The goal here was to think a little bit out of the box and have some fun. I was trying to include team needs, players available,depth at positions of need in the draft and whether a team needed an impact player or if they were rebuiliding.
I know most of the trades won't happen but the goal was to try to put a different spin on the typical Mock Draft. I am also assuming we have a CBA in place and teams are allowed to trade
1) Carolina Panthers - Da'Quan Bowers - DE Clemson.
Carolina is in a tough spot. There is not a consensus number one pick, no definitive franchise quarterback and no second round pick. Bowers, Fairley and Gabbert all have flaws. is Bowers a one year wonder or are the 15.5 sack the real deal? Carolina goes after the Julius Peppers they lost.
2) Denver Broncos - Patrick Peterson - CB - Denver
Denver goes out to revitalize their defense and goes after the top CB in the draft. Petersonis the top elite player with the least number of question marks. Peterson is a big corneback who is just as good at stopping the run as he is at covering the pass. Denver could have gone with Fairley but with the quantity and quality of defensive line they opt for CB in the first and will target d-line in the second.
Team needs: DE,DT,OLB,CB,WR,TE,QB
3) Buffalo Bills - Blaine Gabbert - QB - Missouri.
This pick resembles the Matt Ryan pick from a few years back. Is he a franchise guy? Can he make all the throws? As the combines come together and individual workouts take place one quarterback usually emerges as the alpha dog. This one is Blaine Gabbert. Fitzpatrick is a good middle of the road QB. Buffalo needs to strike gold and fine a franchise, elite, top dog quarterback for the next decade.
4) Cincinnati Bengals - Nick Fairley - DT- Auburn
Cincinnatigoes with the best player available even though it is not their greatest need. Fairley helps them shore up their line and they will find a way to utilize him to stop the run against Pittsburgh and Baltimore. Fairley is built for the AFC North and the Bengals get their game changer.
Team Needs: OT,DE,ILB,CB,SS
Cam Newton is not Vince Young or Demarcus Russel. If you want an NFL comparison look no further than Big Ben in Pittsburgh. The Arizona coaching staff is Pittsburgh west and if they can find someone to "manage" the game and has the ability to stand up to the big hits it is Cam Newton.
6) Cleveland Browns -TRADE W/ RAMS- Cleveland trades their first (6) and fourth (101) for St. Louis's first (14), second (47) and fourth (111).
Rams - AJ Green - WR - Georgia.
The Rams give up their second and move down 11 spots in the fourth and pick up the best young receiver this side of Calvin Johnson. Green is a game changer, that displays size, toughness and is a grear route runner. Bradford and Green work together for the next ten years reeking havoc in the NFC.
7) San Francisco - Prince Amukarama - CB - Nebraska
San Francisco takes one of the most athletic players in the draft. A workout warrior Amukarama fills a huge need for the Niners. Alex Smith is working with Harbaugh but that does not rule out a QB in the future.
8) Tennessee- Jimmy Smith - CB - Colorado]
Another team in need of a QB, but with the top two gone they settle for one of the most underrated players in the draft. Smith is a big, physical corner with top end speed. Going against Peyton Manning and Matt Shaubfour times a year, Tennessee fills a need with a shut down corner.
Team Needs: QB,OG,ILB,CB
9) Dallas Cowboys - TRADE W/ NE PATRIOTS - Dallas trades their first (9) round pick to NE for the Patriots first (17) (through Oakland) and their second (60).
Patriots - Robert Quinn - DE North Carolina
Quinn is the impact game changer the Patriots need to take their defense to the next level. He will be a starter from day one and will create havoc as a rush end in the 3-4. This will go a long way to putting the needed pressure on the QB to get out of third down situations. He is Clay Matthews with two inches. The Patriots keep their original first round pick and will likely trade the first pick of the second round (acquired from Carolina) for additional picks in the second round and next years draft.
Quinn has some question marks, especially sitting out the entire season, but he has one of the biggest upside in the draft.
