Well, it’s that time again, to reveal the 2009 Shark Tank Mock Draft. Kaleb (no one knows his real name so don’t even ask) has spent countless hours putting this together and organizing so I thought I would do my due diligence and publish it on the front page for all the world to see. So enough of my blah, blah and blah…. Let’s get to what the collective shark community thinks will happen at the draft.
#1 – Detroit Lions
Team Representative: TNLionsFanatic
Team Needs: QB, OT, DT, MLB, DE, CB, KR, TE
The Selection: Mathew Stafford, QB
The Detroit Lions have plenty of holes and more than a few needs, after all they managed to go 0–16, setting an NFL record as the only team in history to go winless. After a tremendously embarrassing season the Lions have 5 picks in the first 82 of this years draft. Unfortunately, that’s not enough, but neither the fans nor the Lions can expect a turn around in one year. However, the building process starts now and they have to get these first 5 picks right, starting with #1. If the Lions miss on this pick, it could set the franchise back even further than it already is and tear apart a loyal fan base that is barely hanging on by a thread. If you like Poker, then you have to love the draft. Where else can you see 30+ million dollar bets every single year? This is one gamble the Lions have to play close to the vest and go all in with the right hand.
Reports out of Allen Park are that Daunte Culpepper is “looking good” and being reunited with Scott Linehan could spark a flame, but that flame won’t stay lit forever, hence Culpepper is not the long-term answer. The Lions current LT, Jeff Backus has not lived up to the hype or his contract since arriving in Detroit 9 years ago, so an upgrade at LT is eminent. Which then brings us to the Middle Line-Backer position and the true lack of talent that they have at this position. The Lions reached in last years draft taking Jordon Dizon in the 2nd round after a run on LB’s, left an already thin class, thinner. With no true starting caliber MLB heading into training camp, one could argue this to be the most glaring need for this team.
Can Mathew Stafford or Mark Sanchez be the franchise Quarterback the Lion’s need him to be? Will Jason Smith, Eugene Monroe or Michael Oher, be the anchor on the line for the next ten years? Can Aaron Curry make a difference on a defense that ranked 32nd in the league last year? The answers to these questions are few and far between, but the time is now. Because of the depth at the LB position in this year’s draft and the amount of money that #1 spot commands, Detroit unfortunately passes on Aaron Curry. With the QB class looking less than stellar this year and with even more question marks in next years crop, the Lions are forced to pull the trigger now on their “Franchise Quarterback”. With Culpepper at the ready, Stafford or Sanchez could be brought along slowly, allowing time to learn the offense. Although the Lions could gamble and take a shot on Josh Freeman or use a later round pick on Rhett Bomar, the risk on passing one of the top 2 QB’s in the draft is just too great and therefore the Detroit Lions select: Georgia QB Mathew Stafford with the first overall pick in the 2009 Draft. Can anyone say: “All in?”
#2: St. Louis Rams
Team Representative: Offense
Team Needs: OT, LB, WR, DT
The Selection: Aaron Curry, LB
Curry is considered the best player in the draft, at any position. He has the strength, intelligence, and athleticism to control the middle. The Rams have lacked a MLB since London Fletcher departed seven years ago. Raji (DT) would be great here, if not for the recent news. Crabtree (WR) would be great here, if not for the “injury”. OT is the position that most people feel the Rams will take. There were eight offensive linemen taken last year. I feel that, with the WR and OLB talent available in the first round this year, that capable OT’s will drop just far enough, that the Rams will be able to pick one in the early second. Alex Barron has played surprisingly better at LT, than at RT. Barron has also been working at the LT position in recent practices. This gives the Rams the freedom to take Curry, and to start the second round rookie at RT. I believe also, that the shortened drop-backs relating to the west coast offense (less time in pass protection) further alleviates the need for a first round OT.
#3 – Kansas City Chiefs
Team Representative: Z-Hawks
Team Needs: OL, DL, LB, DB, WR
The Selection: B.J. Raji, DT
After a miserable 2-14 season, Clark Hunt knew that some drastic change was in order. That’s where Scott Pioli comes in. As the GM of the Chiefs, he’s tried to emulate The Patriot Way by bringing in former Patriots, being selective in free agency, and starting the transition to a 3-4 defense. Ever since the Patriots switched to the 3-4 back in 2000, they’ve spent three 1st round draft picks on defensive linemen: Richard Seymour, Ty Warren, and Vince Wilfork. Aaron Curry has been the popular pick for the Chiefs and for good reason. Some consider him to be the best talent in the draft, and it looks like he has the tools to be a solid NFL linebacker. Curry is certainly a possibility but NT is a much more glaring need. With Vrabel, Johnson, and newly signed Zach Thomas, the Chiefs already have 3 out of four LB positions filled and resembles New England’s LB stable (at least age wise). It has also been rumored that Tamba Hali will play the other OLB spot. However, no one on their current roster has the physicality or experience to play the nose, and without a true NT, the 3-4 cannot work. That is why B.J. Raji is the best choice the Chiefs can make. He’s an elite prospect that can potentially anchor the defense for many years.
