Moving Up

El Guapo

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On my way back from buying groceries tonight, I started to think about when Packers GMs move up in the draft. You pay a premium by bundling lower and/or future picks in order to draft somebody that you really feel is worth the premium.

Below is a list of players drafted by Ted Thompson (2005-2017) and Brian Gutekunst (2018-current). TT was vindicated on 3 of 9 occasions - Clay Matthews, Morgan Burnett, and Casey Hayward. Batting 33% generally in the draft is below expectations. One would think that you move up because you are convinced that these players will succeed. I would think that the success rate should be north of 50% and closer to 75%...otherwise it's just not worth the premium price.

Gutekunst has moved up in the draft seven times. However, we clearly have no clue yet how his two 2024 picks will turn out. So in the five times prior, he was succesfull either 2 or 3 times depending on how you view Darnell Savage. He was a 5yr starter out of the gate. However, he never got a second contract from Green Bay and was allowed to leave in FA. One could argue that for the premium we paid to move up (our 30th pick and two 4th rounders to move up to the 21st pick) was not justified in the end when we only got five years of average play.

Either way, Gutekunst is batting somewhere in the 40%-60% range. That's better than Thompson but it still makes you question if it is ever a good move to move up in the draft to get "your guy."

Ted Thompson
2008​
Jeremy Thompson - DE4th roundFailure
2009​
Clay Matthews - DE1st roundSuccess
2010​
Morgan Burnett - S3rd roundSuccess
2012​
Jerel Worthy - DT2nd roundFailure
2012​
Casey Hayward - CB2nd roundSuccess - went on to be a good CB for San Diego
2012​
Terrell Manning - LB5th roundFailure
2013​
Johnathan Franklin - RB4th roundFailure
2015​
Brett Hundley - QB5th roundFailure
2016​
Jason Spriggs - OL2nd roundFailure

Brian Gutekunst
2018​
Oren Burks - LB3rd roundFailure
2019​
Darnell Savage - S1st roundPartial Failure/Success - picked up 5th year option but let him go without a second contract
2020​
Jordan Love - QB1st roundSuccess
2021​
Amari Rodgers - WR3rd roundFailure
2022​
Christian Watson - WR2nd roundSuccess
2024​
Evan Williams - S4th round???
2024​
Jacob Monk - G5th round???
 

tynimiller

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On my way back from buying groceries tonight, I started to think about when Packers GMs move up in the draft. You pay a premium by bundling lower and/or future picks in order to draft somebody that you really feel is worth the premium.

Below is a list of players drafted by Ted Thompson (2005-2017) and Brian Gutekunst (2018-current). TT was vindicated on 3 of 9 occasions - Clay Matthews, Morgan Burnett, and Casey Hayward. Batting 33% generally in the draft is below expectations. One would think that you move up because you are convinced that these players will succeed. I would think that the success rate should be north of 50% and closer to 75%...otherwise it's just not worth the premium price.

Gutekunst has moved up in the draft seven times. However, we clearly have no clue yet how his two 2024 picks will turn out. So in the five times prior, he was succesfull either 2 or 3 times depending on how you view Darnell Savage. He was a 5yr starter out of the gate. However, he never got a second contract from Green Bay and was allowed to leave in FA. One could argue that for the premium we paid to move up (our 30th pick and two 4th rounders to move up to the 21st pick) was not justified in the end when we only got five years of average play.

Either way, Gutekunst is batting somewhere in the 40%-60% range. That's better than Thompson but it still makes you question if it is ever a good move to move up in the draft to get "your guy."

Ted Thompson
2008​
Jeremy Thompson - DE4th roundFailure
2009​
Clay Matthews - DE1st roundSuccess
2010​
Morgan Burnett - S3rd roundSuccess
2012​
Jerel Worthy - DT2nd roundFailure
2012​
Casey Hayward - CB2nd roundSuccess - went on to be a good CB for San Diego
2012​
Terrell Manning - LB5th roundFailure
2013​
Johnathan Franklin - RB4th roundFailure
2015​
Brett Hundley - QB5th roundFailure
2016​
Jason Spriggs - OL2nd roundFailure

Brian Gutekunst
2018​
Oren Burks - LB3rd roundFailure
2019​
Darnell Savage - S1st roundPartial Failure/Success - picked up 5th year option but let him go without a second contract
2020​
Jordan Love - QB1st roundSuccess
2021​
Amari Rodgers - WR3rd roundFailure
2022​
Christian Watson - WR2nd roundSuccess
2024​
Evan Williams - S4th round???
2024​
Jacob Monk - G5th round???

