2008 Mock Draft: Round One

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2008 Mock Draft: Round One

Post  RedMagma on Thu Dec 27, 2007 5:07 pm

2008 Mock Draft: Round One

Last update: Thursday, Dec. 27, 2007. Next update: Every 7-10 days until January.
This NFL Draft order is based on current NFL standings, my Power Rankings and 2008 Draft Prospect Rankings. I've posted a 2009 NFL Mock Draft for those who are interested.

1. Miami Dolphins: Glenn Dorsey, DT, LSU
With the Tuna now a Dolphin, all bets are off. If he plans on coaching this team in a few years - which I think is a very realistic possibility - he may draft Chris Long as a perfect fit for his 3-4. He may also take Glenn Dorsey, the consensus No. 1 in mock drafts across the internet. Jake Long is also a possibility because the offensive front is in dire need of an upgrade. And I don't think you can rule out Darren McFadden or Matt Ryan. Ronnie Brown is coming off injury, and McFadden is the top prospect in the draft. Ryan, meanwhile, would be an improvement at the quarterback position, though Cam Cameron may want to give John Beck another year to prove himself.

I think we can rule Jake Long out. Until recently, the Dolphins had surrendered less than two sacks per game, and had run the ball extremely well with Ronnie Brown and Jesse Chatman. The main reason Miami is 1-14 is because it cannot stop anyone; the defense is ranked 31st, surrendering 26.6 points per game. They gave up more than 40 to the Jets and allowed Kyle Boller to convert third downs, for crying out loud.

Glenn Dorsey has dominated the line of scrimmage almost every game this year. He slowed down toward the end, but that's attributed to injury. The Dolphins' decrepit stop unit needs help everywhere, starting up front. Dorsey can instantly improve a defense ranked dead last in rushing yards allowed. That said, don't be shocked if Chris Long is selected here.

2. St. Louis Rams: Jake Long, OT, Michigan
Orlando Pace is one of the top offensive tackles in the game, but he has missed significant time the past two seasons. Without Pace on the line, the Rams simply cannot score consistently. They need to do something about this, because as far as I'm concerned, Pace is unreliable at this stage of his career, and reminds me a bit of Tony Boselli during the early stages of this decade.

Chris Long is definitely an option, but St. Louis cannot allow Marc Bulger to be sacked six times per week. He's too good a quarterback for that to happen.

3. New York Jets: Darren McFadden, RB, Arkansas
I've changed my mind about this selection so many times. The Jets are 3-12 because of two reasons: Chad Pennington and a defense that has only 26 sacks through 15 games. Kellen Clemens is the answer at the quarterback position, meaning New York will need to draft someone who can get to opposing signal callers in their 3-4 defense.

However, Darren McFadden is the top prospect in this draft class. McFadden can do for the Jets what Adrian Peterson did for the Vikings - give them a primer offensive weapon capable of dominating a single contest on his own. And it's not like the Jets' offense is all that great; they're ranked 24th, scoring just 17 points per contest. If the Jets take McFadden, I'd feel bad for Thomas Jones, but being able to obtain an athlete as talented as McFadden comes along once every few decades.

4. Atlanta Falcons: Matt Ryan, QB, Boston College
The Falcons need a major upgrade at the signal-caller position and a true leader in the locker room. Given the way Matt Ryan commanded his squad over Virginia Tech and Clemson in the clutch, Atlanta may decide to make him the franchise's future at quarterback. I would say that Brian Brohm is also an option, but I seriously doubt Arthur Blank trusts anyone from the University of Louisville right now.

One more thing - don't count out Jake Long or Darren McFadden if they are available; Atlanta's offensive line is in shambles and desperately needs upgrades, while the running back position is also unsettled with Warrick Dunn nearing retirement.

