2006 Mock draft
Is this too early?? LOL
I really hope Denver can get the S from Texas, Huff. He has good size and he is very fast. He has playmaker written all over him.
SoCals link; http://www.nfldraftcountdown.com/sub/mockdraft.html
Updated November 16, 2006
1. HOUSTON TEXANS
D'BRICKASHAW FERGUSON OT | Virginia | Scouting Report
This was supposed to be the year that Houston took a big step forward, but once again it was the same old story with the offensive line holding the team and franchise back. From the point when they took a chance on Tony Boselli in the expansion draft to the signing of Victor Riley this past offseason, the Texans have been in search of a top left tackle literally since their inception but have been unable to find anyone who can hold down the position. Because of this it is nearly impossible to get a read on the true progress of former #1 overall pick David Carr since he is getting sacked at a rate that is setting NFL records. The selection of D'Brickashaw Ferguson would put an end to this problem once and for all though and finally give the team the elite left tackle they, and Carr, have been dreaming of. A tremendous athlete for his size, Ferguson has everything you look for from the position and his name deserves to be mentioned in the same breath as recent elite tackle prospects such as Walter Jones, Jonathan Ogden and Orlando Pace. As long as Ferguson is available when they pick there really is no need to look at other options because it is crystal clear as to what the franchise needs to do. The only other potential consideration would be to possibly trade down if Matt Leinart is available while collecting a king's ransom for the pick and still landing Ferguson a bit later.
2. TENNESSEE TITANS
MATT LEINART QB | Southern Cal | Scouting Report
This would be what you'd call a dilemma. Most assume that Steve McNair will retire following this season but even if that is the case they still have Billy Volek, who has played well when given the opportunity and was just signed to a new contract. Still, the lure of possibly adding a player you can build a team around is too enticing to pass up so they reunite Leinart with his old offensive coordinator at Southern Cal Norm Chow, who now holds the same position with the Titans. By now everyone knows all about Leinart and how after winning the National Championship and the Heisman Trophy he passed up being the #1 pick in the 2005 NFL Draft to go back to school for his senior year. While he doesn't have amazing physical tools Leinart is simply a winner with intangibles that are off the charts, a la Tom Brady. If a team that doesn't need a quarterback does indeed end up choosing #1 look for a bidding war to ensue for this guy with the starting price likely to begin at what the Chargers got for Eli Manning in 2004 and perhaps much, much more if both Vince Young and Brady Quinn opt to return to school. Offensive tackle is also going to be a big need since Brad Hopkins will be moving along soon so D'Brickashaw Ferguson would be an excellent fit here as well. However, the golden rule of the NFL Draft is that unless you already have one you never pass on a elite signal caller. Period.
3. NEW YORK JETS
REGGIE BUSH RB | Southern Cal | Scouting Report
Every year a team's once promising season is derailed by injuries and there is little doubt as to who suffered that fate in 2005. With Chad Pennington going down for the second consecutive season with a serious shoulder injury the team is going to have some very tough decisions to make regarding his long-term future. If Pennington is jettisoned this choice will likely be used to grab a stud quarterback like Matt Leinart or Vince Young, but if they decide to hold onto Chad it will be a different story. After signing Pennington to a huge new contract not that long ago it just wouldn't be financially feasible to draft a signal caller here and devote so much money and cap space to one position and two players, so they look elsewhere. Curtis Martin has been very reliable and one of the best in the business for a long time now, but he isn't getting any younger and has a lot of mileage on his tires. Reggie Bush is simply the most exciting, dynamic football player in the college game and a guy who scouts describe as "special", which is a term that isn't thrown around lightly. He will not only upgrade the running game but also provide a major boost as a receiver out of the backfield and as a return man as well. Adding an impact player like Bush will relieve the pressure off of the Jets quarterback, whoever that may be.
4. ARIZONA CARDINALS
VINCE YOUNG QB | Texas | Scouting Report
After being the popular pick by many analysts to take a big leap this season the Cards are back to their old tricks and are among the leagues worst teams. This is a franchise that has been looking for a quarterback to build around for a long time with little or no success and while Josh McCown has shown flashes he will be a free agent and doesn't seem to have much support from Dennis Green. Vince Young is as exciting of a prospect to come along at the quarterback position in some time and even though he will likely need a lot of development and possibly have to sit and learn for a year or two at the pro level his upside and potential are just too enticing to pass up. With Kurt Warner still in the fold Arizona can afford to wait for Young to develop, which is a situation similar to what Green had in Minnesota in 1999 when he chose Daunte Culpepper early in the draft and sat him early on in his career. Running back is still a possibility as well but they do have last years 2nd round pick J.J. Arrington, who Green likes, and most of the teams troubles in the running game can be blamed on the lackluster play of the offensive line. Also don't rule out a stud linebacker or defensive tackle to upgrade a porous run defense, but if a top quarterback is available that will be the pick.
