Mock Draft No. 1

The Gridiron Gentlemen has always pushed me to do things I’ve never done before. This is a very early attempt at a mock draft and by no means think it will end up this way. But based on needs, I thought I would match up a few players to teams.

I want to stress that the angle I’m coming from is more on teams needs rather than the talent of a lot of these draft picks. Obviously I didn’t take into account teams trading, which this year there could be a fair bit of. But I thought it would be a good opportunity to assess teams needs.

Pick 1: Houston Texans – Teddy Bridgewater, QB

Yes Jadeveon Clowney should be the no. 1 pick, but the Texans are a QB away from being back in the Superbowl mix. I think the Texans probably bring back Antonio Smith for the short-term and get back to a win now mentality. That being said, if Jadeveon Clowney shows that he’s willing to put the work in, he stands a very good chance of going no. 1.

Pick 2: St Louis Rams – Greg Robinson, OT

Sam Bradford needs to spend less time on the IR and less time on the floor. Greg Robinson could be the much-needed piece to kick-start their Offence. If Bradford still fails then its time to change things up next season. In truth they probably move down the order.

Pick 3: Jacksonville Jaguars – Johnny Manziel, QB

Take a motivational coach like Gus Bradley, add a firecracker of a QB and you either have a great mix or a time bomb. Seriously the Manziel is a good fit to help the Jags follow the Seahawks mould. Whatever happens by the end of the draft they need a QB.

Pick 4: Cleveland Browns – Jadeveon Clowney, DE

The Browns have a ridiculous amount of draft picks this year including 2 in the first round. If Clowney drops this far (which is kind of unlikely), they have to take him, even as a OLB who spends most of his time with his hand in the ground. Seriously though, he won’t reach 4…right? If it’s looking like he’s still on the board at 4, I genuinely think I team trades ahead of them to get him.

Pick 5: Oakland Raiders – Blake Bortles, QB

They desperately need a QB. With a ridiculous amount of cap space they can surround him with talent and hopefully get the most out of him. It’s a risky move but could have an insane amount of upside.

Pick 6: Atlanta Falcons – Jake Matthews, OT

And again…Matt Ryan needs to spend less time on the floor. Simple.

Pick 7: Tampa Bay Buccaneers -Anthony Barr, OLB

With Lovie Smith in charge of the Bucs he will now be looking for his player to build a typical Lovie Defence around. Enter Anthony Barr. I think the Bucs probably want to take a QB at some point in the Off Season, but unless they trade down this would be a stretch.

Pick 8: Minnesota Vikings – Khalil Mack, OLB

The Vikings Defence is getting old at Linebacker. This is a real area of need. If Barr is off the board, Mack could very well be wearing purple.

Pick 9: Buffalo Bills – Sammy Watkins, WR

The Bills need to start surrounding Manuel with weapons and Sammy Watkins could be the answer, similarly to the Rams, if this doesn’t work, Manuel could have a short NFL career.

Pick 10: Detroit Lions – Justin Gilbert, CB

A desperate need for the Lions. If they get better here and with some decent coaching, this team could be no. 1 in the NFC North.

Pick 11: Tennessee Titans – CJ Mosley, ILB

If they lose Verner, this could be a different pick. Truthfully the Titans have a number of needs, but with Locker essentially having another year to prove himself, you have to think they bolster their front 7.

Pick 12: New York Giants – Taylor Lewan, OT

Manning needs time to hold on to the ball for too long. To do that he needs help from the O-line.

Pick 13: St Louis Rams – Marqise Lee, WR

With their 2nd pick in what I am calling “operation lets see what Bradford’s got”, The Rams should be picking a potential no. 1 wideout.

Pick 14: Chicago Bears – Timmy Jernigan, DT

Pick any Defensive slot, ANY DEFENSIVE SLOT. Fill it with the top player. Seriously though Jernigan should be their no. 1 prospect.

Pick 15: Pittsburgh Steelers – Calvin Pryor, S

Polamalu could either be out, regardless he’s lost a step and will need help at Safety. Most folks have them taking a wideout. I just can’ see it, with their current set of Receivers, even without Sanders.

Pick 16: Dallas Cowboys – Kony Ealy, DE

Much like the Bears, they have a silly amount of needs on Defence. You’ve got to think Marinelli will want a top Defensive End to work with.

Pick 17: Baltimore Ravens – Eric Ebron, TE

Flacco needs all the help he can get and with Pitta possibly leaving the club now might be the time to give Flacco another young reliable target that isn’t a deep threat.

Pick 18: New York Jets – Mike Evans, WR

Literally any Receiver on the board will help this team. It is time to see what Geno’s got.

Pick 19: Miami Dolphins – Zack Martin, OT

On the field the Incognito situation has meant they are left with massive gaps along the line. I fully expect this to not be the only O-lineman they take.

Pick 20: Arizona Cardinals – Morgan Moses, OT

The Cards were great last year. However in typical Palmer fashion, threw too many Interceptions. A bit more time in the pocket could help a lot.

Pick 21: Green Bay Packers – Ha Ha Clinton Dix, S

Tight End is a distinct possibility here, but another huge need is at Defensive back. If a quality player like Ha Ha Clinton Dix is still on the board, they have to take him.

Pick 22: Philadelphia Eagles – Darqueze Dennard, CB

The Eagles are a decent set of Defensive backs away from being Superbowl contenders. Dennard would be a good start to improving this.

Pick 23: Kansas City Chiefs – Stephon Tuitt, DE

The Chiefs are almost certainly paying attention to what the Seahawks have done. To improve in this way they need to create a stable of Defensive Linemen, which could start with 3-4 Defensive End Tuitt.

Pick 24: Cincinnati Bengals – Louis Nix, DT

erm…See above.

Pick 25: San Diego Chargers – Bradley Roby, CB

Like a lot of teams, the Chargers have a huge need at Corner. Roby could fit the bill for the Chargers. In this Division any help at Corner has to help.

Pick 26: Cleveland Browns – Jarvis Landry, WR

The Browns need back up to Gordon and with endless draft picks, Landry could be a good pick to surround whoever they have at QB. Whether its Hoyer or a QB from the 2nd round.

Pick 27: New Orleans Saints – Dee Ford, DE

To make cap space for Jimmy Graham, the Saints will have to lose a few of their older pieces on Defence. Dee Ford is surging up draft boards and could join the Saints with a hungry Defensive Coordinator in Rob Ryan.

Pick 28: Carolina Panthers – Davante Adams, WR

Steve Smith is getting old. Brandon LaFell is good, but he’s no no. 1. Queue a Wideout that is work in progress that could provide some options for Cam Newton in the future.

Pick 29: New England Patriots – Jace Amaro, TE

Amaro needs work, but who better to learn under. With Brady getting up in age, he’s going to need some reliable hands to help through the next few years. Hopefully Amaro can at least provide Brady a helping hand.

Pick 30: San Francisco 49ers – Kelvin Benjamin, WR

They’re not short on Wideouts. They are however short on deep threats. Throw in Benjamin and it should at least provide another option to Crabtree if Boldin doesn’t resign.

Pick 31: Denver Broncos – Jason Verrett, CB

When Harris went out for the Broncos in the playoffs they were a completely different team. Any help at Corner will be much appreciated.

Pick 32: Seattle Seahawks – Scott Crichton, DE

This could be different if the keep hold of Bennett. But knowing they could pick up some young talent should mean they are not necessarily in a hurry to over pay for him.

So that’s my first ever mock draft. There will obviously be a lot of changes in the future months, but I tried to base this on team needs more than the talent of the draft picks.

Anyway all opinions are welcome, so hit me up.