Easter break from college, perfect time for a mock!
1. Carolina: Cam Newton, QB Auburn: It looks like the Panthers want to start the new regime with a new QB, and honestly I don't see them going with Gabbert, who's potential seems similar to Clausen's. If your gonna go QB this high, you better go with the one with the higher ceiling.
2. Denver: Marcel Dareus, DT, Bama: Elway recently said they are looking to get 4 starters out of this draft, and its safe to say Dareus is the most likely "starter" here. He's pro ready after being coached by Saban, and he's got a great size/athleticism ratio. I'm going to say it'll be an upset if they don't draft Dareus, even for Miller. On Miller, I don't see him being drafted by Denver. Fox's LB's are closer to S's then DE's, and I see Miller as more of a DE in a 4-3 then anything, kinda like an Orakpo in 09.
3. Buffalo: Blaine Gabbert, QB, Mizzou: I like what Gailey's doing there, but with such a poor record I think the only way to sell Chan Gailey to Buffalo beyond this year is to draft a QB of the future. Gabbert has the athleticism Gailey craves.
4. Cincinatti: AJ Green, WR, UGA: Who would think 3 of the top 4 picks would be O with all the D talent at the top end? AJ is definitly the BPA here and possibly the safest, and picking him up first should help bring Carson back.
5. Arizona: Von Miller, OLB, Texas A&M: With the top QB's gone, they got to go D, and for a team with such a bad front 7 its hard for them to pass a kid born for the 3-4 OLB spot, which is nearly impossible to find these days.
6. Cleveland: Nick Fairley, DT, Auburn: Definitly a risk, but I don't see anyone beyond Newton with a higher cieling. I can't see Jones go this high with his recent injury, and I don't think any of the DE's are more worthy then Fairley.
7. SF: Patrick Peterson, CB, LSU: If the top QB's are gone, and PP is available, this is a slam dunk
8. Tennessee: DaQuan Bowers, DE, Clemson: Yes they did go DE last year, and yes Bowers has some injury concerns, but still Bowers should be a great fit opposite of Morgan and orthoscopic knee surgery is nothing to be afraid of.
9. Dallas: Tyron Smith, OT, USC: How can it not be? Only if they trade down.
10. Washington: Robert Quinn, OLB, UNC: I don't know if he's the perfect fit for 3-4 OLB, but around this time 2 seasons ago people said the same of Orakpo and it worked out for them.
11. Houston: JJ Watt, DE, Wisconsin: Should be a good compliment for Mario Williams.
12. Minnesota: Ryan Mallet, QB, Arkansas: I said this a month ago, and I still say it with his stock on the rise. This kid can flat out fling the ball, and the Vikings don't have anyone on their roster who can. They need a QB and at 12 Mallet is a good choice.
13. Detroit: Prince Amukamra, CB, Nebraska: 2 elite D players from Nebraska in a row. I'd be surprised if Prince fell here, but if he does I can't see Detroit pass on him.
14. STL: Julio Jones, WR, Bama: Definitly one of the top realistic targets for the Rams. I could even see this team trade up for Jones if Green is gone and they think someone will pull the trigger on Jones.
15. Miami: Mike Pouncey, OG/C, Florida: I don't like predicting trades, but if Miami trades down I definitly could see them go in this direction. Even if they do stay put I could see them go Pouncey over Ingram if the top QB's are gone.
16. Jacksonville: Cameron Jordan, DE, Cal: Alualu and Jordan team up again, should be a great tandem.
17. New England: Anthony Castanzo, OT, BC: Belicheck brings in the OT from his own backyard to protect Brady. The kid may not be the best run blocking OT, but he's a guy you can plug in at LT and not have to worry about Tom's blindside.
18. San Diego:Muhammed Wilkerson, DE, Temple: Kid is rising fast and fills a need for San Diego.
19. NYG: Cory Liuget, DT, Illinois: I know DT may not be their biggest need, but Reese loves going DL early and the value is definitly here.
