Commentary

Kiper's best and worst from Round 1

Picks Mel liked, picks Mel questioned and the three best picks still available

Originally Published: April 23, 2010
By Mel Kiper Jr. | ESPN.com

Well, Round 1 has finally come and gone. The one thing we know more than anything is that the Oklahoma endowment should get a nice bump. Three Sooners off the board within the first four picks is remarkable, and says a lot for what Bob Stoops is working with down in Norman. Then there were the trades.

Once we got past the early action -- the mock was holding up just fine for a while -- the trades started to pile up. Some seemed to make sense -- teams moving up for players that they simply couldn't have gotten later -- and others were, frankly, puzzling. In at least one case, a team moved up for a player who it seemed entirely possible would have been available later. Much later.

But it takes two teams to make a trade. If you can't get a guy at a certain spot, you have to call up the team in the next-best position. Be sure to check out my look at how the second round could take shape, but read on for teams that I think had a great first round, some picks I question and three situations to keep an eye on early on the second day.


Three I liked


Seattle Seahawks
The picks: Russell Okung, Earl Thomas
Summary: It couldn't have lined up much better for the Seahawks, and for Pete Carroll in his first NFL draft in over a decade. Without trading, they landed the safest left tackle pick at No. 6 -- Okung is the perfect replacement for the great Walter Jones on the left side of that line -- and then they find Thomas waiting for them at No. 14. Some thought Seattle could take a defensive end with that second pick, but Thomas is a guy many thought Philadelphia or Green Bay would have traded up for, and even after the Eagles traded up, they ended up taking Brandon Graham, leaving Thomas there for Seattle. Few players in the draft have Thomas' kind of instinctive playmaking skills. Bottom line: On a day when so many teams moved around to assure themselves of the guys they wanted, Seattle stood pat and still hit a home run.

Mel Kiper Jr.

Football analyst