First-round NFL draft comments

Published: Friday, Apr. 27, 2012 - 12:00 am | Page 4C
Last Modified: Sunday, Apr. 29, 2012 - 12:48 pm

The Bee's Matthew Barrows breaks down the first round of the NFL draft.

1.ColtsAndrew LuckQBStanfordExit Manning, enter Luck. Colts get another smart, studious passer to be the face of the franchise.
2.Redskins-aRobert Griffin IIIQBBaylorRedskins draft the more physically gifted quarterback in the draft. But can they protect him?
3.Browns-bTrent RichardsonRBAlabamaBrowns move up one spot to assure that no one else swoops in and steals this workhorse running back.
4.Vikings-cMatt KililOTUSCVikings get three extra draft picks and wind up with the player they would have drafted anyway.
5. Jaguars-dJustin BlackmonWROklahoma StateThe Jaguars really wanted Blackmon to pair with last year's pick, Blaine Gabbert, and they traded up to get him.
6.Cowboys-eMorris ClaiborneCBLSUThe Cowboys added one cornerback, Brandon Carr, in free agency and get another good one in Claiborne.
7.Buccaneers-fMark BarronSAlabamaWith the best cornerback off the board, the Buccaneers go with the next best thing – the best safety in the draft.
8.DolphinsRyan TannehillQBTexas A&MThe quarterback controversy in Miami – who's worse, David Garrard, Matt Moore or the new guy, Tannehill?
9.PanthersLuke KuechlyILBBoston CollegeVersatile linebacker can help the Panthers slow offenses of division rivals Saints and Falcons.
10.BillsStephon GilmoreCBSouth CarolinaTall, big-bodied cornerback started the last three years in the toughest conference in the nation.
11.ChiefsDontari PoeDTMemphisPoe lit up the scouting combine, but he didn't do much at Memphis. A big body for the middle of the Chiefs' defense.
12.Eagles-gFletcher CoxDTMississippi StateThe interior of Philadelphia's defense was a sieve last year. The 300-plus-pound Cox will help clog things up.
13.CardinalsMichael FloydWRNotre DameThe Cardinals needed a wide receiver to play opposite Larry Fitzgerald; Floyd should fill that role.
14.Rams-hMichael BrockersDTLSUJeff Fisher gets size, toughness in the middle of defense. Brockers should make Chris Long and Robert Quinn better.
15.Seahawks-iBruce IrvinDEWest VirginiaThe first big surprise; Seahawks feel the undersized West Virginia defender has rare pass-rush ability off the edge.
16.JetsQuinton CoplesDENorth CarolinaThe former Tar Heel slipped a bit his senior season and thus slipped a bit in the draft.
17.Bengals-jDre KirkpatrickCBAlabamaPass defense was a weakness in Cincinnati last season. Kirkpatrick will try to take Nate Clements' job.
18.ChargersMelvin IngramDESouth CarolinaSan Diego's pass rush has dropped off in recent seasons, and the versatile Ingram will be expected to revive it.
19.BearsShea McClellinDEBoise StateAnother pass rusher goes in the top 20. A defensive end with Boise State, McClellin could play linebacker in the NFL.
20.TitansKendall WrightWRBaylorRumors of Wright's slide in the draft were exaggerated. He will become Jake Locker's favorite target.
21.Patriots-kChandler JonesDESyracuseHe has the same physique as Aldon Smith. Maybe that's why the Patriots traded up to get him.
22.Browns-lBrandon WeedenQBOklahoma StateHe's a year older than the 49ers' Alex Smith. Cleveland likes maturity and the competition he'll have with Colt McCoy.
23.LionsRiley ReiffOTIowaMatthew Stafford's long injury history played into this pick. The Lions needed someone to protect his blind side.
24.SteelersDavid DeCastroGStanfordHe came tantalizingly close to 49ers, but Jim Harbaugh's former pupil takes his 6-5, 316-pound body to Pittsburgh.
25.Patriots-mDont'a HightowerILBAlabamaVersatile Alabama linebacker will add toughness to New England's defense.
26.TexansWhitney MercilusDEIllinoisThe Texans add to their strength by taking a defensive end who had 16 sacks last season.
27.Bengals-nKevin ZeitlerGWisconsinThe Bengals take one of the safest picks in the draft to shore up the interior offensive line and protect Andy Dalton.
28.PackersNick PerryDEUSCThe Packers needed a pass rusher to pair with Clay Matthews and found one in Perry, who had 9 1/2 sacks last year.
29.Vikings-oHarrison SmithSNotre DameThe Vikings traded up to select Smith, a big and athletic safety from Notre Dame who started 38 straight games.
30.49ersA.J. JenkinsWRIllinoisGeneral manager Trent Baalke pulls another first-round surprise with Jenkins, a versatile and speedy pass catcher.
31.Buccaneers-pDoug MartinRBBoise StateProductive every-down runner joins a squad that wasn't happy with LeGarrette Blount as their primary running back.
32.GiantsDavid WilsonRBVirginia TechThe Giants lose Brandon Jacobs but add Wilson, one of the most explosive running backs in the nation last year.

Key to trades:

a-from Rams; b-from Vikings; c-from Browns; d-from Buccaneers; e-from Redskins through Rams; f-from Jaguars; g-from Seahawks; h-from Cowboys; i-from Eagles; j-from Raiders; k-from Bengals; l-from Falcons; m-from Broncos; n-from Saints through Patriots; o-from Ravens; p-from Patriots through Broncos.

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