2014 NFL Mock Draft First Round Version 1

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Oregon State Beavers wide receiver Brandin Cooks (7) scores a touchdown against USC Trojans in the first half at Reser Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jaime Valdez-USA TODAY Sports

Whenever writing up a mock draft, I feel like it’s important to construct each pick based on how you would want each team to pick per their individual situation, rather than who you think each team will pick. Otherwise, it’s a total guessing game that takes out the useful opinion of analyzing prospects and team needs, and instead replaces it with trying to read through the rumor mill. I’d rather not make trades in mock drafts for the sake of simplicity, but there are a few instances in which I feel a trade is absolutely necessary. For instance, the St. Louis Rams will trade down in this mock, because I have a hard time believing they are going to stay put at pick number two. It just makes no sense for them to do that, and that’s why it makes no sense for me to have them sticking around there.

For more great 2014 NFL Mock Drafts, check out the mock draft databases at Walter Football, DC Pro Sports Report, and Sports Jabber.

1. Houston Texans
Teddy Bridgewater
QB, Louisville

There are plenty of reports out there that state the Texans will pick either Blake Bortles and Johnny Manziel, and I’m sure you’ve read all of them- especially if you are a Texans fans. Again, I don’t create my mock drafts based on what reports say, because there’s always a chance that things change or that the reports are just smokescreens. I also don’t buy into the whole “Bridgewater isn’t a Bill O’Brien quarterback”, because that’s essentially saying O’Brien wouldn’t want to draft the most accurate, polished, and smart pocket passer in the draft. Bridgewater does a much better job of reading through his progressions than Manziel and Bortles, his accuracy is the best in the class, he’s mobile but is a pocket passer at his core, and he could help lead a more efficient Texans offense with Andre Johnson and DeAndre Hopkins helping him out at receiver. Bridgewater doesn’t make many mistakes out there, and his college tape is a wonder to behold. Just watch how he manipulated Hurricanes defenders with his eyes against Miami in the Russell Athletic Bowl to see his ability to beat both man and zone coverages.

2. St. Louis Rams (from Washington) trade their pick to the Arizona Cardinals
Blake Bortles
QB, UCF

It’s time to be different and get messy, even if it means making a crazy intra-division trade between the Arizona Cardinals and St. Louis Rams. The Cards obviously have an uphill battle when it comes to making the playoffs in the NFC West, but no NFL franchise is going to give up on another darkhorse run that could finally yield this team a playoff spot. Why would the Cardinals make this bold of a move to trade up for quarterback who isn’t ready? Well, Carson Palmer is locked in as the starter next season, but I can’t see how they would pay him $10 million to stick around for the 2015 season after paying him $8 million in 2014. Palmer’s a nice stopgap, but that’s all the 34-year-old is at this point- a stopgap whose lack of arm strength doesn’t accentuate the talent of the receivers around him and definitely doesn’t help Bruce Arians achieve what he wants to do. More importantly, that expensive 2015 season is voidable, and I’m sure the Cards would like to be in a position to “void” that year.

But Bortles could be exactly the guy Arians wants, especially since his size, mobility, pocket presence, physical tools, and upside might remind the Cardinals head coach of quarterbacks he’s successfully coached in the past. Bortles has a buyer-beware tag due to his inability to read through progressions, the relatively easy throws he attempted in college, his technique issues, his somewhat spotty accuracy, and his needs-improvement decision-making. However, he has as much upside as anyone in this class with his arm strength, incredible pocket poise, crazy mental toughness and clutchness, mobility, and the potential that he has if he improves on his accuracy, decision-making, and form. Bortles is somebody who could struggle as a rookie due to turnovers and the adjustment between the AAC and NFL, but he would have a great coach in Arizona and a friendly scheme with playmakers (Larry Fitzgerald, Michael Floyd, and Andre Ellington). He would also get chance to learn on the bench for a year. Why is that important? Take it from here, Tommy B.

3. Jacksonville Jaguars
Jadeveon Clowney
DE, South Carolina

I really want the Jacksonville Jaguars to take a quarterback in the first round, but there’s no point in taking a QB and setting your franchise back a few years if you don’t think there’s someone who stands out and is worth the third overall pick. It all may be a smokescreen, but I’m also wondering if the Jaguars are sold on Johnny Manziel or Derek Carr. I know it sounds like I’m bucking my own logic here, but the Jaguars have so many needs that their prudent GM David Caldwell knows it’s best to build a strong roster. I agree with that, and I think the Jaguars are going to go best-available here. Despite his lack of pass rush moves, rawness, and background concerns, Clowney is the best prospect in this draft class. The Jaguars desperately need a top pass rusher, and that’s what Clowney would provide for this team. Not only does he have elite physical tools, but he’s also a willing and able run defender, which should further help this team. I could see the Jags taking Clowney and then picking up a second-tier QB like David Fales, Aaron Murray, or Jimmy Garoppolo in the second- or third- round of the draft.

