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Wednesday, April 17, 2013

2013 NFL Mock Draft (4/17/13): TWO ROUNDS



By ANDREW CHAMPAGNE
Twitter.com/AndrewChampagne

Thanks to Walter Cherepinsky for listing this draft on his database. If you want to take a look at a ton of different mocks, check out http://www.walterfootball.com . Also check out http://www.dcprosportsreport.com/MockDraft.htm and http://www.sbnation.com/nfl-mock-draft/2013/1/15/3869542/2013-nfl-mock-draft-database , as they were kind enough to link to us as well.

A quick clarification: I will not be predicting trades in any of my mock drafts. That’s too much speculation, even for a mock draft nut like me. If a trade is confirmed, I’ll throw it into the mock.

With that, on to the latest mock!

1) Kansas City Chiefs (2-14): Luke Joeckel, OT, Texas A&M

I've had Luke Joeckel here for a while now, and there's no reason to change that at this point. He’s one of the best players in this draft class, and he fills a definite need after the departure of Eric Winston and with the uncertainty of Branden Albert beyond the 2013 season.

2) Jacksonville Jaguars (2-14): Dion Jordan, DE/OLB, Oregon

This is the first wild card pick of the draft, as the Jags have needs pretty much everywhere. I wouldn't be surprised with anyone else I have in my top five, but for now, Jordan is the guy. He's the most versatile defender in the draft, with the physical ability to both rush the passer or cover slot receivers, and he's got the potential to be a building block for Jacksonville's defense going forward.

3) Oakland Raiders (4-12): Sharrif Floyd, DT, Florida

This has been a pretty popular pick for pretty obvious reasons. Tommy Kelly has been released, and the defensive line was in shambles even when he was there. If Floyd gets taken by Jacksonville, I could see the Raiders going in a number of different directions, but for now, he goes to Oakland.

4) Philadelphia Eagles (4-12): Geno Smith, QB, West Virginia

I don’t love this pick, especially when the Eagles have some glaring needs elsewhere that can be addressed in big ways with this pick. That said, if they want a quarterback, they won’t be able to do better than Smith in this spot. Michael Vick is a question mark due to his age and injury history, and Nick Foles doesn’t fit Chip Kelly’s offense. I wouldn’t be surprised if the Eagles take Dee Milliner or Eric Fisher and take E.J. Manuel in the second or third round, but for now, Smith is the pick.

5) Detroit Lions (4-12): Eric Fisher, OT, Central Michigan

I'm a little torn between Fisher and Ezekiel Ansah, as both fill huge needs. This is based solely on the current draft class, one that's rich in defensive talent but not in quality offensive linemen. The Lions lost Gosder Cherilus to free agency and Jeff Backus to retirement, so Fisher obviously fills a pretty big gap.

6) Cleveland Browns (5-11): Dee Milliner, CB, Alabama

I’ve had Ezekiel Ansah going here for quite a while, but Milliner is available here after the Eagles opt for Geno Smith. Cleveland does have Joe Haden, who’s very good, but they don’t have anyone across from him after the departure of Sheldon Brown. Milliner is easily the top corner in the draft, and this gives Cleveland a secondary to build their entire defense around for years to come.

7) Arizona Cardinals (5-11): Lane Johnson, OT, Oklahoma

With Carson Palmer officially a Cardinal, Lane Johnson rises. Arizona’s offensive line may have been the worst in football a year ago, and they can fill huge needs with either Johnson or Chance Warmack. Johnson is the more conventional pick, and thusly my selection, but Warmack wouldn’t surprise me, either.

8) Buffalo Bills (6-10): Ezekiel Ansah, DE/OLB, BYU

Geno Smith rising means that someone falls to the Bills. In this case, that’s Ansah, who may be one of the best athletes in the entire draft class. He’s got the potential to be a top-notch pass-rusher off the edge, and here, he gives Buffalo’s front seven another weapon in their struggle to regain relevance in the AFC East.

9) New York Jets (6-10): Star Lotulelei, DT, Utah

Lotulelei’s been cleared to play, which is great news. He was considered a top-five prospect before news of his heart condition leaked at the Combine, and he may rise back to that point before draft day. The Jets could use an impact player in the middle of their defensive line, so this could wind up being a great pick if Lotulelei’s still on the board.

