2013 NFL Mock Draft: Pre-Super Bowl Edition
With the 2013 NFL draft order all but set heading into the Super Bowl, it's time to take a fresh look at the players teams are targeting.
A mock draft is much more than just assigning the best player to the next team on the list. When sitting down to write a mock draft, I'm taking my own personal evaluations of players plus news and notes from NFL scouts and executives that I'm in contact with.
Picks are assigned with free agency, team needs and team schemes in mind. Who should your team be looking at? Find out in our new three-round mock draft.
1. Kansas City Chiefs
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The Pick: OT Luke Joeckel, Texas A&M
New general manager John Dorsey has said the Kansas City Chiefs will draft the best player available with the first pick in the 2013 NFL draft.
Since the Chiefs hold the first pick, Dorsey has no reason to lie or mislead other NFL teams. He's not pandering for trades or draft positioning. Anyone who followed Dorsey during his time in Green Bay—and keeping with the Packers' draft strategies during his time there—the best player is the right pick.
Luke Joeckel is the best pick. He also potentially fills a big need for the Chiefs, as left tackle Branden Albert is entering free agency this spring. He's also coming off a season in which he missed four games due to injury.
Albert is good—potentially great as a pass protector—but in a league where teams are always trying to get stronger, faster, younger and cheaper, Dorsey may see the left tackle position as an area where the Chiefs can better the team while getting younger, faster, strong and cheaper.
Left tackles don't win games on their own, but Joeckel is not only the best player available in this year's class; he's the best left tackle I've ever evaluated in my now 12 drafts.
2. Jacksonville Jaguars
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The Pick: DE Bjoern Werner, FSU
There are very few positions where the Jacksonville Jaguars can't get better. Left tackle comes to mind. That's about it. Even running back Maurice Jones-Drew needs a good backup.
With that in mind, the Jaguars can and should draft the best player available. That player happens to be Florida State defensive end Bjoern Werner.
Werner posted 13 sacks in 2012—good for second most—while also tallying eight passes batted down. Werner was a one-man wrecking crew in 2012, and that's what the Jaguars need on their own defensive line.
Quarterback is definitely in play here with a new general manager and head coach in town, but David Caldwell won't rush that decision. At least not in his first season.
3. Oakland Raiders
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The Pick: DE Damontre Moore, Texas A&M
The Oakland Raiders are a team with many needs—which makes using the No. 3 overall pick much easier. You simply draft the highest-rated guy on your board.
Damontre Moore, for good reason, would be that player for me. What I'm hearing from NFL contacts is that while Moore might not wow you with athletic ability, his knack for getting to the quarterback hasn't gone unnoticed.
When I see Moore on film, it's clear he's at a level higher than most offensive linemen—except Florida's Xavier Nixon, who somehow shut him down. Moore still has room to develop his pass-rushing mechanics, though, and in an attacking scheme he'll shine on the edge.
4. Philadelphia Eagles
Jarvis Jones NFL player comparison.
The Pick: OLB Jarvis Jones, Georgia
The NCAA's leading sack man in 2012, Jones dominated the college football landscape while playing through injuries.
Jones has the potential to be the biggest impact player in the entire 2013 draft class. He's athletic, productive, instinctive and plays a position where the transition to the NFL can be easy for excellent prospects.
It wouldn't be a surprise to see Jones going higher than No. 4 overall if questions about his spinal stenosis condition get answered. Each team will view Jones differently, but it would be shocking to see him fall past Philadelphia.
5. Detroit Lions
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The Pick: CB Dee Milliner, Alabama
Not every team subscribes to the idea that you should simply draft the best player on the board, but Martin Mayhew of the Detroit Lions does stick to this philosophy often.
Dee Milliner wouldn't be my top player on the board here, Utah's Star Lotulelei would be, but the Lions won't draft another defensive tackle here. Instead, look for Mayhew to mix things up and draft the best player available at a position of need. The idea here is to look at all of your team needs—in no order—and draft the best player who could fill one of those spots.
Milliner is a boundary cornerback who will need some refinement at the next level, but he has the best skill set we've seen from an Alabama cornerback in Nick Saban's time there. If Milliner can work on his footwork, he'll be a star in the NFL and a massive upgrade at cornerback for the Lions.
6. Cleveland Browns
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The Pick: OLB Barkevious Mingo, LSU
The Cleveland Browns are rumored to make a change to the 3-4 defense under coordinator Ray Horton, and at a minimum it should be expected that they will run a hybrid scheme that moves around key players.
