TFYDraft: Hi, everyone
WerewolfEars: Thanks for the chat, Tony
TFYDraft: Thanks for having me...
vikingspub: OK, guys, Tony is in and we should be ready to go.
vikingspub: Fire away with the questions.
vikingspub: Tony, I'll start if no one else will. At the 49th pick, who is the best value for QB for a West Coast offense?
TFYDraft: 49th is kind of tough. I'd say Brodie Croyle of Alabama, but anything before the 60th pick is a reach in my mind. There is a big gap between the top three QBs in the draft, then the second tier, which begins with Croyle.
WerewolfEars: Hey, Tony. I am skeptical about RB in the first for us (see it still in a lot of mocks), especially with the signing of Chester Taylor and the money he is getting. What is your thought?
TFYDraft: Werewolf, it depends on the value. You make a good point, and in all likelihood they will look elsewhere in the first frame.
vikingspub: My personal opinion is that those who have RB in the first for the Vikings don't have an updated free agent list.
viklover: It wouldn't surprise me if they select a back later in the draft.
vikefaninoh: Hey, Tony. What are you hearing about the Pack's interests at No. 5? I will probably throw up in my mouth if they select A.J. Hawk.
TFYDraft: Vikefan, the Pack will take whichever top defensive player is on the board, unlikely to be Mario Williams. More than likely Hawk.
fireicon: Tony, I like Ernie Sims at pick No. 17 for the Vikings. What is your thought on that or should we trade up for a top QB if we can?
TFYDraft: Fireicon, I was just speaking with someone else about Sims at 17. I think it is a possibility. It definitely fits a need, though he may not be the type of "good character" the team wants to bring in. I think a trade up for Jay Cutler will definitely be explored.
fireicon: I like Cutler and think he would be a good fit .. or Croyle later on if need be. Tanks
viklover: In your opinion, Tony, isn't there more value in a current NFL backup put on the roster than say drafting a second-tier QB?
Havoc1649: How serious do you think the Vikes are about trading up for a QB? I have seen comments by Childress regarding this.
TFYDraft: Havoc, they are very serious, though they will not mortgage the farm for one of the QBs.
vikingspub: What are the differences between DeMeco Ryans and Ernie Sims, as players and as guys off the field?
TFYDraft: Vikepub, Sims is a lot more explosive, faster and much stronger at the point. He is not as instinctive compared to Ryans. Sims has had his share of problems early in college while Ryans is the opposite - he graduated from Alabama in seven semesters.
Havoc1649: Any mention of one of the three they may like over the others.
TFYDraft: Havoc - Leinart, Cutler, Young
WerewolfEars: What about UTEP LB Thomas Howard - a reach for us at No. 17 or no? Or a better second-rounder?
TFYDraft: Werewolf, Thomas is a major reach No. 17. He may not make it to 49 either.
vikingspub: By make it to 49th, do you think he's a reach there or you think he'll be selected by then.
TFYDraft: VikingsPub, Howard will be selected somewhere between picks 38-45.
viklover: Tony, what is your overall opinion of Jay Cutler?
TFYDraft: viklover, I think he is a bit overrated. I like his physical skills and he offers a lot of tools to work with, but he needs to significantly improve his reads and learn to make plays with his head, not just his strong arm. At Combine workouts, I sat behind a newly elevated head coach (not the Vikes) who said Cutler was the kind of QB who will throw 25-30 picks per season.
TFYDraft: viklover, a lot of people have made that comparison, but I think he is a poor man's Brett Farve.
viklover: I agree.
Havoc1649: Every once in awhile there is a QB prospect that slips through the cracks and doesn't go until later rounds, is there anyone this year that might have a better pro career than expected?
TFYDraft: Omar Jacobs of Bowling Green if he receives the proper coaching. Ditto for Ingle Martin. Justin Holland of Colorado State and Jeff Mroz of Yale are sleepers.
viklover: Your thoughts on the right tackles in this year's draft?
TFYDraft: viklover, lots of potential, though no sure things. Winston Justice could break into a starting lineup as a rookie if he focuses on the task. Eric Winston of Miami can play either side, and Marcus McNeill from Auburn will be terrific if his back is healthy. After that, Jeremy Trueblood of BC, a healthy Ryan O'Callahan of Cal and Guy Whimper, a sleeper from East Carolina, all have starting potential.
JBrowner47: Will A.J. Hawk play inside or outside?
TFYDraft: Jbrowner, I like Hawk on the outside, though he would also be effective on the inside of a 3-4.
JBrowner47: Thanks, so you don't see him as a MLB? What's your thought on Whitworth, OT from LSU?
TFYDraft: Jbrowner, no, I don't think Hawk stacks well enough against the run to play the middle. Whitworth took a step back as a senior, purely a strong-side tackle and has potential if he improves his flexibility.
vikingspub: Daryn Colledge listed the Vikings as having an interest in him at the Combine. Your opinion on him at right tackle?