10) Tennessee Titans (6-10): Chance Warmack, OG, Alabama

In normal years, a guard in the top 10 would be a reach. However, this is far from a normal year, and Warmack is one of the best players available. There’s still a need at right guard, even after the signing of Andy Levitre, and this could really bolster Tennessee’s run game while giving Jake Locker time to grow as a quarterback.

11) San Diego Chargers (7-9): Tavon Austin, WR, West Virginia

Danario Alexander may wind up departing San Diego as a restricted free agent. If that happens, Philip Rivers wouldn’t have anything to work with in the passing game besides Antonio Gates. I’ve had Cordarelle Patterson here for a while, but his stock has reportedly fallen while Austin’s has steadily risen since the Combine.

12) Miami Dolphins (7-9): Jarvis Jones, DE/OLB, Georgia

Bjoern Werner was the pick, but his stock is dropping. Jones was once considered a top-five prospect, and he fills a need in Miami. The Dolphins need a presence opposite Cameron Wake, and Jones clearly has the potential to be a top-notch player. He’s a bit of a risk with his spinal condition, but if he pans out, he might be the steal of the draft.

13) Tampa Bay Buccaneers (7-9): Xavier Rhodes, CB, Florida State

The Aqib Talib trade created a huge hole, and Ronde Barber has to retire at some point, right? I had Desmond Trufant here, but all indications are that Rhodes, once thought to be the second-best cornerback prospect in the draft, has risen back up draft boards.

14) Carolina Panthers (7-9): Sheldon Richardson, DT, Missouri

There are people saying Richardson could go even earlier than this. He certainly has the athletic ability to, and this is probably as low as he’ll go. Carolina’s defensive line is porous, and the Panthers gave up several big games to opposing running backs in the 2012-13 season.

15) New Orleans Saints (7-9): Barkevious Mingo, DE/OLB, LSU

Rob Ryan's aggressive 3-4 attack needs pass-rushing linebackers to be successful, and that’s exactly what Mingo is. The Saints defense was absolutely awful in 2012, and there are needs to fill all around it.

16) St. Louis Rams (7-8-1): Jonathan Cooper, OG/C, North Carolina

Even with the signing of Jake Long, the Rams’ offensive line needs an upgrade. Cooper is versatile and can play three different positions. D.J. Fluker may make sense here if Rodger Saffold is traded, but he’s still on the team, so for now, Cooper is the guy.

17) Pittsburgh Steelers (8-8): Cordarelle Patterson, WR, Tennessee

Patterson’s stock has slipped a bit over some character concerns, but he’s an excellent fit in Pittsburgh. The Steelers lost Mike Wallace to Miami in the offseason, so more depth is needed at receiver. Patterson is raw, but has tremendous athleticism and sky-high potential if he’s kept in line.

18) Dallas Cowboys (8-8): Kenny Vaccaro, S, Texas

The Cowboys reportedly really like Vaccaro, and he fills a position of need for them. Dallas’s secondary hasn’t been great in quite some time, but the sure-tackling safety joins Morris Claiborne as another piece for Monte Kiffin’s defense.

19) New York Giants (9-7): Alec Ogletree, LB, Georgia

The Giants may be searching for a defensive end, and could have jumped on Mingo if he was available (or selected Alex Okafor or Damontre Moore with this pick). In this mock, though, they’ll zero in on Ogletree, probably the top inside linebacker prospect in the draft. There are some character issues here, most notably his pre-Combine arrest, but the Giants released Michael Boley and have depth issues at that position.

20) Chicago Bears (10-6): D.J. Fluker, OT/OG, Alabama

I’m not as high on Fluker as others are. He’s not going to be a left tackle, and yet some have him off the board in the early-teens. However, Chicago’s offensive line does need help, and new head coach Marc Trestman will undoubtedly want to protect Jay Cutler.

21) Cincinnati Bengals (10-6): Desmond Trufant, CB, Washington

Trufant was very good at both the Senior Bowl and the Combine. Cincinnati's pass defense isn't bad, but they also weren't all that great a year ago, and you can never have too many quality defensive backs, especially in the current pass-happy era of football.

