Thursday, April 27, 2006
Sure, everyone and their mother has made a mock draft at this point. I've even seen another blogger do an NBA Mock Draft already (which was cool). But, well, I'm a sucker for conformity, and I've been writing a lot about the NBA lately, so it's time to mix it up. Feel free to make fun of me when somehow all of my picks are wrong.
1. Houstan Texas - RB Reggue Bush (USC)
Players like Mario Williams or D'Brickashaw Ferguson are probably better fits for their needs, but I don't see how they can pass on Reggie Bush. In my opinion, he's the best RB in the draft, the best pass-catcher in the draft, and the best punt returner in the draft. With a talent like this, there's no way the Texas can or should pass on Reggie Bush.
2. New Orleans Saints - DE Mario Williams (NC State)
After they signed Drew Brees, they don't really have a need for a QB, although Matt Leinart is still an option. I see them going with Mario Williams here, a guy that has been compared to the late, great Reggie White. While that's a bit lofty, he is extremely athletic and should be very good.
3. Tennessee Titans - QB Matt Leinart (USC)
There's been rumors that the Titans favor Vince Young, who is more in the mold of Steve "Air" McNair, but I think they'll reunite Norm Chow and Leinart. In my opinion, Leinart is the best and most polished QB prospect in the draft, and I think this should be a relatively easy decision for the Titans. We'll see.
4. New York Jets - OL D'Brickashaw Ferguson (Virginia)
Vince Young would obviously be a tempting pick here, but with the Jets already with Chad Pennington and Patrick Ramsey, D'Brickashaw is the safe pick. Their Line was not good at all this year, and by all accounts Ferguson is a beast of a man, and that's pretty good, I think.
5. Green Bay Packers - LB A.J. Hawk (Ohio St.)
The best LB in the draft, and really just a stud at that position. If Ferguson and Williams are already off the board (and it seems they will be), this should be a very easy pick for the Pack. He can make an immediate impact for Green Bay, and should be a very good player for a long time.
6. San Fransisco 49ers - TE Vernon Davis (Maryland)
They could go defense and go with Michael Huff, but they need some offensive weapons for young QB Alex Smith. While they do have Eric Johnson, a solid TE, Vernon Davis is a WR/TE hybrid, in the mold of a guy like Antonio Gates. Think better than Kellen Winslow, only without all the baggage (and presumably the bad driving habits)
7. Oakland Raiders - QB Vince Young (Texas)
Young is not a QB that fits Davis' normal preference for QBs, but I don't think Davis will pass him up. While last year's 3rd round pick Andrew Walter seemed to be the QB of the future, I think Davis will jump at the chance to get someone of Young's physical abilities, even if he's a little raw.
8. Buffalo Bills - DT Brodrick Bunkley (FSU)
It seems likely that if the Bills stay in this spot, they'll take a DT, and Bunkley, along with Haloti Ngata, is one of the top 2 DT on the board. While I've heard that Marv Levy likes Ngata better, I think we'll see Bunkley here, because he fits better in Buffalo's scheme than Ngata does.
(9. Detroit Lions - WR Chad Jackson (Florida)
No, I'm just kidding.)
9. Detroit Lions - DB Michael Huff (Texas)
Matt Millen is prone to do anything in these drafts, and while I'm in favor of him drafting a WR just to see the reaction of the people at ESPN, I think we'll see Michael Huff here. Cutler would be tempting, but I think McCown can be a viable long-term answer there with Martz as the Coordinator. I think logic will prevail here, and Huff will be the choice.
10. Arizona Cardinals - QB Jay Cutler (Vanderbilt)
While a LB like Ernie Sims or Chad Greenway, or an OL like Winston Justice would help them out more now, I think they'll look long-term and select Jay Cutler. After letting Josh McCown go, they've got Kurt Warner alone there, and while he can play when he has time to throw and has good WR (and he does), the chances are probably good that he won't be a long-term answer. Which is why I see Cutler as the pick here.
11. St. Louis Rams - LB Chad Greenway (Iowa)
This is where the draft gets a little tricky, because there are more options for the Rams. They could go for a LB like Greenway or Ernie Sims, or they could opt for help in the secondary with Clemson CB Tye Hill. In the end, I think they'll go with Greenway.
12. Cleveland Browns - DE/OLB Kamerion Wimbley (FSU)
The Browns are improved, but they could still use some help on the defensive side of the ball. Ngata would be an intriguing choice here for the Browns, but I think they'll go with the speed rusher in Wimbley.
13. Baltimore Ravens - DT Haloti Ngata (Oregon)
Ravens would be ecstatic if Ngata falls to them. He's a big DT in the mold of Sam Adams or Ted Washington, which is a good fit to take on bodies and allow Ray Lewis to do what he does best, which is roam around and find the ballcarriers. Ngata is the logical choice for the Ravens.
14. Philadelphia Eagles - OT Winston Justice (USC)
The second OL off the board after Ferguson. With Tra Thomas and Jon Runyan at the tackles, they could use a little youth, and Justice is very talented. Chad Jackson is also a possibility for the Eagles, but I think that if Justice is still on the board, he'll be in Eagle Green next year.