No matter the alignment, the Browns lack an outside edge-rusher to play in Horton's defense. Jabaal Sheard may be a solid player, but he doesn't have the quickness or speed to be a double-digit sack guy in this scheme. Barkevious Mingo does.
Mingo is a dynamic pass-rusher coming off the edge, and he's scheme versatile, having played primarily at left defensive end for LSU. This means Mingo is used to firing off and going against bigger, stronger right tackles. We know he has the speed, but on film you also see better-than-expected hand use in disengaging from blocks.
Mingo is a risk, as all players are, but with him you have exceptional athleticism and raw football skills. If he can learn on the job, the Browns will have a steal.
7. Arizona Cardinals
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The Pick: DT Star Lotulelei, Utah
Truly the best player left on the board, Star Lotulelei is more than just a best-player-available pick.
The Cardinals could easily move on from Darnell Dockett this offseason. With a new coaching staff coming to town, there's always a chance for scheme changes and tough personnel decisions. While defensive tackle isn't the biggest need, the value of Lotulelei here in addition to the need at the position makes it too good to pass on.
Some have compared Lotulelei to a younger Haloti Ngata. If the Cardinals can get that type of prospect with the No. 7 pick, finding a left tackle can wait until Rounds 2 or 3.
8. Buffalo Bills
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The Pick: DE Ezekiel Ansah, BYU
The Buffalo Bills need a quarterback. And a middle linebacker. And a pass-rushing defensive end opposite Mario Williams. What do they do at No. 8?
When faced with equal needs, it's always best to draft the highest-ranked player at one of those positions. It seems easy enough, but many teams tend to overthink this one. The Bills can't afford to. Drafting a bookend pass-rusher in the first round is a much better play than reaching for a player at another position.
Ezekiel Ansah may not be a household name—yet—but he will be by the time the Senior Bowl week ends. Ansah is a phenomenal athlete with exceptional size and burst. He's a terror off the edge, and with a rare size and speed ratio, NFL offensive tackles will have one hell of a time keeping him in check.
9. New York Jets
Geno Smith NFL player comparison.
The Pick: QB Geno Smith, West Virginia
Will the New York Jets actually move away from Mark Sanchez at quarterback?
They definitely should, but if Rex Ryan can actually pull the trigger on this pick—or allow it to happen—is another story. With Sanchez locked in for at least one more season, the team should be looking early and often for a better solution moving forward.
While some want to see Geno Smith drafted in the top two picks, this is much closer to where his actual value lies. He's a good quarterback who isn't a clear candidate to translate to the NFL, being closer to Ryan Tannehill as a prospect than Andrew Luck or Robert Griffin III.
Smith has talent, and given the needs for quality quarterbacking, he could still see himself drafted much higher than this.
10. Tennessee Titans
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The Pick: OG Chance Warmack, Alabama
If you're just now tuning in to the 2013 draft class, it may seem foolish to spend a top 10 pick on an offensive guard. Meet Chance Warmack.
The best interior offensive lineman in college football, Warmack may have been the best offensive lineman this year. His ability in the run and pass game really came to a nice balance in 2012, with Warmack showing dominant play in both areas of the game.
The Titans would love to replace Steve Hutchinson with a top-tier offensive guard like Warmack. He's the perfect fit for the Tennessee run game and fills a massive void on the inside of its line.
11. San Diego Chargers
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The Pick: OT Eric Fisher, Central Michigan
The San Diego Chargers need a left tackle. Badly. No team was hurt more by the decisions of Jake Matthews and Taylor Lewan to head back to school for their senior seasons, as the tackle crop is now missing two top-10 talents.
The consolation is that Eric Fisher is a legit left tackle prospect in his own right. A good athlete who dominated lesser competition, Fisher has a great chance to solidify his stock at the Senior Bowl. If he can show the same talent against better competition, the Central Michigan tackle will see his stock soar.
12. Miami Dolphins
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The Pick: WR Cordarrelle Patterson, Tennessee
If you're surprised to see a wide receiver drafted this high in a year where many are saying the talent at the position is lacking, don't be. Cordarrelle Patterson is a value at No. 12 overall.
The Dolphins' best wide receiver right now is their quarterback, Ryan Tannehill, who spent two seasons split out wide at Texas A&M. Even with Brian Hartline showing some production this year, the Dolphins need to spend at least two picks on wide receivers in the early rounds.
