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Ian Rapoport: Falcons Wanted To Get Their Franchise Guy

The Rich Eisen Show / Rich Eisen
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April 30, 2024 3:37 pm

Ian Rapoport: Falcons Wanted To Get Their Franchise Guy

The Rich Eisen Show / Rich Eisen

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April 30, 2024 3:37 pm

4/30/24 - Hour 3

Guest host Tom Pelissero and the guys play a round of ‘Start-Bench-Cut’ where he weighs in on Caleb Williams vs Jayden Daniels vs Drake Maye, the NFL Draft’s top WRs not named “Marvin Harrison Jr,” and which top edge rusher has the best chance to register double-digit sacks.

NFL Insider Ian Rapoport and Tom discuss the Dallas Cowboys’ “All-In” offseason strategy, the Falcons’ shocking selection of Michael Penix Jr. 8th overall, if the 49ers will trade either Deebo Samuel or Brandon Aiyuk, how close the Patriots came to trading the 3rd overall pick, and more.

Tom puts on his NFL Insider cap again and breaks down, pick-by-pick, how the Minnesota Vikings landed JJ McCarthy with the 10th overall pick in NFL Draft.

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This is the Rich Eisen Show with guest host Tom Pelissero. You said the first item up for bids involved the Bears. Live from the Rich Eisen Show studio in Los Angeles.

Caleb's first game in Roma D'unze and the Bears faithful showing up, maybe you put them in Detroit. Earlier on the show, senior writer for NBA.com, Steve Ashburner, ESPN staff writer Dan Murphy, free agent wide receiver Jarvis Landry. Coming up, NFL Network insider Ian Rappaport. And now, sitting in for Rich, it's Tom Pelissero. Welcome back to the Rich Eisen Show. Tom Pelissero in for Rich. We'll also be back tomorrow. Ian Rappaport is going to join us here shortly as we continue the NFL discussion. We're going to play start, bench, cut momentarily here. I've got some stories, the backstories of how the various quarterbacks went off the board in those first 12 picks. Before we get to that, let's a clip start circulating on the internet that seems like a Dan Cortez hit piece.

I want to make abundantly clear, as we were saying in the break after this came up for reasons that I don't even recall. Dan Cortez was the epitome of cool in the 1990s from the mullet to the Oakleys to the general presence. He was on Seinfeld. He was on Seinfeld.

Come on. He was he was everything like you aspired as like a 12 year old to be. That was the coolest guy.

No doubt. He's wearing the what was it, the bugaboo jackets, you know, with the collar flipped up in neon, turquoise and everything like that was the guy. Somehow, you know, Dan Cortez's brother, T.J. Jefferson.

Yes. Well, I knew him. I knew him at the time we back in Pittsburgh, I telemarketed, as I said, and his brother, Vince. We worked at the same company for a little bit together. So Dan Cortez's brother, Vince, the telemarketer who you recently found his business card.

I did. And that's why I said, is he still a telemarketer? Definitely not. Definitely not.

I don't know what he's doing. But that's why I said I looked at Vince Cortez's Instagram about a month ago because I was going through an old box. I found this old business card and I was like, oh, yeah, Vince, let me see if I could find him. So I went to Dan's Instagram to see if I could find him.

I didn't. But yeah, man, he said he was a guy from Pittsburgh, so his story got to be pretty well known. He came out to L.A., worked at MTV. He was a production assistant and then somebody higher up at MTV saw him and kind of knew.

So he had personality and thought he could do the job. So he got auditioned and he got some hosting gigs for MTV, as the story goes, which turned into, you know, doing the Rockin' Jocks and among other things. That's how we got to Dan Cortez. I had actually forgotten that we were talking about Rockin' Jock.

And whether or not we should have the four point play. It's amazing I still know this Dan Cortez story after so many years. But yeah, it was something that someone who came here from Pittsburgh always meant, you know, I remembered and I start working at MTV and I was like, man, could this happen to me? It didn't, but I thought about it. But here you are. It all worked out great, TJ.

It did, it did. Dan Cortez, much more than a MIMBO. All right, Brockman, time to play your favorite game here. He's a MIMBO. He has Stark Bench Cut. Bring it on.

Stark Bench Cut. Play my music. Start. Start.

Start now. Bend. Just sit down and be quiet.

Or cut. Get out. Get out. Get out. That's new. That's amazing. Tom, you're familiar with the game, you know, Blank Mary Kill.

Stark Bench Cut is literally exactly the same. I'm going to give you three options. Start one. Aren't they out of order, though? Maybe.

Start one. We're going to let it go. Bench Cut. You get the idea.

I got the concept. Okay, NFL Draft Edition. First quarterback to reach a Super Bowl. Let's go to the top three picks. Caleb Williams, Jayden Daniels, Drake May. Well, I think the easy answer here is Caleb Williams. And that has as much to do with the situation he's in as it does his ability. We talked to coaches and scouts within the league.

He's virtually unanimous. Most talented guy that there was in this draft. Yeah, he's got to learn to play on time. He's got to learn, probably, to be a little bit more within the structure of the offense. Take singles. That's what everyone's saying.

Take singles. An unbelievable, unbelievable player can throw from any arm angle, can run when he needs to. He's not the tallest guy, but he's thick enough that he can go in red zone and things like that when he needs to run. He can be a difference maker with that as well.

But he also has the infrastructure around him. And that was a big part of what the Bears did over the past several months. A big part of what Caleb and his team and his dad, Carl, who's a longtime business disruptor and has really guided Caleb's career.

They wanted to make sure that the investment and the infrastructure was there in Chicago. So what do the Bears do? They go out and hire an offensive coordinator they think is a really good fit. He's been versatile. Shane Waldron's worked with different types of quarterbacks, worked under McVeigh, worked under Bill Belichick.

