Mock Draft with Trades and Explanations (1 round)

The order of the picks are simply my opinion.  I feel like it is wishful thinking to predict trades because it simply isn't possible, but in reality, is it possible to predict the NFL draft? So I decided why not. Let's get started!



1: Miami Dolphins: Andrew Luck, QB, Stanford

Pretty much a no-doubter.


2: Indianapolis Colts TRADE to Minnesota Vikings for #6 and future 2nd.

Vikings select: Matt Kalil, OT, USC

Although many think the Colts would take Kalil, they have two rookies that have shown promise in Ben Ijalana (2nd round pick) and Anthony Castonzo (1st round pick).  I'm not sure that it's time to give up on them yet. Meanwhile, the Vikings trade up to protect the team's two best assets, Adrian Peterson and Christian Ponder


3: St. Louis Rams: Justin Blackmon, WR, Oklahoma State

The Rams get a go-to target for Sam Bradford, who badly needs one.  He may not have the size or upside that Jeffery has, but he is athletic and a great route-runner.  He will succeed on the Rams, who have pretty much nothing at wideout besides Brandon Lloyd, who will probably leave as a free agent. 


4: Arizona Cardinals: Jonathan Martin, OT, Stanford

The Levi Brown experiment is finally done, and the Cardinals draft a cornerstone Left Tackle, while Brown slides over to RT.  The Cardinals have a few other needs, namely a CB to play next to Patrick Peterson, but there is no defensive back worth taking here. 


5: Denver Broncos: Trent Richardson, RB, Alabama

The Broncos stick it out one more year with Tebow, but they give him a better tailback to give the ball to.  Moreno simply hasn't performed well enough for the Broncos to start him. 


6: Indianapolis Colts: Matt Barkley, QB, USC

After moving down and collecting a future second round pick, the Colts get a future at quarterback.  By no means is Peyton done, but neck injuries are nothing to sneeze at.  Even if he does recover, Barkley can sit two or three years behind Peyton a la Aaron Rodgers.


7: Seattle Seahawks: Landry Jones, QB, Oklahoma 

Quarterback may not be the biggest need for the Seahawks, but the answer at QB longterm certainly is not on their current roster, and in a class with 3 elite QBs, the Seahawks may as well get their franchise QB.


8: Jacksonville Jaguars: Alshon Jeffery, WR, South Carolina

The Jags are clearly lacking a stud at wideout, and Blaine Gabbert has not looked like the star he was projected to be.  But getting him a big number one target who may only be a cut below Calvin Johnson, Andre Johnson, and A.J. Green can only help him.


9: Cleveland Browns: Michael Floyd, WR, Notre Dame

Maybe a bit of a reach, but Colt McCoy has looked pretty decent out there without a real number one target.  Imagine what he could do with Floyd.  Floyd may be a bit of a bonehead, but talent-wise, he is on par with Jeffery and Blackmon.


10: Carolina Panthers: Dre Kirkpatrick, CB, Alabama

The Panthers probably at least considered Patrick Peterson at number 1 last year, and they still are looking for a dominant corner.  Kirkpatrick is big, physical, and athletic, and should be the choice here.  However, a DT like Brandon Thompson wouldn't be a bad choice either.


11:  Washington Redskins: Quinton Coples, DE, UNC

I didn't put Robert Griffin here because he not only has fallen way back down to earth, but also because he may not even declare for the draft.  Anyhow, the Skins go with an upside pick at DE that would give them a lethal pass rush if he pans.  Kerrigan, Orakpo, and Coples would give them a Lions-like defensive front.


12: Kansas City Chiefs: Vontaze Burflict, MLB, Arizona State

The Chiefs could use a playmaking linebacker to put next to Tamba Hali, and Burflict is it.  He is big, athletic, and plays with a lot of intensity.  Todd Haley would love for him to fall to Kansas City.


13: Cincinatti Bengals: Morris Claiborne, CB, LSU

Claiborne has been flying up draft boards, and for good reason.  He isn't the physical specimen that Kirkpatrick is, but he can be the dominant corner that Cincinatti has been looking for since Jonathan Joseph left in free agency.


14: Tennessee Titans: Brandon Thompson, DT, Clemson

The Titans have shown a few signs of brilliance, but have been rather inconsistent.  I'm not sure there are any glaring needs, but the lines on both side of the ball need upgrades.  I was torn between Thompson and David Decastro, but I ultimately picked Thompson as the better player.


15: Chicago Bears: David DeCastro, OG, Stanford

Yes, David Decastro may have slipped past the Titans, but he didn't last long afterwards.  The Chicago O-Line is still a bit of a mess, as is their receiving corps, but there is no WR worth taking here.  DeCastro is the best interior lineman in this draft class, and the Bears would love to have him.


16: Cincinatti Bengals (via Oakland): TRADE to New England Patriots for pick 30 and pick 47 (via Oakland)

Patriots Select: Zach Brown, OLB, UNC

The Patriots finally take a pass rusher!  Its pretty clear that Rob Ninkovich sucks and shouldn't be on an NFL roster, so the Pats can't help but find a replacement.  In Brown, they get a speedy edge rusher that has been compared to Von Miller to complement their big MLBs.