5. SAN FRANCICSO 49'ERS
JIMMY WILLIAMS CB | Virginia Tech | Scouting Report
In the first year of a massive rebuilding project Mike Nolan's defense has fared pretty well, but one position that still needs to be upgraded is cornerback. Ahmad Plummer can't seem to stay healthy and while Shawntae Spencer is a good young player there is little else beyond him in terms of depth. Williams is a former safety who still plays with that same physical mentality, but he also has the speed and athleticism of a corner. In other words he is exactly what teams look for in that he is both big and fast. San Francisco also still has a lack of playmakers on the offensive side of the ball so if by some chance they could get a shot at Reggie Bush and reunite him with his old high school teammate Alex Smith it would be an ideal situation. Wide receiver is also a glaring weakness but unlike past years there doesn't seem to be an elite playerat that position like Andre Johnson, Larry Fitzgerald or Braylon Edwards who is worthy of this high of a pick, although they could reach for Santonio Holmes. When it comes to value and need Jimmy Williams is the obvious fit as he would be a tremendous upgrade in the secondary and give the team the lockdown coverman they have been searching for since the days of Deion Sanders.
6. BALTIMORE RAVENS
MARIO WILLIAMS DE | North Carolina St. | Scouting Report
Seeing both Matt Leinart and Vince Young off the board here will likely break the hearts of both the Ravens front office as well as their fans, but that's the way it goes sometimes. There is no denying their need for an elite quarterback but there is a reason those types of players are so valuable and go so high in the draft, which is that they are hard to come by. Unless both Young and Brady Quinn opt to come out early the Ravens would be out of luck choosing this low and if both return to school for their senior seasons Baltimore would likely have no shot at getting a top signal caller in this draft, barring a trade. After being known for running a classic 3-4 defense the Ravens are getting away from that a little these days which will require a new breed of defender, especially along the defensive line. Terrell Suggs will easily be able to man one defensive end spot but Anthony Weaver, while a very good 3-4 end, would be average at best in that same capacity with a 4-3. Mario Williams has everything you look for physically in a premier pass rusher and could be the best defensive end prospect to come along since Julius Peppers, making him a rare prospect. Even though they miss out on the quarterback they want and need (oh well, there's always next year) they do still land a premier talent.
7. NEW ORLEANS SAINTS
A.J. HAWK OLB | Ohio St. | Scouting Report
Every year the Saints go into the season with such high expectations only to lay an egg. This time around you can't place all the blame on their shoulders and there is no denying they were dealt a tough hand, but with the talent the team has it is hard to excuse year after year of underachieving. One area that has continually been lacking is linebacker, where despite investing numerous draft picks on the likes of Sedrick Hodge, James Allen, Courtney Watson and Alfred Fincher they still are unable to put together a serviceable group. Hawk is as productive of a linebacker as you will find with tremendous instincts, a nose for the ball and much better athleticism and physical tools than he is given credit for. Simply put, this guy is all over the field and will instantly become the leader and captain of whatever team is lucky enough to bring him into the fold. New Orleans would probably love to add a top quarterback but unless they end up in the Top 3 overall they will likely be out of the Leinart / Young sweepstakes. Here's a little something for the conspiracy theorists to chew on: With all the talk about the franchise potentially moving to Los Angeles in the future it sure wouldn't hurt to have a local star like Matt Leinart to build around and he probably wouldn't mind staying home where he is worshiped either.
8. GREEN BAY PACKERS
LAURENCE MARONEY RB | Minnesota | Scouting Report
It has been a season to forget for the Cheeseheads and there will be plenty of intrigue this upcoming offseason, not the least of which centers around whether or not Brett Favre will retire. It seems most failed to see this sudden decline on the horizon for the Packers, but in hindsight the signs were all there. From losing two Pro Bowl offensive lineman to not upgrading a porous defense to failing to add much immediate help via the draft, the franchise almost set itself up to fail. That's in the past now though and all they can do is try to get things back on track, with this high draft choice likely being the centerpiece of that plan. It would be very easy to make a case for the team to select a premier linebacker or defensive lineman with this pick but running back is a viable option as well. Ahman Green will be an unrestricted free agent and the past two seasons have seen injuries and a decline in production from him so it might be time to bring in some fresh blood, whether it's behind Favre or Aaron Rodgers. Maroney is an extremely productive and explosive runner who is a threat to take it the distance every time he touches the ball and his addition will bring a big play dynamic back to this offense.
