Sunday, March 1, 2015
FAIRFIELD-SUISUN, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

Verrett, Bucannon defy odds by getting picked in first round

By
From page B2 | May 10, 2014 |

What are the odds?

The city of Fairfield goes the first 78 years of the NFL draft with only one first-round selection.

Then it gets two more in about 15 minutes on Thursday.

Joining Armijo High graduate Doug Martin, who went to the Minnesota Vikings with the ninth overall selection in 1980, are Rodriguez’s Jason Verrett, who was taken by the San Diego Chargers with this year’s 25th pick, and Vanden’s Deone Bucannon, who went to the Arizona Cardinals a few minutes later at No. 27.

“Who’d of thought the 2008 Vanden-Rodriguez game would have two NFL first rounders on the field,” said Fairfield High coach David Fishleigh, who coached the Mustangs in 2008. “That’s pretty amazing . . . to have two guys within three picks of each other on the same field in 2008.”

Vanden coach LeVon Haynes agreed.

“When you look back on that game (won by the Vikings 21-15 with a fourth-quarter comeback), that time of year, who’d of thought these two kids would be high draft picks in the NFL,” Haynes said. “Deone was highly recruited while Jason wasn’t. It shows, even if you’re not recruited out of high school, if you work hard and let nothing stop you, anything can happen. I’m just proud of Jason. It’s the first time in Fairfield history having two picks in first round. I find it amazing, I find it a blessing.”

Anyone doing the math would find the odds astronomical.

Since 1936, the first year of the draft, Armijo, Fairfield, Rodriguez and Vanden have had a combined 189 graduating classes – more than 6,600 players with an average of 35 per squad – eligible to be selected to play in the NFL.

The odds of even making it to the NFL are slim, as just seven city players had been drafted in any round before Thursday night.

Armijo’s had two players drafted all-time (Martin and his older brother George Martin by the New York Giants), while Fairfield has had two (Quinton Ganther by the Tennessee Titans and Desmond Bishop by the Green Bay Packers), Rodriguez has had two (Stevie Johnson by the Buffalo Bills and James-Michael Johnson by the Cleveland Browns) and Vanden one (Carter Campbell by the San Francisco 49ers).

By being taken in the first round, there’s added pressure on Verrett and Bucannon to make a splash, to have an impact.

A quick look at what’s being said in San Diego and Arizona shows those in the know feel the choices were good ones.

In a column under the headline “Verrett fills need, but he’s not a reach,” Nick Canepa of U-T San Diego wrote, “I have no problem with Verrett, who isn’t big in stature in a league trying to find corners bigger than NBA centers. He does have a 39 1/2-inch vertical jump, which probably means he can dunk. But, by all accounts, even though he had shoulder surgery in March (and a few knee meniscus repairs before that), he wasn’t taken too early. He’s thought to be the draft’s best cover corner.”

Tom Krasovic, also of U-T San Diego, downplayed Verrett’s size, though he noted the last cornerback under 5-10 to go in the first round was Ohio State’s Antoine Winfield in 1999.

“Jason Verrett may be the Russell Wilson of the draft,” Krasovic wrote. “He has everything going for him except for height.”

Krasovic was quick to point out Verrett’s plusses – and how they help the Chargers fill a big “need.”

“For all their need at cornerback, the Chargers may have had Verrett as their top-ranked player when they made the pick. I doubt they had a great chance to trade down, my ideal scenario. They took a tough, brave performer who plays fast. Verrett flings his body, which weighed about 180 pounds last season into whoever has the ball, if he’s near enough. (Chargers General Manager Tom) Telesco wants players who love football. He found one in Jason Verrett.”

There was also praise for Bucannon in his new home, though with some reservations – over who the Cardinals didn’t pick.

Johnny Manziel was a favorite in some corners, but Arizona traded down out of the 20th spot to 27th. Manziel went to the Cleveland Browns at No. 22.

“The Cardinals played it safe,” wrote Dan Bickley for AZCentral.com. “They traded down, acquired an extra pick and drafted a hard-hitting safety who checks all the boxes.

