With the bulk of free agency out of the way and more than two weeks passing since the last time I posted a mock, I figured now is a good time to update it.
Not only has free agency had an impact, but some front offices' subtle hints have also contributed to this update. This is probably the worst time to draw up a mock since tomorrow something could happen in free agency that completely throws off the rest of the picks, but oh well.
1) St Louis Rams- Sam Bradford QB (previous pick: Sam Bradford)
St. Louis already has their number one jersey drawn up with Bradford's name on it. The money's too big for DT, their D-line would be way too over-invested in, and Bradford built too much muscle this offseason for them to pass him up.
2) Detroit Lions- Russell Okung OT (previous pick: Ndamukong Suh)
This is where things get interesting. It's always funny to see every year how much effect the big board has on everyone's mocks, but the closer and closer the draft gets people start coming back down to reality (myself included). I had them picking Suh here because he's a beast, but this is a deep class on defense.
A star LT in the NFL is the most priceless commodity a team can have, and even though Okung comes with no guarantee of being the next Walter Jones, he's still the best bet at LT in the draft. If he can help provide Stafford with even just a little more time to throw I think he has a bigger team impact than Suh.
Even if Suh had a phenomenal season and grabbed a sack per game, the extra time Okung could provide Stafford would still be more important. Suh's sacks would result in the offense getting the ball more, but if you're offense can't do anything with it, what is the point of having it. This decision has very little to do with Detroit's free agent signings. I think that helped them to make this choice easier, but they could still use a DT. I just can't see Stafford surviving another season without some protection.
3) Tampa Bay Bucs- Ndamukong Suh DT (previous pick: Gerald McCoy)
No need to ramble on with this one. Tampa would love to see Suh fall but even if he doesn't, they will be happy taking McCoy.
4) Washington Redskins- Jimmy Clausen QB (previous pick: Russell Okung)
I'm not jumping on any bandwagons.
Most people who have the Skins taking Clausen here have Bradford first, Suh second, and McCoy third.
The only reason I'm putting Clausen here now is because Okung is off the board. I agree that the smartest move for them to make at this point would be to draft an OT, but I think Shanahan wants his QB now!
If Okung goes second I can see him using that as an excuse for why he picked a QB over a LT, because none of the other tackles would have been worth it. If Okung doesn't get picked second, he's definitely the right move here. Although I'd rather see Clausen go here so the Seahawks aren't even tempted to pick him up at six.
5) Kansas City Chiefs- Gerald McCoy DT (previous pick: Anthony Davis)
I know some 90 some-odd percent of all of the Chiefs fans want Eric Berry here.
This will not happen with your line-minded Pioli. He would have taken the best OT here had McCoy not fallen, but he will jump all over McCoy at five. It may not be what you wanted, but it's hard to complain about getting one of if not the beast player in the entire draft.
6) Seattle Seahawks- Eric Berry S (previous pick: Eric Berry)
We were this close Seattle. We almost nabbed ourselves Gerald McCoy, but it's probably better that we didn't.
With the departure of Deon Grant, the Seahawks have a gaping hole to fill at safety. I can't imagine Carroll wanting Thomas to fill that hole. It'll either be Mays or Berry and with the best OT off the board already, Seattle will pick up the best defensive back in the draft and wait until 14 to pick up their starting LT.
Then again, it's not far fetched to see this or the 14th pick traded. It's not far fetched really to see any of the top five picks traded either, but I'm only working with the draft order I have at the present time.
If a trade were to take place that moved one or both of Seattle's picks back, I can see us drafting a LT first and then Mays second, but with Berry available at six, he's hard to pass up.
7) Cleveland Browns- Joe Haden CB (previous pick: Joe Haden)
With Clausen off the board, Holmgren will definitely wait until a later round to look at QB. At this point, they go for the best available player.
Joe's original 40-time was not very impressive, making a lot of people move him out of their top 10, but he has redeemed himself with a sub 4.4 40-time. Even with the first slow 40-time you have to look at him as a football player.
The dude is beyond a doubt a shutdown corner. Seven's high for a corner but he'll have an instant impact.
8) Oakland Raiders- Bruce Campbell OT (previous pick: Bruce Campbell)
Definitely an Al Davis move. Draft a guy an entire round before he has to. Seems like the most logical thing that will happen.
