2014 NFL Mock Draft Roundup: Who Are the Experts Picking?
With free agency winding down and the draft almost a month away, it's time to round up some of the brightest minds within the NFL draft world and display their picks side-by-side for the entire first round.
This diverse collection of opinions should help give us a better picture of all the various scenarios that could take place on May 8.
For the sake of not overcomplicating things, the option for trades has been eliminated.
Here is the panel of experts:
- NFL.com's Daniel Jeremiah: Mock draft updated March 20
- NFL.com's Bucky Brooks: Mock draft updated March 25
- ESPN.com's Mel Kiper Jr.: Mock draft updated March 13 (subscription required)
- ESPN.com's Todd McShay: Mock Draft updated March 6 (subscription required)
- SI.com's Chris Burke: Mock draft updated March 25
- SI.com's Doug Farrar: Mock draft updated March 5
- Bleacher Report's Matt Miller: Mock draft updated February 26
- CBSSports.com's Will Brinson: Mock draft updated March 20
- And last but not least, I added in my own picks.
1. Houston Texans
Jeremiah: Jadeveon Clowney
Kiper: Khalil Mack
McShay: Blake Bortles
My Pick: Manziel
According to Bleacher Report's Dan Pompei, the Texans are looking to move down in the draft to accumulate more draft picks without having to put all their eggs in one basket. This move will require a number of pieces to fall perfectly in place, but it would be smart if the Texans think quantity over questionable quality here.
If they're unable to lure a worthy trade partner, most people believe Houston is going to take a quarterback. If that's the case, Blake Bortles is supposedly the guy they prefer. But after Manziel’s pro day, I wouldn’t be surprised if the Texans pulled the trigger on the flashy in-state product with the swagger to take the league by storm.
Sure, Manziel lacks the ideal stature of an NFL quarterback, but he shows more promise than Michael Vick did when he was the first overall selection back in 2001. Unlike Vick, Manziel seems capable of growing into a dangerous pocket passer and team leader.
2. St. Louis Rams
Jeremiah: Greg Robinson
Brooks: Jake Matthews
McShay: Jadeveon Clowney
Miller: Sammy Watkins
My Pick: Clowney
The Rams need help on the offensive line badly, especially with Sam Bradford fresh off a season-ending ACL injury. But they just can’t pass up the opportunity to draft a rare, transcendent athlete like Jadeveon Clowney.
With a lot of talk about his motor/effort during games, my tape study suggests that effort is in no way an issue here. Though he may not have the highest motor in football, it isn’t a liability.
It's good to see the majority of the experts agree with the Clowney pick here.
Greg Robinson could be a serious candidate at play for St. Louis, but there should be talented blockers available when the Rams pick again at No. 13. Prospects like Clowney only come around once every decade, so when they land in your lap, you take them.
3. Jacksonville Jaguars
Jeremiah: Sammy Watkins
Brooks: Khalil Mack
Kiper: Jadeveon Clowney
McShay: Teddy Bridgewater
My Pick: Mack
Mack is an elite player who shined in every aspect of the evaluation process. There's no doubt he has the talent to possibly be the first overall pick in this draft.
Picking him third overall may surprise many since the Jaguars desperately need a quarterback, but it could be more of a possibility than most seem to think. Don't expect him to be available outside of the top five.
Bridgewater is the consensus pick among experts. This is a high probability outcome, although his questionable pro day could cause a more drastic free fall come draft day.
4. Cleveland Browns
Jeremiah: Jake Matthews
Brooks: Sammy Watkins
Kiper: Blake Bortles
McShay: Johnny Manziel
Burke: Greg Robinson
Brinson: Teddy Bridgewater
My Pick: Bortles
If Blake Bortles is available here, it would be hard for the Browns to pass him up. They have to understand that their shot at drafting one of the big-name quarterbacks will not be an option if they wait until they pick again at No. 26.
If the need for quarterback wasn't already dire enough, they have already said goodbye to former first-round pick Brandon Weeden and Jason Campbell.
Brian Hoyer, the most experienced quarterback remaining on the roster, is not the answer as the face of an organization—even an organization that is largely considered inept from the top down.
