Day One of the 2010 NFL Draft is in the books and it was one of the most surprising in recent years with a stunning top ten pick and seven trades including back-to-back trades at picks 12 and 13.
With the new format, there is a different feel to day one, but it would not be a draft without prematurely declaring winners and losers (limited to 5 teams in each category):
Seattle Seahawks - Stood pat with their two first round picks and came out with two excellent players at positions of need. Russell Okung is the top tackle in the draft to anchor their offensive line. Earl Thomas ' tremendous coverage awareness and range fills is an ideal fit for today's pass happy NFL and fills a void in the secondary.
Arizona Cardinals - Landed the best nose tackle in the draft in Dan Williams , filling a void in the middle of their 3-4 defense.
Dallas Cowboys - Landed a player whom many doubted will fall to them in Dez Bryant . Bryant is the top receiver in the draft and it was not close only sliding due to character concerns. The risk-reward trade-off at 24th overall is acceptable for a player of his talent (highly reminiscent of Randy Moss). Only swapping a 3rd for a 4th to ensure they got their man was a shrewd trade up.
San Francisco 49ers - Mike Singletary is building his team in his own image by adding two top talents to upgrade a questionable offensive line. Anthony Davis fills their need at offensive tackle and guard Mike Iupati gives them a mauler along the interior. Alex Smith and Frank Gore have to be thrilled with the upgrades.
Detroit Lions - Landed the draft's top overall player and a defensive building block in Ndamukong Suh and traded up to land the playmaking running back they wanted in Jahvid Best without giving up much (swapped fourths and gave up a seventh).
Tim Tebow - Defied the skeptics by getting selected in round one, most surprisingly as the second quarterback off the board. Landed in a good situation in Denver with a creative offensive coordinator.
Jacksonville Jaguars - Selecting defensive tackle Tyson Alualu 10th overall was round one's biggest reach and watching Denver and Miami trade down and acquire additional second- and third-round picks made it look even worse. Alualu would have been on the board later in the round.
New England Patriots - Added an extra fourth and upgraded a fourth to a third but failed to add a needed difference maker with their first round pick. Would have been better getting the stretch-the-field receiver they need opposite Randy Moss with Demaryius Thomas /Dez Bryant or drafting the top five technique Jared Odrick rather than add solid cornerback (exceptional special teamer) Devin McCourty . The Patriots need to add players, not picks, this year.
Denver Broncos - Maneuvered well to get the players they targeted, but Demaryius Thomas and Tim Tebow were both developmental boom-bust picks on a team needing immediate contributions.
New Orleans Saints - Passed on needs in the front seven to select Patrick Robinson , a toolsy corner with questionable awareness and instincts. The Saints have used far too many picks on the secondary in recent years.
Washington Redskins - Failed to draft down after bluffing on Eric Berry and then reached to select Trent Williams over Russell Okung. Williams is a good scheme fit but he struggled playing the left side in 2009. A risky pick at fourth overall.
Jimmy Clausen - The story of day two of the draft was supposed to be about Tim Tebow, not Jimmy Clausen. The leadership concerns are very real as 32 picks passed on him as a franchise quarterback.
Other Day One Thoughts
Whether it was the prime time slot or day-long build up, the pace of this year's draft far exceeded expectations. Teams were quick and decisive throughout the day wrapping up the draft before the end of the local news (on the East Coast).
After following form for the first seven picks, the draft featured one of the most surprising strings of picks in recent memory from picks eight through ten (Rolondo McClain, CJ Spiller and Tyson Alualu). Kudos to Oakland for making a surprising but solid pick in McClain taking football IQ over physical tools.
The much anticipated run on offensive tackles did not happen. Kansas City, Oakland and Buffalo are all positioned to grab an offensive tackle early in round two as Charles Brown, Bruce Campbell and Rodger Saffold remain on the board.
Buffalo faces a tough call on quarterback or offensive tackle in round two?
As expected the value in round two is at wide receiver, safety and rush linebacker. Cornerback has thinned a little though as five corners surprisingly went off the board in round one.
My bold prediction of more trades in round two than round one is in jeopardy after seeing seven trades go off the board in round one.
Top five players on the board entering day two:
1. QB Jimmy Clausen, Notre Dame
2. DT Brian Price , UCLA
3. DE/OLB Sergio Kindle , Texas
4. WR Golden Tate , Notre Dame
5. OT Charles Brown , USC
Chris Maier is Senior Editor for NFLDraft101.com. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org . Join NFLDraft101.com for Live Coverage of the 2010 NFL Draft including a live chat and analysis on all 255 selections. Follow us on twitter: nfldraft101