15. Denver Broncos - WR Chad Jackson (Florida)
With Rod Smith getting old and Ashley Lelie underachieving, it makes sense for the Broncos to look for a WR here, especially with none of them taken so far. Chad Jackson and Santonio Holmes are the top two WR, and I think the Broncos will go for the former Gator, who seems to me like the best WR in the draft.
16. Miami Dolphins - WR Santonio Holmes (Ohio St.)
With Daunte Culpepper, Ronnie Brown, Chris Chambers, & Co. already on board, they have the makings of a good offense. Adding another quality WR, which Holmes is, would go a long way to help continue to improve that offense even more.
17. Minnesota - LB Ernie Sims
If by some chance Cutler falls here I'll jump for joy, but I don't think that will happen. The more likely scenario is that either Chad Greenway or Ernie Sims falls here, and the Vikings take whoever is left. I think that will be Sims.
18. Dallas Cowboys - S Donte Whitner (Ohio St.)
The Cowboys could use a safety to play opposite of hard-hitting Roy Williams, so Whitner makes sense here. He's quick and can make plays. The Cowboys might also look at Manny Lawson or a CB here, but I think they'll go with Whitner.
19. San Diego Chargers - CB Tye Hill (Clemson)
With the Chargers looking for a CB, and the best one still up on the board, this should be an easy choice for the Bolts. He's a little small, but he's quick, athletic, and a good tackler. He should fit in quite nicely as the nickel back.
20. Kansas City Chiefs - CB Jimmy Williams (Virginia Tech)
He has fallen off a lot since the end of the year, as he was once considered a top 10 pick. He has the talent, but the questions about his attitude have made him drop this far. However, he has the most potential of any CB in this draft, and that's too enticing to pass up at #20.
21. New England Patriots - RB DeAngelo Williams (Memphis)
This pick shows just how deep this draft is. Williams is the 2nd best RB in the draft, and in a lot of years would be a top 10 pick. I think he'll be a fine RB for a long time, and if the Patriots grab him at 21, I think this could wind up being one of the best picks of the first round.
22. San Fransisco 49ers - CB Johnathan Joseph (South Carolina)
The 49ers went offense in their first pick with Vernon Davis, so I think they'll look to upgrade the defense now. Joseph is the best CB left on the board, and should push for playing time immediately. Manny Lawson is another possibilty here.
23. Tampa Bay Buccaneers - CB Antonio Cromartie (FSU)
An intruiging prospect because he was hurt all of last year, he's a big talent who's stock seems to be going up. The Bucs could opt for an OL in this spot, but if Cromartie is still available, I think they'll take him here.
24. Cincinnati Bengals - TE Mercedes Lewis (UCLA)
The Bengals could use help defensively, but after the run on DB before them, I think they'll opt for TE, and the best one left on the board is Mercedes Lewis from UCLA. He has good hands and decent speed, and should be a solid player in the NFL.
25. New York Giants - LB Bobby Carpenter (Ohio St.)
Carpenter is coming off an injury late in his college career, and the Giants did sign Lavar Arrington, but I still like Carpenter here. He's a smart player, who is still pretty athletic, and while he doesn't have the potential of a lot of the earlier LB, he is a safe pick here.
26. Chicago Bears - DB Jason Allen (Tennessee)
With Mike Green gone, and the top 2 TE off the board, I think the Bears will look for secondary help here, and Allen is a nice prospect. He could wind up playing either S or CB, but I think he'll wind up as a solid safety for da Bears. Ashton Youbody is another possibility.
27. Carolina Panthers - LB DeMeco Ryans - Alabama
With the best safeties off the board, the Panthers could look at a RB, but I think they already have some depth there. I think they'll go for a young LB, and Ryans is the best one of those left.
28. Jacksonville Jaguars - DE/OLB Manny Lawson (NC State)
The Jags get a break as Lawson falls all the way down to 28. A tweener, he's a good pass rusher and should immediately provide depth and push for playing time in a solid Jacksonville defense.
29. New York Jets - RB LenDale White (USC)
White seems to be falling all over the place, but he is still a quality RB. He's been hampered by injuries which has caused him to have some bad workouts, but with the Jets needing help for aging Curtis Martin, RB looks like the pick here, and LenDale White fits them best.
30. Indianapolis Colts - RB Laurence Maroney (Minnesota)
Now that Edgerrin James is in the desert, the Colts need a RB. Maroney is extremely talented - he's fast, can find the holes, and has decent hands. The Colts should be able to just plug him in and not really miss a beat offensively.
31. Seattle Seahawks - CB Ashton Youboty (Ohio St.)
One more Buckeye off the board. The defending NFC Champs are still a little thin in the secondary, and Youboty makes sense here. He has decent size, and has the skills to compete for a starting spot right away.
32. Pittsburgh Steelers - WR Sinorice Moss (Miami)
If LenDale White is still on the board, I think they'll go with him here. Nick Mangold from Ohio St. is another possibility. However, I think if White is gone they'll go with the undersized by playmaking WR Sinorice Moss to replace Antwaan Randle El. Moss is explosive after the catch, and can help replace Randle El's production as a punt returner. He could be a nice complement to Hines Ward in time, and for now, he can settle in as the slot receiver and special teams player.