Thursday, April 26, 2012

NFL draft: No. 32, New York Giants: David Wilson, RB, Virginia Tech - Pioneer Press

Latest choice: No. 32, New York Giants: David Wilson, RB, Virginia Tech

NEW YORK - The Indianapolis Colts, as expected, chose Stanford quarterback Andrew Luck with the No. 1 pick in the NFL draft on Thursday, April 26.

The Washington Redskins chose Baylor quarterback Robert Griffin III with the No. 2 pick. They moved up from second overall to sixth in an earlier trade with the St. Louis Rams.

The Browns moved up one spot, from fourth overall to third, in a trade with the Minnesota Vikings and picked Alabama running back Trent Richardson.

Minnesota also gets picks in the fourth, fifth and seventh rounds from the Browns.

The Vikings took Southern California offensive tackle Matt Kalil with the No. 4 pick.

At No. 13, the Arizona Cardinals chose St. Paul native Michael Floyd, a wide receiver from Notre Dame. The Cretin-Derham Hall graduate gives Arizona two high-profile receivers from Minnesota; the Cardinals' Larry Fitzgerald, a Minneapolis native from Holy Angels Academy, is one of the NFL's top wideouts.

A brief look at the top six first-round selections:

No. 1, Andrew Luck, QB, Indianapolis: Luck is the first player the Colts have taken No. 1 overall since Manning in 1998 and the second Stanford quarterback they've taken No. 1. The Baltimore Colts took John Elway with the first pick in 1983. Manning will now play for Elway in Denver after missing last season to recover from neck surgery.

No. 2, Robert Griffin III, QB, Washington

(from St. Louis): Griffin is the Redskins' highest draft pick since linebacker LaVar Arrington went at No. 2 in 2000. Arrington made three Pro Bowls in six seasons in Washington.

The Redskins hope Griffin can end their revolving door at the game's most important position. Washington has used 21 starting quarterbacks over the past 19 seasons.

No. 3, Trent Richardson, RB, Cleveland (from Minnesota): Desperate for playmakers to help one of the league's worst offenses, the Browns sent the Vikings three draft picks so they could get Richardson, the Crimson Tide star viewed as the most complete back in this year's draft and perhaps the best since Adrian Peterson in 2007.

The 5-foot-9, 228-pound Richardson should make an immediate impact on a Cleveland offense that scored just 218 points last season and had just four rushing touchdowns. Richardson scored 21 TDs for the national champion Crimson Tide.

"He's passionate. He's productive. He's durable, and he's the kind of runner we feel is going to help us get our offense together to score the points that we need to win the games that we're going to win," said Browns coach Pat Shurmur, who went 4-12 in a tumultuous first season. "He's a terrific runner."

No. 4, Matt Kalil, OT, Minnesota: The 6-foot-7, 306-pound Kalil left college after his junior year, giving the Vikings an obvious upgrade for their offensive line to better protect young quarterback Christian Ponder's blind side.

No. 5: Justin Blackmon, WR, Jacksonville: The Jaguars traded up to select the Oklahoma State receiver, giving up a fourth-round selection to swap spots with Tampa Bay.

Jacksonville hopes Blackmon will provide an immediate boost for the NFL's worst offense. The 6-foot-1, 207-pound Blackmon caught 122 passes for 1,522 yards and 18 touchdowns last season. He had 111 receptions for 1,782 yards and 20 touchdowns in 2010.

Jacksonville struggled mightily at receiver last season. Eight wideouts caught 121 passes for 1,359 yards and seven scores.

No. 6: Morris Claiborne, CB, Dallas (from St. Louis): The LSU All-America cornerback was considered by most the best defensive back available in the draft.

Dallas moved up eight spots in the first round after a trade with St. Louis. The Rams got the No. 14 pick as well and the Cowboys' second-round selection, 45th overall.

Claiborne led the Tigers with six interceptions last season and won the Jim Thorpe Award as the nation's top defensive back. He was also LSU's top kickoff returner, averaging 25 yards per return.

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