Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Slow News

With the Steelers basically done wheelin' and dealin' until the draft, the Tar Heels' season in the books, and the Red Sox not set to officially start until next week, the interesting news spigot is at a trickle. Of course, that won't keep me from trying.

... Yesterday, DJ pointed out a new mock draft and NFLDraftCountdown has Pittsburgh taking S Daniel Bullocks (Nebraska) in round one, DE/OLB Mark Anderson (Alabama) in round two, and JOAT Devin Hester (Miami) in round three.

Yeah, I didn't know who Mark Anderson was either. I looked him up though, and he was a DE in college, but he's listed at 6'4", 254 lbs. and ran a 4.62-forty at the Combine. He's too small to play DE in the 3-4 and could be the next "conversion project" for the Steelers. (Also, NFLDraftScout also has Anderson pegged to go in the 2nd round, so maybe he's sneaking up draft boards.)

As far as the Trai Essex pick goes (you know, the "I sure as hell didn't see that coming" selection), Anderson and Jon Alston are two intriguing names. I mentioned Alston a week or so ago, and apparently a lot of teams (including Pittsburgh) are interested in the Stanford OLB, who after busting out a 4.40-forty and 40" vertical at the Combine, might make the move to safety in the NFL. If Pittsburgh were able to grab these two guys in the 2nd and 3rd rounds (or trade some combination of picks to get them both in round two), I'd be happy with that.

In today's Draft Report, Wexell talks about Nick Mangold. I know we've talked this to death, but I'm still generally against the idea of taking a center in the first round (in the last six seasons, the average NFL center was taken in the 4th round), and even if this is Hartings' last season, Pittsburgh can go with Okobi for 2007 and bring in some competition next year. If every player the Steelers want at pick 32 is somehow off the board and Mangold is still there, I'd be content to see them trade down and get more picks in the 2nd round. Mangold will probably be a great NFL center, but the position just isn't a priority this year.

... Eric pointed this out yesterday, but here's the link to the Coach Cowher vidya game (Yep, me typing "vidya" is my oh-so-clever Hank Hill impression). Here's a quote from the article:
"With NFL Head Coach there is finally a game that gives true football fans the chance to strategize and become the head coach of their favorite team," said Cowher. "Coaching is about leadership and everyone will now see how difficult, but also how rewarding coaching can be."
Cowher later added, "... And spitting. Spitting is also a very important part of coaching. Who Dey? Who Dey? We Dey! Sorry about that last part there, I just couldn't help myself ... it was just too easy."

Okay, I made that last part up, but it doesn't make the fact that the Bengals are still steamed about the whole ordeal pretty comical. But this is what happens when T.J. Whosyourdaddy cleans his shoes with the Terrible Towel. Myron Cope Angry! Myron Cope No Like Whosyourdaddy Disrespecting Terrible Towel! Myron Cope Curse Bengals! (Well, as much as you can curse a team that, until last season, has been staring up at mediocrity for 15 years or so.)

[/End really weird Myron Cope bit]

... Finally, can the Pirates take this guy back? I realize he was only in Pittsburgh for a season, but he could boost ticket sales by promising to battle it out with Randall Simon between innings. As I think about it, Julian Tavarez is the Bizarro Millar. He's not the fun drunk everybody likes to laugh at, he's the angry drunk that could blow a fuse at any moment and start randomly punching people. Yep, just want the Red Sox need.

... In other Red Sox news, I was sorry to see Tony Graffanino go. I liked what he did in Boston last year, but a lot of was simply due to the fact that he replaced Mark Bellhorn at second base. Not quite like replacing Jim Rice in left.

Alrighty, more tomorrow.