Savage is a success. Remove the round of weight from the equation you got a multi-year starter who is as of right now likely to start for another team as well.

I'd even argue Burks is a success as well, dude is one of the best ST guys in the league and last year even played exceptional at times in reserve when needed at LB. He just didn't work well here. Amari is the only true failure IMO for Gute.

For TT:
I'd argue Hundley was a success for a 5th round QB.
Likewise I think Jonathan Franklin in no way should be chalked as a failure given his catastrophic neck injury suffered. Shouldn't be considered a failure or a success.

I see this as Gute is 4 for 5 being success with two unknowns and Thompson as 4 for 8 being success and on *Franklin.
 

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On my way back from buying groceries tonight, I started to think about when Packers GMs move up in the draft. You pay a premium by bundling lower and/or future picks in order to draft somebody that you really feel is worth the premium.

Below is a list of players drafted by Ted Thompson (2005-2017) and Brian Gutekunst (2018-current). TT was vindicated on 3 of 9 occasions - Clay Matthews, Morgan Burnett, and Casey Hayward. Batting 33% generally in the draft is below expectations. One would think that you move up because you are convinced that these players will succeed. I would think that the success rate should be north of 50% and closer to 75%...otherwise it's just not worth the premium price.

Gutekunst has moved up in the draft seven times. However, we clearly have no clue yet how his two 2024 picks will turn out. So in the five times prior, he was succesfull either 2 or 3 times depending on how you view Darnell Savage. He was a 5yr starter out of the gate. However, he never got a second contract from Green Bay and was allowed to leave in FA. One could argue that for the premium we paid to move up (our 30th pick and two 4th rounders to move up to the 21st pick) was not justified in the end when we only got five years of average play.

Either way, Gutekunst is batting somewhere in the 40%-60% range. That's better than Thompson but it still makes you question if it is ever a good move to move up in the draft to get "your guy."

Ted Thompson
2008​
Jeremy Thompson - DE4th roundFailure
2009​
Clay Matthews - DE1st roundSuccess
2010​
Morgan Burnett - S3rd roundSuccess
2012​
Jerel Worthy - DT2nd roundFailure
2012​
Casey Hayward - CB2nd roundSuccess - went on to be a good CB for San Diego
2012​
Terrell Manning - LB5th roundFailure
2013​
Johnathan Franklin - RB4th roundFailure
2015​
Brett Hundley - QB5th roundFailure
2016​
Jason Spriggs - OL2nd roundFailure

Brian Gutekunst
2018​
Oren Burks - LB3rd roundFailure
2019​
Darnell Savage - S1st roundPartial Failure/Success - picked up 5th year option but let him go without a second contract
2020​
Jordan Love - QB1st roundSuccess
2021​
Amari Rodgers - WR3rd roundFailure
2022​
Christian Watson - WR2nd roundSuccess
2024​
Evan Williams - S4th round???
2024​
Jacob Monk - G5th round???
So much more goes into this. What exactly did they give up to move up? IMO the 2 move ups this year were unnecessary. IMO they could have picked those 2 without moving up. Oh well we will never know.
 
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El Guapo

El Guapo

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Savage is a success. Remove the round of weight from the equation you got a multi-year starter who is as of right now likely to start for another team as well.

I'd even argue Burks is a success as well, dude is one of the best ST guys in the league and last year even played exceptional at times in reserve when needed at LB. He just didn't work well here. Amari is the only true failure IMO for Gute.

For TT:
I'd argue Hundley was a success for a 5th round QB.
Likewise I think Jonathan Franklin in no way should be chalked as a failure given his catastrophic neck injury suffered. Shouldn't be considered a failure or a success.

I see this as Gute is 4 for 5 being success with two unknowns and Thompson as 4 for 8 being success and on *Franklin.
I had all of these same thoughts, but tried to keep the analysis simple and straight forward (even though it really isn't). For the same reason you argue for Savage as a success (removing the weight of the round), the same should be done for Hundley as a 5th rounder. Remove the weight of the round and you have a QB that really couldn't carry the team when it was needed.

