The draft is just a few days away, therefore it is time to post our final version of our 2013 NFL Mock Draft!
Here are the previous two versions for comparison:
1. Kansas City Chiefs – OT Luke Joeckel – Texas A&M
No change atop my draft. Kansas City needs a tackle and takes the most polished one in this year’s draft class. Some would argue for Central Michigan’s Eric Fisher here, but it simply comes down to whether or not you like Mayonnaise or Miracle Whip.
2. Jacksonville Jaguars – DE/OLB Dion Jordan – Oregon
Jacksonville needs a pass rusher or two. Pairing Jordan with last year’s draft selection in Andre Branch gives Jacksonville two extremely athletic pass rushers. Taking Jordan here switches the focus to the offensive side of the ball for the next few rounds..
3. Oakland Raiders – DT Sharrif Floyd – Florida
Floyd has incredible ability to be a force in this league. His ability to not only stop the run and rush the passer but to penetrate the pocket quickly will be a huge asset to a young Oakland team in a rebuilding mode. His stock has really come on as of late and has not taken a hit at all. If Oakland chooses to pass on the athletic tackle, he could be waiting a bit to hear his name.
4. Philadelphia Eagles – OT Eric Fisher – Central Michigan
No change here either. I have been calling this since day one and will stand by this pick until Fisher is off the board. Fisher, who is arguably just as talented as Joeckel, will be an excellent addition to Chip Kelly‘s squad.
5. Detroit Lions – OG Chance Warmack – Alabama
What!? A guard!! Storm the streets! I’m expecting to get some negative feed-back for this pick, but I love it. Call me crazy for putting a guard in the top ten. Call me stupid. But this kid is an instant Pro Bowl player. Now, Detroit is looking for linemen and could easily opt for Oklahoma’s Lane Johnson here. But I’ve heard a rumor or two saying Detroit is incredibly infatuated with the powerful guard. Warmack is my safest pick in this here draft and will be an excellent addition to a young Detroit offense. Things are looking up in Detroit.
6. Cleveland Browns – CB Dee Milliner – Alabama
This pick is sexy and probably the sexiest of the first round. Cleveland will probably try to trade out of this spot to pick up a second-round pick by using Lane Johnson or Milliner as trade bait, but I’m not predicting trades in this here mock draft buddy. Milliner is this year’s best corner prospect and will compliment CB Joe Haden well in Ohio.
7. Arizona Cardinals – OT Lane Johnson – Oklahoma
No change here! Arizona is about as desperate as desperate can get for offensive linemen. Johnson has the highest upside of the top-three tackles in this draft, but will need some time to develop his game a bit. Arizona benefits from Johnson’s combine performance which boosted his stock ten fold. This doesn’t seem as big of a reach as it could have been.
8. Buffalo Bills – DT Star Lotulelei – Utah
Arguably the best “prospect” in this year’s draft, Lotulelei’s stock took a hit due to some medical reasons. BUT, his heart condition has been cleared by team doctors. Buffalo will be featuring a mix of a 3-4 and a 4-3 front. That’s where Lotulelei comes in. Don’t freak Bills fans. We aren’t replacing your beloved Kyle Williams. But a 3-4 front of Star Lotulelei, Kyle Williams and Marcell Dareus has this Dolphins fan shaking in his boots.
9. New York Jets – WR Tavon Austin – West Virginia
Now, I can definitely see the Jets looking to trade up for Milliner here. After the Revis trade, the Jets are in the market to replace the all-pro. But, it makes sense to stay where they are at 9 and 13 to add young talent to a depleted roster. That being said, Austin is a good fit for this team. New York has a few power running backs and a few decent wide receivers but a speed specialist is lacking. And that’s just what Austin brings to the table.
10. Tennessee Titans –DE Ezekiel “Ziggy” Ansah – Brigham Young (BYU)
Ansah is that incredible athlete that just so happens to fall out of the top-ten every year. Well, not this year (sorry Miami fans). Tennessee has a nice young pass rusher in Derrick Morgan, but the team needs to add more talent to a young and impressive defense. Let’s add this physical freak to a freakishly athletic defense. Man..just give them a few years to mature.
11. San Diego Chargers – OT D.J. Fluker – Alabama
Storm the gates!!! Another surprise pick! This is a bit more of a reach, though. The team obviously would have liked to see Johnson or Warmack fall to them, but I think they can live with Fluker. Fluker is an incredible run-blocking tackle, but can be beat off the edge by quick pass rushers when pass blocking. San Diego can live with this guy. Fluker can play LT, RT, LG, RG. Just stick him where you need him!