#4 – Seattle Seahawks
Team Representative: xX-MaNx
Team Needs: CB, LT, FS, WR, RB, G,
The Selection: Michael Crabtree, WR, Texas Tech
Analysis: The #4 draft spot has the most mystery and potentially draft altering ramifications behind it this year. Seattle could go in 4 major directions in my opinion: QB, WR, OL, or trading down. Any other speculation is ridiculious in my eyes since the class lacks any true elite talent.
Seattle has addressed it’s WR woes with 31 y/o TJ Houshmanzedah, but the WR corps is still old and has a lot of money tied up in injury prone players. Matt Hasselbeck has suffered a back injury last year that if re-aggravated could spell an early end to Seattle’s 2010 season. Walter Jones is also coming off of Microfracture knee surgery and is in all likelihood his final year in a Seattle uniform. What does Seattle do with a high salary draft pick?
Investing in a franchise LT is never a bad idea, but Seattle is moving toward a Zone-blocking scheme that Monroe is not fit to fully adapt with and Jason Smith will only be drafted at this spot if Jones is definitely unservicable. Drafting Stafford or Sanchez would create a QB controversy while getting paid a heavy salary to sit on the bench. After watching Larry Fitzgerald dominate the playoffs with his superior athleticism and Deion Branch getting paid far more than his worth, Seattle will put it’s money in a rookie franchise WR that will give immediate results, allow Branch to be cut and allow the aging team to make their last push to the Super Bowl. Ruskell’s job depends on a winning season.
Considerations: Jason Smith, Eugene Monroe, Mark Sanchez, Trade Down
#5 – Cleveland Browns
Team Representative: OarChambo
Team Needs: Most dire? OLB, WR, S
The Selection: Mark Sanchez, QB
Analysis: if the draft fell this way the Browns are doing one of two things and both involve a trade. If Quinn is dealt I have to think Sanchez is the pick here. He’s not ready for game action, but DA can serve as a one year stop gap (because he’s no better than a quality backup) while the staff gets Sanchez ready. If things go awry, which is likely, he can be thrown out there in December to see what he’s got. The other alternative would be if Quinn is not dealt, in which case we’re trading down, lots of teams are looking for an anchor on the left side of the line, there are two still available, and both are probably coming off the board with the next two picks. Although you never know with Crazy Al so one could fall to Jacksonville at #8 too. Since I can’t execute a draft pick trade in this mock I’m going to go the route assuming we dealt Quinn. Madness follows and Mel Kiper’s hair moves. Seriously.
Team Representative : The Light Within
Team Needs : OT, C, HB, LB, DE, DB, FB, P
The Pick: Jason Smith-OT Baylor
Analysis: Although a little disappointed to see Curry go before them, Cincinnati is ecstatic to have their pick of the top OT’s. When you have a talent like Carson Palmer behind center, your first, and second, and third, priority is to protect him. Last year, a switch to a zone blocking scheme, coupled with injuries along the offensive line, led to a season ending injury for #9. Mike Brown will not let that happen so easily this year. With the sixth overall pick, the Bengals grab the best LT available, and lock up that spot for, hopefully, the next decade. This would be a no-brainer, the best player available at the biggest position of need.
Also considered: Eugene Monroe, Everette Brown
#7 Oakland Raiders
Team Representative : SJSwarm
Team Needs : OT, DE, DT, WR, OLB, DB
The Pick: Eugene Monroe OT Virginia
Analysis: We need a smart, agile OT, and either Smith or Monroe should be the Raiders top two targets, provided that Raji doesnt slip. Talking hairpiece Mel Kiper thinks we need a WR in round one, but with Al Davis favorite Percy Harvin potentially falling out of round one completely, I think we go OT and see if Harvin, Nicks or Britt falls into round 2. If we DO take a WR here, word out of Oakland is that we will try to package our 2nd rounder along with a 2010 pick for disgruntled Bills OT Jason Peters, but I prefer going this direction.
