This is an opportunity for you, the readers, to vote on the picks in the 2011 NFL Draft. All you need to do is sign up for the forums and vote in the 2011 Reader NFL Mock Draft section of the forums. If you have trouble registering, e-mail me. Look for updates on Twitter @walterfootball.
- Blaine Gabbert: 45.5%
- Cam Newton: 25.9%
- Marcell Dareus: 13.3%
- Patrick Peterson: 6.3%
- A.J. Green: 5.6%
- Nick Fairley: 1.4%
- Da'Quan Bowers: 0.7%
- Von Miller: 0.7%
- Robert Quinn: 0.7%
Reader 2011 NFL Mock Draft Member Comments:
Hawkins: I voted Gabbert. I think it's going to come down to a quarterback, and I think Gabbert's Pro Day will be the thing that gives him the edge. I'd like to see Clausen given a chance under Rivera but new regimes = new quarterback.
Vincinerator: If it was me, I'd take either A.J. Green or Patrick Peterson. I'm not ready to give up on Clausen, he just needs some help. Peterson is just, by far, and I can't truly stress how far, the best player in this class. If I had a ratings grade, he'd be an A+ or 100 while A.J. Green would be next at A or 97. Peterson is a god.
Sadly, they'll take Blaine Gabbert. As a Chargers fan, it makes me feel bad for Ron Rivera.
Roddoliver: Cam Newton. Carolina went with the "safe", "pro-ready" QB in 2010. Jimmy Clausen struggled so much that GM Matt Hurney still considers QB the n? 1 need. Combine this situation with a new head coach in town, and remember that new regimes mean new QBs. But draft based on upside this time. Take the best spread QB, a winner that was able to dominate the competition in the SEC with impressive plays and stats. Tim Tebow did not struggle as much as many "experts" expected, and the same can happen with Newton.
TehDruid: I picked Marcell Dareus.
I believe they really can't mess this pick up, so I went with the player that I think best helps them. They obviously could go QB, but I'm not sure they'll be sold on either QB and will give Clausen another year. The Panthers defense isn't bad at all, but one weakness I believe is at the DT position. They have Charles Johnson, Everette Brown and Greg Hardy to work with at the DE position, so I don't think a DE is an option for them given that. Their secondary and LB's are amongst the best in the league in my opinion, so the most logical position would be DT or WR. The Panthers have spent a lot of resources on the WR position so I believe they'll push that down the list which leaves me with Marcell Dareus.
Dareus has the versatility to play whichever DT position they need him to play because he can 1 and 2 gap. I believe adding an elite DT prospect to an already stout defensive team is the best way to go. By doing this they then can start to focus purely on their offense which is going to need a lot of work.
Springfieldtopes23: Despite the fact that I believe Blaine Gabbert should be the pick, I went Peterson because he's the best player in the draft and I don't know whether the Panthers are willing to waste a 2nd round pick without giving him a fare chance. Hey look at it this way, if he fall apart, they'll be in position to draft Andrew Luck next season and thats who they really want anyway.
PantherFaninNFL: This pick comes down to 5 peoples for me: Cam Newton, Blaine Gabbert, Marcell Dareus, Nick Fairley, and Patrick Peterson. There have been reports on Carolina not looking defensive line, so let's eliminate Dareus and Fairley. All reports say Carolina is looking more into Cam Newton than Blaine Gabbert, and there are a ton of people who do not think Gabbert is all that good. Peterson is still an option, but it is unlikely because he is a corner and Carolina's need is at quarterback. So who else but Cam Newton?
Baous: Should be: AJ Green - Touted as the next Moss/Megatron, he'll be a big time weapon for Clausen (too soon to give up on him - he had no help and David Carr syndrome: no o-line, hence scared of pass rush).
Will be: Blaine Gabbert - As Walt says: new regimes means new QBs, Rivera wants his guy. Gabbert's good pro day "solidifies him as the top QB in this class", and Schefter tweeted that he thinks Gabbert would be the #1 pick. SCHEF IS NEVER WRONG
WhatDoYouWant711: This pick is the reason I haven't updated my mock in a month: I don't have a ****ing clue.
DT is definitely one of Denver's biggest needs and Dareus, listed at 6'3 319lbs, fills that need quite nicely. I give Dareus the nod over Fairley because of Fairley's "on-field antics", by which I mean him being a potentially dirty player. Also, Dareus is larger and has experience in Nick Saban's 3-4/4-3 scheme - Saban has produced some pretty good pros and 3 potential 1st round prospects this year (Mark Ingram, Julio Jones, and Marcell Dareus).
Some may look to Da'Quan Bowers as John Fox's selection with this pick given his infatuation with athletic DEs, but does he really need one? Elvis Dumervil is returning from injury and is going to be switching to a DE, specifically a RE, in the 4-3 scheme and I believe John Fox will give Robert Ayers a shot at the LE position. So, I don't think DE is that big of a need.
Patrick Peterson is the best CB prospect in a good while and even though the Broncos managed to re-sign Champ Bailey and have veterans like Andre Goodman and young guys like Syd'Quan Thompson and Perrish Cox. Cox is facing sexual assault/rape allegations, so his future is far from settled in Denver and I don't think Thompson is fast enough to make up for his inexperience at this point. So Patrick Peterson could be the pick, but I really doubt it.
rphx88: Marcell Marcell Marcell! Dareus has to be the pick for Denver. He fills a major hole in a D-Line that can't plug a bloody nose. (Heard Bart Scott was gonna trade mark his "nose bleed" comment so change a few works for copyright reasons) Dareus also is less of a headcase compared to Fairley and has less injury concerns than Bowers. With that combination Dareus is the pick at selection two.
Mycarman: Is Patrick Peterson the better prospect? sure. But the team just locked down Champ Bailey for a few more years, and the need for a DT like Marcell in their new (or really return) 4-3 defense.
mdb17: I picked Dareus. Fox had huge defensive tackles at Carolina so he may want the same thing in Denver. I think he gives Dumervil and Ayers a try at each defensive end position. Football is won in the trenches and Denver's front 7 is abysmal.
SteVo: Even though they re-signed Champ Bailey, Patrick Peterson could be the pick if he's higher on Denver's board (Champ isn't getting any younger), but I think they'll go with their biggest need in defensive tackle and grab Marcell Dareus. With the possibility of no football in 2011, Dareus, the "safe pick," is the right choice over Nick Fairley's "upside."
Vincinerator: Dareus, simply, is the most intriguing prospect that makes any sense. John Fox isn't stupid, he knows that a team with no defensive line can't win any games. After all, he did coach in Carolina last year. So while, again, the best pick would be Patrick Peterson (wonder how many times I'll be saying that), the Broncos should seriously consider taking Dareus. He's an athletic freak with excellent motor who still has a fair amount of upside. Denver could really use the presence next to Elvis Dumervil and Robert Ayers (a PERFECT fit for the 4-3 LE, which I thought everybody knew until McDaniels screwed with our heads). That sounds like a pretty scary D-Line to me.
BroncoFan7: Josh 'I do what I want' McDaniels isn't in charge anymore, so they will in all likelihood make the right pick. The Broncos cut multiple defensive tackles. And John Fox has spoke highly about this years defensive line class. Marcel Dareus would bring an immediate impact to the Broncos struggling defensive line.
Third_Eye: The last time the Broncos selected a Defensive tackle in the first 2 rounds of the draft they got Trevor Pryce. That worked out pretty well. For some asinine reason, they have not drafted high at that position since then. They have tried free agent stop gaps who were out of their prime, like Sam Adams, Darryl Gardner, Gerard Warren, DeWayne Robertson, and Jamal Williams. None of those worked out. Our defensive line has been our weakest link for over a decade. Something must be done.
To me, I have been supporting Marcell Dareus since the middle of last year. When Dareus was ranked below Fairley I was hoping we would trade back a few selections and take Dareus. Now if we trade back we won't get him, so I advocate taking him at 2. He is the best DT in this draft, has perhaps the highest floor of any of the top prospects, is pro ready after playing in the Nick Saban defense, he is versatile, and has a tremendous speed and strength ratio for his size. In fact, my ideal draft scenario has us getting Dareus in the 1st and Phil Taylor in the early 2nd round. Those two could combine to give Denver their own version of "The Williams Wall" with Robert Ayers and Elvis Dumervil as the starting ends. Taylor probably doesn't last until the 2nd round now, but it's a nice thought.
Either way, if Dareus is on the board (please don't take him Carolina) he has got to be the pick. As of right now, the only defensive tackles on the roster are Kevin Vickerson and Louis Leonard. To say this is the biggest team need is a massive understatement. They need 2-3 new Defensive Tackles
- Cam Newton: 41.4%
- Von Miller:28.3%
- Nick Fairley: 11.1%
- Patrick Peterson: 10.1%
- A.J. Green: 8.1%
- Robert Quinn: 1.0%
- Da'Quan Bowers: 0%
Reader 2011 NFL Mock Draft Member Comments:
Classic Silver and Black: This is where I think things will start to be interesting.