9) Buffalo Bills- Bryan Bulaga OT (previous pick: Jimmy Clausen)
With Clausen gone, the simple pick is OT. The difficult decision is deciding who the second best OT in the draft is. In my opinion and I think the Bills will agree, it is Bulaga. He has great footwork, great pass blocking, but the only problem is tiny arms.
He is still worth the pick though.
10) Jacksonville Jaguars- Derrick Morgan DE (previous pick: Derrick Morgan)
Just because Jacksonville picked up Kampman in the offseason doesn't mean he will solve all the problems. Even if Kampman has a comeback season, their sack totals would still be mediocre. They need to bring in some young talent at the DE position. The best, proven DE in the draft is Morgan. They could go JPP but Morgan's the safe bet here.
11) Denver Broncos- Rolando McClain ILB (previous pick: Dez Bryant)
He's had some poor workouts but either way, Denver could use some help defending the run game. If you want to base your decision on workouts, then he is not the guy, but I think any intelligent team weighs a player's college career just a smidgen higher than his workouts.
I originally had Bryant here because I thought a deal would get done with Seattle in no time for Marshall. The decision could still very easily be Bryant. It doesn't seem like any other teams are that interested in Marshall which may give Seattle the confidence to wait until it comes down to actually drafting to make a trade for Marshall. If a trade happens, the obvious choice is Bryant, but if it doesn't happen then Denver will go with McClain.
12) Miami Dolphins- Dez Bryant WR (previous pick: Jason Pierre-Paul)
The Miami Dolphins have made it very clear in past drafts that they are not afraid to draft a WR in the first round.
Ted Ginn Jr. just isn't the weapon that Chad Henne needs. They could wait until later to draft a WR and pick up Pierre-Paul with this pick, but that could be risky.
JPP is a beast but potential doesn't always pan out. If Bryant falls past Denver, Bryant would make an immediate impact. Even though people say there's a risk behind it because of his suspension, I still say you have more a risk of JPP being a bust than a situation come up at the NFL level where lying will get Bryant suspended for the entire season.
13) San Francisco 49'ers- C.J. Spiller RB (previous pick: C.J. Spiller)
The Niners might be tempted to grab an OT here, but with only two real top OT's off the board, they will feel pretty safe that one of the other two top names will still be around at 17. They would rather take that risk than risking the chance of Seattle picking him up at 14 (even though as a Seahawk fan I hope we don't even consider Spiller).
14) Seattle Seahawks- Trent Williams OT (previous pick: Bryan Bulaga)
Thank goodness Spiller's off the board.
With so many other more basic needs to fill before considering a running back, Spiller gone at 13 is the best thing that could happen to us. If the draft order stays this way and we have already picked up our starting safety, then the move here will be OT.
A lot of people have Davis ahead of Williams, but with Williams' speed/quick feet and Davis' possible injury concerns and only decent pass blocking, I think Williams is a better fit in the new scheme.
15) New York Giants- Jason Pierre-Paul DE (previous pick: Rolando McClain)
With McClain off the board, I don't know if they will go after Kindle here and try to find someone to move to the Mike backer spot, or if they will just address the defensive line.
16) Tennessee Titans- Carlos Dunlap DE (previous pick: Carlos Dunlap)
I know JPP is still available, but like I said before, the closer we get to draft day the closer we get to reality.
JPP is a beast but unproven. He is full of potential but in order to replace KVB they are going to go with Dunlap who can make an immediate impact. They will not be concerned with his off-field issues.
They will probably be secretly praising his off-field issues because those issues are the only reason he's available this late in the draft. Had that not happened he would more than likely be a top 10 pick.
17) San Francisco 49'ers- Anthony Davis OT (previous pick: Trent Williams)
It's crazy to see him fall this far, but other OT's have stepped up (the other just impressed Al Davis) and the Niners will be happy that their gamble paid off to take Spiller first and grab an immediate starter at 17, despite his poor combine.
18) Pittsburgh Steelers- Mike Iupati OG (previous pick: Mike Iupati)
Nothing's changed here.
Ben's going to continue getting his bell rung until Pittsburgh gets some help on the o-line. At this point they can either take the best guard or they can take arguably the fifth best OT in Charles Brown.
A lot of people say he'll always just be a guard but they might try to give him some opportunities at tackle to see what he can do. Either way, Iupati's an immediate improvement to that awful line.
