Tag Archives: BTSC

BTSC on Sports Talk on Trib Live Radio at 3:30 p.m. ET Saturday


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2012 BTSC Steelers Flag Football Fantasy Draft: Seventh Round Results


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2012 BTSC Steelers Flag Football Fantasy Draft: Fifth Round Results

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Steel Curtain Radio: Lance Williams Speaks with BTSC About Training Camp


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2012 BTSC Steelers Flag Football Fantasy Draft: Third Round Results

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Annual BTSC “Get To Know Each Other” Thread!


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Bumped to front page. It's one of our favorite times of the offseason when this thread rolls back around. -barnerburner

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How this works:

Basically, you tell all of us here as much about yourself as you feel comfortable doing on the intrawebs. (Read: Don't put your actual address, social security number, yadda yadda yadda.)

I'll start the festivities...

I am Spike.

34 years old

I'm a Gemini

I live in the Great NorthWET. Yeah, Seahawks country...Lemme tell ya, that invokes some interesting conversations at my favorite bar when anyone finds out I'm a Steeler fan.

I have two awesome kids. One is 3 and my youngest turned 1 a little over 2 months ago.

I do ironwork construction and am a maintenance millwright.

I've been working with big pieces of metal or hazardous chemicals for 10 years.

I'm pretty much covered in tattoos.

I enjoy playing Magic: The Gathering and have no less than 15 decks that will beat yours any day of the week. I played in the Stronghold pre-release tournament. People in the know about Magic will understand how long I've been playing.

I am in a band. I play bass in said band, but I've only been playing bass for 2 years. I got my first 6 string guitar when I was 11, and 23 years later, I'm not much better than when I started...LOL.

I have been a die hard Steelers fan since 1995. And, no, before you ask, it was because they drafted Kordell Stewart, NOT because they went to the Super Bowl. He was supposed to be more electrifying than Neon Deion...Well, we all know how that worked out...But it made me a fan of the best team in all of sports.

Well, there you have it. Those are basically what everyone wants to know, if you think I left anything out, don't be afraid to say so and ask if you want to know.

4587871627_7205b11c11_m_medium

Include a pic if you want.



Source: Behind the Steel Curtain

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BTSC 2012 Community Mock Draft Pick No. 32 — New York Giants Select Kendall Wright, WR, Baylor

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We are done and the 2012 BTSC Community Mock Draft is in the books! Pittsblitz56 did say he was working on it, but the agreed time came and went so I'm stepping in again here. Next up: the real thing at 8:00 pm EDT!

By the way, take note of the cool little minute-long draft profiles from SBN NFL that are embedded with these picks. It's been Michael Bean's personal project to make these videos happen, and let us know what you think of them! -barnerburner-

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First off, I want to say that if VinnySteel had not decided to go for the triple-TE threat for the Patriots, Coby Fleener absolutely would've been the pick here. Right now the New York Giants have got a bunch of guys that seem like they could all be decent role players at the TE position, but Fleener would've instantly upgraded it and given them an ultra-athletic headliner that would've made everyone better.

But no harm, no foul that Vinny picked Fleener ahead of us. We can deal with it and look back at what is still on our draft board and what value stands out.

And as we look at it, one name is standing out right now...

With the 32nd pick in the 2012 BTSC Community Mock Draft, the New York Giants select Kendall Wright, WR, Baylor.

The Giants still need to get younger on their O-line, so someone like Peter Konz was briefly considered here. I also did momentarily consider adding even more strength to the Giants' D-line and taking Chandler Jones, just for the fun of it. They did lose one of their starting CBs, Aaron Ross, in free agency, so Janoris Jenkins was also considered here. And Ross's departure does leave a bigger void than Mario Manningham's departure left at WR (the void that Wright would ostensibly be filling).

But Wright grades out as a better prospect than either Jenkins/Jones/Konz/or anyone else on the board right now.

Linebacker was the only position where I would've considered taking a 1st round-caliber prospect, even if he graded out lower than Wright. I know they traded with the Bengals to acquire Keith Rivers, and that could be all that they needed to shore up the position, but they literally had bums off the street playing there this past season (in late November, they pulled Chase Blackburn away from being a middle school substitute math teacher, but he repaid them by intercepting Tom Brady and being one of their Super Bowl heroes). Though as I wrote last year, with the talent that they've stockpiled on their D-line and in their secondary, they could go with bums off the street again at LB and it still may not matter.

BTSC 2012 Community Mock Draft Picks:

  1. Indianapolis Colts -- Andrew Luck, QB, Stanford
  2. Washington Redskins -- Robert Griffin III, QB, Baylor
  3. Minnesota Vikings -- Matt Kalil, OT, USC
  4. Cleveland Browns -- Justin Blackmon, WR, Oklahoma State
  5. Tampa Bay Buccaneers -- Morris Claiborne, CB, LSU
  6. St. Louis Rams -- Dontari Poe, DT, Memphis
  7. Jacksonville Jaguars -- Quinton Coples, DE, UNC
  8. Miami Dolphins -- Ryan Tannehill, QB, Texas A&M
  9. Carolina Panthers -- Luke Kuechly, LB, Boston College
  10. Buffalo Bills -- Michael Floyd, WR, Notre Dame
  11. Kansas City Chiefs -- Brock Osweiler, QB, Arizona State
  12. Seattle Seahawks -- Melvin Ingram, DE/OLB, South Carolina
  13. Arizona Cardinals -- Riley Reiff, OT, Iowa
  14. Dallas Cowboys -- Dre Kirkpatrick, CB, Alabama
  15. Philadelphia Eagles -- Mark Barron, S, Alabama
  16. New York Jets -- Trent Richardson, RB, Alabama
  17. Cincinnati Bengals -- Cordy Glenn, G/T, Georgia
  18. San Diego Chargers -- Nick Perry, DE/OLB, USC
  19. Chicago Bears -- David DeCastro, OG, Stanford
  20. Tennessee Titans -- Stephon Gilmore, CB, South Carolina
  21. Cincinnati Bengals -- Michael Brockers, DT, LSU
  22. Cleveland Browns -- Jonathan Martin, OT, Stanford
  23. Detroit Lions -- Whitney Mercilus, DE, Illinois
  24. Pittsburgh Steelers -- Dont'a Hightower, LB, Alabama
  25. Denver Broncos -- Fletcher Cox, DT, Mississippi State
  26. Houston Texans -- Stephen Hill, WR, Georgia Tech
  27. New England Patriots -- Courtney Upshaw, DE/OLB, Alabama
  28. Green Bay Packers -- Shea McClellin, DE/OLB, Boise State
  29. Baltimore Ravens -- Devon Still, DT, Penn State
  30. San Francisco 49ers -- Kevin Zeitler, OG, Wisconsin
  31. New England Patriots -- Coby Fleener, TE, Stanford



Source: Behind the Steel Curtain

BTSC 2012 Community Mock Draft Pick No. 31 — New England Patriots Select Coby Fleener, TE, Stanford

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Thanks go to VinnySteel for completing his two-part turn in the mind of Bill Belichick and graciously allowing me to intrude upon his vacation. Now there's just one pick left to go! Last up: the Super Bowl Champion New York Giants and they'll be represented by Pittsblitz56.

By the way, take note of the cool little minute-long draft profiles from SBN NFL that are embedded with these picks. It's been Michael Bean's personal project to make these videos happen, and let us know what you think of them! -barnerburner-

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So, here we go again... just when I thought I was done - they pull me back in! ... like Bill Parcells. (Almost.)

But this pick is really about another Bill - a Parcells disciple who has far exceeded his one-time mentor. Mr. Belichick, of course, has built much of his success through the draft, a point well emphasized by Rebecca Rollett in her piece a couple of days ago about Kevin Colbert's prowess in doing the same. Unlike the Steelers however, he has become famous for wheeling and dealing considerably, having traded down or out of the first round in each of the last five drafts - including doing so twice each in both 2009 and 2010.

As such, there's much speculation and maybe it's even a foregone conclusion that this pick at this point will likely not happen for the New England Patriots. Most New England bloggers and fans out there seem to think they will attempt to trade their second 1st round pick to a pick-needy team for a first round pick in 2013, thus setting them up with the option to repeat the process for yet another year. A partner that seems to be mentioned more than once when considering this scenario is Jacksonville. Year to year, who knows what Belichick will do? He's traded out and then back into the first round in the same draft, for goodness sakes!

As such, there feels like more of a "poetic license", if you will, with this pick. If it's unlikely to be made, then the options of what would be done with it become much more wide. It isn't a throw off - and the Patriots could stun the world and actually use both of them - but regardless, it definitely becomes completely a "best player available" scenario as it feels almost like a "bonus" pick. So this time around, I felt there were lots of options:

Janoris Jenkins - In this case, he's definitely among the BPA, and New England has taken troubled players down the straight and narrow before (see: Randy Moss). But taking a first round risk on a guy with that many red flags is likely a little too much. Plus, he still hasn't done anything in the NFL. Moss was proven when he came to the Patriots.

Vontaze Burfict - See Janoris Jenkins, above. Plus, he might be crazy.

There are several offensive line prospects left at this point, but I just feel the Patriots already prepared well for Matt Light's retirement. Switching Nate Solder to the other side and moving Marcus Cannon with Sebastian Vollmer coming back on board gives them a bevy of high picks on the line as it is. I don't believe they would be open to drafting a lineman here unless he was extraordinary, and I don't feel any of those that are left really are.

So I went with something of a surprise...

With the 31st pick in the 2012 draft, the New England Patriots select Coby Fleener, TE, Stanford.

Okay - so forget all that stuff I said about defense in my last pick. Belichick doesn't care. He breaks convention faster than FBI agents at the Hotel Caribe and has only slightly better scruples.

And yes, they already have two incredible tight ends. But Fleener is 6'6", 247 and runs a 4.46-4.57. He's virtually a wide receiver anyway. His best routes are the deep seams and he exploited them well as evidenced by his just under twenty yards per reception last season (19.62). He had 34 of those receptions for 667 yards and ten touchdowns last year. Teams will shy away from him because he had the ankle injury - sort of like what happened with Heath Miller when he fell to us. But Fleener is faster than Miller and just as good a blocker as Miller was when he came out of college.

Yes, defense makes sense here too. But if you think about it, if the Patriots had a third incredible tight end - not only would they have scored even more points last year, they also would not have missed a healthy Gronk as much as they did in the Super Bowl. If Courtney Upshaw produces for them in the pass rush on defense, then just one more ridiculously impossible to cover option for Tom Brady might just be too much for the rest of the NFL to over come. Even when considering the whooping that we put on them - would Keenan Lewis or Cortez Allen or any of our cornerbacks handled him as easily as they did Deion Branch? Would it have changed the outcome of that game? Would the AFC Championship had been as close, considering Baltimore didn't exactly have a stellar secondary? With another touchdown on the board, Brady is fully in clock-killing mode by the 4th quarter and a player like Fleener could be the kind of player to make something like that happen.

Plus, Fleener is intelligent and will adjust and easily learn the crazy wrinkles that three high-caliber tight ends could produce.

Bottom line is if Belichick were forced to make this pick, he'd want to be certain he was upgrading the team. Fleener definitely would not be there at their next pick, and Belichick absolutely elevates his team by nabbing him here. If he stays healthy and the Patriots are able to be as creative as his potential allows them to be, they may (for the time being) kill the theory that "defense wins championships", much to the chilled chagrin of true Steelers fans.

