NFL Draft Monsters’ Frantz Medard returns with his second mock draft of the year…
Pick: 1 Buffalo Bills: Andrew Luck, QB, Stanford
- Ryan Fitzpatrick has had his moments, but I don’t see how the Bills can see him as the long-term solution. The Bills still need that franchise QB, and Fitzpatrick isn’t it. Andrew Luck is poised beyond his years. He has prototypical size and he doesn’t make mistakes. He’s the top QB in the class and it would be tough for the Bills to pass on him.
Pick: 2 Carolina Panthers: A.J Green, WR, Georgia
- A.J Green might be the top prospect in this year’s class. His body control in unbelievable, and he has tremendous hands. He’s a dominant WR that can be an instant contributor as a rookie. Brandon LaFell and David Gettis have had some decent games in their young careers, but pairing Steve Smith with A.J Green would be a dream come true for that offense.
Pick: 3 Dallas Cowboys: Patrick Peterson, CB, LSU
- The Cowboys collapse this season has been almost surreal to watch. Their defense has imploded, especially that secondary. Opposing QBs have a 105.5 QB Rating against them (30th overall). Patrick Peterson can step in and be a difference maker. With Newman falling apart and Mike Jenkins regressing, Peterson will be a valuable addition.
Pick: 4 Detroit Lions: Prince Amukamara, CB, Nebraska
- The Lions over the last few years have fielded some of the worst secondaries in the league. They just don’t have talent at the position. With Amari Spievey transitioning to SS, the Lions are in desperate need of a CB. Amukamara is a shut-down corner. He has the size, speed and fundamentals that coaches crave from their CBs.
Pick: 5 Cincinnati Bengals: Da’Quan Bowers, DE, Clemson
- The Bengals are really struggling to get after the passer and it’s killing that defense. It starts up front with Mike Zimmer’s defense and they aren’t getting it done. Da’Quan Bowers is a Julius Peppers clone. He’s a physical specimen that can anchor against the run and also turn the corner and wreak havoc. He would be a great addition to this defense.
Pick: 6 Arizona Cardinals: Ryan Mallett, QB, Arkansas
- Outside of Carolina, Arizona may have the worst QB situation in the league. Derek Anderson turns the ball over at will and Max Hall can’t hit the broad side of a barn. They need to upgrade the position and they do it with Mallett. He can make all of the throws and he should make Larry Fitzgerald happy once again.
Pick: 7 San Francisco 49ers: Robert Quinn, OLB, UNC
- The 49ers kind of lose out here with the top CBs and QBs off of the board. I don’t see them reaching for one of those positions here so they go with the next best option, OLB. Robert Quinn is an explosive athlete with the size and ability that will make him a coveted prospect. The 49ers don’t have a dominant presence that can rush from the outside, Quinn could become that guy.
Pick: 8 Minnesota Vikings: Marcell Dareus, DT, Alabama
- This was a tough pick with no QB available, but I think Dareus makes the most sense. Pat Williams is on his last legs and they need to find his replacement. Marcell Dareus can be a game-changer, and he would form a dominant duo with Kevin Williams. He can really fire off of the ball and create some problems on the interior.
Pick: 9 Denver Broncos: Nick Fairley, DE, Auburn
- The Denver Broncos DLine is not very good. The entire unit needs an upgrade, but they start with an upgrade at DE with Fairley. This guy has completely dominated games this season. His first step is elite, and he has the motor to make plays all game long. He has the ability to kick outside to DE in a 3-4 to make an impact for this defense.
Pick: 10 Cleveland Browns: Akeem Ayers, OLB, UCLA
- The Browns are lacking a consistent threat off of the edge so upgrading the OLB has to be a priority. Ayers is one of the rare OLB prospects that has actually proven that he can both rush the passer from a 2 point stance, and also drop into coverage. Ayers should have no problems stepping into this defense.
