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Clowney headlines overlooked top 10 of NFL draft

The NFL draft had a lot of future stars selected on May 8. However, one name was missing from the top 10, which officially turned the NFL draft into the Johnny Manziel show. While the likes of Jadeveon Clowney and Greg Robinson were the actual first players picked, the fact Manziel didn't even make it into the top 10 or 20 made all the headlines.

No. 1: Jadeveon Clowney (Houston Texans)  After weeks of trade speculation, plus Johnny Manziel and Khalil Mack speculation, the Texans finally went with the long preordained No. 1 choice.
Photo by Elsa/Getty Images
Clowney headlines top 10 of NFL draft
Photo by Elsa/Getty Images

Since Manziel is from Texas and the Texans need a quarterback, it could have overridden how Clowney had been the projected No. 1 pick for over a year. If Houston wasn't sold on Clowney, however, it may have taken Khalil Mack or traded the pick away outright. Instead, the Texans kept it and made the presumed safest choice.

If the sentiments of Manziel's hometown fans weren't enough to move the Texans, then the prospect of big buzz and a potential franchise quarterback was expected to move someone else in the top 10. As it turned out, a quarterback was picked in the top 10, along with two Texas A&M Aggies -- yet none of them were Manziel.

Once the St. Louis Rams passed on their second chance to get him at No. 13, and when the Dallas Cowboys became the second Texas team not to keep him home at No. 16, there was no telling who would take him. The Cleveland Browns finally did at No. 22, adding him to No. 8 selection Justin Gilbert, who will now live in Manziel's shadows despite being 14 places higher than him.

Even Clowney couldn't match up to the Manziel show, and neither could Blake Bortles despite being the actual top quarterback in the NFL draft. Unlike Manziel, Bortles was chosen by a hometown team, as he will go from Central Florida to the Jacksonville Jaguars as the No. 3 selection.

The NFL draft has highly picked flops and big stars emerging from lower slots every year. Should Clowney, Bortles and Mack disappoint while Manziel becomes a star, the Texans, Jaguars and Oakland Raiders will be haunted for some time. In fact, "Johnny Football" can put the entire top 10 on notice by making those teams look foolish -- or they could all be vindicated whether their picks deliver or not.

The accompanying slideshow lists the top 10 prospects of this year's NFL draft, even if the No. 1 attention grabber was the man at No. 22.

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