All this talk about Andrew Luck is driving me nuts. But since it’s week 8, and I know all of my team’s flaws, I love looking ahead to the NFL Draft. There is a long season to go and most of this will change, but it’s fun to try to predict what would happen if the season ended today. Well at least it is fun to me. So let’s take a look at how things could play out next year.
1. Miami Dolphins – QB – Andrew Luck – Stanford; I’m not sure if anyone has heard of Andrew Luck but he is this under-the-radar prospect everyone is talking about. I’d go on a limb to say the Dolphins gamble and take him here. The Chad Henne era just isn’t working out.
2. Indianapolis Colts – T – Matt Kalil – USC; The Colts could really use a stud on defense to help stop the run or some help in the secondary. But there are no players that fit that bill worthy of being selected #2 overall. So I would suspect they took a can’t-miss tackle in Kalil to go along with last year’s 1st round pick Anthony Costanzo.
3. St. Louis Rams – WR – Justin Blackmon – Oklahoma St; Everyone thought the Rams would make the jump this year but it has not worked out. Sam Bradford still looks like a promising QB, but he can use a big weapon on offense. Justin Blackmon is a beast of WR who plays like former Okie State teammate Dez Bryant. And he doesn’t seem to be as much of a headcase at Dez either which is a plus.
4. Minnesota Vikings – DE Quinton Coples – North Carolina; Their seems to be such an importance on pass-rushing DE’s lately. If you can land one, it is a huge asset for your defense. Coples is the guy this year and the Vikings could line him up opposite Jared Allen.
5. Arizona Cardinals – T – Jonathan Martin – Stanford; The Cardinals can use help protecting Kevin Kolb to get that offense going. And big Jonathan Martin would help stabilize things on the line for them.
6. Jacksonville Jaguars – WR – Alshon Jeffery – South Carolina; The Jaguars haven’t had a good WR since the Nixon administration. It’s amazing, I literally have no clue who their WR’s are. Jeffery is a physical WR who can make some acrobatic catches. He’d be a nice battery mate for Blaine Gabbert.
7. Carolina Panthers – CB – Dre Kirkpatrick – Alabama; I’m sure the Panthers would love for Jeffery to fall to them to give Newton another weapon. But if not, look for them to go with a CB since they cannot stop the pass at all. Kirkpatrick is a tall, physical corner who should be a shutdown guy in no time.
8. Denver Broncos – RB – Trent Richardson – Alabama; Who knows what the Broncos will look like next year. Everything revolves around Tebow. But John Fox loves the run game and Knoshown Moreno flat out sucks. Plus he is always hurt. Trent Richards is a monster who can get you the tough runs but is explosive enough to take a big one to the house.
9. Philadelphia Eagles – LB – Vontaze Burfict – Arizona St; A few things here. First, I doubt the Eagles will be drafting this low, although I hope they do. And 9 is a little high for a ILB, but the Eagles cannot stop the run and Burfict would be perfect for them. This dude brings some major attitude and can blow up an O-Line with the best of them.
10. Seattle Seahawks – QB – Matt Barkley – USC; I like Barkley a little better than Landry Jones, plus Pete Carroll coached Barkley at USC. Seattle has a lot of talent but their QB situation is one of the worst in the NFL.
11. Cleveland Browns – T – Riley Reiff – Iowa; The Browns could use a playmaker at WR, but there is nobody at this position they could grab. I still think Colt McCoy can be a good QB too, so why not take a solid T to help give him time to throw and Peyton Hillis some holes to run.
12. Kansas City Chiefs – QB – Landry Jones – Oklahoma; I’m not a believer in Matt Cassel. He looks great in those K-Swiss ads with Kenny Powers but that doesn’t help on the field. Jones is a tall QB that plays in a pro system in Oklahoma so he should have a smooth transition into the NFL.
13. Tennessee Titans – CB – Morris Claiborne – LSU; You can never have enough CB’s in the NFL and Mo Claiborne is a big time playmaker with good size. The Titans always have a tough defense so he should fit in well with that club.
14. Washington Redskins – QB – Robert Griffin – Baylor; Contrary to what Mike Shanahan tells you, the ‘Skins QB’s both are terrible. They have a good defense and some decent weapons on offense. Griffin is a scary athlete who can throw the ball well but is also a track star for Baylor.
