Historical Pop Culture and Mock Draft

With the first overall pick, the Carolina Panthers select...

Let's face it – mock drafts are unscientific and useless.

Based more on innuendo and inane man crushes than actual logic, mock drafts merely serve as a distraction during the cold nights of the early NFL offseason. In the end, all that is produced is a numbered list of guesses – and the realization that one mock draft is truly no different than the last.

With these thoughts in mind, I present a different approach to a mock draft – one that takes into account the historical and pop culture perspective of each respective NFL city. Much like any other mock draft, what follows could actually happen.

Or at the least, the quotes are actually real.


Mel Kiper, Jr.

Not only is Kiper the first overall pick, but the world's first draft expert is also the sole reason for the existence of a Historical and Pop Culture Mock Draft. Without "analysts" such as Kiper, none of this could be possible.

And thoughts like the following couldn't actually have any real meaning.

"I think this is a pretty good draft class overall."


Jesus of Nazareth

Most Historical and Pop Culture Mock Draft analysts had targeted Jesus of Nazareth for a fall, thanks to the former carpenter's slow 40-yard dash time. However, Denver's front office was reportedly blown away by Jesus' leadership skills and impressive character attributes. Arriving in Denver, Jesus now joins a crowded core of quarterbacks, which includes Kyle Orton and Tim Tebow.

When pressed by local media, Jesus refused to name himself as the team's starter – showing the kind of restraint and team-first attitude that made him such an attractive prospect. In his post-draft comments, Jesus offered the following statement regarding a potential QB controversy – although most Bronco fans may have misinterpreted his meaning as an endorsement of Tebow.

"For God so loved the world, he gave his only begotten son."


Studs Terkel

In an effort to get someone outside of upstate New York to care about their existence, the Bills were originally rumored to be "in love" with human headline ticker O.J. Simpson. However, the attention-starved franchise turn in a vastly different direction with the third overall pick by selecting the 96-year old Terkel, the Pulitzer-Prize winning author and broadcaster – best known for such Buffalo-centric titles as Will the Circle Be Unbroken? and Hope Dies Last.

Most Historical and Pop Culture Mock Draft analysts feel that this pick has the sticky, Ovaltine-caked fingerprints of Buffalo's 92-old owner Ralph Wilson all over it. Because of Terkel's age and propensity for recording oral histories of events that only the two octogenarians could vaguely remember, the pick was a no brainer for Wilson.

As for what Terkel can bring to the Bills' actual on-field product, the team's newest draft pick appeared a bit bewildered by the question – or at by the prospects of the glowing, digital lights that filled a post-draft press conference room.

"I hope that memory is valued – that we do not lose memory."


Lewis and Clark

When owner Mike Brown turns in his Historical and Pop Culture Mock Draft pick, anything can happen. However, this year the longtime Bengals owner – and son of a great football mind – offered a practical solution to his team's decades-long struggle to procure new talent. By adding the famed explorers Lewis and Clark, the Bengals can now boast having three overall scouts within their franchise.

Despite Brown's insistence that Lewis and Clark actually play both tight end and defensive end, the two newest Bengals seem primed to scout some new talent for the Bengals. Regarding their prospects of finding players for a franchise that has traditionally disdained the scouting process, Lewis and Clark offered the following thoughts.

"I had been led to believe, that it was barren, sterile and sandy; but on the contrary I found it fertile in the extreme…"


Allen Iverson

Interesting move here by the Cardinals as the former NBA great Iverson is added to a roster that is still trying to find its footing after Kurt Warner ascended to heaven.  In Iverson, the Cardinals receive an ultra-talented athlete – one who should instantly give the team an offensive threat as well as help improve race relations in America's most dysfunctional state.

However, also intriguing to Arizona is Iverson's communicative skills.  After quarterback Derek Anderson's ill-fated and underwhelming 2010 press conference mini-meltdown, Iverson wasted no time in showing the Arizona QB how an interview should be conducted.

"I know it's important, I honestly do but we're talking about practice. We're talking about practice, man. We're talking about practice. We're talking about practice. We're not talking about the game. We're talking about practice. When you come to the arena, and you see me play, you've seen me play right, you've seen me give everything I've got, but we're talking about practice right now."


