With the 2009 NFL Draft just hours away, there is much speculation on who the Detroit Lions will select with the #1 overall pick. The options look to be either Georgia QB Matt Stafford or Aaron Curry of Wake Forest with a minimal chance at OT Jason Smith of Baylor. With that, here is my mock draft.
1. Detroit Lions- Matt Stafford (QB) Georgia- I think that Stafford will be a good quarterback in the league if he joins the Lions because of his elite arm strength, size, and ability to put the ball in tight spots. Also Calvin Johnson will help. Stafford has not signed a contract and LB Aaron Curry said he would take less money to be the 1st pick.
2. St. Louis Rams- Jason Smith (OT) Baylor- With future Hall-of-Famer Orlando Pace being released by the Rams, they have a big need for the OT pick. Smith possesses the athleticism, footwork, and strength to be a Pro-Bowl OT.
3. Kansas City Chiefs- Aaron Curry (OLB) Wake Forest- Curry may very well be the best athlete, as well as player in this draft. He looks to make an immediate impact and will help the Chiefs team that scored an NFL-low 10 sacks. Almost a lock.
4. Seattle Seahawks- Eurgene Monroe (OT) Virginia- While some believe that the 'Hawks will choose USC QB Mark Sanchez, I don't. They already have Matt Hassleback locked up at QB for the next couple of years and Sanchez won't make an immediate impact.
5. Cleveland Browns- Brian Orakpo (DE) Texas- I predicted this pick would be Orakpo about a month ago until Texas Tech WR Michael Crabtree was said to had aroused the Browns front office. But, reports came out after a visit that he was a "diva" and a "mean guy." Orakpo could play LB but I feel he is best suited for DE. Pick could be traded.
6. Cincinnati Bengals- Andre Smith (OT) Alabama- Smith was projected to be the #1 pick months ago but his stock dropped after he packed on some weight and run shirtless during the combine. This did not impress NFL coaches. This would be a steal.
7. Oakland Raiders- Michael Crabtree (WR) Texas Tech- Suspected to make a dumb move cause of owner Al Davis, the Raiders will not. They will go smart and pick the best player available who could be the best in the draft. With the arm strength of Jamarcus Russell and the youth at WR with Johnnie Lee Higgins and Chaz Schilens Crabtree should help the offense dramatically. The Patriots might trade up for him.
8. Jacksonville Jaguars- Mark Sanchez (QB) USC- Sanchez will be perfect since Garrard has only a few years left in his career as a starter. Sanchez will develop for a year or 2 and learn the offense then take over.
9. Green Bay Packers- Everette Brown (DE/OLB) FSU- With Aaron Kampman moving to LB, the Packers can either put Brown at DE or LB. He will be a great pass rusher and will help the 'Packs defense well.
10. San Francisco 49ers- B.J. Raji (DT) Boston College- Coach Mike Singletary understands the importance of defense and this pick will show it. Raji is so strong and powerful that he could anchor a defense just like Albert Haynesworth has done. They will pick Sanchez if available.
11. Buffalo Bills- Michael Oher (OT) Mississippi- With the trade with OT Jason Peters to the Eagles, the need for an OT rises and Oher is a great one. I wouldn't be surprised if they go for defense like Maybin or Ayers with this pick.
12. Denver Broncos- Tyson Jackson (DE) LSU- Jackson is a very physical specimen with unbelievable strengthth. He will help the D-line in order for the Broncos to get a linebacker or other defensive player with the 18th pick.
13. Washington Redskins- Robert Ayers (DE) Tennessee- He doesn't have great speed or strength but he can flat out play. He had trouble with the law a few years ago and got suspended 2 games but he improved his work ethic and attitude.
14. New Orleans Saints- Malcolm Jenkins (CB/S) Ohio State- I originally had thought for them to get Chris Wells with this pick but I've heard from sources that they will be taking Jenkins and will move him to Safety.
15. Houston Texans- Clay Matthews (OLB) USC- Though I don't agree with this pick, I will expect it for many reasons. One is that the Texans will draft one of the USC LB's here and another is that Clay is a tough player that will help the whole defense became more physical. Also, his uncle is on the coaching staff.
16. San Diego Chargers- Brian Cushing (MLB) USC- Cushing has good size, strength, and speed. He played OLB in College but in the 3-4 defense the Chargers play, he will be better suited as an ILB. Some think Rey Maualuga has a chance going here, I think no chance. I don't see the Chargers going for a RB because I think they will draft Andre Brown (NC State) in the 3rd round. Possible trade down- maybe to Vikings so Minnesota can get QB Josh Freeman.
17. New York Jets- Josh Freeman (QB) Kansas St.
18. Denver Broncos (from Chi)- Rey Maualuga (ILB) USC
19. Tampa Bay Buccaneers- Aaron Maybin (DE/LB) Penn St.
20. Detroit Lions (from Dal)- Jeremy Maclin (WR) Missouri
21. Philadelphia Eagles- Knowshon Moreno (RB) Georgia
22. Minnesota Vikings- Darrius Heyward-Bey (WR) Maryland
23. New England Patriots- Larry English (DE/LB) N. Illinois
24. Atlanta Falcons- Vontae Davis (CB) Illinois
25. Miami Dolphins- Darius Butler (CB) UConn
26. Baltimore Ravens- Hakeem Nicks (WR) UNC
27. Indianapolis Colts- Peria Jerry (DT) Mississippi
28. Buffalo Bills (from Phi)- Brandon Pettigrew (TE) Okla St.
29. New York Giants- Kenny Britt (WR) Rutgers
30. Tennessee Titans- Sean Smith (CB/S) Utah
31. Arizona Cardinals- Chris "Beanie" Wells (RB) Ohio State
32. Pittsburgh Steelers- Alex Mack (C) California
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