That said, the need for a franchise signal caller is too paramount for it not to be addressed, even if it means eschewing superior prospects. Matt McGuire brought up a great point that the Browns passed on Brady Quinn in favor of Joe Thomas in 2007. The difference here is that unlike last year, there are no second-tier quarterbacks. In 2007, Kevin Kolb, Drew Stanton, Trent Edwards and John Beck were all second-round prospects. There aren't any signal callers in this draft like that; at least not yet. If the Falcons don't take Ryan here, they'll be left with no one.

5. Kansas City Chiefs: Ryan Clady, OT, Boise State
Brian Brohm and Andre' Woodson are both options here, but Brodie Croyle actually looked pretty decent at Indianapolis, so maybe the Chiefs will hold off on drafting a quarterback and give their young gun-slinger a year to prove himself. With that in mind, Sam Baker and Ryan Clady become serious options to improve the offensive line. I know there are better prospects available at this juncture, but Kansas City cannot afford to surrender 52 sacks in 15 games again.

6. Oakland Raiders: Chris Long, DE, Virginia
Oakland's defense has regressed a lot this year. You can look at the defensive line, which has produced only 26 sacks through 15 games and can't stop the run. I think Al Davis would be extremely pleased if he were able to land Chris Long at this juncture. Howie Long played Pro Bowl-caliber football for 13 years in Oakland. Davis, who needs to get his organization back to respectability, may get nostalgic and draft Howie's son, in hopes that he can lead his team to prominence once again.

7. Baltimore Ravens: Brian Brohm, QB, Louisville
Tons of options here, including DeSean Jackson, Vernon Gholston, Malcolm Jenkins and Ryan Clady. However, something I've been putting off for Baltimore is a quarterback at this spot. In the wake of Kyle Boller playing like Kyle Boller against the Indianapolis Colts, I can't see the Ravens going with either him or Steve McNair next year, despite Brian Billick's apparent love affair with the former. Whether that means trading for Donovan McNabb, or drafting either Brian Brohm or Andre' Woodson, Baltimore seriously needs to upgrade the signal-caller position if it wants to return to the postseason. Hopefully the Ravens front office ignores whatever Billick has to say on this matter.

8. New England Patriots: Malcolm Jenkins, CB, Ohio State
I can't believe New England may go 19-0 and draft in the top 10 come next April. How ridiculous is that? I previously had them taking McFadden, but San Francisco's recent two-game winning streak has ruled out that possibility. James Laurinaitis? Also an option, but Bill Belichick said that he needs to trust his linebackers, and thus does not select any early in the draft. It's no secret New England needs help at linebacker, but that may come via free agency.

With that in mind, the Patriots also could use upgrades at cornerback. They have five defensive backs who are free agents this upcoming offseason, one of whom is Asante Samuel. If he walks, they'll need to utilize one of their first two selections on a top-notch corner.

9. Cincinnati Bengals: James Laurinaitis, MLB, Ohio State
The Bengals will have to decide between Calais Campbell, Vernon Gholston, Sedrick Ellis and James Laurinaitis at this juncture, but given the Bengals' injuries woes at the linebacker position over the past few years, I don't think they can pass up on the latter. Their defense lacks identity, play-makers and a leader. It can't stop anyone, especially when it uses its 10-man formation. Laurinaitis will help all three areas.

10. Denver Broncos: Sedrick Ellis, DT, USC
Pick a position, any position. The Broncos are ranked near the bottom in every defensive category, and need help everywhere. However, the most glaring hole on Denver's roster looks to be at defensive tackle. There's a reason the Broncos are 31st against the run and have no pass rush up the middle. It's so bad, I guarantee Sedrick Ellis was better this year at USC than any of Denver's current tackles.

11. Carolina Panthers: Kenny Phillips, FS, Miami
James Laurinaitis, Calais Campbell and Vernon Gholston are all options here, assuming they are all available. But I don't think Carolina can pass up on Kenny Phillips if he happens to be available. Mike Minter's unceremonious retirement this offseason left the Panthers with a hole at free safety, filled by the pedestrian Deke Cooper. Phillips will give Carolina another defensive playmaker it desperately needs.

