2008 NFL Draft re-do

Don Banks of SI.com decided to re-do the 2008 NFL Draft after what we know now. (I.e. Matt Ryan is a freak.)

Matt Ryan1. Miami Dolphins (Original Pick: Jake Long, OT, Michigan)
RE-DO PICK: MATT RYAN, QB, BOSTON COLLEGE
Chad Pennington has been superb, and Chad Henne is locked and loaded as the Dolphins quarterback of the future. But Ryan is in the midst of one of the greatest seasons ever by a rookie quarterback, and you don’t pass on that given a second chance. Just like Ben Roethlisberger in our inaugural re-draft of 2004, Ryan shoots to the top of the heap.

2. St. Louis Rams (Original Pick: Chris Long, DE, Virginia)
RE-DO PICK: JOE FLACCO, QB, DELAWARE
You think Flacco lingers to No. 18 on the board this time around? Uh, no. It’s a quarterbacks league, and while I’m not sure anyone could win in St. Louis about now, Marc Bulger sure isn’t getting it done. The list of teams that wished it had believed in Flacco last spring is getting longer all the time.

3. Atlanta Falcons (Original Pick: Matt Ryan, QB, Boston College)
RE-DO PICK: JAKE LONG, OT, MICHIGAN
Without the Falcons getting their quarterback in this slot, they would turn to their need at left offensive tackle, where they took USC’s Sam Baker after trading back into the first round at No. 21. Long, Ryan Clady and Duane Brown have all excelled at LT this year, but the ex-Wolverine has been a solid pro.

4. Oakland Raiders (Original Pick: Darren McFadden, RB, Arkansas)
RE-DO PICK: CHRIS JOHNSON, RB, EAST CAROLINA
We all know Al Davis loves speed, but in Johnson he gets speed that has actually produced as a rookie. McFadden has just one 100-yard rushing game, and that came in Week 2. Johnson has been a spectacular season-long contributor to Tennessee’s overwhelmingly successful running game.

5. Kansas City Chiefs (Original Pick: Glenn Dorsey, DT, LSU)
RE-DO PICK: CHRIS LONG, DE, VIRGINIA
The Chiefs have gotten virtually zero impact out of Dorsey, and they sure could have used some defensive line help to offset the loss of the traded Jared Allen. Long has modest statistics, but his four sacks are a good first step in the right direction. Don’t forget it took Mario Williams until year two to find his groove.

It’s always interesting to look back at the draft every year after most of the regular season has been played out. In April, Glenn Dorsey was arguably the best defender in the draft but as Banks points out, he’s made no impact for the Chiefs. Granted, these players are just 14 weeks into their young careers so a lot could change, but how wrong was everybody (myself included) who suggested the Falcons should have taken Dorsey over Matt Ryan? It would have looked like one of the biggest draft blunders of the year, assuming of course Dorsey was equally ineffective for Atlanta.

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