Thirty-two dreams were fulfilled on Thursday night as 32 young men joined the NFL fraternity after being selected in Round 1 of the 2013 NFL draft.
Surprisingly, Geno Smith was not one of the men selected in the first round.
Unsurprisingly, offensive linemen dominated the top of the draft, as five were selected in the first 10 picks.
The Kansas City Chiefs got things started with the first overall pick, selecting offensive tackle Eric Fisher out of Central Michigan to protect Alex Smith's blind side.
The Oakland Raiders made the first trade of the draft—a smart move to gain another pick by general manager Reggie McKenzie—with the Miami Dolphins, which selected defensive end Dion Jordan out of Oregon.
According to NFL: AroundTheLeague, Oakland received the No. 12 and No. 42 picks in return for the No. 3 pick:
The Buffalo Bills also traded back, sending their No. 8 overall pick to the St. Louis Rams, which selected receiver Tavon Austin—a bold but smart move by St. Louis, which needed a playmaker on offense.
According to NFL Network's Albert Breer, it was a "complex trade":
What Buffalo did at No. 16 was truly shocking, selecting quarterback E.J. Manuel over Geno Smith.
The San Francisco 49ers also made a big move, jumping up from their spot at No. 31 to the No. 18 spot owned by the Dallas Cowboys to select safety Eric Reid from LSU. Reid will inevitably replace Dashon Goldson, who signed with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in free agency.
Mike Sando of ESPN.com provided the details of the trade:
The Atlanta Falcons maneuvered for the fourth trade of Round 1, moving up from No. 30 to the No. 22 spot owned by the Rams for cornerback Desmond Trufant.
According to Jason La Canfora of CBSSports.com, the Falcons gave up a third- and sixth-round pick to the Rams:
The Minnesota Vikings made a huge move at the end of the first round, trading for the No. 29 pick of the draft (owned by the New England Patriots)—the team's third first-round pick of the draft—to select receiver Cordarrelle Patterson.
According to Tom E. Curran of Comcast Sports New England, the Vikings coughed up a staggering four picks to make the deal:
The Dallas Cowboys made a shocking selection with the No. 31 pick, drafting center Travis Frederick, who was a player most experts didn't expect to be selected until Round 3 or later.
Here are the results of Round 1, courtesy of NFL.com.
|1||Kansas City Chiefs||Eric Fisher||OT||Central Michigan|
|2||Jacksonville Jaguars||Luke Joeckel||OT||Texas A&M|
|3||Miami Dolphins (via OAK)||Dion Jordan||DE||Oregon|
|4||Philadelphia Eagles||Lane Johnson||OT||Oklahoma|
|5||Detroit Lions||Ezekiel Ansah||DE||BYU|
|6||Cleveland Browns||Barkevious Mingo||OLB||LSU|
|7||Arizona Cardinals||Jonathan Cooper||OG||North Carolina|
|8||St. Louis Rams (via BUF)||Tavon Austin||WR||West Virginia|
|9||New York Jets||Dee Milliner||CB||Alabama|
|10||Tennessee Titans||Chance Warmack||OG||Alabama|
|11||San Diego Chargers||D.J. Fluker||OT||Alabama|
|12||Oakland Raiders (via MIA)||D.J. Hayden||CB||Houston|
|13||New York Jets||Sheldon Richardson||DT||Missouri|
|14||Carolina Panthers||Star Lotulelei||DT||Utah|
|15||New Orleans Saints||Kenny Vaccaro||S||Texas|
|16||Buffalo Bills (via STL)||E.J. Manuel||QB||Florida State|
|17||Pittsburgh Steelers||Jarvis Jones||OLB||Georgia|
|18||San Francisco 49ers (via DAL)||Eric Reid||S||LSU|
|19||New York Giants||Justin Pugh||OT||Syracuse|
|20||Chicago Bears||Kyle Long||OT||Oregon|
|21||Cincinnati Bengals||Tyler Eifert||TE||Notre Dame|
|22||Atlanta Falcons (via STL)||Desmond Trufant||CB||Washington|
|23||Minnesota Vikings||Sharrif Floyd||DT||Florida|
|24||Indianapolis Colts||Bjoern Werner||OLB||Florida State|
|25||Minnesota Vikings (via SEA)||Xavier Rhodes||CB||Florida State|
|26||Green Bay Packers||Datone Jones||DE||UCLA|
|27||Houston Texans||DeAndre Hopkins||WR||Clemson|
|28||Denver Broncos||Sylvester Williams||DT||North Carolina|
|29||Minnesota Vikings (via NE)||Cordarrelle Patterson||WR||Tennessee|
|30||St. Louis Rams (via ATL)||Alec Ogletree||ILB||Georgia|
|31||Dallas Cowboys (via SF)||Travis Frederick||C||Wisconsin|
|32||Baltimore Ravens||Matt Elam||S||Florida|
Observations and Analysis
This first round was a joy to watch for NFL enthusiasts.