12. Miami Dolphins – OG Jonathan Cooper – North Carolina
Yes, two guards in the top-fifteen picks! Call me crazy. Personally, I am absolutely in love with Cooper’s ability. Cooper is a natural fit in Miami’s zone blocking scheme the team will be using this season. Sure the team could reach for a corner here or trade up or back, but I’d much rather see Ireland take Cooper and help solidify that offensive line for years to come. And for the naysayers, Cooper is a top talent. He is just as good as Warmack and both are better than Pittsburgh Steelers’ Guard David DeCastro whom was drafted last year with the 24th overall pick.
13. New York Jets – CB Desmond Trufant – Washington
New York, as I stated above, could look to move up for the draft’s best corner prospect in Alabama’s Dee Milliner. But the team sticks here and snags the second best corner in Desmond Trufant. Trufant is the best man to man corner in this draft. Although he will not get you many interceptions or force many fumbles, he is incredibly active against the run and will lock down his assignment.
14. Carolina Panthers –DT Sheldon Richardson – Missouri
Mark my words, this kid is going to be special. Richardson is EXTREMLY athletic for a defensive tackle. Although he compares well to Florida’s Sharrif Floyd, Richardson is a better run defender than Floyd. If Richardson can become more of a force rushing the passer, Carolina could be making the steal of the draft here at 14.
15. New Orleans Saints – OLB Barkevious Mingo – LSU
Rob Ryan NEEDS a pass rusher!! Sure the team could opt for Xavier Rhodes here who has fallen a bit, but Mingo is an incredible raw talent. The Ryan family is notorious for taking incredible athletes and turning them into insane pass rushers. Look for Mingo to bulk up a bit and become a force sooner rather than later in Ryan’s 3-4 hybrid defense.
16. St. Louis Rams – OLB Alec Ogletree – Georgia
Ogletree fan here! Hearing that this kid could be the pick at 16 and it puts a big old smile on my face. St. Louis needs an athletic young linebacker to pair with MLB James Laurinaitis. Ogletree, a former safety, is active in coverage and is a vicious tackler. Although you’d like to see him as a better pass rusher, that’s not Ogletree’s game.
17. Pittsburgh Steelers – OLB Jarvis Jones – Georgia
I’ve been saying this one for awhile now, but Jarvis is the perfect fit for Pittsburgh. Sure the team could stand to add a corner or a wide receiver, but the team cannot roll with Jason Worilds as their replacement for James Harrison. Jones is a nasty player and plays with an attitude that screams PITTSBURGH!!
18. Dallas Cowboys – FS Kenny Vaccaro – Texas
Dallas needs a young pass rusher and some offensive line help. But the draft’s top safety is falling right into their lap and rumor has it that Dallas is tempted to trade up for Vaccaro. Vaccaro is not your typical top safety. Mustering 5 interceptions in a four-year span at Texas, Vaccaro didn’t make many “impact” plays that you’d like to see out of a top-ten pick. But, Vaccaro can come right in and help a Dallas secondary looking for a leader on the back-end.
19. New York Giants – DE Bjoern Werner – Florida State
I’m taking a shot with Werner here. If Miami does not take Werner at 12, this kid could drop significantly. It has nothing to do with the fact that he is a bad player, he’s actually a great player. But he’s a pure 4-3 defensive end. New York should be running to the podium to hand this one in. Pairing Werner with Jason Pierre-Paul will give New York quite a young and deadly pass rushing duo.
20. Chicago Bears – MLB Manti Te’o – Notre Dame
This kid went from top-five pick to out of the first round to top-twenty pick and for no real reason. Te’o is this year’s best linebacker and should be taken in the top-twenty. Chicago needs a linebacker to replace their long-time leader. Te’o has an Brian Urlacher type ability to his game, meaning he is very instinctive in coverage. I consider this a steal for Chicago at this point.
21. Cincinnati Bengals – FS Jonathan Cyprien – Florida International
Cincinnati is rumored to be obsessed with Cyprien and for good reason. The Bengals have one of those secondaries. You know, the one that doesn’t really have a “star” but they all compliment each other great. The biggest issue last year was their low level of safety play. Nate Clements just isn’t a safety. Cyprien’s jock could do a better job back there than Clements did last year. Cyprien is the real deal. Strong, fast, physical and can cover. The only thing holding him back from being a top pick is where he comes from.
22. St. Louis Rams – WR Justin Hunter – Tennessee
I’m hearing that St. Louis loves this kid. Hell I love this kid. Hunter has all of the tools to be a great wide receiver in this league, he just has an incredibly thin body. Hunter compares well to Cincinnati Bengals’ WR AJ Green. Long and lanky but can beat you over-the-top. Look for Jeff Fisher and company to make Hunter the second receiver off the board.
