With the official list of eligible underclassmen released Wednesday and the East-West Shrine Game coming up Saturday (3 p.m. ET, NFL Network), it's time to start the conversation around which players could or should be drafted in the first round.
East-West Shrine Game on NFL Network:
On Saturday, Jan. 22, NFL stars of tomorrow compete in the 2011 East-West Shrine Game in Orlando, Fla. Coverage begins on
at 3:30 p.m. ET.
NFL Network broadcast schedule
While NFL scouting departments have been tracking these guys all season, coaching staffs are just now starting to watch tape, read reports and get in-person looks.
Below is quick first pass at trying to match up an NFL team's draft position, drafting style and needs with a college player's projected NFL position and readiness, along with his perceived draft value at this point in the evaluation process. Things will change -- sometimes dramatically -- as the process moves along the Path to Primetime (NFL Draft, April 28-30, NFL Network).
* Underclassman are marked with an asterisk.
1. Carolina Panthers (2-14) -- Da'Quan Bowers*, DE, Clemson
2. Denver Broncos (4-12) -- Patrick Peterson*, CB, LSU
3. Buffalo Bills (4-12) -- Robert Quinn*, DE, North Carolina
4. Cincinnati Bengals (4-12) -- Nick Fairley*, DT, Auburn
5. Arizona Cardinals (5-11) -- Blaine Gabbert*, QB, Missouri
6. Cleveland Browns (5-11) -- A.J. Green*, WR, Georgia
7. San Francisco 49ers (6-10) -- Prince Amukamara, CB, Nebraska
8. Tennessee Titans (6-10) -- Marcell Dareus*, DT, Alabama
9. Dallas Cowboys (6-10) -- Tryon Smith*, OT, Southern California
10. Washington Redskins (6-10) -- Cam Newton*, QB, Auburn
11. Houston Texans (6-10) -- Cameron Jordan, DE, California
12. Minnesota Vikings (6-10)-- Aldon Smith*, DE, Missouri
13. Detroit Lions (6-10) -- Gabe Carimi, OT, Wisconsin
14. St. Louis Rams (7-9) -- Julio Jones*, WR, Alabama
15. Miami Dolphins (7-9) -- Mark Ingram*, RB, Alabama
16. Jacksonville Jaguars (8-8) -- Jimmy Smith, CB, Colorado
17. New England Patriots (from Oakland Raiders, 8-8) -- J.J. Watt*, DE, Wisconsin
18. San Diego Chargers (9-7) -- Von Miller, OLB, Texas A&M
19. New York Giants (10-6) -- Anthony Costanzo, OT, Boston College
20. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (10-6) -- Adrian Clayborn, DE, Iowa
21. Kansas City Chiefs (10-6) -- Ryan Kerrigan, DE, Purdue
22. Indianapolis Colts (10-6) -- Drake Nevis, DT, LSU
23. Philadelphia Eagles (10-6) -- Aaron Williams*, CB, Texas
24. New Orleans Saints (11-5) -- Ryan Mallett*, QB, Arkansas
25. Seattle Seahawks (7-9) -- Stephen Paea, DT, Oregon State
26. Baltimore Ravens (12-4) -- Brandon Harris*, CB, Miami (Fla.)
27. Atlanta Falcons (13-3) -- Allen Bailey, DL, Miami (Fla.)
28. New England Patriots (14-2) -- Akeem Ayers*, OLB, UCLA
Note: The draft order for the final four teams will be determined by the outcome of the championship games this weekend and the Super Bowl. These picks are listed in inverse order of regular-season record:
» Green Bay Packers (10-6) -- Nate Solder, OT, Colorado
» New York Jets (11-5) -- Rodney Hudson, OG, Florida State
» Chicago Bears (11-5) -- Derek Sherrod, OT, Mississippi State
» Pittsburgh Steelers (12-4) -- Cameron Heyward, DE, Ohio State