My meandering T-minus-three-days draftapalooza column (attaway to sell the column, King!) includes an eye-opener from Mike Mayock, predictions from the cognoscenti, separating fiction from fiction [cq] on Johnny Manziel,
I think I'm going to quit listening to Mike Mayock for a little while after his nonsensical Teddy Bridgewater comments. It sounds like Mayock needs to take a timeout and think about how he could watch hours of Bridgewater's tape and then completely change his mind based on a scripted workout. Also, JOHNNY MANZIEL! READ THIS COLUMN BECAUSE IT HAS "JOHNNY MANZIEL" WRITTEN IN IT!
Keep moving that needle, Peter.
and the hottest name in the draft.
Last week: "Everybody lies this time of year."
This week: "Let me tell you about the hottest name in the draft I learned about just this week!"
Until then, here’s what I know now:
Ten things, from 1 to 32.
From the top of the first round to the bottom, here’s what I’m hearing:
No. 1, Houston. The buzz about a trade-down or Khalil Mack to Houston instead of Jadeveon Clowney won’t die.
It mostly won't die because guys like Peter King and Ian Rappaport keeping repeating this rumor on Twitter and in print. It may be true, but this could also be the sort of rumor that gets legs because reporters keep reporting on it.
Nos. 2 and 13, St. Louis.
It wouldn't a MMQB discussing the NFL Draft if Peter didn't update us on the Rams and whether they are thinking of trading the pick or drafting a certain player with the #2 and #13 picks. The people need to know what the Rams will do! We know it will be brilliant, but just HOW brilliant must be shared prior to the draft!
One other piece of knowledge I got confirmed Sunday:
(Peter King calls Marvin Demoff) "Hey, has Snead met with Kingsbury about Manziel yet?"
(Marvin Demoff) "I'm pretty sure he has. They met recently."
(Peter King) "Thanks, I'm a super-important reporter, and don't worry, I won't reveal my source."
Rams GM Les Snead recently went to Texas Tech and met at length with coach Kliff Kingsbury—Manziel’s offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach at A&M in 2012—and came away thinking Manziel could adjust to life well as an NFL passer.
BREAKING NEWS: A college coach thinks one of the quarterbacks who his legacy will be partially be based upon will make a great NFL quarterback. I hope this doesn't shock you too much.
Does that mean the Rams will take Manziel if he’s there at 13? I am still dubious. But I can tell you the Rams like him a lot.
And this is a rumor I can believe...unless the Rams fed Peter this information in an effort to get another team to trade up to above the Rams spot at #13 in order for a player the Rams really want to fall to them at #13. So maybe I shouldn't believe it. It's not like Peter wouldn't play the fool for the Rams or just put out false information on behalf of the Rams.
No. 3, Jacksonville. A peer of GM David Caldwell said Sunday he knows a big Jag priority will be to play it safe with this pick. Sammy Watkins or Jake Matthews … quite safe.
I don't know if Sammy Watkins is playing it as safe as Peter wants to think. The history of sub-6'3" receivers drafted so high in the draft is quite mixed.
No. 8, Minnesota. The Vikings are more inclined than ever to get their quarterback out of a bottlenecked group of passers at No. 40 in the second round.
No. 11, Tennessee. Hadn’t heard quarterback and the Titans in round one until Sunday. Now I hear: corner one, quarterback two.
And since draft rumors this time of year are always completely true, I guess this should be considered a fact now. Titans fans, try to guess which quarterback your team is selecting in the second round and then pray it isn't Tom Savage.
No. 20, Arizona. We’ve been hearing a lot about quarterback here, and with the unpredictability of the QB market this year, it’s entirely possible the Cards could take a Derek Carr.
Every team is getting a quarterback this year according to Peter King. YOU get a quarterback! YOU get a quarterback! A quarterback for you! Everyone gets a quarterback!
No. 24, Cincinnati. Bengals like Teddy Bridgewater. They couldn’t. Could they?
We know you don't like Andy Dalton, Peter. We get it. I would absolutely not spend my first round pick on a quarterback (though I do love Teddy Bridgewater) if I were the Bengals. Also, there are only so many quarterbacks who should go in the first round, so there are going to be quite a few draft busts at the quarterback position if five QB's are off the board at the #24 pick.
