Jim Sez NFL Draft: The QBs - NBA Playoff Notes
OUR FINAL JIM SEZ NFL DRAFT POSITION-BY-POSITION REPORT - IT'S TIME TO CHECK OUT THE TOP QUARTERBACKS ...
PLUS OUR NBA PLAYOFF NOTEBOOK INCLUDING COACH TALK
The deals are done. The Los Angeles Rams and the Philadelphia Eagles have traded away the proverbial "arm-and-a-leg" to get into the #1 and #2 draft slots, respectively, and now the only real drama is who goes where ...Is Cal's Jared Goff gonna stay on the left coast or will the Rams instead select North Dakota State's Carson Wentz with that numero uno selection?
Hey, sit tight and we'll have our own Jim Sez Mock Draft forecast in our next column but one question we wish to ask is just how many quarterbacks will get nabbed with Round I picks:
Three? Four? Or even more? Hmmm.
THE NFL DRAFT REPORT
Our extensive Jim Sez NFL Draft coverage rolls on with a look at the top incoming Quarterbacks:
JARED GOFF, California - The consensus feeling is that this 6-foot-4, 215-pound from Novato (CA) will get scooped up with that top pick of the draft with the Rams keeping this kid "home" after he threw for 4,719 yards and 43 TDs last year in his junior season. Most favorably compared to former Cal great/current Green Bay Packers superstar Aaron Rodgers, note that Goff has a quick release and isn't afraid to zip it into tight coverages. The overall NFL board claims he's only the 5th- or 6th-best overall talent in this draft.
CARSON WENTZ, North Dakota State - At 6-foot-5, 238 pounds, this Bismarck (ND) native thrived in a wide-open offense that saw 'em lead the Bison to a 20-3 record in his two years as a starter. Wentz is super-bright and shows great pocket awareness but critics claim he often "locks" onto a receiver and gets hurt when he forces it into coverage. Now, can he the long-term savior of the Philadelphia Eagles?
PAXTON LYNCH, Memphis - Maybe the most mystifying signal-caller in this man's draft, this 6-foot-7, 245-pounder could go as high as the mid-teens in Round I ... or as low as the late 20s. The Deltona (FL) native has turned off a few NFL teams with his cocky attitude and one argument against drafting Lynch is an inability to bounce back when things are not going well (see 16-of-37 passing for 106 yards with one INT in a Birmingham Bowl loss to Auburn last year). Gut feel now is Lynch goes #19 to Buffalo.
CONNOR COOK, Michigan State - Most draftniks believe this 6-foot-4, 218-pounder will go somewhere in the middle of Round II but our gut feeling here is this former Sparty star (34-4 in his college career) has proven his shoulder has healed and so look for 'em to sneak into the first round with Arizona snapping 'em up at pick #30.
CHRISTIAN HACKENBURG, Penn State - Think about it for a moment: There was plenty of talk that this former Nittany Lions star was gonna be the top pick in this year's NFL Draft prior to the start of last year ... so should he be falling all the way to a third-round status now? The 6-foot-4, 224-pounder is a dark horse to get snapped up late in Round I but we're inclined to say he goes in the second round to either the New York Jets or New Orleans Saints.
CARDALE JONES, Ohio State - This former national championship-winning quarterback is considered a third- or fourth-round pick but we find this 6-foot-5, 253-pounder a really intriguing player who could make his way into Round II. Jones sports a strong arm and he's ultra-tough to take down (more than a little Ben Roethlisberger in 'em).
Jim Hurley and his Network of Handicappers/Bloggers are all geared up for these NBA Playoffs that continue to roll on this last week in April - so just go online right here or call our exclusive toll-free telephone # of 1-800-323-4453 each/every day during these NBA Playoffs and we'll send you straight into the winner's circle. Remember that it's not too late to sign up now for the entire NBA Playoffs plus there's Major-League Baseball on tap every day!
Hey, how about the fact since 2008 there have been 55 NBA Playoff teams that found themselves in two games-to-none holes and only two of 'em - that's right, just two teams - that managed to overcome that deficit and went on to win the series.
Well, right now we're looking at three NBA first-round playoff series where we could see a team overcome a two-games-to-love set and no doubt the most likely scenario figures to be in that Portland Trail Blazers versus Los Angeles Clippers set now that Clips star G Chris Paul is out with a broken hand suffered in Monday night's 98-84 Game 4 loss.
The other two teams attempting to win a series after getting into 0-2 holes are Charlotte and Boston in the East - and won't be shocked if at least one of 'em prevails! ...
Speaking of key injuries, the defending champion Golden State Warriors look to wrap up their best-of-seven first-round playoff series against Houston on this final Wednesday night in April without G Steph Curry who's expected to miss the next two weeks of post-season action with a sprained knee. The Warriors - looking to end things here in a Game 5 - have really perked up behind a lot of "no-names" such as reserve F Marreese Speights (poured in 22 points in that Game 3 loss to the Rockets) and backup guard Ian Clark (see seven assists in last two games and some sticky defense too) ...
Finally, the coaching carousel continues to go 'round and 'round with recent hires including Scott Brooks with Washington, Tom Thibodeau with Minnesota and Kenny Atkinson with Brooklyn but there's major intrigue when it comes to the vacancies with the New York Knicks and the Los Angeles Lakers: It sure looks like "interim" coach Kurt Rambis will stay put with NYK (although the fan base hates the idea and president Phil Jackson's been hearing the noise) while there's talk that UConn head coach Kevin Ollie may be the man to replace Byron Scott in LA. If there's another guy on the Lakers' radar it's Jeff Van Gundy who - according to sources - wants back in to NBA coaching life after years holding an ABC/ESPN microphone.
NOTE: We'll have the NFL Mock Draft in the next edition of Jim Sez.