Atlanta Hawks: Attention on centers

Can Haywood really be had for the mid-level?

Can Haywood really be had for the mid-level?

The Hawks say they are looking to free agency instead of the draft for frontcourt help. At this point it’s not clear if that need supersedes their desire for a starting-caliber point guard (in case the Jeff Teague thing doesn’t yield immediate fruits) or wing player (in case J.J. bolts in free agency). This is especially the case since the returning frontcourt (Al, Josh, and Zaza) might be a stronger group than the returning backcourt (Bibby, Jamal, Marvin and Teague).

But since the draft doesn’t look like it will yield a big man who can contribute now at pick No. 24, and Jason Collins and Randolph Morris both are free agents, the Hawks will need a center one way or the other. Let’s assume they won’t go the vet-minimum route this time and will actually use their mid-level exception to seek a starting-caliber center (neither assumption is safe, but let’s just say both are plausible). What kind of center could the Hawks expect to acquire in free agency this summer?

First, let me say that trying to predict the market for free agents this summer is tricky. With so many teams potentially having so much cap space (and presumably a desire to spend the money) so-so players might find a strong market for their services. Add in the fact that the focus here is free-agent centers in a league where “quality big man” is usually near the top of the list of wants for most teams in the league, and it makes things even more unpredictable.

(To illustrate that point, see this quote from Magic GM Otis Smith explaining why he used the full mid-level exception last year to re-sign Marcin Gortat, a backup center of modest accomplishment: “Like I said before, we’re in a league that probably only has 10 centers. We just happen to have two. It’s a luxury.”)

But we can look at what happened with free agent centers in years past to get some kind of feel for what the market might dictate. Then I’ll look at some of the free-agent centers for a clue as to what the Hawks might reasonably find available for the mid-level exception.

In 2008, centers Emeka Okafor and Andrew Bogut got the big money, with each signing five-year deals averaging $12 million . Bogut signed an extension before the final year of his rookie contract. The Bobcats signed Okafor to the deal after it had extended a one-year qualifying offer for $7.1 million and after DeSagna Diop turned down their contract starting at the mid-level.

Diop signed a comparable deal with Dallas, so he is the kind of center the full mid-level got you in 2008. But the market was different back then. There were only four or five teams with enough salary-cap space to add players with significant salaries, compared with eight or nine that could do so this summer. So if a salary starting at $5.6 million got you Diop back then, a salary starting at $5.73 million (Larry Coon’s estimate for the mid-level in 2010-11) may not get you even that much now.

Last summer the Cavs signed Anderson Varejao to a deal worth a bit more than the mid-level with five years guaranteed. The Magic matched the offer sheet Gortat signed with Dallas for the full mid-level. And Boston added Rasheed Wallace using their full mid-level exception (yeah, I know, ‘Sheed ain’t exactly a banger in the post but he’s savvy enough to play center as he showed against Dwight Howard). Once again the market was different in 2009, with not so many teams with significant cap space, but it’s a starting point.

That gives us a list of free-agent, mid-level centers (or in Varejao’s case, near it) over the last two years that includes Diop, Varejao, Gortat and Wallace. Looking at how they compared statistically in 2009-10, it seems the Celtics overpayed for ‘Sheed, but then again what they really paid for is what he’s doing now in the playoffs.

So with those four players as the baseline, which 2010 NBA free-agent centers compare as far as their production while also taking their age into account? After crunching the numbers and considering the market, my (subjective) list includes Brendan Haywood, Shaquille O’Neal, Joel Przybilla, Brad Miller and Darko Milicic. Now, like I said, perhaps interest from with salary-cap space drives up the price of these players, or maybe teams they aren’t even worth the full mid-level at this point, but I’m putting them out there for comparison and discussion (hey, it’s June 1 and things are quiet).

The best (realistic) option among the group might be Haywood, who made $6 million this season. He will be 31 in November, which makes him about three years older than Varejao was when he got his deal from Cleveland. So even if he finds his market value inflated he may not be able to attract more than the mid-level, particularly if he wants three years or more.

Haywood and Varejao have remarkably similar statistical profiles. Haywood has a comparable player efficiency rating, rebounding percentage, true shooting percentage and is a better shot-blocker. Varejao is a more effective passer and gets more steals.

