Todd McShay 2012 NFL Mock Draft: Best Players Available from McShay's Final Mock

John RozumCorrespondent IApril 27, 2012

STANFORD, CA - NOVEMBER 26:  Coby Fleener #82 of the Stanford Cardinal runs on to the field for their game against the Notre Dame Fighting Irish at Stanford Stadium on November 26, 2011 in Stanford, California.  (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

Early on Thursday, ESPN's Todd McShay revealed his final 2012 NFL mock draft before the event itself.

Of McShay's projected first-rounders, 27 of them got selected; therefore, only five players left from McShay's final mock slipped into Round 2.

With that said, let's look at which of those remaining prospects are the best available.


Stephen Hill: WR, Georgia Tech

To some extent, it wasn't surprising to see Stephen Hill last until Round 2. He comes from a run-heavy offense at Georgia Tech that forced him into a receiver that specializes as a run-blocker.

So, Hill didn't get nearly as many opportunities as other receivers. With only 21 receptions for 428 yards and four touchdowns heading into 2011, Hill almost doubled his yards with 820 on 28 catches; thus averaging almost 30 yards per reception.

Another year at college would have definitely made Hill a first-rounder, but his playmaking skills alone deserved strong consideration this year. Hill brings a dangerous combination of size, speed, leaping ability and hands to stretch defenses and work off play-action.

Provided that he can keep building on that proven reliability, Hill has the potential to quickly develop in the NFL.


Courtney Upshaw: LB, Alabama

Courtney Upshaw is a fierce pass-rusher off the edge with 16.5 sacks, six forced fumbles and 104 tackles between 2010 and 2011.

He also brings acute awareness when defending the run to make plays in the backfield,as well as the ability to occasionally sink into coverage and wall off quick slants and crosses. He is a consistently reliable tackler that plays with sound discipline and technique.

Considering that the Crimson Tide had so much talent on their defense though, a lot of Upshaw's production can be attributed to his teammates. He was put in favorable positions to make plays on just about every snap, but that's what also makes Upshaw great.

His reliability paid big dividends for Alabama and with his size, speed and power combo, Upshaw makes for a dominant 3-4 pass-rushing outside 'backer.


Coby Fleener: TE, Stanford

The best tight end in the draft, Stanford's Coby Fleener collected 1,101 receiving yards on 62 receptions, including 17 touchdowns the past two seasons.

Possessing great size, top-end speed and smooth route-running, Fleener displayed impressive consistency as a complete tight end. In Stanford's pro style, run-oriented offense, Fleener's production as a receiver is quite noteworthy.

As for the running game, no offense can be effective without a tight end that knows how to block. The Cardinal ranked No. 18 in rushing by averaging over 210 yards on the ground per game; and Fleener's athleticism allowed him to get upfield against linebackers and defensive backs to extend running lanes.

He'll make an immediate impact in 2012 and provide a distinct advantage as well, because you don't see too many run-blocking tight ends that can make plays downfield like Fleener.


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