The 2011 NFL Draft is fully underway and now that Round 1 is complete, it's we're just a few hours away from the start of Round 2.
We had a total of four trades in the first round, including the blockbuster deals for the Atlanta Falcons to take Alabama wide receiver Julio Jones and the Jacksonville Jaguars to grab Missouri quarterback Blaine Gabbert.
Due to the lockout teams can only trade draft picks so we won't have any Randy Moss for fourth-round deals this year. Nevertheless, I'm expecting even more trades in Day 2 than we had yesterday.
That said, here are some of my predictions for trade rumor scenarios.
The No. 33 pick is one of the most pivotal selections in the NFL Draft and it has tremendous trade value because teams will want to snag those steals that dropped out of the first round before anyone else.
Who else to own this pick other than the New England Patriots who are known for trading out (by the way, they traded the No. 28 pick to the New Orleans Saints).
I wouldn't be surprised at all if they dealt this one away as well.
It's been proven on numerous occasions before that generating an effective pass rush is an integral key to success. Just ask the Pittsburgh Steelers and Green Bay Packers, who played in the Super Bowl and ranked first and second in the NFL in sacks with 49 and 48, respectively.
With more and more teams transitioning to the 3-4 defense due to the creative flexibility it adds, that unique pass-rushing outside linebacker has become one of the most coveted positions in the league.
Yesterday, the two went in Von Miller (even though he didn't go to a 3-4 team) and Ryan Kerrigan. However, there are still three top-notch ones remaining in Akeem Ayers, Reed Brooks and Justin Houston.
Clemson DE Da'Quan Bowers' draft stock has plummeted due to legitimate long-term concerns involving his knee injury which may limit him to playing for only five or six years in the NFL as opposed to the expected decade for most high draft picks.
Nevertheless, he's still an elite pass rusher and he led the nation with 16 sacks last season.
He's built as a pure 4-3 defensive end but I could see some teams possibly fitting him in as a 3-4 five-technique end as well. Either way, I have a feeling he could be a hot commodity for one of the elite teams out there who are willing and can afford to take a risk on him.
Don't be shocked to hear a trade go down for the Clemson star.
Four quarterbacks went in the first 12 picks and whether you agree if that was good value or not isn't the point. They did and it just goes to show how in demand signal-callers are in a pass-heavy league.
There are three quarterbacks, in my opinion, who could be taken early in the second round: Andy Dalton, Colin Kaepernick and Ryan Mallett.
If there's a team looking to grab one of them, they may have to trade up in order to secure their guy.
A lot of rumors have been circulating about the Carolina Panthers trading into the second round. Note the New England Patriots currently hold their pick at No. 33
Let's say a player like Marvin Austin, who's a hometown hero by the way, slips down. The Panthers, who have a glaring void at defensive line, could decide it's worth the risk to move up and snatch him.
They have a ton of needs and must fill them as soon as possible, so perhaps it's best that they pick up as much talent in this draft as possible.
According to NFL Network analyst Charlie Casserly, this isn't an incredibly deep draft overall and frankly I've got to agree.
So maybe giving up those fourth- and fifth-round picks in order to get your guy in the second is a better option, even if you end up overpaying based on the traditional draft value point system.
Moreover, I could see teams that don't have many immediate needs trading completely out in exchange for future. Many times the genius organizations make moves with some of the 'lesser skilled' ones and end up on top.
Prime example: The Patriots traded last year's No. 89 overall to the Panthers and end up with the No. 33. Not bad if you ask me.