Disclaimer: This Mock Draft Sucks, and I’m know nothing about Football.
My methodology is this. I craft a big-board, and roughly fill the players to teams of need. I avoid reaching in the draft. This is a glorified big-board so I probably didn’t fill every team’s biggest need.
1) Houston Texans – Jadaveon Clowney (DE, South Carolina). Simply put, he’s the best player available, with the highest upside. Yes, Houston needs a quarterback bad, but there are no guarantees in this draft. Clowney has “work-ethic issues”, but his tape is still very impressive and his upside extraordinary. Pro Comparison: An unrealistic-Madden player.
2) St. Louis Rams (from Redskins) – Sammy Watkins (WR, Clemson). Sammy Watkins is talented, but is more explosive than he is quick. He is a receiver on the level of A.J. Green or Julio Jones. That being said, he’s arguably the most explosive athlete in the draft, and is another weapon of Sammy Bradford. Pro Comparison: Angry Percy Harvin licking the tears of Redskins fans.
3) Jacksonville Jaguars – Teddy Bridgewater (QB, Louisville). There is no denying Bridgewater’s talent. He’s athletic, has an effective arm and elite accuracy. While he often looks passive in tape, and in interviews, the Jaguars would be foolish to pass on a player with all the tools at the most important position. Pro Comparison: Philip Rivers on a diet.
4) Cleveland Browns – Johnny Manziel (QB, Texas A&M). Kyle Shanahan is going to love Manziel as his combination of down-field passing and foot-quickness fashion the Browns into a top offense. Couple Manziel with a top receiver, and a Shanahan running game, the Browns could have a Chiefs-esque breakthrough. Pro Comparison: Swag-Daddy Russell Wilson.
5) Oakland Raiders – Aaron Donald (DT, Pittsburgh). While the Raiders need a quarterback, they’d be better advised to take best player available. Aaron Donald has all the tools; explosiveness, quickness and motor to dominate offensive lines for years to come. While undersized, Donald will be productive in the NFL. Just look at Sheldon Richardson and Geno Atkins. Pro Comparison: Geno Atkins.
6) Atlanta Falcons – Jake Matthews (OT, Texas A&M). While the Falcons could opt to upgrade their pass-rush with Khalil Mack, they won’t be able to pass up a legitimate blue-chip prospect like Matthews. He’s the rare plug-and-play left tackle, and the Falcons need to protect their investment in Matt Ryan. Pro Comparison: Eugene Monroe.
7) Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Khalil Mack (DE, Buffalo). The Falcon’s loss is the Buccaneers gain as they get a dominating player with their pick. Mack has been successful fighting through triple-teams, and has the athleticism to be an immediate edge-threat next to Gerald McCoy. Mack is versatile, and hopefully Lovie Smith will take advantage of Mack’s productivity from different positions in the front-7. Pro Comparison: Von Miller with ankle weights.
8) Minnesota Vikings – Justin Gilbert (CB, Oklahoma State). Talented, athletic and aggresive, Justin Gilbert is an elite corner-back prospect. While Gilbert might struggle in his first year, he could very well be a top-corner by his second. Pro Comparison: Dee Milliner in week 16+17.
9) Buffalo Bills – Greg Robinson (OT, Auburn). A freak athlete, Robinson shows everything a tackle needs (length, burst, strength, nastiness) except polish. It’s not surprising to see Robinson stone-wall a cornerback on a play, shut down a defensive end on the rest, and occasionally make a Greg Robinson Play. A GRP is when an offensive lineman chips a lineman, pancakes a linebacker, and gets down-field faster than the ball-carrier. Pro Comparison: Ndamukong Suh playing offensive tackle.
10) Detroit Lions – Calvin Pryor (FS, Louisville). The Detroit secondary is hella underrated, but adding a player Calvin Pryor can instill confidence and toughness to a defense that lacks all that, and talent. Pryor is capable of sinking into single-high coverage, and being the first to blow up a screen anyway. Special talent. Pro Comparison: Earl Thomas and Kam Chancellor’s secret son.
11) Tennessee Titans – Blake Bortles (QB, UCF). Jake Locker may still become a quality quarterback, but injuries issues and a poor-fit with Whisenhunt means the Titans will aim for another quarterback. Bortles has is a complete quarterback, but accuracy and consistency questions drop him to the Titans. Pro Comparison: Jake Locker, but better in every way.
