By BARRY WILNER, Associated Press
NEW YORK (AP) — How appropriate for a quarterback-driven league that the top two picks on Thursday night will be passers expected to turn around franchises.
Only one other quarterback is likely to go in the first round, when NFL teams will devour space-eating defensive linemen, pass rushers and wide receivers.
The league's offseason Super Bowl runs for three days at Radio City Music Hall. Here's how the first round might go.
1. INDIANAPOLIS (2-14)
Such Luck, as in Andrew Luck. After 13 seasons of trying to deal with Peyton Manning in a Colts uniform, AFC opponents must face the most NFL-ready quarterback since Manning. Owner Jim Irsay couldn't have chosen a better time — once it was clear Manning wasn't welcomed back — for rebuilding the franchise from top to bottom. If he's fortunate, Irsay won't have to think about the position for another dozen or so years.
ANDREW LUCK, QB, STANFORD.
2. WASHINGTON (5-11, from St. Louis)
Mike Shanahan used a whole bunch of picks to get to this spot for the best QB prospect he has had since John Elway won him two Super Bowls. Can a Heisman winner bring a Lombardi Trophy to D.C?
ROBERT GRIFFIN III, QB, BAYLOR.
3. MINNESOTA (3-13)
After two seasons of free fall, the Vikings can't afford to miss on this pick. Fortunately, there are plenty of choices for their many needs. The most reliable is ...
MATT KALIL, OT, SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA.
4. CLEVELAND (4-12)
No shortage of holes to fill on both sides of the ball. After toying with selecting a quarterback, the Browns do the wise thing and take someone to help their incumbent QB, Colt McCoy, make plays.
TRENT RICHARDSON, RB, ALABAMA.
5. TAMPA BAY (4-12)
After plummeting from 10 wins to the bottom of their division and changing coaches, the Buccaneers are torn between a playmaker on offense and one on defense. Their D was so bad in 2011, so ...
MORRIS CLAIBORNE, CB, LSU.
6. ST. LOUIS (2-14, from Washington)
The Rams traded down once and thought about doing so again, with several teams interested in this slot. But when the receiver they covet remains on the board, they stay put.
JUSTIN BLACKMON, WR, OKLAHOMA STATE.
7. JACKSONVILLE (5-11)
The Jaguars certainly would have liked Blackmon, but didn't expect him to last. They need a pass rusher and possibly the best one in this crop is available.
QUINTON COPLES, DE, NORTH CAROLINA.
8. MIAMI (6-10)
Probably the most debated pick in the first round, because the Dolphins struck out chasing Peyton Manning, Matt Flynn and a high enough draft spot to take Griffin. Some say they will be reaching for ...
RYAN TANNEHILL, QB, TEXAS A&M.
9. CAROLINA (6-10)
Ron Rivera is a defensive coach and his unit was awful last year, just as the offense was ascending. Look for the Panthers to concentrate heavily on their D, beginning with ...
MELVIN INGRAM, DE, SOUTH CAROLINA.
10. BUFFALO (6-10)
The Bills have had a strong offseason in free agency and could look to trade down. They have needs on the offensive line and at receiver, though, so staying put will give them shots at Michael Floyd or ...
RILEY REIFF, OT, IOWA.
11. KANSAS CITY (7-9)
Kansas City is not that far away from contending if it gets all the missing, injured parts back. One place the Chiefs surely need help is inside on defense.
LUKE KUECHLY, ILB, BOSTON COLLEGE.
12. SEATTLE (7-9)
Another team seeking help on defense, although not in a secondary that could be among the NFL's best. Seattle also might look at the offensive line.
FLETCHER COX, DT, MISSISSIPPI STATE.
13. ARIZONA (8-8)
The Cardinals need to supplement their receiving corps and also could use help on the offensive line. Their defense solidified late last season and is relatively young. Giving whichever QB emerges as the starter another weapon to go with Larry Fitzgerald seems the top priority.
MICHAEL FLOYD, WR, NOTRE DAME.
14. DALLAS (8-8)
For Rob Ryan's defense to work, the Cowboys need more support for LB DeMarcus Ware on the pass rush. But they also must further shore up the leaky secondary that was boosted by adding CB Brandon Carr.