Chat with Mel Kiper
Welcome to SportsNation! On Monday, NFL draft guru Mel Kiper Jr. will be by to give his thoughts on the completed 2010 draft.
Kiper has served as expert analyst for ESPN's annual NFL draft coverage since 1984. His pre-draft predictions are frequently the most accurate. Kiper is also analyst for College GameDay on ESPN Radio. He also contributes to SportsCenter and ESPN.com.
Send your questions now and join Kiper Monday at 11 a.m. ET!
Buzzmaster (11:00 AM)
We've got Mel!
Where do you think Jevan Sneed woulf have ended up getting drafted in 2011, given he had a decent season this year??
Mel Kiper (11:02 AM)
He could have been a second or third round pick if he had gone back. He's 6-3, 220. He's a good athlete. He has talent. What he needed to do is make better decisions. He only completed 56% as a sophomore. In two years, he threw 39 INTs. He has a lot of work to do. Why he came out is beyond me.
What do you take away from this draft? What were the big stories?
Mel Kiper (11:03 AM)
The storylines were the QBs. Clausen, McCoy and Tebow. They'll be defined by those moves three years from now. Will this draft catapult Seattle back to where they want to be? Carolina to the Super Bowl? Will it prevent Jacksonville from jumping ahead?
Mel - Was Myron Rolle a sixth-rounder on talent alone, or did teams drop him because they're afraid he's not committed to football?
Mel Kiper (11:04 AM)
I thought he was a 5-6 rounder just on the way he played at Florida State. I didn't grade him out the way some others did. Will he be focused on football 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. He has other avenues to explore. Without anything else involved, I thought he was a 5-6 rounder.
Brian (Topeka, KS)
Were you suprised at the choices the Chiefs made?? Besides Berry and possibly McCluster as a return guy, I don't think anyone else will contribute this season....poor draft in my opinion!!
Mel Kiper (11:06 AM)
Asamoa is a C/G out of Illinois. Arenas in the second round, I like him, but I thought that was a little high. He's a great return man and he was productive in college. Moeaki was a good pick at TE. I wouldn't have taken him over Aaron Hernandez, who ended up going in the fourth round.
Peter Mulard (Erie, Pennsylvania)
Do you think that Spikes and Cunningham will make a big impact for the pass rush for the Patriots this season?
Mel Kiper (11:07 AM)
Cunningham is the only one. It won't be from Spikes. I think he was a reach in the second round and is an ILB. You run a 5-flat 40, you're more like a fourth rounder. Cunningham could be like an Adalieus Thomas LB. I like him. He's a good player. He plays hard all the time.
J.B. (Dunmore, PA)
Mr. Kiper: I've been trying to make sense of the Vikings draft but really can't. Why two RBs and why not take a Clausen, LeFevour, or McCoy to groom as a QB?
Mel Kiper (11:08 AM)
They only drafted one RB. Joe Webb will be a WR. He was a QB in college. Gerhart is a good physical runner, but I thought they needed more of a pass catcher. Cook, I think lacks as a tackler. Griffen is inconsistent. I didn't see anything late that excited me. I, too, was underwhelmed.
Mel, what did you think of the Dan LeFevour pick to the Bears? I thought all along he was the 2nd best QB in the draft.
Mel Kiper (11:09 AM)
I liked the Bears draft. I liked the pick. I think 3-4 years down the road he can help you. You'll know in the next two years if Cutler is the answer there. I like the Wright pick, they needed help at safety. Wootton was a first round pick a few years ago, but had the injury. I gave them a B grade.
Why did Sergio Kindle fall to the second round? was it just because of questions about his knee?
Mel Kiper (11:10 AM)
Yeah. The injury question was the major factor. I was still surprised and I was surprised that Miami and New England both passed up Jerry Hughes and Sergio Kindle. Miami did get an OLB in the second round, but I was surprised they both passed on these two. Kindle dropped to Baltimore because of the injury question. I think that's the only reason. If not, I think he was a mid first round pick. That was one of the best value picks in the whole draft.
Vaughn (New York)
After all the buzz on the Eagles and their infamous Mcnabb pick(37th pick overall) what do youo hink of their draft as a whole?..success?..disapppointment?
