College Football

A VERY EARLY MOCK DRAFT – 2ND EDITION

WOW!!!!!!!! What an amazing display of dominance the Seattle Seahawks put on the what many claim to be the best QB of all time. My favorite part of the game was the fact that Richard Sherman made a statement leading up to the game that Peyton throws up some “ducks” that can be intercepted and the media just laughed it off like Sherman was just playing the “thug” image for the cameras. Even Manning himself got involved by laughing with the media when he said he threw “Touchdown ducks.” Well it turns out that Sherman was the one who was right as the Seahawks just dominated Manning all night long in the route. And with that beat down we are now football less except for National Signing Day in college and the Road to the Draft in the NFL. Which for me is one of my favorite times of the year. I will watch every hour that is televised for the combine and when I am not watching I will be reading up on the draft itself. I enjoy this time because I get to see where the products like the Seahawks and Broncos begin on their journey to the top. Championship teams begin here. And it will be interesting to see which players are able to make an impact on a team like Offensive and Defensive Rookies of the Year, Green Bay’s Eddie Lacy and the Jets’ Sheldon Richardson. And now without further ado my 2nd edition Mock of the NFL Draft.

Texans fans want Johnny Football to stay home

Texans fans want Johnny Football to stay home

Houston Texans

Houston Texans

1. JOHNNY MANZIEL – QB TEXAS A&M: The more I look into this draft I just cannot come up with a winning scenario for the Texans in which they do not draft Manziel. If this kid would go somewhere and become a superstar after the Texans passed on him that would probably cost some jobs. Even the fans are getting involved with their Billboard plea to draft Texas’ own Johnny Football. The only alternative I see for the Texans would be for the other team in this draft that loves Manziel, the Cleveland Browns to use their two 1st round picks to entice Houston to let them have the chance at Johnny. If that does not happen then the commish should be calling out Manziel’s name in this slot. (LAST MOCK POSITION: 1)

St. Louis Rams

St. Louis Rams

2. SAMMY WATKINS – WR CLEMSON: Jeff Fisher remembers the “greatest show on turf” well due to the fact his Titans fell 1 yard short of stopping that team in the Super Bowl. Now that he coaches the Rams he hopes to get them and himself back to the big game and after drafting Tavon Austin last year, what better way to get back to Super Bowl form than by drafting college phenom Sammy Watkins? A Watkins and Austin combo would be a migraine for opposing defensive coaches. And unless someone comes up with a good trade package I expect the Rams to be a scary offense next year. Maybe even scarier that Bruce and Holt. (5)

Jacksonville Jaguars

Jacksonville Jaguars

3. JADEVEON CLOWNEY – DE SOUTH CAROLINA: The Jags need a QB but they do have other picks that they can grab one with and one thing is certain. There is no player that they can grab of this caliber with their next pick. Honestly there may not be a player of Clowney’s caliber in this whole draft. Of course there is a chance that the Jags use this pick to secure more picks but if they stay in this slot and Clowney is available I think Shad Khan and company will take this player. After all as the Seahawks just showed the world last night DEFENSE wins championships. (6)

Cleveland Browns

Cleveland Browns

4. BLAKE BORTLES – QB CENTRAL FLORIDA: Another mock draft and like a broken record the Browns choose a quarterback. This time it is UCF star Blake Bortles. Now for those of us that remember the Browns have had a decent amount of success with signal callers from colleges out of Florida. From Bernie Kosar to fellow Hurricane Vinny Testaverde the Browns have had success with Florida QB’s. Bortles is 6 ft 4 and weighs in at 230 lbs. He has outstanding size, mobility and he possesses the intangibles Browns fans may not have seen since the days of Testaverde and Kosar. Unless the team can get up to the top spot to draft the guy many feel they really desire in Manziel, I think they would be salivating at the thought of drafting Bortles. (3)

Oakland Raiders

Oakland Raiders

5. TEDDY BRIDGEWATER – QB LOUISVILLE: The Raiders are in need of many things on the offensive side of the ball including a QB. Bridgewater would be the best one left on the board if the draft falls this way and would be a great pick up for an Oakland franchise that has lacked a true star at QB since Rich Gannon left after the 2003 season. Bridgewater has the size and arm strength to have a good career in the NFL. Put that together with his smooth delivery and the Raiders could have a star again. It will be interesting to see if this Raiders front office can keep away from the crazy draft picks that Al Davis was known for but if they get a Bridgewater or one of the other QB’s they will be on their way. (4)

