Written by: Andrew Aziz of Everything-Colts.com
2012 NFL Mock Draft 4.0
1st Overall Pick – Indianapolis Colts
Andrew Luck – Quarterback – Stanford
This pick is a no-brainer for the Colts. Jim Irsay has pretty much convinced everyone that he is picking him. Peyton Manning is not with the team anymore, which means that the Colts biggest need is quarterback. He’s a must pick. Luck has everything teams want in a quarterback: arm, size, accuracy, and smarts. He’s the best college prospect since Peyton Manning. At the combine, he showed how athletic this guy could be. He put up the same numbers as Cam Newton. Essentially, Luck is a athletic freak like Newton and has the arm of a guy like Peyton Manning, coming out of college. A mixture of Peyton Manning and Cam Newton make him the best draft prospect since John Elway, which is saying that he’s the best college prospect in the last 29 years.
2nd Overall Pick – Washington Redskins (from St Louis Rams)
Robert Griffin III – Quarterback – Baylor
The Redskins made the move; they traded 3 first round picks (this year’s (2012), 2013 and 2014) and this year’s 2nd round pick for (essentially) Robert Griffin III. This kid is an absolute monster, and if Andrew Luck weren’t in this draft he’d easily be number 1 and he’d be a number 1 draft pick in most drafts. He had a great year where he showed off his great arm and his off the charts speed. He’s a pocket quarterback with great mobility and runs a sub 4.4 40 yard dash. He’s a freak athlete with a great arm. The Redskins are going to be tough to adapt to, but playing a spread offense at Baylor is a good start as the spread offense and West Coast offense have many similar traits. He had one of the most productive seasons in the NCAA, even better than Andrew Luck’s season. He is a great quarterback who should be great for years to come.
3rd Overall Pick – Minnesota Vikings
Matt Kalil – Offensive Tackle – University of Southern California
The Vikings have one of the worst lines in football. This is an easy move. Charlie Johnson was pretty bad at left tackle, and he is a better guard or right tackle. Kalil can come in and play right away at left tackle. He has great footwork and is pretty strong. He’s only 295, which means that he’ll have to gain muscle. That shouldn’t be too big of a problem as he’s 6’7 (can gain weight to due his frame). They have a big investment in Christian Ponder, so they have to protect him. They have Adrian Peterson, but when they decide to pass, they’re going to need to protect him, as Ponder gets sacked 8% of the time he drops back to pass.
4th Overall Pick – Cleveland Browns
Trent Richardson – Running Back – Alabama
Peyton Hillis is not coming back to the Browns, which leaves a very big hole on that offense. Colt McCoy is not a quarterback that can throw 35+ times a game. He’s better when used in a run heavy offense. Trent Richardson is one of the best running back prospects in years. He has great power, speed and tackling-breaking ability. He reminds me of Adrian Peterson, which is saying a whole lot. The Vikings were in a situation like this several years ago with no quarterback and a big whole at running back. They drafted AP and never looked back. I think the Browns want that too. Richardson could come in and do better than Peyton Hillis in his first year.
5th Overall Pick – Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Morris Claiborne – Cornerback – Louisiana State
In LSU’s incredible year lies the play of Claiborne, who had another great year. The junior had 6 interceptions and 50+ tackles. Now, the Bucs could use a good linebacker, but picking Kuechly would be a bit of a stretch. They also need a good cornerback, as Ronde Barber’s career is coming to an end and Aqib Talib could be going to jail. They could use a good shutdown corner, plus with 3 pass heavy teams in the division, they’re going to need to shut some guys down to have a chance to compete in that division. Their offense had an off-year, but they should only get better. Their defense is the team that killed the Bucs this year.
6th Overall Pick – St Louis Rams (from Washington Redskins)
Justin Blackmon – Wide Receiver – Oklahoma State
The Rams biggest need is wide receiver, plain and simple. Their O-line was so bad last year due to injuries an with their O-line healthy again, it should be pretty good. Brandon Lloyd doesn’t seem like he’s committed to St Louis and even if he is, it’s still a big need. Sam Bradford is a young QB and young QBs need as much help as possible. They have Steven Jackson in the backfield, so that’s good. They’re getting bette at tight end. That’s another good step; and now with Blackmon they could have a good receiving core with Lloyd and Amendola. If Lloyd leaves, then the Rams would need to sign a free agent or draft a receiver in the middle rounds. Blackmon is a must pick for the Rams, or they’ll be screwed-over going forward.
7th Overall Pick – Jacksonville Jaguars
Quinton Coples – Defensive End – North Carolina
The Jaguars need a good defensive end, who can get to the quarterback. Jeremy Mincey is getting better and better, so keep him at left end, but Matt Roth is a pure run stopper. Quinton Coples is the ideal 4-3 defensive end: he’s powerful, quick and smart. The only problem with him is his worth ethic. It is noticeably that there are some days where he tries, and some days where he doesn’t care. A player’s coach like Mike Mularkey should be good for him.
8th Overall Pick – Miami Dolphins
Michael Floyd – Wide Receiver – Notre Dame
The Dolphins lost Brandon Marshall and as it stands right now, wide receiver is their biggest need. Their best receiver is Davone Bess, and that’s not a good thing. Michael Floyd fits this team perfectly. Bess could become the possession receiver that he is and they could use Floyd as their big body/deep threat. He is an athletic 6’3 receiver with great hands and good speed. He’s arguably the best receiver in the draft, but his off-the-field issues secure him as the #2.
9th Overall Pick – Carolina Panthers
Michael Brockers – Defensive Tackle – LSU
This pick is purely based on Brockers potential in the NFL. He has an outstanding amount of potential in this league. He was one of the best players on LSU’s amazing defense and he’s only a sophomore. He’s a big guy who can definitely become a good 4-3 NT. He’s a good run stopper and he’s getting better in the pass rushing department. He could draw some double teams and that could make Ron Rivera could be to his aggressive game-plan where all he would do is blitz. One of the biggest needs on the Panthers is the defensive tackle spot. This fills that need.
10th Overall Pick – Buffalo Bills
Riley Reiff – Offensive Tackle – Iowa
A must pick for the Bills. Demetrius Bell is a free agent, and even if he is retained, the only person they have to play right tackle is Chris Hairston. Reiff is better than Chris Hairston. Hairston is a better backup than starter. Riley Reiff is the 2nd best OT in the draft and with the departure of Demetrius Bell, it’s their biggest need. Reiff has great size, great mobility and great footwork. He could become their franchise OT for years to come, and that’s something that is very hard to find these days in the NFL. Ryan Fitzpatrick needs protection to really excel and without a left tackle, they really won’t get that.