The trades, the bold moves and the anticipation of each selection as the networks didn't tip the picks made for exciting television.
Here are a few of the things that stood out the most.
Geno Smith Didn't Get Picked Up In Round 1
According to mock drafts everywhere, Smith was supposed to be a potential top-five pick, and at the least, most experts expected him to be drafted in the top 10.
That's not what happened on draft day, however, as Smith took a legendary tumble down the board.
The Bills had a chance to pick him up at No. 16 but instead drafted Manuel, shocking everyone watching the draft.
Now Smith will have to find peace on Thursday night as he deals with the disappointment of being passed over by every single team in Round 1 of the 2013 NFL draft.
Oakland Is On the Right Track Under Reggie McKenzie
Oakland needed to trade back, with only six picks to work with before the trade with Miami.
This is a franchise that is being rebuilt from the ground up, and it's a process that will take some time. McKenzie's move to gain Miami's second-round pick by moving back to the No. 12 spot was smart.
He is determined to follow in Ted Thompson's footsteps by building his team through the draft, and he knows that more picks equals more opportunities to land quality starters and maintain a consistent level of excellence.
Landing D.J. Hayden was a big surprise, as many suspected McKenzie would target a defensive tackle, and Sharrif Floyd and Star Lotulelei were both still available.
That said, Hayden is a superstar in the making and a young man who has already overcome a lot of adversity in his life, having survived a near-death experience on the practice field back in November last year.
Doug Farrar of Yahoo! Sports said it best:
Oakland is on the rise, Raiders Nation. It might take some time, but you'll be cheering soon.
Love, Love, Love What Les Snead is Doing In St. Louis
Tavon Austin is a rare player, and he's one many teams coveted during the scouting process.
Rams general manager Les Snead went into Round 1 with two first-round picks—No. 16 and No. 22. His trade for Austin allowed him to still make two first-round picks, and he landed one of the most explosive players in the draft.
Sam Bradford hasn't had an elite offensive weapon in his three years with the Rams. Now, with Austin in the slot and Jared Cook lining up at tight end, he'll have two big-time playmakers to open things up on offense.
Snead wasn't finished making deals in Round 1, either.
He picked up two additional picks—one in the third round and one in the sixth round—in the trade with the Falcons.
With his second first-round pick—the No. 30 overall pick—Snead landed one of the top defenders in this year's draft in linebacker Alec Ogletree. He will likely be an outside linebacker for the Rams, as James Laurinaitis is a solid inside backer.
Ogletree fell down the board due to some legitimate character concerns stemming from his time at Georgia, but if any head coach is equipped to deal with this young man, it's Jeff Fisher.
The Rams will be a tough, tough team to defeat in 2013.
The Fall of Sharrif Floyd
Before the draft, Bob McGinn of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel offered some intriguing insight about Floyd:
Compared by several scouts to Steelers DE Ziggy Hood. "Those idiots on TV made Floyd," a third scout said. "He's not that good. He's not better than Ziggy Hood. Floyd's not a real bulky guy, but he can run."
Floyd was picked by most experts to be selected by the Raiders with the No. 3 overall pick of the draft. Some analysts, like Bleacher Report's Michael Schottey, didn't buy into the hype and projected him to go in the middle of Round 1.
Floyd was finally picked up by the Minnesota Vikings, which selected him with the No. 23 overall pick.
Now he'll get to play next to Kevin Williams, and he'll have a chance to make a name for himself with plenty of one-on-one opportunities, as Williams demands double teams more often than not.
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