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Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Just over three-weeks out Mock

With the draft about three weeks away, here's an updated look on how things could go May 8.

1.       Houston, Jadaveon Clowney, DE, South Carolina. A freakish athlete who is too good to pass up.

2.       St. Louis, Greg Robinson, OT, Auburn. Don’t be surprised to see the Rams also take a QB at some point high.

3.       Jacksonville, Blake Bortles, QB, USC. The Jaguars have tried to make do with patchwork QBs since Mark Brunell.

4.       Cleveland, Sammy Watkins, WR, Clemson. The Browns get a stud receiver to pair with Josh Gordon.

5.       Oakland, Johnny Manziel, QB, Texas A&M. The Raiders love big-name players and have had issues selling out their stadium. Manziel would create some excitement around the team.

6.       Atlanta, Jake Matthews, OT, Texas A&M. The Falcons need to protect Matt Ryan better.

7.       Tampa Bay, Mike Evans, WR, Texas A&M. Three A&M players in a row.

8.       Minnesota, Derek Carr, QB, Fresno State. Carr has passed Teddy Bridgewater in the QB pecking order of this draft.

9.       Buffalo, Khalil Mack, LB, Buffalo. The Bills get a home-grown talent.

10.   Detroit, Justin Gilbert, CB, Oklahoma State. The Lions would have liked Evans to fall and could trade up for him. But here they ‘settle’ for Gilbert.

11.   Tennessee, Anthony Barr, LB, UCLA. The Titans need playmakers all over the place. They get one on the defensive side of the ball who will fit into defensive coordinator Ray Horton’s 3-4 scheme.

12.   N.Y. Giants, Aaron Donald, DT, Pitt. The Giants need to start rebuilding their interior defensive line.

13.   St. Louis, Ha-Ha Clinton-Dix, S, Alabama. The back end of the Rams’ secondary is a mess. Clinton-Dix will help that right away.

14.   Chicago, Timmy Jernigan, DR, Florida State. The Bears would have preferred Donald, but grab another difference maker at defensive tackle.

15.   Pittsburgh, Kyle Fuller, CB, Virginia Tech. It’s a tough call over some guys still on the board, but Fuller fits. Forget what the talking heads are saying. Fuller will end up higher in this draft than some of the other more-hyped corners. He’s a feisty zone corner who will tackle all day long.

16.   Dallas, Taylor Lewan, OT, Michigan. The Cowboys need to improve their offensive front.

17.   Baltimore, Calvin Pryor, S, Louisville. The Ravens continue to rebuild their secondary, though they could go offensive tackle.

18.   N.Y. Jets, Odell Beckham, WR, LSU. The Jets have to have somebody to throw the ball to.

19.   Miami, Zach Martin, OL, Notre Dame. Head coach Joe Philbin was a longtime offensive line coach. And the Dolphins’ line was a mess last season thanks to the Incognito-Martin fallout.

20.   Arizona, Ryan Shazier, OLB, Ohio State. The Cardinals grab a speedy defender for an already-improving defense.

21.   Green Bay, C.J. Mosley, ILB, Alabama. The Packers want an inside backer who is good in coverage.

22.   Philadelphia, Darqueze Dennard, CB, Michigan State. Dennard’s fall ends.

23.   Kansas City, Eric Ebron, TE, North Carolina. The Chiefs need an offensive playmaker to pair with Dwayne Bowe.

24.   Cincinnati, Jason Verrett, CB, TCU. Verrett could also be a consideration for the Steelers. He’s solid in coverage and feisty.

25.   San Diego, Louis Nix, DT, Notre Dame. The Chargers need a big body in the middle of their defense.

26.   Cleveland, Teddy Bridgewater, QB, Louisville. The Browns got their receiver early and get a QB later in the first round.

27.   New Orleans, Demarcus Lawrence, DE, Boise State. Lawrence is a guy who is starting to generate some first-round talk. The Saints add to an already-impressive pass rush.