Patterson is set up to dominate in this year's class, as he's the most physically gifted of the wide receivers and one of the few players who combines size, speed and downfield ability. If any player at the position has the potential to move up into the top 10, it's Patterson.
13. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
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The Pick: FS Kenny Vaccaro, Texas
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers rolled with the ageless Ronde Barber at free safety in 2012, but moving forward they'll have to address the position. If they hope to seamlessly move into the future, taking a hard look at Kenny Vaccaro would be smart.
Vaccaro easily ranks as this year's best safety prospect, combining great coverage skills with solid tackling and ball-hawking ability. The Texas safety has played free and strong safety while also showcasing his man-coverage skills in the slot as a cornerback. Vaccaro can do it all.
The Buccaneers would love a cornerback here, but no player is worth the No. 13 overall pick. Vaccaro or a trade down are the best options.
14. Carolina Panthers
Sharrif Floyd NFL player comparison.
The Pick: DT Sharrif Floyd, Florida
The middle of the Carolina Panthers defense improved in 2012 thanks to rookie Luke Kuechly, but the job of fixing this defense is far from done.
The defensive tackle position has been a weakness for the Panthers for years, and now the new general manager must address the position. The good news is that Marc Gettleman comes from the New York Giants, where they know a thing or two about drafting defensive linemen.
Floyd hasn't hit the mainstream talking points yet, but he will given his strength, size and burst. He's a classic three-technique penetrator at defensive tackle who has the all-around skills to be a disruptive force on the inside.
15. New Orleans Saints
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The Pick: DT Sheldon Richardson, Missouri
The New Orleans Saints will have an interesting offseason as they try to make improvements on the offensive line and continue to stock up the defense for coordinator Steve Spagnuolo. With their first-round pick, it really comes down to offensive tackle or defensive lineman.
With that in mind, the Saints should take a hard look at Sheldon Richardson. The Missouri defensive tackle has excellent pass-rushing skills on the inside, showing off a high motor and great first-step quickness to get to the passer. Richardson could be the answer on the inside, allowing Cameron Jordan to be an attacking threat on the outside.
16. St. Louis Rams
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The Pick: OG Jonathan Cooper, North Carolina
Les Snead and Jeff Fisher should have one goal for the first round of the 2013 NFL draft: fixing the offensive line.
There are building blocks in left tackle Rodger Saffold (when healthy) and right guard Harvey Dahl. The other three starters need to be replaced. Fast. Add in North Carolina guard Jonathan Cooper, and you have a premier left guard for the next decade.
That solves at least one problem. With two first-round picks, the Rams can look for a right tackle or free safety at pick No. 22.
Cooper is a powerful blocker who looks to dominate at the point of attack. He'll put defenders on their backs and keep running—showing off good balance and quickness to pull and lead on outside runs.
17. Pittsburgh Steelers
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The Pick: OLB Dion Jordan, Oregon
A torn labrum has pushed Oregon's Dion Jordan down the board, which means one lucky team will add a potential top-five pick in the later half of the first round.
Jordan's ability to play multiple positions will garner him plenty of attention from NFL scouts. Depending on how healthy his shoulder is by the Oregon pro day, he may be able to rehabilitate his stock and continue to climb up the board. As it stands today, the Pittsburgh Steelers would love to add this freak of nature to the lineup.
Jordan would be the ultimate counter to LaMarr Woodley on the edge, allowing the team to replace James Harrison in the future while adding in another athletic pass-rusher in the interim.
18. Dallas Cowboys
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The Pick: DT Jesse Williams, Alabama
With the hire of Monte Kiffin to run the team's defense, the Dallas Cowboys will be making the move to a 4-3 alignment. That means using free agency and the 2013 draft to fill out the new positions after moving from a 3-4 set.
One particular need will be for a defensive tackle next to Jay Ratliff. What Ratliff lacks in size and strength, he makes up for in technique and quickness off the ball. The Cowboys need someone to balance that out—someone with the strength to command and control double-teams while being able to split the gap and rush the quarterback.
Jesse Williams has played all over the Alabama defensive line, showing off the speed and strength to be a force no matter his position. The Cowboys defensive line would look much better with Williams lining up beside Ratliff and DeMarcus Ware.
19. New York Giants
Alex Okafor NFL player comparison.
The Pick: DE Alex Okafor, Texas
As Osi Umenyiora and Justin Tuck become less important to the New York Giants, and as each makes a smaller impact each season, the team's front office will start to look for younger, better pass-rushers. The time is now.