BTSC 2012 Community Mock Draft Picks:

  1. Indianapolis Colts -- Andrew Luck, QB, Stanford
  2. Washington Redskins -- Robert Griffin III, QB, Baylor
  3. Minnesota Vikings -- Matt Kalil, OT, USC
  4. Cleveland Browns -- Justin Blackmon, WR, Oklahoma State
  5. Tampa Bay Buccaneers -- Morris Claiborne, CB, LSU
  6. St. Louis Rams -- Dontari Poe, DT, Memphis
  7. Jacksonville Jaguars -- Quinton Coples, DE, UNC
  8. Miami Dolphins -- Ryan Tannehill, QB, Texas A&M
  9. Carolina Panthers -- Luke Kuechly, LB, Boston College
  10. Buffalo Bills -- Michael Floyd, WR, Notre Dame
  11. Kansas City Chiefs -- Brock Osweiler, QB, Arizona State
  12. Seattle Seahawks -- Melvin Ingram, DE/OLB, South Carolina
  13. Arizona Cardinals -- Riley Reiff, OT, Iowa
  14. Dallas Cowboys -- Dre Kirkpatrick, CB, Alabama
  15. Philadelphia Eagles -- Mark Barron, S, Alabama
  16. New York Jets -- Trent Richardson, RB, Alabama
  17. Cincinnati Bengals -- Cordy Glenn, G/T, Georgia
  18. San Diego Chargers -- Nick Perry, DE/OLB, USC
  19. Chicago Bears -- David DeCastro, OG, Stanford
  20. Tennessee Titans -- Stephon Gilmore, CB, South Carolina
  21. Cincinnati Bengals -- Michael Brockers, DT, LSU
  22. Cleveland Browns -- Jonathan Martin, OT, Stanford
  23. Detroit Lions -- Whitney Mercilus, DE, Illinois
  24. Pittsburgh Steelers -- Dont'a Hightower, LB, Alabama
  25. Denver Broncos -- Fletcher Cox, DT, Mississippi State
  26. Houston Texans -- Stephen Hill, WR, Georgia Tech
  27. New England Patriots -- Courtney Upshaw, DE/OLB, Alabama
  28. Green Bay Packers -- Shea McClellin, DE/OLB, Boise State
  29. Baltimore Ravens -- Devon Still, DT, Penn State
  30. San Francisco 49ers -- Kevin Zeitler, OG, Wisconsin



Source: Behind the Steel Curtain

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BTSC Seven Round 2012 Mock Draft: The Final Edition

Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images

Here it is lady's and gentlemen, my final seven round mock for the 2012 draft. As always I look forward to your questions, comments, and conversations. I'm sure some of the Steelers picks will cause a stir but I hope you all enjoy.

-Jason

(big_jay71)

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1. Indianapolis Colts – Andrew Luck QB, Stanford

2011 1st round Draft Pick: Anthony Castonzo OT, Boston College
Team Needs: QB/NT/CB/S/OG/OC/TE

This pick is a done deal, a no brainer. The Colts get Luck-y yet again (terrible pun I know) by being in position to draft a franchise quarterback just as Peyton Manning’s career is winding down. But the Colts have a lot of overhauling left to do to become prominent again. Reggie Wayne will be 34 years old this season and Pierre Garcon left via free agency, and the offensive line needs an infusion of youth and talent. Also the Colts released Dallas Clark at tight end. Defensively it’s likely that new head coach Chuck Pagano with convert them into a 3-4 scheme, and even if they do stay a 4-3 Pagano will spend more time, money, and draft picks on the defense than his predecessors. Dwight Freeney and Robert Mathis will convert into OLB’s in the new 3-4 scheme but who knows how well will they make that transition. The Colts also have one of the weakest secondaries in the NFL and upfront they don’t have anyone who can play nose tackle.

2. Washington Redskins (via St. Louis Rams) – Robert Griffin III QB, Baylor

2011 1st round Draft Pick: Ryan Kerrigan DE, Purdue
Team Needs: QB/OG/FS/RT/NT

The Redskins will finally get the franchise quarterback they’ve been lacking for what seems like forever after trading up with the Rams for the number two overall pick and the right to draft Robert Griffin III. Aside from quarterback the Redskins definitely need to upgrade their offensive line. Kory Lichtensteiger tore two ligaments in his knee and Jammal Brown cannot stay healthy. At wide receiver they signed Pierre Garcon and Josh Morgan but Santana Moss and Jabar Gaffney are both over 30 years old and behind them are a bunch of late-round 2011 rookies. Defensively they need an upgrade over Adam Carriker at DE and eventual successor to London Fletcher at ILB. If they draft a nose tackle at some point the Redskins could move Barry Cofield to DE which would be a better fit for him anyway. At safety they signed Brandon Meriweather to replace LaRon Landry but they also cut O.J. Atogwe so they’ll need at least one starter. Beyond that the Redskins could really use some depth at OLB since they will probably lose Rocky McIntosh to free agency and at CB even though they signed Cedric Griffin.

3. Minnesota Vikings – Matt Kalil OT, USC

2011 1st Draft Pick: Christian Ponder QB, FSU
Team Needs: LT/OG/CB/WR/S/LB/DT

The Vikings biggest issue offensively has been trouble protecting the quarterback. Matt Kalil has to be their top priority in the 2012 draft and because of the Rams trade Kalil will be available to protect Christian Ponder’s blindside for the foreseeable future. He is an elite talent and would replace a severely untalented Charlie Johnson. Even before the release of both Steve Hutchinson and Anthony Herrera the Vikings needed guard help and now they must address that need early in the draft. Defensively the Vikings biggest need would be at cornerback. Antoine Winfield is 35 years old and cannot stay healthy while Chris Cook has legal troubles, and they cut Cedric Griffin who has since signed with Washington. And at safety they’ve needed an upgrade for years. If the Vikings took anyone besides Matt Kalil it would most likely be LSU cornerback Morris Claiborne. Another option would be Oklahoma State wide receiver Justin Blackmon. A couple of years ago it was a strength but now the wide receiver corps needs an overhaul.

4. Cleveland Browns – Trent Richardson RB, Alabama

2011 1st round Draft Pick: Phil Taylor NT, Baylor
Team Needs: QB/RB/WR/RT/OG/CB

Cleveland drafted Greg Little in the second round of the 2011 NFL draft and he’s been a nice addition to a very underachieving WR core but they still need a legitimate number one WR so Justin Blackmon would make a lot of sense, although Mike Holmgren doesn’t like taking WR’s in the first round. They could also take Riley Reiff to fill the void at right tackle after releasing Tony Pashos. On the other side of the ball they could take Morris Claiborne and have one of the top cornerback tandems in the league when paired with Joe Haden. I don’t think the resigning of Dimitri Patterson would stop Mike Holmgren, who unlike with WR’s loves taking CB’s early, from taking Claiborne but it does lesson Cleveland’s need to have to take him. The Browns let Peyton Hillis leave via free agency so if they were going to find someone to replace him who better than Trent Richardson? Richardson is better than his predecessor Mark Ingram who was a first round pick last year and is generally considered one of the most complete backs to enter the draft since Adrian Peterson. At quarterback Colt McCoy hasn’t shown much and since the Browns took him in the third round they don’t have anything invested in him. I’ve seen many mock drafts that have Cleveland taking Texas A&M QB Ryan Tannehill here but this is way too high for a QB with only a year and a half of solid but not overly spectacular starting experience under his belt.

5. Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Morris Claiborne CB, LSU

2011 1st round Draft Pick: Adrian Clayborn DE, Iowa
Team Needs: CB/LB/RT/RB

The Bucs have a lot of holes to fill. On the offensive line they managed to fill some holes in free agency by signing the Saints Carl Nicks which moves Jeremy Zuttah to center and dramatically upgrades the interior but Jeremy Trueblood still really needs to be replaced at right tackle. At running back the Bucs need a compliment to LaGarrette Blount who can’t block and isn’t much of a pass catcher in which case Trent Richardson would make a lot of sense if he’s available. Just about the only place the Bucs are truly set is on the defensive line. At linebacker they need a replacement for Geno Hayes and Quincy Black should be replaced. But the biggest issue is at cornerback. Ronde Barber is 37 years old and just signed a one-year deal and Aqib Talib will be going to prison at some point. They signed Eric Wright but the Bucs need to look for long-term solutions. Morris Claiborne is the top prospect available at this point and fills Tampa Bay’s biggest position of need so I can’t see them taking anyone else as long as he’s available.

6. St. Louis Rams (via Washington Redskins)Justin Blackmon WR, Oklahoma State

2011 1st round Draft Pick: Robert Quinn DE/OLB, UNC
Team Needs: LT/WR/DT/OLB
/CB/FS/RB

St. Louis gets to trade back and can still draft one of their top targets. Their two biggest needs will be at left tackle and at wide receiver. Sam Bradford was beaten down this last season and the team needs to do everything it can to better protect him. If he’s available there’s no way the Rams would pass on Matt Kalil and they could take Riley Reiff here. Either of them would play left tackle, moving Rodger Saffold over to left guard or right tackle to replace Jason Smith who has been a huge bust to this point. At wide receiver Brandon Lloyd has already signed with the Patriots. On defense the Rams could use a lot of help. They cut both starting tackles Justin Bannan and Fred Robbins so they must address this issue in the early rounds even though they signed Kendall Langford. At linebacker both Brady Poppinga and Chris Chamberlin are free agents who need to be replaced regardless. In the secondary they signed Cortland Finnegan but could still use another starting CB and an upgrade at free safety.


7. Jacksonville Jaguars – Kendall Wright WR, Baylor

2011 1st round Draft Pick: Blaine Gabbert QB, Missouri
Team Needs: WR/DE/RT/QB/CB

Blaine Gabbert was terrible in his rookie season and GM Gene Smith better do everything he can to improve his performance before Smith finds himself out of a job. In his defense Gabbert doesn’t have much to throw to. They did sign Chad Henne but he didn’t fare so well in Miami so who knows how he’ll pan out if given the opportunity to start in Jacksonville. They could also use an upgrade at right tackle over Guy Whimper. The biggest immediate need on offense is at wide receiver. They did go out and sign Laurent Robinson but he’s only a solid number two option. Defensively they need a pass-rusher and some help in the secondary. They resigned Rashean Mathis to a one year deal but at 32 years old the Jags need to look for some long term solutions. Jeremy Mincey was resigned as well but the Jags do need another DE to replace an oft-injured Aaron Kampman. At this point it could come down to Michael Floyd or Melvin Ingram. Gene Smith loves high character guys which would favor Ingram but the new ownership may not give him complete autonomy to select whoever he wants. The Jags first choice would be Justin Blackmon but as he’s not available I think they will look to trade back with someone like the Jets who really like Melvin Ingram and are willing to move up. Kendall Wright was a popular pick for Jacksonville pre-combine before he ran a bad 40. At 16 it’s a possibility that they could still land Michael Floyd but Kendall Wright is a very Gene Smith-type pick. I’m not going to predict the trade parameters for the Jets but it will most likely cost them at least their second round pick to move up here. It’s also rumored that the Eagles, who have more trade bait than the Jets, are looking to move up for Fletcher Cox.

8. Miami Dolphins – Ryan Tannehill QB, Texas A&M

2011 1st round Draft Pick: Mike Pouncey OG/OC, Florida
Team Needs: QB/WR/RT/DE/S/WLB/TE

After being unable to trade up for RGIII, being left out of the Peyton Manning sweepstakes, and unable to sign Matt Flynn Miami is leaving no stone unturned to try an upgrade over Matt Moore. Elsewhere Marc Colombo has been absolutely terrible at right tackle and needs to be replaced immediately which is why they could give some serious consideration to Iowa’s Riley Reiff or Stanford’s Jonathan Martin. They’ll also need a replacement for Vernon Carey if he isn’t resigned and could use an upgrade over Richie Incognito as well which could put Martin’s Stanford teammate David DeCastro as an option too. After trading Brandon Marshall to Chicago the Dolphins will have to find a new number one wide receiver. If Michael Floyd is available he’ll get some looks here. Miami also needs a better pass-catching option at TE other than Antony Fasano. Defensively the Dolphins will be converting from a 3-4 to a 4-3 defensive scheme so they’ll need to tweak their personnel. Cameron Wake will probably man one end spot but they’ll have a vacancy at the other. And at linebacker they’ll need to search for someone to play the weak side. Personally I think that this is way too high but teams overreach for QB’s every year. Owner Stephen Ross needs to make a statement and the Dolphins can’t go through another season of terrible QB play.

9. Carolina Panthers – Luke Kuechly LB, Boston College

2011 1st round Draft Pick: Cam Newton QB, Auburn
Team Needs: DT/CB/LB/RT/WR/S

The only dependable wide receiver on the Panthers roster is Steve Smith who will be 33 years old shortly after the 2012 NFL draft. At right tackle Jeff Otah cannot seem to stay healthy and Riley Reiff or Jonathan Martin would be a great replacement. The biggest issues for Carolina are on defense as they need players just about everywhere. They relied on two third-round rookies at defensive tackle and while Sione Fua was decent Terrell McClain was not. At linebacker Thomas Davis cannot stay healthy and they lost Dan Conner to free agency. In the secondary the Panthers need someone opposite of Chris Gamble and they need upgrades at both safety positions. This pick will come down to Dontari Poe, Fletcher Cox, Riley Reiff, or Luke Kuechly. As with the Dolphins the Panthers can find a solid right tackle option in the next couple of rounds. At this point Kuechly is a slightly better prospect than Fletcher Cox even though he doesn’t fill as big of a need for Carolina and there rumors are that the Panthers really like him.

