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War Machine

AFC Central Draft Thoughts and Review

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With all due respect, now that we got the NFC out of the way it's time to get to the big boy conference.  The SEC of the HSRL if you will.  We will start with the Central which has had the highest win % of any division of the AFC since inception and is home to your world champion Pittsburgh Steelers!   :).  While the division has been significantly top heavy, some coaching changes are sure to bring some balance back.  




1.  Cincinnati Bengals (Diaz)


The Bengals have been one of the most consistent franchises in the HSRL.  With seasons of 9 and 10 wins, the Queen City has been treated to some good solid Tecmo.  However, it just hasn’t been good enough to make the playoffs.   The fans have been showing signs of restlessness as 2nd place finishes are not what they expected when coach Diaz was hired.  While his job seems to be safe, the seat continues to get warmer especially when their hated rival Steelers hoisted the Lombardi trophy this past season.


Draft Thoughts:  The Bengals who are known for their ground and pound, have taken a different approach to their draft by taking a solid QB-WR combo in Ken Anderson and the speedy Paul Warfield.  This combo can be lethal in the hands of an all around talent like Diaz so their division wisely drafted some DB talent to try and offset the potent attack.  Adding in the 50MS Boozer at RB will give opposing defenses a decent threat of a run making the Bengals offense unpredictable and tough to stop.  As expected, by going with offense in the first 4 out of 5 rounds, the defense takes a bit of hit particularly in the secondary.  The Bengals will be led by LB stud Jack Ham and for a while there, it seemed like Ham was all they would have.  But they were able to salvage their secondary woes with the nice pickup of Clancy Williams (44RP-56INT) in round 6. 


Favorite pick:  DB Williams/Phillips (Round 6).  Normally a 44RP-56INT DB is nothing to write home about, but when you forego DB the first 5 rounds and still end up with a Louis Oliver/Jarvis Williams (minus the HP) like clone in Clancy Williams, you gotta be loving life.  Tremendous value especially with the way Diaz roster was constructed up to that point.  I’m convinced he will continue to own me. 


Least favorite:  Ken Anderson (Round 1):  A draft master like Diaz makes it difficult to pin point a mistake.  So i'm going with the pick that surprised me the most.  I was a little surprised by the pick mainly because i expected one of the last super stud DB's to be taken (Wilson).  With lack of elite QB talent in this league, he was the best remaining and the offense that was built around Anderson will thrive.  



2.  Houston Oilers (JFagundes)

The Oilers franchise has gone through some turmoil over the years in HSRL.  With their 3rd coach in 3 years, the Oilers ownership hopes they found some stability in Super Bowl runner up coach JFagundes.  Fagundes brings a solid coaching resume to the table but he steps into a division that has had some of the best teams in HSRL since inception of this fine league.  The Central just got tougher and Fagundes is the reason why, so there will be some great battles in the division which should add further intrigue at the top.


Draft Thoughts:  JFag has taken a similar draft approach to his successful ’71 season.  While he doesn’t have anybody that can approach the great ’71 Lem Barney, Billy Thompson provides a very good alternative and will be the anchor of the defense.  Adding a 44RP LB to a stud DL unit should help vs the run while Thompson takes care of the pass.  Offensively, the Oilers should score points (56MS RB and 50-63WR) and it will be up to how he uses the 44-44 QB to be drafted later.  A very well balanced team assembled that will be ready for battle.


Favorite pick:  Floyd Little (Round 2): I struggled to pick a favorite since all of his picks were solid throughout.  I was hoping to pick Floyd for the extra BC that Calvin Hill lacks. 


Least favorite:  Rich Caster (Round 3).  A solid pick but in looking at the draft, there were tons of 50MS WT’s out there through the 7th round.   The HP and 63REC is nice though. 



3.  Pittsburgh Steelers (War Machine)

The reigning Super Bowl champion Steelers have been the HSRL Cinderella the first two seasons.  With coach War Machine new to the tecmo scene, expectations were low as he had the ability to fly under the radar.  Well that all changed after the surprising Super Bowl victory in the ’71 season as well as a recent Super Bowl title in ATA.  Despite back to back division titles and a Super Bowl ring, the Steelers have heard the whispers and grumblings in the Pittsburgh media about their lack of success vs the heated rival Bengals.  To ease the concerns of the fans and media, some victories vs the Bengals will go a long way.


Draft Thoughts:  The Steelers tried to mimic the draft strategy of their Super Bowl winning ’71 season and were pretty successful for the most part.  The draft was built around the run game pairing a 56MS RB (huge downgrade from Leroy Kelly) with a road grading OL to pave the way.  Defensively they have some nice pieces in the secondary, LB, and a solid DL which should give some flexibility against certain playbooks.  While the draft was solid, nothing stands out as exceptional.  With a tougher schedule this year and a weaker team, the clock may strike midnight on War Machine’s Steelers.


Favorite pick:  QB Dan Darragh (Round 7):  Anybody reading this is thinking who cares about this scrub but this was more about draft timing.  I wanted one of the 19MS-44PC QB’s and almost pulled the trigger one round earlier.  I took a gamble and let them go and it payed off for me when Darragh was left.  He still stinks though.


Least favorite:  Steelers OL (Round 4):  With an influx of young OL added to the player pool, the OL groupings were a little deeper than normal.  I will admit this was a homer pick as they were pretty awesome for me last season.  I probably should’ve passed and taken one of the middle of the road units later. 



4.  Cleveland Browns (Player121x)

When HSRL was created, the Browns tried to make a splash by hiring a big name coach in TSBGOD.  But from the beginning, it was a marriage from hell as TSB struggled for wins and eventually the two parted ways.  The Browns have learned their lesson and took a different approach in their coaching hire by going for an up and coming coach to lead their franchise in player121x.  Some pundits have questioned Player121x’s decision to join one of the top divisions and the superior conference, but the cajones displayed by the coach has Browns fans optimistic.  It will be a difficult task in this division but a good draft explained below can help him find success.


Draft Thoughts:  WOW what a draft.  This was probably my favorite draft as he was able to get super stud 56RP-75INT DB Larry Wilson, one of the last 56MS RB’s in round 2, the last 56MS-63REC WR in rd 3, and to top it all off he got the last 50RP LB with a 44RP buddy.  He mustve known something when he shockingly chose the 15th slot instead of taking Staubach #1.  Excellent draft but now he has to translate that to wins.


Favorite pick:  Several fantastic values fell to Player121 as the draft played out perfectly for him.  My favorite was having the last 50RP LB with a solid 44RP partner available in middle of the 4th.


Least favorite:  Lawrence McCutcheon (Round 5).  This is really nitpicking since getting a 50MS RB in round 5 is solid and I really cant complain.  Already with a 56MS RB though, McCutcheon may not do much unless the plan is to move one to receiver.  Im grasping for straws here and struggling to make an argument.  I really loved players draft!

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I can't remember if it was your first or second playoff game, but your OL totally chewed up your opponent's DL opening massive holes for Kelly.  It's what inspired me to take the HOU OL in round 3!

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Hopefully they will serve you better than they did me toolie! The pancakes I was envisioning never seemed to come through.

Edited by drake

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