Archive for the ‘2012 Draft’ Category

Profetta’s 2012 NFL Mock Draft – September 30 Update

Posted by Brad On September – 29 – 2011

Miami is the winner in Profetta's latest release of his 2012 NFL Mock Draft

1. Miami Dolphins- Andrew Luck QB Stanford   Just as with Carolina and John Fox last year, the lousy team with the lame-duck head coach lands the #1 overall pick. There are a few teams that are less talented than the Dolphins, but even fewer that are in as much disarray (or in a division as unforgiving as the AFC East). After taking a cursory glance at Miami’s remaining schedule, the only game I even thought about penciling a “W” next to was the Week 7 matchup at home vs. the Broncos…and even that’s iffy. (Miami will be coming off of a Monday Night matchup at the Jets, while the Broncos will be coming off of a bye.)

There might be greater needs along the Dolphins’ depth chart than at QB, but the selection of Luck at #1 overall is simply a foregone conclusion. Luck is the most promising prospect since Peyton Manning and would be a deluxe upgrade from impending free agent Chad Henne. Beyond the obvious positional upgrade, the selection of Luck would provide great hope for the future in Miami, where a frustrated and increasingly disinterested fanbase has tired of a mediocre product and the parade of so-so passers that have taken turns under center since the retirement of Dan Marino.

2. Indianapolis Colts- Matt Barkley QB USC   The Colts’ current QB situation is so dire that they should seriously consider taking Jeff George up on his recent comeback proposal.

The losses to Cleveland and Pittsburgh could have been wins with merely sereviceable performances by Kerry Collins/Curtis Painter, but both QBs were atrocious. Recently re-signed journeyman Dan Orlovsky is not the answer. I just don’t see any way this team gets more than three wins, even in the weak AFC South. The recent losses of defensive captain Gary Brackett and starting safety Melvin Bullitt to season-ending injuries doesn’t help matters. The Colts are just having one of those “Murphy’s Law” kind of seasons.

There will be great debate as to whether the Colts should select Manning’s heir or a franchise LT like Matt Kalil or Jonathan Martin near the top of the 2012 NFL Draft. Sentimentality aside, I’m of the opinion that pinning your hopes on a QB (no matter how legendary) who will be 36 in March and has neck/back issues problems worthy of stem cell solutions just isn’t good business. The Colts can avoid the $28 million bonus Manning is due in 2012 simply by releasing him before late February. The uncerimonious release of Manning obviously wouldn’t be popular around Indy, but rarely does a NFL Draft crop boast three potential franchise QBs (four, if Robert Griffin III keeps it up). The Colts should take advantage of the rare opportunity to transition from one franchise QB to another.

Following three pristine performances, Barkley reverted back to his old form in USC’s PAC-12 opener against Arizona State, often holding on to the ball too long and forcing the ball into coverage, while turning it over three times. He also continued his disturbing trend of folding in the fourth quarter. I won’t bury him based on one game, but let’s just say that this pick could just as easily be Landry Jones or RG3. Barkley will never be confused with Manning, but he’s at least on par with rookies Jake Locker and Blaine Gabbert, and could allow the Colts to remain competetive in the post-Manning AFC South.

3. Seattle Seahawks- Robert Griffin III QB Baylor   RG3′s early season performance is becoming impossible to ignore. (As many TDs as incompletions through three games…are you serious?!) While I’m sure that Griffin will cool off as Baylor’s BIG 12 season unfolds, his vastly improved accuracy and pocket awarness, in concert with his great athleticism and arm strength, make him a Heisman contender and a strong candidate to enter the 2012 NFL Draft. (Keep in mind that he’s already earned his degree.) Griffin has plenty of great tape and should make a mockery of the Combine, so we may see a Newtonesque rise up draft boards during the predraft process.  Seattle offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell prefers a mobile QB, so Griffin could get the nod over the (relatively) mechanical Landry Jones if the Seahawks are given the choice of the two come next April.

