Craig: Spielman can't rest on his laurels, ask other GMs

  • Article by: MARK CRAIG , Star Tribune
  • Updated: April 26, 2013 - 7:23 AM

Numerous general managers drafting Thursday night were doing so for the first time, a sign of the high job turnover in the NFL last season.

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Rick Spielman.

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If Rick Spielman needed a reminder not to rest on his past draft-day successes, all he had to do was look at all the new faces making the decisions at the top of Thursday night’s first round.

Eight of the first 14 picks were made by the league’s seven new general managers. They’re new because the teams they work for were a combined 34-78 and 0-for-7 in playoff appearances a year ago. They’re new because their predecessors messed up way too badly on way too many draft days.

Those seven new faces mean that nearly a quarter of the league’s decisionmakers are new this year. That’s a good thing for the Vikings, who look comfortable and confident with Spielman overseeing the Vikings’ draft for the seventh time, including the past two with final say on all transactions.

In his first six drafts, Spielman used his first-rounders on rookies of the year Adrian Peterson and Percy Harvin, a rookie Pro Bowl tackle in Matt Kalil, a 16-game rookie starter at safety in Harrison Smith and trade bait to land multiple All-Pro defensive end Jared Allen.

Spielman also used Day 3 picks (fourth round or lower) to land five starters – Brian Robison, John Sullivan, Brandon Fusco, Jamarca Sanford and Letroy Guion – a rising star in Everson Griffen and an All-Pro kicker in Blair Walsh.

Thursday night, he filled not one, not two, but three needs with first rounders. No. 23 pick Sharrif Floyd will play nose tackle this year and then replace Kevin Williams, the last Vikings’ defensive tackle taken in the first round back in 2003.

No. 25 pick Xavier Rhodes gives the Vikings a pair of 6-2 starting cornerbacks, along with Chris Cook, to combat the NFC North’s giant receivers. And No. 29 pick Cordarrelle Patterson fills a huge need at receiver, which was obvious by how much the Vikings paid (picks in the second, third, fourth and seventh rounds) to New England to trade back into the first round to get him.

– would be more than happy to do as well as Spielman has on draft day.

The new guys owned the first (Chiefs), second (Jaguars), sixth (Browns), seventh (Cardinals), ninth (Jets), 11th (Chargers), 13th (Jets) and 14th (Panthers) picks.

Four played it safe with offensive linemen in what was considered a meat-and-potatoes draft. Also taken were two powerful, mobile defensive tackles, a pass-rushing 3-4 outside linebacker and the top cornerback.

Here’s who the new guys took in Round 1:

Chiefs: Dorsey. No. 1 overall: Eric Fisher, OT, Central Michigan.

Dorsey gave himself leverage to trade disgruntled franchise player Branden Albert when he went with a predictable position, but a surprise player. Fisher was considered more of a risk because he came from a smaller school than Luke Joeckel, the consensus No. 1 projection from Texas A&M.

Jaguars: Caldwell. No. 2: Joeckel, OT, Texas A&M

Jacksonville had the fewest sacks in the league (20) a year ago. But rather than take Oregon pass rusher Dion Jordan, they went the safer route with Joeckel.

Browns: Lombardi. No. 6: Barkevious Mingo, OLB, LSU.

Cardinals: Keim. No. 7: Jonathan Cooper, G, North Carolina

Jets: Idzik. Nos. 9 and 13: Dee Milliner, CB, Alabama; Sheldon Richardson, DT, Missouri.

Idzik is by far the biggest risk-taker among the new GMs. He wasn’t a popular guy when he traded All-Pro corner Darrelle Revis to Tampa Bay for the 13th pick. But he came back with Milliner, a big corner who can tackle, cover and even rush off the edge.

Chargers: Telesco. No. 11: D.J. Fluker, OT, Alabama

Panthers: Gettelman. No. 14: Star Lotulelei, DT, Utah

 