I thought that Jonathan Franklin had a chance. But let's be real. He had that great game against Cincinnati, got hurt, but if I remember also fumbled or did something dumb and was in McCarthy's dog house for the rest of the season before the neck injury became apparent. Franklin had a flash of goodness, but flamed out quickly before succumbing to injury.

I do appreciate your optimism.
 
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El Guapo

El Guapo

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So much more goes into this. What exactly did they give up to move up? IMO the 2 move ups this year were unnecessary. IMO they could have picked those 2 without moving up. Oh well we will never know.
Yes - I have all of the info about what they gave up each time. I didn't want to get into that level of detail. All in all after reviewing my draft records, I never saw a glaring instance where we gave up the farm to get someone - i.e. we didn't go all Mike Ditka to get one running back. The Packers have made reasonable trades to move up each time. The real question is about the end justifying the means. I don't think that either GM knocked it out of the park for the most part.

Even if I split the difference with tynimiller (granting one more success) that would mean 6 out of 14 move-ups were a success. Even if it was 7 of 14 that is still only 50%. We should be striving for 50% in the draft without moving up. Assuming each move-up cost at least two bundled, lower picks means that there were potentially 28 (14 x 2) draft picks that we could have exercised. If we hit on even 40% of those draft picks we would have gotten 11 successful players out of it instead of 6 or 7.

Generally, moving up has not been a successful venture for the Packers.
 

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You'll never know the answer to this question because you'll never know who Would've been picked had we sticked where we were slotted.
 

PikeBadger

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Yes - I have all of the info about what they gave up each time. I didn't want to get into that level of detail. All in all after reviewing my draft records, I never saw a glaring instance where we gave up the farm to get someone - i.e. we didn't go all Mike Ditka to get one running back. The Packers have made reasonable trades to move up each time. The real question is about the end justifying the means. I don't think that either GM knocked it out of the park for the most part.

Even if I split the difference with tynimiller (granting one more success) that would mean 6 out of 14 move-ups were a success. Even if it was 7 of 14 that is still only 50%. We should be striving for 50% in the draft without moving up. Assuming each move-up cost at least two bundled, lower picks means that there were potentially 28 (14 x 2) draft picks that we could have exercised. If we hit on even 40% of those draft picks we would have gotten 11 successful players out of it instead of 6 or 7.

Generally, moving up has not been a successful venture for the Packers.
Well, I'm definitely not impressed with the Savage pick especially seeing now that we gave up 2 fourth rounders to get a guy that was essentially a fourth round talent to begin with. I'm generally speaking not a huge fan of moving up though. I saw Mike Sherman trade 2 picks to move up and snatch the incomparable BJ Sander.
 
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El Guapo

El Guapo

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Wasn't Spriggs career negatively affected by a serious leg injury? Or am I thinking of someone else?
Agreed that it was Sherrod you were thinking about. Spriggs' career was negatively affected by his inability to even beat the second-stringers in training camp competition.
 
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El Guapo

El Guapo

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Well, I'm definitely not impressed with the Savage pick especially seeing now that we gave up 2 fourth rounders to get a guy that was essentially a fourth round talent to begin with. I'm generally speaking not a huge fan of moving up though. I saw Mike Sherman trade 2 picks to move up and snatch the incomparable BJ Sander.
Here is the info that I have in my records from when Savage was drafted. One can understand why Thompson and other GMs were salivating over him. As often happens in sports it may be that we never put him at the correct position (CB), pushing him to be a safety when that wasn't setting him up for success:


THE PICK: Darnell Savage Jr., safety, Maryland
HT: 5-10 3/4 WT: 198 40-yard dash: 4.36 HOMETOWN: Newark, Delaware

QUICK TAKE (Silverstein): That has to be the fastest safety the Packers have had since Nick Collins. Very questionable height at 5-10 3/4. They definitely wanted a guy who has range. Highly productive guy, but the height is going to be a question mark, although that wasn't a problem for Earl Thomas, who is 5-10. The Packers used the pick they got from Washington for Ha Ha Clinton-Dix to trade up for Savage. He had four interceptions as a senior. He was fourth on the team with 52 tackles and second with 5 1/2 tackles for loss. Savage started his last two seasons and had seven interceptions during that span. They just added a guy with Nick Collins speed to roam the deep middle. But he's not the hitter Collins was and he's much shorter. He's going to have to show he can play big receivers down the field. A scout said: He's small, but great ball skills and position versatility. Not sure where he plays, but he's a good football player.

