Home > Uncategorized > Running Blog Of The 2011 NFL Draft — Round 1

Running Blog Of The 2011 NFL Draft — Round 1

It’s April 28, 2011, and we have finally reached an NFL event in which the words lockout, appeal or stay (as a noun) are not neccessary. It’s great to see some signs of hope, but tonight, let’s not think about that. This evening is about the future of the NFL, not it’s depressing present. The masses are packed into the Radio City Music Hall. I am parked on my couch in the Long Beach Towers apartment complex. So let’s blog it out, son.
4:34 p.m. Pre-draft introductions are underway, with the 2011 Hall of Fame class standing beside the 25 players who will be waiting in the green room tonight (and into tomorrow for some) waiting to hear where they will start their pro career. I can’t wait to see Mark Herzlich on that stage, but I fear he’ll be waiting for quite a while, well into Friday.
4:35 p.m. Cam Newton’s name is introduced and since he’s going to be the No. 1 pick, he gets the highest volume of verbal hate from the NYC crowd. Nobody likes a favorite.
4:37 p.m. But not often does the comissioner get more boos upon introduction than the soon-to-be top pick. Fans serenade Goodell with chants of “Let them play!” and “We want football!” Unfortunately, the chants were mixed together and not very well in snyc, so we had a few awkward moments of “Let want footplay!” Goodell responds with a “I hear ya.” And that leads into the moment of silence for yesterday’s victims of the tornadoes in Alabama. That’s one way for Goodell to get the crowd off his back.
4:42 p.m. I’ll be watching NFL Network’s coverage of the draft tonight, mostly. This is the first draft I’ve watched with NFL Network, so I want to see how they work it. Plus, I’m willing to put up with Michael Irvin’s nonsense as long as I can avoid a night of Chris Berman’s tired, awful puns.
4:49 p.m. Watching this interview between Cam Newton and Deion Sanders … Deion says he wears a cologne called confidence every day and he smells the same scent on Newton. It was a pretty cheesy brand of bro love.
4:54 p.m. Should Cam Newton really be the No. 1 pick? Probably not. He needs time to learn in the NFL. Unfortunately, Carolina can’t provide that environment. The Panthers need him to start right away, which is probably not for the best for him.
4:55 p.m. He’s supremely talented, athletically. He’s exciting and engrossing on the field. He will sell a ton of tickets and has a classic Magic Johnson smile. He’s a good leader and, despite what others say, he is determined to succeed. I don’t get the people who doubt his will to be great. Did they not watch Auburn play last year? The dude is driven. I don’t think NFL money is going to change that.
But I do worry about how quickly he will adapt to the NFL. Again, he has to start on day one. Jimmy Clausen can’t keep a seat warm. Still, even with Newton, the Panthers are going to lose plenty in 2011. Does that mean Cam loses that confidence, that swagger? That can be very damaging for a young player.
4:57 p.m. Kara Henderson says Denver will take Von Miller with the second pick. Just put the Bills on the clock, why doncha?
5:02 p.m. The draft is about to start, and we see Cam Newton on the phone and getting handshakes. It’s obvious what that means: He just saved 15 percent on his car insurance. 
5:03 p.m. Goodell comes out to officially start the draft, and the fans are not saying “Boo-urns.” He gets them back on his side for a second by declaring, “Let’s get back to some football!”
5:05 p.m. Much props to Carolina for not wasting any time. I mean, this thing is going to take three-plus hours anyway. If you know who you are going to take, don’t take the full 10 minutes. Get up there and keep this train moving!

5:06 p.m. Carolina takes …


No, Cam Newton. Cam Newton is, officially, the No. 1 pick in the 2011 NFL Draft.

5:08 p.m. So let it be said now:


You’re welcome, sports editors.

