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Matt McGuire's Shocker Mock
2008 NFL Mock Draft

Last update: Monday, April 21, 2008.
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What is this? Every year, picks in the draft happen that we don't expect. Ted Ginn at No. 9 to Miami last year (biggest shocker in recent memory considering the circumstances). Justin Harrell was a pretty shocking pick to the Packers. Craig Davis was arguably the biggest reach in the first round. Donte Whitner was a big surprise in 2006. No one even really anticipated Mario Williams going No. 1 overall (could Chris Long be the next shocking No. 1 pick in the eyes of the consensus?) I thought John McCargo was a fourth-round draft pick, yet Buffalo traded up into the first round for him.

As a reminder, not every pick in this Shocker Mock Draft is a shocking pick, because like the draft, not every pick is a shocker either. This mock draft is just to stir the imagination, and let you be the draft genius in front of all your friends if you predict a few of these selections and they come true.

I started with the Patriots at No. 7 because the top five or six is usually locked in the day before the draft or a few hours leading up to it. I anticipate that Jake Long, Vernon Gholston, Glenn Dorsey, Sedrick Ellis, Darren McFadden and Chris Long will be off the board when the Patriots select.
  1. New England Patriots: Keith Rivers, ILB, USC
    Keith Rivers brings the perfect versatility and leadership to this defense. I think most draftniks would be shocked by this pick, considering all the hype has been about cornerback or even offensive lineman (which I don't think has a chance of happening).

  2. Baltimore Ravens: Leodis McKelvin, CB, Troy
    Taking Leodis McKelvin here isn't a shocker, but all I have been hearing about on ESPN is that Matt Ryan's floor in this draft is Baltimore. Have they watch the draft lately? They were saying the same thing about Brady Quinn to the Fins last year; some just never learn. Baltimore could easily trade high into the second round for Brian Brohm, Joe Flacco or Chad Henne. Ryan to the Ravens is not a lock if he falls here, but he is the front-runner.

  3. Cincinnati Bengals: Kentwan Balmer, DT, North Carolina
    The Bengals don't have much to work with in terms of athletic ability at defensive tackle. Kentwan Balmer would bring a lot of explosiveness and pass-rush ability to this position.

  4. New Orleans Saints: Kenny Phillips, S, Miami
    Most think Kenny Phillips is a late first-round pick, but because the Saints have a huge need at this position (like Buffalo in 2006 with Donte Whitner), this pick can be justified. Their pass defense last year was horrible, and to make it all better they might look to another Miami safety (they seem to be pretty good).

  5. Buffalo Bills: Mike Jenkins, CB, South Florida
    Not a shocking pick at all here considering who was on the board, I couldn't really see Buffalo make a shocking pick. Mike Jenkins is a very versatile corner because he can play mutliple coverage schemes and make a lot of plays.

  6. Denver Broncos: DeSean Jackson, WR, California
    Come on... Darrell Jackson? Samie Parker? Keary Colbert? Brandon Marshall is a stud, but this offense could use a big, deep threat with elite punt-return ability. DeSean Jackson simply brings something to this offense that it lacks: a total play-maker. The favorites here would be Branden Albert and Rashard Mendenhall, but don't be totally surprised if they went with Jackson because of what he would bring to the team.

  7. Carolina Panthers: Rashard Mendenhall, RB, Illinois
    Not an astonishing draft pick, but it's one who would take you offguard. DeAngelo Williams seems to have been in the John Fox doghouse for a while, and they might want Mendenhall to be their No. 1 running back, allowing them to use Williams as the scat back. Mendenhall can handle the load, and many consider him to be the best back in the draft.

  8. Chicago Bears: Matt Ryan, QB, Boston College
    Even though Matt Ryan is the best signal caller in this class, it would surprise me a bit to see Chicago pass up on Ryan Clady. Still, quarterback is a huge need for this team and drafting Ryan wouldn't be a horrible move (if they can get him some talent). Again, not an utterly shocking pick, but one you don't see in very many mocks.

  9. Detroit Lions: Branden Albert, G/T, Virginia
    With Edwin Mulitalo and Stephen Peterman slated to start at the two guard positions, this team could use a big upgrade. Branden Albert is an extremely good guard prospect with his athletic ability, and it always adds value if you can play mulitiple positions (some think he could go as high as the Chiefs at No. 5 and play left tackle). Albert makes a lot of sense for this team even if they had to pass up on Jonathon Stewart, Derrick Harvey and Jerod Mayo.

  10. Arizona Cardinals: Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, CB, Tenn St.
    Not a shocking pick at all here, and I would have a very hard time seeing the Cardinals pass up on DRC.

  11. Minnesota Vikings: Joe Flacco, QB, Delaware
    This would probably make Radio City Music Hall go nuts considering what we would be looking at. Joe Flacco throwing to Sidney Rice and Bernard Berrian. Steve Hutchinson, Bryant McKennie, and Matt Birk blocking for Adrian Peterson and Chester Taylor. It's pretty sick to think about, and it could happen. Brad Childress loves big-arm quarterbacks who are mobile (some think Flacco is) ... Flacco would be a great fit in this offense.