Mark Craig • mcraig@startribune.com

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Los Angeles - LP: C. Frias 2 FINAL
Colorado - WP: J. De La Rosa 16
San Francisco - WP: S. Romo 4 FINAL
Arizona - LP: A. Reed 2
Boston - LP: C. Buchholz 1 FINAL
Pittsburgh - WP: F. Liriano 9
Toronto - LP: J. Happ 1 FINAL
Baltimore - WP: B. Norris 6
Washington - LP: R. Detwiler 1 FINAL
Atlanta - WP: A. Wood 3
Miami - WP: H. Alvarez 4 FINAL
NY Mets - LP: D. Gee 3
NY Yankees - WP: B. McCarthy 3 FINAL
Tampa Bay - LP: A. Cobb 2
Cincinnati - LP: D. Corcino 1 FINAL
Chicago Cubs - WP: K. Hendricks 3
Chicago WSox - LP: C. Sale 2 FINAL
Kansas City - WP: Y. Ventura 6
Cleveland - WP: C. Carrasco 2 FINAL
Houston - LP: B. Oberholtzer 0
Detroit - LP: D. Price 4 FINAL
Minnesota - WP: K. Gibson 8
Milwaukee - LP: M. Fiers 0 FINAL
St. Louis - WP: A. Wainwright 2
Seattle - LP: J. Paxton 0 FINAL
LA Angels - WP: C. Wilson 5
Texas - WP: R. Ross Jr. 6 FINAL
Oakland - LP: S. Doolittle 1
Philadelphia - WP: C. Hamels 5 FINAL
San Diego - LP: E. Stults 2
Tampa Bay 7:25 PM
Atlanta
San Diego 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Buffalo
Dallas 9/21/14 12:00 PM
St. Louis
Washington 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Philadelphia
Houston 9/21/14 12:00 PM
NY Giants
Minnesota 9/21/14 12:00 PM
New Orleans
Tennessee 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Cincinnati
Baltimore 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Cleveland
Green Bay 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Detroit
Indianapolis 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Jacksonville
Oakland 9/21/14 12:00 PM
New England
San Francisco 9/21/14 3:05 PM
Arizona
Denver 9/21/14 3:25 PM
Seattle
Kansas City 9/21/14 3:25 PM
Miami
Pittsburgh 9/21/14 7:30 PM
Carolina
Chicago 9/22/14 7:30 PM
NY Jets
(5) Auburn 6:30 PM
(20) Kansas State
Connecticut 9/19/14 7:00 PM
So Florida
Old Dominion 9/20/14 11:00 AM
Rice
Troy 9/20/14 11:00 AM
(13) Georgia
Georgia Tech 9/20/14 11:00 AM
Virginia Tech
Eastern Mich 9/20/14 11:00 AM
(11) Michigan State
Iowa 9/20/14 11:00 AM
Pittsburgh
Bowling Green 9/20/14 11:00 AM
(19) Wisconsin
Maryland 9/20/14 11:30 AM
Syracuse
Tulane 9/20/14 11:30 AM
Duke
Hawaii 9/20/14 1:00 PM
Colorado
Marshall 9/20/14 1:00 PM
Akron
North Carolina 9/20/14 2:30 PM
East Carolina
Army 9/20/14 2:30 PM
Wake Forest
Virginia 9/20/14 2:30 PM
(21) BYU
(6) Texas A&M 9/20/14 2:30 PM
SMU
Rutgers 9/20/14 2:30 PM
Navy
Central Mich 9/20/14 2:30 PM
Kansas
Utah 9/20/14 2:30 PM
Michigan
Florida 9/20/14 2:30 PM
(3) Alabama
Louisville 9/20/14 2:30 PM
FIU
Fla Atlantic 9/20/14 3:00 PM
Wyoming
Indiana 9/20/14 3:00 PM
(18) Missouri
San Jose St 9/20/14 3:00 PM
Minnesota
Texas State 9/20/14 3:00 PM
Illinois
Massachusetts 9/20/14 3:00 PM
Penn State
Georgia State 9/20/14 5:00 PM
Washington
Appalachian St 9/20/14 6:00 PM
Southern Miss
Miss State 9/20/14 6:00 PM
(8) LSU
Northern Ill 9/20/14 6:00 PM
Arkansas
Middle Tennessee 9/20/14 6:00 PM
Memphis
Utah State 9/20/14 6:00 PM
Arkansas State
Miami-Ohio 9/20/14 6:00 PM
Cincinnati
Idaho 9/20/14 6:00 PM
Ohio U
Ball State 9/20/14 6:00 PM
Toledo
(14) So Carolina 9/20/14 6:30 PM
Vanderbilt
(4) Oklahoma 9/20/14 6:30 PM
West Virginia
Ga Southern 9/20/14 6:30 PM
South Alabama
UNLV 9/20/14 7:00 PM
Houston
(22) Clemson 9/20/14 7:00 PM
(1) Florida State
Miami-Florida 9/20/14 7:00 PM
(24) Nebraska
New Mexico 9/20/14 7:00 PM
New Mexico St
California 9/20/14 9:00 PM
Arizona
Louisiana 9/20/14 9:30 PM
Boise State
(2) Oregon 9/20/14 9:30 PM
Washington St
San Diego St 9/20/14 9:30 PM
Oregon State
Toronto 9/19/14 9:00 PM
Brt Columbia
Edmonton 9/20/14 6:00 PM
Hamilton
Calgary 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Montreal
Ottawa 9/21/14 3:00 PM
Saskatchewan
Montreal 9/26/14 6:00 PM
Ottawa
Saskatchewan 9/26/14 9:00 PM
Edmonton
Hamilton 9/27/14 5:30 PM
Winnipeg
Brt Columbia 9/27/14 8:30 PM
Calgary
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