Last update: Wednesday, Oct. 23, 2013.
Major changes in all 3 rounds.
Next update: Next week. Follow me @walterfootball
The order of this 2014 NFL Mock Draft is based on my NFL Power Rankings
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Go to 2014 NFL Mock Draft: Round 2
*** THIS IS A LIVE 2014 NFL MOCK DRAFT. PICKS ARE BEING POSTED NOW. TO SEE PREVIOUS VERSIONS, CHECK OUT THE ARCHIVED 2014 NFL MOCK DRAFT SECTION. FOLLOW @walterfootball FOR UPDATES ***
Jacksonville Jaguars: Teddy Bridgewater, QB, Louisville
Many might say that the Jaguars have the worst quarterback situation in the NFL. They would all be wrong. Jacksonville has a franchise signal-caller. His name is Teddy Bridgewater.
Given how important the quarterback position is, Bridgewater will the No. 1 pick in the 2014 NFL Draft, barring injury or late-season collapse. There's really no discussion. Jadeveon Clowney wouldn't change the Jaguars' franchise. Bridgewater would.
I should mention that I've seen some project Marcus Mariota to be the No. 1 pick. He'd be in contention, but redshirt sophomore quarterbacks seldom declare. Andrew Luck didn't even come out despite being guaranteed the No. 1 spot.
By the way, I'm doing this live because I thought it'd be fun to get instant feedback. I'm going to post my mock anyway, so why not do it this way? Follow @walterfootball for updates.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Jadeveon Clowney, DE, South Carolina
I've been mocking Tajh Boyd to the Buccaneers for the past four weeks, but I'm dropping him in my mock for two reasons. First, he struggled mightily against the Seminoles, as you can read about here in the Clemson-Florida State recap. Second, Charlie Campbell reported that Boyd will measure in at 5-11 or 6-0 at the Combine.
The Buccaneers will still be searching for a quarterback. They'll grab one of the redshirt sophomores if they declare. If not, they could take someone in the second round. If they go with the latter strategy, Jadeveon Clowney would be a no-brainer, as he would bolster a pass rush that didn't log a single sack against Matt Ryan and his patchwork offensive line.
Some call Clowney the top defensive prospect to come along in years. Clowney has motivational problems, as Charlie Campbell reported before anyone else about two months ago. Clowney is having a mediocre season, but teams will overlook that in favor of his talent. There were similar concerns with Julius Peppers coming out of North Carolina in 2002, and he still went No. 2 overall.
Pick change; previously Tajh Boyd, QB
New York Giants: Jake Matthews, OT, Texas A&M
This was a close call between Jake Matthews and Anthony Barr. I ultimately settled on the left tackle because the Giants, who have major pass-protection issues, need to shield Eli Manning as he continues into his mid-30s. William Beatty has struggled on the blind side this year, while Justin Pugh has totally been out of place at right tackle. This pick would allow Pugh to slide into his natural guard position.
Pick change; previously Jadeveon Clowney, DE
Minnesota Vikings: Anthony Barr, DE/OLB, UCLA
The Vikings had a truly pathetic performance against the Panthers two weeks ago. They couldn't tackle at all, and there was absolutely no pass rush. Imagine how much worse their inability to get to the quarterback will be once Jared Allen moves on.
Anthony Barr is the best player available - some argue that he should be chosen before Jadeveon Clowney - and he could be used like Von Miller in Minnesota's defense. A former running back, Barr played defense for the first time this past season and made an instant impact, recording 13 sacks. The sky's the limit for him, as he'll only get better at his new position.
Houston Texans: Taylor Lewan, OT, Michigan
This was a tough decision. I considered C.J. Mosley, as I've been mocking him to Houston the past four weeks, but it's too early for an inside linebacker, despite the glaring need. Tajh Boyd was an option, but I wanted to move him down into the middle portion of the first round. Louis Nix was also a candidate, but I ultimately settled on Taylor Lewan.
The Texans let Eric Winston go this past offseason, thinking they could easily replace him because of their system. As it turns out, the new right tackle, Derek Newton, has been one of the worst starting linemen in all of football.
Pick change; previously C.J. Mosley, ILB
St. Louis Rams: HaHa Clinton-Dix, S, Alabama
St. Louis' defense has been atrocious this year for many reasons. One is the play of safety Rodney McLeod. He hasn't been terrible, but it's clear that the Rams need to find an upgrade next to T.J. McDonald. HaHa Clinton-Dix is arguably the top defensive player available who makes sense for St. Louis.
