To put it simply, many in the New England area were surprised last week when the Patriots passed up on California defensive end Cameron Jordan with the 17th pick in the draft.
So too, actually, was Jordan himself.
"I was real surprised over a couple different picks, actually," Jordan told NESN.com. "I thought I'd go a little bit higher. I thought I was definitely a mid-teens guy, but that's part of the draft. You get a whole bunch of wrenches thrown in, and it's definitely unpredictable."
When asked to specify, Jordan said he was a little stunned that each team in the 16-20 range went in a different direction. Though he wouldn't mention the Patriots specifically, those teams included the Redskins, Pats, Chargers, Giants and Buccaneers, who all needed help at defensive end. The Redskins (Ryan Kerrigan), Chargers (Corey Liuget) and Bucs (Adrian Clayborn) all drafted defensive linemen, which made Jordan even more confused.
Many believed Jordan could have gone as high as No. 9, so it was definitely eye opening when he fell to the Saints at No. 24. Though the drop cost him some money and caused a stressful draft-night experience, it might have worked out for the best.
The Saints have an immediate need at defensive end, and they're built to win a Super Bowl in 2011. Plus, Jordan met with Saints defensive line coach Bill Johnson for a couple hours during the pre-draft process, and Jordan said he came away from that meeting as a smarter player.
"Really, I'm pretty juiced about it," Jordan said about playing for the Saints. "I'm pretty stoked that I'm that I'm going to a good situation."