11th Overall Pick – Kansas City Chiefs
Melvin Ingram – Defensive End/Outside Linebacker – South Carolina
A bit of a stretch, but it’s a need for the Chiefs. Riley Reiff is gone, so there goes the top tackles in the draft. Melvin Ingram was a beast this year. He had 13.5 sacks and 2 interceptions… as a defensive end. He could easily move over to Outside Linebacker, because the Chiefs use a 3-4 system. Now, here’s my theory. Tambi Hali is a beast, but he won’t get to the QB often if he gets double teamed 70% of the time. They need 2 stud pass rushers, who can constantly get to the quarterback. Having a good pass rush helps your pass defense, which is something new head coach Romeo Crennel wants. Romeo is all about defense, and with Cassel, Charles and Moeki returning to the offense, defense should be more of a priority. I wouldn’t say this is a must pick, but this could definitely give them a big boost on defense.
12th Overall Pick – Seattle Seahawks
David Decastro – Offensive Guard – Stanford
With the signing of Deuce Lutui, it makes the guard spot on the Seahawks better, but the fact of the matter is, they don’t have a quality left guard. John Moffitt was ok in his rookie season, but he’s a better backup. David Decastro is one of the best guard prospects we’ve seen in years. He’s a guy who is as solid as a rock, he has good footwork and on tape, it looked like he never moved an inch. He’s the real deal, and you could be seeing him in Pro Bowls. Now, how can you pass on him, when your O-line is in its current state? With the drafting of Decastro, their O-line will go to the next level.
13th Overall Pick – Arizona Cardinals
Dontari Poe – Defensive Tackle – Memphis
One of the biggest needs on the Cardinals is the NT spot. They have Darnell Dockett and Calais Campbell as their 3-4 DEs, but they don’t have a good NT. It’s hard to have a 3-4 defense without a good NT. Some teams make it work, but they make up for it with a lot of talent in other spots. The Cards don’t have much talent on the D, so having a good NT is a must. Dontari Poe had one of the best combines in recent memory running a 4.9 40 yard dash, and showing his great agility and power. He has top 10 potential. This could be the perfect pick for the Cards as this pick could really help their defense and perhaps their team in general. This pick fills their 2nd biggest need.
14th Overall Pick – Dallas Cowboys
Dre Kirkpatrick – Cornerback -- Alabama
This kid has attitude problems, but besides all that he is a top 10 talent. He is a big strong cornerback who no QB threw at this year in college football. He shut down a lot of good wide receivers. He has 0 interceptions due to nobody throwing his way. He’s so physical when hitting the ball carrier and covering the receivers, it’s what the Cowboys need and what Rob Ryan wants. That Ryan family is filled with a bunch of aggressive crazies, so getting a physical corner is what they need. Also, the cornerback spot is their biggest need as Terrence Newman is not that great anymore and is better as a #2 cornerback. He’s the best player on the board and could help the Cowboys right away, especially in a pass heavy division.
15th Overall Pick – Philadelphia Eagles
Mark Barron – Safety -- Alabama
The Eagles took linebacker off their biggest needs list when they acquired Demeco Ryans from the Texans. Now they go to their 2nd biggest need, the safety spot. They drafted Nate Allen to play FS, and he’s looking not bad when healthy, so now they need a SS. Mark Barron is the perfect SS. He’s the best safety in an okay class. He’s physical, he can play in the box, he can cover and tackle very well. He’s a great safety, one of the best we’ve seen in the last couple of years.
16th Overall Pick – New York Jets
Luke Kuechly – Inside Linebacker – Boston College
The Jets’ linebackers are getting old and even then they could use a leader and a talent upgrade. Luke Kuechly is pretty athletic, but is a leader on and off the field. He is also the best linebacker in the NCAA with his great tackling skills and phenomenal instincts. Kuechly reminds me of a much better Barrett Ruud in the sense that he’s not the greatest athletically (but still pretty good), but he makes up for it with his instincts. He’s the best linebacker in the draft.
17th Overall Pick – Cincinnati Bengals (from Raiders)
Fletcher Cox – Defensive Tackle – Mississippi State
The Cincinatti Bengals have Geno Atkins, but Domata Peko doesn’t know how to get to the QB and his run stopping skills are diminishing. They could use a new DT, but it’s not a big need. Fletcher Cox is arguably the best player on the board, so it’s hard to pass on him. They could go with David Wilson the running back, but it’s too hard to pass up on Cox. He’s arguably the best player left on the board.
18th Overall Pick – San Diego Chargers
Courtney Upshaw – Outside Linebacker – Alabama
Courtney Upshaw can play both defensive end in a 4-3 and could easily become a good 3-4 outside linebacker. He doesn’t have the greatest speed, but he’s a great pass rusher with a relentless motor. He has a great first step and gets to the QB a lot. He had 9.5 sacks this year and that wasn’t a fluke. He needs to work on his open field skills as he’s not that fast or agile. He’s strong and knows how to use his hands properly. The Chargers have Antwan Barnes who had a good year as a pass rusher, but it won’t last and you can’t just have him as a pass rusher. Courtney Upshaw could come in and perform like Aldon Smith did last year, and that’s not an overstatement.
19th Overall Pick – Chicago Bears
Jonathan Martin – Offensive Tackle – Stanford
The Bears have not had a very good O-line in years. Lance Louis isn’t a great LT, and it looks like Gabe Carimi will be taking over the LT spot next year. With that being said, Lance Louis doesn’t make a good RT and is a backup at best at the T spot. With Jonathan Martin, you get a solid LT at Stanford who can become an elite RT with some coaching and training. Jonathan Martin had a great career at Stanford, spending most of them doing a very good job protecting Andrew Luck. Unfortunately, he had a bad end to his career with some shaky performances and with the good combine from Reiff, he has become the clear-cut #3 OT. The Bears should take this to protect Jay Cutler, who could use protection after years of having a bad O-line.
