How did your favorite team do in the first round of the '13 NFL Draft?
The first round of the 2013 NFL Draft is complete and 32 new faces have joined the ranks of professional football. Some will play right away and become instant Pro Bowlers like first-rounders Matt Kalil, Andrew Luck, Doug Martin and Robert Griffin III did a year ago as rookies. Others rarely played like A.J.
For the first time since 1963, no running back was taken in the first round of the NFL Draft. Thirty-two players heard their names called Thursday night during the first round of the 2013 NFL Draft from Radio City Music Hall in New York City, and none of them played running back in college. The last time not a single running back was picked in the first round was in 1963, nearly 50 years ago. Back then, the first round of the NFL Draft consisted of just 14 picks.
Athlon Sports covers the storylines, players and teams to follow on Thursday night
The 2013 NFL Draft will commence tonight (8 pm ET) with the first round in primetime on ESPN. While 222 players will be taken on Friday and Saturday, it's the 32 whose names will be called in the first round that have everyone's attention.
Some of the game's best players aren't from the U.S.
The NFL is interested in expanding its presence internationally, and the world is reciprocating by providing talent for league teams. Kansas City Pro Bowler Tamba Hali (Liberia), standout Raiders kicker Sebastian Janikowski (Poland) and Giants end Osi Umenyiora (England/Nigeria) are just a few of the many imports found on NFL rosters last year. Expect that number to swell in 2013, thanks in part to these four top prospects.
Eli Manning, First Round, San Diego (traded to N.Y. Giants), 2004
“The draft was an exciting time. It’s a little unique. You have no idea where you’re going to be living next year. And you don’t get to choose. It’s not like college where you say, ‘I want to go here.’ You’re just kind of sitting there and saying, ‘All right, I may be moving to Cleveland. I may be moving to New York. I may be moving to California.’ It is an exciting kind of just wait to see where you’ll be pursuing your career and your dream of playing football.
“On my draft day I was just excited. And my draft day was very unique — drafted by the Chargers, traded to the Giants. So it was a whirlwind. Obviously, I was very excited to know that I was coming to New York, and coming to a great organization like the Giants, an organization that’s committed to football and such a great history. I was very honored to be a part of that organization. I knew that I was coming in to work hard and try to become the starting quarterback and do great things for the team.”
Aaron Rodgers (2005)
2 of 8
Aaron Rodgers, First Round, Green Bay, 2005
“It was an emotional day. It was a long day. At the time, I wanted to play right away on that day and prove the other 22 teams that passed on me that they’d made a mistake. I look at it differently now. This is where I would have wanted to be had I known then what I know now — about the kind of working environment that this is, the opportunities I would be given, the coaching staff that was going to be here. I mean, I interviewed (before the draft) with Mike McCarthy. He was in San Francisco (as offensive coordinator).
“If they (the 49ers) pick me, both our lives are changed. What would have happened had they picked me and things been different? I don’t like doing the whole what-if game. I just know I’m really glad that I fell into God’s Country here in Wisconsin and had the opportunity to spend my early years the way I did and now gotten the opportunity to be the starter and play for this team.”
Jason Witten (2003)
3 of 8
Jason Witten, Third Round, Dallas Cowboys, 2003
“Peyton Manning was a guy I looked up to, sort of a mentor, and the Colts decided to take a different tight end in Dallas Clark. They drafted a tight end and it wasn’t me. There was emotion there. Nobody had told me that I was going to be drafted there, but obviously you’re human and you’re hoping for those things. That was tough. It was like I got hit right in the stomach when they drafted another tight end.
Then, to wrap it up, two hours later, to get the phone call from Jerry Jones and Coach Parcells. That was quite the moment I’ll never forget. There are the highs and the lows and the anxiety of that day. You get that call from Jerry. Everybody knows his voice. He asked me simply, he said, ‘Would you like to put the star on the side of your helmet?’ As a 21-year-old kid, it put chills on my arm. Your family is all watching. My grandad is my high school coach. He’s sitting right there, and he has no clue who I am talking to. I have a five-minute conversation with Jerry. I get off that conversation and get to talk to a Hall of Fame coach in Coach Parcells. I had a 10-minute conversation with him. All the while that’s going on, you see your name going across the ticker there that they selected you. It was a pretty special feeling getting that phone call and something I’ll remember the rest of my life even though it wasn’t a long conversation.”
Christian Ponder (2011)
4 of 8
Christian Ponder, First Round, Minnesota, 2011
“I remember sitting there when Minnesota came up on the clock. And at that point, Jake Locker and Blaine (Gabbert) had already gone. And I remember the clock got down pretty low, like four-and-a-half minutes left. And then Jim, one of the guys who works for (my agent) Jimmy (Sexton), said, ‘If the Vikings were going to pick you, they’d have called by now. So …’ And as he was saying that, our caller ID is set up to come through the television, and everyone’s watching and up came the 612 area code and ‘Minneapolis, Minnesota.’ … I couldn’t tell you what the Vikings said. I was so excited, almost like shaking. ‘Oh my gosh, this just happened.’ … They had tried, apparently, to call my cell phone a couple times and it was going straight to voice mail. I guess I didn’t have service. So thankfully they called the house.”
Jake Long (2008)
5 of 8
Jake Long, First Round, Miami, 2008
“I had signed about five days before, but still it was an amazing dream come true. The draft was something I watched growing up as a kid, and something you dream about doing. To be able to go there and be with my family, get drafted — it’s hard to put into words. When my name was called Commissioner (Roger) Goodell just said congratulations and good luck. He was happy for me. It was definitely a little weird walking out and having all the media and everybody focused on me. But it was fun.”
