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Thread: Draft Thought Experiment/ Question

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    NUGap's Avatar
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    Draft Thought Experiment/ Question

    Alright, this is really apropos of nothing, but it's not like we need another Patterson or Austin thread. Let's say as a team (it could be any generic team) you identify your two biggest needs at CB and WR, or any combination of two positions. For this scenario, let's say it's a team ithat picks 1-16. Let's also say you have 8 (again generic) picks. Here's what a potential draft could look like.

    1. Xavier Rhodes (CB)
    2. Stedman Bailey (WR)
    3. Robert Alford (CB)
    4a. Kenny Stills (WR)
    4b. Leon McFadden (CB)
    5. Cobi Hamilton (WR)
    6. DJ Hayden (CB)
    7. Denard Robinson (WR)

    Yes, that's 4 CBs and 4 WRs. The point isn't whether those guys would be there or not, it's the idea behind it. Let's assume that each draft has a 50% bust rate and half of those guys won't work out. In an ideal world that means you'd get 2 solid wide receivers and 2 solid corners from this draft.

    If you're the Chiefs, or anyone picking in the Top 10, let's say you have a three year plan. Each year you do this, but with different positions. That means, in an ideal world, you'd have 6 positions definitely shored up over 3 drafts. You may even have some players you don't need and are able to trade for draft picks or other players.

    I realize it doesn't work for some positions, QBs or OCs for instance, but for the vast majority of positions you need more than one player. The problem being, of course, that if you have 4 CBs, it's hard to develop all of them or see the potential in all of them. If the Dolphins drafted this way for three years, theoretically they could have OT, DE, CB, WR, S, and OLB completed for the foreseeable future. Obviously I'm not advocating it, but it's interesting to think about.

    Would you ever draft this way? If you had nine picks, would you draft 3 players at 3 positions? I'm curious for people's thoughts. Do you trust the odds of throwing darts at a board (with some semblance of logic) and seeing if they stick or do you go with "your guys".
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    MiamiDolphin618's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NUGap View Post
    Alright, this is really apropos of nothing, but it's not like we need another Patterson or Austin thread. Let's say as a team (it could be any generic team) you identify your two biggest needs at CB and WR, or any combination of two positions. For this scenario, let's say it's a team ithat picks 1-16. Let's also say you have 8 (again generic) picks. Here's what a potential draft could look like.

    1. Xavier Rhodes (CB)
    2. Stedman Bailey (WR)
    3. Robert Alford (CB)
    4a. Kenny Stills (WR)
    4b. Leon McFadden (CB)
    5. Cobi Hamilton (WR)
    6. DJ Hayden (CB)
    7. Denard Robinson (WR)

    Yes, that's 4 CBs and 4 WRs. The point isn't whether those guys would be there or not, it's the idea behind it. Let's assume that each draft has a 50% bust rate and half of those guys won't work out. In an ideal world that means you'd get 2 solid wide receivers and 2 solid corners from this draft.

    If you're the Chiefs, or anyone picking in the Top 10, let's say you have a three year plan. Each year you do this, but with different positions. That means, in an ideal world, you'd have 6 positions definitely shored up over 3 drafts. You may even have some players you don't need and are able to trade for draft picks or other players.

    I realize it doesn't work for some positions, QBs or OCs for instance, but for the vast majority of positions you need more than one player. The problem being, of course, that if you have 4 CBs, it's hard to develop all of them or see the potential in all of them. If the Dolphins drafted this way for three years, theoretically they could have OT, DE, CB, WR, S, and OLB completed for the foreseeable future. Obviously I'm not advocating it, but it's interesting to think about.

    Would you ever draft this way? If you had nine picks, would you draft 3 players at 3 positions? I'm curious for people's thoughts. Do you trust the odds of throwing darts at a board (with some semblance of logic) and seeing if they stick or do you go with "your guys".
    Very interesting proposal. I think its unlikely because unless the board fell perfectly you would presumably be in a situation where you are passing up superior talent at other positions. I think drafting 3-4 players at one position is pretty unlikely. With that being said...I think that is a similar reason why you see teams (including us) double down on positions pretty often. And depending on FA...I can see it happening this year with both CB and/or WR
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    Quote Originally Posted by NUGap View Post
    Alright, this is really apropos of nothing, but it's not like we need another Patterson or Austin thread. Let's say as a team (it could be any generic team) you identify your two biggest needs at CB and WR, or any combination of two positions. For this scenario, let's say it's a team ithat picks 1-16. Let's also say you have 8 (again generic) picks. Here's what a potential draft could look like.

    1. Xavier Rhodes (CB)
    2. Stedman Bailey (WR)
    3. Robert Alford (CB)
    4a. Kenny Stills (WR)
    4b. Leon McFadden (CB)
    5. Cobi Hamilton (WR)
    6. DJ Hayden (CB)
    7. Denard Robinson (WR)

    Yes, that's 4 CBs and 4 WRs. The point isn't whether those guys would be there or not, it's the idea behind it. Let's assume that each draft has a 50% bust rate and half of those guys won't work out. In an ideal world that means you'd get 2 solid wide receivers and 2 solid corners from this draft.

