I tend to roll my eyes whenever I hear anybody profess hard and fast rules when it comes to Drafting. One common rule is that a team should only take players from certain positions in the first round. This might be true to a degree (see Roger Vick), but a lot of people seem to think the only position on the offensive line worth using a first round pick on is left tackle.
Tell that to any Jets fan today. The Jets bucked convention and took Nick Mangold in the first round in 2006. It was the right move at the time. The team had just let Kevin Mawae go and needed a new center. The club the Jets were trying to beat had Vince Wilfork clogging up the middle of the line. A good center was a necessity.
Mangold has played at a high level since he entered the league and quickly became the best center in the NFL. Fans of Gang Green have been spoiled for a decade and a half watching Mawae and then Mangold man the middle of the offensive line. Mawae was fantastic. Mangold is not quite as athletic as Mawae was and thus does not often pull in the run game like Kevin did. Nick is just as successful if not more so in every other area. He has already been to three Pro Bowls and been on two All Pro teams in five years. We are almost certain to see more.
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