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The fourth pick - to trade or not to trade

Is Joseph Addai the number four pick in this years draft?
Philadelphia, PA (Sports Network) - There seems to be three obvious top picks in the draft, but what if you have the fourth overall selection?

If you have one of the first three picks it seems pretty clear from most mock drafts that Ladainian Tomlinson, Adrian Peterson and Brian Westbrook will be selected in some order.

Now you are up.

Do you select the fourth-best back, an obvious drop from the "Big Three," or do you pick the best quarterback (Tom Brady) or receiver (Randy Moss). Perhaps you might choose to trade down to get a better second-round draft selection because you think that to be advantageous.

In our 12-team Sports Network League, 2004 champion Shawn Clarke is wrestling with just such a dilemma.

Let's examine the scenarios.

Scenario No.1 - He picks RB Steve Jackson or Joseph Addai with pick No.4 and ends up with QB Drew Brees in the second round or if he chooses a second running back - Jamal Lewis or Maurice Jones-Drew. Maybe he selects WR Marques Colston in the third round. A pretty good option if Brees lasts to this point, but a gamble as Brees is the last of the top-tier QBs. If the New Orleans QB is gone he picks a RB or WR and waits until round five for his starting quarterback.

Scenario No.2 - Shawn picks Brady at No.4, but is forced to take the best available running back in the second round or risk having no running game at all. He is likely to have to pick a running back in both the second and third rounds leaving his squad without a stud receiver. Unless Brady has another 52 touchdown (50 passing, two rushing), 4,807-yard season, this is not the way to go.

Scenario No.3 - He picks the best wide receiver in Randy Moss and again is forced to use pick No.21 (McGahee) and probably No.28 (Jones-Drew) on the running game. In this option Shawn take WR Santonio Holmes in the fourth round because the quarterbacks on the board are of similar ability and he can wait another round. He picks the best available QB, Derek Anderson in the fifth round for his starting quarterback, since all the top-tier guys will be long gone.

Scenario No.4 - Shawn trades the No.4 pick along with the 21st and 76th selections for the 11th, 14th and 59th choices. In this option he drafts RBs Larry Johnson and Marshawn Lynch with his first two selections. He gets his stud wide out in Marques Colston at No.28 and Holmes at No.45. His quarterback is Anderson again and with the trade his pick at No.59 is TE Kellen Winslow. He has two very good running backs, two good receivers, a solid quarterback and a hookup with one of the top-tier tight ends.

Now all he has to do is sell the idea to the owner with the 11th draft pick.

Comments? Criticism? Applause? Contact Steve Schwarz at sschwarz@sportsnetwork.com.

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