4. Cleveland Browns 
Johnny Manziel
QB, Texas A&M

Since the Cleveland Browns have one of the stronger offensive lines in this league with an elite LT (Manziel has always had top tackles around him), they’ll have plenty of talent protecting the Texas A&M product. I hate how Manziel never makes the easy read, and I think his reliance on improv skill is going to cause him issues in his first year. But like the Cardinals, the Browns are also in a prime position to afford their raw signal-caller and hopeful franchise QB a chance to learn on the bench, as Brian Hoyer is a nice stop-gap option (2014 is the final year of his deal). I’m not the biggest Manziel fan, but even I recognize his upside, physical tools, and willingness to improve. Kyle Shanahan and Dowell Loggains form an excellent coaching tandem on the offensive side of the ball, so the support system should be there. It’s a risky pick for the Browns, but it’s not like Derek Carr would be without risk either.

5. Oakland Raiders
Khalil Mack
DE/OLB, Buffalo

A lot of people have the Oakland Raiders selecting Sammy Watkins here, but I think the Raiders have a much bigger need for a playmaker on defense as opposed to a wide receiver. Watkins is a potential game-changer and the Raiders could use a guy like him on offense, but I think Mack is too good of a prospect to turn down. Plus, it’s not like Denarius Moore and Rod Streater are bums either, so this is also a case of going with need. Sio Moore looks solid and Kevin Burnett can ball, but the Raiders could also kick Burnett inside and play Mack as a 4-3 OLB. Moreover, Mack can also be a 4-3 DE, which is a need for the Raiders with Lamarr Houston likely departing in free agency. Like Houston, Mack has the ability to succeed as a pass rusher and run defender, and his versatility alone makes him a playmaker. When Clowney’s on the board, he’s usually the pick for the Raiders, Mack makes sense here.

6. Atlanta Falcons
Jake Matthews
OT, Texas A&M

Both Greg Robinson and Jake Matthews are so good that you could legitimately make the case for either, but I can’t put Robinson ahead of Matthews due to the A&M product’s incredible technique. Give me technique over athleticism at the tackle position any day, because it’s usually the raw prospects who bust. Robinson, of course, is more than some “raw” prospect, but Matthews’s technique puts him over the edge. I know the Falcons like Lamar Holmes‘s upside, but can you really bank on that? With Mack and Clowney off the board and Anthony Barr an overrated prospect much better off in the 3-4, I don’t see how the Falcons pass up on the third-best overall prospect in the draft.

7. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
C.J. Mosley
ILB, Alabama

The Buccaneers pretty much got shafted in this mock draft with Khalil Mack already off the board, and that makes it difficult to project their pick. I think it would be a reach for the Bucs to take Sammy Watkins, unless if the Mike Williams situation somehow deteriorates and leads to him getting released. Since I don’t anticipate that happening, I don’t anticipate WR being a need for the Bucs. Even if they do end up cutting ties with Vincent Jackson‘s WR partner, it would still be unwise for the Bucs to spend the seventh pick in the draft on a wide receiver with all the depth at the position in this draft. Seriously, they could find a great WR like Brandin Cooks in round two; this class is loaded at wideout.

So the seventh pick effectively becomes a need vs. value pick, with need being DE and value being C.J. Mosley. Neither Mosley nor Ealy are the best player available, and both actually fill needs for the Buccaneers. However, Ealy fills a desperate need, whereas Mosley fills a more “minor” need at MLB. Ealy looks like a solid 4-3 DE at the next level with his pass rushing skills and decent enough run defending, but Mosley looks like a future All-Pro and has all the physical and mental tools to be a great player at the next level. Give me the better player.

8. Minnesota Vikings
Derek Carr
QB, Fresno State

The Minnesota Vikings are left with the last of the “big four” quarterbacks, but Derek Carr is just about as good as Manziel and isn’t far off from Blake Bortles either. I kind of hate how Carr gets lumped into the back of the bus, as if it’s a bad thing that he’s picked behind those guys. Carr has a cannon of an arm, and he reminds me of a cross between Jay Cutler and Matthew Stafford. He has all the tools to be a franchise quarterback, and I actually think he’s better than Manziel. This guy is also more polished than Manziel, and he makes perfect sense for the Vikings here. They desperately need a quarterback, and hopefully Norv Turner can help mold Carr into a franchise passer.

