Join Date: Apr 2008
Re: RotoWorld Post-Combine Mock Draft
17. Cincinnati Bengals -- Notre Dame WR Michael Floyd
As alluded to previously, receivers will be pushed down a bit by the draft's richness at the position. Add in the fact that there isn't a surefire No. 1 wideout in the class, and they'll almost certainly go later than most anticipate. Floyd's off-field concerns are an issue because they were recurring, bordering on chronic before a clean senior year. The Bengals don't worry much about character.
18. San Diego Chargers -- Stanford OG David DeCastro
Bolts GM A.J. Smith probably won't enter the first day of next week's draft expecting DeCastro to be available at 18. This is a virtually bust-proof, ten-year starting NFL right guard. But that's just it; DeCastro is a one-position interior player in a league growing increasingly urgent for difference makers outside the numbers. San Diego just can't afford to pass after Kris Dielman's retirement.
19. Chicago Bears -- Illinois DE Whitney Mercilus
The Bears hosted Mercilus for a pre-draft visit, worked him out privately in Champaign, and sent officials to Illinois' Pro Day. Based on Chicago's need at Mercilus' position and a non-stop motor sure to appeal to defensive coordinator Rod Marinelli, we're guessing this wasn't all an elaborate smokescreen. Mercilus doesn't always jump off the page on tape, but he is a relentless finisher.
20. Tennessee Titans -- LSU DT Michael Brockers
Brockers' myth-driven hype train has screeched to a halt of late. He isn't nearly as athletic as some portrayed, and it's highly questionable whether Brockers will ever develop into a pass rusher. LSU coaches certainly didn't think he was, pulling Brockers off the field on nickel downs. He is a long, powerful force, however, and Tennessee is in search of more girth on the interior.
21. Cincinnati Bengals -- Alabama CB Dre Kirkpatrick
Kirkpatrick is typically depicted as a "size corner," but his height advantages are a bit offset by short arms, and he exhibited poor ball skills at Alabama. South Carolina's Stephon Gilmore has clearly passed Kirkpatrick as this draft's No. 2 corner, assuming Janoris Jenkins is excluded for his troublesome off-field baggage. Kirkpatrick still projects as a solid starter, and he is pro ready.
22. Cleveland Browns -- Baylor WR Kendall Wright
Pro Football Weekly's recent hatchet job on Wright notwithstanding, this is the receiver with the best tape in the draft. Despite reported 16-percent body fat, Wright routinely outran college secondaries as Robert Griffin III's go-to target. Just think how good he'll be when he's in shape.
23. Detroit Lions -- Midwestern State OG Amini Silatolu
Drawing comparisons to Larry Allen, Mike Iupati, and Saints All-Pro guard Jahri Evans, Silatolu is a brute mauler ideally cutout for a power-based, man-blocking scheme. Detroit struggled mightily to clear interior running lanes last season. Silatolu could help immediately at guard or right tackle.
24. Pittsburgh Steelers -- Alabama LB Dont'a Hightower
Memphis NT Dontari Poe will fall next Thursday because teams worry about his ability to make a year-one impact. While Poe would be a logical fit, the Steelers "waited" on their 2011 first-round pick (Cameron Heyward) and want more instant impact this year. Hightower is a thumping inside 'backer capable of destroying opposing lead blocks, and allowing Lawrence Timmons to run free.
25. Denver Broncos -- Boise State RB Doug Martin
Penn State's Devon Still and Washington's Alameda Ta'amu would both make some sense at No. 25, but Martin has less of a chance to fall to Denver's second-round pick and similarly addresses a pressing need. Martin's efficient pass blocking will quickly make him a Peyton Manning favorite.
26. Houston Texans -- USC DE Nick Perry
An explosive edge rusher, Perry projects as a better long-term prospect than 2011 second-round pick Brooks Reed, and this is a thin position in Houston with Connor Barwin entering a contract year. Perry is a better value than available OTs Mike Adams, Jonathan Martin, and Bobby Massie.
27. New England Patriots -- Boise State LB Shea McClellin
Many mock drafts have McClellin ticketed for Green Bay, but he'd have to get by New England for that to happen. He won't. McClellin is a jack of all trades, and his versatility will undoubtedly catch Bill Belichick's attention. There is even growing speculation that McClellin could be a top-20 pick.
28. Green Bay Packers -- Alabama LB Courtney Upshaw
Upshaw may lack long arms, ideal height, and edge-bending rush skills, but he can be a power player in the LaMarr Woodley mold. Packers GM Ted Thompson always stays true to his board. He'll have a high grade on Upshaw, who also fills a need area at outside linebacker in the 3-4.
29. Baltimore Ravens -- LSU WR Rueben Randle
Randle is a vertical wideout with prototype size, an impressive catch radius, and dangerous post-reception skills. While Georgia Tech's Stephen Hill possesses some of the same traits, Randle has superior tape and potential to be a better all-around receiver. Anquan Boldin is entering his age-32 season, and 2011 second-rounder Torrey Smith is more of a one-trick pony deep threat.
30. San Francisco 49ers -- Georgia Tech WR Stephen Hill
49ers GM Trent Baalke stated in his pre-draft presser that San Francisco has a specific player in mind for the 30th pick, and the club is confident he'll still be available there. Our guess is that it's Hill, a raw but incredibly gifted field-stretching wideout who visited 49ers headquarters on Monday.
31. New England Patriots -- Wisconsin G/C Peter Konz
With LG Logan Mankins coming off ACL surgery and RG Brian Waters considering retirement, New England's interior offensive line may be in flux. Throw in the fact that LT Matt Light has officially called it quits, and it's a safe bet the Pats use one of their first-rounders on the O-Line.
32. New York Giants -- Penn State DT Devon Still
GM Jerry Reese knows a value pick when he sees one. The interior defensive line isn't exactly a strength in New York, either. Stanford TE Coby Fleener, Georgia CB Brandon Boykin, and Virginia Tech RB David Wilson should get consideration, but Still ultimately has the highest draft grade.
Just Missed: Memphis NT Dontari Poe, Stanford TE Coby Fleener, North Alabama CB Janoris Jenkins, Clemson DE Andre Branch, Stanford OT Jonathan Martin, Virginia Tech RB David Wilson, UConn DT Kendall Reyes, Ohio State OT Mike Adams, Virginia Tech CB Jayron Hosley, Oklahoma State QB Brandon Weeden, Marshall DE Vinny Curry, Appalachian State WR Brian Quick, Michigan State DT Jerel Worthy, Washington DT Alameda Ta'amu, Georgia CB Brandon Boykin, South Carolina WR Alshon Jeffery, Notre Dame SS Harrison Smith.