NFL draft pick-by-pick recaps
1. With the first pick in the 2010 NFL draft, the St. Louis Rams select, as expected, Sam Bradford, quarterback from Oklahoma. Bradford, 6 feet 4, 218 pounds and the 2008 Heisman Trophy winner, started all 31 games in which he appeared for the Sooners, setting school records by completing 67.64% of his passes (604-of-893) for 8,403 yards and 88 touchdowns. Considering Blake Griffin is also from Oklahoma, it marks the second time both the NFL and NBA top picks come from the same school.
The rest of the first round:
2. Detroit: Ndamukong Suh, defensive lineman, Nebraska (6-4, 300): The most dominant player in college football last season, Suh won the Lombardi Award, Outland Trophy, Bronko Nagurski Trophy, Chuck Bednarik Award, and Big Twelve Conference Player of the Year Award. Last season, he became the first Nebraska down lineman to lead the school in tackles since 1973. Lions Coach Jim Schwartz was the coordinator in Tennessee with Albert Haynesworth. Massive Suh will play that same role in Detroit.
3. Tampa Bay: Gerald McCoy, defensive lineman, Oklahoma (6-4, 295): McCoy started 40 consecutive games at Oklahoma, a school record for defensive lineman. A superb run stuffer, he routinely fought through double teams and finished his career with 83 tackles, including 14Â½ sacks. The Buccaneers ranked last in rushing defense in 2009 and 26th in sacks. Their hope is that McCoy is as disruptive on the field as Warren Sapp.
4. Washington: Trent Williams, offensive tackle, Oklahoma (6-5, 308): Williams is the most athletic tackle in this draft. He switched from right to left tackle last season to replace Phil Loadholt, taken in the second round by Minnesota a year ago. Although Russell Okung might be the safer pick at tackle, Williams has more potential to be great in the eyes of many scouts. Great fit.
5. Kansas City: Eric Berry, safety, Tennessee (5-11, 203): Berry is the elite playmaking safety in this draft. He was tied for the most interceptions in the country last season with seven, and he led the nation in interception-return yards with 265. The Chiefs haven’t had a true playmaker at safety since Jerome Woods (almost a decade ago) and Berry is a real ballhawk. KC passed on a tackle.
6. Seattle: Russell Okung, offensive lineman, Oklahoma State (6-5, 300): Okung started 47 consecutive games at Oklahoma State, including his final 39 at left tackle. He’s the school’s first offensive lineman taken in the opening round since the Vikings took John Ward in 1970. Replacing All-Pro left tackle Walter Jones is no small task, but Okung is an extremely polished player who’ll be expected to learn on the fly.
7. Cleveland: Joe Haden, cornerback, Florida (5-11, 190): The first true freshman cornerback to start a season opener for Florida, Haden wound up starting 40 games in three seasons for the Gators. The only concern about him is his average speed. The Browns have Sheldon Brown, so there’s a chance Haden could move to safety. He ran a slow 40 at the combine but improved on pro day.
8. Oakland: Rolando McClain, linebacker, Alabama (6-4, 258): McClain made all the calls and adjustments for Alabama’s defense. Some scouts have concerns that he’ll be able to make a smooth transition to middle linebacker in the pros. Good pick for the Raiders, who grabbed Butkus Award winner and a player who can set the tone in the middle of their defense.
9. Buffalo: C.J. Spiller, running back, Clemson (5-11, 195): Spiller, who ran a sub-4.4 40 at the combine, finished his college career Clemson’s third-ranked runner with 3,547 yards and 32 rushing touchdowns. This probably spells the end of Marshawn Lynch in Buffalo. Spiller is a spectacular athlete with Reggie Bush-type speed. He was ACC player of the year.
10. Jacksonville: Tyson Alualu, defensive lineman, Cal (6-3, 295): Alualu was a first-team All-Pac-10 selection last season and led all conference linemen with 60 tackles. He was very disruptive against the pass. Alualu is a ferocious player who can help ramp up the pass pressure for the Jaguars, who were only able to muster an NFL-low 14 sacks in 2009.
11. San Francisco (from Denver through Chicago): Anthony Davis, offensive lineman, Rutgers (6-5, 325): Davis weighed 363 pounds when he arrived at school as a freshman. When he reached the scouting combine in February, though, he was a far more fit 323. Scouts say he’s one of the most impressive athletes in the draft. The 49ers were hurting for an offensive tackle, and they had targeted Anthony Davis early on. They were crossing fingers Raiders wouldn’t take him.
