Sports News Without Access, Favor, Or Discretion

Anybody else have this problem? Every once in a while, it sounds like Mike Mayock's mic gives out. It sounds like an evil droid from Star Wars, or the serial killer on the cell phone from a bad horror movie, or something from Kid A. Getting on my nerves, but not enough to make me switch to ESPN.

And now for the pick ...

Pro Football Weekly ran a feature on Gholston in their draft magazine titled "V is for Virile." The editors must have held a "World's Creepiest Title" competition. The runners up were articles about Brandon Flowers ("F is for Fecund") and Aqib Talib ("T is for Testosterone-laden). Or, maybe the PFW gang was heavily influenced by V for Vendetta, a film that proved movies based on Alan Moore comics have one thing in common with Lions first-round picks: they usually blow goats.

Vernon is no doubt virile, but that's not why he's a high draft pick. He's an incredibly strong, intense pass rusher on the field and bright, dedicated young man off it. He's a versatile defender (V is for Versatile!) who can play end, linebacker, or any of those "just line up someplace and go kill the quarterback" positions that coaches like Eric Mangini are always inventing. He can vary his pass rush moves (V is for Variance!) and the athleticism to learn more.

The Jets need Gholston to be both a pass rusher and run defender; their defense finished last in Adjusted Line Yards (a Football Outsiders stat. Go check it out!). But they also needed help on offense. They experimented last year with the "missing man" formation on their offensive line: instead of replacing left guard Pete Kendall, they planted some tall ornamental grasses between Nick Mangold and D'Brickishaw Ferguson and hoped no-one would notice the easy access to Chad Pennington's ribcage. Offseason acquisitions Alan Faneca and Damien Woody filled the chasms on the offensive line, but the Jets still needed someone to run behind that rebuilt line. They really wanted McFadden. Their fans ruh-heally wanted McFadden. Well, that's what you get when you are standing in line behind Al Davis.


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