American Football: 'Big Daddy' off to Cincinnati

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THE Cincinnati Bengals made Dan Wilkinson, a 6ft 4in, 23st, defensive lineman, the first pick of the 1994 NFL draft.

Wilkinson, who is known as 'Big Daddy', is one of the most highly rated college defensive players in recent years. Exceptionally quick, he has been compared with Green Bay's Reggie White and is expected to make an immediate impact.

Indianapolis took Marshall Faulk, regarded as the best running back in the draft, with their second pick. With the third Washington took the quarterback Heath Schuler, a move that was expected after Mark Rypien, last year's starting quarterback, was released a few weeks ago.

The early emphasis was on defense, largely because in the new salary-cap era they can be expected to make a more immediate impact. Ten of the first 13 picks were defensive players.