St. Petersburg Times Online: Sports
TampaBay.com
Place an Ad Calendars Classified Forums Sports Weather
tampabay.com

printer version

NFL draft 2001

By Times staff writer

© St. Petersburg Times, published April 15, 2001


San Diego Chargers

FIRST-ROUND POSITION: 1.

BIG NEEDS: RB, QB, OL.

KEY OFF-SEASON LOSSES: QB Ryan Leaf (to Tampa Bay), QB Jim Harbaugh (to Denver), G Kevin Gogan (released), S Mike Dumas (released).

NOTABLE ACQUISITIONS: QB Doug Flutie (from Buffalo), CB Ryan McNeil (from Dallas), DE Marcellus Wiley (from Buffalo).

THE HUNCH: Virginia Tech quarterback Michael Vick will apprentice behind Flutie, but who is going to run the ball? The Chargers haven't had a decent ballcarrier since Natrone Means was healthy last decade. They have to find the answer on Day One of the draft or prepare for another long and losing season.

Arizona Cardinals

FIRST-ROUND POSITION: 2.

BIG NEEDS: DT, DE, OL.

KEY OFF-SEASON LOSSES: DE Simeon Rice (to Tampa Bay), DT Mark Smith (to Cleveland), DT Tony McCoy (released), T Ethan Brooks (to Denver).

NOTABLE ACQUISITIONS: G Pete Kendall (from Seattle).

THE HUNCH: The Cardinals are looking for line help on both sides of the ball. Mammoth Texas LT Leonard Davis visited last week, fueling speculation the Cardinals may choose to add to its depleted defensive line in latter rounds. But how can they do that given the departures of Rice, Smith and McCoy, and the injury-prone nature of DE Andre Wadsworth.

Cleveland Browns

FIRST-ROUND POSITION: 3.

BIG NEEDS: RB, WR, OL.

KEY OFF-SEASON LOSSES: WR David Patten (to New England), QB Doug Pederson (to Green Bay).

NOTABLE ACQUISITIONS: TE Rickey Dudley (from Oakland), RB Curtis Enis (from Chicago), DT Mark Smith (from Arizona), LB Dwayne Rudd (from Minnesota).

THE HUNCH: Cleveland is in a can't-miss position because it can fill a need with a quality player. If the Browns don't believe in Enis and are uncertain about Errict Rhett's return from a foot injury, they can go for TCU's LaDainian Tomlinson. Davis and Michigan WR David Terrell also are possibilities.

Cincinnati Bengals

FIRST-ROUND POSITION: 4.

BIG NEEDS: OT, CB, WR.

KEY OFF-SEASON LOSSES: QB Scott Mitchell.

NOTABLE ACQUISITIONS: QB Jon Kitna (from Seattle), DT Tony Williams (from Minnesota), DE Kevin Henry (from Pittsburgh).

THE HUNCH: The Bengals return virtually intact, but that's not saying much given their woeful 2000 performance. The competition between Kitna and former first-round pick Akili Smith is already heating up, but neither will succeed if the protection isn't in place. Davis or Florida's Kenyatta Walker are possibilities.

Atlanta Falcons

FIRST-ROUND POSITION: 5.

BIG NEEDS: OL, DL, WR.

KEY OFF-SEASON LOSSES: P Dan Stryzinski (to Kansas City), DB Terry Cousin (to Miami).

NOTABLE ACQUISITION: QB Eric Zeier (from Tampa Bay), P Chris Mohr (from Buffalo).

THE HUNCH: The Falcons, who had more changes in assistant coaches than players this off-season, might be tempted if WR David Terrell falls this far, but either a high-caliber offensive or defensive linemen should be available. With pass protection and rushing the passer a problem, Gator OT Kenyatta Walker or DT Gerard Warren may find a home in Atlanta.

New England Patriots

FIRST-ROUND POSITION: 6.

BIG NEEDS: OL, RB, DT.