Also considered: Jeremy Maclin
#8 – Jacksonville Jaguars
Team Representative: Hankrip
Team Needs: OT, WR, DT, CB , S
The Selection: Andre Smith OT Alabama
Analysis: Despite red flags raised at combine about Smith’s maturity, his on the field talent is right there with any of the OT’s already off the board. There has been a lot of talk about current Right Tackle, Tony Pashos, moving inside to Guard b/c of his limited athleticism and uncertainty of guards Manuwai and Mo Williams coming off serious injury. Andre Smith could start at RT and hopefully progress to taking over for Tra Thomas at LT in a year or so. The Jaguars current philosophy is centered on running the ball and Andre Smith gives them immediate flexibility and a potential cornerstone at Tackle not seen here since Tony Boselli.
#9 – Green Bay Packers
Team Representative: powerhousebum
Team Needs: NT, DE, OLB, CB, OT
The Selection: Brian Orakpo
Analysis: Ted Thompson picks the best player available, and lookee here, he actually fits a need. Orakpo fills the other rush OLB spot across from Kampman which was a question mark going into the draft. Orakpo showed he could play DE in a 4-3 and OLB in a 3-4 at his Pro Day which will help in our new hybrid 3-4/4-3 defense. He’s extremely strong, possesses a motor that never quits, and plays smart (doesn’t run himself out of plays). He struggled at times with hand placement and snap anticipation, but coaching can easily alleviate those problems.
Oher was a possibility here, but a player like William Beatty could be had in the second and he fits our zone blocking scheme better than Oher. Malcolm Jenkins was also a possibility, but with Tramon Williams playing so well last year the need for a CB gets trumped by the need for 3-4 personnel. If BJ Raji was here he would definitely be the pick as the packers don’t really have anyone to play NT, which is key in the 3-4.
#10 San Francisco 49ers
Team Representative : The Ghost of Lundy
Team Needs : Pass Rush, Tackle to develop, Complimentary RB, QB to develop, Playmaking defensive back
The Selection : Malcolm Jenkins, CB, Ohio State Buckeyes
Analysis: Sleepy. Will analyze later. Okay I have awaken from Hibernation and I can honestly say, I must have been asleep while making this pick. What the hell was I thinking? Okay, If I have to justify this pick, I will… Walt Harris is older than dirt, and Mark Roman plays like dirt. Jenkins may not be the best corner in the draft but he can fill in in case Walt decides to be old and get hurt. In the meantime, Dashaun Goldson may fall on his face in his first year at safety and 40,000 NIner fans will commit suicide if there is a Mark Roman sighting. Jenkins will be an all pro Free Safety, or a adequate safety. Either way, he is the defensive back play maker we need since we suck at interceptions.
Considerations Aaron Maybin, Micheal Oher
#11- Buffalo Bills
Team Representative: TaZZ
Team Needs: DE, OLB, Possibly LT, G, TE
The Selection: Aaron Maybin, DE/OLB, Penn St.
Analysis: This was a tough pick, and I think that the Bills would look at trading down here. The Bills didn’t have a single player register over 4 sacks last year, so the prime need is some QB pressure. With Orakpo gone, that eliminated the DE with the measurables ideal for that spot. Tyson Jackson is a little to big and lacks the explosiveness for the 4-3.
Maybin in the pick and dispite being called undersized and too slow, has started creeping up draft boards. He has put on some weight in between the combine and his pro-day, but hasn’t lost any speed. Infact, he managed to improve on his 40 time. If he manages to put on some more weight, he should be able to fit into the DE spot right away. If not, he is a capable OLB who would be an improvement over Keith Ellison.
If they can find a trading partner on draft day for Jason Peters, don’t be surprised to see Micheal Oher as the pick here.
#12: Denver Broncos
Team Representative: Marik7772003
Team Needs: DT, OLB, ILB, CB, S, QB
The Selection: Everette Brown, DE/OLB, Florida State
Analysis: Moving to a 3-4 is difficult, especially when you don’t have the pieces to make it work. Since the main need has been off the board for a while now (Raji), taking Brown here will allow for Denver to have a strong piece of the 3-4 puzzle figured out from day 1. While Brown doesn’t have exactly ideal size at 6’2″, 256 for a 3-4 OLB, he has the ability to pack on weight on his current frame and become a bigger force to reckon with. He’s quick and fast off of the edge with good moves to back him up.
He has the ability to get to the QB as an edge rusher and to stop the run as well, two problems that have plagued the Broncos over the past several years. He also has a strong motor, something that coach McDaniels is sure to appreciate here in New England West.
He’s a bright kid, and with him coming to Denver, it solves a hole on one of the sides of our defense.
Considerations: The war room had several other players lined up here, including Tyson Jackson.