23. Minnesota Vikings – WR Cordarrelle Patterson – Tennessee
Minnesota probably should look to move up here to ensure the team snags one of the draft’s top pass catchers. Tavon Austin would be the ideal pick to replace Percy Harvin, but if Austin is off the board then Patterson is the most ideal fit. Patterson’s raw talent has many draft experts spinning around in circles. Patterson could develop into a top guy or could absolutely bust and be out of the league in three years.
24. Indianapolis Colts – OLB Cornellius Carradine – Florida State
Carradine had one hell of a season until it was cut short by a devastating knee injury during the latter portion of his 2012 season at Florida State. Miraculously, Carradine ran a blazing 4.75 forty-yard dash at his pro workout the other day in front of NFL scouts – Indianapolis being one of those teams represented. Many have said this kid may be the best pure pass rusher in the draft. So I say, what a better way to replace a Colt legend, eh?
25. Minnesota Vikings – CB Xavier Rhodes – Florida State
Xavier Rhodes has dropped dramatically. Yes, we see this every single year. A top prospect drops down and down and down. Make no mistake, though. Rhodes will be an incredible player for any team that drafts him. Minnesota needs some corner help. It would be ideal to replace Antoine Winfield with Rhodes if he falls. And hey, the Vikes like their corners taller and lanky. Sounds just like the 6’2” corner from Florida State…
26. Green Bay Packers – MLB Kevin Minter – LSU
Green Bay could use a middle linebacker or two. Minter is the best cover linebacker in this here draft class. Something that GB could use. Minter is incredible in coverage and is probably the best tackling linebacker in the 2013 class. If Green Bay could snag Minter here it would be an ideal addition to a defense lacking a true middle linebacker.
27. Houston Texans – WR Keenan Allen – California
Personally, I’m not afraid of Allen’s terrible 40-yard dash. Allen is NOT a burner. He’s a possession receiver which is a trait that Houston covets in it’s receivers. After allowing Jacoby Jones to find his niche in Baltimore and recently showing Kevin Walter the door, Houston is probably the most Wide Receiver needy team in the league. I’m expecting the team to trade up for one of the top guys – ideally Patterson. But if the team is unable to do so, Allen is the most logical fit for Houston’s ground and pound style on offense. Allen is undoubtedly the most polished wide receiver in this year’s class.
28. Denver Broncos – DE/DT Margus Hunt – SMU
This guy is tough to place value wise. Some have Hunt going in the third, and some have him going in the first. I think the most ideal value for a player of his ability and upside is somewhere in the late first to mid second. That being said, Denver needs some help along it’s defensive line. Hunt is a long defensive lineman that has the ability to play both defensive end and defensive tackle in a 4-3 scheme. While I value Hunt as an all-pro caliber defensive tackle, I’m hearing that many teams value the 6’8” stud as a defensive end. Anyway you slice it, Denver would be best suited to take this kid at 28 and add some length to their defensive line.
29. New England Patriots – CB D.J. Hayden – Houston
Realistically I’m awaiting the big Patriots trade that seems to happen every draft. I don’t see NE staying at 29 unless this kid is still on the board. Hayden has incredible upside as a lock-down corner in the NFL, but has some injury history – tore a vein in his heart last November and almost bled to death! While I like this kid, I am not as high on him as others are. But I think New England would be more than happy to add a play-maker like Hayden to it’s young secondary.
30. Atlanta Falcons – DE Damontre Moore – Texas A&M
Damontre Moore went from a potential top-three selection to potentially falling out of the first-round. Moore’s stock began to fall due to a poor outing at the NFL Combine. Once that happened, many began to look at his tape and question his ability to become a dominant edge rusher. While I have my concerns about the kid, I still think Moore can be a dominant force off the edge if given some time to develop his game. Atlanta is probably the most ideal landing spot and since the team received a boost from future Hall of Fame Tight End Tony Gonzalez returning, tight end is no longer the team’s biggest need.
31. San Francisco 49ers – FS Eric Reid – LSU
Safety Dashon Goldson left for Tampa which opened a huge hole in San Francisco’s secondary. Enter Eric Reid. Reid is one of my favorite players in this year’s draft class. While Reid is a sure tackler, he struggles a bit in coverage. Hey, sounds a bit like Goldson doesn’t it? Sure does. I think this here is a match made in heaven.
32. Baltimore Ravens – MLB Arthur Brown – Kansas State
Brown is one of the class’ most versatile players and quite possibly the class’ most versatile linebacker. Brown, who is a bit undersized, will be looking to replace the future Hall of Fame Baltimore legend, Ray Lewis. Brown is an instinctive athlete who can not only stuff the run but can also cover backs and tight ends. Brown is a perfect fit for a Baltimore team looking to get younger on the defensive side of the ball.
Well there it is fans! Please do not hesitate to leave a comment good or bad! I want to hear what YOU think will happen in the first round! Just a few more days…!!!