They thought that was the right guy. They signed DeAndre Swift and they trade for Keenan Allen. They retain their offensive line coach, Chris Morgan, who's really good with the run game and can help out on that side of things. They've already got a top 10 caliber defense.

And oh yeah, they use the number nine pick on Roma Dunsey. Now, is the protection unit going to be good enough for Caleb Williams so that he's not having to run for his life all the time, which he a lot of times was at USC last year? We'll see on that. We'll see how quickly it all comes together. Because when you go around showing off your phone that says I'm going to win eight Super Bowls and beat Tom Brady, you have put all the pressure on yourself.

But Caleb's had that pressure on himself since he was 10 years old. And him and his dad set out the goal. We're going to make him the number one pick. They did it. A lot of people make that say we're going to do that. They did it. And everything that they did over the last dozen years had a singular focus on let's make him the number one pick.

Now it's OK. The Bears got him on board. Was this his first choice?

Have you gone back a year ago? Probably not. But they got him on board. He can be the biggest thing there since Michael Jordan.

Drake May going to New England. He needs some time to sit and they need time to build up the team around him. New coaching staff with Jerrod Mayo. A new de facto GM with Elliott Wolf. They know this is a ground up type of rebuild that they did not want to miss out on getting the quarterback.

And then with the commanders, again it's a team that's got a ways to go. I mean they traded Montez Sweat to the Bears. They traded Chase Young to your pass rushers.

You got day two picks for them last year. They've got a long way to go as well. I would say just from a stability standpoint, assuming that things go as they should this year and the Bears get better.

They should be a playoff contender in their minds this year. But also the parts that are around them. I would say that the answer there just has to be logically Caleb Williams. What about the bench and the cut? Bench and cut.

Sorry I got that was a long soliloquy there and I forgot the name of the segment. I would say so cuts the worst right? Cuts the worst. Cuts three. Because again the order is a little off from how the game normally goes.

I would say they're in that order. I would say the bench is Jayden Daniels just because he's such a dynamic playmaker that you can see him doing different things. He's got to make sure he doesn't get himself cut by getting hit the way that he did in college. With Drake May it's not that he's clearly the third talent. Like I said earlier there was a pretty even split talking to NFL people. Some really like Jayden Daniels. Some really like Drake May. Drake May though is the most unknown.

Drake May is the one you have the least feel for just because he's probably the furthest away from actually getting on the field. We talked yesterday and during overreaction about how many primetime games are the Bears going to get this year? And should they be primetime week one?

Just showcase Caleb right away. I mean again they put all the pressure on themselves. They've done everything to put themselves in that position. Will the league do that though? Maybe throw them against Houston on Monday night week one? How about Bears Vikings out of the gate? I know they like to kind of have different types of matchups in week one. But you put that in one of those Monday night football windows. I mean there's all kinds of great storylines around the NFL. I don't know who's going to be. I don't know off the top of my head who's due to play who. But if you're talking about division matchups potentially which sometimes I know they shy away from. But if you put a division matchup on there the Vikings with J.J. McCarthy potentially as a starting quarterback against Caleb Williams.

That's one of the better ones you're going to get. Alright let's start bench cut. Number two Mike you play the music.

Let's go. Edge. Edge rushers. Didn't go to 15 this year.

That was kind of crazy. Which one gets double digit sacks this season as a rookie? Latu vs. Turner. I'm going to say Laetu Latu with double digit sacks this year. The questions on Latu were almost exclusively medical. If you polled people within the league and I talked to a lot of coaches a lot of scouts about this.

A lot of people would tell you Laetu was the best pass rusher. And if not for a really significant medical history. And he retired at one time. He retired. He had to see a bunch of doctors just to get medical clearance. The Colts were confident enough and a lot of teams were confident that they would be willing to take him. Your concern is not okay is he you know it's not like a knee where he's coming back from.

No this guy's ready to go. You are just making an educated medical as well as football decision that we think he has trained himself well enough. We feel good about the neck.

We feel good about the body. That he's going to be out there. He should be the best one right out of the gate. Because he is the most dynamic of those guys. I would say let's bench Dallas Turner.

He was somebody who was a little bit polarizing. I talked to teams that had both Jervis and Latu above Dallas Turner. But the Vikings gave up I mean a bunch. Because they had already moved in up to 23 and then they gave up the additional picks to move up and go get him here. Him going into that place and being able to play opposite the pass rusher that the Vikings signed in for agency from Houston. I think he's in a pretty good spot.

Did they have to do that? Would he have been there at 23 or did they have to go up to 17 to get him? I mean realistically pass rushers don't slide once the first one comes off the board. You're figuring Dallas Turner is probably going to go sooner than later here. It's kind of the same argument for well did you have to trade up to 10 to go get JJ McCarthy?

Well if you're within striking distance and you've got a certain grade on a guy. You give up a mid-round pick or two and just go find a way to do it. Cut would be Jared Vers. That's not any knock on Jared Vers. I just think that if you're stacking those three guys up who's in the best situations? I put Vers number three.

Okay great. Last one let's talk wide receivers. Okay wide receiver not named Marvin Harrison.

Let's take him out of it. The next three guys to be a pro bowler this year as a rookie. Malik Nabors, Roma Dunze, young lad McConkey. This is a really tricky one because Malik Nabors is going to be catching balls from Daniel Jones.

Or Drew Locke. Roma Dunze is going to be catching balls from Caleb Williams. Lad McConkey is going to be catching balls from Justin Herbert. There's clearly a vision that the Chargers have for Lad McConkey in that offense that Greg Roman is running.

Which is going to be very run heavy you would anticipate based on his history. Even though they haven't spent big on running backs. They brought in JK Dobbins.

They brought in Gus Edwards. It feels like when you trade up to 35 to take Lad McConkey. And really medical was part of the reason Lad was even available at that point. There were some teams that flagged his back. He had the ankle last year and didn't play his best.

