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NFC West Roundup: Kaepernick in the First Round, Late Round Quarterbacks and Reaching for Rudolph

So the draft is on Thursday and we are all anticipating the selections the Cardinals will make this year. Will our 5th be a QB? A cornerback? A linebacker? Who knows? All I know is that this is the last NFC West Roundup before the draft and after that many of the links will (hopefully) be analysis of our rivals' picks. But for now, it is all pre-draft hype. Here is your NFC West Roundup. 


Source: Mallett not on Seahawks board, Kaepernick is " Seahawks Draft Blog
In our ROTB mock draft, there was an obvious divide between who liked Ryan Mallett and who did not think he was a first round worthy pick. The community selected him at fifteen for the Dolphins and the writers did not select him at all. Apparently, the Seahawks carry a notion similar to the writers, but they are willing to take a guy that neither side chose in our draft. Colin Kaepernick has picked up an interested party in the Seattle Seahawks and apparently, they would be willing to pick him up with the 25th pick in the first round. Admittedly, I have not seen a ton of play from Kaepernick, but with so many rosters in the NFL with holes at that position, it does not surprise me that Seattle may be interested in him late in the first round.


Are The Seattle Seahawks Really Looking To Trade Down? - Field Gulls

John Schneider, GM of the Seattle Seahawks, has been in the NFL news recently saying that he would like to trade down in the draft and out of the 25th overall pick. By doing this, they would acquire more picks in later rounds which would give them a chance to draft more players to plug more holes. Some of the positions they are looking to cover are quarterback, defensive tackle, cornerback, wide receiver, and a couple guys to shore up their offensive line. I personally believe that despite the lockout, there will be several trades in this year’s draft. If the Seahawks are truly determined to do so, they will probably be able to trade that pick away and possibly be able to get a guy for all of the aforementioned positions.


2011 NFL Draft: The Case Against The 49ers Drafting A Quarterback The First Two Days - Niners Nation

Yes, I am going to beat the quarterback position to death. The San Francisco 49ers have quarterback problems just like the rest of us, so they will inevitably come out of this draft with a new signal caller. Whether that new guy is drafted early or late, nobody knows. This writer at Niners Nation explains that Alex Smith has been improving over the last couple of years, so taking a quarterback in the first two days of the draft would ultimately be a waste. He points towards guys like Pat Devlin, Greg McElroy and Rick Stanzi as players the 49ers should aim for. If one of these guys is drafted as opposed to a more elite talent like Gabbert or Newton, Alex Smith will definitely be coming back to the Bay Area. It will take time for a late round quarterback to develop, but it could ultimately wind up being a wise decision.


Adventures in drafting offensive linemen - NFC West Blog - ESPN
Mike Sando discusses the different approaches taken between the San Francisco 49ers and the Arizona Cardinals when it comes to drafting offensive linemen. The 49ers stay right with the league average in taking seven offensive linemen since 2005. Three of those seven were taken in the first round, while the Cardinals have only taken Levi Brown in the first round since 2005. The belief is that Russ Grimm can develop later round picks, while the 49ers would like immediate starters like Anthony Davis and Mike Iupati. Neither team is likely to take an offensive lineman in the first round this year given that they each have too many other holes to fill, but do not be surprised if later round picks are used on offensive linemen, especially for our beloved Arizona Cardinals. 


2011 NFL Draft rumors: Rams considering Notre Dame TE Kyle Rudolph? - Turf Show Times
Many questions have come about as to who the St. Louis Rams will draft this year given that it is likely Julio Jones will already be off the board by the time they select at fourteen. Suggestions have been made that they may reach for Kyle Rudolph, a tight end from Notre Dame. Some Cardinals fans (including myself) were hoping that he would go to the second round allowing Arizona to select him. Rudolph could be the receiver the Rams have been looking for and is somewhat comparable to NFC West rival tight end, Vernon Davis. He has the hands and the route running capability to become an effective catcher in the open field. Turf Show Times suggest that the Rams would likely want to trade down to get him so as to not reach for him at 14. Kyle Rudolph will nonetheless be an effective playmaker for whatever team he lands with.  


2011 NFL Draft: Finding day-one contributors in the draft - Turf Show Times
In this post, Turf Show Times looks at possible draft prospects for the Rams and whether or not they could have a large impact from day one. Players like Julio Jones, Corey Liuget, Mark Ingram and even Da’Quan Bowers would immediately come in and create havoc for the opposing team in my opinion. Players like Aldon Smith, Mikel Leshoure and Torrey Smith may take a while to make an impact other than giving the starters a good rest and making plays from time to time. Whoever the Rams decide to take with the 14th pick, that player will be looked upon to play well no matter if he is a starter or a reserve.