2012 NFL Mock Draft: Players Whose Stocks Have Exceeded Actual Value

Eric BowmanFeatured ColumnistApril 10, 2012

INDIANAPOLIS, IN - FEBRUARY 26: Wide receiver Justin Blackmon of Oklahoma State catches a pass during the 2012 NFL Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium on February 26, 2012 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
Joe Robbins/Getty Images

Every year, a NFL team buys into the hype of a guy and reaches on a player in the draft.

The 2012 NFL draft will be no different, as the first round definitely has players with big boom-or-bust potential. 

While some of these players have a high ceiling, they've been praised entirely too much leading up to the draft, and that will be their downfall. 

That being said, here's my 2012 NFL mock draft, with info on each pick and a more in-depth look at those players whose stocks have exceeded their actual value. 

2012 NFL Mock Draft 

1. Indianapolis Colts (2-14): Andrew Luck, QB, Stanford   

Luck is the best prospect in the draft, and the Colts would be insane to pass up on such an incredibly talented QB. 

2. Washington Redskins (5-11): Robert Griffin III, QB, Baylor

The Heisman Trophy winner will have a great deal of pressure on him as he enters the NFL, but he definitely has what it takes to be an elite QB at the next level. 

3. Minnesota Vikings (3-13): Matt Kalil, OT, USC

Christian Ponder needs all the protection he can get. Should the Vikings draft Kalil and not trade this pick, they'll get a guy that will keep Ponder safe for many years. 

4. Cleveland Browns (4-12): Trent Richardson, RB, Alabama 

Richardson is the real deal, and he will not disappoint for the Browns, a team in dire need of improving the offense. 

5. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (4-12): Morris Claiborne, CB, LSU 

Claiborne is a phenomenal defender, and he'll be an instant upgrade for Tampa Bay's secondary. 

6. St. Louis Rams (2-14):  Michael Brockers, DT, LSU

It's very possible the Rams draft a WR here or even trade up to get one, but it's just too risky of a pick. With aging defensive tackles, St. Louis is better off getting a beast like Brockers to anchor its defensive line for several years. 

7. Jacksonville Jaguars (5-11): Justin Blackmon, WR, Oklahoma State 

Blackmon has long been receiving high praise for his accomplishments on the football field. Don't get me wrong, he's a fantastic player, but he's in for a rude awakening when he gets to the NFL. 

At 6'1", 215 pounds, Blackmon doesn't have a huge size advantage over NFL corners like some other receivers in this draft. That's not a huge problem, but since the level of competition he'll soon face is immensely better than what he's use to, transitioning will be difficult. 

He has good but not great speed when focusing on his actual game play, and Blackmon's route running isn't elite. Yes, he's a fantastic playmaker, but advancing the ball is nearly a thousand times more difficult in the NFL. 

The Jaguars have a huge need for a WR, which is why they'll take the gamble on Blackmon. It could pay off, but it could also blow up in their face. 

8. Miami Dolphins (6-10): Alshon Jeffery, WR, South Carolina 

The Dolphins really need a QB, but the only ones worthy of a first-round pick have been taken. With Brandon Marshall no longer on the team, Miami needs to find his replacement, and Jeffery can be that guy. 

9. Carolina Panthers (6-10): Quinton Coples, DE, North Carolina 

INDIANAPOLIS, IN - FEBRUARY 27: Defensive lineman Quinton Coples of North Carolina trips while taking part in a drill during the 2012 NFL Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium on February 27, 2012 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
Joe Robbins/Getty Images

Coples had a down year this past season, but he's still a great player.

He's perhaps the biggest boom-or-bust candidate in the draft, which makes this one a very risky pick for the Panthers. 

Much of the praise Coples gets is all about his 2010 season. Folks shouldn't put too much stock into that, though, because regressing a year later is a horrible sign. 

10. Buffalo Bills (6-10): Courtney Upshaw, OLB, Alabama 

If the Bills are serious about winning, they'll continue to beef up their defense with talented playmakers like Upsahw. 

11. Kansas City Chiefs (7-9): Riley Reiff, OT, Iowa

The Chiefs have to keep Matt Cassel healthy, so protecting him at all times is key. Adding Reiff will ensure Cassel stays safe. 

12. Seattle Seahawks (7-9): Nick Perry, DE, USC 

Perry explodes off the ball and loves to disrupt plays in the backfield, which is exactly what the Seahawks need right now. 

13. Arizona Cardinals (8-8): Jonathan Martin, OT, Stanford 

Martin will help the Cardinals keep Kevin Kolb out of harm's away, as well as create many holes for Beanie Wells and Ryan Williams. 

14. Dallas Cowboys (8-8): Dre Kirkpatrick, CB, Alabama

One of the best corners in the draft, Kirkpatrick would be a huge help for the Cowboys in 2012 and beyond. 

15. Philadelphia Eagles (8-8): Luke Kuechly, LB, Boston College  

Kuechly is a tackling machine, and adding depth to the defense is a must for the Eagles if they want to win it all. 

16. New York Jets (8-8): ): Michael Floyd, WR, Notre Dame 

Floyd has the ability to be a mad man in New York, but in a good way. He's a great red zone target, which will certainly please Mark Sanchez

17. Cincinnati Bengals (via OAK 8-8): Janoris Jenkins, CB, North Alabama 

Jenkins certainly has character concerns, but there's no denying his talents, which is what the Bengals care most about. 

