Tuesday, May 1, 2012

2013 NFL Mock Draft

The way too early edition! Order based on my own power rankings.

1. Tampa Bay Buccaneers- Robert Woods, WR, USC

The Bucs were too bad of a team to take a Safety in the top 10 of this year's draft. 1st round Safeties are for teams that are solid, with solid defenses and want to make a good defense great. They didn't do nearly enough to improve a bad team and that's why they're picking first. WR isn't the biggest need for Tampa, but they have to get value with the 1st overall pick. Since they don't need a QB this is the best player worth the pick at a high value position of need for the Bucs. In reality if TB ends up with the 1st pick I'd expect a trade down to a QB needy team.

2. Cleveland Browns- Sam Montgomery, DE, LSU

Now if there is a trade up to number 1 for a QB then I would expect Woods to go here, except for the fact that Holmgren won't draft a WR in the 1st round. The Browns really need one though, at some point they have to think to themselves we need some elite playmakers on offense if we're going to win.

Sam Montgomery is a great pick though as he will add to a defense that really only has one legit pass rusher in Jabaal Sheard. In today's NFL you need to be able to throw the ball, pressure the QB, and defend the pass in the secondary. Teams that do those things consistently make the playoffs. The ones that do other things well also make deep runs in the playoffs.

3. Indianapolis Colts- Johnathon Hankins, NT, Ohio State

The Colts did a good job of getting some playmakers for Andrew Luck and if Woods was available here I think he'd be the pick to get Luck that elite WR like Manning had in a young Harrison and Wayne. Since he isn't you have to get the best value in a top 5 pick. That would be an elite NT for a defense switching to a 3-4. The Texans are now king of the AFC South and you have to beat them to win the division. That means stopping an elite rushing attack with Arian Foster and Ben Tate.

4. Oakland Raiders- Matt Barkley, QB, USC

By the time this draft rolls around the Raiders will realize Carson Palmer stinks and it's time to go in another direction at QB. For now Barkley is the early favorite to be the 1st QB off the board and probably number 1 overall as someone will trade up for him. That could very well be the Raiders as they don't mind trading away the future for one player. Thanks Raiders, from a Bengals fan for Dre Kirkpatrick and a 2nd rounder next year.

5. Jacksonville Jaguars- Tyler Bray, QB, Tennessee

I don't think Blaine Gabbert is going to get much of a chance in Jacksonville. The coach who drafted him is gone and if he doesn't win this year on a bad Jaguars team he'll be gone as well. They do have Justin Blackmon a legit WR 1 and MJD so some weapons are there.

6. Minnesota Vikings- David Amerson, CB, NC State

When you are in a division with Aaron Rodgers, Jay Cutler, and Matthew Stafford you better have some players who can cover. The Vikings could have taken Claiborne this year but opted for the franchise LT. Now they can get the best cover CB in this draft who may be even better than Claiborne.

7. Seattle Seahawks- Marquess Wilson, WR, Washington State

Seattle had a draft this year where people were saying, what the hell are you doing? Anyways next year they're going to realize that their new QB, Matt Flynn, doesn't have any legit weapons to throw the ball to and he isn't going to be as good as he was for those 2 games in Green Bay when he had an offense loaded with WR's.

8. St. Louis Rams- DJ Fluker, OT, Alabama   (via trade with Redskins)

The Rams make out like bandits for having the 2nd pick in the 2012 draft giving themselves back to back picks in the top 10 in 2013. They've taken a few high OT's lately in the draft and whiffed but now they have Jeff Fisher and he'll finally land them a stud Tackle to help solidify that line for Sam Bradford.

9. St. Louis Rams- Keenan Allen, WR, California

The Rams missed out on Justin Blackmon with their trade back this year. They did land Brian Quick in the 2nd round who I think will be a really good player. After getting Fluker to solidify the line and adding Allen to pair with Quick, Sam Bradford finally has a legit offense. Add that to a talented young defense that was improved in the 2012 draft and the Rams will be an up and coming team that will contend very soon.

