McShay created version 5.1 because of the impact of the Darrelle Revis trade to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, which provides the New York Jets with one more draft pick in the first round of the 2013 draft.
McShay's prior mock draft, version 5.0, was conducted back on April 10. What is interesting is that there are only five teams that have the same exact pick that McShay awarded every team just 11 days earlier. Typically NFL teams have their big boards already set and established by now, but that is not the case for mock drafters. It appears the Revis trade really shook up the entire NFL.
Based on the results of McShay's latest mock, we are going to go through his choices one pick at a time to see which selections make sense and which ones have better available options.
You can come back to this on Friday morning and see which of his picks were on the money.
Luke Joeckel has been considered the No. 1 prospect for months.
Version 5.1 Pick: Kansas City Chiefs select Texas A&M tackle Luke Joeckel.
Analysis: The Chiefs looked like they were making progress in their trade talks to send Branden Albert to the Miami Dolphins. But the potential trade hit a snag, as per this Twitter update from ESPN's Chris Mortensen. Between trade negotiations, salary negotiations or maybe a little bit of both, there are still some hurdles to clear before this is a done deal.
The plan made sense, trading Albert to Miami and then filling his position by using the top draft pick on Joeckel. That strategy gives Kansas City a franchise left tackle in place for years to come. It should give new head coach Andy Reid and starting quarterback Alex Smith peace of mind knowing the blindside is well protected.
A report by Armando Salguero of the Miami Herald states that Albert is looking to make at least $9 million per year. Salguero wrote "He wants a contract that is better than the four-year, $34 million deal with $16 million guaranteed the Rams gave Jake Long."
If the Dolphins were willing to pay that much for a left tackle, they could have kept free agent Long, and then they wouldn't have to surrender a second-round draft pick on top of it. If a trade can't be executed, then the Chiefs will not only have a surplus of left tackles, but will also have alienated Albert in the process.
Somehow we don't think Joeckel or his agent would be too thrilled with the Chiefs asking him to play at right tackle, just so they could make Albert happy.
This situation could get messy for Kansas City, which is a shame, as it detracts from the celebration of having the No. 1 overall draft pick. Hopefully, all parties involved will find a way to work through this mess.
Eric Fisher would provide an upgrade to Jaguars offensive line.
Version 5.1 Pick: Jacksonville Jaguars select Central Michigan tackle Eric Fisher.
Analysis: The Jaguars have so many needs on both sides of the football that any pick in the top-10 would have to be an upgrade for the team. At this juncture, the Jaguars need help on both sides of the ball at the line of scrimmage.
The Jaguars amassed just 20 sacks in 2012, which was dead last in the NFL. Their offensive line gave up 50 sacks, which was third-most in the league. When you have a net of -30 in sacks, you know your team is in trouble.
Fisher would offer the Jaguars a solid tackle that they can plug into the starting lineup for many years to come.
In the 5.0 version, McShay had the Jaguars taking Oregon DE/OLB Dion Jordan, who has the physical skills to become a dangerous pass rusher. That may wind up being the player that Jacksonville does draft.
While former GM Gene Smith focused on players from small schools, that doesn't mean that new GM Dave Caldwell will be following down that same path.
Fisher is the safer pick of the two, and that is something Caldwell needs to be mindful of, since this selection will be his first draft pick as the Jacksonville GM.
Jacksonville fans might be hoping that the team trades out of that second overall pick to pick up more draft picks, but a Twitter update from Ryan O'Halloran nixes that idea.
Other options could include BYU DE Ezekiel Ansah or West Virginia QB Geno Smith.
Wanted to share a random thought. It is remarkable how similar the names are (Geno Smith and Gene Smith) so it is probably for the best that the two won't be working together to avoid any confusion.
Is Sharrif Floyd over-hyped by the media?
Version 5.1 Pick: Oakland Raiders select Florida DT Sharrif Floyd.
Analysis: The vast majority of mock drafts has followed suit with the thought that Floyd would be a solid addition to plug into the middle of the Raiders defensive line. Veteran nose tackle Richard Seymour has departed, and he is still out of work for what it is worth.
I am not intending to throw water on the Raiders pick, but fans of the team should heed a report by Bob McGinn of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. McGinn compiled a review of the defensive linemen available in the 2013 draft class, and talked to a number of scouts in coming up with his report. The feedback on Floyd was that he is really not that good and his hype is due to the media making him out to be greater than he really is.
If that forecast turns out to be true, that is the last thing GM Reggie McKenzie needs. For a team that is hurting due to dead money eating up so much of their salary cap, they need to hit a home run with the No. 3 overall draft pick.
Since Floyd was only a junior at Florida, he wasn't obviously on either roster for the Senior Bowl. It seems odd that Dennis Allen and the rest of the Raiders coaching staff that worked all week at the Senior Bowl can't find a senior worthy of the No. 3 pick. Perhaps they are just sending out a smokescreen, since they may have known all along who they wanted to draft since late January.
