Smart Links – Kellen Moore, Louis CK, George Whitfield, Kevin Sumlin, WR NFL Draft Rankings – 4/13/2012

Gruden camp with one of my favorite college quarterbacks ever, Kellen Moore:

I don’t know what, if any, kind of pro Moore will make. I think arm strength in is general overrated, but Moore’s lack of arm strength does concern me. To me arm strength is not a matter of more is always better — JaMarcus Russell is proof of that — but you do need a threshold level of arm strength necessary for each level. And it’s not about chucking deep bombs; it’s about the ability to throw the ball on a line 25, 30 or even 35 yards from the far hash to the sideline. But Gruden spends a lot of time in this piece on Moore’s uncanny anticipation and that focus is exactly right: If Moore can succeed — indeed the reason he has been so successful so far — it will be because he uses his smarts, accuracy, and anticipation to overcome some of his limitations. As Gruden points out in the video too, Boise State’s multifarious offense is just awesome to watch, but it’s also not easy, making Moore well prepared for an NFL offense — if he can physically perform.

(Also gotta love Moore drawing up two classic pass plays, Sluggo Seam and Spacing.)

- Final column by Rick Cleveland.

- The rise of George Whitfield as the premiere QB guru, including mentor to Cam Newton and Andrew Luck.

- Pre-Snap Read fires up for 2012, with a look at the fighting Bob Davies.

- Behind the scenes with Kevin Sumlin.

- Ultimate Fighting and Math.

- Matt Waldman on this year’s wide receiver NFL draft class. I don’t know if there is a single, super dominant wide receiver in this year’s draft class like a Calvin Johnson or Randy Moss type, but I think there is a solid group of guys who will be consistent NFL contributors for a long time: I expect Justin Blackmon, Kendall Wright, Mohammed Sanu, Reuben Randle, Juron Criner, Marvin McNutt, Joe Adams and Ryan Broyles to all make NFL rosters and hang around with fairly consistent production for the next five to eight years, with at least a couple turning into pro bowl receivers.

After the jump, Mike Leach operates a crane because . . . why not? (H/t cougcenter.)

- Louis CK’s morality.

- Anti-The Art of Fielding. (I have not read the book; just thought it was an interesting review.)

  • http://twitter.com/Ugarles charles

    “Louis CK” is a weird bit of SEO. Did I miss the part where you mention him in the post?

  • smartfootball

    Am a little annoyed that you thought it was some kind of SEO tactic. I simply forgot to link to an article about him that I meant to link to. It’s there now, from the latest Atlantic. The chance of getting some kind of hit because someone searched for Louis CK is slim to zero.

  • John Johnson

    Regarding Kellen Moore, I think he can have a very successful NFL career if he gets a coach who plays to his strengths instead of trying to force him into some supposed “ideal QB”. Living here in Idaho I’ve seen a huge amount of Boise St football and the thing that impresses me so much about Kellen Moore are some of the things that Gruden touched on in the video. His uncanny anticipation and his incredible accuracy are two of them. The third, and this one is hard to quantify, is how unflappably cool he is in all situations. Whether that can transfer to the NFL level is tough to determine, but if I was a team in need of a QB, or with a starter that’s a bit lackluster I’d take a flier on Moore late in the 2nd or early in the 3rd.

  • Tyler Smith

    As someone who works in SEO, I would certainly like to hear a quantified argument for the optimization benefit of including a link to the CK morality bit. Besides, Chris seems to usually only go 50-50 on directly relevant football links on these types of posts; the rest of the content on these has always been very consistent with the CK post (finance, economics, philosophy, culture, law, etc.). And for what it’s worth, one can never have enough Louis C.K.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/6LCDOZXYSCLQUIGUYZONRWHZIE 4.0 Point Stance

    SI excerpted 4 or 5 pages of “The Art of Fielding” a few months ago, which was more than enough for me. The excerpt was so laboriously overwritten  that it was like the author was hitting you with a sledgehammer to make sure you know that this isn’t just any old book, This Is Art. I can’t imagine making it through 512 pages of that.

    SI more recently excerpted Grisham’s new book, which is also baseball-themed. The problem with that one is that the actual baseball scenes were so wildly unrealistic it was impossible for me to suspend disbelief. But then Grisham’s plots have always been faintly ridiculous; the Pelican Brief isn’t exactly an accurate representation of a day in the life of the average Tulane 3L. At least Grisham keeps his sentences short.

    But then I’m just a guy who somehow happened on this website while searching for “Louis CK no huddle air raid.”

  • http://twitter.com/CoachCP CoachCP

    Even if it was a weird bit of “SEO”, SEO isn’t inherrently bad as many people think it is, but that’s clearly not an SEO tactic in this case.  In it’s roots, good SEO is also good organizational practice for blogging, and should clean and clarify  your user experience. I’m assuming Chris simply forgot it (as he illustrated below).

    Just having Louis CK in the title tag/url is only one part of SEO.  No one with content based on Louis CK would link to this story. And why would he want to rank for Louis CK? If Chris wants to rank for anything, it’s probably football related materials.  Driving a non-targeted audience to this blog would do Chris no good in the long run as those people would bounce off the site, likely hurting SmartFootball’s reputation in the Google Algorithm (quick bounce backs = not well optimized content). These additional stories are just pieces he thinks are worth reading (and in this case, a piece he forgot to add) that may be worthwhile for his current audience (football coaches, people interested in football strategy, etc…)

  • http://twitter.com/Ugarles charles

    Oh, I was just kidding. It was obvious that you dropped a link. I’m sorry about that.

