SkoodSports’ NFL Mock Draft: Final Edition (First Round Only w/ Trades)

Posted: May 4, 2014 in Uncategorized
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1. 34Houston Texans – DE Jadeveon Clowney, South Carolina 

At this point, it would be a shocker to see anyone but Clowney go at #1. The South Carolina star has cemented his status as the best prospect in this draft and Houston can probably find a quarterback to begin round two.

2. atl Atlanta Falcons (Trade up from #6) – DE Khalil Mack, Buffalo (Stock up)

For the first time, I am predicting a trade. The Falcons have been rumored to want to move up as they often do. This is a solid spot for them to land Mack, the consensus #2 pass rusher on the market. Atlanta likely would have to give up a 2nd round pick to make this move. But, it’s probably worth it to secure their guy.

3. 30-1 Jacksonville Jaguars – WR Sammy Watkins, Clemson (Stock down)

Earlier this week, the Jaguars’ brass commented on suspended WR Justin Blackmon, saying that they didn’t believe they could rely on the former #1 pick to be with the team this season. If that’s not a signal that Jacksonville is looking for a reciever, then I don’t know what is. Jaguars take Watkins to replace their former bust of a #1 pick.

4. cle Cleveland Browns – QB Blake Bortles, UCF (Stock down)

Cleveland is going to take a quarterback here, and Bortles has been the consensus #1 for months. Johnny Manziel is a possibility. But, the reg flags that he raises will keep Cleveland from grabbing him.

5. tam Tampa Bay Buccaneers (Trade with Raiders) – OT Greg Robinson, Auburn

The Buccaneers have a new regime, and while a QB makes some sense here; it would be smarter for them to build their line up before binging on another young gunslinger. Robinson is the best tackle prospect on the market and would immediately start for Lovie Smith’s club.

6. 14-1 St. Louis Rams (Trade with Falcons) – OT Jake Matthews, Texas A&M (Stock up)

By trading down, the Rams are able to land one of the top tackle talents on the board while also picking up a draft choice or two.

7. oak Oakland Raiders (Trade with Buccaneers) – WR Mike Evans, Texas A&M (Stock up)

Oakland is enamored with Evans, who stands at 6’5. The long receiver would fit in with the Raiders’ mentality of size and speed over all else. They also pick up a couple of mid round choices by swapping picks with Tampa Bay.

8. min Minnesota Vikings – QB Johnny Manziel, Texas A&M (Stock down)

Minnesota would prefer Bortles. But, with the UCF star off the board, they settle for Manziel. Johnny Football may not be the most sure thing at the position. But, his upside offers Minnesota fans who have to sit out in the freezing cold for the next two years a boatload of excitement.

9. buf Buffalo Bills – TE Eric Ebron, North Carolina (Stock up)

The Bills could look to grab a tackle here, as their line could use the upgrade. But, Buffalo hasn’t had a #1 playmaking tight end in well over a decade. Ebron projects as the best prospect at the position in years, and would instantly upgrade the Bills’ beleaguered offense.

10. lions8 Detroit Lions – CB Justin Gilbert, Oklahoma State (Stock up)

There’s always the possibility that Detroit feels comfortable with their young corners and goes either tackle or pass rusher. But, the NFL is a passing league and stopping the pass has never been more important. For a team without a #1 corner, passing on Gilbert would be incredibly foolish.

11. ten Tennessee Titans – OLB Anthony Barr, UCLA

The Titans seemingly want to improve their defense in round one. That could mean either Barr or a cornerback like Justin Gilbert. Barr seems like the BPA here.

12. giants19 New York Giants – OT Taylor Lewan, Michigan (Stock down)

Off-the-field issues aside, Lewan is the best available offensive lineman. The Giants could also consider a pass rusher or a safety.

13. 14-1 St. Louis Rams – S Haha Clinton-Dix, Alabama (Stock up)

After grabbing a solid tackle in the top-10, the Rams address their defensive issues at 13. Clinton-Dix is your classic playmaking safety, manning center field better than Jon Jay.

14. chi3 Chicago Bears – DT Aaron Donald, Pittsburgh (Stock up)

The Bears will have to take a defensive player here. Their woeful performance defensively last year is evidence of that. Donald is arguably the best defensive tackle in the entire draft, so landing him in the teens is impressive. Dallas will likely be calling to try to move up and grab the Pitt Panther. But, the Bears need him just as badly.

15. mia15 Miami Dolphins (Trade with Steelers) – OT/OG Zack Martin, Notre Dame

Miami is pressured to trade up in order to land one of the first round graded linemen. The Dolphins are desperate to rebuild their front after the Jonathan Martin/Rich Incognito fiasco of 2013. Zack Martin can play either inside or outside and would offer the Dolphins flexibility.

16. sanf25 San Francisco 49ers (Trade with Dallas) – WR Odell Beckham Jr, LSU (Stock up)

This is a perfect range for Beckham, whose stock is soaring, to go. The 49ers, meanwhile, have the most picks of anyone in this draft, so giving up a 2nd and a 3rd to move up to this spot is more than understandable. Their lack of playmaking speed at receiver is remedied by landing the blazing Beckham.

17. bal33 Baltimore Ravens – S Calvin Pryor, Louisville (Stock up)

Baltimore’s defense is no longer the bruising force it once was. They’ll address that hole by landing one of the top two tackles (and only first round graded talents) on the board. Pryor is a bit more aggressive than Clinton-Dix, so he should be a solid fit for Baltimore’s scheme.