Oakland can't afford to invest the No. 3 overall draft pick on a player that won't come close to delivering what the team needs from him. An update from NFL draft Insider Tony Pauline's blog states that Oakland is prepared to take the safest pick at No. 3 from their big board.
McShay had selected BYU defensive end Ezekiel Ansah in the 5.0 version, but he might be even more of a risk than Floyd, due to his inexperience and spotty performance. If the Raiders aren't ecstatic about their options at No. 3, perhaps they can trade down in the first round and add some more draft picks, which minimizes the risks.
Version 5.1 Pick: Philadelphia Eagles select Oklahoma tackle Lane Johnson.
Analysis: Philadelphia's draft picks will have to be able to fit into new head coach Chip Kelly's schemes.
Just completed a feature yesterday on analyzing the Eagles first-round draft pick, and Johnson is one of the options that makes tremendous sense for the up-tempo offense that Kelly wants to run.
For Kelly's offense to be effective, they will need to employ as many athletic offensive linemen as they possibly can find. No other offensive lineman in this draft class offers the skill set that Johnson possesses.
Johnson has been described as a freakish athlete because of his speed and agility for such a big man. It is rare to have those qualities, but it sure seems like Johnson would be the best type of tackle that Kelly could plug in to his unique style of offense
This is a pick that some people might determine is a reach, but this pick is smart and projects well for the Eagles offense for years to come.
For what it is worth, NFL draft analyst at the NFL Network, Daniel Jeremiah, said on Path to the Draft don't forget about Coach Kelly's connection with Oregon DE/OLB Dion Jordan, who would upgrade the Eagles pass rush.
Jim Schwartz saw Ziggy Ansah up close at the Senior Bowl.
Version 5.1 Pick: Detroit Lions select BYU defensive end Ezekiel Ansah.
Analysis: It would be a surprise if the Detroit Lions didn't take advantage of the insider information they obtained as a reward for serving as one of the NFL coaching staffs selected for the Senior Bowl. By spending a week with the country's top seniors, and watching them in practice and in film study sessions, few NFL teams have a better handle on the seniors that participated in the game than do the Lions.
We already cited the draft preview article that Bob McGinn wrote for the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel in an earlier slide. That piece offers a nice overview of Ansah, for any Lions fans that want to see what the scouts are saying about him.
It does help Ansah's prospects of landing in Detroit that he made a solid showing in the Pro Bowl. There is also the rationale that Detroit lost both starting defensive ends from last year (Cliff Avril and Kyle Vanden Bosch), so the team definitely needs help at the position.
One other position that Detroit was thought to be interested in addressing was corner. The top corner in this draft is Alabama's Dee Milliner. Milliner does have more experience and a better track record of production than Ansah, but does Detroit want to take a corner with the No. 5 overall pick?
Shoring up the depleted pass rush seems like a solid choice, so it will come down to which players the Lions scouts assigned the highest grade.
Tyler Eifert would give Brandon Weeden a big target to throw to.
Version 5.1 Pick: Cleveland Browns select Notre Dame tight end Tyler Eifert.
Analysis: The Browns are still considered to be an ideal trading partner for a team that wants to move up and take one of the premier tackles in the 2013 draft. According to McShay's latest mock, all three tackles are already off the board, so that would deter teams that once were motivated to swap places with the Browns.
In this latest version, McShay has the Browns taking Notre Dame tight end Tyler Eifert. There is no doubt that Eifert is a talented tight end and is arguably the best tight end in the draft. But at No. 6 overall? That seems like a big reach for a tight end, and is without question the first pick that McShay made that was a real head-scratcher.
We agree that Cleveland needs to surround Brandon Weeden with more weapons, but Eifert at No. 6 just seems like a major reach.
In his prior mock, McShay awarded West Virginia quarterback Geno Smith to the Browns. That might also be construed as a reach, which suggests that there isn't an outstanding match for Cleveland in the top-10 picks.
If Cleveland doesn't trade down and winds up making a pick that is deemed to be a reach, you can imagine that GM Michael Lombardi will be hearing about it from every corner. Especially with the way he roasted other NFL general-manager selections due to the analysis he provided for the NFL Network.
Another possibility is pairing up Alabama corner Dee Milliner to serve as bookend corners with Joe Haden. The Browns would have to get comfortable with all of Milliner's medical red flags to arrive at that conclusion, which won't be a snap decision.
Mary Kay Cabot of the Cleveland Plain Dealer reports that the medical issues are really old hat and won't change Cleveland's opinion of the corner.
Dion Jordan would be an asset for the Arizona pass rush.
Version 5.1 Pick: Arizona Cardinals select Oregon DE/OLB Dion Jordan.