Mel Kiper (11:13 AM)
They got 13 players. That's a lot of players. I think they did a solid job. Brandon Graham, you can't argue with that. Nate Allen filled a need. I like the Kafka pick. I wish Sapp played through a double team better, but he has ability and I like the pick. I give them a B, B+ grade. I gave them a B, but thinking about the late rounders that they stole, I might move it to a B-plus.
Mel, can you give us some insight on why the Panthers drafted Clausen and Pike? I think Clausen was a steal, but why draft two developmental QBs?
Mel Kiper (11:14 AM)
Where you get Pike, you invest minimal time and money into him. You can always develop a young QB and trade him. You can develop him and turn him into a career backup. If they had a 2-3 round grade on Pike and he was there in the 6th round, they might have just decided to pick another QB. He's a good QB. He's got the height. He has a lot to learn after coming out of the QB friendly system at Cincinnati.
Why didn't the Bills pick up a QB until the 7th round? In my opinion that was one of the worst decisions of the draft.
Mel Kiper (11:16 AM)
Brown has some talent. That was a nice 7th round pick. At least they got a good one with some talent. They obviously didn't have as high an opinion as I did on Jimmy Clausen. Even in Round 3, they could have had McCoy. They passed on bargains with that two. I'm not taking Troup over Jimmy Clausen. If you wanted a NT in this draft, San Diego got Thomas in the fifth round. They would have been better taking a NT in the fifth and a QB earlier. Their OL is very questionable. I do like the potential of Callaway. I like some of what Buffalo did and didn't like some of it.
Why would the Jets get rid of Leon Washington and a 7th for a 5th? Is his injury not healing as expected?
Mel Kiper (11:17 AM)
First of all, you have a kid coming off an injury and then you can go and get a younger player in Joe McKnight. Washington is a great player for Seattle. That's a good trade for both teams.
Mel, do you think the raiders adequately addressed their offensive tackle situation in this draft, or will Jason Campbell be running for his life?
Mel Kiper (11:20 AM)
McClain, they could have had Anthony Davis. They traded their starting MLB to Jacksonville. They also got Houston in the second round. I like their first two picks. But they still needed to improve their OL. The OL is still a question mark. You're asking a D-II player and a workout warrior in Bruce Campbell to be your answer. One of them needs to take the spot. When they drafted Jacoby Ford they could have had a David Reed, Riley Cooper, Carlton Mitchell, Dezmon Briscoe. They did it because he was the fastest player in the draft. I like some of the other things they did. I gave them a C+.
Mel Kiper (11:21 AM)
We haven't gotten the final list yet, but Blair White signed by Indianapolis, I thought that was a good pick. LaGarrette Blount signed with the Titans. Jarette Brown also signed with the 49ers. Those were some good pickups.
Steven (Salem, OR)
Since he didn't get drafted do you see a team signing LeGarrette Blount as an unrestricted free agent before the season starts?
Daniel (Miami, FL)
What WR's do you see having productive rookie campaigns in the pass happy NFL?
Mel Kiper (11:24 AM)
I like Andre Roberts going to Arizona in the third. He has return skills too. David Reed to Baltimore. Easley to Buffalo. LaFell or Edwards to Carolina, one of them has to come through. Shipley to the Bengals. Mitchell is an excellent pick to Cleveland. Dez Bryant to Dallas. Eric Decker I think initially could be better than Demariyus Thomas. McCluster will be a heckuva slot receiver with KC. Taylor Price could be a factor right away with New England. Riley Cooper to the Eagles. Another rookie Emmanuel Sanders will be asked to make an impact.
Mel Kiper (11:24 AM)
Golden Tate with Seattle. Benn and Mike Williams in Tampa could be your starting tandem. A lot of these WRs I think will have a nice impact as rookies.
Jon (Brooklyn, NY)
Mel - who are your early frontrunners to go #1 overall next year?
Mel Kiper (11:25 AM)
Jake Locker, Robert Quinn - from UNC who's a freak, Andrew Luck. Those are the top three.
Really not liking what the Packers did in the draft. Way too conservative in my opinion. What do you think of what they did?
Mel Kiper (11:26 AM)
Bulaga fell to them. He's a RT/LT. Burnett was a good pick. Newhouse has a chance to compete. I love the Starks pick. I think every one of their picks could be a factor.
Is it possible Detroit will be the most improved team after their FA work and draft?
Mel Kiper (11:27 AM)
Yeah, I think so. I think they could be. I like what the Lions did. They really did a good job. They got help for Stafford with Best and Fox. They also helped themselves on defense with Suh and Spivey.
