This is my newest 2012 NFL Mock draft. I try to do a weekly one and because I’m a bit bold and tend to trend towards offering unique out of the box selections. I do this for three reasons, first I don’t like to see the same names mocked to the same teams over and over again all over the internet because it bores me. And second the reason I love the draft so much is because of the exorbitant amount of different scenarios that can unfold for each team.
And three, a lot of times what we think teams should do and what they will do are completely different and I like to explore what it is that teams might end up doing (however crazy it may seem) so maybe I won’t be so surprised when the Bills draft C.J. Spiller, or the Jaguars grab a Tyson Alualu or the Vikings take a Christian Ponder.
Scouting report for all of these players (and many more) can be found on our scouting report page
1. Indianapolis Colts (0-11)-Andrew Luck, QB, Stanford Cardinal
Peyton Manning’s injury has ruined one of my favorite games of the season. On Sunday the Colts will take New England Patriots as 21 point underdogs. 21 points. What shame. Peyton vs Brady is always a great game and I’m going to be wishing for a better game on Sunday. Thank goodness the flex scheduling has moved that out of the prime-time slot though.
2. St. Louis Rams (2-9) -Matt Kalil, OT, USC
The Rams are souring on Jason Smith and Roger Saffold didn’t play as well as in 2011 as he did in 2010 and would probably be best suited at right tackle. The other problem is the other biggest need (play making WR) doesn’t represent value here at #2. Kalil is the smart and right pick.
3. Minnesota Vikings (2-9)-Morris Claiborne, CB, LSU
I think if the Draft order remains the game with the Vikings picking third, Jacksonville picking 4th, and the Panthers picking fifth it will make things interesting because none of these teams are going to draft a QB except MAYBE Jacksonville, but I doubt it because they are keeping their G.M.. Blackmon is a very productive college player, but number three overall is too high for him. The Vikings could go in any number of different directions here and perhaps Jonathan Martin would represent best positional value here, but I haven’t explored Claiborne as a top pick (this is also too high for him) so thought I would here.
4.Jacksonville Jaguars (3-8)-Quinton Coples, DE, North Carolina
If the Jaguars don’t draft a QB here what do they do? Suggesting that the Jaguars should take Justin Blackmon here is not off-base and I agree with that idea, but WR don’t offer the greatest positional value in the top five unless they are very good wide receiver prospects (if Alshon Jefferey hada big year this year and ran fast at the combiner he’d be ideal). DE are more coveted than Wide receivers and Coples has scary potential. The Jaguars DE are ok, but they have 11.5 sacks from the DE position with Matt Roth leading DE with 3.5 that’s not going to cut it.
5. Carolina Panthers (3-8)-Justin Blackmon, WR, Oklahom State
Blackmon does a great job of making plays with the balls in his hand. Adding Blackmon to the Panthers won’t fix their Defense, but Blackmon gives a talented weapon to “grow up” in the league with Cameron Newton and I feel more comfortable putting Blackmon here at #5 than I do in the top three or four. The Panthers offense is already pretty scary and they need Defensive help more, but the value’s not here at #5.
6. Miami Dolphins (3-8)-Matt Barkley, QB, USC
If the draft order remains the same, the Dolphins could really “Barkley” (Luck) out because the Jaguars, Vikings, and Panthers all drafted quarterbacks in the first round last year and aren’t likely to draft a QB this year. Now, the Dolphins might want to move up a few slots to keep the Redskins from jumping them and grabbing the quarterback they want, but in a mock not based on trades the Dolphins strike gold here getting Barkley at #6.
7. Washington Redskins (4-7)-Robert Griffin III
This draft class is really strong in two positions: Quarterback and linebacker (especially MLB and 43 linebacker). Robert Griffin III is a unique talent who could be a force with the Redskins and Shanahan.
8. Arizona Cardinals (4-7)-Jonathan Martin, T, Stanford Cardinals
The Cardinals don’t have a great offensive line and this would be pretty good value. Martin can come in and play LT for the Cardinals and be the blindsided protect for Kevin Kolb and hopefully he can stay healthy for next year.