Analysis: Arizona was hoping that one of the top tackles would somehow fall to them with the No. 7 overall pick, but in the latest mock, McShay has all three tackles going off the board by pick No. 4.
So, Arizona better be ready with Plan B. The Cardinals allowed an NFL-worst 58 sacks in 2012, which means that improving the pass protection for Carson Palmer needs to be a top priority.
While Jonathan Cooper and Chance Warmack are still available on the big board, I am not really sure why McShay would pass them up to draft Jordan, but that was his call.
In the prior mock, McShay had Arizona drafting Lane Johnson.
So, what would the addition of Jordan do for the Arizona defense? Linebacker Daryl Washington led the Cardinals with nine sacks in 2012. The defense recorded 38 sacks last year, which ranked tied for No. 11 in the NFL.
For what it is worth, the Los Angeles Times conducted a mock draft by soliciting the pick from the beat writer of every NFL team as their turn came up on the clock. Here is what Kent Somers wrote, who covers the team for the Arizona Republic.
7. ARIZONA (Kent Somers, Arizona Republic) — Chance Warmack, G, Alabama: "The Cardinals like a guy who can step in and play right away. They feel better about their tackles than outsiders do, so that's why they would pass on Lane Johnson."
Version 5.1 Pick: Buffalo Bills select Syracuse QB Ryan Nassib.
Analysis: The evidence seems overwhelming that the Buffalo Bills will draft Syracuse QB Ryan Nassib with the No. 8 pick. You have his head coach at Syracuse (Doug Marrone) and his offensive coordinator (Nathaniel Hackett) both leaving to take on the same role for Buffalo.
Marrone and Hackett want to install the offense they ran at Syracuse for the Bills, so who better to direct it than Nassib?
Rather strange when you compare the No. 8 pick in the 2012 draft was a quarterback named Ryan that followed his college coach into the NFL (Ryan Tannehill followed Texas A&M coach Mike Sherman to the Miami Dolphins). It's merely a coincidence, but it is a little spooky.
You also have Ryan Mallett in New England, so now if the Jets trade for Ryan Fitzpatrick, the AFC East division could be renamed Ryan's Hope.
Seriously, the Bills and GM Buddy Nix are in an awkward spot. The New York Jets trade of Darrelle Revis to Tampa Bay now gives them two first-round picks at No. 9 and 13 overall. They were also interested in Nassib and they have more ammunition to either move up or down in the first round than the Bills do.
Not only that, but the Jets are also ahead of the Bills pick in the second round (No. 39 compared to 41), so that leaves the No. 8 pick as the only time Buffalo knows for sure that they can draft him free and clear.
Yes, taking Nassib with the No. 8 pick would have to be construed as a reach. NFL Network's draft analyst Mike Mayock just released his top 100 prospect list for the upcoming draft, and had Nassib ranked No. 50. That illustrates perfectly how much of a reach this pick could be, but when it comes to quarterbacks, some NFL teams tend to throw all the rules and common sense out the window.
The only potential saving grace for Nix is if he is offered an opportunity to trade down into the bottom half of the first round. If Nassib survives the Jets gauntlet, then there is a very strong chance the Bills could draft him in the 28-32 range. Picking up additional draft picks would be icing on the cake.
Nix has done relatively well with his first-round picks in the prior three drafts. It seems he has painted himself into a corner due to not coming up with a better franchise quarterback option already.
If the Bills do wind up taking Nassib at No. 8 they will never know if he would still have been there on the big board at No. 41. They could draft Tavon Austin, Barkevious Mingo, Jonathan Cooper or Chance Warmack instead with that pick at No. 8.
Will Rex Ryan get his man Barkevious Mingo with No. 9 pick?
Version 5.1 Pick: New York Jets select LSU DE/OLB Barkevious Mingo.
Analysis: The Darrelle Revis trade is in the books, per this report by Adam Schefter and Rich Cimini of ESPN. The Jets are now armed with the No. 9 and 13 overall picks in the first round. They can use those picks to either move up or move down in the first round.
Or they can take the best athlete available on offense and defense. Or they can decide to take the dynamic duo of West Virginia quarterback Geno Smith and wide receiver Tavon Austin and give their offense a shot in the arm.
Mingo would be an instant asset to boost the Jets pass rush. How much weight Ryan's opinion will carry or sway new general manager John Idzik is unknown right now. Idzik could listen to Ryan ramble about any player he wants, but still ignore the lame duck head coach.
If the Jets do take Mingo, then they would have to decide between either Smith or Austin four picks later. Clearly, the Jets will be playing a much different defense in 2013, since Revis will not be there to shut down his side of the football field.
The Jets may want to consider the top corner in the draft, Dee Milliner of Alabama, who is still available according to this mock, to replace Revis.
For what it is worth, ESPN's Adam Schefter reported on SportsCenter that Houston corner D.J. Hayden held his Pro Day on Monday and the only NFL head coach that came to watch the workout was Ryan. With just three days left prior to the draft, that is a telling sign of how interested the Jets are in him.