Augustus Caesar

After missing on Napoleon and Julius Gaius Caesar in recent years, the Browns again try to find a powerful leader to rescue their fledgling franchise.  In landing Augustus - the first Roman emperor - Browns' owner Randy Lerner claims to have found the "serious, credible leader" the organization has lacked since returning to the league in 1999.

Upon arriving in Cleveland, it is clear that Augustus is facing a huge challenge.  The previous ruling regimes of Dwight Clark, Butch Davis and Phil Savage left the team in a virtual state of rubble.  However, exuding confidence in his post-draft press conference, it appears that Augustus is up to the challenge.

"I found Rome brick.  I left it marble."


Mark Zuckerberg

Desperate to return to the innovative days of Bill Walsh and Eddie DeBartolo, the 49ers grab the mega-billionaire founder of Facebook with their first round pick.  Despite having virtually no actual playing experience – other than playing Mafia Wars - Zuckerberg is reportedly enthused to head to the Bay Area and play for an owner who is barely older than most college graduates.

The connections between Jed York and Zuckerberg are striking – as both are the heads of multi-million dollar corporations with global aspirations.  Also, both young men just recently began to shave.  In a post-draft press conference, the organization's youth was fully represented by Zuckerberg's thoughts on turning around the 49ers.

"I started the site when I was 19. I didn't know much about business back then."


Stripped of Pick

Due to the sheer boredom of the franchise, the Titans have been stripped of their 2011 Historical and Pop Culture Mock Draft pick.

In a post-draft press conference….no one noticed.


Mike Teavee

After selecting Apple visionary Steve Jobs in 2010, the Cowboys' Jerry Jones adds another two-dimensional character in Teavee, famous for his telekinetic exodus in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.  Teavee – projected to play in the Cowboys' depleted defensive backfield – adds a unique blend of athleticism and energy.

However, some Historical and Pop Culture Mock Draft analysts are concerned that Teavee's attention deficit issues could impact his on-field production.  Evidence of this was found in Teavee's post-draft press conference, where the newest Cowboy nervously rambled while staring at the mammoth TV hanging from the ceiling of Jones' football palace.

"Look at me! I'm gonna be the first person in the world to be sent by television!"



Donald Sterling

Washington makes a surprising pick at number nine, as most Historical and Pop Culture Mock Draft analysts predicted that the Redskins would select George Steinbrenner. However, in what could be considered a more fitting move, Washington's reviled owner Dan Snyder finds a sort of soul mate in the leather-faced, bigoted and relatively clueless Donald Sterling.

Sterling, the billionaire owner of the NBA's wayward L.A. Clippers, seems to have already channeled the spirit of Snyder's petulant modus operandi.

"If I really called the shots we wouldn't have signed Gomes and what's the other guy's name? You know, they told me if we built a new practice facility we'd attract all the top players in the game. I guess I should have doubled the size of this place."


Karl Rove

A bold move as the Texans select the longtime Republican political strategist and Presidential kingmaker Rove in an attempt to reverse the team's recent fortunes. After suffering through yet another disappointing and mediocre finish, this move essentially signals that the Texans have surrendered franchise control to the man who elevated George Bush to a two-term President.

Despite the clear indications that Rove is now in charge of the Texans' future, the political savant offered his support for the beleaguered Gary Kubiak. Regarding playing for his new coach, the newest Texan is already doing some spin control.

"He's doing a good job. Those who criticize him should reconsider. He's my friend and is trusted by me and the president."



Minnesota begins their transition from the short-lived Brett Favre era by selecting the ancient Thracian gladiator and leader of a brutal slave uprising. Famous for his bloody victories in the sands of Rome, the Vikings add a ferocious warrior who should be a nice compliment to defensive end Jared Allen. Reportedly, the Vikings were blown away by Spartacus' shuttle run performance and amazing leadership abilities.

Most Historical and Pop Culture Mock Draft analysts were impressed by the pick – even going so far as calling Spartacus the "steal" of the draft.  The pick has also been hailed by other Viking players as a shrewd addition. In fact, Vikings' star running back Adrian Peterson was reportedly overjoyed upon hearing that a fellow "slave" was joining the ranks of his team. Of course, Peterson was a bit confused by the origin of the term – something that Spartacus later cleared up when reached for comment.