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Tags: Arizona Cardinals Atlanta Falcons Baltimore Ravens Buffalo Bills Carolina Panthers Chicago Bears Cincinnati Bengals Cleveland Browns Dallas Cowboys Denver Broncos Detroit Lions Green Bay Packers Houston Texans Jacksonville Jaguars Kansas City Chiefs Miami Dolphins Minnesota Vikings New England Patriots New Orleans Saints New York Giants New York Jets NFL Draft Oakland Raiders Philadelphia Eagles Pittsburgh Steelers San Diego Chargers San Francisco 49ers Seattle Seahawks St. Louis Rams Tampa Bay Buccaneers Tennessee Titans

  • Julien Bélair

    I don’t see a world where CJ Mosley is taken in the top 10 and also in front of Watkins. Damn this ILB is wayyyyy overhype.

    Also Ebron will be taken between 10-15 IMO

    • http://www.musketfire.com/ Joe Soriano

      I had him in the top ten, because I just couldn’t find a better choice for the Buccaneers. And really the only reason why Mosley isn’t in the top ten is because ILBs aren’t viewed as being as valuable as players at other positions. I don’t think the Bucs need a WR, no QB fits them there, and they don’t really have a pass rusher to choose from there besides Ford or Ealy. Mosley is the better prospect then either of them, and that was the logic there.

      I don’t think Ebron will fall out of the top 20, and I’ll readily admit that I’m lower on him than most people, too. That said, I’m also not sure if the teams picking between 10 and 15 should even take him.

      • Julien Bélair

        They do need a WR. LIke every team. Even the Broncos need a WR haha

  • Nathan Kearns

    As a St. Louis Rams fan, I obviously love everything about this Mock…

    Using a conservative estimate (i.e. dictated by the draft value chart), the Rams should net, at least, the Cardinals ’15 and ’16 first rounders… and even that would leave them “50 points” short, under the assumption they would be picking at No.20 every year.

    However, we all know that those estimates are more of a minimum acceptable value, and not a predictive measure for trades. Given that there will be plenty of trade interest within the Top 10, I couldn’t imagine the bounty that they would have to fork over to move up.

    For a more realistic trade view, most would expect the Cleveland Browns to give up their No.4, No.26, and either a second- or third-rounder.

    In 2012, it cost the Dallas Cowboys their second-rounder to move from No.16 to No.6 with the Rams… and that was the “lowest price” I could find for such a massive jump.

    So, in my best estimation, I would say it would cost the Arizona Cardinals their: ’14 first- and second-rounder, ’15 first- and second-rounder, and ’16 first-rounder! So, in essence, two additional 1sts and two 2nds… that is a lot of good players!

    Not that I am against this awesomely amazing trade, but I think the Cardinals might be better off waiting at No.20 for Derek Carr. I believe that if he can make it past the Minnesota Vikings (a realistic possibility), he would tumble into their waiting hands!

    • Julien Bélair

      I think the Browns trading up for Manziel if Houston take Bridge is a real possibility

      • Nathan Kearns

        No disagreement there… and I still think it’ll cost them, at least, their No.4, No.26, and either a ’14 or ’15 second-rounder!

        • Julien Bélair

          To be honest this is really something that is difficult to know the ”value chart”. But to Browns do have the picks to do it.

          • http://www.musketfire.com/ Joe Soriano

            I’m not sure if the Browns should trade up just for Manziel, but I wouldn’t be surprised if they did it. And hey, it’s justifiable if they are indeed sold on him.

          • Gary Stewart

            if the rams offer a discount to the browns and just take #4 and 26 and say a 4th round pick then assuming hou takes a qb cle takes a qb and jax takes a qb the better odds are with atl jumping to 4 and trade their #6 and 2nd round pick to secure clowney then if you are ready for this… the rams trade the 6th overall pick to minnesota and take their 8th overall pick and a 2015 2nd rounder so they can take derek carr. the rams end up with #8, 13, 26, atls 2nd their own 2nd clevs 4th and an extra 2015 2nd rounder, drafting at #8 means if the 4 qbs are gone after 6 picks and clowney is gone thats 5 gone 3 left so barr mack mosely robinson and matthews at least 2 of those 5 would be avail to pick from at #8. im in and playing for 2014 not 2 more years down the road!!!! GO RAMS!!!

          • Gary Stewart

            btw as good as clowney is jax has no guarantee of getting a qb in 2015 and i cant believe they wont take one while drafting at #3 but thes my opinion

          • http://www.cnsqonline.com cesarnoel

            Jacksonville will likely follow the Seattle blue print since Gus Bradley came from the Pete Carroll line of coaching. He’d beef up his defensive line starting with Clowney (if he’s available) and likely draft a QB in the later round.