10. Buffalo Bills – Stephon Gilmore CB, South Carolina

2011 1st round Draft Pick: Marcell Dareus DE/DT, Alabama
Team Needs: OT/WR/OLB/DE/CB

The Bills biggest issue heading into the offseason was to upgrade their pass rush and they certainly did that after signing Mario Williams. Because he’s such a supreme talent he’ll garner a lot of constant double-teams so it’ll be important for the Bills to find another DE that can take some of the pressure off of Williams. Head Coach Chan Gailey stated that it was his top priority to upgrade the pass-rush so don’t be surprised to see them draft Melvin Ingram. Also on defense the Bills need a replacement for Drayton Florence and will eventually need one for 32 year old Terrence McGee. Their biggest need offensively will be at left tackle after losing Demetress Bell in free agency. And at wide receiver the managed to resign Steve Johnson but they still need someone to compliment him. Riley Reiff is a popular pick for the Bills but the rumors are that they don’t like him as a left tackle. Gilmore is too inconsistent to be taken in the top 15 but because of his high upside will likely be chosen before he should be. Chan Gailey loves athletic players and this could be the C.J. Spiller pick all over again.

11. Kansas City Chiefs – David DeCastro OG, Stanford

2011 1st round Draft Pick: Jonathan Baldwin WR, Pittsburgh
Team Needs: QB/NT/O-line depth/ILB

The Chiefs recently filled their biggest need heading into the offseason which was to find a capable replacement and upgrade over free agent right tackle Barry Richardson in Eric Winston. Casey Wiegmann will be 39 years old this season and while Rodney Hudson will probably step into the starting center position the Chiefs will be lacking depth along the interior of the offensive line behind Ryan Lilja and Jon Asamoah. In anticipation of losing Brandon Carr to free agency they signed Stanford Routt so it’s unlikely that they draft a cornerback here. They’ll also need to look for a possible replacement for Kelly Gregg at nose tackle who is a 35 year old free agent. I only see three possible choices for the Chiefs in Dontari Poe, David DeCastro, and Luke Kuechly. With Kuechly already off of the board, the Chiefs go with strictly the best player available in David DeCastro. This is high for a guard but DeCastro is the best guard prospect since Steve Hutchinson.

12. Seattle Seahawks – Mark Barron SS, Alabama

2011 1st round Draft Pick: James Carpenter OG/OT, Alabama
Team Needs: DE/LG/LB/CB

Seattle finally upgraded the quarterback position by singing Matt Flynn so that’s one less player in the running to draft Ryan Tannehill, although there have been rumors that the Seahawks love Tannehill so much that they would take him if he’s available. After releasing Robert Gallery the Seahawks could give David DeCastro a lot of consideration to fill the void at left guard if he’s available. Most of Seattle’s issues are on defense. They are really lacking in the pass rush and could use a few starters. Raheem Brock is in the twilight of his career and Chris Clemons will be a free agent next year. David Hawthorne recently signed with the New Orleans Saints so Seattle will need a replacement at ILB. Seattle would love to take Kuechly to replace Hawthorne but there’s a lot of chatter they really like two Alabama prospects which are Mark Barron and Dont’a Hightower. They would trade back for Hightower but stay here for Barron who would upgrade two positions as they would move Cam Chancellor to OLB. This may be early for Barron but Coach Carroll reached last season for another Alabama prospect in James Carpenter.

13. Arizona Cardinals – Riley Reiff OT, Iowa

2011 1st round Draft Pick: Patrick Peterson CB, LSU
Team Needs: LT/LB/WR/OG/CB

Arizona’s two biggest needs will be to upgrade the pass-rush and the offensive line. Sam Acho will man one OLB spot but they’ll need someone to man the other or at least challenge O’Brien Schofield who is probably better in a reserve role anyway. They also need an ILB to pair with Daryl Washington as Stewart Bradley is not cut out for the 3-4 defense and as such they will certainly look at Luke Kuechly if he makes it past Carolina and Seattle. They let Richard Marshall leave in free agency so Arizona could draft a replacement to pair with 2011 rookie phenom Patrick Peterson. The Cards need to give some serious upgrades to protect their investment in Kevin Kolb. At guard they could give some serious consideration to David DeCastro as Deuce Lutui and Floyd Womack are both free agents but they did sign Adam Snyder. At wide receiver they need someone who can take pressure off of Larry Fitzgerald. With the prospects available it will come down to Riley Reiff or Michael Floyd. It’s a tossup but I’ll give a slight edge to Reiff because the Cards must upgrade the protection for Kolb.

14. Dallas Cowboys – Dontari Poe NT, Memphis

2011 1st round Draft Pick: Tyron Smith OT, USC
Team Needs: OC/OG/DL

Dallas did a good job filling their needs through free agency. They’ve needed an upgrade at cornerback for a while now even before cutting Terrence Newman and did so by replacing him with Brandon Carr. At ILB both Bradie James and Keith Brooking were free agents and they went out and signed Dan Conner. With Tony Romo’s injury history they’ve needed a dependable backup and got Kyle Orton. They do however still have a few issues to address. While it’s great that they got Brandon Carr they still need a dependable number two as Mike Jenkins should be a nickel CB at best. They also signed OG Nate Livings, presumably to replace free agent Derrick Dockery, but they are still going to have issues along the interior of the offensive line in that Bill Nagy and OC Phil Costa both need to be replaced badly. They could also use an upgrade over both defensive ends. Even after signing Nate Livings, who was the weak line of the Bengals O-line last season, they still need another guard to continue the overhaul and David DeCastro would be a perfect choice. However the rumors are that the Cowboys will not select another offensive lineman in the first round and are apparently very interested in Dontari Poe, Fletcher Cox, and Mark Barron. Selecting Poe would move Jay Ratliff to end where he would have more one on one chances to rush the passer. The second option is Fletcher Cox who would be a big upgrade over Kenyon Coleman or Marcus Spears.

15. Philadelphia Eagles – Fletcher Cox DT/DE, Miss. State

2011 1st round Draft Pick: Danny Watkins OG, Baylor
Team Needs: LB/SS/CB/DT/OT-depth

After a fast and furious approach to free agency last season the Eagles have been pretty quiet so far this offseason. Linebacker has been an issue for years because Andy Reid just doesn’t value the position. They traded for Houston’s DeMeco Ryans which means there is no chance of the Eagles taking Luke Kuechly here. After trading Winston Justice to the Colts Philly will need some depth at tackle. And Andy Reid loves taking cornerbacks early and Asante Samuel will most likely be traded or cut at some point and DRC was terrible this past season so Dre Kirkpatrick will be an option. At some point they’ll also need to address the strong safety position because Jaiquawn Jarrett may have been a rookie but he was awful last season. At tackle the Eagles do have a few free agents plus Mike Patterson might have some lingering health concerns. In addition to cornerbacks Andy Reid also loves taking defensive linemen early and it’s rumored that they will take a tackle here, ideally Fletcher Cox or Michael Brockers if he’s unavailable.

16. New York Jets – Melvin Ingram DE/OLB, South Carolina

2011 1st round Draft Pick: Muhammed Wilkerson DE, Temple
Team Needs: QB/WR/S/OLB/RT/ILB

Most of the Jets issues are on defense. They’ve had a lot of trouble generating a consistent pass rush. At safety they desperately need to replace Eric Smith and Jim Leonard is a free agent coming back from a torn patellar tendon. They did sign LaRon Landry but that was only to a one-year deal. On the offense their biggest issue is at right tackle. Wayne Hunter has been terrible in replacing Damian Woody. At wide receiver Plaxico Burress is not a long-term answer and they need a better compliment to Santonio Holmes. One issue that is not immediate but will need to be addressed at some point is at ILB. Bart Scott will in all likelihood be cut next offseason and the Jets have already given him permission to seek at trade. A great replacement for him would be Luke Kuechly if he’s available. Apparently the Jets are enamored with Melvin Ingram and are willing to trade up to get him which makes them the most likely trade partners with the Jaguars.

17. Cincinnati Bengals (via Oakland Raiders) – Dre Kirkpatrick CB, Alabama

2011 1st round Draft Pick: A.J. Green WR, UGA
Team Needs: CB/RB/OG/S/WR/DL-depth

Cincy’s biggest need will be at the cornerback position. They lost Jonathan Joseph to free agency last offseason and Leon Hall to a torn Achilles during the season. Even if Hall comes back healthy this season they’ll still need another cornerback to play opposite of him. In addition to cornerback the Bengals also have a need at safety. They resigned Reggie Nelson but will have to replace the recently released Chris Crocker. They need depth at defensive end after losing both Jonathan Fanene and Frostee Rucker. Offensively the Bengals need to replace both staring guards Nate Livings and Bobby Williams. They signed Travelle Wharton from Carolina and have Clint Boling waiting in the wings but may need another starter if Boling can’t cut it. It’s also time for them to start looking for a replacement for Cedric Benson as well. He’s a free agent and rapidly approaching that 30 year old wall for running backs. And Cincy could use a compliment to budding star WR A.J. Green with Jerome Simpson being a free agent and also being arrested for Marijuana. Taking Dre Kirkpatrick based on Leon Hall’s serious injury would fill the biggest need.

18. San Diego Chargers – Michael Floyd WR, Notre Dame

2011 1st round Draft Pick: Corey Liuget DT, Illinois
Team Needs: OG/SS/ILB/CB/3DRB/OT-Depth

Offensively the Chargers replaced the departed WR Vincent Jackson with Robert Meachem and Eddie Royal. They also cut left tackle Marcus McNeill and resigned Jared Gaither. The one hole to fill is at guard after Kris Dielman’s retirement. And they lost third-down running back Mike Tolbert to free agency so they’ll need to replace him at some point. Defensively they signed the Ravens Jarret Johnson to upgrade their pass-rush, seemingly giving up on Larry English. At strong safety they managed to fill the void by going with another veteran stop-gap, this time with Atari Bigby instead of Bob Sanders. There is talk of moving Quinton Jammer to strong safety as some point in which case San Diego would need a replacement for him at cornerback. Taking Stephen Gilmore or Dre Kirkpatrick if they are available would be the ideal option. Michael Floyd doesn’t fill a huge need but he does possess the big body that the Chargers prefer at wide receiver and would be a great replacement for Vincent Jackson as Robert Meachem is a career underachiever. Plus Malcom Floyd is in the final year of his contract and will probably be looking to get paid like Vincent Jackson.

19. Chicago Bears – Whitney Mercilus DE, Illinois

2011 1st round Draft Pick: Gabe Carimi OT, Wisconsin
Team Needs: LT/OG/OC/S/CB/TE

Offensively Chicago needs desperately to upgrade the interior of their line. If Jay Cutler had time to throw the ball on a consistent basis they could really contend every year. Left tackle J’Marcus Webb should not be starting and Chris Spencer is terrible at right guard. Now that Mike Martz is gone the Bears will need to find a pass-catching tight end. Defensively the Bears could use a linebacker to replace Nick Roach and serve as an apprentice to Brian Urlacher who isn’t getting any younger and tore some knee ligaments in the final game of the season. And if the Bears hope to compete with the Packers they will need to upgrade/add to their secondary. They could draft Peter Konz and move Robert Garza over to right guard or they could just take Cordy Glenn to play guard or possibly even to replace Webb at left tackle. The rumors are that the Bears will take the best defensive lineman available. They only resigned Israel Idonije to a one-year deal and will need a long-term replacement for him to compliment Julius Peppers. At defensive tackle they cut Anthony Adams and lost Amobi Okoye to free agency.