#13 Washington Redskins
Team Representative : MikeRaphon
Team Needs : OL, DE, OLB
The Selection : OT Michael Oher, Mississippi
Analysis: With only 4 picks in this year’s draft, the Washington Redskins have to make the most out of every pick. With the 13 pick in this draft, they can go with Oher and lock up Samuels’ protege; they can go Brian Cushing and get that plug & play OLB they need alongside London Fletcher and Rocky McCintosh; or they can go Tyson Jackson to address their glaring pass rushing needs.
As nice as those second two guys would look in a Redskins uniform, we go with Oher for several reasons. For one, he is an elite talent at the position so his name would be in the mix regardless of team need. He just needs to be surrounded by character guys and quality coaching. The Redskins have both of those with Samuels making a great mentor and Coach Bugel a well respected OL coach in the league.
Beyond that, the Redskins must get younger across the OL. Pete Kendall, Randy Thomas, Steve Heyer and Jon Jansen aren’t scaring anybody. With the return of Derrick Dockery and the addition of Michael Oher, the ‘Skins start down the (long) road of shoring up the OL. Campbell is going to need protection if he’s going to continue to improve, and Portis is going to need a road grader if he’s going to continue carrying the load.
At the end of the day, the Redskins will have to lie in the bed they made when they chose Haynesworth over the field in free agency this offseason, rather than making smart personnel decisions to fill the variety of holes through their defense.
#14 – New Orlean Saints
Team Representative: ssfmission
Team Needs: DB, OLB, DE, RB
The Selection: Brian Cushing OLB USC
The Saints are in dire need of of defensive help. There are several players available at this point in the draft that will be able to help them. I would suspect that New Orleans would look at trading down in the first round at this point in order to gain additional draft picks. New Orleans does not currently have a second or third round pick.
Cushing is a smart and tough OLB that will be able to start from day one. He is a solid OLB that can defense the run and get into the backfield.
The easy choice would have been M. Jenkins from Ohio State, but the chances of him dropping this far are remote.
There are many “Draft Pundits” that suggest a power running back such as Chris “Beanie” Wells or Knowson Moreno. I would not be surprised if one of these two were picked if they do not move down.
Considerations: V. Davis, T. Jackson, C. Matthews
#15 – Houston Texans
Team Representative: checo446
Team Needs: DB, OLB, DE, RB, DT
The Selection: Peria Jerry, DT Ole Miss
The Texans will try their best to trade out of this pick if both Jenkins and Cushing are off the board at this point. If the Texans are not able to trade down, expect them to go with a pick on the defensive side of the ball.
Secondary is the Texans biggest concern; however, with Vontae Davis as the only player worthy of selection at this point, the Texans history of avoiding players with character question marks will probably rule out his selection. Expect the Texans to take secondary help in round two, particularly if Chung or Moore are still on the board.
New defensive coordinator Frank Bush covets another lineman with the potential to collapse the pocket from the interior and improve the Texans putrid pass rush. Jerry’s athleticism and motor is a perfect fit for Bush’s aggressive scheme, and with DT Travis Johnson on his last leg in Houston and Amobi Okoye still needing to prove himself, improving the defensive line is a top priority and Jerry will definitely accomplish that from a need standpoint.
Considerations: V. Davis, C. Matthews
#16 – San Diego Chargers
Team Representative: Merriman
Team Needs: None
The Selection: Tyson Jackson, DE, LSU
I really don’t know who the heck A.J. Smith will take as he likes to be secretive and random, but I doubt he’d take a DB since we have a plethora of those or a LB since we signed Kevin Burnett this off-season. That means logically, he will either draft a DE to replace Igor Olshansky (even though Jacques Cesaire is a fine replacement) or a new O-lineman to replace the rather sub-par Clary.
With Tyson Jackson still on the board, he’s the perfect fit for our system. He will complete our D-line and will make it one arguably one of the best D-lines in the league. I was hoping to land this beast and I did. I’m praying the same happens on draft day.
#17- New York Jets
Team Representative : jetsman2806
Team Needs : QB ,WR , DE , P , RB
The Pick: Knowshon Moreno RB Georgia
Analysis: With Thomas Jones getting older , Moreno will slide right in for the future as the Jets starting back, as the Jets have said they intend on pounding the ball. Moreno is at his best running inside and will battle for tough yardage, along with his big play ability. He is more than the typical change of pace back because of his all around rushing skills. The WR position is rather deep this year so we will look at that in the 2nd round. As for QB we will see what we get from Clemens and Ratliff this season and if that fails to workout we will address it in 2010 when Sam Bradford and Tim Teabow are available for selection.