22) St. Louis Rams (7-8-1, from Washington (10-6)): Justin Hunter, WR, Tennessee

I considered mocking Cordarelle Patterson to St. Louis at #16, but offensive line was just too big a need and Cooper was just too strong a fit to pass up. Here, they don’t get Patterson, but they do get a guy who had a great Combine. Hunter ran a great 40 time there, and he gives an offense that’s in dire need of downfield threats a burner who can outrun corners on deep routes.

23) Minnesota Vikings (10-6): Manti Te’o, LB, Notre Dame

I actually have the Vikings taking Te’o two picks earlier, simply because Keenan Allen’s stock is falling with news he may have tested positive for drugs at the Combine. On the surface, this may seem like a puzzling pick. However, the Vikings have a huge need at linebacker, as their only proven starter there is Chad Greenway, and the team as a whole struggled against the pass last season, an area Te'o can instantly improve. Te'o suffered at the Combine, but Adam Schefter reported that he would not drop out of the first round, and he did improve his 40 time at Notre Dame's pro day.

24) Indianapolis Colts (11-5): Sylvester Williams, DT, North Carolina

I’ve had Johnathan Hankins here for a while, but concerns about his weight and work ethic mean he likely falls out of the first round. Williams has been a late riser, and plays the run and the pass as well as any front seven player left in the draft.

25) Minnesota Vikings (10-6, from Seattle (11-5)): DeAndre Hopkins, WR, Clemson

Minnesota needs wide receivers, plainly and simply. They have nobody of substance outside of the newly-acquired Greg Jennings, and that needs to change. Fortunately, this draft is pretty solid with regard to young wideouts, and here, Minnesota gets one that can compete for time right away.

26) Green Bay Packers (11-5): Johnthan Banks, CB, Mississippi State

Banks didn’t do himself any favors at the Combine, but his game tape is solid and there’s no doubt Green Bay has voids to fill in the secondary. Charles Woodson is moving on, and the unit wasn’t anything special this past year anyway.

27) Houston Texans (12-4): Datone Jones, DE/DT, UCLA

I’ve had Houston taking a defensive tackle with this pick for a while, and there’s no reason to change that here. Jones is a versatile player who’s received some first-round buzz, and here, he breaks through to a team that could use some help alongside J.J. Watt on the defensive line.

28) Denver Broncos (13-3): Alex Okafor, DE/OLB, Texas

The Broncos have brought in a ton of quality players in free agency, but they lost Elvis Dumervil thanks to an error in paperwork. They need to find someone opposite Von Miller, and Okafor could be that guy. He's a low-risk player who doesn't take plays off, and he turned heads with his performances at the Alamo Bowl and Senior Bowl.

29) New England Patriots (12-4): Jesse Williams, DT, Alabama

Williams has seen his draft stock go way up, and it's likely he now goes at the back end of the first round. The Patriots are lacking in the middle of the defensive line, and Williams can take up a ton of space while learning from Vince Wilfork.

30) Atlanta Falcons (13-3): Tyler Eifert, TE, Notre Dame

Tony Gonzalez is not retiring despite doing his annual tap-dance around the subject. Still, he's not getting younger, and Tyler Eifert is easily the top tight end in the draft. He could easily go much earlier than this, and I think this is as late as he goes.

31) San Francisco 49ers (11-4-1): Bjoern Werner, DE, Florida State

The Niners may have a need behind Justin Smith, who turns 34 and is going into the final year of his contract. Werner slipped a long way, only a small part of it due to a recent drop in stock, but he lands in a great situation here.

32) Baltimore Ravens (10-6): Kevin Minter, LB, LSU

Minter is an old-school, run-stopping inside linebacker that may have trouble fitting into some new-age defensive schemes. However, an old-school, run-stopping inside linebacker just retired from Baltimore’s Super Bowl-winning team, so Minter would be a pretty nice fit for the Ravens.

SECOND ROUND

33) Jacksonville Jaguars: Matt Barkley, QB, USC

Anyone who still thinks Blaine Gabbert can be an effective starting quarterback needs to have their head examined. The Jags need to address that position in the draft, and if Matt Barkley is still on the board in the second round, this is a no-brainer.