9. MIAMI DOLPHINS
ERIC WINSTON OT | Miami (FL) | Scouting Report
To say that the Miami Dolphins offensive line has struggled the past couple of years would be an understatement and the most glaring weakness is at left tackle, where many players have been plugged in but all have failed. Eric Winston is a former tight end who is still learning the position but has all the tools to possibly be a top left tackle at the next level and, at worst, a right tackle. In fact, had it not been for a serious knee injury Winston may have entered the draft last year and been the first offensive lineman chosen. He struggled early this year while still working his way back to 100% but came on late in the season and began to look like his old self. It usually takes a couple of years to come back from the type of injury he suffered so if teams base his draft grade on the way he played in 2005 someone could end up getting a major steal when he is fully recovered. The Fins also need a top young quarterback to groom as a long-term starter so if a guy like Vince Young somehow fell into their laps he'd be hard to pass up. With Nick Saban at the helm and calling the shots never discount this pick being used for defensive help either.
10. CLEVELAND BROWNS
AHMAD BROOKS ILB | Virginia | Scouting Report
At first glance one might assume the Browns will be looking for offensive help early on, but upon closer examination that probably won't be the case. The team has some playmakers at wide receiver in Braylon Edwards, Antonio Bryant and Dennis Northcutt, plus they have Kellen Winslow II coming back from injury next season as well. At quarterback the team will likely want to give Charlie Frye a shot at the starting job, while Reuben Droughns has been very solid as their starting running back. Keep in mind that Romeo Crennel is a defensive coach and right now they just don't have the personnel to run his 3-4 scheme, which is where Brooks would come in. It isn't often you see a talent like Brooks come along and if not for an injury that kept him out of the first half of the season he probably would be mentioned as a possible Top 3-5 overall pick. With his blend of size and speed Brooks is a rare difference maker on defense and just to give you an idea of what a phenomenal athlete he is Al Groh actually had him returning kicks for the Cavs at 6-4 and 249 lbs. One of the keys to any good 3-4 defense is great linebackers and Brooks fits the mold perfectly. Whether it be on the inside or outside, this guy is an impact player.
11. OAKLAND RAIDERS
CHAD GREENWAY OLB | Iowa | Scouting Report
In the past two offseasons the Raiders have focused their attention in the draft and free agency on the defensive line and secondary, but the linebacking corps still needs quite a bit of work. Basically the Raiders have as little talent on the outside as anyone in the league so to be able to land a top talent like Greenway here would have to be considered a coup. Considered a potential Top 5-10 overall pick coming into the year, Greenway has had a nice season but it is obvious all the losses the Hawkeyes endured up front last year have affected him. His loss is the Raiders gain though as it allows them to get excellent value for the pick while addressing their most glaring need. If they opt to go in a different direction the line could still use some help as Warren Sapp and Ted Washington aren't getting any younger and their depth at end is shaky at best. The secondary also has some question marks and despite a lot of young talent they may want to bolster that unit as well. One thing is for sure, all of Oakland's resources this offseason should be devoted to the defensive side of the ball because even after adding the best receiver in the game and a top running back they still didn't have enough offense to overcome a defense that would seemingly give up 51 points for every 50 they scored.
12. ST. LOUIS RAMS
MARCEDES LEWIS TE | U.C.L.A. | Scouting Report
What was once the "Greatest Show on Turf" has slowed down a bit in recent years and with Mike Martz likely having coached his last game for them the team might be moving in a slightly different direction. No one can scoff at their offensive production, but one position they really haven't utilized throughout the years is the tight end, in large part because they haven't had a dynamic pass catcher there. Well that would all change with this pick because Lewis is like a wide receiver in a tight ends body with the size, speed and athleticism to stretch the field and open things up for others. The other positions they could consider are all on the other side of the ball, with defensive end and the secondary most likely. Leonard Little still has something left in the tank but Tony Hargrove hasn't performed up to the teams expectations and his defensive end spot could certainly be upgraded. In the secondary the team used a number of high picks on corners and safeties in last years draft with mixed results. They have a number of solid players in the deep patrol but lack a true impact player so if they had the opportunity to bring in a stud at either corner or safety it might be hard to pass up.