12. San Diego (from Miami): Ryan Mathews, running back, Fresno State (5-11, 220): The Chargers traded for this pick during the draft and chose a runner with both power and speed, Matthews last season had 17 carries in which he gained at least 20 yards. He finished with 276 carries for 1,808 yards (averaging 6.55 yards per carry) and 19 touchdowns. Safe to say the Chargers got their replacement for LaDainian Tomlinson and then some. Mathews is the best all-around RB in the draft.
13. Philadelphia (from Denver through San Francisco): Brandon Graham, defensive end, Michigan (6-1, 263): Graham will be making the transition from college defensive end to outside linebacker in the pros. In 46 games, he had 138 tackles (85 solo) with 29Â½ sacks. The Eagles know what they like, but wow! They traded up from No. 24 to grab a 6-foot-1 DE. Is Denver trading down for Tim Tebow?
14. Seattle (from Denver): Earl Thomas, defensive back, Texas (5-10, 195): Thomas is fast enough to play either corner or safety in the pros. He entered the draft after only his redshirt sophomore season. He was the finalist for the Jim Thorpe Award, given to the nation’s top defensive back. The Seahawks got both players they were targeting. Thomas is a steal here and is a playmaker. Noteworthy Pete Carroll took him over USC’s Taylor Mays.
15. New York Giants: Jason Pierre-Paul, defensive end, South Florida (6-6, 265): A freakish athlete who is very raw, Pierre-Paul played just one season of Division I football, but it was a spectacular one. He was an All-American and had 45 tackles, including 16Â½ tackles for losses and 6Â½ sacks.
16. Tennessee: Derrick Morgan, defensive end, Georgia Tech (6-4, 270): Morgan figures to be a 4-3 defensive end more than a 3-4 outside linebacker. He’s very disruptive, racking up 18Â½ tackles for losses last season and 12Â½ sacks.
17. San Francisco (from Carolina): Mike Iupati, offensive lineman, Idaho (6-6, 330): A guard with the nastiness of a defensive lineman, Iupati earned All-American first-team honors last season and was named a finalist for the Outland Trophy.
18. Pittsburgh: Maurkice Pouncey, center, Florida (6-5, 312): The only elite center in this draft, Pouncey played a big role in the success of Tim Tebow. The big man won the 2009 Rimington Trophy, awarded to the nation’s best center, the first time in school history a Gator has won that award.
19. Atlanta: Sean Weatherspoon, linebacker, Missouri (6-2, 245): Weatherspoon is only the third player in Missouri history to lead the team in tackles in three seasons. He finished with 413 tackles, third in the school record books.
20. Houston: Kareem Jackson, cornerback, Alabama (5-11, 192)ÃÂ Jackson, who chose to leave Alabama after his junior season, started all nine games and was a shutdown corner as the team’s secondary, which ranked second nationally in pass efficiency defense (90.43 yards per game).
21. Cincinnati: Jermaine Gresham, tight end, Oklahoma (6-6, 261): Gresham is regarded as the most dynamic Nebraska tight end since Keith Jackson. He sat out last season, however, because of a knee injury. In 42 career games for the Sooners, he caught 111 passes for 1,629 yards with 26 touchdowns.
22. Denver (from New England): Demaryius Thomas, wide receiver, Georgia Tech (6-3, 226): Despite playing in a run-based offense, Thomas was an All-ACC selection last season His 46 receptions last season went for 1,154 yards, the second-most in Georgia Tech history.
23. Green Bay: Bryan Bulaga, offensive tackle, Iowa (6-6, 312): Bulaga was penalized just five times in his Iowa career and gave up 3ÃÅ sacks. He’s the fifth Iowa player to be named Big Ten Conference Offensive Lineman of the Year, joining Robert Gallery (2003), Eric Steinbach (2002), Mike Devlin (1992), Dave Croston (1986) and Mike Haight (1985).
24. Dallas (from New England through Philadelphia): Dez Bryant, wide receiver, Oklahoma State (6-2, 220): Bryant was suspended for the final 10 games of his final season for lying to NCAA investigators. In his first three (and only) games of last season, he had 17 receptions for 323 yards and four touchdowns along with an 82-yard punt return for touchdown.