10. Miami Dolphins- Oday Oboushi, OT, Virginia

I can't believe the Phins took Ryan Tannehill 8th overall. Bad move, need is a bad evaluator. They could've had Tyler Wilson in this draft. They also miss out on the top 3 WR's so they turn to their next biggest weakness, Right Tackle. This will at least give Tannehill a pair of bookend Tackles. Now they just need to get him some weapons.

11. Kansas City Chiefs- Tyler Wilson, QB, Arkansas

If the Chiefs are picking up this high again it's because Matt Cassell didn't get it done. They have the weapons at WR, a good running game, and a good defense. Wilson is the last of the big 3 QB's to go off the board and with a solid team around him would be the first to reach the playoffs.

12. Buffalo Bills- Jake Matthews, OT, Texas A&M

It's a shame for the Bills if the draft falls like this because that would mean Fitzpatrick didn't get it done just like Cassell only the Bills don't have a QB worth the pick here. Buffalo should have a solid defense in 2012. They had Tackle as a need heading into this year's draft but passed on Reiff, they shouldn't pass on Matthews.

13. Arizona Cardinals- Barrett Jones, O Line, Alabama

Jones versatility to play basically anywhere on the line will make him a hot commodity in next April's draft. The need the Cardinals have at Tackle didn't go away when they drafted Micheal Floyd. I understand the pick, getting a legit weapon across from Fitzgerald, but when the QB doesn't have time to throw the ball it doesn't really matter. The Cards have the most overpaid, under performing Tackles in the NFL.

14. San Diego Chargers- Xavier Rhodes, CB, Florida State

The Chargers had a need for a CB this year as well, but I understand why they passed on one with Ingram still on the board. I was kind of disappointed the Bengals didn't take Ingram. When a stud pass rushing DE like that falls into your lap that late you gotta pull the trigger, especially with 2 first round picks. Anyway with an improved pass rush they can now take a 1st round CB to pick the ball off of Carson Palmer if he's still in Oakland.

15. Tennessee Titans- Bjeorn Werner, DE, Florida State

After Sam Montgomery, Werner may be the best 4-3 DE on the board. Jones, Mingo, and Jenkins are all more suited to come off the edge in a 3-4 defense. Werner has the size right now to be a 3 down player and that's what you want picking in the top half of the 1st round. The Titans depth at DE is minimal and the pass rush isn't very good.

16. Dallas Cowboys- Jarvis Jones, DE/OLB, Georgia

The Cowboys will be happy to jump all over Jones at 16. He may be the best pass rusher in this draft class. Now that Dallas has shored up their secondary they are a pass rusher across from Ware away from being an elite defense.

17. New York Jets- Barkevious Mingo, DE/OLB, LSU

The Jets got Quinon Coples and his effort issues in this year's draft. They still must continue to upgrade their pass rush if they want to get back to being that elite defense that can run the ball, control the clock, and let their defense beat you. Mainly because their QB's stink and they can't outscore their opponents.

18. Carolina Panthers- Kawaan Short, DT, Purdue

Teams ran and threw all over Carolina last season. On defense you need to be able to stop the run or teams will just run all over you. Also you need to be able to rush the passer. Short is a good interior D Lineman that can provide run support and bring pressure up the interior on passing downs.

19. Chicago Bears- Tyrann Mathieu, CB/S, LSU

Charles Tillman will not be back in Chicago after 2012 because he's due over 8 million. Plus the Bears need an upgrade at CB. When you play in that pass happy division with explosive offenses you better get as many playmakers in the secondary as possible.

20. Philadelphia Eagles- Chris Faulk, OT, LSU

The Eagles have needed an upgrade at Tackle for a few years now. Plus Andy Reid loves drafting lineman early and often on both sides of the ball. Faulk and Watkins on the left side would give the Eagles a dominant right side of the line to run behind.

