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Miami Dolphins: Ahtyba Rubin, NT, Iowa State
The Dolphins can get a young, prototypical nose tackle at a relatively cheap price. I know they already traded
for Jason Ferguson, but the value of a dominating nose tackle is tremendous because it's a big part of the 3-4
to clog the middle running lines.
St. Louis Rams: Reggie Smith, S, Oklahoma
It's all about attitude with the Rams in this draft, and they need to get tougher on defense. Chris Long (or Glenn Dorsey,
whomever is the second pick) will help in this department, but a big leader is need in the secondary. Reggie Smith loves to hit
and could be another Tanard Jackson people sleep on (corner in college to pro safety).
Kansas City Chiefs: Early Doucet, WR, LSU
Dwayne Bowe had a great rookie year. Carl Peterson would pull the trigger quickly on another Bayou Bangal.
Early Doucet should be an elite slot receiver in the NFL (think Wes Welker).
Carolina Panthers: Matt Forte, RB, Tulane
People love to forget the Senior Bowl (unless it's about this year's quarterback or cornerback classes), but I don't. Matt Forte is a better
outside runner than given credit for, and he is the power back to help DeAngelo Williams with the carry load.
Atlanta Falcons: Duane Brown, OT, Virginia Tech
Duane Brown and Gosder Cherilus are the bookend tackles for the Falcons for years to come, and should assist Joe Flacco in a big way
with this Atlanta mock.
New England Patriots: Jonathan Goff, ILB, Vanderbilt
Jonathan Goff has the great intangibles and work ethic that Bill Belichick adores in his linebacking corps. Goff
fits the 3-4 defense like a glove.
Chicago Bears: Chilo Rachal, G, USC
Josh Beekman was a guard drafted last year out of Boston College by the Bears, and Chilo Rachal fills that same mold as a power
blocker. Ryan Clady reminds me of Jason Peters. It all starts in the trenches.
Buffalo Bills: Martellus Bennett, TE, Texas A&M
Martellus Bennett opens up a lot for this offense that lost a talented football player when Kevin Everett went down last season.
How many NFL prospects were drafted by the NBA coming out of high school? Don't jump the gun on the Antonio Gates comparison;
Bennett reminds me more of Heath Miller.
Jacksonville Jaguars: Donnie Avery, WR, Houston
With not much invested in Troy Williamson, the Jaguars draft for depth at receiver and add another deep threat, as well as
some very good separation speed. Donnie Avery has added value as a return specialist.
Kansas City Chiefs: DaJuan Morgan, FS, N.C. State
Bernard Pollard was a very underrated player in the NFL last season, but a rangy free safety could make him look much better.
DaJuan Morgan has all the physical tools you look for, but he isn't always consistent.
At one time, Mike Mayock had him rated ahead of Kenny Phillips based on initial game tape, and I've been a big fan of
his play as well. Kansas City gets great value with this draft pick.
Carolina Panthers: John Carlson, TE, Notre Dame
I don't think John Carlson should go this high, but ohn Fox prefers
great blockers. Carlson is a very balanced player, but had an ugly Combine, barely running a sub 5.0 40.
San Francisco 49ers: Red Bryant, DT, Texas A&M
Red Bryant is probably best fit as a five-technique, but he has the upside to play nose tackle. Don't
look at his size and assume he isn't very athletic. I think he lacks toughness, but five-technqiue is probably his best
fit in the NFL.
Detroit Lions: Trevor Laws, DT, Notre Dame
Trevor Laws is the opposite of Shaun Rogers because he doesn't wear down in games, has a high motor and makes a lot of plays
laterally on the line of scrimmage.
Cincinnati Bengals: Keenan Burton, WR, Kentucky
Cincinnati needs to draft a receiver because Chad Johnson is unpredictable. Keenan Burton is the opposite, showing consistency
and great leadership his whole career at Kentucky.
New Orleans Saints: Jermichael Finley, TE, Texas
I hope the Saints don't give into the Giants' trade demands for a second-round pick for Jeremy Shockey; I don't
think he's worth it with his injury issues (and I don't even think he's that talented). Until it actually happens, I'm mocking
the Saints with Jermichael Finley, who is a natural receiver but needs to give better effort as a blocker.
Houston Texans: Tashard Choice, RB, Georgia Tech
Tashard Choice fits the zone-blocking scheme very well, and he's the best running back-pass protector in this draft. One of the
more complete backs in this extremely strong 2008 class.