Pick change; previously Jake Matthews, OT
Oakland Raiders: Mike Evans, WR, Texas A&M
It feels weird not having the Raiders drafting in the top three. It's all because of Terrelle Pryor, as well as offensive coordinator Greg Olson, who has done another tremendous job of coaching up a quarterback. Pryor is the real deal, so imagine how much better he'll be if he has a legitimate No. 1 receiver to throw to.
Atlanta Falcons: Louis Nix, DT, Notre Dame
The Falcons didn't address defensive tackle even though they have a hole there next to Jonathan Babineaux. Peria Jerry has been given one more chance to prove himself, but he has done nothing thus far. Louis Nix, capable of stuffing the run and putting pressure on the quarterback, would look great up front next to Babineaux.
Pittsburgh Steelers: Sammy Watkins, WR, Clemson
The Steelers desperately need offensive line help, but the two top tackles are off the board. Besides, how can they resist with someone as talented as Sammy Watkins still on the board? It's not like receiver isn't a huge need. With Mike Wallace gone, Ben Roethlisberger doesn't have a legitimate deep threat at his disposal.
Pick change; previously Taylor Lewan, OT
St. Louis Rams: Ra'shede Hageman, DT, Minnesota
Kendall Langford has been a huge disappointment ever since signing a 4-year, $24 million contract in March 2012. The Rams need an upgrade at defensive tackle, and I'm sure they'd love to snag Ra'shede Hageman, who has been a monster this year for Minnesota.
Pick change; previously HaHa Clinton-Dix, S
Cleveland Browns: Johnny Manziel, QB, Texas A&M
The Browns once again send shock waves through the NFL with a bold move. It's a solid draft choice, however, given that Cleveland needs a franchise quarterback. Brian Hoyer played in two starts, but he unfortunately won't get a chance to prove himself because he's out for the year.
Johnny Manziel is seen as a giant douche by some. Scouts told us that he looked like a first-rounder prior to his off-the-field antics. I dropped him into Day 2, but there's once again first-round buzz building for him in the wake of his performance against Alabama. Ultimately, he has too much talent not to go on Thursday.
Michael Lombardi won't care too much about Manziel's personality flaws. Remember, Lombardi was head over heels for Ryan Mallett despite his off-the-field issues.
Buffalo Bills: Vic Beasley, DE/OLB, Clemson
It's time to shoot Vic Beasley up in my 2014 NFL Mock Draft. I've been a bit reluctant to do so because of his lacking size, but he has been a terror this season. Besides, he makes a ton of sense for Buffalo's defense.
The Bills spent a ton of energy addressing their offense in the 2013 NFL Draft, but they didn't do anything to help their pass rush. That would explain why they traded for Jerry Hughes a couple of days afterward.
Philadelphia Eagles: Tajh Boyd, QB, Clemson
Chip Kelly needs a quarterback who will actually be a good fit for his system. The only signal-caller currently on the roster who qualifies is way too injury- and turnover-prone. Nick Foles, who was never a good match for Kelly, had a disastrous performance against Dallas. Matt Barkley is a career backup, at best.
Tajh Boyd struggled in a big game against Florida State and has some height issues, which is why I've moved him down in my mock draft. However, he would fit perfectly into Kelly's offense.
Pick change; previously Marqise Lee, WR
Tennessee Titans: C.J. Mosley, ILB, Alabama
The Titans have a strong pass rush, but their defense has struggled at times this year because their linebackers stink. Moise Fokou has been dreadful in the middle of the stop unit. C.J. Mosley would be a tremendous upgrade.
Pick change; previously Cyrus Kouandjio, OT
Arizona Cardinals: Khalil Mack, DE/OLB, Buffalo
Khalil Mack made the biggest jump in a recent mock draft. Mack completely dominated the Ohio State offensive line. The Buckeyes simply couldn't do anything about him. Mack is now in the conversation to be a top-15 pick. He'd fill a need across from Sam Acho in Arizona.
Baltimore Ravens: Marqise Lee, WR, USC
It should be quite apparent that the Ravens desperately need help at receiver. Neither Jacoby Jones nor Marlon Brown should be a No. 2 wideout in the NFL. Think Baltimore misses Anquan Boldin?
Pick change; previously Jordan Matthews, WR
Go to 2014 NFL Mock Draft: Picks 17-32
Sorry for cutting this into two halves; I've received complaints about load times and putting the mock draft on two pages saves bandwith.
Go to 2014 NFL Mock Draft: Round 3
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