The first round of the NFL Draft was yesterday, and for many a football fan with it brings the promise of greatness (or something exciting to wash away the bitter tears from the previous season). Did Johnny Football expect to be moving to Cleveland, I wonder? Anyway, here's guest-writer Tony Garcia with more observations...
Finally. It's over. After months of debate and prognosticating, the NFL Draft is over! Wait… what's that? There's six more rounds? That can't be right. What the hell was I just watching for the past 4 hours?
I kid, I kid. I enjoyed every moment of it. The first round of the draft is in the books and I need a cigarette. Was it good for you?
This has to have been the most hyped draft that I can remember. Partly because of the timing of the darn thing. The draft was moved back a couple weeks this year which led to an overhyping and an already hyped event. I say overhyped like I hate it. I don't. I love it. I watched every minute of it. Like I said in my previous blog, the NFL is king and they are going to flex their muscles tonight. The draft will dominate ratings, talk shows, Twitter, Facebook and the 24 hour news cycle. But we already know that.
Another reason it was ultra hyped was the cast of characters. Two guys come to mind right off the top of my head that made the draft what it was. Those two guys are Jadeveon Clowney and Johnny Manziel. Sure, there are guys that are going to probably be bigger impact players than Clowney and Manziel but those guys were the stars of the show tonight. Clowney is said to be a generational talent. Guys like him don't come around too often. Manziel on the other hand has already been in the spotlight for a couple years. He was a college superstar and we'll see if his talents will translate to the pro game. He's also been known to throw down a few brewskis every now and then. Mostly on days ending in "Y". His name is Johnny Football and he's here to party.
I never know what to expect on these draft nights as far as draft order goes. I'm not much of a mock draft guy. Meaning I don't put together my own mock draft and try to outsmart the smart guys like Mel Kiper Jr. and his perfect head of hair. His hair intimidates me. It's like staring into an eclipse. You know you shouldn't look, but you still do anyway.
But after one round I have a few notes on the things I witnessed tonight:
- John Gruden loves Johnny Manziel and probably went through a years supply of Vaseline going over his game tape.
- JJ Watt and Jadeveon Clowney should be pretty fun to watch if you ask me.
- Three phrases can pretty much sum up the entire evening: "Giant hands", "Penetration" and "Ball skills".
- My beloved Bears didn't pick any of the top 5 guys I had on my list. This could be a good thing.
- Not as many trades this year as in years past.
- Who the hell names their child Ha Ha? Seriously, that's a name? If I'm every scoreboard operator I'm cueing up Nelson from The Simpsons classic "Haha" for every time that dude makes a mistake. Good player, bad name.
- The Packers and Jets, two teams I strongly dislike, got two players I'd want on my team (Calvin Pryor and Ha Ha Clinton-Dix).
- The Lions did it again, drafting a guy they could've probably traded down and gotten later in the first round. I love ripping the Lions so maybe there's nothing they could've done that I would've applauded. LOLions.
- Cleveland's bar district single-handedly became one of America's most booming bar areas. I mean that in a literal sense. Johnny Manziel will be doing many 12oz curls and will turn that place into another Vegas strip.
- Chris Berman needs to hang it up. I think I've been saying that for about 10 years now but the guy just won't quit. He may have been clever in the 90s but his brand of comedy died years ago. He reminds me of that guy in your group of friends that just doesn't know when it's time to call it a night.
- Whenever the Jets fans chant "J-E-T-S, Jets! Jets! Jets!", I chant "S-U-C-K, Suck! Suck! Suck!"
- My favorite part is always seeing the emotion that some of these kids display. As an athlete growing up, I always imagined what it would be like to be drafted to any team. I can't imagine that feeling.
That's all I've got for now. I'll be paying close attention over these next few days to what's going on with days two and three of the draft. It's always fun to see your favorite team start building what could be a Super Bowl winning team. GMs make and break their careers on these days. Once the draft is over all of the experts will start handing out their grades. The reality is we won't know how these draft classes turn out for another 2-3 years at least. All we can do is sit down and watch it all unfold. I'd like to say I can't wait for football to start back up again, but after a brutal Chicago winter I'm ready to enjoy summer. Football signals the end of summer and I'm just not ready for that yet. At least not while the Blackhawks are still alive and well in the hunt for the Stanley Cup Playoffs.