Tag Archives: leaf draft 2016

Alexander, Dominique

leaf15_domalexanderCard: Leaf Draft 2016
Acquired: 2016, Box Breaker

After taking the Big 12 by storm in his Freshman season, Dominique Alexander held down the starting position at linebacker for the Sooners for 3 years before joining his brother Derrick  in the 2016 NFL draft.  Undersized, but plays with intensity, Alexander is wildly at home equally chasing the run or guarding against the pass. Scouts want to see Dominique bulk up some and improve on shedding blocks.

The 3rd ranked ILB in the 2016 draft, Alexander is expected to go early in either the 2nd or 3rd round. Surpisingly Dominique fell off the draft boards all together. He quickly found a home with the Cleveland Browns and made 7 total tackles and a fumble recovery in his rookie year.

Goff, Jared

Cards: Leaf Draft 2016, Leaf Draft 2016 All-American, Sage Artistry 2016 (#86/100)
Acquired: TTM 2016, C/o The Los Angeles Rams. Box Breaker, 2017
Sent:   5/14     Received:  6/27     (44 days)

As part of their big splash return to Los Angeles, and being on the HBO show Hard Knocks, the Rams traded up for the #1 overall pick to select ‘local’ (as in state) product Jared Goff out of California in 2016. Jared had the most productive career for a QB coming out of Cal since Aaron Rodgers.  He earned All-American honors as a Junior in 2015 throwing for 4714 yards on 341 completions and 43 TDs to only 13 picks. A prototypical pocket passer, Jared finished with 12,195 yards, and 96 TDs with a career passer rating of 144.0.

Head coach Jeff Fisher talked the tough talk during the preseason, emphasizing that the 7-9 and 8-8 records were no longer acceptable for success. He decided to sit Goff behind starter Case Keenum, and after a rough start, the Rams were 3-2 coming out of the gate, but after a crushing defeat to the Bills in October, the bottom basically fell out on the season. The players lost confidence in Fisher and the team unraveled. They’d win one game the rest of the way out. In the midst of the chaos, Goff took over starter duties at quarterback and started the last 7 games of the season.  Jared’s numbers for his rookie season were: 112/205, 1089 yards, 5 TDs to 8 INT.  It really didn’t help that Goff, had a porous offensive line- as Goff took 28 sacks on the chin during that 7 game stretch.  After the Rams loss to the Falcons on December 11th, the Rams relieved Jeff Fisher of his job. After the season, the Rams hired offensive guru Sean McVay to be head coach. It is the hope that under his tutelage and alongside offensive weapons Todd Gurley and Tavon Austin, the Rams can find the fireworks on offense the team is looking for in 2017.

A nice surprise as the #1 overall pick of the 2016 draft signed 2 cards for me in less than two months. Things just seemed to line up perfectly for me on this one as the Rams had just moved from St. Louis back to LA.  I suspected that perhaps the mailboxes in LA would be light, and they’d be eager to answer any fan mail at all that was coming through. Also since Goff was the #1 overall pick, it made sense that I’d strike while the iron was hot. Since that period, Goff has gone almost completely cold, and as of this date he hasn’t signed anything since 2016’s training camp. I got really, really lucky on the Sage Artistry card of him.  I pulled it from a box break in 2017, after previously missing out on sending it to him, and I really like it a lot more than the two Leaf entries I got. Plus I mean look at the autographs from Leaf compared to the Sage Artistry. It’s obvious that the sat down for the Sage ones, as opposed to the Leaf TTM that are rushed.

I feel good about the Rams being back in LA honestly. It’s a shame I don’t live there anymore or I’d attend some games. My admiration of the team goes back to the 80s, during the heyday of Jim Everett and John Robinson. It was a double body blow when the Rams left LA for St. Louis, and then the Oilers followed suit to Tennessee thereafter. I don’t like franchise relocation at all, and one must wonder why the NFL suffers from such an issue when MLB seems completely stable, despite its bevvy of small market franchises.  The Rams coming back to LA completes the circle to me- as hypocritical as that sounds. You have to admire St. Louis for toughing it out for as long as they did with the Rams, but I liken it to a infidelious marriage. St. Louis knew the Rams history and that they longed to be with LA when they got together in the first place. I know this marks the second time that St. Louis has been left at the altar by a football franchise, but to me, the move to St. L smacked of cutting corners to begin with. Regardless I sincerely hope in the future, the NFL in its brain trust will eventually grant an expansion franchise to the city.

Marshall, Jalin

leaf15dr_jmarshall
Card: Leaf Draft 2016
Acquired: 2016, Box Breaker

A cruel unwitting joke did the people at Leaf play on me.  No sooner than I thought that I might be pulling Ohio State runningback Ezekiel Elliot, I realize it’s just his backup Jalin Marshall.

Marshall did a lot though during his short time playing for the Buckeyes. He fit a variety of roles outside of backing up Elliot. He was a gifted return man, receiver, an oft used 3rd down specialist, and an H-Back. Jalin’s 38 receptions as a Freshman were only second on school history behind NFL Hall of Famer Cris Carter (41).  Jalin finished his career at Ohio St. with 74 receptions for 979 yards (13.2 average) and 11 touchdowns.  He also averaged 12.7 yards per return off 52 career punt returns, including a 54-yarder against Indiana.  Marshall did this all with two years of eligibility still remaining, declaring for the draft after his Sophomore season.

Scouts were unsure as to where to put Marshall.  Some boards viewed him as a wide receiver while others saw him as being a runningback. His versatility is a double edged sword, as Jalin had little experience playing runningback, and while he presents decent athleticism, he did not have the best showing at his pro day, displaying average speed. Marshall was considered a late round find by teams, bordering on priority free agent for the 2016 draft. After the draft he signed with the New York Jets.

As injuries plagued the Jets this last season, Jalin was able to get into the lineup and caught his first TD against Miami in week 9. The team utilized him all season, as advertised- as a jack of all trades as he saw action, kick returning, punt returning, and receiving.