Andrew (New Haven, CT)
Mel, what do you think about the giants defensive draft? Why Linval Joseph over the LB's left on the board in the 2nd round?
Mel Kiper (11:28 AM)
There really wasn't anything left. Unless they took Pat Angerer, an undersized MLB. Joseph I thought was a steal. He has a ton of ability. Pierre-Paul and Joseph help that line. Petrus is a tough, firey guy. I thought they had a solid draft. Nice draft.
Mel, do you think Denver could have waited and got Tebow with one of their two second-round picks? Was it necessary to trade into the first round to get him?
Mel Kiper (11:30 AM)
I think it was, because he was a hot guy. If they wanted him, they had to get into the first. There was speculation that New England could get him. He was a hot guy. I thought for sure that he would go in the late first round and a lot of people agreed with that. My information was that he was going in the late first.
Does Montario Hardesty have a chance to be a hidden gem for the Browns?
Mel Kiper (11:30 AM)
If he can stay healthy. He's a rugged, hard-nosed runner. He had some injury issues.
Mel, what is the buzz around the league surrounding Taylor Mays taking shots at Pete Carroll?
Mel Kiper (11:32 AM)
I had no problem with where he was drafted. My last projection did not have him in the first round. I think he was upset that Pete Carroll didn't take him with the 14th pick. But he did not play like the 14th pick. To criticize his former coach is out of line. If you want to privately use that as a chip, then fine. There was nothing positive that can come out of that.
Daniel O'Connor (The Bronx, NY)
Would like your long-term prognosis for John Skelton?
Mel Kiper (11:33 AM)
I think he's hit or miss. He has a powerful arm. Tremendous size. His accuracy was in question. He played at a low level of competition. He's a long-range project. 3-4 years from now, maybe he develops. Possibly. He's big and has a powerful arm.
Does the trade for Campbell make Russell irrelevant? If so is he up their with Ryan Leaf as a bust?
Mel Kiper (11:34 AM)
Yeah, he is up there with Leaf. He did nothing with the Radiers. Now they had to go and get another QB. A bunch of journeymen brought in to play over him. He has no chance in Oakland to do anything now.
Mel, what are your thoughts on the colts and their draft choices?
Mel Kiper (11:35 AM)
I love the Hughes pick. I give them an A+ for that pick. Angerer is exactly the player they like. A little undersized, but very productive. Kevin Thomas was not a typical Colt pick. He was a good talent, but I thought he underachieved. McClendon was a reach. I gave them a C grade.
What's your take on Brandon Graham, an end or OLB? How good can he be?
Mel Kiper (11:36 AM)
He's a DE and he could be very good. He's got a great motor. He's tough, physical. He's not a super explosive DE. Not that incredible burst out of the block. He's super strong in the upper body. Not great closing speed, but he hustles. Andy Reid has always liked pass rushers.
Does Riley Cooper bring anything to the table besides size? Can he be a every down WR?
Mel Kiper (11:38 AM)
I think he's probably your 3-4 option. He has a lot of ability. He ran a 4.53 at the combine. He beat some of the CBs in the SEC on some routes. I thought he could have been a 2-3 round pick. He and Aaron Hernandez were the primary options. He averaged over 18 yards per catch. Nine TD catches.
Ryan (San Diego)
I think the Chargers had a very good draft. They upgraded at RB, got two special teams impact guys and contributors at safety/linebacker and then got a potential gem in Cam Thomas. What are your thoughts?
Mel Kiper (11:39 AM)
To go up as far as they did for Mathews, it tells you how much they wanted to replace Tomlinson. He's a good, solid back. Was he worthy of the high pick? No, but he was what they wanted and needed, they got it. This is a team that feels it's not that far away from the Super Bowl. The only issue I had in their draft was going all the way up to get Mathews. I like what they did. I think their thought process.
Mel Kiper (11:40 AM)
The biggest thing they needed was a NT. They got the 2-3 best NT in Thomas.
Jeremy (Athen, GA)
Did Carolina get the steal of the draft with Clausen in the 2nd. I think he is gonna be a great QB. He wont be counted on the carry the team up front and Carolina has a good locker room to help with some of the "personality" questions teams had about him!