The Bills have two huge blatant needs: OLine and DLine. With no OT worth the nr 3 overall and Dareus (maybe even Fairley) already gone, they don't have a safe pick at a position of need.
I don't think Gailey will make the same mistake he made last year, drafting according to their BPA disregarding need. So Buffalo will gamble, either on a QB or on a pass rusher.
Have they given up completely on Aaron Maybin? Maybe not and anyway it will be hard for them to take another risk of the same kind.
So chances are that Gailey will see in Cam Newton the next Michael Vick for his dynamic offense and he will take the Heisman winning QB from Auburn.
KCinMan11358: I went with Cam Newton because Adam Schefter told me to.
TehDruid: I went with Von Miller. The Bills severely need help along the front 7 and to me Von Miller is the best pass rusher in this draft. Cam Newton is going to be the popular pick here, but I truly believe the Bills think they can win with Ryan Fitzpatrick. Not only that, but guys like Kaepernick will be available in the 2nd round who offer the same attributes that Cam Newton does minus the high price tag/risk because he's a 2nd rounder and not the 3rd pick in the whole draft.
The Bills spent 2 high picks on the DL last year in Alex Carrington and Torell Troup so I believe this is the year that the 3-4 successfully kicks in. What every 3-4 needs is an elite calibur OLB and Von Miller offers just that. It's clear that Aaron Maybin isn't the player he was drafted to be so it's time for the Bills to see their mistake and give it another try. You won't find Von Millers explosiveness and speed often, so it'd be wise to get that squared away.
Blazedestin: The Bills desperately need a franchise QB more than anything else, but there's going to be enough QB's that fit the "Great physical tools, need time to learn the game" mold ala Newton and Kapernick in Round 2 as well. That being said, a pass rushing terror like Von Miller will not be available in Round 2, and he's a natural fit for the 3-4. If I recall correctly, he played it at Texas A&M, so unlike previous 1st round flop Maybin, he doesn't have to adjust to a new position.
JoeLegend: I have Von Miller here. Sure he is not the top player on the board but the Bills 2 biggest needs are OT and OLB. there is no LT worthy of a top 5 pick so why not help the D and get a OLB that can actually get to the QB and make plays behind the line of scrimage.
Trisoman: Bills need: QB, OT, DL, LB, CB, TE
Therefore, the pick must be AJ Green, going by their philosophy last year of picking the one player they didn't need.
Seriously though, I think the pick will probably be Von Miller - they have nothing for the Rush LB position and Miller's draft stock is through the roof at this point.
Wraith36444: The Bills have a pretty consistent draft strategy over the last decade. Take a DB or a RB very high. They will not give up on Spiller after last year and there is not a RB worth taking at this juncture. However, there is an excellent CB to take in Peterson.
rphx88: Cam "Take The Money and Run" Newton is the Bills selection. The Bills are desperate to be relevant in a division that is dominated by the Jets and Pats of late. Newton in my book won't put them in that stratosphere anytime soon, but he will atleast give the Bills some press. If Newton is to succeed he must follow the footstep of Tim Tebow and put in the work to become a pro football quarterback. Newton has questions whether he can fit into a pro offense like Tebow. It is his work ethic that will decide wether he is the next big thing or crumbles like a Fig Newton.
John L: Forget what the Bills positional needs are. Because the Bills need to draft Cam Newton. They need to bring some hope and life back into their fanbase. They have a decent enough stopgap in Fitzpatrick (who really is pretty good in Gailey's system) to hold down the fort for a season or two until Newton is ready. Get him, train him, and make him the face of the franchise. They can get the other pieces in later rounds. They can't keep putting off a franchise QB.
SteVo: I can't see Newton falling past Buffalo at this point. Let's be honest; Ryan Fitzpatrick is not a franchise quarterback. The Bills need to get themselves one. If you're concerned about Newton's "entertainer" and "icon" comments, well, you know, Buffalo could use some zest.
- A.J. Green: 42.4%
- Julio Jones: 16.2%
- Patrick Peterson: 16.2%
- Da'Quan Bowers: 12.1%
- Nick Fairley: 6.1%
- Von Miller: 4.0%
- Robert Quinn: 3.0%
- Prince Amukamara: 0%
Reader 2011 NFL Mock Draft Member Comments:
KyleCleric: Reportedly, Julio Jones is higher on their draft board. I'm not sure I believe it. The pick will be a WR or a QB. The QBs are off the board so the Bengals take the best WR, AJ Green.
Don7031: I went A.J. Green, but I'm just not sure he has enough character issues to be a first rounder for the Bengals.
WhatDoYouWant711: I love Patrick Peterson as much as the next guy, and have felt he's the draft's top prospect for some time now. But Cincinnati drafting him is essentially accepting that Jonathan Joseph won't be on the team next year. Doesn't sound like something Mike Brown (possibly the most stubborn owner in the league) would do.
I voted AJ Green. I already nixed Peterson, and I don't think any of the D-line prospects other than Dareus are worthy of such a high selection. And I'm definitely not putting any stock into a report that they have Julio ranked higher than Green, at least until we have multiple sources indicating their interest in him a couple days before the draft (like the Redskins with Trent Williams, coincidentally at #4 overall).
BarakaFlockaFlame: Had to go with Patrick Peterson. By far the player available and in the draft, Jonathan Joseph is a FA and lets face it, Bengals suck a**.
Zoocrew58: The Bengals should do the wise thing and draft Da'Quan Bowers. Controlling the trenches will make any team better. The Bengals have great interior lineman, Domata Peko is very underrated as a run stuffer, and is a team leader. Geno Atkins is becoming a great player quickly too. Carlos Dunlap has proven he can be a pro bowl level pass rusher. Adding Bowers would give the Bengals something like the Colts have had in Mathis and Freeney. In the AFC North they need to be putting more pressure on opposing quarterbacks. Having an elite defensive line would mask the Bengals' weakness at safety also. I understand that QB is a big need, but they can wait until round 2 and get Jake Locker, Ponder, Mallett, or Dalton then.
Tom: Julio Jones. Unless the Bengals acknowledge Palmer isn't coming back, they need to make an offering for him. Green is no longer the consensus #1 WR, and the Bengals appear to be one of the teams higher on Jones. I can't see why they would lie other than trying to fake out the Panthers or Bills. Do they really think they need to do that? As much as Peterson is an amazing prospect, I just don't see it here. The team that picked up TO and Ocho Cinco would love another high profile WR at #4.
Trisoman: Despite the visits by the Bengals coaches to watch Amukamara, I'm not convinced they'll go for a CB when they have Leon Hall on one side and will probably seek to sign Jonathan Joseph if they can.
On the flipside, T.O. is probably out the door and Marvin Lewis is trying superbly hard to get Ochocinco to follow him. The WR position needs major overhaul - this even if Palmer walks.
Not a Bengals fan but if Peter King is to be believed, then Julio Jones is the one at this spot - he's a willing blocker, he's also big sized and has good hands and he's probably gotten himself into the "1b" Wide Receiver spot in this draft. Am gonna go with Walt and say Jones is the pick here.
NMD: AJ Green. Mike Brown wants Carson back and I would assume part of Marvin Lewis's parameters to re-sign was contingent on him giving the boot to Ochocinco. AJ Green is worthy of the pick and fits nicely into their situation. Nick Fairley would be my second choice as I really think that type of disruptor is really highly valued in the league and he is more of one then Dareus. No Patrick Peterson with the rumor is Johnathan Joseph wants to come back and if him and Hall really like playing across from each other they could be the best combo in the league for years to come. I also think that if the Bengals went DE they would go Robert Quinn as the speed rusher across from Carlos Dunlap as a better fit then Daquan Bowers. I thought it was interesting when someone had to say (can't remember who) that if the Bengals paid a #4 overall QB the big money and Carson walks back into the building and says I'll take my $11.5 million now that it would be too much investment for the cheap Bengals at the QB position.
Yergsword: I think the Bengals will take Newton or Gabbert if they are available, but since they are not here, they should look to improve the weapons their next QB will have. Despite recent reports that they may have Julio ranked ahead of A.J., I am sticking with Green here.
TehDruid: It's gonna be AJ Green. The Bengals love offense and TO/Chad are gonna both be gone so the need at WR is there. This really is a no-brainer pick imo. I realize they "said" Julio Jones is high on their board but I'm not buying it.
- Von Miller: 77.9%
- Patrick Peterson: 14.3%
- Tyron Smith: 3.9%
- Da'Quan Bowers: 1.3%
- Julio Jones: 1.3%
- Robert Quinn: 1.3%
- Nick Fairley: 0%
Reader 2011 NFL Mock Draft Member Comments:
Stupac: I wonder what the over/under should be for how many times Adam Schefter will be mentioned at this pick. One little tweet, and Von Miller leaps ahead of Nick Fairley, Patrick Peterson and Da'Quan Bowers, who were almost unanimously regarded as the top three defensive players in the draft not a month ago. I really hope Schefter doesn't get cute on April Fools Day and tweet that Pat Devlin will be the #1 overall pick, because it'll set mock drafters back an entire year... "Months of meaningless speculation RUINED!"
Then again, I voted for Von Miller.
