We expected the first day of the NFL Draft to be dramatic and it did not disappoint. It was a sensational few hours that left most viewing breathless at times. Here is a pick-by-pick recap and summary of Day one of the draft.
1. Kansas City Chiefs:
Eric Fisher, OT, Central Michigan.
The Chiefs started the evening of with somewhat of a shock. I was widely expected that they would take Luke Joeckel with the number one pick but there had been gathering rumours throughout the day that new Head Coach Andy Reid was smitten with Fisher and he was the choice. The reason they went for Fisher is that he plays a little nastier and the Chiefs think he has more upside. They couldn't have gone wrong with either selection, they now have an insurance policy as Miami contibues to work with Branden Albert over a trade for a second round pick. If Albert stays, they now have two quality tackles that should give Alex Smith enough time to utilise the weapons available to him.
Luke Joeckel, OT, Texas A&M
In the end, Joeckel was just too good for the Jags to pass up here. They have glaring needs elsewhere and this pick was not widely approved by their already deflated fanbase. They wanted a Geno Smith or a Dion Jordan to galvanise the franchise. Whether you like Blaine Gabbert or not, it's clear the Jags aren't quite ready to give up on him yet. With Joeckel and Eugene Munroe, they have two book-end tackles that could end up being one of the best Tackle combinations in the league given they both could still develop further. This will aid Gabbert considerably and lucky enough the Draft played out in the Jags favour with only one Quarterback being selected in the first round. The Jags now have to decide which of the signal callers they like best with the first pick of day two.
Dion Jordan, DE/OLB, Oregon.
The first trade of the night shocked everybody. Miami continued their extremely aggressive off-season and traded one of their 2nd round picks to move up to number 3, where it was perceived they were going to take Lane Johnson. We were wrong, they took Dion Jordan and with everyone simultaneously taking a sharp intake of breath with shock it seemed as if there was no oxygen left inside Radio City Music Hall. Jordan is the best pass-rusher in this draft and lining him up opposite Cameron Wake has the potential to cause teams endless nightmares. This is a direct message to Tom Brady that he won't be having things all his own way this season and the Dolphins really do look like a force to be reckoned with. If they can agree terms with Branden Albert and use their remaining 2nd round pick on him, the Miami Dolphins will have to be taken very seriously indeed. Superb pick in keeping with their sensational off-season.
4. Philadelphia Eagles:
Lane Johnson, OT, Oklahoma.
The only thing surprising about this pick was that the Eagles took so long to make it. With Miami moving ahead of them in the Dion Jordan sweepstakes and Eric Fisher long gone, Johnson was the only alternative. He is far from a consolation prize and will be given the responsibility of protecting Michael Vick's blind side as they look to rebound from a very disappointing year. With Jason Peters returning this year at Left Tackle Vick can feel a lot more comfortable about his chances of having a successful season with two impressive Tackles watching his back.
5. Detroit Lions:
Ezekiel Ansah, DE, BYU.
This was another pick that had been circulating for most of the day. If Dion Jordan wasn't around then the Lions would go for Ansah. He is an absolute beast of a rusher but he is relatively inexperienced and this is viewed by many as a huge risk. Ansah came from absolutely nowhere in this evalutation process and there is a definite 'Boom or Bust' element to this pick. However, the Lions lost Cliff Avril and released Kyle Vanden Bosch so Ansah was well worth the risk here. The Lions already have two formidable Defensive Tackles and lining him up with Suh and Fairley should make sure that Ansah sees a lot of single coverage during the first few games of his rookie season. Will be fascinating to see if he continues his rapid development in the NFL.
6. Cleveland Browns:
Barkevious Mingo, DE, LSU.
It was reported that the Browns were looking to trade back with this pick but with the elite three Lineman already gone there weren't a lot of takers. You could hear Rex Ryan's cursing all the way from his war room when the Browns selected Mingo. The Jets were smitten with him and were going to select him at 9 without question. Mingo fits a huge need for the Browns as they can't rely on just Paul Kruger to apply pressure on the Quarterback. Mingo's size, strength and speed should ensure he has a lengthy career at the next level.
7. Arizona Cardinals:
Jonathan Cooper, G, North Carolina.
