Cairns: A busy day for NFL draft prospects in New York

NEW YORK - The busiest day in New York has to be the day before the NFL draft, believe it or not. It's actually like the storm before the storm for this year's NFL draft prospects.

My day actually started early Wednesday morning with a 6 a.m. flight to New York. The flight was smooth and clear, as my photographer, Tom Livingston, and I watched the sunrise in the sky as we made our way towards New York City.

The first stop for Tom and I Wednesday morning, Chelsea Piers, where 26 NFL draft prospects would be spending the morning with first through eighth grade New York City students, teaching them the game of football at the NFL Play 60 Youth Football Festival.

The NFL encourages all kids to exercise for 60 minutes a day. My main concern was to track down the four possible first round draft picks for the Browns in Thursday night's NFL Draft.

Trent Richardson, Justin Blackmon, Morris Claiborne and Ryan Tannehill were all of the players were there. Trent Richardson told me that he hasn't had any contact with the Browns since his workout but knows they are one of many teams interested in taking him in the first round Thursday night.

"I am ready to take the next step in my football career, I can't believe my days at Alabama are over," said Richardson.

I asked him how he felt about being drafted by the Browns in the rugged AFC North. Richardson said he knows the history of the division and would welcome the opportunity to wear the orange helmet. Many mock drafts have Richardson being taken by the Browns with the fourth overall pick Thursday night.

The interview that impressed me most though was LSU defensive back Morris Claiborne. Claiborne, still wearing a cast on his left hand, was excited at the possibility of being paired up with Joe Haden. Many NFL experts feel a Claiborne/Hayden combination would quickly become one of the best tandems in football, and take Browns fans back to the days of Minnifield and Dixon.

Claiborne's eyes lit up when I asked him about his feelings of playing with Joe Haden.

"I have spoken with Joe on twitter and I am excited about the possibility to play with him and for the Cleveland Browns," said The LSU back.

I know Claiborne wouldn't be the sexiest pick because the Browns need to fill so many holes on offense but how could you argue if the team took a kid who could go on to win multiple Pro Bowls and awaken the Dawg Pound faithful with his play.

I asked Claiborne to tell Browns fans what he would bring to the table and he told me, "Browns will never have to worry about where I am at night, if I am not working with the team, I will be home playing with my son."

This kid has solid character and I am sure he interviewed well, he was impressive.

New York City has a buzz like no other place I have ever been. After the Play 60 event, Tom and I jumped back into a New York City cab and took off for Radio City Music Hall, the epicenter for the NFL Draft. When I stepped out of the cab, satellite trucks were everywhere -- we had arrived.

Tune in tonight to NewsChannel5 at 5,6 and 11 for my interviews with the Browns potential picks and follow my progress right up to the Browns pick on Twitter: @MikeCairns5

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