2013 NFL Mock Draft: Latest Predictions for Every Pick
The combine is over, pro day workouts have begun and the 2013 NFL draft is quickly approaching.
We are less than seven weeks away from the start of the first round, meaning that time is running out for the country's top prospects to prove they are deserving of a Day 1 selection. Although a lot will unfold between now and draft weekend, let's take a look at the latest predictions for all 32 first-round picks.
Here we'll run through the entire first round, breaking down every selection along the way.
*Players worth watching are italicized.
No. 1. Kansas City Chiefs (2-14): Luke Joeckel, Texas A&M, OT
With Alex Smith headed to Kansas City, Texas A&M's Luke Joeckel is a no-brainer for the Chiefs at No. 1. A strong, athletic tackle, Joeckel will surely develop into a franchise cornerstone.
Kansas City recently placed the franchise tag on offensive lineman Branden Albert, but that doesn't mean Joeckel isn't an option at No. 1. He's still one of the best players coming out, and would be a good value pick for the Chief, if they don't look to trade out of the top spot.
No. 2. Jacksonville Jaguars (2-14): Barkevious Mingo, LSU, DE
Jacksonville must address its pathetic pass rush in the first round this year. LSU's Barkevious Mingo displayed tremendous athleticism at the combine, plus he's extremely versatile.
No. 3. Oakland Raiders (4-12) : Star Lotulelei, Utah, DT
As of right now, pending further information on Star Lotulelei's health, the defensive wrecking ball would be a top-five pick in the draft. He has the potential to win at the point of attack for years to come.
No. 4. Philadelphia Eagles (4-12): Dion Jordan, Oregon, DE
The Oregon connection will be too strong for Chip Kelly and the Eagles to pass up. Jordan is an elite pass-rusher and it's no secret that Philly's pass rush went missing far too often in 2012.
No. 5. Detroit Lions (4-12): Dee Milliner, Alabama, CB
Alabama's Dee Milliner is the top defensive back in this year's draft class without question, and the Detroit Lions are definitely aware of that. He has excellent cover skills and will make an impact in the running game as well.
No. 6. Cleveland Browns (5-11): Bjoern Werner, Florida State, DE
Having just taken Brandon Weeden in the first round a year ago, Cleveland is better suited drafting a dominant defensive lineman in 2013, someone like Florida State's Bjoern Werner, who can make a difference on each and every play.
No. 7. Arizona Cardinals (5-11): Geno Smith, West Virginia, QB
Arizona started strong in 2012 but then came completely unraveled. Yes, the Cardinals could use lots of help offensively, but the place to start is quarterback, where West Virginia's Geno Smith is the best available in 2013.
No. 8. Buffalo Bills (6-10): Eric Fisher, Central Michigan, OT
Eric Fisher would be the best player on the board at this point, and although Buffalo isn't in desperate need of another offensive tackle, perhaps the Bills could look to trade this pick or take Fisher for the most value.
No. 9. New York Jets (6-10): Sharrif Floyd, Florida, DT
Florida's Sharrif Floyd is on the rise. Lots of scouts love his frame and what he brings to the table in terms of energy, durability and run-stopping ability.
The New York Jets ranked 26th in the NFL last season in run defense, so it's safe to say that Floyd would be a great pickup at No. 9.
No. 10. Tennessee Titans (6-10): Chance Warmack, Alabama, G
Alabama's Chance Warmack would be a good fit in Tennessee, especially if the Titans want to get Chris Johnson going on the ground. A strong, sound player, Warmack does just about everything well.
No. 11. San Diego Chargers (7-9): Damontre Moore, Texas A&M, DE
Depending on how much stock the San Diego Chargers put into the combine and interview process, Texas A&M's Damontre Moore could be a horrible, or sensational first-round selection.
NFL.com senior analyst Gil Brandt isn't so high on Moore:
I left Damontre Moore off my mock draft, which many of you questioned. He didn't have very good workout at combine, or interview well.— Gil Brandt (@Gil_Brandt) March 4, 2013
But if you've seen what Moore put on tape as an Aggie, it's difficult to define who he is as a player by a few days in Indianapolis. He's a super athlete and his ability to shed blocks off the edge deserves some recognition.
No. 12. Miami Dolphins (7-9): Keenan Allen, California, WR
Even if the Miami Dolphins decide to take the free agency route to acquire a big-time wide receiver this offseason, that shouldn't stop them from going after another tremendous wideout in Cal's Keenan Allen.
Allen has a great pair of hands and could quickly develop into Ryan Tannehill's go-to guy.
No. 13. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (7-9): Lane Johnson, Oklahoma, OT
Oklahoma's Lane Johnson is a super athletic offensive tackle who has played a handful of positions throughout his football career. Tampa Bay would be an excellent fit for him right outside of the Top 10.
No. 14. Carolina Panthers (7-9): Ezekiel Ansah, BYU, DE
He may be somewhat raw, but Brigham Young's Ziggy Ansah is a rare physical specimen. He's 6'6", 270 pounds, but runs with the speed of a agility of a wide receiver.
Plus, Carolina could potentially stick him on special teams where his athleticism would really showcase itself.
No. 15. New Orleans Saints (7-9): Jarvis Jones, Georgia, LB
While Jarvis Jones' outlook seems bright, there are still some doubts about his health. But if he makes it to the mid-first round, look for New Orleans to take a chance on him.
After all, the Saints are a team with serious needs on defense.
No. 16. St. Louis Rams (7-8-1): Tavon Austin, West Virginia, WR
Just imagine Tavon Austin's speed inside of a dome. St. Louis can certainly use the big-play threat as its offense has been one of the least entertaining in football over recent years.
