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Former NFL Player Rocky Boiman on Johnny Manziel, Jadeveon Clowney, and No. 1 Pick

The NFL Draft was moved back two weeks this year. Back when Rocky Boiman was waiting for his name to be called in 2002, it was two days. Now, as a former NFL player, and radio analyst in Cincinnati, he tells how the NFL is genius in pushing back the draft.

“It’s fine and a play by the NFL. The sports world from May, June, and July is big for MLB. It affects minicamps, but it’s not a big deal. (NFL) got it right again.”

On the draft itself, Boiman thinks it’s going to be wild, as the first round starts Thursday, rounds two and three on Friday, and four through seven conclude on Saturday.

“It’s going to be as interesting as I can remember. Dynamic, teams needs quarterbacks, but also don’t want to settle on a quarterback. No (Andrew) Luck, and no sure fire guy. Talk about smart talent vs. need. (Houston) Texans don’t need a quarterback, but it’s a hard thing to gauge. Top heavy in quarterback and offensive lineman. Pass on a quarterback, and then lower teams like the (Cincinnati) Bengals could have one fall. In the 20-32 range, it’s a changed dynamic. Then, there’s also three superstar offensive lineman (Greg Robinson, Jake Matthews, and Taylor Lewan). Taking a quarterback high, and then they (offensive lineman) could fall. It’s going to be outstanding drama and television.”

If the Texans do decide to pass on a quarterback, South Carolina’s Jadeveon Clowney is likely to be the top pick, and Boiman adds that he would take him.

“Take Clowney. I know (Texans) like (Blake) Bortles with Bill O’Brien’s connection to George O’Leary and Central Florida, but I can’t see it. I’m not sold on Manziel. Be safe if you can, and take a quarterback later or trade.”

While Clowney may be the best option, Boiman also thinks there’s some questions with the  South Carolina standout.

“He’s got the ability and is a rare once in a generation player. But in every interview he is asked, ‘do you deserved to be the No. 1 pick?’ He says, ‘Yeah, I’m going to be the No.1 pick.’ Shouldn’t he answer the question like, ‘I’m going to be the best player for the next ten years? I don’t feel like he has the love and passion when he talks. I hate to  characterize Clowney. Seems like his answers are pried, and is not versatile with the media.”

Of course, if the Texans don’t pick a quarterback or Clowney, Buffalo’s Khalil Mack is a viable selection. Choosing between Clowney or Mack may come down to preference or who fits better in Romeo Crennel’s new 3-4 defensive scheme.

As far as the quarterbacks, Manziel could be the first signal caller off the board. After winning the Heisman Trophy his redshirt freshman season, beating Alabama on the road, and winning two bowl games, he could be what an NFL franchise is looking for. Boiman offers his take on the Aggies redshirt sophomore.

“It depends on the team, but Manziel won’t get past Jacksonville. Jacksonville has been mentioned to move to Los Angeles and London and they need an injection of excitement. Owner wants to go global. Even if he’s not a franchise quarterback for 10 years, he adds that fun, excitement, and drama. It depends on if you are in love with him with being a top franchise quarterback. I mean, I don’t love his size, 5’11, and about 210 pounds. Quarterbacks are big guys, are strong and can withstand hits. (Manziel) is interpretive, can create, and I’d like to see some structure.”

Bortles, Louisville’s Teddy Bridgewater, and Fresno State’s Derek Carr are the other top quarterbacks that may be chosen in the first, or high second round.

*For any comments, or story ideas, email Sam at and follow him on Twitter @samtastad.

Clemson v South Carolina
(Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)






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