Monday, January 14, 2013

Conference Championship Round Mock Draft

1. Kansas City Chiefs (2-14) - Geno Smith (QB/West Virginia)

Now that Andy Reid is the head coach in Kansas City, the team will look for a mobile quarterback who can throw as well.  Luckily, the top quarterback available fits that role.

Smith isn't as big as Donovan McNabb (6'5", 240) but at 6'3", 220, he has a better frame than Michael Vick did in Reid's offense.

2. Jacksonville Jaguars (2-14) - Jarvis Jones (OLB/Georgia)

Jacksonville may have the second overall pick, but they will get the best player in this draft.  Jones is a fantastic pass rusher, but he does so much more for the defense as well.  A complete multidimensional player who  will be an immediate upgrade on the Jaguars defense.

3. Oakland Raiders (4-12) - Star Lotulelei (DT/Utah)

Oakland's defensive line is a mess.  Not only is the unit unable to get to the quarterback, but they can't defend the run either.  Lotulelei will command double teams in the pass rush and plug up lanes on the run.

4. Philadelphia Eagles (4-12) - Luke Joeckel (OT/Texas A&M)

Philadelphia's offensive line surrendered 48 sacks last season, which can't happen when the fragile Michael Vick is the signal caller for the team.  Their next quarterback will need protection.

5. Detroit Lions (4-12) - Damontre Moore (DE/Texas A&M)

Cliff Avril played poorly last season after being given the franchise tag so there is a chance he could walk in free agency.  Kyle Vanden Bosch is also in the final year of his contract.

6. Cleveland Browns (5-11) - DeMarcus Milliner (CB/Alabama)

Joe Haden  is a fantastic cornerback, but in a passing league you need two cornerbacks.  Milliner is a shutdown cornerback who can take away the entire side of a field.

7. Arizona Cardinals (5-11) - Eric Fisher (OT/Central Michigan)

This is a bit of a reach for Fisher, but Arizona is desperate for an offensive tackle and Taylor Lewan decided to stay in school.  Arizona has allowed 162 sacks in the past three seasons.

8. Buffalo Bills (6-10) - Tavon Austin (WR/West Virginia)

Buffalo needs help at receiver, especially if they are stuck with Ryan Fitzpatrick for another season.  Austin is a versatile threat, much like Percy Harvin in Minnesota.

9. New York Jets (6-10) - Bjoern Werner (DE/Florida State)

New York's defense has taken a step back in the past two seasons, mainly due to their lack of a true pass rushing threat.  Adding Werner can prevent the team from relying on blitzing.

10. Tennessee Titans (6-10) - Jonathan Banks (CB/Mississippi State)

Tennessee needs help at both cornerback and defensive end, so taking the best player available at either spot will be most likely.  Banks is a solid cornerback who dominated opposing offenses in the SEC.

11. San Diego Chargers (7-9) - Johnathan Hankins (DT/Ohio State)

San Diego has other needs, but Hankins is the best player available who also fills a need.  Hankins can bolster the defensive line in San Diego.

12. Miami Dolphins (7-9) - Dion Jordan (DE/Oregon)

Miami was the second-highest blitzing team in the NFL, something that could backfire on them next season.  Adding another quality pass rusher across from Cameron Wake can help this.

13. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (7-9) - Sheldon Richardson (DT/Missouri)

Gerald McCoy is a stud, but Tampa Bay could add another quality defensive lineman.  Adding another quality defensive tackle could make Tampa Bay's one of the league's best.

14. Carolina Panthers (7-9) - John Jenkins (DT/Georgia)

Carolina couldn't defend the run to save their lives last season.  The team has been thin at defensive tackle for the past two seasons and the team will need to bring in talent at the position.

15. New Orleans Saints (7-9) - Manti Te'o (LB/Notre Dame)

Te'o falls because of his performance in the National Championship, but his overall season shouldn't make him fall too far.  New Orleans has needs all over their defense that will need to be addressed in the offseason.

16. St. Louis Rams (7-8-1) - Keenan Allen (WR/California)

Danny Amendola is not healthy enough to be the top target for Sam Bradford.  Adding a wide receiver in the offseason will be necessary in St. Louis.