"When a free man dies, he loses the pleasure of life. A slave loses his pain. Death is the only freedom a slave knows. That's why he's not afraid of it. That's why we'll win."


Sylvia Plath

Following a tradition of drafting mercurial talents such as Mike Williams, Carlos Rogers and Joyce Carol Oates, the Lions add the ultra-dramatic Plath in an attempt to resurrect their moribund franchise. Although Plath dominated the recent Scouting Combine, some Historical and Pop Culture Mock Draft analysts were concerned regarding the famed poet's crippling depression and penchant for depressing others through her writing.

Regardless, the Lions are banking on Plath to become part of the team's future. Although Plath's post-draft comments seemed to prove a bit divergent.

"Dying is an art, like everything else. I do it exceptionally well. I do it so it feels like hell. I do it so it feels real. I guess you could say I've a call."


Redd Foxx

After securing their quarterback of the future in Sam Bradford, the Rams bolster their offensive backfield by adding the famed comic and St. Louis native Foxx. Although Foxx's size raised some red flags, he reportedly dazzled during pre-draft interview sessions – repeatedly shredding the likes of such obvious NFC West comic targets as Mike Singletary, Pete Carroll and the ghost of Kurt Warner.

Foxx's biting tongue left no opponent unscathed. When asked about the performance of the Rams' offense over the past few years, Foxx offered the following stark critique.

"Beauty may be skin deep, but ugly goes clear to the bone."


Salvatore "Big Pussy" Bonpensiero

After being hung out to dry by team owner Stephen Ross during the owner's pursuit of Jim Harbaugh, Dolphins' head coach Tony Sparano had to realize the writing was on the wall with this selection. Instead of finding some much-needed help at quarterback, the Dolphins instead choose the former New Jersey mobster, a prospect who had plummeted down most Historical and Pop Culture Mock Draft Analysts' draft boards.

Bonpensiero was reportedly wildly out of shape after arriving at the league's Scouting Combine.  Weighing in at roughly 423 lbs., Bonpensiero could only manage to complete the first half of his 40-yard dash. Although it's clear that Ross is sending a message to his embattled head coach with the selection of Bonpensiero, it's not known how he will fit into the Dolphins' game day plans.  When reached for comment, a winded Bonpensiero only offered the following.

"Searchlight Diner.  5:15 a.m.  Subject has still not left location.  Sun coming up."


Jim Bailey

Interesting selection midway through the first round, as the Jaguars select Bailey, the Browns former Vice President and one of Modell's primary enablers during the fall of the original Browns' franchise now heads to Jacksonville to take on a similar role. Although possessing zero football knowledge and a penchant for being little more than a "yes man", the Jaguars are confident Bailey can take the team to the next level.

Of course by drafting Bailey, the financially strapped Jaguars can now fully accelerate towards NFL oblivion. During his post-draft press conference, Bailey exhibited the kind of general incompetence that doomed the Browns franchise some 15 years ago – merely by mindlessly repeating a phrase made more famous by Modell.

"I had to do what I had to do to keep my family alive.  Period."

17. NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS (from Oakland)

Herschel Walker, then another trade

The Patriots again set a Historical and Pop Culture Mock Draft record by trading yet another first-round selection – their 34th transaction of the first round.  In a startling display of trading prowess, Patriots' coach Bill Belichick received one draft pick from every other team in the league – before selecting Herschel Walker.

After selecting Walker, the Patriots promptly dealt the former USFL standout and current MMA fighter to the Raiders for two decades worth of first-round draft picks and a vial of Al Davis' blood serum.  The impact of the moment was not lost on Walker – who although shocked by the day's events – offered the following.

"When you look up, you go up."


The Pinkertons

Most Historical and Pop Culture Mock Draft analysts predicted Chargers' GM A.J. Smith would target The Pinkertons with the 18th overall pick. The selection of the former private security force reflects Smith's frustration during his contract negotiations with last year's top pick – San Diego native Jack Tripper. It was clear that Smith did not want to repeat history in 2011.