5:11 p.m. Von Miller is on the telephone. It’s probably a telemarketer. You know those bastards always call around dinner time!
5:12 p.m. And now, he’s crying. I absolutely love it!
5:13 p.m. The Broncos’ war room is indescribably pumped. It looks like they are on the cast of the Jersey Shore, they are so pumped.
And Von Miller is the guy at No. 2.
5:15 p.m. Tweet from The Denver Post: “Pat Bowlen just strolled into draft room in his short shorts workout gear.” Obviously, he wanted everyone to see his excitment over Miller without saying a word.
5:17 p.m. Von Miller, the only incoming rookie to named on the player’s antitrust suit against the league, gives a big bear hug to Goodell. Now THAT’S cool.
5:19 p.m. The Bills pick is in … and they take Marcell Dareus, which is a no-brainer. The Bills ranked 32nd against the run last season. It can’t get any worse.
5:20 p.m. The Bengals are on the clock, and we are already three picks in after just 20 minutes. That’s got to be an NFL draft record in the past 20 years.
5:24 p.m. And the Bengals’ pick is in!! Jesus! Do the NFL executives have a collective tee time tomorrow morning?
5:25 p.m. The Bengals select A.J. Green. So while Carson Palmer wants out, Cincy gets a replacement for T.O. and probably Ochocinco.
5:26 p.m. I’m having a hard time keeping up with this draft. The speed of it is probably the biggest shock so far. But don’t worry: The Redskins will pick soon enough.
5:27 p.m. The Cardinals are on the clock. Do they select a QB? The overall feeling has changed from yes to no in the past few months. Many think they will go get a veteran QB whenever free agency and trading opens. So does that mean Patrick Peterson teams up with Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie?
5:29 p.m. Peterson is on the phone, Gabbert is not. Awwwwwwwww. He looks so lonely.
And Patrick Peterson is headed to the desert.
5:31 p.m. Peterson is an absolute dynamite athlete and I think he is nearly bust-proof unless he loses his mind. I think it’s a great pick for the Cards, but they have to make sure they get a QB later on, either here or from the market.
But I have absolutely no problem with Patrick Peterson at No. 5 to Arizona.
5:33 p.m. AND WE’VE GOT A TRADE! That was kind of expected, but did anyone think it would be the Falcons?!
the Falcons trade up from No. 27 to No. 6. The Browns were on the clock, but now it looks like the Falcons are going with Julio Jones to team up with Roddy White. WOW!!
Here is what the Falcons gave up: Picks Nos. 27, 59 and 124 in this years draft AS WELL AS a first- and a fourth-round pick next year! The Falcons are all in.
5:36 p.m. Julio Jones is the pick. So, we’ve got Matt Ryan, Michael Turner, Roddy White, Tony Gonzalez (albeit he’s aging) and Julio Jones on one offense. That is mighty tasty.
5:39 p.m. The 49ers are on the clock, and I have to think they are going to go with Blaine Gabbert. Jim Harbaugh is a QB and he wants a QB to work with. No, that doesn’t include Alex or Troy Smith.
5:40 p.m. Although I was aware of it earlier today, I had forgotten that the Lakers are playing Game 6 of their first-round series right now against the Hornets. My friend just texted me “The Lakers just can’t be bothered right now.” I guess that means they are doing good. Feel free to give me a score … I am locked into this accelerated draft for the night.
5:41 p.m. San Fran’s pick is in — Gabbert?
5:43 p.m. Well, it is a Missouri Tiger, but it’s not Blaine, it’s pass rusher Aldon Smith. I don’t mind the pick, but I don’t love it. The Niners have a dearth at QB right now.
And a lot of those people hoping for $10 million bucks with a perfect prediction of the first round just saw their chances shattered.
5:44 p.m. EVERYONE has Nick Fairley going to Tennessee, but with Vince Young on the way out and only Rusty Smith around, do they go with a QB??? Oh, and you’ve got to love the Commissioner coming up to the stage to announce the Titans’ pick with Aldon Smith’s family still on the stage. Hahahaha. Way to rush their moment of glory.
5:45 p.m. With the eighth pick in the 2011 NFL Draft, the Tennessee Titans select


A tip of the cap to you, Tennessee. You have made this draft suddenly interesting. I had to let out a “Whoa!” after that one.

5:49 p.m. What say you, Blaine Gabbert? Somewhere, Brady Quinn and Aaron Rodgers are siting at home and saying, “I know how that feels.”

5:50 p.m. Seriously, Jake Locker has a bunch of athleticism, but isn’t a very accurate passer. So, really, he sounds PERFECT as a quarterback for the Titans. They are going to replace Vince Young with Vince Young, only whiter. Just … wow.

