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2013 NFL Draft: Ranking the five most shocking first round story lines

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Moves were definitely made in prime time

Moves were definitely made in prime time
Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports

How many mock drafts did ESPN expert Mel Kiper put together? At least five, and the same goes for Todd McShay.

CBS, NBC, Fox Sports and a zillion blog sites (Full disclosure: Including this one) all spent hours upon hours mocking up the first 32 picks, trying to figure out how it would all go down come April 25 in Radio City Music Hall.

However, despite all the pouring over stats, film tape and interviews, nobody had any idea what was actually going to happen once commissioner Roger Goodell struck the gavel to open the first round of the 2013 NFL Draft

Thus, we ranked the top five picks (or non-picks) that proved the most shocking based on the months of projections previous to the evening.


5. Was Sheldon Richardson the best defensive tackle in the Draft?

5. Was Sheldon Richardson the best defensive tackle in the Draft?
Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Jets received the 13th-overall selection from the Buccaneers when they traded star corner Darrelle Revis to Tampa Bay. Also armed with the ninth pick, the Jets had the opportunity to both replace Revis and bring in an elite playmaker.

As early as they could, they found their new man in the defensive backfield, scooping up Alabama's Dee Milliner with a No. 9 selection that was applauded nationwide.

Not even an hour later, the Jets were back on the clock, but must not have had enough time to think things through. Florida's Sharrif Floyd had been rated the top-overall defensive tackle by the entire world and was going as high as No. 3-overall in Kiper's latest mock. Star Lotulelei of Utah had been the highest-rated player at the position until a heart condition forced him out of the Combine, but he was medically cleared later by league doctors.

Finally, both Mizzou's Sheldon Richardson and North Carolina's Sylvester Williams were seen as toss-ups. However, let's not forget about all the wide receivers still on the board, led by the athletic freak of nature that was the extremely well-dressed Cordarrelle Patterson.

Through it all, and with some of the very best players in the nation, the Jets went with Richardson, who was pretty good in his one season as a Tigers starter.

Pretty shocking choice right there, and Jets fans, obviously, were not impressed.

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4. Minnesota Vikings go trade-crazy

4. Minnesota Vikings go trade-crazy
Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

Speaking of former Tennessee star Cordarrelle Patterson, the wide receiver will be bringing his bow ties and his crazy leaping ability to the Twin Cities.

However, his arrival in Minneapolis was only made possible after the Vikings front office traded the 52nd, 83rd, 102nd and 229th (you read that correctly, four picks, ladies and gentlemen) for the right to make it into the first round for the third time.

In what was part of our fifth-most shocking draft day development, Sharrif Floyd slipped all the way from the top five down to Minny at No. 23. At No. 25, the Vikings again chose defense, selecting Florida State defensive back Xavier Rhodes.

Finally, with arguably the most talented, if not raw, wideouts still on the board, the Vikes proved the most aggressive team in the building, selecting flash over a stable of picks.

Pretty shocking to see a team trade four picks for one, but it's also pretty cool to see a team make not one, not two, but three first-round selections in the same draft.

The most shocked of all this? Easily Vikings quarterback Christian Ponder. All of a sudden, he has Greg Jennings, who signed as a free agent, as well as Patterson to throw to.

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3. The rise and fall of Manti Te'o

3. The rise and fall of Manti Te'o
Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

Next time you think a crazy ex is ruining your night with insane texts messages or something, just think about former Notre Dame All-American Manti Te'o: His ex-girlfriend didn't even exist and she may have cost him a first-round draft selection. Harsh.

After piling up more than 100 tackles in each of the last three seasons, Te'o disappointed at the 2013 NFL Combine, but put together a good 40-yard dash time at his pro day. His efforts as a leader on the playing field, combined with his track record for success with the Fighting Irish and finally with his handling of the extremely public catfishing he was subjected to was supposed to have him in the first round.

Guess not.

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2. The Kansas City Chiefs are ready for some MACtion

2. The Kansas City Chiefs are ready for some MACtion
Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports

Both Illinois and Michigan are in the Big Ten, but in 2013 it was the Mid-American Conference's Northern Illinois competing in a BCS bowl and it was Central Michigan's Eric Fisher under the spotlight at the NFL Draft.

That's right, Fisher became the very first player in MAC history to be selected with the top pick when the Kansas City Chiefs tabbed him as their guy to protect newly acquired QB Alex Smith's blind side.

Texas A&M's Luke Joeckel took home the Outland Trophy as the nation's top exterior lineman and was projected to be the Chiefs' choice (say that 10 time fast) for quite some time.

Well, Joeckel did not have to wait long, going second-overall to the Jacksonville Jaguars. Still, there were probably very few people in the football world as shocked about how it all eventually went down as Fisher and Joeckel themselves.

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1. Did Buffalo really just take EJ Manuel?

1. Did Buffalo really just take EJ Manuel?
Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports

Watching the Jets give the New York media more ammunition was amusing. The Vikings gave us some interesting drama, and while Eric Fisher's dreams came true, Manti Te'o's absolutely did not.

However, none of those scenarios are nearly as shocking as what Buffalo pulled with their pick, originally the No. 8 selection. Wisely, the franchise traded down. However, in dire need of defensive linemen, cornerbacks and a wide receiver, the Bills instead went with quarterback EJ Manuel.

Nothing against Manuel here as a person, but this is shocking purely because of the value lost in selecting the former Florida State star with such a high pick. By most accounts, Manuel was barely even a top five passer going into the draft, behind Geno Smith, Ryan Nassib, Matt Barkley, Mike Glennon and possibly even Tyler Wilson.

If Buffalo wanted Manuel, they easily could have waited until the second round, selecting an elite positional player to help bolster the roster at either eight or 16.

Instead, Manuel is now their signal-caller of the future, even though the highest-rated QB in the Draft, Smith, was still sitting in the green room.


What do you think is the most shocking move made in the first round?

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MORE DRAFT: Photo gallery of first round draft selections

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