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Juiced Sports Presents: 2012 Mock Draft, Final Edition

Juiced Sports Presents: 2012 Mock Draft, Final Edition

MIKE KAYE

With the draft just a week away, draft boards are likely set in stone. After numerous mock drafts, we at Juiced Sports give you one last look at what can happen next week. As always, a few surprises are promised in this three round mock.

Disclaimer: Remember these picks are not who I would take at each position, but who I think the teams will select with the scenarios given. With so many picks, I will not be conducting trades in order to maintain accuracy.

Round 1

1. Indianapolis Colts: Andrew Luck, QB, Stanford

While it hasn’t been reported, with a week to go, negotiations have likely started between Luck’s agent and the Colts. Luck has a high ceiling and a high floor which makes him a rarity in quarterback draft picks. That’s why he has to be the number one pick in this draft. You won’t have to worry about him being Ryan Leaf or Matt Leinart. At worst, he’ll be Carson Palmer with mobility.

2. Washington Redskins (STL): Robert Griffin III, QB, Baylor

RG3 will answer a lot of Washington’s issues on offense, as long as Mike and Kyle Shanahan mold their plans to his strengths. Griffin is a superb athlete who has a higher ceiling but a much bigger boom or bust ratio than Luck. No matter what happens with Griffin, this pick is a victory for a now-dormant franchise.

3. Minnesota Vikings: Morris Claiborne, CB, LSU

Vikings GM Rick Spielman seems to be down on drafting an offensive tackle so early. While a lot of pundits see that as a smokescreen, I do not. Remember, these picks aren’t what I would do, they are what I think the teams will do. With that said, the Minnesota secondary is awful and Claiborne in a top five player in this draft. He also have return ability, so that’s less damage for Percy Harvin.

4. Cleveland Browns: Trent Richardson, HB, Alabama

Trent Richardson is a premiere playmaker with a pedigree to match. The Browns do need help at wide receiver but no prospect at that position is worth taking here (trust me). The most important thing for Cleveland, is to successfully get the ball out of Colt McCoy’s hands.

5. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Matt Kalil, OT, USC

With the Vikings’ pick, Kalil (who I think is the best offensive tackle prospect since Jonathan Ogden) falls. The Bucs lose out on Claiborne, who they were targeting. Kalil has phenomenal value here, so a trade is very likely, but for this article’s sake, Kalil goes to the Bucs. This move would allow Donald Penn to swing to the right tackle spot where he is a huge upgrade over Jeremy Trueblood.

6. St. Louis Rams (WAS): Fletcher Cox, DT, Mississippi St.

Cox has climbed draft boards in the last few months and the Rams have a ton of draft picks to fill all of their many needs. The Rams lack a true presence in the middle of their defensive line and Cox can do it all. A lot of readers may see this as a reach, but Cox is by far the best defensive lineman in the draft and will be Pro Bowler before you know it.

7. Jacksonville Jaguars: Justin Blackmon, WR, Oklahoma St.

The Jags need playmakers, especially with MJD sitting out for a new contract and Laurent Robinson as their number one guy. Blackmon has all the tools needed to be a top guy and Jacksonville lacked threat since Jimmy Smith left town years ago.

8. Miami Dolphins: Michael Floyd, WR, Notre Dame

Miami needs to be smart with this pick after failing to get Peyton Manning, Matt Flynn, RG3 and trading Brandon Marshall. The last move means they have no one to throw the ball to, which would make a really tough assignment for a rookie QB. Ryan Tannehill has always been a reach here, so passing on him is not a horrible decision. Floyd gives the Fins size and talent at the wide receiver position. He can be a Pro Bowler.

9. Carolina Panthers: Michael Brockers, DT, LSU

After missing out on Cox, the Panthers solve their interior issues with Brockers. While he is a bit of a one-year wonder, he has enormous potential. He is already a monster against the run, but he has the measurements and athleticism to excel in rushing the passer as well.