  • Greg Smith

    So you don’t like Michael Floyd as an NFL receiver?

  • Sumedh Joshi

    Sometimes Chris, I enjoy reading your non-sports links more than your sports links.  I’m not sure what this says about my sports knowledge (probably nothing very charitable). 

    Loved the Atlantic review.  Another favorite review of mine is Matt Cartmill’s review of Donna Haraway’s (at least) misinformed critique of science.  Worth a look, for schaudenfraude alone: 

    http://www.improbable.com/2011/11/29/an-epic-unfavorable-book-review-primate-visions/

  • smartfootball

    I’m sanguine. I don’t think he’ll be bad but it seems likely that he will be drafted too high. Has a chance to develop into a top notch guy, given his physical tools. 

  • http://www.facebook.com/adam.zahovay Zahovay Ádám

     Gotta love the face of Gruden, when Moore explains how they can get all the shifts and motions together! :) :)

  • NoHuddleAirRaidForTheWin

    I really wish that one or several of the QBs coming through this thing would man up and tell Gruden off…Unless this whole thing is scripted and for entertainment value (I am sure it is to at least some degree), what is the point of trying to scare these rookies and make them uncomfortable? I really hate the whole system of trying to beat rookies into submission from the time they declare for the draft.  It ranges from this type of garbage to the hazing system that is in place. That is why I had a ton of respect, and still do, for Dez Bryant. As he said, he came there to play football, not carry someone’s pads; if that is anyone’s job besides Roy Williams’ job, it should be the equipment people. With that said, it is Roy Williams’ job, he can carry his own pads. I think that some of it is an insecurity thing from the players perspective; they see the new guys coming in to steal their jobs and they want to do everything they can to hold it off and keep the rookies submissive. That stuff is dumb and it’s a complete joke. Instead of beating them down and trying to “put them in their place”, why not welcome them with open arms and try to build them up and be positive and confident from day 1, especially from the coaches’ perspective ? You can still be stern and get the point across without being an absolute jerk.

  • Michael Schuttke

    Overall, I agree…everyone is different though.  Some guys really respond to a “softer” approach, others need a guy to get them a bit on edge to perform well.  In that, while Gruden certainly comes off as a bit bombastic and in love with the sound of his own voice, I think the guy is very intelligent.  I really question so much what the QB’s on these shows “get out of it” besides exposure but I enjoy the shows in that it’s a lot more technical oriented than most everyday fans will ever get to in their typical evening ESPN broadcast. I also kind of want to see someone tell Gruden off but this is really all about promotion.  Like it or not, if these guys are smart, they sit there and take it rather than be labeled as “not able to receive hard coaching.”

    Hazing as a whole though I am 100% on with you there. I see almost no good from players treating rookies, freshman, etc. as 2nd-class citizens.  Every man matters and there is nothing gained from demeaning a teammate. Some of that stuff can be funny, admittedly, but the risk v. reward is just not worth it to me.

  • NoHuddleAirRaidForTheWin

    Good points, like you said it’s mostly about self-promotion for the QBs.

  • Eric Hoffpauir

    On hazing, some of it is really tribal initiation. Rookies have to endure trials to prove that they belong, that they love their team and teammates enough to suffer humiliation and pain, yet still stick with the team. 

    Even there, it seems like it would fall short though. Players go through all sorts of physical and mental trials as part of the team even in early workouts. And I doubt that newly acquired free agents and traded players have to go through hazing rituals as well. 

  • smartfootball

    One thing I’ve noticed this season is that the QBs are much better “coached” for their responses, how to act, etc. It is all about exposure for them, building their brand and hopefully improving their draft stock (if possible). Brock Osweiler in particular came across as a guy whose agent had sat him down for multiple sessions to prepare for the Gruden camp thing. Of course he has more to gain from it than most.

    I think this has also caused the spontaneity of the pieces to go down. Though keep in mind it’s an edited show; they film a bunch of stuff and then piece it together to show the usual narrative (build up, a critical play or technique, etc). 

    On the whole I take a beggers can’t be choosers. I have a feeling that a lot of the material on the cutting room floor is more interesting than what makes it on screen, but I don’t watch much TV coverage of football but I do enjoy watching these.

  • Duh9

    Are you talking about the National Football League or Little League baseball? You think Gruden is being an “absolute jerk”…..are you serious???? He jokes around with QBs about throwing interceptions and tries to give them advice about situations they will see in the NFL. It is significantly easy-going and Gruden floods every guy with compliments…in fact I’d argue he’s excessive with the flattery.   Also, NFL locker rooms police themselves and it’s very important for team chemistry. Dez Bryant more than likely was acting like a complete arrogant POS so he had to be put in his place….if not, the locker room implodes, games lost. You weep for Dez Bryant, yet he’s out fishing on a 10 million dollar yacht right now, it’s not a big deal. Anyways, I don’t care that much, but your extraordinary level of self-righteousness forced me into action.

  • Duh9

    If this were 20 years ago Kellen Moore = Joe Montana. As a scout, I’d ask the question how well would Joe Montana play in the “modern” NFL?  My answer would be yes, but only in a strict WCO system  in good weather….therefore, 6th round grade…..considering his extraordinary production along with the other countless intangibles everybody talks about, I’d take him in the 5th round in a second.