I'm with you on the Vikings and Dolphins, but I'm not sure about your read on the Giants. They're not getting healthy. Their two best O-linemen (Pugh and Richburg) are doubtful. With a decimated O-line and Hankins out, the Giants are clearly the weaker team in the trenches in this matchup. You mentioned that the G-Men could be motivated by their opportunity to cushion their lead in the NFC East, but don't forget that Washington can pull into a tie for first with a win. Just some food for thought.
1. Hackenberg needs to the right team with a mature environment where he can sit behind a quality starter. He is the best arm talent in the draft. Has excellent footwork and a nice release. He moves well in the pocket despite all the sacks. he is a play action quarterback who inexplicably plays zone read in college. In the rare instances they run play action from under center he looks great. Then they go back to zone read. The defenses don't honor his running ability and just tee off on the running back. Which puts them behind the chains consistently and there is no draftable talent offensively on his team outside of the RB Barkley(freshman)
I received many e-mails and tweets about my 2013 NFL Mock Draft and the upcoming NFL Draft in general. To share the answers to the questions publicly, I decided to start up a mailbag column. Pass along your NFL draft questions and comments. I'll put together a mailbag periodically that answers questions/comments sent via email firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @draftcampbell.
From Vinnie Monteleone, Staten Island, New York
"I'm a big Jet fan from Staten Island and I was wondering why they havent conisdered trading for Chris Ivory who is just rotting on the Saints bench, whenever he was given an oppurtunity he produced. I'm sure it wouldn't take more than a late round draft choice to get it done why hasn't this gained any traction am I missing something, I'm tired of watching green run into the first defender for two yards every carry."
Great question. I think Chris Ivory would be a big upgrade for the Jets. I think a late-rounder (Rds. 5-7) would probably get it done. The Saints are also missing their second-rounder as a Bountygate penalty, so I'm sure adding more picks is appealing to them with the struggles they've had this season. Ivory would be a nice addition for New York.
From Jon Foster,
"What should the Browns do if they get the #1 pick. Take Barkley or trade it for picks I.e. the RG3 deal. I'd like to see the browns get Jarvis Jones and Marquess Wilson from wazzu, and load up on picks the year after?"
If the Browns can land a deal like the Rams did in the 2012 NFL Draft, they definitely should pull the trigger on the trade. Like St. Louis, Cleveland has so many needs that adding a pack of premium picks will go a long ways to upgrading the talent level of the team throughout the starting lineup.
If the Browns can still land Jarvis Jones that would be ideal, but they can't drop more than a couple of spots and hope to still land him. I think Cleveland's new regime will be looking to trade down.
Don't forget that the Browns are without their second-rounder because of the Josh Gordon selection in last summer's 2012 Supplemental NFL Draft. I don't believe that Matt Barkley or Geno Smith will cause a team to give up as much as the Redskins did in the deal for Griffin, but just getting a second-rounder would be helpful.
From Ethan M., Sandy Springs, Georgia
"I read some of your articles that said that some Alabama and LSU offensive linemen struggled against Western Kentucky and North Texas. I honestly think they were just being easy against their pass rush on purpose because of they were no question the dominant team. What do you think about that? May you include the following sentence about my question in the draft mailbag;
Are Alabama and LSU's Offensive linemen purposely being easy on weak teams' pass rushers because victory is all but guaranteed?"
I didn't mention the offensive linemen from LSU struggling at all against North Texas. The LSU player who I said struggled in that game was safety Eric Reid. He was beaten for two touchdowns in man coverage.
As far as Alabama goes with Western Kentucky, the answer is no, the linemen aren't purposely going easy on those teams. If they do that, they would be benched in a heartbeat. The offensive linemen going easy could lead to the starting quarterback or running back going down with a serious injury from taking an unnecessary hit. If they allowed that to happen, the coaches would give their starting spot to someone else.
Those linemen also are NFL prospects, and they know that bad tapes are going to hurt their stock. There is no way that Alabama's offensive linemen or coaches were okay with them allowing six sacks to Western Kentucky. Going easy on an opponent pretty much ends in Pop Warner or high school.
From Ben Schroeder, Washington D.C.
"The recent blueprint for Jets success involves a dominant defense keeping games close for an unspectacular offense. I hate to sound trendy, but they need to spend their first pick on a linebacker. On roster cut down day, Mike Tannenbaum waived half of his 8 2012 draft picks. I don't think he knows what to do with late round picks. He has traded up several times in recent drafts, and has had great success.
He could be planning another draft day trade to acquire a RT of Matthews caliber, especially to repair his reputation after the Wayne Hunter fiasco, but he must first secure a starting linebacker. I hope they can find someone similar to the Giants Mathias Kiwanuka, or the Skins Lorenzo Alexander; a player with great size/athleticism combo who has the talent to be unleashed as a blitzer until they are ready to take over as a full time linebacker.
Is there a similar type of player with top-20 potential?"
I'm in 100 percent agreement with you Ben that the Jets need to address their outside linebackers. Last April, I thought Melvin Ingram would be perfect for them, but Coples could turn into a good pick unworthy of second-guessing. There are a bunch of options right now for pass-rushing outside linebackers in the top 20. That group includes Barkevious Mingo, Sam Montgomery, Damontre Moore, Corey Lemonier, Alex Okafor and Jarvis Jones.
I'm expecting that Jones will be long gone when the Jets are set to pick. He is a top-five pick, and I think New York won't be picking that high. However, this draft should have a number of good fits from the group above. I think Moore, Mingo and Lemonier would be ideal in a 3-4. Montgomery and Okafor could do it, but they could be better fits as 4-3 defensive ends.
From Chris Johnson, Fayetteville, Arkansas
"If Brian Quick and Chris Givens pan out for the Rams, do you see the team taking a safety and offensive line help?"
I highly doubt that Quick and Givens will solve the wide receiver problems, but if the Rams don't need a receiver, I'm not sure they would go with a safety that high. I believe St. Louis would draft an offensive tackle and an outside linebacker. This is a really good safety draft, so the team could land a talented one with one of its second-day picks. The offensive tackles and linebackers have a much bigger drop off, so the Rams would get better value by waiting on a safety.
From twitter Phear Phactor
"Who is the best man cornerback in the 2013 NFL Draft for Schiano in Tampa?"
That would be Alabama's DeMarcus Milliner. He is the best man-cover corner in the draft. Milliner is quick and agile enough to turn and run with speed receivers, while still having the size and strength to matchup against big receivers. From a scheme perspective, there is an overlap with Schiano's desire to play man-to-man and what Alabama does. Milliner would be reunited with Mark Barron and could really bolster the Bucs' pass defense that has been exploited for big plays downfield this year.
I think that Milliner is going to be selected in the top-seven picks, and Tampa Bay should be picking lower than that. Thus, the team may have to trade up for him. If Buccaneers can't/don't, they could look at Florida State's Xavier Rhodes or Mississippi State's Johnthan Banks. Both of them have some man-cover abilities, but each one plays zone part of the time.