KEY OFF-SEASON LOSSES: DT Chad Eaton (to Seattle), LB Chris Slade (released), S Larry Whigham (released).

NOTABLE ACQUISITIONS: G Mike Compton (from Detroit), WR Bert Emanuel (from Miami), LB Mike Vrabel (from Pittsburgh), G Joe Panos (from Buffalo).

THE HUNCH: Drew Bledsoe was sacked 45 times last season and, after giving him a contract extension, the Patriots are in no mood to see their star get roughed up. Effective running may help most. LaDainian Tomlinson and Deuce McAlister are likely targets.

Seattle Seahawks

FIRST-ROUND POSITION: 7, 17.

BIG NEEDS: WR, CB.

KEY OFF-SEASON LOSSES: S Jay Bellamy (to New Orleans), G Pete Kendall (to Arizona), DT Cortez Kennedy (released), WR Sean Dawkins (released).

NOTABLE ACQUISITIONS: DT Chad Eaton (from New England), DT John Randle (from Minnesota), LB Levon Kirkland (from Pittsburgh), S Marcus Robertson (from Tennessee).

THE HUNCH: Receiver is a clear need, even though the Seahawks may land Jerry Rice. Darrell Jackson returns after a solid rookie campaign, but he's not a true deep threat.

Chicago Bears

FIRST-ROUND POSITION: 8.

BIG NEEDS: WR, RB, CB.

KEY OFF-SEASON LOSSES: RB Curtis Enis (to Cleveland), G Todd Perry (to Miami), C Casey Wiegmann (to Kansas City), CB Walt Harris (free agent).

NOTABLE ACQUISITIONS: P Brad Maynard (from Giants), DT Keith Traylor (from Denver), DT Ted Washington (from Buffalo).

THE HUNCH: The Bears are a likely candidate to trade down and acquire more picks in the second or third round. Vice president Mark Hatley figures this draft is deep and the Bears needs plenty. If they stay put, they could fill any of their three needs at No. 8.

San Francisco 49ers

FIRST-ROUND POSITION: 9.

BIG NEEDS: RB, DL, LB.

KEY OFF-SEASON LOSSES: LB Jason Kyle (to Carolina), DE Anthony Pleasant (to New England), LB Ken Norton (released), RB Charlie Garner (to Oakland).

NOTABLE ACQUISITIONS: LB Derek Smith (from Washington).

THE HUNCH: Garner took his consecutive 1,000-yard seasons across the bay to Oakland, leaving the Niners with a real void. They need to find a complement to Jeff Garcia's scrambling and running, and they don't have one on the roster. Defensive line also is a need, but there's talk DT Dana Stubblefield may rejoin the team.

Green Bay Packers

FIRST-ROUND POSITION: 10.

BIG NEEDS: DT, DE, WR.

KEY OFF-SEASON LOSSES: T Ross Verba (to Cleveland), QB Matt Hasselbeck (to Seattle).

NOTABLE ACQUISITIONS: QB Doug Pederson (from Cleveland), DT Gilbert Brown.

THE HUNCH: The Packers had a quiet off-season, hoping that having five picks among the first 82 selections will pay dividends. DT is problematic with Steve Warren and Santana Dotson coming off injuries and Brown coming off the fat farm. But there's talk the Pack may trade up with Arizona. Receiver also is a possibility, with Antonio Freeman apparently regressing.

Carolina Panthers

FIRST-ROUND POSITION: 11.

BIG NEEDS: RB, DL, LB

KEY OFF-SEASON LOSSES: K Joe Nedney (to Tennessee), DE Reggie White (retired), QB Steve Beuerlein (released).

NOTABLE ACQUISITIONS: G Kevin Donnalley (from Miami), LB Jason Kyle (from San Francisco), C Jeff Mitchell (from Baltimore), T Todd Steussie (from Minnesota).

THE HUNCH: LaDainian Tomlinson or Deuce McAllister, if available, will be snapped up immediately. The Panthers have retooled their offensive line, but need someone to run behind it. Veteran Tim Biakabutuka has been injured too many times to be considered reliable.