PantherFaninNFL: Von Miller, Adam schefter tweeted it, Arizona needs it, and Sam Bradford is going to hate it.
StevenLourie: I think it's clear, anything other than Miller is going to be an upset at this pick (assuming he makes it here). The Cards don't need a receiver (Jones) or an end (Fairley, Bowers, Watt) and their head coach and defensive coordinator are former assistants with the Steelers, who notoriously never spend first rounders on cornerbacks (Peterson). It's too soon for a tackle (Smith, Costanzo) so it's down to the two linebackers, Miller and Quinn. Schefter thinks Miller won't fall past here and who am I to question him.
rphx88: It's Miller Time for my home town Cardinals. The Cards 3-4 defense was pathetic at Rush linebacker last year. Joey Porter and Clark Haggans are old ex-Steelers who are too old to play at a quality level. Miller would inject youth and athleticism into a position that severly needs it. He is greatly versatile and can bring the blitz or drop back in coverage. I hope Miller is the pick for the Cards and plus it would be a fun drinking game to have to drink a Miller Light every time he got a sack.
Whatdoyouwant711: I keep hearing Miller to 'Zona, which really does make too much sense. But I refuse to watch Patrick Peterson fall any further.
Ahooper14: Two reasons I picked Patrick Peterson:
1. Too much talent to let slide at #5.
2. I want my Browns to get Von Miller, as much of a pipe dream as that is.
Tom: Not. Even. Close. The OLBs on the Cardinals are who, Tweedle-dee and Tweedle-dum? You need at least one dynamic pass pusher for a 3-4, see Clay Matthews and his affect on the Packers even when no one is on the other side. This is really their only smart option. Miller is a speedy guy who is a perfect fit for the Arizona turf.
KyleCleric: Von Miller. Because it's the group think choice.
Blazedestin: The Cardinals need to get to the QB and protect their QB, whoever it may be next year. While no OT is worth a top 5 pick, there's certainly a dynamic pass rusher worth it. Schefter has spoken that Miller will be a top 5 pick. As Schefter has spoken, so it shall be.
- Patrick Peterson: 34.9%
- Da'Quan Bowers: 22.1%
- Julio Jones: 16.3%
- Nick Fairley: 16.3%
- Robert Quinn: 10.5%
- J.J. Watt: 0%
Reader 2011 NFL Mock Draft Member Comments:
TehDruid: This pick has to be Patrick Peterson. I realize the Browns just spent a 1st rounder on Joe Haden, but their is a revolving door opposite of him. With the rookie wage scale likely to take effect this season, the Browns secure the best player in the draft and set up a secondary that could be amongst the best of the league when it's all said and done. The DL is a huge issue, as is WR, but you don't pass on arguably the best player in the draft, especially when it's in a position of need.
Mike Holmgren recently went on record saying that you can never have too many good CB's. I think they'd run to the podium if Peterson is still there. The DL depth in this draft allows them to take Peterson at #6 because they can still fill the holes well into the 3rd round. When you're building a team you realize it isn't gonna happen overnight, so you take the best talent available to you as a piece of the puzzle. It has to be Patrick Peterson.
VikingFan173: The question here is if the Browns go BPA or strictly for need. What they need is some DL after their change back to the 4-3 and boy did they need some. Patrick Peterson, arguably the best player in the draft sitting here hes going to be hard to pass up. The other options are Nick Fairley and two DE's with highly big red flags, Quinn who sat out the year and the one-year wonder Bowers, it all depends on their board but to me its got to be Peterson, having him and Joe Haden would be deadly and im sorry but the top player doesnt drop out of the top 6, his position be damned.
CreamRanger: Let's face it, the Browns aren't gonna be contenders next year. With Peterson still on the board there will be plenty of teams wanting to trade up for him and in all likelihood the Browns could swap first rounders with another team and accumulate some more picks for attaining 4-3 personnel. That being said I voted for Peterson with the notion that although Peterson will go at 6 overall, it may not be to the Browns.
Even if the Browns do draft Peterson here it may not address a major need, but Peterson is easily the best player available. Not to mention there is the possibility of keeping Haden and Peterson around for a couple seasons as valuable trade material to snag that big name blue chip player in the future. Maybe that is too much foresight to place upon an individual draft pick, but someone of Peterson's caliber only comes around so often and we all know that if Peterson becomes the next Nnamdi or Revis then every team that passed up on him to in the 2011 draft to address a positional team need will be ridiculed for years to come.
Blazedestin: Holmgren's no fool. He realizes that a huge advantage to running a 4-3 scheme is that he can spend lower picks to snag players who have fallen simply because they're incompatible in a 3-4 scheme. Undersized, yet incredibly talented, players like Jurell Casey and Drake Nevis will be waiting in Round 3. The Browns #1 priority is ensuring the success of their starting QB, Colt McCoy. Drafting a quality WR like Julio Jones would go a long way to securing that future.
SteVo: If the board falls this way, there will probably be a flurry of teams trying to trade up for Peterson--and I imagine the Browns would consider taking him themselves. But defensive end is by far their biggest need, so it comes down to Bowers and Quinn. Bowers' knee appears to have checked out, and in the end, this guy led the nation in sacks and tackles for loss at Clemson. You can't ignore that kind of production.
Stupac: Would Patrick Peterson and Joe Haden be the best CB tandem in the league? Maybe--some day. Would that stop the Steelers, Ravens, and Bengals from running the ball all over Cleveland's defense? Peterson may be the best player available, but the Brownies have bigger needs than a #2 CB (drafting PP moves Haden to the other side of the field). They invested two high picks on the defensive backfield last year, now it's time to hit the trenches. There is a gaping hole on the defensive line that used to be called Shaun Rogers. Unless AJ Green drops, this pick has to be Nick Fairley.
SteelCity: The Brownies are going to need some more personnel for the new 4-3 and already have a shutdown CB. I personally would draft Peterson but Bowers fills a big need.
Finnegans Wake: I'm not as enamored with either Quinn or Bowers as most folks here. In a draft with some DE depth, the Browns can still add quality at the top of R2, and should find some good WR at the top of R3. BPA is Peterson, and despite the redundancy with picking Haden last year R1, since when did having two of the best young corners in the NFL become a bad thing?
StevenLourie: The Browns already have one stud young cornerback in Joe Haden. If they take Peterson and he pans out Haden continues to pan out, they'll have two elite shutdown corners and in a pass heavy league, that possibility is going to be too much for them to pass on.
Mycarman: Patrick Peterson could go 1st overall to the Panthers, and is arguably the best player in the draft. So to get him at six is a steal. While he doesn't fill the biggest need, he does fill a need and adding him will create one heck of a CB tandem.
- Prince Amukamara: 48.4%
- Robert Quinn: 20.3%
- Nick Fairley: 14.1%
- Da'Quan Bowers: 10.9%
- Cameron Jordan: 4.7%
- Jake Locker: 1.6%
Reader 2011 NFL Mock Draft Member Comments:
TehDruid: Prince Amukamara is just what the 49ers need. They would of loved to of gotten Patrick Peterson, but Amukamara is a good CB in his own right. One of the biggest flaws on that 49ers team aside from QB and the CB position and this pick allows them to fix it up with a quality player.
VikingSteve26: Voted Prince Amukamara. I don't think SF's defensive line or linebacking corps is bad enough where they spend a top 10 pick on it. Harbaugh probably doesn't like Mallett, I don't see him reaching for Locker at 7. They could use a new corner, and Prince is a top prospect in the draft.
Aaah: You put too much value on the CB position. Stopping the pass in the NFL in on the DL first. Disrupting the QB before he has a chance to get the ball out. San Fransico however needs to fix their QB position or they are going to continue play with a team personality of Sybil. Every week, they showed up as a different team. If the draft goes the way the 'Popular" vote has gone so far, San Fran Has to reach for Locker.
Harry Ballsagna: To me, this vote comes down between Robert Quinn and Prince Amukamara. If Patrick Peterson were still on the board, this would be a no brainer; it'd be Peterson. I'm going with Robert Quinn because Amukamara does not play with enough consistency. Although physically talented, he shows lapses in concentration at times and I worry he will be this years Kareem Jackson (ouch). Robert Quinn would easily be a top-5 pick this year if he were not suspended, and the rust he showed at the combine will wear off once he gets a full offseason of NFL workouts (which unfortunately won't be until 2012). I view Quinn as an elite prospect and arguably the best pass rusher in this years draft. The 49ers already have a stout run defense, and by adding an elite pass rusher like Robert Quinn 49ers fans with be looking at a very formidable defense for years to come.
Viking1014: Their sack leader is a 3-4 end so they need that explosive guy of the edge and I think Quinn can be that guy. Mike Mayock and Walt keep saying if this guy would have played last year (screw the NCAA!) he could have been the top pick in the draft... that's good enough for me. Plus it didn't exactly hurt Sam Bradford not playing the season before the draft.
SoldierSilent: Has Bowers' stock fallen this much? This guy was so explosive and he should be th pick for the bengals or at least the browns.. Two 4-3 teams that desperately need a dominant pass rusher at the end position. It doesn't matter if you have good CB's, if you don't have good pass rush, your defense will falter (see 2010 Jets).
