Nick Wagoner's 4/2 Mock Draft
Mock Draft Version 1
Monday, April 2, 2007
By Nick Wagoner
Clearly, NFL mock drafts are one of the most difficult exercises because so many things can happen during the course of the draft. Of course, doing one with the draft still a month away seems like even more of an exercise in futility.
With the NFL scouting combine in the rearview mirror and about a month until the annual selection process, we unveil our NFL Mock Draft version 1.0. A lot will change between now and the draft, but here’s the best guess at what could happen in April.
1. Oakland Raiders – QB JaMarcus Russell, LSU – Some think Brady Quinn is the safe choice, but the Raiders never have been a fan of the safe selection. Russell’s size, athleticism and arm strength are a better fit for the Raiders’ preferred down field passing game, but Russell is more of a risk to bust.
2. Detroit Lions – OT Joe Thomas, Wisconsin – Mike Martz believes he can make any quarterback a 4,000-yard passer so long as he has a solid line in front of him. That’s why the Lions pass on a passer and take this mammoth tackle to anchor the line.
3. Cleveland Browns – RB Adrian Peterson, Oklahoma – Cleveland could also go quarterback, but Romeo Crennel wants a power running team and Peterson is the best back in the draft with the potential to be one of the best in the league. If not for injury concerns, he might be the best player in the draft.
4. Tampa Bay Buccaneers – WR Calvin Johnson, Georgia Tech – Johnson is the most talented player in the draft and he would instantly give a stagnant Tampa offense the type of home run threat it has sorely lacked. Reality says someone will trade up and Johnson will go No. 1 by hook or by crook.
5. Arizona Cardinals –DE Gaines Adams– With Thomas off the board, Arizona looks to bolster the line on the other side of the ball. Adams gives them the best pass rusher they’ve had since Simeon Rice.
6. Washington Redskins – DE Jamaal Anderson, Arkansas– Washington’s pass rush was simply awful and almost non-existent last year. Anderson is the next best target after Gaines.
7. Minnesota Vikings – QB Brady Quinn, Notre Dame – The Vikings drafted Tarvaris Jackson last year, but he doesn’t appear to be the long term answer. Brad Johnson is at the end of the line and Quinn is a strong prospect with enough experience to be a solid player sooner than later.
8. Atlanta Falcons – S LaRon Landry, LSU – Landry and Reggie Nelson are top flight safeties, but some scouts believe Landry is the best overall defensive prospect in the draft.
9. Miami Dolphins – WR Ted Ginn Jr., Ohio State – The Dolphins could use Quinn also, but will have to hope that Daunte Culpepper can bounce back or that Cleo Lemon can be ready. Ginn will be a big help to whoever is playing quarterback next year with his game breaking ability and speed.
10. Houston Texans – OT Levi Brown, Penn State – Someone has to protect the giant investment made in quarterback Matt Schaub. Brown is the next best tackle after Thomas.
11. San Francisco ***** – DE Adam Carriker, Nebraska – Carriker can fit in as a tackle or end in the *****’ 3-4 defense. A hard worker who is huge for an end should be solid contributor for a long time.
12. Buffalo Bills – CB Leon Hall, Michigan – Hall solidified his position as the best corner in the draft. After the loss of cornerback Nate Clements, the Bills go with Hall, though running back Marshawn Lynch would make sense as well.
13. St. Louis Rams – DT Amobi Okoye – The Rams can’t believe their good fortune to get the player in the draft with the most potential. At only 19, Okoye’s future is better than his present and his present already makes him the top defensive tackle in the draft.
14. Carolina Panthers – LB Patrick Willis, Mississippi – The Panthers have gone through plenty of linebackers in the past few years and have yet to find long-term answers. Willis is a superb athlete and would provide instant help.
15. Pittsburgh Steelers – DE Jarvis Moss, Florida – No player in the draft would give the Steelers a better fit as a potential edge rusher as a linebacker in a 3-4 or an end in the 4-3. Moss has Shawne Merriman type potential as a pure pass rusher.
