Big Names Picked in the Second and Third Rounds of the Draft
Day Two of the NFL Draft finally saw several of the so-called big names taken off the board.
One of the first to go was Manti Te'o, who was picked up by the San Diego Chargers early in the second round. Most feel that this team would be ideal for him because of the location -- closer to his family -- and because the media is not as tough as a New York or Chicago.
One of his new teammates will be someone else who's been worked over by the media lately: DJ Fluker of Alabama. Yeah, he's the same Fluker who was probably responsible for Te'o's slide into the second round.
Geno Smith's name was called in this round, too. Smith was just glad to go anywhere; he proved this by walking out of the Green Room on Day One and celebrating his mother's birthday at a New York restaurant. Day Two saw him landing in that hornet's nest known as the New York Jets. It's even odds his smile quickly turned to quiver when they called his name.
Smith joins Mark Sanchez, Tim Tebow, and Greg McElroy as the fourth quarterback on this team. His selection seals the writing on the wall for two of those names, and we all know which two. Sanchez may butt-fumble again in his career, but if it doesn't happen early in 2013, it won't happen with the Jets. His contract -- $8.25million -- makes him as impossible to trade as Tebow, who would net the Denver Broncos $1.5million from the Jets if he gets moved, which was a wacky provision in that deal that should have qualified someone in the Jets' front office for a drug test.
There were still a few surprises in the second and third rounds. First up was how far Alabama running back Eddie Lacy slid down in the draft. Lacy almost dropped completely out of the second round. Luckily for him, it worked out perfectly because he landed in the laps of the Green Bay Packers. How much more room will he get with linebackers and secondary having to play it straight due to the NFL's richest-ever quarterback always a threat to turn a play into a play option?
This pick did not go unnoticed by Bears, Lions, and Vikings fans who were not thrilled at the prospect of facing Lacy twice a year in the division; one of those fans was Michael Wilborn of ESPN, an unabashed Chicago Bears believer:
"As a Bears fan, I hate seeing Lacy go to the Packers ... it just seems like a pick sure to help Green Bay stay on top in the division."
Another somewhat shocking development -- or non-development, as the case may be -- was that USC quarterback Matt Barkley was not picked in the second or third round. The NFL is a button-down, tow-the-corporate-line operation, and it's likely his Cali whine got more notice from war rooms than did last season's shoulder injury.
Tyrann Mathieu's name was called by the Arizona Cardinals. Mathieu was very emotional and a bit humbled by the whole experience. He truly landed on his feet, what with close friend and former LSU teammate Patrick Peterson on the Cardinals' roster. Add Arizona's drafting of Bayou Bengal linebacker Kevin Minter, and the Honey Badger has a built-in support system that has a decent chance of keeping his focus on making money instead of blowing it.
Do Mathieu was picked on certain conditions that he would take weekly drug test.
The last rounds of the draft will be held today and tomorrow on ESPN and the NFL Network.