I've had a mock scribbled down on paper now for awhile now. I was moving it around today and decided to put up my first mock of the 2011 draft. I like to change things up, as could be seen in my mocks from last year, though this one is more conventional because of its early date. ESPN week 7 power rankings were used for order. All criticism is welcome, it makes us both better. Here we go
1. Buffalo Bills: Jake Locker, QB, Washington. Bills are starting over, and the text book way to start over is drafting a fresh new QB.
2. Carolina Panthers: Da'Quan Bowers, DE, Clemson***. Surprise pick already? Panthers are also in need of a start over. They have two young QBs who could both be good players. Bowers has been dominant this year, already having recorded nine sacks and is steady against the run. Panthers are bad against the run and pass. Bowers helps both areas.
3. Cleveland Browns: A.J. Green, WR, Georgia***. Great receiver to a team that lacks a great receiver. Not sure how they feel about their three platoon quarterback situation, but if they stick with it you have to figure McCoy is the guy going forward. Might as well give him someone to throw it up to.
4. Detroit Lions: Anthony Castonzo, OT, Boston College. Lions are moving in the right direction. Secondary help is needed, but Stafford is out with an injury for the second straight season. I'm going with offensive tackle, something I was saying they should have done last season.
6. San Francisco 49ers: Akeem Ayers, OLB, UCLA***. The 49ers pass rush has been lacking as of late. They could add another physical specimen to their linebacker corps with Ayers, in a system that would let him rush the passer and be great in coverage as well in zone blitzes.
7. Dallas Cowboys: Allen Bailey, DE, Miami. I've seen Dareus going here as well in several other mocks, but I like Bailey better for Dallas' style of the 3-4.
8. Jacksonville Jaguars: Patrick Peterson, CB, LSU***. Jaguars secondary has been atrocious, and taken away from the fact that the front seven is playing well. The pass rush excuse is gone, as the defensive line is playing well. Time to address the real problem. Peterson can start immediately and move Mathis or Cox to FS.
9. San Diego Chargers: Marcel Dareus, DE, Alabama***. The Chargers have a lot of potential free agents coming up, especially on the defensive line. Can't sign them all, and Dareus could start right away.
10. Seattle Seahawks: Ryan Mallett, QB, Arkansas***. Hasselbeck is old, and this franchise is headed in the right direction. A quarterback like Mallett is another piece well worth adding.
11. Denver Broncos: Prince Amukamara, CB, Nebraska. Defensive front is a need here, but taking a nose would be a reach considering what is on the board. There will be plenty of NT types to be had in the second and later. Amukamara injects some youth into an aging secondary.
12. St. Louis Rams: Julio Jones, WR, Alabama***. Sam Bradford has been impressive thus far, and that has been as a rookie and throwing to Mark Clayton and Danny Amendola. With a target like Jones and another year of experience, Bradford could really prove me wrong about his potential as a pro.
13. Cincinnati Bengals: DeMarco Murray, RB, Oklahoma. Bengals could use another running back, and their other needs would be reaches here. Murray is explosive and would be a good compliment to Cedric Benson's hard running style.
15. Arizona Cardinals: Christian Ponder, QB, Florida State. Reach or not, Cardinals need to figure out a QB. Personally I think Ponder is a safe pick for a future QB and should have a good NFL career.
17. Miami Dolphins: Mark Ingram, RB, Alabama***. The running back position is gaining age for the Dolphins. A hard, patient runner like Ingram fits their offense and adds youth to the backfield.
18. Green Bay Packers: Rodney Hudson, G, Florida State. Hudson is probably my favorite offensive lineman in this draft. Looks like a future all pro at guard. The Packers offensive line is still in a rebuilding mode after taking Bulaga last year.
19. Washington Redskins: Mike Pouncey, G, Florida. The Redskins offensive line is being reworked. Pouncey can play both center and guard.
20. Kansas City Chiefs: Jonathan Baldwin, WR, Pittsburgh***. The Chiefs have the number one rushing offense in the league right now. Next season they are going to need a deep threat to loosen things up for that running game everyone is now aware of. Bowe is not that, Baldwin is.
22. New York Giants: Janoris Jenkins, CB, Florida. I don't like the Giants current secondary situation, and I don't think they do either. Jenkins is a player who has gotten better every year, and there is no reason to believe that won't continue his first few years in the pros.
23. Philadelphia Eagles: Curtis Brown, CB, Texas. The Eagles continue to add to their secondary through Brown. Hobbs could be replaced.
24. Houston Texans: Deunta Williams, FS, UNC. Texans have had a need at free safety for a long time.
25. Tennessee Titans: Aaron Williams, CB, Texas***. The Titans could feel a need to add to this position. Finnegan and Verner haven't been bad, but the Tennessee secondary needs help in general. Instead of reaching for a safety, they settle for another corner who could play immediately.
26. Atlanta Falcons: Derek Sherrod, OT, Miss. State. The Falcons could use help on the offensive line, more than anything else tackle. I don't think Sherrod is a left tackle immediately, but I think he could possibly play there down the road. He has the feet for it.
27. New Orleans Saints: Robert Quinn, DE, UNC***. The Saints have to love the value that falls to them here. Need meets value.
28. Indianapolis Colts: Marvin Austin, DT, UNC. The Colts address the defensive tackle position after being exposed against the run thus far this season. And Austin doesn't suck at pass rushing either. Colts get good value here.
30. New England Patriots: Daniel Thomas, RB, Kansas State. The Pats grab a pounder late in the first.
31. New York Jets: Von Miller, OLB, Texas A&M. The Jets grab a pass rusher who has fallen because of a bad senior campaign. Rex Ryan can find this guys pass rush skills again.
32. Pittsburgh Steelers: Matt Reynolds, OT, BYU***. The Steelers grab a big right tackle to take over for Adams once he hangs it up.