“The Cardinals also left a lot of disappointed fans in their wake, including me.”

The disappointment stopped there, however.

Paola Boivin, also of AZCentral.com, wrote, “True Cardinals fans: at ease. Concerns about how the team would fare in the first round of the NFL draft were tempered Thursday with a pick who could make an immediate impact.

“Deone Bucannon, we salute you.”

Boivin praised the Vanden grad’s character and how he connected with the team’s brass during a pre-draft visit.

“The Washington State strong safety, whose father was a Marine sergeant and his mother a career Naval nurse, brings a hard-hitting style of play that General Manager Steve Keim said was Adrian Wilson-esque. . . . Bucannon doesn’t have a checkered past, but he did connect on a level with Keim and (head coach Bruce) Arians) that made the Cardinals decision-makers believe he would be an ideal fit.”

They have yet to play a down and their only acts as members of their respective organizations has been to travel to their new places of employment for introductory press conferences, but the early returns look good.

One more thing: Arizona closes the preseason at San Diego. San Diego opens the regular season at Arizona.

What are the odds?

Reach Paul Farmer at 425-4646, ext. 264, or [email protected] Follow him on Twitter at www.twitter.com/pfarmerdr.

Paul Farmer

Paul Farmer is a 1985 graduate of Brigham Young University. The Suisun City resident has been with the Daily Republic Sports Department since 1989 and has served as sports editor since 2007. He and his wife Jackie have four children.
LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | No comments

The Daily Republic does not necessarily condone the comments here, nor does it review every post. Read our full policy

.

Solano News

 
Peace and patience: Quilters gear up for show

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: C1Comments are off for this post

School bands compete in Pageantry on Parade

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A1, 1 Comment | Gallery

 
Calling someone a ‘smoker’ is hilarious

By Brad Stanhope | From Page: A2

 
Conservancy plans next Quail Ridge Reserve walk

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A3

 
Police seek suspect in armed robbery

By Bill Hicks | From Page: A3, 1 Comment

4-H Presentation Day brings fun, education to Fairfield

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A3 | Gallery

 
What you eat can affect your medications

By Marilyn Ranson | From Page: C4

 
CAASC 18th Annual Chinese New Year and Scholarship Celebration

By Steve Reczkowski | From Page: A5 | Gallery

Rollover in Suisun City

By Aaron Rosenblatt | From Page: A5, 1 Comment | Gallery

 
State schedules ramp closure at freeway project site

By Kevin W. Green | From Page: A5

Vigil doesn’t pan out amid concerns

By Bill Hicks | From Page: A5

 
Appointments on tap for Board of Supervisors meet

By Kevin W. Green | From Page: A5

Tri-City NAACP honors community members at gala event

By Bill Hicks | From Page: A5 | Gallery

 
NY, SF town house prices through the roof

By Bud Stevenson | From Page: B7

 
Parker Road restaurant does brisk business

By Susan Hiland | From Page: B7

 
Fairfield police log: Feb. 27, 2015

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A9

Suisun City police log: Feb. 27, 2015

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A9

 
Airmen with local ties finish basic training

By Nick DeCicco | From Page: B10

Force draws many from South, middle class

By Tom Philpott | From Page: B10

 
.

US / World

Christie to Calif. Republicans: No rush to pick 2016 nominee

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

 
US missionary abducted in Nigeria is courageous, friends say

By The Associated Press | From Page: C3

Dress that ‘greatly resembles’ stolen Nyong’o gown found

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
Weekend storm drops snow, rain, hail in California

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

Churches, synagogues, mosques bear tough New England winter

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

 
Mother charged in death of infant found in California swamp

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

Hyundai recalls 263,000 cars due to power-steering problem

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

 
Blind dog rescued after being lost for 2 weeks in the cold

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

Details about proposed national monuments in California

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

 
National monument supporters in California get antsy

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

Greece will not seek another bailout, prime minister says

By The Associated Press | From Page: A11

 
Attacks kill 37 people in and north of Iraq’s capital

By The Associated Press | From Page: A11

US drone strike in Yemen kills 3 suspected al-Qaida fighters

By The Associated Press | From Page: A11

 
Nemtsov a possible ‘sacrificial victim,’ investigators say

By The Associated Press | From Page: A12

.