13. BUFFALO BILLS
HALOTI NGATA DT | Oregon | Scouting Report
Last offseason the Bills lost mammoth defensive tackle Pat Williams as a free agent and as it turns out they probably miss them even more than they thought they would. Sam Adams still has something left in the tank but he isn't getting any younger and guys like Tim Anderson and Justin Bannan just haven't gotten the job done. Enter Haloti Ngata, who at 6-5 and 338 lbs. has a freakish blend of size, speed, strength and athleticism. In fact, there is a chance he could be long gone by this point because based on upside and potential he would rate as one of the premier players in the entire draft should he come out early. Their other major weakness is on the offensive side of the ball at left tackle, where Mike Gandy leaves a lot to be desired as Jonas Jenning's replacement. If by some chance a top offensive tackle fell into their laps here that could be the direction they opt to go, but defensive tackle is every bit as big of a need and to land a supreme talent like Ngata this low could turn out to be a steal. Either way look for them to focus on bringing in a big nasty to upgrade the trenches very early on, but whether it is on the offensive or defensive side of the ball remains to be seen.
14. DETROIT LIONS
MATHIAS KIWANUKA DE | Boston College | Scouting Report
After using so many recent first round picks on the offense (Joey Harrington, Charles Rogers, Roy Williams, Kevin Jones, Mike Williams) it is high time the other side of the ball was shown some love. James Hall has emerged as a good young pass rusher at one defensive end spot but Cory Redding is more of a backup and can certainly be upgraded. The man they call "Kiwi" is an imposing physical presence with excellent athleticism who excels at terrorizing opposing quarterbacks. Adding a premier pass rusher like Kiwanuka could take the entire Lions defense to a new level and give them one of the best young units in the league. Offensive tackle could also be a consideration here if they want an upgrade from Kelly Butler on the right side. If they can somehow get a shot at a top quarterback like Leinart or Young they might have to jump at it since it's become painfully obvious that Joey Harrington is not going to get the job done and that Jeff Garcia has very little left in the tank. Based on their options at this point though Kiwanuka is the best fit in terms of both need and value so he is the choice, finally giving the defense a premium talent through the draft.
15. MINNESOTA VIKINGS
DEANGELO WILLIAMS RB | Memphis | Scouting Report
You can make the argument that no team has been more disappointing this season than the Minnesota Vikings, who had Super Bowl aspirations before falling victim to problems both on and off the field. It is easy to blame the teams drop-off in offensive production on the loss of Randy Moss and while that is a big part of it you'd be remiss not to note the lack of a running game as well. Basically the team doesn't have a runner who they can give the ball to 20-25 times a game and have carry the load. Michael Bennett will be a free agent who is not likely to return, Mewelde Moore is injury-prone and best suited for a 3rd down or situational role, Moe Williams is only a short yardage runner and the jury is still out on Ciatrick Fason. DeAngelo Williams doesn't get nearly the attention he deserves but he is going to be a great NFL running back and would be an excellent fit for the Vikings here. This choice will add balance to their offense, which in turn should open things up in a passing game that hasn't been nearly as potent as it should be considering the talent the team has at quarterback and wide receiver. Linebacker is also a concern, but adding a premier running back would be just what the doctor ordered to restore the luster to what was known as a one of the most dangerous offense in the league not long ago.
16. PHILADELPHIA EAGLES
SANTONIO HOLMES WR | Ohio St. | Scouting Report
At this point it appears safe to say that Terrell Owens will never play another game for the Eagles, in which case there is a major hole at wide receiver for a team that relies heavily on the passing game. Granted they did draft Reggie Brown at the top of round two a year ago and they do have an affinity for Greg Lewis, but they still need one more top talent at the position. Santonio Holmes isn't the type of physically impressive receiver prospect we have seen in recent years like Andre Johnson and Larry Fitzgerald, but he is a big play threat who also does the little things like block and run good patterns. One thing the team lost in Terrell Owens is a guy who had the ability to take it the distance on any play and Holmes can provide that for the Philly offense. In recent years the Eagles front office has done a great job of locking up their young players to long-term deals and using their draft choices to build depth at all positions so really this is a team without many glaring needs, but if you were going to pinpoint one receiver sticks out like a sore thumb and would be the logical direction they would go with this pick. Don't rule out the old "best player available" option either though because Philadelphia is one of the few teams who may be able to realistically go that route.
17. KANSAS CITY CHIEFS
RODRIQUE WRIGHT DT | Texas | Scouting Report
At long last the Chiefs finally decided to address their defense last offseason and while there were certainly improvements there is still work to be done, most notably up front. A big problem this season has been the defensive tackles inability to keep blockers off of linebackers Derrick Johnson and Kendrell Bell, which prohibits them from doing what they do best which is fly around and make plays. Early in his career Rodrique Wright looked like a future Top 5 overall pick, but since then his career has been marred by inconsistency and unmet expectations which is why he is still available this late in round one. Make no mistake about it though, Wright has the ability and upside to become a force at what the pros consider a premium position so at this point he is worth a roll of the dice. Kansas City might also be looking to add a premier wide receiver since Eddie Kennison is getting older and they haven't really had a true #1 for some time now. Overall though the defense is still what really needs to be addressed and they could realistically opt for a lineman, linebacker or defensive back without much second guessing from anyone. Last offseason was a big step in the right direction and one more effort like that could lead to the defense challenging their offensive counterparts for team superiority.
18. NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS
MICHAEL HUFF CB | Texas | Scouting Report
They say that all good things must come to an end and in the case of the New England Patriots age, injuries and free agency might finally be catching up to them and could spell doom for their dynasty. Without a doubt the biggest problem area for the Pats the past couple of years has been the secondary, where they just can't seem to stay healthy, and even though they have done an admirable job of patching holes the best they could an infusion of talent is needed. Michael Huff has been one of the most productive defensive backs in the college game the past few years and has experience at both cornerback and safety, with the physical tools to project to either position at the next level. Whether he would be replacing the disappointing Duane Starks or taking over for Rodney Harrison at safety this choice just makes a lot of sense and would help shore up what has been this teams one glaring weakness for two years now. It also wouldn't hurt to bring in some youngsters at linebacker, especially inside, or along the offensive line but overall this is a franchise that has done a pretty good job of building depth which has helped them become the dominant team they have been. Still, when all is said and done the secondary has to be their major point of emphasis next offseason and a guy like Huff would be a perfect fit.
19. DENVER BRONCOS (f/WAS)
CLAUDE WROTEN DT | L.S.U. | Scouting Report
It is important to give credit where it is due, and the Denver front office deserves some positive notice for the work they did along the defensive line last offseason. When the team brought in four castoffs from a disappointing Cleveland Browns line most assumed disaster was looming, but in fact they have gotten very favorable results from the group. With that said they are still shy on talent up front, most notably inside at tackle where beyond Gerard Warren they have little more than journeymen and average players. Wroten is a player who doesn't get a lot of attention but is quietly one of the better defensive prospects in this draft. Despite his lack of sheer physical tools Wroten is active and very disruptive which could lead to him going much higher than casual college football observers would expect. Adding a pass rush presence like Wroten at defensive tackle would be a tremendous move and give Denver a dimension they haven't had inside for a long time. Of course they could opt to go in alternate directions here but with the way the board is breaking down at this point the run on defensive tackles figures to start right around this general area so the time to grab one is now.
20. SAN DIEGO CHARGERS
DEMECO RYANS OLB | Alabama | Scouting Report
You would have a hard time finding a franchise that has done a better job of building through the draft in recent years than San Diego. In fact, right now they have 15 players that they drafted starting for them, and that doesn't include Antonio Gates and Kris Dielman who they signed as undrafted free agents. For those who are counting that's 17 home grown starters, which is pretty amazing no matter how you cut it! Lately the teams focus on draft day has been on the defensive side of the ball, but this year they could really go either way. Starting inside linebacker Randall Godfrey has said he plans to retire following the '05 season and if that is the case they will need to find a replacement. DeMeco Ryans has been very productive throughout his career and is a playmaker from the linebacker position who is seemingly always around the ball. In fact, grabbing him here would qualify as an excellent value pick because he could easily go much higher. Another major consideration would be the offensive line where they are solid at the starting spots but in great need of quality depth, especially at left tackle behind the aging Roman Oben. Safety is also an area that could stand to be upgraded as well, but at the end of the day Ryans is the best fit in terms of need and value at this point.
21. JACKSONVILLE JAGUARS
CHARLES GORDON CB | Kansas | Scouting Report
Everyone knows about Rashean Mathis, who is one of the better young cornerbacks in the league, but how many of you can name the other corners on the Jags roster? Give up? Well if the names Kenny Wright and Terry Cousin don't ring a bell you need not worry, they are journeymen at best and fans in Jacksonville probably wouldn't recognize them on the street. Needless to say it is imperative for the Jaguars to bring in a top young cornerback to round out what is one of the more impressive groups of young defensive talent in the league. Gordon is still raw after having played wide receiver early in his career, but he has certainly been impressive since the switch and could have a Chris Gamble-like progression at the next level. Another area the team could address is the defensive line where, despite having the best set of defensive tackles in the league, they are lacking outside opposite of Reggie Hayward where the duo of Paul Spicer and Marcellus Wiley leave a lot to be desired. As long as there is any type of value left at the cornerback position that would by all accounts be the obvious direction for them to go as it is easily their most glaring need.
