AFC East Mock Draft Round 1
By Eric Roddy
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Being a Miami Dolphins fan, I am undoubtedly looking forward to the 19th overall selection in the upcoming 2014 NFL Draft. That being said, the other three teams I will be watching closely are Miami’s division rivals. While this deep draft will hopefully result in an improved Dolphins roster, it will also end with an improved AFC East as a whole. Here are my first round selections for each team in the AFC East, in order of their selection number.
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Buffalo Bills: With the 9th overall pick in the 2014 NFL Draft, the Buffalo Bills select… Ha Ha Clinton-Dix, Free Safety, Alabama. The Bills have the very difficult task of replacing FS Jarius Byrd, who is now playing in New Orleans. Clinton-Dix is easily the best safety prospect in the draft, and should be available when the Bills come to the podium. Not only is Clinton-Dix a great ball-hawk, but he has the speed and strength to take down big running backs. With time, he would be a great replacement for Byrd and could be even better.
New York Jets: With the 18th overall pick in the 2014 NFL Draft, the New York Jets select… Odell Beckham Jr., WR LSU. Along with Sammy Watkins, Beckham Jr, is arguably the most explosive offensive talent in this year’s draft. One thing the Jets lacked last season (among many) was the ability to catch the football. Geno Smith had almost no help. Beckham Jr. can play anywhere on the field and has tantalizing speed in the open field. He would quickly become Smith’s (or Vick’s) number one target.
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Miami Dolphins: With the 19th overall pick in the 2014 NFL Draft, the Miami Dolphins select… C.J. Mosley, ILB Alabama. The Dolphins are in a weird spot in the draft. With the top 4 OL prospects likely gone by 19, their other option is to reach for a 2nd round tackle prospect or take a guard. I see them going with Mosley, a polished defensive mastermind with the ability to cover anyone. Last season with Alabama, Mosley had 109 tackles, 5 pass breakups and a forced fumble. He would fix Miami’s ailing linebacker corps and would not be a reach at 19.
New England Patriots: With the 29th overall pick in the 2014 NFL Draft, the New England Patriots select… Jace Amaro, TE Texas Tech. The Patriots simply aren’t the same team offensively without TE Rob Gronkowski. Without Gronk in the game, the Patriots offense often fizzled out. Amaro is very similar in size to Gronk, and is listed at 6 foot 5, 265 pounds. He has great speed (4.74 forty yard dash) and great hands. He would provide the Patriots with a second TE and depth should Gronk get injured again. Flashback to the days of the Gronkowski and Aaron Hernandez duo…. Yikes!