Sunday, March 3, 2013

Draft Daily Mock Draft 1.0

With the combine over and pro days and individual team workouts on the way, it's time for Draft Daily's Mock Draft 1.0! With each pick you'll see my grade for that player and a very brief analysis. Non-seniors will be noted with an asterisk. Enjoy.

1. Kansas City Chiefs (2-14) - OT Luke Joeckel*, Texas A&M (97)
Offensive tackle probably isn't one of their biggest needs but when you're picking first overall, you don't have the luxury of picking for positional needs. Joeckel is arguably the best prospect in this draft and could be inserted instantly as the day 1 starter at left tackle, helping protect the investment the team just made in new QB Alex Smith.

2. Jacksonville Jaguars (2-14) - OLB Jarvis Jones*, Georgia (95)
I think the Jags would love to take an offensive skill position player here to make an instant impact but this year's class just doesn't have a prospect that fits that description that would warrant being picked this early. However they desperately need a pass rush on defense as they ranked dead last in sacks last season, and I think Jarvis Jones is the best pass rushing prospect available.

3. Oakland Raiders (4-12) - QB Geno Smith, West Virginia (90)
Yes, it'd be a pretty big reach but quarterbacks tend to get drafted earlier than they should and the Raiders need a change at quarterback as badly as anyone else in the league. Carson Palmer has been a major disappointment since coming to the Raiders and is now old and injury prone. Terrelle Pryor is still very raw and is not anywhere close to being a starter in this league. Geno Smith is a good quarterback and could be the Raiders' answer at QB for a long time.

4. Philadelphia Eagles (4-12) - DT Sharrif Floyd*, Florida (97)
I think Sharrif Floyd is the best prospect in this year's class but defensive tackles just don't make as big an impact as other positions so for that reason, I have him landing here at 4th overall. The Eagles need to improve their disappointing defense that ranked in the bottom 10 in rush defense and Floyd would be a big boost.

5. Detroit Lions (4-12) - CB Dee Milliner*, Alabama (94)
The Lions gave up the 6th most points of any defense last season and have a big hole at cornerback. Fortunately for them, Dee Milliner not only fills that hole but also fits perfectly in this range in terms of value (I have him 7th overall on the Double-D Big Board). Always nice when need meets value and the Lions get a player that should start from day 1.

6. Cleveland Browns (5-11) - OLB Dion Jordan, Oregon (94)
The Browns are another team that desperately needs help offensively but again, there's just no offensive skill position players that they could defend picking this high. So they draft one of the top defensive prospects available in an attempt to improve their bottom 10 defense.

7. Arizona Cardinals (5-11) - OT Eric Fisher*, Central Michigan (94)
QB is their biggest need but this is a down year for quarterbacks and with Geno Smith already off the board, they'll have to wait. Instead they go with Eric Fisher who's stock is on the rise post-combine. He could be a day 1 starter at left tackle and would improve the Cards' offensive line that gave up the most sacks of any team in the league.

8. Buffalo Bills (6-10) - OLB Barkevious Mingo*, LSU (93)
The Bills have a hole at weakside linebacker and Mingo has the size and athleticism to make the move from defensive end to outside linebacker. He's one of the best players available at this point and would help improve the Bills' poor defense.

9. New York Jets (6-10) - OLB/DE Ezekiel Ansah*, BYU (92)
The Jets have wanted and needed a pass rusher at outside linebacker for some time. Don't forget they planned on taking Seahawks pass rusher Bruce Irvin last year before Seattle scooped him up ahead of them. Ezekiel Ansah fills this hole. He's a little raw but still a freak athlete and looks to be one of the top pass rushing prospects in this year's class.

10. Tennessee Titans (6-10) - OG Chance Warmack, Alabama (96)
In terms of talent, I think Chance Warmack is a top 5 player but because of the nature of the guard position, I expect him to fall a little bit. The interior of the Titans' offensive line needs help and Warmack fits the bill. Their offense needs Chris Johnson to produce to be successful and adding a solid run-blocking offensive lineman like Warmack would really help.

11. San Diego Chargers (7-9) - OT Lane Johnson*, Oklahoma (93)
The Chargers need Philip Rivers to return to his 2011 form for the team to be successful. They could start by keeping him off his back (they gave up the 4th most sacks last season). Lane Johnson is another tackle whose stock is on the rise post-combine and he'd improve the Chargers' poor offensive line.

12. Miami Dolphins (7-9) - DT Star Lotulelei, Utah (95)
In light of Lotulelei's recently discovered heart condition, I have him falling a little bit. Depending on the results of his additional health tests in the coming weeks, his stock could head back upward or continue to fall but for now he lands here at 12th overall. The Dolphins have a need at defensive tackle and Lotulelei is top 5 in terms of talent.

13. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (7-9) - DT Sylvester Williams, North Carolina (92)
The Bucs would love a quality defensive tackle to pair with Gerald McCoy in their 4-3 front and Sylvester Williams would do that nicely. He'd also improve their defense that ranked 29th in the league last year.

14. Carolina Panthers (7-9) - WR Tavon Austin, West Virginia (91)
The Panthers need to add a quality weapon for Cam Newton and in Austin, they'd be getting a very nice playmaking compliment to Steve Smith. His stock has been soaring since the combine and he is arguably the biggest offensive gamechanger in this year's draft.