34) San Francisco 49ers (from Kansas City): Margus Hunt, DE/DT, SMU

This is a luxury pick for the Niners, who can pretty much take the best player available at this juncture. In this case, Hunt is in the mix, and he may also fill a need on the defensive line if new signee Glenn Dorsey doesn't fill the shoes of the departed Isaac Sopuaga at defensive tackle.

35) Philadelphia Eagles: Barrett Jones, OG/C/OT, Alabama

I might be alone in mocking Jones as high as I am, but the guy has a ton of things going for him. His intangibles and leadership qualities are huge, and he can play multiple positions on the offensive line.

36) Detroit Lions: Tank Carradine, DE, Florida State

Carradine is a bit of a risk coming off of an injury, but all signs are that he’s 100 percent heading into the draft. That’s good, because the Lions desperately need help at defensive end. Cliff Avril and Kyle Vanden Bosch both left, so there are several holes Carradine can fill assuming he’s ready to go.

37) Cincinnati Bengals: Giovani Bernard, RB, North Carolina

Eddie Lacy’s stock is on the decline after a subpar pro day, and that’s great news for Bernard. He’s a guy that can split time with BenJarvus Green-Ellis right away while also contributing as a return man, and I think he’s got the potential to be a very useful back at the next level.

38) Arizona Cardinals: Kyle Long, OT/OG, Oregon

Two picks, two linemen for Arizona, a team that desperately needs help in the trenches. The Cardinals went through several quarterbacks last year and protected none of them. Here, though, Long can fill plenty of holes up front next to fellow rookie Lane Johnson.

39) New York Jets: Keenan Allen, WR, Cal

The Jets need help behind Santonio Holmes at wide receiver. Allen is a first-round talent, but character issues caused him to drop this far.

40) Tennessee Titans: Jamar Taylor, CB, Boise State

Tennessee’s defense was extremely weak last year, and they’ve spent time this offseason trying to upgrade it. They got several newcomers at safety, but are still in need of talented corners. Taylor fits that mold.

41) Buffalo Bills: Arthur Brown, LB, Kansas State

Brown would be a first-round pick if not for injury troubles that probably relegate him to the second round. Still, the Bills have needed a presence at inside linebacker since they let Paul Posluszny walk several years ago, and Brown can be that kind of player.

42) Miami Dolphins: Menelik Watson, OT, Florida State

Watson's stock is on the rise, partially due to his talent and partially due to the “tackles rising on draft day” principle. At any rate, there's no doubt Miami needs reinforcements up front. Jake Long left, and Watson could start from day one out of need.

43) Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Damontre Moore, DE/OLB, Texas A&M

Tampa Bay’s front seven is dealing with a ton of injury woes and question marks heading into the 2013 season. Moore is a risk; he was once a top-five pick, but a ton of character issues and a horrible Combine performance means he’s available here. If he pans out, though, this could be a fantastic pick for the Bucs.

44) Carolina Panthers: Larry Warford, OG, Kentucky

While some of Carolina’s non-Cam Newton rushing woes were injury-related, it’s also true that the team’s offensive line has struggled at times. Warford is the best lineman available, especially after a very solid performance at the Senior Bowl.

45) San Diego Chargers: Dallas Thomas, OT/OG, Tennessee

Philip Rivers had a bad year in 2012, and part of that was because the Chargers couldn’t protect him. They have plenty of needs on their offensive line, and in Thomas, they get a versatile player who can be plugged in at several spots up front.

46) St. Louis Rams: Robert Woods, WR, USC

The Rams really DO need bodies at wide receiver. They lost a lot this offseason, but again, they get a chance to rebuild with a draft deep in talent at that position. Woods was once thought of as the best wideout in this class, but he took a backseat to Marquis Lee this past season. Still, he could be a very capable starter.

47) Dallas Cowboys: Kawann Short, DT, Purdue

Short is a great fit for Monte Kiffin's 4-3 defense. He's not the biggest guy, but he can rush the passer from the defensive tackle spot and provide a legitimate presence in the front seven. I've had him going in the first round for a while, but this is a great spot for him to shine.

