With the Juniors declared and the all-star circuit heating up its time to update the mock drafts and see where the chips have fallen.
Listed on Walter’s Football Mock Draft Database
Mock Draft Updated: January 17, 2013
1. Kansas City Chiefs-Geno Smith, QB West Virginia (Scouting Report)
It’s been stated multiple times by everybody doing a mock draft that Smith is not exactly a clear-cut top pick. However, quarterbacks always rise to the top of the draft, and the Chiefs desperately need help under center. Smith has an intriguing blend of size and arm strength and has good safety valves for a rookie in Dwayne Bowe and Tony Moeaki. Behind a solid Chiefs offensive line, he should be able to stay upright enough to work out the kinks and turn into an above-average starting quarterback in the league.
2. Jacksonville Jaguars-Jarvis Jones, DE/OLB Georgia (Scouting Report)
The Jaguars are looking for a complete talent overall under new management, so I think they go for the best player available mixed with a player who can make a splash in the media. Star Lotuleili is a talented defender, but defensive tackles do dirty work that doesn’t often get recognized. If you’re trying to kickstart a franchise it’s best to take a player who can also make headlines. Jones is a talented defender who can make a living in the backfield and get fans interested.
3. Oakland Raiders-Star Lotuleili, DT Utah (Scouting Report)
The Raiders are brutal against the run; they’ve proven that over and over again this season. Lotuleili is an impressively large and physical player who can play in multiple fronts. He has a strong lower body and an emerging pass-rushing arsenal, which means, at worst, he’ll shore up their run defense.
4. Philadelphia Eagles-Luke Joeckel, OT Texas A&M (Scouting Report)
This is what happens when you build an offensive line around Bills cast-offs. With Bell unable to make an impact and Jason Peters suffering a pretty serious knee injury, the Eagles were a mess at tackle this year. As bad as Vick was, a lot of it had to do with the fact that he was running for his life. Joeckel can be a Jake Long-type bookend for the next decade.
5. Detroit Lions-Bjeorn Werner, DE Florida State (Scouting Report)
Werner is a player that I’ve liked for a couple years now. He doesn’t flash, but he is a smart football player who does everything well. He can get after the quarterback, seal against the run, and understands his gap assignments perfectly. The Lions are in a difficult spot here because they desperately need cornerback help, but Dee Milliner is the top one on the board and he’s not really a top 5 talent. They might go for the best player available and try to improve their pass rush in the process.
6. Cleveland Browns-Damontre Moore, DE Texas A&M (Scouting Report)
Jabaal Sheard was a solid addition last season, but he’s found some trouble getting into the backfield regularly this season. Part of the reason for that is that teams have gotten leads on the Browns and continued to run the ball, but it’s also simply that the Browns don’t have a lot of other talent on the line. Moore can be the solution. He’s the type of hybrid DE/OLB that the NFL is moving towards these days. He may never turn into Von Miller, but even if he slightly resembles the former Aggie, it’s a win for the Browns.
7. Arizona Cardinals-Tyler Wilson, QB Arkansas (Scouting Notes)
Yes, this is early for Wilson, but quarterbacks always get taken above their value point in the first round. The Cardinals absolutely cannot walk away from this draft without a franchise quarterback. Wilson didn’t have the senior season that many people expected from him, but the arm strength and accuracy are still there. He’s a better fit as a mid-late first rounder, but the Cardinals need to reach to secure this pick.
8. Buffalo Bills-Barkevious Mingo, DE/OLB LSU (Scouting Report)
About two weeks ago this pick would have been a lock for Manti Te’o. After being thoroughly embarrassed by Alabama, Te’o has fallen in the eyes of many evaluators for being exposed against a powerful offense. However, the Bills hiring of Mike Pettine signals more of a hybrid defense that can allow them to use the talents of Barkevious Mingo. A fearsome tackler and an athletic specimen, Mingo can be used to rush the passer in a 3-4, off the edge in four man fronts, or in coverage as a large OLB in certain formations. He’s big and freakishly athletic; the type of playmaker this defense needs.