Alex Okafor has been an all-around stud for the Texas defense, even if the team defense numbers don't accurately show his impact. Okafor has played left and right end, and he shows the ability to stop the run off the edge and rush the quarterback. He's tough, athletic and has room to improve his technique.
For the Giants, this is a no-brainer.
20. Chicago Bears
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The Pick: ILB Arthur Brown, Kansas State
The Chicago Bears need a left tackle. They really can't afford to overlook the position again in 2013, but the draft class doesn't dictate a good value at the position with this pick. Instead of reaching for a left tackle, the Bears can do the smart thing and draft a can't-miss inside linebacker to replace Brian Urlacher.
Arthur Brown might not be the biggest linebacker in the draft class, but he's one of the fastest and most instinctual linebackers you'll see this year. Brown makes up for his lack of size with great awareness and a tenacity that you can't coach.
This would have been an ideal spot for Manti Te'o before the girlfriend scandal. With his stock in question, Brown swoops in to steal the spotlight.
21. Cincinnati Bengals
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The Pick: OLB Alec Ogletree, Georgia
You might be familiar with Georgia linebacker Alec Ogletree—he's the one running through ball-carriers every time you watch them play. What you might not know is that with his skill set and speed, Ogletree projects better to the NFL as an outside linebacker than his college position of middle linebacker.
That's good news for the Cincinnati Bengals, who would love to pair Ogletree's hard-hitting ability with Vontaze Burfict. If you aren't aware of the hitting presence these two bring, well, it would be unlike anything we see in the NFL right now.
Ogletree can be a bit erratic at times, but if he's coached up as well as Burfict was in 2012, the Bengals will have two future Pro Bowl linebackers.
22. St. Louis Rams (from Washington)
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The Pick: OT Dallas Thomas, Tennessee
Another St. Louis Rams pick in the first round, and another offensive lineman.
This time the team focuses their aim on right tackle prospect Dallas Thomas of Tennessee. A versatile big man, Thomas can play any position other than center and not see a big drop off. With the oft-injured Rodger Saffold at left tackle, having someone with the ability to slide over in a pinch is a great benefit.
Thomas is a safe, strong pass protector who lacks the quickness to be an every-down starter at left tackle, but he has good strength for the inside or right side of the line. He's the answer to Sam Bradford's prayers, though, and a pick the Rams can't afford to pass on.
23. Minnesota Vikings
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The Pick: WR Keenan Allen, California
There is no guarantee that Percy Harvin will be back with the Minnesota Vikings in 2013. With that in mind, a team that already needed to add a wide receiver is forced to take a hard look at the crop of players in Round 1.
Keenan Allen is a potential top-15 pick based on game film, but a knee injury has limited his offseason. The fact that he won't run a blazing 40 time is also a negative. Those two factors push Allen down to No. 23, where he's a good value for the wide receiver-needy Vikings.
Allen's strengths are in his ability to run after the catch and in his versatility. Not so unlike Harvin, who the team will either look to replace or pair with Allen.
24. Indianapolis Colts
Johnthan Banks NFL player comparison.
The Pick: CB Johnthan Banks, Mississippi State
The talent at cornerback this year isn't exceptional, with just one top-tier player (Dee Milliner), and then a 20-spot drop to the next best. Johnthan Banks isn't a bad player, though; he's just not an elite cornerback prospect.
The Indianapolis Colts won't care that Banks may not have a top-10 grade; he's a value pick at No. 24 overall and can come into their lineup as a starter opposite Vontae Davis.
Banks has the ability to shoot up boards with a strong Senior Bowl, but overall he lacks the quickness and hip flexibility you want from a higher pick.
25. Seattle Seahawks
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The Pick: OT D.J. Fluker, Alabama
A calf strain will unfortunately keep D.J. Fluker from participating at the Senior Bowl as a graduated junior, but he's still in Mobile interviewing with teams. And he's huge.
Fluker's a mammoth run-blocker who has some trouble firing off the ball to beat pass-rushers on the edge. For this reason, he projects as a right tackle in the NFL, but a damn good one. With power, length and good balance, Fluker should be a 10-year starter with few weaknesses if kept on the right side.
That's where the Seattle Seahawks need him, as Breno Giacomini has been the weak link on an offense that took off in 2012.
26. Green Bay Packers
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The Pick: OG Barrett Jones, Alabama
The Green Bay Packers were eliminated from the playoffs due to a lack of speed on defense, but that doesn't mean they should panic into drafting heavily on the defensive side of the ball again in 2013.
