Minnesota. Percy Harvin needs the best babysitter in the great north woods. Brad Childress' fate may rest with whether Harvin keeps his head on straight ... Phil Loadholt, the biggest, baddest tackle on the board, also has NFL people who don't trust him to be an Eagle Scout, but he should walk onto the team as the starting right tackle.
New England. I was told last night the Patriots loved Eric Wood, the Louisville center who projected to center or guard in the NFL, but if that's the case, they could have had him at 26 instead of trading out of the round for yet more picks. So I remain mystified about the continued trading rather than picking ... Brandon Tate's a poor man's Percy Harvin, with the same off-field question marks, picked almost exactly two rounds later than Harvin ... I go into the Patriots in more depth later, but I thought it was a strange draft, almost drunk with the power of moving back. The one reason you can never kill this team about drafting is it's taken a lot of no-name guys high over the years and many have become cornerstones.
New Orleans. Draft was crippled by trades for Jonathan Vilma and Jeremy Shockey. If they fail, or if they're mediocre, this draft stinks, and their team does too ... I've never seen so many teams so in love with a corner who runs 4.53 as is the case with Malcolm Jenkins. "Great football player,'' I kept hearing in the last couple of weeks. Most football people think he'll eventually be a free safety, maybe even by 2010.
New York Giants. Sorry. I still can't figure why, with five picks in the top three rounds, they didn't go get Anquan Boldin or Braylon Edwards. Giants fans have every right to have the attitude "In Jerry We Trust'' about GM Jerry Reese, and they'll just have to trust that Hakeem Nicks or the tall drink of water from Cal Poly, Ramses Barden, is going to be a go-to guy for Eli Manning by October. How many times does that happen in the NFL with rookie receivers? Not many.
New York Jets. Two-person draft. I don't buy it's a desperate team with a desperate GM making a desperate move, getting Mark Sanchez and Shonn Greene and saying goodbye to the rest of the draft profligately. Quarterbacks are expensive. And Greene might have been the highest-rated back on the Jets' board, from what I hear. (Sounds impossible, but stranger things have happened on NFL draft boards.)
Oakland. Darrius Heyward-Bey got picked seventh overall because of his speed. Period. To me, taking him this high is the kind of classic combine mistake teams made 15 years ago, pushing a player way up because he's an incredible specimen, not because he's a great football player. Heyward-Bey is a player with questionable hands and tremendous athleticism who should have been chosen 27, not 7.
Philadelphia. Now, no one knows if Jeremy Maclin and LeSean McCoy are going to be players. But getting them at 19 and 53, respectively, constitutes the best value picking of any team on day one of the draft, as happened last year with DeSean Jackson in the middle of Round 2.
Pittsburgh. Utilitarian draft, with Ziggy Hood coming in to be a starter, eventually, at end instead of 4-3 tackle ... Kraig Urbik (now, doesn't that sounds like a Steeler offensive-line name?) is a brawler who might have to play guard after a tackle career at Wisconsin ... And after losing Nate Washington in free-agency, Steelers picked his deep-threat heir in Mike Wallace of Ole Miss.
San Diego. I was like everyone else -- Larry English at 16? Crazy -- until I got on the phones Saturday night and kept hearing, "Great pick.'' Imagine if Shawne Merriman comes back healthy, and this team has Merriman, English and Shaun Phillips coming off the various edges.
San Francisco. For a team that hasn't picked a great receiver since Terrell Owens, Michael Crabtree's a welcome choice. He's 6-2, 215 pounds ("a faster Boldin,'' one personnel man told me last week) and he finally gives the 49ers some respect in the passing game ... Glen Coffee may play more than you think if Frank Gore can't hold up.
Seattle. The Seahawks had an odd weekend. They must really not trust Leroy Hill to take the tag off him and essentially make him a free-agent. I love the deal for Denver's one in 2010; it showed me Tim Ruskell isn't as worried about his job as others are for him ... And Aaron Curry is a bulletproof pick. He should lead that defense for years.
St. Louis. I can't be happier for the fans of the Rams that this team did the right thing and took a 10-year tackle. Why? The tackle situation was as bad as any single position for any team in football, and getting Jason Smith to replace Orlando Pace was essential ... James Laurinaitis over Rey Maulaluga at LB? It has to do with the Rams' belief that the Ohio State kid can better run a defense. I'll be writing about the Rams' weekend more in-depth at the top of Tuesday's column, but I think it was a positive weekend for St. Louis.
Tampa Bay. Josh Freeman is almost a one-man draft. That's how excited the Bucs are to have him. The one thing the Bucs had to have out of this spring was a quality quarterback. They failed to get Jay Cutler. That put the pressure on them to go get Freeman. I'll write more about the Bucs tomorrow also, but I liked them identifying what they wanted and going and getting him.
Tennessee. Not a huge Kenny Britt fan. Not at all. But he's a big receiver and Mike Heimerdinger must think he can get something out of him early; I thought a center for the long term would have been smarter ... The pick I like better is Sen'Derrick Marks, to replace the lost Albert Haynesworth. He just needs to be in the rotation with the other terrific young middle-cloggers Jeff Fisher and Mike Reinfeldt have gathered.
Washington. Well, Dan Snyder and Vinny Cerrato were telling the truth after all -- no 2010 first-rounder would go in any deal for Mark Sanchez. I like Brian Orakpo, if he's playing hard every snap.
NFL Truth & Rumors