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Mike Mayock I want your job

April 25, 2013

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Mike Mayock has the past few years surpassed Mel Kiper as the preeminent draft analyst. I have no problem with that as he has a foundation of football that Kiper can’t touch and doesn’t mind going out on a limb once in awhile when he thinks the majority of people are wrong (a sign of a true scout). The problem is that every year I find serious holes in some of his analysis and decided this year I would start a segment where I put 10 comparisons between my board and his board and keep track of it. I’ll post the results in future years and let the reader decide whether Mayock or Anderson is the better talent evaluator.

Luke Joeckel vs. Eric Fisher: This is a pretty straightforward argument as he surprisingly has Fisher as the #1 player in his entire draft and I have Joeckel as the #1 player on my board. Since they play the same position and will for sure be taken within a few picks of each other their careers will be compared to each others’ forever so we might as well keep track. Joeckel is the #1 OT in this class and the 3rd best OT I’ve graded in the past 7 years behind only Joe Thomas and Matt Kalil who both made the Pro Bowl as rookies. I suspect Joeckel will continue that trend or at worst be in the Pro Bowl by Year 3.

Jarvis Jones vs. Dion Jordan: I have Jarvis as my #1 pass rusher while he has Dion as his #1 pass rusher. I went for strength (20 reps), burst, and productivity (28 sacks the past 2 seasons) while Mayock went with length (6’6 ¼), upside, and pure speed (4.60 40). Let’s see in a few years which prospect becomes the better pass rusher.

Alec Ogletree vs. Manti Te’o: This one feels like I’m stealing from a baby but it’s Mayock’s own fault. He and his Notre Dame biased scouting have determined that the #1 inside linebacker prospect for the 2013 Draft is Manti “catfish” Te’o (23rd on his board) and not Alec Ogletree (44th on his board). I couldn’t disagree more as Ogletree is #14 on my board while Te’o is a late 3rd round grade (#10 LB and #107 overall). This one should be fun to remind readers of in a few years.

Jonathan Cooper vs. Chance Warmack: Like nearly everyone in the scouting community Mayock thinks Warmack is the best guard in this draft class. I highly disagree as Cooper isn’t just #1 on my board but no one is even close. To me Cooper is a Top 20 grade (#19) while Warmack is a mid 2nd round grade (#55) with them being separated by 36 spots. Cooper is the most athletic guard I’ve ever graded while Warmack is just a fat, strong drive blocker that I’ve seen dozens of times over the years. Warmack is the #4 ranked player on his entire board, something that I doubt looks smart in a few years.

Zach Ertz vs. Tyler Eifert: Mayock isn’t alone in his belief that Eifert is the #1 TE in this draft class. Bob McGinn (well respected writer in Milwaukee) polled 16 scouts and 15 of them rated Eifert #1 with only one lone scout rating Ertz as the top tight end. Well I agree with the minority on that one as Ertz is faster (on film, his 40 was inferior), has better hands, and much better body control. I like both players but Ertz to me has Pro Bowl potential while Eifert looks more like an above average starter. That couldn’t be more different from Mayock’s view that Eifert (#13 ranked prospect) is far superior to Ertz (#46) so even if they are about equal I’d say it proves Mayock wrong.

Matt Barkley vs. Geno Smith: Mayock also isn’t alone in this belief either as while opinions vary widely on the quarterbacks of this draft class, the consensus is that Smith is superior to Barkley. Mayock has Smith ranked #21 AND EJ Manuel ranked #41 with Barkley coming in as his #3 QB at #43. I disagree as I think Barkley has been unfairly criticized for everything from his freak shoulder injury (started 47 games but now he’s injury prone?) to the poor play of the USC defense. Barkley has a low upside but is very polished, has elite experience (4 year starter in High School and 4 year starter in college), and has a great work ethic. I suspect Barkley will be a starter 3 years from now while Smith will be a bust and Manuel will still be a developmental guy.

Shamarko Thomas vs. Kenny Vaccaro: Vaccaro is his #1 safety (#17 overall) while he’s my #11 safety (late 3rd round) so I had to do a comparison with Vaccaro somehow. I eventually decided on Shamarko Thomas as he’s the #3 safety on my board (#41 overall) and is a good comparison since he’s the #7 safety on his board and only #95 overall. By the way the #1 safety on my board, Baccari Rambo, didn’t even make his Top 100 so he’d better hope I was wrong on that one otherwise he’ll look even more dumb. I absolutely hate his safety rankings (JJ Wilcox ahead of Thomas and Rambo? Seriously!) and one of us is going to look flat out dumb in a few years.

Dee Milliner vs. DJ Hayden: This is another one where I feel like it’s just too easy but hey it’s Mayock’s rankings right? Milliner has been the #1 CB on my board since midway through the 2012 season and he’s been a Top 10 talent ever since he ran a sub 4.4 40 at the Combine. While Hayden is interesting with superior quickness and hands to Milliner he isn’t as strong, straight line fast, or experienced as Milliner. While Mayock thinks they are neck and neck (Hayden is #14 vs. Milliner at #16) I think there is a pretty big chasm with Milliner on my board being #3 and Hayden being #71. I’d be shocked if this one didn’t go in my favor when it’s reviewed in a few years.

Damontre Moore vs. Bjoern Werner: I like Werner so this isn’t as fun for me but still it’s shocking to me that Damontre Moore doesn’t even have a 1st round grade on Mayock’s board (#33 overall). Werner is close in rankings (#26) but to me this comparison is all about Moore (#7 on my board) being incredibly underrated by Mayock. Werner gets some love by me too (#17) but to me Moore has been bashed far too much for a poor 40 time.

Tyrann Mathieu vs. Jordan Poyer: Mayock has Mathieu (#98) neck and neck with Poyer (#85) on his board. To me they have drastically different grades as while I think Poyer is okay (#117) I think Mathieu (#20) is a future star. He has more red flags than any prospect in this draft but the kid can play and I think whoever gets him in the 2nd or 3rd round will be getting a steal.

Bonus comparison: At #56 and #58 on Mayock’s board he has Tank Carradine and Johnathan Hankins respectively. I couldn’t disagree more on two players as Carradine actually has a Top 10 grade on my board (#8 Overall) while Hankins is one of the most overrated prospects in this draft coming in at #113. We shall see if both become solid starters which his late 2nd round grade projects them as or if Carradine becomes a stud and Hankins a backup DT like my rankings have them as.

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