Feeling a Draft

Read Broncos Update Columnist Sam DeWitt's blow by blow description of the recently completed NFL Draft.

Originally, the plan was to watch the draft at my longtime friend Tom Haffey's place, joined by his son Christian (three years old) and Patrick Byrne, picked up in free agency just after the '04 friend draft. His long-suffering, low-paying gig as a Redskins fan made him an automatic choice to watch with us.

Also joining us, a huge pot of homemade spaghetti and meatballs, presented with much fanfare to the guests by Mr. Haffey, or "Quaffey" as he'll be called for the rest of this column. Mmm, meatballs. No, I can't believe I just typed that, either.

As it turned out, Patrick and I arrived just in time to see the Niners take Alex Smith. Not really a surprise at all, but at least we were underway. Little did I know that this day would turn out to be the bane of my very existence. Has anyone ever tried to watch the entire NFL draft on TV and write about it? This is like torture for a columnist. From the 15 minute wait between picks to the noodles and sauce in my stomach, I was ready to curl up in a ball. Some observations:

It took exactly five minutes and 32 seconds for Patrick to make his first smartass comment, coming when Suzie Kolber asks Smith how he went from third-stringer to first pick of the '05 draft. "Steroids," says Byrne. It's looking like a good day.

Is anyone else a little uneasy about Chris Berman? Every time they show him, he's sweating like a pig. Looks like the guy who constantly sweats, no matter what. I may refer to him as "Sweaty Guy" from here out.

Sweaty Guy mentions that every star player the Browns had is now on the Broncos. Concrete proof that the term "star player" is thrown around all too often these days.

With Tampa Bay on the clock, Berman says that Tampa won't draft Aaron Rodgers from Cal because they've got their quarterback situation "taken care of." When will people learn? Having Brian Griese on your team should be cause for making hasty trades and getting a new quarterback. Griese is not good. Griese will never be good. He's the football equivalent of Wanda Sykes.

I thought it would be easy to write this play-by-play of the draft. I was really, really wrong. I don't see how Mel Kiper can be so excited about this every year, to the point that he ends up talking about two days for his entire year. He just yelled at me for 72 seconds for thinking Mike Williams is slow. Seriously, pointing at me from the screen and yelling about how crazy I am. I guess he knows crazy.

An hour and fifty-two minutes in, Sean Salisbury says that Williams is a steal from here out because he catches the ball with his hands. Oh.

Six minutes later, the draft team asks Vikings coach Mike Tice what it was like to say goodbye to Randy Moss, as Quaffey, Patrick and I trip over each other to make a joke. Tommy said "refreshing," followed by Patrick saying "What was it like? Um, heaven," and me following with "Like taking a shower after a really really bad camping trip." Good times.

Andrea Kramer's new hair dye job is giving me a migraine. I may end up going down with an injury before we get through this sucker.

They're interviewing Joe Gibbs in Washington. Has anyone ever seen him and Ross Perot in the same room together? I doubt it very much.

12:40 - Merrill Hoge spits out that he doesn't know what Matt Millen is doing in Detroit. Zing?

12:41 ZING!!!

Hoge just got excited and ended up making up a word, "Translishing." Sounds great.

At 1:46, Cincinnati takes David Pollack from Georgia, as someone mentions that the Bengals have a good chance at upsetting the Patriots and going to the Super Bowl this year. I have no idea who said this because I'm now fighting a migraine combined with food coma and feel like passing out. Also, the major problem isn't the draft; it's the fact that Denver won't have their first pick for another 12 hours. Good God, I can't believe I wanted to do this.

Yup, we're all set with this play-by-play. Screw this. I'm not writing about every pick til the Broncos pick at 56.

TIME WARP

Finally, the Broncos get their man: cornerback Darrent Williams from Oklahoma State. Guy is also a return specialist with a good deal of speed. I really hope he works out, since I know nothing about him. That's always a good sign.

We also took Karl Paymah, a cornerback out of Washington State. Never heard of him either. Maybe one of these guys will pan out. But at least we're focusing on our trouble areas here - if we had wound up with a running back on the first day, I'd wonder about the team's sanity.

I spoke too soon: Third round, the Broncos select - Maurice Clarett. I did not see that coming. This will get it's own column later in the week.

Random thoughts from draft hell:

Did you know there was a guy in this draft with the last name of Incognito? St. Louis took him, and I'm sure the media there is falling all over itself making the "never heard of him," joke. And he's a center, probably the most unsung position in football. How perfect.

Everyone acted so surprised when Aaron Rodgers dropped to the Packers at No. 24, even though I've been talking about how this would probably happen for two weeks. It was need, folks, not because people didn't like his skills. And Green Bay needs an heir to Brett Favre, now entering his 823rd season. Why did this surprise anyone? If he was going earlier, he would have gone to Tampa to be an answer to the Griese problem.

The steal of this draft: Vincent Jackson from Northern Colorado. 6-5, 241l pound wide receiver will absolutely be a superduperstar in San Diego. I, of course, wish that the Broncos had picked him up.

Most confusing pick of the draft: Matt Cassell from USC. This guy was Matt Leinart's backup, and the Pats picked him up in the seventh round. Not that I can say anything about Belichick, since he got Tom Brady in the sixth, but Cassell wasn't even a starter in college. At least Brady had experience.

Later this week, in this very space, my take on the Clarett pick. Why I think he could be fantastic for this team. Peace out.

Sam DeWitt is a regular columnist for BroncosUpdate.com. He will never watch another NFL draft from start to finish. You can reach him at BUMoose@gmail.com with comments and questions.


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