12) New York Giants – Darqueze Dennard (CB, Michigan State). The Giants get the best cornerback in draft; Gilbert is more talented, but Dennard has better production. Dennard sticks to receivers, and is physical beyond measure. Cornerback isn’t the biggest need for the Giants, but Dennard is the biggest talent. Pro Comparison: Revis Island, but less athletic.
13) St. Louis Rams – Hasean Clinton-Dix (FS, Alabama). Clinton-Dix is phenomenal in single-high coverage, and shows incredible range. Not quite as instinctive or aggressive as Pryor, but does a better job of keeping the play in front. Pro Comparison: Happy Jairus Byrd.
14) Chicago Bears – Kony Ealy (DE, Missouri). Bears need Front-7 help, and they get a player who can play all of those positions. Athletic enough to be a middle linebacker, but strong enough to be an under-tackle, Ealy is a perfect fit for the new-look Bears defense. Pro Comparison: Melvin Ingram’s potential.
15) Pittsburgh Steelers – Mike Evans (WR, Texas A&M). The Steelers are looking for a tall receiver, and the draft delivers. Evans is more of a vertical threat, used to give Antonio Brown more breathing room. Evans is also a deadly red-zone option, and a good play-maker after the catch. Pro Comparison: How Vincent Jackson sees himself.
16) Baltimore Ravens – C.J. Mosley (ILB, Alabama). The Ravens have multiple needs, but enough young talent and veteran options to fill them as stop-gaps. They will always take the best-player available because they are not dumb. C.J. Mosley is athletic, smart, and instinctive, and can lead a defense. Pro Comparison: NaVorro Bowman.
BREAK: The issue with this year’s draft is that there are a lot of top-10 talents. C.J. Mosley, who just went to the Ravens at 16, will usually be a top 6 draft pick. It’s absolutely wonderful.
17) Dallas Cowboys – Louis Nix III (DT, Notre Dame). The Cowboys need some talent in the middle, and Louis Nix brings the heat. A remarkable first step, with incredible strength, Nix has the ability to play 5-tech end, nose tackle, and 3-tech tackle. Fantastic player, with fantastic skills, but with unfortunate injury issues. The Cowboys take a flier on an elite prospect in hopes of recovery. Pro Comparison: Vincent Wilfork III.
18) New York Jets – Eric Ebron (TE, UNC). Ebron isn’t an elite prospect like some are claiming; he has inconsistent hands, and questionable toughness. However, game-breakers at tight ends are rare, and Ebron’s talent allows Morhinwig to explore different match-ups, and open up the field for Jeremy Kerley. To the Jets, his value is much higher than his production, but not as high as his talent. Pro Comparison: Aaron Hernandez but not a psychopath.
19) Miami Dolphins – Zach Martin (OG, Notre Dame). They need a new offensive line. Martin, who is good at tackle, but downright dominant at guard, is a good versatile upgrade for a unit that needs refreshing. Pro Comparison: Logan Mankins.
20) Arizona Cardinals – Brandin Cooks (WR, Oregon State). While the Cardinals need a tackle, relatively low state-taxes and a surprisingly good season means that help will certainly come via free agency. Brandin Cooks is simply the best player available, adding an explosive element between two talented physical receivers. Pro Comparison: Antonio Brown.
21) Green Bay Packers – Ra’shede Hageman (DT, Minnesota). The Packers need an infusion of nasty on defense, and Hageman is fucking huge. He has the elite-potential and a dominating size. He is what B.J. Raji was supposed to be. Literary Comparison: Gregor Clegane.
22) Philadelphia Eagles – Kyle Fuller (CB, Virginia Tech). Fuller has first-round tape, and first round athleticism and aggression. He is an absolute plus in run defense, and was occasionally used as a safety. A boundary corner, Fuller hasn’t shown much in terms of pressing, but has shown remarkable patience, and simply doesn’t give up the big play. He’s remarkable in closing on the ball and breaking up passes, and would be useful next to Brandon Boykin. Pro Comparison: Antoine Winfield 2.0 with new speed upgrades.
23) Chiefs – Odell Beckham Jr. (WR, LSU). Incredibly fast and athletic, with remarkable route-running and hands, Odell Beckham Jr. would be the complete package had he been a couple inches taller. His leaping ability and sharp-route running makes-up for his size, and his production would be magnified in an Andy Reid’s offense that fits Beckham perfectly. Pro Comparison: Santonio Holmes.