Kansas City Chiefs

FIRST-ROUND POSITION: 12.

BIG NEEDS: QB, RB, WR.

KEY OFF-SEASON LOSSES: QB Elvis Grbac (to Baltimore), DT Chester McGlockton (to Denver), WR Kevin Lockett (to Washington).

NOTABLE ACQUISITIONS: C Casey Wiegmann (from Chicago), CB Ray Crockett (from Denver), DE Rich Owens (from Miami).

THE HUNCH: The Chiefs continue to covet Rams backup Trent Green, but if a trade cannot be worked out, they will have to come up with a contingency plan in the draft. Michael Vick will be long gone, leaving Purdue QB Drew Brees as the only other prospect considered first-round material.

Jacksonville Jaguars

FIRST-ROUND POSITION: 13.

BIG NEEDS: OT, DL, LB, P.

KEY OFF-SEASON LOSSES: WR Reggie Barlow (to Oakland), LB Brant Boyer (to Cleveland), T Leon Searcy (to Baltimore), T Todd Fordham (to Denver), G Brendan Stai (to Detroit).

NOTABLE ACQUISITIONS: None.

THE HUNCH: The Jaguars are in bad shape. Strapped by the salary cap, they need all nine of their picks to pay off. With Fordham's departure, tackle becomes the most pressing need, but the two best tackles could be gone. They could snare Michigan T Steve Hutchinson, or take the best defensive player.

Buffalo Bills

FIRST-ROUND POSITION: 14.

BIG NEEDS: CB, DL, OL.

KEY OFF-SEASON LOSSES: DT Ted Washington (to Chicago), DE Marcellus Wiley (to San Diego), QB Doug Flutie (to San Diego), P Chris Mohr (to Atlanta), G Joe Panos (to New England).

NOTABLE ACQUISITIONS: None.

THE HUNCH: Here's another team that could not play the free agent game because of cap restraints. The Bills lost two key defensive linemen, so someone such as FSU's Jamal Reynolds is a possibility, but cornerback and offensive line also are weaknesses. Rob Johnson's tendency to hold on to the ball too long was not the only reason he was pummeled.

Washington Redskins

FIRST-ROUND POSITION: 15.

BIG NEEDS: WR, LB, G, DT, CB.

KEY OFF-SEASON LOSSES: WR Albert Connell (to New Orleans), QB Brad Johnson (to Tampa Bay), DT Dana Stubblefield (released).

NOTABLE ACQUISITIONS: K Brett Conway (from N.Y. Jets), WR Kevin Lockett (from Kansas City).

THE HUNCH: The Redskins, who purged their roster to get under the salary cap, have an array of needs and only four draft picks. That's why coach Marty Schottenheimer has made it clear Washington would like to trade down for more picks in the second and third round. The problem is, 15 may not be enticing enough for other teams.

Pittsburgh Steelers

FIRST-ROUND POSITION: 16.

BIG NEEDS: DL, LB, CB.

KEY OFF-SEASON LOSSES: DE Jeremy Staat (to Seattle), LB Mike Vrabel (to New England), LB Levon Kirkland (to Seattle), DE Kevin Henry (to Cincinnati).

NOTABLE ACQUISITION: OL Jeff Hartings (from Detroit), S Mike Logan (from Jacksonville).

THE HUNCH: The Steelers covet Miami LB Dan Morgan, but he may not fall this far. If Morgan is off the board, Pittsburgh could turn to cornerback because Chad Scott and Dewayne Washington will be free agents after the season. With Ted Washington opting for Chicago, DT is a possibility.

Detroit Lions

FIRST-ROUND POSITION: 18.

BIG NEEDS: OL, CB, WR.

KEY OFF-SEASON LOSSES: G Mike Compton (to New England), OL Jeff Hartings (to Pittsburgh), T Ray Roberts (released).

NOTABLE ACQUISITIONS: CB Todd Lyght (from St. Louis), QB Jim Harbaugh (from San Diego), G Brendan Stai (from Jacksonville).