17. Pittsburgh Steelers (8-8) - Barkevious Mingo (DE/LSU)

There is a good chance James Harrison will be cut in the offseason.  If he is, however, the Steelers will need to find someone who can get to the quarterback.

18. Dallas Cowboys (8-8) - Chance Warmack (G/Alabama)

Dallas needs to upgrade their interior offensive line.  Warmack is an elite prospect who fals here because he doesn't play at a premium position.

19.  New York Giants (9-7) - Alec Ogletree (LB/Georgia)

New York reportedly wants to upgrade their linebacker unit this season, which means Chase Blackburn may not return in he offseason.  If he walks, the team will have a void in the middle of their defense.

20. Chicago Bears (10-6) - Jonathan Cooper (G/North Carolina)

Chicago struggled late in the season due to their offensive line.  Adding a mainstay at the position will be necessary in the offseason.

21. Cincinnati Bengals (10-6) - Kevin Minter (LB/LSU)

Rey Maualuga was terrible this season and is a free agent.  Cincinnati could look to the draft to upgrade the position.

22. St. Louis Rams (7-8-1) - Kenny Vaccaro (S/Texas)

St. Louis' cornerbacks played phenomenally last season, but they need help at safety. Vaccaro had a solid season which has caused him to jump up the draft boards.

23. Minnesota Vikings (10-6) - Robert Woods (WR/USC)

Christian Ponder needs more option at wide receiver.  Percy Harvin, who is often injured, is his only reliable target.

24. Indianapolis Colts (11-5) - Sam Montgomery (DE/LSU)

 Robert Mathis and Dwight Freeney are getting older and will need a younger player who can rotate in with them.  Montgomery is talented enough to go in the top half of the draft, but has fallen due to concerns about his knee.

25. Seattle Seahawks (11-5) - Ezekiel Ansah (DE/BYU)

Chris Clemons is now a big question mark after tearing his ACL.  Seattle has other players who can get to the quarterback, but Ansah is the best player available.

26. Green Bay Packers (11-5) - Giovani Bernard (RB/North Carolina)

Green Bay's unbalanced offense caught up to them in the postseason.  They will need to add a running back in the offseason to help keep defenses honest in 2013.

27. Houston Texans (12-4) - Terrance Williams (WR/Baylor)

Across from the aging Andre Johnson, Houston does not have many options in the passing game.  The Texans will need to bring in another quality receiver soon.

28. Denver Broncos (13-3) - Jesse Williams (DT/Alabama)

Denver needs a big man in the middle to clog up running lanes.  Derek Wolfe, last year's top pick, will move to defensive end with this move.

29. New England Patriots (12-4) - Barrett Jones (C/Alabama)

Bill Belichick loves his versatile players and Jones fits that prototype.  A center in college, Jones can play everywhere but left tackle in the NFL.

30. Atlanta Falcons (13-3) - Zach Ertz (TE/Stanford)

Tony Gonzalez has hinted at retirement all season.  If he goes, Matt Ryan will need a safety valve for next season.

31. San Francisco 49ers (11-4-1) - Alex Okafor (DE/Texas)

San Francisco has a great pass rushing unit, but there is not a lot of depth in the position.  With few needs, San Francisco is able to take the best player available.

32. Baltimore Ravens (10-6) - Matt Elam (S/Florida)

Ray Lewis will retire at the season's end, but every years, the Ravens also deal with whether or not Ed Reed will do the same almost every year.  Reed will turn 35 this September.

Monday, January 7, 2013

End of Regular Season 2013 Mock Draft

* Denotes Underclared Underclassman

Really want to look ahead? Here's the 2014 Mock Draft 

1. Kansas City Chiefs (2-14) - Geno Smith (QB/West Virginia)

The Chiefs can't possibly enter 2013 with their current quarterback situation, so unless they obtain someone like Matt Flynn or Michael Vick (if Andy Reid goes to Kansas City), they will look to the draft for Geno Smith.