Haywood is better than Diop, who turns 29 next January (though he should have plenty of tread left with an average of 14.3 minutes in 536 games). Przybilla (who has a $7.4 million player option for 2009-10) turns 31 before next season; he had a good year in 2008-09 but wasn’t productive during an injury-marred season in 2009-10.

Miller, 34, fell off this season. Shaq actually had a pretty efficient year but age, injury and motivation are concerns so his days of big money are over. Darko ($7.5 million) is still only 24-years old if you can believe that but he’s still mostly about size and potential and isn’t really a willing defender or rebounder.

Haywood, by the way, said he wants to re-sign with the Mavericks. Apparently, watching old and injured Erick Dampier start over him didn’t sour him on his experience in Dallas. The Mavs, who hold Haywood’s Bird Rights, apparently are high on him. Coach Rick Carlisle to NBA.com:

“It’s very important to get Haywood re-signed. I really liked what he did for us. He’s a guy that had an impact on both ends. At 30 years old, he’s relatively young for a center. Centers tend to play for a very long time…Brendan is very athletic. He’s got a good feel for the game. He’s got a good knowledge of the game.”

Some other potential free-agent centers who likely won’t get the full mid-level if they hit the market: Channing Frye ($2.08 million player option for 2010-11), Zydrunas Ilgauskas, Nenad Krstic ($5.4 million player option for 2010-11), Chris Wilcox ($3 million player option for 2010-11), Ben Wallace, and Theo Ratliff.

A full list of free agents by position is available at Hoopsworld.com.

– All appears calm on the coaching search front with ASG’s Michael Gearon Jr. away on business until next week. Mark Jackson interviewed over the weekend but he still looks to be a long shot due to his lack of coaching experience.

MC

397 comments Add your comment

HawkKingBibby

June 1st, 2010
3:05 pm

HawkKingBibby

June 1st, 2010
3:13 pm

There is a peception out there that Sund may want Casey while Gearon likes Avery who Sund feels wants some of Sunds power either now or in the near future. Is this just speculation?

HawkKingBibby

June 1st, 2010
3:18 pm

As bad as the Hawks could use a center I dont think Brenda is the guy.

Reggie

June 1st, 2010
3:22 pm

Any Chance the Hawks could trade for a Bigman like say Andris Biedrins from Golden State or Samuel Dalembert from the 76ers?

Michael Cunningham

June 1st, 2010
3:31 pm

@HawkKingBibby: from what i know, that’s mostly speculation. remember, Gearon Jr. gives Sund autonomy so they wouldn’t bring in a guy Sund doesn’t want. apparently the power thing hasn’t come up much if at all with the Hawks and Avery and the Hawks wouldn’t be receptive if it did.

Big Ray

June 1st, 2010
3:31 pm

So all is quiet on the coaching segment, eh? Oh joy-gasm….

If there is one name I’d not mind picking up from that entire group, considering both age and productivity, it’s Nenad Krstic. If he remains healthy. Maybe. Otherwise, you’re picking up older guys who you really need if you’re making a big push in the playoffs. If Joe goes, we probably aren’t doing that.

I don’t have a problem with Dalembert or Biedrins. However, you only get either guy in trade if you’re giving up Al or Josh. Same ol’, same ol’…

ryan

June 1st, 2010
3:32 pm

I like Brad Miller and Big Z .

Big Ray

June 1st, 2010
3:33 pm

MC ,

I think the ASG are more sold on Sund than they were Knight. Of course, that’s speculation, but something about the situation makes me think this is so.

I sure hope we can sign a better pivot than we have in the past, and it would be nice to get this new head coach thing on the road already. But that’s just me and my impatient self.

Michael Cunningham

June 1st, 2010
3:41 pm

@Reggie: they could swing a sign-and-trade if they are over the cap when the deal happens. they could also clear as much as $8.1 million in cap space to make a trade without the exception. when looking at trades, you first have to determine if it will work under the restrictions of the CBA. then you have to keep in mind the goals of each team. Biedrins has three years and $27 million left so if GS were looking to dump a long-term contract he might be in play for teams willing to send a guy with an expiring deal and/or a young, promising player–these tend to be the most valuable chips. Dalembert has an expiring contract in 2010-11 which means he could be dealt but Philly could probably get some nice pieces in return.

HawkKingBibby

June 1st, 2010
3:41 pm

MC have you or anyone you know tried to contact JJ to see what he knows or get his take on this power summit rumor?