The team will return key injured players like Nick Perry in 2013, giving the defense a boost at linebacker without reaching with their most valuable draft pick. Instead, this is where Ted Thompson can do what he does best: draft the best player available.
Alabama's Barrett Jones is an incredible value here due to his ability to play tackle, guard and center. The Packers have struggled with offensive line help in recent years, and having one player talented enough to line up in three different positions is something they can't pass up.
27. Houston Texans
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The Pick: DE Johnathan Hankins, Ohio State
The 3-4 defense requires stout defensive ends who can hold up against the run. In the Houston Texans' scheme, they like those guys to slide inside and rush the quarterback on third down. Johnathan Hankins can do both.
Built like a defensive tackle, Hankins doesn't have the speed to play every down on the inside as a pass-rusher, but in a 3-4 scheme he's set to see starting reps as an end. This is where his strength and leverage will be huge benefits in a one-gap system that asks him to simply lock down the edge.
Wide receiver and cornerback might be other areas where the Texans go in Round 1, but Hankins' value is great at No. 27.
28. Denver Broncos
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The Pick: ILB Kevin Minter, LSU
Here's a pick where value meets need and a perfect fit in a scheme.
Kevin Minter would be the ideal middle linebacker in John Fox's defense. His ability to stop the run with speed and strength between the tackles frees up Von Miller and Elvis Dumervil to spend more time attacking the edge. He's also quick enough to cover up tight ends and backs releasing into routes off play action.
Minter's name hasn't been hyped much yet on a national level, but the LSU junior is an absolute stud in the middle of the field.
29. New England Patriots
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The Pick: WR Tavon Austin, West Virginia
Wes Welker and Julian Edelman both enter free agency this season. While the New England Patriots are great at re-signing the guys they want at a value price, keeping both slot receivers might be tricky. It might also not be the smartest move.
Edelman is solid, but he's reached his ceiling as a mid-level slot guy. Why not add a more dynamic athlete—someone faster, more electric and more capable—at a cheaper price and with a higher upside?
Tavon Austin was one of the most electric players in all of college football. He's a tremendous athlete who can line up in the slot, out wide or even in the backfield. That sounds like a Bill Belichick-type player to me.
30. Atlanta Falcons
Sam Montgomery NFL player comparison.
The Pick: DE Sam Montgomery, LSU
We've seen during the 2012 season that the Atlanta Falcons need to add pass-rushers. This is where they do that.
The Ray Edwards experiment failed, leaving the team short one defensive end down the stretch. As good as John Abraham can be, he was limited, and Kroy Biermann is more of a utility player. What the Falcons need is a pure pass-rusher.
Sam Montgomery lined up as the LSU right defensive end, matching up one-on-one with the opposition's best pass-blocker. More times than not, Montgomery won. In fact, a hell of a lot more times than not.
With a quick first step and good instincts, Montgomery can be an impact player early on. How he develops is a red flag, though, as Montgomery hasn't improved over the course of his career. He's an athlete right now, not a football player.
31. Baltimore Ravens
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The Pick: FS Eric Reid, LSU
Ed Reed's best days are behind him, with the end of a brilliant career nearly over. For the Baltimore Ravens, now is the time to address the hole that will be created once Reed retires.
Eric Reid has the skills to come in and be an impact at free safety from his first season. He may not be the ball hawk that Ed Reed has been; the LSU product is a better form tackler in the open field and will be able to fill in for some of the gaps created once Reed retires.
Some may want an inside linebacker here, and while that's possible, the Ravens have two very good prospects in Dannell Ellerbe and Jameel McClain. Ellerbe is a free agent, but he's a middle-tiered player the team should have no trouble re-signing.
32. San Francisco 49ers
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The Pick: CB Xavier Rhodes, FSU
The San Francisco 49ers essentially redshirted their 2012 draft class this season, waiting until late in the year to unleash LaMichael James on the NFL. They won't have that luxury in 2013.
Trent Baalke and Jim Harbaugh have tough decisions to make in free agency and when looking at building the roster through the draft. Free safety Dashon Goldson's contract is up, making that a position of need. They also need another cornerback to pair with Tarell Brown and Chris Culliver after seeing Carlos Rogers' play regress this season.
Xavier Rhodes has starting ability, and with good size and speed, he's an asset to play on the outside. As a boundary corner, Rhodes can take on the bigger receivers with Culliver, and Brown can handle the inside guys. This is a perfect match for San Francisco.
