2012 NFL Mock Draft: Fourth-Round Gems Who Have Star Potential

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2012 NFL Mock Draft: Fourth-Round Gems Who Have Star Potential
Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images

The first three rounds of the 2012 NFL Draft are in the books, but there are still some late-round gems to be found.

This mock draft will focus on the fourth-round players who have the potential to become stars.

Scouts get paid more for their work in uncovering these diamonds in the rough in these latter rounds than for the more obvious players that are selected in the first couple of days.

 

96. St. Louis Rams: Orson Charles, TE, Georgia

After loading up on the defensive side of the ball during most of the last couple of rounds, the Rams go back to stocking Sam Bradford's arsenal and take one of the best tight ends in the draft.

 

97. San Francisco 49ers (from Colts): Jared Crick, DE, Nebraska

The 49ers have gone with a couple of skill positions in their first two picks. Crick is just the kind of player Harbaugh loves, and he'll be a perfect eventual replacement for Justin Smith.

 

98. Baltimore Ravens (from Vikings): Marvin Jones, WR, California

The Ravens will gladly take this underrated receiver to add to their burgeoning young corps.

 

99. Houston Texans (from Buccaneers through Vikings): Billy Winn, DE, Boise State

The Texans continue loading up on young talent for their defense. Winn projects as a 3-4 defensive end and will give them some good depth.

 

100. Cleveland Browns: Brandon Boykin, CB, Georgia

The Browns are fortunate that Boykin has fallen this far. He'll be a solid nickel option on defense until he develops his game a bit more.

 

101. Denver Broncos (from Jaguars through Buccaneers): Ben Jones, C, Georgia

The Broncos need to add depth and competition to the interior of their offensive line. Jones was a stud at Georgia and will develop into a solid starter in the NFL.

 

102. Washington Redskins: Lamar Miller, RB, Miami (Fla.)

Miller is exactly the kind of athlete who will thrive alongside RG3. The Redskins have to be thrilled he's fallen to them here in the fourth round. 

 

103. Miami Dolphins: Cam Johnson, DE, Virginia

The Dolphins have a need for a player of Johnson's diverse skill set. He can play with his hand in the dirt as well as in a two-point stance.

 

104. Carolina Panthers: Nick Toon, WR, Wisconsin

It wasn't long ago that Toon was making appearances in the first round of mock drafts. He's no first-rounder, but here in the fourth round, he is a steal.

 

105. Buffalo Bills: Chris Polk, RB, Washington

Fred Jackson is getting old, and C.J. Spiller is prone to injury, so the Bills take Polk as insurance against both eventualities and snag one of the draft's best running backs.

 

106. Seattle Seahawks: James-Michael Johnson, ILB, Nevada

The Seahawks lost David Hawthorne to the Saints via free agency, so they need to find a starting middle linebacker. Johnson is underrated but could very well be the guy.

 

107. Kansas City Chiefs: Ron Brooks, CB, LSU

Brooks is a nice third or fourth cornerback for the Chiefs, and they will need as many as they can get playing against Philip Rivers and Peyton Manning twice a year.

 

108. Denver Broncos (from Jets): George Iloka, FS, Boise State

Brian Dawkins retired, so the Broncos need to find more talent to occupy their secondary. Iloka is a fine prospect who will challenge for playing time, if not a starting role in his rookie year.

 

109. Washington Redskins (from Raiders): Alfonzo Dennard, CB, Nebraska

The Redskins need talented players to fill their roster in the secondary. Despite his off-field issues, Dennard is a prospect worth taking at this point in the draft.

 

110. San Diego Chargers: Kirk Cousins, QB, Michigan State

A.J. Smith would be smart to upgrade his backup quarterback situation. Cousins is a smart, athletic quarterback who will benefit from Norv Turner's tutelage.

 

111. Chicago Bears: Jonathan Massaquoi, OLB, Troy

The Bears need to prepare for the day when Lance Briggs isn't able to go any longer. Massaquoi is a nice prospect and will learn a ton behind Briggs and Brian Urlacher.

 

112. Arizona Cardinals: Brandon Washington, OG, Miami (Fla.)

The Cardinals will continue to build their offensive line through the draft. Washington is a mauler who'll open up big holes in the running game but who needs to get better in pass protection.

 

113. Dallas Cowboys: Josh Chapman, DT, Alabama

The Cowboys continue their strong draft by taking Chapman, a true nose tackle who will significantly upgrade their line in a year or two.

 

Chris Graythen/Getty Images

114. Seattle Seahawks (from Eagles): Ladarius Green, TE, LSU

The Seahawks need to provide whichever quarterback ends up behind center with a fast tight end to beat coverage over the middle. Green is going to be a good one, and he is a terrific value at this point in the draft.