Well, if you’re Cincinnati, and you’re seriously thinking about making Andy Dalton the center of the franchise and paying him $17 million a year, you might be asking the question about whether Dalton’s worth it.
I can understand this, but am still not sure this is a good move. I recognize Peter King's mission is to alert the world that Andy Dalton sucks in the playoffs (though it's funny, the fact Dalton leads his team to the playoffs, where he sucks, is a negative for Peter but he has no criticism for younger quarterbacks like Bradford/Stafford who can't get their team in the playoffs on a regular basis...it's like being in the playoffs and sucking is worse than not going to the playoffs at all), but I really don't think the Bengals should spend a first round pick on a quarterback.
No. 26, Cleveland. Time to get a quarterback, right? Not so fast. GM Ray Farmer has asked at least one team low in the round about trading back into the first round from Cleveland’s second-round slot. That leads me to think Cleveland wants to get ahead of Houston, another obvious quarterback hotspot, and get a passer with a third first-round pick.
And Cleveland, you may not get a quarterback with this pick, but you get a quarterback in the second round! A quarterback for you!
No. 32, Seattle. Think about the advantages of picking, saying, 35th instead of 32nd if you’re the Seahawks.
Thought about it. It totally depends on if there is a player at #32 that I really want.
Last year, the difference between the 32nd pick (safety Matt Elam) and 35th pick (tight end Zach Ertz) was $350,000 per year. Not a huge sum, but when you add a $1.4 million total difference between 32 and 35 to the fact that the Seahawks might be able to get a low-fourth-round pick for moving down three slots—and you remember how good Seattle’s been in the later rounds of drafts—you start to think John Schneider has to be thinking about this too.
I admittedly ain't so good with these picks and their value, but I do understand a fourth round pick this year is worth a third round pick next year, so I'm not sure the Browns would trade a 2015 4th round pick. The Browns fourth round pick (equivalent of a 3rd round pick next year) this year still seems a bit much to move back three picks, but what do I know?
I think the advantages of saving $1.4 million and adding a mid-round prospect outweigh the edge of the fifth-year option.
Which is easy to say right now until that player drafted at #35 is a stud and the Seahawks have to re-sign him in 2-3 more years for fear he will hit free agency rather than have the luxury of pushing back when they have to spend money on this player by exercising his fifth year option.
I asked Mike Mayock, Todd McShay, Mel Kiper and Gil Brandt, “When round one is over Thursday night, tell me a story line or two that will surprise people.”
Mike Mayock thinks Teddy Bridgewater falls entirely out of the draft. No team will draft Bridgewater after that terrible Pro Day he had. Hey, that's just Mayock's prediction based on extensive viewings of Bridgewater's film, followed by all that film being ignored because Bridgewater didn't play well on his Pro Day.
Kiper: “If I predict something that would shock me now, then it probably won’t be too shocking when it happens.
Translation: "Can you just give me my paycheck now? I have no idea what will happen. Just pay me and I will come up with some controversial talking points and then call it a day."
The real shock would be no quarterbacks going before 16, but I really don’t think that’ll happen.’’
It seems Peter King thinks five quarterbacks could go in the first 24 picks. So there's that.
McShay: “I’ve got [Ohio State linebacker] Ryan Shazier going ahead of [more noted Alabama linebacker] C.J. Mosley. I just updated my mock draft today. I’ve got Shazier going to Arizona at 20, Mosley to Green Bay at 21. Shazier is lean, but he can fly.’’
Wow, I'm surprised the fact Shazier can fly didn't cause him to shoot up boards earlier in the draft process. Being able to fly over the offensive linemen to get to the quarterback does seem like a big advantage. Perhaps it's BECAUSE Shazier is lean that helps him to fly? You know, like a bird has wings made of light bones and this helps them fly also.
Brandt: “I don’t think Teddy Bridgewater falls to the second round. I think Johnny Manziel will go in the top five, but not number one. And I think Khalil Mack gets picked ahead of Jadeveon Clowney.”
Mike Mayock says Jadeveon Clowney will go #1 overall, Mack will be fall to the Patriots, who will then trade Mack's rights to the Jaguars along with Tom Brady in exchange for 23 1st round picks and the rights to whichever team lands Teddy Bridgewater as an undrafted free agent...not the rights to Bridgewater, but the rights to the NFL TEAM that drafts Bridgewater. It's a real blockbuster trade. Either way, tune into NFL Network's draft coverage to hear Mayock say crazy things that seems completely out of character for him.