THE HUNCH: Offensive line appears to be a clear need, but the Lions' draft will be influenced by attempts to restructure the contracts of LB Allen Aldridge and WR Herman Moore. If new agreements aren't reached, Detroit may use the draft to find replacements.

New York Jets

FIRST-ROUND POSITION: 19.

BIG NEEDS: WR, DL, FS.

KEY OFF-SEASON LOSSES: K Brett Conway (to Washington), QB Ray Lucas (to Miami), LB Bryan Cox (released), LB Roman Phifer (released).

NOTABLE ACQUISITIONS: LB Doug Colman (from Cleveland), LB James Darling (from Philadelphia), WR Matthew Hatchette (from Minnesota).

THE HUNCH: With the talent pool so deep at receiver, that is certainly a possibility. California DE Andre Carter is the son of assistant coach Rubin Carter, but he may be gone by the time the Jets pick. Florida State DE Jamal Reynolds and Miami DT Damione Lewis are other possibilities.

St. Louis Rams

FIRST-ROUND POSITION: 20, 29.

BIG NEEDS: DE, CB, LB.

KEY OFF-SEASON LOSSES: DE Kevin Carter (to Tennessee), DT D'Marco Farr (released), S Keith Lyle (released), CB Todd Lyght (to Detroit).

NOTABLE ACQUISITIONS: LB Mark Fields (from New Orleans), S Kim Herring (from Baltimore).

THE HUNCH: The Rams reportedly are looking to sign a veteran CB before the draft, which would allow them to concentrate on other needs as they continue to retool the defense for new coordinator Lovie Smith. St. Louis will have eight new defensive starters, and a few may come from this draft.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

FIRST-ROUND POSITION: 21.

BIG NEEDS: OL, LB, WR, S.

KEY OFF-SEASON LOSSES: TE Patrick Hape (to Denver), LB Don Davis (to St. Louis).

NOTABLE ACQUISITIONS: QB Brad Johnson (from Washington), DE Simeon Rice (from Arizona), LB Jude Waddy (from Green Bay).

THE HUNCH: All the prognosticators have the Bucs picking an offensive lineman, primarily Michigan's Jeff Backus. But the re-signing of Jerry Wunsch decreases the need, and the Bucs are not fond of taking linemen in the first round. Receiver, linebacker and maybe even defensive line are possibilities even though those aren't dire needs.

Indianapolis Colts

FIRST-ROUND POSITION: 22.

BIG NEEDS: DL, CB, WR.

KEY OFF-SEASON LOSSES: LB Cornelius Bennett (released), QB Kelly Holcomb (to Cleveland), CB Tyrone Poole (released), DE Mark Thomas (released).

NOTABLE ACQUISITIONS: None.

THE HUNCH: The Colts have clear needs on defense, at cornerback and defensive tackle, but some believe their desire to find a complement to Marvin Harrison may lead to a receiver pick in the first round. If they go defense, Wisconsin CB Jamar Fletcher or Texas DT Corey Hampton could be chosen.

New Orleans Saints

FIRST-ROUND POSITION: 23.

BIG NEEDS: CB, WR, LB.

KEY OFF-SEASON LOSSES: CB Alex Molden (to San Diego), WR Jake Reed (to Minnesota), K Doug Brien (released), LB Mark Fields (to St. Louis).

NOTABLE ACQUISITIONS: S Jay Bellamy (from Seattle).

THE HUNCH: Although they have boasted of being solid at every position, look for the Saints to take a cornerback in the first round. Fred Weary and Steve Israel are coming off leg injuries and Molden has moved on. Ohio State's Nate Clements or Mississippi State's Fred Smoot could break in as a starter or provide depth.

Denver Broncos

FIRST-ROUND POSITION: 24.

BIG NEEDS: DB, WR.

KEY OFF-SEASON LOSSES: TE Byron Chamberlain (to Minnesota), DT Keith Traylor (to Chicago), T Tony Jones (released), CB Ray Crockett (to Kansas City).

