Latest Round 1 Mock

I tried to blend conventional wisdom with a desire to shake things up a bit and maybe make my mock a bit different from so many others, while still being halfways sensible.  Tell me how I did.

1. St. Louis Rams - Sam Bradford, QB, Oklahoma

I know, it's kinda funny to start out saying you want to shake things up and then come out with a consensus pick.  Well, in this case, it just makes too much sense.  I can only see this being three people:  Bradford, Clausen or Suh.  From everything I read, Bradford is currently on the inside track.

2. Detroit Lions - Russell Okung, OT, Oklahoma State

I've read reports that the Lions are thinking about drafting Okung and kicking Jeff Backus inside to left guard.  They should do it.  And they will.  With Corey Williams joining the team and Sammie Lee Hill playing well last year, drafting Suh just doesn't fit here.

3. Tampa Bay Buccaneers - Ndamukong Suh, DT, Nebraska

Yahtzee for Bucs fans!  Greatest need + dominant player = win

4. Washington Redskins - Bryan Bulaga, OT, Iowa

No matter who their quarterback is going to be, he needs to be protected.  Bulaga has a good deal of experience at left tackle, nice athleticism and was coached Kirk Ferentz.  He's my #2 ranked OT in the draft and I have difficulty believing Shanahan could pass on him.

5. Kansas City Chiefs - Bruce Campbell, OT, Maryland

Al Davis curses his bitter rivals as they snatch his #1 hope from under him.  Doubtless he'll retreat to his dungeon where he will use his warlock powers to cast a spell on them.  Seriously, though, Campbell has all the physical tools to be a dominant left tackle and the Chiefs coaching staff will be delighted to have this clay to mold.  Much like with the Lions, Branden Albert can kick inside to guard and probably become a dominant player there.  Two birds dead with one stone.

6. Seattle Seahawks - Gerald McCoy, DT, Oklahoma

Last year, one of the best defensive prospects in recent memory dropped right into Seattle's lap.  It happens again this year with McCoy.  He is too good and offers too much value to pass up, despite what might be more pressing needs elsewhere.

7. Cleveland Browns - Eric Berry, S, Tennessee

The loss of Brodney Pool has left Cleveland's secondary in an even worse state than it already was.  If Berry lives up to his "next Ed Reed" billing (and I think he will), this will be looked back on as a total steal for the Browns.

8. Oakland Raiders - Trent Williams, OT, Oklahoma

A nice consolation prize for Al Davis and one that might fit his team's needs even better.  The Raiders are in need of right tackle help and Williams has a lot of experience there.  He can also push Mario Henderson to take over the left tackle spot.  He has the athleticism Davis prizes.  Do not be surprised if his name is called at #8.

9. Buffalo Bills - Dan Williams, NT, Tennessee

A little high for Williams, it's true, but if Buffalo is going to shift to the 3-4 defense, they'll need a real nose tackle to be its linchpin.  Williams is the only one who fits the bill at this juncture.

10. Jacksonville Jaguars - CJ Spiller, RB, Clemson

Surprised?  Don't be.  I admit I hadn't even thought of this until the mock last Saturday, but the more I ponder it, the greater sense it makes.  Spiller is a dynamic weapon that can run, catch passes out of the backfield and line up in the slot.  He can also help the return game.  Paired with Maurice Jones-Drew, he can make the Jaguars offense exponentially better.  Their defense has troubles, yes, but you need to score points to win and the Jags are drafting in the top 10 for a reason.


11. Denver Broncos - Rolando McClain, ILB, Alabama

The recent release of Andra Davis only makes this pick more likely in my mind.  McClain is a beastly and natural 3-4 inside linebacker and the Broncos defense could sure use the boost.

12. Miami Dolphins - Jason Pierre-Paul, OLB, South Florida

Rush linebacker is a huge need for the 'Fins and Pierre-Paul has the athleticism to play the position.  His bust rate is high, but I think Parcells has sufficient confidence in Tony Sparano to pull the trigger.

13. San Francisco 49ers - Joe Haden, CB, Florida

Secondary help is needed in San Fran and Mike Singletary has too sharp an eye for defensive talent to be put off by the overblown furor over Haden's 40 time.

14. Seattle Seahawks - Jimmy Clausen, QB, Notre Dame

If Clausen is still sitting here, the 'Hawks will turn in their draft cards so fast, Goodell won't even have time to announce that they're on the clock.  Clausen and Carroll have a history and Clausen played in a pro style offense, which Pete Carroll prizes.  With Hasselbeck nearing the end of the road, this is the definition of a no-brainer.

