With the Combine just days away I thought it would be a good time to post my first mock draft. You can put these in stone. This is exactly how the first round will unfold.
1. Carolina – Nick Fairley, DT, Auburn
This guy’s a beast. They’d much rather have the chance to draft Andrew Luck, but Fairley will be a good addition to the defense. And the good news for the Panthers is that they’ll still suck, so they might be able to get Luck next year.
2. Denver – Da’Quan Bowers, DE, Clemson
The Broncos only won 4 games last year, but 2 of those wins came against playoff teams. I didn’t get an actual quote from Mark, but I’m assuming that he thinks the Broncos are much better than their 4-12 record. Well their pass rush resembled a 4-12 team, so they should address that with this pick (unless they plan on having Tebow play both ways this year, which I’m sure he could do).
3. Buffalo – Cam Newton, QB, Auburn
He wins everywhere he goes. His track record would really be put to the test. The Bills would probably be better off going with a defensive playmaker like Patrick Peterson or Von Miller, but they might try to grab Newton thinking he can be their franchise QB.
4. Cincinnati – A.J. Green, WR, Georgia
He’d looked awesome in all of the games I watched him in this year. The Bengals should jump at the chance to take a WR early in the hopes that it’ll inflate his ego and he can one day create a unique persona that lands him a shitty reality TV show called “Green with Envy” (although I hope the show centers on his odd-couple relationship with the Eagles’ kicker and it’s called Green/Akers).
5. Arizona – Blaine Gabbert, QB, Missouri
I can only hope that this pick happens. I think Gabbert’s going to bust. It would set the team back another couple of years and let their existing young talent get fed up and jump ship. Instead they’ll probably pick-up a decent veteran QB and draft Von Miller.
6. Cleveland – Von Miller, OLB, Texas A&M
It looks like Cleveland is switching from the 3-4 to the 4-3, so it could use some versatile talent on that side of the ball. Miller’s stock is rising pretty quickly, so it’s likely that he’ll go top 5.
7. San Francisco – Patrick Peterson, CB, LSU
This would suck.
8. Tennessee – Robert Quinn, DE, UNC
This will be an interesting player to watch. He was suspended for the whole season. He’ll need to show that he’s still in good shape and can play at the level he did last season. Mike Mayock and Michael Lombardi think this guy is going to blow up the combine and jump up a bit in the draft.
9. Dallas – Marcell Dareus, DE/DT, Alabama
Should be able to play DE in the 3-4.
10. Washington – Cameron Jordan, DE, Cal
Jordan’s stock is on the rise and he could go this high based on teams’ needs for a 3-4 DE which is probably where he will play. He looked good in Senior Bowl practice and improved his stock, but I wasn’t too impressed with some of the games I watched him in.
11. Houston – Prince Amukamara, CB, Nebraska
A great talent that has been overshadowed by Patrick Peterson. This would be the perfect scenario for the Texans.
12. Minnesota – JJ Watt, DE, Wisconsin
13. Detroit – Nate Solder, OT, Colorado
14. St. Louis – Julio Jones, WR, Alabama
Hopefully this pick doesn’t happen. My hope is that by this point in the draft their front office assumes the NFL skipped them this year since they’ve never knew the first round to last this long.
15. Miami – Mark Ingram, RB, Alabama
16. Jacksonville – Aldon Smith, DE/OLB, Missouri
17. New England – Tyron Smith, OT, USC
18. San Diego – Corey Liuget, DE/DT, Illinois
19. New York Giants – Anthony Castonzo, OT, BC
Keith, do you have any input on this pick? I just went with the best rated BC player since they probably fooled around with Coughlin’s daughter.
20. Tampa Bay – Ryan Kerrigan, DE, Purdue
21. Kansas City – Akeem Ayers, OLB, UCLA
22. Indianapolis – Gabe Carimi, OT, Wisconsin
23. Philadelphia – Jimmy Smith, CB, Colorado
I need to apologize to Sinclair on this one. There’s a lot of buzz about Smith right now and he might be climbing up the draft boards. He’s not on the same level as Peterson or Amukamara, but it looks like he’ll end up as the #3 CB.
24. New Orleans – Adrian Clayborn, DE, Iowa
I don’t like this guy much. He just seems really boring to me. He didn’t seem to stand out much in any of the Iowa games I watched.
25. Seattle – Mike Pouncey, G/C, Florida
I think this pick would make the most sense. It could provide a little more quality on the line which is definitely needed. There would be a lot of interesting options if the draft played out this way. Locker would still be on the board. Justin Houston (DE/OLB, Georgia) would be a nice addition to the pass rush. Or they could go with a playmaker on offense like Titus Young (WR, Boise St). If Gabe Carimi slips to this spot he could be a good pick since it looks like he would be a better fit at RT.
26. Baltimore – Titus Young, WR, Boise St
27. Atlanta – Justin Houston, DE/OLB, Georgia
28. New England – Muhammad Wilkerson, DE/DT, Temple
29. Chicago – Derek Sherrod, OT, Miss St
30. New York Jets – Phil Taylor, NT, Baylor
Big fat man for a big fat coach.
31. Pittsburgh – Cameron Heyward, DE/DT, Ohio St.
32. Green Bay – Drake Nevis, DT, LSU
I really like this guy.