Tyler Wilson NFL player comparison.
1. Jacksonville Jaguars—Tyler Wilson, QB, Arkansas
The Jaguars have Chad Henne and Blaine Gabbert, but they need a fresh start at the position after realizing that they wasted a first-round pick on Gabbert in 2011.
2. Kansas City Chiefs—Matt Barkley, QB, USC
John Dorsey will stick to his best-player-available mentality in Round 2, but the team can't ignore their need at quarterback in the first two rounds (barring a big free-agent signing or trade).
3. Philadelphia Eagles—Logan Ryan, CB, Rutgers
The Nnamdi Asomugha experiment could end this offseason in a move that frees up valuable salary-cap space. Logan Ryan is a first-year starter waiting to be picked.
4. Detroit Lions—Lane Johnson, OT, Oklahoma
The Lions have to work on building up the offensive line—even after adding Riley Reiff next year. Johnson can play left or right tackle.
5. Cincinnati Bengals (from Oakland)—Eddie Lacy, RB, Alabama
The best running back in the 2013 class, it wouldn't be a surprise if the Bengals used their first-round pick on the bruiser from Alabama.
6. Arizona Cardinals—Justin Pugh, OT, Syracuse
A left tackle coming out of Doug Marrone's pro-style offense, Pugh is ready to step in and upgrade Arizona's offensive tackle position.
7. Cleveland Browns—FORFEIT
Pick used in 2012 supplemental draft: WR Josh Gordon.
8. New York Jets—DeAndre Hopkins, WR, Clemson
The Jets found their quarterback in Round 1; now they must add weapons for him to work with. DeAndre Hopkins has great athleticism and deep ability. He's a starter.
9. Tennessee Titans—Matt Elam, SS, Florida
The Titans' draft focus will shift to the secondary after Round 1, targeting at least one safety and a cornerback. Elam is a big hitter who lacks great size, but he will be an asset at strong safety.
10. Buffalo Bills—Ryan Nassib, QB, Syracuse
The Bills reached for Nassib in last week's mock draft, but another week and more coaching hires provides intel that he should be here in Round 2. A great Senior Bowl week could change this.
11. Miami Dolphins—Zach Ertz, TE, Stanford
A potential top-20 player who falls down the board only due to team needs, Ertz would be the Dolphins' best tight end from his first practice.
12. Tampa Bay Buccaneers—Khaseem Greene, OLB, Rutgers
Greg Schiano dips back into his old coaching grounds to pick an outside linebacker with the talent and speed to be a menace off the edge in his 4-3 defense.
13. Carolina Panthers—Terrance Williams, WR, Baylor
Cam Newton is a franchise quarterback, but the Panthers haven't built up a team around him. Terrance Williams has the speed and size to give Newton an option other than Steve Smith.
14. New Orleans Saints—FORFEIT
Pick removed by NFL due to Bountygate scandal.
15. St. Louis Rams—Robert Woods, WR, USC
A talented, tough possession receiver who can move the chains after the catch, Woods will be the underneath target the Rams need to complement Brian Quick and Chris Givens.
16. San Diego Chargers—Manti Te'o, ILB, Notre Dame
The Manti Te'o story continues to confuse, and it will cause his stock to drop from the middle of Round 1 to the middle of Round 2. The Chargers will gladly swoop him up.
17. Dallas Cowboys—Margus Hunt, DE, SMU
A big defensive end with the versatility to play all across the board, Hunt will be a great fit in Monte Kiffin's defense as a left defensive end opposite DeMarcus Ware.
18. Pittsburgh Steelers—Tyler Eifert, TE, Notre Dame
Eifert lacks the athleticism to be drafted higher than this, but the Steelers won't mind. His size and hands will give them a young red-zone threat to complement Heath Miller before replacing him down the line.
19. New York Giants—John Jenkins, DT, Georgia
The Giants continue to focus on the defensive line, adding a big body in the middle who can still penetrate the A- and B-gaps and wreak havoc against the run.
20. Chicago Bears—Oday Aboushi, OT, Virginia
The team has continually missed on drafting tackles—Chris Williams and Gabe Carimi to name a few—but new general manager Phil Emery has to set his eyes on getting better at the position.
21. Cincinnati Bengals—John Simon, DE, Ohio State
An athletic, versatile defensive end who is a bit undersized but has a motor that never stops. He'll be a great fit as a situational rusher early and potential starter down the road.