9. New York Jets-Johnathan Hankins, DT Ohio State (Scouting Report)
Yes, the Jets offense is terrible, but it’s also taking attention away from the fact that their defense is not producing either. Wilkerson is their leading pass-rusher, as a 3-4 defensive end, with only six sacks, so the Jets would love to grab Mingo or Moore here. However, they could also use somebody stout against the run. Hankins might not be a sexy pick, but I think he could become legitimate top 10 value after postseason workouts.
10. Tennessee Titans-Dee Milliner, CB Alabama (Scouting Notes)
There are no major, glaring weaknesses on the Titans, but they simply don’t defend the pass that well since Cortland Finnegan bolted for St. Louis. If Milliner drops to the Titans here, he’s a must-pick. He’s the top corner in the draft and an area of need for Tennessee. As one of my favorite prospects in the draft, Milliner matches physicality with true cover skills.
11. San Diego Chargers-Eric Fisher, OT Central Michigan (Scouting Notes)
Much like the Eagles, the Chargers have made their quarterback look terrible by refusing to protect him from defenders. Rivers’ skills are certainly declining, but he has a few good years left in the tank. The Chargers would have really hoped that Lewan and/or Matthews would have declared for the draft, but Fisher is better than people think. He might never be an elite LT, but he should be well above-average for a decade, which is worthy of this spot.
12. Miami Dolphins-Keenan Allen, WR California (Scouting Report)
Wide receiver is the Dolphins number one need. With some late season wins, they’ve moved down in the draft order enough to actually take one without it being a reach. Allen is unquestionably the best receiver in this class. He’s no Julio Jones or AJ Green, but he’s a strong receiver who can help give Tannehill another option on the outside.
13. Tampa Bay Bucs-Johnthan Banks, CB Mississippi State (Scouting Report)
The Bucs can’t stop anybody through the air, and they got rid of their best corner when they traded Talib to New England. I don’t see anyway they don’t take a corner in the first round. At 6’1”, he’s a larger corner who can defend the pass and also come up and help in run support. He’s not one of the fastest corners in the country, but he reads routes well enough to stay with opposing receivers.
14. Carolina Panthers-Sheldon Richardson, DT Missouri (Scouting Notes)
The Panthers run defense is terrible. Their offense is starting to get a little bit more consistent under Cam Newton, but they are never going to win until their defense can start getting offenses off the field. Kuechly was a tremendous pick, but he needs some help in front of him. Richardson is a big, strong body who can help get into the backfield and also keep lineman off of Kuechly.
15. New Orleans Saints-Manti Te’o ILB Notre Dame (Scouting Report)
Amidst the entire bounty scandal, the Saints defense lost some of its aggressiveness. Spags has slowly started to turn the product around, but the Saints need some more talent too. Te’o has soured in some people’s eyes, but he’s still a solid prospect who would bring some locker room stability to a defense that lacks a true leader.
16. St. Louis Rams-Chance Warmack, OG Alabama (Scouting Notes)
I think that Sam Bradford would be an effective NFL quarterback if he was given more time and more weapons. Givens and Amendola have produced this season, and it’s too early for the Rams to give up on Brian Quick, so I don’t think they’re taking a wide receiver in round one. The next best option is to keep Bradford upright and comfortable in the pocket. Warmack would be a much higher pick if teams valued guards. He would immediately upgrade the Rams line.
17. Pittsburgh Steelers-Ezekiel Ansah, DE BYU (Scouting Report)
The Steelers are another team that is in desperate need of a left tackle that will find the lack of top end talent frustrating. Instead, they can turn to helping an aging defense. Ansah is exactly the type of young, athletic, explosive talent that could help move Pittsburgh’s defense back up to their aggressive best.