15. New York Giants - Derrick Morgan, DE, Georgia Tech

With Osi Umenyiora ending the season as a backup and Justin Tuck's sack production dropping by half in 2009, the Giants have to be thinking about drafting a defensive end.  Morgan presents incredible value at this pick.

16. Tennessee Titans - Brandon Graham, DE, Michigan

With Kyle Vanden Bosch's departure, the already acute need of Tennesee at defensive end has become downright dire.  Graham's stock keeps rising and rising and I don't think it's a stretch at all to take him in the top half.

17. San Francisco 49ers - Anthony Davis, OT, Rutgers

The 'Niners have a big need at right tackle and Davis can fill that bill.  You have to figure any questions about motivation can be solved by Coach Singletary.

18. Pittsburgh Steelers - Earl Thomas, S/CB, Texas

Forget that they re-signed Ryan Clark.  First, I think Thomas can be better than Clark.  Secondly, Thomas has the skills to be able to play cornerback and the Steelers could sure use an upgrade over William Gay.  The Steelers organizational philosophy is to bring their draft picks along slowly, so Thomas can even be utilized in a backup role in both positions to see where he fits best.

19. Atlanta Falcons - Everson Griffen, DE, USC

With Jamaal Anderson a confirmed bust and John Abraham aging, the Falcons are in need of someone to apply pressure to the quarterback.  Griffen is the best option at this point.

20. Houston Texans - Brian Price, DT, UCLA

The Texans need help along their defensive interior and price is the BPA at that position, so it fits.

21. Cincinnati Bengals - Mike Iupati, G, Idaho

Guard is a critical need for the Bengals and Iupati is the best guard prospect to come along in years.

22. New England Patriots - Jermaine Gresham, TE, Oklahoma

Already a likely pick, this became even moreso when Ben Watson signed elsewhere.  A Brady to Gresham combination is one that can keep opposing defensive co-ordinators awake at night.

23. Green Bay Packers - Dez Bryant, WR, Oklahoma State

I thought this would be Charles Brown right up until they re-signed Chad Clifton and guaranteed him 7.5 million.  You don't sign a potential backup to that kind of contract.  Also, when you consider that Ted Thompson's draft philosophy is to take the BPA and that Donald Driver just cleared 35, the Bryant pick makes a ton of sense.

24. Philadelphia Eagles - Sean Weatherspoon, OLB, Missouri

Philly's linebacking corps is a shambles right now.  Upgrades are needed at both outside spots (hopefully Stewart Bradley can return 100 percent and continue to man the middle) and Weatherspoon is far and away the best linebacker available at this juncture.

25. Baltimore Ravens - Jared Odrick, DE, Penn State

When you consider that Dwan Edwards has signed elsewhere and that Trevor Pryce will be 35 by the time the 2010 season starts, you realize Baltimore would be smart to take Odrick here, who has the size and skill set to play a 3-4 DE.

26. Arizona Cardinals - Jerry Hughes, OLB, TCU

The situation with Arizona's linebacking corps make Philadelphia's look minor.  Nowhere is the need greater than rush linebacker and Hughes is a guy who should excel at the spot.

27. Dallas Cowboys - Taylor Mays, S, USC

Jerry Jones likes big names and guys with flashy stats and when you consider that he has a defensive minded head coach and that a switch to SS would benefit both Mays and be an upgrade over Gerald Sensebaugh, you go.

28. San Diego Chargers - Ryan Matthews, RB, Fresno State

With Tomlinson gone and Sproles not the kind of back that can carry the starting load, this pick is pretty self-evident.

29. New York Jets -  Sergio Kindle, OLB, Texas

With Vernon Gholston a bust and the Jets not having much across from Calvin Pace, Rex Ryan will  want the swagger and skill that Kindle brings to the table.

30. Minnesota Vikings - Kyle Wilson, CB, Boise State

Cornerback is a need for the Vikes and Wilson is the best one on the board.

31. Indianapolis Colts - Charles Brown, OT, USC

Colts get huge value here and a reliable blindside protector for Peyton Manning.  Score.

32. New Orleans Saints - Carlos Dunlap, DE, Florida

The Saints currently having nothing across from Will Smith at defensive end and I can't picture Sean Payton letting Dunlap get away with slacking or taking plays off.

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