          • Gary Stewart

            the difference being seattle

            thought they had their qb when they signed flynn in free agency, and wilson in the 3rd round to groom for the future. he just happened to beat out flynn jax has gabbert and henne they cant try a 3rd round project if they want to win my guess is they take a qb at #3 but we shall see!!

          • http://www.cnsqonline.com cesarnoel

            If they manage to get a Stud RB in the like Tra Mason or KaDeem Carey their QB won’t be pressured enough to make plays.

          • Gary Stewart

            tre or ka deem i would love one of those two to take pressure off zac next year for the rams but jax has to work on their o line or the stud rbs will be running into brick walls!!

          • http://www.cnsqonline.com cesarnoel

            I’d prefer Charles Sims over Tre and KaDeem. Rams needed Change of Pace / Back field receivers.

          • Gary Stewart

            sorry joe no pressure this time just saying while the trade down for futures doesnt excite me the dix pick is perfect!!

          • http://www.musketfire.com/ Joe Soriano

            Haha, I don’t know how far the Rams should trade down or with who, but I do know that they shouldn’t be picking at #2 and should try to get as many picks as possible. Nobody really fits them at #2, whereas they can go in so many different directions if Snead deals down. And, as we all know, Snead likes trading down.

            Charles Sims is the best all-around back in the draft, and I agree that they don’t need a “feature-type” back a la Carey or Mason.

    • http://www.musketfire.com/ Joe Soriano

      Thanks for dropping by, Nathan. It seems like that wouldn’t be the best of trades for the Cardinals, but I didn’t want to think that far ahead, which looks like a huge mistake haha.

      But if the Cardinals want a QB, then hoping Carr falls might not be the best policy.

      • Nathan Kearns

        I’d love for you to be a prophet and this thing somehow go down! In that case, Les Snead should be given Executive of the Year from 2015 through whenever he retires…

        • http://www.musketfire.com/ Joe Soriano

          If this happens, then I can’t imagine what Rams fans would be feeling haha.

      • Gary Stewart

        joe its time to think that far ahead and tell us what you feel the rams will get for moving down 18 spots and we arent talking 10 to 28 we are talking 2 to 20 so speculate what will the rams get back because the fans of ram nation deserve better than to improve their divisional opponent and to ask the team to wait til next year repeatedly not to mention the cards stand to pick in the 20 range not 7-10 next year our division plays the nfc east a bit easier than the south

    • http://www.cnsqonline.com cesarnoel

      The Blake Bortles pick makes sense because Bortles is similar to Andrew Luck and Ben Rothlesberger (quarterbacks that are mobile) and have the same body frame on which HC Bruce Arians likes.

      • http://www.musketfire.com/ Joe Soriano

        Haha, that’s what I tried to allude to in the explanation, and it wouldn’t make sense at all for the Cardinals to do this if Arians didn’t love Bortles.

        • http://www.cnsqonline.com cesarnoel

          But with the latest news that Houston has hired former Central Florida QB Coach it basically tipped which QB are they picking.

  • KCtitleist11

    Sammy Watkins is the best receiver in this draft hands down. If he falls to Detroit, their receiving core would be stupid. I would really like to take a big receiver to threaten defenses opposite Bowe like Kelvin Benjamin out of Florida state. He’s 6’5 234lb. That’s only 5 pounds less than Calvin Johnson at the same height. He has the size to be a monster. Then if we could only fill that slot position (because McCluster is gone), we’ll be set. Maybe Donnie Avery could fill it, but if we sign Maclin to go in the slot on a good affordable deal w/ Benjamin and Bowe on the outsides… I don’t even have to continue

    • http://www.musketfire.com/ Joe Soriano

      Having Benjamin would be awesome, and the Chiefs WR corps would definitely be top-notch with Maclin in the fold, too. But Benjamin has so much “bust” to him that I think it’s better for the Chiefs to get a guy like Cooks who can get YAC and mix reliability with playmaking ability. Again, Cooks is a guy with Victor Cruz-potential. Some compare Benjamin to Calvin Johnson, but that’s neglecting just how good Johnson’s hands and route-running are. Does Benjamin have either of those all-important traits? Not quite, but yes, the upside is there.

      Honestly, I’m cool with whoever the Chiefs choose to pick at the end of the day, as long as it’s a WR in the first.