 

115. Tennessee Titans: James Brown, OG, Troy

Chris Johnson couldn't get any yards last year in part to the atrocious lack of a push his offensive line was able to generate. Brown will help him in his cause to become a dominant rusher in 2012.

 

116. Cincinnati Bengals: Terrell Manning, OLB, North Carolina State

Manny Lawson is only so-so for the Bengals. Manning could push him to start, believe it or not, and at the very worst he upgrades the depth at the outside linebacker position.

 

117. Detroit Lions: Markelle Martin, FS, Oklahoma State

In the NFC North, you need talented secondaries, so the Lions will be thrilled to still see Martin in the middle of the fourth round.

 

118. Minnesota Vikings (from Falcons through Browns): Marvin McNutt, WR, Iowa

McNutt will be a big help with wide-receiver depth. After Percy Harvin, the Vikings are frightfully short on talent, and McNutt could even see significant playing time in his rookie year.

 

119. Pittsburgh Steelers: Alameda Ta'amu, DT, Washington

The Steelers need to find Casey Hampton's eventual replacement. Look no further.

Wesley Hitt/Getty Images

 

120. Cleveland Browns (from Broncos): Joe Adams, WR, Arkansas

Time to add more offensive weapons for Brandon Weeden to play with. Adams is a speedy guy who will compete for playing time in his rookie year.

 

121. Houston Texans: Bobby Massie, OT, Mississippi

After losing Eric Winston to the Chiefs in free agency, the Texans will look to add competition for his old spot on the right side of the line.

 

122. New Orleans Saints: DeQuan Menzie, CB, Alabama 

The Saints need to continue restocking their secondary. Menzie will compete for a minor role in their defense and will contribute as a gunner on special teams.

 

123. Philadelphia Eagles (from Packers): Zebrie Sanders, OT, FSU

The Eagles are smart at drafting players for the future on offense. Sanders is a bit raw, but given a couple of years in the weight room and solid coaching, he's going to be a stellar tackle on the right side of the line.

 

124. Buffalo Bills (from Ravens): Jarius Wright, WR, Arkansas

The Bills, after loading up on defense in free agency, will continue building their offense through the draft. Wright is fast, and his ability to make plays will earn him a minor role on their offense in his rookie year.

 

125. San Francisco 49ers: Josh Kaddu, OLB, Oregon

The 49ers will continue adding pieces to their dominant defense. Kaddu is an underrated pass-rushing specialist who could find his way into the lineup as a backup in his rookie year.

 

126. Houston Texans (from Patriots through Broncos and Buccaneers): Josh Norman, CB, Coastal Carolina

The Texans need to upgrade the depth at the cornerback position. Norman is a small-school stud who'll play big at the next level.

 

127. New York Giants: Ronnell Lewis, OLB, Oklahoma

The Giants are set for starters, but they can't allow Lewis to pass them by at this point in the draft. He will be a starter in the NFL in a couple of years, and he fits their mold to perfection.

 

Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

128. Minnesota Vikings (compensatory): Omar Bolden, CB, Arizona State

The Vikings made great strides towards upgrading their secondary early in the draft when they took Harrison Smith. They will add to their ranks by taking Bolden, who should compete for playing time on Sundays.

 

129. Oakland Raiders (compensatory): Cyrus Gray, RB, Texas A&M

After losing Michael Bush to free agency, the Raiders will look to find a backup running back. Gray is a powerful runner, much like Bush, and he'll fit in nicely with the Raiders.

 

130. Baltimore Ravens (compensatory): Brandon Mosley, OT, Auburn

Offensive tackles are a premier position in the NFL. Mosley is a solid backup from day one, and he could develop into a starter for the Ravens down the line.

 

131. New York Giants (compensatory): David Molk, C, Michigan

David Baas was atrocious last year for the Giants. They could find their 2012 starting center here at the bottom of the fourth round.

 

132. Green Bay Packers (compensatory): Malik Jackson, DE, Tennessee

Jackson is an extremely diverse athlete who'll fit in perfectly as a 3-4 defensive end in the Packers' scheme.

 

133. Green Bay Packers (compensatory): Chase Minnifield, CB, Virginia

The secondary of the Packers isn't getting any younger. Time to restock. 

 

134. Minnesota Vikings (compensatory): Audie Cole, ILB, North Carolina State

The Vikings need to add depth to a depleted linebacking corps. Cole is a good tackler and will contribute on special teams as a rookie.

 

135. Dallas Cowboys (compensatory): Senio Kelemete, OG, Washington

The Cowboys finish off the fourth round with another steal. Kelemete could start for them by the middle of the 2012 season.

 

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