"We'll let him compete with the other quarterbacks on the team -- Crompton, Hoyer and Brady, and we'll see how it goes.''
-- New England coach Bill Belichick, to NFL Network, on third-round pick Ryan Mallett, after off-field issues caused the troubled Arkansas quarterback to sink like a lead weight. How positively, democratically Belichickian, lumping a three-time Super Bowl winner in with Brian Hoyer and Jonathan Crompton, neither of whom has started an NFL game.
"He's a great quarterback, but when I play against him, he's going down.''
-- First-round defensive tackle Phil Taylor of the Browns, on Pittsburgh quarterback Ben Roethlisberger, a two-time Super Bowl winner.
"Get ready to play. We'll put you on the other team's best. You ready for that? I know you are. You're part of the Ravens' defense now."
-- Baltimore defensive coordinator Chuck Pagano, on the phone with Colorado cornerback Jimmy Smith after the Ravens made him their first-round pick Thursday night, according to Ravens PR czar Kevin Byrne.
"Right now, Charlie's all we got.''
-- Seattle coach Pete Carroll, to NFL Network, on his starting quarterback. With Matt Hasselbeck and J.P. Losman free agents, Charlie Whitehurst is the only quarterback on the Seattle roster.
"We are petitioning the NFL to let Sam wear number five, so he can be Sam Acho Cinco.''
-- Arizona coach Ken Whisenhunt, after drafting linebacker Sam Acho in the fourth round Saturday.
"I'm told I can't find one person who thought the linebacker [Michigan's Jonas Mouton] we took in the second round ... wasn't a fifth- or sixth-round guy. Well, I've found one guy. Me. He's a second-rounder here."
-- San Diego general manager A.J. Smith, to Nick Canepa of the San Diego Union Tribune.
One thing about A.J. Smith: He's a confident man.
"This is the first time all weekend I haven't been booed.''
-- Commissioner Roger Goodell, walking on-stage at Radio City Music Hall Saturday morning to hold a town hall forum with some fans before the third day of the draft began.
The draft-pick value chart, used by teams leaguewide, is at times valuable, at times maddening. The chart shows the Browns getting a slight advantage (but not a major one, as many draft analysts have said) in the 5-for-1 deal with Atlanta that netted the Falcons Julio Jones Thursday. (More about that in my Sports Illustrated draft report this week.)
Where the chart misses the mark, I believe, is for teams wanting to get great depth out of a draft. Take Washington's handling of the draft, which I thought was very good for what the Redskins wanted. At the NFL meetings a month ago, Mike Shanahan said, "We need starting players, a few of them, and we need a lot of depth.'' So when they started trading down, beginning with the 10th overall pick to number 16 with Jacksonville in the first round, I knew what they were doing. Washington started the draft with eight picks. It finished with 12. Here's how it ended up fleshing out, via the draft-pick-value chart, once the matching picks canceled each other out:
The Redskins traded the chance to get a quarterback (Blaine Gabbert went 10), but they didn't love any of the quarterbacks enough to commit long-term to them. For that 10th pick, they got defensive end Ryan Kerrigan (16), Miami wideout Leonard Hankerson (79), Nebraska running back Roy Helu (105), SMU wideout Aldrick Robinson (178) and Florida guard Maurice Hurt (217).
Will it work out? I don't know. Shanahan, I believe, didn't like the quarterbacks in this draft much more if at all than Rex Grossman and John Beck, who should be his top two guys at the start of the season -- unless the Redskins sign a veteran to compete for the job with them.
1. Well-publicized one: The 28th pick in the 1987 NFL Draft was Mark Ingram. The 28th pick in the 2011 NFL Draft was Mark Ingram. Father and son. Wide receiver and running back.
2. Christian Ponder enrolled at Florida State in 2006, earned his bachelor's in Finance in 2008, earned his master's at FSU in 2009, and played his redshirt senior season having earned his bachelor's and master's in four academic years.
3. New Browns fullback Owen Marecic was coached by Clay Matthews -- longtime Browns linebacker, dad of The Other Clay Matthews -- growing up in California.
4. Terrific factoid from Geoff Hobson of Bengals.com: Ten years ago, Bengals owner Mike Brown wanted to take Drew Brees with the fourth pick in the first round, but the Bengals were still smarting from the first-round disaster that was Akili Smith two years earlier. So they didn't pick him in the first round. But as the round dragged on, Brees went unpicked. Had he been there at pick number 36, Cincinnati likely would have taken him. But Brees got drafted by the Chargers on the first pick of round two. The Bengals, with the 36th pick, instead chose Chad Johnson, receiver, Oregon State ... And now you know the rest of the story.
Flew through Milwaukee to San Francisco the other day, had some time to kill, and so I re-entered security after getting a bite to eat. On my way through security, at the end of the X-ray zone where travelers gather belongings, there was a sign.
I asked one of the TSA guys about the sign. "Interesting word,'' I said. "Ever hear of it before this?''
"No,'' the guy said. "I went to the bookstore and looked in the biggest dictionary I could find, and it wasn't there. But they tell me it's a word.''
I went to dictionary.com and looked. No "recombobulation.'' I went to merriam-webster.com. No "recombobulation;'' the website said, "The word you have entered isn't in the dictionary.'' Now, I did find "discombobulate,'' which means "to confuse or disconcert.'' But no "recombobulate.''
But as I sit here and recombobulate about it, I suppose it means "area where you get your crap together after getting half-stripped and then going through X-ray.''
One more travel note. On the plane to San Francisco (every seat occupied, but since when is that different from every other flight these days), the 4-year-old behind me kept kicking the seat. I took it for a half hour or so, then turned around and asked the dad if he could get the boy to stop. The dad said: "Yeah, I tried, but if you tell him not to do it, I know him -- he'll keep doing it.''
I would say, "I weep for the future,'' but that would be a bit of an overreaction.
"I have been told that I can't play football before. We all know what happened with that. #neverquit''
--@MarkHerzlich, undrafted Boston College linebacker and cancer survivor Mark Herzlich, after going through three frustrating days of not being picked by the NFL. He sent this one hour after the end of the seventh round.
And how about this Tweet from Herzlich Saturday night: "Today sucked for me but everyone needs to pray for all the people in Alabama. They need us more than ever right now.''
"Crowd chanting "USA! USA!'' here at #Mets-#Phillies.''
--@KenDavidoff, Newsday baseball writer Ken Davidoff, at 11:03 p.m. Sunday, when the news of Osama bin Laden's death spread at Citizens Bank Park.
"Eyes glued to CNN Bin Laden Dead.''
--@wilfork75, New England defensive tackle Vince Wilfork, digesting the news at home late Sunday night.
"The Navy Seals get an A for their draft.''
--@mrnejman, at 1:58 this morning. And that will be the only draft grade that counts for anything today.
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