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Mailbag 4/28

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Who’s your sleeper in the NFL Draft?

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: DEC 19 Stanford at UCLA Photo by Jevone Moore/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Which Team, Sport, or Club has disappointed you the most this season? - BuzzForPresident

Ben: I think the easy answer is the baseball team. They are a very talented team, and they haven’t really lived up to it.

Andrew: Baseball has not been as good as I thought they would be. The pitching has been subpar, given my expectations for Borrell.

How many draft prospects do you think is on the football team? - Notwima13

Ben: This is a tough question because it’s a younger team, so it’s hard to project something like that. As long as Jeff Sims keeps improving, I think he’ll get drafted. Same for Gibbs. On defense, I think Tre and Juanyeh both need to have really good years to solidify their chances. Tariq Carpenter is the interesting one. I think he’ll get drafted, if for nothing else, for his physical prowess. He’s a freak, and teams will always take a chance on a guy like that, even if the production isn’t there.

Robert: As Ben said, it’s hard to project out several years, especially in more marginal cases. But here’s my projection of who will actually get drafted: Gibbs, Zamari Walton, Kevin Harris, Jared Ivey, Kaleb Edwards, Kyle Kennard, Trenilyas Tatum, Jordan Domineck, Weston Franklin, and Leo Blackburn. That’s 10 guys, over the next 4-5 years. That seems like a reasonable expectation given the talent upgrades on the roster so far.

Favorite Draft Day Memory? - Notwima13

Ben: It didn’t actually happen, but back in 2007, I really wanted the Falcons to try and trade for the first overall pick with a package built around Michael Vick (keep in mind, this was right before he was arrested). The Falcons had Matt Schaub, and I was hoping the Falcons would use that first pick to draft Calvin Johnson. Can you imagine? That would have been AWESOME!

Robert: Joe Hamilton is my all time favorite player. He ended up as the Heisman runner up in 1999, and he has the kind of skillset that is looked upon much more favorably in today’s NFL. I watched the 2000 Draft to see where he would end up. I’m sure it wasn’t actually all of them, but it felt like I watched every single pick, which made for quite a long weekend, since he fell to the 7th round. But then the Bucs grabbed him, I was elated.

What does Tre Swilling need to do this year to get drafted? - Anuj Bhyravabhotla

Ben: I think Tre is a pretty solid player, but I think he needs a big year to really solidify his chance at being drafted.

Robert: Show a much improved ability to play man coverage. It seems that he is going to get sometime at the nickel and sometime outside. Either way, he needs to demonstrate the ability to lock someone down in man if he is going to be attractive to an NFL defensive coordinator.

How are we feeling post Spring Game? - DressHerInWhiteAndGold

Ben: I only got to watch the highlights, but I’m feeling pretty good about where the offense is right now. Kyric McGowan is going to be phenomenal this season. I was also pleasantly surprised how well Bruce Jordan-Swilling looked at running back. I don’t know how much he will play, given the depth there, but it was nice to see.

Robert: About the same. Right now, I would say we are a 5-7 type team. If development and luck broke perfectly for us, 8-4 is the absolute ceiling in my view. Conversely, 3-9 is probably still the floor. I think the offense will take another incremental step forward; the defense is still very much wait and see for me.

Hello Guys,

I guess I’m obligated to ask real questions this week, instead of fake questions like what is your favorite old school board game? I like chess and checkers, but I’m also a big mancala fan.

Real Question time. I have a few given it’s draft week and that the spring game was last week:

1) Where are we expecting Pressley Harvin III to go in the draft? I guess for simplicity lets say does he go in the first half or last half of the draft (before or after pick 16 in the 4th round I believe) and who does he end up with?

Ben: It will definitely be the last half of the draft. More specifically, I think it will probably be in the fifth round or later. As for who, pick a team who needs a punter. I would love to see the Falcons take him, but I don’t know that I see that happening.

Robert: Definitely second half. I will say the Chargers, as they were last in the league in net punting last year, and Sir Pressley Harvin III would most certainly be an upgrade!

2) who impressed you the most during the spring game? I felt like I saw good things from the defense, especially Kyle Kennard (See Robert’s Advanced Stat Article from Monday), but keep in mind they were playing against our offense.

Ben: I mentioned this earlier, but let me mention this again: Bruce Jordan-Swilling was a pleasant surprise. He looks to be in great shape and moved pretty fluidly at running back. It’s already a deep position group, but it’s good to know that Tech could come out in a four-running back set and do some damage.

Robert: Compared to my expectations: Kennard, Harris, and Eley on defense. McGowan, Minihan, and Sims on offense.

3) Tough losses for Tennis and Golf this week. I don’t think tennis will make the post-season, but we’ll see. I’m curious if we have any other sports make a playoff run at the end of the spring. I know summer college sports isn’t a thing (since most students aren’t on campus in the summer), but if you could add a summer sport to play what would you pick? I might enjoy an e-sports program or something.

Ben: Give me a summer kickball league. Like not even at a major stadium or anything. Just find an old lot to play in, and just play pick-up games.

4) General football question, are there any names or faces you are keeping an eye on in the draft (for any reason)? I’m not all that interested in this year’s draft class honestly, but I think it’ll be interesting to see where Kellen Mond ends up since he has almost no hype, despite being a decent QB in a tough conference.

Ben: I’m actually also going to stick with quarterback and go with Davis Mills, the quarterback out of Stanford. Mills was highly recruited out of high school, and then disappeared at Stanford because Stanford is a bad football team, and they also had KJ Costello for a while. Mills has some serious arm talent, though, and with some good coaching, I think he could be a pretty solid quarterback in the NFL. In fact, I liked him enough to draft him in the FTRS Mock Draft, which drops tomorrow, so keep an eye out for that.

Robert: I think the second tier of receivers (Elijah Moore, Rondale Moore, Kadarius Toney) is fascinating, and each of those guys could be a monster based on scheme and deployment where they end up. Of course, I always keep an eye on the potential late round Tech guys, which is potentially just Jalen Camp and Harvin this year.

5) Do you prefer constantly uplifting and sappy drafts that ESPN runs now where the commentators don’t seem to say anything bad about any players, or do you enjoy when commentators hate on certain picks and players? Personally I like a bit of negativity, just as a taste of realism, but I can see why ESPN wants to sell the happy version of the draft.

Ben: I don’t think I see it quite the same way. I think they do a pretty decent job of sharing their criticism of players. They don’t outright say, “What the [Foghat] was that pick?” but I think that’s okay. As for the sappy personal stories, I think they do overdo it a little bit. I understand it, but it’s a lot.

Drew: I don’t mind the mostly positive stuff as long as ESPN avoids spending the entire draft talking about the hardships that every single player has endured. It totally loses its emotional punch when its player after player and completely distracts from the draft.

Ok, well hopefully I took up enough of your time. Y’all have a good rest of your week.

John Madden (submitted via email)