Andre Carter To Remain In The Bay Area

April 21, 2001

NEW YORK - Michael Vick, who 24 hours earlier expected to be going to San Diego, was selected first in the NFL draft Saturday by the Atlanta Falcons.

Atlanta acquired the pick Friday and immediately said it would take the Virginia Tech quarterback. Vick, who played only two seasons in college before declaring for the draft, drew a loud ovation from the crowd at Madison Square Garden when he came on stage after commissioner Paul Tagliabue announced him as the first selection.

Arizona then took Texas offensive tackle Leonard Davis, a 370-pound All-American. Davis is expected to play the right side for the Cardinals.

Asked if he is mean enough to play in the NFL, the soft-spoken Davis replied, 'I have a mean streak. I'm able to turn it on and off.'

'When I get off the field, I'm a nice guy. When I get on the field, I can take a guy's head off,' Davis added.

Cleveland supplied the first surprise of the early picks, taking defensive tackle Gerard Warren of Florida. The Browns were expected to go for an offensive skill player such as running back LaDainian Tomlinson or wide receiver David Terrell.

But when the Cardinals passed on Warren - considered the best defensive player in the draft - Cleveland took him to team with last year's No. 1 overall selection, defensive end Courtney Brown.

With the fourth pick, Cincinnati went for Justin Smith, a quick defensive end from Missouri whose strong postseason workouts raised his stock.

Then came the Chargers, using the pick they acquired from Atlanta for Vick. San Diego had been interested in Tomlinson even if it held onto the top spot and passed on Vick. So the Chargers grabbed the TCU running back at No. 5.

'I know how to rebuild a team. I know what it takes,' said Tomlinson, who twice rushed for 2,000 yards in a season at TCU. 'I'd love to have a chance on a team that's rebuilding. I enjoy the challenge. I love to prove people wrong.'

New England, looking to secure its defensive line, took Georgia tackle Richard Seymour. That made three of the top six picks defensive linemen in a draft loaded with them, particularly tackles.

Yet another trade sent the seventh overall selection from Seattle to San Francisco. The 49ers went for the fourth defensive lineman in the early picks, taking end Andre Carter of California. Carter's father, Ruben, was a top nose tackle for Denver in the 1970s and '80s and is an assistant coach with the Jets.

'Mike Holmgren is a tough guy to deal with,' said 49ers president Bill Walsh, who gave Holmgren his first NFL job. 'I don't know where he learned that.'

Chicago, which reportedly wanted Carter, grabbed Michigan's David Terrell, the first receiver taken - although that is not considered a particularly needy position for the Bears.

Seattle GM Holmgren took another receiver, North Carolina State's Koren Robinson. Some scouts rated Robinson higher than Terrell, although Robinson has questionable hands.

The emphasis on defensive linemen continued as Green Bay, with a pick acquired from Seattle earlier this offseason for quarterback Matt Hasselbeck, took Florida State end Jamal Reynolds. That made half of the first 10 picks defensive linemen.

The first linebacker chosen was Dan Morgan of Miami, who went to Carolina with the 11th pick. His college teammate, defensive tackle Damione Lewis, then went to St. Louis, which acquired the 12th spot from Kansas City for quarterback Trent Green.

That made three straight selections from the state of Florida.

Georgia's Marcus Stroud became the seventh defensive lineman taken in the first 13 picks. Jacksonville went for the defensive tackle.

Tampa Bay, needing a starter on the offensive line, traded up to No. 14 to get tackle Kenyatta Walker of Florida. The Buccaneers sent their first-rounder, No. 21 overall, and a second-round choice to Buffalo.

Washington, which spent so heavily in free agency last year and still fell short of the playoffs, addressed a serious need by taking wide receiver Rod Gardner of Clemson.

Tampa Bay, needing a starter on the offensive line, traded up to No. 14 to get tackle Kenyatta Walker of Florida. The Buccaneers sent their first-rounder, No. 21 overall, and a second-round choice to Buffalo.

The Jets moved up from 19th to 16th and took Miami wideout Santana Moss, who also is a dangerous kick returner. New York sent its first-rounder, 19th overall, plus a fourth-round and a sixth-round pick to Pittsburgh.

With its second pick of the first round, Seattle drafted guard Steve Hutchinson of Michigan.

Hutchinson's blocking mate for the Wolverines, tackle Steve Backus, was chosen by Detroit. It was the third straight year the Lions took an offensive lineman in the first round.

Pittsburgh, with the pick obtained in the deal with the Jets, selected Texas defensive tackle Casey Hampton. St. Louis's second of three first-rounders was Arizona State linebacker Adam Archuleta, who will play safety in the pros.

Buffalo, choosing with the pick acquired from Tampa Bay, grabbed another defensive back, Ohio State cornerback Nate Clements.

The third straight defensive back chosen was Will Allen of Syracuse, who went 22nd overall to the New York Giants. The NFC champions traded up with Indianapolis to get the pick.

Deuce McAllister, once rated a top-10 pick and the best running back available, fell to No. 23, where New Orleans took him. McAllister was injury prone at Mississippi.

The Saints' pick was curious because they already have Ricky Williams.

Denver and Philadelphia both tried to fill immediate needs. The Broncos selected cornerback Willie Middlebrooks of Minnesota, while the Eagles, desperate for receiving, grabbed wideout Freddie Mitchell of UCLA.

Miami, rumored to be interested in quarterback Drew Brees, instead went for Wisconsin cornerback Jamar Fletcher.

Another Badger, running back Michael Bennett, a world-class sprinter, went to Minnesota, which hopes he will replace the retired Robert Smith.

Oakland, in need of a safety, selected Florida State's Derrick Gibson. The Rams, with their third opening-round choice, again aided their defense with Ryan Pickett, a tackle from Ohio State.

A fourth player from Miami, wideout Reggie Wayne, was taken by Indianapolis. It was the first time the Hurricanes had four first-rounders.

Then Super Bowl champion Baltimore finished the opening round by selecting Arizona State tight end Todd Heap.

Overall, 16 defensive players and 15 on offense were taken.

By BARRY WILNER
AP Football Writer

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