 5:53 p.m. One minute to go on the Cowboys’ clock. That’s something new. They are trying to four-corner-offense this draft.

5:53 p.m. The Cowboys have need at corner and offensive line. I think they go with the Prince from Nebraska.

5:54 p.m. The guys on NFL Network say that the Cowboys are stalling because they are trying to work a trade, but the pick is in, so here’s who the Cowboys’ selected:

5:55 p.m. Tyron Smith, offensive tackle from USC. That also makes a ton of sense. That line was a sieve last year, and the Cowboys have to protect Romo. Smith was the clear-cut best offensive lineman in this draft.

5:59 p.m. The Redskins are on the clock and probably steaming that the Titans have stolen their screw-up thunder. DO THEY go with Gabbert? If not, Minnesota at No. 12 is licking its chops.

6:01 p.m. Well, hold everything … Jacksonville Jaguars have made a trade! They move up from No. 16 to No. 10, and Blaine Gabbert is on the phone.

6:02 p.m. Gabbert is the pick, officially. I think it’s fantastic. David Garrard is always underrated, but he is not going to lead that team very far into the playoffs these days. He has about $25 million left on his contract, but I think Gabbert can come in, learn from Garrard for about a year while the Jags remain competitive. Then he’ll gain the job in 2012, and I love his future prospects. The Jags gave up their second-round pick to move up six spots. I think it’s a great deal for J-Ville. Remember when we all thought they were going to go with Tim Tebow last year? Well, they just waited a year for their QB of the future.

6:07 p.m. The Texans are on the clock. They had what was one of the worst — if not the worst — secondary in NFL history last season. Prince would have to be the pick.

6:08 p.m. So, of course, the Texans go with J.J. Watt, a defensive lineman. I mean, he’s a good player, but he doesn’t address that team’s most pressing need. Lions fans must love it, because Prince has been a target of theirs for a while.

6:10 p.m. I have to figure the Texans, who don’t pick until No. 42, have to make sure they end up with Aaron Williams, Jimmy Smith or Brandon Harris.

6:12 p.m. The Vikings are on the clock and with no mention of Brett Favre — except for that one right there — I think they have to go with the offensive line since no viable QB is on the board here.

6:14 p.m. I have really enjoyed the NFL Network coverage. Less stupid jokes, more NFL knowledge than ESPN.

6:14 p.m. Rich Eisen brings up a good point: Everyone thought Fairley was going to go to the Titans at No. 8. Now, he’s still on the board. Where does he fall to? Maybe the Rams at No. 14.

6:16 p.m. The pick is in for the Vikings. Best part about it: NFL Network hasn’t spoiled it by spying on a player with a phone by his ear. That’s what made the Jake Locker selection so shocking — past the fact that it was just a strange pick.

6:18 p.m. And the Vikings select — Christian Ponder! Wow. Apparently, a storm is coming and all NFL teams, bracing for an emergency, are rushing to the nearest mini-mart and cleaning the shelves of quarterbacks.

6:20 p.m. At this pace, Colin Kaepernick may land in this first round. Ryan Mallett’s prospects are certainly rising.

The Detroit Lions are on the clock.

6:21 p.m. All of a sudden, the Detroit Lions are shaping up to have a fearsome run defense. NICK FAIRLEY GOES TO DETROIT. He and Suh in the middle????? OH MY FUCKING GOD!!!!!

6:23 p.m. I expected Prince to go there, but only because that would have been their pick in a normal draft. But this thing is off the rails, and I never expected Fairley to fall that far. So, while I bet very few considered it, it makes a lot of sense. Make a growing strength even stronger.

6:25 p.m. I know everyone is worreid that Fairley might not be motivated enough, but when you are lining up against one of the best defensive tackles in the game, that’s going to psyche you up. I think it’s a great situation for Fairley to go to. I can’t say how much I love that pick, but it’s a damn lot.

6:27 p.m. The Rams are on the clock at No. 14, and Boston College’s Anthony Costanzo was seen shaking hands before NFL Network headed to commericial. It seems like the Rams may want to guard Bradford some more?

