Another busy, busy day of draft preparation. We're going to do two more Q&A's this week, one Thursday and one Friday. Get your questions in now. Here we go.
Q: With reports all over the place now that Florida's Percy Harvin tested positive for marijuana at the combine, could he drop all of the way to the Bears? More importantly, would Jerry Angelo draft him and give the team a receiver more explosive than Devin Hester?
Ben T., New York
A: Angelo has ample experience with wideouts from Florida who dabble in weed, or at least test positive for weed. The Bears drafted speedster John Capel in the seventh round in 2001, 208th overall, about six weeks before Angelo was hired. The Bears took the unusual step of renouncing their draft rights to Capel about a week before training camp opened and before the team had reached a contract with him. Capel got busted in Gainesville, Fla., a month after the draft for possession of marijuana, and he blew off and was late to a slew of team activities. Twelve months earlier, Capel had stunned Michael Johnson and Maurice Greene in the 200 meters at the U.S. Olympic trials.
"John did not display the desire needed tobe a member of this football team,'' Angelo said in a statement at the time. "His actions left us with little choice but to end the relationship and move forward."
Angelo was with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers when they drafted a sliding defensive tackle, Warren Sapp, 12th overall in 1995. Sapp also had some drug luggage hanging over him, but the Bucs went ahead and took him and wound up with one of the most dominant players at his position for a decade.
"It was just a gut feeling. We could have been wrong and could have had egg on our face today," Angelo said three years later. "Are the rewards greater than the risks? You have to answer that when character is in question."
Harvin may play the same position as Capel, but he much more resembles Sapp in terms of ability. It would be one thing to roll the dice in Harvin with a top-10 pick. If he somehow makes it all the way to the Bears--multiple people we spoke with today said there is little to no chance he makes it out of the first round--he's a no-brainer. You're talking about a $3 million contract for four years for a guy who some consider the most explosive offensive player in the draft.
Mike Florio over at profootballtalk.com nailed the issue this morning. It's what league execs have said for years. When a player fails a drug test at the scouting combine he's either got a serious drug problem or he's too dumb to stop in time to let the evidence clear out of his system before a drug test that should be circled in his calendar in red. You worry about investing in the wrong player in the first round, really the top third of the first round. If you like Harvin as a player, what's the risk at No. 49? The reward could be immense.