But if it ends up like this, then it would be Quinn. As a Niner fan, Quinn seems like the most fluid pass rusher, besides Von Miller.
StevenLourie: I think Fairley is BPA here. He was a popular #1 pick before The Combine, and, while Marcell Dareus has leapfrogged him at his position since, Fairley hasn't really done a lot to hurt his stock (an inch shorter, 3 pounds lighter, but a great personal workout and 40). He gives them a major upgrade over Isaac Sopoaga, who has played significant snaps for them in each of the last 6 years and has never surpassed 1.5 sacks in a season. Overall, while Amukamara fills a bigger need, Fairley is the BPA and still fills a fairly (pun definitely intended) big need.
McNulty: I'm voting for Amukamara on the Prince-ple that you need to stop the pass in today's game.
mdb17: I'm torn between Amukamara and Quinn here. Amukamara is a safer pick than Quinn and fills a position of greater need for the 49ers. However, Quinn has huge upside in another position of need for the 49ers. However, no one can be certain that Quinn can play 3-4 OLB. I personally believe he can but there is a question mark when projecting players to new positions. The 49ers have a stout defense but they are missing that elite rusher to take it to the next level. A very good pass rush can disguise a weakness at corner and vice versa. Ultimately, I picked Amukamara because there are less questions associated with taking him.
SwAg Dynasty: Prince Amukamara, Nebraska Cornhuskers.
Entering the year of college football there was speculation as to whether or not Prince Amukamara could hold up in coverage without an elite presence on the D-Line (Ndamukong Suh). He didn't disappoint. He had an incredible season that turned him from "Potential 1st Round Pick" to "Near Top-10 Lock". In most draft classes, Prince Amukamara would be the top corner, but (unfortunately for Amukamara) Patrick Peterson is also in this one. If Patrick Peterson is the best CB Prospect since Charles Woodson and there isn't a huge drop-off between Peterson and Amukamara, then Amukamara is obviously not doing too bad for himself. Also, CB is definitely one of the biggest needs for the 49ers and Amukamara addresses that need quite effectively... Oh, and Prince Amukamara has a sweet name.
VikingFan173: The 49ers are really hoping that Gabbart will fall to #7, and its looking like that wont be happening, they have a choice to either go DL, prince or BPA. The 49ers CB's are horrible, just horrible. I just dont think they can pass on Prince, hes slotted around here and even with Fairley and Quinn available they need more help on the backend than in the front 4. The pick is Prince Amukamara.
- Nick Fairley: 73.0%
- Da'Quan Bowers: 17.6%
- Robert Quinn: 2.7%
- Jake Locker: 2.7%
- Ryan Mallett: 2.7%
- Julio Jones: 2.7%
Reader 2011 NFL Mock Draft Member Comments:
Classic Silver and Black: First thing first, let's rule out any QB here. QB headaches is what made this franchise plummet from first round bye to bottom feeder in just two seasons. They aren't going to take in people like Mallett or Locker who could even regress farther their signal calling. If no CBA is in place at the draft date, they will opt for a high base low ceiling QB later on (ie Ponder in round 2 or Stanzi in round 3/4).
Julio Jones could be the choice if they go BPA, but their receiving corp is far from bad. It would be too much of a luxury pick for a rebuilding franchise and Bud Adams may be senile but he's no Ralph Wilson, yet.
So if the actual draft pans out the way this reader mock has until now, the choice will be essentially restricted to the 3 premium DLinemen still on board: Bowers, Fairley and Quinn.
There aren't many signs coming from Nashville about whom of these they may like. But in my opinion it should be Nick Fairley. First of all he's the most solid, safest profile among the three, Bowers has had major injuries and just one year of productivity, Quinn just sat out one year and has some character concerns, while Fairley only has the 'dirty player' reputation going against him. Second, the Titans in 2010 had much better performances from the outside of their DL compared to the inside. Even if Babin leaves in free agency, they have sophomore Derrick Morgan coming back healthier, but they don't have as much talent at DT and with the DC change they can forget about Haynesworth returning in Tennessee.
Harry Ballsagna: Had to go Nick Fairley with this selection because the Titans are actually a 4-3 team and also have a need at defensive tackle. I could easily see Bowers or Quinn being the pick here, as adding another solid DE prospect to pair with an emerging Derrick Morgan is always a good investment. However, Nick Fairley has a chance to be a dominant game-breaker in the form of Ndamukong Suh, and while there are questions about Fairleys work ethic, the Titans are a team typically averse to character concerns. With the loss of Jim Washburn as well, the Titans are going to need as much talent on the defensive line as possible to make up for that loss of great coaching. Once a shoe-in for the top pick, this is as far as I can see Nick Fairley dropping despite my mancrush on Robert Quinn (I blame you, Mayock).
StevenLourie: I think the Titans will take all of 5 seconds to make this selection if the draft falls this way. They've been looking for Albert Haynesworth's replacement since he left. Fairley can be like Haynesworth, only hopefully, without all the crazy.
VikingFan173: The Titans have a tough choice here, not between positions but the top three players are all from the DL. The highest ceiling is Robert Quinn, but seeing that he sat out the year I think we can easily take him off the list this high. Bowers is the next guy on the list, too bad his knee looks like crap. The third option is to try to replace Haynesworth, even with the Titans having some good depth at DT at any rate. In the end, even with Bowers' crappy knee, he actually has game tape and will be a top 10 pick, and it's here.
mdb17: Ok I'm gonna be a bit different that most people and say they take Bowers over Fairley. The reason for this is that they are looking to get bigger on the defensive line. It was mentioned by Munchak very early when he was talking about the team. I don't think Fairley makes them any bigger at DT but Bowers makes them a lot bigger at DE. For that reason, I went with Bowers.
VikingSteve26: Voted Robert Quinn. BPA, fills a need, elite talent, etc etc... Jason Babin finally had a good season. Big deal. How can Bowers be getting more votes than Quinn? So what if Quinn sat a year? Bowers' knee looks like ****.
BobLoblaw: Bud Adams was just forced to get rid of one athletic QB that he loved. If he likes Jake Locker as his new one, I think he takes him here. QBs could easily be highly valued in this draft. If there isn't a new CBA, there might not be an opportunity to find a replacement in free agency before the draft, and so no guarantee you'll get one at all. If there is a new CBA, there might be a rookie cap that makes it less expensive to miss on a first round QB selection. Either way, the Titans and some of these other teams that need QBs might not have the luxury of waiting until round 2 to get someone they like.
McNulty: I think it's Fairley obvious who the Titans will pick.
RazorStar: How I do I say the Titans should take Fairley without using a Fairley obvious pun... DAMN IT. He'll be a nice fit on their defensive line, and adds a second threat inside with the usually unhealthy Jason Jones. You can never have too many defensive linemen...
Viking1014: Would love to be controversial and go against the grain on this one but the group consensus makes too much sense here. Fairley was slated as the top pick before the combine and the fact he's now falling to 8 and fills a position of need I see the Titans taking no time to hand this one in.
Blazedestin: Even if Jason Babin leaves, Derrick Morgan looked the part of a starter in limited action last year. Additionally, he tore his ACL long enough ago that he will be fully recovered by the start of the year, whenever the hell that is.
With that in mind, the cupboard's bare at DT. Jason Jones is not big enough to hold up at the point of attack. I'm not a huge Fairley fan, but he's at least decent value at this junction.
- Tyron Smith: 31.8%
- Da'Quan Bowers: 21.2%
- Cameron Jordan: 16.7%
- J.J. Watt: 15.2%
- Mark Ingram: 7.6%
- Robert Quinn: 4.6%
- Anthony Castonzo: 3.0%
Reader 2011 NFL Mock Draft Member Comments:
JoeLegend: I said OT Tyron Smith. Even though he is raw at OT he has tremendous upside and we know how Jerry Jones is about athletic players with tremendous upside. Draft him make him a RT and keep Free at LT until Smith is ready to play LT.
VikingFan173: I dont see a good scenario here for the cowboys. They basically have the choice of drafting a 3-4 DE(watt), a 3-4 OLB(Quinn) or a RT(Tyron Smith). The RT is a huge reach because of positional value, which is a lot of bull, it should be best player no matter the position(with the exception of ST players). It's hard enough to hit players w/o getting rid of options based on their positional value. Having said that Tyron Smith is the best player available and its possible that Doug Free, Dallas LT, might leave furthur opening another hole among the OL and Tony Romo needs all the help he can get.
Tom: JJ Watt. While I thought Bowers was the higher prospect, people in the know here seem to be saying Watt fits the scheme better. And its not like Watt isn't a good value here. The Cowboys could really use some depth here, and probably won't be the first team to take an OT in a weak class.
I also want some of these DLs off the board. They're all going to keep falling because all of us will split those votes, and the one viable non-DL will win. When Peterson went to the Browns, I pictured Holmgren in his office: "Awesome, 3 great defensive lineman are still there! Perfect for my new 4-3! Now, Bowers or Fairley... Bowers? No, Fairley! Wait, maybe Quinn? ARGH! I can't decide! Screw it, I'm taking Peterson, its too hard to choose!"
