John’s 2012 NFL Mock Draft
1) Indianapolis Colts – QB Andrew Luck (Stanford) – This pick is pretty simple since the world has already been told.
2) Washington Redskins – QB Robert Griffin III (Baylor) – With Luck off the board the Shanahans get their guy.
3) [TRADE] Cleveland Browns – RB Trent Richardson (Alabama) – Even in the “new” NFL teams can’t pass on a runningback like Richardson. He’s got a mix of size, power, and speed that any coach would drool over. There is a reason everyone has trouble with most teams in the AFC North; its a division with hard nose defense and a run game. Cleveland will look to build with that formula around Richardson.
4) [TRADE] Minnesota Vikings – CB Morris Claiborne (LSU) – With 3 pretty good WRs in the NFC North the Vikings won’t pass up the chance to take Claiborne. Claiborne has the opportunity to develop into a shut down corner. He’s got the size and speed to take on big, quick receivers. You don’t see a combination like this at corner every day.
5) [TRADE] Philadelphia Eagles – OT Matt Kalil (USC) – Philadelphia knows they need to keep Michael Vick up right and keep him healthy. There is no way Tampa Bay stays in this spot and Philadelphia could package a deal to make this move worth Tampa Bay’s time. Philadelphia would love to have this guy and would he would come in to keep the city of brotherly love safe on the left for years to come.
6) St. Louis Rams – WR Justin Blackmon (OSU) – The Rams need playmakers all over the field. They have to give Sam Bradford someone to throw the ball to. Blackmon is a guy who can work his way up to being a top 10 WR down the road. The Rams would be silly not to make this pick with Claiborne and Kalil off the board.
7) Jacksonville Jaguars – DE Melvin Ingram (OLB) – The Jacksonville Jaguars are generally not a smart franchise. With Ingram they find a guy who both fits their scheme and isn’t a reach. Jacksonville won’t get the trade they want and will have to settle for the 7th spot. With the Jaguars love for defensive talent, this is actually a smart pick for this young franchise.
8) Miami Dolphins – QB Ryan Tannehill (Texas A&M) – The Dolphins have failed in their attempts to bring a franchise quarterback to Miami. They’ve struggled finding the answer since Dan Marino left. They will reach here and go after potential. Time will tell if it’s a potential bust or a potential face of the franchise.
9) Carolina Panthers – DE Fletcher Cox (Miss St) – Jon Beason needs help on the front 7 of Carolina. Fletcher Cox brings them a mixture of athleticism and production. Cox is regarded as a “safe pick” and therefore Carolina will take him off the board before teams begin to line up to take him away.
10) Buffalo Bills – WR Michael Floyd (Notre Dame) – There isn’t much to say here except imagine Steve Johnson and Michael Floyd together. The Bills need another playmaker on offense and they can afford to take a chance on Floyd now that they’ve addressed some defensive needs this offseason. Watch out for the Bills if healthy next year.
11) Kansas City Chiefs – OT Riley Reiff (Iowa) – The Chiefs will know they need to add talent to their offensive line. Reiff gives them a chance to help protect Matt Cassel and open lanes for a healthy Jamaal Charles.
12) Seattle Seahawks – DE Quinton Coples (North Carolina) – Pete Carroll could be tempted to trade down and take a guy he recruited in Nick Perry, however, Carroll may be looking for a talented difference maker in Coples. Carroll may have the voice to drive Coples to play every down at full speed, if he does this pick could pay huge dividends.
13) Arizona Cardinals – OG David DeCastro (Stanford) – Russ Grimm (the Cardinals offensive line coach) will be fighting hard for DeCastro to come to Arizona. DeCastro gives immediate help to this offensive line’s interior. DeCastro comes in to protect their investment under center.
14) Dallas Cowboys – S Mark Barron (Alabama) – The Cowboys will be tempted to trade up from this spot. Jerry Jones is always trying to bring in the flashiest player for his team. In Barron, Dallas gets the best Safety on the board to help Brandon Carr hold things down in the secondary. This is a key pick for the Dallas Cowboys.