Opinion

Editorial Cartoon: March 1, 2015

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Sound off for March 1, 2015

By Daily Republic | From Page: A8

 
New school funding plan remains on bumpy path

By Dan Walters | From Page: A8

Even Gruber deserves a break sometimes

By Megan Mcardle | From Page: A8

 
I might just vote for a Democrat next time around

By Letter to the Editor | From Page: A8, 3 Comments

Aging Fairfield housing agency faltering

By Letter to the Editor | From Page: A8

 
.

Living

Community Calendar: March 1, 2015

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A2

 
Today in History: March 1, 2015

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

With numbers falling, Houston-area nuns’ future uncertain

By The Associated Press | From Page: C3

 
Horoscopes: March 1, 2015

By Holiday Mathis | From Page: C4

Kidney Walk participation helped give me a positive outlook on life

By Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar | From Page: C4

 
.

Entertainment

Take a look – Dr. Seuss has a new book

By The Associated Press | From Page: C2

 
Publisher launches line of Warhol e-books

By The Associated Press | From Page: C2

Q&A: Opera star Deborah Voigt writes of turbulent life

By The Associated Press | From Page: C2Comments are off for this post

 
PUBLISHERS WEEKLY BEST-SELLERS

By The Associated Press | From Page: C2

Review: ‘The Girl on the Train’ has realistic plot

By The Associated Press | From Page: C2Comments are off for this post

 
TVGrid

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B11

.

Sports

Vikings girls looking for first section title

By Paul Farmer | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
Local Report: Vaca’s Aquino wins Masters wrestling title

By Daily Republic staff | From Page: B1

Phegley hopes his style will catch on in Oakland

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

 
A year after meeting Tiger, Indian golfer on the rise

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

Jeff Gordon takes a final spin at track that meant so much

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

 
Harrington takes 36-hole lead, then more rain in Florida

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Defending champ Federer beats Djokovic to retain Dubai title

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Safarova beats Azarenka to win the Qatar Open

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Environmental activists disrupt meeting by Olympic officials

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Hamilton hones Mercedes with fastest time at F1 testing

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Thunder’s Russell Westbrook has surgery on cheekbone

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Anthony Mason, rugged forward of 1990s Knicks, dies at 48

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Warriors center Festus Ezeli suspended for a game

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Reichelt leads Austrian World Cup downhill sweep

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Players’ union head: future spring games in Cuba possible

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Harvick wins Xfinity race at Atlanta for 3rd year in a row

By The Associated Press | From Page: B4

Stolen No. 44 NASCAR race car found in suburban Atlanta

By The Associated Press | From Page: B4

 
.

Business

Fruits and vegetables get a star-studded marketing push

By The Associated Press | From Page: B7

 
For many in US, cash saved at gas pump is staying in pockets

By The Associated Press | From Page: B7

Nevada casinos keep $953.7 million in winnings in January

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

 
Historic snows causing headaches for real estate industry

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

Boy, 13, builds Braille printer with Legos, starts company

By The Associated Press | From Page: B9Comments are off for this post

 
Recalls this week: hand trucks, ceiling fans

By The Associated Press | From Page: B9

Review: Freedom! These smartwatches leave the phone behind

By The Associated Press | From Page: B9

 
Greek prime minister rules out third bailout

By The Associated Press | From Page: B9

AP Exclusive: Fuel-hauling trains could derail at 10 a year

By The Associated Press | From Page: B12 | Gallery

 
.

Obituaries

Lester Singer

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

 
Virgil Albert Hanson

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A4

Leah E. Hoffman

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

 
Thomas Browning

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4, 1 Comment

Jacqueline Mendes

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

 
John W. Van Wart

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

.

Comics