Cornerbacks were a hot commodity in this year's flag football draft, and it's not difficult to see the reasons why--they're often the most polished all-around athletes a team has. With the versatility to mimic the opposing team's wideouts and the speed to keep pace as they bolt down the field, it's a tailor-made skillset for even the most demanding flag football GMs.
By the end of round four, Devin McCourty, Aqib Talib and even Ras-I Dowling are predictably off the board. Knowing that my colleagues have eagerly gambled with this year's rookie class earlier in the draft, I opted to do the same and snagged the best remaining cornerback on the roster--Rutgers' Logan Ryan.
I felt like the selection of Ryan represented incredible value as he draws a ludicrous amount of comparisons to this year's first overall pick, Devin McCourty. Aside from sharing the same alma mater, Ryan also cites McCourty as one of his biggest professional influences. Rutgers' HC even agreed, saying he hadn't seen a player like Ryan since DMC. His athleticism doesn't jump out at you quite like McCourty's, but he is a much more physical specimen that won't be afraid to go toe-to-toe with my opponents' bigger targets. Ryan's also incredibly solid in the run game just in case Alec, Greg or Rich decide to pull a fast one, and has the size (5'11", 191 lbs.) and speed (4.56 40) to play at a high level all across the field.
And the icing on the cake? Ryan started at both quarterback and cornerback in high school. Now, I'm not trying to insinuate that Ryan will take snaps away from all-time Tommy B., but that experience on offense will prove invaluable as Ryan projects to a WR when I have the ball. He'll understand the route tree and can use his physicality to remain open for a pass as we find ways to expeditiously advance down the field.
Ryan was a multiple All-Big East selection for one of the premier defenses in college football and has the offensive acumen when the time comes to make that all-important switch. I felt like Ryan fell criminally under the radar in this year's draft, and I was ecstatic when he fell and immediately filled one of my roster's biggest needs.
Alec and Greg may have captured the household names, but if you take a closer look at the team (that's T-E-A-M team) I've carefully assembled, you'll see how well the pieces truly fit. There's only two more rounds left, but I've managed to shore up a major weakness while remaining locked-and-loaded on both sides of the ball. Your move, Mr. Shane.