HawkKingBibby

June 1st, 2010
3:43 pm

Im not trying to ignore the big man talk but it seems our 1st step this offseason cant even be made until we know whether JJ is coming back. If JJ waits around to see what goes down with Lebron Wade etc this could hold up alot of the Hawks plans.

Michael Cunningham

June 1st, 2010
3:43 pm

@ Big Ray: my conversations with Gearon Jr. bear that out. he seems to have complete trust in Sund to do the right thing. that doesn’t mean he won’t play devil’s advocate if he’s not totally sold on something but it seems he believes in Sund.

Michael Cunningham

June 1st, 2010
3:45 pm

@HawkKingBibby: i’ve tried to get JJ. i don’t know him very well since i just got here but from what i hear he’s notoriously tough to reach in the offseason, even for his teammates. i’m assuming we will hear from him or his people once it gets closer to July 1.

Reggie

June 1st, 2010
3:56 pm

If Josh Childress comes back from Greece; how much trade value do you think he would have around the league? I think the Hawks can get a good piece for him

Reggie

June 1st, 2010
3:57 pm

is it even possible that Josh Childress could play for the Hawks next season

Mike is back

June 1st, 2010
3:57 pm

MC, thanks for the update, if we can keep Morris at a bargain basement price…he might be worth holding on to. Maybe a new coach can at lease get out of RandMo…what we are getting out of Zaza.

Big Ray, ditto on Nenad Krstic…he was very effective in the post, before all the injuries. I would also consider bring Theo Ratliff back…if we could not get Haywood or Krtic.

The Solution

June 1st, 2010
4:23 pm

What about gasol from memphis…I say look for some sort of trade. he is 25 and gets 14 points and 9 rebounds and 1.6 blocks. trade trade smith marvin or chill or some sort of package deal to get him. who ever is left out of the three can play the 3 or resign jj and move him to the 3 and start crawford @ the 2.

jroc

June 1st, 2010
4:27 pm

Wilcox would be a good pick up for the hawks he is more active and tougher than Haywood.Really MC are there any true centers in the nba.All the guys over seven feet are injury prone and are stiffs.Dwight has No post moves still a very raw talent for a true center.I think the hawks would get by with just having an acive 6′10 guy that can get a rebound or get a put back here or there and a few blocks here or there.

lewis

June 1st, 2010
4:27 pm

Lebron told Larry King cleveland has the edge.
Lebron is not leaving cleveland.
Joe is leaving Atlanta.

I was talking to a buddy of mine about it, telling him that our best bet would be to get Hinrich and Taj for JJ, trade Taj + Zaza for M. Gasol.

But he’s telling me that Gasol is a UFA, possible player option for next year?

Memphis is almost cheaper than the hawks, i don’t know that they’ll match a solid offer.

Ramon

June 1st, 2010
4:27 pm

I would be willing to give Haywood a nice size chunk of the mid-level exception depending on how well the physical went. At the same time I would be on the phone begging teams to take Bibby in a trade, and if it took packaging the newly crowned 6th man of the year with him, I’d be all for that also!

Can anyone tell me how good Felton is on pressuring the ball up the court? I think going forward Felton and Teague would be a nice tandem at the point guard spot that wouldn’t cost too much, and still be effective.

ajw

June 1st, 2010
4:29 pm

Brad Miller would fit in nicely with the Hawks. We need a good passer in the post. Plus he has a nice elbow shot to open up for Josh and Al on offense. He also has a tough attitude which pisses off opponents.

cdog

June 1st, 2010
4:30 pm

wishful thinking on everyone’s part about big men.the fact of the matter, you’re still dealing with rick sund,who’s cherishes money and control over winning a championship.instead of blaming mike woodson last year, had he did what winning GMs like danny ainge and laker owners would have done and bring in the neccessary pieces, the hawks would have still be playing now instead of losing in 4 games to orlando which he then made woodson the scpegoat when he was the reason for the teams failures.

Fundamentals

June 1st, 2010
4:44 pm

Teams like the Spurs prove year after year to have an eye for talent. We need to employ the best scouts to scour summer leagues and camps for some rising talent either from overseas, the D-League or the draft. We don’t have $$ to sign anyone and we all know anyone isn’t really available. It’s risky, but something we must investigate persistently.