5. Oakland Raiders
Jeremiah: Blake Bortles
Brooks: Greg Robinson
Kiper: Teddy Bridgewater
McShay: Sammy Watkins
Miller: Jadeveon Clowney
Brinson: Johnny Manziel
My Pick: Robinson
Reggie McKenzie seems like the type of conservative general manager who would use this pick on an offensive tackle, especially after the mishap with Rodger Saffold not passing his physical.
Wide receiver Sammy Watkins is the consensus pick by the experts, and he makes a lot of sense. But if the Raiders are seriously considering giving DeSean Jackson big money to sign alongside their other free-agent acquisition James Jones, that wouldn't leave much room for Watkins here.
If Jackson signs elsewhere, suddenly Watkins becomes a much more reasonable option.
6. Atlanta Falcons
Jeremiah: Khalil Mack
Brooks: Anthony Barr
Kiper: Jake Matthews
McShay: Greg Robinson
My Pick: Sammy Watkins
With Roddy White and Julio Jones currently on the roster, it may not a make a lot of sense for Atlanta to draft Watkins here. However, White is getting up there in age at 32, and general manager Thomas Dimitroff loves explosive playmakers.
The Falcons could use a pass-rusher here, but Anthony Barr doesn't seem to fit their defensive scheme and Clowney is already taken. Defensive coordinator Mike Nolan brought in some 3-4 principles after joining the Falcons, but his base has been a 4-3 look.
The best player available in this scenario is Clemson's Sammy Watkins. Imagine how tough it will be trying to defend these three wideouts at the same time.
7. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Jeremiah: Taylor Lewan
Kiper: Sammy Watkins
McShay: Khalil Mack
Burke: Eric Ebron
Miller: Jake Matthews
Brinson: Greg Robinson
My Pick: Teddy Bridgewater
With the last of the big-name quarterbacks falling here, the Bucs will likely be tempted to trade down, as several QB-needy teams pick up their phones in hopes of jumping into the seventh spot and stealing Teddy Bridgewater.
Lovie Smith and Co. don’t appear to be sold on Mike Glennon as their quarterback of the future, which is partly why they added Josh McCown in free agency.
He is 34 years old and would make a great mentor to a guy like Bridgewater, giving the rookie a chance to work his way into the starting role without being thrown into something he wasn't ready for.
The experts seem to think Taylor Lewan is a possible choice for the Bucs at No. 7. He certainly had the type of combine that justifies him as a top-10 selection.
8. Minnesota Vikings
Jeremiah: Johnny Manziel
Brooks: Aaron Donald
McShay: Justin Gilbert
Miller: Derek Carr
Brinson: Jake Matthews
My Pick: Gilbert
The Vikings need a quarterback badly. They would probably be one of the teams mentioned in the previous slide who try to trade up with the Bucs to snag Bridgewater at No. 7. With the best quarterbacks already yanked off the board, Minnesota may consider reaching for Derek Carr here but would hopefully come to their senses and try for him in later on in the first round instead.
Justin Gilbert is unanimously considered one of the best corners available, although I personally thought Jason Verrett had the most impressive tape of the CBs. Gilbert should go first when you consider he has ideal size at 6'0", 202 pounds for the NFL and is neck-in-neck with Verrett in football ability.
He would be a nice complement on the opposite end of one of last year's first-round picks, CB Xavier Rhodes.
If Manziel, Bortles or Bridgewater is available here, I'd imagine the Vikings take any one of those guys.
9. Buffalo Bills
Jeremiah: Mike Evans
Brooks: Eric Ebron
Kiper: Taylor Lewan
McShay: Jake Matthews
Farrar: Calvin Pryor
Miller: Khalil Mack
My Pick: Anthony Barr
Per B/R's Dan Pompei, rumor has it that the Bills could be interested in trading up for the first pick in the draft. If there's any truth to this, you have to think they have their eye on Clowney or Khalil Mack.
Buffalo is not likely to abandon its investment in EJ Manuel so soon, and Watkins doesn't sound like the player it would be targeting with a trade up to the first spot.
If such a trade never materializes, Buffalo could very likely go with an enticing Plan B in Anthony Barr. He would provide an intriguing pass rush on the outside that could take this defense to the next level.
