2015 NFL Mock Draft: Post-Combine Predictions for 1st-Round Prospects

Matt Fitzgerald@@MattFitz_geraldCorrespondent IIIFebruary 25, 2015

INDIANAPOLIS, IN - FEBRUARY 21: Quarterback Jameis Winston of Florida State looks to throw a pass during the 2015 NFL Scouting Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium on February 21, 2015 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
Joe Robbins/Getty Images

The 2015 NFL Scouting Combine ended on Monday, so it's the appropriate time to unveil an updated first-round mock draft after what transpired in Indianapolis.

Several standout performers benefited from the combine, while a few others disappointed. However, many of the top-tier players likely to be off the board within the first 32 picks largely lived up to the hype, so big boards shouldn't have experienced any drastic overhauls.

Check out a post-combine mock scenario for April 30's first day of the draft, along with analysis on what was learned from the action at Lucas Oil Stadium.

2015 NFL Mock Draft: Round 1
No. Pick Team Selection
1 Tampa Bay Buccaneers Jameis Winston, QB, Florida State
2 Tennessee Titans Leonard Williams, DL, USC
3 Jacksonville Jaguars Dante Fowler Jr., DE/OLB, Florida
4 Oakland Raiders Kevin White, WR, West Virginia
5 Washington Redskins Randy Gregory, DE/OLB, Nebraska
6 New York Jets Marcus Mariota, QB, Oregon
7 Chicago Bears Alvin Dupree, DE/OLB, Kentucky
8 Atlanta Falcons Shane Ray, DE, Missouri
9 New York Giants La'el Collins, OT, LSU
10 St. Louis Rams Marcus Peters, CB, Washington
11 Minnesota Vikings Amari Cooper, WR, Alabama
12 Cleveland Browns DeVante Parker, WR, Louisville
13 New Orleans Saints Vic Beasley, OLB, Clemson
14 Miami Dolphins Trae Waynes, CB, Michigan State
15 San Francisco 49ers Jaelen Strong, WR, Arizona State
16 Houston Texans Brandon Scherff, OT, Iowa
17 San Diego Chargers Danny Shelton, DT, Washington
18 Kansas City Chiefs Dorial Green-Beckham, WR, Oklahoma
19 Cleveland Browns (via Buffalo) Eddie Goldman, DT, Florida State
20 Philadelphia Eagles Ronald Darby, CB, Florida State
21 Cincinnati Bengals Shaq Thompson, OLB, Washington
22 Pittsburgh Steelers Landon Collins, SS, Alabama
23 Detroit Lions Quinten Rollins, CB, Miami (OH)
24 Arizona Cardinals Melvin Gordon, RB, Wisconsin
25 Carolina Panthers Andrus Peat, OT, Stanford
26 Baltimore Ravens Maxx Williams, TE, Minnesota
27 Dallas Cowboys Owamagbe Odighizuwa, DE, UCLA
28 Denver Broncos Arik Armstead, DL, Oregon
29 Indianapolis Colts Malcom Brown, DT, Texas
30 Green Bay Packers Benardrick McKinney, ILB, Mississippi State
31 Seattle Seahawks Byron Jones, CB, Connecticut
32 New England Patriots Todd Gurley, RB, Georgia
Picks are personal opinion

2015 Post-Combine NFL Draft Analysis

Jameis Winston appears to be ahead of Marcus Mariota as the prime candidate to be the first overall pick. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers need a quarterback to compete in the NFC South, and Winston is the most pro-ready prospect.

A dazzling throwing session in Indianapolis saw Winston outshine every other passer. He exuded plenty of confidence and flashed a great deep ball. More important, he reportedly fared well in the interview process, according to Bleacher Report's own Mike Freeman.

Former NFL QB and CBS analyst Phil Simms provided a succinct description of Winston as a natural passer:

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Phil Simms has high praise for Jameis Winston. http://t.co/ZOBZ0hPvBU http://t.co/oM8m8HCUGj

But let's not get confused—Mariota didn't hurt himself at the combine. He kept himself in the top-two conversation, and it's hard to envision him falling past the New York Jets at No. 6 overall.