19) Atlanta Falcons- Sean Weatherspoon OLB (previous pick: Kyle Wilson)
Alright Falcon fans, I gave him to you. In my previous mock I said how much I knew you all wanted him but there was no way you would draft a LB before taking care of your issues in the secondary. Dunta took care of that issue and so now, Spoon's all yours.
20) Houston Texans- Dan Williams DT (previous pick: Dan Williams)
I know this is a long shot. He should probably go sooner than this.
I was thinking Denver if they don't go after Bryant. The only problem is they signed Jamal Williams, who may not have the effect Dan would have, but at least that fills that gap for the time being.
There are possible one or two other spots I could see him going along the way, but I think Houston will be happy to grab him here.
21) Cincinatti Bengals- Jermaine Gresham TE (previous pick: Jermaine Gresham)
If he falls past Cinci, I can't see him falling past Baltimore. I don't think it will come to that though. This offseason, Cinci's already addressed adding another weapon at WR. I think they give Palmer a big target over the middle in Gresham.
22) New England Patriots- Sergio Kindle OLB (previous pick: Brian Price)
If Kindle falls past the Dolphins, I think New England will be happy to pick him up here. They will probably already be considering a hybrid DE/OLB like Graham at this spot, but if Kindle falls they'll probably be more tempted to take him over Graham.
23) Green Bay Packers- Brandon Graham OLB/DE (previous pick: Brandon Graham)
I think Green Bay will be thinking the same way as New England and will end up whichever one of the two New England doesn't pick. This pick will definitely be used to find Kampman's replacement.
They, like the Patriots will end up happy either way because both will be forces in the NFL.
24) Philidelphia Eagles- Everson Griffen DE (previous pick: Sean Weatherspoon)
The Eagles could use some help at LB.
Unfortunately, the best LB's are already off the board and the next best bet would be Sapp. The Eagles had no real problems getting pressure on the QB last year, but Griffen would be an upgrade (which rumor has it, they're looking for one).
He will definitely will have more an impact than Sapp would.
25) Baltimore Ravens- Kyle Wilson CB (previous pick: Golden Tate)
With Atlanta going with Spoon, the Ravens catch a break. Wilson slips right into their hands and he will be a big help in the Ravens' secondary.
26) Arizona Cardinals- Earl Thomas S (previous pick: Earl Thomas)
I can't see him going in the top 20 after a lack-luster combine. Maybe 20 to Houston, but I see him going here. The Cardinals would like to grab an OT here to help keep Leinart/Anderson safe, but with the departure of Rolle I think they will view Thomas as a steal here and wait until later to grab OT.
27) Dallas Cowboys- Taylor Mays S (previous pick: Taylor Mays)
Unless the Seahawks trade back and pass on Berry, the Cowboys are the most likely choice to pick Mays.
28) San Diego Chargers- Ryan Mathews RB (previous pick: Jahvid Best)
Alright, I've been swayed.
Best is probably going to be very successful in the NFL, and his head will probably be fine, but it is risky to spend a first round choice on a RB who has injury concerns. Mathews is no slouch, and he will have a good NFL career.
29) New York Jets- Golden Tate WR (previous pick: Aurrelious Benn)
Because Baltimore passed on Tate, the Jets are in a good position to draft him. They could go Aurrelius Benn here, but Tate's a brilliant playmaker and he will make Sanchez better.
30) Minnesota Vikings- Jared Odrick DT (previous pick: Terence Cody)
I still think someone may take a risk on Cody in the first, and the Vikings are the most likely in my book to do it. Brian Price is still on too, but Odrick is impressive and he gained ground in the draft. They could be looking at CB here due to Winfield's age and Griffin's injury, but they will soon need a DT with the Williams brothers getting old.
31) Indianapolis Colts- Charles Brown OT (previous pick: Jared Odrick)
After losing the Super Bowl, the offensive line's performance was the first to be criticized. Any extra time for Manning to throw is extra time for Manning to put the game away. Brown will help to upgrade the o-line, if not by this season at least by the following one.
32) New Orleans Saints- Jerry Hughes DE (previous pick: Maurkice Pouncey)
It's hard to point out holes in a team that just won the Super Bowl, but if I have to pick an area it'd be the front seven (other than Vilma). Hughes could add at the very least depth and youth to the line.
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