2008 NFL Mock Draft: Picks 11-20

InTheBleachers.netSenior Analyst IApril 24, 2008

If you missed picks 1-10, you can find them here. In this part we will look at picks 11-20 which reflect the Jared Allen trade. This mock draft will be presented in the form of a mock draft, but is not meant to be predictive. Rather, with each team we’ll take a look at their needs, and who is likely to be available that they might covet.

Could Matt Ryan be
this year’s Brady Quinn?

11. Buffalo (needs - DE, CB, WR) - Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, CB, Tennessee State - Buffalo is rumored to be working a trade with Philadelphia, involving Lito Shepperd and a swap of 1st round picks. DRC is a tremendous athlete, but pretty raw as a CB. He’s a first round pick based mostly on his combine. If Buffalo trades the pick, they will not be needing a CB, and will likely be targeting a possession WR, like Malcolm Kelly or Limas Sweed.

12. Denver (needs - DT, OL) - Chris Williams, OT, Vanderbilt - Denver is one of those teams that may like to try to move up to get Sedrick Ellis. Failing that, they will likely settle for the best available offensive lineman. Williams is very athletic, appears to be a good fit with Denver’s system, and should play left tackle eventually.

13. Carolina (needs - RB, offensive line, defensive line) - Matt Ryan, QB, Boston College - Ryan’s senior year was in some ways the converse of Brady Quinn’s senior year. Quinn started his senior year as the Heisman Trophy favorite, and, despite playing well, was viewed less and less favorably as a prospect, eventually being picked by Cleveland with their SECOND pick of the draft. Matt Ryan started his senior season as one of a bunch of QBs behind Brian Brohm, and, despite not playing much better than he had as a junior, gradually climbed up the prospect boards until he was the consensus top quarterback, and a potential #1 overall pick. Its hard to explain why Ryan is viewed as the better prospect than Brohm; BC had a better year than Louisville, but mostly that was because of the way the respective defenses played. Nevertheless, Ryan will be the 1st QB taken. Carolina has more pressing needs, but its hard to believe they’d pass on a potential franchise qb.

14. Chicago (needs - OL, WR, RB) - Devin Thomas, WR, Michigan State - Chicago is like Carolina, they’re pretending they don’t need a QB, but aren’t actually fooling anybody. If Ryan is still around, they’ll probably take him. Their most glaring deficiency is at WR, and Thomas looks to be a good one. Good size (6′2″, 215), good athlete, good hands, more of a possession receiver/red zone type, also returned kicks in college. The Bears also need help at OL and RB, which might mean either Jeff Otah or Rashard Mendenhall. Also, don’t rule out Brian Brohm this early.

15. Detroit (needs - LB, CB, OL, RB) - Derrick Harvey, DE, Florida - Harvey is perhaps comparable to Dwight Freeney, and may have ruined Troy Smith’s shot at being taken in the first round - Harvey absolutely demolished Ohio State in the BCS Championship Game two years back. Detroit has a lot of needs, and could go in a lot of different directions. Harvey is likely to be coveted by a number of teams who might try to trade up to get him, such as Jacksonville, Minnesota, and Washington.

Brohm might have been
a Top 10 pick in 2007

16. Arizona (needs - RB, CB, WR) - Rashard Mendenhall, RB, Illinois - This is a very deep draft for RBs, so its likely that some teams that need one in the first round will fill a different need, thinking to pick up somebody like Ray Rice or Matt Forte later in the draft. Mendenhall has ideal size (5′11″, 210), good vision, outstanding measurables, and was productive and durable in college, also excelling in the passing game. Arizona may look at one of the CBs available, as well.

17. Kansas City (from Minnesota) (needs: offensive line, CB) - Mike Jenkins, CB, South Florida - The Chiefs traded for this pick on Tuesday, as part of a trade for Jared Allen. Jenkins is a big (6′0″, 200), physical cover corner who could probably also play safety. The Chiefs also now have a hole at defensive end to fill; they may have made the trade thinking either Vernon Gholston or Chris Long would be available at #5, or they may be targeting Phillip Merling or Derrick Harvey here.

18. Houston (needs - RB, CB) - Jonathan Stewart, RB, Oregon - Houston is the team most likely to draft a RB in the first round. Stewart is a power back, possibly comparable to Michael Turner, who played in a spread offense in college.

19. Philadelphia (needs - OL, WR) - Jeff Otah, OT, Pittsburgh - As mentioned, Philadelphia is rumored to be working on a trade with Buffalo. I think Otah is the player they are targeting, but I don’t see who would pick Otah between 11 and 19, so I don’t think Philadelphia needs to trade. If Otah isn’t available, Philadelphia may look at somebody like Gosder Cherilus. All signs point to Philly picking an offensive lineman. Otah is considered a right tackle - he’s enormous, and powerful, but not particularly agile.

20. Tampa Bay (needs - QB, WR, defensive line) - Brian Brohm, QB, Louisville - As I said above, I’m not clear why some people are down on Brohm. He really couldn’t have played better as a senior, although Louisville’s defense could have. Obviously, that can’t be held against him. He was criticized for skipping the Senior Bowl, but Matt Ryan also skipped the Senior Bowl. Brohm is generally acknowledged as the more accurate passer, and has superior footwork. Ryan’s advantages are durability, and intangibles. Both are good prospects, and Tampa seems like a good fit for Brohm - he seems comparable to Rich Gannon, who flourished under Jon Gruden.

Tomorrow we finish off the draft with the remaining picks.