20th Overall Pick – Tennessee Titans
Jerel Worthy – Defnesive Tackle – Michigan State
The Titans have no defensive tackles, and since Albert Haynesworth left, it’s been a big need. Right now, their best defensive tackle is Jurrel Casey, who’s not bad, but they need a true 4-3-defense tackle. Jerel Worthy is a good prospect that can develop into a very good defensive tackle. He’s versatile, quick and powerful. He reminds me of a better Drake Nevis. Worthy has one quality that I haven’t seen from other DTs in this year’s class, he wants to prove that he’s the best, which is something I haven’t seen any other DT say. He has the drive and the motivation, which is something you can’t say about some prospects, like Devon Still.
21st Overall Pick – Cincinnati Bengals
Peter Konz – Center – Wisconsin
By far the best center in the draft, Peter Konz is a beast. He’s going to be a very good center. He was apart of the Wisconsin O-line that gave up only 22 sacks all year. Now, the Bengals could use a good center. Kyle Cook is not very good, and he’s the only center. Cook is a backup at best, and Konz could come in and be a good starter, maybe even a Pro-Bowler. This would be another big step towards rebuilding their offense and replenishing it with young talent. It started with AJ Green, Andy Dalton and Clint Boling last year. Now they must take a good center, who can help protect Andy Dalton, because we all saw the playoff game against the Texans, the O-line was horrible and Cook was a pretty big part of that failure. They need to give this young kid protection. They make this pick earlier than expected as they don’t want to risk him getting picked by another team that’s in between this pick and their 21st overall pick.
22nd Overall Pick – Cleveland Browns (from Atlanta Falcons)
Ryan Tannehill – Quarterback – Texas A&M
The Browns need a quarterback. Colt McCoy has made good progress, but to many people, including myself, he’s an elite backup, not starter. Ryan Tannehill has the potential to be a top 10 quarterback in this league. He’s showed great pocket presence and has a good arm, and even has some nice wheels. He possesses a lot of things that franchise QBs need, the only problem is, he’s inexperienced, and that kills stocks. Teams may worry that he could suffer the Blaine Gabbert effect where he gets scared of the 290-pound lineman running at him. The best thing to do is to make him sit on the bench in his first year, give him limited snaps, and then make him the starter in his 2nd season. The Browns are in a rebuilding project, and they still have tons of needs, so building an offense around a young kid like Tannehill could be the best thing they could do.
23rd Overall Pick – Detroit Lions
Cordy Glenn – Offensive Tackle/Guard – Georgia
Although his natural position is a guard, the Lions could use a good offensive line upgrade. Their best linemen are over 31 years old, and their guards are mediocre at best. Rob Sims could be a good right guard, and Stephen Peterman is useless at right guard. They should draft Cordy Glenn, move Rob Sims to right guard and make Peterman a backup. Then, when Jeff Backus retires, Cordy Glenn can make the switch to left tackle as he has the size and would have the experience. It’s a good short-term pick, and it could help them out in the long run.
24th Overall Pick – Pittsburgh Steelers
Stephon Gilmore – Cornerback – South Carolina
Ike Taylor is getting up there in age and he’s really the only cornerback on that team that should be starting. They need a guy who can have an immediate impact and can be a good long-term answer at the CB spot. Gilmore has really been on the rise recently. He had a good combine and a good pro-day, where he showed off his very good speed and his good agility. Gilmore is an outside only cornerback, who plays well in zone coverages. Man coverage is not his thing, and that could be an issue if he plays with the Steelers, but he can definitely learn under Dick Lebeau. In my opinion, he’s the 2nd best available CB on the board, and has the ability to be a great cornerback in this league. He could come in and become the #2 outside cornerback for the Steelers and once Ike Taylor retires in a few years, he could take over the #1 spot. The CB spot is one of the Steelers’ biggest needs.
25th Overall Pick – Denver Broncos
Devon Still – Defensive Tackle – Penn State
The Broncos lost Brodrick Bunkley and they could use a big upgrade at the DT spot. They have two great pass rushers on the edge, but essentially nothing in the middle, so they will need draft a good 4-3 DT. Devon Still is a perfect fit. Devon Still doesn’t have the greatest motor, but guys like that end up doing well in the NFL under good coaching. John Fox is the type of coach that gets everything out of you, and with Peyton Manning on the offense; you’ll be motivated to do well. He’s one of the best DTs in this draft, and his stats backup that up. He has good potential in this league, he just needs to be motivated, and he could end up being the best DT out of this draft.
26th Overall Pick – Houston Texans
Kendall Wright – Wide Receiver – Baylor
The Texans need depth at the receiver position. When Andre Johnson was out, the passing game significantly decreased (even though Schaub was out). Kevin Walter didn’t do a great job and Jacoby Jones was useless. They need a good speedy possession receiver, who could also be a deep threat. Not too many people better than Wright. He had an unbelievable year with RG3 at Baylor and was arguably the most productive receiver in the country. The Texans could use him as their defense is great, their O-line is great and their backfield is great. A #2 receiver is arguably their biggest need. He could have gone to the Browns, but Zach Brown is a bigger need and RG3 is not going there.
27th Overall Pick – New England Patriots (from Saints)
Whitney Mercelius – Defensive End – Illinois
The Patriots could use younger pass rushing DEs. Mercelius is good in both a 3-4 and 4-3. He could play 4-3 DE and 3-4 OLB. Andre Carter and Mark Anderson are both free agents and the general consensus is that one of them is staying and one of them is going. If that’s the case, then Mercelius must be drafted. He had 16 sacks this last year due to his good speed and great first step. He’s very underrated and he’s a top 20, maybe top 15 talent. This is a great value pick for the Patriots, and even if Carter and Anderson stay, they should still pick him as Carter doesn’t have many years left in this league.
28th Overall Pick – Green Bay Packers
Nick Perry – Defensive End / Outside Linebacker– Southern California
The Packers defense was pretty bad this year. The Packers pass rush was just off this year; everything was just off thie year for the Packers: the rush defense, the pass defense and the lack of pressure on the QB. Clay Matthews had a good year, but it’s clear they need someone to compliment him. There is no better pick in the draft (out of the remaining players) than Nick Perry. He can easily play 3-4 outside linebacker, and he went to USC, the same school as Matthews! It’s a match made in heaven for the Packers.