Manuel needs weapons in the worst way to help give him some early confidence. Mike Evans could help make this offense much more dynamic and would pair nicely alongside Stevie Johnson and Robert Woods.
Of all the picks from above, Pryor seems like the least likely scenario here. I just don't see him as a prospect worthy of a top-10 pick.
10. Detroit Lions
Jeremiah: Justin Gilbert
Brooks: Timmy Jernigan
Kiper: Mike Evans
Burke: Anthony Barr
My Pick: Evans
The Lions did give big money to Golden Tate in free agency, which would make the addition of Mike Evans somewhat of a luxury pick at this point. But he could also turn Detroit's offense into one of the most dangerous units in the NFL.
Just think about what the Bears and Falcons have been able to do with having two dynamic pass-catchers in their offense.
Evans, Tate and Calvin Johnson would make the most dangerous trio of wide receivers in the NFL. Imagine the size mismatches in the secondary. Such possibilities make it hard not to consider Evans with the 10th overall pick.
Cornerback is a big need as well, but with Gilbert gone, it may make sense to address this need later on, especially with the availability of Evans here.
11. Tennessee Titans
Jeremiah: Anthony Barr
Brooks: Justin Gilbert
Burke: Aaron Donald
My Pick: Donald
With the switch to the 3-4 defensive front, a defensive lineman and capable pass-rusher becomes a huge priority for the Titans.
Grabbing Aaron Donald here has to feel good for the organization when you factor in his enormous production at the collegiate level. He is a physical freak who can be unblockable at times for an undersized interior lineman. The key here is that he would have to be allowed to penetrate and not be used as a primary two-gapper, or else his talents will be wasted.
Anthony Barr would also be a nice pick here if he happens to drop out of the top 10. Of all the edge-rushers in this draft, he had the highest speed/weight grade, which averages the player's times in the 40-yard dash, short shuttle and three-cone drill and then factors that time with his weight, per NFL.com.
When it comes to his tape, there are some rough patches, but he’s certainly a positive value outside of the top 10 here.
12. New York Giants
Jeremiah: Eric Ebron
Brooks: Mike Evans
McShay: Taylor Lewan
Farrar: Anthony Barr
Miller: Kony Ealy
Brinson: Aaron Donald
My Pick: Ebron
The Giants have a lot of holes to fill after losing Hakeem Nicks and Justin Tuck. Their offensive line is also a glaring weakness that they may not be able to ignore with this pick.
With that said, if there was a true defensive end with dynamic pass-rush skills available at this point, the Giants would probably consider taking him here.
Eric Ebron is a special football player who can change the dynamic of the Giants offense. If he is the pick, he would help quarterback Eli Manning, who is coming off his worse year as a pro.
13. St. Louis Rams
Jeremiah: Ha Ha Clinton-Dix
McShay: Calvin Pryor
Farrar: Mike Evans
Miller: Taylor Lewan
Brinson: C.J. Mosley
My Pick: Lewan
After snagging Clowney with the second pick, the Rams can now turn their attention toward the future of the offensive line. With the selection of Lewan here, this could be the future replacement for Jake Long, who can't seem to stay healthy at this point in his career.
Lewan's tape does not confirm him to be a blocker who does all the extras like hustle downfield or finish his blocks. In addition, blocking for a run-first quarterback presented a difficult challenge for scouting his pass-protection abilities, given the erratic movements and tendency to break the pocket. This appears to cause opponents to slow-play the rush.
The Rams also need a safety badly. If Calvin Pryor or Ha Ha Clinton-Dix happens to be available here, don't be surprised to see the Rams jump on either one of them.
14. Chicago Bears
Jeremiah: Timmy Jernigan
Brooks: Ra'Shede Hageman
Kiper: Aaron Donald
Farrar: Louis Nix III
Miller: Justin Gilbert
My Pick: Ha Ha Clinton-Dix
The Bears would love to replace the loss of Julius Peppers with this pick, but the right value for a defensive end just isn’t available here. Look for that move to be made in Round 2 or 3—unless of course they trade back into the bottom half of the first round and seek out Dee Ford.