NOTABLE ACQUISITIONS: DT Leon Lett (from Dallas), DT Chester McGlockton (from Kansas City), CB Denard Walker (from Tennessee), TE Patrick Hape (from Tampa Bay), WR Eddie Kennison (from Chicago).

THE HUNCH: The Broncos have addressed several needs through free agency, but they always could add secondary depth or someone to push Kennison as the third receiver.

Philadelphia Eagles

FIRST-ROUND POSITION: 25.

BIG NEEDS: WR, RB, DL.

KEY OFF-SEASON LOSSES: LB James Darling (to New York Jets), WR Torrance Small (released).

NOTABLE ACQUISITIONS: DE Ndukwe Kalu (from Washington), WR James Thrash (from Washington).

THE HUNCH: The Eagles need to complement Donovan McNabb with more playmaking receivers, but at the same time, they have to consider Duce Staley's injured foot. If he doesn't come back healthy, coach Andy Reed will need a feature back. Reports out of Philly indicate the team may be willing to trade up.

Miami Dolphins

FIRST-ROUND POSITION: 26.

BIG NEEDS: OT, WR.

KEY OFF-SEASON LOSSES: G Kevin Donnalley (to Carolina), DE Trace Armstrong (to Oakland), LB Larry Izzo (to New England), QB Damon Huard (to New England).

NOTABLE ACQUISITIONS: DB Terry Cousin (from Atlanta), QB Ray Lucas (from New York Jets), WR James McKnight (from Dallas), G Todd Perry (from Chicago).

THE HUNCH: The Dolphins are said to be particularly fond of Hurricanes WR Santana Moss, who might be available this late in the first round because of his size. Then again, the team lacks a legitimate starter at left tackle.

Minnesota Vikings

FIRST-ROUND POSITION: 27.

BIG NEEDS: CB, RB, DL.

KEY OFF-SEASON LOSSES: RB Robert Smith (retired), LB Dwayne Rudd (to Cleveland), DT John Randle (to Seattle), T Todd Steussie (to Carolina).

NOTABLE ACQUISITIONS: DE Lance Johnstone (from Oakland), WR Jake Reed (from New Orleans).

THE HUNCH: The Vikings may fill their defensive line needs by signing Cortez Kennedy. There's also talk coach Dennis Green will trade for the Seahawks' Ricky Watters. Those two acquisitions could prompt the team to go for a cornerback, which Green calls the most pressing need.

Oakland Raiders

FIRST-ROUND POSITION: 28.

BIG NEEDS: S, LB, WR.

KEY OFF-SEASON LOSSES: TE Rickey Dudley (to Cleveland), DE Lance Johnstone (to Minnesota).

NOTABLE ACQUISITIONS: RB Charlie Garner (from San Francisco), DE Trace Armstrong (from Miami), WR Reggie Barlow (from Jacksonville), OL Tony Hutson (from Washington).

THE HUNCH: The addition of Garner means the Raiders can go for a safety, especially when you consider the most crucial defensive blunder came when Marquez Pope missed Shannon Sharpe and he ran 96 yards for a TD.

New York Giants

FIRST-ROUND POSITION: 30.

BIG NEEDS: CB, TE.

KEY OFF-SEASON LOSSES: P Brad Maynard (to Chicago), DE Cedric Jones (released), K Brad Daluiso (released).

NOTABLE ACQUISITIONS: DE Kenny Holmes (from Tennessee).

THE HUNCH: The Giants have made no attempt to hide their desire for cornerback depth. Veteran Dave Thomas held up for most of the season, but the team needs depth at the position and insurance in case Thomas falters. Minnesota's Willie Middlebrooks is a possibility because the team likes his 6-foot-2, 202-pound frame.

Baltimore Ravens

FIRST-ROUND POSITION: 31.

BIG NEEDS: OL, S, WR.