ROUND 1: No. 30 (traded to Seahawks)
HOW ACQUIRED: Pick obtained in 2018 draft-day trade with New Orleans. Traded to Seahawks on Thursday night along with two fourth-round picks (#114 and #118) for Pick No. 21 (Darnell Savage Jr.)

What The Scouts Said:
"Savage will offer an interesting litmus test for how teams value instincts, IQ and coverage quickness against size. He sports a compact frame with a muscular build and was actually bigger at the combine than some scouts expected. His sticky cover skills and ability to close on throws from all areas of the field are valuable commodities that should not be undervalued. Savage should be targeted as a Day 2 hybrid defender offering early starting potential as a two-high zone or slot cover talent." - NFL.com scout Lance Zierlein

"A chameleon type of prospect that has the unique of ability to being scheme versatile. Savage can adapt to any scheme that he's included within and it makes his value even greater. His athleticism makes him an ideal fit as a nickel defender or as a strong safety. With the difficult transition of potentially playing the nickel, he has the hips and fluidity of being able to have success at that spot. A firm outlook as an early Day 2 prospect, it would not be surprising at all to see Savage be one of the better defensive backs in this class before it's all said and done because of his complete game and natural athleticism." - draft analyst Jordan Reid

"There's no player that's got more steam and momentum right now in this draft than Darnell Savage. Teams love him, love him to the point where I would not be surprised if he found his way into the first round. The only thing he's lacking is just kind of ideal size, a little bit undersized, but he ran 4.3, he plays to that 4.3. ... He'll be in my top 50, having watched a little bit more and you get a chance to see him, the things he can do, lining up all over the field and that versatility you're talking about." - NFL.com draft analyst Daniel Jeremiah
 

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Here is the info that I have in my records from when Savage was drafted. One can understand why Thompson and other GMs were salivating over him. As often happens in sports it may be that we never put him at the correct position (CB), pushing him to be a safety when that wasn't setting him up for success:


THE PICK: Darnell Savage Jr., safety, Maryland
HT: 5-10 3/4 WT: 198 40-yard dash: 4.36 HOMETOWN: Newark, Delaware

QUICK TAKE (Silverstein): That has to be the fastest safety the Packers have had since Nick Collins. Very questionable height at 5-10 3/4. They definitely wanted a guy who has range. Highly productive guy, but the height is going to be a question mark, although that wasn't a problem for Earl Thomas, who is 5-10. The Packers used the pick they got from Washington for Ha Ha Clinton-Dix to trade up for Savage. He had four interceptions as a senior. He was fourth on the team with 52 tackles and second with 5 1/2 tackles for loss. Savage started his last two seasons and had seven interceptions during that span. They just added a guy with Nick Collins speed to roam the deep middle. But he's not the hitter Collins was and he's much shorter. He's going to have to show he can play big receivers down the field. A scout said: He's small, but great ball skills and position versatility. Not sure where he plays, but he's a good football player.

ROUND 1: No. 30 (traded to Seahawks)
HOW ACQUIRED: Pick obtained in 2018 draft-day trade with New Orleans. Traded to Seahawks on Thursday night along with two fourth-round picks (#114 and #118) for Pick No. 21 (Darnell Savage Jr.)

What The Scouts Said:
"Savage will offer an interesting litmus test for how teams value instincts, IQ and coverage quickness against size. He sports a compact frame with a muscular build and was actually bigger at the combine than some scouts expected. His sticky cover skills and ability to close on throws from all areas of the field are valuable commodities that should not be undervalued. Savage should be targeted as a Day 2 hybrid defender offering early starting potential as a two-high zone or slot cover talent." - NFL.com scout Lance Zierlein

