Here is what you need to know on this Wednesday, April 9, 29 days before the NFL draft.
Here are the five best players drafted with the 34th pick since the first AFL-NFL common draft in 1966. (per the Pro-Football-Reference.com Approximate Value metric):
1. LB Jack Ham, career AV 112 (drafted in 1971 by the Steelers)—Ham went straight into the starting lineup as a rookie and started all but three games of the Steelers run of four Super Bowl titles in six years. He was first-team All-Pro six times and is in the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
2. CB Lem Barney, 99 (1967, Lions)—A shutdown corner before the term was invented, Barney was one of the bright spots on a string of mediocre to awful Lions teams from 1967-1977. He made six Pro Bowls, was first-team All-Pro twice and he has a bust in Canton as well.
3. DB Carnell Lake, 81 (1989, Steelers)—Lake played for the Steelers from 1989-1998, a time when they were winning games but they were unable to add “one for the thumb”. They lost his only Super Bowl appearance following the 1995 season. He made four Pro Bowls with the Steelers (plus first-team All-Pro honors in 1997) and one more in Jacksonville in 1999. He finished up his career with the Ravens in 2001.
4. G Chris Snee, 75 (2004, Giants)—Snee was with the Giants for both of their recent Super Bowl wins and has been one of the more solid lineman in the league since he came to the Giants in 2004. He has four Pro Bowls and earned first-team All-Pro honors in 2008. Snee is the only active player on this list.
5. DB Tim McDonald, 71 (1987, Cardinals)—Quite the ball hawk at safety, McDonald picked off 40 passes in 13 NFL seasons. He spent the first six with the Cardinals before moving to the 49ers. After becoming the Cardinals’ starter at strong safety in 1988 he missed just five starts in 12 years. McDonald made six Pro Bowls including five straight from 1991-1995.
—It’s been 101 days since the Redskins played a game; it will be about 151 days until they play another one.
—Days until: NFL Draft 29; Training camp starts 105
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