BBD Writer Eric Samulski
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.