  12. Houston Texans: Ryan Clady, OT, Boise State
    Ryan Clady to the Texans isn't a shocking pick either. Passing up on Clady at 18 simply would not happen.

  13. Philadelphia Eagles: Chris Williams, OT, Vanderbilt
    Not many picks that the Eagles could make would be shocking (realistically) because a lot of their needs are filled. Chris Williams takes over as the heir apparent to William-Tra Thomas at left tackle, and Winston Justice tries to make something of himself on the right side.

  14. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Donnie Avery, WR, Houston
    The well-respected site (leading source on all Bucs information) claims that Tampa Bay has a first-round draft grade on Donnie Avery. Yeah, if this happened, you wouldn't want to speak to me for months. I wasn't a fan of Michael Clayton when he was drafted, and I think this pick could be even worse. Still, if PR thinks this is possible, I can't doubt them (though I really don't see it happening).

  15. Washington Redskins: Antoine Cason
    Most fans think this would be a reach for Antoine Cason at No. 21, but I have Cason rated as the third-best corner in the draft. A play-maker is needed opposite Carlos Rogers, so it would make a lot of sense for Washington to go with Cason.

  16. Dallas Cowboys: Devin Thomas, WR, Michigan State
    Wideout is a huge need with Terrell Owens and Terry Glenn aging. Devin Thomas can be developed (which is what he needs) and his high upside makes a lot of sense for the Cowboys at No. 22.

    Another pick that is not a shocker in the least.

  17. Pittsburgh Steelers: Derrick Harvey, DE, Florida
    This would be a very shocking pick considering that the Steelers are (or possibly were) with a 3-4 base defense. We all know Mike Tomlin is a disciple of Tony Dungy and Monte Kiffin (pioneers of the famous Tampa-2). He might eventually install the 4-3 Tampa-2 and want a speedy right defensive end who can get after the quarterback. Harvey can play rush linebacker in the mean time, but if this were the pick it would mean the switch to the Tamp- 2 would happen in 2009, possibly as soon as next season.

  18. Tennessee Titans: Early Doucet, WR, LSU
    It would be pretty surprising to see Tennessee pass on James Hardy and Limas Sweed for Early Doucet, but we have no idea what their draft grades are. Maybe Doucet is high on their list and they value his YAC and reliability. Plus, keep in mind how great the early production has been for receiver prospects coming out of LSU with Michael Clayton and Dwayne Bowe because they are well-coached football players in terms of route running, hands and blocking.

    Doucet is a jack-of-all-trades, master-of-none type prospect. Jeff Fisher might be intrigued by that.

  19. Seattle Seahawks: Fred Davis, TE, USC
    Not a total shocker if the Seahawks were to go with Fred Davis here. They need a receiving threat at tight end who has some speed.

  20. Jacksonville Jaguars: Pat Sims, DT, Auburn
    Pat Sims fits the same mold as Marcus Stroud and John Henderson, and with the trade of Stroud to Buffalo, taking a tackle here makes a lot of sense. The Auburn product is very raw, but he has an extremely high upside. Most draftniks feel like this would be a huge reach. Look at past drafts - Craig Davis was a huge reach in 2007 and John McCargo was a pick no one predicted when Buffalo traded up for him. Marcedes Lewis and Mathias Kiwanuka weren't viewed as first-round draft grades in 2006. It happens, so get used to it.

  21. San Diego Chargers: Dan Connor, ILB, Penn State
    Again, hard to make a logical shocker pick for a team that is stacked at several positions, but I think Dan Connor is much better than what they now have at inside linebacker.

  22. Dallas Cowboys: Carl Nicks, G, Nebraska
    No one is projecting the Cowboys to draft a guard in the first round, but I feel like an upgrade could be made for Kyle Kosier. Dallas loves big, bulky linemen, and Carl Nicks certainly is that at 6-4 335 (and he runs an impressive 5.15 40 to show off his athleticism).

  23. San Francisco 49ers: Trevor Laws, NT, Notre Dame
    The Niners don't have many options at nose tackle. Trevor Laws' great technique, motor, and fit as a two-gap defensive tackle make him a very smart choice here at No. 29.

    Most don't project the 49ers to go with a nose tackle in the first round, but I think it's very possible.

  24. Green Bay Packers: Phillip Merling, DE, Clemson
    Phillip Merling wouldn't be a shocking pick to the Packers because they have a big need at right defensive end; they need an every-down player (which Kabeer Gbaja-Biamila is not). Cullen Jenkins offers minimal pass-rush ability, so Merling would make a lot of sense here if he falls this far.

  25. New York Giants: Dustin Keller, TE, Purdue
    Call me crazy, but I'm not sold on Kevin Boss. I think he's a solid tight end, but nothing all that special. Dustin Keller would bring a different dimension to this offense with his athleticism, quick route running and reliable hands. He would create more big plays, and you certainly need to do that in the NFC East.

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