12. Chicago Bears: Andre' Woodson, QB, Kentucky
Rex Grossman's audition is over. He's done for the year, which is a shame because he was having the best stretch of his career since the beginning of the 2006 season. With Grossman out of commission, I don't think the Bears can afford to keep their quarterbacking situation static.

There is a chance the Bears go after Derek Anderson or Donovan McNabb. If that happens, I could see them drafting Kenny Phillips, Ryan Clady or Jonathan Stewart, should they be available.

13. Arizona Cardinals: Vernon Gholston, DE, Ohio State
The Cardinals were eliminated from playoff contention when they lost back-to-back contests to the Seahawks and Saints. The reason for those defeats was because Arizona couldn't stop the pass. Actually, that's an understatement; Matt Hasselbeck and Drew Brees combined to go 48-of-63, 587 yards and six touchdowns. That's only 15 incompletions in two weeks! Pathetic!

I don't think the Cardinals can pass up on Vernon Gholston if they have the chance to draft him. With Gholston, Arizona will be able to put more pressure on opposing signal callers, helping out its beleaguered secondary in the process. Gholston can also smooth the transition to the 3-4, assuming Ken Whisenhunt wants to change systems. The Cardinals gets no pressure from the defensive end position, and that would change with Gholston in the mix.

I love what I've seen out of Gholston this year; he has 10 sacks and beat Jake Long in the Michigan game. His projected 40 time, in the mid-4.5s, is excellent considering he's about 260 pounds. He's moved himself up draft boards, and has become a top-15 prospect. I think he'll continue to increase his stock, much like Patrick Willis did last year, because he's an absolute beast and a workout warrior.

14. New Orleans Saints: Mike Jenkins, CB, South Florida
The Saints can't stop anyone because they can't apply pressure on opposing quarterbacks. They can't apply pressure on opposing quarterbacks because their secondary is garbage, prompting defensive coordinator Gary Gibbs to provide more help to a horrific defensive backfield. If New Orleans were able to add Mike Jenkins to its roster today, he would be a starter.

15. Buffalo Bills: Malcolm Kelly, WR, Oklahoma
Malcolm Kelly, at 6-4, 217, is the perfect complement to the lightning-quick Lee Evans. Trent Edwards needs a better No. 2 receiver than Peerless Price, Roscoe Parrish and Josh Reed.

16. Houston Texans: Jonathan Stewart, RB, Oregon
Darius Walker has been solid coming out of the backfield, and Ahman Green and Ron Dayne are both on the roster, but are any of them really the guy whom Houston can ride into the playoffs? The Texans need to address the running back situation, especially considering the plethora of talent at the position in this class.

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Re: 2008 Mock Draft: Round One

Post  RedMagma on Thu Dec 27, 2007 5:07 pm

17. Detroit Lions: Dan Connor, OLB/MLB, Penn State
It seems like everyone has completely abused a Detroit secondary ranked 31st versus the pass. Cornerback is a desperate need for the hapless Lions, but with the two top prospects at that position off the board, there's a chance the team could opt for either Keith Rivers or Dan Connor. Don't count out Sam Baker either, but the most important factor here is that no team has ever won the Super Bowl with a guy named Paris starting at middle linebacker. I cannot verify this statistic.

18. Philadelphia Eagles: Sam Baker, OT, USC
An image Eagles fans will always have in their minds is Winston Justice looking helpless as Osi Umenyiora beat him for a Giants record six sacks. This is the future of Philadelphia's offensive line. With William Tra Thomas and Jon Runyan nearing retirement, the Eagles will need a new tackle to protect Kevin Kolb's blind side for the next decade. Philadelphia has plenty of other needs, including receiver, safety, defensive end and tight end, but protecting its young quarterback is a priority.

19. Minnesota Vikings: DeSean Jackson, WR, California
The Vikings desperately need help at quarterback at safety, but there aren't any players at those positions worth taking here. I don't think Minnesota can have Bobby Wade lead the team in receiving yards again. That's just humiliating.

