Sunday, January 17, 2010

2010 NFL Mock Draft

1. St. Louis Rams
Jimmy Clausen, QB, Notre Dame
Although there are exceptions that test the rule (the 2006 Chicago Bears spring to mind): a team's more likely to lose games despite having a good quarterback than they are to win despite having a poor one. Unless an unexpected cut happens, the way Pennington fell into Miami's lap a couple of season's ago (or unless Brett Favre's ego decides it wants to see if he can take a team from worst to first), the Rams absolutely have to take a chance here on landing a good, young quarterback. There's no guarantees, and Clausen isn't as highly-rated a prospect as some QBs that have come out in recent years, but he's a three-year starter whose completion percentage and yards per attempt showed significant improvement in each of his three years at Notre Dame. Ndamukong Suh is a strong possibility, of course, but the Rams have taken a defensive linemen first in four of the last nine drafts, including two of the last three, and they're not going anywhere with the QBs they have.

2. Detroit Lions
Ndamukong Suh, DT, Nebraska
I don't know that there's a better argument for picking Suh here than this: Detroit's best defensive tackle last season was Grady Jackson. Although there's not much precedent for a DT coming in and having an impact right away, Suh is as good as advertised and, with just a little help along the line, should be playing at an All-Pro level within three seasons.

3. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Gerald McCoy, DT, Oklahoma
Speaking of teams with poor defensive tackles, the Bucs are actually worse off than the Lions. Featuring Chris Hovan, Ryan Sims, and Roy Miller, the Bucs fielded the worst rotation in the league. McCoy's a smart, athletic DT who is right there with Suh in terms of potential.

4. Washington Redskins
Russell Okung, OT, Oklahoma State
Washington's offensive line was a disaster in 09 and with long-time left tackle Chris Samuels very likely having to retire due to his neck injury, the Skins need to start rebuilding this unit immediately. If Sam Bradford shows enough during his workouts leading up to the draft, this would be a natural landing spot for him, but for my money he has a lot of work to do to get chosen this high.

5. Kansas City Chiefs
Dez Bryant, WR, Oklahoma State
Getting scared when you're a young man and lying about something you did is not uncommon. And the fact that what Bryant was lying about wasn't, in the big scheme of things, a huge deal, shouldn't mean so much when team's start putting those red flags next to players' names. In terms of on-field ability, Bryant was right up there with Michael Crabtree and I'd even give him the edge in raw playmaking ability. While I tend to believe you can find WRs, like RBs, throughout the draft and so it's generally not worth it to use a high pick on one, Bryant has special talent and would be worth it. That said, the Chiefs have a lot of needs, and Tennessee safety Eric Berry or Alabama middle linebacker Rolando McClain would also make a lot of sense here.

6. Seattle Seahawks
Eric Berry, DB, Tennessee
The Seattle defense was bad last year, but what was easy to overlook was that they played the run well with their rush defense posting a -8.8% DVOA. Unfortunately the Seahawks were third worst in the league at defending the pass (33% DVOA). With new offensive line coach Alex Gibbs being an expert at coaching up lower-round draft picks, Seattle can afford to go defense with this pick and try to shore up the O-line later. And Seattle is another spot Sam Bradford could land if he works out well and Seattle wants to focus on finding their future signal caller.

7. Cleveland Browns
Sam Bradford, QB, Oklahoma
Bradford is a huge question mark at this point, but the Browns can't be content to proceed with Brady Quinn and Derek Anderson as their only options at QB.

8. Oakland Raiders
Patrick Robinson, CB, Florida State
We'll probably have a clearer picture of who Al Davis will draft after the official 40 times are posted at the NFL combine, but until then let's say the Raiders go with speedy cornerback Patrick Robinson to help out with their pass defense which was pretty bad despite having the sixth-best adjusted sack rate and Nnamdi Asomugha covering one side of the field. If Robinson isn't as fast on the track as he is on the field, then another good Al Davis option would be safety Taylor Mays: if he runs the 40 in under 4.5 seconds at 6'3" and 230 lbs, it will be hard for Mr. Davis to look at anyone else.

9. Buffalo Bills
Anthony Davis, OT, Rutgers
Even before injuries decimated their offensive line the Bills struggled in pass protection. Neither Demetrius Bell nor Jonathan Scott came close to adequately filling the left tackle spot vacated by the Jason Peters trade.

10. Jacksonville Jaguars
Joe Haden, CB, Florida
With the tenth pick in the NFL draft, the Jacksonville Jaguars select University of Florida cornerback, Joe Haden. Selecting Tim Tebow here might sell tickets for a season or two, but the better long-term economic strategy is winning. And besides, Tebow should still be available in round two or three. More to the point: the Jaguars defense was incredibly unbalanced: they had the worst pass defense (39.7% DVOA) and the seventh best rush defense (-12% DVOA).

11. Denver Broncos (from Chicago Bears)
Rolando McClain, MLB, Alabama
Andra Davis played well at inside backer for his new team but he wore down as the season went on and will be 32 by the end of next season. The other inside backer D.J. Williams was serviceable at best in the new 3-4 scheme. Rolando McClain brings great value at this slot and would be a perfect addition to the rebuilt Broncos D.

12. Miami Dolphins
Sergio Kindle, OLB, Texas
Will Kindle's off-field trouble keep Parcells & co away? If Kindle can prove that he has any kind of head on his shoulders, any sense of what kind of player he can be and the willingness to do what it takes to make that happen, Miami can pull the trigger and take a chance on him. Starting outside linebackers Jason Taylor and Joey Porter are nearing the end of their careers and neither played particularly well last year with Porter especially seeing a drop off in his play.

13. San Francisco 49ers
Brian Price, DT, UCLA
The 49ers are a quarterback away from being a championship-qaulity team, but with no QB left on the board, I think they'll look to keeping their front seven stocked, although defensive back would garner strong consideration as well.

14. Seattle Seahawks (from Denver Broncos)
C.J. Spiller, RB, Clemson
Spiller would not only add a sorely missing explosive element to the Seattle run game, but he would go a long way toward improving their woeful return game as well.

15. New York Giants
Carlos Dunlap, DE, Florida
The Giants are still one of the most talented teams in the league and with Kenny Phillips and Antonio Pierce coming back from injury they can afford to go best player available.

16. Tennessee Titans
Jason Pierre-Paul, DE, South Florida

17. San Francisco 49ers (from Carolina Panthers)
Perrish Cox, CB, Oklahoma State

18. Pittsburgh Steelers
Corey Wooten, DE, Northwestern

19. Atlanta Falcons
Jermaine Gresham, TE, Oklahoma

20. Houston Texans
Donovan Warren, CB, Michigan

21. Cincinnati Bengals
Anthony McCoy, TE, USC

22. New England Patriots
Dan Williams, DT, Tennesee

23. Green Bay Packers
Bruce Campbell, OT, Maryland

24. Philadelphia Eagles
Sean Weatherspoon, OLB, Missouri

25. Baltimore Ravens
Brandon LaFell, WR, LSU

26. Arizona Cardinals
Bryan Bulaga, OT, Iowa

27. Dallas Cowboys
Trent Williams, OT, Oklahoma

28. San Diego Chargers
Terrence Cody, DT, Alabama

29. New York Jets
Damian Williams, WR, USC

30. Minnesota Vikings
Earl Thomas, S, Texas

31. New Orleans Saints
Derrick Morgan, DE, Georgia Tech

32. Indianapolis Colts
Charles Brown, OT, USC

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