By Max Sass, Sports Editor
NFL Draft Day 1 Winners:
Seattle Seahawks: Any team picking twice in the top 14 should be a winner but the Seahawks did a nice job with their picks. They avoided taking CJ Spiller too early at six and instead took Russell Okung the best (or second best if you are a Trent Williams fan) offensive lineman. Earl Thomas, the safety from Texas, was a terrific pick at 14. Pete Carroll avoided picking for need in his first Seattle draft and selected talented players regardless of positions.
Green Bay Packers: One of the few flaws the Packers had was that they struggled to protect Aaron Rodgers. Bulaga from Iowa could be a starting tackle in the NFL for the next decade and the Packers got great value on him at 23. Bulaga could also help the Packers reinvigorate their running game this season.
Tennessee Titans: After the Dolphins traded down from 12, Georgia Tech defensive end Derrick Morgan fell to the Titans. They were extremely lucky to get Morgan, the best pure DE in the draft and he will help fill an immediate need.
New York Jets: Though the Jets passed on Everson Griffen and Jared Odrick, two defensive ends who would have fit very well in their 3-4 system, the Jets came away with great value. Kyle Wilson is an aggressive cornerback who excels in press coverage, a scheme the Jets love to play. Wilson will not have to be a star immediately and will have Darrelle Revis, the best cornerback in the league, to learn from.
Tim Tebow: It would be almost un-American not to mention Tebow here. He went from being America's golden boy quarterback with two national championship rings to a player most likely being selected to play tight end or h-back in the NFL. Then Tebow overhauled his delivery, went into his telephone booth, put on his cape and got the Broncos to give him first round money.
Denver Broncos: The Broncos took Demaryius Thomas, a WR from Georgia Tech when Dez Bryant, a far more talented receiver as well as Arrelious Benn were still on the board. The Broncos then took Tim Tebow at 25 even though Jimmy Clausen and Colt McCoy were still available. Not sure what Josh McDaniels was thinking here.
Jacksonville Jaguars: The Jaguars selected Tyson Alualu, a defensive tackle, tenth overall when he was not considered a first day pick by most teams and experts. The Jaguars should have moved down to select him or taken Dez Bryant to help their lackluster passing offense.
San Diego Chargers: The Chargers traded up to replaced Ladanian Tomlinson with Ryan Matthew at 12. Matthew most likely would have lasted into the twenties (the next back taken was Jahvid Best at 30) and is not worth the money he will get at 12. The Chargers still have Darren Sproles and would have been better off filling a hole on defense later in the first round. Matthews could, in the best case scenario, be a downhill, Steven Jackson-type back but more likely will end up being a backup for the Chargers for a while and never making a Pro-Bowl.
San Francisco 49ers: The 49ers did very well to get two excellent offensive lineman in Anthony Davis and Mike Iupati but the team has forgotten what got them to glory in the past. Great quarterbacking play has been the key in San Fran and the Niners passed on Jimmy Clausen. Twice. Alex Smith is not good enough to win a Super Bowl with under center and SF messed up by passing on a future franchise QB.
Jimmy Clausen: Clausen got stuck waiting to get selected much like his Notre Dame predecessor Brady Quinn. The only difference is that Quinn eventually got taken in the first round. Clausen now had to wait overnight to be selected and lost a ton of money in the process. The good new for Clausen: at least he is not on the Raiders.