Pro Bowler is so subjective because he had a fan vote involved in there and everything else. I can totally see it being Lad McConkey. I'll give him the start. Roma Dunze is going to be competing for targets with Keenan Allen and with DJ Moore.

So let's put him in the cut category. Just strictly based upon Malik Nabors is clearly the one. Lad McConkey who joins a wide receiver depth tryer with Quentin Johnston. Mike Williams isn't there anymore. Keenan Allen is not there anymore. So I'm going to say start Lad McConkey, bench Malik Nabors, cut Roma Dunze. Even though I think that Roma Dunze when all is said and done.

If you're talking about these three guys he could be the best one. I just don't know if we're talking about Pro Bowl as a rookie. That the ball is going his direction enough for that to be able to happen.

How would you stack those ones up Brockman? Good question. I guess it all comes down to quarterbacks. I kind of think you nailed it.

Rome as amazing as he is and a very special talent, special player, great guy. Strikes me in the Jackson Smith and Jigba category as last year. Where he's kind of the third guy on the depth chart in a way.

So where are those targets going to come from? Does he catch more than 60 balls next year? Seems like a lot for the third wide receiver. I think you kind of have it. Do you have 360 catch guys on that team?

Yeah. I mean if you do that probably means that we're still seeing Caleb Williams running all over the place and just chucking it around and they haven't established a run game. Part of the reason again that they kept Chris Morgan and they hired Shane Waldron was they want to run the football a lot. So I don't think that any quarterback, you don't want any rookie quarterback throwing the ball 500 times.

You just don't. You'd like to have a level of balance there. Now if they're in a bunch of shootouts, he's going to have to do that. But with Matt Enoof who's coordinating that defense, you were hoping you were going to be. I mean look what the Bears did at the end of the year with the Lions. I mean they made them earn every yard. I thought that was the most impressive thing about how the Bears finished. I want to say they finished 5-3 down the stretch even though they were still kind of offensively they had a lot of challenges through the course of the season. And that was not all on the coaching staff. Luke Getze is a fine coach.

He's going to do good work with the Raiders. It was just they were in a certain style of game. But once they got Montez Sweat and they were able to play a more aggressive defensive style and they had people who get after the pass rusher. You saw them really turn the corner. I think the NFC North quite possibly is the most fascinating division in the league this year. Because you've got the Lions where everybody's darling and Dan Campbell and that group Brad Holmes have built a team that the city has rallied behind.

It's built in the city's image. You had 800,000 people close to it out in the streets for the NFL Draft listening to 7th round picks being read the other day. You've got the Packers who tripled down on the running back room. They lost Aaron Jones obviously in free agency. But they signed or excuse me they released him after agreeing to terms with Josh Jacobs. But you still have Jacobs. You got AJ Dillon resigned.

And then you go out and you draft Marshawn Lloyd in the third round. They want to run the crap out of the ball. And they've got Matt Lafleur calling the plays. He's one of the best play callers in the league with a young, exciting receiver group around Jordan Love.

I mean that's a group that should scare you. The Vikings already had the infrastructure with Kevin O'Connell calling the plays there with Justin Jefferson and Jordan Addison and TJ Hockinson. And they add Aaron Jones to that mix. They've had challenges personnel wise on defense. We'll see this year. They obviously changed some things over.

You know, Danneel Hunter's not there anymore. The corners, the defensive backs. Harrison Smith is back but there's still a lot of transition there. But Brian Flores calling the plays.

They should be competent. And then you got the Bears that just added Caleb Williams and Roma Dunze and signed DeAndre Swift and traded for Keone Allen. That division, week in and week out, should be one of the divisions where every game is can't miss. Now did I say that two years ago about the AFC West? And then that ended up being a complete train wreck on multiple fronts?

Yes, I did. But it certainly seems like the quarterbacks in that division are going to carry a lot of this moving forward here. And I still want to get to, maybe we can do this tomorrow as well, but just kind of the stories through how all those quarterbacks landed. But the Vikings alone with JJ McCarthy and kind of the poker game that they had going. Once Drake May, who they were trying to go up and get at three once he was off the board. And believing, Kwasiadofo Mensah believing, he didn't think the Giants would actually take JJ McCarthy at six. Because if they take him at six and then... Then what do they do? Well, and then you have Michael Penix coming off at eight.

My understanding was Penix and McCarthy were pretty similar on the Vikings board. They would have taken either one of them at number 11. Would they have traded up to eight, you think? If JJ McCarthy's off the board at six. Or seven, I guess.

They lose that poker game. Yeah. Can you trade up to seven and potentially go get the guy? Right. Does the team at seven even want to move out of that pick?

I mean, you got a lot of questions here, but they stood in. And then in the end, once Penix goes eight, the Bears aren't going to let you trade up to nine. You don't take any chances whether there was really somebody trying to trade into ten or not.

Just don't take chances. You give up another pick or two and you move into ten and go get your guy. But that's a high wire act that they had to pull off here throughout the course of the top of that draft. We didn't have the trades the way that some people thought. But that was in large part because there weren't those teams at four and five that were willing to move up. The Giants at six were. They simply weren't going to give up anything close to what the Patriots wanted.

The Patriots never got a real offer. They take your new favorite guy, Drake May. Now we just got to get you some duct tape like everybody at the draft and Sharkey to convert your Mac Jones jersey.

That's right. Not my Mac Jones jersey. I'm an adult.

I bought one for my son last year. You've never owned a jersey? No. I don't even wear a jersey.

I'm a grown man. I mean you've got a Red Sox hat that you wear every day. You've got a mini Patriots helmet on your desk. Yep.

Patriots legends. So you draw the line of having another man's name on your back. I also just don't. I don't think. I don't like that. I don't like wearing jerseys.

I don't look good in them. Yeah. So just say that. Don't be like I'm a grown man. I don't wear a jersey. Yeah.

