COMMENTARY| The NFL Draft is just a week away and teams are finishing up their preparation. While many are locked in to certain players, there may be a few players originally overlooked. Here's a look at a few Boston Red Sox players who should get some attention as draft day gets closer (you know, if any of them had a football background, were 22 years-old, and could take a serious hit).
Jacoby Ellsbury, WR- At 6'1", 195 lbs., he doesn't have the ideal size to be an outside receiver, but he certainly has the speed. Ellsbury would easily be one of the fastest players in the draft. He claims he once ran a 4.28 40-yard dash. That would have been top-3 this year at the combine for the wide receiver position. It's not just top speed for the centerfielder, but acceleration as well. Ellsbury is one of the best in the majors at breaking on the ball, and has one of the best jumps on the base paths. Ellsbury closes well on fly balls and rarely makes a mistake. He also makes incredible diving catches, which would probably translate well to the football field.
Jonny Gomes, ILB- One of the fiercest guys in the clubhouse, Gomes is known for being a player you want on your team if a bench-clearing brawl goes down. Standing at 6'1" and weighing 203 lbs., Gomes would be a beast in the middle of the field. He is also an outstanding clubhouse presence, which is another great characteristic of an interior linebacker. Gomes may not be the most talented ball player, but he'll be an instant fan favorite.
Jon Lester, QB- Who doesn't love a strong throwing southpaw? Lester has the prototypical size (6'4", 240 lbs.) and strength to be an NFL quarterback. He can change speeds at the drop of a dime, which would help him make a variety of different throws all over the field. He's also stayed moderately healthy throughout his career, which is an obvious positive. As seen often on the mound, Lester has a decent amount of fire. He does tend to get a little out of control when rattled, but overall is very reliable. Lester would certainly have to deal with being a more vocal leader.
Dustin Pedroia, RB- He's not big enough. He's not strong enough. He's not fast enough. He's perfect for the running back position. Pedroia has been proving people wrong since his early days at Arizona State, and I'm sure he would be ready to do it all over in the NFL. The second basemen has more drive to succeed than 99% of current professional athletes. Pedroia is an intelligent ballplayer who would certainly enjoy physical play. He has very good instincts and good hands along with other key attributes for the position. Think Danny Woodhead with more charisma.
David Ortiz, DL- Listed at 6'4", 250 lbs., Ortiz could stand to add some more weight, but the dude is a rock. Considering his strength, Big Papi would be a great run stopper and would not be afraid to take on a blocker or two. Ortiz would have to work on footwork and outright hustle. He would also have to work on his attitude to make sure he is all about "team" and not "me." However, his physical strength would outweigh any weaknesses he may have. Ortiz would certainly be a tough guy to push around in the trenches.
Chris Sedenka is a Yahoo! Contributor in Sports covering the Boston Red Sox.You can listen to his daily radio show on 96.3FM in Portland, ME or at thebigjab.com. He is also the voice of the Maine Red Claws of the NBA D-League.
You can follow Chris on Twitter @ChrisSedenka.
- Sports & Recreation
- American Football
- Jacoby Ellsbury
- Jonny Gomes
- Jon Lester