he’s 6-foot-5, 271

The NFL draft is an annual exercise in optimism Authentic
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, but hindsight is always part of the equation—it
usually takes a few years to see how much of it was warranted. But going into
the 2013 draft, the talent pool seemed to be half-empty rather than half-full.
Comparing it to other years, Broncos GM John Elway presciently said, “Not nearly
as many impact guys.” Another GM thought to himself, This board is probably
a mess for everybody
. It was the year between Andrew Luck and Jadeveon
Clowney, when linemen were among the best and worst picks; when the bottom half
of the first round would yield more Pro Bowlers than the top half; when a top
pick who simply became a regular starter would be viewed as a “great” success.
Six of the first 10 picks from the 2013 draft have already moved on to other
teams—a stunning number. “I look back at that draft,” says one veteran talent
evaluator, “as one of the most confounding drafts for us.” In the spirit of 32
picks, here are 32 takeaways from one of the strangest drafts in NFL history

The Chiefs had the first overall pick, but it wasn’t a golden asset. New
general manager John Dorsey fielded only three or four calls from other teams
the day before the draft—and none of the trade offers were very serious. There
was no Andrew Luck to select at No. 1. Had there been, the Chiefs’ plan may have
been very different. Instead, they traded with the 49ers for veteran quarterback
Alex Smith in February http://www.detroitlionsteamonline.com/sylvester-williams-jersey ,
and in March they settled on drafting an offensive tackle as a building block
for new coach Andy Reid. They took Eric Fisher, valuing his athleticism and
upside even though he hadn’t faced top-tier competition at Central Michigan. “It
was one of those things where, if you understood to have a degree of patience as
an organization, that he would begin to hit his mark right around Year 3,”
Dorsey says. Fisher has never made a Pro Bowl, but he’s started more games than
any other top-10 pick from that year’s draft. Last year, the left tackle signed
a four-year, $48 million extension with Kansas City.

For the first time since the AFL-NFL merger in 1970, offensive tackles were
drafted first and second overall. The Jaguars selected Texas A&M lineman
Luke Joeckel with the second pick. To put an absolute value on those selections,
however, consider this: One AFC personnel executive said his team’s grades on
all three of last year’s top offensive tackles—Ronnie Stanley (No. 6 to
Baltimore), Jack Conklin (No. 8 to Tennessee) and Laremy Tunsil (No. 13 to
Miami)—were well above Fisher and Joeckel’s marks. Jacksonville didn’t pick up
Joeckel’s fifth-year option. In March Authentic
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, he signed a one-year, $7 million deal with the
Seahawks to play left guard.

Article continues below ...

Nick Aliotti, the former defensive coordinator at Oregon, remembers NFL teams
streaming through the Ducks’ headquarters in the months leading up to the draft.
Dion Jordan was projected to be a first-round pick, and talent evaluators asked
about everything—including, point-blank, if drugs were a problem. “You feel bad,
like, maybe you gave false information, even though I didn’t, to the teams that
were considering drafting him, because I never saw that coming Authentic
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,” Aliotti says. “I never saw the drug thing
being a problem, I really didn’t. We are not with him 24/7, but we are with him
quite a bit, so I thought I really knew the kid.”

There are football reasons why Jordan wasn’t a good fit as the Dolphins’ pick
at No. 3—he was a 3-4 outside linebacker drafted to be a 4-3 defensive end—but
it’s his three suspensions for violating NFL policies on performance-enhancing
drugs recreational drugs that have derailed his career. Aliotti says he and the
Oregon staff signed off on Jordan without reservation. He even went so far as to
vouch for him when a friend, then-Dolphins trainer Kevin O’Neill, called to
inquire about Jordan. “You feel bad you didn’t know,” Aliotti says, “but you
feel worse for the young man.” The Dolphins sacrificed a second-round pick to
move up nine spots and leapfrog Chip Kelly’s Eagles. Jordan, who hasn’t played a
down since 2014, was cut by the Dolphins this spring and signed a low-risk deal
with the Seahawks.

Had Dion Jordan been on the board at No. 4, it would have been hard for Chip
Kelly to pass on his former player. Instead, the Eagles took Lane
Johnson Cheap
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, who played quarterback, tight end and
defensive end in the college ranks before moving to the offensive line during
his last two years at Oklahoma. He was drafted on upside—and the Eagles hit that
projection. Johnson earned a six-year extension immediately following his third
season. But he’s also missed his own share of time with suspensions, a four-game
ban in 2014 and a 10-game ban last season for performance-enhancing drugs.

The top half of the 2013 first round has produced exactly two Pro Bowl bids
in four seasons: defensive end Ziggy Ansah (No. 5 to Detroit) in 2015, and
defensive lineman Sheldon Richardson (No. 13 to the Jets) in 2014. Among the top
16 picks, Ansah has earned the lone All-Pro nomination, a second-team nod in
2015. The crazy part is that Ansah might have been the biggest risk among the
top 10 picks. Though he had the size (he’s 6-foot-5, 271 pounds, and has 35
1/8-inch wingspan), he arrived at BYU in 2008 from Ghana having had no exposure
to football. He showed up to spring practice in 2010 hoping to walk onto the
team. When he was drafted, he had started just nine games in his life.image

An undersized edge rusher who struggled to set a physical edge in the run
game, Barkevious Mingo was taken sixth overall by the Browns . . . but he’s
already. Jorge
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