#18: Denver Broncos (via Bears)
Team Representative: Marik7772003
Team Needs: DT, OLB, ILB, CB, S, QB
The Selection: Rey Maualuga, ILB, USC
Analysis: After taking our newest OLB Everette Brown at #12, there are still many holes in the defense. Even with D.J. Williams sliding inside to one of our ILB spots, there is still a gaping hole that is next to him. Maualuga will fill that spot tremendously.
Maualuga has great ball skills and is a good run-stuffer out of the MLB spot for the Trojans. Despite an injury to his hamstring suffered at the Combine, his play speaks for hisself. He has great instincts on the field and can be a natural leader with his inherent ferocity.
Despite our need at the most important part of our new defense, nose tackle, Maualuga was too much to pass up with the top 2 DTs off the board here. Ron Brace or Sen’Derrick Marks will be probable targets in round 2 if they get that far.
#19 – Tampa Bay Bucs
Team Representative: Stankweasels 3000
Team Needs: QB, DT, OLB, DE, WR, CB, S
The Selection: Percy Harvin, WR
The Bucs are in need of a lot of different players all over the field. They could definitely use a young WR, a do-everything DT, a QB who isn’t an ancient retread…you get the picture. At 19, there are definitely players who could satisfy those needs making this a pretty tough decision.
The Bucs helped their cause by bringing in a few nice players. The addition of Derrick Ward means that if Cadillac doesn’t get off his blocks and on the road again, Tampa is covered with Ward and Graham. Kellen Winslow Jr. brings in a nice target for whatever QB is throwing the ball. Signing Byron Leftwich means that the Bucs are probably looking at the QB rich 2010 draft class to find their future at that position. Unfortunately for Byron, he’s got some pretty crusty options to throw to at the WR position. Antonio Bryant is nice but no team wants him to be their best WR.
After looking at the players on the board I decided that Harvin could add just the jolt the Buccaneers need. He’s a Florida guy. He’s got the speed to succeed and while Bryant and Clayton aren’t the greatest WR’s in the NFL, they would afford Percy an opportunity to learn the NFL game while contributing mightily to special teams and on passing downs. I was very tempted to go with Matthews or Maclin but decided that the fans in Tampa Bay would love to cheer for their Gator.
#20 Detroit Lions
Team Representative: TNLionsFanatic
Team Needs: QB, OT, DT, MLB, DE, CB, KR, TE
The Selection: James Laurinaitis ILB
Analysis: As the Lions watch defensive players peel off the board in front of them, picking James Laurinaitis gives them a solid compliment to what could shape up to be a very decent line backing group. Laurinaitis was less than impressive in his workouts at both the combine and his pro-day, but the reality is that he’s a very good football player that should do very well with Ernie Sims and Julian Peterson on the outside.
Considerations: E. Britton, M. Johnson, V. Davis and Ziggy Hood
#21 – Philadelphia Eagles
Team Representative: Smashraj84
Primary Team Needs: OT, TE, RB, C, WR
The Selection: Brandon Pettigrew, TE, Oklahoma State
After a rollercoaster season which ended in the NFC Championship game, the Eagles continued with the ride in the offseason. Letting Brian Dawkins sign with the Broncos has rightfully angered fans, but the Eagles feel that Sean Jones can be a short-term successor and Q2 (Demps and Mikell) will be the future. Losing Dawkins may have caused the most uproar among fans, but other positions took a significant hit in the offseason as well. Gone is the team’s pair of tackles, their starting TE, and their backup RB. Stacy Andrews will be tasked with filling the Runyan’s old position, but there is a definite hole at left tackle…unless you believe Todd Herremans or Shawn Andrews is the answer. Celek has shown he has the capability to be an NFL TE, but the Eagles have always had two quality TEs they could rely on. The Eagles could definitely use another body at the TE position. Westbrook turns 30 in September and recent history has shown that he cannot be counted on for many more “Westbrook”-type seasons. With no real backup, the Eagles should also look to upgrade this position. Finally, this analysis would not be complete without mentioning the WR position. The Eagles front office is satisfied with Curtis, Jackson, Avant, Brown, and Baskett, but there is always room for another playmaker. The Eagles will seriously consider all possibilities of upgrading the position, specifically trading for a veteran such as Boldin or Edwards. However, in the end they will lose out to another team willing to give up more value. On the subject of trades, acquiring Jason Peters would alter the Eagles draft plans dramatically.