The Vick/Newton comparisons are inevitable, but pay them no mind. Griffin (6-2/225), a member of the Baylor track team, is a top-notch athlete, but isn’t as explosive as Vick or as big as Newton. However, he’s more refined and has better accuracy than both at similar stages of their careers. Unlike Vick and Newton, Griffin’s intelligence and character will never come into question. If anything, comparisons to Aaron Rodgers would be more apt.

4. Minnesota Vikings- Matt Kalil OT USC   The Vikings are finding out the hard way that Charlie Johnson is a guard disguised as a left tackle. Their recent interest in the morbidly obese Max Starks only confirms their desperation to upgrade this position. It already looks like a lost season in Minny, so if a QB is going to take a beating, it might as well be a  washed-up stopgap like Donovan McNabb. Rookie Christian Ponder is the future under center. If his injury history at Florida State is any indication, the Vikes better find a top-shelf blindside protector…pronto. Kalil is a premier, low-risk LT prospect, a la Joe Thomas and Jake Long, with good size, great athleticism and even better fundamentals. His experience in a pro-style system and NFL bloodlines are gravy. Plug ‘n’ play.

5. Kansas City Chiefs- Jonathan Martin OT Stanford   It will be very interesting to see what GM Scott Pioli chooses to do with this pick. Matt Cassel simply isn’t the kind of QB that can take his team to the Super Bowl, so a potential franchise QB like Landry Jones would seem the logical choice. However, history shows that Pioli is adept at mining late round QB gems, so if he’s not sold on Jones, he could address the OT position in the first round and target an intriguing late-round passer like Florida’s John Brantley.

Few college O-lineman are performing better than Jonathan Martin right now. Well-rounded, smart and consistent, he could step in at LT and allow Branden Albert to move to the right side or inside to guard.

I think that folks may be overreacting to the Chiefs’ early season struggles just a bit. This isn’t an awful team, just a team that’s had the wind taken out of it’s sails due to a rash of major injuries. With an improved O-line and a return to health from Jamaal Charles, Eric Berry and Tony Moeaki, the Chiefs could bounce right back in 2012. Read the rest of this entry »

2012 NFL Draft Prospect Rankings – September 26 Update

Posted by Brad On September – 27 – 2011

1 Andrew Luck QB Stanford Junior 1
2 Matt Kalil T USC Junior 1
3 Trent Richardson RB Alabama Junior 1
4 Jonathan Martin T Stanford Junior 2
5 Vontaze Burfict LB Arizona St. Junior 1
6 Justin Blackmon WR Oklahoma St. Junior 1
7 Alshon Jeffrey WR South Carolina Junior 2
8 D.J. Fluker T Alabama rSo 3
9 Lamar Miller RB Miami rSo 2
10 Quinton Coples DE North Carolina Senior 1
11 Matt Barkley QB USC Junior 2
12 Dre Kirkpatrick CB Alabama Junior 1
13 Landry Jones QB Oklahoma Junior 3
14 Michael Floyd WR Notre Dame Senior 3
15 Brandon Jenkins DE FSU Junior 2
16 Stephon Gilmore CB South Carolina Junior 2
17 Jayron Hosley CB Virginia Tech Junior 3
18 Manti Te’o LB Notre Dame Junior 2
19 Morris Claiborne CB LSU Junior 4
20 Luke Kuechly LB Boston College Junior 3
21 Greg Reid CB FSU Junior 5
22 Jared Crick DT Nebraska Senior 1
23 Brandon Thompson DT Clemson Senior 2
24 Robert Lester S Alabama Junior 1
25 Zach Brown LB North Carolina Senior 4
26 Riley Reiff T Iowa Junior 4
27 Alfonzo Dennard CB Nebraska Senior 6
28 Mohamed Sanu WR Rutgers Junior 4
29 Janoris Jenkins CB North Alabama Senior 7
30 Chase Minnifield CB Virginia Senior 8
31 David DeCastro G Stanford Junior 1
32 T.J. McDonald FS USC Junior 2

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Updated NFL’s Future 2012 NFL Mock Draft

Posted by Brad On August – 11 – 2011

1.  Buffalo Bills – Andrew Luck, QB, Stanford

The Bills lost rather than gained this offseason which will hurt a roster that is already depleted of talent.  Andrew Luck is a once in a lifetime prospect that Buffalo will not pass on even though QB is the least of their worries.  They need a LT, help in the defensive backfield, and still need front seven impact players.  Sorry, Buffalo fans but I’m predicting a miserable finish in 2011 and the first pick in my 2012 NFL mock draft.  But the good news is that you are the proud winners of the Andrew Luck sweepstakes.

