UltimateNYG NY Giants blog draft analyst Wonder emphasizes value wherever he can. 2 years ago, just because he thought that LBer Vontaze Burfict had the potential to be special, didn’t mean he wanted any team in their right mind to take him early in the draft. He had off-the-field problems, but felt from a VALUE perspective that the risk in Round 4 or later would be worth the potential reward of a guy with NFL caliber skills. He went undrafted, the Bengals signed as a UFA, and he made the Pro Bowl in his second season. Now that is super value. But here is the difference- if the Bengals (or any other team, for that matter) had taken him in Round 2, Wonder would have felt that that was almost as egregious as letting him go undrafted. He still had issues and there were other players that were going to be available that had similar talent AND more certainty. So it is not just who you pick, it is WHEN you pick them. Watching guys like Tyson Alualu get taken in the Top 10 of the draft was sloppy- not because these players were or were not going to be good pros, but because the cost of resources was overallocated. If you like a player like that, TRADE DOWN and he should still be available.
It is with this understanding of value that we list 16 players that the Mocks and mainstream draft analysts are slotting high which Wonder thinks belong in Round 2 (or very late Round 1). This list of players is not an indictment on any of them. Many will make solid pros. But allocating Round 1 draft resources to these players is not value.
Ha Ha Clinton-Dix
Wonder thinks that ~12 of these players will go in Round 1, and that is overpayment for services. “Lots of people are jacked up about CJ Mosley,” explains Wonder. “I am sure people will say I am nuts, but I do not think he belongs in Round 1. He will be a solid MLBer, but not great, so Round 2.”
Wonder sheds some color on Clinton-Dix and Pryor: “The mistake GMs are making in 2014 is the classic error we discussed a few posts ago. You cannot look at Safety in this draft the same way as you could back in 2010. Back then, the top Safeties were Eric Berry and Earl Thomas, and we projected them as Dominant star players. They were drafted in the top half of the 1st Round. But this year, the Safeties are simply not the same caliber. Clinton-Dix and Pryor may be the 2 best Safeties in the 2014 draft, but that does not mean you can justify selecting them in Round 1. They will be solid contributors to whichever teams that take them, but they will not be Round 1 great. They will be Round 2 very good. And that is a big difference.”
This list is not a wrecking ball. Wonder explains that Morgan Moses and Zack Martin are not like Chris Williams in 2008. Williams was panned by Wonder in 2008 before the Draft, feeling he would underachieve at best and was a potential bust. In contrast, OL prospects Martin and Moses will be very good pros, just not great. If the Giants decided to take one of them with the 12th pick in the Draft, it would simply be a reach. It would not be a calamity like Williams, but simply a waste of resources. If the Giants desperately want a top tier OLman, understand there is a gap between <Matthews, Robinson, Lewan> and <Martin, Moses>. Not a large gap, but one large enough that the Giants should trade down before selecting either one.