Recalling the fascinating 2000 NFL Draft


It was the draft where collegiate teammates were selected first and second overall, the draft where the first kicker was taken before the first quarterback.

The draft where the best player was taken in Round Six.

Yes, it was the 2000 NFL Draft, which kicked off 15 years ago Wednesday in New York.

Here are some of memorable occurrences from this dial-up era draft:

  • The top two picks — defensive Courtney Brown (Cleveland) and linebacker LaVar Arrington (Washington) — played together on the same defense at Penn State. However, injuries limited both players from having long careers. Arrington had the better NFL run, making three Pro Bowls, but he was gone from the game by 2007.
  • Past trades left a few clubs sitting pretty in Round One. Here are three examples. One, Washington selected Arrington with a pick New Orleans dealt for Ricky Williams in 1998. Two, the Ravens took tailback Jamal Lewis at No. 5 — a pick that Atlanta dealt the previous in the previous draft for a second-round choice. Finally, the Jets took edge rusher John Abraham at No. 13 — a selection that once belonged to San Diego. However, the Chargers traded the pick for a second-round selection in 1998.
  • It’s here we pause to say that trading a future No. 1 pick for a current No. 2 pick is generally not advisable.
  • Washington held the No. 2 and No. 3 overall picks. After taking Arrington, Washington selected left tackle Chris Samuels, who made six Pro Bowls and spent his entire 10-season career with the club. Washington acquired the No. 3 pick by trading picks Nos. 12 and 24 to San Francisco.
  • The Jets had four No. 1 picks — and did well with all of them, selecting defensive lineman Shaun Ellis 12th, Abraham 13th, quarterback Chad Pennington 18th and tight end Anthony Becht 27th.
  • Pennington was the first quarterback off the board and the only passer selected in the first two rounds. He was taken one spot after the Raiders selected placekicker Sebastian Janikowski. The Raiders also took the first punter (Shane Lechler, Round Five). Both specialists are still in the league.
  • The 16th pick belonged to the Patriots, but it went to the Jets as compensation to sign Bill Belichick. The Jets ultimately traded the selection to the 49ers to move up for Ellis (No. 12). At No. 16, the Niners took outside linebacker Julian Peterson, a five-time Pro Bowler.
  • Fun fact: the Saints gave up a seventh-round pick to hire then-Kansas City assistant Ron Zook as their special teams coach.
  • How’s this for old school? Five tailbacks were selected in Round One, including three in the first 11 picks: Lewis, Thomas Jones (Arizona, No. 7), Ron Dayne (N.Y. Giants, No. 11). The others were Shaun Alexander (No. 19, Seattle) and Trung Candiate (No. 31, St. Louis).
  • How’s this for new school? At No. 9, the Bears selected linebacker Brian Urlacher, whose rare speed and athleticism made him ideally suited for the 21st-century game.
  • Ultimately, though, the 2000 draft will be remembered for quarterback Tom Brady lasting until pick No. 199. He was the seventh of 10 Patriots draft picks and the second of the club’s choices in Round Six. Twelve selections before taking Brady, the Patriots took reserve defensive back Antwan Harris, who played in 52 regular season games and was a key contributor in New England’s Super Bowl XXXVI run, including when he scored on a blocked field goal in the AFC title game.

55 responses to “Recalling the fascinating 2000 NFL Draft

  1. sportnut92 says:
    Apr 15, 2015 5:45 PM

    So basically,

    There was nothing fascinating about this draft, other than the legend TB12 went through it. The rest are hacks.

    Yes, Jamal Lewis was such a “hack”. Only carried the Baltimore Ravens offense to a Super Bowl victory as a rookie and set the single game rushing record later broken by Adrian Peterson. Quite the “hack”…..

    Oh, and don’t even bother with Seabass going to the Hall. He clearly sucked…..

    Brian Urlacher? Who was he? Not one of the greatest linebackers of this day and age. Another bust, wouldn’t you say?