      • KCtitleist11

        Same here. I really want a WR first round and there’s a lot of talent out there. I also really like Odell Beckham and Marqise Lee, but Lee may not fall to 23. I know Cooks won the Biletnikoff this year and all, but he reminds me of Tavon Austin. I liked Tavon Austin coming into the draft but he really didn’t do a lot all year. I know he came on at the end of the year with some big games, but those big games were games with 2 catches for 150 yards or something along those lines. Some games Austin had 1 catch for 12 yards and was absolutely ineffective. I like the big play ability, but I really want a guy that can have games like 8 catches for 115 yards signifying he can consistently get open. I just don’t want Cooks to end up like Austin if we take him 23rd overall. I’m not knocking Austin, but it just worries me with that beginning of the season that he had when everyone thought he was going to be a monster out of the gate like he was in college. Cooks is a very similar receiver to Austin.

        • http://www.musketfire.com/ Joe Soriano

          Cooks is a LOT better than Austin, imo. I didn’t like Austin coming out of college, because he didn’t run clean routes and couldn’t win downfield. Cooks is better at that, and I think he’s a better prospect coming out than Austin was. Still, there’s definitely some risk to him, and I am also a huge fan of Beckham. If Lee falls to 23, I think Dorsey pulls the trigger, but what do I know about Dorsey’s preferences?

  • Kareem Daniels

    The Steelers like bigger corners. Gilbert will be there pick if they take a corner in the first round.

    • http://www.musketfire.com/ Joe Soriano

      Good point, but I think Verrett is too good to pass up on. He plays so smart, has good speed, is extremely physical, and is a PD-maven.

  • ahrcshaw

    Your Panther selection is confusing to say the least. I think Mr G and the staff will go for OT, then a CB, then a WR. I also believe shoring up the line would give Cam more time to pass, which would cover for his slowness in making a selection. You can say what you want buy speeding up Cam’s selection process is a long term project. Cam’s primary problem is when he gets in a hurry he throws too high. Cam favors Smitty because he is the only one who will fight for the ball, Olsen doesn’t, nor do the otther WR’s Buuuut the other WR and Olsen can and have caught pass when Cam has had time to pass. Look at the stats for any game that Cam has had time to throw as opposed to a game he is harassed.

    The CB then becomes a major second because a good CB or two or three would quickly shore up the defense, which would allow them to move Munnerlyn to the nickle, also shoring up the defense. I think they will let make a lot of moves at CB in the later rounds.

    I believe they will let LaFell walk and Keep Ginn, maybe Hixion. and even bring in another good TE. There are two question marks, in which Mr G calls on your squad already, the young WR, and the Big TE. This scenario would allow Mr G to bring in a good WR to develop.

    What is for sure Mr G and Rivera willl bring in a bunch at these three positions and look deeply into what is already on the roster and in the workin process mode. Go Panthers.

    • http://www.musketfire.com/ Joe Soriano

      I was squarely between CB and WR for the Panthers, so I’m definitely cool with CB being the pick (probably a bigger need, tbh). As for tackle, Byron Bell needs to be upgraded haha. Left side of the Panthers line is sick (assuming Gross stays), but the right side has issues.

      • ahrcshaw

        All three area have issues, but as you improve one area, ie DT, that improves another. Mr G is definitely a in the trenches GM, the battle is and alway will be won by the unsung hero’s in the trenches. Giant therory and really not to far off.

        My point is what will help Cam the most to produce points, Cams problem is he gets “pass rush” riled and tend to throw his pass erratic and high. If you do not eliminate that, you could get the best WR’s in the country and it would not help. When rushed Cam’s natural tendency is to run, when forced to stay into the pocket and he gets rushed he either pass too erratic or high, or waits too long and get sacked because he is trying to do as they say and stay cool in the pocket. If the pass rush is not stopped or at least contained they could be better off letting Cam scramble out and pass.

        Having a secure O line eleminats a lot of problems for Cam, and you can see the results by looking at the 4 games the Panthers pounded the opposition, then note what WR Cam had.

        • http://www.musketfire.com/ Joe Soriano

          If there isn’t a top OT available with that pick, then I think the Panthers can afford to wait to address that. Then again, with Gross aging, it might be better to be proactive. I mean, the best OT available would be Kouandjio, who isn’t a sure thing at all.

          • ahrcshaw

            Your are probably right, as I recall there were a couple of young un-drafted guy picked up last year that got hurt or something, I am thinking about the Canadian guy? who was the #1 Canadian draftee.

            I still think Cam would do a lot better with a good O line, what do you think of my comments regarding the O line?

