2010 NFL Mock Draft: First Round (Jake Locker Not Included)
Here's the latest update of my 2010 NFL mock draft. The draft order is based on my season record and playoff projections. There are a few players that I couldn't get photos for; I put up a player from that team instead if they had no search results. Tune in next week for another update of my mock draft, and feel free to comment and tell me what you think of my picks—and whether you like your favorite team's pick.
1. St. Louis Rams: Jimmy Clausen, QB, Notre Dame
The Rams are a wreck, and Marc Bulger should retire now before he hurts himself even more. Kyle Boller isn't the answer at QB either.
Keith Null threw five interceptions in his debut, and guess who his QB coach was? Yep, the biggest NFL bust ever: Ryan Leaf.
In short, the Rams are desperate for a QB.
Clausen finished his junior season at Notre Dame with 28 touchdowns, four interceptions, and a 68 percent completion rate.
If Notre Dame had a decent defense and a better coach, they would have been a BCS team.
Clausen, despite his critics saying that he can't lead his team to wins, led his team to great near-comebacks, specifically against USC.
2. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Ndamukong Suh, DT, Nebraska
Suh had a spectacular Big 12 Championship performance. He exposed Colt McCoy, notching four and a half sacks on the day. He even got invited as a Heisman finalist and placed fourth in the voting.
He has 12 sacks on the season, and he can play in a 4-3 or 3-4 scheme, which will benefit him in the NFL. He has been compared to Kevin Williams.
3. Cleveland Browns: Eric Berry, S, Tennessee (Jr.)
The Browns need major help on defense, and Berry is too big of a talent to pass up.
The Browns need to improve their pass defense, and taking arguably the best 2010 NFL Draft prospect would create dramatic improvement in the Browns' secondary.
Berry had 14 career interceptions at Tennessee and returned three of them for touchdowns. He has no reason to stay in Tennessee for his senior year.
4. Detroit Lions: Gerald McCoy, DT, Oklahoma (Jr.)
The Lions have terrible rush defense, allowing 128.4 rushing yards per game and 4.9 yards per carry this season.
Since Berry is taken now, the Lions will go with a DT.
McCoy is an elite defensive tackle—he has great intangibles, and is explosive with high stamina.
They should take Russell Okung, but offensive line coach George Yarno somehow approves of Jeff Backus' performance this season.
5. Oakland Raiders: Bruce Campbell, T, Maryland (Jr.)
Al Davis loves players that can run a fast 40 time, and Campbell can run a 4.9, which is very fast for a tackle.
Davis should draft Okung as he is a better tackle, but Davis values 40 times over talent.
The Raiders need offensive line help badly, and Davis will probably not draft a QB, since Bruce Gradkowski has been doing pretty well recently.
Davis still probably believes that JaMarcus Russell still has potential, although Russell is one of the biggest busts ever.
6. Kansas City Chiefs: Russell Okung, T, Oklahoma State
The Chiefs have no offensive line, and Matt Cassel will continue to get beaten up if the they don't take a tackle now and move Branden Albert back to guard.
Okung is a rare gem of a tackle prospect. He has amazing leadership skills and is a four-year starter. He can be expected to start on day one.
7. San Francisco 49ers (from Carolina): Joe Haden, CB, Florida (Jr.)
Haden is the best cornerback in the nation, and leads Florida's dominant defense.
The 49ers would benefit from his services as they need to improve their secondary. Nate Clements is injured too often, and they need another reliable corner.
8. Buffalo Bills: Sam Bradford, QB, Oklahoma
With Gerald McCoy off the board, the Bills can address their rush defense issues later and take a QB here.
Ryan Fitzpatrick isn't the answer under center.
Bradford comes with some red flags, such as playing in a spread shotgun offense and staying healthy. The Bills will be hoping Bradford can return to his old form.
9. Washington Redskins: Bryan Bulaga, T, Iowa (Jr.)
QB Jason Campbell has improved over the course of the season. Meanwhile, Chris Samuels is injured, and the Redskins need help on the offensive line. If they don't get it, Campbell could easily start struggling again.
10. Seattle Seahawks: C.J. Spiller, RB, Clemson
At this point, this would be a reach, but I think Spiller will be a standout in the NFL Combine, and his draft stock will go up and make him a top 15 prospect.
The Seahawks need a RB. Forsett has done well, but Edgerrin James will likely retire, and Julius Jones is not good. Plus, Forsett isn't the type of RB who will be able to handle the carries alone.
11. Denver Broncos: Rolando McClain, LB, Alabama (Jr.)
The Broncos have a hole at inside linebacker.
McClain is the top inside linebacker in this year's draft, and he's coming off a great performance in the SEC Championship against Florida.
This is a perfect scenario for the Broncos.
12. Pittsburgh Steelers: Earl Thomas, S, Texas (So.)
The Steelers' offensive line is hurting badly, but the tackle class is weak this year, and none of the options remaining are worthy of being drafted this high.
The Steelers can go for a value pick here. Ryan Clark is a free agent, so the Steelers will need a free safety.
Thomas has had a phenomenal year. He has eight interceptions returned for 149 yards and two of them have been returned for touchdowns.
He and Troy Polamalu would form an invincible safety duo.
13. Houston Texans: Taylor Mays, S, USC
The Texans need help in the secondary, and Mays is the best available in that area. He's a hard hitter, and he and Bernard Pollard would form a good safety combo.
14. San Francisco 49ers: Jerry Hughes, DE/LB, TCU
Hughes has got to be one of the most underrated players in college football. He is a two-time first-team All-American, and the 49ers need help on their rush defense, and Hughes can play both DE and OLB and plays in a 3-4 defense at TCU just like the 49ers have, so he would be a perfect fit. Manny Lawson is a bust and needs to be replaced.
