Sunday, April 21, 2002
Bargains to be had on final day of draft
By John Clayton
Unlike Saturday when 98 players were selected in 10 hours and 33 minutes, Sunday's final four rounds zipped by in less than seven hours. A total of 163 players were selection.
Here are the bargains.
Defensive end Alex Brown of the Bears, fourth round: The Bears have been looking for a pass-rusher for the past two drafts. Alex Brown of Florida may not be Andre Carter, whom the Bears coveted last year, but he will be the most active of the Bears nine draft choices. The Bears almost traded up five spots to the top of the fourth round to get him. They felt they were lucky when he fell to them as the sixth pick of the first round. Sure, Brown is undersized at 6-3, 260 pounds. But the Bears believe he can come off the edge and rush the quarterback.
Tight end Randy McMichael of the Dolphins, fourth round: McMichael ran a poor 4.8 40 at the combine and turned off teams who were looking to draft him in the first three days of the draft. The Dolphins had two rounds without a draft choice and felt that if McMichael could fall to them, he'd have a chance to start. Recently, they timed him on a fast track and he ran a 4.59 and a 4.62. They equated that number to a 4.7-second 40 on grass. He has a feel for the passing game, and the Dolphins will give him a chance to start.
Defensive end Kenyon Coleman of the Raiders, fifth round: Had he left UCLA last year, Coleman probably would have gone in the second round. But at 6-5, 282 pounds, the Raiders believe they have a bargain. They didn't want him for his pass rush. They wanted him for his run-stopping ability at the power end position. Getting him in the fifth round was a bargain.
Linebacker Nick Rogers of the Vikings, sixth round: Rogers is labeled a tweener. One team thought that Rogers had all the looks of another Stephen Boyd, who had been a great middle linebacker for a few years. Of course, Rogers was a sixth-rounder, too. But he had 15 sacks over the past two years for Georgia Tech. George O'Leary, the Vikings defensive line coach, was the Georgia Tech coach and know Rogers better than anyone. He could be a decent developmental strong side linebacker.
John Clayton is a senior NFL writer for ESPN.com.