16. Green Bay Packers – RB Marshawn Lynch, California – With the departure of Ahman Green to free agency, the Packers grab the speedy and talented Lynch, who could be Maurice Jones-Drew - version 2.
17. Jacksonville Jaguars – DE Charles Johnson, Georgia – The Jaguars have been hampered by injuries at the end spots and that has hurt their pass rush. Johnson instantly gives them a boost.
18. Cincinnati Bengals – DT Alan Branch, Michigan – The Bengals could use help at many defensive positions, but Branch’s freefall makes this a no-brainer. Branch is one of the biggest question marks in the draft. Some love him, some don’t. But there’s no denying that with his size and athleticism, Branch could be an impact player in the NFL.
19. Tennessee Titans – WR Dwayne Jarrett, USC – With Drew Bennett in St. Louis via free agency, the Titans get a big, physical playmaker to help young quarterback Vince Young in the passing game.
20. New York Giants – LB Lawrence Timmons, Florida State – Timmons has every physical tool needed to be a big-time player at the NFL level, but struggled in his combine workout. With a little seasoning and better understanding of the game, he could be a Pro Bowler.
21. Denver Broncos – S Reggie Nelson, Florida – The Broncos desperately need pass rush help and will do whatever it takes to trade up to get some, but if they stay here, it’s worth grabbing Nelson, who isn’t as polished as Landry, but has more potential.
22. Dallas Cowboys – CB Darrelle Revis, Pittsburgh – Revis is a top notch corner, but also a solid returner and would make a nice fit in Wade Phillips’ defense.
23. Kansas City Chiefs – WR Robert Meachem, Tennessee – The Chiefs are desperate for offensive line help, but could still use a boost in the receiving corps. Meachem has size and speed (4.38 in the 40) and gives Kansas City a threat to stretch the field and open up room for Larry Johnson.
24. New England Patriots – LB Paul Posluszny, Penn State – The Patriots need to get younger at the outside linebacker spot and with Timmons off the board, Posluszny fits the bill. Posluszny is the type of productive player that Bill Belichick loves.
25. New York Jets – CB Chris Houston, Arkansas– The Jets need help in many places despite a surprising year in 2006. Houston is really athletic and quickly climbing many draft boards.
26. Philadelphia Eagles – DE Anthony Spencer, Purdue – Spencer is the type of player who will be rising up draft boards with every workout. He’s an excellent pass rusher and gives Philadelphia some fresh young legs at a position of need.
27. New Orleans Saints – CB Aaron Ross, Texas – Ross was a productive player for the Longhorns and should be an instant contributor. His ceiling might not be as high as others, but he’s well rounded and talented.
28. New England Patriots – WR Dwayne Bowe, LSU – Even after signing Dante Stallworth, the Patriots must find a player to give Tom Brady a decent deep threat on a consistent basis. Bowe has the size and speed to do just that.
29. Baltimore Ravens – OT Joe Staley, Central Michigan – The Ravens aren’t getting much younger along the offensive line and Staley gives them a versatile lineman capable of stepping in at guard right away with the potential to move to tackle when Jonathan Ogden steps away.
30. San Diego Chargers – S Michael Griffin, Texas – Griffin is a solid player who helps the Chargers upgrade one of their few areas of weakness in the secondary.
31. Chicago Bears – TE Greg Olsen, Miami – The Bears would like a quarterback, but none left are worth this spot. Olsen gives whoever plays quarterback next season a nice safety valve. By the time the draft comes around, Olsen probably won’t fall this far.
32. Indianapolis Colts – LB Jon Beason, Miami – The Colts lost Cato June to free agency so grabbing an athletic linebacker to fill the void makes sense.
Re: Nick Wagoner's 4/2 Mock Draft
Hmmmn.... this Okoye talk sounds exactly like what was said about Ryan Pickett.
Re: Nick Wagoner's 4/2 Mock Draft
and Pickett played well for the Rams. He did, he was just lumped in with DLew and Arch.
Re: Nick Wagoner's 4/2 Mock Draft
Hmmmmm, Ted Ginn going #9 to Miami?
Obviously, Wagoner hasn't been reading this board.
Or maybe he has since I got here. (Sorry Nick, only having fun).