Mayock surprised me the other day by saying he thought Martin will come off the board “between nine and 13 … He’s too good. He’s too safe. He’s about as safe a player as there is in this draft.”
"Martin is the best player in the draft because he had a great Pro Day. On tape, he allowed 87 sacks this year, but boy, that Pro Day was fantastic!"
Mayock told me Sunday he saw a Notre Dame practice last summer in which Martin had to be shifted from his usual spot, left tackle, to guard because of an injury, and when he watched the tape of the practice, “It looked like he’d been playing guard for years.’’ I know one team in the top 10 seriously considering him.
And by "playing guard" Mayock means playing "point guard." He thinks Martin, if he declared for the NBA Draft, would be the best guard prospect in the draft. He makes Marcus Smart look like a hobo. Tune in to NFL Network on draft night to hear how many crazy-ass things Mike Mayock will say. Here come the ratings!
I’ll make a trade with you, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell: You put the draft back in April, and I’ll support a four-day draft.
Peter, your support for a four-day draft literally means nothing to Roger Goodell. He doesn't want/need your support to get this done.
It’s misleading to say Day 3 is four rounds. It’s actually five, if you include the nearly full round of compensatories. Those 156 picks come in a cascade, with little time for interpretation. Moving it to a fourth day, logically, would make Day 3 cover rounds four and five, with the final day wrapping up rounds six and seven—but with something added at the end.
Yes, because we need one more day for the ESPN draft analysts to spend 50% of the time pretending they know something in-depth about the guy just drafted in the sixth round and spending 50% of the time regurgitating their hot sports takes from the past three days about the guys drafted in the first and second rounds.
If 7.5 million people watch some portion of the NFL scouting combine, then some appreciable fraction of that will watch to see who has a shot to be the next Arian Foster or Kurt Warner.
There's this thing called "over saturation" that I'm not sure the NFL has ever heard of before. They may learn something about it in the coming years.
ESPN would drop off at the end of the seventh round, most likely, and the NFL could get ratings juice by putting two hours of Daniel Jeremiah and (if he still has a voice left) Mike Mayock on NFL Network,
Mike Mayock thinks there will be more All-Pro players selected in the 7th round of this year's draft than there will be All-Pro players selected in the 1st round of this year's draft. Come to NFL Network for more controversial and crazy statements from Mayock! Who knows what he will say?
In a pleasant way, the long-time long-form Sports Illustrated writer Gary Smith has always gone against the grain. No interest in social media,
One person's "against the grain" is another person's "stays behind the times." Gary Smith is great, but this needs to be mentioned.
Then Peter spends time saying what a great writer Gary Smith is, which may be a true statement, as well as asking Smith what his favorite story he (Smith, not Peter King, though it wouldn't shock me if Peter King asked Gary Smith what Smith's favorite story that Peter has written may be) has written would be. It's interesting, but it reminds me of a description Peter used for Smith in this part of MMQB...
But stories to be loved by the biggest fans and people who don’t care about sports at all. That’s his gift—to make everyone read stories about sports people voraciously.
MMQB is quickly becoming for people who don't necessarily care about reading about the NFL, but prefer to hear anecdotes and "life on the road" tales from Peter King. It's not gotten to the point MMQB is about anything but the NFL, but every new section Peter adds seems to be a section that turns the column in a direction that is less and less NFL-related.
“I’m sad to see some of these guys retiring. I’m not far behind.”
—Denver quarterback Peyton Manning, on the field at Yankee Stadium on Sunday. He was in New York to see friend Derek Jeter play for the last time, and he’ll stay today to tape the Letterman show. Jeter and Letterman have both announced plans to retire.
This is one of the "Quotes of the Week," a quote from Peyton Manning revealing that he is close to retiring, which is something most people already knew. It will be sad to see the best baseball player of Peter's lifetime AND the only quarterback to secretly be a massive corporate shill while covering it up with humor retiring within a few years of each other.
“We look at the draft as, in some respects, a luck-driven process. The more picks you have, the more chances you have to get a good player. When we look at teams that draft well, it’s not necessarily that they’re drafting better than anybody else. It seems to be that they have more picks. There’s definitely a correlation between the amount of picks and drafting good players.”