28.   Carolina, Marquise Lee, WR, USC. Carolina needs somebody to add to their passing game.

29.   New England, Kyle Van Noy, LB, BYU. This is a typical Belichick pick. Van Noy could play inside or out and the Patriots need depth at both.

30.   San Francisco, Dee Ford, DE/LB, Auburn. The Aldon Smith situation forces the 49ers to look to the future.

31.   Denver, Xavier Su’a-Filo, G, UCLA. The Broncos are in a win-now mode and Su’a-Filo can be plugged in on their line.

32.   Seattle, Brandin Cooks, WR, Oregon State. The Seahawks don’t have any glaring needs and can take the best playmaker available. 


Patrick said...

Sorry Dale, but there is about 0% chance that Mack falls that far. Like the draft otherwise.

The Browns getting Watkins worries me and I keep seeing it in mock drafts. I see the Rams trading out, but if they don't they can't pass on him.

Lets say the Browns do get him, the Steelers need to draft a corner. I was going to say they need to make a move up on Gilbert or Dennard, but here you have Dennard being available (but them taking Fuller). Either way looks like they have a good choice at corner and it would be a big help in covering Watkins/Gordon/Green/Smith.

If I could make a bet paying 3:1 that the Steelers draft Dennard at 15, I'd put money on it.

Anonymous said...

Hate the pick.

Fuller had all of 2 interceptions in his last healthy season.

Not the playmaker we need.

Anonymous said...

Oakland won't pick johnny football. they've already stated schaub is the starter. makes no sense.

I would also be disappointed if they grabbed fuller at 1.15. zone cover guys who can tackle shouldn't go that high in the draft. he's not a ball hawk either.

additionally, if (based on your mock draft) the steelers could potentially trade back (say with philly who wants a CB) and still have their choice of ebron, verrett, fuller, and nix then that makes much more sense, imo.

kyle said...

Fuller also gave up an insanely low number of catches 11-20 yards. Like 7% low.

Gilbert gets more picks but he gets burned more. It depends on what matters to you - dependability or splash plays.


Never assume because the Oakland Raiders have said or done something that logic will be involved in their next decision. I know Al Davis is gone but I think the only thing crazier for Oakland than drafting Manziel would be thinking Schaub will be a good starter for them. Not to mention, teams saying who the starter will be means next to nothing.

Does seven picks make that much of a difference for whether Fuller is worth it? Sure, if the Eagles want to give up a 3rd or something and you still get your guy then it's a perfect opportunity but let's say nobody calls, do you still draft the guy you want?

And just for myself, Fuller at 1.15 seems like a much better value than Nix at 1.22. A zone cover corner who can tackle is much more important in the league these days than a NT with bad knees.

Anonymous said...

the reason I don't see Oakland making a QB pick is not just because schaub is there, but also because of the money they will have tied up in him. no way they will pay 2 QB's starter money.

I'm not a big time nix fan, just pointing out he would be there.

also, my biggest point being the steelers have been able to find quality DB's in the 3rd-5th rounds in the past. why spend 1.15 on the same type of player you can get later who just doesn't have the hype/attention? imo, if they can get a guy who they feel is a "difference maker" at 1.15, then by all means take him (whoever that may be). but, if it's someone like fuller, then I'd rather they find a way to trade down and get more picks without sacrificing in quality of player.

obviously, I defer to their judgment, but based on dale's mock, I see no difference in picking at 22 compared to 15 for the steelers.

datruth4life said...

Dale, if LT Taylor Lewan drops, are you certain that the Steelers won't bite? Remember, if you can get a legit starting LT on a rookie contract for the next 5 years, then you are helping out your salary cap tremendously. I'm also not sold on Beachum, Adams or Gilbert being the long-term answer at LT. I do like Fuller over Dennard. Some people keep saying that Dennard ran a 4.37 at his pro day. It must be his agent because he didn't run the 40 at his pro day. He ran a 4.51 at the combine while Fuller ran a 4.40. Just think Fuller is a better fit, though I'd still pull the trigger on Gilbert if he is still available. If you can apprentice at a position of need and still be a game-breaker as a returner during your rookie year, the Steelers can't pass that up. That is why I was so high on WR Cordarrelle Patterson last year and hoped the Steelers would have selected him over Jarvis Jones.

