2012 NFL Draft: Post-Super Bowl First-Round Predictions
Now that Super Bowl XLVI is in the books as the New York Giants edged the New England Patriots 21-17, we can now fully look towards the 2012 NFL draft as the draft order is set and ready to go.
With that being said, we have tons of questions heading into this one. For starters, if the Indianapolis Colts draft Andrew Luck, where will Peyton Manning go? Who will land Robert Griffin III? Where will Trent Richardson go?
To find out, check out my latest 2012 NFL Mock Draft, post-Super Bowl predictions.
1. Indianapolis Colts: Andrew Luck
No surprise here.
The Indianapolis Colts will look towards the future with this pick as they'll draft Stanford quarterback Andrew Luck.
Now the real question is what will happen to Peyton Manning?
2. St. Louis Rams: Justin Blackmon
Sam Bradford and the St. Louis Rams desperately need a wide receiver—so why not select the draft's top rated wide receiver?
Oklahoma State's Justin Blackmon is one intriguing prospect that is filled with talent and upside and should fit in as a first-year impact player with Bradford and the Rams.
3. Minnesota Vikings: Matt Kalil
The Minnesota Vikings need to build around their young quarterback in Christian Ponder if they want to have a successful future—it all starts with equipping him with the proper protection.
Ponder already has talented weapons such as Adrian Peterson and Percy Harvin, now it's time to add some stability to their offensive line by drafting USC's Matt Kalil.
4. Cleveland Browns: Robert Griffin III
As long as there are no trades and the Cleveland Browns go to draft with Robert Griffin III still available, they will snag him up immediately.
Forget Colt McCoy, RG3 is the draft's most dynamic quarterback that has a ton of talent and upside and would likely end up being Cleveland's quarterback for many years to come.
5. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Morris Claiborne
With an aging Ronde Barber and the off-field issues of Aqib Talib, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers will make a splash and select the draft's most talented cornerback prospect in Morris Claiborne.
Claiborne was an absolute stud during his time at LSU and would be a first-year starter with the Bucs. He could develop into one of the league's best shut-down corners.
6. Washington Redskins: Ryan Tannehill
With Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III already off of the board, the Washington Redskins will have no choice but to either trade the pick or draft Texas A&M's Ryan Tannehill.
Tannehill is an interesting quarterback prospect as he's very athletic that has great leadership skills but needs to improve on his footwork in the pocket in order to succeed at the NFL level.
7. Jacksonville Jaguars: Quinton Coples
The Jacksonville Jaguars have a lot of holes of both sides of the ball but desperately need a pass rusher.
North Carolina's Quinton Coples is the best available in the 2012 draft as he possess freakish athletic abilities for a defensive end, but has had trouble fighting off double-teams. That issue could be fixed if he adds a few more moves to his arsenal.
8. Carolina Panthers: Michael Brockers
LSU defensive end Michael Brockers is a very versatile defensive lineman that can line up in various positions along the defensive line. He would be a perfect fit in Ron Rivera's defense.
Brockers is a very talented pass rusher that can penetrate the interior offensive line but will have to improve on his ability to play against the run at the NFL level.
9. Miami Dolphins: Riley Reiff
The Miami Dolphins need to beef up a bit on their offensive line and improve in some areas: One area is right tackle.
Iowa's Riley Reiff is an ideal selection for the Dolphins as he'll immediately jump in and start at right tackle. He will certainly make a first-year impact for the team.
10. Buffalo Bills: Courtney Upshaw
With the Buffalo Bills making the switch from the 3-4 to the 4-3, drafting Courtney Upshaw makes all the sense in the world.
The Alabama product is an absolute monster that should translate well at the NFL level while lining up with Marcell Dareus to create one of the most young-and-promising defensive fronts in the league.
11. Kansas City Chiefs: Jonathan Martin
The Kansas City Chiefs need some major help along their offensive line and selecting Stanford's Jonathan Martin would be a wise decision.
Martin did a tremendous job protecting Andrew Luck's blind side at left tackle and should be able to be thrown right into the mix as a first-year starter at either left or right tackle for Kansas City.
12. Seattle Seahawks: Zach Brown
The Seattle Seahawks will likely lose linebacker Leroy Hill this offseason, which leads me to believe that North Carolina's Zach Brown is a nice fit for the Seattle Seahawks.
Brown is an extremely athletic outside linebacker that can after the quarterback as well as dropping back in coverage.
13. Arizona Cardinals: Mike Adams
The Arizona Cardinals have one of the most inconsistent offensive lines in the NFL. If they want to get the ball to Larry Fitzgerald they're going to have to find some guys that can protect their quarterback.
With that being said, Stanford offensive guard David DeCastro is the draft's best available guard and is an ideal fit for the Cardinals.
14. Dallas Cowboys: Dre Kirkpatrick
Taking a look at the Dallas Cowboys, you can tell their biggest weakness is their secondary and it needs to be addressed this offseason.
Alabama's Dre Kirkpatrick is one talented cornerback prospect that could very well be a first-year starter with the Cowboys and would likely make some impact in 2012 for Dallas.
15. Philadelphia Eagles: Luke Kuechly
The Philadelphia Eagles absolutely need an upgrade at linebacker and Boston College's Luke Kuechly is the best available.