Team Needs: DE,OLB,OT,OG
10) Washington Redskins - Julio Jones - WR - Alabama
Washington could go a lot of ways here but their two biggest needs are QB and WR. With the top two QB's off the board Shanahan calls Nick Saban and gets the inside scoop on the physically toughest wide receiver in the draft. Big, tough, physical with underrated speed. He will be the go to guy for the quarterback to be Carson Palmer (for their second round pick). Then they can sit around and watch others draft until they come up again in ROUND 5!
11) Houston Texans - Marcel Darius -DT - Alabama
Darius is a top 5 picks in most drafts. After being suspended for two games last year his stock falls but he is too talented to pass up and will help solidify a week Houston defense. He is a steal at 14. Someone always slips and this year it is Darius.
Team Needs: DT,TE,SS,FS,CB
12) Minnesota Vikings - Cameron Jordan - DE - Cal
Minnesota courts just decimated the Vikings line for at least four games. Jordan is versatile, strong and will get to the QB the way the Vikings like to attack.
Team Needs: DE,DT,OLB,QB
13) Detroit Lions - Von Miller - OLB - Texas Tech
I know Miller had a great Senior Bowl and he is rising up the charts. Most of the top 15 players were not in the Senior Bowl. OLB's rarely go in the top 5. D lineman are more valuable and this year we have a bumper crop. Detroit lucks out and gets a game changer in Miller. He is the perfect fit for their young improving defence.
14) Cleveland Browns (from Rams) - Nate Solder - OT - Colorado
The biggest and best tackle comes off the board. With comparisons to Tony Bosseli (Mike Mayock the best in the business) Cleveland can now pound the ball and protect Colt McCoy. He has work to do to get better but his size and frame are second to none.
Team Needs: OT,DE,OLB,ILB,WR
15) Miami Dolphins - TRADE TO KC CHIEFS- Miami trades their first (15) for KC's first (21st) and third (86th).
KC Chiefs - Corey Liguet -DT - Illinois
I know Pioli is like Belicheck and trades down not up. But Pioli also saw what Vince Wilfork has done for the Pats and jumps ahead of Jacksonville to take this rock of a man. 6' 3" 300 pounds with room to add a little more he will do for the KC line what Wilfork had done in NE. Some are going to say this is too high for him but on many of the big boards he is right around 10.
Team Needs: DT, OLB,ILB,TE,WR
16) Jacksonville Jaguars- Ryan Kerrigan - DE - Perdue
After missing out on LiguetJacksonville stays with a DE who prefers to keep his hand on the ground when he is attacking the QB. He is a relentless pass rusher and that will be needed facing the Colts and the Texans.
Team Needs: DE,ILB,SS,FS,QB,TE
17) Dallas Cowboys (from New England) - Gabe Carimi - OT - Wisconsin
A versatile lineman to protect the injured Tony Romo Carimi can play tackle or guard. He plays with a mean streak and will add some needed youth to the Cowboys front line.
Team Needs: OT,OG,DE,SS,FS
18) San Diego Chargers - JJ Watt- DE Wisconsin
The Chargers get a three down lineman that will open things up for their linebackers. They better hope the rookie cap in the new CBA is slotted because his agent (Condon) will be difficult to deal with. If his agent was more flexible he would possibly be a higher pick.
19) New York Giants - Tyron Smith - T - USC
Most Giant fans will hate this pick because he is undersized. He is a Junior so he has room to grow. He is a little raw but if he stayed in school he would be a top five pick next year. Giants invest in Eli's future and get a potential stud with the most upside except for Solder.
Team Needs: OT, OLB, ILB
20) Tampa Bay Bucs- Aldon Smith - DE/OLB - Missouri
Tampa Bay takes a player that fills multiple needs. Smith is a bit of a tweener but he will fill out over time. He will be an immediate improvement over the current DE but over time he may be a better fit at OLB.
