Posted by Chase Stuart on April 22, 2008
The NFL and AFL had their first common draft in 1967, making this year the 42nd draft in modern professional football history.
Jake Long becomes the third offensive lineman selected with the first pick, joining Orlando Pace and Ron Yary. Each made 7 Pro Bowls.
Fifteen lineman have now been drafted first overall, with twelve of them being defensive players.
Exactly two-thirds of the number one draft picks have been offensive players.
Long becomes the eighth player from the Big 10 to be drafted first overall, joining Courtney Brown, Pace, Ki-Jana Carter, Dan Wilkinson, Jeff George, Tom Cousineau and Bubba Smith.
Long becomes the first Michigan Wolverine ever selected with the number one overall pick. USC has the most number one picks, with five.
Long becomes the 37th first draft pick selected from a current BCS school. Alex Smith (Utah), David Carr (Fresno State), Ed "Too Tall" Jones (Tennessee State), John Matuszak (Tampa) and Terry Bradshaw (Louisiana Tech) were all drafted from current non-BCS schools or non-Division 1 schools (Jones, Matuszak).
According to the current breakdown of schools, the ACC and the Big 12 have five number one picks each, the Big 10 has eight, the SEC has seven, and the Pac-10 has eleven. Notre Dame has one (Walt Patulski), and the Big East has zero. Mike Vick was selected first overall when Virginia Tech was in the Big East, but the Hokies are now in the current ACC. The current WAC has two (Carr, Bradshaw) and the current Mountain West has one (Alex Smith).
Long (6'7) joins Bubba Smith and Orlando Pace in a tie for the third tallest player ever picked first overall. Ed "Too Tall" Jones was the tallest first pick ever at 6'9, and John Matuszak ranks second at six feet, eight inches. Ki-Jana Carter, 5'10, was the shortest top selection ever.
Long is also the third heaviest player ever (315 lbs) drafted first overall, behind Dan Wilkinson (335) and Orlando Pace (325). Irving Fryar was the lightest first pick, weighing just 200 pounds.
Long is also the first native Michigander selected at the top of the draft. Washington, Texas and Ohio have each had four top picks, while California leads the country with six sons selected first (Palmer, Aikman, Keyshawn Johnson, Plunkett, David Carr and O.J. Simpson).
Long is the tenth oldest player selected first overall. Billy Simms was the oldest, as he turned 25 in September of his rookie season. Mike Vick was the youngest, and both he and Alex Smith were just 20 years old when drafted.
Long is the 14th player selected by an AFC East team with the first pick. The Bills have four (Bruce Smith, Cousineau, Patulski and Simpson), the Baltimore Colts have one (Elway; the Colts were not in the AFC East when Bubba Smith was selected), the Indianapolis Colts have three (Manning, George and Emtman), the Jets have one (Keyshawn) and the Patriots have four (Drew Bledsoe, Irving Fryar, Kenneth Sims and Jim Plunkett). This is the first number one pick by Miami.