However, in adding the Pinkertons to the Chargers' locker room, Smith is confident that not only will he have his first-round pick quickly signed – but that also his new army of hired goons will likely squash any kind of locker room dissent. The Pinkertons offered his thoughts to the small core of Historical and Pop Culture Mock Draft analysts before breaking both of Vincent Jackson's knees.

"A friend to honesty and a foe to crime."


The Wiggles

In yet another attempt to placate quarterback Eli Manning, the Giants add some friendly faces to their locker room.  New York's front office feels that the Australian quartet famous for singing inane songs that only two-year olds can understand will offer Manning a sounding board for the pressures that come via playing in the nation's biggest media market.

Despite the team's needs at other positions – and the Wiggles' foursome weighing a combined 138 pounds – the pick was clearly designed with Manning's emotional state in mind.  The move comes on the heels of last year's first-round selection, child psychologist Erik Erikson, who proved to be a major bust due to the fact that he scared Manning.

In an attempt to not allow history to repeat itself, Giants' head coach Tom Coughlin immediately organized a play date between Manning and the Wiggles – which led to the new friends issuing the following statement.

"I counts 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10.  He counts 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10.  And when I get up to the top, I climb back down again."


Fourteen Somali Pirates

Noted for eschewing character concerns in favor of procuring on-field talent, the Bucs continue their recent trend of roster building with the selection of fourteen unidentified Somali pirates.  The pirates drew a lot of buzz at the league's Scouting Combine, where the uninvited Somalis captured dozens of hostages before demanding a ransom for Mel Kiper's Big Board.

Although the Somali pirates are regarded as some of the more elusive draft prospects to enter this year's draft, problems could occur when it comes time to negotiate a contract.  In a post-draft press conference, the Somalis read a statement which expressed their desire to receive signing bonuses in unmarked bills – an act that the general public interpreted as symbolic of the league's current labor struggle.

"We just want the money."


Andrew Jackson

For the third consecutive season, the Chiefs select the 18th President of the United States and famed military leader with a first round pick.  Jackson, one of the more violent, hard-hitting safety prospects to enter the Historical and Pop Culture Mock Draft in recent years, has failed to report to Chiefs camp for two years running – mainly due to his savage hatred of Native Americans.

However, the Chiefs – undeterred in their attempts to add a physical presence to their defensive backfield, along with continuing a long tradition of blatant racism – feel that 2011 could be the year that Jackson finally comes into the fold in Kansas City.

Of course, Jackson remains exclusively focused on the team's outdated logo and nickname – which has only rekindled his raw emotions regarding the native race.

"They have neither the intelligence, the industry, the moral habits, nor the desire of improvement which are essential to any favorable change in their condition. Established in the midst of another and a superior race, and without appreciating the causes of their inferiority or seeking to control them, they must necessarily yield to the force of circumstances and ere long disappear."


Tom DeLay

Indianapolis goes with the conventional pick at No. 22, landing the former Texas Congressman known as "The Hammer." Although the Colts needed to upgrade their talent surrounding franchise quarterback Peyton Manning, Indianapolis GM Bill Polian could not pass on DeLay's vast experience in literally re-shaping the political landscape around him.

DeLay, an architect of Congressional redistricting and a central figure in some of the more publicized political lobbying scandals in recent memory, has already sensed an instant camaraderie with the Colts' GM and self-styled pseudo-Commissioner. Polian, known for effectively helping to change multiple league rules in an attempt to award his franchise with an unfair competitive advantage, had targeted DeLay throughout pre-draft workouts.

In coming to Indianapolis, DeLay can partner with Polian and begin the league's descent into a glorified game of two-hand touch football.

"We're no longer a superpower. We're a super-duper power."


Jeffrey Dahmer

Dahmer's selection could be considered as a seminal moment in the annals of Historical and Pop Culture draft history, as never before has a serial killer gone in the first round. Although he failed to impress scouts in pre-draft workouts by registering a dismal three 220-pound bench presses, Dahmer's focus and sneaky quickness caught the eye of Philadelphia head coach Andy Reid, along with Reid's sons.

Coming to Philadelphia, Dahmer joins a cast of players led by fellow wayward youth Michael Vick, who already shares a unique bond of cruelty with the newest Eagle. In fact, the two new teammates exchanged a series of text messages focused solely on the finer points of rehabbing a flawed public image. Dahmer quickly held a post-draft press conference in an attempt to try out his new learning.

