2012 NFL Mock Draft: Post-Super Bowl Projections for Top Impact Players
It is officially 2012 NFL Draft season—a lead you're bound to read numerous times today.
Oh, how sweet it is.
The New York Giants triumphed in Super Bowl XLVI, and now, we all (minus the millions of Giants fans) must move on to projecting what our teams will do in April to make their run at the Vince Lombardi Trophy next season.
Let's take a look at the top impact players with an updated, post-Super Bowl mock draft.
1. Indianapolis Colts: Andrew Luck, QB, Stanford
The Colts are at the initial stages of their organization reconstruction process, but remember, there Luck is the most polished quarterback prospect to the enter the draft in a decade, give or take a few years.
We've seen young signal-callers perform well over the last few seasons, and none were as skilled or NFL-ready than the Stanford QB.
He should make his presence known on the field right away, especially if Reggie Wayne and Pierre Garcon are re-signed.
2. Washington Redskins (trade with St. Louis Rams): Robert Griffin III, QB, Baylor
He'll need to add a little more weight to his frame, especially because he'll scramble in the NFL, but he's got everything else to be an immediate star on Sundays.
3. Minnesota Vikings: Matt Kalil, OT, USC
4. Cleveland Browns: Justin Blackmon, WR, Oklahoma State
5. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Morris Claiborne, CB, LSU
6. St. Louis Rams (trade with Washington Redskins): Alshon Jeffery, WR, South Carolina
7. Jacksonville Jaguars: Quinton Coples, DE, North Carolina
8. Carolina Panthers: Michael Brockers, DL, LSU
9. Miami Dolphins: Courtney Upshaw, DE/OLB, Alabama
10. Buffalo Bills: Melvin Ingram, DE, South Carolina
11. Seattle Seahawks: Whitney Mercilus, DE/OLB Illinois
12. Kansas City Chiefs: Luke Kuechly, LB, Boston College
13. Arizona Cardinals: Riley Reiff, OT, Iowa
14. Dallas Cowboys: David DeCastro, OG, Stanford
DeCastro's impact will be instant, but other players will get the praise. He's the best guard prospect in about a decade, and whichever team ultimately drafts him will become better running the football and their quarterback will have more time to throw.
All games are won in the trenches, and there isn't a smarter more technically-sound offensive lineman in this draft than DeCastro.
15. Philadelphia Eagles: Vontaze Burfict, LB, Arizona State
16. New York Jets: Nick Perry, DE/OLB, Southern California
17. Cincinnati Bengals: Trent Richardson, RB, Alabama
18. San Diego Chargers: Cordy Glenn, OL, Georgia
19. Chicago Bears: Michael Floyd, WR, Notre Dame
20. Tennessee Titans: Zach Brown, LB, North Carolina
21. Cincinnati Bengals: Kendall Wright, WR, Baylor
Wright's flat-line speed and elusiveness in the open field will make him a solid contributor immediately, especially if he can go to a team like the Bengals that already has their No. 1 receiver spot solidified.
With the majority of the attention on budding star A.J. Green, Wright will be able to work underneath on quick bubble screens and occasionally work down the field to make huge plays right away.
Regardless of where he goes, he won't be asked to be the go-to guy, but will find his niche as a Welker-esque receiver that comes with the bonus of big-play capabilities.
22. Cleveland Browns (from Atlanta): Dont'a Hightower, LB, Alabama
23. Detroit Lions: Stephon Gilmore, CB, South Carolina
24. Pittsburgh Steelers: Jonathan Martin, OT, Stanford
25. Denver Broncos: Doug Martin, RB, Boise State
26. Houston Texans: Devon Still, DT, Penn State
27. New England Patriots (from New Orleans): Mark Barron, S, Alabama
28. Green Bay Packers: Dre Kirkpatrick, CB, Alabama
29. Baltimore Ravens: Peter Konz, C, Wisconsin
30. San Francisco 49ers: Mohamed Sanu, WR, Rutgers
31. New England Patriots: Chase Minnifield, CB, Virginia
32. New York Giants: Mike Adams, OT, Ohio State
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