There's a lot of grown men who wear jerseys. There's one in this room. Yeah. Exactly.

TJ's going to be wearing one tomorrow. I won't. It's just not my thing. All right. Let's take a break here. Ian Rappaport, NFL Network Insider, my fellow insider, another member of the insiders, joins us right after this. Draft stories coming up on the Eisen Show. Hey folks, it's time for the NFL Draft, which means for me, I need a good night's sleep because if I don't have one, I'm just not myself. You know the deal. You know exactly how important it is to have quality sleep.

It's a game changer for all of us. So sleep number helps me. My sleep number setting is 60.

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Power dot com slash awards only at a sleep number store or sleep number dot com. Our house is a mess. Come on in. I'm Amber Wallin, Internet comedian and host of your new favorite podcast, Fly on the Wall. That's pretty presumptuous to assume that this is going to be their favorite podcast, by the way. Anyway, that wasp that you just heard interrupt me is my husband and co-host Benjamin Wallin listening as we discuss relationships and keeping our sweet baby kid alive.

Fly on the wall and wherever you listen. I think Patrick Mahomes is going to lead you onto the field next year. It's going to be weird getting into a huddle with Alex Smith, too, because you did not obviously play in the last game of the year, right?

No, I did not. So that was where Mahomes was out there. Yeah. What are your feelings now that Alex Smith has been unofficially traded away to use your phraseology here? It's it's awkward. It's awkward.

I honestly don't know how to really accept it. I mean, through my entire career, I've you can't say Travis Kelce without Alex Smith. I mean, he's been my quarterback.

He's been the guy that's arguably the I owe a lot of my success to him. You know, so it's it's going to be awkward going into a huddle, like I said, with with anybody but Alex. But I know Pat is ready for the opportunity.

Sure. He's he's he's taking a lot of a lot of mental reps and a lot of notes from Alex and how this thing should be ran. But Alex ran it to it to an absolute tee this this past season. And you know, obviously everyone's excited to see what he can do. We had Chris Harris of the Broncos on game day morning in the playoffs. And he said when he was looking at film of Mahomes and he played a couple of series against him. Yeah. He says this kid's got some serious ability. The Broncos said that. Yeah.

Have you seen anything of that note? Without a doubt. I mean, what he what he does in practice is it's fun to watch him in practice because kind of he's on the scout team, kind of just being a backyard quarterback, thrown it all every way imaginable. You can think of sidearm underhand, putting the ball anywhere on the field. So it was definitely fun watching him in that regard. And when he played against the Broncos, I mean, he he had a lot of footballs where he put it right on the money. Right. And then in crucial times and crucial moments.

So I mean, it's it's like I said, it's going to be exciting to see where you can go with it because it's it's the expectation is definitely high. Welcome back to another Rich Eisenless show. I am in for Rich. I am Tom Pellicero jarring when you say it that way. I mean, that's it. He's not dead. He's taking a little break.

Right. He's at the he's at the new front. New front. New front. He's still this who came up with that meet the new front. Same as the old front.

We may be on right now. The new front watching us and talking about, hey, we love Roku. We love the Rich Eisen show we do. Hello from to New Frontville in New York, New Frontville. Oh, is it because of New York?

We don't know. Is it NU streaming? New Frontier. Yeah, it's like new metal. It's the Limp Bizkit of up front. That's what it is, the two dots above that's what I want to know. New Front. Right.

Text Rich. Is that what it's called? We got Bizkit. We got Korn. And we got the Rich Eisen show. Is that what it's called? That's that's the lineup today. The two dots.

Text Rich. Popper Roach. And find this out. And get everybody.

Cut my life into pieces. OK, come on. Keep going, Brockman. Let's talk to Ian. Maybe not. Maybe not. You guys are idiots. You literally are idiots. All right. I'm actually not the idiot in the house right now. Tom started this, by the way. I'm not the idiot.

It's usually my fault. All right. Let's bring in our guest. He's an NFL Network insider.

So am I. Another piece of The Insiders coming to us because he appears to be headed out to the golf course or just came off of it. Ian Rappaport just just came off it. OK, how'd you shoot, Ian? Mediocre. Mediocre. But, you know, first couple rounds, my first pro-straff round. I'm getting back into it, but, you know, some good moments and not as good moments. Good start.

Good start. Ian's got some of the best old man game. I think he's only a year or two older than me. But his ability to hit like he's got the thing where every club goes one hundred eighty yards, like driver. That's the hundred eighty yards straight.

The five iron goes like one seventy five. But he hits the ball straight almost every time. I can drive it one hundred yards past him, but it might go twenty yards off the fairway, which is kind of, you know, the point of golf, Ian, of course, is to hit the ball toward the hole. It's the toward the hole part. That's that's the part I'm missing. That's the key part.

Yeah. So we were both at the draft the entire week in Detroit. There's a lot of things I want to get into from that, but let's start with a story you and I broke very early yesterday morning. Ezekiel Elliott is back with the Dallas Cowboys. I will see how T.J. Jefferson, who's a big Cowboys fan, feels about this. But I thought this was interesting because the whole offseason, everybody, and including in the replies to our story, is just saying, oh, all in Cowboys, all in. They're all in on twenty sixteen with Zeke. I think that one of the things that people missed was this deal was effectively done.

They had the framework of the deal in place last week. It's why they didn't reach for a running back. They had so many needs through the course this offseason because they lost their left tackle and their center. They lost two of their pass rushers.

