The first day of the NFL draft is now in the books, but there is still a significant amount of talent available. NFL franchises and championships are built on the second day of the draft and here is a list of guys who could go a long way toward helping a franchise build that championship.
DE Michael Johnson: Georgia Tech
Johnson is one of the most physically gifted prospects in the entire draft and has a skill set that is second to none at the defensive end position. But, questions about his passion and ability to play the run have caused him to fall out of the first two rounds. However, Johnson is an explosive edge rusher who has the ability to develop into a Jason Taylor-type player, we expect him to come off the board very quickly in Round 3
TE Shawn Nelson: Southern Mississippi
Nelson is our top-rated tight end in the draft and will end up being a great value wherever he gets selected. He has the ability to get down the field, pluck the ball away from his body and pick up yards after the catch. His long, thin frame is a bit of a concern, but he blocks much better then given credit for.
OG Duke Robinson: Oklahoma
In one of the weakest offensive guard classes to come along in years, Robinson still stands on the board and will end up being a good value in Round 3. He is a big, physical road-grader who can create movement in the run game and hold his own in pass protection. For a team that values, big, physical offensive linemen (Eagles, Cowboys) Robinson should be an attractive fit.
DT Jarron Gilbert: San Jose State
Gilbert has to be one of the prospects who is generating the most talk among NFL executives this morning, especially from the teams that run a 3-4 scheme. He is a long, explosive D-lineman who has the versatility to play either the three or five-technique and should hear his named called very quickly.
RB Shonn Greene: Iowa
Greene is one of our favorite running backs in this year's draft class and we think he really has a chance to be more productive then any of the running backs drafted before him next season. His vision, power and toughness between the tackles would make him an ideal fit in a zone-blocking scheme and we think he would be a great fit with the Houston Texans.
QB Stephen McGee: Texas A&M
The draft only saw four quarterbacks come off the board in the first two rounds and McGee now looks like the best QB available. He is still very raw and needs some time to develop. However, he can make all the throws, is accurate from the pocket and can create plays with his feet. I can definitely see a team like the Minnesota Vikings or Denver Broncos taking a shot on him at some point.
OLB Jason Williams: Western Illinois
The small-school linebacker has been flying up draft boards during the postseason process and is now likely to hear his name called off the board in Round 3. Williams possesses rare straight-line speed for the position and makes plays sideline-to-sideline. He is ideally suited to play OLB in a 4-3 and we could see him drawing a lot of interest from the Tennessee Titans.
Late-round quarterbacks Nate Davis, Graham Harrell and Cullen Harper are recognizable names amongst even the most casual of football fans, but I expect see all three to slip into the later portions of the draft.
There are still some intriguing mid/late round offensive tackles on the board that have the ability to develop into starting left tackles at the next level. Two guys that fit that mold are Xavier Fulton and Joel Bell. Both are very gifted athletes who possess the feet and body control to handle the edge, but may need a year of two to develop into the position.
Finally, below is a list of mid/late round guys to keep an eye on:
QB Rhett Bomar: Sam Houston State
TE John Phillips: Virginia
CB Keenan Lewis: Oregon State
DT Terrance Knighton: Temple
DT Sammie Hill: Stillman
DT Ricky Jean-Francois: LSU
FS Chris Clemons: Clemson
CB Greg Toler: St. Paul's
DT Roy Miller: Texas
OT Gerald Cadogan: Penn State
OG Herman Johnson: LSU
CB Bradley Fletcher: Iowa
RB Javon Ringer: Michigan State
CB Mike Mickens: Cincinnati
ILB Dannell Ellerbe: Georgia
DE Kyle Moore: USC
ILB Frantz Joseph: Florida Atlantic
ILB Mortty Ivy: West Virginia
DT Mitch King: Iowa
DE Zach Potter: Nebraska
DE/DT Everette Pedescleaux: Northern Iowa