9. Philadelphia Eagles (4-7)-Zach Brown, LB, UNC
The Eagles don’t traditionally draft linebackers in the first round and people are mocking a lot of linebackers to the Eagles (Burfict, Kuechly Te’o), but I think the only linebacker the Eagles will consider at this point is Brown. Despite how frustrated fans an get with the Eagles smaller defense it’s an organizational philosophy, the difference between Brown and many of the smaller fast linebacker the Eagles gravitate towards is Brown has the chance to be a real difference maker.
10. Kansas City Chiefs (4-7)-Riley Reiff, T, Iowa
Last year the Chiefs were linked a lot to Gabe Carimi. This year they get a better prospect with Riley Reiff the the tackle for Iowa. Reiff can play LT or RT and would instantly improve the Chiefs offensive line. I really consider grabbing Trent Richardson here, but I did so in my last mock. Imagine Jamaal Charles and Trent Richardson? Scary.
11. Seattle Seahawks (4-7)-Trent Richardson, RB, Alabama
I think this would be a coup for the Seahawks. Now they need a franchise quarterback, but I don’t believe they will have any interest in Landry Jones and are more likely to consider Ryan Tannehill if he’s available in the second round. Every move Pete Carrol has made at Quarterback since becoming the head coach indicates he wants a mobile quarterback (letting hasselbeck leave, trading for Charlie Whitehurst, signing Tavaris Jackson, being intersted in Colin Kaepernick more last year and reportedly (seahawksdraftblog.com) not being at all interested in Ryan Mallett.
Richardson would be Best player available here and continue the on-going mentality that Carrol is trying to build-the tougher, stronger football team.
12. Cleveland Browns(4-7)-Dre Kirkpatrick, CB, Alabama
This is a best player available pick but also a need pick as well. Joe Haden is a very good player, but there’s not a ton more in the secondary for the Browns. A combination of Joe Haden and Dre Kirkpatrick would be perhaps the best young cornerback duo in the entire league. Also with two first round picks the Browns can afford to grab best player available at #12.
13. San Diego Chargers (4-7)-Alshon Jefferey, WR, South Carolina
Something is wrong with Philip Rivers this year. Is it the weapons surrounding him (the loss of Darren Sproles?), an injury? I’m not sure. But maybe the Chargers feel that they don’t have enough WR depth and talent so they grab the very talented, but not productive-enough Alshon Jefferey. I personally feel the Chargers should look cornerback here with his pick.
14. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (4-7)-Alfonzo Dennard, CB, Nebraska
This is an extremely popular pick in mock draft land, but not one I’ve made for the Buccaneers often. But just based on the way the board fell I’m going to give the Buccaneers Dennard.
15. Buffalo Bills (5-6)-Michael Floyd, WR, Norte Dame
Two things: I don’t think this pick will happen and two I think it Should happen. Michael Floyd is one of my favorite players in this draft, well is one of the most talented players in this draft. One of the Bills huge under the radar needs is an inability to stretch the field. Floyd doesn’t have great speed, but he has a very good size/speed combo and he does such a good job of challenging for the ball in the air that he will make a lot of plays in the N.F.L. down the field. I’m not sure the Bills would take on Floyd’s character issues, but they must find a way to provide more weapons for Fitzpatrick who has looked very average since he signed his new contract, if you don’t count the Jets game on Sunday.
Yes the Bills need a pass rusher very badly, but the value isn’t great at this point in the draft.
16. Tennessee Titans (6-5)-Alameda Ta’amu, DL, Washington
The Titans probably won’t make this pick and they do have some young talent along the defensive line, but I was trying to think outside the box here a bit. Jurrell Casey has a promising young future and Karl Klung has shown some pass rushing ability, but the Titans are struggling to stop the run (22nd in the league) and Ta’amu has really good ability. Ta’amu though does have some “motivational issues” and has bouts of serious inconsistency.