Out of Bounds: 2008 NFL Draft – The Aftermath

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. It’s a holy pilgrimage NFL fans should take at least once in their

lifetime. This year’s draft weekend didn’t 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 year’s 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 year’s 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 year’s 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 hadn’t gotten to the Draft yet.

 

Friday night, the

Draft Weekend was In Effect Mode like Al B. Sure

when ESPN

the Magazine their annual Pre-Draft party at Touch. Heineken, CytoSport,

and Under

Armour sponsored the evening, and what an evening it was.

This year’s host was Rocsi from BET’s 106 & Park. Hosea Chanchez from the

CW’s 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 year’s NBA

Finals. We’ll have to wait and see.  Gaius Charles and other cast members

from NBC’s Friday Night Lights came through as

well.  Of course, what’s an NFL Draft

party without the current and future players, and there were plenty of that to

go around.

 

TE Kevin

Boss and WR Steve

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 didn’t go your

way. The Draft weekend went by, and Shockey was still a New York Giant.  I’m 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 wasn’t drafted,

I’m sure there’s 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,

the New

York Jets have to

have their face all up in the place as well. 

Jets OT, D’Brickashaw 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 ESPN’s 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 he’s ready to rock. Guess he’ll be everyone’s top pick in the

fantasy football drafts this year. He gave a shout-out to his QB Tavaris Jackson and the rest off the

Vikings’s 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.

 

St. Louis Rams RB Steven

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 I’m 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; don’t 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. It’s still a win/win situation for the Rams and I’m 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

night’s 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 year’s NFL Draft.

First, this year’s Draft Saturday lasted three hours and 39 minutes. That’s 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. That’s also a record. When

Commissioner Goodell said he wanted changes to the Draft format, he wasn’t

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 year’s draft with fellow

football fans.

 

The big story in

this year’s 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. There’s 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, I’m 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, that’s just my opinion, I could be wrong.” If you

didn’t get a chance to see Campbell’s

story on ESPN’s E:60 check it out below and form

you own opinion on the situation.

 This year’s 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

NFL.

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