Welcome back to our second edition of BCI's Two Minute Drill. Today Dan and AJ talk about the 2015 NFL Draft, the biggest surprises and how this year's draft will effect recruiting.
AJ Black: Ok we are back with the second installment of BCI's Two Minute Drill. The 2015 NFL Draft has come and gone, and three Eagles have found homes in the NFL on rookie deals (Ian Silberman/Brian Mihalik/Andy Gallik), with another four invited to rookie camps as UDFA. Dan, what surprised you the most about the Eagles in the draft this year?
Dan: I was pretty shocked to see Andy Gallik fall as far as he did. He entered the draft as one of the four best centers on the board, essentially earmarking him for something like a fourth round pick. Instead he was a sixth round pick to Tennessee. He isn't projected to start there, which astounds me since he was rated so highly. There's also talk of using him as the "first guy up" down there - playing snaps at guard. What about you?
AJ: Honestly I was stunned that three Eagles were taken in the draft in general. Going into this draft I felt strongly that Gallik was going to get drafted. He had solid projections, analysts had him a mid level pick. But to have Ian Silberman and Brian Mihalik drafted was a bonus. Mihalik has the size to make him appealing, and Silberman is a physical tackle. What else interested me was the UDFA's, and camp invites that got picked up as well. Which of those six players do you think have the best opportunity to make an NFL team?
Dan: Tyler Murphy is the most intriguing pick because he can be a scat back to open up new options in the Pittsburgh offense. The running back situation is pretty bad for the Steelers; they have a top back in Le'Veon Bell, but there's a lot of openings after that. He isn't good enough to be a full QB, so they'll need to get creative with him. He's not big enough to take the pounding of an NFL bruiser.
Besides him, I think Manny Asprilla has a chance to stick, at least with a practice squad. There was no way to predict that Al Louis-Jean would wind up playing a nickelback role with the Bears like he did. The only thing is that San Diego was top five against the pass. So that could make it tough for him to actually stick there. Plus we know Manny is easily torched by speedy receivers.
It's a good point about the surprise draft class, and next year might be thinner. Who are you seeing as your way too early BC draft picks in 2016?
AJ: Next year is certainly going to be lean in terms of the draft, as this will basically be the last class of Spaz recruits. When I look at the BC seniors three guys stick out as guys I would consider draftable, and two I think have a chance if they improve. The three players I think have good chances are Connor Wujciak, Mehdi Abdesmad and Harris Williams both strike me as guys that could be late round picks. Williams and Abdesmad, if he can stay healthy would probably land somewhere in the 5th round. Abdesmad has great size for an interior lineman, and has shown flashes of dominance. He's going to need to put together a complete season before a team will take a risk on him. Wujciak will be interesting, because he plays a run stuffing defensive tackle, something that isn't a huge need in the NFL right now.
The two fringe players that could improve their stock with a solid season would be Justin Simmons and Dave Bowen. NFL teams might shoot for Bowen just based on BC's reputation on offensive line, while Simmons could get a look as a physical safety/corner if he has a strong senior year.
Dan, how do you think the relative success BC has had in the draft will help them on the recruiting trail?
Dan: Any time you see a guy on television carrying the BC banner, it brings awareness and free marketing to your program. At the end of the day, college football, for some athletes, is about manufacturing players capable of playing on Sundays. If you can't do it, nobody who is an elite guy harboring NFL dreams is even going to sniff your program.
Take a look at some of the other programs out there. UConn just had its first ever first round draft pick, but nobody else was taken. BC's Pinstripe Bowl opponent, Penn State, only had the same amount of guys taken as the Eagles. Notre Dame - the VAUNTED Notre Dame - had ONE guy taken, and it came in the seventh round. Remember that two years ago, not a single Eagle was taken in the draft.
If you want to take it a step further to the UDFA's, look at the amount of Eagles at least given sniffs. Think about a place like UMass. They bring in a guy like Jean Sifrin for one season. At 27, he dominates competition as a tight end. He declares for the draft, and he ends up not being picked at all. BC players are in demand, and that's a huge get for guys who put premiums on getting to the next level.
I know I just got long-winded on that one, but I'm super passionate about seeing your brand out there in the NFL. I'll kick it back over to you with this - speaking of the UDFA's, was there anyone who wasn't picked up that really surprised you?
AJ Black: Shakim Phillips not getting picked up was pretty surprising to me. I read some pre draft reports that had him running a sub 4.4 at his individual workout. Given that flash and speed you had to imagine that some NFL team would have taken a chance on him. They must have seen something else that was more concerning, whether it was in his medicals or on the field. Speaking of medicals, I have to imagine that Ty-Meer Brown didn't receive an invite because of his injury history. Remember he had a major neck injury during his time at UConn that threatened his career, but it was nice to see him have a final successful year at Boston College, that being said I could see why NFL teams would be hesitant to bring him aboard.
Thanks for the banter again Dan.
Time for the No Huddle Offense:
AJ: Dan, I went to see Avengers: Age of Ultron this weekend. Do you dig comic book movies, if so, what has been your favorite one so far?
Dan: I'm an X-Men guy. My wife drives a Nissan Rogue so naturally my car is named Gambit because that was her boyfriend in the comics. Plus Tim Riggins played him in the Wolverine movie.
AJ: See, I have a hard time just picking one so I'm going to be lame and pick two, one from the Marvel Universe and one from DC. I will have to go with Dark Knight and Guardians of the Galaxy.
Happy Cinco De Mayo New Guy! Do you drink your margaritas frozen or on the rocks?
Dan: Neither! I'm weird and don't drink margs. I do, however, dominate Dos Equis. I like to think I am the Most Interesting Man Alive after 8 or 9 of those delectable delights.
Alright AJ. Your turn in the hot seat. After my wife started making me watch Scandal, I'm going to need a show this summer to make her watch. Give me your best shot. I don't care if it's Netflix, Hulu, or on demand.
And, yes, you may make a comment about the fact that I'm in love with Olivia Pope.
AJ: So I have two choices for you, both of them equally awesome. Peaky Blinders is a fantastic British TV show on Netflix with Cillian Murphy (Scarecrow from Batman) about a turn of the 20th century Irish gang. Second, Daredevil, another Netflix exclusive, probably the best show I've seen this year. It's actually not over the top super hero, it's got a good blend of Law and Order in there as well so if she likes that kind of show you're good.