The draft is a way to build your franchise; so we like to look back 5 years and see who your favorite team selected in the 1st round and how that player turned out for your favorite team.
With the 1st pick in the draft the Carolina Panthers selected quarterback Cam Newton (Auburn). The Panthers where looking for a franchise quarterback and they found one in Newton. Newton has started 78 out of a possible 80 games since 2011. He had his best season on 2015 throwing for 35 touchdowns with just 10 interceptions. Carolina went 15-1 and made it to the Super Bowl last season.
The Denver Broncos had the 2nd pick and took defensive lineman Von Miller (Texas A&M). Miller has turned into a premier pass rusher for the Broncos. He has 60 career sacks with his high being 18 1/2 in 2012. Miller was the 2015 Super Bowl M.V.P. as his Broncos defeated Newton’s Panthers.
The Buffalo Bills had the 3rd pick and selected Marcel Dareus (Alabama). Dareus has been an anchor for the Bills interior defensive line. As a defensive tackle Dareus has recorded 30 1/2 career sacks with 10 of those sacks coming in 2015. Dareus has made the Pro Bowl twice.
The Cincinnati Bengals had the #4 pick and they selected wide receiver A.J. Green (Georgia). Green stepped right in and has been a top receiver in the NFL since being drafted. He has totaled 1000+ receiving yards every season with a high of 1426 yards in 2013. Green also has 415 career receptions, 6171 career yards and has scored 45 touchdowns in his 5 seasons.
The Arizona Cardinals had the 5th pick and they took defensive back Patrick Peterson (LSU). Peterson is one of the top cornerbacks in the NFL and has started every game (80) since being drafted. Peterson has 17 career interceptions wit a high 7 in 2012. Peterson is also a dangerous punt returner. As a rookie he returned 4 punt for touchdowns.
The Atlanta Falcons gave up 2 1st round picks, a 2nd round pick and 2 4th round picks to move up to the 6th spot in the draft and take wide receiver Julio Jones (Alabama). Was it worth it? Jones has 414 career receptions, but 136 of those came last season. He has scored 34 career touchdowns and has 6201 career yards. Last season Jones led the NFL with 1871 receiving yards and tied for the league lead in receptions.
With the 7th pick in the draft the San Francisco 49ers selected linebacker Aldon Smith (Missouri). Smith’s first two seasons with San Francisco where great. He notched 14 sacks as a rookie and followed that up with 19 1/2 his 2nd season and even though he only appeared in 11 games his 3rd season he still recorded 8 sacks. After some injuries and suspension issues Smith is now a member of the Oakland Raiders.
The Tennessee Titans had the 6th pick in the draft and they selected quarterback Jake Locker (Washington). Tennessee was looking for a franchise quarterback, but sadly Locker wasn’t it. He appeared in 30 career games starting 23 of them. His record as a starter was 9-14. He threw for 4967 yards with 27 touchdowns and 22 interceptions in his career. Locker retired after the 2014 season.
With the 9th pick in the draft the Dallas Cowboys selected offensive lineman Tyron Smith (USC). Since being drafted Smith has playing in and started 79 out of a possible 80 games for the Cowboys. Smith has made 3 Pro Bowls and the Cowboys have had one of the top rushing attacks in the NFL since he was drafted.
The Jacksonville Jaquars had the 10th pick and they took quarterback Blaine Gabbert (Missouri). Gabbert spent 3 seasons with the Jaquars; starting 27 games for them. As a starter he had a 5-22 record. He threw for 4357 yards with 22 touchdowns and 24 interceptions. Gabbert has been with the San Francisco 49ers the last 3 seasons.
The Houston Texans had the 11th pick in the draft and they selected defensive lineman J.J. Watt (Wisconsin). Watt has turned into the best defensive lineman in the NFL. Watt has started every game (80) since being drafted and has led the NFL in sacks twice; 2012 and 2015. He has 74 1/2 career sacks. Watt has 1 career interceptions, but returned it 80 yards for a touchdown. He has also found his way to the offensive side of the football where he has 4 career receptions with 3 of them going for touchdowns.
The Minnesota Vikings had the 12th pick and they selected quarterback Christian Ponder (Florida St.) I remember this being a bit of a surprise pick. Ponder had success in his 2nd year as he led the Vikings to a 10-6 record. In his career Ponder played in 38 games starting 36 of them and had a career record of 14-21-1 as a starter. He threw for 6658 career yards with 38 touchdowns and 36 interceptions. Ponder did score 7 rushing touchdowns in his career.
Lucky pick number 13 belong to the Detroit Lions and they used it on defensive lineman Nick Fairley (Auburn). Fairley spent 4 seasons in Detroit playing in 46 games and starting 31 of them. He totaled 14 sacks with Detroit. His season high was 6 in 2013. Fairley spend the 2015 season with the St. Louis Rams. He was signed by the New Orleans Saints this off season.
With the 14th pick the St. Louis rams selected defensive lineman Robert Quinn (North Carolina) Quinn is a two-time Pro Bowler who has 50 career sacks. He had a career high 19 sacks in 2013. He’s played in 71 games for St. Louis starting 54 of them. Quinn was limited to just 8 games last season.He did have 5 sacks in those 8 games.
At #15 the Miami Dolphins selected offensive lineman Mike Pouncey (Florida). Pouncey has played in and started 72 out of a possible 80 games. He has started 60 at center and 12 at right guard for the Dolphins. Pouncey has been a Pro Bowl selection the last 3 seasons.