Kuechly was a tackling machine during his time at BC and should offer more production compared to last year's draft pick, Casey Matthews.
16. New York Jets: Melvin Ingram
What Rex Ryan needs is a pass rushing outside linebacker that he can just let loose—and South Carolina's Melvin Ingram is that guy.
Ingram can play both outside linebacker and defensive end, so he does have some versatility which is something that Ryan could certainly use in his aggressive defense.
17. Cincinnati Bengals: Trent Richardson
At Cedric Benson continues to age, the Cincinnati Bengals would love to welcome Trent Richardson to town.
Richardson will team up with Andy Dalton and A.J. Green to create one of the youngest offensive cores in the NFL. He should be very successful for many years to come.
18. San Diego Chargers: Nick Perry
The San Diego Chargers defense is aging right before our eyes and could use some help in the pass rush.
Nick Perry is one of the draft's top pass rushers but is a bit undersized and will have to add some strength to beat offensive tackles at the NFL level.
19. Chicago Bears: Michael Floyd
The Chicago Bears would love to add Michael Floyd as he would immediately fall in as the team's No. 1 wide receiver.
Let's be realistic: The Bears wide receiver corps is pretty pathetic and Jay Cutler needs someone to throw to. That makes Floyd a very wise pick.
20. Tennessee Titans: Devon Still
The Tennessee Titans never really replaced the presence of Jason Babin as they lost him via free agency last offseason.
Penn State's Devon Still may not be a defensive end, but he's an athletic and very versatile defensive lineman that can play against the run as well as penetrating the offensive line.
21. Cincinnati Bengals: Peter Konz
Peter Konz is the most NFL-ready center that the 2012 NFL draft has to offer and the Cincinnati Bengals will be the one to land his talents.
Konz is well balanced as he is a very impressive run blocker that explodes off of the ball and can also hold his ground while pass blocking.
22. Cleveland Browns: Kendall Wright
If the Cleveland Browns do end up with Robert Griffin III and Kendall Wright is available at this point of the draft, there is no doubt in my mind that they'll draft Wright—why not?
It makes perfect sense.Wright was RG3's No. 1 wide receiver at Baylor.
23. Detroit Lions: Mike Adams
With an elite quarterback in Matthew Stafford, the Detroit Lions need to improve their offensive line in order to keep him healthy.
Ohio State's Mike Adams is an NFL-ready offensive tackle that can play left or right tackle. He's a solid run blocker as well as a great pass protector.
24. Pittsburgh Steelers: Dontari Poe
Casey Hampton is not getting any younger and drafting Dontari Poe to be his future replacement would be a wise decision for the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Poe is a massive object that would fit perfectly in Pittsburgh's 3-4 attack.
25. Denver Broncos: Jerel Worthy
Jerel Worthy would certainly be quite the addition to an already suffocating defensive front for the Denver Broncos.
The Michigan State product is a massive lineman, but is still very athletic and will demand double-teams on nearly every play, which will clog up the middle of the line for the opposing offense.
26. Houston Texans: Dwayne Allen
The Houston Texans could certainly use an offensive tight end that would benefit in the presence of Andre Johnson.
Clemson's Dwayne Allen is a perfect fit for the Texans as he's a solid blocker but is extremely athletic and is this year's top receiving tight end.
Allen is definitely an upgrade over Owen Daniels.
27. New England Patriots: Alshon Jeffery
Alshon Jeffery is exactly what the New England Patriots need on offense, a tall, physical wide receiver that has a well-rounded skill set.
Offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels would love to add Jeffery to his offense as he'd likely jump in as the team's No. 1 receiver.
28. Green Bay Packers: Alfonzo Dennard
With Alfonzo Dennard still available, the Green Bay Packers would have no choice but to draft him—his value is too much for the Packers to pass up on.
The Packers have one of the worst pass defenses in the NFL and Dennard would certainly be an upgrade in their secondary.
29. Baltimore Ravens: Cordy Glenn
The Baltimore Ravens really need to improve their offensive line, especially the interior.
Georgia's Cordy Glenn is a massive offensive guard that is likely to be a first-year impact player and would be a great run blocker for Ray Rice and Baltimore's ground game.
30. San Francisco 49ers: Mohamed Sanu
Aside from Vernon Davis, Alex Smith has no one to throw to.
Michael Crabtree has been a bust and now it's time to roll the dice with Rutgers' Mohamed Sanu.
Sanu is a speedy receiver that can stretch the field and should see his value increase following the NFL combine as he's such an athlete.
31. New England Patriots: Janoris Jenkins
You need to put Janoris Jenkins off-field issues aside and look at how talented he really is—and that's what Bill Belichick will do.
Belichick loves his Florida Gators, and anyone that has played for Urban Meyer for that matter, which leads me to believe that he'll take on Jenkins as he's such a gifted football player.
32. New York Giants: Vontaze Burfict
The Super Bowl XLVI champions New York Giants need an upgrade over Chase Blackburn and Arizona State's Vontaze Burfict is the best available.
Burfict is a very talented linebacker that should steal the starting job at middle linebacker as a Giant.
In my opinion, this selection is almost a steal considering that the Giants are the Super Bowl champs.