10. Buffalo Bills: Dre Kirkpatrick, CB, Alabama

The Bills are the likeliest candidate to trade up for Kalil if the Vikings, Browns, and Bucs want to field offers. As I’m not opening up the labyrinth that is mock trades, the Bills are stuck at 10. Dre Kirkpatrick made a bonehead mood before the Combine, but there is no questioning his talent. The Bills ranked in the bottom three of virtually every passing defensive category. Kirkpatrick’s size and coverage skills will be welcomed.

11. Kansas City Chiefs: Ryan Tannehill, QB, Texas A&M

The Chiefs are in this position because of injuries, not a lack of talent. The team just doesn’t have a ton of needs, so they go with competition at their most important spot. Tannehill falls to KC, who looked at adding Peyton Manning this off-season. Matt Cassel is a good player, but the Chiefs need someone to push him to be great and eventually take over him.

12. Seattle Seahawks: Melvin Ingram, DE, South Carolina

Seattle lacks pass rushers outside of Chris Cleamons who is getting older. Ingram may be the best pass rusher in the draft and would definitely help Pete Carroll’s defense. With Floyd, Blackmon, and Tannehill gone, this pick is an easy one.

13. Arizona Cardinals: Reily Reiff, OT/OG, Iowa

The Cardinals have constantly struggled to protect their quarterbacks, no matter who they are. With John Skelton’s lack of mobility and Kevin Kolb’s injury history, protecting them is more important than ever. Reiff projects as more of a right tackle but can play most positions on the line. While I am not a huge fan of his, I think the Cardinals take the big man from Iowa.

14. Dallas Cowboys: Quintin Coples, DE/DT, UNC

This a great spot for Dallas to be in. They have the choice of David DeCastro, Mark Barron, and Coples, who are all high their boards (IMO). The ‘Boys lack a pass rushing presence in their front, so they go with the talent of Coples over the stability of DeCastro and the need for Barron. Coples falls because of his reported lack of enthusiasm for the sport and his work ethic.

15. Philadelphia Eagles: Luke Kuechly, ILB, Boston College

Much like Dallas, this scenario is beneficial for Philly. Kuechly led the nation in tackles the past two seasons and that is one of Philly’s biggest weaknesses. With Cox and Brockers off the board, Keuchly can be the short term answer at SAM linebacker and could eventually take over for the newly-acquired DeMeco Ryans in the middle.

16. New York Jets: Courtney Upshaw, OLB/DE, Alabama

Rumors are that the Jets really want Melvin Ingram, but since they missed out on him , they add another pass rusher. Upshaw has gone up and down boards since the BCS Championship game, but this is likely good value for him. The Jets need a guy who can get pressure on the quarterback as well as other teams get pressure on Mark Sanchez.

17. Cincinnati  Bengals (OAK): David DeCastro, OG, Stanford

As the Bengals continue to evolve their offense, keeping Andy Dalton upright, should be one of their biggest concerns. With numerous early round picks, the Bengals can go for the offensive line in the first. DeCastro has multi-Pro Bowls written all over him.

18. San Diego Chargers: Nick Perry, OLB/DE, USC

Much like the Jets, the Chargers need a REAL pass rusher. They go local with Perry who is fireball with long arms. The Chargers could go wide receiver here, but pass rusher is much more likely.

19. Chicago Bears: Whitney Mercilus, DE, Illinois

The Bears failed to take away protection from Julius Peppers last season, which hurt against opposing offenses. Mercilus hasn’t got a tremendous amount of success in college on his resume but he was lights out last season. The Bears should be familiar with him as a he’s a local product with huge upside.

20. Tennessee Titans: Chandler Jones, DE, Syracuse

The Titans are likely to take the best defensive player on the board that isn’t a safety. Jones has been a huge riser in recent weeks, with his Pro Day and Combine. He is the best defensive end available and I expect him to go around here.