—Baltimore assistant GM Eric DeCosta, to Jenny Vrentas of The MMQB, in Vrentas’ enlightening story last week about the Ravens’ love of compensatory picks, and how they intentionally try to obtain more compensatory picks than other teams through a sort of planned obsolescence of their own veterans.
This is the same planned obsolescence of their veterans that led to the Ravens trading Anquan Boldin and led to the Ravens announcing difficult moves they would have to make after their Super Bowl winning season, which led to Peter King astoundingly taking this to mean the Ravens may not re-sign Joe Flacco.
I strongly recommend you give Vrentas’ story a read if you have not already.
Peter strongly recommends we read the story that is on the football website that he has started in connection with SI.com. So this is a completely unbiased recommendation that we need to read this story and is in no way recommended for any reason other than the fact it's a great story. I wrote a really great post the other day I would highly recommend you read. It's brilliant.
“He’s got the balls of a burglar.”
—Rich Gannon, former NFL quarterback and 2002 NFL MVP, to me, on Johnny Manziel, in my virtual roundtable with five quarterback experts dissecting Manziel this week.
Johnny Manziel! He gets pageviews, that's for sure, so be sure to mention him as often as possible. ESPN is turning Manziel into the new Tebow, while Peter King has mentioned Johnny Manziel in every MMQB for the past month, while really not highlighting or discussing any of the other quarterbacks in the draft in-depth. Peter takes the time to highlight a ridiculous comment made about Teddy Bridgewater or report on Tom Savage's rise up draft boards, but otherwise he tends to stick to the draft prospect that he knows gets viewers' eyes to MMQB.
Asked a veteran personnel man this week how many players his team had with “make-it’’ grades on his draft board, and he said 170, which is up about 25 players from a usual draft. Different teams I’m sure will have different ways of looking at this board; I’m just saying this draft probably has more players who would make an average NFL roster than most recent drafts.
Let's look at this paragraph and see the issues with exactly how Peter has reached this conclusion that this draft has more players who probably would make an average NFL roster than most recent drafts.
1. We have no idea which team this veteran personnel man works for. Is it the average NFL team? Is it a team that is rebuilding and therefore more players in the draft could stand a chance of making the roster? Is it the Seahawks, so players would have a smaller chance of making the roster?
2. How do we know this is up 25 players from a usual draft? Has Peter asked this same veteran personnel man every year and its averaged that usually 145 players have a "make-it" grade on his team's draft board?
3. Acknowledging different teams have different ways of looking at the board is great, but doesn't this mean the 170 players with a "make-it" grade could be on the high side? Or on the low side?
4. This is a sample size of one team, so it's nearly impossible to say 170 players with a "make-it" grade is representative of how other NFL teams feel. There's almost no concrete conclusion that can be drawn from the information Peter has conveyed. It could be representative of all other NFL teams or it could mean absolutely nothing.
5. How can Peter come to the conclusion this draft has more players who would make an average NFL roster than most recent drafts? We don't know if the team whose draft board has 170 players with a "make-it" grade is representative of the other NFL teams nor do we know the strength of the overall roster for the team that this veteran personnel man works for. I have to make this point twice. Peter reaches a conclusion based on the draft board for one NFL team.
This is another example of Peter King saying something like, "This draft is harder to figure out in terms of which quarterbacks are the best" when it may not entirely be true. He's become more and more prone to hyperbole and using this hyperbole to make a point. Peter is basically saying, "Well this one team has 170 players with a 'make-it' grade on their draft board so that is probably true for every team" and doesn't have the proof necessary to back this statement up.
The 170th pick is the 30th pick in the fifth round this year. San Francisco owns it. Here are the teams that, theoretically, could have the biggest injection of new life on their rosters this fall, the teams with the most picks among the top 170:
8: Cleveland*, Jacksonville, San Francisco.
7: New York Jets.
6: Atlanta, New Orleans, St. Louis, Baltimore, Houston, Detroit, Minnesota, Green Bay.
Again, this is assuming the 170 players figure is a correct figure and that all of the 170 players on this team's draft board are selected in the first 170 picks. It's entirely possible another team has a different draft board with different players that have "make-it" picks that aren't considered in the Top 170 players of the draft. It's very convoluted, but the bottom line is I don't think Peter is telling his readers very much other than which teams have the most picks out of the first 170 picks in the draft.
