When your team’s futures on the clock, they are pressured to make the pick that will pan out, the word bust will always be associated with names from Alex Smith to Akili Smith. However I am not here to focus on the busts, I am here to focus on the steals, the best value picks. People picked in the later rounds or being passed up on. I will be focusing on guys from the past ten years.
Brady picked in the 6th round in the 2000 draft, has done it all. He has won two Super Bowl MVPs and has won the big one 3 times. Brady has been to four Pro Bowls, Brady has done so much and has went from the Quarterback who ran the slowest forty to the face of the franchise to a sure lock for the Hall of Fame.
Brady has about 27,000 career passing yards and will be one of the few that throws for 200 TDs and under 100 interceptions. Brady is the king of draft steals, not only of this decade, but arguably of all time.
Steve Smith was picked 74th overall in the third round out of Utah, Smith always was not highly drafted because he is a small guy, at 5'9" 185 pounds, Smith has become one of the top receivers and is a threat to score every time he touches the ball.
Smith has reached the 1,000 yard mark five times in his eight years. Smith is a four time Pro Bowler and is coming off a great year where he had 1,421 receiving yards and six touchdowns despite missing the first two games.
Michael Turner was picked 154th overall in the fifth round in 2004. Turner sat out behind L.T in San Diego and in the previous off season he finally found a home in Atlanta.
Turner was second in the NFL in rushing only behind Adrian Peterson; Turner had 1,699 rushing yards with 16 touchdowns. Turner provided a strong running support for the young Matt Ryan. Turner was a 2008 Pro Bowler and All Pro.
Colston drafted in the seventh round 252 overall of 06 draft, four picks short of being the 2006 Mr. Irrelevant, Colston has emerged as one of the top receivers, a lot like Brandon Marshall listed at 6-4, 225 pounds, Colston is a big receiver who causes a lot of matchup problems for opposing corners, Colston is not a receiver who only catches the short stuff, remember he did have an 86 yard touchdown in 06.
Rarely do you see a seventh round pick start in week one and become the teams number one receiver racking up 70 catches and 1,038 yards in his rookie season in which he deserved the 2006 rookie of the year award that went to Vince Young, who looks like a one shot wonder.
Colston only had 760 yards and is coming off a disappointing 2008 season, expect this day two draft steal to have a bounce back year in 2009.
Picked in the 4th round 98th overall, Marshall has had back to back 100 catch 1000 yard seasons and is emerged as one of the top receivers in the NFL. Marshall at 6'4" creates so much matchup problems for opposing corners. Great possession receiver and can also stretch the field. Marshall was a 2008 Pro Bowler and will be a great target for Kyle Orton in Denver.
Brandon Jacobs was picked 110th overall in the fourth round. Jacobs is a big physical back who like contact. Jacobs had a great 2008 season; however he was snubbed out of the Pro Bowl.
Despite missing a few games, Jacobs rushed for 1089 yards and 15 touchdowns, nicknamed earth when he was part of the Giants trio of Giants running backs.
Jacobs was given a long term contract in the offseason and has become the feature back for the Giants, there were some questions about Jacobs when Tiki Barber retired, Jacobs handled the load in 2007 and rushed for 1000 yards.
Asante Samuel was picked in the 4th round 120th overall, however Samuel has won 2 Super Bowls with the Patriots, Samuel has been one of the top cornerbacks, Samuel has also shown up in the postseason. Samuel is a two time Pro Bowler, a one time All Pro and at 28 is very much in his prime.
Jared Allen was picked in the fourth round 126th overall, has become a sack artist playing on the best defensive line in football. Allen is coming off a Pro Bowl year in which he racked up 14.5 sacks. Allen was involved in the deal in which where Minnesota sent draft picks to Kansas City for Allen, and Allen has absolutely panned out. Allen is also 27 and in his prime.
Picked in the 4th round 109 overall, Barber is like a horse when running with the ball, one of the toughest backs in the NFL to bring down. Although he has failed to rack up a 1,000 yard season, this was his first year becoming the feature back for the Dallas Cowboys. However in '06 and '07 he combined for 24 TDs and 4.8 yards per carry. The best finisher in the game, when it is the fourth quarter and you need to ice out the clock, get that critical 3rd down conversion, he’s your guy.
Housh was another seventh rounder, 204 overall, who flourished and made a trip to the Pro Bowl. Housh played his college ball at Oregon State alongside Chad Ocho Cinco, Ocho Cinco went on to become a second round pick, Ocho Cinco went on to have a great career too. Both catching passes from Carson Palmer, they used to be a deadly tandem when they were both together.
Housh, used to be more known for his last name. The great thing about a guy with that kind of last name is that he can back it up on the field. Housh has racked up at least 90 catches and 900 yards each of the last few years. He has also racked up at least 900 yards each of the last five years.
Housh has been rewarded with a big contract in Seattle and will be Matt Hasselbeck’s go to guy on 3rd down. His yards per catch was under 10 yards last year because Ryan Fitzpatrick is a very weak armed quarterback so expect him to have a bounce back year.