purple haze, on 26 February 2014 - 09:14 AM, said:
It’s not that he doesn’t see the value. He even said Russell was a good player. But scouts/organizations all have draft philosophies. Remember Whaley said last week that between two equal players he’s taking the bigger one? Nix has a similar philosophy. Also, remember Nix valued draft picks highly. In the first three rounds those picks are seen as most valuable. So Wilson did have value to Nix; just not first three rounds of the draft value. If Wilson was available in the fourth Nix might have grabbed him. Wilson was a great college player, was an obvious winner and leader. But he’s a 5’11ish QB in a league that has not seen many QB’s of that size have great success.
One can argue about drafting Graham in the 3rd, but Graham brought elite speed and athleticism to the table. He wasn’t a great player, but he had great potential and based on his physical talent. In fact, his measurables made him stand out at his position. Nix liked big athletes or elite athletes. He’s not the only one. Every team passed on Wilson twice and some three times. I would have loved to have Wilson in Buffalo, but there’s no guarantee we would be seeing what we see out of him in Seattle in B-Lo or anywhere else. Many factors go into a player being successful outside of their actual talent. You think Gailey would have played Wilson?? I don’t. He seemed to prefer veterans to rookies in general.
Also, keep in mind, Russell has his rough patches in games. That defense keeps scores within reach in a lot of games and gets turnovers so he has a chance to chop the wood again. Eventually having extra possessions allows his talent to show itself . He would not have had that in a theoretical year one with the Bills.
TJ Graham's combine numbers (with his 2012 rank in parentheses):
40-yard dash: 4.41 seconds (T-7th)
Bench press: 8 reps (not in top 15)
Vertical jump: 33.5" (not in top 15)
Broad jump: 10'0" (not in top 15)
3-cone drill: 6.77 seconds (3rd)
20-yd shuttle: 4.18 seconds (15th)
For comparison, here's the 10th-best value for each of those from this year's WRs at the combine:
40-yard dash: 4.44 seconds (Graham would've placed 5th)
Bench press: 16 reps
Vertical jump: 38.0"
Broad jump: 10'4"
3-cone drill: 6.76 seconds (Graham would've tied for 10th)
20-yd shuttle: 4.01 seconds (Graham would've tied for 15th)
Compared to me or any normal human being, TJ Graham is absolutely an elite athlete. Compared only to the pool of NFL WRs, however, he might not be much better than average. Particularly when you factor in his size (5'11", 188 lbs.). If he was putting up those numbers at Kelvin Benjamin's size, it would be much more impressive. (For the record, he did beat Benjamin in everything but bench press, which is pretty meaningless anyway.)
Graham's speed is probably elite (although Goodwin looks significantly faster on the same field), but it's really unfair to call him an elite athlete overall. He's far too earthbound. Sorry for the off-topic post; I'll shut up now. Just bothers me when people overstate the case for TJ Graham. There's a reason most draftniks projected him as a 5th-7th round pick.