2013 NFL Draft Recap: 7 Things You Need to Know About the First Round of the 2013 NFL Draft
The first round of the 2013 NFL Draft was held on Thursday night at Radio City Music Hall in New York, as NFL teams plucked the best college talent to augment their rosters. The night featured a few surprises and several trades. We’ve gathered up the essential information for you below:
The top two picks were offensive tackles.
Unlike the 2012 NFL Draft, when Andrew Luck had signed a contract with the Indianapolis Colts days before the announcement, no one knew whom the Kansas City Chiefs intended to select. They selected Eric Fisher, an offensive tackle from Central Michigan. He was only the fourth tackle in NFL history to be taken as the overall No. 1 pick, joining Ron Yary (1968), Orlando Pace (1997) and Jake Long (2008). Fisher was selected by Andy Reid, who took over as head coach of the Chiefs during the offseason.
After Fisher went to the Chiefs, the Jacksonville Jaguars selected Luke Joeckel from Texas A&M with the second overall pick. Two offensive tackles may not seem like exciting picks, but you can’t have a successful run or passing game without solid linemen. That’s why Houston Texans’ RB Arian Foster bought all of his linemen Segways at the end of last season.
There was only one quarterback taken.
In a move that few expected, the Buffalo Bills traded down and selected E.J. Manuel of Florida State with the 16th overall pick. Manuel was just a two-year starter, so it will be interesting to see how soon the Bills expect him to be playing regular minutes. On the plus side, he is extremely mobile, so defenses have to cover the pass and contain him from scrambling. This was the latest the first quarterback was taken in the NFL draft since the Jets selected Chad Pennington with the 18th pick in 2000.
The Minnesota Vikings made three picks.
The Minnesota Vikings were the most prolific franchise in the first round of the 2013 NFL Draft, becoming the first team since the 2001 St. Louis Rams to take three picks in the first round: Xavier Rhodes, CB, Florida State with the 23rd pick; Sharrif Floyd, DT, Florida with the 25th selection and Cordarrelle Patterson, WR, Tennessee with the 29th pick. That’s a lot of talent to add in just one night.
The St. Louis Rams made the best trade.
The Buffalo Bills traded the eighth overall pick to St. Louis, which moved up to draft wide receiver Tavon Austin of West Virginia. St. Louis could make an impact next season as they’ve been under the radar after a campaign that saw their only divisional loss coming in the final week of the season against the Seahawks. As we later found out, Buffalo was planning to select a quarterback so, on paper, it was a win-win for both teams.
The Chicago Bears and Dallas Cowboys both reached with their picks.
When Mel Kiper Jr. stresses a player is a developmental project, that means he’s a long way from being ready to play in the NFL. While guard Kyle Long of Oregon is no stranger to football — his dad is NFL great Howie Long — most experts had Chicago selecting either Notre Dame TE Tyler Eifert or ILB Manti Te’o. It will be interesting to see how the Bears fill their needs throughout the rest of the draft.
Perhaps an even bigger reach was the Dallas Cowboys taking Wisconsin center Travis Frederick with the 31st pick. Even Frederick himself said he had second-round talent at the highest.
Manti Te’o, Geno Smith and Matt Barkley were not drafted.
Manti Te’o wasn’t in attendance at the draft, choosing instead to watch with his family from Hawaii without cameras. Some projected him to go to the New York Giants or the Chicago Bears, but when Minnesota traded with New England to get back into the first round it seemed like a lock. Unfortunately for Te’o, the Vikings selected Cordarrelle Patterson from Tennessee. Maybe GMs were affected by Te’o’s personal issues and his subpar performance against Alabama in the BCS title game.
In addition to Te’o, West Virginia quarterback Geno Smith and USC quarterback Matt Barkley, both of whom were at one point in their lives considered top 10 talent, each slid out of the first round. It will be interesting to see where they wind up on the second day of the NFL draft.