20. Washington Redskins: Calais Campbell, DE, Miami
First of all, I'd be remiss if I didn't give my condolences to the Taylor family. May Sean rest in peace. Hopefully more people will realize that guns should be taken off the street. Sean would probably still be with us if firearms weren't so accessible.

Washington failed to register a single sack the Sunday following Sean's death. Keep in mind that the team was playing a rookie quarterback. Phillip Daniels isn't exactly young and reliable at the age of 34. The Redskins need a possible successor for him.

21. Tennessee Titans: James Hardy, WR, Indiana
Vince Young's drive to set up a potential game-winning field goal against the Colts was thwarted by his own teammate. Brandon Jones, Tennessee's No. 1 wide out, dropped an easy first down in field-goal territory. Against the Broncos on Monday night, it seemed like every single receiver had dozens of drops. It's a shame Young's talent is going to waste with the garbage the Titans surrounded him with.

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22. Dallas Cowboys: Reggie Smith, CB, Oklahoma
This pick is from Cleveland. Terence Newman and Anthony Henry aren't exactly young. Newman will be 30 in September 2008, while Henry doesn't have many productive seasons remaining in the NFL.

23. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Early Doucet, WR, LSU
Joey Galloway and Ike Hilliard both have had a great year. However, they'll be 37 and 32, respectively, at some point during the 2008 season. Tampa Bay needs to get younger at the wide out position.

24. Seattle Seahawks: Rashard Mendenhall, RB, Illinois
Shaun Alexander will be 31 by the start of the 2008 season, and he has already shown signs of declining. His willingness to fall to the ground when no running lanes are available, combined with his 3.4 yards-per-carry average this year is concerning. If the Seahawks don't cut Alexander at the end of the year, I'll be shocked, even though the fat slob has five more years on his deal.

25. Pittsburgh Steelers: Jeff Otah, OT, Pittsburgh
So, I was looking through Pittsburgh's stats when I was making my Rams-Steelers pick, and I saw something that made my eyes bulge. Did you know they've surrendered 47 sacks this year? They even had problems keeping St. Louis out of the backfield. What happened to their offensive line? Well, Alan Faneca is leaving this offseason, while right tackle Willie Colon is probably more suited to play inside. They can move Colon to left guard, opening a slot at right tackle. That's where Jeff Otah, a 340-pound monster, comes in.

26. San Diego Chargers: Frank Okam, NT, Texas
When you allow 296 rushing yards to a running back, there's something fundamentally wrong with your defense. The Chargers have since improved, but their struggles stemmed from Luis Castillo being out and Jamal Williams aging. San Diego would simply be lost without Williams, who turns 32 in April. Plus, the Chargers have no depth up front. With Rey Maualuga coming back to USC in 2008, I think San Diego goes with Frank Okam or a receiver like Adarius Bowman.

27. New York Giants: Adarius Bowman, WR, Oklahoma State
Receiver isn't the most pressing need, but Adarius Bowman is such great value at this juncture. Amani Toomer's days as a Giant are numbered; he may retire soon. Plaxico Burress isn't getting any younger either. The Giants should grab a wide out capable of stepping in if Toomer, Burress and Jeremy Shockey keep getting hurt.

28. Jacksonville Jaguars: Mario Manningham, WR, Michigan
Does anyone find it hilarious that Dennis Northcutt, who couldn't even get on the field in Cleveland, is Jacksonville's top receiver, despite all the No. 1 picks the team used on players at that position? I know... another first-rounder spent on a wide out... But Mario Manningham is actually quick, unlike Matt Jones. He'd be a perfect complement to Reggie Williams.

29. Green Bay Packers: Aqib Talib, CB, Kansas
Charles Woodson just turned 31, while Al Harris will be 33 in December. I'd like to see the Packers add some young blood to their cornerbacking corps.