The Cardinals could have gone any number of ways with this pick, they chose the second best Guard in this class. There was a feeling that they needed line and Cooper is a better pass protector than Chance Warmack. Carson Palmer and Rashard Mendenhall will welcome this pick without question. Cooper has exceptional footwork and he is quick enough to get to the next level should the opportunity arise. This was a definite reach for Arizona, they could have traded down and got him in the mid-teens because they certainly needed help elsewhere. However, Cooper will be a solid starter in the NFL for 8-10 seasons barring injury.
St. Louis Rams:
Tavon Austin, WR, West Virginia.
The Jets nightmare continues. The Rams traded with the Buffalo Bills to move up to 8 and snatched Tavon Austin from the clutches of the Jets. The Rams have been high on Austin's ability from the start of evaluations and their draft room was visibly elated they got this deal done. Nobody will be happier than Quarterback Sam Bradford, he had lose Danny Amendola this off-season and has been lobbying hard for some weapons in this draft. Austin is incredibly gifted and could end up being an upgrade on Amendola. He certainly has more speed and big-play ability, plus he is a serious threat on Special Teams without question. This was a fantastic pick for the Rams and they knew if they would have used the 'wait and see' approach they would have missed out on one of the most dynamic players in this years draft class.
9. New York Jets:
Dee Milliner, CB, Alabama.
Oh dear, the Jets fans in the Radio City Music Hall did not care for this pick one bit. Having traded Darrelle Revis many people thought these picks would be used on getting Mark Sanchez some help and getting an edge rusher who can actually get to the Quarterback. If we have learned anything from the Jets during the Ryan era it's that anything can happen. Their plans were obviously de-railed with Mingo and Austin already having been taken but drafting Milliner was extremely unexpected and met with a chorus of boos from the beleagured Jets fans present. Milliner has the skills to be a good corner at the pro level but he has some mighty big shoes to fill in New York. The Jets essentially traded Revis for Milliner and a 3rd round pick when you think about it, complete lunacy even by the Jets high standards of making mistakes. Milliner needs some work on his ball-handling and his footwork but he should end up being a solid starter in the NFL. However, the pressure on him to now is immense as the comparisons with Revis will be rife. Whether he can cope with the scrutiny or not remains to be seen.
10. Tennessee Titans:
Chance Warmack, G, Alabama.
Running Back Chris Johnson will have been doing cartwheels when this pick was announced. Warmack had convinced the Titans of his talent during a rigorous private workout and they didn't hesitate to select him in the top 10. Warmack is a dominating presence on the line and will be an all-pro guard in no time at all. No lineman in College gave him any difficulty last season and expect that trend to continue in the NFL. He is extremely heavy-handed with fast feet and superb awareness and will be a 12 year starter in the league. Johnson will do well to run behind him as often as possible and look for Johnson to have a year more in-keeping with his talent due to Warmack's presence on the line. This pick ensured that 3 lineman and 2 Guards were selected in the top 10, an exceptionally rare occurrence.
11. San Diego Chargers:
D.J Fluker, OT, Alabama.
This pick was also a bit of a no-brainer as far as need was concerned. Fluker became the third consecutive Alabama prospect to be selected and fills a huge need for the Chargers, who's offensive line was a shambles last year. Fluker isn't as gifted as the 3 tackles that were selected in the top 5 but he will prove to be a very useful acquisition for the Chargers. He needs some work, especially with his lateral movement but he has room to develop his size and could end up playing Guard in a couple of years. Right now though, the Chargers are desperate to give Philip Rivers some semblence of time to create plays so Fluker will be a day one starter at Right Tackle.
12. Oakland Raiders:
D.J Hayden, CB, Houston.
This was a bit of a shock pick from Oakland. Many thought that they had received a huge slice of good fortune, with reported target Sharrif Floyd still around at 12. The Raiders have never been one for convention on Draft day and this continued with the selection of Hayden. Hayden's is a great story, having come back from a near-death injury to make into the top half of the NFL Draft. He passed physicals with all 32 NFL teams after a horrific injury in practice that caused a substantial amount of internal bleeding which Doctors say was fortunate not to end his life. Hayden has shown tremendous character and courage to make it this far. All that aside, he is extremely gifted and some scouts actually had him ahead of Dee Milliner in evaluations. He is a ball-hawk with elite speed and Oakland have a fantastic athlete on their hands. This selection does leave a gaping hole on their defensive interior that will need to be addressed on day two of this draft.