With the 16th pick the Washington Redskins selected defensive lineman Ryan Kerrigan (Purdue). Kerrigan has started every game (80) since being draft by the Redskins. He has 47 1/2 career sacks with his career high of 13 1/2 coming in 2014. Kerrigan has forced 17 fumbles in his career has 2 fumble recoveries as well as 2 career interceptions.
With the 17th pick the New England Patriots selected offensive lineman Nate Solder (Colorado). Solder has played in 67 games starting 64 of them since being drafted. He battled injuries last season as he played in just 4 games. New England acquired this pick by trading defensive lineman Richard Seymour to the Oakland Raiders.
The San Diego Chargers had the 18th pick and they used it to select defensive lineman Corey Liuget (Illinois). Liuget has played in 74 games since being drafted starting 71 of them. He had an injury last season that caused him to miss 5 games. Liuget has 21 career sacks with his career high of 7 coming in 2012.
With the 19th pick the New York Giants selected defensive back Prince Amukamara (Nebraska). Amukamara has only played in all 16 games 1 season (2013) because of injuries. He’s appeared in 55 out of a possible 80 games. Amukamara has 7 career interceptions with a career high of 3 coming in 2014.
At #20 the Tampa bay Buccaneers selected defensive lineman Adrian Clayborn (Iowa). Clayborn spent 4 seasons with Tampa Bay. He started all 16 games as a rookie and posted his single season high for sacks with 7 1/2. Clayborn had 13 sacks while with the Buccaneers. He played in just 36 games in his 4 seasons with Tampa Bay. He spent the 2015 season with the Atlanta Falcons.
With the 21st pick the Cleveland Browns selected defensive lineman Phil Taylor (Baylor). Taylor started off by playing and starting all 16 games for the Browns as a rookie. He record 4 sacks (his career high) to go along with 37 tackles and 22 assists. Since his rookie year Taylor has played in 28 games totaling 3 sacks, 32 tackles and 18 assists.
With the 22nd pick the Indianapolis Colts selected offensive lineman Anthony Castonzo (Boston College). Castonzo has played in and started 73 out of a possible 80 games since being drafted. He’s the Colts left tackle and has the job of protecting Andrew Luck’s blind side. Castonzo does have 1 career touchdown catch.
The Philadelphia Eagles had the 23rd and they used it to select offensive lineman Danny Watkins (Baylor). Watkins played just 2 seasons in Philadelphia and spent just 3 season total in the NFL. He played in 23 games for Philadelphia starting 18 of them. He played in 1 game for the Miami Dolphins in 2013.
At #24 the New Orleans Saints selected defensive lineman Cameron Jordan. Jordan has played in every game (80) since being drafted and has started all but 1 one them. He has 39 career sacks and his career high of 12 1/2 came in the 2013 season. Jordan is a two-time Pro Bowl selection (2013 & 2015) and has 1 career interception.
With the 25th pick in the draft the Seattle Seahawks selected offensive lineman James Carpenter (Alabama). Carpenter spent 4 season with the Seahawks. He played in 45 games and started 39 of them. Last season Carpenter stated all 16 games for the New York Giants.
With the 26th pick in the draft the Kansas City Chiefs selected wide receiver Jonathan Baldwin (Pittsburgh). Baldwin played just 2 season wit the Chiefs. He appeared in 26 games and started 10 of them. he had 41 catches for 579 and 2 touchdowns while in Kansas City. The Chiefs traded Baldwin to the San Francisco 49ers for wide receiver A.J. Jenkins before the 2013 season.
The Baltimore Ravens had the 27th pick and they used it to selected defensive back Jimmy Smith (Colorado). Smith has had some injury issues in his career. He has played in 63 games for the Ravens starting 45 of them. He has 8 career interceptions and has returned 1 for a touchdown. He did post his career high in interceptions (3) last season while playing in every game.
At #28 the New Orleans Saints selected running back Mark Ingram (Alabama). Ingram has 3195 yards and 26 touchdowns in 62 career games for New Orleans. His 964 yards and 9 touchdowns in 2014 are career highs. Ingram made his only Pro Bowl after the 2014 season. He also has 103 career receptions for 693 yards.
With the 29th pick the Chicago Bears selected offensive Lineman Gabe Carimi (Wisconsin). Carimi wasn’t the anchor to the offensive line that the Bears had hoped for. He lasted 2 season with Chicago. He played in 18 games; starting 16. He played in 14 games (starting 3) for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2013 and in 2014 he appeared in 16 games (starting 7) for the Atlanta Falcons.
With the 30th pick the New York Jets selected defensive lineman Muhammad Wilkerson (Temple). Wilkerson was quite the find for the Jets at the end of the 1st round. He has played in 77 out of a possible 80 games and has started 75 of them. Wilkerson has 36 1/2 career sacks with his high of 12 coming just last season. After his 2015 season Wilkerson was elected to his 1st Pro Bowl.
At #31 the Pittsburgh Steelers selected defensive lineman Cameron Heyward (Ohio St.) Heyward has appeared in all 80 games for Pittsburgh since he was drafted. He started 45 of those games. He has 22 career sacks, 132 tackles and 68 assists. Heyward had a career high 7 sacks last season for the Steelers.
The Green Bay Packers had the 32nd and final pick of the 1st round and they used it to take offensive lineman Derek Sherrod (Mississippi St.). Sherrod spent 4 seasons with the Packers. He appeared in 20 games for Green bay, but only made 1 career start.
There’s the 2011 1st round. How did your team do? Did they get a franchise player? a solid role player? or did they end up with a draft bust?