6:29 p.m. The Rams, instead, go with Robert Quinn, a rushing defensive end. He didn’t play last year after the NCAA declared him ineligible after some contact with an agent. I don’t love the pick, but the Rams certainly needed help at rushing the passer. And Marshall Faulk brings up a good point: Steve Spagnuolo is the head coach for the Rams and as the former defensive coordinator of the Giants, he is used to working with a team that stockpiles rushing linemen.

6:32 p.m. The Dolphins are on the clock. All of my friends in central and southern Florida are freaking out, I’m sure.

6:35 p.m. “With the 15th pick in the 2011 NFL Draft, the Miami Dolphins select Mike Pouncey.”

And I shake my head. Not because it’s a bad pick, but that is who I wanted the Giants to select. I was hoping Pouncey would fall to them at No. 19.

6:39 p.m. What will the Redskins do here at No. 16? Another trade is a spoken possibility as is the unexpected.

6:42 p.m. Ryan Kerrigan is about to become the newest Redskin. That makes a good amount of sense. The Redskins need help getting after the passer. I’m just surprised that Prince is still on the board.

6:46 p.m. The Patriots are on the clock and about to do something with the first of their 38 picks in this draft.

6:47 p.m. Stacey Dales doesn’t look pleased that NFL Network has placed her inside a Boston bar in front of a bunch of rowdy drunks to report on the Patriots this night. Then again, she always looks annoyed for some reason.

6:48 p.m. I’m getting ready for a surprise here at No. 17.

6:49 p.m. Rich Eisen says he would like to see cable networks, such as the one that employs him, stop beating the commish to the punch when calling draft picks. SPEAK THE TRUTH, BROTHA!

6:49 p.m. And a bit of a surprise takes place as the Pats take Nate Solder out of Colorado. Interesting that they didn’t take BC’s Castonzo there. But hey, I’m never going to say Bill Belichick is wrong when it comes to drafting players. Solder is a work in progress. When you look at him, you realize he needs to get stronger. But he’s got a lot of upside.

6:54 p.m. Illinois defensive tackle Corey Liuget is going to the Chargers. And that puts the Giants on the clock!!! WOOOOOOOOOOO!

6:56 p.m. Last year, the Giants disappointed me when they selected Jason Pierre-Paul from USF instead of Derrick Morgan. This year, I wouldn’t mind Castonzo, who has fallen or Mark Ingram here.

6:59 p.m. Of course, Mark Ingram’s father, his senior, was New York Giants receiver in the ’80s. Good story that I’m sure will be overused in a hurry.

7:00 p.m. MAKE THE PICK!! I am getting nervous over here!


7:02 p.m. And Prince Amukamara. That pick was obviously a one of talent over need. The Giants have more glaring holes on their offensive line than defensive secondary, certainly. But when a top-10 player in the minds of many falls to 19 and you’ve got a chance to get him, you get him. And really, outside of the skill positions, I have no problem with fortifying an already solid position into a bigger strength.

So yeah, I like it.

7:07 p.m. And I think that name is going to work really well in New York. Copy editors are loving that pick.

7:09 p.m. The Bucs are now on the clock. They had their eye on Prince, but Da’Quan Bowers may be the player here.

7:09 p.m. But it looks like Adrian Clayborn is headed to Tampa. He has a phone in one and and his face in the other, clearly tearing up. The Bucs certainly needed someone in their defensive front-seven.

7:12 p.m. A news update for my own personal pleasure: The Lakers are up by 20 in the fourth quarter. I guess they couldn’t be bothered. On to the Mavs/Blazers winner.

7:13 p.m. The Chiefs and Colts are the next two teams to pick. Castonzo! Get in here!

7:15 p.m. How about Peyton Hillis landing on the cover of Madden’ 12? First of all, I’m not sure how he got more votes than Aaron Rodgers in the semifinal round of the voting, but more than that, don’t anyone say that he will be a victim of the Madden curse. If he has a disappointing season this year, it won’t be because of a curse; it will be a regression to the mean of his less-than-special career up until 2010.

7:19 p.m. And we have a trade. The Browns have moved up from No. 27 to No. 21, which they originally got in their trade earlier today with the Falcons, and are going to take Phil Taylor, a big defensive tackle from Baylor. The trade also included the Browns’ third-round pick, No. 70, going to KC.