22. CHICAGO BEARS
VERNON DAVIS TE | Maryland | Scouting Report
Sometimes it is hard to determine which side of the ball a team will address with their first round pick, but that isn't the case here. There is little doubt that the Bears defense ranks right up there with the best in the league, however the offense is on the other end of the spectrum and still needs some work. Right now their basic philosophy is to run the ball and let the defense take them home, but in order to allow the offense the opportunity to hold up their end of the bargain more playmakers are needed. Last offseason the team did a nice job of adding Muhsin Muhammad, Mark Bradley and Cedric Benson, not to mention Kyle Orton and upgrading the offensive line, but the work is far from done. One thing that can really help an offense, especially one with a young signal caller, is to bring in a tight end who can be a weapon in the passing game. Only a junior, if you looked up the term workout warrior in the dictionary you'd likely see a photo of Vernon Davis, who is as athletic and fast of a tight end as we have seen come along in a while. There is an outside chance they could bring in some youth along the offensive line as well but at the end of the day this team needs guys who can help move the chains and put points on the board.
23. TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS
JOE THOMAS OT | Wisconsin | Scouting Report
If the names Anthony Davis and Kenyatta Walker don't sound too familiar to you don't worry, they don't strike much fear into the hearts of opposing defensive ends either. Those two are actually the Buccaneers starting offensive tackles, Davis a former undrafted free agent on the left side and Walker a former first round pick and frequent resident of Jon Gruden's doghouse on the right side. Needless to say this is a team in desperate need of a stud blocker on the outside and if Thomas were to come out the Bucs would be very fortunate to land him here. A former tight end, Thomas is still learning the position and needs to develop as a pass blocker but he has all the physical tools to be a top left tackle at the pro level. In fact, if he goes back to school for his senior campaign he could very well be a Top 5-10 overall pick in 2007. Another direction Tampa could go here is quarterback, but unless some underclassmen come out there likely won't be much value at that position at this point in the first round. Gruden is known as an offensive coach and he realizes there is work to be done on that side of the ball so I fully expect offense to once again be the focus early on in the draft like it has been the last couple of years.
24. NEW YORK GIANTS
GABE WATSON DT | Michigan | Scouting Report
The Giants have one of the better defensive end duos in the league with Michael Strahan and Osi Umeyiora, but the interior is a different story. William Joseph was beginning to look like a first round bust before starting to come on a little this year, but beyond him there is very little else with Kendrick Clancy and Fred Robbins being mediocre at best. Gabe Watson has had a very up and down season and was even benched at one point but he has come on as of late and probably pushed his way back into round one. Physically Watson has it all, with tremendous size (6-4, 331), quickness and athleticism, but he doesn't always play up to that ability. At this point in round one though he is well worth the risk and if Tom Coughlin can get the best out of him on a consistent basis he will be a major steal for the G-Men. New York could also be looking for a wide receiver since Amani Toomer is getting up there in years and the depth behind he and Plaxico Burress is very shaky at best. A few years ago the team took a shot on Joseph when he fell into their laps and this time around Watson could very well be in a similar situation, which they might once again be willing to take advantage of.
25. ATLANTA FALCONS
TAMBA HALI DE | Penn St. | Scouting Report
Before ultimately selecting wide receiver Roddy White in the first round of last years draft the word was that Atlanta was taking a close look at defensive line prospects. Well they did address the defensive tackle position by selecting Jonathan Babineaux in round two but there is still an issue outside at end, where Brady Smith is getting older and there isn't much behind him and Patrick Kerney when it comes to depth. Tamba Hali is just beginning to receive the national attention he deserves thanks to a fantastic senior season and is a player on the move. After playing out of position at defensive tackle earlier in his career Hali has found a home outside at end and has emerged as one of the premier sack artists in the country. For years now the Falcons have gone through journeyman after journeyman at the safety position, with Keion Carpenter and Ronnie Heard being the latest stopgaps, so that is a viable option for them as well. Finally, even though they aren't known for using high picks on the offensive line that is an area that could stand to be upgraded and there should be some solid value in this portion of the draft if they chose to go in that direction.
26. DALLAS COWBOYS
LARON LANDRY S | L.S.U. | Scouting Report
Ask any Cowboys fan and they will probably tell you that offensive tackle is the teams biggest need. With Flozelle Adams out with injury and Torrin Tucker and Rob Petitti leaving a lot to be desired as professional starters, it would be hard to argue. That may well be the case, but with a lack of quality value at the position on the board at this point the team needs to look in a different direction and address what is arguably just as critical of a weakness. Roy Williams is one of the premier safeties in the league but coverage never has been or will be his strong suit, so to bring in a guy like Landry who can be a ballhawk in centerfield would be a tremendous addition. Also, keep in mind that Bill Parcells is and always will be a defensive minded coach and you can bet the image of his secondary getting torched by Washington for two late touchdowns in an early season loss will still be prominent in his mind come draft day. If a top offensive tackle prospect were still on the board that could very well be the direction they go, but with that not being the case look for the Tuna to revert back to his old ways and continue to upgrade his defense and the free safety position is begging to be addressed.
