The 2010 NFL Draft is less than three months away, and there is quite a bit to talk about. This is your typical first round mock draft, and of course this does not count for possible draft day trades or anything along those lines. As you will see, this is a defensive draft, and most of the first round is taken by defensive players. Here's my list, and I hope you enjoy.
This one isn't as much a no-brainer as one might think. While Suh is the best front seven player available, the Rams should also consider Eric Berry, the star safety from Tennessee. Ronald Bartell led the secondary with a mere 61 tackles, and Berry would surely make that number higher upon arrival. Suh would put a big body on the Rams line, one that also consists of Leonard Little and Chris Long, who had the most and second most sacks on the Rams, respectively, though combined they had just 11.5 sacks among them. Berry wouldn't be a bad choice, but Suh just makes sense here.
When your interior defensive line consists of Grady Jackson and Sammie Lee Hill, you need an upgrade. Jackson is 37 and Hill isn't anything special. Gerald McCoy is. He's that player whose last name isn't Suh, but is still a monster. In a defensive minded draft, the Lions can't pass up on him.
The Bucs are bad. Really bad. Eric Berry can solve some of those problems. He is versatile, and you're not going to worry about off the field problems, much like 2008 first round pick Aqib Talib. The Bucs have a decent safety situation with Sabby Piscitelli and Tanard Jackson, but Berry would surely solidify a secondary that also includes star Ronde Barber.
Phillip Daniels is 36, and Morgan is the number one end on the market. It makes sense, especially considering how dominant Morgan was this past year. If Brian Orakpo plays like he did last year and Albert Haynesworth decides to show up this year, Morgan could be a great fit in Washington under the Mike Shanahan regime.
The Chiefs are essentially in a huge defensive hole. It doesn't take much more explaining than that. McClain is a fabulous linebacker, and the Chiefs will find a place for him, because he will be an upgrade from Corey Mays. Having linebackers consisting of Demorrio Williams, Tamba Hali, Mike Vrabel and McClain would put the Chiefs front seven in a much better position. And with Romeo Crennel coming to town...
It seems like a stretch, but Matt Hasselback isn't getting younger, and the Seahawks fans are having less and less reasons to buy tickets. A top 10 selection of a QB will excite any fan of a team, just like the Jets selection of Mark Sanchez last season. Bradford and Jimmy Clausen are essentially the top QB's on the market in this draft, and with an aging Hasselback, the Seahawks will pull an Aaron Rodgers on us, just a bit earlier in the draft.
The offensive lineman is never the popular pick, but Okung would make a great fit in Cleveland. After the extremely sudden emergence of Jerome Harrison as a replacement to Jamal Lewis, Okung would be a fabulous right tackle along side Joe Thomas, the third pick in 2007. Okung is known for being incredibly rough and frightening on the line, so maybe he could do something completely unprecedented, like take the Browns to the playoffs (yeah right...).
It's only been two years since the Darren McFadden (disaster) era started, but Al Davis can't take a chance at letting someone as talented as Spiller go through his draft pick. Ever since the whole Robert Gallery thing, Davis hasn't been that into drafting o-lineman (he's only taken three since 2004). Even though Trent Williams would probably be more beneficial to the development of the team, you have to remember that the Raiders don't develop. They just get players Al Davis thinks are good, and play completely unstructured football. That's why the Raiders are going to take Spiller, because Davis is crazy!
Clausen was the epitome of a freshman with a lot of talent being used at his worst capacity, as in all of the 2007 season for Notre Dame. He was better in 2008 and actually played very well last year, and in my opinion kind of went under the radar because Notre Dame underachieved. The Bills went with a combination of Trent Edwards, Ryan Fitzpatrick and Brian Brohm. Now if the Bills want to sell about 377 tickets next year, they would be taking a step towards that goal if they don't draft a QB. Clausen is ready to play in the NFL, and the Bills have a chance to make him a very good QB.
The Broncos get the 10th pick from the Bears, and they will take a bit of a chance on the very talented Rutgers tackle, their second offensive lineman taken in the first round in the last three years (Ryan Clady in 2008). Davis is known for his unbelievable pass protecting skills, but apparently has had weight and character problems in the past. He looks like a bit of a project, but he could become a true star if he does pan out.
Thomas is one of the best players available in the draft this year, and the eight interceptions didn't hurt his reputation. Gerald Alexander is a decent safety, but Thomas would be a huge force at strong safety for a Jaguars team that is close to being playoff bound.
Bowman is a monster. That's all the fins need to know when they draft him. He was the most dominant linebacker at linebacker u this year, and Bowman could take over for Jason Taylor, who has one or two years left at most in Miami. If the Dolphins want to plan big for the future, Bowman would go well with those plans.
The 49ers have names in their secondary, but they don't have much production. Dre Bly and Nate Clements were good at one time, but Bly is aging, Clements production is going down and both had injury riddled 2009 seasons. Joe Haden was simply a monster in Florida, and he could really help the 49ers out on man to man coverage.
Mays is an absolute monster at safety, nearly winning the Jim Thorpe award in 2008. The Seahawks have a lot of needs, and solidifying their defense is one of them. Pete Carroll will go back to his USC roots and take one of his most productive players.