Philadelphia Eagles: Brad Cottam, TE, Tennessee
What happens to L.J. Smith after this season after being hit with the franchise tag? I say get rid of the player
that should be signed to a multi-million dollar endorsement by Butterfingers, forcing Bart Simpson to demand a trade
Arizona Cardinals: Cliff Avril, DE/OLB, Purdue
Cliff Avril brings the speed off the edge and continues the tradition of Boilermaker pass rushers into the league.
Kansas City Chiefs: Mike Pollak, C, Arizona State
The Chiefs missed out on Jeff Faine in free agency to Tampa, so they'll grab the consensus No. 1 center in the draft, who actually
compares very favorably to Faine, displaying great athleticism and technique.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Jason Jones, DE, Eastern Michigan
Greg Smith is rumored to be on the trading block and my projection is that Tampa Bay should receive a fourth-round draft selection
for him. If he is moved, a young left bookend is needed opposite Gaines Adams. Jason Jones will have to play immediately on passing downs,
and can learn a lot from Kevin Carter on how to stuff the run. I love this fit with Jones in the Tampa-2 scheme; I think he can
be an extroardinary pass rusher from the left side in the 4-3, but he needs to develop his game.
Washington Redskins: Marcus Harrison, DT, Arkansas
The Skins need to stuff the run, and Marcus Harrison can do just that, bringing a lot of young blood to this aging defensive
Tennessee Titans: Tyvon Branch, CB, Connecticut
Tyvon Branch is the kind of athletic, press-man corner that I think Jeff Fisher would like to add since the Pac Man-Titan
saga is GAME OVER.
And I'd like to mention, a fourth-round pick is too much for a player who will singlehandedly increase stripper
incomes in Dallas by 5.6 percent.
Seattle Seahawks: Quintin Demps, FS, UTEP
A rangy play-maker is needed for a team that I feel like has a very overrated secondary.
Detroit Lions: Terrell Thomas, CB, USC
Terrell Thomas was born to play in the Tampa-2 defense at corner, and the Lions need to get younger here from a depth standpoint.
Brian Kelly is a stop gap, and Thomas can learn a lot behind him and Leigh Bodden. Plus, he gives versatility at safety
Pittsburgh Steelers: Kevin Smith, RB, Central Florida
I was in a tough spot for the Steelers, so I gave them the best running back on the board.
Jacksonville Jaguars: Chad Henne, QB, Michigan
Chad Henne falls in my mock because he's very overrated, but the Jaguars could use a developmental quarterback behind David
The investment worked out for Atlanta when they drafted Matt Schuab. He was a third-round pick that turned into swapping
picks 8 and 10 in the 2007 Draft, and adding up to two second-rounders.
It's a smart play because you never know if your starter could get injured. Pure value for the Jaguars here, and I just
didn't see many other glaring needs on their team at this pick.
Chicago Bears: Thomas DeCoud, FS, California
The Bears have most of their offensive needs addressed and all the good running backs are off the board. I think they could use
another safety besides Daniel Manning, and Thomas DeCoud is a physical player with solid instincts.
Green Bay Packers: Orlando Scandrick, CB, Boise State
Orlando Scandrick fits the bill as an athletic, press-man corner and he won't be rushed into the starting lineup. He could
contribute in his rookie season at nickel.
Dallas Cowboys: Anthony Collins, T, Kansas
I know the Cowboys have Doug Free and James Marten, but neither player can play left tackle in my eyes. Anthony Collins has some upside
to do it, and if he doesn't work out there, they can put him at left guard or right tackle.
Indianapolis Colts: Xavier Adibi, OLB, Virginia Tech
The Colts need a WILL linebacker, and Xavier Adibi is the typical fit with his speed.
New England Patriots: Craig Steltz, SS, LSU
Craig Steltz is a smart football player who is a more fluid athlete than given credit for when I watch him on film.
New York Giants: Josh Barrett, SS, Arizona State
More help in the secondary for the Giants, and they just keep getting faster on the defensive side of the ball.
Washington Redskins: Jacob Tamme, TE, Kentucky
An H-Back with elite receiving skills who compares to Chris Cooley.
Cincinnati Bengals: DeMario Pressley, DT, N.C. State
DeMario Pressely is exactly the pass rusher this team is lacking at tackle. Very good upside for a mid-round prospect.
Atlanta Falcons: Kory Lichtensteiger, C, Bowling Green
Big hole at center, but Kory Lichtensteiger has all the intangibles you look for in an anchor center. I see a lot of Matt Birk
in his style of play. He has short arms, and he's not the most athletic (how many centers are?), but he is tough, smart and nasty.
Baltimore Ravens: Kendall Langford, DE, Hampton
Adding depth on the defensive line would be a smart move with Trevor Pryce getting up there in age.
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