OK, before I begin, let me just say: THIS is for entertainment purposes only. In short, don’t take any of this seriously. Unless I get it most of it right. Then expect me to print it out and hand it out to total strangers on the streets to prove my capacities as a Prognostidamus.
Also, I am projecting four different trades. You know they’re going to happen. Expect it even if the ones I point out aren’t the ones that do come true. Fact is that this is a deep draft but no obvious standout superstars, like last year’s Luck/RG3 at the top. All the same, there will be stars coming out of this. It’s just that there’s no clear cut definition as to whom. In fact, some of the names you’ll see below are absent in other mock drafts’ first round. That’s how wide open things are.
So all that said…here you go…MOCK!
1. Kansas City Chiefs: Luke Joeckel, OT Texas A&M
Joeckel or Fisher. Fisher or Joeckel. Flip a coin. One of them will end up here for the Chiefs.
2. Jacksonville Jaguars: Dion Jordan, DE/OLB Oregon
The Jaguars will look like crazy for any deal to move down. But if it fails, it’s Smith or Jordan and, unless they’re crazy about Smith, it should be Jordan.
3. Oakland Raiders: Sharrif Floyd, DT Florida
The conventional, safe and easy choice for Oakland. So watch for them to not do it.
4. Philadelphia Eagles: Geno Smith, QB West Virginia
Would the Eagles pass on Fisher or Milliner to take the Draft’s highest-rated QB? Given how lukewarm they were about bringing back Mike Vick, I say yes.
5. Arizona Cardinals: Eric Fisher, OT Central Michigan (Proj w/DET)
My first projected trade. Arizona is one of the candidates to move up if Fisher or Joeckel slides. Cost is #7 and #38 for a #1 overall-caliber tackle.
6. Cleveland Browns: Dee Milliner, CB Alabama
Who is the best CB in the draft? Is it Milliner, Hayden or Rhodes? The Browns will have their pick of the litter.
7. Detroit Lions: Chance Warmack, OG Alabama (Proj w/ARI)
The Lions will have options here (if they do trade down). Lane Johnson, Ezekiel Ansah or a CB is a possibility. But taking one of the highly-rated OGs would fill a hole.
8. Buffalo Bills: Tavon Austin, WR West Virginia
Lots of talk of the Bills taking a QB here. Even if they do, they need weapons for that QB. Austin will be a target for many if he gets out of the Top 10.
9. New York Jets: Lane Johnson, OT Oklahoma
The Jets need a solution to their QB situation, but none are here. Even so, they could use some protection for that QB. If Johnson is here, he might be nice bait for others to trade up.
10.Tennessee Titans: Jonathan Cooper, OG North Carolina
The Titans signed Andy Levitre from Buffalo but they still got a hole on the other side. Gooden or Warmack would fill that hole. Don’t discount a pass rusher or a CB.
11.San Diego Chargers: Star Lotulelei, DT Southern Cal
There’s rumors of this pick being traded to Kansas City for Branden Albert. Even if that happens, Lotulelei is too good a prospect and would fill either team’s holes in the middle.
12.Miami Dolphins: DJ Hayden, CB Houston
Miami was in the driver’s seat for moving their pick for Branden Albert, but those talks have apparently cooled. If they stay here, then Hayden or Rhodes would be the pick.
13.New York Jets: Tyler Eifert, TE Notre Dame (From TB)
The Jets got this pick from the Bucs thanks to the Darrelle Revis trade. If they don’t use it to pick his replacement, they could look at either a lineman or pass rusher. Or another weapon for Sanchez.
14.Carolina Panthers: Barkevious Mingo, DE/OLB Louisiana State
The Panthers have needs on their defensive line, both inside and out. If not there, a DB could be an option or Tavon Austin, if he lasts this long.
15.San Francisco 49ers: Ezekiel Ansah, DE/OLB Brigham Young (Proj w/NO)
The second projected trade. The Niners have 13 draft picks. No way they keep them all. Leaping half of the draft to take the highly-rated, but raw Ansah to groom. Cost is #31, #61 and #95.