Dee Milliner is regarded as the top corner in 2013 draft class.
Version 5.1 Pick: Tennessee Titans select Alabama corner Dee Milliner.
Analysis: Milliner is widely regarded as the top corner in the 2013 NFL draft class. It might surprise people to learn that NFL Network's Mike Mayock actually ranked Houston corner D.J. Hayden ahead of Milliner on his top 100 prospect list.
The Titans addressed their offensive line issues with the addition of guard Andy Levitre in free agency. They also added veteran safeties George Wilson and Bernard Pollard in free agency to help out the secondary. By drafting Milliner, the Titans would be inserting a number of new faces for a pass defense that was ranked No. 26 in the NFL in 2012.
In his 5.0 version, McShay had the Titans drafting DT Sharrif Floyd, but he is long gone in this version.
Milliner doesn't come into the draft without some concerns, however. Milliner just had surgery last month to repair his torn labrum so he will be recovering from that operation during the majority of the summer.
One final thought on Milliner is that Alabama corner Dre Kirkpatrick, who went in the first round of the 2012 draft, revealed that he never learned how to backpedal in college. Whether or not that is true for Milliner hasn't been made known publicly yet.
Regarding other options for Tennessee, they also like Alabama guard Chance Warmack, who could benefit from playing for people like Mike Munchak and Bruce Matthews. Don't be surprised if Warmack lands in Tennessee.
To add even more confusion to the Titans pick, NFL Draft Insider Tony Pauline states that the Titans are also interested in Alabama tackle D.J. Fluker. It is sounding like the chances are good Tennessee will draft somebody from Alabama, we just don't know which player.
Jonathan Cooper is one of the two-best guards in 2013 draft.
Version 5.1 Pick: San Diego Chargers select North Carolina guard Jonathan Cooper.
Analysis: The San Diego Chargers' current roster has one of the weakest offensive lines in the NFL. The group took a major blow when their top lineman, guard Louis Vasquez, bolted for the Denver Broncos in free agency.
San Diego didn't do that much in free agency to correct the situation, so they must have liked their chances to get better at the draft, recognizing that offensive linemen were one of the biggest areas of strength in this draft class.
However, the way that McShay projects this draft to unfold, the best three tackles will be long gone by the time the Chargers are on the clock.
So barring a dramatic trade up into the top-four picks, the Chargers will have to be content to draft one of the top available guards instead with the No. 11 overall pick.
McShay must feel good about this selection, as this is one of his five selections that wound up being the same from Version 5.0 and Version 5.1. We like this move for the Chargers as well.
Chance Warmack could be an All-Pro at guard.
Version 5.1 Pick: Miami Dolphins select Alabama guard Chance Warmack.
Analysis: If the San Diego Chargers wind up drafting Jonathan Cooper at No. 11, the Dolphins would be pleased to take Warmack right after him with the pick at No. 12.
Warmack and Cooper will be up for All-Pro consideration within their first few years in the NFL due to their athleticism, agility, power and quickness.
In the 5.0 version, McShay gave the Dolphins Florida State corner Xavier Rhodes, which seems like a bit of a reach.
Miami can trade up or trade down at No. 12 but few people think they will sit still with the No. 12 pick. If they do remain there and are able to draft Warmack, there would be no complaints here. That would be a solid pick.
We are still waiting to find out how the Dolphins decide to proceed or not with the potential Brandon Albert trade with Kansas City. If that deal goes down, it will obviously have an impact on the Dolphins draft plans as well as their salary cap.
Version 5.1 Pick: New York Jets select West Virginia wide receiver Tavon Austin
Analysis: This is the draft pick that the New York Jets just received from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in the trade for Darrelle Revis, as was reported by this Twitter update from ESPN's Adam Schefter.
If you want to know why the Jets would consider taking a player that is only 5'9" tall and weighs 174 pounds, all you have to do is watch the above YouTube video against Oklahoma to see why he is worthy of the pick.
Austin has that rare combination of unique speed and quickness that will make him one of the most difficult players to tackle in the open field in the NFL. The Jets will need to come up with a number of creative plays to get the ball in his hands. If they do, he will be a threat to take it to the house every time he touches the ball.
If you enjoy watching C.J. Spiller run with the ball, you will enjoy watching what Austin can do with the ball after the catch. Spiller was a surprise pick for Buffalo in 2010. Austin could be the surprise pick for how high he ultimately is selected in the 2013 draft.
The biggest concern about Austin is that he needs to be able to withstand the pounding of a 16-game NFL schedule. To return proper value, figure he needs to play for about 1,000 snaps this year. How many big hits can his body afford to take out of those 1,000 hits and not break down?
Star Lotulelei would be a nice upgrade for Panthers defensive line.
