

Brooks Reed, the Arizona defensive end was a common name in first rounds of mock drafts as were Texas cornerback Aaron Williams and even Miami corner Brandon Harris.

Sidenote: The PATCO standings have been completely shuffled by the stunners pulled by Tennessee and Atlanta. We'll post the standings shortly, but here's the tie-breaker: Which player will be the last player selected in the NFL draft? If no one gets the exact last player picked it will roll from back-to-front (if no one submits Mr. Irrelevant, per se, then it goes to which player was the next to last pick and so forth).


UT coach Bruce Pearl yells in the student section before the Lady Vols college basketball game against Duke in Knoxville on Jan. 22, 2007. (AP Photo/Wade Payne)

From CelticVol

Hey 5@10,

Well, well, well..........My how the tide has turned. As the old saying goes, "What goes around comes around." How happy do you think Tennessee fans were on Monday morning when Ohio State University (I refuse to call them THE Ohio St. University) revealed the NCAAs findings into Jim Tressell's actions? Somewhere I bet Bruce Pearl is smiling. Don't you find it a bit ironic that this has happened to the Buckeyes after they were the ones that turned in the Vols?

C-Vol

It absolutely is from the "what goes around comes around" file of college sports. And in truth, that's a wise lesson for all fan bases, because everything moves in cycles. It's like angering the golf gods, you know their punishment is going to be a quick and ugly double bogey or a painful three-putt. So it goes.

As for THE Ohio State University and THE scandal THE football program finds itself in (the 5-at-10 can appreciate CelticVol refusing to embrace the THE, however we go to THE other extreme), it's worse than what Pearl and Co. were caught doing. The numbers that are coming out about the wrongdoings at THE Ohio State University are over THE top. From the AP story "Ohio State football players are alleged to have improperly traded dozens of items to the owner of a tattoo parlor, receiving tattoos, $14,000 and in one case a sport-utility vehicle, according to a newspaper report." Yep, an SUV. According to the justice department, there were 36 items sold to Eddie Rife, the tattoo parlor owner. Read that again.

Pearl's original sin was lying about a cookout - and deserved the medicine he received since he continued to com clean to his bosses and the NCAA - that would have been at most a secondary violation. His lies were silly and stupid that got out of control.

Tressel has lied and covered up major NCAA violations and what is obviously a rogue program. And he was doing it to cover up the major sins of THE Ohio State University.

As for it happening at OSU - the school that turned in Pearl and the overflowing hypocrisy of Tressel's clean-cut, "Senator" image - well another saying that is appropriate here os "Karma is a ... (That's right we're a family-oriented- Intertube-web-based-sports column and won't finish that thought).

That said, Pearl's smile is probably only slight - after all he's still without a job and will have a tough time landing one with the NCAA threats of "Show Cause" clauses hanging over any school that may be interested in hiring Pearl. The 5-at-10 wonders how many times a day, Pearl slaps his forehead (hard) and mumbles something like, "All you had to do was tell them about the stupid cookout and this goes away...."

If the NCAA doesn't strong-arm THE Ohio State University into a similar move with its football coach, well, there will need to be splainin' to do. Let's see where THE chips fall.


Atlanta Hawks guard Jamal Crawford (11) celebrates as he and Orlando Magic guard J.J. Redick (7) walk off the court after Game 6 of the NBA basketball Eastern Conference first-round playoff series, Thursday, April 28, 2011, in Atlanta. Atlanta won 84 -81, knocking the Magic out of the playoffs. (AP Photo/John Amis)

From PDavi

I know the normal maibag is full of questions, and that's cool. But I enjoy the "This and That" and the end. I know that's not a question, but OK wait, how about this: Can we end this mailbag with a "This and That?"

Well-played sir, very well-played.

Sure, here we go:

- Lakers and Hawks handled bid-ness and advance to the conference semis. Tonight it's Game 6 in Memphis, where the Grizzlies can eliminate the top-seeded Spurs. If it goes to Game 7, it's hard to see the Grizz winning. So it goes.

- Amid all the drat scuttlebutt, the NFL is starting to get back to work on the field today. At least for the time being before the next round of lawyer action and torts and voy dire, etc. The NFL, it's where legalese and bilateral contracts happen.

- Uh, what's going on in the ATL? Less than a week after Roger McDowell allegedly threatens to know a father's teeth out in front of his twin daughters, Derek Lowe gets a DUI on Thursday night. Somebody get Bobby Cox on the Bat Phone, stat. Get a grip on this Fredi.

- Travis Haney of the Charleston Post and Courier is saying that all signs are pointing to South Carolina quarterback Stephen Garcia being reinstated by June. If that's the case, the 5-at-10 is saying that all signs are pointing to South Carolina quarterback Stephen Garcia being suspended by late July.

Until Monday.