29th Overall Pick –Baltimore Ravens
Dont’a Hightower – Inside Linebacker – Alabama
The Ravens want to look for a replacement as Ray Lewis is getting really old, and they’re going to need another inside linebacker as Jameel McClain can’t do it all by himself. Hightower is a big, good tackling linebacker who was on a bad team. He can get to the quarterback and is good in coverage. He’s a project and the heir to Ray Lewis. They could use this pick on a center, but there is no good center near the top of the board. They could trade up for Peter Konz, but it’s not worth it. Matt Birk is old, but not retired and still doing well. Another reason why the Ravens should pick Hightower is because Ray Lewis has been injury prone the last few years, and although their defense does fine without him, he could use a backup. It’s the perfect pick for the Ravens here. He reminds me of Jeremiah Trotter.
30th Overall Pick –San Francisco 49ers
Mike Adams – Offensive Tackle – Ohio State
Joe Staley is a very good left tackle, unfortunately, Anthony Davis is a horrible right tackle. He was just absolutely torched many times this season, whether it be against the Ravens, Eagles or Giants, he was bad. It’s looking like he is becoming a very big bust. Now, he is still young and there is still hope for him, but I think the 49ers should draft Adams, and make Davis and Adams fight for the starting right tackle job. Whoever wins deserves it. The loser can either stay the backup or be the starting right guard. They need to give Alex Smith all the protection he could get, or he’ll just end up like the quarterback he was several years ago.
31st Overall Pick – New England Patriots
Stephen Hill – Wide Receiver – Georgia Tech
The Patriots not only need a big deep threat receiver, but they need youth at the receiver spot. Stephen Hill is a big guy, who is a unbelievable great deep threat, one of the best deep threat receiver in this draft. He has good hands and good size, and is pretty strong so that he could get around press corners. Hill had a phenomenal combine where he showcased his unbelievable speed and great hands. This is a must pick for the Pats as on some big boards, he’s the 2nd best receiver.
32nd Overall Pick – New York Giants
Zach Brown – Outside Linebacker – North Carolina
The Giants could definitely use a OLB. Michael Boley isn’t getting younger and Kiwaunuka isn’t the most ideal OLB. Zach Brown is a great 4-3 outside linebacker, the best 4-3 outside linebacker in the draft. He definitely has 1st round talent, and has so much talent that he could become their star linebacker for many years. He’s a very good tackler, he’s good in coverage, and has very good speed. He just needs to get some NFL experience and get a hard dose of reality, and once that happens, he’ll become a great linebacker. He has all the skills, but the attitude needs a little help. That’s where the reality of being in the NFL should kick in.
33rd Overall Pick – St Louis Rams
Janoris Jenkins – Cornerback – North Alabama
Arguably the biggest need on the Rams is the cornerback spot. They have a ton of bodies at the position, but not much quality. Even with the addition of Cortland Finnegan, they still need a good outside cornerback to compliment him. Janoris Jenkins is the perfect pick. Jenkins has first round talent and is a perfect #2 CB. He kind of reminds me of Antonio Cromartie, but a little smaller. Jenkins has attitude problems and likes to get in fights, but playing in a city like St Louis and having Jeff Fisher as your head coach should erase those worries. The perfect pick for the Rams.
34th Overall Pick – Indianapolis Colts
Coby Fleener – Tight End – Stanford
The perfect pick for the Colts! Coby Fleener is the best tight end in the draft, he played his college career with Andrew Luck, who is expected to be the Colts 1st overall pick, and he has all the physical attributes to be a top 10 tight end in the NFL. Andrew Luck loves his tight ends, and we saw that from him in college. Getting him a tight end that he’s familiar with could really make his transition into the NFL much easier. Fleener has blazing speed (4.45 40 yard dash), has good hands, and great size (6’6 240). He’s one of the best players on the board, he’ll help out Andrew Luck, and at the same time, take out arguably the Colts’ biggest need.
35th Overall Pick – Minnesota Vikings
Alshon Jeffrey – Wide Receiver – South Carolina
The Vikings need help on offense. They have their running game, they have their QB and they have their #1 receiver, and their tight end. Now they need an interior O-line and a #2 wide receiver for Christian Ponder. Rueben Randle has good size, good speed and good hands. He’s a good all around receiver which makes for a great #2 receiver. The very impressive part is that he played for LSU, a program that has 2 below average QBs in Lee and Jefferson and it’s a team that tends to not pass the ball a lot, but he still puts up great numbers. He had 917 yards with 8 touchdowns this last year in his junior year. This pick gives Ponder more help and it makes the interior O-line the new priority on the offense.
36th Overall Pick –Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Lamichael James – Running Back – Oregon
Lagarette Blount is a good running back, but in my opinion, he would be more effective if they use him like the Giants use Brandon Jacobs, as a third down back and short yardage guy. Lamichael James is a fantastic running back who is a good receiving running back (Blount is terrible) and is the perfect running back for this offense. With him in now, they could effectively utilize the big and small running back attack. They have the big running back in Blount and the have the small running back in James. James was arguably the most productive running backs in the nation last year and was a Heisman finalist. He had 1800 yards and 18 touchdowns with 210 yards receiving. He had 1700 yards in his sophomore year (RS) and 1500 yards in his freshman year. He has 53 touchdowns in his college career (3 years). He’s a great pick that a lot of people seem to be overlooking.
37th Overall Pick – Cleveland Browns
Rueben Randle – Wide Receiver – LSU
The Browns are not only looking for a wide receiver, but they are looking for a big wide receiver. They have a good #2 receiver in Greg Little, but he’s a possession receiver, which makes a good #2 guy. They need a quick new big guy and who better than Brian Quick. He’s arguably the best wide receiver on the board. With this pick, the Browns will take off 3 of their biggest needs. The Browns lost the sweepstakes for RG3, so they must go forward with Colt McCoy. He’s not good enough to win by himself, so get him all the help he could get. The O-line is getting good, the running back core would be good with Richardson and their receiving would become pretty good with Quick and Little, and even Massaquoi.
38th Overall Pick – Jacksonville Jaguars
Zebrie Sanders – Offensive Tackle – Florida State
The Jaguars need to give Blaine Gabbert all the protection he can get, as he gets very scared when faced with a pass rush. Eugene Monroe is becoming a good left tackle and they have some nice prospects at guard and Meester at center, so right tackle is the big need. He has great size, strength and athleticism that could make him a good left tackle, let alone right tackle. A great value pick here.