Atlanta Falcons

Atlanta Falcons

6. GREG ROBINSON – T AUBURN: At the start of the 2013 season I had never heard of Robinson, but as the season progressed it was clear this kid would be a high draft pick this April. His size and strength will allow him to play the most important position along the offensive line, left tackle. The same position he played at Auburn where he not only kept Nick Marshall upright but also cleared the way for star tailback Tre Mason. Hearing Robinson’s name will make Matt Ryan a very happy QB as well as Steven Jackson and the rest of the backs. (11)

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

7. ANTHONY BARR – LB UCLA: The one thing that fans in Tampa and new coach Lovie Smith can relate on is a love for linebackers. In Chicago, Lovie had guys like Urlacher and Briggs. In Tampa the fans have cheered guys like newly annoited Hall of Famer Derrick Brooks and Jamie Duncan. So to draft a stud like Anthony Barr is a no brainer. Barr who started out as a running back has the explosiveness and ability to find the QB and disrupt plays causing many experts to compare him to Green Bay star Clay Matthews. Which is just the kind of playmaker that the Bucs need to establish a new identity. I would have to say if I was making a list of guys that are can’t miss players, Barr would be on that short list. (7)

Minnesota Vikings

Minnesota Vikings

8. JUSTIN GILBERT – CB OKLAHOMA STATE: The Vikings would love to grab a guy like Manziel, Bortles or Bridgewater but let’s face it they have no chance unless they make a Hershel Walker style trade to get up higher in this draft. So they will look for a QB like Carr, Boyd or McCarron later in the draft. So since they can’t get a QB why not grab another big need CB. In Justin Gilbert they not only get the best rated of the corners but also one of the drafts dangerous return men as well. Gilbert has the size and the ball hawk skills that have many people in need of secondary help salivating at his game tape. The only way I think  he gets past this slot is if one of the QB’s fall down the board. (24)

Buffalo Bills

Buffalo Bills

9. JAKE MATTHEWS – T TEXAS A&M: This is a wild card for the Bills. If all the teams draft by need then it is possible that Matthews could slide down to this slot. If the teams draft based off potential then there is probably little chance Matthews falls this far in the round. I say teams draft based off need though and fans in Buffalo are excited by this pick. Matthews is gigantic and can play on either side of the line. He also possesses pedigree since he is the son of legendary lineman Bruce Matthews and the nephew of Clay Matthews Sr. That fact almost has me rooting for an NFC North team to take him so he can battle cousin Clay twice a year. If he does fall to Buffalo though it will be a wonderful way to protect EJ Manuel and open lanes for the running game. (2)

Detroit Lions

Detroit Lions

10. DARQUEZE DENNARD – CB MICHIGAN STATE: The more I read about the Lions the more comfortable I feel about them drafting Dennard here. The need is clear and I would be shocked if the position is not addressed with one of their first two picks. The only knock on Dennard is that he is only 5-11 and the new sheriff on the defensive side of the ball Teryl Austin, who worked in Baltimore last season had only one corner under 6 feet tall which was Lardarius Webb. But like Webb, Dennard is a play maker. At Michigan State, Dennard smothered receivers and in 2013 he took home the Jim Thorpe Award as the nations best. Although he does not have the speed of a Gilbert or Purifoy, he is able to blanket receivers better than almost any in the draft. (10)

Tennessee Titans

Tennessee Titans

11. TAYLOR LEWAN – T MICHIGAN: One thing that new coach Ken Whisenhunt likes to do is run the ball and when you have an aging offensive line and a free agent starter in David Stewart the position becomes a draft priority. Taylor Lewan will help immediately and his nastiness may help set a new tone for the new coach and his offense. Hopefully Lewan can come in and help protect the oft injured Jake Locker who should be able to benefit greatly from the arrival of Whisenhunt who has worked with the likes of Ben Roethlisberger, Kurt Warner and most recently Phil Rivers. (9)

New York Giants

New York Giants

12. KHALIL MACK – LB BUFFALO: Last year Jon Beason resurrected his career with the Giants. Unfortunately he seemed to be the only linebacker out on the field making plays. Grabbing Mack in this spot is out of the Giants comfort zone since the last time they drafted a LB in the first round it was 1984 and that player became a star, Carl Banks. (12)

St. Louis Rams

St. Louis Rams

13. HA HA CLINTON DIX – S ALABAMA: The Rams have a lot of potential in this draft. Not only do they have two of the first thirteen picks but they also have a coveted pick in the two slot. They could end up with three picks in the first round or they could grab superstar talent in the draft which is what I have them doing. If they grab Watkins at 2 then Clinton Dix at 13, this team could be next year’s Chiefs with some key signings in free agency. Dix is the kind of player that instantly makes their defense that much better. He possesses a high football IQ and he showed great awareness for Nick Saban at Alabama. I believe he could be a Pro Bowl safety and have a long career. (21)