21. Cincinnati Bengals: Mark Barron, SS, Alabama

This is a huge coup for the Bengals. With Chris Crocker on the streets, Barron can definitely fill his role. The safety from Alabama is the best at his position and would be a huge upgrade for the Cincy secondary.

22. Cleveland Browns (ATL): Coby Fleener, TE, Stanford

The moto for the Browns this draft is: “we need playmakers.” At this point, the value is kind of low for number one guys with Kendall Wright and Mohamed Sanu likely slot players. The best safety valve for a young QB is a great tight end and Fleener is the best of the bunch.

23. Detroit Lions: Cordy Glenn, OT/OG, Georgia

Glenn was originally projected as a guard but with an explosive Combine and Pro Day, scouts are starting to see him as a tackle. Glenn can begin his career at right tackle and then eventually take over for Jeff Backus on the left side.

24. Pittsburgh Steelers: Dontari Poe, NT, Memphis

The key to a successful 3-4 defense is a nose tackle. Poe has a ton of potential but little to show for it in college. The Steelers are great at developing talent so they take flyer on Poe.

25. Denver Broncos: Kendall Wright, WR, Baylor

Andre Caldwell is a decent player, but Peyton Manning can always use more playmakers. Wright is a guy who can play outside but can thrive in the slot and in the return game. The Broncos would love to add a defensive tackle here, but the premiere guys are gone.

26. Houston Texans: Jonathan Martin, OT, Stanford

As much as Stephen Hill would be a welcomed site in Houston, with Eric Winston on the Chiefs, the Texans really need a right tackle. Martin slides down to 26 for a lack of faith in his athleticism. A lot pundits view him as a right tackle so he loses value. Houston will take advantage of other team’s lack of interest.

27. New England Patriots (NO): Rueben Randle, WR, LSU

The Patriots have added tons of wide receivers in the off-season but they still lack size at the position. Randle is still developing but can be used as a redzone target right away.

28. Green Bay Packers: Jerel Worthy, DE/DT, Michigan St.

The Packers missed Cullen Jenkins last year. Worthy is a guy with similar five-technique, pass rushing ability. He has a high motor and size that could improve the defensive front of the former champs.

29. Baltimore Ravens: Andre Branch, OLB/DE, Clemson

The Ravens let starter, Jarrett Johnson, walk in free agency, so they need a guy on the strong side of their 3-4 defense. Branch can serve as a bookend to Terrell Suggs.

30. San Francisco 49ers: Stephen Hill, WR, Georgia Tech

They may have added Randy Moss, but Hill reminds me of a younger version of him. What a better way for Hill to learn how to play like Moss, then having Randy on the team with him? Hill has great size and speed and would settle the Niner’s wide receiver position.

31. New England Patriots: Dont’a Hightower, ILB, Alabama

Bill Belichik is a fan of linebackers and needs a guy next to Jerod Mayo in the middle. Hightower has a winning pedigree and would be a big upgrade over the departing Gary Guyton (signed with the Dolphins).

32. New York Giants: Mike Adams, OT, Ohio State

The Giants have very few holes as the defending champs, but one place they can afford to upgrade is at offensive tackle. Kareem McKenzie is gone, so they need a replacement as a starter. Adams is a good player who can the Giants can plug-and-play right away.

Round 2

33. St. Louis: Bobby Massie, OT, Mississippi

The Rams need to get protection for Sam Bradford and Massie is the best left tackle on the board.

34. Indianapolis: Dwayne Allen, TE, Clemson

With Fleener gone, Allen becomes the Marcus Pollard/Dallas Clark for Andrew Luck.

35. Minnesota: Alshon Jeffery, WR, South Carolina

Minnesota passed on Blackmon and get a great potential with Jeffery, who could turn out to be the stud of this class (doubt it though).

36. Tampa Bay: Lamar Miller, HB, Miami

The Bucs have become one-dimensional in their running game with LaGarrett Blount, so they add some lighting to his thunder with Miller.

