Barkley's pro day on Wednesday was met with mixed reviews. Some believe he could be a solid starter in the NFL. Others believe he will be a bust like, you know, those other former USC quarterbacks.
Here's my latest 2013 NFL mock draft. Will Barkley be selected in the first round? Read on.
1. Kansas City Chiefs: Luke Joeckel, OT, Texas A&M
There are some murmurs that the Chiefs may take Eric Fisher here—whose agility was on full display at the combine—but I believe Luke Joeckel is the better overall prospect. His work protecting Ryan Tannehill and Johnny Manziel at Texas A&M was terrific.
2. Jacksonville Jaguars: Dion Jordan, DE/OLB, Oregon
Dion Jordan is a classic example of why you don't look at numbers when evaluating talent. He posted only five sacks in his senior season at Oregon, but that's primarily because he was asked to drop back in coverage a lot as a strong-side linebacker. Jordan's versatility—combined with his athleticism—makes him a prime fit for the "Leo" linebacker position in Jacksonville.
3. Oakland Raiders: Sharrif Floyd, DT, Florida
While the Raiders did sign free agent defensive tackles Vance Walker and Pat Sims, neither of them offers what Sharrif Floyd could. Floyd has an impressive combination of strength and athleticism. He would be a great asset for Oakland. Then again, this is the Raiders we're talking about...
4. Philadelphia Eagles: Eric Fisher, OT, Central Michigan
According to Tim McManus of Philadelphia Magazine, the Eagles are expected have Eric Fisher for a visit. It makes sense, given the Eagles have needed better pass protection for years. Fisher ranked second in the broad jump (116.0 inches) and tied for first in the 20-yard shuttle (4.44 seconds) among offensive linemen at the combine.
5. Detroit Lions: Ezekiel Ansah, DE/OLB, BYU
I don't think "replacing" Cliff Avril with Jason Jones at defensive end during free agency has the Lions satisfied. Jones is a good player, but Ezekiel Ansah has so much potential given his elite athleticism. It actually makes sense: Start Jones at defensive end and allow the raw Ansah to come along and develop.
6. Cleveland Browns: Dee Milliner, CB, Alabama
After signing former Baltimore Ravens outside linebacker Paul Kruger, I expect the Browns to address their secondary next. Dee Milliner—arguably the best and most complete cornerback in the class—would be a nice addition lined up opposite Joe Haden.
7. Arizona Cardinals: Geno Smith, QB, West Virginia
I know there's been talk about the Cardinals passing up on a quarterback in the first round, but if Geno Smith lands here, I find that hard to believe. While Smith isn't perfect (he still needs to work on his accuracy), he has the arm and the mobility to potentially be a franchise QB. Are the Cardinals really going to pass on Smith's potential? Do they even realize who they have under center right now?
8. Buffalo Bills: Matt Barkley, QB, USC
After Matt Barkley's pro day on Wednesday, he's become an even more controversial figure. But, the reality is, we saw what we knew all along. In a vertical passing game, Barkley doesn't fit. But he can fit in the right system—given his accuracy on short and intermediate routes and his intangibles—and I actually think it would be a mistake for the Bills to pass on him.
9. New York Jets: Jarvis Jones, OLB, Georgia
It really bothers me when supposed experts like Mel Kiper Jr. of ESPN lower a prospect's draft stock significantly because of his 40-yard dash time. Jarvis Jones' ability to anticipate the snap count and burst off the line makes him a solid pass-rushing prospect and that's what the Jets need.
10. Tennessee Titans: Barkevious Mingo, OLB, LSU
Barkevious Mingo is scheduled to meet with the Titans. Bingo, Titans, you win at being smart. Mingo may be raw, but he's an athletic specimen who would fit on the weak side for Tennessee.
11. San Diego Chargers: Lane Johnson, OT, Okahoma
No Eric Fisher? Meh, no problem. Lane Johnson figures to be a longtime tackle in the pros. He ranked second in the 40-yard dash, second in the vertical jump, first in the broad jump, second in the three-cone drill and fifth in the 20-yard shuttle among offensive linemen at the combine. That shows you what kind of athleticism and agility the 6'6", 303-pounder has for his size.
12. Miami Dolphins: Xavier Rhodes, CB, Florida State
The Dolphins signed Mike Wallace and Brandon Gibson and re-signed Brian Hartline, which will help young quarterback Ryan Tannehill. Addressing the secondary is the next step. Xavier Rhodes possesses the size, strength and toughness to match up with the bigger receivers in the NFL and give the Dolphins an edge.
13. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Star Lotulelei, DT, Utah
Concerns still linger about a possible heart condition that could lower Star Lotulelei's stock. Those concerns come first and foremost. But if he holds up to teams' tests, I could see him being drafted around here. His 38 reps on the bench press on his pro day on March 20 would have tied him for first among defensive linemen at the combine. He was a beast at Utah.
14. Carolina Panthers: Sheldon Richardson, DT, Missouri
At 6'2", 294 pounds, Sheldon Richardson has an intriguing combination of athleticism and strength at defensive tackle. Heck, even Steve Smith thinks the Panthers should select him. It's a no-brainer.
15. New Orleans Saints: Bjoern Werner, DE, Florida State
Bjoern Werner's lack of elite athleticism or explosiveness may have dropped his draft stock a bit, but this guy's a football player. He knows the game, anticipates wonderfully off the line and has a variety of pass-rushing moves that should make up for his lack of top-notch athleticism. The Saints need someone off the edge.
16. St. Louis Rams: Kenny Vaccaro, FS, Texas
After losing Craig Dahl and cutting Quintin Mikell during free agency, the Rams would be wise to draft a safety prospect like Kenny Vaccaro. Knowing Jeff Fisher, it's hard to see the Rams passing up on Vaccaro if he's here. He fills a need and he's the most complete safety prospect in the class.