Smith especially makes sense if either Reid or Oregon's Chip Kelly are given the head coach position.  Smith is a mobile quarterback (something Reid loves with Vick, Donovan McNabb) and can light up a scoreboard (much like Kelly's high-octane offense).

2. Jacksonville Jaguars (2-14) - Jarvis Jones (OLB/Georgia)

Jacksonville's pass rush improved when they claimed Jason Babin off waivers, but they need more people to get to the quarterback in a division that features Matt Schaub and Andrew Luck.

Jones is a do-it-all linebacker, evidenced by his game earlier this season against Missouri.  Prior to Babin being claimed by the Jaguars, Jones had more sacks alone than the Jaguars did as a team.

3. Oakland Raiders (4-12) - Star Lotulelei (DT/Utah)

The Raiders need to fix their toothless front, which has just been run over all season.  Lotuleilei is a big body who can command double teams and plug up running lanes.

4. Philadelphia Eagles (4-12) - Luke Joeckel (OT/Texas A&M)

This is another pick that depends on whether or not Philadelphia picks up a quarterback in the offseason.  Alex Smith has been a name mentioned, but if all depends on who takes over.  If they do have a new signal caller, however, they will need to protect him.

Joeckel has started at left tackle almost immediately after he set foot on Texas A&M's campus.

5. Detroit Lions (4-12) - Damontre Moore (DE/Texas A&M)

Cliff Avril had a disappointing 2012 campaign so Detroit could let him walk in free agency this year.  The Lions are big on taking the best player available so at this spot either Moore (if he declares) or Manti Te'o would be that option.

6. Cleveland Browns (5-11) - Manti Te'o (LB/Notre Dame)

Cleveland used their early draft picks last year on their offense, this year, they need on their defense.  The Browns have a lot of quality players on the defense, but they have some areas that need tweaking.  Te'o can play both middle and strong side linebacker.

7. Arizona Cardinals (5-11) - Taylor Lewan (OT/Michigan)*

Quarterback is a need in Arizona, but not as badly as their offensive line, which has been the worst in the league at protecting the quarterback for the past four seasons.

8. Buffalo Bills (6-10) - Tavon Austin (WR/West Virginia)

The Bills could go after a quarterback here as well, but they have other needs that can also be addressed here without reaching for a player.

Austin is a versatile receiver who can also run the ball, much like Percy Harvin in Minnesota and could be a offensive spark plug in the NFL.

9. New York Jets (6-10) - Bjoern Werner (DE/Florida State)

The Jets pass rush has been non-existent in the Rex Ryan era except when they blitz.  New York will need to find someone who can get to the quarterback early in the draft.

10. Tennessee Titans (6-10) - DeMarcus Milliner (CB/Alabama)*

This pick comes down to the best player available at either cornerback or defensive end.  Tennessee has nothing to offer at pass rush and the secondary suffered because of it.  The Titans will need to improve both units this offseason.

11. San Diego Chargers (7-9) - Eric Fisher (OT/Central Michigan)

San Diego's pass protection cost them at least two games this season with costly penalties as well as allowing sacks late in games.  The new head coach will need to find a way to protect Phillip Rivers.

12. Miami Dolphins (7-9) - Dion Jordan (DE/Oregon)

Miami was the second-highest blitzing team in the NFL, which is something opposing offensive coordinators can figure out next season, much like what happened to the Jets.  Miami needs to counteract this by drafting another guy who can get to the passer across from Cameron Wake.

13. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (7-9) - Jonathan Banks (CB/Mississippi State)

Even before the Buccaneers traded the troublesome Aqib Talib, their secondary was leaky.  Eric Wright is overpaid and Ronde Barber isn't getting any younger.  The team needs to upgrade their secondary if they want to compete with Matt Ryan and Drew Brees.

14. Carolina Panthers (7-9) - Johnathan Hankins (DT/Ohio State)

The Panthers had a lot of trouble stopping the run this season mainly due to a lack of talent at defensive tackle.  Hankins, who has shut down opposing running games all season, could alleviate this.