16.St Louis Rams: Eddie Lacy, RB Alabama
A bit of a reach for the Rams, but with Stephen Jackson gone to Atlanta, the Rams opt to take his replacement right here and hope he can ease the pressure on Sam Bradford.
17.Pittsburgh Steelers: Jarvis Jones, OLB Georgia
The Steelers have a number of holes they could fill here — Vaccaro as heir to Polamalu? Patterson to replace Wallace? — but given they cut James Harrison, let’s say they need a pass rusher.
18.Dallas Cowboys: Kenny Vaccaro, S Texas
The Cowboys need playmakers on D and Vaccaro can fill in either Safety slot.
19.New York Giants: Tank Carradine, DE Florida State
They let Osi Umenyiora go to Atlanta and Justin Tuck has an uncertain future. Carradine was sidelined by a torn ACL but was a top 10 prospect heading into the season.
20.Chicago Bears: Justin Hunter, WR Tennessee
The Bears solved a lot of their issues during the free agency period. All but WR. Alshon Jeffery looks like a great speed option but Hunter has the size to be a #1 option for Jay Cutler.
21.Cincinnati Bengals: Jonathan Cyprien, S Florida International
The Bengals deputized Nate Clements to play safety because Taylor Mays wasn’t cutting it. Cyprien is highly rated and would hopefully solve that issue.
22.St Louis Rams: Eric Reid, S Louisiana State (From WAS)
This was part of the package that the Redskins gave St Louis for the right to draft RGIII. The Rams have issues at Safety and Reid isn’t far behind Vaccaro and Cyprien though.
23.Minnesota Vikings: Xavier Rhodes, CB Florida State
If Rhodes is still available at 23, the Vikings will be that proverbial “running their card to the podium” team.
24.Indianapolis Colts: Datone Jones, DE UCLA
Though they brought back Fili Moala and signed Ricky Jean-Francois, the Colts could use more talent in case Dwight Freeney is a salary-cap cut.
25.Minnesota Vikings: Alec Ogletree, ILB Georgia (From SEA)
The Vikings got this pick from the Seahawks for Percy Harvin. Jasper Brinkley and Erin Henderson had issues last year. Ogletree might have gone higher but for off-field issues.
26.Buffalo Bills: Ryan Nassib, QB Syracuse (Proj w/GB)
Third projected trade. Buffalo trades back into the first round to nab their QB of the future. The cost? #41 and next year’s first round pick.
27.Houston Texans: DeAndre Hopkins, WR Clemson
The Texans need a #2 WR to take some pressure off Andre Johnson.
28.Denver Broncos: Bjoern Werner, DE Florida State
Having lost Elvis Dumervil to a bad fax, the Broncos could use someone to at least fill in that spot.
29.Miami Dolphins; Menelik Watson, OT Florida State (Proj w/NE)
Fourth projected trade. If the Dolphins lose out on Branden Albert, they’ll need to go find an OT in the draft. Watson has risen up draft boards and the cost to trade up is #42 and #84.
30.Atlanta Falcons: Desmond Trufant, CB Washington
ANY help the Falcons can provide their defense would likely be heralded. Brent Grimes is coming off a major injury and they cut Dunta Robinson.
31.New Orleans Saints: Damontre Moore, DE/OLB Texas A&M (Proj w/SF)
Saints trade down and take a tweener pass rusher. Any help at any level of the defense would be an upgrade, but don’t discount a late move for an OT given the need to protect Drew Brees.
32.Baltimore Ravens: DJ Fluker, OT Alabama
If any of the 3 top safeties are still here, they might be the pick. If not, it’s down to replace a linebacker (Lewis and Ayanbadejo) or offensive tackle (McKinnie). Given all they’ve spent on Joe Flacco, if Fluker is here, it’s a no-brainer.