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A Different View of the First Round

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  • A Different View of the First Round

    It might just be the cold medicine, but in this sickly fog I'm in, I felt tempted to produce a quick first round mock before the NFL Combine started. I tried my best to avoid cliche picks where I could, and took a few leaps here and there. The analysis was typed fast and off the cuff, so please excuse spelling mistakes, and let me know if I forgot anyone important.


    1. Miami Dolphins: Matt Ryan, Quarterback, Boston College
    This pick relies solely on Ryan convincing one section of Miami’s new management triangle that he is the man to build around, but Ryan seems to leave a good impression whenever he meets with scouts or teams. My brain says to go lineman or linebacker, but I’m waiting to see Chris Long work out before I’m willing to slot him as the substantial favorite. I’m not a very big fan of Matt Ryan myself, but I think this pick is very possible.
    2. St. Louis Rams: Chris Long, Defensive End/Linebacker, Virginia

    Although nothing is a lock at this point in the draft process, you have to imagine that if Chris Long is there, the Rams will take him. Someone like Glenn Dorsey would be tempting because they have a full stable of undertackles to play opposite him, but I think the Rams simply need a defensive end more. Long’s versatility and experience playing in a 3-4 defensive scheme only helps.
    3. Atlanta Falcons: Jake Long, Offensive Tackle, Michigan

    I’m not entirely sure I buy the defensive tackle talk just because Mike Smith is the new head coach. As far as I can tell, Atlanta has some talent on the interior line, but they seem totally without a legitimate left tackle. I’m sure you’ll hear some people say that Long isn’t a legitimate left tackle either, but I think he’d do a fine job on the left side and might just be the smartest pick Atlanta can make.
    4. Oakland Raiders: Glenn Dorsey, Defensive Tackle, Louisiana State

    This is a hard decision. On one hand, the Raider’s ties to Sedrick Ellis are undeniable. Al Davis worked at USC, Lane Kiffin worked at USC, and Ellis played under Kiffin at the Senior Bowl. That said, Dorsey fits the bill better when compared to past defensive tackles Davis has spent a high 1st rounder on. The organization’s general opinion of Terdell Sands might be the most important factor here, followed by how Oakland’s doctors feel about Dorsey’s knee, but for now I think this pick is more likely.
    5. Kansas City Chiefs: Sedrick Ellis, Defensive Tackle, Southern California

    Does Kansas City go for Clady with a defensive presence like Ellis staring them in the face? I’m going to say no. Ellis would anchor a defense which is probably only a few pieces away from being quite good, and would help free up defensive ends Jared Allen and Tamba Hali.
    6. New York Jets: Phillip Merling, Defensive Line, Clemson

    Merling has the frame to add weight and I see no issue with him playing at around 300 lbs (in theory). New York has been the lowest point for Gholston for some time now, but I think Mangini would probably go for a defensive lineman before a linebacker, and in Merling he could see Richard Seymour.
    7. New England Patriots (from San Francisco 49ers): Vernon Gholston, Linebacker/Defensive End, Ohio State

    Normally, I wouldn’t have New England taking a linebacker in the first round, because they have shown great prowess at filling those spots with free agent pickups. That said, Gholston could have the sort of immediate impact that Kamerion Wimbley had in Cleveland, and if he works out well the Pats might not be able to resist.
    8. Baltimore Ravens: Ryan Clady, Offensive Tackle, Boise State

    Baltimore is going to have to draft a quarterback at some point in this draft, but with Matt Ryan off the board, I don’t think they reach for one here. Clady has great potential and would help them insert some long term money into offensive line.
    9. Cincinnati Bengals: Darren McFadden, Runningback, Arkansas

    I have to believe that Cincinnati wants to draft defense, but Marv Lewis knows that few positions contribute first year like top runners. McFadden would add a whole other element to that Bengals offense, and Lewis may not be able to pass on someone who many think is the draft’s premier talent.
    10. New Orleans Saints: Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, Cornerback, Tennessee State

    No player has helped themselves as much as the man they call DRC. Who ends up being the first corner taken in going to depend on pro day drills and how each runs at the combine, but Rodgers-Cromartie simply looks like a shutdown corner every time I see him play, and it appears that some teams feel the same way.
    11. Buffalo Bills: Keith Rivers, Linebacker, Southern California

    This pick is simply too sensible to avoid. Rivers fits the Bills defensive perfectly, and would be an immediate frontrunner for defensive rookie of the year.
    12. Denver Broncos: Kenny Phillips, Safety, Miami

    It’s been hard to get a handle on where exactly Phillips is in the minds of NFL decision makers, and as a result this might be a bit high for the kid. That said, any teams that takes a look at Phillips’ sophomore year is going to be tempted to take him this high, and Denver undoubtedly needs help at the safety position.
    13. Carolina Panthers: Chris Williams, Offensive Tackle, Vanderbilt