20. Tennessee Titans – Michael Brockers DT, LSU

2011 1st round Draft Pick: Jake Locker QB, Washington
Team Needs: OC/OG/WLB/DT/DE/CB-depth

The Titans biggest issues have been along the interior of the offensive line. LG Leroy Harris and OC Eugene Amano both need to be replaced in a hurry and right guard Jake Scott is a free agent. They did sign Steve Hutchinson who should have a couple more years left in him to replace Scott. Given how Mike Munchak criticized the offensive line I think it’s definitely going to be a priority in this draft, although he’s also stated that he will not use their first round pick on an offensive lineman. WR Kenny Britt tore his ACL and MCL and may not come back the same player and even if he does the Titans could still use another playmaker for their offense since Donnie Avery is a free agent. Defensively they need to do a better job generating a pass-rush and they have a lot of free agent linemen. They lost Cortland Finnegan to free agency but still have Jason McCourty and Alterraun Verner so they’ll only need depth. At linebacker they have two good young pieces in Colin McCarty and Akeem Ayers but still need a WLB. On the defensive line they did sign Kamerion Wimbley to replace the departed Jason Jones but don’t count out another DE because Derrick Morgan is looking like a bust, and they could use an upgrade at DT over Sen’Derrick Marks. Just like the Chicago Bears, the Titans would love for Dre Kirkpatrick to fall to them but will otherwise take the best defensive lineman available which at this point would be Michael Brockers.

21. Cincinnati Bengals – Courtney Upshaw DE/OLB, Alabama

2011 1st round Draft Pick: A.J. Green WR, UGA
Team Needs: CB/RB/OG/S/WR/DL-depth

At this point Cincy could use their second first round pick on any number of prospects. As already mentioned they could use another offensive guard if they feel like Clint Boling isn’t ready to step into a starting position in which case UGA’s Cordy Glenn would be an excellent option. At running back they would have their pick of Lamar Miller, David Wilson, or Doug Martin. Stephen Hill would also about an option which would take the pressure off of A.J. Green and given Andy Dalton another weapon to flourish his career with. Looking at the flurry of defensive ends they signed in free agency, first round busts Jamaal Anderson and Derrick Harvey, it’s evident that the Bengals aren’t happy with their pass-rush from the position. Head Coach Marvin Lewis seems to have a preference for Courtney Upshaw over other first round defensive ends. His stock has fallen because of concerns about whether or not he can hold up in coverage as an outside linebacker in a 3-4 defense. In a 4-3 defense there should be no concerns with him playing with his hand on the ground.

22. Cleveland Browns (via Atlanta Falcons) – Mike Adams OT, Ohio State

2011 1st round Draft Pick: Phil Taylor NT, Baylor
Team Needs: QB/RB/WR/RT/OG/CB

Thankfully Cleveland is not stuck with the option on having to make the decision whether or not to take Ryan Tannehill with this pick. While they will more than likely have to go into the 2012 season with Colt McCoy at the starter they can get him some more help on the offense. Here they could easily take Stephen Hill to fill their need for a number one wide receiver. To aid the defense they could replace Jayme Mitchell with Nick Perry. Mike Holmgren loves taking cornerbacks early and could upgrade Dimitri Patterson with Janoris Jenkins. A big issue for the Browns has been at right tackle. Upgrading the position would also improve Colt McCoy’s abilities as well so it will come down to Mike Adams, Cordy Glenn, or Jonathan Martin. Martin isn’t really a good scheme fit and the Browns have shown interest in Adams.

23. Detroit Lions – Quinton Coples DE, UNC

2011 1st round Draft Pick: Nick Fairley DT/DE, Auburn
Team Needs: LT/CB/OC/SS/RB-depth

Detroit has a habit of taking the best player available regardless of need. It’s why they have one of the best defensive lines in the NFL but also have one of the worst offensive lines in addition to one of the worst secondaries. Left tackle has been an issue for years and while they did resign Jeff Backus the Lions need to look for a long term replacement. OC Dominic Raiola is terrible. Even though the strength of this team has been its defensive line they could potentially take a DE in the first round because Kyle Vanden Bosch will be 34 years old this coming season and they franchised Cliff Avril but may not be able to sign him to a long-term contract. At cornerback Eric Wright was signed by the Bucs but he needed to be replaced anyway. Peter Konz, Cordy Glenn, Jon Martin, or even Janoris Jenkins would all be solid options here as they would all fill a need for the Lions. Keeping with their draft strategy they’ll take Quinton Coples if he’s available here. He could go as early as 12 to the Seahawks but falls do to work ethic issues after stating that he only gave a “C” effort this past season. With the defensive line leadership that Detroit has they could keep Coples in line.

24. Pittsburgh Steelers – Cordy Glenn OG/OT, UGA

2011 1st round Draft Pick: Cameron Heyward DE, OSU
Team Needs: OG/NT/ILB/OT/WR/RB/S

Easily the Steelers biggest need is at offensive guard. I think it’s easy to agree that the frustrating carousel of Chris Kemoeatu, Ramon Foster, Trai Essex, and Doug Legursky is not working. Thankfully we no longer have to suffer Kemoeatu’s lapses in play and judgment as he’s been released. The Steelers will need depth at tackle as well. Max Starks will probably not be resigned after tearing an ACL in the playoff loss to Denver. 2011 rookie Marcus Gilbert will be sliding over from right tackle to take Starks spot with Willie Colon returning to right tackle, but with Colon’s injury history it’ll be a gamble to go into the season without a solid back up. With Rashard Mendenhall’s ACL tear I’ve seen some chatter about the Steelers possibly drafting a replacement for him. ACL tears are a serious issue, especially for running backs, and next year will be the final year of his contract. Defensively the Steelers still need to find a long term successor to Casey Hampton at nose tackle. He’s 35 years old, will be coming off of an ACL tear of his own, and is in the final year of his contract. In the secondary I’ve seen enough promise out of the youngsters at cornerback to finally be ok with the Steelers bypassing the position early in the draft. At safety though the time is near to start looking for at least one safety for depth to groom behind Ryan Clark and Troy Polamalu. At ILB James Farrior has become a cap casualty. At 36 years old he has clearly lost a step and could no longer be depended on to cover across the middle of the field. Some have high hopes for Stevenson Sylvester but at this point he’s just a late round pick who’s been a special teams standout. He hasn’t shown enough to warrant being expected to take over the starting duties. Thanks to his monster combine performance Dontari Poe is no longer an option to replace Casey Hampton, not unless they want to trade up to get him. And if the Steelers do trade up wouldn’t it be for David DeCastro? One option I thought about was another defensive end like Devon Still or Michael Brockers. I’ve read a lot of chatter about Ziggy Hood sliding over to play nose tackle. Some people think the Steelers should draft Josh Chapman in the second round to play nose tackle but he’s only 6lbs. heavier than Hood who is relatively the same size as Chris Hoke. With the talent available it’s going to come down to Alabama ILB Dont’a Hightower or Georgia’s Cordy Glenn. Hightower has the experience of playing in a 3-4 defense and the leadership abilities to replace Farrior. If the Steelers can keep him out of the weight room so that he sheds some bulk that should increase his speed and would make him less of a liability in coverage. Until that point he can be an end rusher on obvious passing downs. Cordy Glenn would fill the Steelers biggest need and he has the versatility to play both guard and tackle. He had a good combine measuring in at 6’5”, 346lbs., with 34.75in arms but still being able to run a 5.15 40 and do 31 reps on the bench press. I’ve mocked Hightower to the Steelers almost since the beginning of the draft season but with Glenn available I just can’t see the Steelers passing him up. For all of those fans wishing for the Steelers to trade up for Dontari Poe just look to the future as the 2013 draft could have as many as five nose tackles taken in the top two rounds, with two or three going in the first round.

25. Denver Broncos – Peter Konz OC, Wisconsin

2011 1st round Draft Pick: Von Miller DE/OLB, Texas A&M
Team Needs: DT/LG/OC/CB/RB/WR

So now that Denver has won the Peyton Manning sweepstakes they may use this pick to get him some help on offense. They could use a replacement for Zane Beadles and J.D. Walton on the offensive line. At WR they lost Eddie Royal to free agency but did sign Andre Caldwell. Defensively the Broncos have to stop neglecting the tackle position especially after losing Brodrick Bunkley to free agency. Given the weak crop of tackles in this year’s draft they must take this opportunity to take the highest rated one in this draft class. They could also draft an heir to Champ Bailey. He’s turned in another good year but at age 33 (he turns 34 before the 2012 season) how many good years can he have left? They did sign Tracy Porter but that was only to a one-year deal. At running back Willis McGahee is 30 years old and Knowshon Moreno cannot stay healthy. Head Coach John Fox loves running back by committee so Lamar Miller, David Wilson, or Doug Martin could be options as well. It’s likely that the Broncos will listen to requests from their new savior quarterback as Manning only has a few good years left and the Broncos must strike with the iron is hot which means an offensive player could be the most likely option, even other their dire need for defensive tackles. At this point it’ll come down to the remaining wide receiver with a first round grade which would be Stephen Hill or a lineman like Peter Konz. J.D. Walton was terrible last season and the Broncos tried to sign Jeff Saturday so Konz is a logical choice.

26. Houston Texans – Stephen Hill WR, Georgia Tech

2011 1st round Draft Pick: J.J. Watt DT/DE, Wisconsin
Team Needs: OG/RT/WR/NT/SS/CB

The Texans really don’t have any huge pressing needs except on the offensive line. They lost Mike Brisiel to free agency and Wade Smith just needs to be replaced. They also need a new right tackle after releasing Eric Winston. The Texans could also use a better compliment to Andre Johnson than Kevin Walter and Jacoby Jones. Defensively they appear to be pretty well stacked. They could use a bigger run-stuffing nose tackle to anchor the front of their defense. At cornerback Kareem Jackson is coming close to being labeled a bust so Houston could take Stephen Gilmore or Alfonzo Dennard. Even if he does turn things around it wouldn’t hurt to have another quality cornerback on the roster with the NFL coming increasingly pass-heavy. Andre Johnson, Bryant Johnson, and Kevin Walter and all 30 years old and the Texans could use someone who can stretch the field and take the pressure off of Andre Johnson. Hill exploded at the combine running a 4.36 40 at 6’4”, 215lbs. As long as one of the top four wide receivers is available I can’t see the Texans going in another direction. If they are gone I could see the Texans drafting Dont’a Hightower to replace DeMeco Ryans or Jonathan Martin to replace Eric Winston.

27. New England Patriots (via New Orleans Saints) – Nick Perry DE/OLB, USC

2011 1st round Draft Pick: Nate Solder OT, Colorado
Team Needs: OLB/DE/WR/OC/CB

There’s almost no chance the Patriots use both of their 2012 first round picks. It’s likely they’ll find someone to give them a ridiculous deal for this selection. New England needs to overhaul just about their entire defense. Their pass-rush is a joke at this point and both Andre Carter and Mark Anderson are free agents. At safety they need someone to pair with Patrick Chung. And at defensive end Gerard Warren and Shaun Ellis are both aging free agents. They also need to overhaul their receiving corps and find a receiving threat that can stretch the field vertically. Wes Welker is their only dependable WR and he’s 31 years old, although they did just sign 31 year old Brandon Lloyd. Unfortunately there aren’t any wide receivers available that would warrant this pick. In the past Coach Belichick has shied away from taking converted DE/OLB’s early in the draft but now that the Patriots employ at 3-4/4-3 hybrid it makes sense to take a pass-rushing threat who is scheme versatile, playing DE in a 4-3 and OLB in a 3-4 defense.

28. Green Bay Packers – Shea McClellin, DE/OLB, Boise State

2011 1st round Draft Pick: Derek Sherrod OT, Miss. State
Team Needs: OC/OLB/S/DE/RB/CB

Green Bay has the luxury of not having too many holes to fill. They do still need a pass-rusher to play opposite of Clay Matthews and will need to prepare for the day that Charles Woodson finally retires. They could also use an upgrade at defensive end over Jarius Wynn and Mike Neal cannot stay healthy. Aside from their needing an OLB perhaps their biggest need would be at safety. Nick Collins is coming off of a serious neck injury that could be potentially career threatening. Offensively they could continue to stockpile linemen. If they keep Derek Sherrod at guard they’ll still need to find an heir to Chad Clifton at left tackle, or someone to play right tackle if Bryan Bulaga moves to the left side. At center they lost Scott Wells to free agency. At running back Ryan Grant is a free agent and James Starks may not be able to shoulder the load full time. With Wells’ departure Peter Konz would seem like the likely choice if he’s available. However the Packers seem to really like Boise State DE/OLB Shea McClellin.