Chicago Bears

Chicago Bears

14. TIMMY JERNIGAN – DT FLORIDA STATE: One thing missing from the Bears this season was a punishing defense. That could be in large part due to the fact that injuries wreaked havoc on the Bears d-line. The team also will see Henry Melton, a staple at defensive tackle hit the free agent market. This will have the Bears watching a lot of game tape on guys like Jernigan, Nix and Donald, among other. In the end I see Jernigan getting his name called first. Unless the constant images of him gasping for air on the sidelines in the BCS National title game scare teams off. (14)

Pittsburgh Steelers

Pittsburgh Steelers

15. MIKE EVANS – WR TEXAS A&M: Something Big Ben has been clammoring for is a tall wide receiver to loft the ball to. If the Steelers get the chance at Evans, Ben will get his wish. Evans is not only big, standing at 6-5 but he is also a pretty darn good receiver as well. He has the jumping ability and ball skills to become a star in the NFL. On multiple occassions this past season I watched as Evans battled against defensive backs for the ball, winning almost every time. He does not have the speed of Antonio Brown but he can take it to the house. I could see him becoming a star rather quickly. (16)

Baltimore Ravens

Baltimore Ravens

16. MARQISE LEE – WR USC: The Ravens will target a wide receiver here and whether it is Evans or Lee the team will come away better than their current roster. With Gary Kubiak running the offense and Joe Flacco having another target to throw the ball to, the Ravens may right the ship. The team struggled in 2013 a year after winning the Super Bowl and ended up missing the playoffs. With Lee in the fold the team can hopefully open up their running game that was so dominant in 2012. (13)

Dallas Cowboys

Dallas Cowboys

17. STEPHON TUITT – DE NOTRE DAME: One thing was clear this season for the Cowboys the defense is broken. The best player is obvious in DeMarcus Ware and what a great way to make him even better than by drafting a player that could cause just as much havoc on the other side of the line. Tuitt who finished strong for the Irish after a very slow start could be a guy that forces offenses to account for another lineman allowing Ware to break free. The Cowboys have to get that defense back to the top and that move starts with a player like Tuitt. (17)

New York Jets

New York Jets

18. ERIC EBRON – TE NORTH CAROLINA: If the Jets believe in Geno after this season then they must provide him with weapons. There may be no better weapon at this pick than Eric Ebron who plays much like the current star of the league Jimmy Graham. Ebron is so versatile he is able to line up as a receiver if needed and if the Jets can nab him Geno Smith will be ecstatic. If they look to make their fans boo at this draft they may instead go with the top guard available or maybe even make that defense even better by nabbing a corner. (18)

Miami Dolphins

Miami Dolphins

19. CYRUS KOUANDIJO – T ALABAMA: After last season is there any question that the Dolphins must address tackle with this pick? When your offensive line is in the news headlines and it has nothing to do with football there may be a problem. What they will get in Kouandijo will help them forget the crazy season with Incognito last year. He is big, physical and has the wide base needed to become a dominant tackle at the pro level. Of course he did struggle at times with some of the better SEC opponents he is only 20 years old and has lots of time to get better. (19)

Arizona Cardinals

Arizona Cardinals

20. ZACK MARTIN – T NOTRE DAME: The Cardinals may enter free agency with no real starter at either tackle position so they will have to address the position in this draft. Martin was a solid performer against some stiff competition at Notre Dame. His versatility will allow him to play either tackle position as well. By the time the draft actually happens Martin may move further up the draft board as the scouts and experts are just loving this kid out of Notre Dame. If the Cards choose to wait on tackle or sign them in free agency then look for them to snag a linebacker or rush end. (20)

Green Bay Packers

Green Bay Packers

21. LOUIS NIX III – DT NOTRE DAME: Nix may be hurt a little by his injury that sidelined him late in Notre Dame’s season. I do however feel that who ever gets this young man will be getting an amazing player and personality. Nix can clog the middle and with players around him he is a beast. Early in the season he was getting double teamed and at times triple teamed due to the lack of play from some of his teammates. But a year earlier with a strong Tuitt and Te’o playing alongside of him, there were times when Nix was just plain dominant. If a team desires having the best 3-4 in the league then Nix is the guy to look at. (15)

Philadelphia Eagles

Philadelphia Eagles

22. CJ MOSLEY – LB ALABAMA: Many see Mosley at the top of the draft but many will look at his medical history and that is why I see him falling down the board. He has had a dislocated hip and elbow as well as shoulder surgery. However he is probably the best middle linebacker in this draft and the Eagles need some dynamic defenders to match that high-octane offense. If they don’t get lucky and grab Mosley here then look for the best dynamic defender left on the board. (22)