StevenLourie: I don't think this pick will be any of the 3 tackles. Jerry Jones has never used a first rounder on an offensive lineman, plus they seem confident about resigning Doug Free longterm. Free isn't an elite left tackle, but he gets the job done. I doubt they draft a tackle until the 3rd-5th round, where they can tap into a depth of right tackles, which is really what they need. Cornerback would make sense if one were available, but one isn't. Robert Quinn makes some sense, but no need has used a top 10 pick on a rush linebacker since Vernon Gholston and I think there's a reason for that. It's way to risky to use a top 10 pick on a guy and then change his position completely. That leaves Watt and Bowers. Bowers is the better player, but Watt fits the scheme better. People in the know are saying that Watt has a legitimate shot to go top 10 and I think he comes off the board here.
mdb17: I voted Watt. He fills a need for the Cowboys providing they keep Ratliff at NT. I don't like the idea of them taking Tyron Smith this early to play RT. First, he will not be top of the BB in terms of talent and secondly, RT is not a highly valued position. However, I think it is likely that the Cowboys trade this pick if Amukamara is off the board.
Blazedestin: I'm going Cameron Jordan. He's a very talented 3-4 end prospect who separates himself from the pack not only by being tough, aggressive, and a talented pass rusher, but also because he's one of the few prospects in this draft with actual 3-4 experience. Additionally, he is so athletically gifted, there has been talk about moving him to 3-4 Outside Linebacker. Right Tackles aren't very hard to find in the NFL; the Cowboys will be able to find a guy like Ben Ijalana or Marcus Cannon in Round 2 who can do the job.
Manu Ginobli's Bald Spot: Of the players left, Cameron Jordan. He's a highly disruptive 5-technique that would make Dallas's front seven one of the deadliest in the league. Even just looking at the D-line, Jordan makes it one of the best in the league. The only concern is Jordan's possible "dirty" stigmatism, but I doubt Jerry jones or Jason Garrett cares if Jordan plays at a high level.
McNulty: The Cowboys typically go for big, beefy O-Lineman, but Jerry Jones likes Smith and perhaps the USC Tackle's leaner, more athletic build will mean he won't Tyron passing plays late in the game.
WhatDoYouWant711: I really haven't even considered the idea of Dallas making a pick with Amukamara off the board. I've considered "What do they do if not draft Amukamara?" but never this. I think that if the draft were to go down this way, it would come down to Tyron Smith, JJ Watt, and Robert Quinn.
Smith fills Dallas' biggest need at right tackle and has the athleticism Jerry loves. Tony Romo's season ending injury was because of a fullback, but there's no question that the team needs to protect him better, and the rush offense didn't light the world on fire, either. The only issue is, Jerry has never drafted an offensive lineman in the first round. Draft history may not have any bearing, but why would Jones start now when this O-line class sucks?
Watt would immediately replace Igor Olshansky in the starting lineup and ease the likely loss of Marcus Spears to free agency. He also might be the BPA. Problem is, a D-line of Watt, Jay Ratliff, and Stephen Bowen is about as undersized as they come, and none of them really make any sense in the 2-gap scheme Rob Ryan is likely to run.
Quinn is a distinct possibility, as Anthony Spencer was pretty mediocre last year. That being said, Ryan is reportedly ecstatic to work with Spencer, and I'd say there's a fair chance Spencer plays much better in the final season of his contract next year. I also like the odds of Dallas overpaying Spencer next spring and watching his production fall to crap, but that's a complaint for another day.
Ultimately I went with Smith, but this is probably the most likely team to move up or down in the Top 10. If Patrick Peterson falls out of the Top 5, look for Dallas to try to trade up. If a top quarterback prospect, D-line prospect, or Julio Jones falls to them (I.e., someone the Redskins would want), look for Dallas to move down and block divisional rival Washington in the process.
- Julio Jones: 51.5%
- Robert Quinn: 16.7%
- Jake Locker: 13.6%
- Da'Quan Bowers: 7.6%
- Cameron Jordan: 3.0%
- Mark Ingram: 3.0%
- Ryan Mallett: 3.0%
- J.J. Watt: 1.5%
Reader 2011 NFL Mock Draft Member Comments:
Colts Homer: Julio Jones. Big name at a huge position of need. Star potential. I think they'd make that pick quickly.
Trisoman: Unless all the questions about Locker are answered in the Shanahans' minds, I don't see them jumping for Locker - and it's not like Locker has such starry potential written over him that Snyder would make them draft him anyway I think (unlike, say, Cam Newton). And anyway if the Shanahans had enough faith to entrust Grossman with their 2 minute drill I think they might actually be ok with drafting a QB at Round 2 (be it Mallett, Ponder, Kaepernick, whoever) and letting him sit for half a season.
On the other hand, Devin Thomas and Malcolm Kelly are legendarily bad - I watched the opening week game between the Redskins and the Cowboys and lost count of how many friggin' 3 and outs McNabb threw - and believed that quite a few owed to the atrocious route running of the WRs. I say Julio Jones to go here, what with the blocking, the hands and that 4.3 on a fractured(?) foot. While I'd rather Jones go somewhere else, I think his excellent combine just made him big money.
RazorStar: Robert Quinn does not fall any farther than this, Quinn is the best option here as a pass rusher, and the Washington 3-4 experiment needs another OLB opposite Orakpo. Without their defense Washington was nothing last year, at least with Quinn they'll compete in their division because the offensive lines of the other NFC BEAST teams are weakening with age.
Manu Ginobli's Bald Spot: Definitely Robert Quinn. The Redskins had a weak 29 sacks last year, and aside from Brian O-sack-po, their leading sack getter had a pitiful 2.5 sacks. Since the Redskins foolishly switched to a 3-4 last year, Quinn would help replace Andre Carter at the other RLB spot across from Orakpo, and let Carter possibly move to 3-4 DE, thus upgrading two positions in one.
Jekel019: Listen, I know Julio Jones is the popular pick here but I can 100% guarantee that the Skins do NOT pick him at #10. No matter how talented a WR is, picking one in the 1st round is a luxury pick that just doesn't help bad teams. Here is a list of every team that has drafted a WR in the top half of the 1st since 2003 -- OAK, SF, DET, MIA, CLE, MIN, DET (again 1), ARZ, DET (again 2), JAC, BUF, TB, DET (again 3), & HOU. Notice any common themes among these teams? I'll give you guys a hint, it has something to do with none of them making the playoffs last year (and most of these teams consistently pick early in the 1st). WR is a sexy pick, but I keep looking at teams like HOU & DET who have arguably the two best WRs in the league and miss the playoffs EVERY SINGLE YEAR. Now whether you guys believe that Shanahan is good at finding talent or not, he is very confident in his ability to find value O players in the later rounds so I have to believe that the 1st round pick will be used on the Defense (that ranked 31st last year and is in dire need of personnel to fill out their new 3-4 D). This would be a completely different story if we were talking about A.J. Green here but Julio Jones??? Really guys? This is a WR that has been injured for the past two years straight and isn't even the best WR in this draft! As an SEC football fan I can say with good confidence that I would rather have three different WRs in the SEC before I would take Jones (Green, Childs, & Jeffery -- yes, I know Childs & Jeffery aren't in this draft). Shanahan would have to be mental to pick Jones.
What the Redskins really need to do is trade down to get more picks, but trades are next to impossible to predict so I'll assume that they don't trade and have to pick at #10. This being the case I picked Robert Quinn. Brian Orakpo is in my opinion the most underrated player in the league. The only reason his stats aren't on par with guys like Matthews and Ware is because there are so many holes in the Skins defensive front 7, which means teams strongly focus on Orakpo. Pairing Orakpo with another stud pass-rusher like Quinn (or maybe Aldon Smith if Quinn is gone) would instantly give the Redskins one of the best pass rush in the league, and would take a lot of attention off of Orakpo. Then the Skins could grab a QB (Locker, Dalton), WR (Hankerson), IOL (Wisniewski, Hudson), or DE (Paea, Heyward) in the 2nd. This team has too many holes and not enough talent to pick an injury ridden WR at #10.
It's easy to pick a player to go to a team simply based on need, but like I said earlier I 100% GUARANTEE THAT THE REDSKINS WILL NOT PICK JULIO JONES. You all will see.
VikingSteve26: Voted Jake Locker. Shanahan liked Jake Plummer. Plus... they may fear him going 12 to the Vikings.
VikingFan173: The Redsins need everything, Locker is way too early here and there are plenty of QB's that should be around in the 2nd locker is probably not going to last that long but the upside and talent of Julio Jones falling to #10 is too hard to ignore, Robert Quinn is another possibility but the Skins need offense more than defense at this point, even if they need both.
StevenLourie: The Redskins need...well everything. Julio Jones is probably BPA on that list and everyone on that list fills a need. Jones could go as high as 4 and is reportedly rated higher than AJ Green by several NFL teams. This guy is a big time prospect available at 10.
