i realize that some people may not like Shawn Oakman because of this or that, but i guarantee you that cat's not falling to the end of the fourth round. I hope he does, because I'm a carolina fan, but there's no way a DE that big and fast will last that long. He's kinda like Julius Peppers physically. except bigger.
New England Patriots: Derek Sherrod, OT, Mississippi State
This pick is going to be up for sale to the highest bidder as teams shuffle their draft boards overnight. They would have to consider staying put and taking Derek Sherrod should he fall out of the first round though. This is not a pick I love, but I have to hustle to finish this final update.
Green Bay Packers: Brooks Reed, DE/OLB, Arizona
PROJECTED TRADE: Trading out of the first round pays off for the Packers who get pick No. 133 from the Bills and still get a bookend pass rusher for Clay Matthews. This is a dream scenario for ESPN. I can envision a two-hour special featuring just the hair of Matthews and Brooks Reed. Cousin It is definitely jealous.
New England Patriots: Danny Watkins, G, Baylor
PROJECTED TRADE: They get pick No. 101 from the Bengals and use their selection here to grab Logan Mankins 2.0. It is just that simple. I think the Patriots are going to rebuild their lines in this draft. Let's face it they have the picks to take this draft by the, well, you know.
Denver Broncos: Stephen Paea, DT, Oregon State
The depth on the interior of the defensive line drives their decision to take Von Miller in the first round, and if not for a knee injury suffered at the Senior Bowl I believe Stephen Paea would be buzzed up as an easy first round pick.
Cleveland Browns: Da'Quan Bowers, DE, Clemson
It is insanity to predict a player once considered an option at No. 1 overall as sliding to the early second round, but medical concerns are tricky. If he starts falling down the board plenty of teams could be interested.
Arizona Cardinals: Martez Wilson, ILB, Illinois
This is a no-brainer pick as far as I'm concerned and no reason to change it since Martez Wilson is once again on the board. There is a possibility a team looking for a pass-rusher will target him earlier than this believing they can play him outside.
If not, the Cardinals will not hesitate to pair him up inside with last year's pick Daryl Washington.
Tennessee Titans Ryan Mallett, QB, Arkansas
Like a lot of teams, quarterback is a high priority for the Titans in the 2011 NFL Draft. Vince Young flaming out has really put them in a tough position. As I am typing this it has been confirmed he is officially, for sure, no doubt about it coming back. In case anyone had any doubts left.
Kerry Collins is ready for a rocking chair. Before he calls it a career, he would like to throw for 111 yards so he can pass Joe Montana for 10th on the all-time list.
The Titans are not going to put their fate in the hands of Rusty Smith, and can consider themselves lucky Ryan Mallett is still on the board for them to take.
Dallas Cowboys: Rahim Moore, FS, UCLA
Nothing to see here if you looked the previous version I am staying with the pick.
This defense was a major liability in 2010. In more than half of their games they allowed more points than even a top offense could be expected to keep up with. They were 2-9 when surrendering 24-plus points and only 5-5 when scoring 26-plus points. Which side of the ball do you think is the bigger problem?
It is not like their defense lacks talent. In 2009, they were second in scoring (15.6). Some passion and new blood should provide them a spark.
Ironically, the 2009 season was pretty good for Rahim Moore as well. He had 10 interceptions before his production dropped off. Maybe he can rebound along with his new Cowboy teammates and return to his thieving ways.
Washington Redskins: Colin Kaepernick, QB, Nevada
Once again I am thinking in line with Walt. As I chalked Colin Kaepernick in here I noticed he also put in this spot. The Redskins have to get a quarterback and quite frankly this might be their dream scenario because it does not require a reach or trade up.
If the Bills don't take Kaepernick this is my next best logical fit for him.
Houston Texans: Aaron Williams, CB/S, Texas
If you don't know the Texans are having major problems all across their secondary you must be living under a rock. This is the best player on the board and he fits a need.
Minnesota Vikings: Justin Houston, DE/OLB, Georgia
Failing a drug test at the Combine is pretty stupid, but it allows the Vikings to make up for their Jake Locker reach by getting an excellent value to bolster their pass rush by adding Justin Houston.
Detroit Lions: Torrey Smith, WR, Maryland
Calvin Johnson needs a reliable threat to draw defensive attention away from him. The Lions also need a powerful running back, but that can come later.
San Francisco 49ers: Johnny Patrick, CB, Louisville
Having secured their quarterback in the first round the 49ers will be able to sleep well on Thursday night and figure out which prospects can help them the most in the secondary. Johnny Patrick is a surprise pick this early, but he has drawn a lot of attention across the league.
Denver Broncos: Benjamin Ijalana, OT/G, Villanova
The Broncos have more questions than answers at quarterback, but it appears as though they will stand pat with their current depth chart until next year when Stanford's Andrew Luck and USC's Matt Barkley are possible additions. In the meantime they solidify the offensive line.
St. Louis Rams: Mikel Leshoure, RB, Illinois
There is a lot of buzz about the Rams possibly taking Alabama's Mark Ingram in the first round. The smarter play is to sit back and let Mikel Leshoure fall to them. Not a lot of teams are desperate for running back help. Leshoure can extend Steven Jackson's career and eventually replace him.
