The season is over, the Super Bowl is over, and after this weekend the Pro-Bowl is over. Focus now turns for teams to the NFL Draft in April, the Combine, Pro-days, and of course Free Agency which starts in 21 days at midnight. Here is our 3rd mock draft of the season. This is round 1. Round 2 is on its own post.
– Chris Long – DE – VA: I keep trying to figure out who else will go here, and honestly I can’t. The Dolphins could look at the other Long, Jake, but that is a little too high for an offensive lineman. The Phins will surely try and move this pick and already have said that it is “Up for sale”. The question of course will be can they convince another team that they need to pick in this spot? With the Phins likely to move to a 34 defense, Long is not a nescessity, however, I seriously think that the Dolphins and Jason Taylor will amicably part ways this off-season and that would then leave this spot open to fill.
– Sedrick Ellis – DT – USC: Ellis is moving up a lot of boards, especially after his phenomenal showing in the Senior Bowl. With question surrounding the fit of Glenn Dorsey, I am honestly thinking that Ellis could jump ahead of him. With The Rams needing to bolster a pourous Dline, Ellis should be able to make a positive impact early.
– Matt Ryan – QB – BC: This pick will be interesting for sure. The fact that the Falcons need help at both RB and QB makes this pick interesting. Matt Ryan is the guy that will hold the keys to this pick. A great performance at his pro-day workout or at the Combine, if he participates, could drive his stock to 3rd overall pick. However, an average performance could force the Falcons to take Darren McFadden and take a QB in round 2. If ATL loses the coin toss, Ryan is almost assuredly the pick.
– Darren McFadden – RB – Ark: Somewhere Jerry Jones is crying right now. Of all the teams, DM is going to the Raiders. Even though it can be said that Al Davis has pretty much lost his mind, he also knows that his offense lacks a truly great threat. McFadden is that guy.
– Jake Long – OT – M: The Chiefs need some Oline help in a bad way. They have one of the best RB’s in the business who last year receieved a nice increase in a new contract. Opening that running lane and protecting young Brody Croyle is a must. Long will fit nicely and is that big body that the Chiefs always seem to have on the line of scrimmage.
– Glenn Dorsey – DT – LSU: Dorsey has been the No. 1 rated DT in the college ranks all season, yet the word is that Ellis is garnering the accolades of late. Dorsey has some injury concerns, nothing remotely serious, but enough to drop him out of the number 1 spot. If he falls past St. Louis at number 2, and he might, then the Jets will be looking at a very solid fit for the very bad Dline.
– Keith Rivers – OLB – USC: The Patriots could lose two of their interior LB’s to retirement. Seau and Brushchi. If that happens, the Pats will likely move one of their OLB’s to the inside leaving a hole. As much as I think they could go with a secondary player here, the LB spot is glaring. Evident in the Super Bowl…which by the way they lost. 18-1 is a very hard record to stomach for the Patriots, although TB and Junior could retire, perhaps should, that taste in their mouth may be enough to keep them around 1 more year.
– Brian Brohm – QB – Louisville: Brohm is a need and really nothing more. Brohm has the ability to make the transition to the NFL but he will need the time to develope and the Raven under new coaching now have that time as expectations after last season have taken a nose dive.
– Vernon Gholston – DE – OSU: The Bengals need some defensive help to provide some time for their offense who although was sparatic last year, is the solid money maker for the franchise. Gholston should be able to adjust to the NFL coming out of OSU.
– Kenny Phillips – S – Miami: The Saints would be stupid if they took anything but a CB or a Safety. Phillips is the best on the board in that department right now and the Saints shouldn’t spend much time making the pick.
– Derrick Harvey – DE – Fl.: The Bills need help at the LB spot, they need help on the Dline…yes, I know they have money and picks tied up their already, and they need another WR. Too high for a wideout in this class and although the Bills do like to gamble with guys projected later, Harvey may be able to fit that DE/OLB type of player that gives the Bills some versatility.
– Michael Jenkins – CB – S. FL: Why? Because they are the Broncos and the Broncos rarely do what everyone expects. Oline is a concern, but I don’t see Shannahan spending a high 1st rounder on one…even Clady. That leaves LB where Dan Connor is there or at DE/DT where there is some guys that would be solid fits, but the Broncos seem to go for the strong secondary types and with Lynch nearing the end of his career, Jenkins may be able to transition to a safety.