          • http://www.musketfire.com/ Joe Soriano

            I think your arguments hold for every QB, and I agree that offensive tackle is a big need for this team. Jordan Gross isn’t getting younger (even if he’s still great), and Byron Bell will continue to be a disaster. Guard should be fine (watching RG closely), but I don’t think the Panthers should take a tackle in the 1st unless if a top guy falls to them. I think they should go best available at WR, CB, OT in the first.

          • ahrcshaw

            You are right, I have no idea who Mr G thinks is tops at OT, I just think that is what he would look for. I have no idea what Mr G or Rivera have on their wish board, but according to the news there are a lot of good OT’s, WR’s and a few good CB’s in this class. I am confident they will have a wide range of players. I also think one of the big WR from Florida State. Penn State and ??Vanderbilt ?? will be available. One thing for sue I hope they select a tall WR that will fight for the ball as that is what is wrong with LaFell and where Smittie excels.

          • http://www.musketfire.com/ Joe Soriano

            I had you guys taking Benjamin over Jordan Matthews, but Robinson would have gone to you if he were still available. Watch for Odell Beckham Jr., because he’s a sleeper.

          • ahrcshaw

            Cook from Oregon St might be a good one but he is small? so I would be weary unless he is available late.

  • Gunnar Martin

    I gotta say I really liked your mock until you had San Diego picking Roberson at 25. I’m not a big fan of his, to say the least, and besides, I doubt we even pick a CB in the first round. Yes, it may be our biggest need, but it’s a pretty deep position this year and we would be better off drafting BPA. Telesco seems to like that style the best, too.

    However, I do like that you had Fuller and Attaochu going so high. They’re both extremely underatted, in general. Neither of them probably end up going that high, but there’s no question that they should.

    • http://www.musketfire.com/ Joe Soriano

      Fuller and Attaochu are two of my sleepers, and they helped me make this mock unique.

      I’m not the biggest Roberson fan either, but I like him and think the Chargers desperately need a CB. It is a deep position in this class, but I’m not sure the Chargers can afford to wait. Going BPA would suit the Chargers, though, and that’s a great point.

      Thanks for dropping by, Gunnar. Do you like Fuller more than Roberson?

      • Paul Newbold

        I love Attaochu as a sleeper. I’m hoping the rest of the league does fall a sleep on this kid! He’d make the Jets linebacker corps much more dependable, and would provide a nice addition to their pass rush. Originally projected as a third rounder by many scouting reports, with a good showing at the combine, I think his stock will skyrocket! I know Rex Ryan would love to land him, he’s a Rex type LB for sure!

        • http://www.musketfire.com/ Joe Soriano

          The Jets will hope that he slides into the 2nd, because a pass rushing duo of Coples and Attaochu combined with that DL would be sick.

          • Paul Newbold

            I agree, while many have them going offense in the first two rounds, I think if Attaochu is there for the Jets in the second, Rex will be all over him!

      • Gunnar Martin

        I do like Fuller more than Roberson. Much more. Roberson plays with a sort of nonchalant sense of urgency that doesn’t impress me, and he’s not good at shedding blocks and attacking the ball carrier in the run game. Maybe it’s just that he lacks that “football passion.” He relies way too much on athleticism alone. He’s not terrible, but I see him more as a third rounder than a first rounder.

        • http://www.musketfire.com/ Joe Soriano

          Well, you also have to remember that comparing any CB prospect’s run D to Kyle Fuller’s run D is lopsided, because Fuller is just insanely good at stopping the run haha.

          • Gunnar Martin

            Right, but Roberson is also just insanely bad at stopping the run haha. Point is, I don’t like him very much as a prospect.

  • 3kolu

    Carr’s more polished than Bortles as well. He was a 3 year starter at Fresno State. He best be served as a backup for couple years. His upside is tremendous, but, he is also a candidate for inconsistency as well.

    • http://www.musketfire.com/ Joe Soriano

      Yeah, it’s tough trying to compare the three QBs in this class behind Bridgewater, because they all have so many positives and negatives to closely break down. Carr has the best arm in the class and has plenty of people helping him out in the background, but his footwork and needs work. That said, I actually like him a tad more than Bortles, because I think he is more polished than Bortles. It’s such a tough call, but Carr is my #2 QB behind Bridgewater.

      • 3kolu

        Yes, I agree. I like all these QB’s, but at the same time, I have some serious concerns with them as well. If they end up in the right system and/or with a great cast of players surrounding them, they should be fine. But, if they are put into the starting role too early, they will certainly struggle mightily. Minnesota would be the ideal fit for all of these guys because they have all the pieces in place except for LG. Also, if Greg Childs comes back in full health, their WR corps could become elite.

