Brilliant thought, Andrew. Really smart. I agree totally. Entering the combine, Rice was in the late-second-round realm, and I think he moved up some because he ran a 4.44 40-yard dash, which was about a tenth of a second faster than scouts thought he’d run. The criticism of him was that he wasn’t fast enough to run past corners, but I think he addressed that at the combine.
I don’t know why I read Peter King - I disagree with him on nearly everything. But I was reading this, and wow, am I glad I did. First, King goes on to say that Matt Ryan will be a good quarterback. I saw him play a few times, and I’ll tell you he’s a mediocre quarterback who played for an overrated BC team in a conference where nearly all the traditionally good teams had off years. I expect he’ll be a tolerable NFL quarterback if he gets on a team with a decent line. Anyway, what’s really ridiculous is how King thinks that Rutgers’ Ray Rice has silenced all critics by running the 40 a tenth of a second faster than everyone thought he would. Does he really think that an extra tenth of a second of speed is going to make that much difference? What’s the margin of error on the timekeeping at the combine? I didn’t see Rice play, although people have told me he’s absurd. Successful college running backs are not nearly as hit-or-miss as quarterbacks, and I expect Rice will do well in the NFL. Of course, that’s all ignoring the strategy that I’d take in the NFL draft, which is to trade away my first round (And maybe second round) pick unless I could get a game-changing player, pick up a dozen offensive and defensive linemen in the third round, and go from there.