2012 NFL Mock Draft: The Effect of Dre Kirkpatrick's Arrest on the First Round

Chris TrapassoAnalyst IJanuary 19, 2012

TUSCALOOSA, AL - SEPTEMBER 24:  Dre Kirkpatrick #21 of the Alabama Crimson Tide against the Arkansas Razorbacks at Bryant-Denny Stadium on September 24, 2011 in Tuscaloosa, Alabama.  (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

How does the arrest of Alabama's premier cornerback prospect Dre Kirkpatrick affect the rest of the first round of the 2012 NFL draft?

His marijuana possession charge was the first and hopefully the last off-field blunder by anyone in this year's class. 

Riding high (no pun intended) after the beat down of the LSU Tigers to win the national championship, Kirkpatrick along with a handful of other Crimson Tide defenders are bound to get long, hard looks by teams in dire need of defensive help. 

Because of his athleticism and size (6'3'' 195 pounds) the solid corner had a shot to be picked in the top 15. With a strong showing at the Combine in February, he may have vaulted into the top 10. 

Now, organizations will be leery of using such a high selection on a player with off-field issues with other defensive backs available.

Nebraska's Alfonzo Dennard should be extremely thankful. There's a great chance he'll now be the second cornerback selected. South Carolina's Stephon Gilmore should be the next corner picked. Both are solid prospects, but neither is worth "reaching" for in the top 15.

Kirkpatrick was the only corner with the skills, speed and upside to sneak into the top 10 after Morris Claiborne. 

Essentially, all the cornerbacks with first-round grades should move up a spot on league-wide draft boards. 

He'll have an effect on other positions too—and one team in particular.  

TUSCALOOSA, AL - NOVEMBER 05:  Michael Brockers #90 and Sam Montgomery #99 of the LSU Tigers react after the Alabama Crimson Tide missed their field goal in overtime at Bryant-Denny Stadium on November 5, 2011 in Tuscaloosa, Alabama.  (Photo by Kevin C. C
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

Although the Carolina Panthers would love to add more offensive weapons to aid Cam Newton's growth, they understand adding talent on defense is a must.

They have to improve on that side of the ball playing in a division with the high-powered New Orleans Saints and Atlanta Falcons.

They could take a chance on the youthful physical specimen, defensive lineman Michael Brockers out of LSU.  

There's still a long way to go in the pre-draft process, but as of now, Kirkpatrick's arrest has dropped him out of the first round and will result in some changes in the opening 32 selections.   

2012 NFL Mock Draft (January 18th Update, post-Kirkpatrick arrest)


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: Alshon Jeffery, WR, South Carolina

8.  Carolina Panthers: Michael Brockers, DE/DT, LSU

9.  Miami Dolphins: Courtney Upshaw, DE/OLB, Alabama

10.  Buffalo Bills: Nick Perry, OLB, USC

11.  Seattle Seahawks: Whitney Mercilus, DE/OLB, Illinois

12.  Kansas City Chiefs: Luke Kuechly, LB, Boston College

13.  Arizona Cardinals: Jonathan Martin, OT, Stanford

14.  Dallas Cowboys: David DeCastro, OG, Stanford

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: Riley Reiff, OT, Iowa 

19.  Chicago Bears: Michael Floyd, WR, Notre Dame

20.  Tennessee Titans: Zach Brown, LB, North Carolina

21.  Cincinnati Bengals: Alfonzo Dennard, CB, Nebraska

22.  Cleveland Browns (from Atlanta Falcons): Dont'a Hightower, LB, Alabama 

23.  Detroit Lions: Stephon Gilmore, CB, South Carolina

24.  Pittsburgh Steelers: Cordy Glenn, OL, Georgia

25.  Denver Broncos: Chris Polk, RB, Washington

26.  Houston Texans: Kendall Wright, WR, Baylor 

27.  New York Giants: Mike Adams, OT, Ohio State

28.  Baltimore Ravens: Quinton Coples, DE, UNC

29.  New England Patriots (from New Orleans Saints): Devon Still, DT, Penn State

30.  San Francisco 49ers: Peter Konz, C, Wisconsin

31.  New England Patriots: Mark Barron, S, Alabama

32.  Green Bay Packers: Chase Minnifield, CB, Virginia