    Shane Lechler was a terrible punter. He isn’t going to the Hall of Fame with counter part Seabass…..

    Leave it to some pompous New England fan…..

  2. So SF traded the 3rd pick (2,200 pts per the draft chart) for the 12th and 24th picks (1,940 total pts).

    But now Washington probably wouldn’t trade their pick (5th, 1,700 pts.) for Cleveland’s 12th and 19th picks (2,075 total pts.), because they so WAY overpaid for Bobby Griffin.

  3. Remote throwing time when the Giants selected Dayne instead of Brady (I mean Shaun Alexander).

  4. tccoats says:
    Apr 15, 2015 6:03 PM

    “So SF traded the 3rd pick (2,200 pts per the draft chart) for the 12th and 24th picks (1,940 total pts).”

    — Was wondering about that from a draft value standpoint. Thanks for sharing.


  5. Al did get a once in a generation kicker, still a kicker…
    SJ going on 15 years and only missed 4 games in his career. Not to mention +55% from over 50.

  6. Rams spend a 1st round pick on a RB when they have Marshall Faulk, 27 years old, six years left on his deal, the highest paid player in franchise history.

    Franchise about to drive off the cliff.

  7. Wait, so let’s get this right.

    pftcancer is banking on a One Season Wonder(Jamaal Lewis), a pair of special teams kickers that have no hardware to prove their worth, and an overrated LB(Urlacher) who was forced to retire because not a single team offered him a contract, make this draft fascinating? LOL. Please note;2004 NFL Draft. It’s likely one of these flukes played on your team, must be a bummer.

  8. Janikowski was a great pick, 15 years and still starting/ contributing to the organization that drafted him. How is that a bad draft pick?

  9. Charger fans can laugh now, but this was the sad and unglorious end of the Bobby Beathard era.

    Beathard traded the 2000 1st rounder to Tampa back in ’98 for their ’98 2nd round pick– to select Mikhael Ricks.

  10. Charger fans can laugh now, but this was the sad and unglorious end of the Bobby Beathard era.

    Beathard traded the 2000 1st rounder to Tampa back in ’98 for their ’98 2nd round pick– to select Mikhael Ricks.
    Wasn’t laughing then, not laughing now. Beatherd made horrible moves after ’94.

  11. and Samuels is a hack too right?

    other notable picks

    marcus washington
    chad clifton
    laveranues coles
    neil rackers
    adalius thomas
    marc bulger

    shaun ohara (undrafted)
    shayne graham (undrafted)

  12. Yeah I wasn’t laughing then either. That one was crushing and was made worse as Leaf flamed out. (To be fair, he grabbed Jamal W with a supplemental pick that year).

    Can’t really blame him for Leaf though– Not too many QBs in NFL history have had the skills Ryan Leaf had. What a crying shame and a waste.

  13. So the Patriots also passed on Brady 6 times? I was thinking it was 5.

    Just goes to show you – who knew?

  14. I was with an nfl scout at a Knicks game that told me Ron Dayne wouldn’t be able to hit the holes fast enough in the NFL. He was right.

  15. Tom brady = most overrated athlete in sports history. Great cheater though. 6th round pick bcuz hes a mediocre dink n dunk specialist. Any decent QB can look HOF in NE. Ask matt cassel.

  16. you forgot Leif Larson also made the Bills and had 2 career sacks

    btw…he was the pick just before Tom

    Very unfortunate, the bills could have ruined Tom under Gregg Williams, thereby never having to listen to all the insufferable Pats fans the past decade and a half

  17. I remember Beathard drafting Mikhael Ricks and thinking “huh?” He thought he still had the magic, I guess. My lasting memory of Ricks is when the Chargers were getting their arses pounded and he caught a pass for a first down, then proceeded to pop up and make the dramatic “first down!” gesture, pointing down-field etc. Embarrassing, and even as bad as the Bolts were then, it actually made it worse.

