The biggest change since my last mock draft is obviously the Darelle Revis trade from the Jets to the Buccaneers. I don’t think the Jets got enough in the trade. They basically traded away the best cornerback in football for a 1st and 4th round pick. I know the Jets had no leverage but the fact of the matter is they aren’t as good of a team as they were before this trade. They have too many holes to fill and they have no margin for error going into a weak draft. Meanwhile, the Buccaneers have solidified their secondary that was atrocious last season. This is likely my last mock draft before Thursday night’s draft.
1. Kansas City Chiefs, Luke Joeckel, OT, Texas A&M – This has to be the most uncertain first pick in a long time. Last year the Colts had already decided on Andrew Luck days before the draft. This year it seems like the Chiefs are gonna hold off until they absolutely have to make their selection. I don’t know why they’re wasting time with the smokescreens. No one is trading up and there’s no one else worth taking.
2. Jacksonville Jaguars, Dion Jordan, DE, Oregon – Its looking more and more like Jordan will end up in Jacksonville as teams have cooled off on Geno Smith as the clear cut best quarterback in the draft. Eric Fisher is also an option here but I think they’ll try to address the offensive line later and give Blaine Gabbert a shot. They could also look at quarterback later in the draft where it makes more sense. I’d give a guy like Tyler Bray from Tennessee a shot.
3. Oakland Raiders, Shariff Floyd, DT, Florida – Common sense says Star Lotulelei is a better player at defensive tackle, but Floyd fits the Raiders system better. That being said, its only a matter of time before Floyd realizes he’s playing for the Raiders and eats himself out of the league. Its sad really.
4. Philadelphia Eagles, Eric Fisher, OT, Central Michigan – In my last mock, I had the Eagles taking Geno Smith but I think they’d be better served taking a guy to protect the quarterbacks they already have than to take another quarterback. Thats like trying to fix a bloody nose by breaking it.
5. Detroit Lions, Dee Milliner, CB, Alabama – The Lions could also go with a defensive lineman or an offensive lineman but I think cornerback is a more pressing matter. Their interior defensive lineman are still pretty good so the need for an edge rusher isn’t that important at this point in the draft. Don’t be surprised if they trade up to take Eric Fisher though.
6. Cleveland Browns, Ezekiel Ansah, DE, BYU – The Browns are another team that could go in a number of directions here. Even with the signing of Paul Kruger, they’ll probably take Ansah if he’s available.
7. Arizona Cardinals, Star Lotulelei, DT, Utah – For once the Cardinals don’t have a pressing need. They’re in a position where they can take the best player available. They can also field offers from other teams trying to trade up.
8. Buffalo Bills, Geno Smith, QB, West Virginia – I don’t think the Bills should make this pick. I also don’t think they should take Ryan Nassib here either. I think they should take Cordarelle Patterson or Tavon Austin to open things up for Stevie Johnson and then look for Nassib in the second round. But will they do that? Probably not. What do I know? I’m just a guy that watches a lot of football.
9. New York Jets, Barkevious Mingo, DE, LSU – As I stated earlier, the Jets have a lot of needs. They need help on the offensive line, defensive line, secondary and at quarterback…in that order. They can’t do much at quarterback right now and the secondary actually performed admirably after Revis went down in Week 3. So that leaves the trenches. Games are won and lost in the trenches. Mingo is a solid pick here.
10. Tennessee Titans, DJ Fluker, OG, Alabama – Fluker is healthy and he’s versatile. He’ll also help the Titans right away.
11. San Diego Chargers, Lane Johnson, OT, Oklahoma – This was always going to be the pick for San Diego.
12. Miami Dolphins, Chance Warmack, OG, Alabama – This pick is really interchangeable because Jonathan Cooper can also go here. Warmack is rated slightly higher though.
13. New York Jets (from Tampa Bay), Jonathan Cooper, OG, North Carolina – The Jets will use their newly acquired first round pick to help their offensive line.
14. Carolina Panthers, Sheldon Richardson, DT, Missouri – I don’t think Star Lotulelei will fall this far down and Richardson is the next best defensive tackle prospect, which is what the Panthers desperately need.
15. New Orleans Saints, Jarvis Jones, DE/OLB, Georgia – The Saints are looking to upgrade their defensive line as they’ve shifted to a 3-4 defense. Jones is a solid pass rusher for them.
16. St Louis Rams, Kenny Vaccaro, S, Texas – The Saints need help in the secondary and they have two picks in the first round so they can find help at wide receiver somewhere else.
17. Pittsburgh Steelers, Damontre Moore, DE/OLB, Texas A&M – I previously mocked Jarvis Jones to the Steelers so if he falls to them, they’ll take him. I don’t see them trading down but they could take the best available edge rusher.
18. Dallas Cowboys, Sylvester Williams, DT, North Carolina – The defensive line for the Cowboys needs some help. There were a few games where they got absolutely no push on the inside.
19. New York Giants, Desmond Trufant, CB, Washington – The Giants are still trying to add pieces to build in that secondary. Xavier Rhodes is another option here.
20. Chicago Bears, Cordarelle Patterson, WR, Tennessee – I’ve been saying all along that they need a guy to stretch the field and take some attention away from Brandon Marshall. Tyler Eifert is another option here.
21. Cincinnati Bengals, Kevin Minter, LB, LSU – The Bengals took care of their need at outside linebacker by signing James Harrison, now they need to address their need at inside linebacker.
22. St. Louis Rams, Tavon Austin, WR, West Virginia – Austin might not be available here but if he’s available, they’ll snatch him up. They could also take him at 16 but I don’t think they’ll risk losing Kenny Vaccaro.
23. Minnesota Vikings, Justin Hunter, WR, Tennesee – I’m not too solid on this choice because I don’t think Hunter is a first round pick, but they do need a wide receiver. They could also go linebacker here but they’re picking again at 25 so they can address it there.
24. Indianapolis Colts, Xavier Rhodes, CB, FSU – More and more this is looking like the choice for the Colts.
25. Minnesota Vikings, Alec Ogletree, LB, Georgia – This guy is a great linebacker in coverage and he can be a playmaker at the next level.
26. Green Bay Packers, Tyler Eifert, TE, Notre Dame – Jermichael Finley probably won’t be a Packer after this season so Eifert will fit right in and take over the starting job. He might even compete for the job early this coming season.
27. Houston Texans, Robert Woods, WR, USC – Could the Texans reach for Woods? They do need a second option at wide receiver and Andre Johnson is getting up there in years.
28. Denver Broncos, Datone Jones, DE, UCLA – Jones is another versatile guy who can play inside and outside. After losing Elvis Dumervil to free agency, they’re going to have to find that production elsewhere.
29. New England Patriots, Matt Elam, S, Florida – No one really knows what the Pats will do. No one knows what they ever do. They need help in the secondary and as much as they could use a corner, I think Aqib Talib can hold it down for them. Elam makes a lot of sense here as the eventual replacement for Adrian Wilson.
30. Atlanta Falcons, DJ Hayden, CB, Houston – Hayden’s name has a lot of buzz around it lately. The Falcons addressed a need at defensive end by signing Osi Umenyiora away from the Giants. Now they can fill a need in the secondary.
31. San Francisco 49ers, Jonathan Cyprien, S, Florida Int’l – After losing Dashon Goldson to free agency, they’ll have to address that need.
32. Baltimore Ravens, Eric Reid, S, LSU – Free agency has helped a lot of these guys who would normally fall into the second round get back into the first.. Ozzie Newsome is known for taking the best player available so don’t be surprised if they do in another direction here.