Kansas City Chiefs

Kansas City Chiefs

23. ODELL BECKHAM – WR LSU: Over the last few years one thing became clear about Odell Beckham, whenever he touches the ball he is dangerous. His vision on the field allow him to make big plays and dominate on the football field. He is an amazing runner who sees the field well and would fill a huge void on the Chiefs from 2013. The team was good but as far as go to receiver went, the team often looked to Jamaal Charles or whoever could get open. Having that “it” guy that a play can be called for can take a team to the next level. (30)

Cincinnati Bengals

Cincinnati Bengals

24. BRADLEY ROBY – CB OHIO STATE: Roby may be the most talented corner in the draft, if only he could play more consistently. There have been some instances where it just did not look as if Roby was playing to his potential. His ball skills, speed and playmaking abilities are top notch and if he can stay focused on the game and if he finds the desire to be the best, he very well may become a legend. (NR)

San Diego Chargers

San Diego Chargers

25. KONY EALY – DE MISSOURI: The Chargers could use a guy that can blow up the line and get after the QB and Ealy is that guy. He has experience on the inside and outside of the d-line and what makes him a solid pick for the Chargers is his closing speed when in pursuit of the QB. If the Chargers don’t go defensive line here they could look hard at a cornerback or maybe offensive line. (25)

Cleveland Browns

Cleveland Browns

26. CARLOS HYDE – RB OHIO STATE: This pick would send Browns fans into a frenzy as Hyde is one of their own. He reminds me a lot of what the Browns had back in the 80’s with a guy by the name Kevin Mack. The team could also look to grab a receiver to play opposite Josh Gordon and Jordan Cameron too. Either way they need to make both picks on the offensive side of the ball. (26)

New Orleans Saints

New Orleans Saints

27. ANTONIO RICHARDSON – T TENNESSEE: One thing the Saints need to do is protect Drew Brees and Tiny Richardson will be able to help with that. Richardson projects as a right tackle and if he refines his skill he can be a great one. His power and relentlessness allow him to dominate his opponent. If he works hard enough he may be able to play on the left side but more than likely a right tackle. (NR)

Carolina Panthers

Carolina Panthers

28. KELVIN BENJAMIN – WR FLORIDA STATE: In case you missed the last few seasons with Cam at QB one thing has been clear. Cam needs more playmakers. Benjamin is exactly that and to line him up opposite Steve Smith for next year would instantly make Cam an even more dangerous weapon. The team could also look to shore up the secondary or add some strength along the offensive line but I believe playmakers are at the top of the draft board. (28)

New England Patriots**

New England Patriots

29. CYRIL RICHARDSON – G BAYLOR: This pick could be traded away for more picks but I see the Pats taking measures to prolong the career of Tom Brady. Richardson is an amazing talent that actually grades out as the 7th best lineman in the draft and the 1st overall guard. The team could also look to grab a TE to replace a huge part of their offense that sits in prison currently or they could also grab a defensive lineman. (29)

San Francisco 49ers

San Francisco 49ers

30. RA’SHEDE HAGEMAN – DT MINNESOTA: Hageman possesses all the tools to be a dominate force, yet every scout says the same thing, he just hasn’t put it all together. This pick could end up being another DT out of Pittsburgh, Aaron Donald but the player with the most potential is Hageman. A coach like Jim Harbaugh may be the guy to get the most out of him which may be enough for the team to draft Hageman. (NR)

Denver Broncos**

Denver Broncos

31. LOUCHEIZ PURIFOY – CB FLORIDA: The defense needs some attention and as long as Peyton stays under center in 2014 the Broncos will look to the secondary with this pick. Purifoy is a quick corner with very good ball skills and even though he has yet to snare an interception he does not struggle in coverage. The Broncos could also aim to grab a a defensive lineman with this pick as there are many that could still be available. (31)

Seattle Seahawks

Seattle Seahawks

32. JACE AMARO – QB TEXAS TECH: If Percy Harvin can come back healthy next year the Hawks have their number 1 receiver so why not grab their number 1 tight end. In Amaro they get probably the best TE in the game during the 2013 season and he wasn’t even up for the Mackey Award. What Pete Carroll would get is a player that can line up wide and line up in tight and just make plays either way. He is very quick and catches just about anything thrown his way. The Seahawks could also grab a wide receiver or offensive lineman as well. (32)

Until Next Year

Who will have a Percy Harvin type impact?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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