Round 1 is in the books, and ... wow. We had it all, from picks 1 straight through to 32.
Can Rounds 2 and 3 possibly match the excitement? That would be unrealistic. But there is a ton of talent left on the board, and there still is a lot to figure out.
So for you fans who hate your teams' draft, stay patient and consider a few things that might occur Friday night.
Tracking the quarterbacks
They're always the hot topic, eh?
Some good ones remain. We have Fresno State's Derek Carr and Eastern Illinois' Jimmy Garoppolo with top-50 grades, and they should go off the board in short order. How fast, we don't know. But there are a few teams that still could use a quarterback and might get antsy at some point.
Among them: the Texans, Buccaneers, Raiders, Titans and Cardinals. Interestingly, those first four teams own picks in the first 10 selections in Round 2, so the wait might not be too long for a few of them.
Could we see a surprise name — such as Pitt's Tom Savage, LSU's Zach Mettenberger, Alabama's A.J. McCarron or even Virginia Tech's Logan Thomas, perhaps — go before Carr or Garoppolo? Yes, because with quarterback it's always going to be a style and skill fit for a team at that position over any consensus grade.
No. 33 pick in play?
We mentioned the Texans, who will be on the clock first ... but for how long? Talk started brewing early last night about them wanting to move down and already starting to let the word get out about that.
GM Rick Smith is a value guy, and he'll want to maximize his at-bats this weekend. The more, the better. The Texans currently have 10 more picks but certainly would be open to moving down, and/or acquiring 2015 selections.
The guess here is that none of the QBs left enamored themselves enough to Bill O'Brien and Smith to make them the top pick in the second round, although we suspect they won't wait too long to find someone (Savage?) who fits their profile later on.
Or could it be a veteran quarterback in the league currently? Word has leaked out at the Patriots' Ryan Mallet and the Buccaneers' Mike Glennon perhaps could be had for the right price, which shouldn't be cost-prohibitive for a team with so many picks left.
Who will make the most noise?
The Browns, Rams and Vikings all made multiple first-round selections and were among the big hits on Thursday in Round 1. So who will make the splashes tonight?
One we know for sure — the 49ers.
Every other team currently only has one, two or three picks total in Rounds 2 and 3, but the Niners are loaded with a stunning five of the next 66 picks. They are: Nos. 56 (from the Chiefs) and 61 overall in Round 2 and Nos. 77 (from Titans), 94 and 100 (compensatory selection).
Will they keep them all? Not likely, although we know they'll make a pick at 100 to close out Round 3 as compensatory picks can't be dealt.
But for those who might have shrugged at the Jimmie Ward first-round selection, we'd remind you that they have tons of ammo left to target some needs, including receiver, both lines of scrimmage and perhaps even a surprise pick or two along the way from Jim Harbaugh and Co.
Welcome, Colts and Redskins!
Their draft party is now underway. After sitting out Round 1, the Redskins (No. 34) and Colts (No. 59) should be on the board in Round 2, barring trades. The Redskins almost have to look offensive line, don't they? There are some ones we like — UCLA OG Xavier Su'a-Filo, Nevada OL Joel Bitonio, Mississippi State OG Gabe Jackson and Alabama OT Cyrus Kouandjio among them.
The Colts need help on all three levels of the defense, at wide receiver and (still) on the offensive line. Any of those positions could be at play if they stick around at 59. Their draft record under GM Ryan Grigson suggests it could be a bit of a surprise pick when they do finally make a choice.
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