The 2012 NFL Draft is one the deepest drafts in recent memory. Most of the guys who will be drafted are proven commodities. You won’t have a lot of guys who rose into the first-round based just on their NFL Combine performance. It is quite reassuring for a team to draft a player based on their actual on-field production than to cross their fingers and take a risk on a guy who can bench more and/or looks better shirtless.
I do my impersonation of Mel Kiper and Todd McShay with my own Mock Draft.
Warning: Alabama and LSU will be represented well in this year’s 1st round of the NFL Draft.
1. Indianapolis Colts – QB Andrew Luck (Stanford)
This is a pretty easy pick, you might as well write him in.
2. Washington Redskins – QB Robert Griffin III (Baylor)
Washington didn’t trade up to draft anyone other than Griffin III.
3. Minnesota Vikings – OT Matt Kalil (USC)
Minnesota recently said that this pick was on the market. Don’t take any of Jim Irsay’s tweets seriously…ever. If they trade this pick or not, Kalil will go at #3.
4. Cleveland Browns – WR Justin Blackmon (Oklahoma State)
Unless the Browns can trade down to pick a QB, Blackmon is too good to pass up.
5. Tampa Bay Buccaneers – CB Morris Claiborne (LSU)
Who cares about Wonderlic scores! I love Claiborne and he’ll be a good one.
6. St. Louis Rams – WR Michael Floyd (Notre Dame)
The Rams still need to bolster their receving corps and Floyd would help. He’s a bit of a reach at #6, but he fills a team need.
7. Jacksonville Jaguars – DE Melvin Ingram (South Carolina)
This will give the Jaguars another pass rusher and will help Jeremy Mincey on the other end.
8. Miami Dolphins – QB Ryan Tannehill (Texas A&M)
If no one trades up to get Tannehill earlier, he’ll be picked by the Dolphins. They need a QB of the future and he’s worth the risk.
9. Carolina Panthers – DT Dontari Poe (Memphis)
Poe is the ‘Mr. Upside’ of the 2012 NFL Draft. Scouts see something special in him and he has all the tools to be a good defensive tackle.
10. Buffalo Bills – G David DeCastro (Stanford)
He’s the best guard in the draft and will help get some holes for Fred Jackson to run through.
11. Kansas City Chiefs – LB Luke Kuechly (Boston College)
He’s been compared to Keith Brooking…Kansas City needs a Keith Brooking-type linebacker.
12. Seattle Seahawks – DE Quinton Coples (North Carolina)
Seattle’s defensive front was really bad in 2011, Coples will fill their need.
13. Arizona Cardinals – OT Riley Reiff (Iowa)
Reiff may not be available at #13, since teams like to trade up to get left tackles. If he’s there at #13, Arizona would gladly pick him.
14. Dallas Cowboys – S Mark Barron (Alabama)
Dallas has needed a strong safety since Darren Woodson retired. He would be an upgrade over Abram Elam.
15. Philadelphia Eagles – DT Fletcher Cox (Mississippi State)
Andy Reid loves him some defensive tackles. They also need help at cornerback, but this will add depth.
16. New York Jets – RB Trent Richarson (Alabama)
I think I’m the only person who think that Richardson will fall in this draft. The NFL is a different league than it was a decade ago. If someone doesn’t trade up to draft Richardson, the Jets will get a steal. He would be a nice complement to Mark Sanchez and Tim Tebow.
17. Cincinnati Bengals – DT Michael Brockers (LSU)
Cincinnati has bolstered its defense with physical guys. Brockers would be a nice fit in that defense and it would be the best pick for the Bengals.
18. San Diego Chargers – CB Dre Kirkpatrick (Alabama)
The Chargers have yet to replace Antonio Cromartie and Kirkpatrick is their guy.
19. Chicago Bears – OT Jonathan Martin (Stanford)
Jay Cutler has found that it is hard to throw the ball while on your back. The Bears have whiffed on a few other offensive tackles recently, but Martin will help him stay on his feet.
20. Tennessee Titans – CB Stephon Gilmore (South Carolina)
A ballhawk cornerback with 4.40 speed? The Titans will jump on him if he’s there at #20.
21. Cincinnati Bengals – G Cordy Glenn (Georgia)
He was a beast at the NFL Combine and replaces Bobbie Williams, who left via free agency.
22. Cleveland Browns – OT Mike Adams (Ohio State)
Mike Holmgren likes a talented offensive line. Adams might be a reach at #22, but there isn’t a quarterback worth the reach. They could pick Brandon Weeden, Kirk Cousins, or Brock Osweiler later in the draft.
23. Detroit Lions – CB Janoris Jenkins (North Alabama)
The Lions have spent the last two drafts building their defensive line. It is time for them to spend some picks on their secondary.
24. Pittsburgh Steelers – ILB Dont’a Hightower (Alabama)
He’s the perfect pick for the Steelers. His name sounds like he should have played for the team in the 1970s.
25. Denver Broncos – DT Jerel Worthy (Michigan State)
Denver needs help against the run and Worthy would be the best defensive tackle on the board.
26. Houston Texans – WR Kendall Wright (Baylor)
If the Texans pick Wright at #26, it would free up Jacoby Jones to focus on just being a receiver. Wright will help in the receiving corps, but he’s a threat as a kickoff & punt returner.
27. New England Patriots – OLB Courtney Upshaw (Alabama)
This draft is becoming very Crimson Tide heavy. He’s undersized and doesn’t have a true position at either defensive end or outside linebackers. Even though many mock drafts have him going much higher, he’s a project.
28. Green Bay Packers – DE Chandler Jones (Syracuse)
The younger brother of UFC champion, Jon “Bones” Jones, would look good in a Green Bay jersey.
29. Baltimore Ravens – C Peter Konz (Wisonsin)
Konz would be the “Center in waiting” and would take over when Matt Birk retires.
30. San Francisco 49ers – WR Stephen Hill (Georgia Tech)
Alex Smith needs more targets and I wouldn’t be surprised if Coby Fleener is picked here instead of Hill. Jim Harbuagh coached him at Stanford and having another big target would benefit Smith. I think they go with Hill because I don’t know how Vernon Davis would react to having another tight-end as competition.
31. New England Patriots – S Harrison Smith (Notre Dame)
Even though New England needs to improve their front seven, their secondary was the worst group to have every made it to the Super Bowl.
32. New York Giants – TE Coby Fleener (Stanford)
Kevin Boss is a good tight-end, but Fleener could be the next Rob Gronkowski. He’s a big target for Eli Manning and he’ll get open in their offense.
Feel free to “Like” my blog on Facebook or click the Facebook box located within the sidebar.