18. Dallas Cowboys-Jesse Williams, DT Alabama (Scouting Notes)
The Cowboys would have really wanted Warmack at this spot, but need to adjust. They could really use offensive tackle help, but there is nobody with the exception of DJ Fluker or Lane Johnston, both of which I believe are reaches. Drafting Jesse Williams is less likely if they re-sign Jay Ratliff, but the Cowboys could really use somebody inside to punch up the run defense. Williams can play over the center in either a 3-4 or 4-3 front, depending on what Kiffin brings.
19. New York Giants-Dion Jordan, DE Oregon (Scouting Report)
The Giants always like to load up on their defensive line; that’s even when their line is strong. This year has been a real down year for the Giants defense in terms of production in both the run and pass game. Jordan is an athletic, physical pass-rusher who has room to put on plenty of weight and could turn into a dynamic player at the end of his first season, similar to the type of production the Giants got from Jason Pierre-Paul when he was a raw specimen.
20. Chicago Bears-Jonathan Cooper, OG North Carolina (Scouting Notes)
The Bears are another team that are continuously failed to address their offensive line issues. With Jay Culter, Matt Forte, and Brandon Marshall, they have the skill players who put together a dynamic offense. They just need to give them time to make plays. Cooper isn’t a household name, but he’d a quick, technically sound guard who can block in-line or pull out in front. He could do wonders for the Bears offense.
21. Cincinnati Bengals-Alec Ogletree, LB Georgia (Scouting Notes)
The Bengals could really use some help in their linebacker corps or take a pass-rushing talent like Montgomery. However, I think that Ogletree will be the selection here once workouts are over. He’s versatile and a sure tackler. He hits like a truck and has really improved his coverage ability. He could be a great addition to a Bengals linebacker corps that has many high-profile college players who have yet to really produce in the NFL.
22. St. Louis Rams-Kenny Vaccaro, S Texas (Scouting Report)
The Rams could also use an offensive tackle and could use this pick on DJ Fluker, but I think that if Cordy Glenn fell to the second round, Fluker is likely to do the same. If they turn their attention to the defense, the safety position is the one that jumps out. Finnegan has helped the pass defense, but he needs some help over the top. Kenny Vaccaro should be the next in the line of talented Longhorn defensive backs.
23. Minnesota Vikings-DeAndre Hopkins, WR Clemson (Scouting Notes)
Christian Ponder has had a subpar sophomore season, but I think a lot of that has to do with his lack of receiving options. Percy Harvin was constantly hurt, and he’s not a number one wide receiver to begin with. DeAndre Hopkins is a big receiver who can make plays downfield. I think he’ll separate himself from the pack once offseason workouts begin.
24. Indianapolis Colts-Lane Johnson, OT Oklahoma (Scouting Notes)
The Colts identity has really changed under Chuck Pagano, but he needs more talent on the defensive side of the ball to take their performance up a notch. Running a 3-4 scheme, they could take a big nose tackle prospect like John Jenkins, or a more athletic lineman, like Sharrif Floyd. However, the Colts franchise rests on Andrew Luck’s shoulders, and he was hit more than any other QB in the NFL. Johnson is a large, strong lineman who could become a very solid right tackle.
25. Seattle Seahawks-Sharrif Floyd, DT Florida (Scouting Notes)
The Seahawks have a pretty fearsome defense already, but they could use another body in the middle to help occupy blockers and stop up the run. Floyd is a borderline first round pick right now, but I love the way he uses his hands to keep blockers off of him, and I think he has the explosion to be a real playmaker at the next level. I know the Seahawks want a pass-rusher, so Sam Montgomeryis an option, but I think you can find a guy to rush the passer later in drafts.
26. Green Bay Packers-Barrett Jones, OG Alabama (Scouting Notes)
The Packers could go with a tight end here if they let Finely go, like many expect. However, I still think that they have some glaring holes on the offensive line. Jones is a versatile lineman who can plug and play at a number of positions along the interior of the line. It will help the Green Bay offense more than a first round tight end would.
