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2011 NFL Draft: Value Charts And Realistic Values

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Last week, a couple of sites put together draft value charts looking at where players were worth drafting. Pro Football Weekly put together a chart based on feedback from various NFL teams and:

[P]rojects the league value of players, pinpointing a specific area where players likely will be drafted. It is important to note that these values do not reflect where PFW thinks the players should be drafted or what type of pros they will become; that is better reflected by PFW's grades in its top 10 prospects at each position.

Wes Bunting of National Football Post put together a sort of similar looking chart, but his was a look at where he would feel comfortable selecting various prospects during the first three rounds. I wanted to reference it for folks to check out when they get a chance, but for the purposes of this post it's not really of much significance.

In the PFW chart, the quarterbacks are fairly spread out. Cam Newton and Blaine Gabbert find themselves at the top of the first round and Jake Locker is in the middle of the first round. Andy Dalton is at the top of the second round, with Cristian Ponder and Ryan Mallett in the middle of the second round. Finally, Colin Kaepernick is listed in the top of the third round and Ricky Stanzi is in the middle of the third round.

The placement of Kaepernick is interesting given the thought by some that he's worked his way into the first round. This isn't surprising though as it really only takes one team to grab a guy earlier than he's projected. Even if 31 teams value a player in the third round, it only takes one team to value that player higher and next thing you know, he's gone.

Based on PFW's league-wide assessment, three quarterbacks would definitely go in the first round, with Andy Dalton as a possible fourth. Given the limited number of quarterbacks after that and the number of teams with moderate to serious QB concerns, one has to wonder how quickly a team becomes willing to reach for any one of these later round QBs. It will be interesting to see how the 49ers handle that situation as they look for yet another answer at QB.