Anonymous said...

I don't like Nix either but not because I don't value the NT position. Simply because I don't think he is the talent that Casey Hampton or Joel Steed were. Stopping the run puts teams in predictable down and distance situations which makes defending the pass easier.

kyle said...


They wouldn't be paying two QBs starter money. They would be paying Schaub and have Manziel (or anyone else) on a rookie contract for five years. I would be very surprised if the Raiders don't draft a QB at some point in the draft. Doesn't have to be Manziel and it doesn't have to be in the 1st but I think they are targeting the position.

The thing about Fuller is he has been getting the hype and attention. I believe he has met with at least half of the teams in the league. I agree that he isn't the type of player you want in the top half of the draft (not exciting) but for all of the talk about "fit" there aren't any players at that position who are a better fit for the Steelers.

Dale Lolley said...

As stated, Manziel would be under his rookie deal for five years. Much cheaper. Also Schaub is 31 and coming off a season in which he was benched for Case Keenum. He's hardly a long-term answer.

As for Fuller over some other players available, it's just another way I see things could happen.

And if you like a player enough to pick him at 22, what is the difference if you take him at 15?

It only takes one team to muck up your trade down by also falling in love with the player.

I think trades up and down will be somewhat difficult this year because of the depth of the draft. Unless moving to get a QB, I think teams will stay where they're at.

As for Lewan, no thanks. Do you think the Steelers will overlook the guy allegedly calling a rape victim and threatening her? I think he's a bad guy. And I'm not sold that he's anything more than a RT.

Anonymous said...

RG3 signed 4 yr. deal for $21m, all guaranteed. that's roughly $5.25m guaranteed per year.

I think it is safe to say manziel gets similar deal as RG3 if he goes to the raiders.

schaub reworked his deal with raiders at 2 yr. for $13.5m, with $8m guaranteed. that's $4m guaranteed per year.

of the top 50 nfl QB contracts (in terms of total value), 19 have $4m or more in guaranteed money per year. based on that, I would say the raiders would be paying starter's money to 2 QB's if they drafted manziel.

kyle said...


Draft picks salaries are slotted. The only negotiating consists of the fifth year option and some ancillary stuff.

Salaries are not averaged out. Manziel would be making far less than most starting QBs in the league. That is not a consideration for the Raiders or any team

Anonymous said...

imo, it's the guaranteed money that counts in the nfl. all of manziels conract would be guaranteed as that has been the norm for top picks the last few years.

we all know that aaron Rodgers won't see all of his $110m contract, or drew brees $100m contract.

if the raiders take manziel, they will be guaranteeing money to 2 QB's that is comparable to starting QB's for the rest of the nfl over the next 2 years.

kyle said...

The total guaranteed money over the life of the contract averaged out per year isn't the issue. The cap hit is what matters. This year's salary isn't amortized like a signing bonus.

Last season, you have to get all the way down to Josh McCown (23rd) before you find a QB with a cap hit under $5 million.

EJ Manuel (taken much later than fifth overall but still the first QB taken) had a cap hit just north of $2 million. If the Raiders take someone fifth overall the cap hit will be higher than $2 million but not by a ton.

None of this means the Raiders will take him (or any QB in the 1st) but they won't be scared off by the money they're committing to the position.

Dale Lolley said...

You only needed to be in Oakland last season with a crowd of 40,000 and the upper deck covered to see that team has an attendance problem. Part of it is the stadium. Part is the 49ers being so close.

But they need someone who would generate buzz. They have drafted that way for years. Look at all the Heisman winners they have brought in. I know Al Davis is gone, but the Raiders are the Raiders.

Steve said...

I think the Browns draft Manziel

Pistol said...

They sure didnt mind Adams who is less talented failing a drug test at the combine or Rainey who threatened to kill his gf so why is Lewan any different??

That being said i'm good w either Dennard or Fuller at 15 but wouldnt be upset if they took Lewan at all.

Steve said...