7:21 p.m. Peyton Hillis to announce the pick! Hahahaha. I love it. He thanks his fans for getting him on the Madden cover. And he announces Taylor. The best thing I can say about Taylor: When all of the rookies who were going to be in the green room today wore a suit or at least a dress shirt on top of the Radio City marquee yesterday, Taylor had a red polo shirt and khaki slacks on. Oh, and he was rocking a toothpick. Classy.

7:25 p.m. He’s a nice replacement of Shaun Rogers, but I have a feeling he will be a bust.

7:26 p.m. Before Taylor was even announced, Castonzo was celebrating and wearing a Colts hat. That makes A TON of sense for the Colts. They needed an offensive tackle badly. So, Castonzo goes to Indy and the Eagles are on the clock at No. 23.

7:27 p.m. Danny Watkins from Baylor is about to be selected two picks after Taylor to Philly, another team with another hole at offensive guard/tackle. And damn, this draft has running-from-the-cops speed. That’s three picks made evident to the public in about five minutes.

7:32 p.m. Some of the nation’s finest warriors escort Goodell onto the stage. USA! USA! USA! That’s a nice way to at least hold off on the boos this Eagles pick is going to get in a second.

7:34 p.m. Yes, God bless the USA

And now, with the 23rd pick in the 2011 NFL Draft, the Philadelphia Eagles select Danny Watkins.


Great opposites in emotion.

7:39 p.m. The Saints are now on the clock at No. 24. Is this where Da’Quan Bowers finally lands. They have a definite need at defensive end, and that would be a good value pick.

7:42 p.m. The Saints do take a defensive end in Cam Jordan from Cal. And man, he is wearing a lovely shiny suit. That looks fantastic.

7:43 p.m. The Seahawks could go with quarterback, but that would be a stretch at this point — although that didn’t stop the Titans or Vikings. I like Gabe Carimi here. I am going to keep betting on an offensive lineman until I get one right.

7:45 p.m. Great to see Mark Ingram’s drafted Alabama teammates sitting with him in the green room. That’s really cool to me. However, there aren’t a lot of teams left in this round with a need a RB.

7:47 p.m. NFL Network’s Mike Lombardi says the Seahawks are trying to trade here, which is why they are taking so much time off their draft clock. They have about 90 seconds remaining and are killing me over here. I was ready to continue our now-previous speed.

7:50 p.m. Tick. Tick. Tick. Tick. Tick. Tick. Tick. Tick. Tick. Tick. Tick. Tick. Tick. Tick. Tick. Tick. Tick. Tick. Tick. Tick. Tick. Tick. Tick. Tick. Tick. Tick. Tick. Tick. Tick. Tick. Tick. Tick. Tick. Tick. Tick.Tick. Tick. Tick. Tick. Tick. Tick. Tick. Tick. Tick. Tick. Tick. Tick. Tick. Tick.

7:52 p.m. The Seahawks couldn’t trade out and ended up selecting James Carpenter, offensive tackle from Alabama. A lot of people said, “Who?” And that basically included his own head coach! With all of the Alabama players — not including Carpenter — and Nick Saban sitting with Mark Ingram, NFL Network did a quick close-up on Saban as soon as the pick was announced. And then Saban gave us the moment of the draft.

“James Carpenter?”


Jesus, this thing has been great.

7:58 p.m. We have another trade with the Ravens at No. 26. This has to be a team trading up for a skill player.

8:00 p.m. Or at least I think we have a trade. The Chiefs are on the clock and no announcement has been made about the Ravens.

Sure, make this thing even weirder.

8:01 p.m. The league announces Baltimore at No. 26 has made a pick ONLY AFTER announcing that Kanasas City has made a pick and the Patriots are on the clock.

Or in other words, what?

8:03 p.m. This draft has entered a lockout.

8:04 p.m. Here comes to commish to announce the No. 26 pick of THE KANSAS CITY CHIEFS. Uh, that’s not how it was supposed to work. Something happened. Anyway, the Chiefs get Jonathan Baldwin, wide receiver from Pittsburgh. That’s a great weapon to go with Dwayne Bowe and a good option for Matt Cassel.

