When you live in New
York, the signs that spring has arrived are as
evident as a sewer rat, buying a hot dog on 42nd Street. The trees begin
to blossom in Central Park, the trains are screwed up on the weekends because
everyone is traveling to Shea Stadium or Yankee Stadium for an afternoon of
baseball, and there are banners throughout the city leading NFL fans to Radio City Music Hall for the NFL
Draft. Its a holy pilgrimage NFL fans should take at least once in their
lifetime. This years draft weekend didnt start with a lot of intrigue (more
on that later), but when Draft Day came around last week, there were more plot twist than
an episode of Lost.
This years Draft weekend actually started on Tuesday, April
22, 2008. The Miami Dolphins signed Jake Long, OT from Michigan, to a 5 year, $57 million
contract. In doing so, Long became the #1 overall pick in this years draft. Although
the suspense of figuring out whom the #1 pick would be had left the building,
the plot thickened as the week went on. The next day; the Kansas
City Chiefs traded DE Jared Allen
and a 6th round pick to the Minnesota Vikings
for a 1st round pick, two 3rd round picks, and
a 6th round pick in this years draft.
On the same day, the Tennessee
Titans agreed in
principle to trade troubled and
suspended CB Adam Pacman Jones to the Dallas Cowboys for a 4th
round pick in this years draft. The
trade was approved on Draft day after Pacman signed a new 3-year contract with
the Cowboys with a club option for a 4th year. Dangumit, all of this
took place and we hadnt gotten to the Draft yet.
Friday night, the
Draft Weekend was In Effect Mode like Al B. Sure
the Magazine their annual Pre-Draft party at Touch. Heineken, CytoSport,
Armour sponsored the evening, and what an evening it was.
This years host was Rocsi from BETs 106 & Park. Hosea Chanchez from the
Game was in the house, partying with current and future
NFL superstars. NBA legend, Kevin Willis came through singing high
praises for his former teammate and current head coach of the Boston Celtics, Doc
Rivers. Willis predicts the San Antonio Spurs vs. Boston Celtics in this years NBA
Finals. Well have to wait and see. Gaius Charles and other cast members
from NBCs Friday Night Lights came through as
well. Of course, whats an NFL Draft
party without the current and future players, and there were plenty of that to
Smith from the World Champion New York
Giants were there. Smith made
his case for the Giants drafting fellow USC Trojan Keith Rivers, but knew that Rivers
would be gone by the time the Giants pick came up at the 31st spot.
Both Boss and Smith were in strong support of keeping TE Jeremy Shockey, despite the rumors of
the Giants trading Shockey to the New
Orleans Saints on Draft day. Speaking of the Saints, WR Marques Colston was in the house and
welcomed the idea of the Shockey trade. Sorry Charlie, it just didnt go your
way. The Draft weekend went by, and Shockey was still a New York Giant. Im sure there were many in the Giants
organization that was happy to see Shockey is still a New York Giant.
One time New York Giant and current Green
Bay Packers RB, Ryan
Grant was there and he sang high praises of Packers QB, Aaron Rodgers. Amir Pinnix from The University of Minnesota stopped by with
the hopes of having his name called on Draft day. Although he wasnt drafted,
Im sure theres a team in the league who will give him a call and sign him.
The fact that he fells blessed just to be invited to Draft speaks of how humble
this young man is. We wish him all the
best for his future.
You know if the New York Giants show up at a function in NYC,
York Jets have to
have their face all up in the place as well.
Jets OT, DBrickashaw Ferguson was there and
like Ryan Grant, Ferguson sang the praises of his QB Chad Pennington as well as the Jets
back-up QB Kellen Clemens. He also had props for Jets
RBs Thomas Jones and Leon Washington despite the analysts
predicting the Jets would draft RB Darren McFadden from the University of Arkansas.
McFadden had already been drafted by the Oakland
Raiders by the time the
Jets pick came around at the 6th spot in the 1st round,
so the Jets drafted DE Vernon Gholston from The Ohio State University. Jets fans
had Radio City Music Hall rocking when the selection was made and as ESPNs Chris Berman put it, The Jets just won the Super Bowl!! in
response to the pro-Jets crowd reaction. Speaking of Offensive Tackles, Jake
Long showed as well. Told you it was some kind of evening.
The 2007 NFL Rookie of the Year, Adrian Peterson came through to show
support for fellow Boomer Sooners participating in this
year draft. Peterson is looking forward to having a better season than the year
he had in 2007-08. Overachiever. He
knows the target is on his back this year, but hes ready to rock. Guess hell be everyones top pick in the
fantasy football drafts this year. He gave a shout-out to his QB Tavaris Jackson and the rest off the
Vikingss offense, and how 2008-09 will be their year to shine. He also
mentioned how it was a good move that the Vikes were able to acquire Jared Allen
from the Chiefs. Look out folks, the
Vikes may make some noise this season.
Jackson showed AllHipHop.com a lot of love and mentioned how he
checks out the site everyday. Now let me be honest with you fam, those of you
who checked out my picks during the season know that Im a lifelong San Francisco
49ers fan, so
this was a hard pill to swallow. Sometimes you gotta take one for the team. It
was all good though. Jackson
spoke about the injuries that plagued the team this year and how the team is
not rebuilding, but trying to stay healthy so they can capture the NFC West
title once again.
Jackson gave some advice for the future stars of the
NFL; dont worry about the money, worry about getting that starting role on the
team. Once you get that role, the money
comes to you. Focus on the game and it will payoff in the end. Take heed
to the words that he manifests. Jackson
was a strong advocate for Glenn Dorsey to be drafted by the Rams.
In the end, the Rams drafted Chris Long with their pick in the 1st
round. Its still a win/win situation for the Rams and Im sure Jackson has no problems
with that pickup.
Speaking of Dorsey,
he was the last person I spoke to that night, and the brother soaked up every
minute of the evening. He brought his family with him for the Draft and for the
nights festivities and you can see this young man is living life and loving
it. He made no excuses about the beating his knees took this year and said he
felt great and was ready to give it all for whichever team drafted him. I will
say this, after meeting Dorsey that night; the Chiefs drafted not only a good
player, but a good person. He is a
genuine guy who can, and will, be the face of that franchise for a long time.
The next day was the
Draft, and there were surprise all over Radio City Music Hall throughout the two day
extravaganza. Here are some of the highlights from this years NFL Draft.
First, this years Draft Saturday lasted three hours and 39 minutes. Thats the fastest Day One of the Draft in
the modern era of the NFL. There were 33
trades within the two days the Draft was held. Thats also a record. When
Commissioner Goodell said he wanted changes to the Draft format, he wasnt
playing. If you want to check out all of the players drafted this year, click here to go to one of the threads From
The Cheap Seats and discuss this years draft with fellow
The big story in
this years Draft was the story of Army S Caleb Campbell. Campbell was drafted by the Detroit Lions in the 7th
round with the 218th overall pick. Theres a policy within the Army
that states that Campbell, or any soldier who pursues a career in professional
sports, is eligible
for an early release from active duty after two years and will spend their time
on their free days in recruitment for the Army. Some people, especially those
who have relatives that are in the Armed Forces, have been out spoken about the
policy. Honestly, Im just glad to see another young man given the opportunity
to play football in the NFL and not have to got to war. To quote Dennis Miller, Then again, thats just my opinion, I could be wrong. If you
didnt get a chance to see Campbells
story on ESPNs E:60 check it out below and form
you own opinion on the situation.
This years NFL Draft was one of the most interesting
weekends in the history of the NFL. If last weekend was any indication of what
the season has in store, then this will be one hell of year for the fans of the