20. Tampa Bay: Aldon Smith, DE, Mizzou: A lot of people are much higher on him then I am. But for me, pick 20 of the draft with the top DE's gone is a great spot for him.
21. KC: Gabe Carimi, OT, Wisconsin: Haley's comments pertaining to his OL was far from a vote of confidence. Unless they trade up for a WR, I see them in the running for an OT. I don't see Taylor being picked this high with the recent medical update.
22. Indy: Nate Solder, OT, Colorado: The Colts would probably prefer a more pro ready OT here, but Solder has too much potential to pass up.
23. Philly: Jimmy Smith, CB, Colorado: Reid is generally more forgiving of character concerns then most coaches, especially if the player is very talented.
24. New Orleans: Justin Houston, DE, UGA: Saints need a new pass rusher and Houston is a great fit for them, especially this late in the first.
25. Seattle: Jake Locker, QB, Washington: I don't get the impression this team is confident in Whitehurst. I could see them trade down for Locker but if you really like a QB, there's no such thing as a reach for him.
26. Baltimore: Derek Sherrod, OT, Miss St: Oher didn't do as well at LT in his second season as he did at Rt his rookie year, and Geathers is all but gone. If Sherrod falls here I can't see Balty pass on him unless Jimmy smith is available.
27. Atlanta: Adrian Clayborn, DE, Iowa: Depending on which Clayborn they get, this could be a steal or a bust. I'm banking on him getting his game together in the pros.
28: New England: Ryan Kerrigan, OLB, Purdue: He's been flying under the radar of late, making me think he could be a perfect Pats pick. The kid can flat out get to the QB, and this NE team could use that.
29: Chicago: Stephen Paea, DT, Oregon St.: Not to toot my own horn, but I made this pick before the playoffs started and everyone was convinced (and still are) that the Bears will go OT. I think they would like to go OT early, but I don't think the ones worthy of the pick will last this long. If they don't I can easily see them go for the best 3 tech.
30: NYJ: Akeem Ayers, OLB, UCLA: The Jets should be ecstatic with this pick. Unlike Gholston, he is a true OLB who should fit well within the 3-4. His pass rush may need to be refined but if anyone can do it it's fatass.
31. Pittsburgh: Cameron Heyward, DE, Ohio St.: Taylor continues to fall, as the medical concerns I've heard may make him fall to the late second, and I don't see Pitt risking their first on that. Heyward has great potential and with the age in the DL, this would be a smart move for the future.
32. GB: Danny Watkins, OG, Baylor: I fully believe the fans of the team that pick him will hate him because of his age, but wouldn't you rather have 8 good to great years from Watkins then potentially 10-15 not so good ones? The kid has a lot of talent and for a team coming off an SB victory they are still playing for the present, and Watkins gives you a great presence day one.
33. NE: Mark Ingram, RB, Bama: I'd be surprised if he fell this far, but a lot of rumors have made me swing this way. No way does Ingram get passed here if for some reason he falls this far.
34. Buffalo: Brooks Reed, OLB/DE, Arizona: Going QB first, This team's gotta go D here unless a top OT falls. Reed gives them the pass rushing talent they need.
35. Cincy: Marcus Cannon, OT/OG, TCU: This kids flying up boards. He fits the Bengals OL mold, and I could see him having LT potential. I think they should go QB, but Brown probably won't budge on Palmer, and won't take a QB as well.
36. Denver: Martez Wilson, LB, Illinois: DT is by far Denver's biggest need. LB is right behind it, and with Wilson being able to play any LB position in the 4-3, and being the talent he is, I can't see Denver pass on him if he falls here and they went DT previously.
37. Cleveland: Jon Baldwin, Pitt, WR: Has the potential to be a #1 WR, and in the second, and being the Browns biggest need, they have to go Baldwin.
38. Arizona: Colin Kapernick, QB, Nevada: I see Kapernick being the best fit for Whisenhunt at this stage, and he needs to go QB after going D first.
39. Tennessee: Andy Dalton, QB, TCU: I have Ponder higher then both Dalton and Kapernick, but both the aforementioned guys have higher ceilings so in the 2nd I could see them go higher.