Pick: 11 St. Louis Rams: Julio Jones, WR, Alabama
- You know your WR corps is bad when losing Mark Clayton for the year is actually a big loss. Julio Jones has an NFL ready body and he presents a huge talent upgrade over what the Rams currently have now. Sam Bradford isn’t going to be able to do it by himself and if he is ever going to develop he needs weapons out wide.
Pick: 12 San Diego Chargers: Adrian Clayborn, DE, Iowa
- The San Diego Chargers really lack talent on the DLine, they desperately need to upgrade it. Adrian Clayborn is dominant force that would really upgrade this unit. He won’t wow you with raw athleticism, but he just knows how to get the job done. The Chargers are incredibly lucky to add him here.
Pick: 13 Washington Redskins: Justin Blackmon, WR, Oklahoma State
- The Redskins just threw a ton of money at Donovan McNabb, but he has no weapons to throw to outside of Santana Moss. Their 2008 draft class (Devin Thomas and Malcolm Kelly) have all but busted out of the league and it has set that offense back. Justin Blackmon as a redshirt sophomore looks like the real deal. If he declares this would be a nice landing spot for him.
Pick: 14 Houston Texans: DeAndre McDaniel, FS, Clemson
- Houston’s secondary as a whole is a complete mess and they need to address it this offseason. At this point the secondary is actually losing them games and they are statistically the worst in the league. In particular the FS spot is a weak spot. McDaniel is a ball-hawking safety that has the size and speed to be force early in his career.
Pick: 15 Kansas City Chiefs: Aldon Smith, OLB, Missouri
- The Chiefs suddenly rejuvenated defense under Romeo Crennel is playing fast and physical. However, Mike Vrabel is just about done and they need to replace him. Aldon Smith is an athletic monster that could become a fierce OLB in that defense. He and Tamba Hali would form a potent pass-rushing duo for years to come.
Pick: 16 Seattle Seahawks: Allen Bailey, DE, Miami
- Pete Carroll craves versatility out of his DLineman and Bailey can bring just that. He can play on the outside as a stout, run-stuffing DE and he can kick down inside as an athletic pass-rusher. This guy’s stock is bound to soar once he abuses the combine and it wouldn’t surprise me if he gets drafted this high.
Pick: 17 Jacksonville Jaguars: Brandon Harris, CB, Miami
- 2 Hurricanes in a row. The Jaguars secondary has just been getting torched this season. Every spot in the secondary needs to be upgraded, but they start here with CB. Harris has played great this season and it looks like the light has finally turned on. He is a physically talented corner that would be a huge help for this secondary.
Pick: 18 New England (Oakland): Cameron Jordan, DE, Cal
- It might be this west coast bias, but it seems like Jordan is flying under the radar right now. No one really talks about him, but he has been a dominant force in that Cal 3-4 and he would be a fantastic addition for the Patriots. The Pats are in need of an upgrade at DE and Jordan would certainly help fortify that front.
Pick: 19 Miami Dolphins: Mark Ingram, RB, Alabama
- This might seem like a surprise pick, but let me explain myself. Both Ronnie Brown and Ricky Williams are free agents this year and it seems unlikely that they will keep both. There is even a chance that they let both go. With the QB spot in question, and no QB prospect worth a selection here, they take Mark Ingram to get that run game back on track.
Pick: 20 Tennessee Titans: Marcus Cannon, OG, TCU
- The Titans once dominating OLine has fallen off this season and it starts in the interior. Those guys just aren’t giving CJ2K a chance to make plays. Upgrading this unit with a mauling presence needs to be a priority. Marcus Cannon is a mammoth prospect with remarkable footwork. He can step in immediately and upgrade the OG position.
Pick: 21 New Orleans Saints: Travis Lewis, OLB, Oklahoma
- Outside of Jonathan Vilma the talent in that LB corps just isn’t there. Greg Williams’ attacking defense needs someone to help Vilma shoulder the load and Lewis can be that guy. Travis Lewis is a tackling machine with speed to burn. He can step in at the WLB position and hold it down for years.