The Bears need help at safety and could improve the back end of their defense by adding a solid center fielder like Clinton-Dix.
It makes sense to take the best safety off the board here considering the talent is so deep at other positions. Clinton-Dix is a well-rounded field general with good size who makes the most of his opportunities for big plays.
He may not be the best athlete at the position, but he shows impressive playmaking instincts and can navigate center field with impressive command.
Interior line seems to be the most pressing need for Chicago, but the available talent may dictate the terms with the 14th overall pick. With Donald already drafted, Jernigan could be too big a risk to take this early, and Nix is not ideal for a 4-3 front. Of the available inside guys left in this scenario, Hageman may be their best option if they absolutely must fill that hole.
15. Pittsburgh Steelers
Jeremiah: Odell Beckham Jr.
Brooks: Darqueze Dennard
Kiper: Justin Gilbert
McShay: Ha Ha Clinton-Dix
Burke: Justin Gilbert
Miller: Kelvin Benjamin
My Pick: C.J. Mosley
There are a few directions the Steelers could go here at No. 15. The youth movement must commence on the defensive side of the ball where there are a lot of areas of need.
Mosley would be a great pickup for the Steelers at No. 15. He is clearly the most complete inside linebacker in the draft and has the versatility to be an every-down guy.
If there is a position in this draft that has a huge drop-off quickly, that position would be inside linebacker. He is by far the best available interior guy and plays a position of need. Pittsburgh can still grab a quality receiver in Round 2 who can end up being a talented starter.
16. Dallas Cowboys
Jeremiah: Aaron Donald
Brooks: Kony Ealy
Kiper: Timmy Jernigan
Burke: Louis Nix III
Farrar: Ha Ha Clinton-Dix
My Pick: Jernigan
For a big man, Timmy Jernigan has impressive fluidity and moves well. He reminds me of a former teammate of mine, Brandon Mebane from Cal.
It would be nice to see Jernigan make more plays behind the line of scrimmage, but he does have the build, strength and athleticism to excel at the next level.
The risk is whether or not he’ll put it all together and become a dominant player. From his tape, it appears as though the Cowboys are drafting a solid starter here. But when you need interior help on the defensive side like Dallas does, you might have to sacrifice great prospects for suitable ones.
Besides, Jernigan does seem to fit the mold of an ideal Tampa 2 player.
17. Baltimore Ravens
Jeremiah: Calvin Pryor
Brooks: Zack Martin
Kiper: Brandin Cooks
McShay: C.J. Mosley
Burke: Taylor Lewan
Miller: Eric Ebron
My Pick: Pryor
The reloading project is currently under way in Baltimore. Last year, the Ravens drafted a safety in the first round, and he struggled at times. They might have to make it back-to-back years where they take a safety with their first pick. The departure of James Ihedigbo in free agency leaves a big hole that Pryor can fill nicely.
He is an aggressive tone-setter on defense who brings a swagger and some big hits to the secondary.
Keep in mind though, there are holes in his game in terms of coverage, awareness and lateral movement, but he should be an asset when taken as a whole.
We’ve seen these types of players have a lot of success in recent years at the NFL level with Dashon Goldson, Kam Chancellor and Donte Whitner. The only question is: Is he worth a first-round grade?
18. New York Jets
Jeremiah: Brandin Cooks
Brooks: Marqise Lee
Kiper: Odell Beckham Jr.
Burke: Darqueze Dennard
Brinson: Mike Evans
My Pick: Lee
With so many receivers in this draft to choose, from it's hard to say which guy the Jets like the most. Beckham seems to be a hot name right now, but I can totally see Marqise Lee being the favorite for the Jets.
He probably is the most talented receiver after the catch in this draft class. He also had one of the more productive college careers of the group.
Brandin Cooks could also be considered here. The Jets seem intent on adding a quick receiver who can stretch the field ever since they lost out on Tavon Austin a year ago.
19. Miami Dolphins
Jeremiah: Zack Martin
Brooks: Xavier Su'a-Filo
My Pick: Jake Matthews
The experts seem to be overwhelmingly in favor of Zack Martin here for the Dolphins. This decision was determined by each because Jake Matthews was not available in their scenarios.