    I’m not the most versed in the current state of Panther football, but it seems the general consensus is that they need a left tackle. Williams doesn’t have the potential of other 1st round offensive tackle prospects, but he figures to be able to step in immediately and hold down the spot for years to come.
    14. Chicago Bears: Rashard Mendenhall, Runningback, Illinois

    I’m fairly sure the Bears go for a immediate impact player at this spot, but what position will be mostly decided by how free agency shakes out. Wide receiver and offensive line look to be spots that could be filled, but do the Bears go for those spot over the local kid who could team with Cedric Benson to give them a suddenly dangerous running attack?
    15. Detroit Lions: Derrick Harvey, Defensive End, Florida

    Whether Shaun Rogers leaves town or not, I think it’s safe to say that Detroit needs some more talent on that defensive line. If Rogers does leave I’d say that a defensive tackle like Kentwan Balmer might be the best choice, but Harvey is a prototypical speed rusher and would add a lot to that Detroit defense.
    16. Arizona Cardinals: Leodis McKelvin, Cornerback, Troy

    It appears that Antrelle Rolle is officially making the switch to safety, which leaves the Cardinals without the man coverage corners needed to run that defense. McKelvin probably has a shot at the top 10 depending on how he works out, so the Cardinals would jump all over this sort of value pick.
    17. Minnesota Vikings: DeSean Jackson, Wide Receiver, California

    I’m not sure how I feel about this pick, because I think Minnesota has other positions to fill. That said, I’ve soured on the idea of them replacing Ryan Cook this soon, and I would never underestimate the sort of influence Devin Hester has on a NCF North team.
    18. Houston Texans: Branden Albert, Offensive Lineman, Virginia

    This is probably the biggest reach I have in this mock, but the more I think about it, the more I like it. Albert has been gaining attention as of late, and although his best fit is probably guard, I’ve seen nothing to suggest he cannot play left tackle in the NFL. Albert has great lateral movement and blocks very well when he gets to the next level, both attributes that should grab the attention of Gary Kubiak, who should be looking to solidify that offensive tackle spot for good.
    19. Philadelphia Eagles: Aqib Talib, Cornerback, Kansas

    Where Talib falls depends on who you talk to, but he has some strong supporters out there, and I don’t doubt that Philly could use another shut down corner.
    20. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Kentwan Balmer, Defensive Tackle, North Carolina

    Brian Brohm is a thought here, but I can’t imagine that Chris Hovan has been impressive enough for the Bucs to pass on Balmer here. Kentwan could end up being a fantastic 4-3 nose tackle, and he may be considered a steal at this point in the draft.
    21. Washington Redskins: Mike Jenkins, Cornerback, South Florida

    There was a time that Jenkins appeared to be a potential top 10 pick, but as of right now he’d have to be singularly impressive over the next month to get back that stock. There’s little doubt that the Redskins need to address their secondary, and even with Shaun Spring and Carlos Rogers already on the team, Jenkins might be too good to pass up.
    22. Dallas Cowboys (from Cleveland Browns): Jeff Otah, Offensive Tackle, Pittsburgh

    I can’t pretend to know how Dallas feels about Doug Free potentially replacing Flozell Adams, but Otah is definitely more in that Adams mold, and the potential is undeniable.
    23. Pittsburgh Steelers: Gosder Cherilus, Offensive Tackle, Boston College

    I could see Pitt going several different ways here, but I still think that solidifying that offensive line is a top priority. Cherilus doesn’t have many supporters who think he’s got a great future playing left tackle, but he could immediately start on the right side for the Steelers, allowing Colon to move inside, where he’s likely a better fit.
    24. Tennessee Titans: Limas Sweed, Wide Receiver, Texas

    Personally, I don’t think Sweed is a 1st round pick. That said, his potential in intriguing, and the fact that he already worked with Vince Young at the college level might play a huge part in the Titan’s draft logic.
    25. Seattle Seahawks: Jonathan Stewart, Runningback, Oregon

    Maybe this isn’t shaking it up, since this was my defacto pick for Seattle for months, but I haven’t seen Stewart fall this far in many mocks lately. As always, the 40-yard dash time is going to play a larger role then it should with the runningbacks, which might drop Stewart in the mid 20’s.
    26. Jacksonville Jaguars: Malcolm Kelly, Wide Receiver, Oklahoma

    If they do let Matt Jones walk, then there’s little doubt that Jacksonville will be looking for a big, physical receiver to replace him. I have Kelly rated as my top wideout, and depending on how he runs, he could slip into the top 20.
    27. San Diego Chargers: Reggie Smith, Defensive Back, Oklahoma

    I wouldn’t be shocked to see the Chargers draft some offensive line help here in the form of Carl Nicks, but I do think they need some secondary help. I hear that Paul Oliver may be moving to safety, which might defeat the need for this pick, but some depth never hurt and Smith is versatile to make himself useful from day one.
    28. Dallas Cowboys: Felix Jones, Runningback, Arkansas