Marc Mariani (2010)
6 of 8
Marc Mariani, Seventh Round, Tennessee, 2010
“I had been talking (to Brandon Fisher, college teammate and son of Titans coach Jeff Fisher) on the cell phone throughout the day. I got the number from the Titans on my (caller ID) and then they said someone wanted to talk to me. I thought, all right, this is it. I’m excited. Brandon was on the other line and he said ‘I’m just messing with you.’ At that point I was ready to fly down there and whoop his buns. Then he told me it was the real deal and he put me on with (Coach Fisher). At that point I kind of lost it a little bit. It was awesome.”
Vincent Jackson (2005)
7 of 8
Vincent Jackson, Second Round, Northern Colorado, 2005
“I decided to just invite my close friends and family over for a BBQ and enjoy each others company. … When the phone rang about 2 minutes before my name was announced on TV I felt butterflies. There are so many emotions going on. I didn't know I had a chance to play in the NFL until after my Junior year of college. That was the first year I was a full-time starter as wide receiver. My senior year brought a lot of scouts to my games, I got to play in the Senior Bowl, and attend the Combine. There was so much work, so many hours involved in creating an opportunity to get my foot in the door. So when I got the call I was extremely happy and anxious for the next chapter in my life to begin."
Athlon Sports looks back at recent drafts to see which picks worked out and which didn't
The 78th installment of what is officially called the “NFL Player Selection Meeting,” better known as the 2013 NFL Draft, will commence on Thursday. Thirty-two college players will hear their names called by NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell when the first round of the draft is broadcast live on ESPN from Radio City Music Hall in New York City.
Following the first round, 222 more college players will be selected by all 32 NFL teams on Friday and Saturday. Every player that is picked will become a part of NFL history, regardless of whether they ever make it on the field.
Athletes and sports personalities get arrested just like the rest of us normal members of society. But for some reason (aka lots of money and fame) they tend to take the booking process a bit less seriously than the rest of the population. Here is a collection of athletes and one famous announcer who appear to be rather pleased about the idea of spending the night behind bars.
The 68-year-old broadcasting legend was snagged this past Friday night (April 19) for an alleged DUI. Although you can't see his teeth, there's a twinkle in his eye and half-smile waiting to bust out. According to TMZ, Michaels "couldn't have been nicer during the arrest."
10. Adrian Peterson
2 of 12
Last year, after a scuffle at a night club in Houston, Peterson was arrested and booked for simply resisting arrest. All-Day certainly doesn't look too worried in his mugshot, and for good reason. Charges were later dismissed.
9. Roger Clemens
3 of 12
Roger Clemens had a reputation as a greedy, arrogant, narcissistic a-hole. I know, this is shocking considering his handsomely quaffed hair style in this photo. But he certainly doesn't appear to be all that upset about this little situation in New Mexico.
8. Rey Maualuga
4 of 12
The Bengals linebacker was arrested for DUI back in 2010 after hitting two parked cars and a parking meter. Maualaga's Pontiac Sunfire was totalled. In the car with him were two young women, one of which was 18 years old and the other was a juvenile. He was 23 at the time. The former USC tackler seems to have an air of confidence about him, doesn't he?
7. Nick Fairley
5 of 12
Lions defensive tackle Nick Fairley was arrested for eluding arrest and charged with DUI on Highway 90 in Alabama in May 2012. For a guy dealing with his fifth arrest in one pro season, Fairley seems, well, fairly pleased with himself.
6. Michael Irvin
6 of 12
The former Cowboys star wide receiver was arrested on a misdemeanor drug charge a few years back and clearly doesn't care. Irvin, who has been linked to drug issues his entire career, was 34 at the time and was booked with a 21-year-old female. Don't hate the play-maker, hate the game.
5. Scottie Pippen
7 of 12
The former NBA superstar was arrested in Houston after using an on-coming lane to make a pass. He was booked on DUI. I guess there is something about having six NBA championship rings at the house that will keep a smile on your face.
4. Josh Hamilton
8 of 12
Alcholism is a very serious issue that needs to be handled with care and attention. But because Mr. Hamilton is so public with his struggles, and doesn't mind talking openly about it, his 2005 rampage in North Carolina needs to be documented. We can all look back on our past and laugh, right?
3. Marcus Jordan
9 of 12
Outside of a hotel in Omaha, the son of Michael Jordan did his best Scottie Pippen impersonation when he got busted last year for disorderly conduct and resisting arrest last month. He has already had multiple questionable public decisions — aka UCF shoe-gate, Las Vegas gambling and pornstar tweeting. But this picture takes the cake.
2. Cedric Benson
10 of 12
This troubled Texan has been arrested so many times that it is getting difficult to keep track. He was cut by the Bears after both a driving and boating while intoxicated back in 2008. He was arrested again in the summer of 2011 before his final season with the Bengals. Any number of mug shots could have been used, but this was apparently his happiest moment behind bars.
1. Deion Sanders
11 of 12
No human being has ever been more excited about being booked in custody than Primetime. He was arrested for misdemeanor trespassing back in 1996 when he was busted fishing on a private lake in Florida. He has always had a flare for the dramatic and Sanders has always loved to be in front of the camera — even if it is behind bars.
Who are the best sleepers NFL teams should be targeting after Round 1?
The first round of the NFL Draft monopolizes coverage in the media and fan’s minds alike. While the first 32 picks are important and generally feature the most elite talents, the best organizations in football are competitive year after year because of quality middle round work.