Pick: 22 Chicago Bears: Derek Sherrod, OT, Mississippi State
- The worst OLine in the NFL resides in Chicago. It’s a mini-miracle that Cutler has only missed one game playing behind that Swiss cheese line. Upgrading the OLine has to be their top priority and they are lucky enough to land Sherrod here. Derek Sherrod is an impressive athlete that has been a dominant force this season. Whether it’s at LT or RT, Sherrod should make an impact.
Pick: 23 Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Ryan Kerrigan, DE, Purdue
- The Bucs have only been able to amass 8 Sacks thus far this season, with only 5 of them coming from their DEs. The DT spots have been addressed with Gerald McCoy, Brian Price and Roy Miller, but the DE spots desperately need work. Ryan Kerrigan is an energizer bunny on the field. He just never quits and he would give the Bucs a much needed force on the edge.
Pick: 24 New York Giants: Rodney Hudson, OG/OC, Florida State
- The Giants need to find a replacement for the aging Shaun O’Hara and Hudson seems like a great replacement. Florida State coaches are on record saying that Hudson would have no problems transitioning to OC. Given his athleticism, I tend to agree. He is a polished blocker that consistently maintains leverage through his blocks. He would be a nice addition here.
Pick: 25 Baltimore Ravens: Aaron Williams, CB, Texas
- It’s amazing that the Ravens’ defense is still effective despite their lack of talent at CB. They desperately need to upgrade the position. Williams is a tremendous talent that could become a very good CB in the league. He has prototypical size and speed and he should be able to upgrade that secondary.
Pick: 26 Green Bay Packers: Jeremy Beal, OLB, Oklahoma
- The Packers are looking to find an outside linebacker to pair with the awesome Clay Matthews. Beal has put together an incredible senior season thus far, and he is one of the few defensive ends in the country that has experience playing out of a 2-point stance. He’d be a nice fit in a 3-4 defense.
Pick: 27 Philadelphia Eagles: Gabe Carimi, OT, Wisconsin
- Michael Vick’s athleticism helps to hide the problem, but the reality is that the Eagles OLine is not very good. The OTs especially need help. They won’t be replacing Jason Peters due to his absurd contract, but Winston Justice could be replaced. Carimi looks like the best RT prospect in this class. He’s an absolute mauler in the run game.
Pick: 28 Indianapolis Colts: Stephen Paea, DT, Oregon State
- The Colts have needed to upgrade the interior of their defensive line for some time now. Antonio Johnson and Daniel Muir don’t scare anyone. Stephen Paea is an aggressive DT that can both get after the passer and stop the run. He would certainly help take pressure off of Freeney and Mathis.
Pick: 29 Pittsburgh Steelers: Dont’a Hightower, ILB, Alabama
- The Steelers still have a dominating defense with Troy Polamalu and Lawrence Timmons leading them, but they are an aging group. James Farrior is 35 years old and it doesn’t seem as though they have a replacement waiting in the wings. Hightower has experience in a 3-4 and he would form an awesome duo with the impressive Timmons.
Pick: 30 New York Jets: Christian Ballard, DT/DE, Iowa
- The Jets are incredibly thin at DE right now and it’s a position that needs to be addressed. With Vernon Gholston looking more and more like a bust, the DE position seems like the Jets number one need. Ballard is a high motor guy that has really turned it on this season. He has the size and strength to flourish in a 3-4.
Pick: 31 Atlanta Falcons: Jonathan Baldwin, WR, Atlanta
- Teams this season have been rolling a ton of coverage Roddy White’s way and he needs someone to step up and take some pressure off of him. Baldwin could be a very good WR in the NFL. He makes tough catches in traffic and he knows how to go up and get it. He’s a unique deep threat that should pose some real match-up problems in the NFL.
Pick: 32 New England Patriots: Justin Houston, OLB, Georgia
This may be seen as a reach, but it could prove to be a steal. The Patriots need to find a way to generate a pass-rush and their OLBs have not been getting the job done. Justin Houston has experience playing in a 3-4 and in his first season in that system he has been incredible. He has the burst and athleticism the Pats are lacking at the position.