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2013 NFL Draft Order: Teams in Best Position to Trade Up for Blue-Chip Prospects

ORCHARD PARK, NY - DECEMBER 09: Head coach Jeff Fisher of the St. Louis Rams watches play from the sidelines against the Buffalo Bills at Ralph Wilson Stadium on December 9, 2012 in Orchard Park, New York.  (Photo by Rick Stewart/Getty Images)
Rick Stewart/Getty Images
Alex BallentineFeatured ColumnistFebruary 24, 2013

When it comes to the NFL draft, flexibility is a precious commodity.

Most teams have to accept their draft slot and settle for whatever prospect comes to them. However, teams with plenty of assets available for trade have the ammunition to move up and down the draft order as they please.

With plenty of blue-chippers at the top of this year's big board, the ability to offer a king's ransom for early picks is invaluable. The Atlanta Falcons made a huge offer to move up 21 spots to get Julio Jones in the 2011 draft, and the move was pivotal in turning them into Super Bowl contenders.

So who could be in line to make a huge move this year?

These teams have the ammo to make a big splash on draft day if they believe there's a prospect who can take them to the next level.

 

St. Louis Rams

Not including the compensatory picks that will be doled out before the draft, St. Louis has eight picks.

Included are two first-rounders, the 16th and 22nd. If the Rams are willing to part with either or both of those picks, it's hard to envision anyone not picking up the phone when they come a-calling.

The Rams desperately need a franchise tackle to protect Sam Bradford. They can take their chances and hope that tackle slides all the way to No. 16. Or they can offer a package of picks that a team in the top 10 can't refuse to select Texas A&M's Luke Joekel or Central Michigan's Eric Fisher.

 

Miami Dolphins

The Dolphins are already picking at No. 12, so they don't have a long way to go if they want to move into position to grab an elite player.

In addition to that pick, they have eight other picks, including two in the second round. That extra second-round pick could prove to be extremely valuable.

With a dire need for a cornerback and Alabama's Dee Milliner looking like a top-10 selection, he may be worthy of the extra picks that it would take for the Dolphins to move up. If, instead, they elect to stay at No. 12 and take the best available player, they would be in a great position to use that extra second-round pick to move back into the first round.

The Dolphins are definitely a team that could make a huge impact on draft day.

 

San Francisco 49ers

The 'Niners were on the precipice of being the NFL's best team last season. If they can add another dynamic piece through the draft, they'll be odds-on favorite to win it all next season.

If they decide against making a big move on draft day, it won't be for a lack of assets.

In quarterback Alex Smith, the NFC champions have a valuable trade chip. The emergence of Colin Kaepernick has made Smith expendable, but he's certain to be of interest to other teams.

They shouldn't have issues parting with some of their picks, either. With 11, they are the only team that has more than 10 picks at this point in the offseason. There aren't too many holes in the roster, but the 'Niners are in a great position to add one more playmaker if they like someone early in the draft.

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