2012 NFL Mock Draft: Examining Possible Landing Spots for LSU's Morris Claiborne
Where is he an ideal fit?
Where will he land?
Let's take a look.
Ideally, the Vikings would love to spend an early draft pick to help shorten the learning curve for quarterback Christian Ponder.
However, they might not be afforded that luxury depending on how the first two picks go.
If the St. Louis Rams snag Justin Blackmon after the Indianapolis Colts select Andrew Luck, Claiborne will be the best available fit for Minnesota's secondary that allowed more than 250 yards per game through the air in 2011.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
The Buccaneers need help on offense, but they especially need to bolster the second two levels of their defense.
Their secondary gave up the most passing yards per game in the NFL this season, making Claiborne the logical selection. He can be an instant starter for a rebuilding team playing in the same division as Drew Brees, Matt Ryan and Cam Newton.
At 6'0'' and 185 pounds, he'll need to add some bulk to match up with some of the bigger possession receivers in the NFL, but he has the instincts, athleticism and ball-hawking ability to contribute immediately.
This is the most unlikely landing spot for Claiborne as the Panthers hold the No. 8 overall position. While the Panthers could be looking to add more offensive weapons to Cam Newton's arsenal, the defense is in need of major reworking.
They allowed nearly 250 passing yards per game in 2011 and underrated corner Chris Gamble needs help in the defensive backfield.
Carolina would likely welcome Claiborne if Blackmon and Jeffery are off the board.
2012 NFL Mock Draft (Jan. 10 Update)
1. Indianapolis Colts: Andrew Luck, QB, Stanford
2. St. Louis Rams: Justin Blackmon, WR, Oklahoma State
3. Minnesota Vikings: Matt Kalil, OT, USC
4. Cleveland Browns: Trent Richardson, RB, Alabama
5. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Morris Claiborne, CB, LSU
6. Washington Redskins: Robert Griffin III, QB, Baylor
7. Jacksonville Jaguars: Jonathan Martin, OT, Stanford
8. Carolina Panthers: Alshon Jeffery, WR, South Carolina
9. Miami Dolphins: Whitney Mercilus, DE, Illinois
10. Buffalo Bills: Courtney Upshaw, OLB, Alabama
11. Seattle Seahawks: Nick Perry, OLB, USC
12. Kansas City Chiefs: Dont'a Hightower, LB, Alabama
13. Arizona Cardinals: Riley Reiff, OT, Iowa
14. Dallas Cowboys: Dre Kirkpatrick, CB, Alabama
15. Philadelphia Eagles: Vontaze Burfict, LB Arizona State
16. New York Jets: Melvin Ingram, DE/OLB, South Carolina
17. Cincinnati Bengals (from Oakland Raiders): Lamar Miller, RB, Miami
18. San Diego Chargers: David DeCastro, OG, Stanford
19. Chicago Bears: Alfonzo Dennard, CB, Nebraska
20. Tennessee Titans: Zach Brown, LB, North Carolina
21. Cincinnati Bengals: Kendall Wright, WR, Baylor
22. Cleveland Browns (from Atlanta Falcons): Ronnell Lewis, LB, Oklahoma
23. Detroit Lions: Stephon Gilmore, CB, South Carolina
24. Pittsburgh Steelers: Cordy Glenn, OL, Georgia
25. Denver Broncos: Devon Still, DT, Penn State
26. Houston Texans: Michael Floyd, WR, Notre Dame
27. New York Giants: Mike Adams, OT, Ohio State
28. Baltimore Ravens: Luke Kuechly, LB, Boston College
29. New England Patriots (from New Orleans Saints): Brandon Thompson, DT, Clemson
30. San Francisco 49ers: Peter Konz, C, Wisconsin
31. New England Patriots: Mark Barron, S, Alabama
32. Green Bay Packers: Chris Polk, RB, Washington
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