Mr. Starwood Preferred Member Travel Note of the Week
After years of being told, “You’ve got to go to Jazzfest,” I finally went to the New Orleans spring staple, the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival, on Saturday … to see Bruce Springsteen at the old lady of a racetrack there, The Fairgrounds.
Ah yes, Peter went to this festival to see Bruce Springsteen play. I know nothing about this festival, but is it like Coachella for Peter's generation?
"I have been told for years I should go to Coachella, so I finally went this year to hear U2 perform. I left after they performed, but boy I had a great experience!"
Springsteen was his usual indefatigable self. How does a 64-year-old man keep up that pace—not just for 2 hours and 35 minutes, but the pace of touring and keeping it so fun night after night? Coolest part of the show: He brought up John Fogerty—and Fogerty’s two sons to play maracas—and they combined on “Green River” and “Proud Mary.”
At the same time Springsteen played, you could have (and thousands did) seen elsewhere on the property Trey Songz, Foster the People, Better Than Ezra, Al Jarreau, Johnny Winter, The Head and the Heart (a Seattle-based Steve Gleason favorite) … or Dwayne Dopsie & the Zydeco Hellraisers.
Oh, so it isn't Coachella for Peter's generation. It has a couple of newer artists and older artists. Sounds like fun. It also sounds not NFL-related and goes back to my point that MMQB is becoming a column for people who like to read about Peter's stories about his life and travel, with a little NFL talk mixed in.
1. Saw Rob Ryan, the Saints’ rock star of a defensive coordinator, and NBC’s Brian Williams, a huge Springsteen fan, at the show. You see what Williams, the Yankee fan, is doing in this photo? He’s covering up the Red Sox logo on my shirt.
3. I visited Steve Gleason, who spent some time in the hospital this week with pneumonia. He’s feeling better, but his ALS is advancing inexorably. It’s such a cruel disease; muscles controlling his ability to swallow now don’t work. Cutest thing I saw all weekend
Jesus, Peter. How insensitive. ALS isn't cute at all.
: Gleason’s son Rivers sitting on his lap in his wheelchair, watching a Jimmy Kimmel skit on YouTube.
Oh, well I guess that is cute. Talk about a tough transition from one sentence to the other. One sentence is about the cruelty of ALS and the next sentence Peter is marveling at the cuteness (Not precociousness, not at all) of Gleason's son.
Adam Silver just banned Donald Sterling for life. As for the afterlife, I’ll take it from there.
— God (@TheTweetOfGod) April 29, 2014
I don’t know who that is, but I like the handle.
It's God, Peter. That is God Tweeting.
Ten Things I Think I Think
1. I think I’m in favor of the draft rotating sites. As Cowboys VP Stephen Jones said the other day, he’s in favor of the idea of putting it at the team’s stadium in Arlington.
How shocking that Stephen Jones suggested the draft be at his team's stadium in Arlington. I thought he was going to suggest the draft be held in the Superdome or anywhere, but alas, he wants the draft to be in his team's home stadium. I'm speechless at this amazing turn of events.
I'm not sure I have a preference on whether the draft gets moved or not, but my opinion could be greatly affected by whether I have to hear idiot Jets fans boo or cheer a pick as if they really know the player that was just selected. I also wish ESPN would not focus on these idiot Jets fans when it comes time for their team to pick and act like their opinion means anything other than a bunch of morons booing because they are too uneducated to know the player their team just chose.
4. I think the GM under the most pressure this week is Rick Spielman in Minnesota. He cannot pick the wrong quarterback if he wants any job security.
In fairness to Spielman, he doesn't HAVE to pick a quarterback, but the expectation the Vikings pick a quarterback seems to be there so I guess Spielman will end up choosing one whether he really feels that quarterback is the right guy or not.
5. I think one of the big questions anyone should have about Pitt quarterback Tom Savage was raised the other day by Gil Brandt. “It’ll be interesting to see how much of a factor it’ll be that Savage basically went 1,000 days without playing a game,’’ he said. “Did you know that?” Can’t say that I did. But I looked it up. And yes, it was 1,022 days between the last game Savage played at Rutgers in 2010 and the first game he played at Pitt in 2013.
