I’ll be using mostly Walterfootball.com’s draft order so if you don’t like where a team is picking blame Walter not me. I’ll adjust it a little bit (I’m just switching around the first three picks), so if you have a problem with the order go over at walterfootball.com to complain!
Also since this is being done prior to free agency and the draft (and the season) it’s almost more like a big board with me slotting players into the range that they will be drafted and not really worrying at all about needs.
#1 Oakland Raiders-Matt Barkley, QB, USC
If the Raiders are picking first overall next year they are taking a quarterback of their future. Last time they gambled on Jamarcus Russell and spent about the next decade paying for it. This time they take a “safer” prospect in Matt Barkley.
#2 Tampa Bay Buccaneers-Tyler Bray, QB, Tennessee
If the Buccaneers are picking second overall there’s a good chance that they consider a quarterback as well. If they are picking 2nd overall it means that Josh Freeman has again had another bad year. If you consider that Freeman is not Greg Schiano’s guy-he may become more expendable.
#3 Jacksonville Jaguars-Jonathan Hankins, DT, Ohio State
I don’t know if the Jaguars would give up on Gabbert even if they were bad again in 2012. Right now as of today their roster is not impressive. Hankins can be a top five player if he has another big year next year.
#4 Miami Dolphins- Sam Montgomery, DE/OLB, LSU
The LSU redshirt sophomores (who will be redshirt juniors next year) are all terrific players. I bet Montgomery or Mingo end up in the top five next year. If the Dolphins don’t address pass rusher this year they will next year. Cameron Wake is terrific, but he’s no spring chicken.
#5 Seattle Seahawks-Logan Thomas, QB, VA Tech
This seems awful high, but Thomas was very impressive at times last year and might have a Cameron Newton/Robert Griffin III type ascension. Thomas has loads of physical ability. He also fits what the Seahawks are looking at quarterback with their bootlegs and reliance on speed at the quarterback position (reliance or preference at the very least).
#6 Indianapolis Colts-Jarvis Jones, OLB, Georgia
The Colts will be in full 34 swing next year so grabbing what would have been the best pass rusher in this class would be a good idea. Jones also seems to have a really good head on his shoulders.
#7 Minnesota Vikings-Robert Woods, WR, USC
The Vikings have Percy Harvin at WR, but if they end up in the top 10 again it means they didn’t give Ponder enough weapons to throw to. Woods had a terrific year last year, but like Blackmon Woods doesn’t possess terrific measurables. Woods is listed at 6’1 190 pounds, if he measures in any smaller than that it’ll be tough for him to go in the top 10.
#8 Buffalo Bills-D.J. Fluker, T, Alabama
The Bills have to address Tackle. The Bills are always picking about 10th so picking 8th makes a lot of sense for next year. Right now as of today Fluker is the best Tackle in the class.
#9 St. Louis Rams-Brekevious Mingo, DE/OLB, LSU
Mingo is another terrific pass rusher for the LSU Tigers and a major reason why they will compete again for the National Championship. Perhaps he’s not the best system fit here, and the Rams will probably consider a DT if they don’t address that this year, but the value is here.
#10 New Orleans Saints-David Amerson, CB, North Carolina State
The saints need help in the secondary and Amerson has a lot of ability. Amerson is a CB/S hybrid who has enough talent to play either position.
#11 Tennessee Titans-Xavier Rhodes, CB, Florida State University
I like Rhodes a lot and he is all the talent in the world. The Titans are set to lose Finengan in the off-season this year. Even if they don’t by this time next year Rhodes could be the best player available on the board. He had some nagging injuries this year which hurt his performance at times, but is really talented.
#12 New York Jets-Marcus Lattimore, RB, South Carolina
Lattimore is going to next year’s Trent Richardson. The one RB prospect that is a lock to go in the first round. If the Jets are picking 12th they’ll have a better shot at landing Lattimore than they do this year of Richardson picking 17th. If Lattimore has a huge season next year it’s possible that he enters the draft number one on a few big boards-he’s that talented.
#13 Cleveland Browns- Manti Te’o, LB, Norte Dame
I’m a huge fan of Te’o. The Browns will have seen Te’o play plenty and will value his leadership and ability.
#14 Arizona Cardinals-Brandon Jenkins, OLB, FSU
The Cardinals are likely to address pass rusher in the draft or free agency this year, which might make this less of a need. Jenkins played better than his stats indicate this year, but if he can have the stats reflect how well he is playing next year he could be a top 15 pick. Plus another year of playing the Joker role will further help his transition in the N.F.L.
#15 Dallas Cowboys-Star Lotluelie, DL, Utah
Not a well known name, but a terrific player. A guy who would have been one of those 2nd round type prospects this year people hadn’t heard much about. Going back to school though was a great idea. He’ll probably end up well into the first round.
Round two continued on next page