No. 17. Pittsburgh Steelers (8-8): Jonathan Cooper, North Carolina, G
Pittsburgh Steelers fans watched one offensive lineman after another go down injured in 2012, and although there may be more pressing needs in the Steel City this offseason, bolstering the offensive line at No. 17 isn't a bad idea.
North Carolina's Jonathan Cooper is arguably the most versatile guard coming out this year, and the second-best guard overall behind Alabama's Chance Warmack.
Cooper would be primed for success in Pittsburgh, a team with a tradition of winning and doing so by playing run-first, grinding football. Cooper's stock is still improving, though, so he could be off the board even before the Steelers are up.
No. 18. Dallas Cowboys (8-8): Sheldon Richardson, Missouri, DT
Missouri's Sheldon Richardson could eventually become the anchor that holds the Dallas Cowboys' defense down. Dallas ranked 22nd against the run in 2012, an area where the Cowboys must improve this coming season if they are to have any hope of winning the NFC East.
No. 19. New York Giants (9-7): Datone Jones, UCLA, DT
Like their division rivals, the New York Giants need to address their defensive line in 2013. The pass rush was certainly lacking this past season, and a player like UCLA's Datone Jones could help change that.
Jones may be flying under the radar this March, but at 6'4", 275 pounds, he's hard to miss.
No. 20. Chicago Bears (10-6): Tyler Eifert, Notre Dame, TE
This is an unbeatable pick for the Chicago Bears at No. 20. We know about Chicago's defensive prowess, but until it surrounds Jay Cutler with more weapons, Chicago won't be a serious contender in the NFC.
Notre Dame's Tyler Eifert would fill the void left by Greg Olsen's departure a few years back and provide Cutler with another playmaking target alongside Brandon Marshall.
As I've mentioned time and time again, Eifert is a wide receiver in a tight end's body. He has phenomenal speed for a player his size, 6'6", 250 pounds, and can move better than most linebackers.
No. 21. Cincinnati Bengals (10-6): Cordarrelle Patterson, Tennessee, WR
With A.J. Green on one side and Tennessee' Cordarrelle Patterson on the other, Andy Dalton would seemingly have no choice but to be more consistent.
No. 22. St. Louis Rams (via Washington Redskins) (10-6): Kenny Vaccaro, Texas, S
It's starting to look less and less likely that Texas' Kenny Vaccaro will still be on the board at No. 22 when the Rams make their second first-round selection, but if he is, look for St. Louis to gobble him up.
The best safety prospect coming out of college football in 2013, Vaccaro can read and diagnose the play quickly and then react.
No. 23. Minnesota Vikings (10-6): Desmond Trufant, Washington, CB
The folks in Minnesota may like their cornerbacks, but opposing offenses love them. The Vikings ranked 24th in pass defense in 2012, and must improve in that area if they are going to return to the postseason in 2013.
Washington's Desmond Trufant has all the physical tools to excel at the next level.
No. 24. Indianapolis Colts (11-5): Sylvester Williams, North Carolina, DT
Indy boasted the fourth-worst rushing defense in the NFL a season ago, therefore taking North Carolina's Sylvester Williams with the 24th overall pick would be a wise way to kick off draft weekend.
No. 25. Seattle Seahawks (11-5): Alec Ogletree, Georgia, LB
Alec Ogletree certainly hasn't helped himself in terms of off-field behavior, but if there's one thing that seems to bring out the best in every player, it's winning. Seattle is a team on the rise and one capable of maximizing on Ogletree's talents.
No. 26. Green Bay Packers (11-5): Eddie Lacy, Alabama, RB
If Aaron Rodgers were in charge of making Green Bay's first-round selection, he would likely take Alabama's Eddie Lacy, a bruising running back who could take some pressure off of the Packers' vaunted aerial assault.
It's been a long, long time since the Packers had a dependable running game, but Lacy could change that.
Lacy is the kind of back who can break two or three arm tackles with ease, He is hard to bring down and has enough agility to excel as an open-field runner. He may not possess the all-around greatness of a Trent Richardson, but Lacy can make an average offensive line look talented.
No. 27. Houston Texans (12-4): Kevin Minter, LSU, LB
Don't sleep on LSU's Kevin Minter. He did nothing but produce in Baton Rouge, and he looks poised to do the same in the NFL. The Houston Texans would be a great fit for Minter at No. 27.
Which position boasts the most depth in 2013?
No. 28. Denver Broncos (13-3): Xavier Rhodes, Florida State, CB
Heading into January the Denver Broncos were the favorite to win the Super Bowl, but they couldn't get past the eventual world champion Baltimore Ravens, who torched them through the air. Look for John Elway and Co. to address the underachieving secondary this April.
No. 29. New England Patriots (12-4): Matt Elam, Florida, S
Year after year it seems experts point to the New England Patriots' secondary as one of the club's biggest weaknesses.
Florida's Matt Elam is a hard-hitting safety who brings toughness and tremendous instincts to the table.
No. 30. Atlanta Falcons (13-3): Zach Ertz, Stanford, TE
Tony Gonzalez's future is still very much up in the air, but assuming he stays true to his word and hangs up his cleats for good this offseason, Stanford's Zach Ertz would be an ideal replacement.
A 6'6", 250-pound pass-catching stud, Ertz could be a star in Atlanta for a very long time.
No. 31. San Francisco 49ers (11-4-1): Johnthan Banks, Mississippi State, CB
Although Mississippi State's Johnthan Banks wasn't all that impressive at the combine last month, he's certainly put enough strong play on tape to warrant a first-round selection. Depending on what direction San Francisco decides to go this spring, Banks could wind up on the West Coast.
No. 32. Baltimore Ravens (10-6): Manti Te'o, Notre Dame, LB
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