NFL Mock Draft 2013: What Your Team Must Do on Draft Day
I must admit, I have no idea who your favorite team is. However, I can still claim I know what your favorite team, whichever one that may be, must do because I've got this first-round mock draft nailed.
Well, that may be a bit of an overstatement. This year's draft is wide open, and there is no clear pecking order.
Still, if the draft plays out like this, all teams will be able to walk away satisfied.
In my full first-round mock below, I'll pay extra attention to some of the more intriguing picks—those will be marked in italics.
1. Kansas City Chiefs (2-14): Luke Joeckel, OT, Texas A&M
It's already been an eventful offseason for the Chiefs, and after a winding road, the Chiefs would be wise to select an offensive tackle.
Luke Joeckel has all the physical tools to be great.
2. Jacksonville Jaguars (2-14): Dion Jordan, DE, Oregon
The Jaguars need a difference-maker in the pass rush. Dion Jordan is a physical specimen with all the tools to be an elite pass-rusher.
3. Oakland Raiders (4-12): Sharrif Floyd, DT, Florida
The Raiders are undergoing a complete makeover at the defensive tackle position.
This team needs someone to build around on the interior of the defensive line, and the Raiders won't be able to pass on Sharrif Floyd.
The 6'3", 297-pound Floyd doesn't have the most decorated college career, but he has elite physical tools and is starting to come into his own. He also has the ability to penetrate into the backfield. Last season, he had 13 tackles for loss and 6.5 sacks.
This defense needs a difference maker and Floyd has that potential.
4. Philadelphia Eagles (4-12): Eric Fisher, OT, Central Michigan
This is going to be an interesting selection. I could see the Eagles and new coach Chip Kelly adding Kelly's former player Dion Jordan, but I think he'll be off the board.
Another possibility is Geno Smith. He has decent mobility, and could be a nice fit in Kelly's offense.
However, I don't see them going in this direction either. After all, Kelly had much of his success at Oregon while working with a less-than-elite quarterback, and given some of the question marks surrounding Smith's potential, I don't see Kelly making that pick here.
Instead, he will look towards the offensive line. For Kelly's offense to be successful, he needs someone to help seal the edge.
Fisher is a great talent, a nice value and he will be the Eagles' selection.
5. Detroit Lions (4-12): Ezekiel Ansah, DE, BYU
Ezekiel Ansah is a great talent and a complete defensive end. He has the ability to provide heat on passers.
With the Lions losing Cliff Avril via free agnecy, Ansah will help keep the Lions' pass rush going.
6. Cleveland Browns (5-11): Dee Milliner, CB, Alabama
Dee Milliner is clearly the most complete corner in this draft. The Browns will have a formidable corner duo with Milliner and Joe Haden.
7. Arizona Cardinals (5-11): Geno Smith, QB, West Virginia
However, Palmer is 33, and he is inconsistent.
The Cardinals would be wise to identify their quarterback of the future and with the best signal-caller in this draft still available, they won't pass on Geno Smith.
Smith has the arm to make all the throws, and he has solid accuracy to go with it.
He has to get better at reading defenses and making decisions, but with Palmer already in place, the Cardinals will be able to bring Smith along slowly.
8. Buffalo Bills (6-10): Matt Barkley, QB, USC
Sure, the Bills signed Kevin Kolb to a two-year deal to throw him into the quarterback mix with Tarvaris Jackson, but like the Cardinals, this team must still identify its quarterback of the future.
Barkley doesn't have the highest ceiling, as he doesn't do anything at an elite level, but he is solid and can flourish with talent around him.
9. New York Jets (6-10): Chance Warmack, G, Alabama
Chance Warmack is exactly what the Jets need. A physically dominant player in the trenches, who will help bring a nasty attitude back to the Jets.
10. Tennessee Titans (6-10): Bjoern Werner, DE, Florida State
The Titans have received some wildly inconsistent play along the offensive line. Bjoern Werner will help solve that. This young man has yet to find a play where he wasn't going all out.
11. San Diego Chargers (7-9): Lane Johnson, OT, Oklahoma
The Chargers must find a way to get Philip Rivers back to being an elite quarterback, and this is not going to happen until he gets improved pass protection.
Lane Johnson is a nice start.
12. Miami Dolphins (7-9): Xavier Rhodes, CB, Florida State
Corner is not the biggest need for the Dolphins, but that doesn't mean they don't need an infusion of talent at the position.
Xavier Rhodes is a good value here, and his physical style will fit in nicely.
13. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (7-9): Star Lotulelei, DT, Utah
Star Lotulelei's draft stock has taken a bit of a hit due to his heart condition, but he is supremely gifted, and the Buccaneers need a boost at defensive tackle.
14. Carolina Panthers (7-9): Cordarrelle Patterson, WR, Tennessee
Cordarrelle Patterson has the tools to be one of the game's best. He needs some polish on his game, but his talent alone makes him a nice value here.
15. New Orleans Saints (7-9): Barkevious Mingo, DE, LSU
With the 15th pick in the 2013 NFL Draft, the New Orleans Saints select the entire defense of the Alabama Crimson Tide.
If they could, they would.
This team needs to get better on all levels of its defense. This will lead them to Barkevious Mingo. He is an outstanding athlete with the ability to get to the passer no matter where he lines up.
16. St. Louis Rams (7-8-1): Tavon Austin, WR, West Virginia
Tavon Austin is the kind of elite playmaker the Rams desperately need. I'm sure Sam Bradford will not object to this pick.
17. Pittsburgh Steelers (8-8): Jarvis Jones, OLB, Georgia
Honestly, I wouldn't be shocked to see Jarvis Jones go in the top 10, or fall completely out of the first round.
18. Dallas Cowboys (8-8): Sheldon Richardson, DT, Missouri
With the Cowboys transitioning from a 3-4 to a 4-3 defense, they are going to need some added muscle for the defensive front.
Sheldon Richardson is a solid value and a good fit.
19. New York Giants (9-7): Johnthan Banks, CB, Mississippi State
I see the Giants going with either the best defensive lineman or corneback available. The way this first round plays out, they will get the best value with Banks.
20. Chicago Bears (10-6): D.J. Fluker, OT, Alabama
However, they still have a hole to fill at guard. I could see North Carolina's Jonathan Cooper going here. However, Fluker will make a fine guard, and the potential to also play tackle will make him the Bears' selection.
21. Cincinnati Bengals (10-6): Damontre Moore, DE, Texas A&M
Damontre Moore is really coming into his own. The Bengals will grab him to help give Cincinnati one of the fiercest defensive lines in football.
22. St. Louis Rams* (From 10-6 Washington Redskins): Kenny Vaccaro, FS, Texas
Having already addressed the need at receiver, the Rams will turn their attention to defense and take the best safety in this class.
23. Minnesota Vikings (10-6): Datone Jones, DE, UCLA
Datone Jones has nice versatility with the size to play inside. This will help the Vikings keep aging defensive tackle Kevin Williams fresh.
24. Indianapolis Colts (11-5): Jesse Williams, DT, Alabama
The Colts need a beastly nose tackle. Jesse Williams fits the bill nicely.
25. Minnesota Vikings (from 11-5 Seattle Seahawks): Keenan Allen, WR, California
The Vikings have to add a playmaker to the receiving corp to help take some of the heat off of Adrian Peterson, and also to give the limited Christian Ponder someone to grow with.
26. Green Bay Packers (11-5): Menelik Watson, OT, Florida State
The Packers must upgrade their offensive line and tackle is a good place to start. Watson isn't the greatest value here, but he has good tools.
27. Houston Texans (12-4): Robert Woods, WR, USC
Houston must find another receiver to help stretch out opposing defenses. Woods' hands and ball skills make him a threat all over the field.
28. Denver Broncos (13-3): Sylvester Williams, DT, North Carolina
The Broncos must get stronger up the middle in their defense. Sylvester Williams is a solid athlete with a good motor.
29. New England Patriots (12-4): Desmond Trufant, CB, Washington
The Patriots must continue to add talent to the defense. Desmond Trufant needs to become more consistent, but he has potential to be a true No. 1 corner.
30. Atlanta Falcons (13-3): Johnathan Hankins, DT, Ohio State
The Falcons must get stronger in the defensive trenches. Hankins has a high ceiling, and he will help solidify this run defense.
31. San Francisco 49ers (11-4-1): Jonathan Cooper, G, North Carolina
Jonathan Cooper has the talent to go higher; however, I see teams passing on this interior lineman until No. 31.
Cooper has some experience at center, and this is one of the few needs for the Niners.
32. Baltimore Ravens (10-6): Kevin Minter, ILB, LSU
Kevin Minter doesn't have the athleticism that Ray Lewis brought to the middle linebacker position. However, he is a smart, instinctive linebacker with a nose for the ball.
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