21. Cincinnati Bengals- Tony Jefferson, SS, Oklahoma

Finally the Bengals get the top notch, 1st round Safety they've been missing for years. Reggie Nelson played well last season and I expect him to keep it up under Zimmer. Jefferson would be perfect to pair next to him. Jefferson isn't the big 6'3" plus Safety the Bengals usually like but he's an elite player at the position with excellent instincts. He can play the pass and the run. No more watching the Bengals SS get completely burnt in coverage. The addition of Jefferson would give the Bengals an excellent starting 4 in the secondary with Nelson, Jefferson, Hall, and Kirkpatrick all 1st rounders.

I've always said the difference between a good defense and a great defense is having a dominant Safety. Look at the Steelers and Ravens, both great defenses for years. They had in common they can stop the run, rush the passer, and both have great Safeties that can make huge plays that change a game.

22. Denver Broncos- Tyler Eifert, TE, Notre Dame

After one year in Dallas, Peyton Manning will go to John Elway and tell him the difference between here and Indy on offense was I had an elite TE to throw to, go get me an elite TE. Elway will then pull the trigger on the best TE in the draft.

23. New Orleans Saints- Jelani Jenkins, OLB, Florida

The Saints will realize after this year they've been getting by with mediocre LB's for way too long. Sean Peyton will notice when he's watching the games at home on TV and come back and draft a LB next year. If I'm a LB, I want to go to the Saints. In addition to your contract you get paid extra when you hit someone and knock them out of the game.

24. Detroit Lions- Desmond Trufant, CB, Washington

Detroit had a major need for a CB. I understood why they took Reiff in the 1st round it was great value. The 2nd round is a different story. CB is a major need and they took a WR coming off an ACL injury they could've had in the 3rd most likely. I like Ryan Broyles a lot, but WR isn't nearly as pressing as CB when you're trying to overthrow Green Bay for 1st place.

25. Atlanta Falcons- Brandon Jenkins, DE/OLB, Florida State

Jenkins is probably better suited to play in a 3-4, but Atlanta has a solid team and he could be used for depth as a situational pass rusher. This would probably add to his value as he'd be coming in on 3rd down fresh against tired O Lineman.

26. Pittsburgh Steelers- Sean Porter, OLB, Texas A&M

It sucked as a Bengals fan to watch the Steelers have another good draft getting DeCastro and Mike Adams. However they didn't get to go younger on the aging defense in the early rounds meaning they'll have to wait another year with a defense a year older and half a step slower.

27. San Francisco 49ers- TJ McDonald, Safety, USC

The Niners still didn't get to adress their Safety issues as there were only 2 Safeties in the 2012 draft that were starter caliber right now. Look for them to go after a Safety early in next year's draft as that's the only weakness on that defense.

28. Baltimore Ravens- Manti Te'o, LB, Notre Dame

The Ravens took care of getting a younger pass rusher across from Suggs. Now they need someone in the middle who can learn from and then take over for Ray Lewis.

29. Houston Texans- DeMarcus Milliner, CB, Alabama

Alabama just keeps putting out 1st round defensive backs year after year. Other than Johnathon Joseph the Texans need some serious upgrades at CB. Kareem Jackson hasn't lived up to his 1st round status and likely has one last shot to prove himself.

30. New York Giants- CJ Mosley, LB, Alabama

Im suprised the Giants didn't add a LB in the 1st round in this year's draft. That was really the one weak spot on that team. It was masked by a good line, but they'll need to upgrade if they want to return to the Super Bowl soon.

31. Green Bay Packers- Khaled Holmes, Center, USC

The Packers brought in Jeff Saturday which is an upgrade at Center. However he's getting long in the tooth and by the time next year's draft rolls around they'll be looking for a replacement or at minimum some depth.

32. New England Patriots- Kwame Geathers, NT, Georgia

The Patriots added two impact players on defense in this year's draft and now are likely the favorites to win it all. They have one of the best NT's in the NFL but he's now in his 30's and Belicheck will be looking to add a quality backup to spell Wilfork and eventually take over for him.

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