The Eagles would be ecstatic if one of the top 4 tackles fell to them, but are likely to trade up to get the tackle they want if they feel none of them will fall. However, with the top 4 tackles off the board the Eagles will look to address the position later, possibly with their 2nd pick in the 1st round. It’s hard to see guys like Vontae Davis and Jeremy Maclin fall this far, but Andy Reid needs to add a threat to complement the outside speed at WR. The Eagles select Brandon Pettigrew. He is a guy who doesn’t mind doing the dirty work in the trenches and will be able to help the new OTs block the edges. He also has some upside in the passing game and should be able to excel in the middle of the field immediately. Pettigrew will allow the Eagles to run/pass out of two-TE sets effectively, something they haven’t done since Chad Lewis was playing.
Considerations: Eben Britton, Donald Brown, Chris “Beanie” Wells, william Beatty
#22 – Minnesota Vikings
Team Representative: birddog
Primary Team Needs: OT, WR, TE, DB
The Selection: OT Eben Britton, Arizona
Tough position for the Vikings to be in with a few WR’s staring at them yet but, the right side of the O-Line needs a boost and Eben Britton looks too good to pass on. The only real hesitation here is Drew Radovich being injured last season. I’m not sure Cook would’ve held his job had Drew stayed healthy since he promptly worked himself into second team reps before the pre-season injury. So thats an unknown IR question mark. Regardless, Rick Spielman won’t take a WR in the 1st rnd.
Are we putting faith in Sid Rice to turn the corner this year? Its his 3rd season – time will tell.
Considerations: Jeremy Maclin, Hakeem Nicks, ….etc..
#23 – New England Patriots
Team Representative: Cyguy84
Primary Team Needs: OLB, CB, ILB, S, OL
The Selection: OLB Clay Matthews
Analysis: (Taken from Patriots.com)
As a former walk-on with an outstanding motor and work ethic, Matthews is a self-made player who overwhelms opponents with his relentless passion. Though he isn’t a skilled or polished pass rusher, Matthews racks up sacks because of his refusal to quit on plays. While some scouts have suggested that Matthews is possibly a “one-year wonder” based on his production during his lone season as a starter at USC, his strong performances at his workouts has even his strongest detractors projecting him to be one of the hottest prospects in the draft.
#24- Atlanta Falcons
Team Representative: KS19
Team Needs: DT, DE, Secondary,
The Selection: DT Evander Hood
Analysis: Evander Hood can be seen by some as somewhat of a reach at #24 on the surface after his poor Senior season, but I think that his superb Junior season and post season show his true potential.
In 2007 Hood recorded 30 solo tackles with 5 sacks, 3 forced fumbles, and 5 passes deflected in 14 games. In 2008 Hoods production dropped after facing many double teams, which are seen as one of his major weaknesses. I think with Hoods natural ability and high motor that he can be coached up and improve this aspect of his game. The Falcons need a guy in the middle opposite Jonathan Babineaux to not only stop the run, but to get some pressure on the QB. A high motor, hardworking, athletic guy is just what the Falcons need here. (This is assuming Peria Jerry is off the board when the Falcons pick. If not, Jerry will be the pick I think.)
#25- Miami Dolphins
Team Representative: Cylon LoveChild
Team Needs: CB, Rush LB, WR
The Selection: Connor Barwin, Cincinnati
Analysis: CB may be a greater need but OLB is another and the drop off after Barwin and Johnson is significant. Michael Johnson has attitude problems but it doesnt matter because Barwin is the steal of the draft. TE or LB or both! As Jerome Harrison has verified, the OLB in a 3-4 defense has to be the most disruptive and fearsome player. Porter has performed but at 32 he is in the twilight of his career. Matt Roth does not scare anyone. They have brought in Cameron Wake from the CFL in hopes of developing him, but that re-inforces their need at OLB. Barwin has the athleticism and more importantly the propensity to make big plays. He even made plays on special teams, blocking several kicks. His TE ability likens him to a player like Mike Vrabel. The Phins can wait to later rounds to get some CB’s becasue this is a guy that should pass Roth on the depth chart. Some may call this a reach but he would never make it past the Pats at #34.
#26- Baltimore Ravens
Team Representative: Kaleb
Team Needs:TE , RT,DE,LB,DB
The Selection: WR Jeremy Maklin, Missouri
Analysis: You would think that the Ravens would draft a cb, however that is no longer the issue anymore since the team signed Foxworth and later on re signed Samai Rolle which now gives the team depth in that postion, so that is no longer an important need.