They were filling those other needs. My question to you is, from our perspective, from your perspective, what do we make of the Cowboys this offseason and where they're at for twenty twenty four? I mean, to me, it's a pretty normal offseason. And I know that sounds weird because everybody's losing their damn minds about how they didn't sign anyone. But this is kind of what the Cowboys do. They draft, they develop, they get very good players, they pay them a lot of money, their own players usually, and they don't sign a ton of free agents like, yeah, sometimes they will sign like a, you know, a stopgap guy like, you know, Stefan Gilmore or something like that. But it's like this year they're getting Trevon Diggs back. They don't need us to Von Gilmore and look, maybe they might sign someone like that anyway. I'm just saying, like, I don't know how many holes they have as a roster. They just did it in a way that everybody would like to, because you'd like to draft guys, develop them, pay the really good ones, let the ones who are just pretty good go to get overpaid and free agency, replace them with younger guys who are also very good, but much cheaper and then do the cycle all over again.

Now, the fact that they didn't have a running back until Zeke signed, like, okay, that's fine, but they also have drafted players that will help make whoever's there as a running back much better, which is some good offensive lineman. So, you know, everybody's losing their minds, and I feel like the fact that the all-in thing came out, gives something, gives everyone something to, like, hang on to, I just don't know that it's that much different from how the Cowboys usually operate in the offseason, and then they'll pay some of their key players a lot of money, and then some of this will make sense. Everyone also is losing their minds about Michael Penix to Atlanta at number eight. I think that that's fair to say a lot of people within the league also, if you're talking about the biggest surprise in round one, I texted a ton of people.

It was so consistent, everyone's just going, Michael Penix, totally mind-blowing that they actually did it. You were on an island, in fact, you were getting shouted down by the guy who normally sits in the seat on the broadcast who didn't want to hear your Michael Penix explanation because it was so, in Rich's mind, absurd. Take me through the Falcons' mentality, why this pick occurred within the framework of, of course, you just gave Kirk Cousins a hundred million dollars guaranteed like six weeks before.

Yeah, I am on an island. I was also on an island on Jordan Love being a fantastic pick by Brian Gutigan's The Green Bay Packers and on other digital shows that I may appear on regularly, they routinely beat me up for that and it looks pretty good now. One thing about Penix first before I get to your question, I talk to a lot of people, a lot of coordinators, a lot of general managers and assistant GMs and people who do this evaluation for a living. Everybody loved Michael Penix and I'm not saying he was like the number one pick because obviously he was not, I was a little surprised he went as early as he did, but especially coordinators just loved him, right? I mean, he, the way he threw from the pocket was compared to a, to me, to a left handed Justin Herbert, easily a top five arm right now in the NFL and as far as a leader, just a really cool, confident, confident dude.

Everybody loved Michael Penix. It just, they all sort of decided that he was behind the other guys and I kept trying to be like, well, why? And they're like, well, you know, I guess the injury concerns and I'm like, okay, I get it. If he tears his ACL again, that would be bad.

But everybody did love him. As far as the Falcons go, it's basically this, there's nothing more important than quarterback and if they are good this year and I think they're going to be good because they have a good roster and they have a totally fine, very productive starting quarterback, you know, cousins is probably not a top 10 quarterback, but you know, maybe he's close. Maybe he's 15th or something like that. 12th, I don't know. Whatever you think of him.

There has been very productive throughout the course of his career. You're not going to be picking eighth ever again. So basically what this was is the drafting version of signing a player to an extension. It's saying we're going to get, we're going to lock in your money now, but it's really going to be like for a year from now or like two years from now. When the Eagles signed Devante Smith to an extension, he had two years left, but they give him the money now.

Like they say, we're going to do the extension now, we're just going to lock it in and then you're good. That's basically what the Falcons did at quarterback, which is to say, we're getting our franchise guy, we're, we're just going to put him over here for a little bit and then we're going to play with this other guy for the next two years. There's a couple of things there. On Panics, I found him to be a polarizing prospect because there also were people who said like, you just can't play with that style of quarterback because he is so pocket dependent. It's got to be clean for him when he's in rhythm.

He's really, really good. And the national championship game, sorry to interrupt, national championship game where he was getting a lot of pressure. Exactly.

So anyway, gone. Right. So Alabama, you know, was collapsed the pocket and that's, you know, sometimes your offensive line does get their butts kicked and you do have to play from a, you know, a dirty pocket. There were also a lot of people who just said he's the best pure passer. When you talk about dicing people up, I was going through this with somebody very familiar with the Vikings draft philosophy and going through all the knocks on him and you know, here's what people are saying.

It's got to be clean for him. That person goes, this is before the draft. Yeah, it sounds a lot like Kirk cousins, which is true. That's kind of been Kirk cousins through his career, which is when he's got time in the pocket, he can eat you up when he's got to move.

That's where you kind of don't know whether things happen. So obviously the Falcons, if they believe in Kirk cousins, it's easy to see why they've believed in Michael Pennix in terms of the skill set where you, where I get lost with the Jordan Love comparisons that many people have made is the Aaron Rodgers relationship was deteriorating in Green Bay already prior to the Jordan Love pick. They didn't know from year to year, was he going to come back? He was thinking about whether he was going to move on and he'd been there for so long. This is much closer to if the Jets last year had traded for Aaron Rodgers and then use their first round pick to draft a quarterback. If they had gone out and said, Hey, we're just going to, we're going to take one here.

That's a lot closer to it because you had this entire, the good vibes and obviously it was on hard knocks and everything. I know how it ended last season four snaps later, but this is Kirk cousins. He's on stage whipping up the crowd.

Yeah, here we go. And then an hour later they call him and say, we're taking a quarterback. It just creates in my mind and the mind of a lot of other people within the league, a unique dynamic. I'm sure Raheem Morris and Terry Fontenot thought through this, that what they're going to have to deal with, but instead of just, Hey, when you're going through the lumps early on with a first time play caller and Zach Robinson and a new quarterback, all these new weapons, Hey, all right, they're going to get better. Now the crowds can be chanting for Michael Pennix.

