Commentary

Winners and questions: Rounds 2 & 3

Bengals and Bucs impress; Dallas and New England raise some questions

Originally Published: April 30, 2011
By Mel Kiper Jr. | ESPN Insider

NEW YORK -- A lot of good picks were made Friday night here at Radio City. Certainly enough that I could highlight more than three teams. This is the point where you really start to get a feel for which teams seem to have a clear plan in mind, while others are giving the impression that they are fighting with their draft boards, seeing players they want taken by other teams and then being forced to settle, unable to move off a pick.

Like we did Thursday, let's take a look at teams that have impressed me with their picks, several that have raised questions and a few storylines to watch as we head into the final day here in New York. I will say this -- there are still enough good players out there that you could see teams make up some ground and land key pieces.


Three I liked


Tampa Bay Buccaneers


The picks: Da'Quan Bowers (51), Mason Foster (84)
Summary: Let's be clear on the Bowers selection: Is there reason to believe there are serious medical concerns with his knee? Absolutely. That said, guys can fall down the board for multiple reasons, and we've certainly seen cases in which the fact that one team didn't pick a guy scared off others that were considering him. You can hear the personnel people asking, "What did they see that we didn't?" But whether Bowers loses time in 2011 or not, getting a guy who has the skill set and athleticism of a top-5 pick this far down the board is a potential gift to the franchise. When you consider that the Bucs built the interior last year with Gerald McCoy and Brian Price with their first two picks, and now are working the edges with Adrian Clayborn and Bowers, there's a plan in place to make the core of any good defense a really good one. It's interesting that both Tampa and Detroit showed big improvement last season after targeting the defensive line and both have gone back to the well again in this draft.


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Mel Kiper Jr.

Football analyst