"I really screwed up this time."


William Faulkner

The Saints go with the hometown pick at No. 24, selecting the famed author of such works as "The Sound and the Fury" and "A Rose For Emily." Despite needing upgrades throughout their defense, the Saints' brain trust, led by Sean Payton and Gregg Williams, are banking on Faulkner to execute the team's elaborate game day schemes.

Faulkner was considered a "major reach" by most Historical and Pop Culture Mock Draft analysts. Blending talents that could be characterized as anything between "genius" and "incomprehensible" – or as any honest English major would state – "ridiculously and needlessly complex," Faulkner's intelligence may take a while to translate into on-field productivity. However, in his post-draft press conference, Faulkner appeared unfazed by the Saints' voluminous playbook, although it's quite possible that the famed writer was merely referring to his readers.

"A mule will labor 10 years willingly and patiently for you, for the privilege of kicking you once."



The always unpredictable Pete Carroll surprised many Historical and Pop Culture Mock Draft analysts with his selection of the first century Greek philosopher, poet and biographer. Despite the Seahawks' needs at quarterback, Carroll sensed something intriguing about the author of "Parallel Lives."  Perhaps this connection explains the former USC head coach's desire to still behave like a 20 year old frat boy – while also running an NFL franchise.

Or, as some analysts suspect, Carroll is simply looking for someone to record his legacy of decadence. Plutarch, who wrote about the lavish lifestyles of Roman emperors, would appear to be the right fit for such a task. Appearing at a post-draft press conference, Carroll announced that his new draft pick was to begin work on a literal translation of the phrase "Beast Mode."

Appearing up to the task, Plutarch offered the following on his first assignment:

"Character is simply habit long continued."


Stringer Bell

The Ravens go with the hometown pick at No. 26 with the selection of Bell, a stylish drug kingpin attempting to become a legitimate businessman in downtown Baltimore. Although some mock draft analysts thought the Ravens would look for a wide receiving threat, the Stringer pick makes perfect sense considering the makeup of the Baltimore locker room.

In fact, team leader and man of God Ray Lewis was reportedly enraptured with the Stringer selection. Reports out of the Baltimore locker room suggest that Lewis was alternately crying joyous tears and stashing away crudely designed shivs. Sensing that he found both his football and life soul mate, Lewis and Stringer huddled for a post-draft meeting that included the following exchange.

"You know, Avon, you gotta think about what we got in this game for, man. Huh? Was it the rep? Was it so our names could ring out on some ghetto street corner, man? Naw, man. There's games beyond the game."


Every Annoying ESPN Sports Center Host

After missing on General Stonewall Jackson back in 2010, Atlanta turns to the world of sports infotainment for their 2011 pick. Attempting to both capitalize on the burgeoning fame of their franchise quarterback Matt Ryan, along with bolstering their overall roster depth, the Falcons select the entire roster of ESPN's Sports Center's on-air talent. The pick was heralded by both Mock Draft analysts and Indianapolis GM Bill Polian as a shrewd means of bending league rules to gain an unfair competitive advantage.

While the actual on-field merits of such names as Josh Elliott, Dari Nowkhah, the little guy with the hair and the two that look like brothers leave much to be desired, the pick speaks to the Falcons' desire to improve their name recognition through a series of individuals who are only concerned with their Media Q rating. By doing so, Falcons fans can expect to hear even more endless references to their star quarterback's unimaginative nickname – uttered by aging frat boys desperate to retain some forever lost ounce of coolness.

"Matty Ice….goes down smooth."


Ralph Waldo Emerson

After trading down a mock record fourteen times, the Patriots select the famed Transcendentalist poet and essayist with the 28th pick. The author of such works as "Representative Men," "The Conduct of Life," "Concord Hymn" and "Self-Reliance" would appear to be an odd fit for New England, especially considering how close the Patriots came to another AFC Championship appearance a season ago. Also complicating matters – at least according to most Historical and Pop Culture analysts – are the ideas that Emerson has no prior football experience and has been dead for 129 years.

