NFL's Future

2014 NFL Mock Draft

"Eric Ebron"

Bob Donnan-US PRESSWIRE

The 2014 NFL Draft is less than three weeks out and things are as murky as I can remember in recent years. With so many great players atop this draft, it’s going to be a difficult call to accurately predict many of these selections. I think the top two picks have a shot at being dealt on or before draft day. If Houston settles on taking a QB and passing on Clowney I feel pretty confident they will move down the board a few slots remaining in the mix to snag Manziel or Bortles. In this mock, I’m sticking with Clowney but I went on the record last week, saying this pick could be dealt to the highest bidder.

1. Houston Texans – Jadeveon Clowney, DE, South Carolina

This one is Clowney or a trade back in my book. The question will be what team will be willing to give up a king’s ransom to move up for Clowney.

2. Atlanta Falcons (trade w/STL) – Khalil Mack, OLB, Buffalo

Atlanta finds it a bit too costly to move up to No. 1 for Clowney and wind up finding a better fit for what they want to do. The Falcons sense the Jags pining for Mack’s services so they pull the trigger to get a guy they should be targeting.

3. Jacksonville Jaguars – Johnny Manziel, QB, Texas A&M

With Mack and Clowney off the board, the Jags make the splash that is sure to send shock waves through the media. The marriage of Gus Bradley, Jedd Fisch, and Johnny is perfect.

4. Cleveland Browns – Sammy Watkins, WR, Clemson

"Sammy Watkins"

Mitch Stringer-USA TODAY Sports

The Browns could go with a QB in this spot with Bortles, Bridgewater, and Carr still on the board but I think they stay patient and take a weapon for this offense. Picking up Nate Burleson isn’t stopping them from pulling the trigger on this offensive playmaker.

5. Oakland Raiders – Blake Bortles, QB, UCF

Oakland could be a good landing spot for Blake Bortles. They won’t have to rush him in with Matt Schaub likely to get a year to prove he can return to form.  They may be bidders to move down the draft for a team looking for one of the tackles or Mike Evans. I wouldn’t be surprised at all if the Raiders were targeting Aaron Donald in a trade down or at No. 5.

6. St. Louis Rams (trade w/ATL) – Greg Robinson, OT, Auburn

St. Louis has to be ecstatic they were able to move down and get a guy they were targeting at No. 2. Robinson is a plug and play guy that should really open up the running game for the Rams.

7. Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Mike Evans, WR, Texas A&M

Tampa Bay may be looking to move up the board for a receiver or they could stay patient at No. 7 and hope one of Watkins or Evans falls down to them. In this scenario they form a tandem of WR’s that can go toe to toe with Chicago’s in terms of size.

8. New York Giants (trade w/MIN) – Jake Matthews, OT, Texas A&M

The Giants have to find a LT if they don’t want Eli to repeat his abysmal season of 2013. They get aggressive with Jake Matthews sliding down this far and Minnesota is happy to oblige with Carr and Bridgewater still on the board.

9. Dallas Cowboys (trade w/BUF) – Aaron Donald, DT, Pittsburgh

Aaron Donald could wind up being the most impactful guy in this class. That’s a bold statement given the loaded nature of this draft but he’s special. Jerry Jones realizes it and moves on up to secure himself a 3T to pair with Henry Melton.

10. Detroit Lions – Ha Ha Clinton-Dix, S, Alabama

I’ve had the Lions going with Anthony Barr fairly consistently over the course of the last month or so. Someone I trust advised me that it’s unlikely they don’t look for an upgrade in the secondary.

11. Tennessee Titans – Kyle Fuller, CB, Virginia Tech

Maybe the first real surprise of the draft would be the Titans pulling the trigger on Kyle Fuller over more highly rated (in the media) corners. His skill set really would be a nice fit in Ray Horton’s defense and I think he’s worthy of a look this high.

12. Minnesota Vikings (trade w/NYG) – Teddy Bridgewater, QB, Louisville

Minnesota is able to maneuver down the draft board and still get a QB capable of playing right away in Teddy Bridgewater. Kudos to Rick Spielman.

13. St. Louis Rams – Derek Carr, QB, Fresno St.

"Derek Carr"

USA TODAY Sports

Another shocker but why not if you’re the Rams. I’m still wondering why Sam Bradford gets a pass for his mediocre play and injury history. Can the Rams afford to bank on Bradford staying healthy and carrying this team to the playoffs coming out of the NFC West. I don’t think so, so Les Snead calls Derek Carr’s name.

14. Chicago Bears – Justin Gilbert, CB, Oklahoma St.

The Bears should be players for Aaron Donald’s services as he is exactly what they need. If they can’t swing a deal to move up or he doesn’t fall down to them (highly unlikely) they take the next best thing in Justin Gilbert.