13. New York Jets:
Sheldon Richardson, DT, Missouri.
Another baffling pick from the Jets. There's no doubt Richardson has more than enough talent to be a massive success in the NFL. He is everything you want a defensive tackle to be. Huge arms, broad shoulders and eats space. I just don't see how he fits in with the Jets scheme here. If they plan on playing him at end then that would be inexcusible. This pick is even more baffling when you consider Lotulelei and Floyd were still on the board and are clearly better prospects than Richardson. There's no doubting he's a fantastic player and it will be interesting to see where Rex Ryan incorporates him into their defense, but Mark Sanchez has been crying out for help and this pick could have been used for that purpose. The Jets couldn't have had a worst start to the 2013 Draft in my opinion.
14. Carolina Panthers:
Star Lotulelei, DT, Utah.
This could possibly have been the quickest pick of the night and a dream scenario for the Panthers. They had their pick of the two best defensive tackles in this class and preference was for Lotulelei. With the heart scare at the Combine having clearly put some teams off, their loss was Carolina's game. Lotulelei is a relentless pass rusher from the tackle position, he has the ability to brush lineman aside and has an unbelievable burst off the line of scrimmage. If he stays healthy and contributes as much as Carolina expect him to then he could be a Pro-Bowl Tackle and give the Panthers one of the most intimidating defenses in the NFL.
15. New Orleans Saints:
Kenny Vaccaro, S, Texas.
The Saints needed defensive help, whether that be in the secondary on in getting to the Quarterback. The preference was to take the best Safety in this draft. They are incredibly thin on the back-end and slotting Vaccaro next to former 1st round pick Malcolm Jenkins should improve their secondary considerably. It also give the Saints two safeties who have no trouble covering the slot receivers if need be. Vaccaro is a great reader of the game and has the speed to help the Corners cover deep. He is a good tackler who has no trouble seeking out the ball on blitzes or in run support. A quality pick that is very unlikely to backfire on the Saints as they look to return to the Playoffs.
16. Buffalo Bills:
E.J Manuel, QB, Florida State.
Think everybody watching the Draft knew this pick was going to be a Quarterback. The Bills traded out of the number 8 position because they didn't feel a signal caller was worth taking in the top 10 and they felt confident that one wouldn't be selected by the time they picked at 16. They, of course, were right but which Quarterback would be selected? Nassib? Smith? Barkley? In the end it was none of the above as they went with E.J Manuel, a decision that surprised many but the Bills had shown a high degree of interest in him during the evaluation process. He has good size, mobility and has a fantastic arm. I doubt whether he will be ready to start from day one as he will need to adjust to the speed of the NFL and improve his decision making. The Bills do have Kevin Kolb on their roster and he is quite capable of filling in for a season while Manuel makes the necessary adjustments.
17. Pittsburgh Steelers:
Jarvis Jones, OLB, Georgia.
We thought Jones would drop and a sensible team drafting in the mid-first round would take him and those suspicions were confirmed. It was the Steelers who got lucky and had Jones fall to them. Jones had been taken off some team's draft boards altogether due to his spinal issue but there is no doubting had it not been for that he would have been selected in the top 5. He has a gift for applying pressure on the Quarterback and will suit this Steelers defense perfectly. He should be given free reign to cause as much havoc in the backfield as possible and is a perfect replacement for the departed James Harrison. He has definite Pro-Bowl potential providing he can stay healthy. Superb value pick at this stage for the Steelers.
San Francisco 49ers:
Eric Reid, S, LSU.
The 49ers had already seen the top safety taken off the board and were not prepared to hang around and wait for another one to follow suit. They traded with the Cowboys to move up and land Eric Reid, who fits a huge need for the 49ers due to Dashon Goldson leaving for Tampa in free agency. Reid is an intimidating presence in the secondary of a defense and despite the one bad game against Clemson, where he was torched on numerous occasions by DeAndre Hopkins, he has done enough on film to justify being selected this high. He will also benefit playing for the best defense in the NFL but will also be counted on to fill the hole left by one of the best safeties in the game currently.
19. New York Giants:
Justin Pugh, OT, Syracuse.
