NFL Draft 2011 - First Round Recap
Atlanta, GA 4/29/2011 04:17 PM GMT (TransWorldNews)
The NFL Draft kicked off Thursday night with the usual fanfare and electricity. A slight hint of controversy was in the air at the beginning as fans soundly booed and chanted at NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell. The fans chanted "We want football" in response to the recent labor disputes between the owners and the players. Goodell bore the brunt of fan's frustrations as he was booed nearly every time he approached the podium but the draft was otherwise successful.
The Carolina Panthers held the first pick and used it to select Auburn quarterback Cam Newton. Newton won the National Title last year with the Tigers but questions about his ability to run an NFL style offense and past problems with authority made the choice risky.
The Denver Broncos chose Von Miller second overall. The linebacker from Texas A&M has shown tremendous abilities on the field with his speed and agility. He has also proven to be a hard worker and leads teammates by example.
The Buffalo Bills selected Marcell Dareus from Alabama with the third pick in the draft. Many people thought that the Bills could reach for a quarterback to lead their franchise but is seems that they are content to stick with Ryan Fitzpatrick and decided to go with a dominating defensive lineman.
With the fourth pick the Cincinnati Bengals chose Georgia wide receiver AJ Green. Green was a standout for the Bulldogs in college and should bolster a Bengals roster that is facing questions about their quarterback and whether enigmatic receiver Chad Ochocinco will play to his potential.
The Arizona Cardinals chose fifth and selected Patrick Peterson from LSU. The cornerback is seen as one of the best prospects to come to the draft in years and has been compared to Green Bay Packers superstar Charles Woodson.
The sixth pick in the draft was traded by the Cleveland Browns to the Atlanta Falcons. The Falcons gave up their first, second and fourth round picks from this year's draft along with their second and fourth round picks in next year's draft as well. The Falcons used the trade to draft Julio Jones from Alabama. Jones has been a terrific wide receiver for the Tide during his collegiate years and should give the Falcons another deep threat to compliment Roddy White.
The San Francisco 49ers chose Aldon Smith with the seventh pick in the draft. The Missouri defensive end is an impact player against the pass rush but at times can play too high to get around some blocks. The 49ers selection of a defensive player all but committed them to extending the Alex Smith era at quarterback.
The eighth pick saw the Tennessee Titans draft Washington quarterback Jake Locker. Locker is a solid pick for a team that is heading a new direction after letting former quarterback Vince Young go. Young never turned into what the Titans thought he could be and his play is a large factor in why the Titans are also heading into the season with a new head coach.
The Dallas Cowboys used the ninth pick to get Tyron Smith, an offensive tackle from USC. Smith is an interesting pick as he has recently had surgery and had fluid in his knee at the NFL combine. Overall should be a solid addition to a team that needs help protecting its quarterback in the coming season.
Rounding out the top ten the Jacksonville Jaguars chose quarterback Blaine Gabbert from Missouri. Gabbert was highly touted before the draft and surprisingly available to a franchise who needs a fresh start at the quarterback position.
The rest of the first round picks were:
11. Houston Texans - JJ Watt, Wisconsin defensive end
12. Minnesota Vikings - Christian Ponder, Florida State quarterback
13. Detroit Lions - Nick Fairley, Auburn defensive tackle
14. St. Louis Rams - Robert Quinn, North Carolina defensive end
15. Miami Dolphins - Mike Pouncey, Florida center
16. Washington Redskins - Ryan Kerrigan, Purdue defensive end
17. New England Patriots - Nate Solder, Colorado offensive tackle
18. San Diego Chargers - Corey Liuget, Illinois defensive tackle
19. New York Giants - Prince Amukamara, Nebraska cornerback
20. Tampa Bay Buccaneers - Adrian Clayborn, Iowa defensive end
21. Cleveland Browns - Phil Taylor, Baylor defensive end
22. Indianapolis Colts - Anthony Castonzo, Boston College offensive tackle
23. Philadelphia Eagles - Danny Watkins, Baylor offensive guard
24. New Orleans Saints - Cameron Jordan, California defensive end
25. Seattle Seahawks - James Carpenter, Alabama offensive guard
26. Kansas City Chiefs - Jonathan Baldwin, Pittsburgh wide receiver
27. Baltimore Ravens - Jimmy Smith, Colorado cornerback
28. New Orleans Saints - Mark Ingram, Alabama running back
29. Chicago Bears - Gabe Carimi - Wisconsin offensive tackle
30. New York Jets - Muhammad Wilkerson, Temple defensive end
31. Pittsburgh Steelers - Cameron Heyward, Ohio State defensive end
32. Green Bay Packers - Derek Sherrod, Mississippi State offensive tackle