22. Washington Redskins—Jordan Poyer, CB, Oregon State
The Redskins get lucky when Poyer falls to them. He's a ball hawk who has a chance to shoot up boards following the Senior Bowl.
23. Minnesota Vikings—Kawann Short, DT, Purdue
Rebuilding the Williams Wall won't happen, but the Short-Williams wall would restart the impact in the middle of the Minnesota defensive line.
24. Miami Dolphins (from Indianapolis)—Kyle Long, OT, Oregon
Kyle Long can play guard or tackle, and he just might be the guy to replace Jake Long if the Dolphins left tackle leaves in free agency.
25. Seattle Seahawks—Justin Hunter, WR, Tennessee
The Seahawks offense took off in 2012. Now they need a big receiver who can get deep and attack defenses. Justin Hunter, at 6'4", can be that guy.
26. Green Bay Packers—Giovani Bernard, RB, UNC
It never hurts to add talent and speed on either side of the ball. Ted Thompson will love the all-around game of Bernard.
27. Houston Texans—Mike Glennon, QB, NC State
Matt Schaub is regressing. T.J. Yates shows limited promise as a starter. Mike Glennon has the size and strength to open up the Houston offense in ways Schaub never could.
28. Denver Broncos—Sylvester Williams, DT, UNC
The Broncos must look to the middle of their defensive line, as John Fox needs an anchor to put in between Von Miller and Elvis Dumervil.
29. New England Patriots—Desmond Trufant, CB, Washington
It's no guarantee that Aqib Talib will stay in New England when he hits the free-agent market. Whether he's back or not, Bill Belichick loves drafting cornerbacks.
30. Atlanta Falcons—Jordan Reed, TE, Florida
Tony Gonzalez could be set to retire, opening up a massive hole at tight end. Reed is a great athlete who would give Matt Ryan the safety net he needs in the middle of the field.
31. Baltimore Ravens—Travis Frederick, OC, Wisconsin
Versatile offensive linemen are becoming more valuable in the NFL, and Frederick can play guard and center. The Ravens will look at him as the future in the middle of the line.
32. San Francisco 49ers—Phillip Thomas FS Fresno State
Dashon Goldson could be a target to leave in free agency. If so, the 49ers can replace him with a similarly ball-hawking safety in Phillip Thomas.
Markus Wheaton NFL player comparison.
1. Kansas City Chiefs—Datone Jones, DE, UCLA
The 3-4 defense is staying in Kansas City, but defensive ends Glenn Dorsey and Tyson Jackson may not. Adding a big-bodied five-technique guy makes sense.
2. Jacksonville Jaguars—Markus Wheaton, WR, Oregon State
The Jaguars have something in Justin Blackmon, but he'll never be a downfield threat. Markus Wheaton can be.
3. Detroit Lions—Cornellius Carradine, DE, FSU
Injuries could keep Carradine from playing in 2013, but the Lions can afford to wait one season for a player who has top-20 potential.
4. Oakland Raiders—Tyler Bray, QB, Tennessee
Carson Palmer hasn't been the answer in the short term and definitely isn't a solution long term. Tyler Bray could sit for a year or two before taking over in Oakland.
5. Philadelphia Eagles—Zac Dysert, QB, Miami (OH)
New head coach Chip Kelly will have to evolve his fast-paced spread offense for the NFL, and that could mean bringing in a big-league passer like Dysert to develop as his guy.
6. Cleveland Browns—Will Davis, CB, Utah State
A small-school stud with room to move up the board, Davis would be a candidate to start in his first season opposite Joe Haden.
7. Arizona Cardinals—Chase Thomas, OLB, Stanford
Building up the pass-rushing talent is key for the Cardinals. They might also consider another offensive lineman here. Or a quarterback.
8. Tennessee Titans—David Amerson, CB, NC State
Amerson fell from the top 10 all the way to Round 3 after showing up poorly in man coverage. He has a chance to redeem himself if he can show the talent that led to 13 interceptions in 2011.
9. Buffalo Bills—Da'Rick Rogers, WR, Tennessee Tech
The Bills lack a big wide receiver to stretch the field, and Da'Rick Rogers has a first-round skill set with off-field questions to drive his value down.
10. New York Jets—Brandon Jenkins, OLB, FSU
Jenkins struggled to stay healthy at Florida State, but this edge-rusher would be a great addition once healthy in the Jets' 3-4 scheme.
