Conor Cahill’s 2014 NFL Mock Draft: Version 1.0

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Apr 25, 2013; New York, NY, USA; NFL commissioner Roger Goodell introduces Luke Joeckel (Texas A

Check out version 1.1 of my 2014 NFL Mock Draft HERE.

The 2014 NFL Draft order is one week away from being basically set, but we already have a good idea of when teams will make their selection. This is my 1st NFL Mock Draft, so let me know how it went for your team. Let’s mock.


1. Houston Texans: QB Teddy Bridgewater, Louisville Cardinals

This is the most obvious pick it the mock. The Texans need a QB, Bridgewater is the best QB in the draft. It is rumored that the Texans are also looking at Johnny Manziel with their pick. Whoever the Texans do decide to go with, we do know that they want a game-changer type of QB moving forward. The game-manager style of Matt Schaub is a thing of the past for this Texans team.


2. St. Louis Rams (WAS): OT Jake Mathews, Texas A&M Aggies

The Rams will likely want to trade down, as most of their needs are not worth a number 2 pick. I’m sure teams will surely be scrambling to select a QB. (Possibly the Jaguars if they finally realize Blaine Gabbert isn’t very good.) If they can’t find a trade partner, the Rams will probably pick on the offensive line. #2 is a little high for a RT, but if they are sticking with Sam Bradford at QB, or any QB for that matter, they need to keep him upright to have a chance at success.


3. Jacksonville Jaguars: DE Jadeveon Clowney, South Carolina Gamecocks

The Jags are nowhere near ready to draft another QB and have plenty of holes to fill. They will get lucky with Clowney, probably the most talented player in the draft, falling to them at #3. Besides, the Jags GM said they would build around Blaine Gabbert. I don’t understand it either, but it makes the Clowney pick make even more sense.


4. Oakland Raiders: QB Blake Bortles, UCF Knights

Matt McGloin is not the future at QB for the Raiders. He has filled in nicely this year, but looks to be a good backup at best. The Raiders will look to land their QB of the future in UCF’s Blake Bortles. Bortles has a strong arm and the ability to scramble (a la Aaron Rodgers) and would be a good fit for the NFL. I have Bortles ranked as the #2 QB on the board ahead of Derek Carr or Johnny Manziel. The Raiders could also go with Jadeveon Clowney here if the Jags pass him up.


 5. Cleveland Browns: QB Johnny Manziel, Texas A&M Aggies

Manziel is a pretty good QB option when you ignore the character issues. The guy can flat out run and his passing has improved significantly over his Heisman year. Cleveland is always desperate to find their next QB, but Manziel definitely has the skill to be their franchise QB for a long time. The Browns will get a steal with Manziel at #5, and should try to move up to get his Texas A&M teammate, Mike Evans, later in the draft to pair with Josh Gordon. Now that would raise the ceiling of this offense by a mile.


6. Atlanta Falcons: OLB Anthony Barr, UCLA Bruins

The Atlanta Falcons were terrible this season after Super Bowl aspirations in the pre-season. The two biggest reasons for their poor season is the rushing attack and the defense. It is far too early to draft a RB, so they will go with pass-rusher Anthony Barr, who happens to also be the most talented guy left on the board. Barr is an ex-FB with a lot of knowledge about offense, and it has translated into very good instincts on defense. Barr could easily go in the top-3, so the Falcons may have to move up to make sure they can pick him.


7. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: WR Sammy Watkins, Clemson Tigers

The Bucs seem set on lanky Mike Glennon as their QB of the future (for now), so they must start surrounding him with more weapons. Sammy Watkins has home run potential on every play and will stretch the defense for Doug Martin and free up Vincent Jackson. Another option here would be TE Eric Ebron, but Watkins has such a huge upside, he might be hard to pass up at #7.


8. Minnesota Vikings: QB Derek Carr, Fresno State Bulldogs

The Vikings should learn not to take the next available QB late in the top-10, but they won’t. From what I’ve seen from Derek Carr, he is maybe the 4th best QB in this draft. His stock fell even more for me after his pedestrian game in the Las Vegas Bowl against USC (the best team he played this season). I would mock him even lower if Hundley and Mariotta came out. The Vikings will not learn from their mistake with Christian Ponder, and reach for Derek Carr with the 8th pick.


 9. Buffalo Bills: TE Eric Ebron, North Carolina Tar Heels

It may be a little early to take Ebron here, but the Bills need to add some weapons for now-2nd year QB, EJ Manuel. Adding Ebron creates a mismatch for almost any defender in the NFL. Ebron is fast, physical, and can make insane catches in contact. Eric Ebron would make life for EJ Manuel much easier in the open field, and especially in the red zone. Offensive guard is another option here for the Bills.