We all gotta realize JJ is going to hold out till he knows our coach and he knows his options. It’ll probably be like Josh where we wait all summer and then get him on a reasonable deal. We don’t want to overbid like we did with Bibby and Marvin. Hopefully Marvin will flourish under a new coach. Hopefully JJ and JChill will want to be here as well.

Felton would be a good assett to pick up to partner with Teague. We need competition to spur growth, but we also need folks to be rewarded for their efforts.

I think Morris is worth another shot if the new coach will use him. Collins would’ve been funtional if used in the rotation. Using like we did on such a limited basis was unfair to him last year. ZaZa’s efforts will be based on team chemistry. We gelled too early last year and fell apart when it mattered.

cp

June 1st, 2010
4:47 pm

cdig im now convinced that you’re related to Woodson. You defend the dude more than Samuel and northcyde combined. Dude he is gone get over it. If Woodson was this great coach as you seem to make it then why aren’t teams knocking down his door trying to hire him? You know why? He was exposed in the playoffs yet you and only a few on here don’t seem to understand that.

ntrigue

June 1st, 2010
4:49 pm

Have you heard if Steve Smith is getting consideration? If /mark Jackson is getting some consideration why not Steve Smith MC?

Fundamentals

June 1st, 2010
4:55 pm

ntrigue – called for that for months now. Smitty is the next opportunity to sign “Doc”. We slighted Doc in the past, see what he did? I think Smitty can put it together here if givent the chance. Great guy, well respected, deserving of a chance.

Who would have a better handle on how to get guys like Joe and Jamal the ball in the right spots? Solid player, solid man. AMEN to hiring Smitty!

Rufus1

June 1st, 2010
4:59 pm

I want a cheap Center!!!

DJ Mbenga, Ian Mahinmi, Etan Thomas or Fabricio Oberto…We just need tall bodies.

The Hawks have enough talent offensively, we just need size and deepth..I would prefer Ian Mahinmi and DJ Mbenga, because they both make about 1mil a year.

Bring Sergiy Gladyr the 6′5″ PG/SG and let him battle Teague for the PG spot and sign Wes Mathews or Kyle Korver with the Midlevel exception(If JJ leaves)

P.S I respect ASG’s business model, we can’t all be Billionaires

P.S JJ is coming back…the best place for him is ATL. Only New York would offer him a max deal and he values his privacy too much to live in New York..

Rufus1

June 1st, 2010
5:13 pm

Hinrich, Deng and Turgalou SUCK…They all make more money than Marvin and are NO BETTER. Some of you think they are better, but you need to listen to what their cities say about them…it will sound very familiar to what we say about Marvin.

The team regret the contracts they gave those players, so why would we want them. When they talk about the core of the the Bulls, they say ROSE and NOAH. In Toronto, they Booed Turgalou…Otis Smith wasn’t fooled.

tyger

June 1st, 2010
5:23 pm

1. Hawks need to trade up for Wesley Johnson, Syracuse – whole package.
2. Shaq would help us tremendously, we don’t need the old Shaq, we just need Shaq.
3. Randolph Morris is the best young center available. Hawks are absolute fools to lose him.
4. Channing Frye would be a helluva stretch 4/3 not a center however. Does make us longer.
5. Who signed Mike Bibby for 3yrs./$18M???

ILL-logical

June 1st, 2010
5:32 pm

Thank you MC for the analysis and research for this blog entry,it establishes some much needed perspective on the coming year and the challenges the Hawks face. What is even more critical, in my opinion, is context: what are the teams goals for the next season?
Are they trying to win a championship or is the goal the “flacid
make some noise in the playoffs”? Establishing a clear and measurable goal allows for accountability for the fans, management and the players. The fans and the players both will have a clearer understanding of the free agent / draft decisions made by management if the context of their selection is clearly stated upfront.

ntrigue

June 1st, 2010
5:40 pm

Fundamentalz- I dont know how we ever let Doc get away from us just doesnt make any sense! Steve Smith would be a great coach and when listening to him speak he has an high basketball iq higher than Mark Jackson and all the other basketball analists

terrell

June 1st, 2010
5:42 pm

I guarantee you that they’ll be a big man taken after #24 that will contribute as a rookie. Hawks just suck at scouting. I could find a better big than Zaza after #24 my damn self. MC, you sound as if you agree with that perception.

terrell

June 1st, 2010
5:44 pm

Forget Haywood. Bring in Kurt Thomas. We need some toughness.

