When was the last time they drafted an impact player? Wallace was a nice surprise. Well, I guess Pouncey was a pretty sweet pick, but he's on an island.
If Kevin Colbert were managing your financial portfolio, you'd be losing your ass. And he just got a promotion? People, I don't know why we'd expect things to get better any time soon.
His record is definitely spotty. Lots of teams in the NFL put an averagely competent pro offensive line on the field with a couple of 1st- and 2nd-round picks, and a bunch of late draft picks, FA castoffs, players they develop, and so forth. Yet we've been unable to pull this off. With Gilbert, we finally add another high-ish draft pick to the line, but before that, and of course before Pouncey, we had nothing but developmental (to put it kindly) players in front of our Franchise QB.
The failure of the line is partly horrible player evaluation and acquisition, and partly poor coaching and development. Anyone else notice, by the way, that Craig Urbik is starting for the Bills? I have no idea how well he's playing, but given that we have 1.5 starting-quality linemen right now, that seems pretty damning.
As for Colbert's picks, every GM will have their hits and misses, and we've done well considering we pick late in the 1st round every year for a decade now. The questions I have about Colbert's picks:
* He picked Mendenhall in an '08 draft loaded with RBs. This is 20/20 hindsight, but the number of quality backs taken after him is staggering: Chris Johnson, Matt Forte, Ray Rice, Jamaal Charles, Steve Slaton, and I think I'm missing another decent guy or two.
* We've drafted DEs two of the last three years, and while this makes sense as our D-Line is aging, we've stocked a position for depth, basically. In today's NFL, this is a bit of a luxury, and generally, if your first-rounders aren't hitting the field pretty soon, you're sacrificing talent elsewhere. That's what's happened to us.
* Given the above, it's a bit of a mystery why we extended Aaron Smith. Do we see Hood as a replacement for Hampton?