In my mock draft, Matthews is still available after falling much lower in the draft than expected. But every year, the draft is full of surprises like this one. I think the media have Matthews rated higher than NFL teams do, but he still should be taken before Martin.
20. Arizona Cardinals
Jeremiah: Bradley Roby
Brooks: Dee Ford
Kiper: Darqueze Dennard
Burke: Calvin Pryor
My Pick: Derek Carr
When it comes to the expert panel, Dee Ford was the popular choice for the Cardinals here. I do understand the need for outside rushers, but he strikes me as a prospect who could end up struggling with a transition to outside linebacker. He is not a guy I would consider a surefire first-round draft pick.
While Carson Palmer plays out the last few years of his career, the Cardinals have a chance to grab a big-arm prospect in a similar mold to Palmer.
Derek Carr is determined not to follow in his brother’s (David Carr) footsteps by fading away into oblivion in disappointing fashion. Like his brother, Derek has a world-class arm and comes from Fresno State. However, he has the added advantage of learning from his brother’s experience and mentorship regarding the business of the NFL and the quarterback position as a whole.
The big concern is his tendency to shrink under duress to an alarming degree. Poise is a critical trait for an NFL quarterback, and it seems to be one that unfortunately eludes Carr.
21. Green Bay Packers
Jeremiah: C.J. Mosley
Brooks: Calvin Pryor
McShay: Eric Ebron
Miller: Ha Ha Clinton-Dix
My Pick: Darqueze Dennard
The Packers have more pressing needs at other positions beyond cornerback, but I'm guessing they didn't expect a player like Dennard to be available this late. Sometimes you have to go with the best guy on your board.
Besides, in a passing league, can you ever have a surplus of top-quality cover guys? Perhaps a surplus in this area will make up for the deficit at the safety position.
The recent acquisition of Julius Peppers and the re-signing of B.J. Raji take some pressure off the defensive front. Inside linebacker is an area of focus, but the matching talent is not available here if the draft plays out in this way. I doubt the Packers would pass up on C.J. Mosley or Eric Ebron if either should be available at No. 21, and it seems the panel agrees with those sentiments.
22. Philadelphia Eagles
Jeremiah: Darqueze Dennard
Brooks: Bradley Roby
Kiper: Calvin Pryor
Burke: Odell Beckham Jr.
Farrar: Kony Ealy
Brinson: Jason Verrett
My Pick: Brandin Cooks
Chip Kelly and the Eagles are difficult to peg down here, considering we only have a sample size of one year. That year did seem to reveal a strong bias toward Pac-12 prospects in 2013. With that said, Kelly saw what Brandin Cooks can do firsthand while coaching in the Pac-12.
The receiver position suddenly became a pressing need with the recent release of DeSean Jackson. Plus, the Eagles have no idea what type of player Jeremy Maclin will be after returning from an injury that sidelined him all of last season.
With the combination of top-tier production and a blazing sub-4.4 40-yard dash time, it doesn’t matter that Cooks doesn’t show up well on tape. NFL personnel men tend to be blinded by blazing speed and huge numbers in college.
I'm personally not a huge fan of Cooks as an option here, but in an attempt to predict the NFL's tendency, he is likely going to be picked somewhere in the late first round.
He is similar to Jackson in that they are both undersized and incredibly fast, but Jackson has the edge in his ability to make defenders miss after the catch. Cooks seems like more of a straight-line runner who lacks the agility to be truly elusive, but his explosive speed should be a dangerous addition to Philly's high-powered offense.
23. Kansas City Chiefs
Jeremiah: Marqise Lee
Brooks: Odell Beckham Jr.
McShay: Beckham Jr.
Farrar: Beckham Jr.
Miller: Ra'Shede Hageman
Brinson: Beckham Jr.
My Pick: Beckham Jr.
The Chiefs could consider one of the many talented receivers available at this pick, or they may opt for a corner. At some point throughout the draft, they will need to address these areas.
Alex Smith needs some more weapons, and Odell Beckham Jr. is a playmaker with incredible potential. Most analysts believe that he is the better of the two receivers from LSU as he makes a late push into first-round consideration.
