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Thursday, April 25, 2013

NFL Draft Day 1 Winners & Losers

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NFL Round 1 Winners & Losers
By Wild on Sports Analyst Jason Gillson
A look at the biggest winners and losers for Thursday's first round of the 2013 NFL Draft

Winners:
Minnesota Vikings
#23 DT Sharrif Floyd
#25 CB Xavier Rhodes
#29 WR Cordarrelle Patterson
The Vikings were very aggressive on day one and boy oh boy did it pay off. They got a bit of gift with their first pick of the round at #23 when DT Sharrif Floyd, considered by many to be a top 10 talent, fell in their laps. At #25 CB Xavier Rhodes fills a major area of need. Rhodes was probably the #2 CB in the draft class and was a terrific pick up at 25. They then created some of the biggest buzz in New York by trading back into the draft from New England at #29 to pick up Cordarrelle Patterson. Patterson is a bit of a risk/reward pick but after two slam dunks in Floyd and Rhodes, taking a flyer on a guy who at his peak could be a Randy Moss type of throw it up and get it deep threat is definitely worth the gamble. The Vikings are BIG day 1 winners.

St. Louis
#8 WR Tavon Austin
#30 LB Alec Ogletree
If Minnesota is winner number 1, St. Louis is 1B. They made a slick move to trade up with Buffalo one slot above the NY Jets to take the best WR in the draft in Tavon Austin. The Jets had been drooling all over Austin in recent weeks. Austin makes a perfect replacement in STL for the departed Danny Amandola. In fact, Austin is probably closer to the guy Amandola is replacing in New England than Amandola himself. They then made a trade with Atlanta to move out of the #22 pick, picking up the #30 and others in the process. They then were able to snag LB Alec Ogeltree with that pick. Ogeltree is a fast hard hitting LB. If he can stay dedicated could go down as the best LB in the class.

Denver Broncos
#38 DT Sylvester Williams
Winners by chance but big winners nonetheless. Williams, like Floyd were both possible top 10 talents that really fell in this draft. Maybe some character issues in both cause it? In any case, if he keeps his nose clean he could go down as the steal of the draft.

Carolina Panthers
#14 DT Star Lotulelei
If you have been following our mock drafts you would have seen Lotulelei in the top 5 in each and even #1 in early editions. For the Panthers to walk away with the Utah DL at #14 is fantastic for that organization. 

Miami Dolphins
#3 DE/LB Dion Jordan
The Dolphins where the first team to make a surprise move on Thursday. Several anticipated a trade up for Miami if the draft played out as expected, but that move would be to select an offensive tackle, not a defensive player. Jordan may be the most explosive pass rusher in the draft. With Jordan on one side and Cameron Wake on the other the Dolphins may have one of the more dangerous attacks in football in 2013.

Losers:
New York Jets
#9 CB Dee Milliner
#13 DT Sheldon Richardson
The two players the Jets strongly coveted in this draft were Mingo and Austin. Both were off the board when the Jets pick came around. They did address a need with their first pick in Dee Milliner. Milliner is a solid DB but will forever be compared to Darrelle Revis, the man whom he will be replacing. At #13 the Jets had a ton of holes particularly on the offensive side of the ball. Instead of addressing a need they reach for probably the 4th best DT available at the time passing on guys like Lotulelei and Williams. When will Rex Ryan learn that it will be the offense, not the defense, that ultimately will cost him his job. A waste of a pick at #13.

Buffalo Bills
#16 QB EJ Manuel
I struggled with putting the Bills in the losers category because they made a very smart move by trading out of #8 down to #16 to pick a QB, a position they really needed help at. Unfortunately, this draft is very weak in terms of elite talent at QB and the Bills got the #3 or #4 QB in that class. Manuel would have been there for their second round pick, maybe even for their 3rd. They have a ton of needs. Taking a long term project at QB in the first round with multiple immediate impact players still on the board is tough to swallow. Sorry Bills fans. Its not going to be pretty.

Chicago Bears
#20 T Kyle Long
Long comes from a strong pedigree but has a ton of off the field issues and is not even a fraction as polished as older brother Jake. He was a 2/3 round projection going into the draft. The Bears had a glaring hole at LB and even could have been justified taking a TE like Tyler Eifert. Instead they went with a major reach of a pick.

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