NFL Draft Prospects | Review of 2013 “Steals”

Updated iGM Draft Restrictions for Steals of the 2013 NFL Draft

By Chris Barry,

NFL Draft Review Keenan AllenFor fans interested in our site and our iGM game, one of the most enjoyable events of the NFL season is the NFL Draft.  It’s like Christmas in April (well, now in May,) as the fates of all 32 teams in the league will twist and turn based on the decisions made on Draft weekend.

Every year, we take a look back at the most recent draft after we have had some time to watch the rookies play a bit.  Obviously, we won’t know for sure how each player will do over time until years down the road, but we can at least make some observations at this point with respect to some players that have exceeded expectations (and, by “expectations,” we mean where the players were drafted.)

For NFL geeks like us, this is a fun little exercise, but we have a purpose as well.  When new Members sign up and start running a virtual NFL team in our iGM game, they automatically start back in time – one week after the last Super Bowl.  We do that so new people can really get into the game right from the start.

But, there’s also quite a bit of 20/20 hindsight potential by this time of the year.  Once you know a bit about this year’s class, you could cheat (I’ll leave out the “you’re only cheating yourself” speech) and draft differently.

While we can’t eliminate that entirely, we can prevent serious abuse of the system, and we do that by putting draft restrictions on certain players.  Kenbrell Thompkins may have gone undrafted in real life, but if you start a team today and you want him, you need to take him by the end of Round 3, for example.

This is all shown right on the Live Draft page.  Here are the players we have singled out this year that we believe would have gone significantly higher if the draft were re-done today, in the order in which they were actually drafted, with their new iGM Live Draft restriction:

  • Kiko Alonso, LB/Buf, #46.  His stock slid due to health and off-field red flags, but he has started all 11 games so far for the Bills and solidified the middle of their defense.  He has 112 tackles, 2 sacks, 4 INTs, and a fumble recovery.  If you want him in iGM, you’ll need to draft him by pick #20.
  • Tyrann Mathieu, CB/Ari, #69.  An electric athlete with significant off-field concerns (plus he’s only 5’9″), Mathieu’s slide was no surprise.  He landed in the best possible situation, with former LSU teammate Patrick Peterson.  He has kept out of trouble so far, starting 9 games and contributing 65 tackles, a sack, and 2 INTs to the Cardinals’ stingy defense.  Of course, with players like this, you always hold your breath, but so far, so good.  #48
  • Terrance Williams, WR/Dal, #74.  He’s technically their third WR, but the Cowboys play 3-wide a lot, and he has produced big-time in his role, with 508 yards and 5 TDs to date.  It’s scary thinking of him teamed with Dez Bryant for years to come.
  • Keenan Allen, WR/SD, #76.  After a slow start, injuries got him in the lineup, and he hasn’t looked back, despite some nagging injuries of his own.  On pace for over 1,100 yards and 5 TDs.  #48
  • David Bakhtiari, OT/GB, #109.  Green Bay’s OL was a question mark even before Brian Bulaga’s injury, but Bakhtiari stepped in at LT and saved their bratwurst.  Now, there’s talk he may stay at LT as the long-term answer, allowing them to move Bulaga to the right side.  Filling such an important position with such a late pick make this a candidate for best value in the draft right now.  #64
  • Kenny Stills, WR/NO, #144.  He has 474 yards and 4 TDs so far, as if Drew Brees needed another weapon.  He’s immature as a receiver and still this productive.  #64
  • Zac Stacy, RB/StL, #160.  731 yards and 4 TDs despite nagging injuries limiting his time.  #96
  • Jordan Mills, OT/Chi, #163.  Won the job in camp and has started all 11 games so far.  Teaming with Kyle Long on the Bears’ rebuilt right side of the offensive line.  #96
  • Josh Evans, S/Jax, #169.  (In iGM, #128)
  • Vince Williams, LB/Pit, #206.  (In iGM, #128)
  • Marcus Cooper, CB/KC, #252 (originally drafted by SF.)  (In iGM, #128)
  • Kenbrell Thompkins, WR/NE, UFA.  He’s got 31 catches for 450 yards and 4 TDs so far, and he’s a physically impressive deep threat who should continue to develop.  #96
  • Joseph Fauria, TE/Det, UFA.  (In iGM, #128)
  • Ryan Schraeder, OT/Atl, UFA.  (In iGM, #128)
  • Joe Vellano, DL/NE, UFA.  (In iGM, #128)
  • Matt McGloin, QB/Oak, UFA.  (In iGM, #160)
  • Timothy Wright, TE/TB, UFA.  (In iGM, #160)

Remember, the Draft restrictions we put on players are not estimates of where players would be drafted today.  They are merely to prevent Members who are just getting to the Live Draft now from having an unfair advantage.

Who else do you think should be on this list?

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