2013 NFL Mock Draft: Current Projections for Every First-Round Selection
Well, free agency has certainly made filling out a mock draft a very interesting proposition in the past two days.
With a bevy of moves and teams making major splashes, my mock draft certainly looks a whole lot different today. And hey, that's what makes the NFL offseason so much fun, right?
I don't doubt there are more surprises to come—I even projected a trade, though I'm sure you can guess who is involved in that—but for now, this is how I see the draft playing out.
1. Kansas City Chiefs: Luke Joeckel, OT, Texas A&M
The Chiefs are a team that will look a lot different in 2013. New quarterback Alex Smith will be heading the attack, and the offensive line will have some turnover with Eric Winston released and Branden Albert given the franchise tag. I would be shocked if new coach Andy Reid doesn't solidify the trenches with Luke Joeckel.
2. Jacksonville Jaguars: Jarvis Jones, OLB, Georgia
The Jaguars need playmakers, plain and simple, and there isn't a bigger defensive playmaker in this draft than Jones, who will be a great fit in Gus Bradley's defense. Ignore all of that spinal stenosis business—Jones is going to be a stud.
3. Oakland Raiders: Sharrif Floyd, DT, Florida
Oakland needs to improve in the trenches. Sharrif Floyd could end up being a player similar to Geno Atkins. This is a great match.
4. Philadelphia Eagles: Eric Fisher, OT, Central Michigan
This pick could be an outside linebacker like Dion Jordan or Ezekiel Ansah, or a defensive lineman like Star Lotulelei. But the more I look at it, the more I believe the Eagles are going to build through the trenches, and won't let Eric Fisher get past them here.
Whether he moves to right tackle or they bump Jason Peters out to the right, the Eagles could actually have one of the strongest lines in the league if they add Fisher, move Todd Herremans back inside to guard and get Peters and center Jason Kelce back healthy.
5. Detroit Lions: Dee Milliner, CB, Alabama
For a long time this has seemed to be a pretty obvious pick. It still is.
6. Cleveland Browns: Dion Jordan, OLB, Oregon
Wait, didn't the Browns sign Paul Kruger and Quentin Groves in free agency? They sure did, but Groves is a rotation guy and the Browns should target the best player on the board. Dion Jordan is an athletic freak and will bring a lot of speed to this defense.
7. Arizona Cardinals: Geno Smith, QB, West Virginia
If either Joeckel or Fisher are on the board, that will be the pick. But seeing as they won't be, the Cardinals will go ahead and draft the quarterback they desperately need.
8. Buffalo Bills: Matt Barkley, QB, USC
Say what you want about Barkley, but he likely would have been the third quarterback off the board last season. Sure, his 2012 was disappointing, but do you really think he'll drop into the second round?
No way. The Bills could always wait and go after a player like Ryan Nassib, but I think Barkley's experience and excellent production prior to 2012 will make him the pick at No. 8.
9. New York Jets: Ezekiel Ansah, BYU, DE/OLB
With Smith and Barkley off the board, the Jets will instead upgrade the pass rush with the freakishly athletic Ansah.
10. Tennessee Titans: Bjoern Werner, DE, Florida State
After signing Andy Levitre, the team must focus on improving its pass rush. Werner is a nice fit for the Titans.
11. San Diego Chargers: Lane Johnson, LT, Oklahoma
He's Philip Rivers, and he approves this selection.
12. Miami Dolphins: Xavier Rhodes, CB, Florida State
After addressing wide receiver in free agency by signing Mike Wallace, the Dolphins can address other positions. While guard is also a big need, I think the Dolphins will add the best cornerback left on the board and snag Rhodes.
13. New York Jets (from Tampa Bay): Chance Warmack, OG, Alabama
Yes, I'm predicting that the Jets will trade Darrelle Revis to the Bucs and land their first-round pick (and a bunch of other compensation I won't even bother to guess). It isn't as crazy as it sounds. The Jets will then gladly fill a major need at guard with one of the best players available in this draft, period.