29. Baltimore Ravens – Dont'a Hightower ILB, Alabama

2011 1st Draft Pick: Jimmy Smith CB, Colorado
Team Needs: LT/OC/LB/S/CB/WR/OG/CB

The Ravens are all about taking the best player on the board as opposed to drafting to fill a need. Offensively they will need to find an eventual long-term successor to Matt Birk at center. At left tackle Bryant McKinnie is just a Band-Aid at this point in his career. At WR Lee Evans did not pan out like the team had hoped and Anquan Boldin is starting to decline as well. Defensively they must find a successor to Ray Lewis and Ed Reed. In addition to finding a successor for Ray Lewis the Ravens will have to replace Jameel McClain if they do not resign him. Ed Reed will be 34 years old this coming season and both of his backups Tom Zbikowski and Haruki Nakamura left in free agency. And at OLB Jarret Johnson is now a San Diego Charger and Sergio Kindle may never pan out. Just as with the Packers the Ravens would seem like a likely landing spot for Wisconsin center Peter Konz but they will not pass up the opportunity to draft Alabama’s Dont’a Hightower if he’s available. With his experience in a 3-4 and leadership abilities as a captain of Alabama’s top ranked defense he would be the ideal successor to Ray Lewis and could start out as an outside rusher to replace the departed Jarrett Johnson. It’s likely that Baltimore may even trade up in front of the Steelers to get Hightower. Another option would be Jon Martin as a long-term solution at left tackle.

30. San Francisco 49ers – Coby Fleener TE, Stanford

2011 1st round Draft Pick: Aldon Smith DE/OLB, Missouri
Team Needs: RG/RT/FS/DE/WR/QB

Thanks to Jim Harbaugh this team has completely turned around for the better. Heading into the draft the 49ers will only have a few needs and none of them should be too pressing. Their biggest need will be at wide receiver after losing Josh Morgan and cutting Braylon Edwards. They did sign Mario Manningham and Randy Moss but Moss is only a stop-gap. They also have a hole at right guard now that Adam Snyder has signed with the Cardinals. They could take a chance on Alshon Jeffery or reach for Mohamed Sanu. At DE Isaac Sopoaga and Justin Smith played extremely well last season but they are 30 and 33 years old respectively so the team could draft for depth and a future starter with someone like Devon Still or Kendall Reyes if either of them are available. I know the 49ers have Vernon Davis but none of the available prospects line up with the team’s needs. Coach Harbaugh likes using multiple TE sets and adding another weapon for Alex Smith wouldn’t hurt, especially a weapon that Harbaugh is very familiar with.

31. New England Patriots – Devon Still DE/DT, Penn State

2011 1st round Draft Pick: Nate Solder OT, Colorado
Team Needs: OLB/DE/WR/OC/CB

As previously stated the Patriots will most likely not use both of their first round picks. Here they have the luxury of taking the best player available that fits any sort of need. That player could be Kendall Reyes or Devon Still who both can play end in a 3-4 and tackle when they switch to the 4-3 and he would help revamp New England’s lacking pass rush. Like the 49ers the Pats could reach for one of the available WR’s such as Jeffery or Sanu, or they could take Notre Dame safety Harrison Smith as Belichick does have a history of using early round picks on the secondary. Here Devon Still makes the most sense as a versatile player who can play DT in their 4-3 and DE in their 3-4 defense.

32. New York Giants – Jonathan Martin OT, Stanford

2011 1st round Draft Pick: Prince Amukamara CB, Nebraska
Team Needs: OG/OT/RB/ILB/CB/FS

The Giants have serious issues all along the offensive line. At tackle William Beatty is injury prone and Kareem McKenzie is a 33 year old free agent leaving only 2010 fourth round pick James Brewer to replace him. The situation at guard is even worse. At running back Ahmad Bradshaw is injury prone and Brandon Jacobs has been cut. Defensively the Giants could use both another CB and at least one ILB as Aaron Ross, Chase Blackburn, and Jonathan Goff are all free agents who have yet to resign. At tight end both Jake Ballard and Travis Beckum suffered knee injuries in the Super Bowl and the Giants only signed Martellus Bennett to a one-year deal. With the prospects available it will probably come down to a running back like Lamar Miller, David Wilson, or Doug Martin, but Martin is the best player available and fills a big need for the Giants.

Round 2:

33. St. Louis Rams Jerel Worthy DT, Michigan State

The Rams cut both Fred Robbins and Justin Bannan and have shown some interest in Jerel Worthy.

34. Indianapolis Colts Alshon Jeffery WR, South Carolina

When teams draft QB’s at the top of the first round they usually find him some help in the second.

35. Minnesota Vikings Kevin Zeitler OG, Wisconsin

The Vikings released both starting guards this offseason. They also need help at wide receiver since they only have Percy Harvin so if Alshon Jeffery were available he would be the selection.

36. Tampa Bay Buccaneers Doug Martin RB, Boise State

The Bucs need playmakers on offense. Doug Martin would be a great compliment to LaGarrette Blount who doesn’t offer much in the way of pass-catching or blocking, two things which Martin excels at doing.

37. Cleveland Browns Rueben Randle WR, LSU

Cleveland must use one of their top three picks in the draft to address their need for a true number one WR and will probably take the highest rated one here.

38. Jacksonville Jaguars Chandler Jones DE, Syracuse

Jacksonville needs a pass rusher to play opposite of Jeremy Mincey and could easily take Melvin Ingram with their first pick. Chandler Jones has seen his stock rise significantly and could be taken in the first round.

39. St. Louis Rams (via Washington Redskins) – David Wilson RB, Virginia Tech

New Head Coach Jeff Fisher love a strong running game. Steven Jackson has taken a pounding as the work horse back for St. Louis and they could use a compliment to him to prolong his career. David Wilson is a solid overall player with the potential to be a three-down back and would be a serious upgrade to back-up Jackson over Jerious Norwood and Cadillac Williams.

40. Carolina Panthers Bob Massie OT, Ole Miss

Jeff Otah is always injured. If they bypass taking Dontari Poe or Fletcher Cox in the first round they could take Kendall Reyes or Brandon Thompson here.

41. Buffalo Bills Brian Quick WR, Appalachian State

The Bills need a solid compliment to Steve Johnson and to help Ryan Fitzpatrick in the passing game.

42. Miami Dolphins Mohamed Sanu WR, Rutgers

This pick will come down to a DE to pair with Cameron Wake in their new 4-3 defense, a right tackle to replace Marc Colombo, or a wide receiver to replace the traded Brandon Marshall.

43. Seattle Seahawks Bobby Wagner LB, Utah State

Seattle lost David Hawthorne to free agency and only resigned Leroy Hill to a one-year deal so linebacker will be a top priority here if they fail to land Luke Kuechly in the first round. This pick should come down to Bobby Wagner or Mychal Hendricks.

44. Kansas City Chiefs Alameda Ta'amu NT, Washington

If K.C. doesn’t draft Dontari Poe in the first round they’ll have to take a nose tackle here to replace Kelly Gregg.

45. Dallas Cowboys Harrison Smith SS, Notre Dame

Dallas could very easily take Mark Barron in the first round so it is no surprise that they would look at Harrison Smith here.

46. Philadelphia Eagles Janoris Jenkins CB, North Alabama

Andy Reid likes spending early picks on CB’s and Asante Samuel might be cut or traded at some point. Jenkins is a steal here and a team like the Eagles will overlook his character concerns.

47. New York Jets Mychal Kendricks LB, Cal

The Jets could go for a RT to replace the dreadful Wayne Hunter, a WR to replace 35 year old free agent Plaxico Burress, or an ILB to eventually replace Bart Scott. If they do trade up for Melvin Ingram in the first then this pick will be compensation to Jacksonville who would most likely take a cornerback like Jayron Hosley or Josh Robinson since all of their current CB’s are set to be free agents in 2013.

48. New England Patriots (via Oakland Raiders) Amini Silatolu OG/OT, Midwestern State

The Pats love to draft versatile linemen and Amini Silatolu is the best player available. He’s seen his stock rise and could be chosen in the late-first round. Also Matt Light has retired.

49. San Diego Chargers Ronnell Lewis DE/OLB, Oklahoma

Even though they signed Jarrett Johnson in free agency the Chargers still need to upgrade their pass-rush and could use their first round pick on an OLB.

50. Chicago Bears Jayron Hosley CB, Virginia Tech

At this point Chicago’s biggest needs are at OG, CB, and LB and with the talent available Jayron Hosley is should be the pick.

51. Philadelphia Eagles (via Arizona Cardinals) Kendall Reyes DT, UConn

They took Fletcher Cox in the first round but this is a best player available situation. Andy Reid likes drafting defensive lineman and has issues at the tackle position. Trevor Laws signed with the Rams, Derek Landri and Antonio Dixon were only resigned to one-year contracts, and Mike Patterson suffered a seizure which might have long-term health ramifications.

52. Tennessee Titans Lavonte David OLB, Nebraska

The Titans need an upgrade at WLB and Lavonte David would form a great young tandem with Colin McCarthy and Akeem Ayers.

53. Cincinnati Bengals Lamar Miller RB, Miami

Cedric Benson is unlikely to be resigned and pushing on that 30 year old RB wall. They did sign BenJarvis Green-Ellis but Miller is a steal here would could be taken in the late-first to early-second round.

54. Detroit Lions Alfonzo Dennard CB, Nebraska

Detroit always goes with the best player available and they do have a need at cornerback. After Dennard’s recent arrest it’s possible that he could fall on draft day.

55. Atlanta Falcons Kelechi Osemele OG/OT, Iowa State
2011 1st round Draft Pick: Julio Jones WR, Alabama
Team Needs: LT/OC/RB/DE/TE

Atlanta has several needs that should be addressed but unfortunately they traded away their first and fourth round picks this year to Cleveland for the rights to draft Julio Jones last year. On the offensive line they’ll need to replace LT Sam Baker who was benched at one point during the season. At center Todd McClure will turn 35 years old before the draft and he is a free agent. At RB Michael Turner is starting to show some wear and tear. They resigned both John Abraham and Kroy Biermann but Abraham is already 34 years old and last years free agent signing Ray Edwards was a bust in his first season with the team so don’t rule out the Falcons taking a DE here. And at ILB Curtis Lofton signed with New Orleans and all Atlanta has to replace him is the recently sign Lofa Tatupu. Here the Falcons should take the best offensive lineman available, particularly at tackle or center. They’ve shown interest in Kelechi Osemele who can also play guard if Joe Hawley doesn’t play better in his second year.

56. Pittsburgh Steelers Derek Wolfe DE/DT, Cincinnati

Defensive end is far from the Steelers biggest need but Derek Wolfe is the best prospect available that does fit any sort of need which is the Steelers drafting philosophy. With Aaron Smith gone and Brett Keisel on his way out in the next year or two the Steelers will be lacking depth at the position, especially if they move Ziggy Hood to nose tackle either permanently or temporarily while Casey Hampton is injured. He represents a much better value than any of the available nose tackles like Josh Chapman or Nick Jean-Baptiste and the Steelers have shown interest in him.

57. Denver Broncos Brandon Thompson DT, Clemson

If Denver bypasses the DT position in the first round they must address it here with Brandon Thompson who is one of the best players available.

58. Houston Texans Mitchell Schwartz OT, Cal

Houston has big holes on the offensive line after losing Mike Brisiel to free agency and releasing Eric Winston.

New Orleans Saints

Forfeited in bounty scandal.

59. Green Bay Packers Mike Martin DE/DT, Michigan

None of the Packers current DE’s generate much of a pass-rush. This may be a little early for Mike Martin but the Packers prefer their DE’s with a little more size/strength combo.

60. Baltimore Ravens Vinny Curry DE/OLB, Marshall

The Ravens biggest needs at this point are on the offensive line at LT, LG, and OC, but any of the available prospects would be considered a reach and the Ravens always go for the best player available. Just because they take an ILB who could possibly be a pass-rusher will not prevent them from taking another rusher here. The lost Jarrett Johnson to free agency and Sergio Kindle may never be healthy enough to play.

61. San Francisco 49ers A.J. Jenkins WR, Illinois

San Fran really doesn’t have any pressing needs. With the talent available they will mostly likely go for a WR here.

62. New England Patriots Zach Brown LB, UNC

In addition to needing to upgrade their pass-rush the Pats also need an OLB who can cover when they are I their 4-3 alignment.

63. New York Giants Dwayne Allen TE, Clemson

Jake Ballard and Travis Beckum both suffered ACL injuries in the Super Bowl and Martellus Bennett was only signed to a one-year deal. The Giants like TE’s who can also block.

Round 3:

64. Indianapolis Colts Josh Robinson CB, Central Florida

Indy needed upgrades at CB even before they lost Jacob Lacy to free agency.

