This mock is of course assuming that no trades are made or anything which never happens so it can only truly be so accurate but this is my best guess based on my research and seeing who teams have been looking closest and and who fits in with the specific schemes and styles of the teams in question.
Feel free to comment and dispute anything you think would be different.
1. St. Louis Rams - Sam Bradford – QB, Oklahoma
Apparently Bradford wanted to wait on signing a contract in case someone else decided to trade up for him which isn’t going to happen so he’ll go #1 to the Rams and sign the biggest contract ever. The Rams need a QB and aren’t going to pay big money to a DT at #1 so this is pretty much a foregone conclusion at this point.
2. Detroit Lions - Ndamukong Suh – DT, Nebraska
3 different players are said to be in the running at this pick after Bradford with those including Suh, fellow DT Gerald McCoy, and OT Russell Okung. Suh is the best player in this draft and the Lions are done screwing up their early 1st round draft picks.
Word is that Albert Haynesworth is likely going to be traded, however, and if he should land in the Lions uniform then this pick would become Okung in a heartbeat.
3. Tampa Bay Buccaneers - Gerald McCoy – DT, Oklahoma
Easy pick here for the Bucs. They either draft Suh, if for whatever reason Detroit doesn’t, or they get who many have rated nearly as high as Suh at DT in McCoy. Either way they get an anchor to their defensive line for the foreseeable future as many have dubbed McCoy as the next Warren Sapp.
4. Washington Redskins - Trent Williams – OT, Oklahoma
3 Oklahoma players in the top 4 is ridiculous but given the zone-blocking scheme of new coach Mike Shanahan, Williams is a far better fit for them than Okung even though Okung is nearly universally the top OT on all ranking lists by scouts. Williams will need to live up to his potential though if they want to keep McNabb off of injured reserve next season with their currently abysmal offensive line.
5. Kansas City Chiefs - Russell Okung – OT, Oklahoma State
The combination of the offensive minds of Todd Haley and Charlie Weis can only mean one thing…a whole lot of passing next season. Kansas City had the 6th most sacks in the NFL last year and they currently have a player in Branden Albert playing LT when he is far better suited on the other side of the line or even moving back inside to his college position of OG.
6. Seattle Seahawks - Eric Berry – FS, Tennessee
Seattle was 30th in passing defense last year and their secondary could use a huge makeover. Berry is miles ahead of any other secondary player in this draft and can make an immediate impact in the Seahawks defense. Adding a playmaking safety to an already excellent set of LBs could give this defense a big boost next season.
7. Cleveland Browns - Joe Haden – CB, Florida
Drafting defense early is Holmgren’s style and with how pathetic the Browns’ defense was last season, especially their secondary, you can bet that improving that part of their team is going to be a priority for him. Eric Berry dropping to them here would be ideal but with him off the board, they turn to the next best secondary player in Joe Haden to pair with Eric Wright to create a formidable CB duo.
8. Oakland Raiders - Jason Pierre-Paul – DE, South Florida
As always, the Raiders are a tough team to predict because Al Davis is the only one with his brain. I’ve seen a lot of mocks with OT Bruce Campbell going here and while that might be the kind of off the wall pick that Davis could make, I think Pierre-Paul makes for the kind of pick he would go for as well. Defensive line is a need and Pierre-Paul is a physical freak with minimal experience at the position in college. This could actually turn out being a good pick if he lives up to his potential.
9. Buffalo Bills - Bryan Bulaga – OT, Iowa
Bulaga has been generally overrated in most mocks with him going in the top 5 but OTs always tend to go early and often in drafts and with this one being so deep at the position, it will be no different. Word is that the Bills aren’t exceptionally high on Clausen so taking a QB isn’t something expected here. The Bills offensive line was atrocious last season giving up 46 sacks (just 5 off the league high) so revamping that line should be a priority.
10. Jacksonville Jaguars - Derrick Morgan – DE, Georgia Tech
Defensive end seems to be a need for the Jags every year and this one is no different. Derrick Harvey has been a monumental bust so far and even though they have already grabbed Aaron Kampman to help with their abysmal sack totals (just 14 all of last season) but a polished pass rusher like Morgan would be a great pick for them here.