It seems most of the experts agree that the Chiefs will be looking to add a wide receiver. The questions now become: Which receiver do they prefer, and which ones will actually be available?
24. Cincinnati Bengals
Jeremiah: Kyle Fuller
Brooks: Ryan Shazier
Burke: Kony Ealy
Farrar: Jason Verrett
Miller: Darqueze Dennard
Brinson: Bradley Roby
My Pick: Dee Ford
I can understand the pick of Ryan Shazier here for the Bengals. They have been in need of a speedy linebacker who can cover just about any position on offense.
However, with Michael Johnson moving onto a more lucrative contract and James Harrison being released earlier this week, a talented young pass-rusher at an affordable price could be a wise move for the Bengals at No. 24.
Dee Ford is quick and explosive despite being undersized at 6’2”, 252 pounds. He’s been climbing up draft boards ever since his impressive performance all week during the Senior Bowl, where he capped it off with being named MVP of the game.
The Bengals could be looking at a defensive tackle, but there isn’t a prospect who fits the bill here.
If you’re thinking Ra’Shede Hageman is a good option here, I would disagree based on his lumbering and lazy quality consistent with his tape. He does intrigue teams with his size and strength, but it rarely translated into disruption on a football field. With that said, teams can certainly value his upside more than his questionable effort and quickness.
25. San Diego Chargers
Jeremiah: Louis Nix III
Brooks: Kyle Fuller
Kiper: Bradley Roby
McShay: Jason Verrett
My Pick: Verrett
It seems the panel is in agreement with at least the position San Diego should be considering here.
The Chargers are in a great spot to grab whom I believe is the most impressive cornerback in this draft class in terms of his tape and athleticism.
The only question about Jason Verrett projecting to the next level is his less-than-ideal height, measuring just under the 5’10” mark. Even though he is short in stature, he reduces that concern with an incredible vertical jump of 39 inches.
He is incredible at breaking on the ball and knocking down passes. He’s also a physical tackler who rarely misses.
26. Cleveland Browns
Jeremiah: Teddy Bridgewater
Brooks: Jason Verrett
Kiper: Kelvin Benjamin
McShay: Brandin Cooks
Burke: Derek Carr
Farrar: Xavier Su'a-Filo
Miller: Marqise Lee
My Pick: Bradley Roby
Roby is a rare physical talent with a few off-the-field issues to contend with. His resume on film is inconsistent, as he seems to turn it on and off at times. If you put this guy in the hands of the right coach and motivator, he has the assets to become a star in the NFL.
Are his potential character concerns likely to clash with what Cleveland is trying to build? Quite possibly.
Jeremiah has the most intriguing scenario here with Teddy Bridgewater sliding all the way down to the Browns at No. 26. This is unlikely considering a team would probably trade up to draft a sliding quarterback long before he falls this far.
27. New Orleans Saints
Jeremiah: Dee Ford
Brooks: C.J. Mosley
McShay: Morgan Moses
Burke: Ryan Shazier
Farrar: Kyle Fuller
My Pick: Kyle Van Noy
The Saints can go in several directions here, as evidenced by the panel of experts.
More than anything, though, they need pass-rushers on defense. Many people have Kyle Van Noy going in the second or even third round, but I see nothing but a player with first-round talent and a productive career at BYU. I'm not sure he will be a first-round pick, but I am sure he deserves to be.
If you were to bottle up what Tyrann Mathieu has and infuse it into an outside linebacker's body, you would essentially create Van Noy. I believe he will ultimately have a better NFL career than Anthony Barr and could be a top candidate for rookie of the year in 2014-15.
It's hard to imagine any scenario where the Saints don't think defensively in the first round, even with them needing a wide receiver at some point. Other possible candidates include Stephon Tuitt, Ra'Shede Hageman or Dominique Easley.
28. Carolina Panthers
Jeremiah: Kelvin Benjamin
Brooks: Cyrus Kouandjio
Burke: Morgan Moses
Miller: Zack Martin
My Pick: Allen Robinson
The Panthers must give quarterback Cam Newton weapons in this draft. The sooner they do this, the better. Fortunately for Carolina, this draft is deep in receivers, which should give it a plethora of options to pick from even at No. 28. Don’t be surprised if the Panthers elect to grab two receivers before the draft is said and done.
