With the 2014 college football season right around the corner, the Inside...
Downtown’s 2014 NFL Mock Draft – Holiday Edition
After only 13 weeks there’s a lot of football left to be played in the NFL so most of these picks will change, however; this is the draft order (by record) right now. Here’s what I think would happen if the 2014 NFL Draft was to start right now!
1. Houston Texans – QB from Louisville – Teddy Bridgewater – I think it’s safe to say the Texans are the worst team in the NFL. Case Keenum has had his shots and he’s failed, Gary Kubiak has been fired and Matt Schaub is set for free agency. Finding the face of your franchise is the key for the Texans and Teddy Bridgewater should be that guy. I’m just hoping as time goes on, Bridgewater doesn’t get that Geno Smith kind of hype and falls into the second round. I don’t see how though because of his intelligence, mobility and accuracy.
The Texans just better hope Bridgewater doesn’t decide to go back to school next season.
2. Minnesota Vikings – DE from South Carolina – Jadeveon Clowney – With Jared Allen on the verge of testing free agency, your quarterback situation can wait. Don’t pass up Clowney when you play the Bears, Packers and Lions.
3. Atlanta Falcons – OT from Texas A&M – Jake Matthews – With Clowney already off the board, it’s hard to believe that they look anywhere else other than trading down so a team like Cleveland or Jacksonville get their QB or they take the best offensive lineman in the draft in Jake Matthews.
4. Tampa Bay Buccaneers – OLB from UCLA – Anthony Barr – The Buc’s need help on their offensive line but they also need a pass rusher. Anthony Barr could be elite and I think Schiano will take him to excite the crowd and pray that Barr’s performance will be able to change the billboards down in Tampa.
5. St. Louis Rams (from Washington) – OT from Michigan – Taylor Lewan – The Rams could very well go after a quarterback or possibly even grab another weapon for Sam Bradford but I think they grab the second best offensive lineman in Lewan to protect Bradford. More than likely, Lewan starts on the left side while Jake Long moves to the right side.
6. Cleveland Browns – QB from Texas A&M – Johnny Manziel – Personally I like Derek Carr over Johnny Manziel but I can’t take Manziel’s athleticism away from him. Cleveland might add a veteran QB that becomes available and use this pick on something else but I doubt it. If Manziel pans out or not, at least he’ll put people in the seats for a while.
7. Oakland Raiders – WR from USC – Marquise Lee – Don’t get me wrong, I love the way Sammy Watkins plays but Lee to me has better route running which should be important when you’re looking for a number one guy for Pryor.
8. Buffalo Bills – OT from Alabama – Cyrus Kouandjio – The fan favorite Khalil Mack is available but I think the Bills will realize the fact that he’s never played against elite talent and lacks some tools to become an elite linebacker/pass rusher. You don’t want another Aaron Maybin do you? Go with the safe pick in an offensive tackle, especially one from Alabama.
9. Jacksonville Jaguars – QB from Fresno State – Derek Carr – I like Derek Carr a lot. I think he’ll be better than his older brother David and actually picking at the 9th spot allows the Jaguars to build around Carr and let’s him ease into the pros instead of throwing him out there like they did with Blaine Gabbert. Keep Chad Henne and let Carr use the next year to learn the system.
10. Green Bay Packers – MLB from Alabama – CJ Mosley – The Packers always seem to build their defense and injuries always seem to hurt their defense. One of the safest picks in this draft is Mosley and I don’t see the Packers going in a different direction.
11. Tennessee Titans – DE from Stanford – Trent Murphy – I know what you’re thinking but Murphy is a top 20 talent who brings great size and above average speed for his size off the edge. Murphy ranks second in the country in sacks (13). This is an area of need for the Titans as Derrick Morgan hasn’t been the elite talent they were hoping for and Kamerion Wimbley is playing as 4-3 DE when he fits a 3-4 system.
12. Pittsburgh Steelers – OT from Florida State – Cameron Erving – The Steelers need all the help they can find up front. If they don’t go with Erving, I’d think they go secondary or wide receiver.
13. San Diego Chargers – CB from Michigan State – Darqueze Dennard – I truly believe he’s the best corner in the country. I like how physical he is and the way he makes plays in both zone and man coverage. The Chargers need something to slow down the Broncos.