65. St. Louis Rams Brandon Boykin CB, UGA

The Rams need a number two CB to pair with newly signed Cortland Finnegan.

66. Minnesota Vikings Marvin McNutt WR, Iowa

Minnesota has to draft a WR relatively early.

67. Cleveland Browns Brandon Weeden QB, Oklahoma State

If Cleveland bypasses Ryan Tannehill in the first round they’ll have to take someone in the next few rounds to compete with Colt McCoy.

68. Tampa Bay Buccaneers Billy Wynn DT, Boise State

Brian Price has been a complete bust.

69. Washington Redskins Zebrie Sanders OT, Florida State

RT Jammal Brown has a long injury history.

70. Jacksonville Jaguars Dwight Bentley CB, LA-Lafayette

Rashean Mathis is getting old and was only resigned to a one-year deal.

71. Buffalo Bills James Brown OT, Troy

The Bills need to bring in some competition for Chris Hairston at left tackle.

72. Miami Dolphins Andre Branch DE, Clemson

In their new 4-3 alignment the Dolphins will need another DE to pair with Cameron Wake.

73. Miami Dolphins (from Chicago Bears via Carolina Panthers) Brandon Brooks OG/OT, Miami of Ohio

Miami needs to replace Marc Colombo at right tackle.

74. Kansas City Chiefs Chris Polk RB, Washington

K.C. has nothing but injury issues at running back as Jamaal Charles is coming back from a torn ACL and injury-prone Peyton Hillis was only signed to a one year deal.

75. Seattle Seahawks Cam Johnson DE, Virginia

Seattle has pass-rushing issues. Raheem Brock is a 34 year old free agent, Jason Jones only signed a one-year deal, and Chris Clemons is a free agent next year.

76. Houston Texans (via Philadelphia Eagles) Josh Kaddu DE/OLB, Oregon

Houston will be looking for rotational depth at OLB after losing Mario Williams to free agency.

77. New York Jets Nick Toon, WR, Wisconsin

The Jets need more consistent weapons for Sanchez or Tebow besides Santonio Holmes. Nick is the son of former Jets Pro-bowl WR Al Toon.

Oakland Raiders

Forfeited after selecting Terrelle Pryor in the supplemental draft.

78. San Diego Chargers – LeMichael James RB, Oregon

San Diego misses having Darren Sproles in the back field.

79. Chicago Bears Tank Carder ILB, TCU

Brian Urlacher will be 34 years old and is coming off of a knee injury.

80. Arizona Cardinals Juron Criner WR, Arizona

Arizona needs another WR to take the pressure off of Larry Fitzgerald.

81. Dallas Cowboys – Jamell Fleming CB, Oklahoma

Dallas needs depth at CB and a possible number two since Mike Jenkins should not be starting.

82. Tennessee Titans Ron Brooks CB, LSU

The Titans will need depth after losing Cortland Finnegan to free agency.

83. Cincinnati Bengals Brandon Washington OG/OT, Miami

Cincy needs depth at OG and maybe a possible starter.

84. Atlanta Falcons Trumaine Johnson CB/S, Montana

The Falcons need secondary help and they have shown interest in Trumaine Johnson.

85. Detroit Lions Jeff Allen OT, Illinois

Detroit has to address their offensive line at some point. Jeff Backus is 34 years old.

86. Pittsburgh Steelers Isaiah Pead RB, Cincinnati

Rashard Mendenhall will be coming back from a torn ACL and Isaac Redman is the only running back on the roster with any credible experience. Baron Batch spent his rookie season on the bench with an ACL tear and both Jon Dwyer and John Clay are largely unproven save for one long gain and one short touchdown run respectively. Head Coach Mike Tomlin said the position would likely be addressed in the draft and the Steelers have shown interested in Isaiah Pead.

87. Denver Broncos – Bernard Pierce RB, Temple

John Fox likes using a multi-back system and Knowshon Moreno is always injured.

88. Philadelphia Eagles (via Houston Texans) Brock Osweiler QB, Arizona State

The Eagles needs a young QB that they can groom for the future or can trade for a future draft pick like they did with Kevin Kolb. Osweiler has the highest upside of any of the second tier QB’s and is extremely mobile for his stature.

89. New Orleans Saints Brandon Taylor S, LSU
2011 1st round Draft Picks: Cameron Jordan DE/DT, Cal/Mark Ingram RB, Alabama
Team Needs: OLB/DT/SS

Offensively the Saints signed Ben Grubbs to replace Carl Nicks but could still use some depth. At wide receiver they resigned Marques Colston but Robert Meachem went to the Chargers. Their biggest needs are on defense. They’ve already addressed their need at linebacker with the signings of Curtis Lofton and David Hawthorne. At defensive tackle youth is needed at Aubrayo Franklin is 32 years old and Shaun Rogers is 33 years old, and both of them are free agents anyway. They did sign Brodrick Bunkley but can still use one more. And at safety they must find someone who can cover better than Roman Harper who is constantly burned in coverage.

90. Green Bay Packers – Robert Turbin RB, Utah State

The Packers will need a replacement for Ryan Grant.

91. Baltimore Ravens Chris Givens WR, Wake Forest

Lee Evans is gone and Anquan Boldin’s skills are declining.

92. San Francisco 49ers Jared Crick DT/DE, Nebraska

San Fran needs youth and depth at DE.

93. New England Patriots Markelle Martin S, Oklahoma State

New England needs someone to pair with Patrick Chung.

94. New York Giants Tony Bergstrom OG/OT, Utah

The Giants have a huge hole at left guard.

95.compensatory pick. Oakland Raiders Josh Chapman NT, Alabama

Oakland is converting to a 3-4 defense and will need a nose tackle.

Round 4:

96. St. Louis Rams Terrell Manning OLB, North Carolina State

Brady Poppinga and Chris Chamberlin are free agents, with Chamberlin having already signed with the Saints.

97. Indianapolis Colts Ladarius Green TE, Louisiana-Lafayette

Indy cut Dallas Clark.

98. Minnesota Vikings Casey Hayward CB, Vanderbilt

The Vikings Antoine Winfield is 35 years old and injury-prone.

99. Houston Texans (via Philadelphia Eagles from Tampa Bay Buccaneers) James-Michael Johnson ILB, Nevada

Houston signed Bradie James to replace DeMeco Ryans but he’s only a short-term solution.

100. Cleveland Browns Chase Minnifield CB, Virginia

Cleveland has Sheldon Brown and resigned Dimitri Patterson but neither are solid starting options. Chase’s father Frank was a Pro-bowler for the Browns so he’ll be a fan favorite and Mike Holmgren likes spending early picks on cornerbacks..

101. Jacksonville Jaguars Brandon Mosley OT, Auburn

Guy Whimper was resigned to a two-year deal but he’s terrible.

102. Washington Redskins Cyrus Gray RB, Texas A&M

Washington has no depth at RB.

103. Miami Dolphins Antonio Allen S, South Carolina

The Dolphins cut Yeremiah Bell.

104. Carolina Panthers Josh Norman CB, Coastal Carolina

Carolina needs an upgrade across from Chris Gamble.

105. Buffalo Bills Orson Charles TE, UGA

Buffalo could use an upgrade over Scott Chandler at TE.

106. Seattle Seahawks Leonard Johnson CB, Iowa State

Seattle resigned Marcus Trufant but he’s coming back from a nagging back injury.

107. Kansas City Chiefs Ryan Steed CB, Furman

The Chiefs were still trying to resign Brandon Carr after having signed Stanford Routt so they could use some depth at CB.

108. Denver Broncos (via New York Jets) Marvin Jones WR, Cal

Denver will get as many weapons as possible for Peyton Manning.

109. Washington Redskins (via Oakland Raiders) Senio Kelemete OG, Washington

Kory Lichtensteiger will be coming back from a serious knee injury.

110. San Diego Chargers Shaun Prater CB, Iowa

San Diego might move Quentin Jammer to strong safety.

111. Chicago Bears Marcus Forston DT, Miami

They cut Anthony Adams and lost Amobi Okoye to free agency.

112. Arizona Cardinals Jake Bequette DE/OLB, Arkansas

Arizona needs to bring in some competition for O’Brien Schofield.

113. Dallas Cowboys Phillip Blake OG/OC, Baylor

Phil Costa needs to be replaced.

114. Philadelphia Eagles George Iloka SS, Boise State

Jaiquawn Jarrett was terrible last season.

115. Tennessee Titans Tyrone Crawford DE, Boise State

Tennessee needs a possible replacement for Derrick Morgan if he can’t turn things around.

116. Cincinnati Bengals T.Y. Hilton WR, Florida International

Jerome Simpson is a free agent who got arrested for drug possession.

117. Detroit Lions Trenton Robinson S, Michigan State

Amari Spievey needs to be replaced.

118. Cleveland Browns (via Atlanta Falcons) Sean Spence OLB, Miami

The Browns need an OLB.

119. Pittsburgh Steelers Keith Tandy CB, West Virginia

The Steelers have a lot of largely unproven talent at cornerback behind Ike Taylor, and Taylor himself will turn 32 years old shortly after the 2012 draft.

120. Denver Broncos DeQuan Menzie CB, Alabama

Denver released Andre Goodman.

121. Houston Texans – Nick Jean-Baptiste NT, Baylor

Houston needs a bigger nose tackle that can anchor the front.

122. New Orleans Saints Ryan Broyles WR, Oklahoma

The Saints did a very good job in free agency filling most of their holes so here they can afford to take the best player available for depth. Broyles would be a solid addition to the WR corps and would replace Robert Meachem.

123. Green Bay Packers Coryell Judie CB, Texas A&M

Charles Woodson will be 36 years old this season.

124. Buffalo Bills (via Baltimore Ravens) – Russell Wilson QB, Wisconsin

Trent Edwards had an up and down season. Wilson is a good developmental QB that fits Chan Gailey’s system.

125. San Francisco 49ers Andrew Datko OT, FSU

San Fran has a hole at RG and needs an upgrade at RT. They could move Anthony Davis to guard and draft a tackle.

126. New England Patriots Chris Rainy RB/WR, Florida

Another weapon for Tom Brady.

127. New York Giants Jaye Howard DT, Florida

The Giants need depth at DT after a few free agent losses.

128. compensatory pick. Minnesota Vikings Nigel Bradham LB, FSU

E.J. Henderson is a free agent who needed to be replaced anyway.

129. compensatory pick. Oakland Raiders Jonathan Massaquoi DE/OLB, Troy

Oakland needs OLB’s for their new 3-4 defense.

130. compensatory pick. Baltimore Ravens Ben Jones OG/OC, UGA

Baltimore lost Ben Grubbs to free agency and could use an eventual starter at OC behind Matt Birk.

131. compensatory pick. New York Giants Tommy Streeter WR, Miami

The Giants lost Mario Manningham to free agency.

132. compensatory pick. Green Bay Packers Aaron Henry S, Wisconsin

Nick Collins may never play again after a serious neck injury.

133. compensatory pick. Green Bay Packers Kyle Wilber LB, Wake Forest

Green Bay has no depth at ILB and may cut or trade A.J. Hawk at some point.

134. compensatory pick. Minnesota Vikings Hebron Fangupo NT, BYU

Minnesota needs a powerful run-stuffer like Pat Williams.

135. compensatory pick. Dallas Cowboys Joe Adams WR, Arkansas

Dallas lost Laurent Robinson in free agency.

Round 5

136. Indianapolis Colts Trevin Wade CB, Arizona

Indy needs multiple upgrades in the secondary.

137. Denver Broncos (via St. Louis Rams) Kirk Cousins QB, Michigan State

Denver needs someone to backup Peyton Manning with Tim Tebow traded to the Jets and Brady Quinn signing with the Chiefs.

138. Minnesota Vikings Philip Thomas FS, Syracuse

Minnesota has had issues at safety for a while now.

139. Cleveland Browns Oliver Vernon DE, Miami

Cleveland released Jayme Mitchell.

140. Tampa Bay Buccaneers Keenan Robinson OLB, Texas

Geno Hayes is a free agent and Quincy Black was terrible last season.

141. Washington Redskins Bruce Irvin DE/OLB, West Virginia

Washington has no depth behind Brian Orakpo and Ryan Kerrigan.

142. Jacksonville Jaguars Demario Davis OLB, Arkansas State

Jacksonville needs depth at LB.

143. Carolina Panthers Akiem Hicks DT, Canada

Carolina must do something about their DT issues at some point. Akiem Hicks is the poor man’s version of Michael Brockers.