2.  San Francisco 49ers – Dre Kirkpatrick, CB, Alabama

The marriage of Jim Harbaugh and Andrew Luck almost came true but Buffalo’s 2-win season ruined it for 49er fans.  I think the 49ers stay away from QB with second round pick Colin Kaepernick showing promise unless Luck is there for the taking.  The 49ers have some stop gaps at the CB position but not a true shutdown CB.  Kirkpatrick has the size, speed, and skills to make his way to the second pick in the 2012 NFL mock draft.

3.  Washington Redskins – Landry Jones, QB, Oklahoma

I know, the Redskin brass all would have taken John Beck with the whatever pick in whatever draft.  A 3-4 win season should remind them why they didn’t (or anyone) take Beck that high.  The Redskins did a nice job of picking up talent in free agency (albeit overpaid for some but it’s Dan Snyder) but that won’t equal anymore wins for the ‘Skins.  Jones has all the physical tools of being a big time QB in the NFL and will tempt the 49ers in the 2 hole but falls to Washington.  If Washington passes on QB help in the 2012 NFL Draft it will go down as an epic failure on Mike Shanahan’s “vaunted” resume.

4.  Cincinnati Bengals – Matt Kalil, T, USC

Cincinnati has one of the most underrated tackles in the NFL with Andrew Whitworth but their line is in need of an overhaul.  They will give this season for Andre Smith to get it together and remain healthy.  After another season of mediocrity he will be moved to guard.  They can move Whitworth to RT or play Kalil at RT to begin with but Kalil has elite skills and will be an immediate upgrade to the Bengals OL.

5.  Miami Dolphins – Matt Barkley, QB, USC

I will be the first to admit that I’m not high on Barkley right now.  This pick is assuming he takes a leap forward in 2011 to elite collegiate status.  Big if.  This organization is in flux and needs a new face to give it life.  Fans are chanting for Kyle Orton…you know it’s bad.  Barkley is athletic, has adequate arm strength but needs to work on accuracy down the field.

6.  Tennessee Titans – Quentin Coples, DE, North Carolina

Tennessee lost Jason Babin in free agency and are left with unproven Derrick Morgan and Jason Jones as starters.  Coples brings the physicality and athleticism to the position to make an immediate impact on a front seven that is deplete of talent.  The Titans failure to address the offensive line in the 2011 NFL draft and free agency will have to be taken care of early in the 2012 NFL Draft also.

7.  Seattle Seahawks – Stephon Gilmore, CB, South Carolina

I love the skills Gilmore brings to the field and have him higher ranked than most.  I think he’s an elite corner in the NFL and capable of playing day one.  Seattle is faced with starting Walter Thurmond and Marcus Trufant in 2011 and will lose Kelly Jennings after this season.  They have very little depth and need a legitimate #1 corner.  Trufant will be more effective as the teams number 2 corner. Read the rest of this entry »

Updated 2012 NFL Draft Prospects

Posted by Brad On July – 21 – 2011

With all the time off from real football and growing increasingly tired of paying attention to courtroom football, I grew an extreme fondness for spending hours upon hours watching bad game tape (thanks CW).  That is good news and bad news for my readers.  Here’s the good; I broke down over 45 players in roughly three months and came to a solid preseason rankings which I have been unveiling periodically for about three weeks.  Here’s the bad; I overanalyzed each prospect to the point that readers were emailing asking me what the hell I was thinking ranking Janoris Jenkins, Janzen Jackson, Sean Spence, or whoever else that high.