    If you're the Chiefs, or anyone picking in the Top 10, let's say you have a three year plan. Each year you do this, but with different positions. That means, in an ideal world, you'd have 6 positions definitely shored up over 3 drafts. You may even have some players you don't need and are able to trade for draft picks or other players.

    I realize it doesn't work for some positions, QBs or OCs for instance, but for the vast majority of positions you need more than one player. The problem being, of course, that if you have 4 CBs, it's hard to develop all of them or see the potential in all of them. If the Dolphins drafted this way for three years, theoretically they could have OT, DE, CB, WR, S, and OLB completed for the foreseeable future. Obviously I'm not advocating it, but it's interesting to think about.

    Would you ever draft this way? If you had nine picks, would you draft 3 players at 3 positions? I'm curious for people's thoughts. Do you trust the odds of throwing darts at a board (with some semblance of logic) and seeing if they stick or do you go with "your guys".
    No, I would not do it. Sure you're major needs are at two positions, but there is no way you narrow the draft to just those two positions.
    "It happens all the time," Taylor said. "It's not an exact science and personnel guys aren't the end-all, be-all. " Jason Taylor,2011
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    As always, you bring up interesting points of discussion.

    It could work, but it wouldn't be the best use of coaches. TypicAlly, teams try to get one guy for each major position grouping (DL, LB, DB, OL, RB/FB/TE/WR) and QB is a different animal. This is to give the coaches a shot at developing a young guy and five him the extra individual attention usually needed.

    I happen to subscribe to the philosophy that having two guys at the same position isn't much of a difference to the coach, and the players spur one another onward. Competition brings out the best in them, and they bonds through shared situations.The odds are actually better for each player is guess, and the team is more likely to find a solution.

    From a salary cap perspective it works out. It is very rare that both players excel so probably only one of hen will be hard to sign. If he leaves, the other can step in without hamstringing the position.

    You could do 3 at a position probably, but given the finite number of roster spots it begins to make the position grouping lopsided from an experience and cap perspective. Your suggestion of trading some might work, but rarely does a team get full value back in a trade.

    Four at a position would be too much for me. If they were all approximately the same experience, you would be awfully mistake prone at the beginning and in cap hell later. The only exception I could see is OL, where a rebuilding team wants to build chemistry for a young QB and has a couple or so good veteran leaders to help teach them.

    In the end, rosters are fairly tight and good players don't stay on the practice squad. Pick your gems to polish and groom your meat and potatoes players at multiple ages. That way your deopofd in talent isn't a cliff, and you can manage your cap money.

    Two rookies and two bets are fine, but four rookies would be putting too many apples into one basket for me.
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    i go with "my guys"...
    hoops scoops 2012 season ..."in 2014 ryan tannehill etches his name in stone amongst the games elite qbs"..."ryan tannehill and andrew luck will carry the afc for the next decade plus the way peyton manning and tom brady have this last decade plus"
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    Very interesting. "Drafting for Idiots." If you know nothing of football, or you're just a GM in a rut struggling at finding difference makers, do this! Excellent strategy sir!
    Draft Wishlist:

    1. Patterson WR
    2a. Da'Rick Rogers WR
    2b. Eric Reid/ Rambo FS
    3a. Tharold Simon CB
    3b. Chris Gragg TE
    4. Brandon Jenkins LB
    5. Cornelius Washington DE
    5/6. Vince Williams LB
    7. Onterio McCalebb RB
    7. Collin Klein QB

    FA:
    Tyler Polumbus RT, Starks DT, Bush RB, Grimes DB, Avril DE
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    NUGap's Avatar
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    First, let me say I agree with all of your points, I'm just playing devil's advocate here. I don't think I would ever use the 4 pick model, I think it's too much, but I'd be inclined to try the 3 pick. So if you had 9 picks, 3 picks on 3 positions. That way you're hoping for between 4 and 5 players to come out and play well for you.

    One advantage of picking only at a set number of positions is that you could spend all your time researching them. As it stands, teams have to invest their time in studying roughly 9 positions (assuming the Dolphins don't study QBs heavily this year, etc). Yes, there's a lot of time put into studying each player, but instead of studying ~200 draft picks, a team could focus on three position groups and only study ~50. You'd have the ability to study fifth round picks at the same level as first round picks, which could make you more successful at the later picks.

    The downside of course, as someone mentioned, is that you wind up eschewing better talent for your position. Do you not draft Reshad Jones because safety isn't on your list, instead picking Nolan Carroll because CB is the position you're focused on. No one sane would argue they would pick Carroll over Jones. But if you had better info on 5th round picks, would you be smart enough to not pick Carroll?
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    I'm all about innovation in the NFL, there isn't enough of it.

    but you have to figure that if hundreds of GMs in the long history of the draft have never used that strategy repeatedly it probably isn't the best way to go.

    On a one off basis, it isn't a bad way at all, IMO. I would have no difficulty with us doubling or tripling up on WR or CB this season, that's how bare the cupboard is with quality players in those two positions.
    Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try Again. Fail again. Fail better. - S. Beckett
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