10. Tennessee Titans: OLB Khalil Mack, Buffalo Bulls

The Titans are 20th in the NFL this season in sacks, and gave up 30+ points 5 times. The Titans will benefit by adding another pass rusher. Mack is a physical freak and never stops working to get to the quarterback. Mack would instantly improve the Titans defense with his skill, but more importantly, his attitude.


11. New York Giants: CB Darqueze Dennard, Michigan State Spartans

The giants need some athleticism in the secondary. Prince Amukamara is finally playing better, but the Giants need to shore up that 12th ranked pass defense. Dennard is the top ranked corner in the draft. The Giants could also make a pick along the offensive line, because Eli Manning has been sacked 37 times this season.


12. Detroit Lions: WR Marqise Lee, University of Southern California

Lee is getting no love after having an average season with an average quarterback, multiple play callers, and a whole bunch of drama at USC. He is still a great route-runner and receiver, as seen in the Las Vegas Bowl, and would be a good compliment for Megatron. Another receiver to pair with Johnson would make the offense much more explosive and consistent. WR Davante Adams out of Fresno State or a corner are other options here.


13. Pittsburgh Steelers: OT Taylor Lewan, Michigan

The Steelers are tied for 25th in the NFL in sacks allowed this season. Big Ben can avoid sacks, but not that many. Somehow the Steelers were able to stay afloat this season despite those sacks allowed and a horrible running game. Adding Taylor Lewan could solve both those issues. Lewan would bring a tenacity and competitiveness that was lacking on the front line this season.


14. New York Jets: WR Mike Evans, Texas A&M Aggies

If the Jets believe Geno Smith is good enough to groom into their future QB, it’s time to start surrounding Geno Smith with weapons. Mike Evans also happens to be one of the top players available. At 6’5″, Evans Evans led the SEC in receiving touchdowns and would add a legit red zone threat for Smith.


15. St. Louis Rams: S HaHa Clinton-Dix, Alabama Rolling Tide

The safety play of the Rams was pretty terrible this season. They will look for an upgrade to play with TJ McDonald. The Rams will be getting the top safety in the draft in Clinton-Dix. Clinton-Dix is probably the best defensive player available at this point, although the Rams could also go with a corner here, since Cortland Finnegan has been horrible this season.


16. Green Bay Packers: ILB CJ Mosley, Alabama Crimson Tide

Despite not having Aaron Rodgers for most of the season, the Packers defense has not given them many chances to win. CJ Mosely probably has the talent to be a top-15 pick, so the Packers are getting good value at #16. Mosely is an elite athlete coming from one of the best defenses in college football. Mosely should be able to make an immediate impact in the Packers’ rush defense, and has the athleticism and instincts to become great in the passing game.

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  • TheReturnOfMrBlanks

    Watch we let Clarey go and draft Cyril Richardson, the O-line would be so beastly. I could honestly see TT doing something like that depending on what he does in FA.

    • Conor Cahill

      I could see that too. I would rather he draft someone for the left side though.

      • Joe Soriano

        The left side is fine, because King Dunlap has been a beast this season.

        • Conor Cahill

          But so has Fluker.

        • tbell11

          I fear King Dunlap is the next Big Lazy though

          • Conor Cahill

            Im not sure about that.. He definitely had some boo-boo problems throughout the season though. Luckily TT signed him to a short contract so there will be no $6M cap hit for releasing him if he in fact becomes big(ger) and lazy.

          • Joe Soriano

            The biggest worry with Dunlap might be the concussions, and then it’s the fact that we’re all hoping 2013 isn’t a one-hit wonder for him.

          • Conor Cahill

            2-3 seconds in the pocket also helps..

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  • Joseph Bulger

    I can’t argue with Dennard… Jim Thorpe Award (nation’s best D back), consensus 1st team All-American, Jack Tatum Award (college football’s best defensive back), Big 10 D-Back of the Year. They need that kind of talent opposite Prince. It’s just that there are so many questions about that O-line… $nee coming off his 2nd hip surgery IR stint, Glass Baas hurt yet again coming back off IR, Diehl willing to play for the vet min as PFF’s 73rd of 75 ranked O-linemen, and Beatty having persistent mental lapses at LT. If they let Boothe walk, then they’re thinking they’ll survive a run to the Super Bowl in 2014 with Beatty-Diehl-Baas-$nee-Pugh. That scares me.

    • Joe Soriano

      The Giants desperately need OL help, and we all can’t harp on that nearly enough. They need a CB badly, but they need OL help even more. The blocking has been atrocious, and neither Eli nor the RBs can get much going as a result.