39th Overall Pick – St Louis Rams (from Washington Redskins)
Brandon Thompson – Defensive Tackle – Clemson
Now that they have their cornerback situation resolved and a big chunk of their wide receiver need resolved, time to move to other pressing issues. The defensive tackle spot is a joke on the Rams. They have essentially no one up the gut, besides Fred Robbins who’s getting pretty old. They need youth and talent at that spot and Thompson fills a big need for the Rams as they pick the best defensive tackle on the board. He’s good in both pass rushing and run stopping.. Now with Thompson, they have their interior D-line almost solved.
40th Overall Pick – Carolina Panthers
Andre Branch – Defensive End – Clemson
The Panthers were ranked 25th in sacks last year and they could definitely use a DE to compliment Charles Johnson. Andre Branch is that guy. Branch has first round talent and is a great pass rusher. If they want their defense to get better in general, they’re going to have to get pressure on the QB. Pressure on the QB is a must in a division where all 3 teams are pass-heavy. Branch could give them an immediate impact and don’t be surprised if you see him go to a couple of Pro Bowls in his career.
41st Overall Pick – Buffalo Bills
Kelechi Osemele – Offensive Guard – Iowa State
The Bills need to just keep adding and adding to their O-line so that they could give Ryan Fitzpatrick the best protection he could get. Kelechi Osemele could be a potential 1st round pick with his great run and good pass blocking skills. He’s a big balanced guy who’s hard to push around and is great to have on double teams. He could definitely open holes for Fred Jackson. This is almost a must pick with Demetrius Bell on the way out and their O-line lacking bodies
42nd Overall Pick –Miami Dolphins
Chandler Jones – Defensive End – Clemson
One of the Dolphins’ biggest needs is a pass rusher or a defensive end. Jones flew under the radar in 2011 but is rising after more thorough film study, and his size, strength and length give him impressive potential as a pass-rusher. The Dolphins are switching to 4-3, and they really have no good 4-3 DEs besides Cameron Wake, who has experience playing it in the CFL. This pick could be considered a reach, but Jones has a ton of potential and could easily pan out. He reminds me of a young Robert Mathis.
43rd Overall Pick – Seattle Seahawks
Lavonte David – Outside Linebacker – Nebraska
David is a very fast and has great instincts. Leroy Hill and Barrett Ruud only signed one year deals, which means that David is probably going to be the eventual starter. With Ruud playing terribly in the last couple of years, don’t be surprised if they move Wright over and let David start a few games. This pick is for the future and he could really benefit them. He reminds me of Manny Lawson.
44th Overall Pick – Kansas City Chiefs
Brandon Washington – Offensive Guard – University of Miami
The Chiefs just added Eric Winston to become their new right tackle, but the interior of their line could use an upgrade. They could use depth and some youth. Washington is a former left tackle at The U, and has an extraordinary amount of potential at guard. I say he has 1st round potential at guard. He reminds me of Carl Nicks, and if that’s the case, he’ll be a perennial Pro Bowler. This is a pick that the Chiefs just can’t pass on.
45th Overall Pick – Dallas Cowboys
Dwayne Allen – Tight End – Clemson
Surprised? This may be a bit of a surprising pick, but the Cowboys took Martellus Bennett in the 2nd round (in 2008), right in the middle of Jason Witten’s prime. They wanted to utilize the 2 TE set, but that didn’t work. Now, they just released Bennett and they could use a good #2 TE. If they want the 2 TE set to work, they need to get a solid #2 TE. Allen is that guy. Not the most athletically gifted guy but is a great target and is a good receiver. He even possesses good blocking skills. Had the best season out of all the TE’s in the country, but a bad combine lowered his stock. Still a great value pick for the ‘Boys.
46th Overall Pick – Philadelphia Eagles
Jayron Hosley – Cornerback – Virginia
Asante Samuel is definitely on the way out since the Eagles put him on the trading block (hint hint, they may trade him in the upcoming draft), and Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie is unhappy with his playing time and his position (he wants to be an outside cornerback, not nickel). With all that being said, the Eagles could lose both of them by the end of next year. With that being said, Hosley is a good pick here. The Eagles could use a cornerback that can play both outside and nickel positions and a guy that can tackle well. He could be a great long-term answer for the Eagles.
47th Overall Pick – New York Jets
Brian Quick – Wide Receiver – Appalachian State
With Plaxico on the way out, they could use a big body in there, plus they have no real depth at the wide receiver spot with Plaxico. Dwight Jones is pretty quick for a big guy and had one of the most productive seasons in the country this year. The Jets could use a good reliable big receiver, as there aren’t many left out there. A bit of a stretch but it will pay off. Plus you need to give Sanchez all the help he can get.
48th Overall Pick – New England Patriots (from Raiders)
Shea McClellin – Outside Linebacker – Boise State
The Patriots could use a good outside linebacker. With the pick of Whitney Mercelius, they have one good outside linebacker, who can get to the QB, and now with McClellin, they have their 2nd OLB. McClellin can be the long-term starter for the Pats, and that’s reassuring considering that they aren’t great at the LB spot.
49th Overall Pick – San Diego Chargers
Jared Crick – Defensive End – Nebraska
The Chargers could use a 4-3 NT. Garay could easily switch to NT and if that’s the case, then they need a 3-4 DE. Also, Luis Castillo, their other starter is getting old and is not as productive as he used to be. He is replaceable. With Crick, they could get a longterm starter opposite to Cory Liuget. Their D-line becomes much better with this pick.
50th Overall Pick – Chicago Bears
Kevin Zeitler – Offensive Guard – Wisconsin
The Bears need a good guard even if Lance Louis moves inside. If that’s the case, then they would need a good left guard. Kevin Zeitler was apart of one of the best lines in the NCAA last year. His O-line allowed only 22 sacks all year and Zeitler was one of the key components of that line. He could come in right away and have a good impact just like Carimi did before he got injured. A good value pick here.
51st Overall Pick – Philadelphia Eagles (from Cardinals)
George Iloka – Free Safety – Boise State
The Eagles are safety troubles. Nate Allen is constantly injured and even as a starter he’s mediocre at best. They need some new talent in there. They need to give Allen some competition or maybe move him over to strong safety and let Iloka take over free safety. He’s a good strong player who can tackle well and can cover well in zone coverages. He’s not that fast however. This is a good value pick for the Eagles as this is one of their big needs.