40. Dallas: Christian Ballard, DE, Iowa: Has good size for the position, and comes from Iowa, a program that breeds pro ready players.
41. Washington Redskins: Christian Ponder, QB, FSU: Perfect player/scheme fit, Ponder should thrive in the PA/Boot O Shanny runs.
42. Houston: Brandon Harris, CB, Miami: Lower then I'd like, but I have a feeling teams will be turned off by his barely 5'10 frame. Whoever gets him in the second gets a steal
43. Minnesota: Leonard Hankerson, WR, Miami: They got the QB, now with Rice on the fence they should get him a WR.
44. Detroit: Mason Foster, LB, Washington: Great LB with a lot of scheme versatility.
45. SF: Phil Taylor, NT, Baylor: Many of you maybe thinking "wtf?" But with the recent injury concerns, I could see Taylor fall to the 2nd round to a team desperate for a NT.
46. Denver: Kyle Rudolph, TE, Notre Dame: TE is a huge need for Denver, although how much Fox uses TE's may affect this pick, especially ones who can catch. I still believe Denver should go for this pick even if they plan to block a lot with their TE. Rudolph's pretty raw in the area, but he is very strong, has the frame to block, and just needs some coaching up.
47. STL: Marvin Austin, DT, UNC: Spags comes from Philly and NYG where they love DT's like a fat kid loves cake. Austin is one of the best and they'd be lucky if he fell here.
48. Oakland: DeMarcus Van Dyke, CB, Miami: Can you say it won't happen?
49. Jacksonville: Ras-I-Dowling, CB, Virginia: Mathis is the only decent CB they've got and he's been playing pretty bad lately. A good value pick filling a need here, especially with the top QB's gone.
50. San Diego: Rahim Moore, S, UCLA: Big need pick here with Weddle's return in question. However, with the 50th pick, there is good value here as well.
51. Tampa Bay: Jabaal Sheard, DE, Pitt: Could go higher then here. I could see the Bucs use the strategy they used last year on their biggest need (going DT 2x) if the value is there, and in this situation it is.
52. NYG: Stefen Wiscinieski, C, PSU: Great value here, knowing Rorschach he'll find something wrong with this pick but if he falls here and they didn't go C with their first pick they'd be hard pressed not to go C if the value is right.
53. Indy: Jarvis Jenkins, DT, Clemson: This kid is the prototypical 1 tech in a 4-3, and the colts could really use one
54. Philly:Bruce Carter, LB, UNC: STEAL!!!!!
55. KC: Kenrick Ellis, NT, Hampton: this kids stock is soaring now, and I don't see it as a reach here. Like Taylor, he showed the character concerns are not a problem and that he can move well for his size.
56. New Orleans: Mikell LeShoure, RB, Illinois: With the uncertainty in the Saints backfield, this pick should help and give them a guy to lean on for the future and now.
57. Seattle: Allen Bailey, DE/DT, Miami: Seattle tends to do whacky things for their DL, so if anyone can find a place for Bailey its Seattle.
58. Baltimore: Torrey Smith, WR, Maryland: Didn't put up as good of numbers as people would think a speed demon would, but in the late 2nd this is a smart pick, should fit in well at the slot.
59. Atlanta: Titus Young, WR, BSU: WR with speed is a big need for ATL and Young provides that.
60. New England: Benjamin Iljana, OT/OG, Villanova: Probably won't fall this far, but you best believe Belicheck will take him if he does.
61. San Diego: Sam Acho, OLB, Texas: Pass rushers a big need and I think Acho can provide that.
62. Chicago: Marcus Gilbert, OT, Florida: Definitly a big need for this squad, and the value here is very good.
63. Pittsburgh: Aaron Williams, CB, Texas: I'm personally not high on the kid, and I see his value around this area.
64. Green Bay: Orlando Franklin, OT, Miami: Should be a good LT down the road, can sit and wait and then be a book end tackle with Bulaga.