Mel Kiper (11:41 AM)
With the RBs that they do and having the guys they have there. I think they're in a good situation in Carolina with Clausen moving forward. He's coming off an injury and they have Matt Moore. I would start him to begin the season. If they're winning games with Moore, you stick with him.
Did any other teams have Armanti Edwards that high on the board? I thought he'd still be there in the 4th round where, where the trade may not as much...
Mel Kiper (11:42 AM)
Some thought he would be a third. They didn't reach for Edwards. There was a mixed opinion. He's a projection from QB to WR. Can he be Randle-El? That's what they're hoping. He's a talented player.
Jeremy (Athen, GA)
Do you think McDaniels can make Tebow into a pro bowl QB? He is suppose to be a QB guru, but this would be a career maker or breaker!!
Mel Kiper (11:44 AM)
He's a QB guru because of Tom Brady, a hall of famer. Did he make Brady into a hall of famer? That's like hitting coaches. Do batting coaches make great hitters? I don't know. Tom Brady's a hall of famer for a reason. McDaniels, can he make Orton into a hall of famer? I don't think so. I'm more interested in seeing what he can do with Brady Quinn. If he makes Tim Tebow into a Pro Bowler, that will be phenomenal for the league. And it will be great for Tim. I'll root for him to do that. No one out there could root against him. Do I think he can do it? No. Would I bet against him? No.
what are your thoughts on the cards pick of O'Brien Schofield in the 4th? where would he be graded without his injury?
Mel Kiper (11:45 AM)
I love the pick. He had a great year. He would have been a late first rounder in my opinion. New England and Miami would have been teams jumping at him in the first round. At worst, an early second. He had a great year. You red-shirt him this year. He won't be ready to play and you get him ready for 2011.
Who are some of the guys that you thought would be selected that went undrafted? Are there any potential undrafted gems out there?
Mel Kiper (11:50 AM)
QB: Jarett Brown, Matt Nichols, Jevan Snead. RB: Bloung, Roy Upchurch, Shawnbrey McNeal. FB: Jackson. WR: Blair White. TE: Colin Peek. OT: Tony Washington, Kevin Hashlam. OG: Brandon Carter. LS: Clint Gresham. DE: Antonio Coleman, Kevin Basped. DT: Nate Collins, Jimmy Saddler-McQueen. MLB: Mike McLaughlin. OLB: Dane Fletcher, Keaton Kristick, Justin Cole. CB: Terrence Johnson, Brian Jackson, Donovan Warren, Devin Ross, Sam Shields, AJ Jefferson, Chris Hawkins. S: Barry Church, Terrell Skinner, Kyle McCarthy.
Mel Kiper (11:51 AM)
No placekickers were drafted. PK: Bret Swenson, Hunter Lawrence. Three punters were drafted. Others are: Mike Brandtner, Trevor Ward.
Do you think the Dolphins filled their need for an edge rusher with Misi?
Mel Kiper (11:52 AM)
I like Misi, yes, but I would have taken Hughes in the first round and taken care of other needs later. I would have gone Hughes and then Joseph instead of Odrick and Misi.
Mike (Rutland, Vt)
Mel,Did the Cowboys do okay with their picks? Boom or bust?
Mel Kiper (11:54 AM)
They didn't have a lot of needs. They feel very comfortable with Doug Free at LT. Dez Bryant was a good pick. To move ahead of Baltimore was a strong, agressive move. I have no problem with Sean Lee. Wall and Young I think are backups. I gave them a B-. For not needing much, they got a good WR in Bryant.
Jay Jay (Marin (Money) County, Ca)
Mel, what teams draft did you like the most/least?
Mel Kiper (11:56 AM)
The least was Jacksonville and Minnesota. The best was Baltimore and Seattle.
A Rhodes Scholar, and a DT from Brown? Jeff Fisher is on the rules commitee. Any chance they are moving towards a round of Trivial Pursuit instead of the coin toss to decide who gets the ball first in OT?
Mel Kiper (11:57 AM)
I think in terms of getting guys like that, they're borderline. Can he make the team and contribute? If one of those two make the team, that would be it. Rolle has a chance. Howard is a long shot.
Mel Kiper (11:58 AM)
It was good. Thank you for everything. I appreciate all of the questions. All of the loyalty in being here every week. We'll take a little break now. We'll be back in early August - August 11. It's right before the start of NFL preseason games. Fall practice will have just started. See you then!