37. Cleveland: Janoris Jenkins, CB, North Alabama

Sheldon Brown is getting older and may transition to safety, so Cleveland needs someone opposite Joe Haden. Jenkins may have character issues but there is no doubting his talent.

38. Jacksonville: Vinny Curry, DE, Marshall

After going offense with their first pick, the Jags go pass rush with Curry who is a monster of a man.

39. St. Louis (WAS): Lavonte David, OLB, Nebraska

The Rams need a weakside linebacker and David is a guy who can solve those problems and be a star in Jeff Fisher’s defense (he’s one of my dark horses for Defensive Rookie of the Year).

40. Carolina: Bobby Wagner, OLB, Utah State

Carolina has a ton of injury-prone backers, so it makes sense to add depth. Wagner can play all three spots much like Dan Connor who left in free agency.

41. Buffalo: Zebrie Sanders, OT, Florida State

Buffalo passed on Reiff in the first, so they have to go tackle in the second. Sanders needs a bit of work, but he can start at right tackle if needed.

42. Miami: Brandon Weeden, QB, Oklahoma St.

The Dolphins were smart with their first pick (finally), so they add a QB in the second to throw to Floyd. If Weeden was 24, he’d be a top ten pick.

43. Seattle: Kevin Zeitler, OG, Wisconsin

This is kind of low for Zeitler but Seattle loves the value and takes him to replace Robert Gallery.

44. Kansas City: Peter Konz, OL, Wisconsin

Casey Wiegmann can’t play forever and Konz is the best center in the draft. Konz comes from the offensive lineman factory in Wisconsin and can start right away.

45. Dallas: Doug Martin, HB, Boise State

Dallas is rumored to be shopping Felix Jones (can’t say I blame them), so adding a guy to the mix is important. DeMarco Murray is definitely the starter, but he is injury prone so it’s good to have a backup that can start. Martin is potential first round pick.

46. Philadelphia: Kendall Reyes, DT, Connecticut

With linebacker taken care of, the Eagles add depth to their rotation at defensive tackle. Reyes has the athleticism to thrive in Jim Washburn’s Wide 9 formation.

47. New York Jets: Harrison Smith, SS, Notre Dame

The uncertainty surrounding Jim Leonard (will he sign?) means the Jets have questions at safety. Smith can fill Leonard’s role right away.

48. New England (OAK): Devon Still, DE/DT, Penn State

The Patriots keeps adding to their defense that really struggled last year. Still was initially considered a first rounder, but I think he fits in the second.

49. San Diego: Alfonzo Dennard, CB, Nebraska

Quentin Jammer is no spring chicken, so it would serve San Diego well to add a youth at corner. Dennard can play safety or corner, so he could fill the void at strong safety if Bob Sanders doesn’t stick around.

50. Chicago: Brandon Thompson, DT, Clemson

Amobi Okoye is no longer in Chicago, so a good run stopper is needed. Thompson is a bit raw but can provide depth immediately.

51. Philadelphia (ARI): Brandon Boykin, CB, Georgia

Asante Samuel is likely to be traded and Joselio Hanson was exposed in the slot last season, so the Eagles go nickel corner with Boykin. The little dude from Georgia spent most of his time in the slot, so Boykin wouldn’t need to adjust all that much to the position.

52. Tennessee: Josh Robinson, CB, Central Florida

Cortland Finnegan is no more, so the Titans added a speedy corner to take his place. Robinson will provide good competition for Tennessee’s young secondary.

53. Cincinnati: Mohamed Sanu, WR, Rutgers

The Bengals need a guy that’ll compliment A.J. Green. Sanu can be plugged in the slot and play a Welker-like role for the Bengals.

54. Detroit: Jamell Fleming, CB, Oklahoma

The Lions need help in their secondary and Fleming comes from a good program, where he clearly excelled. He won’t start right away but he could be a difference-maker down the road.

