Now that we have pulled off highway robbery and have added Santonio Holmes to our receiving corps, our priorities leading up to the draft change. The only position where we have a glaring hole is now DE, formally occupied by Marques Douglas. Adding anything else would just be for luxury or depth. Besides that, Tannenbaum has put this team in the position to go many different ways with our 1st and 2nd round picks. Once again, we will leave the draft with a small amount of selections but past drafts have shown Mike T loves quality over quantity.
Still with a little over a week before the draft, we can plug more holes to put ourselves in an even better position for April 25. One obvious way is signing Jason Taylor. I think this signing is going to happen sometime before the Wednesday deadline Taylor has set for himself and, as much as I didn't like the guy his whole career, he will give us a great 3rd down pass rusher and some more versatility in our front 7. Another move we should make is re-signing Douglas to a one year deal. Even if we draft a DE, Douglas at worst will give us depth at the position. He's a great run stopper and would once again be a reliable starter if the rookie can't step up. This probably won't happen before the draft but I really think Douglas should be put on board for 2010 at some point. I am also hoping Leon will sign his tender and we will be without the extra 2nd round pick and a hole at running back. Leon brings too much to this team to let him go.
If these two moves are made we have an enormous amount of flexibility in the draft. Of course trading up is a big possibility, but if we stay at 29 I think our top target should be Jared Odrick. He might not fall to us because the Patriots and Ravens are both interested in him but his skill set and versatility would be a great addition to our defense. We should also consider taking a rush linebacker like Brandon Graham, Sergio Kindle, or Jerry Hughes if they are available. All 3 have a lot of talent that could add a lot to the pass rush and do what Vernon Gholston can't. Mike Iupati is a player who a lot of mock drafts have us taking and I think he'll be hard to resist if he's available. He can play anywhere on the line and would give us depth that we have needed for the past 2 years. He is the only offensive lineman I would approve of selecting in the 1st round however. We have too much stability at O-line to take anyone inferior to Iupati. A cornerback like Kyle Wilson or Devin McCourty would also add depth and be very useful. The only player I can see us trading up for is Earl Thomas. If he begins to fall for whatever reason, Tannenbaum will be ready to pull the trigger. This guy is a hawk and would be a perfect fit for us. He is going to be a superstar safety down the road.
If we decide to stay put at 29 in the 1st round, I would love to see us trade up to the early picks of the 2nd round. Due to the depth of this draft, there will be so much 1st round talent floating around early in the 2nd round and we shouldn't hesistate to swoop in and grab some of that. Whatever we don't address in the 1st round can be addressed here and we leave the draft with 2 rookies who will make a big impact next year and down the road. We have our 4th, 6th and 7th round picks as well as next year's selections as trading pieces and Mike T has shown he's not afraid to use them. Another draft with 2 or 3 rookies is fine by me as long as we make them count and we continue to plug holes through free agency.