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NFL Draft 2011 News

We're now just about 30 hours away from the 2011 NFL Draft - and of course, there's drama. Most of the NFL news the past few days has come from Judge Susan Nelson ordering an injunction to end the lockout, while the owners look for a stay. Most people in America aren't going to know what it means - but it means, essentially, that the end of the lockout is near and that there will almost certainly be a full 16 game season this year. 

So with that, let's all enjoy the 2011 NFL Draft - which will be held over three days again, with the first round being held on Thursday night, rounds two and three on Friday (take that, Royal Wedding) and the rest of the draft on Saturday.

Yesterday, there was news that Andy Dalton could actually sneak into the first round. Given half the quarterbacks in the league, it's not terribly surprising. However, it was surprising to see Jason La Confora report that the Titans might be willing to take Dalton with the eighth overall pick. This would be excellent news for the Cowboys - assuming the ninth overall pick is still in their possession at that point - since it would let another elite level talent slip to them. 

As for that ninth pick that the Cowboys have, Rick Gosselin still projects Dallas to select J.J. Watt. Gosselin projected Dallas to select Dez Bryant last year, and it happened even though it took a trade with New England to ultimately happen. 

There are rumors surrounding the Patriots as well - that they'd be interested in trading up if the right player were there. Given Jerry Jones' habit of trading down in the draft, it's possible that Dallas and New England could swing another draft day deal. It's usually against New England's draft M.O. to trade up, but ESPN's Adam Schefter identified New England and Philadelphia as two teams that could trade up.

SB Nation predicts the opposite, though, and projects Dallas to trade up for Arizona's fifth overall pick and select LSU cornerback Patrick Peterson.

Photographs by jamesbrandon, jdtornow, phlezk, flygraphix, mcdlttx, tomasland, and literalbarrage used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.