27. SEATTLE SEAHAWKS
A.J. NICHOLSON OLB | Florida St. | Scouting Report
Last year the Seahawks defied convention and chose Lofa Tatupu a couple of rounds earlier than most thought he would go. In hindsight that was a tremendous pick as he is starting for them and a contender for Rookie of the Year. Linebacker is still a concern however and both starters outside could stand to be upgraded so Seattle takes advantage of the depth at the position in this years draft to do just that. Nicholson has really come into his own as a senior and moved way up draft boards thanks to his speed, athleticism and playmaking ability both against the run and dropping back into coverage. They might also want to bring in a defensive end with the loss of Chike Okeafor as a free agent, Bryce Fisher being nothing to write home about and with very little depth at the position. Depending on Ken Hamlin's long-term recovery prognosis from injuries he suffered in a fight the team might also need to seriously look into brining in another safety to team with Michael Boulware. What it all boils down to though is that Nicholson is by far the best fit from both a value and need standpoint which would make him an excellent choice for the Seahawks this late in the first round.
28. CAROLINA PANTHERS
DARNELL BING S | Southern Cal | Scouting Report
In round one of the 2005 NFL Draft Carolina chose safety Thomas Davis, but the early returns on his performance in the secondary have not been good and it looks like he is destined to be a linebacker at the pro level. With that being the case safety is a position that must be addressed, even if only for the sake of depth. Bing is probably the best draft-eligible player on the Trojans defense and a safety who can both be a force against the run as well as get the job done in coverage. Adding him to an already stout defense will only help ensure that it will remain a strength of the team for years to come. When healthy the Panthers have arguably the best defensive tackle in the game but the fact is Kris Jenkins has been injured for two straight years now and with Brentson Buckner getting up there in years as well it is time to bring in some quality depth and insurance. If a top defensive tackle fell to them here he would likely garner serious consideration, as would an offensive lineman since they are playing converted guard Travelle Wharton outside at the critical left tackle spot. Don't rule out a big wide receiver either since Rod Gardner hasn't really stepped up after being brought in to replace Muhsin Muhammad.
29. CINCINNATI BENGALS
JESSE MAHELONA DT | Tennessee | Scouting Report
After years of being a league wide laughing stock Marvin Lewis finally has this franchise turned around and on the right path. While the offense is in great shape Lewis still has some work to do on the other side of the ball so that is the direction they go here. John Thornton and Bryan Robinson are solid players but provide little in the way of penetration so they need to bring in someone who can get after the quarterback from the interior. Mahelona burst onto the scene in 2004 after transferring from a junior college and hit the ground running, quickly becoming one of the premier defensive tackles in college football. Adding a pass rush presence like Mahelona up front will help out everyone else on the defense and give them a dimension they are currently lacking. Another option would be the secondary where they could really use a top safety to team with Madieu Williams, however with there not being much value left there at this point it doesn't make sense to reach for a lesser talent. Mahelona is still a little underrated right now but the pros are always looking for guys who can rush the passer and when it comes to that Mahelona may very well grade out on top among the defensive tackles in that department so he is the pick.
30. PITTSBURGH STEELERS
MAX JEAN-GILLES OG | Georgia | Scouting Report
It doesn't take a rocket scientist to know where the Steelers bread is buttered so any choice used to bolster the running game can hardly be criticized. With guys like Alan Faneca, Jeff Hartings and Marvel Smith the left side of the offensive line is in great shape, but the right side is another matter. Kendall Simmons is a former first round pick but his career has been somewhat derailed by injuries and illness, while Max Starks is a first year starter who is serviceable but nothing to write home about. Max Jean-Gilles is a mammoth presence who can be dominant in the running game and his selection would, at the very least, provide tremendous depth and possibly even a starter at either right guard or right tackle. He almost came out early a year ago but went back to school and that was probably wise decision as he will likely go much higher this time around. Overall this is a team with very little in terms of glaring needs so you can never rule out them opting for the best player available, in which case a linebacker or defensive back would be the most likely options. Jean-Gilles would appear to be an ideal fit though and his style of play would mesh seamlessly with what the Steelers love to do, which is run, run, run the ball.
