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The Latest: Even LeBron and Cavs ready for NFL draft 


CHICAGO (AP) — The Latest on the first day of the NFL draft (all times local):


4:50 p.m.


Hall of Famers such as Bruce Smith, Dick Butkus, Larry Csonka and Marshall Faulk will be among 32 former players who will announce picks in the second round of the NFL draft on Friday.


Each team will have one star from its past who will handle the duties. Other members of the Hall of Fame who will do so are Willie Brown, Orlando Pace, Will Shields, Lynn Swann, Paul Warfield and Michael Irvin.


In the third round, two winners of the NFL's Man of the Year Award will reveal choices. Panthers linebacker Thomas Davis (2014) will announce Carolina's selection, and Shields (2003) will handled Kansas City's pick.


Make-A-Wish recipient Daniel Halipern, 16, will join Commissioner Roger Goodell to announce Denver's first-round pick. Halipern is a high school sophomore and Broncos fan.


St. Jude Children's Research Hospital patient Andrew Woodruff, 13, a Seahawks fans being treated for bone cancer, will join Goodell to announce a pick during Round 3.

Students from Barton Elementary School in Chicago will accompany Bears defensive end Israel Idonije to disclose the team's third-round selection.


Also announcing a choice will be a Medal of Honor recipient, retired Staff Sgt. Salvatore Giunta (Falcons, Round 3).




2:00 p.m.

Even the Cleveland Cavaliers had football fever on draft day.


After practice ended Thursday, the Cavs, who are waiting to see who they'll play in the second round of the NBA playoffs, hurled footballs across the courts at their indoor training facility.


LeBron James, an All-Ohio wide receiver in high school and die-hard Dallas Cowboys fan, hauled in several long passes from guard J.R. Smith, who showed that his long-range accuracy extends beyond the 3-point line. Point guard Kyrie Irving also joined in, showing a nice five-step drop before whistling a pass to Smith.


Center Kevin Love was asked to assess his teammates' football skills and rank them as if he owned the No. 1 overall pick.


"It's tough because if I was starting a team, I would probably say J.R.," the big man said. "But then we got an All-Pro wide receiver out there too in 23 (James). So, it's tough to say."


—Sports Writer Tom Withers reporting from Cleveland



12:35 p.m.


While most NFL cities are buzzing with teams, fans and media getting ready for the draft, things are relatively quiet in New England. At least for one more day.


The Patriots are the only team without a pick on the first day of the draft. They had the 29th pick taken away — along with $1 million — as part of the penalty in the "Deflategate" scandal. So there will only 31 picks in the first round.


The Patriots could trade back into the first round, but that's unlikely because commissioner Roger Goodell says he's going to confiscate their highest pick no matter what.


There was no availability at Gillette Stadium on Thursday, though the team was no doubt working behind the scenes to get ready for Days 2 and 3. The Patriots have 11 picks in the next two days, including four in the second and third rounds and five in the sixth round.



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