11. Tampa Bay Buccaneers—Jamar Taylor, CB, Boise State
The Buccaneers may need to make cornerback a higher priority, depending on free agency. Jamar Taylor fits the mold as a physical cover man with early starting potential.
12. San Francisco 49ers (from Carolina)—Bennie Logan, DE, LSU
The 49ers desperately missed Justin Smith when he was out this year. They also need to get younger at the position. Logan is an experienced five-technique end who can stand up offensive linemen.
13. New Orleans Saints—Menelik Watson, OT, FSU
Jermon Bushrod enters free agency this season, and the team could be looking for a younger, more athletic upgrade. Watson is definitely that.
14. St. Louis Rams—D.J. Swearinger, FS, South Carolina
A big hitter who can also cover, Swearinger would be right at home in Jeff Fisher's physical defense.
15. San Diego Chargers—Larry Warford, OG, Kentucky
The Chargers use two of their first three picks on the offensive line as new head coach Mike McCoy won't let their terrible line play hinder his early success.
16. Miami Dolphins—Quinton Patton, WR, Louisiana Tech
The Dolphins badly need this kind of speed at wide receiver. Patton is a sleeper with great upside as a No. 2 option for Ryan Tannehill.
17. Pittsburgh Steelers—Tony Jefferson, FS, Oklahoma
The Steelers know that Ryan Clark and Troy Polamalu can't play forever. Tony Jefferson gives them a young stud to groom for the future.
18. Dallas Cowboys—Chris Faulk, OT, LSU
Faulk projects best as a right tackle in the NFL, but the Dallas Cowboys can experiment with he and Tyron Smith to find the best matchup for the two young powerhouse tackles.
19. New York Giants—Alvin Bailey, OG, Arkansas
Solidifying the interior of the offensive line and just adding depth is a smart move for the New York Giants in Round 3.
20. Miami Dolphins (from Chicago)—Robert Alford, CB, SE Louisiana
One of the fastest players in the 2013 draft class, Alford has the skills to transition from small-school to big-time player early on.
21. Cincinnati Bengals—T.J. McDonald, FS, USC
The Bengals will be looking at free safeties as early as Round 1. While McDonald isn't great in coverage, he makes up for it in run support and with an athletic ceiling.
22. Washington Redskins—Bacarri Rambo, FS, Georgia
With a name like Rambo, it's fitting that Bacarri loves to hit. The Redskins are desperate for an ugprade at free safety, and the Georgia product is a great fit.
23. Minnesota Vikings—Brian Winters, OG, Kent State
A college guard, Winters can come in and immediately upgrade the right guard position with Geoff Schwartz headed to free agency.
24. Indianapolis Colts—Sean Porter, OLB, Texas A&M
The transition to a 3-4 defense continues. If Porter can play like he did in 2011, the Colts will have the steal of the draft.
25. Seattle Seahawks—Montee Ball, RB, Wisconsin
A highly productive running back who doesn't do any one thing exceptionally well, Ball is a great complementary back for Marshawn Lynch.
26. Green Bay Packers—Stedman Bailey, WR, West Virginia
Adding speed in the event that Greg Jennings leaves in free agency and Donald Driver retires, Stedman Bailey will give the Packers the most exciting run-after-catch crew in the NFL.
27. Houston Texans—Cobi Hamilton, WR, Arkansas
Andre Johnson desperately needs help on the other side of the field. Hamilton, along with DeVier Posey, will finally start drawing the attention of NFL secondaries.
28. Denver Broncos—Joseph Randle, RB, Oklahoma State
The Broncos lack a home-run hitter at running back, and Randle can do that as a runner and receiver. He's the solution to Willis McGahee and Knowshon Moreno's inconsistencies.
29. New England Patriots—Landry Jones, QB, Oklahoma
Why not? Ryan Mallett is likely to see interest as a starting quarterback soon, and Tom Brady isn't getting any younger. Draft for the future.
30. Atlanta Falcons—Marcus Lattimore, RB, South Carolina
Lattimore is unlikely to play in 2013, but the Falcons won't need him right away. If he can bounce back from two ACL tears in two years (one on each knee), Atlanta will have a steal.
31. Baltimore Ravens—Lavar Edwards, DE/OLB, LSU
With Paul Kruger hitting free agency, the Ravens can't pass up an athletic pass-rusher at this point in the draft.
32. San Francisco 49ers—Brandon Williams, NT, Missouri Southern State
The nose tackle position needs an upgrade in San Francisco, and this small-school gem has starting potential.