Next season the Ravens risk losing both Mark Clayton and Derrick Mason via agency so picking a wr is not a suprise ,what is somewhat of a suprise is that Jeremy Maklin lasted this long in the draft, The Ravens didnt expect this at all considering the only rookies they have bought into the teams complex to have a private workout have been Darius Heyward Bey, Hakim Nicks , Kenny Britt Percy Harvin ,Brandon Pettigrew and Benie Wells. Flacco now has a new toy who might have a chance to make an impact in this first yr.
#27- Indianapolis Colts
Team Representative: rodg2915
Team Needs: DT, WR, RB, OLB
The Selection: WR Darrius Heyward-Bey, Maryland
Analysis: I’m not totally in love with this pick. The Colts have a huge whole in the middle of their DL and were hoping Peria or Hood would have been availalbe. But with the ties cut with Harrison, Peyton needs another weapon. Darrius’ 6’3″ and 4.3 speed cannot be denied at this pick. This will allow Gonzalez and Clark to keep their slot positions and create a double deep and outside threat with Wayne now without controversy owning the WR #1 role. The DT situation may be handled in the next round. Indy’s need for OLB and RB depth will be addressed in mid-late rounds.
Considerations:Chris ‘Beanie’ Wells
#28 – Philadelphia Eagles
Team Representative: Smashraj84
Primary Team Needs: OT, RB, C, WR
The Selection: Donald Brown, RB, Connecticut
Analysis: See previous pick.
The Eagles have shown in the past that they do not value RBs early in the draft. Heckert has been quoted, “It’s still not at a point where we say we’ve got to come out of the first two rounds with a running back”. However, when push comes to shove they will take the player they are highest on. Donald Brown was uber-productive in college and would fit very well in a WCO. As Westbrook’s backup, he could learn the system early on before eventually taking over. McNabb would be very excited if the Eagles add two weapons to his arsenal in the 1st round and Westbrook has said he would welcome an RB addition.
The Eagles could take Beanie here, but Brown is a better receiver out of the backfield and I doubt the Eagles want to deal with nagging injuries at the RB position anymore. Drafting an offensive tackle is an obvious choice here, but the Eagles have 11 picks after the 1st round and can move up to take one of the 2nd tier OTs such as Beatty or Loadholt.
Considerations: Chris “Beanie” Wells, William Beatty
#29 – New York Giants
Team Representative: TD Celebration
Primary Team Needs: WR, SLB, Depth at RB, Secondary, OL, LB
The Selection: Kenny Britt, WR, Rutgers
Analysis: The Giants will not be happy if the draft turns out this way. With 8 LBs and 4 WRs taken before their pick, the choices available for their two main needs look to be thin and will be thinner at their first choice in the 2nd round. The Giants are reportedly actively pursuing a WR in a trade and I am expecting something to work out but if it does not the position needs to be addressed.
Linebacker will be the pick if any of the Southern Cal linebackers make their way down this far. Clint Sintim will be a consideration here with his versatility to play strong-side or middle linebacker with a current hole at strong-side and an aging Antonio Pierce. If less wide receivers were already taken and there was a better chance that one would fall to them in the second, Sintim would be the pick here.
As far as their other needs- Wells is not the type of back the Giants will be looking at, SS will be addressed later if Chung or Moore fall in the second or with a mid-round SS like Hamlin or Cook, and OL depth is not an urgent enough need to use a 1st on.
As far as wide receivers go, Britt and Nicks are both considerations here. Overall, people seem to be somewhat split on who the better receiver is. Similar speed, slight edge to Britt on size, and with Nicks’ recent weight fluctuation question marks: the overall edge goes to Britt here. I wouldn’t complain if Reese and company went the other way though.
30 – Tennessee Titans
Team Representative: redbone
Primary Team Needs: CB, WR, C, OLB
The Selection: CB Vontae Davis, Illinois
Analysis: The Titans don’t have any real glaring needs in regards to the starting positions. There are a few aging veterans like Kevin Mawae and Nick Harper so adding talent and depth in those areas along with WR will be top priority. In taking Vontae Davis this will help solidify the CB position because Harper is 34 years of age. The Titans have the habit of taking the best player on the board early instead of drafting on need so this pick represents what I would do but in reality it could go in many different directions.
Considered: Robert Ayers, Hakeem Nicks, Alex Mack
#31 – Arizona Cardinals
Team Representative: JimHart
Team Needs: RB, DE, C, OLB, OT, FS
The Selection: RB Chris “Beanie” Wells, Ohio State
Let me begin by saying that I highly doubt that Chris Wells will be available for the Cardinals at the 31st spot. But since he is in this mock, he is a the most highly attractive selection given the likelihood of Edgerrin James not being on our roster next season, and Tim Hightower not being the answer at HB. The only concern I have with Wells are the nagging injury issues. Other than that however, he has everything that fits the “Pittsburgh” style running attack that Whisenhunt is looking for. And given the high power passing attack Arizona enjoys, Wells will not be required to shoulder the entire offensive burden as a rookie.
