Linebackers in Short Supply in 2008 Draft subject logo: COLSPORTS
Posted by: badanov

Almost half the picks taken this year in the 2008 NFL draft have been interior linemen, defensively and offensively, starting the Michigan offensive tackle Jake Long, who went to the Miami Dolphins as expected, when they signed him last Wednesday.

I was pretty sure LSU's Glenn Dorsey would go first, but Miami's choice with the Big Wolverine makes sense.

The shortage of linebackers made sense when you consider the shortage in Div I football last year; there were no real standouts: Oklahoma had one of the best linebackers in Div. I football in Curtis Loftin, that no one really knew about. He had a very good Pro Day earlier this month, and there was some dicussion in local sports talk radio he would go in the upper rounds.

I am a big fan of linebackers. I think these guys who are supposed to take care of whatever pops out of the line are workhorses, the backbone of any football defense, so it was somewhat of a surprise when only two were taken in the first round.

Chris Long of Virginia going before Dorsey I guess wasn't much of a surprise. Sportcasters spoke of him in glowing terms albeit in a weak major football conference, and it was probably my personal preference for southern football that disregarded Long as such an attractive pick. The scouting reports defy everything I just wrote about the fella. I just think Dorsey played in a much tougher venue than Long and Long's experience in the NFL may wind up supporting that.

We'll just have to see.

Boston College's Matt Ryan going this early to Atlanta was also a mystery to me. The ACC is a relatively weak conference in Div I, but BC did have a former NFL assistant coach. ( Green Bay, Atlanta ) Jeff Jagodzinski, who trained this guy in NFL plays, so apparently he may be ready for the 2008 season.


I do remember the Boston College-Virginia Tech game last year when BC was shut out until the last quarter and Ryan led the Eagle to a victory with two touchdown passes. This was when BC was 2nd in the nation and even a loss here would still have kept BC first in the Coastal Division in the ACC.

I don't recall his performance being all that great throughout the game even in the forth quarter when Ryan did what he had to do to beat Virginia Tech. I recall the final drive by BC for the win to be sloppy.

Not really trying to draw a comparison here, but Michael Vick, Atlanta's former quarterback and disgraced NFL player who went first in the 2001 NFL draft, was considered the top prospect in the country at the time. Vick went to Virginia Tech, an ACC team.

Given Vick's performance since that time leading up to his incarceration, I would say ( and have said all along )for all the hype, Vick was at best a mediocre quarterback, and I suspect Ryan may well wind up being in the same class, with a stellar college career and a less than stellar NFL career.

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