Well, I am please to announced that my new top 100 2012 NFL Draft prospects list is ready to be unveiled.  As always you can refer to it here anytime but please be gentle because you know I’m sensitive.  Enjoy. Read the rest of this entry »

2012 Safety Prospects

Posted by Brad On July – 20 – 2011

"2012 safety prospects featuring Robert Lester"The 2012 safety prospects will be graded overall on a curve.  On the surface this appears to be a weak class with some potential breakout stars amongst it.

The juniors will lead the way with talents like Robert Lester, Ray Ray Armstrong, T.J. McDonald, and the troubled Janzen Jackson.  The senior class is fairly weak with just Mark Barron and Kenny Tate as possible top 100 players.

Here’s a look at the 2012 safety prospects:

1.  Robert Lester, S, Alabama

Height: 6’2  Weight: 210

Lester emerged with a solid sophomore campaign racking up 52 tackles and 8 INT’s.  He has ideal size and elite athleticism.  Lester has the ability to knock out pass catcher or play centerfield with the best of them.  If Lester comes on strong again as a junior he could crack the top 15 in the 2012 NFL Draft.

2012 NFL Draft projection:  Top 20

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2012 Cornerback Prospects

Posted by Brad On July – 19 – 2011

"2012 cornerback prospects featuring Dre Kirkpatrick"The 2012 cornerback prospects class is as talented as it is deep.  That’s saying a lot if some of the top juniors declare for the 2012 NFL Draft.

This class will be highlighted by a potential top 10 corner in Dre Kirkpatrick.  Not far behind Kirkpatrick are juniors, Stephon Gilmore and Jayron Holsley.  With Alfonzo Dennard, Janoris Jenkins, and Chase Minnifield representing the senior talent we may see as many as seven first round corners taken in the 2012 NFL Draft.

Here’s a look at the 2012 cornerback prospects:

1.  Dre Kirkpatrick, CB, Alabama

Height: 6’3  Weight: 192

Kirkpatrick is the early frontrunner for the Thorpe Award and deservedly so.  A physical specimen at 6’3 and 190 pounds, Kirkpatrick has drawn comparisons to elite NFL corners such as Nnamdi Asomugha and Champ Bailey.  He finished 2010 with three INT’s and seven passes broken up.  Kirkpatrick may grade out higher than number five overall pick in the 2011 draft, Patrick Peterson.

2012 NFL Draft projection:  Top 10

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2012 Inside Linebacker Prospects

Posted by Brad On July – 18 – 2011

"2012 inside linebacker prospects featuring Vontaze Burfict"The 2012 inside linebacker prospects are TALENTED.  If and only if several juniors declare for the 2012 NFL Draft.  The seniors on this list are underwhelming to say the least but the crop of juniors make up for it.

The 2012 inside linebacker prospects are led by the talented and temperamental, Vontaze Burfict.  Burfict is the most feared ILB to come out of college in a long while.  Not as physically gifted as Patrick Willis but makes up for it with a sensational meanstreak.  Sometimes to mean.  The other juniors are nothing to shake a stick at either.  Manti Te’o and Luke Kuechly are close seconds to Burfict in the talent department and make for a strong class of ILB’s.  As many as four 2012 inside linebacker prospects could be taken in the first round of the 2012 NFL Draft.  That would be impressive.

Here’s a look at the 2012 inside linebacker prospects:

1.  Vontaze Burfict, ILB, Arizona State

Height:  6’3  Weight: 245

Burfict is in the Patrick Willis department as talent goes.  If he could eliminate the dumb penalties in 2011 he could be the rare top 10 ILB.  Burfict brings the most physical style of play to the game but will have to prove he will be willing to become a student of the game to warrant a top 10 selection.  The comparisons to Ray Lewis are fair but he will have to show that he’s a student of the game (ala Ray Lewis) to fully become that type of talent.  Burfict lacks no physical tools to be a successful NFL ILB and is scheme diverse.