– Ryan Clady – OT – Boise St: Clady would be a very solid pick for the Panthers at this spot. He fills a need and without a solid Oline last year, the Panthers were horrid. Their running game suffered and their QB, Delhomme spent more time on IR than he did in a game.
– Jeff Otah – OT – Pitt: Prior to the Senior Bowl, I had the Bears taking Andre’ Woodson out of Kentucky. After watching Woodson, the Bears might be nuts to do that. They need some Oline help to protect whoever ends up playing QB and to open up the lanes for a running game that has some very decent potential.
– Leodis McKelvin – CB – Troy: Projected as a late first, the Lions could seriously give this kid a look here at the mid point. The Lions will NOT take a WR even if Roy Williams gets traded…which will not happen. The Lions biggest defensive problem is the long ball and the run support from their secondary corners. It should be addressed here.
– Aqib Talib – CB – Kansas: A perfect fit for the Cardinals secondary. The Cards are close, but without a solid defense, they will never be able to completely get out of the mire they have been in for over a decade, or is that two decades. Talib will give their defense a boost and should learn quickly.
– DeSean Jackson – WR – California: The honeymoon with 1st round pick Troy Williamson is about over, glasses and all. The Vikings have the best young RB in the league and have a solid Oline, heck, even a mediocre QB like Jackson looked decent. What they lack is a pure pass catching WR.
– Dominique Rodgers – Cromartie – CB – Tenn. St: This kid did nothing but impress at the Senior Bowl. It has to be imagined that he will do nothing less at the Combine and at his pro-day. The Texans need the secondary help and Cromartie would be a very good fit.
– Malcom Kelly – WR – Oklahoma: All this talk about the Eagles trading McNabb…who knows, but either McNabb or Kolk will need someone to throw the ball to.
– Kentwan Balmer – DT – NC: The Bucs need to shore up a DLine that proved to have quite a bit of holes in it. Their vets are old and they need an infusion of youth. The Bucs could go with CB, Oline, Rb, or Wr especially here. But Balmer fills a very nescessary need.
– Mario Manningham – Wr – Michigan: Yes, they need a DE, no I don’t think they value what’s left this high. They could go with a Reggie Smith in the secondary, but this team needs to score points, and with Dallas picking next, they get to improve their offense while taking the guy the Boyz’ wanted as well.
(from the Browns) – Jonathan Stewart – RB – Oregon: The Cowboys are the hottest rumor going around right now about trading up for Darren McFadden, as much as I would love to see a trade up with Miami, I don’t see it happening. With Mario Manningham gone, I could see the Boyz going with a Doucet or a Sweed, but having Jonathan Stewart still on the board and in need of another RB….WR can wait a few more picks.
– Gosder Cherilous – OG – BC: The Steelers are set to lose both Matt Starx and Alan Faneca. What do you think they will take in round 1? And possibly round 2 as well.
– Limas Sweed – WR – Tx: Is there any other position that is as glaring a need as this one? The Titans need to start thinking about getting Young some weapons instead of thinking that Young is the only weapon.
– Rashard Mendenhall – RB – Illinois: Shaun Alexander is about done.
– Calais Cambpell – DE – Miami: I think there is a very good possibility that the Jags will have Jason Taylor as a DE next year. They need a solid pass rusher and there is very few better than JT…in this draft there is none. I doubt that they give up a 1st rounder for him but if they do trade for him, WR would be the logical choice here instead.
– Branden Albert – OG – Virginia: The Oline got some bad exposure last year and although the team had the NFL rushing leader in LT, there is still some need for improvement.
Reggie Smith – CB – OK: The Cowboys need to address their secondary and although they need another WR, I think they can get one in round 2. With Manningham gone and the RB situation addressed, Smith is the best on the boards.
Early Doucet III – WR – LSU: Yeah, they need playmakers on the O.
– Patrick Lee – CB – Auburn: The Pack needs some depth.
I put the Pats in here for two reasons. 1: Because they forfeitted this pick and 2: They didn’t finish slotted at what would be 32….Because they lost the Super Bowl…remember, this is a Dolphins site.!
Phillip Merling – DE – Clemson: The Giants could go LB here but they are more apt to want a true OLB instead of a MLB. With a need for a solid pass rushing DE to replace Strahan who could retire at the top, Merling would be a good fit here.