BEREA, Ohio -- If you missed any of the first-round action from Thursday night, check the blog for my instant reaction on all the picks as well as columns on the Browns' two additions, running back Trent Richardson and quarterback Brandon Weeden. The Browns got tougher with Richardson and then reached late in the first round for Weeden.
It was a late night, but I will return in a few hours to post first-round grades for the division teams, a few notes about the picks, and a look ahead to Day 2 (second and third rounds are Friday night).
Here's what the local columnists are saying about the first round:
BENGALS: The Cincinnati Enquirer's Paul Daugherty believes coach Marvin Lewis "threw a bone" to defensive coordinator Mike Zimmer. Cornerback Dre Kirkpatrick, who was taken 17th overall, is the first defensive player drafted in the first round by the Bengals since 2008. "Since, they’ve gone for glory guys (Jermaine Gresham and A.J. Green at No. 1, Andy Dalton and Jerome Simpson at No. 2)," Daugherty wrote. "For Zimmer, they picked Rey Maualuga and Carlos Dunlap, in Round 2 in 2009 and 2010.Both have shown flashes of pretty good-ness; neither is a player that keeps offensive coordinators up nights."
BROWNS: The Cleveland Plain Dealer's Terry Pluto feels this was perhaps the most shocking draft night for the Browns since they returned in 1999. The Browns traded up to No. 3 for running back Trent Richardson and selected quarterback Brandon Weeden later in the first round. "I absolutely love the Richardson deal, because the price was small in terms of low-round picks," Pluto wrote. "Weeden seems like a bit of a stretch in the first round. But the Browns have been searching for a quarterback since taking Tim Couch in 1999 with the first pick of the expansion franchise. Weeden will be the latest to give it a try. If he turns out to be the right guy, this could be one of the best drafts in team history."
RAVENS: The Ravens did the right thing by trading out of the first round, according to the Baltimore Sun's Mike Preston. The Ravens traded their 29th pick to the Minnesota Vikings in exchange for the No. 35 pick overall (second round) and their No. 98 pick (fourth round). Baltimore now has two picks in the second round and two in the fourth round. "As the first round came to a close, the Ravens had to be smiling, because there are a number of players they value who are still available," Preston wrote. "The list includes Alabama outside linebacker Courtney Upshaw, Georgia guard Cordy Glenn, Georgia Tech wide receiver Stephen Hill, Wisconsin center Peter Konz, and Mississippi offensive tackle Bobby Massie."
STEELERS: The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette's Ron Cook says drafting guard David DeCastro is the latest investment in a protection plan for Ben Roethlisberger. This marks the third straight year that the Steelers have used a first- or second-round pick on an offensive lineman. "The Steelers are serious about keeping franchise quarterback Ben Roethlisberger healthy for a long time," Cook wrote. "It makes sense, right? He's 30 now. You invest $102 million in a guy, you want him to be able to play every down, every game. The Steelers saw what happened to their team last season after Roethlisberger's ankle injury in early December, and they didn't like it one bit."