14. Carolina Panthers: Star Lotulelei, DT, Utah
Lotulelei is the most versatile defensive lineman in this draft, and could play either nose tackle or defensive end in a 3-4 and both techniques in a 4-3. He's an incredible steal at this point in the draft—from a talent perspective, he could still be the top player selected—and he fills a major need for the Panthers.
This pick makes too much sense not to happen. Well, if Lotulelei is available here, that is.
15. New Orleans Saints: Barkevious Mingo, DE/OLB, LSU
The Saints will be thrilled that Mingo is on the board here. He'll seriously upgrade the team's outside linebacker position in the 3-4 defense.
16. St. Louis Rams: Cordarrelle Patterson, WR, Tennessee
With Danny Amendola unlikely to return, adding a weapon out wide to stretch the defense and make plays for Sam Bradford is a must. The combination of Cordarrelle Patterson and recently-signed Jared Cook will give defensive coordinators nightmares.
17. Pittsburgh Steelers: Alec Ogletree, LB, Georgia
The Steelers always manage to get great value at their draft. Ogletree may have some character issues, but the Steelers will straighten him out and get the most of his immense talent.
18. Dallas Cowboys: D.J. Fluker, OT, Alabama
The Cowboys shouldn't hesitate to upgrade the right tackle position. Luckily for them, Fluker falls right into their laps.
19. New York Giants: Sheldon Richardson, DT, Missouri
Yes, the Giants did recently sign Cullen Jenkins, but Richardson is a three-down tackle and a very, very good value at this point in the draft. The Giants will gladly solidify in the trenches and nab him.
20. Chicago Bears: Jonathan Cooper, G, North Carolina
After signing tackle Jermon Bushrod in free agency, the team will continue to upgrade the offensive line with Cooper, who is truly a steal at No. 20.
21. Cincinnati Bengals: Damontre Moore, DE, Texas A&M
Here's another steal. Moore's disappointing combine will see him drop, especially as teams decide he isn't a fit for a 3-4 scheme, but the Bengals will gladly take him to improve the pass rush in their 4-3 defense.
22. St. Louis Rams (via Redskins): Kenny Vaccaro, S, Texas
After adding the top wide receiver on the board, the Rams will turn their attention to defending the pass and add the top free safety on the board, Kenny Vaccaro. The secondary will be a strength for the Rams in 2013.
23. Minnesota Vikings: Tavon Austin, WR, West Virginia
With Percy Harvin traded to the Seattle Seahawks, the Vikings waste little time finding his replacement.
24. Indianapolis Colts: Johnthan Banks, CB, Mississippi State
Banks dropped down some boards after failing to run well at the combine, but he's a long, proven corner and a great value for the Colts at this point.
25. Minnesota Vikings (from Seattle): Johnathan Jenkins, DT, Georgia
Received in the Harvin trade from Seattle, the Vikings will add some girth in the trenches with Jenkins.
26. Green Bay Packers: Jesse Williams, DT, Alabama
The Packers need to improve on the defensive line. Williams can play nose tackle—and he's a big body that will plug gaps in the running game—allowing the team to play B.J. Raji at different spots on the line.
27. Houston Texans: Keenan Allen, WR, California
The Texans desperately need to add a solid weapon opposite of Andre Johnson. They find one in Allen.
28. Denver Broncos: Johnathan Hankins, DT, Ohio State
Do you think Broncos fans even care who the team drafts after signing Wes Welker in free agency? In all seriousness, though, the Broncos need some help on the defensive line, and Hankins will fill in nicely at tackle.
29. New England Patriots: Desmond Trufant, CB, Washington
Without question, the biggest need in New England is cornerback, and Trufant is an exciting talent.
30. Atlanta Falcons: Eddie Lacy, RB, Alabama
Tony Gonzalez is returning, and the Falcons really need to address the running back position. With their pick of the litter at No. 30, the Falcons will add the bruising Lacy and roll out the league's most balanced offense.
31. San Francisco 49ers: Eric Reid, S, LSU
With Dashon Goldson signing in Tampa Bay, free safety becomes a major need. Eric Reid is a nice value here and fills an obvious need for the team.
32. Baltimore Ravens: Manti Te'o, Notre Dame, LB
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