52nd Overall Pick – Tennessee Titans
Leonard Johnson – Cornerback – Iowa State
Cortland Finnegan is gone and they need a new cornerback to (for now) take over the #2 cornerback spot. Time will tell if Jason McCourty is ready for the #1 receiver spot, but for now he’s that guy. Leonard Johnson is a small, but speedy instinctive cornerback who is great at covering the intermediate to long routes. He kind of reminds me of Ellis Hobbs in the sense that he could cover the long ball well and has some good leaping ability.
53rd Overall Pick – Cincinnati Bengals
Antonio Allen – Free Safety – South Carolina
Reggie Nelson is a free safety, and he’s a replaceable player. Antonio Allen is a pro-ready safety who is pretty good in coverage. He possesses a tall long frame that includes room to get stronger. He’s a good athlete who possesses good speed and good range. He needs to get stronger and tackler a little better, but he’ll learn that, especially under Mike Zimmer. A good pick here.
54th Overall Pick – Detroit Lions
Alfonzo Dennard – Cornerback – Nebraska
The Lions biggest need is their secondary. Their safeties are fine, but they need some help at cornerback. Alphonso Smith is the only starter there. Chris Houston is more of a nickel-back cornerback. He is a 1st round talent, but his knee injury brings his draft stock lower. He’s also a small cornerback who many predict will be beat by a lot of bigger wide receivers. Dennard could help them out right away as a #2 cornerback. It fills their biggest need.
55th Overall Pick – Atlanta Falcons
Ben Jones – Center – Georgia
Todd McClure is getting up there in age and they could use an upgrade in the interior part of their line. Ben Jones can offer that. He has good initial quickness and can be a good leader on the line. Jones is good against any kind of defender, whether it be the speedy ones, or the powerful ones. This is a future pick for the Falcons as he will be the anchor of the line in a couple of years, and for now, he could play as a guard and backup center.
56th Overall Pick – Pittsburgh Steelers
Bobbie Massie – Offensive Tackle / Offensive Guard – Mississippi
The Steelers biggest need is their offensive line and depth at that spot. They just released Chris Komoeatu, and they need a new guard or backup tackle. Bobbie Massie is very versatile and could play both spots easily. Very good off the snap and has great long arms and strength. He unfortunately relies on his athleticism too much, but some good DTs or DEs beating him should change that. He has the ability of playing anywhere on the line. He reminds me of Ben Ijalana.
57th Overall Pick – Denver Broncos
Bobby Wagner – Outside Linebacker – Utah State
DJ Williams, their starting strongside linebacker, has been suspended for 6 games, and they have absolutely terrible depth at the linebacker spot. Williams also has a 5M-dollar cap hit, which further adds to the Broncos’ problems. With the drafting of Bobby Wagner, who’s a smart fast underrated prospect, they can essentially get rid of DJ Williams and make Wagner their starter. His stock is rising and is a perfect fit in the Broncos 4-3 defense.
58th Overall Pick – Houston Texans
Kendall Hayes – Defensive Tackle – Connecticut
Shaun Cody is pretty good, but he lacks consistency. Some plays he’s there, on others he’s not. Hayes is a very underrated defensive tackle who I can see becoming a good NT in the NFL. Hayes is very versatile and could potentially play 3-4 DE, which makes his value even better. Hayes is also projected to go in the early to middle of the 2nd round which makes this pick even better. A great pick for the Texans.
59th Overall Pick – Green Bay Packers
Doug Martin – Running Back – Boise State
Ryan Grant is a free agent, and the only good running back on the roster is James Starks, who gets injured every now and then. They could use a good running back and make a nice 2 back attack with Starks. Martin is a great running back who had an amazing year with 1300 yards and 16 touchdowns in his senior year. He’s a big, bruising running back. Martin is also the best player on the board. This is the perfect pick for the Packers.
60th Overall Pick – Baltimore Ravens
Trumaine Johnson – Cornerback – Montana
The Ravens may be losing Ladarius Webb, and even if they don’t, they could use a good nickel cornerback. Trumaine Johnson can offer his great experience with press coverages and zone coverages, something the Ravens use. He’s very expendable. He’s a great pursuiter and can read receivers routes very well and can cut off the receivers in route. That’s what the Ravens need: a ball hawk. He needs to work on his speed and some other things, but he has the potential to be a very good cornerback for the Ravens.
61st Overall Pick – San Francisco 49ers
Mohamed Sanu – Wide Receiver – Rutgers
They just signed Randy Moss, but who knows if he’ll pan out. Odds are, no, and even if he does, it’s only a one year deal and they’ll need receivers in the future. They have Michael Crabtree who is the new #1 WR, and with a bunch of okay depth players, they’ll need to have that new #2 guy. Josh Morgan is gone too, so this becomes a bigger need. Sanu is a good possession receiver and could become a very good #2 receiver for the 49ers. He could give Alex Smith a good target.
62nd Overall Pick – New England Patriots
Billy Winn – Defensive End – Boise State
They have their two outside linebackers in Mercelius and McClellin, and they just lost Andre Carter and Mark Anderson, so let’s get a guy on the D-line. Billy Winn is a good pick here. He is a teammate of McClellin, he’s a great DE and could be a good 4-3 DT (at the utility spot). This kid also has a great attitude, so he should work well with Belicheck. He can get to the QB, which is something key if you want to start on the Pats D-line, and he could stop the run. He could be a starter for years to come with the Pats.
63rd Overall Pick – New York Giants
Lamar Miller – Running Back – University of Miami
The Giants just released Brandon Jacobs and the only solid running back on that team is Ahmad Bradshaw. Lamar Miller has early 2nd round talent, but has dropped due to inexperience, but he has a ton of upside. He is a small quick strong running back, who reminds me of a bigger, but not as good MJD. He had over 1200 yards and 9 TDs in the run heavy Hurricanes offense. He’s not a good receiving option. When running up the gut, he looks for holes to run through and when running to the outside, he uses his blazing speed to get there. He ran a 4.41 40-yard dash at the combine. He doesn’t break many tackles, but he’s very quick so that helps a bit. A good value pick for the Giants here, especially after the departure of Jacobs.
64th Overall Pick – Indianapolis Colts
Alemada Ta’amu – Nose Tackle – Washington
It doesn’t look like the Colts are signing a nose tackle, which means they’ll have to find one through the draft. Look no further than the 2nd best nose tackle in the draft, Alameda Ta’amu. The 330-pound monster is a great run stopper who constantly draws double teams. One of the biggest needs on the Colts now that they are a 3-4 defense is the nose tackle spot. Ta’amu is a big guy who is fantastic against the run and could draw many double teams. He could become the cornerstone of this defense.