15) [TRADE] Tampa Bay Buccaneers – CB Stephon Gilmore (South Carolina) – The Bucs make the trade down to 15 knowing they have capable players still on the board. Gilmore at 15 gives them a corner who can develop into a difference maker early for this team. With Claiborne and Richardson off the board, the Bucs will be looking to trade down hoping a guy like Gilmore is still available to draft.
16) New York Jets – DT Dontari Poe (Memphis) – Rex Ryan will be looking for the next Haloti Ngata. Poe gives him an incredible athlete he can mold to hold this defense together down the road. Poe fits perfectly in the locker room because he will go with the flow and stay out of conflict. Ryan gives Poe the best shot to succeed.
17) Cincinnati Bengals – CB Dre Kirkpatrick (Alabama) – The Bengals will be drooling when Kirkpatrick falls to them. Kirkpatrick is a very talented corner but has fallen lately because of Stephon Gilmore. The Bengals will be able to keep up with their division rivals defensively with a pick like this.
18) San Diego Chargers – OT Jonathan Martin (Stanford) – The Chargers bring in a player to keep Phillip Rivers from under duress. Jonathan Martin will work hard from day one to start the season taking on talented pass-rushers. San Diego will look to the offensive side of the ball to reenergize their offensive attack.
19) Chicago Bears – DE Chandler Jones (Syracuse) – The Bears will add some youth to an aging defensive front. Chandler Jones gives them an athletic presence on the other side of Julius Peppers. The Bear’s pass rush will be a priority for Rod Marinelli and Jones is exactly the prototype Marinelli is looking for.
20) Tennessee Titans – DE Whitney Mercilus (Illinois) – The Titans need help on defense, especially with a young QB and having to play the Houston Texans twice a year. The Titans add raw toughness and versatility with Mercilus.
21) Cincinnati Bengals – OG Cordy Glenn (Georgia) – To protect their young QB the Bengals select Glenn to help stop some of the top interior lineman in the league in their division. The Bengals won’t be looking for a receiver here because they know flash doesn’t pay dividends in that division without reliable lineman.
22) Cleveland Browns – QB Brandon Weeden (OSU) – The Browns might be looking to trade out of this spot. With little interest in moving up besides their division rival in Baltimore, they’ll settle for Weeden to bring in to compete with McCoy for the reigns of this offense.
23) [TRADE] Baltimore Ravens – LB Dont’a Hightower (Alabama) – The Ravens won’t let their division rival Steelers take Hightower before they get a chance. Hightower gives this team a run-stopper they desperately need next to Ray Lewis. A bonus will be drafting a guy who played against Trent Richardson (drafted by cleveland) in practice.
24) Pittsburg Steelers – DE Courtney Upshaw (Alabama) – With Hightower just out of their reach they’ll settle for his teammate, a versatile DE/OLB who gets a chance to develop into another star on this legendary defensive powerhouse.
25) Denver Broncos – WR Stephen Hill (Georgia Tech) – Broncos will be looking for another WR for Manning to throw to.
26) Houston Texans – WR Kendall Wright (Baylor) – Texans will take another WR to complement Andre Johnson to make this offense an even scarier one.
27) New England Patriots – DE Nick Perry (USC) – New England wants to add some ammunition to their less than able defense. Nick Perry gives them great value late.
28) Green Bay Packers – DE Andre Branch – Andre Branch will come into the rotation in Green Bay and help aid this defense.
29) [TRADE] – Detroit Lions – CB Dre Kirkpatrick – Lions want a Cornerback in the first. They trade down with the Ravens to get their guy. They need this kind of help in their secondary.
30) San Francisco 49ers – TE Coby Fleener – The 49ers know how scary it will be with Coby Fleener and Vernon Davis as weapons in the red zone. They’ll take him off the board before the Giants can touch him.
31) New England Patriots – DT Devon Still – Couldn’t hurt to have more lineman for this team. They add great depth with their second pick.
32) New York Giants – C Peter Konz – New York needs to add skill to the interior. They’ll do that here. Konz’s skill is greater than his value in the draft. New York is getting a solid Center late.