15. New Orleans Saints (7-9) - S Kenny Vaccaro, Texas (92)
Safety is a big need in the New Orleans' secondary and Vaccaro would fill that need well. In a strong 2013 safety class, Vacarro ranks at the top and he'd really help improve the Saints' defense that ranked 31st last year.

16. St. Louis Rams (7-8-1) - OT D.J. Fluker*, Alabama (90)
Offensive tackle is probably the Rams' biggest need as they continue to develop their young franchise QB Sam Bradford. Their current left tackle Rodger Saffold projects as a better fit at right tackle and Fluker could take over the blind side.

17. Pittsburgh Steelers (8-8) - OLB/DE Bjoern Werner*, Florida State (91)
James Harrison could be a cap casualty this offseason and even if he's not, he's getting old and has become injury prone in the latter stages of his career. Werner is a guy that's high on a lot of boards and could potentially make the move to 3-4 outside linebacker.

18. Dallas Cowboys (8-8) - OG Jonathan Cooper, North Carolina (93)
This is another guard that despite talent, drops because of his position. The Cowboys offensive line as a whole wasn't very good last year and Cooper projects as a guy that could start for them from day 1.

19. New York Giants (9-7) - ILB Alec Ogletree*, Georgia (91)
Ogletree would be a pretty good value pick here in terms of talent. Due to character concerns, I have him dropping a bit but Tom Coughlin has the type of strong leadership and strict coaching style that could straighten him out. The Giants have a big need at linebacker and Ogletree would help fill it.

20. Chicago Bears (10-6) - TE Tyler Eifert, Notre Dame (91)
The bottom line is the Bears need to get Jay Cutler another weapon other than just Brandon Marshall. Tyler Eifert would be a great addition as he is a very good tight end and would be an instant contributor in Chicago's passing game.

21. Cincinnati Bengals (10-6) - S Matt Elam*, Florida (87)
The Bengals have a need at safety as two of their regular contributors, Nate Clements and Chris Crocker, are set to leave via free agency. Matt Elam is the second best safety on my board and could contribute as a rookie.

22. St. Louis Rams (via 10-6 WAS) - WR Cordarrelle Patterson*, Tennessee (90)
At 22, I have the Rams continuing to help out Sam Bradford. They haven't really had a receiving weapon to speak of outside of Danny Amendola and Bradford has struggled because of it. Patterson is still raw at this point but he could develop into a legit no. 1 receiver, the athletic ability is there.

23. Minnesota Vikings (10-6) - DT Sheldon Richardson*, Missouri (91)
The Vikings could go receiver here but for now I have them going with Richardson at 23, who's among the best available at this point, to compliment Kevin Williams along their defensive front.

24. Indianapolis Colts (11-5) - CB Desmond Trufant, Washington (89)
The Colts need a corner to play opposite Vontae Davis. Desmond Trufant is a player whose stock has been on the rise thanks to strong showings during Senior Bowl week and the combine and would likely improve the Colts' defensive unit that ranked 26th last season.

25. Seattle Seahawks (11-5) - WR Keenan Allen*, California (88)
After Russell Wilson's phenomenal rookie year, I expect the Seahawks to make an effort to provide him with more weapons offensively. Seattle is weak at wide receiver and Keenan Allen is the best wide receiver available at this point on my board.

26. Green Bay Packers (11-5) - RB Ed Lacy*, Alabama (88)
The Packers don't have a true every down running back that can handle a full workload. With Donald Driver retired and Greg Jennings possibly leaving via free agency, I expect the Packers to enhance their run game to help out Aaron Rodgers. Ed Lacy can be an every down back and is the best running back in this class.

27. Houston Texans (12-4) - ILB Manti Te'o, Notre Dame (91)
The Texans have a hole at inside linebacker in their 3-4 system next to Brian Cushing. I have Te'o falling here due to his mediocre combine showing and the whole catfish hoopla. Houston would be filling a need and getting good value.

28. Denver Broncos (13-3) - DT Johnathan Jenkins, Georgia (87)
Denver's defense was very good last season but they have a pretty big void at both defensive tackle positions. The big 358lb. Jenkins is one of the best players available at this point and would help fill that need.

29. New England Patriots (12-4) - WR Justin Hunter*, Tennessee (87)
Wes Welker could be leaving via free agency, which would leave Tom Brady with the overrated Brandon Lloyd as his best option at receiver. Justin Hunter had better production and is a more polished receiver than his Volunteer counterpart Cordarrelle Patterson and would help give the Patriots another receiving option outside of Lloyd.

30. Atlanta Falcons (13-3) - TE Zach Ertz*, Stanford (89)
Tony Gonzalez may or may not be retiring but he's old regardless and the Falcons need to be thinking about replacements. Ertz is probably the most complete tight end in this year's class and would be an asset to Matt Ryan for years to come.

31. San Francisco 49ers (11-4-1) - CB Blidi Wreh-Wilson, Connecticut (88)
The 49ers have a strong defense but they have a need at cornerback. Rumors have surfaced this past week that they could be pursuing a trade for the Jets' Darrelle Revis. If that doesn't happen, they could go with Wreh-Wilson who fits the need and is one of the best players available at this point.

32. Baltimore Ravens (10-6) - ILB Kevin Minter*, LSU (87)
The Ravens will have a hard time replacing what Ray Lewis brought to their team over the years, not just physically but psychologically. At any rate, the need at inside linebacker remains and Kevin Minter is a good player that could begin the attempt at filling the void left by #52.

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