65th Overall Pick – St Louis Rams
Sean Spence – Outside Linebacker – University of Miami
One of the biggest needs on the Rams is the outside linebacker spot. They have a great player in Laurinaitis in the middle, but they have essentially no starter on the ouside. Sean Spence is a good instinctive linebacker who possesses good game speed. He picks the right angles, and is a very coachable player. Fisher should love him. With Spence, you get a solid kid with a lot of upside. A slight reach for the Rams, but it could be worth it.
66th Overall Pick – Minnesota Vikings
Josh Robinson – Cornerback – Central Florida
I see a big reach for Josh Robinson, but the Vikings are known for their reaches, look at Christian Ponder. It fills a big need for the Vikings, and they get an athletic corner in Robinson.
67th Overall Pick – Cleveland Browns
Amini Silatolu – Offensive Guard – Midwestern State
They just lost Steinbech and besides 2 Pro Bowlers on that O-line, it’s a weak O-line. They need some guard help. Amini Siltolu is a good pick here as he’s a very good run blocker.
68th Overall Pick – Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Ronnell Lewis – Outside Linebacker – Oklahoma
The Bucs’ biggest need is the LB spot. They drafted Mason Foster, so let’s go with an outside linebacker. Ronnell Lewis is the best OLB on the board, as he’s quick and a good tackler. Good value pick here.
69th Overall Pick – Washington Redskins
Mychal Kendricks – Inside Linebacker – California
Kendricks has been on the rise recently. He’s a good inside linebacker that should be the successor to London Fletcher, and he should be able to start next to him next year. His stock is soaring, which is the best thing that could happen to a prospect before the draft.
70th Overall Pick – Jacksonville Jaguars
Nick Toon– Wide Receiver – Wisconsin
The Jags need a good #2 receiver. Mike Thomas is a good #3 possesion receiver, and Laurent Robinson is getting #1 receiver money, so it’s safe to assume he’s the new #1 there. Toon is a 2nd round wide receiver, who possesses a good skill set. He could bring in a new dynamic to this offense.
71st Overall Pick – Buffalo Bills
Joe Adams – Wide Receiver – Arkansas
Adams reminds me of a better Mike Thomas. He’s a good possession receiver with great speed. With Stevie Johnson being the inconsistent receiver that he is, it’s good to have a good possession #2 receiver. Also, the Bills could use a receiver badly as it’s one of their biggest needs.
72nd Overall Pick – Miami Dolphins
Brandon Weeden – Quarterback – Oklahoma State
David Garrard is not the longterm answer and may not even play next year. Matt Moore played well last year, but there are better options out there. Brandon Weeden is the best player left on the board, and he has the chance to be the Dolphins starter for several years.
73th Overall Pick – Miami Dolphins (from Chicago Bears via Carolina Panthers)
Ladarius Green – Tight End – Louisiana Lafayette
The Dolphins are losing Anthony Fasano, and even with Fasano on the team, the TE spot is a need. Ladarius Green is a top 5 TE in this draft, and had one of the best years in the country. He could come in and become a great target for whoever the QB is.
74th Overall Pick – Kansas City Chiefs
Trevin Wade – Cornerback – Arizona
The Chiefs lost Brandon Carr, and they need someone to replace him. Trevin Wade is a good replecement. He’s a good prospect who is overlooked due to his terrible team, more specifically defense.
75th Overall Pick – Seattle Seahawks
Brandon Boykin – Cornerback – Georgia
They just signed Marcus Trufant, but only to a one year dael, and they don’t really have depth at the CB spot. Browner is a good starter, and so is Sherman. Boykin can come in and become a good nickelback or a good backup to Browner. He provides good depth and could be an eventual starter after Trufant is gone at the end of the year.
76th Overall Pick – Philadelphia Eagles
Mitchell Schwartz – Offensive Tackle – California
Even with the signing of Demetrius Bell, they are still thin at the tackle spot. They traded Winston Justice to the Colts, so they have no depth. Herremans has an injury history and who knows how Jason Peters’ healthy will be when he comes back. They need some depth at the spot, and some youth.
77th Overall Pick – New York Jets
David Wilson– Running Back – Virginia Tech
They only have Shonn Greene and they don’t plan on resigining LT. This leaves a bit of a hole at the RB spot. With Wilson, they can create a nice 2 back attack and take some pressure off Sanchez. It also fills a need. Wilson has 2nd round talent but due to the emergence of guys like Doug Martin, he falls.
78th Overall Pick – San Diego Chargers
Marvin Jones – Wide Receiver – California
The Chargers lost Vincent Jackson, their #1 receiver, which leaves a big hole at WR. Marvin Jones may not necessarily fill that hole, but he could become a very good #2, and then the Chargers could move over Floyd. They’ve helped the defense, now they must help the offense. Phillip Rivers needs some targets.
79th Overall Pick – Chicago Bears
Mike Martin – Defensive Tackle – Michigan
Anthony Adams is not with the team anymore and they could use a good DT. Stephen Peae is their only competent defensive tackle and they need 2 DTs. Mike Martin is a slight reach here, but he’s really talented. He’s a big guy, who is good in both run blocking and pass rushing, but better in pass rushing. He could be a defensive tackle for the Bears for years to come.
80th Overall Pick – Arizona Cardinals
Dwight Bentley – Cornerback – Louisiana-Lafayette
The Cards have good CBs in Peterson and Toler, but they could use a nickelback or move Toler to nickelback, which means they’ll need an outside guy. Point is, they need depth and even some quality at the CB spot. Bentley had a very good and underrated year at LL. He could come in and start right away.
81st Overall Pick – Dallas Cowboys
Tyrone Crawford – Defensive End – Boise State
Overlooked due to the great year of Billy Winn, Tyrone Crawford is a very good 3-4 DE. The Cowboys could use a good 3-4 DE. Crawford has good pass rushing skills and a great motor. He’s a guy that Rob Ryan loves. This is a need on the Cowboys, as they only have Jay Ratliff on that D-line. Kenyon Coleman is decent for now, but they need someone to compliment him, and that could be Crawford and for a long time.