KEY OFF-SEASON LOSSES: QB Trent Dilfer (free agent), S Kim Herring (to St. Louis), C Jeff Mitchell (to Carolina), QB Tony Banks (to Dallas), T Spencer Folau (released).

NOTABLE ACQUISITIONS: QB Elvis Grbac (from Kansas City), OT Leon Searcy (from Jacksonville).

THE HUNCH: The Ravens have a pressing need for interior linemen, and Nebraska C Dominic Raiola would be a good fit if he slips this far. Raiola has the athleticism to get downfield on long runs and will need only to sharpen his pass-blocking.

Dallas Cowboys

FIRST PICK: 37 (6th in 2nd round).

BIG NEEDS: DT, LB, CB, QB.

KEY OFF-SEASON LOSSES: DT Leon Lett (to Denver), WR James McKnight (to Miami), CB Ryan McNeil (to San Diego), QB Troy Aikman (released).

NOTABLE ACQUISITIONS: QB Tony Banks (from Baltimore), WR Carl Pickens (from Tennessee).

THE HUNCH: The Cowboys have $23-million of cap money going to players no longer on the team. It is impressive they were able to sign any free agents. Limited movement in that arena combined with last season's 5-11 record means they need help everywhere. Defensive tackle is a concern, but look for a best athlete available pick.

Tennessee Titans

FIRST PICK: 60 (29th in 2nd round).

BIG NEEDS: S, RB.

KEY OFF-SEASON LOSSES: DE Kenny Holmes (to New York Giants), CB Denard Walker (to Denver), K Al Del Greco (released), WR Yancey Thigpen (released).

NOTABLE ACQUISITIONS: DE Kevin Carter (from St. Louis), K Joe Nedney (from Carolina).

THE HUNCH: The Rams are entertaining the possibility of signing Titans restricted free agent Samari Rolle. If Tennessee did not match the offer, they would receive the Rams first- (No. 20) and third-round picks. If they match, they will look to add depth at defensive line.

Back to Sports

Back to Top

© 2006 • All Rights Reserved • Tampa Bay Times
490 First Avenue South • St. Petersburg, FL 33701 • 727-893-8111
Contact the Times | Privacy Policy
Standard of Accuracy | Terms, Conditions & Copyright
 

From the Times sports desk

Bucs
  • More boom, less bust
  • Dungy's philosophy -- best available player

  • Devil Rays
  • Vaughn fed up with same old losing Rays
  • Huff doesn't signal rush to get younger
  • Rays tales
  • Today's game: Rays at Orioles, 1:35 p.m.
  • Castilla simmers after benching

  • NFL
  • Vick needs to be strong to handle this week
  • Off-the-field adjustment not easy
  • NFL briefs
  • NFL draft 2001

  • Baseball
  • Seattle gets its chance to gloat
  • Baseball this week on TV
  • Baseball briefs

  • Storm
  • Kaleo, Bowden power Storm

  • Mutiny
  • Missed opportunities cost Mutiny 2-1

  • Letters
  • It is worth paying to see Rays
  • Mizell mailbag

  • NBA
  • Miller has no NBA complaints

  • Lightning/NHL
  • Tortorella has his checklist ready
  • NHL briefs

  • Outdoors
  • Captain's corner

  • Et cetera
  • Highs and lows
  • Week in sports
  • Times wins state awards
  • Sports briefs
  • Horse racing briefs
  • Golf briefs

  • Preps
  • Panther just loves to play
  • Busy Panther has a lot going for her
  • Rams finally win their tourney
  • Results count starting now


  • From the wire

    From the state sports wire
  • Jacksonville's Spicer placed on IR after leg surgery
  • FIU-Western Kentucky game postponed because of Jeanne
  • Brown anxious to face old team for first time
  • Dolphins' desperate defense readies for Roethlisberger
  • Former Sarasota lineman sheds tough-guy image with Michigan
  • Rothstein rejoins Heat as assistant
  • No. 16 Florida has history on its side against Kentucky
  • FSU and Clemson QBs both off to slow starts