Panthers get first pick in draft

Sports Network

, Last Updated: 3:14 PM ET

NEW YORK -- The Carolina Panthers own the first pick in the 2011 NFL Draft by virtue of their 2-14 record, while the Denver Broncos edged the Buffalo Bills and Cincinnati Bengals after having the weakest strength of schedule between the 4-12 clubs.

Denver had a .516 strength of schedule, while the Bills will pick third thanks to a .578 opponent winning percentage. The Bengals (.582) will make the fourth overall selection.

The Arizona Cardinals and Cleveland Browns both logged 5-11 campaigns, but Arizona took the sixth pick following the strength-of-schedule tiebreaker.

San Francisco will select seventh, the highest pick of the seven teams with 6-10 records. The 49ers are followed, in order, by the Tennessee Titans, Dallas Cowboys and Washington Redskins to round out the top-10.

The 11th pick went to the Houston Texans followed by Minnesota, Detroit, Saint Louis and Miami. The latter two franchises went 7-9 on the year.

After a 34-17 loss to the Texans in Week 17 dropped them to 8-8, the Jaguars ended any shot at winning the AFC South title. They settled for the 16th pick after winning the tiebreaker with the Oakland Raiders, whose first-rounder has already been traded to the New England Patriots.

The San Diego Chargers, New York Giants and Tampa Bay Buccaneers finished out the top-20.

The 10-6 Giants won the strength-of-schedule tiebreaker with Tampa Bay after both teams were knocked out of playoff contention with Green Bay's 10-3 win over Chicago on Sunday.

Picks 21-32 are not set as they are subject to playoff results.

The first round of the draft is set for Thursday, April 28.


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