82nd Overall Pick – Tennessee Titans
Phillip Blake – Center – Baylor
The Titans could definitely use a good center, and that’s been the case since the departure of Kevin Mawae several years ago. Blake had a great year protecting RG3, and had a phenomenal combine, that impressed everyone. Before the combine, he was a 5th round pick, but after the combine, he’s a 3rd rounder. He’s a small guy, but very agile and strong for his size. Reminds me of a not as good Jeff Saturday, which is still pretty good. A good pick for the Titans.
83rd Overall Pick – Cincinnati Bengals
Harrison Smith – Notre Dame – Strong Safety
The Bengals just released both Chris Crocker and Reggie Nelson. That leaves 2 big holes at both safety spots. Now, with their 2nd round pick, I see them addressing their SS spot by taking Antonio Smith, who’s a FS. Harrison Smith has 2nd round talent and was one of the best safeties in the country this year. I see him dropping to the teams’ not really needing safeties. He’s also not that kind of player that has overwhelming talent, like Mark Barron. He’s a tough kid, who’s good at tackling and is solid in coverage. He could also play in the box. He reminds me of not as good Mark Barron.
84th Overall Pick – Atlanta Falcons
Jamell Fleming – Cornerback – Oklahoma
They lost Kelvin Hayden, who was their nickelback, and they don’t necessarily have depth at the CB spot. Fleming is very flexible and good in man coverage. He’s a good press corner and although not fast, is very physical. He’s also a good tackler, and good tackling cornerbacks usually make good nickelback. He is a early 3rd round talent, so him falling here is good value for the Falcons.
85th Overall Pick – Detroit Lions
Michael Brewster – Center – Ohio State
Dominic Raiola is turning 34 and doesn’t have many years left. With that being said, Brewster is a great pick here. He was one of the best centers in the country this year, and looked solid in the run-blocking department. He should spend a couple of years behind Raiola before he decides to retire. This is a good long-term pick.
86th Overall Pick – Pittsburgh Steelers
Bruce Irvin – Outside Linebacker – West Virginia
Believe it or not, James Harrison is 34 years old. Believe it or not, he’s on the way out. The coaches and Harrison know that his time is almost up, and they’re probably going to do what they did with Joey Porter, find a replacement and release him a year or two later. Bruce Irvin is a fantastic pass rusher with great speed. He is pretty strong, but lanky. He is a tremendous athlete and with one year of grooming, could be a great successor to James Harrison.
87th Overall Pick – Denver Broncos
Brock Osweiler – Quarterback – Arizona State
No way Osweiler replaces Peyton Manning, but Manning is 36 and doesn’t have many years left, which means they must groom a new QB. Osweiler is an unpolished raw QB. He has the potential to be a very good QB; he has the potential to be like a Joe Flacco. Now, it’s risky to go with a guy based on just potential, but with Manning as his mentor/coach, he could groom him. With good training from Manning, the transition to a new QB that should happen in about 4 years should be smooth.
88th Overall Pick – Houston Texans
Brandon Mosley – Offensive Tackle – Auburn
The Texans lost Eric Winston, their Pro Bowl right tackle, and are now looking for a new tackle. Mosley is an underrated tackle who possesses good versatility and some good strength. He could become a very solid right tackle in the NFL. The difference between him and some other top tackles that remain on the board, is that he’s played the majority of his college career at right tackle, and although it’s not a huge difference from left tackle fundamentality, it’s still an advantage over the other college left tackles.
89th Overall Pick – New Orleans Saints
Tommy Streeter – Wide Receiver – University of Miami
This is a steal for the Saints. The Saints just lost Robert Meachem, who was their big play guy, and they also have no depth at the WR spot. Tommy Streeter is a great deep threat that is quick and has good hands. This is a bit of reach as he’s projected to go in the 4th or 5th round, but he has great upside, something the Saints like drafting (cough cough Jimmy Graham).
90th Overall Pick – Green Bay Packers
Ron Brooks – Cornerback – LSU
Charles Woodson is going to be 36 just after the season starts, and with him winning the Super Bowl 2 years ago, he probably doesn’t have more than 2 years left. With that being said, the only starter on the team besides Woodson is Tramon Williams. Now if Williams takes over, they’ll need a #2 CB or a nickelback. They really don’t have a guy like that although Shields is not bad. Ron Brooks can play both nickel and outside and is very good at both. He’s overlooked due to Tyrann Mathieu and Morris Claiborne excelling, but he’s good.
91st Overall Pick – Baltimore Ravens
Brandon Brooks – Offensive Guard – Miami (Ohio)
The Ravens lost Ben Grubbs and they haven’t replaced him. Brandon Brooks is a great guard who has tons of talent. He reminds me of a young Brian Waters. He’s that good. He could give Flacco much needed pass protection, although their line isn’t that bad. This pick is just to replace Ben Grubbs.
92nd Overall Pick – San Francisco 49ers
James Brown – Offensive Guard – Troy
The 49ers could be looking to help the interior of their O-line after the departure of Deuce Lutui (to the Seahawks). Their O-line was too inconsistent last year with their left side being solid, but the right side being terrible. With James Brown (not the singer J ), they get a big tough kid who has raw skills, who can be developed into a great guard. He’s used to playing tackle, but with his versatility, he should make a easy switch to guard.
93rd Overall Pick – New England Patriots
Isaiah Peed – Running Back – Cincinnati
The Pats lost Benjarvus Green-Ellis to the Bengals, and they really need a running back. Danny Woodhead cannot take over as the #1 running back, Steven Ridley hasn’t proven himself, and Shane Vereen has done nothing. They need a running back, and then with that running back, have a battle for the #1 running back role. It will prove who deserves it and is the most ready. If they draft Peed, I think it would be him.
94th Overall Pick – New York Giants
Michael Egnew – Tight End – Notre Dame
They signed Martellus Bennett, but he hasn’t proven to be a starter and they could use another good TE. If Bennett doesn’t do anything, they can turn to the 6’6 Egnew. Even if Bennett does do well, they could utilize the 2 TE set which would give Eli another receiver, which could be deadly.
95th Overall Pick – Oakland Raiders (Compensatory Pick)
Orson Charles – Tight End – Georgia
The Raiders have nobody at TE after the loss of Kevin Boss, and they could desperately use a good TE. Orson Charles has 2nd round talent, but a DUI and some previous problems have killed his stock. The Raiders probably won’t mind this, knowing them. Charles is fast and a great possession receiver. He reminds me of Aaron Hernandez.