144. Buffalo Bills Kheeston Randall DT, Texas

Buffalo could use some depth at DT.

145. Miami Dolphins Michael Egnew TE, Missouri

Miami needs an upgrade over Anthony Fasano at TE.

146. Kansas City Chiefs Nick Foles QB, Arizona

If Matt Cassel gets injured again K.C. can’t depend on Ricky Stanzi, Tyler Palko, or newly signed Brady Quinn.

147. Buffalo Bills (via Seattle Seahawks) Malik Jackson DE, Tennessee

Buffalo could use some depth at DE because Mark Anderson has injury issues.

148. Oakland Raiders Gino Gradkowski OG/OC, Delaware

Oakland has no depth on the offensive line.

149. San Diego Chargers Trevor Guyton DE, Cal

Luis Castillo was only resigned to a one-year contract.

150. Chicago Bears Lucas Nix OG, Pittsburgh

The Bears need to upgrade at right guard over Chris Spencer.

151. Arizona Cardinals Omar Bolden CB, ASU

Richard Marshall signed with Miami and A.J. Jefferson needs to be replaced.

152. Dallas Cowboys James Hanna TE, Oklahoma

Dallas lost Martellus Bennett to free agency.

153. Philadelphia Eagles Emmanuel Acho OLB, Texas

Brian Rolle will start at WLB, they traded for DeMeco Ryans to play ILB, but they still need an upgrade at SLB.

154. New York Jets Tavon Wilson S, Illinois

The Jets signed LaRon Landry but it was only to a one-year deal.

155. Tennessee Titans Josh Leribeus OG, SMU

Leroy Harris needs to be replaced.

156. Cincinnati Bengals Janzen Jackson FS, McNeese State

Cincy cut Chris Crocker.

157. Atlanta Falcons Vick Ballard RB, Mississippi State

Michael Turner is pretty much done.

158. Detroit Lions Coty Sensabaugh CB, Clemson

Detroit could use multiple upgrades in the secondary.

159. Pittsburgh Steelers Greg Childs WR, Arkansas

With the release of Hines Ward the Steelers have an open roster spot for a wide receiver. It will be interesting to see what kind of WR the Steelers will draft now that Todd Haley has replaced Bruce Arians as offensive coordinator. Arians preferred smaller, faster WR’s while Haley likes them big. The Steelers have shown interest in Greg Childs who has a good combination of size and speed at 6’3”, 219lbs. and ran a 4.39 40 at his pro day, although he ran a 4.55 at the combine. His 2011 season could be counted as a wash because he was still recovering from a torn patellar tendon from the year before.

160. Cleveland Browns (via Denver Broncos) Levy Adcock OG/OT, Oklahoma State

Cleveland cut Eric Steinbach.

161. Houston Texans Nate Potter OG/OT, Boise State

Houston lost Mike Brisiel to free agency and needs to replace Wade Smith.

162. New Orleans Saints Asa Jackson CB, Cal-Poly

New Orleans lost Tracy Porter to free agency.

163. Green Bay Packers Ryan Lindley QB, San Diego State

Matt Flynn is gone and it’s time for G.B. to find that next great backup to develop.

164. Baltimore Ravens Tauren Poole RB, Tennessee

Ricky Williams retired.

165. San Francisco 49ers David Molk OC, Michigan

San Fran could use a successor to Jon Goodwin.

166. Cincinnati Bengals (via New England Patriots) Dwight Jones WR, North Carolina

BPA, Cincy could use as many weapons as possible for Andy Dalton.

167. Cincinnati Bengals (via New York Giants) Travis Lewis OLB, Oklahoma

Cincy will need some depth at OLB after trading Keith Rivers to the Giants.

168. compensatory pick. Oakland Raiders Chris Greenwood CB, Albion

Oakland released Stanford Routt.

169. compensatory pick. Baltimore Ravens Ryan Miller OG, Colorado

Baltimore lost Ben Grubbs to free agency.

170. compensatory pick. Indianapolis Colts Joe Looney OG, Wake Forest

Ryan Diem retired and Mike Pollack signed with the Panthers.

Round 6

171. St. Louis Rams Tim Benford WR, Tennessee Tech

The Rams need as many weapons as possible for Sam Bradford.

172. Philadelphia Eagles (via Indianapolis Colts) Brandon Lindsey DE, Pittsburgh

Andy Reid loves to collect D-linemen.

173. Washington Redskins (via Minnesota Vikings) Donald Stephenson OT, Oklahoma

Washington has no depth on the offensive line.

174. Tampa Bay Buccaneers Taylor Thompson TE, SMU

Tampa Bay is looking for a blocking TE and are interested in Taylor Thompson.

175. Minnesota Vikings (via Cleveland Browns) Rishard Matthews WR, Nevada

Minnesota needs multiple upgrades at WR.

176. Jacksonville Jaguars Ronnie Hillman RB, San Diego State

The Jags could use some depth behind MJD, especially since he’s holding out.

177. Arizona Cardinals (via Washington Redskins) Travian Robertson DE/DT, South Carolina

Arizona needs depth on the defensive line.

178. Buffalo Bills T.J. Graham WR, North Carolina State

Buffalo could use some depth at WR.

179. New Orleans Saints (via Miami Dolphins) Rishaw Johnson OG, California of Pennsylvania

New Orleans lacks interior O-line depth.

180. Carolina Panthers Jarius Wright WR, Arkansas

Steve Smith is 33 years old and Carolina could use some depth anyway.

181. Seattle Seahawks B.J. Coleman QB, UT-Chattanooga

Charlie Whitehurst signed with the Chargers and the Seahawks will likely cut Tavares Jackson at some point after signing Matt Flynn.

182. Kansas City Chiefs Jordan White WR, Western Michigan

The Chiefs need depth at WR and have shown interest in Jordan White.

183. San Diego Chargers Audie Cole ILB, North Carolina State

San Diego lacks depth at LB.

184. Chicago Bears Eddie Whitley FS, Virginia Tech

Craig Steltz is marginally good and Major Wright is not good at all.

185. Arizona Cardinals Vontaze Burflict LB, Arizona State

Someone’s got to give Burflict a chance so why not the home team? Arizona will have to replace Stewart Bradley at some point because he is not a good fit for a 3-4 defense.

186. Dallas Cowboys Ronald Leary OG/OT, Memphis

Dallas needs depth on the offensive line and a possible starter at OG.

187. New York Jets (from Indianapolis Colts via Philadelphia Eagles) Joe Long OT, Wayne State

Wayne Hunter is terrible and needs to be replaced at RT.

188. Denver Broncos (via New York Jets) Winston Guy jr. SS, Kentucky

Brian Dawkins retired.

189. Oakland Raiders Tony Dye, S, UCLA

Oakland needs a backup plan if they can’t sign Tyvon Branch to a long-term deal.

190. Tennessee Titans Michael Brewster OC, Ohio State

The Titans need an upgrade at OC over Eugene Amano.

191. Cincinnati Bengals Tydreke Powell DT, UNC

Jon Fanene left in free agency.

Detroit Lions

Forfeited because of tampering charges.

192. Atlanta Falcons Danny Trevathan LB, Kentucky

Atlanta lost Curtis Lofton to free agency.

193. Pittsburgh Steelers David Paulson TE, Oregon

The Steelers look like they have interest in upgrading the TE position. They’ve brought in multiple prospects at the position, even after signing Leonard Pope, including David Paulson who is a solid blocker and pass-catcher with good size at 6’3”, 246lbs. and has a lot of potential.

194. Philadelphia Eagles (via Denver Broncos) Rokevious Watkins OG/OT, South Carolina

Philly traded Winston Justice and could use some depth along the offensive line.

195. Houston Texans Danny Coale WR, Virginia Tech

Houston could look at taking a couple of WR’s given the age and injury issues they have.

196. Miami Dolphins (via New Orleans Saints) Jerry Franklin LB, Arkansas

The Dolphins will need linebackers for their conversion to a 4-3.

197. Green Bay Packers – Adrien Robinson TE, Cincinnati

G.B. has shown interest in Adrien Robinson.

198. Baltimore Ravens Sean Richardson S, Vanderbilt

Haruki Nakamura and Tom Zbikowski both left in free agency.

199. San Francisco 49ers Chris Owusu WR, Stanford

Harbaugh should know Owusu well. He’s a medical risk but worth it here after a great combine.

200. Philadelphia Eagles (via New England Patriots) Cliff Harris CB, Oregon

Andy Reid loves drafting CB’s and DRC was terrible last season.

201. New York Giants Donnie Fletcher, CB/S, Boston College

They lost Aaron Ross to free agency and could use a replacement for Antrel Rolle.

202. compensatory pick. New York Jets Deangelo Peterson TE, LSU

The Jets need a blocking TE to go with Dustin Keller

203. compensatory pick. New York Jets Brian Stahovich P, San Diego State

T.J. Conley can be upgraded at the Jets brought in Brian Stahovich for a pre-draft visit.

204. compensatory pick. Cleveland Browns Brandon Hardin S, Oregon State

Mike Adams signed with Denver.

205. compensatory pick. Cleveland Browns Gerell Robinson WR, Arizona State

Cleveland could spend multiple picks on WR’s.

206. compensatory pick. Indianapolis Colts Najee Goode ILB, West Virginia

Phillip Wheeler signed with Oakland.

207. compensatory pick. Carolina Panthers Bryan Anger P, Cal

Carolina doesn’t have a punter on their current roster.

Round 7

208. Indianapolis Colts Desmond Wynn OG, Rutgers

The Colts have to rebuild the interior of their offensive line.

209. St. Louis Rams Terrance Ganaway RB/FB, Baylor

St. Louis would use an upgrade over injury-prone Brit Miller.

210. Minnesota Vikings Evan Rodriguez TE/H-back/FB, Temple

Jim Kleinsasser is retired.

211. Cleveland Browns DaJohn Harris DT, USC

Cleveland needs depth at DT.

212. Tampa Bay Buccaneers Sean Cattouse S, Cal

The Bucs released Tanard Jackson.

213. Washington Redskins Robert Blanton CB, Notre Dame

Washington could use some secondary depth.

214. Indianapolis Colts (from New York Jets via Jacksonville Jaguars) Edwin Baker RB, Michigan State

Donald Brown is a bust and Delone Carter isn’t much better.

215. Miami Dolphins Jerrell Young FS, South Florida

Miami released Yeremiah Bell and Sean Jones needs to be replaced.

216. Carolina Panthers Isaiah Frey CB, Nevada

Carolina needs multiple upgrades in the secondary.

217. Buffalo Bills Mike McCants OT, UAB

Buffalo needs depth at OT.

218. Kansas City Chiefs Julian Miller DE/OLB, West Virginia

K.C. needs depth at OLB.

219. Detroit Lions (via Seattle Seahawks) Devon Wylie WR, Fresno State

Detroit has shown interest in Devon Wylie.

220. Chicago Bears Darius Fleming OLB, Notre Dame

Brian Urlacher probably won’t be able to start the season.

221. Arizona Cardinals Jeff Fuller WR, Texas A&M

Arizona lacks any passing threat besides Larry Fitzgerald.

222. Dallas Cowboys Blake Gideon FS, Texas

Dallas needs depth at safety.

223. Minnesota Vikings (from New England Patriots via Philadelphia Eagles) Chase Baker DT, Boise State

Minnesota brought in Chase Baker for a pre-draft visit.

224. Green Bay Packers (via New York Jets) Tom Compton OT, South Dakota

G.B. needs OT depth because of Derek Sherrod’s injury.

225. Seattle Seahawks (via Oakland Raiders) Marc Tyler RB, USC

Seattle needs depth at RB.

226. San Diego Chargers D.J. Campbell S, Cal

The Chargers need depth at safety and brought Campbell in for a pre-draft visit.

227. Tennessee Titans Tim Fugger DE, Vanderbilt

Derrick Morgan looks like a bust.

228. Jacksonville Jaguars (via Cincinnati Bengals) Garth Gerhart OC/OG, Arizona State

Brad Meester will be a free agent next year.

229. Atlanta Falcons Marquis Maze WR, Alabama

Eric Weems signed with Chicago.

230. Detroit Lions Bobby Rainey RB, Western Kentucky

Detroit has injury issues at RB.

231. Pittsburgh Steelers Randy Bullock K, Texas A&M

It's time Pittsburgh moved on from Shaun Suisham.