30. San Francisco 49ers: Gosder Cherilus, OT, Boston College
The 49ers were the sexy sleeper pick this offseason. So, what happened? Frank Gore's injury played a factor. As did Alex Smith's ineptness. And don't forget the disappointing $100 million secondary. However, what hindered the team most has been its offensive line, which has surrendered 50 sacks through 15 games. That's simply unacceptable. I don't care who the quarterback is; no signal caller can possibly thrive without any sort of pass protection.

31. Dallas Cowboys: Felix Jones, RB, Arkansas
It was rumored that Dallas was interested in Dwayne Jarrett in April, but Jerry Jones apparently liked Anthony Spencer a bit more. With Terrell Owens and Terry Glenn close to the end of their careers, and Patrick Crayton set to hit the free-agent market, the Cowboys would love to secure a top-notch wide out.

That said, if someone of Felix Jones' caliber is available - which is plausible, given the depth at the running back position in this class - Dallas won't be able to resist. Julius Jones likely won't be back next year, and the Cowboys clearly don't think Marion Barber can carry the load on his own; otherwise he'd be doing so already[/quote]


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Re: 2008 Mock Draft: Round One

Post  RedMagma on Thu Dec 27, 2007 5:10 pm

2009 Mock Draft: Round One

Last update: Sunday, December 16, 2007. Next update: TBA.

Instead of randomizing this like the previous version of my 2009 NFL Mock Draft, I just decided to use the order I have for my 2008 NFL Mock Draft. It's just easier that way. Why am I doing a 2009 NFL Mock Draft this early? Just for fun. Hopefully you enjoy reading this.

1. Miami Dolphins: Tim Tebow, QB, Florida
2008 Projected Draft Pick (as of 12/16): DT Glenn Dorsey.

If the Dolphins finish with the worst record in 2008, John Beck obviously wasn't the answer. And although it's only been a few games, I don't think Miami is getting anything about of Beck. Along with his horrendous performances against the Jets and Bills, one of the worst general managers in NFL history drafted him, while Andy Reid, a BYU man, passed on him.

The Dolphins can fix their quarterback woes by selecting the in-state Tim Tebow. His versatility makes him the top 2009 quarterbacking prospect.

2. San Francisco 49ers: Michael Crabtree, WR, Texas Tech
2008 Projected Draft Pick (as of 12/16): OT Jeff Otah.

Darrell Jackson and Ashley Lelie are shaky, so the 49ers won't be able to pass on a 6-3, 222-pound receiver with 4.4 speed. I know Michael Crabtree plays in a fake offense, but he registered 125 receptions, 1,861 yards and 21 touchdowns - as a freshman.

One thing I have to mention because I received a few e-mails about this: Michael Crabtree is eligible for the 2009 NFL Mock Draft because he is a REDSHIRT freshman, meaning he'll be out of high school three years once the 2009 Draft rolls around.

One more thing I have to mention, as about a dozen people e-mailed me within a span of an hour the other day. By calling Texas Tech's offense "fake," I only meant that it produces skewed passing and receiving stats, much like Hawaii. I have complete respect for the Red Raiders and everything they stand for. Sorry for any confusion.

3. Atlanta Falcons: Chris Wells, RB, Ohio State
2008 Projected Draft Pick (as of 12/16): QB Matt Ryan.

Atlanta must draft a talented running back to go along with their young signal caller (Matt Ryan in this case.) Warrick Dunn doesn't have much left in the tank, while Jerious Norwood has yet to prove that he can carry the load. Besides, I don't think you can pass up on a talent like Chris Wells.

4. St. Louis Rams: Jeffrey Fitzgerald, DE, Virginia
2008 Projected Draft Pick (as of 12/16): OT Jake Long.

It's no secret that the Rams need help with their defensive front. Jeffrey Fitzgerald would definitely improve a St. Louis stop unit that features no defensive ends with more than two sacks. Fitzgerald is a 279-pound lineman with 4.6 speed.

5. New York Jets: Pat Sims, DE/NT, Auburn
2008 Projected Draft Pick (as of 12/16): DE Chris Long.

The Jets continue to upgrade their defensive line by adding Pat Sims to the roster. New York, ranked 24th versus the run, needs a 316-pounder clogging the middle.

