More proof that Eric Decosta is a freaking genius

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The post-draft show is always one of my favorite nights of
the year, probably because I love the NFL Draft so much as a fan.

From the minute I met Phil Savage at the very first
“Liars’ Luncheon” in 1996, I realized the significance of the draft
and why every team in the league puts such a premium on scouts, watching tape
and picking the right player on that third Saturday of April.

All I need to say is this: Jonathan Ogden vs. Lawrence

I remember the day Ogden got drafted, April 19. 1996 and the
crowd reaction at the Sheraton downtown — the first “headquarters”
for a draft day party, which we were the official “flagship” for —
wasn’t dissimilar to what the Dolphins and Cam Cameron heard from the Miami
faithful on Saturday when Ted Ginn Jr. was selected.

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It was VERY hard to explain to novice fans how you could
justify a left tackle vs. the best running back in college football at

But that pick won Baltimore a championship! (Not to mention
taking Ray Lewis over RB Leeland McElroy!)

So, this past weekend, when Ozzie Newsome and Eric Decosta
set out to pick through the 2007 board, I’m always wondering what decisions,
options, choices they have and what processes they go through to find the
players they do. It’s honestly all I think about on Draft Day, how such and
such a move is going to affect the purple!

And the track record of the Ravens’ staff and the second-day
stars and late picks the team has unearthed over the dozen drafts they’ve done,
lead an inquisitive guy like me to a bunch of questions.

Last night at Piv’s Pub, Decosta sat down with me and gave
me all of the answers.

I hope you tune the show in today (9 a.m., 1 p.m. and 5 p.m.)
and enjoy the stories of the 2007 NFL Draft. If you miss it, we will do our
best to get it on the site ASAP.

One side note: About six years ago, Phil Savage (who was the
man of the hour in the NFL with his big Brady Quinn on-the-clock
blockbuster…you can read about it here in Peter King’s MMMQ) came to me and
said he knew whom the team was taking the day before the draft.

I told him to write it down, put it in a sealed envelope,
and we’d unearth it on Monday to see if he was right.

Of course, he WAS right.

Since then, I’ve encouraged the scouts and various coaches
to write their “best guess” on a sheet of paper to be hermetically
sealed and opened on the Monday Night Live Post-Draft Show with us.

Decosta was SO confident on Friday about being right, that
he told me he’d write down BOTH of the names of who he would get on Saturday
evening. I then had all of my “expert guessers” do the same.

And you know what?

Last night, we had 10 envelopes with everyone from Pat
Moriarty (the Ravens’ cap-ologist) to Rex Ryan filling out “guesses.”

Seven of the 10 correctly had Ben Grubbs coming to the
Ravens on pick No. 29 (only a few had Joe Staley written down). And all but one
person got at least one of the two names correctly.

As for Decosta?

I opened his envelope LAST…and lo and behold, he had Ben
Grubbs at No. 29 and Yamon Figurs at No. 61.

Yeah, I’d say Decosta is pretty damned good!

Listen for yourself anytime today on!

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