"A chameleon type of prospect that has the unique of ability to being scheme versatile. Savage can adapt to any scheme that he's included within and it makes his value even greater. His athleticism makes him an ideal fit as a nickel defender or as a strong safety. With the difficult transition of potentially playing the nickel, he has the hips and fluidity of being able to have success at that spot. A firm outlook as an early Day 2 prospect, it would not be surprising at all to see Savage be one of the better defensive backs in this class before it's all said and done because of his complete game and natural athleticism." - draft analyst Jordan Reid

"There's no player that's got more steam and momentum right now in this draft than Darnell Savage. Teams love him, love him to the point where I would not be surprised if he found his way into the first round. The only thing he's lacking is just kind of ideal size, a little bit undersized, but he ran 4.3, he plays to that 4.3. ... He'll be in my top 50, having watched a little bit more and you get a chance to see him, the things he can do, lining up all over the field and that versatility you're talking about." - NFL.com draft analyst Daniel Jeremiah
Reads like they Micah Hyde'd him into the wrong pigeon hole.
 

PikeBadger

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Reads like they Micah Hyde'd him into the wrong pigeon hole.
Well that certainly is not surprising but I never saw the instincts as a football player and he was never able to cover tight ends. He may have had first round athleticism but I never saw anything to make me believe he was anything but a 4th or 5th round football player.
 
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It's actually the reason that I felt Hafley might lobby for Gute t o bring him back on a 1yr deal to see if he could play at CB.
 

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Batting 33% generally in the draft is below expectations.

The rest of your post is interesting, but 33% success is generally the bench mark of a good drafter, which I think shifts your math.

A more nuanced answer that I've seen is 2 starters (so 2/7 or 28.5%, assuming you stay with only your initial 7) plus a role player is a good draft. That shifts the math up to almost 43%, but I don't know how you grade a role player.

If you call a role player a half, 2.5/7 is back inline with a 33% rate. And if you have a comp pick or two, your rate goes down but the draft on the whole might still be good.

Regarding each, individual move...I'm far less concerned when teams are dealing on the backend of the draft. Burning a 5th or 6th doesn't bother me, particularly if/when the team doesn't necessarily have room for 13 drafted rookies + UDFAs.

In other words, Evan Williams and Jacob Monk are basically rounding errors in my eyes, while Springs and Worthy are quite painful.

Interesting observation: each time both GMs have moved up in the 1st, they haven't missed yet.

 

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The rest of your post is interesting, but 33% success is generally the bench mark of a good drafter, which I think shifts your math.

A more nuanced answer that I've seen is 2 starters (so 2/7 or 28.5%, assuming you stay with only your initial 7) plus a role player is a good draft. That shifts the math up to almost 43%, but I don't know how you grade a role player.

If you call a role player a half, 2.5/7 is back inline with a 33% rate. And if you have a comp pick or two, your rate goes down but the draft on the whole might still be good.

Regarding each, individual move...I'm far less concerned when teams are dealing on the backend of the draft. Burning a 5th or 6th doesn't bother me, particularly if/when the team doesn't necessarily have room for 13 drafted rookies + UDFAs.

In other words, Evan Williams and Jacob Monk are basically rounding errors in my eyes, while Springs and Worthy are quite painful.

Interesting observation: each time both GMs have moved up in the 1st, they haven't missed yet.
NFL average career is 3.3 years. 60 players about per team is on average 180 years +/- of careers. 30 starters and cogs (kickers, 3rd WR, Nickel, etc) so you need to replace everyone every 6 years. 5 starters/cogs per draft.
 

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NFL average career is 3.3 years. 60 players about per team is on average 180 years +/- of careers. 30 starters and cogs (kickers, 3rd WR, Nickel, etc) so you need to replace everyone every 6 years. 5 starters/cogs per draft.

I think the math is more complicated than that.

I do not deny that the average career is 3.3 years or whatever, but that number is drug down by UDFAs, 7th round fliers, running backs, etc. For example, running backs had (last I looked) one of the shortest careers. So yes, you do need to turn them around, but not all positions are the same.

And then when you do have a hit, that player is likely to get a second contract, taking their career up to 7+ years. If they're a super star worthy of a 3rd contract, now it's 10+ years.

And even your misses can be adequate kick coverage players for 3 years before you cut them loose.
 
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A more nuanced answer that I've seen is 2 starters (so 2/7 or 28.5%, assuming you stay with only your initial 7) plus a role player is a good draft.
I thought it was 3-4 starters per draft.