Version 5.1. Pick: Carolina Panthers select Utah defensive lineman Star Lotulelei.
Analysis: Carolina needs to beef up their interior along the defensive line. If Lotulelei happens to fall down to the Panthers with the No. 14 pick, they shouldn't hesitate to draft him.
He is as solid a defensive tackle as there is in this draft class.
This is one of those picks that we have no issues with and fully endorse. Not much else to say except that Carolina fans should be very happy if this pick comes to fruition.
Drew Brees wouldn't mind adding D.J. Fluker to offensive line.
Version 5.1 Pick: New Orleans Saints select Alabama tackle D.J. Fluker.
Analysis: Let me see if I can get this straight. Due to the penalties imposed on the Saints by NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell over the bounty fiasco, New Orleans was stripped of their second-round pick this year.
That leaves the Saints with only two draft picks over the first three rounds of the draft, which would be at No. 15 and 75. New Orleans still has to fix the worst defense in the history of the NFL. And, you are going to make the defense better by drafting an offensive lineman at No. 15?
So by the time the Saints are back on the clock with the pick at No. 75, a grand total of 74 players will be gone before the Saints have added a single player to the defense to help out new coordinator Rob Ryan.
I can just see Ryan now in the Saints war room. He will be pulling out his hair, pacing up and down the room throwing beads, feathers, masks and umbrellas against the walls.
Sorry, but this is another pick that just doesn't make much sense. It has to be defense, defense and when you are done with that, more defense. End of story.
By the way, we would love to see local college product, LSU OLB Barkevious Mingo go to New Orleans with this pick. He might be long gone, but that would be a great start for the Saints draft.
Kenny Vaccaro could still be on the big board at No. 16.
Version 5.1 Pick: St. Louis Rams select Texas safety Kenny Vaccaro.
Analysis: This is the first of two first-round draft picks that the Rams have in the 2013 draft. Vaccaro is widely considered the top safety in the draft class.
Head coach Jeff Fisher can appreciate the impact of a solid member of the secondary. The Rams enjoyed the impact that Janoris Jenkins made last year in the second round, so snagging Vaccaro in the first round should also pan out.
The Rams need to add some more weapons for Sam Bradford, and you would have to think that the Rams would be all over Tavon Austin if he is still available. That wasn't the case for McShay's mock, so going with Vaccaro as an alternative option is a reasonable Plan B.
If it does wind up going down this way, the Rams would then have to come up with a pick on the offensive side of the ball with the other first-round pick.
Jarvis Jones would be a nice addition to Pittsburgh defense.
Version 5.1 Pick: Pittsburgh Steelers select Georgia linebacker Jarvis Jones.
Analysis: This is another of Todd McShay's five picks that remained the same over the last two versions. NFL analyst Brian Baldinger observed on a recent episode of NFL Network's Path to the Draft that when he watches Jones on tape, he instantly thinks of him as fitting in with the Pittsburgh Steelers.
There is no doubt that Jones is a playmaker, and relies on his instincts to sniff out plays and come up with tackles for a loss. He isn't overly fast, but just knows how to make plays. Perhaps his medical red flags (spinal condition) will help him remain on the big board until the Steelers are on the clock.
McShay has conviction that this will be the pick for Pittsburgh. They also have to come up with a replacement for Mike Wallace, but there are needs on both sides of the ball right now for the Steelers, so this appears to be a pick that makes sense.
Version 5.1 Pick: Dallas Cowboys select Missouri defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson
Analysis: The Cowboys were hoping to land Texas safety Kenny Vaccaro with this pick, but McShay has him going two picks earlier to St. Louis. So, the Cowboys need to fall back to Plan B, which would be to fortify their defensive line with the addition of Richardson.
Calvin Watkins of ESPN Dallas wrote that the Cowboys place immense value on Vaccaro. In addition, he is a local product from Texas, which makes him all the more appealing to Jerry Jones.
But McShay has Vaccaro going off the board two picks earlier to the St. Louis Rams, so that means Jones has to figure out a way to move ahead of St. Louis or take Richardson.
Richardson is a solid defensive lineman and was ranked as No. 7 overall on Mike Mayock's big board of 100 prospects. That would represent a great value pick for Jones and the Cowboys.
The other option would be to trade down and take a safety when better value would come in to play later in the round.
Corner D.J. Hayden offers 4.42 speed in the 40.
Version 5.1 Pick: New York Giants select Houston corner D.J. Hayden.
Analysis: Hayden suffered a freak injury when a vein separated from his heart due to a collision in practice at Houston. It is amazing that Hayden survived, because that injury has a 95 percent chance of turning into a fatality. Luckily, he was rushed into emergency surgery and survived, but some teams will have a hard time being totally comfortable with his health issues.
At his pro day in Houston, Hayden came down with a hamstring injury, which might be the final straw for any teams that were already squeamish about him.