15. Dallas Cowboys – CB – Janoris Jenkins – North Alabama; The Cowboys have a ton of talent and not too many weaknesses. But they could use help at corner and Jenkins is a former Florida Gator now playing at North Alabama. He’s failed a few drug tests in the past so you figure he has to play for either the Cowboys or Bengals and I had the Cowboys picking first.
16. New York Jets – G – David Decastro – Stanford; The Jets have a few areas they can go here. But the O-Line has not performed as well as they would have liked especially since they consider themselves a running team. Decastro is a tough physical guard who should have no problem boosting their run game.
17. Cleveland Browns – WR – Michael Floyd – Notre Dame; This pick was the Falcons but they traded it for Julio Jones last year. The Browns need a big time target for McCoy to succeed now that his O-Line should be improved and Floyd is the guy.
18. Houston Texans – NT – Dontari Poe – Memphis; The Texans play a 3-4 now and could use a big NT to stuff the run. He is apparently 350lbs. That’s about all I know.
19. Tampa Bay Buccaneers – CB – Alfonzo Dennard – Nebraska; Tampa has needed a CB for like two years now. Somehow Ronde Barber is still playing for them. Dennard is next best CB so they will take him.
20. Cincinnati Bengals – G – Cordy Glenn – Georgia; This is the pick Cincy got from Oakland for Carson Palmer. The Bengals have a strong defense and they are set with Dalton and AJ Green for a while. Look for them to bolster the o-line and Glenn is a guy with a ton of talent.
21. Chicago Bears – T – Ricky Wagner – Wisconsin; Every year Cutler gets sacked more than anyone, so look for another O-Line selection for the Bears. Last year they took Wagner’s teammate Gabe Carimi so they would re-unite for a strong bookend pairing. And Wisconsin always produces solid lineman.
22. Baltimore Ravens – CB – Chase Minnifield – Virginia; Last year the Ravens took Jimmy Smith at corner and they could still use another CB to pair up with him. Minnifield is the next guy on the board.
23. New York Giants – LB – Luke Kuechly – Boston College; The Giants could use some help on the O-Line but this year’s draft has a ton of big time ILB’s. So the Giants go with Kuechly who is an animal in the middle and has the BC ties that the Giants like.
24. San Diego Chargers – DE/LB – Bruce Irvin – West Virginia; The Chargers are a tough team to figure out since they are so talented across the board. But Irvin is a pass rush specialist who could wreak a lot of havoc on third downs in the NFL.
25. Buffalo Bills – DT – Jerel Worthy – Michigan St; The Bills have a nice offense going so they would look to address the defense. They have had trouble stopping opponents especially the run. Worthy is an animal up the middle and could help right away. And you could bet your bottom dollar Meegsyclause would be the first person to order a Bills Worthy jersey.
26. Cincinnati Bengals – S – Mark Barron – Alabama; Even though their defense is solid, they could use a stud at safety to make their secondary even better. Barron comes with a big pedigree from Bama.
27. New England Patriots – LB – Courtney Upshaw – Alabama; The Pats got this pick from the Saints. And there is no chance they don’t help the defense out. Upshaw can play both the 3-4 and 4-3 and should help get after opposing QB’s.
28. Detroit Lions – LB – Manti Te’o – Notre Dame; The Lions are the fastest risers in the NFL and have done a great job drafting the past few years. Look for them to shore up their defense with stud ILB Te’o. Putting him behind Suh and Fairley should make it next to impossible to run on this team.
29. Pittsburgh Steelers – LB – Dont’a Hightower – Alabama; Here is another ILB. The Steelers pride themselves on tough linebackers and Hightower fits the bill and helps that defense get younger.
30. San Francisco 49ers –WR – Ryan Broyles – Oklahoma; The 49ers will probably try to trade the farm to get Luck but it wont happen. Their defense is great, so they might as well pick up a big time possession WR in Broyles who is the all-time leading WR at Oklahoma which is saying something.
31. New England Patriots – DE – Melvin Ingram – South Carolina; Another pass rusher and big time playmaker for Belicheck to fix his defense.
32. Green Bay Packers – DE – Jared Crick – Nebraska; The Packers certainly don’t need help on offense so look for them to take a big DE who would fit well into the 3-4 system that Green Bay often plays.