Our first mock draft was just done by Isaac. Now all three of us have completed one. Worth noting, Jamie’s now involved so 3 Football Dudes is now officially 3 football dudes. Picks done by all 3 of us, writing done by Isaac.
1. Carolina Panthers – AJ Green, wide receiver. While Jimmy Clausen was beyond turrible last year, part of it has to do with the fact that the Panthers receiver corps (sans Steve Smith) is nothing better than slot receivers and drafting a QB won’t solve this issue. And if the Clausen experiment doesn’t work, you have a #1 receiver ready to replace Smith and help grow with the next QB. While they could draft just about anybody at this position and instantly get better, you need to one of the true play makers in the draft.
2. Denver Broncos – Marcel Dareus, defensive tackle. The Broncos are like the Panthers and have plenty of needs everywhere. The Broncos were absolutely horrendous against the run and finding some form of anchor is a must. They could go just about anywhere with this pick including trading down, but Dareus is one of the safest picks. Isaac called him the potential bust of the draft but has since changed his stance.
3. Buffalo Bills – Cam Newton, quarterback. None of us are sold on Newton. However, Newton’s ability to transition between teams (he played on 3 different teams in 5 years) has to be noted. But the Bills have a good transitional player in place with Ryan Fitzpatrick. But the Bills will be expecting Newton to start soon.
4. Cincinnati Bengals – Blaine Gabbert, quarterback. Gabbert is widely viewed as the best QB in this draft just off of pure readiness. And Carson Palmer believes he’s done with Cincy. So they should just go ahead and start the new era. If they nab themselves a wide out in the 2nd or 3rd, they could potentially put together another playoff run like 2009.
5. Arizona Cardinals – Von Miller, OLB. Fitz has said he doesn’t want a QB drafted here. And Von Miller catches their second biggest need in an edge rusher as Porter and Haggans are both nearly 90 years old a piece. Miller will be an impact player in the same mold of Brian Orakpo especially in a 3-4 situation.
6. Cleveland Browns – Julio Jones, wide receiver. Cleveland lacks a playmaker on offense. They have their feature back in Hillis. They have an excellent offensive line. They have a QB (or at least a solid prospect) and now they just need a player who can stretch the field. The dog pound will love this sure handed, field stretching receiver.
7. San Francisco 49ers – Patrick Peterson, cornerback. It’s likely that the 49ers will jettison current #1 corner Nate Clements as he’s due a lot of money next season and he isn’t as shut down as he used to be. And Patrick Peterson is widely considered the best player in this draft. It is a shame he’d drop this far, but at the same time, corners aren’t normally taken even this high.
8. Tennessee Titans – Nick Fairley, defensive tackle. Everyone had Fairley going #1. Now everyone has him dropping this far. There’s questions of character and drive. We have him here because his coach from Auburn is the new defensive coordinator for the Titans. But the Titans already saw what happened with another SEC highly touted DT named Albert Haynesworth. But a playmaking DT is a need and as far as draft boards go, Fairley is the best available.
9. Dallas Cowboys – Tyron Smith, offensive tackle. While we’re not 100% completely convinced that Jerr-uh won’t go for the more flashy pick of Prince Amukamara, Tyron Smith would fit their #1 need. The Cowboy’s offensive line is in shambles due to age and lack of skill. They need something new to anchor the line. And Tyron Smith is the best offensive lineman in this draft.
10. Washington Redskins – Prince Amukamara, cornerback. There are two reasons for this: 1) Prince is the best available player and 2) DeAngelo Hall is good, but they don’t really have anything else. The Redskins are a team in shambles and pretty much anything will improve this team.
11. Houston Texans – JJ Watt, defensive end. The Texans are a team that could use any number of services on defense and Watt is the best 5 technique defensive end in the draft. What will make this selection happen is that the Texans are switching to a 3-4 making any sort of player that fits that mold a prerogative.
12. Minnesota Vikings – Da’Quan Bowers, defensive end. The Vikings may not bring back Ray Edwards either because they don’t believe in him or because Edwards will get that big contract elsewhere and the Vikings have enjoyed the benefits of having nothing but awesome players on their defensive line. Bowers has fallen from grace recently, but the general belief is that he’ll be a playmaker.
13. Detroit Lions – Nate Solder, offensive tackle. While the Lions have some promising young talents on their team, they still have needs all over the place, none more evident than their offensive line. Matthew Stafford keeps on getting injured and it doesn’t help that his protection barely understands what pass blocking is and what it does to team success. Solder is the second best left tackle in the draft. He will be good at protecting Stafford’s backside.
14. St. Louis Rams – Aldon Smith, defensive end. The Rams will be looking for a player to grow with budding star/franchise quarterback Sam Bradford, but getting Aldon Smith will be a nice alternative since the top two are gone at this point. He went to Mizzou so the fanbase is already familiar with him. And getting some additional pass rush will help this needy team.