That being said, if Wells is not available, as I surely expect to be the case in the NFL draft, the two positions that I believe Arizona will be considering strongly and above the RB position, will be C or DE/OLB. In that case I believe the best choice would be C Alex Mack first, and DE Larry English second.
Considerations: Alex Mack, Larry English, Clint Stinim, Louis Delmas
#32: Pittsburgh Steelers
Team Representative: SteelReserve
Team Needs: CB, OL, DT
The Selection: Ron Brace, DT
Let me preface this pick by saying this. This is a reach at 1.32 and I’m sure the Steelers would try and trade down, but since that’s not an option I had to take him here.
Why not an offensive lineman you ask. Well here’s why…
With the Steelers re-signing Colon and Starks it’s no longer a guarantee that they go o-line with their first pick. Also, the number of teams running the 3-4 is increasing and big NT’s are a hot commodity. Brace is a prototypical 3-4 NT, who is big and strong and can eat up blockers. He would give the Steelers immediate depth on an aging defensive line and with Hampton’s future uncertain, could be a starter in two years. Hampton, along with Miller, Ward, Keisel are all free agents. There is chance this is Hampton’s last year with the Steelers, as he may go the way of Kimo von Oelhoffen and look to sign elsewhere for his last big payday.
Considerations: Alex Mack, Alphonso Smith and Eben Britton
1. Detroit (0-16) –
OT William Beatty ( TNLionsFanatic )
2. New England – from Kansas City (2-14) –
CB Darius Butler ( Cyguy )
3. St. Louis (2-14) –
WR Hakeem Nicks ( Offense )
4. Cleveland (4-12) –
OLB Larry English ( Oarchambo )
5. Seattle (4-12) –
C Alex Mack ( xX-MaNx )
6. Cincinnati (4-11-1) –
OLB Clint Sintim ( TheLightWithin )
7. Jacksonville (5-11) –
CB Alphonso Smith ( hankrip)
8. Oakland (5-11) –
DT Jarron Gilbert ( SJSwarm )
9. Green Bay (6-10) –
DE Paul Kruger ( powerhousebum )
10. Buffalo (7-9) –
DE Robert Ayers (Tazz)
11. San Francisco (7-9) –
OT Phil Loadholt ( LundyLove )
12. Miami – from Washington (8-8 ) –
CB Victor Harris ( Cylon LoveChild )
13. New York Giants – from New Orleans (8-8 ) –
RB LeSean McCoy ( TD Celebration )
14. Houston (8-8 ) –
S Louis Delmas ( Checo446 )
15. New England – from San Diego (8-8 ) –
S Sean Smith ( Cyguy84 )
16. Denver (8-8 ) –
S Patrick Chung ( Marik7772003 )
17. Chicago (9-7) –
WR Brian Robiski ( vonbearsalot )
18. Cleveland – from Tampa Bay (9-7) –
OT Jamon Meredith ( Oarchambo )
19. Dallas (9-7) –
S William Moore ( Michael T 34 )
20. New York Jets (9-7) –
WR Deon Butler ( Jetsman2806 )
21. Philadelphia (9-6-1) –
DE Matt Shaughnessy ( jokerswild1130 )
22. Minnesota (10-6) –
TE Jared Cook ( birddog)
23. Atlanta (11-5) –
DE Michael Johnson ( KS19)
24. Miami (11-5) –
RB Shonn Greene ( Oarchambo )
25. Baltimore (11-5) –
DE Lawrence Sidbury ( Kaleb )
26. New England (11-5)
OG Duke Robinson ( Cyguy84 )
27. Carolina (12-4) –
C Max Unger ( raynman )
28. New York Giants (12-4) –
LB Marcus Freeman (TD Celebration )
29. Indianapolis (12-4) –
DT Fili Moala ( rodg2915 )
30. Tennessee (13-3) –
C Eric Wood ( redbone )
31. Arizona (9-7) –
CB D.J. Moore ( JimHart )
32. Pittsburgh (12-4) –
CB Coye Francies ( SteelReserve )
There you have it. This is exactly how it is going down this weekend so no need to watch the draft. So, enjoy the spring weather knowing you already know who will be picked by your favorite team. Who am I kidding? This will probably be as accurate as my weatherman, but it doesn’t mean we didn’t have fun doing it. And, all of you have fun watching, listening and following the draft this weekend and may your team get the next big thing.