mock-draftWith the NFL Combine firmly in the rearview mirror, it’s time yet again to update my mock draft. The Combine massively shook up the first round with many guys shooting up draft boards while others are starting to fall. Thus there are only a few picks that have remained the same from the last update. In this version I’m also adding a second round, but will be doing in a separate post tomorrow so this one doesn’t become long and unwieldy.

1) Kansas City Chiefs – Luke Joeckel, OT, Texas A&M
Well it’s official. With the Chiefs getting Alex Smith, the 1st overall pick will not be a QB. Instead Andy Reid will be smart and draft Joeckel to help protect his new signalcaller. It’s really a no-brainer that this will be a tackle, but with Eric Fisher’s stock getting better and better, he might go here instead of Joeckel, but for now it’s the Aggie.
Previous: Geno Smith, QB, West Virginia

2) Jacksonville Jaguars – Dion Jordan, DE/OLB, Oregon
In what will be a common theme in this mock, Jordan is shooting up draft boards after an excellent Combine. He has the speed and explosiveness to be an impact rush linebacker and has drawn comparisons to Aldon Smith. He also allayed concerns about his shoulder issue to solidify himself as a top 5 pick.
Previous: Damontre Moore, DE/OLB, Texas A&M

3) Oakland Raiders – Shariff Floyd, DT, Florida
Same position, different player. Floyd has so much upside and versatility that he could easily land here with several draft experts taking notice of his potential. This is also a huge need since Richard Seymour is gone and Tommy Kelly had a horrible season.
Previous: Star Lotulelei, DT, Utah

4) Philadelphia Eagles – Dee Milliner, CB, Alabama
The Eagles have DRC and Nnamdi you say? Well the former is hitting free agency while the latter is likely to be released. Enter Milliner, the consensus top corner, who has excellent cover skills as well as a knack for the big plays. Chipples will start off his tenure with a great pick that fills a major need.
Previous: Luke Joeckel, OT, Texas A&M

5) Detroit Lions – Bjoern Werner, DE/OLB, Florida State
The Lions will picking the best player on the board and here it also happens to fill a big need. Werner will start from Day 1 and his relentless motor will help Detroit’s pass rush. He pushes offensive linemen around with authority and could rack up the sacks early in his pro career.

6) Cleveland Browns – Ezekiel Ansah, DE/OLB, BYU
If it was possible for Ansah to appear any more athletic, he sure showed it at the Combine. His freakish athleticism and unbelieveable upside come despite relative inexperience. However, he possibility of him rushing in right behind Jabaal Sheard will be extremely enticing for the Browns.
Previous: Barkevious Mingo, DE/OLB, LSU

7) Arizona Cardinals – Eric Fisher, OT, Central Michigan
The Cards have been plagued by poor offensive line play since time immemorial and that could change with the selection of Fisher. He’ll challenge Joeckel for #1 overall given his impressive performances at the Senior Bowl and Combine. So at #7, he’ll be a steal for the Cards.

8) Buffalo Bills – Geno Smith, QB, West Virginia
Bills GM Buddy Nix has said he’ll take a franchise QB. Smith undoubtedly has potential and Nix is desperate enough to swing for the fences with him. He’ll talk himself into this pick and may even trade up to select him if necessary. At least he won’t have to reach for Glennon.
Previous: Mike Glennon, QB, North Carolina State

9) New York Jets – Barkevious Mingo, DE/OLB, LSU
Until the Jets’ brass realizes that Mark Sanchez is not even a decent QB, then they’ll turn their attention to other needs. One of those is a pass rushing LB and Mingo fits the bill. Though mostly a DE in college, his speed rushing skills will translate well to outside linebacker where he can follow the initial push into the opponent’s backfield.
Previous: Ezekiel Ansah, DE/OLB, BYU

10) Tennessee Titans – Chance Warmack, OG, Alabama
Guards are rare in the top 10, but two things change that here. One, the Titans need interior O-line help for Jake Locker and two, Chris Johnson will appreciate the help clearing the way for him. Warmack is a tremendous talent who has shown time and time again how much of a dominant blocker he is on the field.
Previous: Dee Milliner, CB, Alabama

