Teams have major choices ahead as draft approaches
Posted: Tuesday March 22, 2005 11:14AM; Updated: Tuesday March 22, 2005 11:26AM
Najeh Davenport is a restricted free agent who would require a fourth-round draft choice as compensation to sign away from the Packers.
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In the offseason, the Monday Morning Quarterback Tuesday Edition will feature Peter King's mailbag and nothing but the mailbag, so on to the reader's questions ...
SOUNDS LIKE THE NINERS ARE LOCKED IN ON A PASSER, MATE. From Tony Rex of London: "It appears Braylon Edwards has reached the top pick on some of the latest mock drafts. The 49ers don't seem to be entirely sold on either of the two leading quarterbacks available. What are the chances that they pick Edwards at No. 1 (assuming they don't trade down for say, Mike Williams), and then Matt Leinart somehow is persuaded to enter a supplemental draft, giving them the dream lineup of the best QB available (and a California local), a great wideout and loads of good feeling from the fans -- who probably have been feeling rather down lately. They have the needs, they have the cap space and Leinart has been rather circumspect in denying the rumors that he is planning to leave USC after all."
Thanks for writing, Tony. After spending time with the 49ers at the NFL Scouting Combine a month ago, I came away with the impression that, first, they loved Edwards, and second, they'd never take him. When you have the chance to get a quarterback you think can be your cornerstone for the next few years -- and after watching Smith of Utah and Rodgers of Cal in their on-campus workouts last week -- I feel strongly they'd be comfortable in staying at No. 1, picking one of them and anointing him as their quarterback of the future. I don't think they want to risk the Leinart scenario. No guarantees there.
THIS WOULD BE A GOOD DEAL FOR THE FISH. From Jack Danehy of Louisville: "Regarding the Najeh Davenport scenario you wrote about yesterday, what am I missing. The Dolphins trade the second overall pick to Green Bay for the 24th overall pick, plus Davenport, plus a second-rounder this year or next. The Fins get a back that could be as good as a rookie and a lot less expensive than the No. 2 overall pick. Plus the 24th pick and a 2nd rounder. The Pack get the Brett Favre replacement in Aaron Rodgers or Alex Smith.''
Jack, interesting thought. Only one problem that I see: I don't think the Packers want the second overall pick, because the second overall pick -- even if it does solve the long-term quarterback problem -- means the Pack will have to pay a quarterback for one or two years at the franchise level of a Favre. The second overall pick will be paid probably $14 million in signing-bonus money. Why would you do that, if the Pack thinks it might have Favre for two more years?
COULD FRIDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL WORK? From Scott Richards of Deptford, N.J.: "Just a quick, serious question: My wife and I went to dinner Saturday night with a bunch of friends, and the guys got to talking about Monday night football games. We came up with many more pros for a Friday night weekly game as opposed to a Monday-nighter. We talked about how extremely difficult it is for even fervent fans such as ourselves to stay up until 1 a.m. to watch the games and then have to be back in work five hours later. At least on Friday nights people are already out, in a party mode. Do you think a Friday night game would be better than Monday?''
It'd be great, but the NFL won't do it. The NFL always has said it won't put games on Friday night during the regular season out of respect to high-school football. Many schools across the country have Friday night games, as you now from your Jersey locale, and the NFL won't step on the toes of the high schools by putting on competing programming.