15. Philadelphia Eagles (trade w/PIT) – Anthony Barr, OLB, UCLA

Anthony Barr fits the bill of what Chip Kelly is looking to do on defense. He wants long athletes with speed. Enter Anthony Barr.

16. Buffalo Bills (trade w/DAL) – Eric Ebron, TE, North Carolina

The Bills are able to work the board magically if this happens. Ebron is a guy they would give serious consideration to at No. 9, so this would be a great value pick at No. 16.


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  • Reggie

    Only 1 Round?? Just kidding my friend. Not sure how I feel about the Lions taking Clinton Dix. He would be an upgrade over the safeties we have now and can make big plays but I do not see him as an elite player. I will be crushed if the Lions cannot get Aaron Donald at 10 or trade up for Watkins…or Jake Matthews. Clinton Dix is even someone you have claimed is over rated.

    • bradc11

      What a disappointment. I’m with you on HCD. I badly wanted Aaron Donald at that spot but I can’t see him making it down to 10. I think this could be a year the Lions get aggressive and go up and get a guy they like. Otherwise they could get stuck at 10 taking a guy like HCD. I promise next week will be a 2 or 3 rounder. Heck may go for a 4 rounder.

      • Reggie

        Brrad,

        Just joking my friend. I love Friday mornings and seeing your mock. Not the normal copied version as everyone else. I think in a draft where they is great depth but short on elite talent you move up and it would not be a bad move. Like I said I do not believe HCD is a bad player or will be a bust but he is not someone to get excited about. He and Quinn would be a nice safety duo.

        • bradc11

          We are on the same page Reggie. HCD is solid but doesn’t jump off the charts for me. If they can move up for Watkins/Evans or shock us all and move up for Mack I would be a fan of that start.

  • ottograham14

    If Bortles is @4 Browns will take him. If not it will be Mack or Robinson. Also already have an undersized nickel corner in Skrine on the team and don’t need to add a similiar player even though Verrett has better ball skills. Team is high on Dennard/Fuller however.

    • bradc11

      If you have the pipeline to Ray Farmer you are the only one. No one has any idea who they are high on. I would say at this point the only thing we know about the Browns is that Mike Pettine likes Khalil Mack…don’t think he went to check on his house during Mack’s pro day. After that it’s anyone’s guess. Verrett isn’t an undersized nickel corner. Far from it. He’s physical – can press or play off man. Plays bigger than his size and has ball skills for day. I love him opposite Haden. I’d take Verrett over anyone not named Kyle Fuller in this corner class.

  • trublu25

    The Giants, a team with more needs than draft picks, moves up in the draft? Bull sh!t if you had them trading back with a team like the ravens that has almost as many compensatory picks as the Giants have regular, this would make more sense. (Especially cuz they need interior linemen not a tackle

    • bradc11

      Did you watch Will Beatty last year? I hope Giants fans don’t think Charles Brown is the answer at LT. Neither should be starting. If either is the starting LT when the season starts, Eli won’t last through the year. I’m interested to hear what you think are bigger needs than LT. Jake Matthews is a stud LT…that you may have to give up a 3rd or 4th to move up 4 spots. I see the starters on the interior of their OL being Geoff Schwartz (solid), JD Walton (if healthy very good) and Chris Snee (still more than serviceable). How is interior OL a bigger need?

  • Duncan

    I would love Buffalo to pull this trade off. What do you have them receiving?

    Ebron seems like the biggest boom or bust prospect in this draft. I would have a have a hard time convincing myself to take a player like him, especialy a TE, in the 1st round. On the flip side though, he’s a great value at 17, and if really does develop into a Vernon Davis type player it would totally be worth it. Another guy I think that Buffalo would have to take a long, hard, look at is Mosely. If Brandon Spikes doesn’t work out, then the Bills are going to need another MLB. For this season they could move Mosely over to SAM and let him play their untill they see how Spikes does.

    • bradc11

      Agreed on Ebron. Not a guy that I personally love…have him rated rated about 27. Mosley will be tough to pass on but they really need to surround EJ with some talent, either on the OL or TE/WR

  • Joe Lawrence

    Does anyone think Atlanta would give up their 1-2-3 picks plus something else to move up 4 spots? Or another #1 plus their 3rd this year? Hopefully nobody in Atl. is that stupid.

  • neighborhooddrunkpart2

    Roby in the first? I don’t mind taking him in the 2nd, but not the 1st round. Then again, the Steelers do love Ohio State players. So, I would not be shocked if this do happen.

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