15. Miami Dolphins – Mike Pouncey, offensive guard. The Dolphins could use some additional beef on the offensive line. Pouncey is the absolute best guard in the draft. With the Dolphins ground and pound, this will do nothing but make them more formidable.
16. Jacksonville Jaguars – Ryan Kerrigan, defensive end. Aaron Kampman has been both a great signing and a terrible signing at the same time. If he could manage to not tear his ACL, pairing Ryan Kerrigan with him will give them a pass rush. Also the fact that Jack Del Rio loves drafting defensive linemen early makes this more than likely.
17. New England Patriots – Cameron Jordan, defensive end. Their defense hasn’t been the same since they traded Richard Seymour. Ty Warren has fallen off now that he’s receiving most of the attention from the offensive line. How fitting that Richard Seymour would be traded for his replacement.
18. San Diego Chargers – Cameron Heyward, defensive end. Like the Patriots, they need a DE that can help out in a 3-4 scheme. Heyward will allow for Luis Castillo to do what he does best, take up blockers and blow up the run. And Heyward will do so as well.
19. New York Giants – Anthony Costanzo, offensive tackle. The Giants don’t have as many issues as other teams. But the offensive line is definitely a concern. Their line is aging slowly and getting Costanzo will help ease this issue and allow for Eli to get some time to throw up miracle throws to David Tyree.
20. Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Justin Houston, outside linebacker/defensive end. This a younger team with a lot of upside. Getting a good pass rusher will help them move farther towards competing with Atlanta and New Orleans. However, with Aqib Talib’s status in question, a corner may be taken here.
21. Kansas City Chiefs – Gabe Carimi, offensive tackle. Gabe is viewed by some as the best tackle in the draft. And the Chiefs have nothing but old people and Brandon Albert on their line. Carimi will ensure that there are two bookend tackles for Jamal Charles to continue to put up ridiculous numbers running the ball.
22. Indianapolis Colts – Derreck Sherrod, offensive tackle. Even Peyton Manning looks ordinary when he doesn’t get any form of protection. Sherrod, while not the best tackle in the draft, will at least be an upgrade over Ryan Diem and Charlie Johnson.
23. Philadelphia Eagles – Jimmy Smith, cornerback. While pairing Jimmy Smith with DeSean Jackson has the possibility of making an epic reality show of them getting into trouble, the Eagles need someone opposite of Asante Samuel. And since the Patriots are not trading away any more corners, Smith will be selected with a prayer that he’ll behave.
24. New Orleans Saints – Adrian Clayborn, defensive end. Will Smith has lost a step and Charles Grant is gone. Getting some more pass rush will help bring New Orleans back to the big game. And with quarterbacks like Matt Ryan and Josh Freeman in your division, you will need a decent pass rush.
25. Seattle Seahawks – Jake Locker, quarterback. He played in Washington, Seattle needs a quarterback after Hasselbeck retires. And having Locker play a season or two under the uber accurate Matt Hasselbeck could do him wonders.
26. Baltimore Ravens – Brandon Harris, cornerback. Since most of their corners are on the open market, they’ll be looking for a way ensure their pass defense doesn’t suffer. Harris has gotten rave reviews from Deion sanders, so the Ravens will gladly gobble him up at the #26 spot.
27. Atlanta Falcons – Torrey Smith, wide receiver. Roddy White is an awesome receiver. Michael Jenkins is not. Getting a receiver who can stretch the defense while letting Roddy do his thing is necessary. Especially since White isn’t as young as he used to be.
28. New England Patriots – Mark Ingram, running back. The Patriots could use some more offensive play makers. Getting a receiving running back will help out with this. While the Patriots will also look for a edge rusher, Ingram is too good to pass up here.
29. Chicago Bears – Matt Reynolds, offensive tackle. The Bears need new offensive linemen like nobody’s business. They will take whatever is available at this position. Reynolds happens to be here and the Bears need hasn’t changed.
30. New York Jets – Muhammad Wilkerson, defensive end. The New York Jets have nothing but old people on their defensive line. It is almost a complete retirement home there. Wilkerson has the potential to be the steal of the draft. And Rex Ryan is able to do wonders with big boys from the draft.
31. Pittsburgh Steelers – Aaron Williams, defensive back. Aaron Williams played corner in college, but will be moved to safety in the NFL. Polamalu isn’t getting younger and is getting more scraped up each and every year. Ryan Clark is only good when Polamalu is playing. Aaron Williams will serve as an immediate upgrade to Clark or create a solid rotation at the position.
32. Green Bay Packers – Leonard Hankerson, wide receiver. Donald Driver is getting up there in age and James Jones is a slot receiver. Aaron Rodgers is going to be doing beautiful things down the road and getting a good receiver to help him out would be nothing but awesome. The Packers don’t have a lot of needs, but getting an extra luxury will be nice.
That’s our 2.0. We’ll probably get another one out just before the draft.
Jamie, Josh and Isaac
3 Football Dudes