18. 20 New York Jets – CB Darqueze Dennard, Michigan State

The Jets should probably address their offensive playmakers. But, this is a draft littered with talent at the wide receiver position. Dennard, meanwhile, would be a solid compliment to last year’s first round pick, Dee Milliner, on the outside.

19. pitt23 Pittsburgh Steelers – CB Kyle Fuller, Virginia Tech (Stock up)

The consensus is that Pittsburgh would like to improve their secondary, most notably at cornerback. With a handful of players expected to go in this range, it’s really anyone’s guess who the Steelers decide to grab. Fuller is a fast riser this offseason, so he’s just as likely as anyone.

20. cards22 Arizona Cardinals – ILB CJ Mosley, Alabama (Stock down)

Arizona lost Karlos Dansby this offseason, so it wouldn’t be a surprise to see them look to replace him early in the draft. Mosley is the consensus best inside-linebacker in the draft, and either he or Ohio State’ Ryan Shazier would be a solid choice at 20.

21. pack9 Green Bay Packers – DE/OLB Kony Ealy, Missouri (Stock up)

Green Bay wants to get faster on defense. They’ll do that by landing a complimentary edge rusher to Clay Matthews. Ealy is likely the only other first round graded pass rushing talent, so the Packers have to grab him here.

22. new17 New England Patriots (Trade with Eagles) – DT Louis Nix, Notre Dame (Stock down)

New England typically likes to trade down early in the draft. But, their plethora of draft choices allows them to go up and grab the player that they want and need. Vince Wilfork doesn’t have much time left, and coming back from that surgically repaired Achilles tendon at his age and weight will not be easy. The Pats know that they must find a replacement for him sooner rather than later. Nix is a big specimen who fits the position and the girth. New England will sacrifice a 3rd and 4th rounder to land this behemoth.

23. kc12 Kansas City Chiefs – WR Brandin Cooks, Oregon State (Stock up)

The Chiefs have made it clear that they covet a receiver early in this year’s draft. I favor Marqise Lee over Cooks from a pure talent perspective. But, the Chiefs already have Dwayne Bowe. So, their preference here is a deep threat. Cooks is a burner and fits the mold perfectly.

24.  ben4 Cincinnati Bengals – CB Jason Verrett, TCU

There was a time when cornerback was a strength of the Bengals’ defense. That’s not the case anymore. Cincinnati could look to find a replacement for free agent DE Michael Johnson. But, the value pick here is Verrett. The TCU product has solid size and speed and would immediately be a dramatic upgrade in the secondary.

25. cha24  San Diego Chargers – CB Bradley Roby, Ohio State (Stock up)

Other than Eric Weddle, San Diego’s secondary is a mess. Roby, while not the top cornerback in this draft, is still a solid get at 25. The Chargers could also look to beef up their offensive line, as going another year with King Dunlap as their starting left tackle would seem imprudent.

26. cle Cleveland Browns (From Indianapolis) – WR Marqise Lee, USC (Stock down)

I’m a little bit uncomfortable putting this many wide receivers in the first round. That position has seen a sharp drop in instances where they’re drafted early in recent years. But, the Browns definitely have depth issues at the position (and a lot of others as well). After Cleveland grabs Johnny Manziel earlier in the round, they find their young gunslinger a big target in Lee.

27. saints18 New Orleans Saints – ILB Ryan Shazier, Ohio State (Stock up)

New Orleans has been disappointed so far in David Hawthorne, who hasn’t looked like the same player since leaving Seattle. Shazier is a solid, ball hawking MLB who would provide depth until he eventually surpasses Hawthorne on the depth chart.

28. panth29 Carolina Panthers – OT Cyrus Kouandjio, Alabama

The Panthers possess a ton of holes, and they could look to address their beleaguered secondary or receiving corps here. But, the loss of Jordan Gross to retirement opens up a pressing need at tackle. Kouandjio played and thrived at the highest level of College Football. He’d be a steal at this pick.

29. eagles21 Philadelphia Eagles (Trade with New England) – WR Cody Latimer, Indiana (Stock up)

The Eagles pick up a couple of picks from New England and still land the big WR they covet. Latimer is a late riser in the draft. But, his combination of size (6-3) and speed (4.44) make him an intriguing prospect for Chip Kelly, who loves that combination in a target. The Eagles could also look to improve their pass rush or their secondary here.

30. dal6 Dallas Cowboys (Trade with San Francisco) – DT Ra’Shede Hageman, Minnesota (Stock down)

Dallas landed a few solid picks in their deal with San Francisco. By doing so, they also landed Hageman, who projects as a very solid pass rushing defensive tackle in a 4-3.

31. sanf7 Denver Broncos – DE/OLB Dee Ford, Auburn (Stock down)

Denver is desperate for some pass rushing depth. With Von Miller typically in trouble with the law or injured, they could use someone to fill a hole behind their talented rusher. Ford had a spectacular Senior Bowl, and should be available around this spot.

32. sea26 Seattle Seahawks – OG Xavier Su’a-Filo, UCLA

Seattle could use depth along their offensive line, as most championship teams will tell you. Su’a-Filo is the best guard prospect available to end round one.

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