Dallas Cowboys: Tyron Smith, OT, USC (9th overall) This was ..."/> Dallas Cowboys: Tyron Smith, OT, USC (9th overall) This was ..."/>

2011 NFL Draft First Round Division Reactions: NFC East


Dallas Cowboys: Tyron Smith, OT, USC (9th overall)

This was a pick that we all saw coming from a mile away, and one that the Cowboys needed to make. They have a clear weakness at right tackle, and Tyron Smith fills that void perfectly. He is an extremely athletic player who is really just coming into his own as a player. People ask why he wasn’t playing left tackle at USC if he was so good, and there’s a very good explanation for it. The guy playing left tackle–Matt Kalil–will probably be a top five pick next year as long as he stays healthy.

This was a solid pick for the Cowboys, and one that they needed to make.

Washington Redskins: Ryan Kerrigan, DE/OLB, Purdue (16th overall)

Mike Shanahan makes smart picks? You’d have a hard time convincing this Denver Broncos fan that it was Mike Shanahan running the Redskins’ war room yesterday. Not only did the Redskins trade down from 10th overall, but they also got a top 12 talent, in my opinion. Ryan Kerrigan is a blue-collar defensive end/linebacker hybrid who brings some great pass rush ability to the Redskins, and gives them a very good bookend to Brian Orakpo.

Again, the fact that Washington was able to pick up extra choices in the draft along with getting Kerrigan is great for them, because now they have ammunition to move up and get the quarterback of their choosing today.

New York Giants: Prince Amukamara, CB, Nebraska (19th overall)

If anyone gives the Giants a grade besides A+, they are sorely mistaken. Amukamara is an elite talent at cornerback who had no business falling to this pick here, and the Giants got a fantastic value with their first round pick. This is a passing league, and in order to defend against the speed and passing that occupies the NFC East, the Giants are going to need guys on the back end to compliment their excellent pass rush.

This pick more than accomplishes that. One of the best picks of day one.

Philadelphia Eagles: Danny Watkins, OL, Baylor (23rd overall)

This was a safe selection by Andy Reid and the Eagles, going with what they know. Watkins is a powerful offensive lineman who will be able to be inserted into the starting lineup right away. Watkins was one of the great stories of the draft. He came to Baylor after being a fireman in Canada and picking up football at a lower level college. He wound up at Baylor, and will be a 27 year old rookie. Still, many believe he will be an 8-10 year starter in the league, so this was a solid but not flashy pick.