They weren't chanting for Taylor Heineke. It's just, it's one more layer to this. It totally changes in my mind, the vibe around that team and kind of what the storylines are going to be as we head into the season. Yeah. And that's okay. I'm really, I'm fine with all of that because I mean, look, yes, the Rogers relationship was deteriorating. Um, and not as the Jordan loves draft, certainly played a role further down.

Yeah. Uh, he was very mad. Definitely very mad. Now Jordan love being an awesome dude, probably helped it just make it tolerable, but he was very mad.

He went out and had two MVP seasons and then left and now Jordan love took over. So is it tense? Yeah, it's tense. When you are a super competitive person, a super competitive environment, it can be tense and tense is okay. As long as you're upfront and honest, tense is okay and I think it's going to help him play better and I think it's going to be awkward, but in the end, no more awkward than a newly signed quarterback getting gold teeth and posting a picture about it before he signs with the Falcons.

Like that was pretty awkward and everyone survived that. The other thing I would say is, um, if the jets had taken a quarterback last year, just for the record, I also would have been fine with it. I really would have. I would have said, you know what, I don't care. Look, you know how much Aaron Rogers caused the jets.

You know how much her cousins, anything to avoid that again, I am for. That's it. That's the argument. But think about this.

All right. And this is all projection, right? They think, I mean, they were very upfront about it.

I thought remarkably. So when Terry Fondo, Raheem Morris kept saying, not only are we going to be good this year, we're not going to be drafted high ever again. That's how good we're going to be, which is saying a lot when you haven't been in the playoffs in quite a while, when you've used now four consecutive top eight picks on skill position players, which is the first time in NFL history that's happened. I also can see a situation where, okay, let's say mid season, they're four and four, they're four and five, whatever, they're, they're in the middle of the pack. Not only are you getting those chance for panics, but aren't we also Ian talking about, do they move on from Kirk cousins after the season, they're paying them 67.5 million this season. He's got a no trade clause, so he can scuttle anything that would happen, but there's a very real conversation that might take place that if they're not a playoff team, if they're not going, you know, winning playoff games here, do they move on at that point?

If Michael Pennix is everything that they think he is in order to draft him at number eight. Yeah. I think that's a great point. I really do. I think that's an excellent point.

And here's what I would say. If that happens and if the crowd is chanting for panics and you're four and four is sort of in between cause you didn't get better, but let's say you're like three and five or cousins. Let's say it's last year's Vikings team where cousins is putting a good number, but you're not winning a lot of games.

Then do you play panics? If he's good enough, then maybe you do. But that actually proves my point because then you could theoretically trade cousins a place he would want to go to the next season and then you have your franchise guy there and it's no problem. You just move on to the next, you know, the next generation of this and you have a guy and that's it. You just, you've taken, you've taken the stable ground that Kirk cousins was standing on a guy who wanted the commitment. That's why he's no longer the Vikings quarterback. That ground now is very unstable.

Oh yeah. It's not about, I keep seeing here, see people say like, well, who cares about his feelings? It's not about feelings. He's got a hundred million reasons to be like, okay with all of this and figure he's just going to play well enough.

It's about the environment around everybody else. Kirk will be fine. Kirk reached out to Michael Pennix. They will get along fine. This is about what the dynamic is around the team, environmental factors.

That's what they're going to be challenged by. The other, the only other pick that I really sensed there was a lot of surprise about Ian from round one in terms of a name that went in round one was Ricky Piersol to the 49ers that obviously comes amidst conversations, teams inquiring about both Brandon Aiyuk and Deebo Samuel. Round one comes and goes, any possibility they could have gotten a two this year plus something else that comes and goes. What are the odds, if any, in your mind that Brandon Aiyuk and or Deebo Samuel are not members of the 49ers week one of 2024?

Week one of 2024, it looks like they both will be. Now look, crazy things can happen. Someone loses a star receiver. They decide to give the 49ers something of value for this year that they need. Theoretically, it's possible that he could get traded, but the main problem is always sort of the problem with a good team trading someone. It's like you can't replace him now. If the 49ers wanted to trade Deebo Samuel, say, or if the Bengals wanted to trade T Higgins, you can do it. You can get really good value.

It just won't help you right now. For the Bengals, I don't even ask about the Bengals, but for the Bengals and T Higgins, the Bengals are a team that could win the Super Bowl this year. The 49ers are a team that could win the Super Bowl. What makes sense for them to move on from someone really good if it hurts your chances to win the Super Bowl this year?

I think as it seems, I would say both these guys are probably coming back. The more calls I made, like I say at the beginning, I saw the Ricky Pierce I'll pick, which I think most people were surprised he went in the first round, but I trust Kyle Shanahan more than a lot of people on offensive skill, guys. A lot of people were surprised he went in the first round, but then it's like, obviously, this means they're trading whatever. The more calls I made, the more people kept going, well, yeah, but why would they trade him?

I'm like, well, that's a good point. Good football players, nothing that can help you right now. So you load up and then a year from now, when you're potentially moving on, they still want to get a deal done with Hyuk. Maybe you're moving on from one of them if that doesn't take place, but yeah, there's really no timestamp on this. The next timestamp, just so people understand, like the off season, nothing really happens that matters between now and sort of mini camp in mid June, which a bunch of teams don't even do anymore through the next timestamp is three months away. It's the last week of July when teams are reporting to training camp and if there's any contractual issues, whatever that are going to play out, that's really kind of the aiming point. After that, the next aiming point is the start of the season. So we've made it Ian, we've made it to the off season. Last thing before I let you get back to the driving range to fix whatever was going right today, anything else, any other surprises, any other things, you're there on TV for all seven rounds, we're there the entire week, anything else you find your brain still wondering about in terms of a surprise pick, a trade that didn't happen, anything else that's kind of sticking with you coming out of the draft?

Yeah. I think the main thing, I mean, there's so many things and what I'm going to do, and I know you do this too, is at some point I'm going to go over my notes and be like, what did I miss? What signals were there?

