If 2012 was the year of the quarterback, then 2013 will likely come to be known as “The year of the big man.”
The 2013 NFL draft was short on big names in comparison to last year, but it was certainly big, as lineman dominated the first round selections. Seventeen lineman were chosen in the first round alone, including the first seven picks.
The Kansas City Chiefs grabbed Central Michigan tackle Eric Fisher with the first pick in the draft. He became just the third lineman to go number one overall since 1997, and he would soon be followed by more 300-plus pound talent on the big stage at Radio City Music Hall.
Texas A&M tackle Luke Joeckel went next, picked by the Jacksonville Jaguars, then Miami made a move and traded up for Oregon defensive tackle Dion Jordan.
The Buffalo Bills secured the draft’s first quarterback with the 16th overall pick when they took Florida State standout E.J. Manuel. They then added to their stockpile of offensive weapons by selecting USC’s speedy receiver Robert Woods in the second round.
The Bills were one of the few teams going for skill players early, but during round two, other teams started to join them. Most teams were beefing up by adding plenty of protectors, pass rushers and run stuffers on day one, but the tide started to turn on day two, as the second round suddenly became a bit more interesting.
The New York Jets certainly made waves by selecting West Virginia QB Geno Smith, adding another layer of drama to their situation at the position. Then, the San Diego Chargers reached out and drafted the controversy-surrounded Manti Te’o.
The draft’s third round was also highlighted by a controversial pick, when the Arizona Cardinals took former LSU star Tyrann Mathieu, also known as “The Honey Badger.” After being kicked off the Tigers for drug-related off-the-field issues, Mathieu spent the better part of last year and this year wondering if he had blown his chance at ever playing in the NFL. But the Cardinals decided to roll the dice and give him a chance to prove he can be a professional.
Several of the draft’s top rated quarterbacks found their names still on the board after day two, but the third day and the fourth round would prove to be QB friendly. The Philadelphia Eagles nabbed USC’s Matt Barkley with the first pick of the fourth, while Syracuse’s Ryan Nassib found a home with the Giants and Oklahoma star Landry Jones landed with Pittsburgh later in the round.
Though the 2013 draft will be remembered for its beefy first round, it will also likely be known as a producer of some grade A skill talent as well. They are many players from the 2013 draft that will make a dramatic impact on their respective teams this season and there are others who will emerge as stars down the line.
And with Fandeavor.com’s exclusive NFLPA Rookie Premiere package, you’ll be to able to meet and hang out with the 40 of the league’s top rookies during an interactive four-day weekend this May! Get up close and personal with newly drafted stars Geno Smith, Ryan Nassib, Matt Barkley, Eddie Lacy (Packers), E.J. Manuel, Stepfan Taylor (Cardinals) and many more! Also, don’t forget to check out Fandeavor’s Twitter page for info on participating in the NFL Draft Trivia Challenge for a chance to win a $30 Lids gift card later today!