  18. So the Patriots also passed on Brady 6 times?

    It’s been documented the Pats had no intention of drafting a QB that year, they had 3 already on the roster.

    Bill couldn’t believe Brady was still available in round 3. By round 6, he felt like he couldn’t pass it up.

  19. Patriots made the greatest selection in NFL history by selecting Tom Brady GOAT. Other teams envy how great the Patriots are.

  20. The author constantly referring to 1st round picks as “No 1 picks” was confusing. Case in point:

    “The Jets had four No. 1 picks — and did well with all of them, selecting defensive lineman Shaun Ellis 12th, Abraham 13th, quarterback Chad Pennington 18th and tight end Anthony Becht 27th.”

  21. You could add up every other pick by every team in the draft and it still wouldn’t equal the Patriots walking off with Belichick and Brady. My new phone’s base operating system auto filled their names in this post based on just three letters each, their legend is ridiculous.

  22. Brady is a great example of why you draft the best player available and not just by positions of need.

    He had gotten a 2nd-3rd round pre-draft grade– certainly no one expected him to be as good as he has, but you know there must have been a few teams (like the Pats earlier in the round) who had him as the best available, but just felt like they were set at the position.

  23. People laughted when Al took Seabass in the 1st round…guess whos laughting now. Seabass is a great kicker but he owes alot to his wife….she settled him down or he would have partyed his way out of the league years ago.

  24. I thought there was no way the Skins screw up after Charley Casserly left them in great shape after getting us the No 2 and 3 picks. Samuels and Arrington were great but every one else was blah.

  25. Al Davis was always ahead of everyone else in his thinking until his later years, which is all young people saw of him, unfortunately.

  26. If not for injuries it would have been a great draft for the Redskins. Trading up with the San Francisco team gave them a shot to get two very good picks.

  27. Thank you for not mentioning the Panthers taking soon-to-be-busted-crackhead Rashard Anderson in the first round…

  28. Ron Wolf found three pro bowlers, two starting tackles who had 10 year careers, and the Packers’ all-time sack leader in this draft. (Plus a solid LB in Na’il Diggs.) Set Mike Sherman up for three straight division titles.


  29. So the Raiders most successful draft in recent memory was when they picked a kicker and punter?

    If only they could make selections that would help on downs 1, 2 and 3.

  30. Arthur Brown – Ravens 2013 2nd round pick

    Another bust picked by Ozzie. Cody, Kindle, Brown, Boller, Dan Cody Dwan Edwards etc.

    Unreal how many 2nd busts/below mediocre players this guy drafts.

  31. This was the last Draft before Jerry Angelo took over the Bears and handed them 11 straight first round busts* Then Phil Emery rolls in and drops one more for good measure.

    *Greg Olsen (’07) is a great TE but still a bust as far as the Bears are concerned; Angelo thought it a good idea to trade him to the Panthers for a 3rd because he was only an average blocker.

  32. voiceofreason01 says:
    Apr 15, 2015 7:00 PM

    “Any decent QB can look HOF in NE.”


    Thanks for recognizing how good the organization is from top to bottom with consistently great teams over the last 15 years! Nice observation!

  33. Kicker and punter in the same draft… SMH Raiders still had a great team for the next 3 years 🙂

  34. Titans took Keith Bulluck with the 30th pick. Starting MLB for 10 years & very underrated player. My favorite Titan not named Steve McNair. I miss when we had a capable GM making our picks.

  35. Ugh – Courtney Brown. Yes, he had injuries, but his problem was a lack of desire to play football once he signed his fat rookie contract.

    A perfect example of why the new system of not overpaying first rounders with their rookie deals makes a ton of sense.

  36. All the Florida gangsta/murderers were already taken by 199 that year, so the Pats took cutest available per Mrs Kraft…

  37. And you know 3 time Super Bowl MVP Tom Brady still has a chip on his shoulder about where he was drafted to this very day.

    If he didnt have that chip on his shoulder…he wouldn’t be anything close to the legend that he is today.

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