O'Brien

June 1st, 2010
5:51 pm

I think the trade market should be explored for ZaZa. His contract is not bad, and he is still young. But given our frontcourt, we need a more physical (backup) center.

In free agency, my pick would be Brad Miller. Although he made $12.5 mil last year, he is 34 years old, and his play is declining. So maybe he is available for the mid-level exception (although you wonder if Chicago wants him back).

Haywood would be my second choice, but I don’t see money being an object for Mark Cuban, so I think Haywood goes back to Dallas. I also like Nenad Kristic, but I am concerned about is injuries (3 of the last 4 seasons).

To round out our big man depth, two of the bigs I like are DJ Mbenga, and Johan Petro (or we can bring RandMo back). They would not be in the regular rotation, but when somebody gets in foul trouble, or if they need to fill in for a few games, I think one of these 2 guys would work. And they can probably be had for less than $1.5 mil per year.

terrell

June 1st, 2010
5:54 pm

I’d take Przybilla over Haywood.

Jody

June 1st, 2010
5:59 pm

Hopefully, the Hawks came away with the right conclusions from the Boston-Orlando series. You’ve got to be able to defend and rebound at a high level to win in the post season and having legitimate size inside (AT ALL TIMES) goes a long way in accomplishing that. Simply looking to acquire a 10 to 15 minute backup won’t cut it.

As far as the coaching situation is concerned, the ASG should be very leery of allowing the GM to create a situation where there are no effective checks and balances to his personnel decisions from the coach (essentially the coach is a yes man). If you hire Avery, I think you’d avoid that as he has no reason to be a yes man for the GM and would challenge the Hawks to make good player personnel decisions basketball wise and not just from a dollar and cents standpoint.

Daniel

June 1st, 2010
6:03 pm

tyger- you have lost all credibility. “Randolph Morris is the best young center available”?!?!!!- wait, you were being sarcastic right?

Ill- what would your goal for next season be? This is going to be a difficult off season to assess. Particularly with the Celtics in the championship. We owned them during the season. Is this team close and just needs better leadership and match ups? I think so, but it would be impossible to make the goal to win a championship when we were eliminated in historic fashion during the second round.

MC- We always could use more front court help, and I actually like Pryzbilla (coming off injury and down year, might be cheaper) Ultimately, we NEED a playmaker at point. I like Teague, but like everyone else including the orginization, we have no idea if he is the real deal or not.

Daniel

June 1st, 2010
6:06 pm

I think bringing up Steve Smih’s name is very ineresting. I too wonder what his coaching aspirations are? I have not even heard if he is interested in coaching.

Prison Mike

June 1st, 2010
6:07 pm

With all this talk about big men, what are they going to do with zaza. I can’t imagine zaza getting much if any playing time if haywood signs.
If avery is signed, let’s say I don’t feel he would be very keen on zaza at all.

cp

June 1st, 2010
6:09 pm

I just saw an interview Teague did on Hawks.com. He said he was going to go home for a week then come back and work out this summer. Said that he had a lot of work to do. Nice to see the kid has a strong work ethic. I hope he is in the gym with Price and shooting a lot of jumpers.

Theo Ratliff

June 1st, 2010
6:12 pm

How long have I been playing in the NBA? Well, I was playing when the “Chocolate Thunder, Rim-Shaking, Earth Quaking dunk happened. And, how many NBA teams have I played for? How many NBA teams are there?

Jody

June 1st, 2010
6:12 pm

Also, if you note, this blog article wasn’t exactly talking about seeking a backup center. Combined with the comments Horford’s made in recent weeks about wanting to move to power forward, I think this is very interesting.

Rod from College Park

June 1st, 2010
6:15 pm

Rufus1,

“Hinrich, Deng and Turgalou SUCK…They all make more money than Marvin and are NO BETTER. Some of you think they are better, but you need to listen to what their cities say about them…it will sound very familiar to what we say about Marvin.”

They are actually all better than Marvin. Ask yourself this question, if Turk was on our team this year, would teams be able to leave him wide opeen like they did Marvin. Would you rather Marvin wide open for that corner 3 or Turk? Sometimes, you can’t look at numbers, you have to understand basketball a little. If the Hawks actually looked at numbers, do you think we would have traded for Jamal this year. Turk in Atlanta this year, barring injury would have been just as effective as he was last year in Orlando, because he could have run that point forward like he did with Orlando, and no team in their right mind would leave him open like they do Marvin. This in turn would lead to easier shots for Joe, Bibby….. He also can post smaller guys, (something Marvin can’t do) and score on a regular basis out of the post. Sometimes when guys are in bad situations, believe it or not, they have no desire to perform to their best ability. Jamal Crawford is the greatest example of that this year.