11) San Diego Chargers – Lane Johnson, OT, Oklahoma
This pick has to be an offensive lineman because Philip Rivers appears to be regressing, though it’s hard to tell with him getting sack-blitzed into oblivion half the time behind a horrendous front line. Johnson followed his great Senior Bowl with a terrific combine, so this pick isn’t really a reach anymore.
Previous: Chance Warmack, OG, Alabama

12) Miami Dolphins – Cordarrelle Patterson, WR, Tennessee
The Fins focus this offseason should be on helping Ryan Tannehill and a priority should be getting him a weapon in the passing game. The WR class is a bit muddled with no clear cut choice for first off the board, but Patterson could be that guy. He’s raw, but is dynamic and will be Tannehill’s new best friend.
Previous: Keenan Allen, WR, Cal

13) Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Desmond Trufant, CB, Washington
The Bucs apparently disliked Morris Claiborne so much last year that they traded down and took S Mark Barron instead. They’ll rectify that mistake this time around and get some help for their beleaguered CB corps and worst ranked pass defense. Trufant is on the rise after a terrific Combine and could even go as high as #10.
Previous: Johnthan Banks, CB, Mississippi State

14) Carolina Panthers – Star Lotulelei, DT, Utah
DT is Carolina’s biggest need and since they might need two and the position’s class is fairly deep they could look to trade down since they don’t have a 3rd rounder. Lotulelei’s heart condition has given teams pause, but if it all checks out he won’t fall any farther as he possess a rare combination of size, power, speed and explosiveness.
Previous: Shariff Floyd, DT, Florida

15) New Orleans Saints – Damontre Moore, DE/OLB, Texas A&M
After a very poor showing at the Combine, Moore has fallen from his Top 3 perch. The Saints have a need at rush LB since they are moving to the 3-4, so they’ll leap at the chance to take the falling Moore who still retains the same skills that had him mocked so high before.
Previous: Dion Jordan, DE/OLB, Oregon

16) St Louis Rams – Jonathan Cooper, OG, North Carolina
Protecting Sam Bradford should be a priority for the Rams and one of their 2 1st rounders must be used on the offensive line. He cemented his first round status at the Combine and Matt Forte will appreciate his talent just like Giovanni Bernard did at UNC.
Previous: Lane Johnson, OT, Oklahoma

17) Pittsburgh Steelers – Jarvis Jones, OLB, Georgia
With the belief that James Harrison might not be back, the Steelers will focus on the outside linebacker position in the offseason. Red flags are emerging about Jones’ spinal condition and that he may not test well at the Combine. However, the Steelers are smart and will snatch up the plummeting Jones, adding his dynamite pass rush skills to their defense.

18) Dallas Cowboys – Sheldon Richardson, DT, Missouri
The ‘Boys biggest need is on the interior offensive line, however, this is Jerry Jones we’re talking about, so of course he won’t address it. He’ll take a guy like Richardson that has elite speed and athleticism that he uses to get around blockers. D-line isn’t that big of a need for Dallas, but the former Mizzou player is too good of a value here.

19) New York Giants – Sam Montgomery, DE/OLB, LSU
GM Jerry Reese loves to draft pass rushers and will get to do so with Montgomery. Despite some controversial comments at the Combine on effort against inferior competition, the LSU product still brings the same proven high-motor and pass rushing skills as he has before.
Previous: Alec Ogletree, ILB, Georgia

Running one of the fastest 40 times at the Combine has Tavon Austin's stock rising. Photo by Brian Spurlock/USA TODAY Sports

Running one of the fastest 40 times at the Combine has Tavon Austin’s stock rising. Photo by Brian Spurlock/USA TODAY Sports

20) Chicago Bears – Tavon Austin, WR, West Virginia
Austin vaulted himself into top 20 consideration with a very impressive Combine showing. He had a very fast 40 and the Bears need a speed element to their passing game. He’ll push out Devin Hester as receiver, but will be a great complement to Brandon Marshall and Jay Cutler.
Previous: Jonathan Cooper, OG, North Carolina