15. New Orleans Saints (7-9) - Sheldon Richardson (DT/Missouri)

The Saints defense overall was horrendous this season, but nothing was as bad as their defensive line, which needs to be upgraded as a whole.

16. St. Louis Rams (7-8-1) - Keenan Allen (WR/California)

Danny Amendola is too fragile to be the top wideout in St. Louis.  Adding a weapon for Sam Bradford will be a necessity this offseason.

17. Pittsburgh Steelers (8-8) - Barkevious Mingo (DE/LSU)

James Harrison could become a cap casualty due to his high salary and his age.  The guy is just too injured for his salary.  If he is gone, the Steelers will need to replace him.

18. Dallas Cowboys (8-8) - Chance Warmack (G/Alabama)

Dallas' interior offensive line struggled to open up running lanes all season.  Warmack is a physical guard who could go in the top half of the draft.

19. New York Giants (9-7) - Alec Ogletree (LB/Georgia)

There is a good chance Chase Blackburn could walk in free agency.  Either way, the Giants are reportedly looking into retool their linebacker unit.

20. Chicago Bears (10-6) - Jonathan Cooper (G/North Carolina)

The Bears offensive line as a whole was terrible this season.  It also did not help that many guys were playing out of their natural position.  Adding a mainstay at one position could fix this.

21. Cincinnati Bengals (10-6) - CJ Mosley (LB/Alabama)*

 Linebacker, especially in the middle, has been an Achilles' heel for the Bengals all season.  Luckily, there is a lot of talent at the position in the draft.

22. St. Louis Rams (7-8-1) -  Kenny Vaccaro (S/Texas)*

While the Rams cornerbacks have played well, the team needs to improve at safety.  Craig Dahl in a free agent.

23. Minnesota Vikings (10-6) - Robert Woods (WR/USC)

A big reason why Christian Ponder has struggled this season is due to the loss of Percy Harvin at wide receiver.  When Harvin was in the lineup, Ponder needs a reliable option at wide receiver in order to be a successful NFL quarterback.

24. Indianapolis Colts (11-5) - Ezekiel Ansah (DE/BYU)

Dwight Freeney and Robert Mathis are beginning to get a little long in the tooth.  Indianapolis will need to find a guy who can rotate in and out with them soon before taking over one of their spots.

25. Seattle Seahawks (11-5) - Terrance Williams (WR/Baylor)

The wideouts in Seattle have played better lately, but it is still a unit that can be upgraded.  Seattle was one of the worst teams in yards after the catch.  Williams is a dangerous player with the ball in his hands.

26. Baltimore Ravens (10-6) - Shayne Skov (LB/Stanford)

Ray Lewis officially announced that he will retire at the season's end.  Baltimore will need to replace the legend and this draft is deep in interior linebackers.

27. Houston Texans (12-4) - Xavier Rhodes (CB/Florida State)

Team who were able to protect their quarterback were able to throw the ball over Houston's defense.  The Texans need to beef up their secondary in order to avoid this.

28. San Francisco 49ers (11-4-1) - Sam Montgomery (DE/LSU)*

The 49ers have a slew of guys who can get to the quarterback, but not much in depth at the position.  A pure value pick for San Francisco.

29. New England Patriots (12-4) - Barrett Jones (C/Alabama)

Jones is a typical New England player in the sense that he versatile enough to play multiple positions, which is something New England needs, especially with four impending free agents along the line.

30. Atlanta Falcons (13-3) - Tyler Eifert (TE/Notre Dame)

Tony Gonzalez recently said he is "95-percent sure" that he will retire at the season's end.  Gonzalez has been a nice safety valve for Matt Ryan and is something the Falcons will want to replace this offseason.

31. Green Bay Packers (11-5) - Giovani Bernard (RB/North Carolina)

The Packers need help at running back.  Cedric Benson sucks and he's been hurt for most of the season  and the rest of the running backs have not helped out in Green Bay.

32. Denver Broncos (13-3) - John Jenkins (DT/Georgia)

Denver needs a big body at defensive tackle.  Doing so will allow Derek Wolfe to move to the outside and improve the Broncos run defense as well as their pass rush.