17: Tampa Bay Buccaneers:  Alfonzo Dennard, CB, Nebraska

Ronde Barber is getting old, and although the Bucs have bolstered their D-Line, it still hasn't covered up their weak secondary.  Although Dennard is the third best corner in the class, he has elite talent and should contribute quite nicely to whatever NFL that team drafts him.


18: Philadelphia Eagles: Manti Te'o, ILB, Notre Dame

We've heard about it all year, the Eagles have no linebackers.  It seems to be a position that the team doesn't value for some reason.  But the "Dream Team" not making the playoffs would force the Eagles to address their biggest need early. 


19: Dallas Cowboys: Cordy Glenn, OG, Georgia

The Cowboys are talented offensively, but they could use an upgrade on the interior line.  Glenn is an absolute monster, and he is good value here at 19, but don't be surprised to see the Cowboys go with a corner here.


20: Buffalo Bills: Courtney Upshaw, OLB/ILB, Alabama

The Bills need some help on defense, and the nice thing about Upshaw is that he is very versatile.  So whether the Bills want to play him at OLB or ILB, or even DE for a few plays, Upshaw can do it.  His ceiling may be relatively low, but he can stop the run and rush the pass effectively.


21: New York Jets: Brandon Jenkins, OLB, Florida State

Although Jenkins has underperformed thus far, he is still a very gifted athlete.  FSU has used him as a DE, but Jenkins is best as a pass-rushing OLB, and Rex Ryan will be able to use him effectively.


22: Detroit Lions: Janoris Jenkins, CB, North Alabama

The Lions don't draft corners the way the Patriots don't draft pass rushers, but I think they simply have to here.  Despite their unreal pass-rush, they are still susceptible to big pass plays.  Jenkins is a great athlete with great instincts and cover skills and would be a great addition here, but the Lions could take an O-Lineman here too.


23: San Francisco 49ers:  Chase Minnifield, CB, Virginia

Virginia keeps pumping out corners, and the Niners need some secondary help.  They were linked to Patrick Peterson last year and they undoubtedly would have taken him if he had fell to #7.  Minnifield is a great cover corner that could really help the young Niners.


24: Pittsburgh Steelers:  Luke Keuchly, ILB, Boston College

Their last two first round picks (Cameron Heyward and Ziggy Hood) were simply BPA selections that sat and were groomed for a year.  Keuchly fits this mold.  He is an upgrade over Larry Foote, and he would make the Pittsburgh D that much better.  An O-Lineman or defensive back here wouldn't surprise me, however.


25: New York Giants: Dont'a Hightower, OLB/ILB, Alabama

The Giants need some help at linebacker, both Middle and Outside.  Hightower can do both, and is a very gifted athlete.  The Giants go with another BPA pick who is also a pass rusher.  This is a match made in heaven.


26: San Diego Chargers:  Jerel Worthy, DT, Michigan State

With no OLBs worth first round consideration left on the board, the Chargers go with another D-Lineman to complement Corey Liuget.  This would turn a mediocre line into a formidable one.


27: Houston Texans:  Ryan Broyles, WR, Oklahoma

The Texans have some needs on the other side of the ball, but finding a sidekick for Andre Johnson is paramount.  Jacoby Jones sucks, and adding a reliable wide receiver would make this offense pretty lethal.


28: Cleveland Browns (via Atlanta):  Jared Crick, DE, Nebraska

With their extra first rounder, the Browns can afford to gamble.  Crick suffered a serious injury, but before that, he was getting some top-15 consideration.  If healthy, he can give the browns a weapon on defense as a true 5-tech.


29: Baltimore Ravens: Peter Konz, C, Wisconsin

It's tough to pick one clear weakness for the Ravens, but an addition to their line or linebacking corps would be beneficial.  The BPA of that group is Konz, regarded as this class's best C.  Joe Flacco tends to hold the ball way too long, so the more protection he gets, the better.


30: Cincinatti Bengals (via New England via New Orleans): Lamar Miller, RB, Miami

Having traded back and added a pick, the Bengals can now address their biggest need other than corner (which they addressed earlier): runningback, without reaching.  Miller is speedy, but is big enough to take on defenders.  He reminds me alot of Mark Ingram.


31: Green Bay Packers: LaMichael James, RB, Oregon

With no glaring need, the Pack can give Aaron Rodgers another weapon.  James can run it, pass-protect, and most importantly catch the ball out of the backfield.  Since Rodgers loves to spread the ball around, James would fit right in.  Even though Starks and Grant are good runners, I'm not convinced that they are better than James.


32: New England Patriots: T.J. McDonald, S, USC

Since the Patriots got their pass rusher earlier, they can afford to reach a bit to address another need at safety.  McDonald can play in the box or play center field, and despite some inconsistency, has been quite impressive.  Considering this is Belichick, this will probably be a trade-down or trade for a future first, but they really do need a safety (their current starter is James Ihedigbo).


Enjoy! And please let me know how I did.

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