Even with the medical issues, Mike Mayock ranks Hayden as the No. 14 best prospect on his top 100 list. So, you either listen to your own doctors and buy into his situation, or you don't.
With the injury history that the Giants have experienced in recent years with their secondary personnel, you would think they would be a little gun-shy about players that were coming into the NFL with extensive injury histories.
Hayden just conducted his own Pro Day workout on Monday, and the only NFL head coach that attended it was Rex Ryan. (hat tip to Rotoworld).
In his 5.0 version, McShay had the Giants taking Alabama tackle D.J. Fluker. Both of these options could very well be gone by the time the Giants are on the clock for good, but there should be at least several players that we've highlighted so far that should be available for the Giants pick at No. 19.
Can the Bears staff straighten Alec Ogletree out?
Version 5.1 Pick: Georgia linebacker Alec Ogletree
Analysis: The Bears need to add some talent to their linebacker unit after agreeing to disagree with Brian Urlacher. Will the Bears want to seriously move on from an institution like Urlacher to taking a kid like Ogletree that has a number of red flags before he ever entered the NFL?
Jim Thomas of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch wrote the Rams might be interested in Ogletree because Jeff Fisher has been able to find a way to work with players that already have red flags. We have no way of knowing if Marc Trestman will be equally up to the task.
Ogletree was suspended at Georgia due to a failed drug test, so is this the kind of player you want to replace Urlacher with?
In his prior mock, McShay had the Bears taking Notre Dame tight end Tyler Eifert at No. 20, which makes more sense, as head coach Marc Trestman wants to give Chicago's offense multi-dimensional looks.
But, in the current mock, McShay had Eifert zooming up the draft board 14 spots to Cleveland at No. 6, which is why that seemed like such a strange pick. If Eifert is gone, we can speculate that Stanford tight end Zach Ertz could be another option for Chicago to consider if they really want to add a second tight end.
Cordarrelle Patterson would bring excitement to Bengals offense.
Version 5.1 Pick: Cincinnati Bengals select Tennessee wide receiver Cordarrelle Patterson
Analysis: If Patterson is still sitting there on the big board at No. 21 overall, it is reasonable to suspect that the Bengals would be ready to scoop him up. Patterson is one of those raw talents that truly could amount to something special, but on the other hand, he could wind up taking years to develop.
ESPN ran a SportsCenter Special on Monday night, and ex-NFL GM Bill Polian said that Patterson scares you because he is such a raw project at wide receiver. He went on to say that Patterson has a long way to go before he will become a finished product.
That is part of the mystery surrounding Patterson, due to playing only one year of major college football. You just aren't positive what you are going to get from him outside of being an exciting kick and punt returner on special teams.
If and when Patterson develops as a receiver, that would propel the Bengals offense to another dimension.
In the 5.0 mock draft, McShay had the Bengals drafting Washington CB Desmond Trufant. Once you get down to the 20th pick, things start getting a little more fuzzy, as player evaluation and scouting grades can start varying wildly from one team to the next.
Alabama RB Eddie Lacy hopes to go in the first round.
Version 5.1 Pick: St. Louis Rams select Alabama running back Eddie Lacy.
Analysis: There has been a running back drafted in the first round of every NFL draft for the past 50 years. Will that streak continue in 2013, or will it finally be broken? If the streak is snapped, that speaks volumes about the importance of running backs in the NFL, and where their overall value is headed.
Lacy could be the first running back to be drafted, but due to some of the issues he has encountered in the offseason, he is no lock to go in the first round.
Lacy hasn't been healthy during the offseason, which seems to be a common theme with Alabama players leading up to the draft. He appeared to be out of shape at his Pro Day workout, which is understandable due to his injuries.
Another factor in evaluating Lacy is that the Alabama offensive line may actually be better than some NFL offensive lines right now. That makes it harder to elevate the Alabama running backs when you project how they would do behind an inferior line. This factor might help to explain why fellow Alabama RB Mark Ingram hasn't lived up to his pre-NFL billing.
St. Louis will miss veteran running back Steven Jackson, so it makes sense that they find a new back to bring in for 2013. But when you consider how effective sixth-round draft pick Alfred Morris was last year for Washington, do you really need to invest a first-round pick in a back?
Another option to consider is Clemson wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins. Jim Thomas sent out a Twitter update that the Rams put Hopkins through a private workout on Monday.
Any player that a team works out this close to the draft, you have to consider him to be in play for that team. So, Hopkins could very well be that offensive option we discussed earlier for St. Louis at No. 22.
North Carolina DT Sylvester Williams is tough to block.
Version 5.1 Pick: Minnesota Vikings select North Carolina defensive tackle Sylvester Williams.
Analysis: This is the first of the Vikings two draft picks in the first round (No. 23 and 25 overall). Due to the aggressive nature of Vikings GM Rick Spielman, we speculate that the Vikings won't be content to sit still with both of these picks.