55. Atlanta: Zach Brown, OLB, UNC

With the arrival of new defensive coordinator, Mike Nolan, there has been a lot of transition at linebacker for the Falcons. Sean Weatherspoon and Akeem Dent are two starters, but they need a guy on the weakside. Brown needs to be motivated, but he has plenty of talent if chooses to use it.

56. Pittsburgh: David Wilson, HB, Virginia Tech

Rashad Mendenhall is likely to miss this season, while recovering from injury. Wilson not only fills his spot now, but likely for the future as well.

57. Denver: Jared Crick, DT/DE, Nebraska

Denver went offense in the first round but still need a run-stopper at defensive tackle. Crick is a good player, who excels against the run and could start right away.

58. Houston: Mychal Kendricks, ILB, California

DeMeco Ryans is in Philly and Daryl Sharpton is pegged to start in his place in Houston. With Sharpton in the starting lineup, the Texans could use some depth. Kendricks was a standout at Cal and could provide some great competition for Sharpton next to Brian Cushing.

59. New Orleans: Forfeit

New Orleans has forfeited this pick due to punishments given by the NFL.

60. Green Bay: Chris Polk, HB, Washington

The Packers running game was awful this past season, so with Ryan Grant being shown the door, Polk comes in to add some energy to the backfield.

61. Baltimore: Kelechi Osemele, OG, Iowa St.

Ben Grubbs is no longer with the Ravens, so they need to find a new left guard. Osemele could start right away.

62. San Francisco:  Jayron Hosley, CB, Virginia Tech

The 49ers have a great defense put could always add depth. Hosley was widely successful at Va Tech and could be make an immediate impact as a nickel corner.

63. New England: Ronnell Lewis, OLB, Oklahoma

The Pats want to improve their pass rush and Lewis excels at that. He will be a starter by mid-season.

64. New York Giants: Bernard Pierce, HB, Temple

The Giants need to add a runner to their rotation and Pierce absolutely blew up at his Pro Day. Pierce could eventually be the starter as Ahmad Bradshaw’s career comes to a close.

Round 3

65. Indianapolis: Bruce Irvin, OLB, West Virginia

The Colt’s new 3-4 defense needs a lot of pass rushers with Dwight Freeney and Robert Mathis in their 30’s. Irvin can start out as a rotation guy and then ascend to the starting lineup.

66. St. Louis: Ben Jones, OL, Georgia

Stephen Jackson needs holes to run through and Jones’ big body can open those gaps.

67. Minnesota:Mitchell Schwartz, OT, California

Minnesota teams Mitchell Schwartz with his brother Geoff to (at least attempt to) improve their deplorable offensive line.

68. Cleveland:Kirk Cousins, QB, Michigan St.

Colt McCoy hasn’t been a “franchise guy,” so the Browns bring in competition with Cousins.

69. Tampa Bay: Sean Spence, OLB, Miami

Tampa Bay is a little light at linebacker and Spence can start right away at weakside, as the Bucs double dip on the U.

70. Washington: Billy Winn, DE, Boise St.

The Redskins could afford to upgrade, as Kentwan Balmer and Adam Carriker aren’t going to scare anyone. Winn is a WINNer (yes, the caps were on purpose).

71. Jacksonville: Orsen Charles, TE, Georgia

Mercedes Lewis struggled last year, so going to a two-tight end formation could be beneficial. Charles is a big body that can block and get open.

72. Buffalo: Juron Criner, WR, Arizona

Buffalo needs a guy a opposite Stevie Johnson and Criner has size and speed that can take some of the attention away from him.

73. Miami: Shea McClellin, DE/OLB, Boise St.

This is a little low for McClellin, but I am not so sold on him being a pro defensive end. The Dolphins like his potential and versatility, so they grab him.

74. Miami (CHI/CAR): Josh Kaddu, OLB, Oregon

The Dolphins are running a hybrid defense, so in a 4-3 look, they need a weakside guy. Kaddu could fill that need.

75. Kansas City: Alameda Ta’amu, NT, Washington

The Chiefs have lacked a strong nose tackle since they transitioned to a 3-4. Ta’amu is the perfect fit for Romeo Crennel’s defense.