2012 NFL Draft projection:  Top 15

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2012 NFL Outside Linebacker Prospects

Posted by Brad On July – 15 – 2011

"2012 NFL Outside Linebacker Prospects"With a ton of teams transitioning to the 3-4 defense, the outside linebacker position has drastically changed over the last several years.  The influx of smallish 4-3 ends turned into rush linebackers has made it difficult to rank the 2012 NFL outside linebacker prospects.

I broke down the OLB’s by guys I thought were certain to make the transition from college DE to NFL OLB (Brandon Lindsey and Bruce Irvin, for example) and left borderline guys on my DE rankings (Brandon Jenkins and Vinny Curry).

Here’s my best guess on the 2012 NFL outside linebacker prospects:

1.  Travis Lewis, OLB, Oklahoma

Height: 6’2  Weight: 233

Travis Lewis did himself well by staying in school for his senior season after a noteably poor junior season for the Sooners.  H e is a 4-3 WILL linebacker that has notched 41 games played in three seasons.  He excels because of his outstanding athleticism and instincts.  He is phenomenal dropping into coverage as evidenced by his 8 INT’s and 10 pass breakups in his career.  Lewis will have to prove that his poor 2010 season was an anomaly and come into 2011 hungry again to maintain the top spot in the 2012 outside linebacker prospects list.

2012 NFL Draft projection:  1

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2012 NFL Defensive End Prospects

Posted by Brad On July – 14 – 2011

"2012 NFL defensive end prospects featuring Quinton Coples"The 2012 NFL defensive end prospects are probably just an average class right now.  But I see some breakout potential throughout this class and come next April we may be changing our tune on overall grade for this class.

The class is headed by Quinton Coples.  Coples is a top five pick and I have him as the second best prospect in the 2012 draft.  There are some underclassmen who will make or break the overall grade for this class.  If Donte Paige-Moss, Brandon Jenkins, Devin Taylor, and Alex Okafor declare for the 2012 NFL Draft this class will be considered deep and strong.

Here’s a look at the 2012 NFL defensive end prospects:

1.  Quinton Coples, DE, North Carolina

Height: 6’6  Weight: 280

If Coples can prove he can stand up against the run he could emerge as a Mario Williams-type talent.  His combination of height, weight, and speed make for a dominate factor on the end in any scheme.  He would definitely be a better fit in a base 4-3 but could fit in the 3-4.  His sophomore season he finished with five sacks and 6.5 TFL’s.  As a junior, in Robert Quinn’s absence, Coples registered 15.5 TFL and 10 sacks.  In 2011, expect Coples to see a ton of double teams and if numbers don’t dip he will solidify his spot amongst the top 5 in the 2012 NFL Draft.

2012 NFL Draft Projection:  Top 5

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2012 NFL Defensive Tackle Prospects

Posted by Brad On July – 13 – 2011

"2012 NFL defensive tackle prospects featuring Marcus Forston"The 2012 NFL defensive tackle prospects lack any firepower at the top of the draft.  Fans of the position have been spoiled by back to back solid DT classes.  This one won’t produce a dominating presence like Ndamukong Suh or Marcell Dareus.

This class is marked by upside.  The top two candidates (Marcus Forston, Jerel Worthy) to come off the board in the first twenty picks are underclassmen.  They are raw prospects with high ceilings but have yet to produce at a consistently high level.  There are several candidates to be 2012’s version of Nick Fairley.  I will stay away from listing these guys in my rankings but there are some talented Nick Fairley-types out there (Quinton Dial, Jesse Williams, Sylvester Williams, and Jonathan Jenkins).

Here’s the list of 2012 NFL defensive tackle prospects:

1.  Marcus Forston, DT, Miami

Height: 6’3  Weight: 310

Forston is the most talented DT amongst the 2012 NFL defensive tackle prospects.  However, he has yet to produce at the expected level.  Injuries and inconsistencies will be the only thing keeping Forston from breaking the top 10 in the 2012 NFL Draft.

2012 NFL Draft Projection:  Top 15

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