25. Denver (from Baltimore): Tim Tebow, quarterback, Florida (6-3, 245): Tebow won the Heisman in 2007 and was the first sophomore in Florida history to earn All-America honors. In 55 games for the Gators, he completed 661 of 995 passes (66.43%) for 9,285 yards with 88 touchdowns and 18 interceptions.
26. Arizona: Dan Williams, defensive tackle, Tennessee ÃÂ Once an out-of-shape big man with a questionable work ethic, Williams emerged as an elite defensive tackle last season. He finished his college career with 150 tackles, sacking quarterbacks seven times.
27. New England (from Dallas): Devin McCourty, cornerback, Rutgers (5-10, 193): McCourty was the star of a Rutgers defense that led the Big East in total defense, scoring defense, turnover margin and tackles for loss.
28. Miami (from San Diego): Jared Odrick, defensive tackle, Penn State (6-5, 305): A three-year starter for Penn State, Odrick last season was named Big Ten Defensive Player and Defensive Lineman of the Year,
29. New York Jets: Kyle Wilson, cornerback, Boise State, (5-10, 185): A four-year starter for the Broncos, Wilson earned either all-conference or All-America honors in each of his seasons.
30. Detroit (from Minnesota): Jahvid Best, running back, Cal (5-10, 201): Best had a total of three 200-yard games in three seasons at Cal. He was a first team All-Pac-10 selection in 2007 and 2008, and second team last season.
31. Indianapolis: Jerry Hughes, defensive end, TCU (6-3, 257): A former high school running back, Hughes was a consensus All-American two years in a row. He caused eight fumbles and recovered four others.
32. New Orleans: Patrick Robinson, cornerback, Florida State (5-11, 192): Some scouts think Robinson has the best footwork of any corner in the draft. But his lack of consistency is glaring. Still, he tied for fifth in the ACC with 11 passes defended, and tied for seventh with two forced fumbles.
For the first time, the NFL has broken the draft into three days, beginning with the first round today at 4:30 PDT on ESPN and the NFL Network). Times NFL writer Sam Farmer takes a look at how Round 1 could unfold. Follow along and see how he did:
1. St. Louis: QB Sam Bradford, Oklahoma -- By releasing Marc Bulger, the Rams have cleared the way to begin the Bradford era.
2. Detroit: DT Ndamukong Suh, Nebraska -- Jim Schwartz wants to rebuild the defense he had in Tennessee, and Suh is the Lions’ Albert Haynesworth.
3. Tampa Bay: DT Gerald McCoy, Oklahoma -- The Buccaneers have searched for years for a replacement for Warren Sapp. McCoy is a compelling option.
4. Washington: OT Trent Williams, Oklahoma -- The Redskins need someone to protect Donovan McNabb’s blind side, and Williams fits their system better than Russell Okung.
5. Kansas City: OT Russell Okung, Oklahoma State -- He’d be a great value pick for the Chiefs, who need a left tackle to bump Branden Albert to the right side. A stunner that could happen? Alabama linebacker Rolando McClain.
6. Seattle: S Eric Berry, Tennessee -- The Seahawks really want a tackle and would love Williams or Okung (in that order), but a playmaking safety doesn’t hurt, either.
7. Cleveland: QB Jimmy Clausen, Notre Dame -- Clausen is going to go around this point in the draft, whether it’s to the Browns or to a team that trades up to get him.
8. Oakland: G Mike Iupati, Idaho -- This is a surprise pick, but massive Iupati could play tackle in the Raiders’ man-blocking scheme. Other possibilities are Maryland tackle Bruce Campbell, South Florida defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul and even Clemson running back C.J. Spiller.
9. Buffalo: OT Bryan Bulaga, Iowa -- The Bills are in dire need of a left tackle (that position devastated them last year) but they need a quarterback too. Would they leapfrog Cleveland for Clausen?
10. Jacksonville: S Earl Thomas, Texas -- Safety is a need for the Jaguars, although not their biggest. They’ll also take a hard look at McClain, the middle linebacker from Alabama.
11. Denver: C Maurkice Pouncey, Florida -- Too early for a center? Maybe, but this draft is light on elite interior offensive linemen and the Broncos badly need someone to snap the ball. There’s a big vacancy at receiver, too, so watch Dez Bryant and Demaryius Thomas.