15. Atlanta Falcons: Sean Weatherspoon, LB, Missouri
The Falcons need an outside linebacker as an upgrade over Mike Peterson.
Weatherspoon has top-15 talent, and could start for the Falcons right away. The Falcons need to improve their struggling defense.
16. Tennessee Titans: Derrick Morgan, DE, Georgia Tech (Jr.)
Kyle Vanden Bosch is a free agent at the end of the season, as are several other defensive ends on the Titans.
Morgan leads Georgia Tech with 12 sacks and would be a great fit for the Titans' rush defense.
17. Jacksonville Jaguars: Tim Tebow, QB, Florida
This is the only pick that's a given. The Jaguars are 7-7, but still can't sell out any of their home games.
Owner Wayne Weaver wants to draft Tebow in order to bring in more fans just like the Vikings got more when they signed Brett Favre.
Since Tebow is from Florida just like the Jaguars, picking Tebow would be convenient for him and the team.
Even if Tebow is a bust, the Jaguars will be selling a lot more seats with a big name like Tebow.
18. Dallas Cowboys: Trent Williams, T, Oklahoma
Williams is the anchor of Oklahoma's offensive line and was named to the AP All-American third team.
Flozell Adams is old, allows lots of sacks, and commits lots of false start penalties. He's obviously not the Pro Bowl tackle he used to be, and he should be replaced.
19. New York Jets: Dez Bryant, WR, Oklahoma State
The Jets need a wide receiver because Braylon Edwards has been a disappointment. He is extremely talented, but he drops way too many passes, so the Jets will not pay to re-sign him.
Mark Sanchez has no receiving weapons, and that doesn't help his rookie campaign at all.
Bryant got suspended for an NCAA violation, but that shouldn't affect his draft stock, as he is still the most talented receiver in college football.
20. Baltimore Ravens: Golden Tate, WR, Notre Dame
The Ravens need a receiver badly, since Derrick Mason will probably retire and Mark Clayton is not reliable.
These factors are definitely contributing to Flacco's passing struggles.
Tate is an All-American WR, and is a fast runner with good hands.
21. Miami Dolphins: Damian Williams, WR, USC (Jr.)
The Dolphins need a receiver, and while Davone Bess has had shining moments, Ted Ginn Jr. is obviously a bust.
Williams plays in a pro-style offense at USC, and should do very well in the NFL with his great work ethic.
22. New York Giants: Ras-I Dowling, S/CB, Virginia (Jr.)
Dowling is a cornerback who can also play free safety, and the Giants need depth in the secondary.
23. Arizona Cardinals: Charles Brown, T, USC
Brown is a great tackle, and the Cardinals need one badly.
Levi Brown has been terrible, and Mike Gandy is a free agent and is unlikely to be re-signed.
24. Seattle Seahawks (from Denver): Anthony Davis, T, Rutgers (Jr.)
Davis (#81 in this photo) is a great tackle, and Walter Jones is 34 and on IR yet again.
Jones needs to be replaced so Matt Hasselbeck can get some protection.
25. New England Patriots: Jahvid Best, RB, Cal (Jr.)
The Patriots need an RB. Fred Taylor is old, Sammy Morris constantly gets injured, and Laurence Maroney is improving but hasn't proven he can be a No. 1 RB.
Best is an explosive, speedy RB who is hard to tackle.
26. Green Bay Packers: Joseph Barksdale, T, LSU (Jr.)
Barksdale has had a great year at LSU, and the Packers need a tackle to replace Chad Clifton, who will be a free agent.
The offensive line struggled badly the first half of the season. While they are now improving, it would still be foolish to not draft a tackle if there is one valuable enough in the first round.
Barksdale is a first-round talent.
27. San Diego Chargers- Terrence Cody, DT, Alabama
The Chargers need a nose tackle, and Jamal Williams had a season-ending injury. He's 34, and he has very little left in the tank.
Cody plays in a 3-4 defense similar to the Chargers' scheme, so he would be a great replacement for Williams.
28. Philadelphia Eagles: Mike Iupati, G, Idaho
The Eagles are having issues in the interior up front, and the Andrews brothers aren't what they used to be.
Iupati is a rare first-round talent that Andy Reid won't be able to pass up.
29. Minnesota Vikings: Ryan Mallett, QB, Arkansas (So.)
Favre will re-sign with the Vikings for one more year, but the Vikings need to draft a successor. Sage Rosenfels is, at best, a stopgap measure.
Mallett has been doing great at Arkansas since transferring from Michigan. He has thrown for 3,425 yards, 29 touchdowns, and only seven interceptions.
He hasn't answered any questions about whether he will go to the NFL early, so he's on my radar until he announces he's staying at Arkansas.
He isn't the kind of QB that will likely produce right away, but given some time, he has shown the potential for amazing results.
He can also benefit just like Aaron Rodgers did by sitting on the bench for a little while and watching Favre play.
30. Indianapolis Colts: Greg Hardy, DE, Ole Miss
Robert Mathis will be a free agent in 2011, so the Colts will need a DE.
They don't have any needs now, so why not look ahead to the future?
Hardy is a strong DE who is injury-prone, but very fast and explosive.
31. Cincinnati Bengals: Jermaine Gresham, TE, Oklahoma
Gresham is easily the best TE in college football. The Bengals need another receiving threat to take the double-teaming heat off of Chad Ochocinco, and because they recently lost a receiver.
R.I.P. Chris Henry (1983-2009)
32. New Orleans Saints: Travis Lewis, LB, Oklahoma (So.)
The Saints are my pick to win the Super Bowl.
They could use an upgrade at linebacker, and they never had the chance to take one in 2009, as they did not have any picks in the second and third rounds.