Hidden Treasures: The Top Late-Round NFL Draft Picks In The Last Ten Years
Sleeper Note: Also considered was Kabeer Gbaja-Biamila of Green Bay, who was a 5th round pick in 2000, #149 Overall. I chose Allen mostly for his contract windfall with Minnesota, plus he went to a much smaller school (I-AA Idaho State vs. I-A San Diego State for KGB)
Linebacker: Pittsburgh Steelers: Joey Porter, DE/LB, Colorado State (1999 - Round 3 Pick 12 - #73 Overall) - The outspoken Porter, who has made headlines as much for his pre- and post-game yapping as it has for his on-field performance, is a four-time Pro Bowl selection and Super Bowl champion. After seven seasons with the Steelers, Porter was released as a salary cap move in March of 2007. He signed with the Miami Dolphins just seven days later. Many people thought Porter's best days were behind him, but he set a career high of 17.5 sacks in 2008 with Miami. His previous career high was 10.5 sacks, which he reached in 2000 and 2005.
Sleeper note: Chicago LB Lance Briggs was a 3rd round choice in 2003, #68 overall. He too has been to Hawaii four times, but his numbers aren't even close to Porter's. At least, not yet.
Safety: Arizona Cardinals: Adrian Wilson, S, North Carolina State (2001 Round 3 Pick 2 - #64 Overall) - Adrian Wilson may be one of the best safeties in the NFL that nobody knew about until this past season. He is known by some for a popular viral video circulating Youtube where he hurdles a bar in the locker room 66 inches off the ground. He also happens to be one of the hardest hitting and best tackling safeties in the NFL. Wilson is a 2-time Pro Bowler and defensive captain of the Cardinals. He has been described as a "poor man's Brian Dawkins". His leadership and intensity were integral in the Card's defensive resurgence over the past few years and played a role in bringing Arizona their first NFC Championship and Super Bowl appearance. Wilson signed a 5-year extension with the Cardinals in 2005, when he surely could have gone to another team that had more success then the once-hapless Cardinals, but he chose to stay and now Arizona is a serious contender in the NFC.
Cornerback: New England Patriots: Asante Samuel, CB, Central Florida (2003 Round 4 Pick 23 - #120 Overall) - Asante Samuel is arguably the best young cornerback in the NFL. In his six pro seasons, Samuel has already collected 26 interceptions, two Pro Bowl honors and two Super Bowl Championships with the New England Patriots. After five successful years with New England, Samuel cashed in during free agency, inking a six-year, $56 million contract with the Philadelphia Eagles. In his first season in Philly, he was selected to his second Pro Bowl, making him an All-Pro in both the AFC and NFC in a very short amount of time. He is also tied for fifth on the all-time post-season interceptions list with former Patriots teammate Rodney Harrison.
Special Teams: New York Jets: Leon Washington, RB/KR, Florida State (2006 Round 4 Pick 20 - #117 Overall) - The speedy Washington has been a spot-duty running back for the Jets, but primarily returns kicks. In two seasons, he has amassed over 4800 all-purpose yards. He has already taken four kickoffs to the house which gives him the Jets all-time mark. At 5-8, 202 pounds, Washington is used as a speed back in tandem with starter Thomas Jones. His small size, quick cuts, catching ability and 4.42 speed puts him in a class of back similar to Warrick Dunn or Darren Sproles.
So you can see there is definitely value on the second day of the draft, and on occasion you can get yourself one more maybe even more than one Pro Bowl player.