Blazedestin: How does one team have so many holes? Outside of maybe safety, LT, and a single rush linebacker, the Redskins are horrifically deficient at every single position on the football field. They could have four first round picks and still miss the playoffs this year. With so many holes, the Redskins have to look at the best talent that fits their offense, or their 3-4 defense. While a player of Da'Quan Bowers' caliber would greatly bolster the defense, he appears to be a strict 4-3 D-End. Julio Jones on the other hand, looks to be a game breaker in any offense. Jones is the pick here, but don't be surprised if the Redskins get a lot of calls from teams like the Rams looking for Julio Jones, or teams like the Seahawks, Falcons, and Saints contemplating drafting Bowers at this spot. Dan Snyder would be a fool not to consider their offers.
- Robert Quinn: 76.0%
- Da'Quan Bowers: 11.4%
- Phil Taylor: 7.6%
- Cameron Jordan: 2.5%
- J.J. Watt: 1.3%
- Jimmy Smith: 1.3%
Reader 2011 NFL Mock Draft Member Comments:
SteVo: I'm not sure how Robert Quinn lasted this long, but he's a no-brainer for Houston, a team that needs a pass rusher in its new 3-4 defense.
RazorStar: I've said it too many times to count. Robert Quinn must be the guy here. Every team that skipped out on his services is gonna regret it when the Texans have the best pass rush in the league along with one of the best offenses. The Texans might finally make their first playoff push with his services.
ManuGinobli's Bald Spot: Again, I have to go with Robert Quinn. I'm not sure if the pass rush is the biggest need for since the Texans, since, unlike most 3-4 teams, their DEs can rush the quarterback well. But he's definitely an explosive talent that would serve to boost the Texans' defensive talent. Nothing like a great pass rush to mask a weak secondary, right?
mdb17: I think they two options here. If they stay up I'd take Robert Quinn. He has the speed to play outside linebacker and they desperately need someone to rush the passer from the exterior. Currently they only have Conor Barwin to do that job. They need to take someone early to generate a pass rush otherwise their corners will be burnt all day.
The second option if they do not want Quinn or are looking to go in a different direction is they could trade down. In this scenario, they take either Phil Taylor to give them a huge presence in the middle to soldify their interior. The other option is they take Jimmy Smith who fits their draft profile for corners because of his size.
Eagles247: I went with DE Robert Quinn from North Carolina here for the Texans.
The two biggest needs for the Texans this offseason come at DE and CB. With no Top 15-caliber cornerbacks this year (Jimmy Smith has character concerns and after seeing what happened to Aqib Talib this offseason, teams will be wary of him), defensive end will be the pick unless some players fall.
Robert Quinn may be the safer pick between him and Da'Quan Bowers, since Bowers has injury concerns and one-year wonder labels. Quinn was suspended, not for character reasons, but for talking to agents (which is now allowed in the NCAA due to the lockout), and I think the Texans would prefer him to Bowers to play opposite Mario Williams.
McNulty: I think the Texans get their elite pass rusher here. I think it's more than Quinn-cidence that he wore the same Tar Heel teal as the greatest 3-4 OLB of all-time.
CKane138: Getting Quinn this late is straight up highway Robert-ry for the Texans. He's the obvious pick.
VikingSteve26: Voted Robert Quinn. Elite pass rushing prospect falling to 11? Too good to be true for a team switching to a 3-4.
- Da'Quan Bowers: 52.2%
- Jake Locker: 17.4%
- Ryan Mallett: 8.7%
- Cameron Jordan: 5.8%
- J.J. Watt: 5.8%
- Christian Ponder: 4.4%
- Anthony Castonzo: 2.9%
- Phil Taylor: 1.5%
- Aldon Smith: 1.5%
Reader 2011 NFL Mock Draft Member Comments:
Eagles247: I picked DE Da'Quan Bowers for the Vikings at No. 12. The Vikings' biggest needs come at QB, DE and DT. I think there is a good chance the Vikings trade for Carson Palmer or Kevin Kolb, or sign a veteran QB. They already have a young QB in Joe Webb, and there is no guarantee that Jake Locker, Ryan Mallett or Christian Ponder could start right away. The best DE right now is Da'Quan Bowers, who took a small fall to this spot. If he can stay healthy and produce like he did in his last year at Clemson, this will prove to be a steal for the Vikings. The Vikings need a pass rusher opposite Jared Allen, who had a relatively unproductive (for him) season this past year. With another good pass rusher to account for, Allen will have an easier time coming off the edge.
Tom: I have to go with Bowers. Even with the concerns, he could have gone in the top 5. He's a value at this spot, and DE is really the only need that fits here. I see the argument for Watt, but everyone is rating Bowers with more potential. I think this is where he falls.
The wild card is that no one knows how the Vikings feel about the quarterbacks. Do they love Locker? They didn't send much staff to his pro day. They've worked out Newton, Gabbert, Ponder, and Stanzi, with Mallett and Dalton scheduled. No word on Kaepernick that I know of. My guess is they'll wait until round 2 if Newton and Gabbert are gone. There's a big enough group that they'll probably get one they like, maybe Dalton.
VikingSteve26: ****. Much rather have Watt or Jordan than that bust-in-the-making Bowers. Even if his knee checks out, he's going to hurt it badly again. Given his injury history, why would anyone expect anything different?
I voted Cameron Jordan by the way. For what it's worth, Jordan's dad played for the Vikings. (and he was pretty damn good)
VikingFan173: The Vikings would be a huge bind here. First the players they are most likely to target... Robert Quinn, Blaine Gabbart, Cam Newton, Tyron Smith and Julio Jones are all gone. The best players on the board are all defensive lineman, the vikings dont need DT as bad as DE with Ray Edwards leaving. The signing of Brian Robison helps a lot but DE is still a clear need in the draft. The vikings luck out because JJ Watt falls, and overall hes a far superior propsect than the fragile Da'Quan Bowers. Another very scary possibility is the vikings franticly reaching for a QB like Ponder or Locker at this point, but hopefully speilman will assure Frazier that they can get a QB at #43 in the second round.
In my honest opinion as a viking fan this pick should be on of the easiest, no way would they pass JJ Watt for a broken down one year wonder in Bowers... easy pick.
RazorStar: Minnesota just has too many needs, none of these quarterbacks are the ideal franchise QB, Ponder would be their best bet if they needed a guy, but his ceiling is rather low. If they really wanted to take the time to develop someone, why not Kaepernick or Dalton later in the draft. I have the Vikings going with Castonzo here, because he's assured to be a hit, and it instantly improves the entire OLine of the Vikings.
Stupac: I'm sure Da'Quan Bowers will win in a landslide, with Ray Edwards an unrestricted free agent and Everson Griffen a soon-to-be restricted felon. Assuming his knee checks out, adding a potential blue chipper like Bowers at this point in the first round would be a coup. However, as Walt is always quick to point out, new regimes mean new quarterbacks. The rest of the NFC North can boast a franchise QB in his early 20s, so Minnesota can't afford to fall behind. Brett Favre left the Vikings in shambles--their roof literally collapsed--and finding his successor has to be priority number one. It's hard to pin down exactly where Jake Locker's stock is at any given moment, but he looked sharp at his pro day (surprise!) and may have cemented his status as the third QB off the board. Sure, the Vikes could wait until Round 2, but there's no guarantee which prospects will be available there--especially when you consider the QB needy teams drafting ahead of them. Best to take what you can when you can.
KyleCleric: The Minnesota Vikings have nothing at the QB position. They have many needs to fill and just two of the top 100 picks. There ability to move up to grab Locker, Mallett, Ponder, maybe even Dalton or Kaepernick may not exist. If they want a QB, they should trade back from 12 and try to net some more picks and then take a quarterback. There are players here worth trading up for. If they're stuck here, Locker is the best choice. If he's a franchise QB, you make sure and take him.
Manu Ginobli's Bald Spot: I voted Jake Locker to the Vikings - but not at #12. I fully expect Minny to trade down at least once to get Locker, and stockpile picks to fill other big holes.
Even then, I could see Leslie Frazier drafting Locker as his "guy", since he didn't draft Joe Webb. His Pro Day probably didn't get him into the first, but maybe a private workout can.
Manu Ginobli's Bald Spot: I voted Jake Locker to the Vikings - but not at #12. I fully expect Minny to trade down at least once to get Locker, and stockpile picks to fill other big holes.
SteVo: This pick is something of a wash because I highly doubt Bowers is still on the board here, but the Vikings won't hesitate to use the 12th overall pick on a defensive end if he is, no matter what they say about Ray Edwards' departure. In this case, they'd be very unwise to pass on Bowers, whose injured knee appears to have checked out. And if you're concerned about any other red flags, remember this: Bowers led the nation in sacks and tackles for loss at Clemson. You can't ignore that kind of production.
Assuming that Bowers isn't available, the Vikings will probably have to choose between an offensive tackle (Tyron Smith or Anthony Castonzo), a defensive end (Cameron Jordan or J.J. Watt), or a quarterback (Jake Locker, Christian Ponder).