Hardly a surprising pick for the Giants when you think about it. They could have gone with Xavier Rhodes, who was now falling, but their linemen are all getting old at the same time and they desperately need some life injected into their front five. Pugh isn't the sexy pick the Giants fans were hoping for, but he was a sensible one. He will take some time to develop and needs to improve his hands and footwork if he is going to play Tackle but his has a huge frame that is still developing and won't be under too much pressure to contribute right away to this Giants team.
20. Chicago Bears:
Kyle Long, G, Oregon.
The brother of the Rams' Chris Long is the selection here. The Bears were simply out of options as most of the lineman they coveted had long since been selected. They could have gone with a linebacker but the priority had to be getting Jay Cutler help along the line. Long is a solid guard and even though this is a major reach will no doubt be an upgrade to what the Bears currently have. He comes from a proud football family and is extremely intelligent when it comes to reading defensive schemes. A solid pick from the Bears.
21. Cincinatti Bengals:
Tyler Eifert, TE, Notre Dame.
The selection of Tyler Eifert is a clear statement from the Bengals. It didn't fit a need for them as they already have a productive Tight End on their roster in Jermaine Gresham. What it does make clear is that the Bengals plan to utilise the same 2 tight-end system that has been so successful for the New England Patriots. Quarterback Andrew Dalton now has a number of weapons at his disposal and the Bengals promise to be a matchup nightmare for any defense they face. Eifert has great hands and has great route-running ability which makes him a nightmare for most linebackers to cover. With Gresham on the other end he should see a lot of single coverages which could result in some early success for the former Notre Dame standout.
Desmond Trufant, CB, Washington.
Clearly the Falcons were a little worried about the Vikings taking their Cornerback of choice with the 23rd pick so they moved quickly to trade up with the Rams to land Desmond Trufant. Many felt that this move wasn't necessary as Trufant may have been around when they selected at 30 but it is better to make the move and get the player you desire rather than wait around and hope he is still available. The Falcons are desperately thin at Corner, with Asante Samuel the only recognised starter in this depleted secondary. Trufant should assist them right away, he specialises in press coverage and has the speed and awareness to cover any deep receiver with relative ease. A great fit for the Falcons who were exposed deep in the Playoffs which eventually caused their downfall. Trufant will no doubt experience some growing pains as he adjusts to the NFL but most rookie corners do and the Falcons have enough firepower on offense to ensure this is not an issue.
23. Minnesota Vikings:
Sharrif Floyd, DT, Florida.
How Floyd fell this far really is a mystery. He was considered by most evaluators to be a top 3 selection and some even had him as the best player in the entire draft. However, due to concerns about his character and the fact he only registered 5 career sacks in College teams allowed him to fall. The Vikings, who needed to find the eventual replacement for Kevin Williams, who has restructured his deal to ensure this could be his final season. For now, Floyd can slot in alongside Williams in what promises to be a formidable defensive front for the Vikings. Floyd will sure to see single coverage most of the time with Jared Allen on the edge which will almost guarantee he has a stellar rookie season. The Vikings must feel like all their Christmases have come at once with Floyd falling in their laps at 23.
24. Indianapolis Colts:
Bjoern Werner, DE/OLB, Florida State.
Werner is a relentless edge rusher and will look to fill the spot vacated by Dwight Freeney. There are some concerns about Werner's size, some scouts saying he needs to put on 15 pounds of muscle if he is to survive the strains of the NFL. It was thought the Colts would have gone with Datone Jones in this spot but they are said to have been impressed by Werner's work ethic and his versatility. He would have serious problems in coverage if he were to play outside linebacker but the general view is that he will start at end and will look to take advantage of playing alongside Rasheed Mathis. Werner is well worth the gamble at this stage of the draft.
25. Minnesota Vikings:
Xavier Rhodes, CB, Florida State.
The Vikings once again take advantage of a top 15 prospect falling in the draft by taking the best Corner remaining by some distance. Rhodes is a great pickup here and has the size to cope with some of the bigger, dominant receivers currently plying their trade in the NFC North. He does need to put on some bulk if he is going to cope with the physicality of the NFL but he has all the makings of a shutdown corner if he is given time to develop. This will cushion the blow of losing Antoine Winfield and playing opposite Chris Cook would allow Josh Robinson to play as the nickel back, giving the Vikings a young and extremely gifted secondary. The Vikings have experienced some fantastic fortune with their two first round picks.
26. Green Bay Packers:
Datone Jones, DE, UCLA.
