Yahoo! Sports asked its three "experts" (Who, other than Silver, demonstrate their lack of knowledge on a regular basis. Silver is arrogant, but he usually makes a well thought out point) who is most likely to whiff in the 2008 draft. 2 of 3 said the Raiders. Only Robinson, giving a pretty well-worn argument to Lions fans, but irking me for dismissing Sims and the change in drafting since Marinelli, chose the Lions. I agree with the other two.
When it comes to ineptitude drafting in this decade, 4 teams stand out, and right now, Detroit is the best of the 4. They are Miami, Atlanta, Oakland and of course, Detroit. Picks in the 2008 draft 1st round? 1,3,4, 15. Frankly, if success in the draft translates to success on the field, than the relative positions in which they are picking this year shows who has been the most successful in the most recent drafts. Atlanta may have made the playoffs in the past, and Oakland went to a Superbowl (due to FA, and really nothing to do with their draft -- and it shows, because they fell very fast, and very hard after that) -- but we are talking about success in the draft. Miami went from Marino to a pathetic Baltimore effort away from 0-16. Atlanta's most successful drafts picks (2 of them) are 1. In Jail and 2. Now playing in Oakland. As for 1st round WR, they are 0-2. At least Millen went 50% on 1st Round WRs!
If you think Millen and 1st round WR don't mix -- how about Al Davis and that secondary of his! Check out Silver's numbers: Al Picked 5 players in the first round in the defensive secondary and only 1, Nnamdi Asomugha, has stuck. They still had to trade high picks for Hall, and pay big-money to Wilson -- in the secondary! Think the fact that the Lions' late second round QB didn't play for a 7-9 team due to being put on IR was bad? How about your 1st overall pick QB not playing more than a couple of quarters on a 4-12 team that played 3 other QB's last season -- and the draft pick was healthy! Didn't really strike me how lucky we are as Lions fans 'til I started to look at it.
If you look at the current status, Miami and Atlanta have almost totally new management, and Miami has new majority ownership. So the jury is out on them, and their history gets a "clean slate" until the new management proves itself competent or inept. That leaves Detroit and Oakland in the mix; Detroit has shown steady improvement over the last couple of years, and the biggest negatives are from picks prior to that; While I'm not giving Millen a free-pass on his prior picks, he is much less likely to make a Mike-Williamsesqe pick this draft than he was 3 years ago. Oakland, on the other hand, has gotten, if anything, more dysfunctional.
Organizationally, the Raiders have more problems than the Lions front office. Half of their coaches aren't talking, their HC has no draft input, and getting a bunch of "talent" doesn't mean anything if the coaches cannot get them to buy into what they are doing, and get the chemistry aspect going. At least in Detroit right now, the HC, Coaches, GM, Owner and Scouting staff are all communicating very well. What will come of it remains to be seen, but I, for one, am optimistic.
The Raiders didn't bring in Kalimba to be a backup - they brought him in to be an impact starter, and re-awaken their pass rush. "Me"Angelo is a hit or miss CB, Wilson is a slightly above average safety who happened to be lucky enough to be one of only a couple of FA from the SB Winning team, they paid a Redding sized contract to a DT with a torn ACL that hasn't finished a season, paid a ton of money to Javon "it's all about me, the talent" Walker, who is still coasting off his one good year in GB... The Raiders are throwing a bunch of money at mediocre FA hoping it will help them win-now, and vault their team from "worst to first". He was lucky once, and got to a Superbowl -- don't count on it being very likely to happen again soon.
Rod is patiently building a solid mix of young stars and veteran role players that will form the basic foundation of a team that will be able to compete for many years to come. Good time to be a Lions fan!!
Forget "Kool-Aid" --- I'm drinking the coffee! Strong, Dark, well-brewed.