31. DENVER BRONCOS
CHAD JACKSON WR | Florida | Scouting Report
It seems like Rod Smith is ageless but he isn't getting any younger and while Ashley Lelie is a solid #2 he isn't going to be able to fill Smith's shoes all by himself. Darius Watts has been a bust who is moving down the depth chart and the team even resorted to bringing in Jerry Rice and David Terrell to patch up their passing game, but to no avail. Chad Jackson was a premier recruit coming out of high school who didn't play like it until this year when he emerged as one of the best receivers in the country. He is explosive and a major deep threat who would solidify the position for the present as well as the future. With an excellent combination of size, speed and athleticism, Jackson has everything you look for in a #1 wideout and could potentially come off the board much higher than this when all is said and done. The Broncos could also look to the defensive line (Defensive End), offensive line (Offensive Tackle) or secondary (Safety) here depending on what happens with their earlier pick. What is boils down to though is that Jackson has just too much upside to pass on this late in the first round and he could very well end up being a steal if he were to fall this far.
32. INDIANAPOLIS COLTS
THOMAS HOWARD OLB | U.T.E.P. | Scouting Report
After years of being a team known for having a great offense and terrible defense it appears that Tony Dungy's influence as well as some smart personnel moves have finally begun to pay dividends. As of now the Colts will likely keep their attention on the defense for at least one more year when it comes to the draft, although that plan could change depending on what happens with upcoming free agents Edgerrin James and Reggie Wayne. A Dungy signature and a principle the team has tried to adhere to is speed on defense and when it comes to that you would have a hard time finding a faster, more athletic linebacker than Thomas Howard. A former safety who walked on with the Miners early in his career, Thomas has been timed as fast as 4.45 in the forty and would provide the type of playmaking ability that is ideal for the Indy defensive scheme. David Thornton and Cato June have done good jobs since taking over starting roles but there is next to nothing in terms of depth and a little competition never hurt anyone. A running back or wide receiver could still be possibilities if they lose James or Wayne, but as of now there is still some work to be done on the other side of the ball and Howard provides the best fit in terms of both value and need.
I really can't see Houston NOT taking Bush. He is the best player maybe to come out in the last 5 years. Trade Dominack Davis for a second rounder and take Bush.
All of the usual suspects.
According to ESPN, Vince Young has told his coaches he will be back at Texas next year.
BTW - I heard on the radio, but have not tried to look it up, that Kiper has Joe Kloppenstein, the CU TE as the number 18 player.
Texas does real well in keeping their players at UT. The list is long of solid Juniors that return for their Senior year.
I think the Skins pick will be higher than what this Mock is showing. They are projecting a 9-7 season for the Skins apparently. I think they're more of a 7-9 team. I suspect their pick will be right around #14.
Johnson from Georgia Tech is the only WR's name I want the Broncos to call. Dude has great height 6'5 and good speed. To me he's version 2k5 of Plax. He also handles himself like a little guy in terms of agility and body control, but he goes up strong for the ball and has GREAT hands. SoCal can vouch for this!
The Mock is from the 16th so the Washington pick isn't up to date. As of right now, it is the #17 pick in the draft.
Lastly, if you're referring to Calvin Johnson, it might be hard to draft him seeing as how he's a true sophomore. And he's better than Plax.
Haloti Ngata Dt Will Be Long Gone At By Pick 11
As of right now, the TEs:
1. Marcedes Lewis, SR, UCLA - Great hands, tall, RAC ability.
2. Leonard Pope, JR, Georgia - Most well-rounded and a BEAST (listed as 6'7" and 250lbs.)
3. Vernon Davis, JR, Maryland - He's like a WR but his height (6'3") isn't what you prefer for a TE, and he isn't the most polished blocker, although he is better than Marcedes)
4. Joel Klopfenstein, SR, Colorado - Somewhere in between Alexander and Putz. Maybe a little faster than Alexander and a better blocker than Putz.
Big, Strong and runs pretty effin' good for a man that size!! Plus you could do the Randy Moss thing and just throw the ball up in the endzone and let his huge Wingspan and 6-7 frame go up and grab it!!!
It would solve all our Red-Zone troubles (even though there are not nearly so bad this year...)
I have a bad feeling about drafting receivers out of Florida.
It just seems like they never become the player they were expected to in the pros. I´d be cautious and it´s not like we´ve had much luck drafting receivers.
How do we pick #31 and Indy at #32?
Guess they figure the real super bowl will be the AFC championship
I still wish we would have taken a chance on Chris Henry. The guy has been, from what I have read pretty good.
I want Ngata with the pick from the Redskins... Having Ngata and Warren on the inside would be sick. The Redskins schedule isn't that tough but the easier teams they play (Arizona, St Louis) are on the road and they are 1-4 on the road right now so I'm hopeful for a 6-10 record...
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