48) Pittsburgh Steelers: Jon Cyprien, S, Florida International

Troy Polamalu is starting to become injury-prone, and it's not like he's young anymore. Cyprien has been rising in the eyes of many close to the draft, and he's among the best players available.

49) New York Giants: Khaseem Greene, DE/OLB, Rutgers

The Giants love drafting pass-rushers, and they've got a need there now with Osi Umenyiora's defection to Atlanta. Greene has been rising quickly, and plays both the run and the pass very well.

50) Chicago Bears: Terrance Williams, WR, Baylor

Chicago has a slight weakness behind Brandon Marshall. Alshon Jeffery showed flashes of potential, but he was hurt for a large part of the season. Williams caught almost 100 passes in his senior year at Baylor, and was a big reason RG3 won the Heisman several years ago.

51) Washington Redskins: Blidi Wreh-Wilson, CB, Connecticut

Washington is sorely lacking in their back seven, and because of it, Wreh-Wilson will have every opportunity to play from day one.

52) Minnesota Vikings: Robert Alford, CB, Southeastern Louisiana

Alford comes from a small school, but he hinted at big talent during the Combine, where he posted a sub-4.4 40 time. Minnesota was bad against the pass last year, and plays a ton of pass-happy teams in their division.

53) Cincinnati Bengals: Corey Lemonier, DE/OLB, Auburn

This may be a bit of a reach, but Cincinnati has questions about their depth at linebacker. Here, they get someone who can rotate between the line and the outside linebacker spot. Lemonier is a bit raw from a technical standpoint, but he had a great Combine that included a 4.6 40 time.

54) Miami Dolphins: Johnathan Hankins, DT, Ohio State

I had Hankins near the back end of the first round for a while, but concerns about his weight and work ethic caused a drop. However, he fits in Miami, as several defensive linemen have contracts that will expire after this upcoming season.

55) Green Bay Packers: Matt Elam, S, Florida

Safety is a need for Green Bay, who brought Michael Huff in for a visit before watching him sign with Baltimore.

56) Seattle Seahawks: Sam Montgomery, DE, LSU

A huge, huge fall continues for Montgomery, but Pete Carroll hasn't shied away from taking players with character issues. If he coaches Montgomery up and gets all his talent out of him, this may wind up being the steal of the draft.

57) Houston Texans: Quinton Patton, WR, Louisiana Tech

Houston has long been searching for a #2 receiver behind Andre Johnson. Patton didn’t play against great competition at Louisiana Tech, but made the most of his opportunities at both the Senior Bowl and the Combine.

58) Denver Broncos: Eric Reid, S, LSU

Reid slipped in this mock through no fault of his own, and he may be a welcome addition in Denver. Their secondary was awful against Joe Flacco, and 37-year-old Champ Bailey may finally be showing his age.

59) New England Patriots: Darius Slay, CB, Mississippi State

New England struggled against the pass last year, and again, you can never have too many quality corners. Aqib Talib is a very good player, but Alfonzo Dennard has off-the-field baggage and the rest of their secondary isn't great.

60) Atlanta Falcons: Brandon Jenkins, DE, Florida State

Atlanta signed Osi Umenyiora, but that doesn't mean the Falcons are done upgrading their front seven. They had huge depth issues at defensive end last year even during their stellar season. Jenkins has some injury concerns, but at his best, he's an impact player.

61) San Francisco 49ers: D.J. Swearinger, S, South Carolina

San Francisco’s front seven is fantastic, but their group of safeties is a question mark, especially after the defection of DaShon Goldson. Swearinger, a captain for the Gamecocks and a physical presence, hits hard and covers well, so he should be an instant upgrade.

62) Baltimore Ravens: David Amerson, CB/S, N.C. State

Baltimore's secondary is a huge question mark. Lardarius Webb suffered a bad season-ending injury, and Ed Reed signed with Houston. Amerson adds versatility to a group that could have plenty of needs when it tries to defend its Super Bowl title.

1 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why in the world would the Packers take a CB in the first round, much less one that didn't perform well? They are set at CB. They need a safety and 3/4 DE immediately, not a backup CB with questionable ability.

April 18, 2013 at 12:27 PM 

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