232. New York Jets (via Denver Broncos) DeVier Posey WR, Ohio State

The Jets need to get weapons to take the pressure off of Sanchez/Tebow.

233. Houston Texans John Cullen OT, Utah

More depth for Houston’s O-line. Cullen is a good fit for their zone blocking scheme.

234. New Orleans Saints Will Blackwell OG, LSU

The Saints need offensive line depth.

235. Green Bay Packers Chris Anzevino OC, Kent State

G.B. lost Scott Wells in free agency.

236. Baltimore Ravens Logan Harrell DE/OLB, Fresno State

BPA, Harrell is a high motor guy who could shed weight and play OLB or gain weight and play 3-4 DE.

237. San Francisco 49ers Delano Howell S, Stanford

Dashon Golden is terrible in coverage.

238. Kansas City Chiefs (via New England Patriots) Matt Reynolds OG/OT, BYU

K.C. needs depth at OT.

239. New York Giants Tahir Whitehead OLB, Temple

The Giants need linebacker depth.

240. compensatory pick. Pittsburgh Steelers Keshawn Martin WR, Michigan State

The Steelers add depth at wide receiver with another player who was brought in for a pre-draft visit.

241. compensatory pick. Green Bay Packers Jermaine Kearse WR, Washington

Donald Driver is 37 years old.

242. compensatory pick. New York Jets – Josh Bush S, Wake Forest

Eric Smith is terrible and Jim Leonard is coming back from injury.

243. compensatory pick. Green Bay Packers Scott Solomon DE/OLB, Rice

Depth at OLB.

244. compensatory pick. New York Jets – Josue Ortiz DE, Harvard

Depth at DE.

245. compensatory pick. Cleveland Browns Drew Butler P, UGA

Reggie Hodges tore his Achilles tendon

246. compensatory pick. Pittsburgh Steelers – Jerrell Harris LB, Alabama

The Steelers add depth at ILB. If they are sold on Stevenson Sylvester as the ILB of the future then they can cut Larry Foote and free up more cap room to sign Mike Wallace to a long-term contract.

247. compensatory pick. Cleveland Browns – Armond Armstead DT, USC

Cleveland bolsters their DT depth behind Phil Taylor and Ahtyba Rubin again with another USC product.

248. compensatory pick. Pittsburgh Steelers – Kevin Beachum OG, SMU

The Steelers close out their draft with another prospect who was brought in for a pre-draft visit. Beachum played left tackle in the SMU spread offense but lacks the prototypical size at 6'3", 304lbs. to play tackle in the NFL, however he is thickly built and plays with very sound overall technique.

249. compensatory pick. Atlanta Falcons William Vlachos OC, Alabama

Todd McClure is 35 years old and only signed a one-year deal.

250. compensatory pick. San Diego Chargers – George Bryan TE, North Carolina State

Antonio Gates is always injured.

251. compensatory pick. Buffalo Bills Chris Marve LB, Vanderbilt

The Bills need depth at linebacker.

252. compensatory pick. St. Louis Rams – Jacquies Smith DE, Missouri

The Rams released James Hall.

253. compensatory pick. Indianapolis Colts – Matt Conrath DE/DT, Virginia

Indy needs multiple players for their new 3-4 defense.



Source: Behind the Steel Curtain


BTSC 2012 Community Mock Draft Pick No. 28 — Green Bay Packers Select Shea McClellin, DE/OLB, Boise State


*** Discuss this article and more at our Pittsburgh Steelers forum ***


Photo

It took me too long to make this pick. I never expected to wrestle with it for as long as I did. Just lock-and-load to second-guess and rip away. Next up: Baltimore Ravens and they'll be represented by our very favorite, Mr MaLoR.

By the way, take note of the cool little minute-long draft profiles from SBN NFL that are embedded with these picks. It's been Michael Bean's personal project to make these videos happen, and let us know what you think of them! -barnerburner-

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I had a lot of trouble and did not know who to go with here for the Green Bay Packers.

I could at least narrow it down to one side of the ball - with their offense tops in the league in scoring and 3rd overall in yards per game, and their defense a below average 19th in scoring and the league's caboose at 32nd in yards per game.

Then I could look at their 29 total sacks - which tied them with the Colts, Bills, and Chiefs for the 27th worst mark in the league and the third-lowest total overall - to deduce that something disappeared from their Super Bowl-winning front seven in 2010 (47 sacks, tied for 2nd overall).

And then... I was stuck.

I mean I did make a pick to meet a deadline, but I'm still second-guessing it to a degree.

Do I go with a defensive lineman to play end in their 3-4? Or do I go with an outside linebacker to play opposite Clay Matthews?

Defensive linemen:

  • Devon Still, Penn State (6'5, 303)
  • Jerel Worthy, Michigan State (6'2, 308)
  • Kendall Reyes, Connecticut (6'4, 299)

Two guys with somewhat solid Day 1 grades, another guy with a late-1st/early-2nd round grade. I really wanted to throw out Jerel Worthy right from the get-go because of (what I think is) his relative lack of size (in this case, height/length). Then I looked up what Cullen Jenkins is listed at, and he's apparently 6'2, 305. It's relevant because in retrospect, the loss of Jenkins and the lack of depth to consistently fill that void this past year (Jenkins had 7 sacks in just 11 games in 2010) is what largely precipitated the Packers' fall from lofty defensive standards.

(Potential) outside linebackers:

  • Shea McClellin, Boise State (6'3, 260)
  • Andre Branch, Clemson (6'4, 259)
  • Vinny Curry, Marshall (6'3, 266)

The four big-name DE/OLB prospects - Melvin Ingram, Nick Perry, Whitney Mercilus, and Courtney Upshaw - have all been taken, leaving me with an assortment of late-1st/early-2nd round prospects.

(I also tried to consider Chandler Jones, DE from Syracuse here, but wasn't entirely sure how he could best maximize his potential in a 3-4. So I threw him out.)

Narrowing down the DL prospects

I ended up throwing Jerel Worthy out anyways because 1) the more I read about him, the more he sounded like a penetrating 4-3 DT that would be out of place at 3-4 DE (like Corey Liuget, the Chargers' 2011 1st round pick, though Liuget may still develop by leaps and bounds going into his second year); and 2) because I just can't take him over Still, when they both played the same position in the same conference and Still was the one named Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year (maybe it's just me though).

The thing is, I eventually decided against Still as well. I think Still is a relatively safe pick that the Packers could take here, and he could certainly help shore up the run defense and create some pressure that linebackers can clean up on. He would definitely be an asset to the team, but my gut feeling is that his effectiveness in a 3-4 would be a step below his effectiveness as a disruptive 4-3 DT. As such, I'm not sure if his value to the Packers here is far enough ahead of the value of a DL prospect from the next tier - like Brandon Thompson from Clemson or Jared Crick from Nebraska - both of whom should be available closer to their 2nd round pick.

And since I could not take Kendall Reyes ahead of both Still and Worthy, and because Reyes' draft stock reminds me a little bit of Kentwan Balmer's back in 2008, I have to throw him out too.

Narrowing down the OLB prospects

This was really tough, but I crossed Andre Branch off the list first. It was more of a gut feeling than anything, but I'll do my best to try to articulate the logic I think I had - McClellin and Curry both seem to me like they could have more to contribute to the Packers right now, even while they grow into the defense. Curry apparently already has a good array of moves in his pass rushing arsenal, and McClellin has some moves as well and a non-stop motor that will never give up on a play, along with the experience of having lined up all over the field at Boise State. All the reports I read on Branch talked about how he can be lightning quick, but they all also talked about how he's a bit of a one-trick pony right now when pass rushing. I think I figured that of the three of them, Branch was the most likely to be a Larry English/Jerry Hughes-type bust.

So in the end...

With the 28th pick in the 2012 BTSC Community Mock Draft, the Green Bay Packers select Shea McClellin, DE/OLB, Boise State.

Yep, it just happened. At the risk of being accused of just going with a pick that's "in vogue" right now, I actually am going with McClellin. I really did not expect to decide on him, but that's just the way it shook out for me today. And I'm not going to partially cop out and say that I'd like to trade down and get him later - I'm taking Shea McClellin and I'm taking him right here. Even if the Patriots take a different pass rusher ahead of me, I have no assurance that they won't double-down and take McClellin with their other 1st rounder (they are currently without both of their leading sack-getters this past season). I can't guarantee that the 49ers won't take another OLB for their rotation either. I know that the Colts should be in the market for an edge rusher with the second pick of the 2nd round to help flesh out their brand new 3-4 (which MaLoR points out in what is a fine piece of work).

I think Vinny Curry has better potential as a pure pass rusher - and we did begin this exercise in part to try to figure out how best to address the Packers' low sack total - but by all accounts he would require a ton of work before he could start dropping into coverage. I'm not necessarily just looking for someone to duplicate Clay Matthews on the opposite side (though that's not a bad end-result); I'm looking for as well-rounded a complement as I can find, who will provide greater flexibility to the defense across all of their various formations (especially if they go back to more 3-4 base defense, and then might need OLBs to drop more often out of that formation). I think McClellin is a better OLB prospect overall, because he has the experience of standing up and moving all over the field. The tiebreaker was McClellin's ability to excel in coverage sooner than Curry could.

I know that quite a few guys at Acme Packing Company aren't quite on board with taking him in the 1st round, and that's fine. I'm just not going to take their reasoning and use it completely in lieu of mine. The kid from Boise State has got speed, awareness, and a fantastic motor - what more do you want? The only knock is sack production specifically (seeming to "regress" with just 6 sacks in 2011 after 9.5 sacks in 2010), which then turns into the usual concerns about someone that "never dominated" against non-BCS competition. In rebuttal, I think you do have to give him a bit of a pass for the drop in sacks, because the experience he was gaining in coverage had to come at the expense of pass rushing opportunities. Furthermore, when Boise State went to play Georgia at Georgia, McClellin reportedly had a great performance against Cordy Glenn.

I'm still not sure I made the right decision to pass on Devon Still. However, with the Packers typically being the least active team in free agency (even less active than us), the fact that they went out to sign a guy like Anthony Hargrove to help address the position makes me a bit more comfortable with waiting to address the DL until the 2nd round or later (they have no idea yet if Pro Bowl safety Nick Collins will return to play football, so they could take a replacement early on Day 2).

BTSC 2012 Community Mock Draft Picks:

  1. Indianapolis Colts -- Andrew Luck, QB, Stanford
  2. Washington Redskins -- Robert Griffin III, QB, Baylor
  3. Minnesota Vikings -- Matt Kalil, OT, USC
  4. Cleveland Browns -- Justin Blackmon, WR, Oklahoma State
  5. Tampa Bay Buccaneers -- Morris Claiborne, CB, LSU
  6. St. Louis Rams -- Dontari Poe, DT, Memphis
  7. Jacksonville Jaguars -- Quinton Coples, DE, UNC
  8. Miami Dolphins -- Ryan Tannehill, QB, Texas A&M
  9. Carolina Panthers -- Luke Kuechly, LB, Boston College
  10. Buffalo Bills -- Michael Floyd, WR, Notre Dame
  11. Kansas City Chiefs -- Brock Osweiler, QB, Arizona State
  12. Seattle Seahawks -- Melvin Ingram, DE/OLB, South Carolina
  13. Arizona Cardinals -- Riley Reiff, OT, Iowa
  14. Dallas Cowboys -- Dre Kirkpatrick, CB, Alabama
  15. Philadelphia Eagles -- Mark Barron, S, Alabama
  16. New York Jets -- Trent Richardson, RB, Alabama
  17. Cincinnati Bengals -- Cordy Glenn, G/T, Georgia
  18. San Diego Chargers -- Nick Perry, DE/OLB, USC
  19. Chicago Bears -- David DeCastro, OG, Stanford
  20. Tennessee Titans -- Stephon Gilmore, CB, South Carolina
  21. Cincinnati Bengals -- Michael Brockers, DT, LSU
  22. Cleveland Browns -- Jonathan Martin, OT, Stanford
  23. Detroit Lions -- Whitney Mercilus, DE, Illinois
  24. Pittsburgh Steelers -- Dont'a Hightower, LB, Alabama
  25. Denver Broncos -- Fletcher Cox, DT, Mississippi State
  26. Houston Texans -- Stephen Hill, WR, Georgia Tech
  27. New England Patriots -- Courtney Upshaw, DE/OLB, Alabama



Source: Behind the Steel Curtain

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