The Giants over the last few years have been known to have one of the most consistent offensive lines in the NFL. But after an incredibly disappointing finish to the 2009 season, Sean Mara said that nobody was secure and there would be changes. Williams is a massive force at the line, and could take over for Kareem McKenzie at right tackle, if the Giants choose to make a big change.
Price has recently emerged as one of the top defensive tackle options in the draft. The 49ers currently have Aubrayo Franklin as their nose tackle, and Price could serve as an upgrade. The 49ers could also consider Syracuse's Arthur Jones or Penn State's Jared Odrick.
Besides often being associated with a popular book reading product, Sergio Kindle is a beast. He's agile and can make big plays, and the Titans will get a lot of production from him. The Titans are not very strong at outside linebacker, so someone like Kindle could boost that significantly.
Dunlap is top 10 talent, but off the field problems have put him on the lower level of the first round. With Brett Kaisel getting a little older, Dunlap seems like a good gamble that the Steelers can take. He's incredibly explosive and has loads of potential. Could end up being a phenomenal selection for the Steelers down the road.
It might seem like a bit of a stretch, but Ducasse is the top guard on the market, and the Falcons are in a bit of a need for a guard. Ducasse is huge, and dominated the UMass line for quite a few years. The Falcons could essentially trade down a few spots to get him, but they would be taking a chance in that he could get picked anywhere from 20 to 25, but the Falcons would be filling a big hole by taking the big Haitian guard.
This is not implying that the Texans should give up on Dunta Robinson, but this is the first time he's been truly healthy in three years, and he turn any heads. He was decent, but Robinson would help that secondary a lot. A big time player for Bobby Bowden, Robinson would get the Texans where they should have been this year: the playoffs.
Spikes was once considered a top 10 pick, but his stock has fell a bit. The Bengals need a middle linebacker, and though Spikes played inside linebacker in college, its essentially the same thing, and Spikes could become a star. The Bengals showed how good they could have been over the last three years this year, and with the addition of a good middle linebacker, could become an amazing franchise.
Pierre-Paul was also not always ranked among the top, but he has emerged as one of the better ends, and the Patriots have the resources to take a chance on him. He's big and strong, everything you're looking for in an end. Can Pierre-Paul play with the likes of Ty Warren and Jarvis Green? Possibly.
The Packers have a good receiving corp, consisting of Greg Jennings, Donald Driver and Jordy Nelson, but Golden Tate would make it much better, possibly making Aaron Rodgers an MVP caliber QB. Tate had amazing success at Notre Dame, and the Packers would make him feel right at home.
The Eagles are a team on the rise, and Carter could make a great impact on this team. Carter could play either outside linebacker, splitting some time with either Mosie Fokou or Will Witherspoon. Carter was a fabulous linebacker in college, and he could make a great fit with the Eagles.
Gilyard, as many Cincinnati fans know well, is a true beast. He was one of, if not the most productive receiver in college football last year, and any team would be excited to have him. The Ravens are a team that has receiving problems. Derrick Mason is very good, but Mark Clayton and Demetrius Williams are nothing special, and that's about it. If they want Joe Flacco to succeed, they're going to need to put people like Marty Gilyard around him.
Bulaga is one of the top offensive tackles available, and the Cardinals need all the offensive line help they can get if they expect to make it to the playoffs with Matt Leinart behind the helm for 16 games. Bulaga was a big force in getting Iowa so high up last year, and with the Cardinals, he can do the same thing.
Jones might not be first round material, but he's the best available safety, and it's not a massive stretch. Jones has some size and is very fast, things that Jerry Jones likes a lot. Plus he's got Jerry's last name, which doesn't hurt. He might split some playing time with Gerald Sensabaugh in his first few seasons and if he is good could be in Dallas for a while.
With LaDainian Tomlinson coming towards the end of his hall of fame career, and Darren Sproles appearing too small to do any serious damage in this league, Jahvid Best would make sense for the Chargers. First of all, he's in state already, which would pump up the fans. Also, he was basically the heisman favorite for the first three of four games of the season. He's explosive. Fun to watch. Remind you of another San Diego running back?
Williams has emerged as a strong defensive tackle in this draft. The Jets need a strong nose tackle and a strong defensive end. If they can find those two things, they will become a true dynasty. Williams is probably the best they can get with the 29th pick, so it's worth the try. If they pick right, they could be looking at a golden age in Jets football.
Benn is a guy whose stock has been rising lately. The Vikings don't exactly need a wide receiver, but adding Benn would establish them as having one of the better receiving corps in the league (they already have Bernard Berrian, Sidney Rice and Percy Harvin). Benn is pretty big, and very strong, and if Brett Favre decides to stay around for another year (or two), he will have another good receiver to throw to.
Odrick is a big defensive tackle from Penn State, kind of what the Saints need. They have that high flying offense any team would dream for, but their defensive line could use a little bit of tweaking. He can play tackle or end, so he is extremely versatile. If Odrick can come through for the Saints, they could be seeing themselves in a few more Super Bowls.
Hughes was the heart and soul of that nearly undefeated TCU team, and he will look to take his big time play to one of the best teams in the NFL, if not the best. Hughes doesn't look huge, but he's a slim 255 pounds, and he is an absolute monster on the field. The Colts can put him on either outside linebacker position and look to have success.