However, always one to buck convention, Patriots' head coach Bill Belichick envisions Emerson as a late-round bargain and a player who can seamlessly fit into the team's wide receiver rotation. Eschewing size and ego for intelligence, precision and character, Belichick believes that he has found a player capable of fitting into the "Patriot Way," despite Emerson's rail-thin physique and propensity for lecturing others on the importance of independence and intellectual freedom. While some analysts were concerned about a potential clash between Emerson and Belichick, it appears that Emerson has already fully bought into New England's system.

"A great man is always willing to be little."


Jim Belushi – Hilarious Comedic Actor

Sticking to their community roots, the Bears select the native Chicagoan with the 30th pick in this year's Historical and Pop Culture Mock Draft. Belushi, an actor/comedian/sibling of a much more famous and talented actor/comedian continues a Bears' legacy of procuring and celebrating overrated talent. This rich history, which began with Mike Ditka and Jim McMahon in the 1980s, has recently seen the arrivals of Jay Cutler, Julius Peppers and Mike Martz – along with an unrealistic uptick in fan expectations.

Although it's not known exactly which position best suits Belushi's skills, it's apparent that the star of such productions as According to Jim, Farce of the Penguins, What's New, Scooby Doo? and Life With Louie will likely bring a sense of hilarity to the Bears merely by portraying clichéd, overweight blue-collar slobs who love fart jokes and innuendo-laced puns. During his post-draft interview, Belushi gave Bears' fans a taste of his potential by comically stumbling over the words of a scripted statement.

"Everyone!  Circumcise your watches!"


Moammar al-Gaddafi – Libyan Dictator

Due to some character concerns, most historical and pop culture mock analysts had the longtime Libyan dictator falling into the second round of this year's draft. However, never one to back away from controversy, the Rex Ryan-led Jets are confident that al-Gaddafi can bolster the team's depth at wide receiver, which already features the likes of Santonio Holmes and Braylon Edwards. In landing al-Gaddafi, the Jets are getting an experienced player who has proven to be elusive in the open field.

Although some analysts are worried about al-Gaddafi's slow 40-yard dash time, Ryan was reported to be "in love" with the Libyan dictator's brash sense of confidence. Already channeling the bluster that has become characteristic of the Jets' head coach, al-Gaddafi made a bold declaration regarding the team's prospects for a future Super Bowl championship.

"In the short term, we'll beat them. In the long term, we'll beat them."


Mark Geragos – Defense Attorney

Interesting selection here as the Steelers make what could be characterized as a "pre-emptive" selection. Considering the off-field antics of star quarterback Ben Roethlisberger and on-field hustle of linebacker James Harrison, the selection of Geragos, who is a world-renowned celebrity defense attorney, helps to bolster the Steelers' depth. Realizing that an offseason labor stoppage could create a brazen atmosphere of lawlessness by players around the city, Geragos serves as an insurance policy for a team whose public image has been tarnished over the past couple years.

While it's doubtful Geragos will see much actual on-field playing time in 2011, he could prove to be an invaluable force in the Steelers' locker room. In yet another display of the kind of steady, proactive leadership that has made the Steelers one of the league's preeminent franchises, the Rooney family has sought donations from all members of the current Pittsburgh roster to cover future legal expenses.

Or, as Geragos stated in his post-draft press conference, it's never too early to get to work.

"We might as well open it up entirely and pollute the entire state."


Dr. William C. DeVries – Heart Surgeon

Fresh off a Super Bowl Championship, the Packers don't appear to have any pressing needs. Possessing of the one of the league's best quarterbacks and youngest rosters, the Packers made what many Historical and Pop Culture Mock Draft Analysts are referring to as a "predictable" pick. Citing the Green Bay's community generations-long struggle with massive degenerative heart disease, the Packers made the safe pick by taking DeVries, who was one of the first surgeons in the world to successfully complete a human heart transplant.

However, DeVries knows that he faces a huge challenge in turning around the collective health of Green Bay, especially considering number of defibrillators found among Packer fans around Lambeau Stadium on most Sundays. Despite his career success, DeVries appeared humbled after being taken in the first round. Realizing the great legacy that the Packers have built in Green Bay, DeVries tried to put things in perspective.

"We all felt the majesty of the body. As we saw the artificial heart beat, the feeling was not ‘aren't we great, but aren't we small?'"

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