McNulty: There's no question the Viking select Bowers here, DaQuan-dry is whether he starts from Day 1 or not.
Ckane138: Just imagine Da'Quan-tity of sacks the Vikings could produce with Bowers, Allen and Kevin Williams. He's fallen too far for the Vikings to pass up.
- Anthony Castonzo: 26.9%
- Cameron Jordan: 20.9%
- Aldon Smith: 13.4%
- J.J. Watt: 10.5%
- Nate Solder: 9.0%
- Gabe Carimi: 7.5%
- Jimmy Smith: 7.5%
- Akeem Ayers: 3.0%
- Ryan Kerrigan: 1.5%
Reader 2011 NFL Mock Draft Member Comments:
RazorStar: The Lions don't reach for players, if a guy is BPA on their board, they are gonna draft him. I think Castonzo is just as good as any of these defensive ends on the board right now, and it fills a bigger need for the team who can't protect their QB's or open up running lanes. The only other guy I could see being picked here is Cameron Jordan, but that's only if the Lions really value the guy. I don't think the Lions can neglect offensive tackle for any longer though.
Tom: Castonzo. Since the Lions got a restraining order on Millen, they've been making some smart decisions. The D-line is the core of their franchise, and Stafford has the potential to be the long term quarterback Detroit hasn't had since... who? If they choose yet another DL, I'll lose faith in Detroit turning around. It is the one area on defense without a glaring need. Yes, Aldon Smith or JJ Watt or Cameron Jordan would improve the line, but it would ignore the huge needs the Lions have elsewhere. You can't win with just an awesome line, and Schwartz has to know that.
Castonzo helps protect Stafford, who needs the best they can give him if they don't want him injured constantly. A team has to protect their star quarterback. I could also see Ayers or Jimmy Smith here. If they think Smith checks out, he could really help the secondary. And Schwartz likes big defenders and linebackers who can play multiple positions. Ayers is all that, so they could be high on him. They certainly need another quality linebacker. But the OL crop really goes down after the first six, and Detroit should grab one when they can.
BroncosCon: This was "how do you want to die, knife or gun?" type of situation because we all know the Lions need to upgrade LT, but they don't seem to recognize it. I had to go with Mayock and vote Castonzo.
Manu Ginobli's Bald Spot: I voted Cam Jordan. The Lions like taking the best player available that they believe fills a hole, and since no tackle fits that bill, they'll opt for Jordan, who would be a great addition to the DL. Could you imagine Jordan, Ndamukong Suh, Corey Williams & Kyle Vanden Bosch on the same D-line? Jay Cutler would be doomed.
Cicero: The Lions factor in BPA more than most teams, and Solder and Costanzo are terrible. There is no way either of them would have any first round talk at all if they were in any of the 3 previous draft classes. My BPA here is Cameron Jordan and the Lions could use an upgrade at LE.
VikingFan173: An OT at this point is a reach, so is CB, they are in the same situation as the Vikings, their needs dont fit their draft position because Tyron Smith is off the board, but will they go OT anyway? I tend to think they still love backus and will take the BPA regardless of need, which is a good thing to do when you need a lot of things, keep adding to that DL becasue Vanden Bosch isnt a youngin...its JJ Watt.
Aaah: The Lions are not taking OL in 1st round. I still say they take Jimmy Smith, CB, Colorado. They had him at Allen Park as well as Amukumara. Deion Branch busted that door wide open with Alphonso Smith last year.
mdb17: I voted Aldon Smith. He's the most talented player left on the board for a 4-3 team. I think Watt and Jordan would be LE at the next level but Aldon Smith has the abilities to be a RE in a 4-3 which is more important than LE. He has the biggest upside of all these guys also.
VikingSteve26: Voted Anthony Castonzo. Detroit's got a decent defensive line, and Jimmy Smith would be a reach at 13, as well as Akeem Ayers. They could use offensive line help.
McNulty: Anthony Castonzo. The athletic BC tackle might be better Castonzo-ne blocking scheme for a team like Houston or Washington, but he is still big and strong enough to take over for his injured fellow BC alum, Cherilus, at RT and maybe even supplant Backus on Stafford's blindside. =
- Aldon Smith: 35.5%
- Cameron Jordan: 19.4%
- Corey Liuget: 12.9%
- Mark Ingram: 11.3%
- Mike Pouncey: 8.1%
- J.J. Watt: 3.2%
- Muhammad Wilkerson: 3.2%
- Jonathan Baldwin: 3.2%
- Ryan Kerrigan: 3.2%
Reader 2011 NFL Mock Draft Member Comments:
mdb17: This pick is Aldon if Smith is on the board. He possess the freakish ability that Spags will want on his defensive line. It will give him a guy that is similar to Osi Umenyiora whom he had when he was at the Giants. They will be a pass rushing force for years to come with Smith and Long opposite each other. Smith can also be slowly introduced into the starting lineup because they have James Hall as well which is important considering Smith needs a bit more coaching and weight training.
NMD: I got Cameron Jordan and Aldon Smith as the first and second best prospects left on the board but I think the Rams would go for the freak athlete and upside of Aldon Smith to put across from Chris Long. I don't think Liuget and Wilkerson are worth taking this high even though they are more of a need.
Daniel Brown: I went with Aldon Smith because they'll need a new RE across from Long given James Hall's age. Spags will be eager to get his hands on a physical freak for his D-line.
Blazedestin: I'm not a huge fan of any of the available selections here; I think the Rams will look for a stud WR for Bradford, or a stud pass rusher to help Long here. Aldon Smith is too much potential for a team as needy as the Rams to gamble on. That being said, the Rams are going to focus on their offense in this draft, and Ingram is the best player available to help them do that. Steven Jackson is one of the only backs in the NFL who isn't on a timeshare, and it's starting to show. A versatile back like Ingram, who isn't as dynamic as Jackson is/was, but can do much of the same things he can, will be a great asset for the Rams in wearing down defenses and establishing the play action.
VikingSteve26: Voted Cameron Jordan. The versatility he provides is what makes him more valuable than Watt at this juncture.
RazorStar: Cam Jordan is the man here, excellent versatility as a DE, is nice and big to open up opportunities for other players in their underrated front seven, and you can use him every down. There isn't a WR worth taking here, and there are other more pressing needs to attend to, like the aging of their defense. They've got the franchise quarterback and a few defensive studs, now it's time to fill up the tank and start making playoff pushes.
JGatt: I dont know why more people havent voted for Pouncey. he can dominate the inside and Sam Bradford is only a couple years removed from a serious shoulder injury. If one of the top two wideouts arent on the board, protection for your franchise is most important.
RamsGM: Two words for you.....ADAM GOLDBERG.
Adam was serviceable as a pass blocker, but was demolished time after time in the run game. He was constantly in the backfield.
StevenLourie: Why would the Rams take an end here? They drafted 3 ends in the late rounds last year, two of which are still on the roster. My guess is that Spags, a genius with pass rushers, is trying to coach up one of these late round talents into James Hall's replacement in a year or two. With other needs, he's not going to burn a first round pick on a blue chip pass rusher. Most likely they trade down, but I picked Liuget here because if they were to trade down, he'd be the one they'd target. Defensive tackle is a major need position. Other options include Wilkerson (fast rising prospect) and Pouncey.
Tom: This is a tough one. The Rams are in a BPA position here, with Liuget and Wilkerson being reaches here. It comes down to Cam Jordan v. Aldon Smith. Smith is the better pass rusher, but Jordan is more versatile. Its possible Jordan could bulk up enough to be a 3-technique. If St. Louis thinks that, they'll go with Jordan. But most reports fit Jordan as an end in a 4-3 or 3-4 set-up, whereas Smith is definitely a 4-3 end. Looking at both players as future ends opposite Long, I've got to go with Smith. DTs and WRs will be there in round 2, and a #2 RB can be picked up anytime. The Rams definitely do not have the luxury of going with Ingram here.
Whatdoyouwant711: Aldon Smith all the way. You don't pass on upside/freakishness. Steve Spagnuolo, who always fielded dominant D-lines in New York and helped St. Louis' line overachieve last year. is the kinda coach that can tap into his immense potential.
That being said, they could easily draft with the mindset of "Any team with half-decent personnel and Spags coaching them is gonna field a pass rush; no need to spend a premium pick on the defensive front. We need to get weapons for Bradford." Every receiver at this juncture is a massive reach in my eyes, especially since they'll be looking for a #1 receiver as opposed to a complimentary wideout. But Mark Ingram is definitely a possibility. Stephen Jackson's on his last legs, so it might be time to get your franchise ball-carrier for the next decade. Remember that they drafted Jackson in the first when Marshall Faulk was still on the roster; I'd say that turned out pretty well.
Ckane138: Unfortunately for the Rams, the top receivers in the draft are Aldon-ning other teams' hats already, so they'll have to settle for a second round receiver and go pass rush here and take Smith. Spags made a name for himself when he had an infinite number of pass rushers, so even with James Hall, Chris Long and Fred Robbins putting up good sack numbers last year there's no reason to think they'll hold back on adding more depth.