6. Kansas City Chiefs: Darrius Heyward-Bey, WR, Maryland
2008 Projected Draft Pick (as of 12/16): OT Sam Baker.

I'd like to see the Chiefs acquire a speedy receiver to complement Dwayne Bowe. Darrius Heyward-Bey is an extremely talented wide out with 4.3 speed. Matt Stafford is also an option, but it may be too early to take him.

7. Oakland Raiders: Michael Oher, OT, Ole Miss
2008 Projected Draft Pick (as of 12/16): DT Sedrick Ellis.

Give Lane Kiffin a lot of credit; the offensive line is playing much better than it did under Art Shell. That said, the front still needs a lot of help. An offensive tackle isn't a sexy pick by any means, but hopefully someone will tell Al Davis that taking Michael Oher is the right move.

8. Baltimore Ravens: Vontae Davis, CB, Illinois
2008 Projected Draft Pick (as of 12/16): QB Brian Brohm.

Chris McAlister and Samari Rolle are old, and won't be around much longer. Vontae Davis is a play-maker who runs a 4.3, and would be a welcome addition to Baltimore's opportunistic defense.

9. Carolina Panthers: DeMarcus Granger, DT, Oklahoma
2008 Projected Draft Pick (as of 12/16): DE Vernon Gholston.

More help for a Panthers defensive line that hasn't done anything positive in 2007. Both Kris Jenkins and Maake Kemoeatu will be in their 30s by the time the 2009 season rolls around. DeMarcus Granger would look great right next to Julius Peppers and Vernon Gholston.

10. Cincinnati Bengals: Taylor Mays, SS, USC
2008 Projected Draft Pick (as of 12/16): MLB James Laurinaitis.

With Dexter Jackson turning 32 months before the 2009 season, the Bengals will look for an upgrade at strong safety. Taylor Mays, a 225-pound beast who runs a 4.3, can only improve Cincinnati's horrific defense.

11. Philadelphia Eagles: Myron Rolle, SS, Florida State
2008 Projected Draft Pick (as of 12/16): OT Ryan Clady.

Current Eagles starting strong safety Sean Considine is the weak link of a solid defense. Myron Rolle could be a cornerstone of Philadelphia's stop unit for the next decade.

12. Chicago Bears: Knowshon Moreno, RB, Georgia
2008 Projected Draft Pick (as of 12/16): QB Andre' Woodson.

My guessing is the Bears are going to give Cedric Benson and Adrian Peterson one more year to get the job done. If that's the case, they'll likely be drafting a running back in 2009.

13. Detroit Lions: Al Woods, DT, LSU
2008 Projected Draft Pick (as of 12/16): CB Malcolm Jenkins.

The Lions need help everywhere on defense, including the interior of their defensive line. Running backs will run into Al Woods, (6-5, 324) and never be heard from again.

14. Washington Redskins: Rey Maualuga, MLB, USC
2008 Projected Draft Pick (as of 12/16): DE Calais Campbell.

London Fletcher won't be around forever, meaning the Redskins may be looking for a long-term solution at middle linebacker.

15. New Orleans Saints: Brandon Spikes, MLB, Florida
2008 Projected Draft Pick (as of 12/16): CB Reggie Smith.

The Saints cannot go with Mark Simoneau or Brian Simmons at middle linebacker much longer. They need to find an enormous upgrade.

16. Houston Texans: Tyson Jackson, DE, LSU
2008 Projected Draft Pick (as of 12/16): RB Jonathan Stewart.

Everything the Texans have done in the draft and free agency over the past few years has been to beat the Colts. Continuing that trend, I'd like to see them add a potent defensive end across from Mario Williams.


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Re: 2008 Mock Draft: Round One

Post  RedMagma on Thu Dec 27, 2007 5:15 pm

The Ultimate Weapon - Arkansas' Darren McFadden



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