A lot of people are underestimating the potential and overall talent of one of my favorite receivers in the draft, Penn State’s Allen Robinson. At 6’2”, 220 pounds, this guy has all the makings of an All-Pro wide receiver at the next level. He is one of the more dangerous weapons with the ball in his hand and can turn a quick slant into a 60-yard touchdown, breaking four or five tackles along the way.
Robinson had quality hands, but he will drop the occasional ball. In many ways he shows similarities to the Cowboys’ Dez Bryant and the Colts’ Hakeem Nicks.
29. New England Patriots
Jeremiah: Xavier Su'a-Filo
Brooks: Louis Nix III
Kiper: Ra'Shede Hageman
Burke: Dee Ford
Farrar: Eric Ebron
Miller: Jace Amaro
My Pick: Hageman
When All-Pro tackle Vince Wilfork went down with injury last year, the Patriots deteriorated defensively to the point where they finished last in the league in rush defense. Luckily, the Patriots and Wilfork have managed to work out their differences and agreed to terms on a new, more cap-friendly contract.
As mentioned in the video, Hageman reminds some of the one-time Patriot great, Richard Seymour. Strength and power are certainly traits this guy has in abundance. If he can become a consistent player in terms of effort, his upside is something to get excited about.
30. San Francisco 49ers
Jeremiah: Jason Verrett
Brooks: Brandin Cooks
Kiper: Kyle Fuller
McShay: Louis Nix III
Brinson: Kelvin Benjamin
My Pick: Benjamin
Kelvin Benjamin has the size and athleticism to dominate in the NFL, especially in the red zone, which happens to be an area the 49ers could use significant improvement. But if this prospect is to ever reach his full potential, he'll need to improve his hands and route running.
At the very least, he would provide Colin Kaepernick a huge target that can haul in passes like a power forward.
The 49ers could also use this pick to address their need at cornerback, which has become a heightened priority after Chris Culliver was charged with a felony hit and run, per Bill Williamson of ESPN.com.
This is bad timing for the 49ers after the release of Carlos Rogers and losing both Tarell Brown and Donte Whitner to free agency—nearly the entire secondary of the 49ers is being overhauled this offseason. They did bring in safety Antoine Bethea and corner Chris Cook, but depth and youth are in order in the back end of that defense.
31. Denver Broncos
Jeremiah: Ryan Shazier
Brooks: Travis Swanson
Kiper: Chris Borland
McShay: Kony Ealy
Burke: Xavier Su'a-Filo
Farrar: Timmy Jernigan
My Pick: Shazier
The Buckeyes produce back-to-back selections in the latter portion of the first round. Like Roby, there’s no doubt Shazier is the type of physical freak who comes around once every few years. But this athletic dynamo is more impressive in shorts than he is in uniform.
The Broncos could use serious help at the linebacker position. Inside linebacker is their primary need, but Shazier has the skills to play any of the linebacker positions. His explosiveness and sideline-to-sideline ability should give the Broncos a significant upgrade on defense—especially when paired with all of the big-name free-agent acquisitions over the last few weeks.
32. Seattle Seahawks
Jeremiah: Morgan Moses
Brooks: Kelvin Benjamin
Kiper: Stephon Tuitt
McShay: Xavier Su'a-Filo
Burke: Brandin Cooks
Farrar: David Yankey
Miller: Cyrus Kouandjio
My Pick: Moses
The Seahawks should be a more explosive passing attack in 2014 with a healthy Percy Harvin, but they also need to replace the losses of Golden Tate and Sidney Rice at some point in this draft.
Morgan Moses is an underrated tackle who I felt had the most impressive tape of all tackles not named Greg Robinson. Effort and consistency are the primary assets in his game. He also knows how to completely shut down talented pass-rushers—which is a valuable asset to have against the formidable NFL West defenses.
Combine results courtesy of NFL.com.
Ryan Riddle is a former NFL player who now writes for Bleacher Report. Follow him on Twitter for more draft info.
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