21) Cincinnati Bengals – Alec Ogletree, ILB, Georgia
Ogletree got a DUI days before the Combine, so that will give a few teams pause. Not the Bengals, who have never been shy about controversial players. He is athletic as a converted safety and also happens to fill a need as Rey Maualuga was pretty terrible at ILB last season.
Previous: Manti Te’o, ILB, Notre Dame

22) St Louis Rams(from Washington) – Kenny Vaccaro, S, Texas
The Rams have some talented corners to help out the pass defense, but a safety would make it even better. Vaccaro wis undoubtedly the top safety in this draft and has great range that he uses in pass coverage and coming to help against the run. The team could also opt for a receiver to help out Bradford.

23) Minneosta Vikings – Keenan Allen, WR, Cal
Like Bradford, Christian Ponder could use another weapon in the passing game, more so if Percy Harvin does not come back next year. Allen seems to be flying under the radar a bit, but has the all around tools to be a successful receiver at the next level.
Previous: Cordarrelle Patterson, WR, Tennessee

24) Indianpolis Colts – DJ Fluker, OT, Alabama
As great of a season as Luck had, he was getting hit left and right, so protecting him is of the highest importance for the Colts and the need cannot be understated. He has the size and strength to literally overwhelm defenders, but does need to improve against speed rushers off the edge.

25) Seattle Seahawks – Kawann Short, DT, Purdue
As good as the Seahawks defense was last season, it could be even better if they had an interior defensive lineman who could occupy blockers and even attack the pocket. That’s describes Short, as he holds the ground against defenders and can burst into the gap very quickly.
Previous: Johnathan Hankins , DT, Ohio State

26) Green Bay Packers – Tyler Eifert, TE, Notre Dame
Recent comments have made it increasingly likely that Jermichael Finley won’t be back with the Packers. In that case, the position will addressed early in the Draft. Eifert would be excellent here as he’s a prover receiver and pulled ahead of Zach Ertz at the Combine.
Previous: Sam Montgomery, DE/OLB, LSU

27) Houston Texans – Kevin Minter, ILB, LSU
There’s huge uncertainty at middle linebacker for Houston. Brian Cushing is coming off a torn ACL while Bradie James is ineffective and a free agent to boot. Minter was a force for the Tigers and their most consistent defender while others around him underperformed.
Previous: DeAndre Hopkins, WR, Clemson

28) Denver Broncos – Xavier Rhodes, CB, Florida State
It seems like every year, people wonder when Champ Bailey is going to show his age, but he keeps performing. Nevertheless, the position could use some depth. Rhodes is one of the top corners in the draft with the strength to battle at the line and a nose for closing in quickly for the tackle.
Previous: Desmond Trufant, CB, Washington

29) New England Patriots – Johnathan Hankins , DT, Ohio State
The Pats don’t really have much of an interior pass rush and may spend an early pick fixing it. Enter Hankins who is a very disruptive force in the middle and uses his size to occupy multiple blockers with the initial burst to get them off balance. Of course Belichick may engineer another mad trade scheme like he usually does.
Previous: Xavier Rhodes, CB, Florida State

30) Atlanta Falcons – Datone Jones, DE, UCLA
Ray Edwards was cut during the season and John Abraham is getting older, so defensive end is a big need, with the Falcons possibly double dipping at the position. Jones has the explosiveness to rush the passer but also the versatility to play anywhere along the defensive line.
Previous: Alex Okafor, DE, Texas

31) San Francisco 49ers – Margus Hunt, DE, SMU
The Niner defense is fantastic but needs to keep adding players with some getting older, such as Justin Smith. A perfect successor would be Hunt, who definitely impressed at the Combine. He possesses a blend of elite power and speed as well as being a former decathlete. The native Estonian is a bit raw and didn’t play football until coming to SMU, but his upside is tremendous.

32) Baltimore Ravens – Manti Te’o, ILB, Notre Dame
Ray Lewis got to ride off into the sunset like he wanted to, but now the search for his successor is on. Te’o did have a miserable Combine and many will say he’s not a 1st round pick. Well, right up until he makes that first goal line stand or huge run stuff on 3rd and 1.
Previous: Kevin Minter, ILB, LSU