The NFL Draft is inching closer, and tensions are running high in war rooms across the country.
But what Thomas Dimitroff & Co. don't realize is that tensions are even higher among the controversy-riddled bowels of the Internet (especially if you criticize Auburn). North Korea's got nothing on this.
It happens every year without fail: fans grow overly attached to prospects whose performances on tape and in the Combine undoubtedly make them "future Hall of Famers" at their respective positions. Our pal Dave touched on this earlier in the week.
It usually goes something like this:
Fan 1: Bro, did you even see how many times Cornelius Washington repped 225 at the Combine? He's looking so swole. I think he's a first-round pick.
Fan 2: Yeah man, but Tyler Eifert is the obvious pick for us. 6'6, 250 lbs. and a 4.68 40-time? You'd have to be crazy to think we'd pass up the next Tony Gonzalez.
Fan 1: The Falcons obviously need a pass rush much more than a tight end that wouldn't even start as a rookie.
Fan 2: You're the real rookie if you think Thomas Dimitroff doesn't go best player available.
Fan 3: TYRANN MATHIEU TYRANN MATHIEU TYRANN MATHIEU
And it spirals outward from there. You see the pattern, I'm sure.
Thomas Dimitroff is a smart man who has added some impressive drafts to his resume with the Falcons, as The DW has shown in his series of retrospective posts. And most of the time, our main Comrade makes reasonable and well-received picks.
But there are surprises every year, too. Picks at strange positions, like Bradie Ewing (FB) and Matt Bosher (P) in the 5th round. Players at positions we thought had depth, the likes of Corey Peters, Akeem Dent or Curtis Lofton.
There are even picks we even disagree with entirely (Matt Ryan, Julio Jones), because at the time they appeared far too risky. Regardless of who Atlanta drafts this year, Dimitroff will never be able to please everyone. These picks take time to process, and that first gut reaction is not always the most rational.
So without further ado, I have compiled a thoroughly-researched and numbers-heavy list predicting your potential sources of agony and despair on Draft Day.
Round 1: TE Zach Ertz, Stanford
With a huge hole at cornerback and a pass rush still needing improvement, the Falcons select a tight end not named Eifert to be groomed as Tony G's eventual successor. This comes with Tank Carradine and Jamar Taylor still on the board, as well. Seas part, plates shift and lightning streaks a blackened sky.
Round 1: DE Margus Hunt, SMU
Mel Kiper's earliest predictions come true to the dismay of many as the Falcons take a defensive end with huge upside and huge bust potential. Margus is blissfully unaware of his own selection, as he is drunkenly wandering the streets of Dallas after consuming an entire barrel of homemade Estonian mead.
Round 1: LB John Lotulelei, UNLV
Dimitroff thinks he's getting a steal here. One of the best players in the draft still available at 30? Yes, please. However, he fails to see the critical error that the defensive player he is thinking of is actually named Star Lotulelei. John (no relation) is projected by many to go in the sixth round. The pick prompts some to claim that former Raiders owner Al Davis is in fact alive and well, operating undercover in the city of Atlanta.
Round 2: OL Brian Schwenke, California
A center by trade, this pick is met with fury after the Falcons spent last year's top pick on center Peter Konz, only to use him as the right guard of the future. Many speculate that offensive line coach Pat Hill has actually been running Atlanta's drafts, and that Dimitroff has become a mere puppet.
Round 2: CB Jordan Poyer, Oregon State
No David Amerson, Johnthan Banks or Darius Slay to be found here on this grim draft day. Poyer's questionable coverage ability and lack of natural speed produces wailing and gnashing of teeth for Falcons fans, and some begin to wonder if the Falcons have embarked on a strange quest to acquire every former O-State Beaver.
Round 4: RB Mike Gillislee, Florida
Not the Marcus Lattimore you wanted, nor is it even the position you wanted after the Falcons signed Steven Jackson to a three-year contract this offseason. Dimitroff's 11-point "only draft offensive players plan" is now a cause for full rebellion among the Falcons faithful.
Round 5: ATH Denard Robinson, Michigan
This pick is made with promises of wacky formations and improved offensive dynamics, which offensive Dirk Koetter promptly ignores once the season starts in true Mularkey fashion. With nothing to do, Robinson ultimately devotes his time to convincing Matt Ryan that he needs to leave his shoes untied.
What say you, Falcons fans? Who do you not want the Falcons to draft in two weeks?