12. Miami: LB Sergio Kindle, Texas -- The Dolphins filled their need for a receiver with Brandon Marshall, and a pass-rushing outside linebacker would really help. Kindle’s an outstanding one, but there are questions about his knee.
13. San Francisco: OT Anthony Davis, Rutgers -- The 49ers sorely need someone who can step right in and secure the starting right tackle job. Davis is that kind of player.
14. Seattle: T Charles Brown, USC -- Pete Carroll is reunited with one of his former Trojans. Now, the pressure is on Brown (or Davis, if he’s available) to replace All-Pro Walter Jones.
15. N.Y. Giants: LB Rolando McClain, Alabama -- The Giants need a player to replace middle linebacker Antonio Pierce, and McClain is an ideal fit. But will the Chiefs snap him up at No. 5?
16. Tennessee: DE Derrick Morgan, Georgia Tech -- With Kyle Vanden Bosch in Detroit, the Titans need an impact pass rusher. Morgan is a good fit.
17. San Francisco: CB Joe Haden, Florida -- The 49ers will have addressed their two biggest needs at this point: offensive tackle and cornerback, both of whom will be immediate starters.
18. Pittsburgh: CB Kyle Wilson, Boise State -- The Steelers have very average cornerbacks, and Wilson could be the best in the draft. Food for thought: What if Pittsburgh took Tim Tebow here?
19. Atlanta: DE Jason Pierre-Paul, South Florida -- Pierre-Paul is a freakish athlete who’s incredibly raw. If his upside were to pan out, though, he’d be a steal here. 20. Houston: RB C.J. Spiller, Clemson -- Steve Slaton isn’t the answer for the Texans, and Spiller is a good option (although Ryan Mathews might be a more complete back). Texans could take a cornerback, too.
21. Cincinnati: TE Jermaine Gresham, Oklahoma -- The Bengals need a tight end who can block and stretch the field. Remember, though, they also need a safety and they like players from USC. This could be Taylor Mays.
22. New England: WR Dez Bryant, Oklahoma State -- With Wes Welker coming off a severe knee injury and Randy Moss in the last year of his deal, Bryant is interesting here. A lot of scouts like Georgia Tech’s Thomas better, however.
23. Green Bay: CB Devin McCourty, Rutgers -- The Packers are getting old quickly at cornerback and need an infusion of youth there. McCourty, Patrick Robinson and Kareem Jackson are options.
24. Philadelphia: CB Patrick Robinson, Florida State -- Robinson might be the most physically gifted cornerback in this draft, but his play has been somewhat inconsistent. The Eagles need a replacement for Sheldon Brown.
25. Baltimore: DT Jared Odrick, Penn State -- Odrick is a good fit for Baltimore’s 3-4 defense. He’s huge and could help the Ravens maintain their excellence on the defensive front.
26. Arizona: DT Dan Williams, Tennessee -- Williams is shorter (6 feet 2) and wide (329 pounds), and he could be the nose tackle that Cardinals Coach Ken Whisenhunt has sought since he arrived. Linebacker is a need, too.
27. Dallas: S Taylor Mays, USC -- The Cowboys cut Ken Hamlin, and they’re looking for a safety who makes more plays. Is that Mays? He still needs to prove he’s a playmaker, even though his “measurables” are off the charts.
28. San Diego: RB Ryan Mathews, Fresno State -- The Chargers don’t have LaDainian Tomlinson and they need a young back who can complement Darren Sproles. They can pick up a defensive tackle in the second round.
29. N.Y. Jets: DE Brandon Graham, Michigan -- As good as Rex Ryan’s defense is, the Jets still need a pass rusher who can pour on the pressure so the team doesn’t have to blitz so much. Another guy to look for here is TCU’s Jerry Hughes.
30. Minnesota: CB Kareem Jackson, Alabama -- The Vikings have a glaring need for help at cornerback. They could be in prime position to trade back if there’s a team zeroed in on Tebow.
31. Indianapolis: OT Rodger Saffold, Indiana -- The Colts need to revamp their offensive line, and Saffold is just the type of player who fits their scheme. If they go defensive tackle, this could be UCLA’s Brian Price.
32. New Orleans: DE Tyson Alualu, California -- Rising fast on a lot of draft boards, Alualu could step right into Gregg Williams’ defense and make an impact.