Like I said in my Mock Draft, the Packers have the luxury of taking who they feel is the best player available here as they don't have many needs. Defensive line was one, as was safety. They decided on taking dominant UCLA rusher Jones, who's quickness for a man his size beggars belief. He pretty much ran over everybody in college and certainly has the potential to do that in the NFL. His bull-rush is a sight to behold and he is incredibly evasive off the block, making him a nightmare to guard. The Packers can't rely on Clay Matthews alone and Jones should give them another dimension in applying pressure to the Quarterback.
27. Houston Texans:
DeAndre Hopkins, WR, Clemson.
Surprisingly, only one Wide Receiver had been taken by this stage and the Texans had the pick of the litter. The opted with Hopkins, who is said to have wowed them at a private workout and his breakout game in College against LSU is enough tape needed to see just what an impact he can have on a game. The Texans needed to get Schaub another weapon as they lost Kevin Walter in the off-season. Hopkins is definitelyan upgrade on the limited Walter and has the ability to break off a big play everytime he gets the ball. There are some questions over his character but working alongside a solid professional in Andre Johnson should do wonders for his attitude.
28. Denver Broncos:
Sylvester Williams, DT, North Carolina.
Williams is another who fell due to other pressing team needs. It is no slight on his ability that's for sure. Williams hasn't had as much attention during the evaluation process as some of the other Defensive Tackles but make no mistake Williams will make his presence felt in the NFL. He is a space eater who is sure to add something to the Broncos already nasty defense. He can also get to the Quarterback if left in single coverage and he is sure to get plenty of that with Von Miller lurking behind him. Incredibly good value pick by the Broncos at the end of the first round.
Cordarrelle Patterson, WR, Tennessee.
Vikings General Manager Rick Spielman was conducting a press conference after the Vikings first two picks when he was signalled by someone in the Draft Room and he ran back accordingly. The reason, a trade up with the New England Patriots to acquire talented but troubled Cordarrelle Patterson. They gave up a lot to move back into the first round (4 picks to the Patriots) so they must think very highly of Patterson, who will be expected to contribute right away to fill the void left when Percy Harvin was traded to Seattle. Patterson was once considered a a top 10 prospect but character concerns caused a dramatic fall. There is no doubting his ability, he is a tremendous route runner with sensational hand-eye co-ordination who can break tackles with ease. The Vikings needed to get Christian Ponder help at some stage and they just couldn't get enough of falling talent in the first round. With the additions of Floyd, Rhodes and Patterson that's three prospects that could easily have all been gone in the top 15. A fantastic first day for the Vikings.
30. St Louis Rams:
Alec Ogletree, ILB, Georgia.
Alec Ogletree was always going to fall because of his character concerns and DUI arrest, the Rams were well aware of this and were smart enough to trade down and acquire extra picks knowing full well Ogletree will still be there at the end of the first round. There is no disputing his talent, a sideline-to-sideline linebacker who can close the space between him and the ball carrier almost instantly. The Rams have identified him as a player they liked throughout the process of testing and deserve enormous credit for sticking to their guns despite the off-the-field incidents that seem to follow Ogletree around everywhere. Let's hope their faith is repaid.
31: Dallas Cowboys:
Travis Frederick, C, Wisconsin.
A very strange pick from the Cowboys. Most Scouts only gave Frederick a third round evaluation and this is a major reach at the end of the first round. There is no doubting the Cowboys need help on their offensive line, with Tyron Smith the only lineman performing at a high level. Frederick is a good organiser and has ability but a first round talent he is not. They'd have been much better off trading out of the first round and obtaining a tackle like Melenik Watson or someone with the versatility of Alabama's Barrett Jones. A very cautious and uninspiring pick from Jerry Jones, which is very out of character.
32. Baltimore Ravens:
Matt Elam, S, Florida.
The Ravens lost both safeties during the off-season and it was vital they addressed this need early on in the Draft. While they were probably hoping Eric Reid would fall to them here, Elam is also very good value here. He has some speed concerns and needs to think more about his positioning but he is well worth drafting at the end of the first round. It was suggested that Manti Te'o would be drafted here to replace Ray Lewis but the Ravens have instead decided on finding the replacement for Ed Reed with this solid selection.
Dean Jones: Follow me on Twitter @DeanJones_