11. Denver Broncos - Dez Bryant – WR, Oklahoma State
This could have possibly been the pick even before Brandon Marshall was traded but after the trade their WR corps is wearing very thin. Eddie Royal is not a #1 WR and Bryant is an absolutely stellar WR talent that I think Denver will have a hard time passing up here. Just too perfect a fit.
12. Miami Dolphins - Dan Williams – DT, Tennessee
Williams would likely be solidly within the top 10 if this wasn’t such an unbelievably strong DT class. A big body who is a perfect fit as a 3-4 NT and considering the Dolphins need for the position, he makes for a very logical choice. The Brandon Marshall trade allows for Miami to concentrate more on defense early here and this would be a perfect pickup for them.
13. San Francisco 49ers - Anthony Davis – OT/OG, Rutgers
There are a whole lot of different ways the Niners could go with for this pick. CJ Spiller has been mentioned as a real possibility but the acquisition of Ted Ginn kind of makes me lean away from him as a pick as one of the real draws for Spiller is his special teams ability. San Francisco could use some help along the offensive line both at tackle and guard and Davis can potentially play both but I see him ending up as their RT of the future with Joe Staley entrenched on the left side.
14. Seattle Seahawks - Charles Brown – OT, USC
Brown’s draft stock has been skyrocketing lately as more and more scouts seem to be moving him up their boards and his obvious connection with Pete Carroll at USC makes this match even more likely. It is probably a reach here especially considering that there are other OTs who some still have ahead of Brown but I expect Carroll to want to bring in some guys he is already familiar with and Brown does have the makings of a solid pro LT.
15. New York Giants - Rolando McClain – MLB, Alabama
The Giants would probably be doing backflips if the best player at their biggest position of need fell into their lap like this. McClain is a very smart player who is the excellent run stopper that the Giants need in the middle of their defense to replace Antonio Pierce who was a staple in their defense for years now.
16. Tennessee Titans - Brandon Graham – DE, Michigan
The Titans struggled on defense for much of the year last year and while much of that has to do with the secondary and injuries they had, a great deal of it also had to do with their pass rush. With their only real legitimate pass rushing DE from last season now in Detroit, they need to fill that void and Graham has the pass rushing skills to be a real threat on the outside.
17. San Francisco 49ers - CJ Spiller – RB, Clemson
Admittedly, I could definitely see someone trading up to grab Spiller or one of the teams I have passing on him grabbing him before this point (such as the Seahawks or Giants, or even the Niners with their first pick) but as for now I have him here. While they passed on him the first time, when he’s still around this time I don’t see how they can really pass on him again.
18. Pittsburgh Steelers - Kyle Wilson – CB, Boise State
The Steelers went all of last season without their CBs even being a minor threat to intercept a single pass all season even against some pretty mediocre QBs. CB is really the only big weakness for this defense and although they could use some offensive line help as well, history tells us that they tend to look at their defensive weaknesses before their offensive line needs as that has been a need for a few years. Wilson has what the current Steeler CBs lack, speed and athleticism along with an ability to locate and actually CATCH the ball.
19. Atlanta Falcons - Sean Weatherspoon – OLB, Missouri
The Falcons need help on defense at both LB and DE and with the top DEs off the board, they jump on grabbing the top 4-3 OLB in this draft and probably the best overall LB after McClain. The Falcons defense took some strides forward last season and have already added Dunta Robinson to help their CB issues.
20. Houston Texans - Earl Thomas – FS, Texas
A lot of people have the Texans taking RB Ryan Matthews here and while that’s a possibility, I don’t find it likely if a player like Earl Thomas is on the board. Thomas’ draft value has been rising lately and he’s established himself as the definite #2 safety behind Berry. The Texans need serious help in the secondary and Thomas can help them fill that void.
21. Cincinnati Bengals - Sergio Kindle – DE/OLB, Texas
Kindle is a great athlete who could help the Bengals in their pass rush as a DE opposite Odom or possibly go the same way as Brian Orakpo and become a stand up 4-3 OLB for the Bengals as they could use both. Taylor Mays could be a possibility here as a freak athlete who is a hard hitter in the secondary but his performance last season hardly warrants him being taken here and Kindle has too much upside to pass up.