Minnesota will be looking to move up in the first round, so while Williams on the surface could be a decent pick, the Vikings probably have grander designs in mind.
Tom Pelissero of ESPN 1500 Twin Cities pointed out in this article that all four of the Vikings top defensive linemen will have played out their contracts by the end of the 2013 season.
So, if you have the ability to read tea leaves, it would make sense that Spielman may want to move up to land one of the top defensive lineman in the draft, so the Vikings won't be void at the position in 2014.
So far Spielman has done a good job of keeping his intentions under wraps, so who the Vikings want to target by moving up is a mystery as of now.
From the prior mock, McShay had slotted Georgia linebacker Alec Ogletree. Given the contract scenario we highlighted on the defensive line, the Williams pick makes more sense.
Xavier Rhodes should be jumping for joy in the first round.
Version 5.1 Pick: Indianapolis Colts select Florida State corner Xavier Rhodes.
Analysis: McShay switched from Houston corner D.J. Hayden to Rhodes in his latest mock version, but at least he stayed consistent with the position, citing the Colts' need to upgrade at corner.
When the draft gets down to the No. 24 range, there still should be a strong number of corner options for the Colts to pick from. In fact, if they are set on drafting a corner, they could also consider trading down later in the round, or even early in the second round and grab their corner then.
For the teams looking to trade up and secure their quarterback later in the first round, Indianapolis could be a surprise team to conduct a trade with. That speculation is based on the depth of the cornerback talent in the 2013 draft class.
Manti Te'o could make it two straight years for N.D. player in first round for Vikings.
Version 5.1 Pick: Minnesota Vikings select Notre Dame inside linebacker Manti Te'o.
Analysis: Minnesota struck gold in the first round of the 2012 NFL draft when they selected Notre Dame safety Harrison Smith. What are the odds they would draft another Notre Dame player in the first round in 2013?
Minnesota is looking to address their linebackers this year in the draft, so adding Manti Te'o with their second pick in the first round could be a smart move.
However, as we mentioned in the earlier Vikings' slide, GM Spielman wants to move up in the first round, so we can't automatically assume that the Vikings would still be retaining this pick. It really depends on how high Spielman wants to climb in the first round.
If things fell like this for Te'o, he would at least have Smith to help introduce him around and let the whole "imaginary girlfriend" situation blow over sooner than later. That is not the kind of thing you want to keep dragging somebody through the mud over and over again. Deal with it, and then move on so everybody can focus on the job at hand.
Can Matt Elam replace Charles Woodson in Green Bay?
Version 5.1 Pick: Green Bay Packers select Florida safety Matt Elam.
Analysis: The Packers opted to part ways with Charles Woodson so they will be looking to add some new blood to their secondary. Florida safety Matt Elam is ranked by Mike Mayock as the No. 25 prospect in the 2013 NFL draft class, so he would represent a reasonably good value pick for Ted Thompson.
We can also speculate that the Packers could draft Alabama running back Eddie Lacy with this pick. McShay has Lacy going to the Rams with the pick at No. 22, which is only four slots ahead of the Packers selection. If Green Bay does place a value on Lacy, it wouldn't cost them that much to move up ahead of St. Louis.
In his earlier mock, McShay gave Green Bay Syracuse offensive lineman Justin Pugh, who would be another intriguing value pick at No. 26.
Between Lacy, Elam and Pugh, the Packers should have at least one of those options available when they are on the clock.
Justin Hunter has the size and speed to be a solid NFL wide receiver.
Version 5.1 Pick: Houston Texans select Tennessee wide receiver Justin Hunter.
Analysis: The Texans can really use another strong wide receiver to take some of the pressure off Arian Foster and Andre Johnson. Kevin Walter has moved on to Tennessee, which places even more emphasis on finding some new weapons for Matt Schaub.
Clearly one of the strengths of the 2013 draft class is the pool of wide receivers. The Texans will need to replace Connor Barwin at some point in the draft, but if there is a wide receiver they really like at No. 27 that could very well be the direction they go in.
Hunter offers a nice combination of size and speed. He does have a tendency to drop some easy passes, but that is something he can work on with his coaches. You can't teach speed, and that is something that will always be in demand for wide receivers.
McShay had Houston taking Florida State tackle Menelik Watson in his 5.0 mock draft, which might be a reasonable pick, but Hunter has more appeal for a Houston team that figures to be in contention again in 2013.
Todd McShay has Bjoern Werner going to Denver in two straight mocks.
Version 5.1 Pick: Denver Broncos select Florida State defensive end Bjoern Werner.
Analysis: So far in this mock draft, there have only been three repeat picks from Version 5.0. Now that we have arrived at the No. 28 overall pick, it is surprising that we will see repeat picks in the next two slides. Perhaps we can chalk that up to the unique depth and overall talent of the 2013 draft class.