Team Needs: DE,OLB,ILB,RB,OG
Philadelphia Eagles - Anthony Constansa - OT - Boston College
Miami is able drop down several spots pick up a third from KC and still gets a cost effective potential franchise starting QB.
The Eagles jump ahead of Indianapolis and take the tackle most prepared to start right away and one who will protect the often injured Vick. They also get a terrific safety blanket with Chad Henne. He will actually make less next year than Kolb and although his stats as a starter are questionable, he would be one of the premier backups in the league.
Team Needs: OG, OT,OLB,SS,CB
22) Indianapolis - Derick Sherrod - OT - Mississippi State
This is a tough one for Pollian. Does he reach for a Offensive Tackle or does he reach for a Defensive Tackle. Ultimately he chooses to protect the franchise and he will shore up the d line in later rounds.
Team Needs: OT, DT, OG , SS
23) Philadelphia Eagles - Mike Pouncey -C/G - Florida
If you are going to go with Vick you better protect him. Pouncey is a versatile interior lineman who will be a better guard than center. Philadelphia will address the defense down the line but they have shored up the front five with quality, versatility and depth.
Team Needs: OLB,SS,CB
24) New Orleans Saints - Mark Ingram - RB - Alabama
Ingram started the season off with an injury but is NFL ready playing against the top talent in the SEC. He will have an immediate impact and will be a great compliment to Reggie Bush. He will change the dynamic on how teams defend the Saints.
Team Needs: DE.DT,RB,OLB,SS
25) Seattle Seahawks - Akeem Ayers - OLB- UCLA
Ayers is the best player available and fills an immediate need for Seattle. He is good at stopping the run but needs to learn coverage skills. Still for Seattle he is a starter on Day 1.
Team Needs: OLB,DT,DE,SS,OT,OG
26) Baltimore Ravens - Rahim Moore - S - UCLA
Moore is a physical safety who is all over the ball. He will fit right in with the aggressive Baltimore defense. By far he is the top safety in the draft. He has experience as a FS and a SS.
27) Atlanta Falcons - Adrian Clayborn - DE - Iowa
Clayborn slips a little in the draft and falls into the ideal situation. Atlanta's top need is a DE and Clayborn is a keeper. Best player at the best value.
Team Needs: DE, TE, OLB, OG
28) New England Patriots - Muhammed Wilkerson - DE - Temple
The ideal three down, 5 technique players to line up opposite Ty Warren. With Quinn, Wilkerson, Wilfork, Mayo and Chung, pressuring the QB will no longer be an issue. The Pats are scary good on defense and will attack the interior offensive line, running back and in round two and three (and four and five and six and seven - the Pats never stop!)
Team Needs: OT,OG, RB, CB, RB
29) Chicago - Randal Cobb -WR - Kentucky
Cobb will stretch the field and keep Hester on special teams. He is a great route runner that will fit into Mike Martz and his chuck and duck offensive. He can also spell Hester on special teams.
Team Needs: WR,OT,OG,OLB,DT
30) New York Jets - Phil Taylor - NT - Baylor
Taylor will fit right into the the Circus that is the New York Jets. A spotted off the field history and a potential wieght issue the behemoth of a man has a mean streak that will eat up centers and guards throughout the AFC. If he can be kept in line this guy is a game changer.
Team Needs: DT,DE,OLB, SS, FS, OG
31) Pittsburgh Steelers - Cam Heyward - DE - Ohio State
Although Pittsburgh needs tackles and guards desperately they do what Pittsburgh does and selects a DE that will fit perfectly in the rough and tumble AFC North. Reviews on Heywardare mixed but with NFL pedigree and a dominant game against Arkansas Pittsburgh jumps on Iron Heads son.
Team Needs: OT, OG, DE CB
32) Greenbay Packers - Justin Houston - OLB -Georgia
The rich get richer. Houston has tremendous skill but will need some time to develop. There will be less pressure on him. He is joining the defending champs with one of the youngest rosters in the league and an underated defense. Sounds lik a win/win.
Team Needs: OLB, RB, DE, OT, OG