As Patriots trade Bledsoe, teams search for another Brady

Posted: Monday, April 22, 2002

NEW YORK -- On a day that Drew Bledsoe was traded from New England to Buffalo, the success of the man who replaced him seemed to have an impact on the second day of the NFL draft.

Six quarterbacks were chosen in the fourth and fifth rounds Sunday and 12 on the day, perhaps because Tom Brady, a sixth-rounder two years ago, led the Patriots to the Super Bowl title thisyear.

The Bledsoe trade had been discussed for a month, but the Bills refused to give up the fourth overall pick this year. They traded next year's No. 1, hoping it will be much lower.

Meanwhile, the Patriots took Rohan Davey of LSU to fill Bledsoe's spot as one of Brady's backups. He was chosen in the fourth round, the second QB taken on the day.

There was little humility in the first of the group, David Garrard of East Carolina, picked by Jacksonville with the tenth pick of the fourth round. The 235-pounder, a less polished version of Daunte Culpepper, immediately declared he was ready to challenge Mark Brunell for the Jaguars starting job.

''I'd like to give him a sense of urgency, knowing he has a guy behind him,'' Garrard said of Brunell. ''I want him to know I'm right on his heels, I'm ready to go, ready to play.''

Four more quarterbacks went in the fifth round: Randy Fasani of Stanford to Carolina; Kurt Kittner of Illinois to Atlanta; Brandon Doman of Brigham Young to San Francisco; and Craig Hall of Northwestern State to Green Bay. Kittner had been projected to be taken as high as the second round.

J.T. O'Sullivan of Cal-Davis was taken by New Orleans in the sixth round.

Seth Burford of Cal Poly-San Luis Obispo went to San Diego in the seventh, and Jeff Kelly of Southern Mississippi was taken by Seattle.

Then Oakland took Ronald Curry of North Carolina, the most sought after athlete in the nation coming out of high school. A point guard in basketball, he might play another position if he doesn't make it at QB.

Overall, 11 QBs were taken on the day. The last one was with the 236th pick -- Wes Pate of Stephen F. Austin, taken by Baltimore.

Among the other name players to go on the second day were defensive end Alex Brown of Florida (Chicago); kickers Jeff Chandler of Florida (San Francisco), Travis Dorsch of Purdue (Cincinnati) and Hayden Epstein of Michigan (Jacksonville); fullback Najeh Davenport of Miami (Green Bay); wide receiver Freddie Milons of Alabama (Philadelphia).

Running back Travis Stephens of Tennessee went to Tampa Bay in the fourth round; Adrian Peterson of Georgia Southern, a three-time Division II All-America, was taken by Chicago in the sixth round; as was Chester Taylor of Toledo by Baltimore; and Luke Staley of Brigham Young by Detroit.

And Nebraska tight end Tracy Wistrom went to Tampa Bay with the 251st pick in the draft -- there were 24 taken, eight more than the most ever in a seven-round draft

The last choice, by Houston was Ahmad Miller a defensive end from Nevada-Las Vegas. He becomes Mr. Irrelevant and will be honored the week of June 16-22 in Newport Beach, Calif.

The draft lasted 17 hours, 30 minutes over two days, the longest seven-round draft ever. The 1996 draft was 16:52.



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