17. Pittsburgh Steelers: Cordarrelle Patterson, WR, Tennessee
Losing Mike Wallace hurt the Steelers, but drafting the No. 1 receiver prospect in the class would be a good way to get back on the right track. Cordarrelle Patterson is raw, but he has all the tools to be an impact player in the NFL. Surrounded by Pittsburgh's veteran leadership, I could see him coming into his own.
18. Dallas Cowboys: Chance Warmack, G, Alabama
Chance Warmack is an exceptional prospect at guard. He could be selected before this. But, based on other teams' needs, it's not out of the question that he falls here. It would be the perfect scenario for a Cowboys team that needs help on the interior of the line.
19. New York Giants: Jonathan Cooper, G, North Carolina
Jonathan Cooper ran the 40-yard dash in 5.07 seconds at the combine, backing up his displays of athleticism at North Carolina. It's not all about athleticism for Cooper, though. He also showed the balance and agility to be a big-time player at the next level. It's no secret that the Giants need help on the interior of the line.
20. Chicago Bears: Alec Ogletree, ILB, Georgia
Alec Ogletree has plenty of character concerns after several off-the-field incidents, but that hasn't stopped at least 10 teams from scheduling private workouts or visits, including the Bears (per Jeff Schultz of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution). Ogletree's physical tools could make him an excellent successor to Brian Urlacher in Chicago.
21. Cincinnati Bengals: D.J. Fluker, OT, Alabama
D.J. Fluker's stock has risen since he lost 16 pounds from the Senior Bowl to the combine (via Daniel Jeremiah of NFL.com). He has the strength and athleticism to be a tackle in the pros, and the Bengals would like to bolster the offensive line.
22. St. Louis Rams (via Redskins): Tavon Austin, WR, West Virginia
No Danny Amendola? Good thing Tavon Austin is a possibility. Austin—who ran the 40-yard dash at the combine in a blazing 4.34 seconds—would be a great successor to Amendola in St. Louis. He has all the tools to be an excellent slot receiver.
23. Minnesota Vikings: Sylvester Williams, DT, North Carolina
Sylvester Williams has become a hot name lately. The 6'3", 315-pounder has the burst and quickness to blow up the backfield and the closing speed to drag down ball-carriers. Kevin Williams is due $7.5 million next year and he's declining. Why not replace one Williams with another?
24. Indianapolis Colts: Datone Jones, DE, UCLA
After releasing Dwight Freeney, the Colts will likely be looking for a 4-3 defensive end here. Datone Jones has the combination of burst and power to translate nicely to the NFL.
25. Minnesota Vikings (via Seahawks): Keenan Allen, WR, Cal
Even after signing veteran receiver Greg Jennings, the Vikings need to add a young prospect at the position after trading Percy Harvin to the Seattle Seahawks. Keenan Allen possesses the size, catching ability and athleticism to work out nicely for the Vikings.
26. Green Bay Packers: Arthur Brown, OLB, Kansas State
There are injury concerns surrounding Arthur Brown, but if teams are comfortable about how he has progressed, he should be a lock as a first-round pick. Brown beefed up for the combine (241 pounds), which alleviated concerns about him not having the size to be a dynamic player in the NFL. Add in Brown's instincts, range, explosiveness and intangibles and it's hard not to like the Kansas State product. Russ Lande of the National Football Post wrote that he was "a favorite amongst coaches and scouts" on March 19. He gives the Packers speed on the edge.
27. Houston Texans: DeAndre Hopkins, WR, Clemson
DeAndre Hopkins has drawn comparisons to Reggie Wayne and Roddy White because—while not exceptionally fast—he simply knows how to create separation with his route-running ability and knowledge of the game. Pairing up Hopkins with Andre Johnson would be a wise move for the Texans.
28. Denver Broncos: Johnathan Hankins, DT, Ohio State
Johnathan Hankins' draft stock has dipped a bit after concerns began to pop up about his frame at the combine. On the other hand, he displayed flashes of being a future Pro Bowler at Ohio State. He has the combination of strength and quickness to be an asset against the run and the pass. His snap count will need to be monitored in the early going, though.
29. New England Patriots: Robert Woods, WR, USC
The Patriots replaced Wes Welker with Danny Amendola in the offseason, a similar yet less-effective slot receiver. They also cut Brandon Lloyd. There is a need in the receiving corps. I think Robert Woods may be a bit underrated, given his combination of fluidity, route-running and hands.
30. Atlanta Falcons: Tank Carradine, DE, Florida State
Tank Carradine was outplaying former Florida State teammate Bjoern Werner in 2012 before tearing his ACL. If he can alleviate concerns about his injury at his personal workout, he could be a first-round pick. The athleticism, footwork, agility and recognition skills he displayed at Florida State make him a low-risk, high-reward pick for the Falcons, who are in need of a defensive end to replace John Abraham.
31. San Francisco 49ers: Desmond Trufant, CB, Washington
If Desmond Trufant falls here, I find it hard to believe the 49ers wouldn't gobble him up. His combination of the size and athleticism—displayed at the combine—as well as his coverage skills and fiery demeanor—displayed during Senior Bowl week—could make him an instant favorite in San Francisco. Plus, we all know how San Francisco's secondary fared against Joe Flacco and the Baltimore Ravens in the Super Bowl last season.
32. Baltimore Ravens: Kevin Minter, ILB, LSU
After the Ravens lost Ray Lewis and Dannell Ellerbe via retirement and free agency respectively this offseason, Kevin Minter would be a logical choice. Minter displayed the instincts and tackling ability at LSU to make him a legitimate first-round prospect. Combined with his toughness, he's a nice fit in Baltimore.
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