Who lied to me? And I don't think there was a lot of that, but there's a lot of lying by omission. I always look forward to that every year, but I think my biggest thing would be, were the Patriots ever really considering trading number three? And I know they took, I mean, I know the offers were real. I don't know if I was in their shoes, would I have taken any of them? But maybe I would have, like it was not, nothing was embarrassing, they're all real offers. No one would have fought to the Patriots for taking any of those offers.

Would you agree? It never sounded like, listen, they had the Giants and the Vikings, they both made offers. The Vikings were persistent all the way up until the Patriots were on the clock.

But no, I did not get the sense that there was ever a real consideration. The Patriots seem to be figuring, okay, we can get a haul, but then what? We still don't have a quarterback if we're going down, we're getting out of the range of the guys that we perceive to be the franchise quarterback. So yeah, we can pick up extra picks to build the roster, but next year's quarterback class based on, this isn't just the Patriots, but a lot of teams say it's not the best.

It's certainly not as deep as this one in terms of having six or seven guys that people thought potentially could be starters. So we're going to stand in, and if you don't give us everything, we're just going to make the pick. Right, and that would be my thing, is like how, they get the offers on the clock, and I know they got the Giants offer a little before, and the Vikings made another run on the clock. Were they ever like, all right, let's consider this? Or were they the whole time like, we're just curious what offers we're going to get, but Drake May is there and we have to take him? That's what I will probably never know, and I do believe there was like earnest interest and curiosity from the Patriots about what offers they get, but I never quite got the sense they were really close to actually doing anything besides picking Drake May.

We went from like, it was 100% the Bears were going to take the number one pick to like, I think it was 95% that the commanders were going to do, we're talking about like two months before the draft, to like the Patriots were truly I think 50-50, but the more teams called and the more teams inquired, the more they got the sense, you're probably going to have to go into that next bucket, and then in the end, three more guys come off the board by number 12, and then we had the longest drought in NFL draft history until the next quarterback was taken. Ian, thank you very much for the time, I'm sure I'll be, well you'll be probably bugging me about something later, so I'll talk to you. Sounds right. All right, bye, thanks for having me. That is NFL Network insider Ian Rappaport, you got something over there Brockman, or are you just waving a fly away? I was waving goodbye to Ian. I was just waving goodbye. Okay you seem to be clearing the air here, let's clear the air on some of those other quarterbacks, we just talked about one of them here, let's do that on the other side of this break, six quarterbacks in the first 12 picks, how did they get there?

How close were we to something else happening? We'll discuss it on the Rich Eisen Show. Well, I mean, and that's why I'm wondering why you would go by the name of Matty Ismack, that's why I'm, I mean that's a beer infused nickname, and it doesn't fit anymore, would you agree it doesn't fit anymore, Matt? Are you, is the natural coming back, or are we making a push for the natural here? No, I'm, well, I'm pointing out that certain nickname that you've had for a long time, just, it's. I like beer. Okay, right. I do like beer. Right.

And when it comes to it, though, you just, you're not slamming them back, right? Is what you're saying. No, I guess I'm drinking responsibly. Okay. Something that would be a natural light of some sort, Matt, are you, what are you drinking?

What are you drinking? It's been a long time. See, you keep making my point, why won't you take the natural from me, Matt? Just why won't you do it? I mean, how many times do I have to ask?

How many times do I have to ask? Just nobody else wants it. Are you aware I offered it to Stafford, your buddy? Is that right?

Yes, I did. He didn't take it either. Well, I mean, he. That's a no, Matt. Hold on a minute. Excuse me.

Hold on. He, I gave him full disclosure that it was a retread and that you had rejected it, because I know you guys talk. I know you guys, you guys are tight, right? He forgot to mention it to me the last time I saw him.

I can't believe that wasn't top of mind for him. OK, so just just on behalf of all my loved ones who are cringing right now, just tell me to move on, Matt. And I'll move on. Just tell me to move on. You got to move on. You got to move on. I love you. But you got to move on. Thank you, Matt. Thank you so much.

Even if I gave you a T-shirt or anything, all right, Matt, I can take a hint after nine years or so. Welcome back to the Rich Eisen Show radio network. I am sitting at the Rich Eisen Show desk furnished by Grainger with supplies and solutions for every industry. Grainger has the right product for you.

Call click Grainger dot com or just stop by. We're talking about the quarterbacks in the last segment with Ian Rappaport. And there's a lot of those untold stories about like the maneuverings that happen up there at the top of the draft when you have six quarterbacks go in the first 12 picks.

Certainly that's the case. I think that the Vikings process getting J.J. McCarthy is instructive of how complicated things can get in the draft. So Caleb Williams always going number one, right? The Bears certainly aren't going to trade Caleb Williams to Minnesota.

So now, you know, all right, cross one name off the board. Jayden Daniels, realistically, should probably always go into Washington. They weren't going to move off the pick.

When did that switch? Because it seemed like, you know, for a year it was Caleb and Drake May and then Jayden Daniels about halfway through last year was like maybe teams could get him at the end of the first round. And then he won the Heisman Trophy and it was like, oh, he's going in the top three. Yeah, I mean, it was Jayden Daniels.

Nobody had if you talk to scouts, nobody had him as a first round player, probably not a top three round player. But he did put on some weight. He put a lot of time in. He had this virtual reality program there that he put a ton of hours into a lot to really get better. And it's got to say it was it was legit. It was his work ethic.

He put it together. There was a lot of stuff that happened at Arizona State. He was not a popular guy.

His mom was not popular with that program. By the end, there were just all these different dynamics. He said he was coming back. Then the NCAA stuff came out and then all of a sudden he's transferring.