    I sorta wanted to make it through a first round without giving Dallas a runningback, but if Jones is actually sitting there at this spot, I can’t see them passing on him. He’d be an ideal counterbalance to Marion Barber.
    29. San Francisco 49ers (from Indianapolis Colts): Mario Manningham, Wide Reciever, Michigan

    Manningham is another one of those guys I’m not sure if 1st round worthy, but some people really like his skill set, and his type of game would appear to fit what Mike Martz looks for. I really want to give San Francisco some defensive line help, but the value would be better for that with their early 2nd rounder.
    30. Green Bay Packers: Dan Connor, Linebacker, Penn State

    Fred Davis was a bit tempting, but I wouldn’t be shocked to see Green Bay decide to continue building that promising young defense. Connor might get the DeMeco Ryan treatment on draft day, but he’d make the Packer’s linebacking corps one of the best in the league.
    31. New England Patriots (forfeit due to league violations)
    32. New York Giants: Sam Baker, Offensive Tackle, Southern California

    With the usual pick of Connor no longer available, how about some offensive line help? The Giant’s blockers played well during their playoff run, but Baker is as solid a technician as they come, and would be the long term plan of keeping Eli Manning healthy and happy.

  • #2
    Not a bad pick for the Eagles as it is a primary need.But I value someone like DRC or Reggie Smith higher for the Eagles because the ability to play Safety/CB which are both needs and after Phillips/Smith the safety pool begins to freefall.That way they can get time at both positions for depth this year and then next year we can draft a Safety in a better class and then move the other guy to CB permanently.
    ~Its only after we've lost everything that we're free to do anything~

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    • #3
      sorry but Sweed to the titans might be the most cliche pick there is.

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      • #4
        I like this mock. I like the idea of Brandon Albert to the Texans. I think that if DMAC fell to the Bengals it would best for them to trade down. I don't think they'll take another RB considering the fact that they took Kenny Irons in the 2nd last year and still have Rudi Johnson. I think if he fell to the Ravens, they would stongly consider taking him. I'm not a big fan of the Malcolm Kelly to Jaxsonville because they already have several tall possession recievers with good 40's but they don't have any playmaking deep threats who can stretch the field. All in all, a good mock.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by DragonMekha View Post
          Not a bad pick for the Eagles as it is a primary need.But I value someone like DRC or Reggie Smith higher for the Eagles because the ability to play Safety/CB which are both needs and after Phillips/Smith the safety pool begins to freefall.That way they can get time at both positions for depth this year and then next year we can draft a Safety in a better class and then move the other guy to CB permanently.
          Although I also like DRC and Reggie Smith more, Talib does have the ability to play S.

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          • #6
            The management is not going to give up on Beck just yet, as they are still very high on him. So I think we'll pass on Ryan. Chris Long or Vernon Gholston please!

            Dolphins Dream Draft: 1. Jaylon Smith 2. Artie Burns 3. Landon Turner

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Cashmoneydrew View Post
              sorry but Sweed to the titans might be the most cliche pick there is.
              It's the first time I've ever made the pick, but I mostly agree. I didn't avoid conventional picks completely.

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              • #8
                I still think we go with Ellis but I like both players.good pick.
                "The liberator who destroys my property, is fighting to save my spirit. The teacher who clears all possessions from my path will set me free."-Tyler Durden

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                • #9
                  A++ Pats pick... :)

                  Thanks to darnik44two for the sig

                  Dream Pats Draft:
                  1. Vernon Gholston, LB, tOSU
                  2. Adarious Bowman, WR, Ok St
                  3a. Charles Godfrey, CB, Iowa
                  3b. Kevin Smith, RB, UCF
                  4. Peyton Hillis, RB, Ark
                  5. Jermichael Finley, TE, Texas
                  6. Brian Witherspoon, CB, Stillman
                  7. Pierre Garcon, WR, Mt Union

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                  • #10
                    Give Houston Jonathan Stewart. Give the Ravens McKelvin, Jenkins or Rivers. We're already trying to build Jared Gaither.

                    Baltimore: 7-4

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                    • #11
                      Great pick for the Chargers. Side note- Oliver is going to be playing hybrid safety/corner role similar to what Weddle played this year.

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                      • #12
                        Solid Packers pick. Couldn't have said the same if you went with your alternative so good choice.

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                        • #13
                          true that for the bears pick. though the effectiveness of that running game still depends a bit on the line performance....that wasn't so good last year

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                          • #14
                            If Ellis is considered a consolation prize for KC with Long off the board then what a consolation prizr it is great pick

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                            • #15
                              LOVE the Otah pick, some other cowboys fans might say go with Free, but at 22 that value is too good, and he either provides instant competition, or an upgrade...However we look at it I feel like we have Romo's backside protected, which is invaluable in itself...Thought I was the only one thinking of him at 22, I believe him, Phillips, or D. Jackson will all get good looks if they fall to 22...





                              Originally posted by Scott Wright
                              I guarantee that if someone picks Cam Newton in the Top 5 they will regret it.

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