Anyway, McShay is convinced that the Broncos will take Werner. They clearly lost a stud pass rusher due to the fax-machine mess with Elvis Dumervil. If Werner can somehow get anywhere close to the production that Dumervil gave them, he will represent a huge financial savings for the team.
Werner is ranked at No. 26 on Mike Mayock's top 100 big board, so he would be a good value selection for Denver with the pick at No. 28. The other option of course is to make sure that the offensive line has enough depth to protect Peyton Manning, because he is the most-important player in Denver.
According to this mock draft, linemen like Justin Pugh (Syracuse) and Menelik Watson (Florida State) are still available if Broncos fans aren't sold on Werner.
New England is high on Datone Jones.
Version 5.1 Pick: New England Patriots select UCLA defensive end Datone Jones.
Analysis: Jones represents the final player in McShay's last two versions of the 2013 mock draft that is going with the same pick, as he likes the chances of the UCLA defensive end landing with New England.
New England is starting to accumulate an interesting array of young defensive talent based on their recent hauls at the draft, which includes Dont'a Hightower, Chandler Jones, Tavon Wilson and Alfonzo Dennard. If you add a player like Datone Jones to that mix, the Patriots defense will have a solid core to work with for years to come.
We all know how much Belichick loves having multiple tight ends to work with, so based on the offseason surgeries to Rob Gronkowski and Aaron Hernandez, we can speculate that Zach Ertz might not be out of the question here with the pick at No. 27. Food for thought.
Justin Pugh could very well go in the first round.
Version 5.1 Pick: Atlanta Falcons select Syracuse offensive lineman Justin Pugh.
Analysis: Pugh is flying a little bit under the radar, as he potentially could go higher than the No. 30 overall pick.
Sports Illustrated's Peter King reported on Twitter that Atlanta GM Thomas Dimitroff wants to move up in the first round of the draft. King didn't specify what position Dimitroff is targeting. So, we are left to speculate that it could be anything from a tight end to eventually replace Tony Gonzalez, a pass rusher to replace John Abraham or help for his secondary.
What player does Atlanta have its sights set on? That part of the equation will be one of the intriguing aspects of the first round of the draft.
Due to this trade speculation, it is doubtful that Pugh would be drafted by Atlanta with the No. 30 pick. In his earlier mock, McShay had the Falcons selecting Boise State corner Jamar Taylor, which seems like a solid pick.
The 6'5" Ertz would be an attractive target for Colin Kaepernick.
Version 5.1 Pick: San Francisco 49ers select Stanford tight end Zach Ertz.
Analysis: San Francisco lost tight end Delanie Walker in free agency, so adding a solid tight end in Ertz to go along with Vernon Davis would give the 49ers offense another new wrinkle to explore in 2013.
Ertz would offer better hands than Walker, and there is also the appeal of Ertz being a local player from Stanford. If anybody can appreciate what Ertz brings to San Francisco, it would be ex-Stanford coach Harbaugh.
While the selection of Ertz makes sense, we also have to be aware that San Francisco has 14 draft picks to work with in this draft. Due to the inexpensive nature of draft picks with the new CBA, the 49ers might as well throw their weight around in the first round and try to move up and get whatever player they feel is a must-have.
The team has relatively few openings as it is, so packaging multiple picks to acquire blue-chip players makes tremendous sense. They have enough firepower that they could conceivably wind up with two picks in the first round, so don't put anything past the 49ers at this point.
Getting back to McShay and his mocks, he had the 49ers taking Florida International safety John Cyprien in the 5.0 mock draft.
It is safe to assume that most general managers will be hoping that Trent Baalke will be giving them a call to run a trade proposal past them on Thursday evening.
Eric Reid would be happy if he goes in the first round.
Version 5.1 Pick: Baltimore Ravens select LSU safety Eric Reid.
Analysis: Since the Baltimore Ravens lost safeties Ed Reed and Bernard Pollard in free agency, it would make sense for them to look at picking up a top-rated safety in this draft. There are a number of directions that Ozzie Newsome can go in here, but Reid appears to be a solid pick to wrap up day one.
However, since it is the last pick of day one, we wouldn't be surprised at all to learn that Newsome winds up trading this pick to one of the teams that was hopeful of trading back into the bottom of the first-round to pick up a quarterback.
Newsome then has the option of drafting a top safety, or even moving down a few more spaces and adding another draft pick, as the Ravens' depth took a serious hit with all of the free agents and retired players that departed.
We do like what Reid brings to the table and would endorse this pick if that is the direction that Newsome wants to go.
We also want to speculate that it would be an interesting dilemma for Newsome to resist the opportunity to trade down if Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te'o is still sitting there on the big board at No. 32. His intangible skills and leadership ability might be an ideal mix to step in and take over Ray Lewis' old spot.
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