22. New England Patriots - Jermaine Gresham – TE, Oklahoma
The clear best TE in this draft and real legitimate receiving threat at the position would be a solid choice for the Patriots who currently have just 1 TE on the decline on their roster who is no longer a reasonable receiving threat. There probably isn’t a receiver they’d want to draft here but they need to give Brady another weapon in the passing game and Gresham can really help open things up on the outside for Moss.
23. Green Bay Packers - Mike Iupati – OG, Idaho
There are a few different ways the Packers could go here depending on who is available. With the top Safeties, 3-4 OLBs, and CBs off the board, the Packers can turn to address another glaring weakness from last season which is their offensive line. Iupati is an extremely strong and well built OL who can be an immediate impact player along their offensive line.
24. Philadelphia Eagles - Maurkice Pouncey – C/OG, Florida
The Eagles have a few needs and could potentially draft one of either McCourty or Robinson at CB but Pouncey is someone who is versatile and fills a need along the offensive line. He can play Center or OG which gives them some flexibility especially with Jackson recovering from his injury that significantly hurt Philly last season.
25. Baltimore Ravens - Devin McCourty – CB, Rutgers
The Ravens are scraping the bottom of the barrel at CB right now and so while it might be nice for them to potentially add a weapon in the passing game, they would probably be reaching for a WR and completely ignoring a blatant weakness. McCourty could potentially step in and start immediately for them and at least add some athleticism to a weak CB group.
26. Arizona Cardinals - Jerry Hughes – OLB, TCU
The Cardinals have a few needs this off season and while it may be in the realm of possibility that they would take Jimmy Clausen here as he is free falling late in the 1st round, they did bring in Derek Anderson in the off season to compete with Leinart so I don’t see that happening. They signed Joey Porter but he won’t contribute for long and may not even be a great contributor this year so grabbing a LB here who can get after the QB is a big need. Hughes is the best blitzing LB left on the board.
27. Dallas Cowboys - Bruce Campbell – OT, Maryland
The Cowboys have some serious issues along the offensive line and especially with Flozell Adams being out of the picture, they have a need at LT. Campbell has all the measurables you want in a franchise LT but he’s raw and could end up being a bust. He’s got too much upside to pass up here at a position of need, however, and I see Dallas grabbing him over someone else like Taylor Mays.
28. San Diego Chargers - Terrence Cody – NT, Alabama
The Chargers need a NT and Cody fits the bill as a big body who can easily occupy a couple blockers to make sure that things stay open for the LBs to make plays. The Chargers need some bulk on their defensive line and Cody answered the biggest questions about his weight when he showed up over twenty pounds lighter at his Pro-day than he was at the Senior Bowl.
29. New York Jets - Jared Odrick – DT/DE, Penn State
The Jets don’t have much depth along their defensive line at DE and Odrick is a perfect fit as a 3-4 DE. They could potentially use a safety as well with Kerry Rhodes out of the picture but DE is a bit more of a pressing need having really just Shaun Ellis as a real solid starting end for them.
30. Minnesota Vikings - Jimmy Clausen – QB, Notre Dame
Clausen went into free fall after dropping out of the top 10 here and the Vikings were really the first team that needed their QB of the future. Brett Favre will hopefully not play forever which means that eventually the Vikings will need a new QB. Favre isn’t really the “mentoring” type but Clausen has all the physical tools needed to become a solid QB at the next level and he’s really a pretty big bargain at this point in the draft.
31. Indianapolis Colts - Brian Price – DT, UCLA
As usual, the defensive line, most specifically the interior line, is an important focus for the Colts to look at and Price is a good pickup at this point in the draft. Offensive tackle is a need but the top ones are off the board and it might be a bit of a reach for Saffold or Ducasse although they might do that anyway.
32. New Orleans Saints - Nate Allen – FS, South Florida
Having still not come to an agreement with free agent safety Darren Sharper, this pick makes sense for the Saints. Taylor Mays doesn’t have good enough coverage skills to really be in consideration for this position in their defense but a ball-hawking guy like Allen is a perfect fit. The DE need was helped by the signing of Alex Brown but they still may go that direction with a guy like Dunlap or Griffen but I think that Safety is more likely with who is on the board.