- Mark Ingram: 69.8%
- Mike Pouncey: 13.2%
- Ryan Mallett: 7.6%
- Christian Ponder: 3.8%
- Jake Locker: 3.8%
- Ryan Kerrigan: 1.9%
Reader 2011 NFL Mock Draft Member Comments:
RazorStar: It's the popular pick, but I'm going to make it anyway. I think Ingram is really underrated, and for a team that relies on the run so much, getting a Curtis Martin type player is not the worst you could do. He's not gonna give you a big burst ability, but 4-5 yards a carry without fumbling is worth a lot more in a pass first league.
Whatdoyouwant711: Miami could easily move down, since the top prospects available hardly match their needs (ILB, FS, QB, RB, TE, and interior O-line). That being said, if they were to stay at 15, it has to be Ingram. MAYBE Pouncey.
StevenLourie: This isn't going to be a quarterback. They're not that desperate at the position. I've heard the argument that the Dolphins' blocking is the bigger problem with their run game, but I think it's both the blocking and the backs, especially with Brown and Williams being free agents. It makes a lot more sense to take a running back like Ingram in the first. you can always get quality guard talent in the 3rd-5th round. there aren't anymore Mark Ingram's this year. He's the only back who deserves to go in the first round this year and it's not even close.
VikingSteve26: Voted Mike Pouncey. A prospect I am still very high on. Miami could use interior line help (less so since they resigned Incognito) and Pouncey is an elite guard prospect. I know I'm in the minority here, but I would take him at 15 (and I'd take him at 12 as well)
MiamiDolphin4Life: Just like the Lions and Rams this would suck for the Dolphins. None of their needs correspond with the current players on the board and they will probably be looking towards trading down.
The Dolphins needs are at QB/RB/OG/C/OLB. They are pretty much set at defense but were and are quietly one of the worst offensive teams in the NFL. Chad Henne struggles with inconsistency and is best when he has a powerful running game which sets up the play action pass, unfortunately the Dolphins can't run the football at all because they have nothing upfront and Ronnie/Ricky both struggled. If the Dolphins were to add a QB to the roster, I'd hope it would be a veteran because they have a solid defense already and would enable them to focus in on their other needs.
It comes down to two players to me: Mark Ingram and Mike Pouncey. Both would be starters from day one and would immediately address a need. I wouldn't be upset with either but I went with Pouncey because he's versatile enough to play both G/C which Tony Sperano hasn't had since he's come to Miami. The value of RB's has fallen off though because how the NFL has changed and you can still find quality starters in later rounds(Blount/Starks/Bradshaw/Foster), and there's still solid capable potential starters in Leshoure/Williams/Thomas/Vereen later in the draft.
Pheltzbahr: Will the Fins set their Mark on Ingram? I think they resign one of Brown/Williams and pass. How about QB? I think Henne gets one more year to show he can do it, leaving the FO to Ponder the future. Pounce-y on a Guard? A little early. I think they Kerrigan to select a front 7 playmaker and make the defense even stronger. He's the pick.
Classic Silver and Black: Like everybody else I have to go with Mark Ingram. He's the only player that meets their present needs without being a reach at No. 15.
Their defense is OK, with depth at all the key positions. Their offense lacks talent at a few skill positions, but Ingram is the only offensive back or end with a mid first round grade.
The only realistic alternative to this scenario is if Bill Parcells still has some influence on the Dolphins front office. Christian Ponder looks very much like a 'Big Tuna QB' and could be a surprise pick here.
rphx88: No Tackles to pick for the Dolphins? I heard something about the Dolphins moving Vernon Carey inside leaving a glaring hole at right tackle. But since no tackle is an option here, I am going with Mark Ingram. Ingram can be a beast in the NFL and I see him dropping like Adrian Peterson did except more steeply. In Miami he can be productive behind a decent offensive line and with no qb set he will be guranteed handoffs. Ingram to the Dolphins seems like a lock without anybody trading up for him.
Tom: And Ingram wins in a landslide. At first I really didn't like any of these picks. It makes more sense for the Dolphins to trade down to 25-40 and get a QB. Henne has all the accuracy of a drunken monkey, and with the lockout they can't even try to get a veteran. Who knows if they'd get a good prospect without drafting one. I don't like the idea of taking a RB in round one. But then again I'm a Packer fan and clearly we all think RBs are worth a 6th rounder. But AP, Steve Jackson, Chris Johnson, DeAngelo Williams are all first round picks, and that does say something. So fine, take Ingram here, but they need one of those QBs. Preferably one with less downside like Ponder.
StevenLourie: Whereas the Jaguars surprised everyone last year by taking Tyson Alualu at 10, the Jaguars would surprise no one this year if they took Ryan Kerrigan. They've drafted an offensive or defensive lineman in the first in each of the last 3 years. In fact, they used their first two picks on linemen in 2008, their first 3 on linemen in 2009, and their first 4 on linemen in 2010, with 7 of those 9 picks being defensive linemen. How they still only managed 26 sacks last year, I don't know. Hopefully for them they get this one right. Kerrigan is a high motor, blue collar, high character, highly productive pass rusher, which is everything Smith looks for. he'll look past his lack of elite athleticism and take him over more athletic ends like Jordan/Watt.
Classic Silver and Black: Ryan Kerrigan fits the kind of player that the present Jags front office likes to draft early (high ethics, long college career, leadership).
But since this franchise doesn't care about reaching for players rated lower on other teams' boards, another player with the same profile that covers an even bigger hole for Jacksonville would be Rahim Moore. Nobody has the UCLA safety going this high? So who did have Alualu as a top ten last year? Given how thin is this draft for the safety position and how deep it is for the defensive ends, that's a reach we can expect.
SteVo: It comes down to Kerrigan and Ponder because both fit the profile that the Jags go for (high character, good work ethic, lots of production in college) and both fill big needs for the Jags. Kerrigan is the better prospect, but Ponder fills the biggest need of all, and hey, he's something of a local product coming from Florida State. Where the Jags draft in the second round, they can't afford to sit still and hope for Ponder to fall to them because he won't--he might be gone by the end of the first round. If they want Ponder as their franchise QB, they need to take him here.
RazorStar: I jumped onto the Ponder bandwagon here. The Jags will always take their guy, no matter how much of a reach he may be. Ponder is a high character QB in a draft with a lot of question marks at the position, and Garrard is a guy who I think is the best of the QB's who will never win a championship sort of player. With the way the Jags pick, nothing would surprise me.
Tmnray: I picked Christian Ponder first off it fits a need and Ponder have been linked to the Jag's numerous times. Ponder fit's there offense and if the jags want they could sit him a year or play him right away due to his pro style offense. Ponders stock has been on the rise and if you ask me he is defiantly worth the 16th pick. The team and the fan's have been clamoring for a new QB and I think ponder is it. The reason I take Ponder over Locker? Because Ponders a better prospect that completes more that 55% of passes. Locker's stock is all from the "eye ball test" for stuff like the combine but when you watch tape locker just doesn't complete passes well.
Vardaan: I like Jake Locker here. The Jaguars have not drafted a quarterback since 2003 when they selected Byron Leftwich. David Garrard is an excellent game manager, but he is a good quarterback, not an elite one even if he shows signs of being elite at times. Jake Locker has a lot of potential and is the QB that would benefit the most from sitting back and developing under a veteran (maybe second to Cam Newton). Jake Locker can be the elite QB that the Jaguars are missing and he will help mask the problems on this team if he can be an elite quarterback. Locker has a higher potential than Christian Ponder and that is why he makes more sense if he is available. I would like if the Jaguars could trade down into the 20-24 range for Locker, but Locker fills a need and has value even at 16.
Jake Locker, Cameron Jordan, Akeem Ayers, Rahim Moore, Ryan Kerrigan, Christian Ponder, J. J. Watt, Mike Pouncey, Brandon Harris, and then Brooks Reed is how I believe these prospects should be ranked for the Jaguars.
Manu Ginobli's Bald Spot: J.J. Watt seems like the best pick here. He's a high-character guy that Gene Smith covets, plus he'd boost a drastically bad Jags pass rush. In addition, he fits well into the hybrid 4-3/3-4 that the Jags love to run. Kerrigan doesn't, which is largely why I didn't vote him.
Whatdoyouwant711: Ryan Kerrigan has been linked to them consistently, but currently on board is one of the only players I can see them passing on Kerrigan for: JJ Watt.
On a pure talent level, Watt trumps Kerrigan in every which way. He also shares Kerrigan's on-field high-motor and off-field high-character, a pair of traits Gene Smith is bound to love. He lacks the speed or pass rush repertoire you'd like to see out of an edge rusher, but Kampman should help teach him some moves, and honestly, there's never really anything wrong with adding size up front, even at the cost of speed.
VikingFan173: I think im going to vote Ryan Kerrigan becasue it will just annoy Vardaan!
Blazedestin: Ryan Kerrigan to the Jaguars.
Insert a bunch of the usual rhetoric about his motor, work ethic, intelligence, and captaincy during his career at Purdue for the reasons that Gene Smith will draft him. At this point, it'll be a mild upset if they don't grab the versatile defensive end here.