Neither was a first round pick. They took Rainey in the fifth. To me, Adams failing a drug test isn't the same as telling a rape victim that you're going to rape her again.

Pistol said...


I'm not saying its the same or trying to defend Lewan by any means im just stating that they dont put a huge premium on character.

Dale Lolley said...

I don't like Lewan as a player. I think he's overrated. Add in the rape thing and I wouldn't want him.

Adams basically begged them to draft him and they have close ties to the Ohio State staff, so they knew more about him.

Pouncey vouched for Rainey. And, he was a fifth-round guy. Little invested.

Pistol said...

I would be much happier if they took a guy like Mewhort or Scholfield in the later rounds. I think this draft has to be wr-cb or cb-wr in the first 2 rounds.

Anonymous said...

I hope we draft Pierra Desir, I think this guy has "it"
I know you won't like him in the first round, but I'm not head over heals for anyone at 15.

Dale Lolley said...

I like Desir. Big corner with ball skills.

Pistol said...


Which of the 2nd round receivers do you iike? Im partial to Mathews and think Benjamin might slide.

Anonymous said...

Thanks Dale, not too many people are high on Desir, coming out of a smaller school. But I for one really think he fits well with the Steelers.

datruth4life said...

Dale, can't vouch for Lewan's character. All I know is that Charlie Casserly said he's a better LT than L. Joeckel and Eric Fischer that went no. 1 and no. 2 in last year's draft. I know everyone is screaming CB for the Steelers at no. 15, but C.J. Mosley just looks like a 10-year starter at the ILB position next to Timmons. I also like idea of having O. Beckham as this team's punt and kickoff returner while he learns the WR position in this Steelers offense. Lastly, I do agree with your pick of Fuller. Think he fits what LeBeau loves to do in this D better than Dennard.

Patrick said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Patrick said...

Charlie casserly watches the draft like the rest of us for a reason

Anonymous said...

Casserly is best known for drafting Mario Williams and as an analyst drawing the wrath of Belichick. He's also known for saying 'if you listen to the fans you end up sitting with them.' I dunno if that's an original or not. But it's funny because one week after ignoring the fans (and ownership)by drafting Williams, he was fired. And vindicated by history. Maybe that quote should be altered to 'if you don't listen to ownership, no matter how stupid ownership is, you end up sitting with the fans.'

Also, Casserly has made a couple of comments about the Patriots, about injury reports iirc. And Belichick has gone out of his way to scumbag him ever since, basically calling him a know-nothing liar..... only history has vindicated him there too and it was Belichick who was proven the liar. It's one thing to lie, but to go out of your way to personally/professionally attack someone while you're lying thru your teeth is quite another. Casserly has taken the high ground, so I have some respect for a guy who will stick to his guns while keeping it professional. He also won't say a bad thing about Adams either, or being fired, or a hint of 'I told you so.' So I'll stick up for him on this, and say his opinion is worth consideration even if ultimately I don't agree with it.

Steve said...

Casserly was a good GM, overall, though he did swing and miss badly on his two top five qb picks (Shuler and Carr).

MAC said...

In my perfect world, the Steelers would draft Fuller in Rd 1 and D. Adams in Rd 2. Both fill positions of need, are scheme fits and appear to have what it takes to contribute immediately.

datruth4life said...


I have the Dolphins biting to move up to the Steelers pick at no. 15. Here's the result for the Steelers:

1 – CB K. Fuller, Va. Tech
2 – DT, S. Truitt, Notre Dame
3 – WR D. Moncrief, Mississippi
3 – OLB J. Attaochu, Ga. Tech
4 – OT A. Richardson, Tennessee
5 – ILB, J. Zumalt, UCLA
5 – CB W. Aikens, Liberty
6 – WR J. Brown, Pittsburgh State
6 – OLB L. Webster, Bloomsburg
7 – NT R. Carrethers, Arkansas State

(Steelers pick up extra 3rd & 6th rd picks for trade down in 1st round)

Dale Lolley said...

Considering Joeckel and Fisher both stunk last season, that's not really a glowing endorsement.