76. Seattle: Mike Martin, DT, Michigan

Seattle continues to add value and depth to their defensive line with Martin. He’ll start by year two.

77. Houston (PHI): Markelle Martin, FS, Oklahoma St.

While the secondary did improve with Wade Phillips calling the plays, they still could upgrade over Daniel Manning at free safety.

78. New York Jets: Greg Childs, WR, Arkansas

Outside of Santonio Holmes, there isn’t much at wide receiver for the Jets. Childs would be, at worst, their third best pass catcher.

79. Oakland: Forfeited (2010 Supplemental Draft-Terrell Pryor)

The Raiders used this pick to draft Terrell Pryor in the 2010 Supplemental Draft.

80. San Diego: LaMichael James, HB, Oregon

The Chargers really missed Darren Sproles last year and adding James can give them the wildcard guy they need to replace him.

81. Chicago: Dwight Bentley, CB, Louisiana-Lafayette

Losing Zachary Bowman won’t hurt, but the Bears could use some youth in the secondary. Bentley is a small school prospect with big league ability.

82. Arizona: James-Michael Johnson, ILB, Nevada

Arizona needs to give Daryl Washington some help in the middle and Johnson is just what the doctor ordered in this scenario.

83. Dallas: Brandon Washington, OG, Miami

The Cowboys signed a few veterans for their interior line, but youth is needed for the future. Washington is a raw blocker but has the potential to be great.

84. Tennessee: Demario Davis, OLB, Arkansas St.

Davis is one of the gems of this draft. While he may not have a huge following, I think he can be a starter for the Titans who lack depth at linebacker.

85. Cincinnati: Chase Minnifield, CB, Virginia

Leon Hall is coming off a major injury, so they need to cover themselves in case he struggles to come back. Minnifield still needs to improve his cover ability but he gives the Bengals depth.

86. Atlanta: Ladarius Green, TE, Louisiana-Lafayette

Tony Gonzales can’t play forever but Green can serve as a backup until Gonzo is ready to hang it up.

87. Detroit: Cam Johnson, DE, Virginia

The Lions seem to have a ton of defensive line talent but with Kyle Vanden Bosch getting up there in age and Cliff Avril not happy with the Franchise Tag, adding depth is important.

88. Pittsburgh: Josh Chapman, DE/DT, Alabama

The Steelers love adding to their front and Chapman is a great player with a championship pedigree.

89. Denver: George Iloka, FS, Boise St.

Brian Dawkins is likely to retire, so the Broncos needs to fill his spot on the roster. Iloka is a good player that can player either safety spot.

90. Philadelphia (HOU):  Chris Rainy, HB/KR, Florida

The Eagles need a running back and a kick returner. After flirting with Darren Sproles last year, they pick his clone in Rainey.

91. New Orleans: Ron Brooks, CB, LSU

Tracy Porter took his talents to Mile High, so Brooks replaces him with the Saints first pick in the draft.

92. Green Bay: Brock Osweiler, QB, Arizona St.

Mike McCarthy loves developing quarterbacks and Osweiler is definitely a project.

93. Baltimore: Trumaine Johnson, CB, Montana

Baltimore drafted Jimmy Smith last year and have Ladarius Webb, but could use a good nickel corner. Johnson is a great player who is suffering from his off-the-field issues.

94. San Francisco: Michael Egnew, TE, Missouri

Egnew is a serious playmaker and would allow the Niners to give Alex Smith a two-tight end look.

95. New England: Casey Hayward, CB, Vanderbilt

The annual cornerback pick for the Patriot is the talented Casey Hayward. Congratulations.

96. New York Giants: Nick Toon, WR, Wisconsin

The Giants take Toon to replace Mario Manningham.

97. Oakland (compensatory): Keenan Robinson, OLB, Texas

The Raiders spend their first pick on a talented linebacker, Robinson, who could start right away on the outside.

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