        • http://www.musketfire.com/ Joe Soriano

          The key with these QBs is, as you said, being patient and getting the right pieces in place (as with most high-upside, raw prospects). However, a team would pay dearly if they fail to do things right, because drafting a guy like Manziel could set a team back a few years if things don’t pan out.

          • 3kolu

            Yes, Manziel is an enigma. He has the ability to do things that are other worldly. He’ll bring energy and excitement that’s for sure. But, for how long?

  • Stan Colbert

    The Chiefs need a DT/DE to play rush in 3-4 and pass in Nickel pkg. They have no 2 round pick and D-line doesn’t seem to be a pos. of depth. Do you see them getting one, who, what round?

    • http://www.musketfire.com/ Joe Soriano

      If you want to go for someone that specialized, then I would wait on getting a sub-package guy until the mid or late rounds. Keep your eyes on George Uko out of USC.

  • Crusader10

    Um, what happened to Barr? Everyone else has him going in the top ten.

    • http://www.musketfire.com/ Joe Soriano

      He’s overrated. Watch his tape closely, and you’ll see that he’s still a very raw player who only wins with his athleticism as a pass rusher.

  • Dean Olson

    Love this mock draft. I don’t necessarily agree with all the picks (no one ever does) but I love that you’re willing to use actual logic with original thoughts, rather than just following what the glorious Mel Kiper thinks (who, if I recall correctly, mocked Shariff Floyd at 3 and Eifert at 6 right before the draft). And because literally no one knows what will happen, calling any mock draft terrible or wrong is really just ignorant and laughable. Essentially, I’m just glad you clearly thought out the picks and did exactly what you think, rather than following the herd.

    • http://www.musketfire.com/ Joe Soriano

      Thanks for the kind words, Dean, and that was my goal in this mock draft. Everyone who commented on this piece has probably read tons of different mocks out there, and I know I have sorted through many of them as well. My whole goal is to look at things from my personal opinion, instead of leaning on experts or pre-draft “smoke”. It’s about analyzing fits, prospects, and taking into account some expert opinion. But in the case of a guy like Anthony Barr or Odell Beckham Jr., I’m not one to conform to expert picks.

      You can never call a mock wrong, but I certainly welcome any and all criticism that I can learn from (under/overvaluing a prospect or not getting a team “need” or “fit” right).

  • http://www.cnsqonline.com cesarnoel

    Rams will never draft a quarterback in the 1st round and Sam Bradford is their quarterback.

    • http://www.musketfire.com/ Joe Soriano

      You definitely aren’t the only Rams fan who has said this, and I just might do this in my next mock. Thanks for the heads up.

      • http://www.cnsqonline.com cesarnoel

        It;s a classic Fisher drafting Philosphy. He needs a Haynesworth type of a DT who can collapse the interior and Brockers AND Hageman would wreck havoc.

        • http://www.musketfire.com/ Joe Soriano

          Haha, the rich would certainly get richer there.

  • Old Frog

    I know a lot of Cowboys fans would be happy with Donald at 17 but personally I’d rather have Martin who goes to Miami at 19.

    • http://www.musketfire.com/ Joe Soriano

      Martin is a beast as well, but I think the Cowboys need a DT more than an OT. He’d still be a solid pick, though, and I’ll be sure to take a close look at this scenario when writing up my next mock draft.

      • Old Frog

        Yeah, I’m somewhat in a minority thinking we need to finish what we started with the O line while we can rather than draft back ups at those positions later on. Martin could step in now at OG and be there at OT later if needed. If we’d taken Warford instead of Escobar with the second pick last year we’d be almost done there.

        • http://www.musketfire.com/ Joe Soriano

          It’s crazy looking at Warford’s play this season and thinking so many teams passed up on him, and it wasn’t a K. Allen situation where he was dropped due to BS concerns.

          • Old Frog

            Yeah. It boggles my mind how the Cowboys scouting department was so good evaluating Frederick at center, no matter what other teams thought, but then so screwed the pooch when evaluating Warford. After the Frederick pick I was ecstatic at the prospect of getting Warford next and couldn’t believe it when they announced Escobar’s name. Major letdown.

          • http://www.musketfire.com/ Joe Soriano

            The Cowboys tricked all of us bloggers and pundits with the Frederick pick…boy has he been great, especially compared to all of our head-scratching haha.

  • Paul Newbold

    Jets take Ebron if available. He has size, speed, athleticism, and a great set of hands! He’s versatile enough to work out of the slot, or you can use him on the outside as well. Lee has been projected as more of a slot receiver at the pro level (Jets have Kerley), he has his share of questions about his hands ( tends to catch with his body at times), his final year of college was less then spectacular, and he’s had nagging injuries as well. Safer bet is Ebron, in my opinion.