18. San Diego Chargers (8-8): Mike Adams, OT, Ohio State  

Adams will make sure Philip Rivers stays upright more often, and that is a huge plus for the Chargers. 

19. Chicago Bears (8-8): David DeCastro, G, Stanford  

The Bears' primary focus has to be on bringing in more protection for Jay Cutler, and doing that through the draft is perfect. 

20. Tennessee Titans (9-7): Melvin Ingram, DE, South Carolina

The Titans have to get after opposing QBs more often, so drafting Ingram would be a wise decision. 

21. Cincinnati Bengals (9-7): Lamar Miller, RB, Miami

The Bengals have great young talent on offense, and adding Miller to that will make the future in Cincinnati very bright. 

22. Cleveland Browns (via ATL 10-6): Kendall Wright, WR, Baylor 

Wright is a home-run threat out wide, which is just what Colt McCoy needs to help put more points on the board for Cleveland. 

23. Detroit Lions (10-6): Cordy Glenn, G, Georgia                    

The Lions could easily go with a corner here, but boosting the offensive line with a guy like Glenn to help keep Matthew Stafford safe would be a solid move for Detroit. 

24. Pittsburgh Steelers (12-4): Alfonzo Dennard, CB, Nebraska 

The Steelers were embarrassed in the postseason by the arm of Tim Tebow. Getting burned like that cannot happen again, which is why Pittsburgh needs to add some talented youth to the secondary, and Dennard would be a great fit. 

25. Denver Broncos (8-8): Dontari Poe, DT, Memphis

INDIANAPOLIS, IN - FEBRUARY 27: Defensive lineman Dontari Poe of Memphis takes part in a drill during the 2012 NFL Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium on February 27, 2012 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
Joe Robbins/Getty Images

The Broncos' biggest need is at defensive tackle, and they have several options here at No. 25. 

I think they'll go with Poe, who tore it up at the NFL Scouting Combine and has seen his stock stay high because of that. 

It's not that Poe is a bad player, but he slips into the first round here to Denver because of his big hype. When athletes unexpectedly dominate the combine, they tend to get taken higher than they should.  

Excelling in drills and excelling on the football field are two entirely different things. It's a wishy-washy defensive tackle class, and Poe makes his was to the Broncos thanks to his great hype after the combine. 

26. Houston Texans (10-6): Stephen Hill, WR, Georgia Tech

Another player who thrived at the combined and had his draft stock skyrocket because of it, Hill needs work to become an elite wideout in the NFL. 

He has blazing speed, which is what makes him so enticing, as well as the fact that he knows how to block well. 

However, his route running could be much better. He'll go to the Texans because they really need more offensive firepower out wide besides Andre Johnson if they plan to continue to win big, but Hill will have to be coached up a great deal. 

27. New England Patriots (via NOLA 13-3): Peter Konz, C, Wisconsin 

Bill Belichick won't pass up on the chance to strengthen his offensive line with guy like Konz. The Patriots are all about keeping Tom Brady safe. 

28. Green Bay Packers (15-1): ): Zach Brown, OLB, North Carolina  

The Packers will focus on the defense here, and getting a stud athlete like Brown to play opposite of Clay Matthews is their best bet here at No. 28. 

29. Baltimore Ravens (12-4): Dont'a Hightower, LB, Alabama 

TUSCALOOSA, AL - NOVEMBER 19:  Defensive back Mark Barron #4 of the Alabama Crimson Tide runs some practice drills before the game against the Georgia Southern Eagles at Bryant-Denny Stadium on November 19, 2011 in Tuscaloosa, Alabama.  (Photo by Mike Zar
Mike Zarrilli/Getty Images

Offensive line is perhaps the biggest need for the Ravens, but they'd be reaching for one here big time. Going with the best overall player in Hightower is the right move. 

30. San Francisco 49ers (13-3): Mark Barron, S, Alabama 

The 49ers took care of their offense in free agency, so focusing on the defense come draft day would be a smart choice. With Barron still on the board, the 49ers secondary gets some better depth.  

31. New England Patriots (13-3): Stephon Gilmore, CB, South Carolina

There's a strong possibility this pick is traded away, but if the Patriots are smart, they'll keep it to get the best talent possible. Gilmore would be a great addition to a secondary in dire need of help. 

32. New York Giants (9-7):  Chris Polk, RB, Washington   

Since Brandon Jacobs left town, the Giants needs another running back to work with Ahmad Bradshaw. Polk would be a tremendous addition for New York. 

Follow E_ROCK12 on Twitter


    Johnny Manziel to Play in CFL

    NFL logo

    Johnny Manziel to Play in CFL

    Adam Wells
    via Bleacher Report

    Can Any Good Come from 'Hard Knocks'?

    NFL logo

    Can Any Good Come from 'Hard Knocks'?

    Gary Davenport
    via Bleacher Report

    The Most Overrated Teams in 2018

    NFL logo

    The Most Overrated Teams in 2018

    Justis Mosqueda
    via Bleacher Report

    Every Team's Biggest Reason to Look Forward to 2018

    NFL logo

    Every Team's Biggest Reason to Look Forward to 2018

    Brad Gagnon
    via Bleacher Report