Grandad

June 1st, 2010
6:23 pm

DJ Mbenga made less than a mil this yr. [perfect fit with us]

Haywood is nice but not a cent over 6 mil.[Cuban takes him]

If Joe leaves & we get Hinrich in S&T then,
that’s not the worst thing that’s ever happened.

Someone asked about Felton…
Lowry better & less expensive + great tag team with Teaguer.
[Teague the starter - of course] Lowry plays his tail off !

Najeh Davenpoop

June 1st, 2010
6:28 pm

“After crunching the numbers and considering the market, my (subjective) list includes Brendan Haywood, Shaquille O’Neal, Joel Przybilla, Brad Miller and Darko Milicic.”

I’m pretty sure I read somewhere that Darko wants to go back to Europe. Miller has never been a great defender, even in his prime, and it seems to me the Hawks should be looking defense-first when looking for their big man. Shaq’s front-running history tells me he’s going to follow LeBron or Wade somewhere.

This leaves Haywood and Przybilla, who are both good defenders and would both fill the Hawks’ need at center. The Mavs and Haywood probably have mutual interest because Erick Dampier’s contract expires next year, meaning even if Haywood re-ups there long term, he’s probably not going to be a backup for too long; knowing Mark Cuban’s history, he will be more than willing to overpay Haywood to keep him. The Blazers would have an interest in keeping Przybilla, even coming off the injury and even with Marcus Camby on the roster, because of Oden’s injury issues, but I’m guessing they won’t break the bank to keep him either.

So although Haywood would be a better option for the Hawks, Przybilla is probably a more likely and more affordable target.

I’m all for addressing needs through free agency and targeting the best player available in the first round of the draft, where contracts are guaranteed, but I hope that doesn’t mean the Hawks are ruling out the possibility of picking a player at a need position if they are actually worth being picked at that spot, like Dexter Pittman will be in the 2nd round.

JSS

June 1st, 2010
6:37 pm

My goodness, just bring Siler’s back for the last center spot… He played very well in China… My grace, he can be had cheaply and he bangs!

Najeh Davenpoop

June 1st, 2010
6:37 pm

“i’ve tried to get JJ. i don’t know him very well since i just got here but from what i hear he’s notoriously tough to reach in the offseason, even for his teammates.”

So he’s tough to reach for his teammates, but LeBron and Wade don’t seem to have a problem coordinating with him for their little free agent summit… nice to know where his priorities are.

Grandad

June 1st, 2010
6:47 pm

Najeh:

According to DraftExpress Larry Sanders has dropped
to 25. He’s a [4]/[5] not a behemoth ‘BUT’ a natural
shotblocker with terrific measurables. If he’s in the
neighborhood it would be a gift. We deserve some good
fortune. I’ll come back with w-span, etc. later.

Clyde

June 1st, 2010
7:20 pm

Star Jackson tranfers from Alabama to Georgia State. Time to get my Panther season tickets.

Najeh Davenpoop

June 1st, 2010
7:25 pm

Larry Sanders looks like a nice player, but really he reminds me of a taller Josh Smith. The Hawks have plenty of athleticism, versatility, and talent with their big men; what they lack is bulk. Sanders is a good looking player, but he won’t solve that problem.

The Hawks need a strong guy in the 260-290 pound range who won’t give up position on the block. Even if that guy is only 6′8″ or 6′9″ it’s no big deal, especially if he has a long wingspan; better to have a guy who gives up a few inches to Dwight Howard than a guy who gives up 30-40 pounds. Daniel Orton, Derrick Caracter, and Dexter Pittman fit that physical profile in the draft (not implying all of them will actually pan out), but if the Hawks think a free agent with that physical profile might get them more value, that’s fine too.

The draft should be used to accumulate the best talent regardless of position. If the best player available is a guy who fills a need, like Orton, or a guy who duplicates an existing player, like Sanders, I’m cool with picking him; even a guy who duplicates existing talent can at least be used as a trade chip later. But the big man problem is not going to be solved by a guy like Sanders.