    • http://www.musketfire.com/ Joe Soriano

      Good points on Lee, and if the Jets view him as a slot WR then it’s best to take someone else. But at the same time, Ebron will mostly operate out of the slot as well, which is, again, where Kerley does his work. Lee’s drops and injury concerns are definitely deterrents, so Ebron vs. Lee makes for a great discussion. I was between them, too, and I might have them taking Ebron in my next mock. They simply need playmakers, so it doesn’t matter much who they get…as long as he’s good.

  • Tynan Patrick

    I really am not a fan of Mike Evans. Not only do i think he plays extremely soft for his size and that he has no concept of how to get himself open except to jump higher than his defender, but in the Ravens new offense with Kubiak as OC, they need someone who can run crisp, accurate routes. Evans can’t run any route, much less a full tree. Evans is a project, I would rather take a more polished player like Lee.

    • Tynan Patrick

      to pad this a bit further, bad routes in Kubiaks offense are INTs or pick sixes. its all timing and placement.

      • http://www.musketfire.com/ Joe Soriano

        Totally true, Schaub saw this the hard way. I hate how Evans never gets significant separation, and I was apprehensive about this pick. I think I’m going to modify this one to see if I can slot a more reliable WR going to Baltimore. Lee over Evans? Makes sense, but who do you think is the best “fit” for Baltimore? I still feel like Flacco needs another guy who is as reliable as Pita.

        • http://www.musketfire.com/ Joe Soriano

          Now that I’ve thought about it, Odell Beckham Jr. might be the best option for the Ravens.

          • Tynan Patrick

            I do like Beckham, but I know Ozzie new some likes to pick the safest players he can. He has often said he would rather take a safe double in the first round than swing for a home run and miss. Which leads me to Lee who i think is the safest first round WR in the draft, or as a second round option if he lasts long enough, to Matthews who is one of the safest picks at any position. both are extremely reliable and run great routes and have good hands. both are tremendous fits and Lee would be a steal at 16, if he had come out last year he would have been a top 10 pick easy. Im in love with the idea of getting lee.

          • http://www.musketfire.com/ Joe Soriano

            Matthews is probably safer than Lee, imo, but Lee also has much better tools at the position. I think Lee would be the best pick for the Ravens there, and Newsome’s philosophy that it’s best to go the “safe” route is one that more and more GMs need to look at.

          • Tynan Patrick

            i agree completely, like i said, i think matthews is one of the safest picks in the draft at any position. at absolute worst he is a solid contributing WR3 with WR1 potential. that said, i don’t think he is really worthy of the 16th or 17th pick, he would be a legitimate target if they traded to the mid 20s, but Lee is the much more talented player and his only real bust potential comes from injury concerns. Im a huge fan of Lee to baltimore, it just feels right. that said, i was the editor for Ebonybird.com last year and i spent 3 months saying i didn’t like Matt Elam because he was short and lacked range and i didn’t think a SS was worth a first rounder. This year Evans is the guy I’m convinced they won’t take, last year it was Elam, so what do i know.

          • http://www.musketfire.com/ Joe Soriano

            Completely agree and Lee and Matthews. Btw, I definitely remember you as the editor of Ebony Bird, and you did some great work over there :) Remember watching you and my man Mike Saver at Patriots Life talking about the AFCCG on ESPN Unite.

          • Tynan Patrick

            That was one of the coolest things i have ever gotten to do. tons of fun(winning made it even more fun). I miss some stuff about being editor like that, but i definitely don’t miss trying to get your staff to write more and inevitably failing and having to post a million times a month by myself. it was definitely a good experience though and its made me a fan sided network reader for life. there are a lot of good writers and opinions to be found here, yourself included. my thing was always the draft(i actually started with fan sided writing exclusively about the draft) and its my favorite sports event every year. I’m already pumped up and bummed out we have to wait two more weeks this year thanks to the new schedule.

          • http://www.musketfire.com/ Joe Soriano

            Thanks for the kind words, and I always love visiting other FanSided sites to gather some opinions. There are so many knowledgeable people on this network, and everybody is a great resource. When somebody such as yourself covers a team like the Ravens closely, your opinion is automatically one that I have to read up on, and I definitely read Ebony Bird whenever there was something about the Ravens that I wanted to learn about or have better insight on. You did a great job of covering the team over there, and it certainly is an awesome experience.

            Sometimes the workload gets overwhelming, but you really feel accomplished when you are able to get a seemingly insurmountable task done.

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