TFYDraft: Vikepub, very difficult for Colledge to play RT in the NFL. Does not have the size/strength. I think he can play LT in the right system.
JBrowner47: Where does CB Dion Byrum out of Ohio U project in the draft? I was thinking in the fourth.
TFYDraft: Jbrowner, probably a little later (5/6). Byrum is not getting the respect he deserves. Someone could take a flier on him, using him as a return specialist.
JBrowner47: I watched him play at OU (I work there) and he's probably the best players on the team.
TFYDraft: Jbrowner, that's not a huge endorsement as Ohio rarely puts players into the league. Byrum should break that streak.
metheus: Getting back to quarterback, can you see us trading our first and possibly a third for Matt Schaub?
TFYDraft: metheus, I think that is a bit much for an unproven QB.
vikingspub: The Vikes seem destined to lose Nate Burleson to Seattle. Is there a third-round-type WR who would fit his role?
TFYDraft: Vikespub, it is a terribly weak WR class, though Greg Jennings of Western Michigan, Travis Wilson of OU (a little bigger than Burleson) or Mike Hass from Oregon State would be good replacements. Stovall if he makes it that far
JBrowner47: There seems to be a lot of uncertainty about Omar Jacobs. Is he a "sandlot" player as one GM has said or a solid prospect who may develop in a couple years?
TFYDraft: Jbrowner, we reported that from the Combine the "sandlot player" tag came as Jacobs was having great difficulty simulating a drop into the pocket from behind center during QB workouts, hence my earlier comment about the need for proper coaching. Jacobs is a guy that needs a lot of work from the ground up.
metheus: Who is that large receiver from Central Florida that wasn't invited to the Combine who played fantastically in the post-season bowl in Hawaii?
TFYDraft: metheus, Brandon Marshal, though he did work out at the combine.
Havoc1649: Besides QB, have the Vikings shown interest in any other position players that they would need to move up to get?
TFYDraft: Havoc, move up? No
vikingspub: Is Skyler Green anything more than a return guy? Could he even go undrafted?
TFYDraft: vikingspub, it is such a poor receiver class I think Green gets drafted. You must do your homework on him as he was a dynamite wideout early in his LSU career but fell through the cracks later on. Solid No. 4/5 and return specialist in the NFL.
JBrowner47: How good is Cedric Griffin?
TFYDraft: Jbrowner, Griffin looks better on the practice field then he does in games. Physically outstanding, but not a whole lot going on upstairs.
metheus: Getting back to Schaub, I agree a first and a third is high, but isn't he far more proven and a higher upside than Croyle and be immediately in competition for No. 1 rather than bringing a guy along like Croyle for a number of years?
TFYDraft: metheus, possibly but it depends on what the asking price is.
vikefaninoh: How high with Donte Whitner go?
TFYDraft: vikefaninohio, Whitner could go late first.
vikingspub: A couple more questions for Tony and then we'll have to let him go. I'll clean up this transcript, organize it and post it tomorrow morning for those that missed it.
JBrowner47: Who would be the best pick in the late second to third round to play strong safety?
TFYDraft: Jbrowner, Daniel Bullocks, Darnell Bing. If you want a pure strong safety, you could get a guy like Chris Harrell of Penn State late in the draft.
viklover: What are your thoughts on Joseph Addai?
TFYDraft: vikelover, Addai is moving up boards. A lot of all-around skills as a runner and pass catcher. Needs to polish his game and runs a little upright, but has starting potential.
lightn24: Thoughts on Charles Spencer?
TFYDraft: lightn24, Spencer has terrific size and athleticism. He can be a dominant blocker at guard if he focuses and makes football a priority.
metheus: What are your thoughts on the Maryland middle linebacker. I forget his name.
TFYDraft: metheus, D'Qwell Jackson is sliding down boards. He is an undersized, two-down defender who lacks the size to be a true MLB at the next level.
HissingBoomslang: What is the latest information about Jason Allen's health, and how/where does that translate in his draft status? Thanks.
TFYDraft: Hissing, no one has red-flagged Allen as far as I am aware. He could go late first round but early second frame is a better projection.
JBrowner47: Where will Anthony Schlagel fall in the draft?
vikingspub: OK, we've got to let Tony go after he answers what's already on the board. We'll try to have him on weekly or at least a few more times before draft.
TFYDraft: Jbrowner, late in the draft - strictly a two-down defender who does not make plays outside the box.
JBrowner47: Thanks, appreciate your time TFYD...
vikingspub: We'll also have Adam Caplan from scout.com, footballinjuries.com and Sirius radio for more free agent talk on Wednesday, time TBD.
HissingBoomslang: Thanks again for taking the time to talk with us.
viklover: Thanks....Good Chat
Havoc1649: Thanks Tony and Pub, enjoyed it
TFYDraft: Thanks for having me fellas. Good luck to the Vikes in April and hope you'll have me back!
TFY Draft Preview Chat Transcript
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