27. Houston Texans-Kevin Minter, ILB LSU (Scouting Notes)
For years I’ve been saying that the Texans could use a slot receiver to help take some pressure off of Andre Johnson. However, they don’t appear willing to take one in the first round. So Minter is the next best thing. He’s an instinctual linebacker and the kind of solid presence that allows playmakers to take chances off the edge, knowing that the middle is under control. After watching the Patriots running game carve up Houston, this may be the smartest pick they can make.
28. Denver Broncos-Tyler Eifert, TE Notre Dame (Scouting Notes)
Peyton Manning has completely changed the Broncos offense, but everybody knows that he loves having a tight end to throw to. Jacob Tamme and Joel Dressen were fine this year, but not good enough to be true assets. Eifert is a well-rounded player who can give Manning a security blanket underneath while also helping in the running game.
29. Baltimore Ravens-Cordarelle Patterson, WR Tennessee (Scouting Notes)
This pick might not make a lot of sense on the surface, but I don’t see the Ravens bringing back Boldin. If they don’t franchise Joe Flacco than this pick could also be Matt Barkley or Mike Glennon. As it stands, I think the Ravens will really need another weapon out wide to help get more out of Flacco if Boldin leaves. Patterson is very raw, but is quite possibly the most explosive receiver in this draft.
30. New England Patriots-Xavier Rhodes, CB Florida State (Scouting Notes)
The Patriots acquired Talib, but their pass defense still needs some work. Rhodes is the type of large, physical corner that teams love. He plays full out on every play, loving to blow up runners in the backfield. Similarly, he has the footspeed to stay with receivers in the open field. He could turn into a very solid player for the Pats.
31. San Francisco 49ers-Sam Montgomery, DE LSU (Scouting Notes)
The 49ers have a strong defense, but every team that builds a strong defense always loads up early in the draft. If the 49ers don’t re-sign Goldson, they are going to have a massive hole at safety, but if a guy like Montgomery falls here than I find it hard to believe that Harbaugh won’t jump. Just another dynamic piece on a strong defense.
32. Atlanta Falcons-Zach Ertz, TE Stanford (Scouting Notes)
The Falcons don’t get a lot of pressure off the edge and could use a player like Alex Okafor, but Tony Gonzalez is such a huge part of the offense and will absolutely need to be replaced.
Rest of the Bills Draft
Round 2 EJ Manuel, QB Florida State (Scouting Notes)
I’ve been touting Manuel for a long time and truly think that his offseason will make him a first round pick. However, right now this is good value for him. He’s a big quarterback who can make plays with his legs, but has underrated accuracy. He’s never completed under 60% of his passes in a season. He may need another year to truly hit his potential, but he has all the tools to become a strong quarterback in the NFL.
Round 3 Aaron Dobson, WR Marshall (Scouting Report)
Buddy Nix keeps talking about wanting a big receiver who is open even when he’s covered. Dobson might just fit that bill. At 6’2” 205 pounds, Dobson is a strong receiver. However, he also possesses 4.4 speed and the production to back up the tools. With a good performance at the Senior Bowl, he could really shoot up draft boards.
Round 4 Kwaeme Geathers, NT Georgia (Scouting Notes)
A gigantic body, who might actually be better than John Jenkins. He’s athletic for his size and very powerful. He may never be more than a rotational player because he would likely only be used when the Bills go to a three-man front, but he can be extremely effective in that role.
Round 5 AJ Klein, ILB Iowa State (Scouting Report)
Klein is not a flashy player or a big name, but he’s an instinctual linebacker that could be very effective in a hybrid defense. He’s faster than people think and he is a sure tackler. Solid in coverage, but not exceptional, Klein is simply a player that does everything pretty well. To me that spells a perfect back-up, rotational player in the NFL. However, that’s his floor. There’s not much risk with him.
Round 6 Terry Hawthorne, CB Illinois (Scouting Notes)
For some reason, people keep saying that Hawthorne is a third day draft pick. I know injuries have been a concern for him, but when he’s on the field, Hawthorne is a real player. He has skills when the ball is in the air and he’s physical in all aspects of the game. With Williams slipping and McGee on the way out, he could provide real CB depth for the Bills.