      • Conor Cahill

        It was a toss up for me between the two. 2nd or 3rd best O-lineman or best CB in the draft…

  • Jordan

    Although I like the thought of the chiefs adding another OLB there are simply too many other holes to fill such as WR, TE, FS, OL, WR, oh and WR. Dorsey is known for his BPA approach though so anything could happen truly

    • Joe Soriano

      I would be disappointed if the Chiefs don’t pluck a WR in the first, because they have easily the worst WRs of any contender. Bowe is not a No. 1 and Avery has no business starting. TE is OK, since the Chiefs still have faith in last year’s draft pick Travis Kelce. OL isn’t nearly as big of a need as WR, which has to be the top need. Chiefs need to work on their O, and WR has to be addressed by the Chiefs big-time. Which draft prospect at the position catches your eye the most, Jordan?

    • Conor Cahill

      If Davante Adams falls to them, it would be a crime for them not to snatch him up. Other than that, I’m not sure what #1-caliber receivers will be available to them at #27. If want to trade up into the late teens, there could very well be a #1 receiver available.

  • Paul Newbold

    IF the Jets keep Rex….they take Clinton Dix at safety. The fans will scream, but the Jets need a safety almost as badly as they need receivers!

    • Joe Soriano

      Firstly, the Jets need to keep Rex, and I’ll try to write a piece on that tomorrow. Secondly, I would love for the Jets to draft Clinton-Dix, and I actually raised that idea in a piece last week when running through potential draft scenarios for the Jets. They desperately need help at S, and Clinton-Dix is easily the best S prospect in this year’s draft. I’m with you, Paul.

  • Josh Hart

    The only qualm I have with Johnny football to the Browns is I’m not sure if he can handle the AFC North. I don’t think he has the body size to last scrambling. Big Ben can’t even last a full season doing it.

    • Conor Cahill

      That is a good point. If they do take Manziel, they need to follow it up with a lineman or two.

  • naflack

    i know the prevailing wisdom is teddy goes 1 to the texans but im very skeptical.
    i just dont see them going qb 1 in this draft, this is 1 of the most over hyped qb classes i can remember.
    i think the texans flip the whole thing on its head…
    if they stay 3-4 they take barr, if they change to 4-3 they take clowney.
    that said…
    i like that you acknowledge how over rated carr is and how dumb spielman is, denard goes over gilbert, ealy and hageman are 1st round picks…good stuff.

    • Conor Cahill

      I saw an article on a few days ago looking at the possibility of the Texans trading down to the Browns’ spot to take Manziel and pick up an extra 1st or second, and let Cleveland take Bridgewater which I thought was interesting. Keeping Manziel in Texas could go a few different ways though, and not all of them are good…

  • chance

    The reason Derek Carr played bad is because he doesn’t have a Defense so he has to try and force things to happen, with AD he would have the best RB in the leauge and 1 good reciever and 1 very good TE plus an up and comer in Patterson with other good WR’s like Wright and Simpson ( if we keep him) and possible even Greg Childs. Carr is perfect for the Vikings.

    • Conor Cahill

      That’s not the only reason..

      • Gunnar Martin

        It’s a pretty big one though.

  • Marvin Gibson

    Why would Chicago draft a 3-4 DE when they play a 4-3. Why would SF draft a small DE to replace Justin Smith in the 3-4 so he can get man handled. You have to be at least 285 – 300 to play DE in the 3-4. Chicago will go after an offensive lineman or a traditional DT. SF will go after a corner since they have 2 that will be F/A (T. Brown and E. Wright) ,1 that will be 33 years old (C. Rogers), and another that will be a F/A in 2015 after coming off an ACL injury this year (C. Culliver). Plus, SF has a bunch of young guys that the drafted that are waiting in the wings on the dline.

  • TopGearRules

    The Browns won’t take Manziel but I’m sure the Texans want him to stay in Texas so they can compete with Tony Romo and the Cowboy mystique. They dont want to take him number 1 overall so I can see the Raiders (4)trading up with Houston to draft Teddy B. Number (1) And the Browns trading with the Rams to nab Bortles. Number ((2) And then Manziel still ends up in Houston at (4.)The Rams get Matthews at 5 and I see Jacksonville staying pat and taking Derek Carr. At (3) Of course all this could change if one of these teams win their final game this Sunday. Best chance of a team winning is Cleveland upsetting the Steelers thus destroying any chance of them getting Bortles.

    • Josh Hart

      Bortles won’t go that high and trading up to get him would be silly.

      • TopGearRules

        Silly? Have you seen him play! The only thing that will be silly is any team passing him up for any other QB in this draft. He will be the next ” Big Ben” I have watched him extensively as well as the other college QB’s and he stands out. If he is not a top ten QB in three years I will eat my hat.

      • Conor Cahill

        Can’t agree with you on this one. I think theres a fair chance he even goes above Teddy.

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