Comcast SportsNet's John Middlekauff praised Winston and Mariota for their full participation at Lucas Oil Stadium:

John Middlekauff @JohnMiddlekauff

Love that Jameis & Mariota both did everything in INDY. Not afraid to compete, they don't have to throw. Not scared to look bad

What was already considered a deep draft class of pass-rushers garnered even more attention thanks to a number of mind-boggling numbers posted in the on-field drills.

Kentucky's Bud Dupree and Clemson product Vic Beasley headlined the group with their amazing displays of athleticism that should have them shooting up draft boards.

Bleacher Report draft expert Matt Miller made sure his followers noticed Dupree, but ESPN CollegeFootball made sure to give Beasley his due, too:

Matt Miller @nfldraftscout

Bud Dupree's Combine isn't getting enough love. More impressive than Vic Beasley. 6'4", 269 lbs 4.56 40 42" vert 11'6" broad

ESPN CollegeFootball @ESPNCFB

Vic Beasley did his best to improve his draft stock. Where do you see Clemson's star LB landing in the draft? http://t.co/J4eqz8Jlzt

Those two stood out the most—and they may not even be the best prospects. Such an honor may wind up going to Florida's Dante Fowler Jr. or Nebraska star Randy Gregory.

On the other side of the ball, whatever the QBs lack in depth is compensated for by a load of talented running backs and receivers. The ball-carriers failed to impress as a whole, harming the chances of a tailback being selected on Day 1 for the first time since 2012.

Comparing this year's receivers with 2014's historic class is a bit premature, and perhaps misguided because of the implicit high expectations. Nevertheless, Kevin White, Amari Cooper and DeVante Parker all made strong cases to go in the top 10 picks.

Two other workout warriors who could hear their names called early were wideouts Jaelen Strong of Arizona State and Dorial Green-Beckham, perhaps the most talented pass-catcher with a checkered off-field past.

Matt Bowen of Bleacher Report noticed Green-Beckham's enviable combination of traits:

Matt Bowen @MattBowen41

4.49 for Green-Beckham at 6-5, 237 pounds is impressive. Size, speed + matchup ability at WR. Stock will continue to rise.

ESPN draft guru Todd McShay and Fox Sports' Bruce Feldman liked what they saw from Strong:

Todd McShay @McShay13

ASU WR Jaelen Strong making 1st Rd case. 42" VJ is outstanding. 4.44 40 (unofficial) is surprising. He showed elite ball skill on 2014 tape

Bruce Feldman @BruceFeldmanCFB

Some great buzz abt #ASU WR Jaelen Strong. Fantastic ball skills & today wowed NFL ppl with a 4.44 40 and 42-inch vertical.

The real revelation in Indy was University of Connecticut cornerback Byron Jones.

Jones shattered the record in the broad jump by leaping 12'3", and posted the best vertical leap of all defensive backs at 44.5 inches. At 6'1" and 199 pounds, he has some serious physical tools to work with.

That's why the latest mock has him creeping into the first round to join the Seattle Seahawks. Previous starter Byron Maxwell is a free agent this offseason. A thinner cornerback market and the premium placed on his position should allow Maxwell to field lucrative, superior offers elsewhere.

Since Seattle has contracts for QB Russell Wilson and All-Pro linebacker Bobby Wagner likely on the horizon, Jones would be a more cost-effective option to place opposite Richard Sherman in a starter's role.

Sherman often locks down one side of the field, and safeties Earl Thomas and Kam Chancellor would give Jones some margin for error as he adjusts to the NFL.

It seems like an ideal fit on paper, and if Jones winds up a Seahawk, it'd be a classic case of NFL royalty getting richer at a bargain and of a lesser-known prospect parlaying a phenomenal combine into an excellent situation to start his pro career.

Note: Combine numbers and information courtesy of NFL.com's tracker.

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