8:06 p.m. I turned it to ESPN since NFL Network went to commercial and heard Adam Schefter say that the Ravens were in trade talks with the Bears when they were on the clock. Some miscommunication took place and this shitstorm happen. I don’t like being inconvenienced!

8:08 p.m. So the Ravens have made their pick at 27 — Jimmy Smith, cornerback out of Colorado. And really, that’s the guy many people thought the Ravens would end up with anyway. I don’t like him after watching him in the combine, but he’s a tall, physical corner.

8:08 p.m. And after all of that stuff, we have a trade! the Saints have moved up to No. 28 in place of the Patriots and the Saints take Mark Ingram! Wow. That is some bad news for Pierre Thomas. I’m not sure Reggie Bush loves it either. The Saints gave up their second-round pick, No. 56 and their first-rounder next year. More picks for the Pats!

8:13 p.m. The announcement is made officially. Pierre Thomas can start packing his bags. The  Bears are on the clock at No. 29. That is, unless they want to talk to the Ravens about a trade and miss their turn entirely.

8:15 p.m. Nick Saban’s reaction to Ingram being drafted was a full 180 from his reaction when James Carpenter’s name was announced. Jake Locker considered, that’s the top moment I’ll take away from this draft.

8:17 p.m. Back on ESPN, Suzy Kolber reads an e-mail she received (?) from Mark Ingram, Sr. and reads it to his son for the first time on the air. Senior talked about how proud he is as a father, etc.

I’m a little emotional after that one. Ingram was completely broken up.

8:20 p.m. The Bears’ pick is in and they get a plow of a man in Gabe Carimi, another guy who fell in this draft. Perfect fit for the Bears. Matt Forte has to love it.

The Jets are on the clock. Business at Radio City Music Hall is about to pick up.

8:22 p.m. And now BOTH networks, ESPN and the NFL, are on commercial. I have no idea what to do with my life for the next 30 seconds.

8:25 p.m. Back on NFL Network, Muhammad Wilkerson, defensive tackle/end from Temple goes to the Jets. Then the Steelers take Cam Heyward, defensive end from Ohio State. Those are two guys who you would think fit very well into their new schemes. Solid choices.

8:29 p.m. And we have arrived to the 32nd and final pick of the night. For three-and-a-half hours, that was really fast.

Also, I have to admit I do love this set up. The first round is the one that everyone watches. Make it its own event in primetime. If you really love the draft and the NFL, come back tomorrow. But the first round should be set apart.

8:31 p.m. The Packers, obviously, hold the final card tonight. They need some help on defense and offensive line. Hard to believe Da’Quan Bowers is about to fall from the top overall pick about 50 days ago to out of the first round tonight.

8:32 p.m. They are taking a lot of time, and you heard many people say that there might be a trade here because the Pats pick first tomorrow, and teams want to get in front of Belichick.

8:38 p.m. And it ends with Derek Sherrod, offensive lineman from Mississippi State. No doubt the Packers have had problems protecting Rodgers in the past couple of years. Not a sexy pick to end the night, but solid.

8:39 p.m. So that does it. A couple of quarterbacks in Mallett and Dalton remain on the board, but I think that’s to be expected. Other first-round products, such as Aaron Williams and Akeem Ayers are still available. But how about the fall of Da’Quan. Wow. This has to be sobering for him.

8:41 p.m. Taking a quick look at the first round: I love what the Falcons did, although they gave up quite a package to get Julio Jones. BUT THEY GOT JULIO JONES! That offense is going to be crazy next year. I like the Giants’, Lions’ Dolphins’ and Saints’ pick(s). Meanwhile, teams reaching on QBs — Titans and Vikings — better hope they pan out or heads will be on the chopping block soon. But one named ruled tonight for me:

James Carpenter?!

Thanks for following along/checking in on this blog. My activity here has been down of late because I am still waiting for my new computer to get in, but it should be here tomorrow. As far as the draft is concerned, I will not be here tomorrow. But once again, thanks a lot!

  1. Ruzzo
    April 28, 2011 at 10:58 pm

    Just two lines after CAM-OLINA PANTHERS and you couldn’t come up with DENVER VON-COS? I’m disappointed in you, Murphy.

  2. April 28, 2011 at 11:57 pm

    I missed a golden opportunity. Dammit!

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