Oakland Raiders: Curtis Marsh, CB, Utah State
What? You didn't think I would throw in a surprise for the Raiders? They want speed and a height out of their cornerbacks. Nnamdi Asomugha is gone and they love to draft cornerbacks early on. Rod Woodson gets a blue chip prospect to work with - or at least a blue chip in their estimation.
Jacksonville Jaguars: Leonard Hankerson, WR, Miami
There are going to be a few surprise picks in the draft and occasionally I will throw some in my mock drafts. Mike Sims-Walker is gone after scoring seven touchdowns in 2010. The only other wide receiver to score more than two touchdowns was Mike Thomas (4) who is going to need someone to work with.
Leonard Hankerson has been playing in big games in the state of Florida since high school and I like the idea of him staying in the Sunshine State.
San Diego Chargers: Brandon Harris, CB, Miami
The Chargers look ahead with this pick trying to find a successor for Quentin Jammer. Brandon Harris gets pushed down in part because of his lack of height, and obviously is not a Jammer clone being several inches shorter but the team has shown interest.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Curtis Brown, CB, Texas
Aqib Talib's audition to be on the reality show Top Shot has created some urgency at the cornerback position. Ronde Barber will probably remain with the organization after this season in some capacity, but I expect this to be his final playing season.
New York Giants: Jonathan Baldwin, WR, Pittsburgh
This final mock is a bit loose because I am going by instinct quite a bit as I rush through it. I see Jonathan Baldwin as their new Plaxico Burress. They need a big receiver and I don't think Ramses Barden is going to be that guy. It's still possible Buurress takes the Mike Vick path from prison back to the NFL, but this is a surprise pick I would like to see.
Indianapolis Colts: Jerrel Jernigan, WR, Troy
As much fun as it was to watch Peyton Manning squeeze lemons into lemonade with Dallas Clark and wide receiver Austin Collie (hello Blair White!) injured, when it came time to play for a title in the playoffs, their offense failed to function up to their standards.
They need another receiver, especially if Collie hangs up his cleats instead of risking permanent brain damage. The latest report is that this might be it for Reggie Wayne in a Colts uniform. Speed is always welcome on this roster and size is not necessarily a requirement.
Philadelphia Eagles: Will Rackley, OT/G, Lehigh
If the Eagles are in fact enthralled with cornerback Jimmy Smith and take him in the first round, they have to make a strong play here to address the right side of their offensive line. Will Rackley has drawn a ton of attention from teams and it leads me to believe he is going off the board in round 2.
Kansas City Chiefs: Edmond Gates, WR, Abilene Christian
All the Chiefs fans can settle down. I knew they needed a wide receiver, and here it is. Dwayne Bowe can't be the only threat to catch the football.
New Orleans Saints: Ryan Williams, RB, Virginia Tech
The Saints are a mess in the backfield. They had to go with Julius Jones with their season on the line. I'm a little concerned about them taking a player with an injury in his rear view mirror when the guy they just signed (Pierre Thomas) is also an injury risk, but the talent is there with Ryan Williams to warrant the risk.
Seattle Seahawks: Rodney Hudson, G/C, Florida State
This is another rare pick that has not changed because Rodney Hudson is such a good fit for their zone-blocking system.
The talk of him playing center is a little premature, but he has shown potential there. The Seahawks are considering their options in the middle. They could retain Chris Spencer or shift Max Unger there which is where he belongs. Hudson could back up the center position which makes him even more valuable.
Baltimore Ravens: Jabaal Sheard, DE/OLB, Pittsburgh
If the Ravens get Gabe Carimi and Jabaal Sheard it would be a very successful start to their draft. Terrell Suggs needs someone to rush the passer on the other side and any red flags Sheard might have are minimized by a strong locker room.
Atlanta Falcons: Allen Bailey, DE/DT, Miami
Kroy Biermann was one of several defensive ends who arrived "tardy to the party" when it came to reaching the opposing quarterback. The Falcons are going to address this problem early in the 2011 NFL draft. Allen Bailey is one of several possibilities they are looking at. His stock went down after the Senior Bowl, but appears to have gone up since.
New England Patriots: Davon House, CB, New Mexico State
The Patriots like corners who can press and have a lot of picks to work with. I doubt they stay put in many of them, but Davon House could be their guy if they do.
San Diego Chargers: Quan Sturdivant, ILB, North Carolina
The Chargers acquired this pick in the Antonio Cromartie trade.
Too many inside linebackers are free agents for the Chargers not to use an early pick on that problem.
Chicago Bears: James Carpenter, OG/T, Alabama
If the Bears pass on offensive tackle in the first round they might reach and grab a new recruit for Mike Tice here.
Pittsburgh Steelers: Marcus Gilbert, OT, Florida
Ben Roethlisberger is a fearless quarterback when it comes to taking hits, but he can't be exposed like he has been the past few seasons. The Steelers need to improve the offensive line.
Green Bay Packers: Ras-I Dowling, CB, Virginia
Best player available is always on the mind of the Packers, but if it meets with a mild need all the better. Charles Woodson is going to decline in a hurry. That is the way the human body works. Ras-I Dowling has some size and plenty of speed. If he can stay healthy this is a great pick at the end of Round 2.