NFL  > General NFL  > Ready or Not, The Draft is Coming! Which GMs Will Earn (or Not Earn) Their Keep?
April 19, 2011, 02:09 PM
With no CBA and a player lockout, the status of free agents will remain up in the air as the 2011 NFL Draft plays out. There must be enormous uncertainty in most NFL front offices right now. Seems to me that this is a year where GMs have a unique opportunity to shine or flop, because evaluating their own team's needs will be especially challenging going into the 2011 Draft.

In San Diego, only 40 players are currently under contract, and 26 are some type of free agent, including both of their starting inside LBs. Going into the Draft, no one knows for sure how those free agency classifications will shake out under a new CBA. It's possible the VJ franchise tag will not even stick.

Bottom line is, I see this as a huge opportunity for those GMs who get it right - the GMs who have the foresight to predict right, the ones who make the right moves. I also believe we will see some disasters in this Draft, as some GMs will predict wrong, assuming they will retain players who they will not end up keeping, thereby leaving gaping holes. I know every Draft presents the opportunity to shine or fail, but it just seems pronounced more this season - more challenging. I hope it's not the Chargers who falter. AJ Smith has done a good job in the draft in the past, and he is going to have to figure out where to go with their many picks this year. I hope he goes DE or S in the first round, but we'll see. I'm starting to get fired up, as it's only a bit more than a week away.

What do you think about your team going into the 2011 Draft on April 28? Are you fired up or has the labor unrest ruined your enthusiasm? Do these unique issues this year affect your team much? Will your team's GM pull it off? Me, I'm hopeful and just ready for some FOOTBALL!
April 19, 2011  04:08 PM ET

Here's to hoping that Tom Heckert can add another solid draft for the Browns.

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April 19, 2011  04:31 PM ET

For the Bengals? QB 1st.

Even in this draft?

April 19, 2011  04:40 PM ET

Solid post, Krusty.

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April 19, 2011  06:34 PM ET

Hey EZ, I like your new avatar. Is it a good likeness?

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April 19, 2011  07:19 PM ET

Thanks for the videos. Sharp Dressed Man is one of my favorites.

April 19, 2011  08:51 PM ET

It is very hard to eval team needs without any FA being signed or even determined yet.

April 24, 2011  11:16 AM ET

Oh the joy of being drafted this year. Once your name is mentioned and you showed up for the event, you will be able to walk on stage have your photo taken with the commissioner and then be whisked away by NFL players and Federal Marshals so that you do not fraternize with the owners. Better staying at home unless someone is paying for your plane ticket and hotel room. Should the agents that are anti-owners and a part of these negotiations be allowed foot the bill? I would think that would be a conflict of interest.

I think Trent Baalke, GM of the 49ers has his priorities straight. They will go defense at #7, there is talk that they might trade down a few slots, if they do, they better get something in return, I doubt they will trade though. They will take a cornerback or defensive end, although there is talk about them taking Peterson, I wouldn't be surprised if they took Amukamara ( a favorite of Eric Davis, ex-49er CB ) or Quinn. Just depends on who's still on the board. The advantage with having a DE is that he can help in 2 ways, run defense and pass defense, and a good pass rusher can make your cornerbacks look better.

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