14. New York Giants – OLB from Buffalo – Khalil Mack – Adding a play-maker to their defense would be ideal for the Giants. Mack has some question marks coming out of the MAC but I don’t see him falling out of the top 15 of the draft.
15. New York Jets – WR from Clemson – Sammy Watkins – Geno Smith wouldn’t throw so many turnovers if he actually had some talent to throw to (maybe). Watkins is here for the Jets if a team doesn’t trade up for him. No way do the Jets let him slide.
16. St. Louis Rams – FS from Alabama – Hasean Clinton-Dix – They need help in their secondary, especially at safety. Clinton-Dix would be an instant starter for them.
17. Baltimore Ravens – WR from Texas A&M – Mike Evans – Adding some more weapons to your $100 million dollar investment of a quarterback would be the right move this year. Evans is here waiting for a team to use his size, speed and hands at the next level. There is no question this pick will be a receiver.
18. Miami Dolphins – OG from Stanford – David Yankey – The Dolphins need help up front with the whole Martin-Incognito situation. Adding Yankey would fill the hole at the LG spot.
19. Chicago Bears – DE from Notre Dame – Stephon Tuitt – Juilus Peppers looks like he’s past his prime and Corey Wooton isn’t the answer. When you face Aaron Rodgers and Matthew Stafford four times a year, you need to add to the pass rush. Tuitt is the best player available at this point.
20. Philadelphia Eagles – CB from Oregon – Ifo Ekpre-Olomu – Chip Kelly will make a phone call out to Oregon on draft day and tell one of his former players to get ready because he needs help defensively.
21. Dallas Cowboys – DE from Clemson – Vic Beasley – There’s a chance Anthony Spencer doesn’t return and even if he does, he’s already over 30 years of age like DeMarcus Ware. Adding to the pass rush is a must for the Cowboys.
22. Detroit Lions – CB from Oklahoma State – Justin Gilbert – Gilbert is a play maker who always has a way to find the football. He puts the offense back on the field and could help the Lions secondary immediately.
23. Arizona Cardinals – OT from Tennessee – Antonio Richardson – One way or another, the Cardinals will add a player to their offensive or defensive line. I think the offense will be their first pick in the draft and with Richardson going pro, he becomes the 5th best OT.
24. Cleveland Browns (trade with Indianapolis) – OG from Baylor – Cyril Richardson – It wouldn’t surprise me if the Browns add a corner at this spot but I think adding a guard or tackle is ideal for the Browns. Richardson is the second best guard in the draft and should have a bright future alongside Mitchell Schwartz and Joe Thomas.
25. San Francisco 49ers – CB from TCU – Jason Verrett – After cutting Asomugha and having their troubles with Eric Wright, adding a corner makes sense for the 49ers. Verrett could be considered the third best corner in the draft but for me he’s the fourth and should be a first round pick regardless.
26. Cincinnati Bengals – OLB from Ohio State – Ryan Shazier – He lacks size to be great but he could be really good in the Bengals line-backing core that is already very talented.
27. New Orleans Saints – DT from Notre Dame – Louis Nix III – Being that Nix was already 350 pounds and is coming off of a torn meniscus; his stock has dropped. He will help the Saints in the run game and going to New Orleans will allow him to take time for his recovery.
28. New England Patriots – DT from Arizona State – Will Sutton – Comparable to Geno Atkins, Sutton is the future replacement for Vince Wilfork. I don’t see the Patriots going in a different direction other than DT.
29. Carolina Panthers – WR from Vanderbilt – Jordan Matthews – If you want Cam Newton to improve, give him another target. Steve Smith can’t play forever and Matthews could be his replacement. Matthews brings good size and speed to fit the Panthers’ top need.
30. Kansas City Chiefs – TE from Texas Tech – Jace Amaro – I don’t see teams taking tight ends as early as most experts predict. Amaro is the only tight end with first round talent and respectively he fills a need for the Chiefs late in the first round.
31. Denver Broncos – CB from Ohio State – Bradley Roby – Adding depth to the offensive line or finding another player for your secondary is what would be ideal. I think with Champ Bailey on the verge of retirement and injuries plaguing the secondary, Roby makes the most sense.
32. Seattle Seahawks – OT from Texas A&M – Cedric Ogbuehi – Here’s a player who has the ability to move all over the line and it could very well help him go earlier in this draft. However, for now I’ll say he’s late day one pick going to the Super Bowl champions.