All that happened. But he flourished in the environment at LSU. And last year, I want to say at 40 touchdown passes, which was over double any other year in his career, he had the best possible season at the best possible time. And so Jayden Daniels, when you dug in now, they seriously considered other options here. I said it and I know a lot of commanders fans picked up on it a month or so ago at the league meeting that when I talked to people there, they believed the commanders would take potentially J.J. McCarthy. And they continued to explore J.J. McCarthy.

He had an unbelievable pro day at Michigan. The commanders were well represented there among a lot of other teams because Michigan had like 75 guys in this draft and Rich celebrated every single one of them on TV with the fight song. And so there was real consideration of that, which is why when they brought in that group of quarterbacks, including Panics and J.J. and Drake May and Jayden Daniels for the now infamous Topgolf trip, it made sense because they were really still working through exactly what they were going to do.

But people within the league always believed that with Cliff Kingsbury's offense, with just the dynamic abilities of Jay Daniels, he was probably going to cross those two off. Three is where it got interesting because the Patriots were listening. They were taking calls. They were willing to hear, OK, what what can we potentially get for this pick? And so the Vikings, as well as the Giants, were both involved in trying to trade up for the Vikings. The target would have been Drake May.

That would have been the guy just because the traits are there. They were high on J.J. McCarthy, too. They're high on Michael Pennix. But Drake May, just because of the height, weight, speed, the arm talent, all those things, if you can, the accuracy is a knock on Drake May. He's not naturally accurate.

So there's going to be a project there in terms of mechanical things and whatnot. But they wanted to target him and try to go up and get him. They hired Josh McCown to coach Drake May in high school.

They simply couldn't do it. They called. They were trying to make offers leading up to the draft. They were doing it again during draft week.

They put in one more Hail Mary on the clock with the Patriots. But at that point, New England already resolved we're taking Drake May. Now things get interesting because Arizona's there at four at fives. The Chargers, the Vikings, while they really, really like JJ McCarthy, who's now their quarterback, from a value perspective, they weren't going to be involved in trying to trade up for him. They simply weren't going to go not to four or to five to leapfrog the Giants.

They're making a calculated bet. The Giants aren't going to take him. So Arizona, which have been listening to offers, they stand in and they take Marvin Harrison Jr. The Chargers, who I think were open to moving down and they know that they've got a lot that they had to do, but they were probably realistically going to stand in and take Joe Walt, which they did. Now it's you're sweating it out if you're Minnesota on, all right, are the Giants, are we right? And they're not going to take JJ.

Sure enough. They take Malik neighbors after all the signals that have been out there that they were considering a quarterback there for where they're at. And once those top three guys are off the board, going with neighbors made a lot of sense at seven, you're not concerned about the Titans at seven. You know, they're not in the quarterback bucket eight, the Falcons surprise everybody.

I mean everybody. And I know it had been speculated upon, I know Rappaport who was just on the show had said it before the draft, Hey, don't be surprised, but it always felt to people in the league like a smokescreen like, yeah, you like Michael Pennix, but there's no way you're taking him at eight right after, uh, signing Kirk cousins to a hundred million dollar guaranteed deal. Well, the Falcons were having trade calls. They were looking into trading down, but this is the complicated part and every GM will tell you every week you say, Oh yeah, just trade, just trade out of the pick.

You need someone to do it and you need to get the right value. They end up standing in and realize about five minutes onto the clock, we're not able to get out of this pick. They take Michael Pennix. Now if you're the Vikings, you have to be sweating it out a little bit because they had JJ McCarthy and Michael Pennix pretty close on the board.

JJ was above Pennix, but they were both guys that the Vikings would have been comfortable taking it 11. Now one of those options is gone and the team on the clock at nine is the bears who are still not going to fray with you because you're within the division. So the bears clearly are not going to take a quarterback again, but they could have traded out.

They don't, they stand in, they take Roma Dunesay. Now at 10, the risk for the Vikings is, are the Broncos, are the Raiders, is somebody going to leapfrog us, take it JJ McCarthy, right or wrong. The Vikings are under the impression, Hey, somebody might be trying to trade to this pick. Let's just not take any chances. So they move up to 10 and get JJ McCarthy. But that's the high wire act pick by pick as this thing is playing out that you don't know really until the Patriots don't trade with you at three. You don't a hundred percent know how this is going out, but that's why you strategize and you have everything in place.

And now the next drama in Minnesota, so I was just Jefferson's contract will be, is it JJ or is it Sam Darnold as your week one starting quarterback? All right. It's been a fantastic show. Thank to you, to you guys for having me here. Thanks to everybody for watching and listening. Thank you to Jarvis Landry, Dan Murphy, Steve Ashburner, Ian Rappaport for all joining the show.

We had a lot tomorrow too. Tom Papa, comedian, big football fan. He's going to be sitting in that chair right there, looking forward to, uh, to talking with Tom Papa, chase Daniel, who does a great job of this quarterback breakdowns. He is going to be on the show as well as Mike Garofolo, my fellow NFL network insider. We shall return tomorrow on the rich eyes and show, which apparently ends in 20 seconds because I thought the L was 55 to 55, 20 McCarthy week one go. That's what you're going to leave me with the next 10 seconds. I think it depends on their reading, how ready they feel JJ McCarthy is.

I definitely wouldn't rule out JJ McCarthy being the quarterback. And that's the end of the show. The Rolling Stone music now podcast gets inside the biggest stories with Rolling Stone senior writer Brian Hyatt.

Now here is my conversation with Jacob Knoll. Your story is, is an amazing one. And obviously you lost your dad when you're only one year old. It was definitely a screwy way to grow up. I think that a lot of people never heard of who I am and then they see me joining this band and they must think this kid must have just been handed everything or nepotism kid is a gift that I have an opportunity to sing in such a big band, like my father and my uncle's band Sublime Rolling Stone music now, wherever you listen.
Whisper: medium.en / 2024-04-30 16:07:35 / 2024-04-30 16:32:18 / 25

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