While looking for an article that supported my statement above, I found this interesting ESPN analysis that essentially analyzes the moving-up concept for the NFL overall. I disagree with some of their analysis but overall it is a good read.
 

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I thought it was 3-4 starters per draft.

While looking for an article that supported my statement above, I found this interesting ESPN analysis that essentially analyzes the moving-up concept for the NFL overall. I disagree with some of their analysis but overall it is a good read.

In summary, as it is with most things, "It depends."
 

mradtke66

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I thought it was 3-4 starters per draft.

So I googled that phrase to see what I could fine. The closest I found was something from the Washington Post, https://www.washingtonpost.com/sports/2022/04/28/grading-nfl-draft-success/

“If you can get three or four meaningful players from each year's draft, that's a really good draft,” former NFL general manager Mike Tannenbaum said.

So if 3-4 is really good, that means less than that is average.

Also, if, hypothetically, you trade your picks such that you end up with the next Payton Manning and Jerry Rice that play for 15 years each, but due to your trades, only make 2 selections, did you have a good draft? You only got 2 starters, so by your first definition, you didn't.

TL, DR: I like to argue.
 

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NFL average career is 3.3 years. 60 players about per team is on average 180 years +/- of careers. 30 starters and cogs (kickers, 3rd WR, Nickel, etc) so you need to replace everyone every 6 years. 5 starters/cogs per draft.
IMO each and every team has 3 to 4 UDFAs make their roster on the average each season.
 

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I thought it was 3-4 starters per draft.

While looking for an article that supported my statement above, I found this interesting ESPN analysis that essentially analyzes the moving-up concept for the NFL overall. I disagree with some of their analysis but overall it is a good read.
Wow. That's very interesting. Very thorough. Fascinating piece in there where he speculates on the effect the Trey Lance trade might have had on San Francisco's Super Bowl, a couple of months ago. Intriguing bit of "connecting the dots that might have been".

I was a little surprised with all that deep-diving, he couldn't find any time for the Jordan Love trade-up, but honestly, that's probably not as relevant to the majority of NFL fans as it is to us Cheesheads.

I just loved the way he broke down the total absence of rational reasoning (not to mention basic arithmetic) we saw on Day One with those Vikings trades. So many draft "experts" were ga-ga over those deals, because they looked really shiny and exciting if you only have a 30-second attention span, but like several of us on this board, Barnwell points out that it was utterly foolish to give up so many picks (over the span of two full drafts) for just one edge rusher. I love reading articles about the Vikings that use words such as "disaster", "mirage of mirages", "nightmare", and "huge mistake." :laugh:
 

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The rest of your post is interesting, but 33% success is generally the bench mark of a good drafter, which I think shifts your math.

A more nuanced answer that I've seen is 2 starters (so 2/7 or 28.5%, assuming you stay with only your initial 7) plus a role player is a good draft. That shifts the math up to almost 43%, but I don't know how you grade a role player.

If you call a role player a half, 2.5/7 is back inline with a 33% rate. And if you have a comp pick or two, your rate goes down but the draft on the whole might still be good.

Regarding each, individual move...I'm far less concerned when teams are dealing on the backend of the draft. Burning a 5th or 6th doesn't bother me, particularly if/when the team doesn't necessarily have room for 13 drafted rookies + UDFAs.

In other words, Evan Williams and Jacob Monk are basically rounding errors in my eyes, while Springs and Worthy are quite painful.

Interesting observation: each time both GMs have moved up in the 1st, they haven't missed yet.
Imo, it's a bit disingenuous to compare successful team's starters to bad teams starters. They aren't equal imo. Also, drafting 25th in every round is far different than drafting 5th in every round.
Unless the draft success numbers take these variables into the equation, the final number is very sketchy imo.
 

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Imo, it's a bit disingenuous to compare successful team's starters to bad teams starters. They aren't equal imo. Also, drafting 25th in every round is far different than drafting 5th in every round.
Unless the draft success numbers take these variables into the equation, the final number is very sketchy imo.
Agree. They give grades and base it on the players they take. They don't take into consideration where a team drafted. It's an easy way out imo and just does not reflect who drafted the best with what they had to work with and what seemed to be the best players for that team. At least I think they should do that, even if that means having two grades.
 

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