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Winners, Losers And The Shock Pick Of The NFL Draft’s First Round

E.J. Manuel
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The 2013 NFL Draft’s first round will be remembered as the year of the offensive lineman, the lack of the quarterback and running back and again, as we have every year, surprises.  Here are the winners and losers from Round 1 and the shocking pick.

Winners:  Rams, Vikings.  The Rams traded up to #8 to get West Virginia WR Tavon Austin who is dynamic and will help QB Sam Bradford right away.  The Vikings had Shariff Floyd (DT-Florida) dumped in their lap at #23 and took Cordarrelle Patterson at #29 who they need to revamp the passing offense.

Losers:  Bills, Jets and Geno Smith.  The Bills traded down to the 16th spot to get a quarterback in E.J. Manuel out of Florida State who’s football IQ is weak, has little check down ability and is atrocious on 3rd down.  Plus, Buffalo might want to run a pistol or read option offense in Western New York where it’s 20 degrees or lower for the last month-plus of the season?  Good luck.  I knew the Bills would screw up this draft as usual, but not this bad.  The Jets, meantime, failed to get a playmaker to help Mark Sanchez, even with Tavon Austin getting picked before Gang Green’s #9 spot.  Geno Smith was thought to go in the first round even for how bad this draft is for quarterbacks, and now he can only hope and wait.

Shocker pick:  The New York football Giants taking OT Justin Pugh from Syracuse.  This is only the second lineman New York has taken in the first round since 1990 (the other was Luke Petitgout out of Notre Dame in 1999).  The G-Men were expected to go defensive end as per usual, but, they need to protect Eli Manning as the years go on.  And Pugh is a solid choice here and is a solid kid.  I thought he would go in the first round all along, just not to the Giants.  I am really rooting for this kid.  I covered him for a few years in Syracuse.  He is going to be a solid pro for years to come.  He has the skill set and is easy to coach.  Head coach Tom Coughlin is a Syracuse guy as well, so Pugh and Coughlin can chat Orange football.

By:  Mike Lindsley, “Mid-Day with Mike,” 1-4, Yankees pre/post game host on 104.5 The Team ESPN Radio.  Follow him on Twitter @MikeLSports.

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