24) Cincinnati Bengals – Trevor Reilly (OLB, Utah). This is one of my favorite players in the draft. You’re welcome, Cincinnati. Reilly has incredible length, explosiveness and burst, and good awareness in coverage. Missed the combine, but has good athleticism. Pro Comparison: Aldon Smith (beta version).
25) San Diego Chargers – Taylor Lewan (OT, Michigan). A talented dude with mountains of potential, but also character issues and questionable production. Lewan has shown poor knee-bend, and occasional lapse, but has all ability to be a top tackle. Despite a good year, the Chargers still don’t have much talent at left tackle. Lewan can be plug-and-play for a team that could use a bookend next to Fluker. Pro Comparison: Andrew Whitworth.
26) Cleveland Browns (from Colts) – Jordan Matthews (WR, Vanderbilt). Matthews has surprising athleticism, and excellent production. The most polished receiver in the draft, Matthews can step in and compliment Josh Gordon’s skill-set perfectly. He is reliable in short and medium routes, while cannot be ignored deep. Pro Comparison: Rueban Randle.
27) New Orleans Saints – Kyle Van Noy (OLB, BYU). Athletic and explosive, Van Noy is among the best defensive playmakers in this draft. A Master of All-Trades, Van Noy has experience rushing off the edge, blitzing the A-Gap, and covering running backs. A 3rd-down wunderkind, Van Noy is the perfect weapon for Rob Ryan’s multiple defense designed to confuse opposing quarterbacks. What better prospect than one who has dominated in every facet of the game. Pro Comparison: LaVonte David.
28) Carolina Panthers – Kelvin Benjamin (WR, FSU). Kelvin Benjamin has potential to be a dominant receiver at all points; he’s flexible and fast enough to run on the outside and strong enough to tower over defensive backs and separate at the line of scrimmage. He’s Jimmy Graham in receiver form; except Benjamin is quicker and faster. He’ll certainly be fun in the slot, or as a split-end in a 3 x 1 formation. Pro Comparison: Jimmy Graham’s wide receiver twin.
29) San Francisco 49ers – Jason Verrett (CB, TCU). Undersized, but physical, Verrett plays with a good amount of “dawg”. He’s aggressive, and plays with a chip on his shoulder. While capable in man-coverage, Verrett is at his best when he’s able to backpedal and attack a receiver’s breaks in a pseudo-zone coverage. He’s a special when blitzing off the edge, and capable of playing in the boundary as well. He fits a 49ers defense that needs a corner to match up against quick slot receivers. Pro Comparison: Cortland Finnegan.
30) New England Patriots – Jace Amaro (TE, Texas Tech). Despite New England’s investment in tight ends, they’re left with a bunch of cast-offs and a broken Rob Gronkowski. While it remains to be seen if Gronk will return to his dominating self (I hope so even as a Jets fan; he’s just too good of a talent to waste, and injuries are painful and terrible), New England needs more dominant receivers will Brady is best; the middle of the field. Amaro provides great value as well; he’s arguable the most athletic tight end in the draft, and has speed to supplement Gronk’s physicality if he returns. Pro Comparison: Not-quite Antonio Gates.
31) Denver Broncos – Dee Ford (DE, Auburn). Ford’s enormous confidence and shiny self-assurance makes him an interesting prospect for any team. He’s doesn’t have the disorienting upside of Clowney, but offers better motor, better technique, and a type of swagger every defense wants. Broncos have a variety of needs, but they won’t pass on a talented pass-rusher on the other side of Von Miller. Pro Comparison: Jason Worilds.
32) Seattle Seahawks – Gabe Jackson (OG, Mississippi State). A massive man, and the ground quakes when he moves. Simply put, he’s immovable. The Seahawks pick up a road grader at guard who creates a positive push on each play. Not very quick, but has enough length to contain in the “telephone booth”. He can pave the road for Marshawn Lynch and the rest of Seattle’s stable of runners. Most importantly, he holds his ground and protects Russell Wilson from interior pressure. Pro Comparison: Larry Warford.
Let me nip this in the bud right now; I don’t have Anthony Barr here because I don’t think he’s good enough. There I said it, he doesn’t get off blocks well, and doesn’t hold up as well in the run. While he excels in coverage, Barr has first-round value. That being said, there is a lot of first-round talent coming in the second-round; and that’s reflective on the overwhelming amount of talent in this draft. Leave your comments; I want to hear your thoughts!!