Again, Savage's agent needs a raise. The fact Savage got invited to the draft and is even being considered in the first two rounds is a tribute to his agent doing work and getting Savage's name to climb the boards of some teams. Of course, this could all have been a smokescreen and Savage really wasn't climbing the board of any teams.
7. I think Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk is on to something. He reported Sunday that of the 32 first-round picks in 2011—all, of course, eligible now to talk new contracts with their teams—none, apparently, is close to a long-term extension. Not J.J. Watt, not Cam Newton.
I'm not sure Mike Florio is on to anything. I get that Peter loves his NBC corporate synergy though. Teams could pick up 5th year options just this past offseason and there is no rush to get a contract done since these players are essentially under another two year deal. Why would a team spend time trying to work out a contract extension in the offseason as opposed to preparing for the draft when they have two years to work out the contract extension? There's no rush.
There’s probably a logical reason—that teams don’t have to do anything now before the draft, and talks will heat up after the middle of May. But if they don’t, you can be sure players will press the collusion button.
They can press the collusion button all they want, but it means nothing. Again, these players are under two year deals now, and if a deal can't be worked out, then these players can be franchise-tagged. I'm pretty sure neither the Texans or the Panthers would play games with Watt and Newton for the sake of collusion. I could be wrong, but I don't think the fact no long-term deals have been worked out yet means much of anything at this point.
10. I think these are my non-football thoughts of the week:
a. Has V. Stiviano’s 15 minutes expired yet?
b. Could it? Quickly?
c. My favorite line from this sap’s interview with Barbara Walters: Asked about her relationship with Donald Sterling, Stiviano said, “I’m his right-hand arm man. I’m his best friend, his confidant, his silly rabbit.”
Why are these all not under the same heading for "a."? It's the same topic being discussed.
d. I wish I had a right-hand arm man. Any volunteers?
I always just assumed it was Brett Favre.
e. The NBA is not my forte, but night after night it is great drama. The other night, when the Damian Lillard three-pointer at the buzzer went in to win the Portland-Houston series, I screamed at the TV. Imagine what Portlandians did. Fantastic theater.
Has Peter ever started off a comment about the NBA with anything but a remark about how he doesn't like the NBA, doesn't watch the NBA and doesn't know anything about the NBA? He seems to watch a lot of NBA basketball and have strong opinions on the sport for a guy who doesn't like it.
h. Coffeenerdness: I could use a darker roast, Community Coffee, but you always make New Orleans a passable coffee stop on the road.
MAKE A DARKER ROAST COMMUNITY COFFEE, OR ELSE PETER KING WON'T GIVE YOU BUSINESS ONCE EVERY YEAR! YOU DON'T WANT TO END UP ON THE "MARRIOTT LIST" DO YOU?
k. The week’s definition of pathetic: Yankee fans incessantly booing Robinson Cano on his return to New York. They’d have all turned down three more guaranteed years for $65 million more than the Yankees offered. Right.
l. And don’t blame me for Red Sox fans booing Jacoby Ellsbury. That’s awful too—and, for the record, I was at his first game back at Fenway Park and stood and cheered. To each his own, but the rancor in both cases is stupid and misplaced.
If Peter expects us to not blame him for Red Sox fans booing Jacoby Ellsbury then why does he feel the need to call out Yankees fans in MMQB? It's clear from his experience at Fenway when Ellsbury returned that fans boo players for taking more money elsewhere, so why call out Yankees fans as if them booing Cano is anything more than an example of a team's fans booing an ex-player on that team who left for a big free agent contract?
n. And finally, just when you thought you couldn’t feel any older, Billy Joel turns 65 Friday.
Joel hasn't put an album of new, original pop songs in almost 20 years and has his first hit in the mid-70's. It makes you feel old, but it's not like Bruce Springsteen is young or anything. He's only a year younger than Joel. When still listening to artists you grew up with for the past almost forty years, it should be completely understood they are going to be old.
The Adieu Haiku
Three days and counting.
Our long national nightmare
is almost over.
Peter is clearly referring to Chris Berman heading up ESPN's draft coverage. Only a few more days until having to listen to the draft on mute or not watch ESPN is no longer a problem. Does anyone like Chris Berman? Other than the fact he has a mysterious amount of pull at ESPN, why does the network continue to give him work? It's not like he adds anything to draft coverage or the home run derby. He takes away more than he adds and those events would draw the ratings they do with or without Berman heading up the coverage for ESPN.