Sunday, March 2, 2014

NFL Mock Draft 3.0

Vikings Corner analyst Daniel House unveils his 3rd NFL Mock Draft for the 2014 season. Which player does he have your favorite team selecting?

Here is Daniel House's NFL Mock Draft 3.0:

1. Houston Texans- Blake Bortles- QB: Central Florida- I've had Johnny Manziel at this pick for several weeks, but after the scouting combine and more rumors swirl from executives, it seems Blake Blake Bortles could be the pick. Many are turning their nose at Manziel's outspoken words in the media and feel like he may be slightly overrated. Bill O'Brien likes quarterbacks who have length and can stretch the field vertically, while remaining tall in the pocket, and with some polishing, Bortles is the perfect franchise quarterback for the Houston Texans.

2. St. Louis Rams- Greg Robinson- OT: Auburn- After an amazing scouting combine where Greg Robinson ran a blazing 4.84 40-yard dash, he improved his draft status significantly. He is a freak athlete, who is an extremely fearsome run blocker and with some work on his pass protection skills, he could be one of the best offensive lineman to enter the draft recently. They seem very likely to select Jadeveon Clowney, but their defensive front is already solid and with the red flags surrounding Clowney, Jeff Fisher and the Rams will make the safe pick.

3. Jacksonville Jaguars- Teddy Bridgewater- QB: Louisville- I don't see how the Jags don't select Teddy Bridgewater with this pick. Bridgewater is a native in Miami and he could be a face the city of Jacksonville could build upon. After evaluating some film, Bridgewater is quietly one of the most consistent quarterbacks in this draft class and it seems like the addition of Bridgewater could provide vaccination to the Jaguars fanbase.

4. Cleveland Browns- Sammy Watkins- WR: Clemson- This pick seems like it should automatically be a quarterback for a team that couldn't move the ball at times last season, but Sammy Watkins is simply too good to pass up. Pair the athletic skill-set of Watkins with Josh Gordon and the Browns have a potent offensive attack. They can find a quarterback in the 2nd round or with their later pick in the first round. Players like Sammy Watkins don't come along very often and the Browns will be moronic to not see that.

5. Oakland Raiders- Derek Carr- QB: Fresno State- Oakland’s passing game ranked with the worst in the league last season and it started with inconsistency at the quarterback position. The Derek Carr pick seems highly unlikely, but after reports from Sam Farmer of the LA Times, this seems like it is a possibility. Multiple sources across the league are saying that Johnny Manziel rubbed the Raiders the wrong way in meetings at the Combine and the infatuation with Carr is simply too strong to resist. If this is the case, Johnny Manziel could witness a nice tumble down the board.

6. Atlanta Falcons- Jadeveon Clowney- DE: South Carolina- After red flags that surrounded Jadeveon Clowney at the combine, is is determined he is still a freak athlete the Falcons would love to land in this draft. Clowney is a freak athlete and ran a 4.53 40-yard dash at the combine, but only completed 17 reps in the bench press. He only ran at the combine and didn't participate in the field drills, which also posted some concerns from general managers across the league. The Falcons have a need for a pass rusher and if Clowney is still around at pick six, the Falcons won't hesitate to draft him.

7. Tampa Bay Buccaneers- Khalil Mack- OLB: Buffalo- The Bucs could really use a dynamic playmaker, but they must settle for one of the best defensive athletes to enter the draft in recent seasons. Khalil Mack is a freak athlete and after Mike Mayock said he would select him with the first pick, many have gotten even more excited about the Buffalo linebacker. He could line up at strongside linebacker in the 4-3 defense and if he added 15-20 pounds, Mack could be moved to defensive end to fill that void as well.

8. Minnesota Vikings- Johnny Manziel- QB: Texas A&M- Rick Spielman would have to be doing cart wheels down the hallways of Winter Park if Johnny Manziel fell to the Vikings at this juncture of the draft. Manziel has been compared to the hallowed Fran Tarkenton and would provide the Vikings the energy injection they have been yearning for at the quarterback position. Questions about his size, work ethic, and ability to stay focused will cause him to fall into the Vikings lap. With the team moving into a new stadium in two years, they can't pass up the temptation to draft a quarterback who knows how to win football games and lead teams to victory, which he did continually during his time at Texas A&M.

9. Buffalo Bills- Jake Matthews- OT: Texas A&M- Offensive tackle is a need for the Buffalo Bills as the right side of the offensive line was in ruins last season. With Greg Robinson’s stock taking a rise, the Bills will still land one of the best offensive tackles to enter the draft in recent seasons. Matthews ability to pass protect with stupendous footwork has caused him to become a perennial top-ten pick in this draft. With an extremely deep class of offensive tackles in 2014, it seems like the Bills will be striking gold, while filling a need at the same time.

10. Detroit Lions- Mike Evans- WR: Texas A&M- The Lions realized what can happen when Calvin Johnson is injured and unavailable for contests. Mike Evans proved that his size and athleticism can translate perfectly into the NFL. Evans is great at catching balls at their highest point, which fits well with Matthew Stafford's gambling mentality. The Lions need to create the wide receiver duos that have been established in the rest of the NFC North to make a charge for a division title in 2014.

11. Tennessee Titans- Anthony Barr- OLB/DE: UCLA- The Titans are switching to the 3-4 defensive scheme, which would be the perfect scenario for them to select Anthony Barr at this pick. The Titans need help among their offensive line, but after addressing this pick in the first round last year, they won't do the same in 2014. Barr is great at forcing turnovers and his size and athleticism are strong, but with more polishing, he could become an elite pass rusher in the NFL.

12. New York Giants- Taylor Lewan- OT: Michigan- The Giants offensive line was very disappointing last year and it resulted in Eli Manning getting sacked an astronomical amount of times. It also played a role in Manning being on pace to break the single-season record for interceptions at one point in the season. They need help on the left side of their offensive line and can do so by adding Taylor Lewan. Lewan was a solid lineman for Michigan and comparisons have been drawn to former Michigan product Jake Long, which would bode well for the Giants, who need as much help as they can get. Lewan ran a solid 40-yard dash time and with his ability to stay light on his feet, he is a smooth prospect.

13. St. Louis Rams- HaHa Clinton-Dix: S: Alabama- The Rams have gotten really lucky the past few seasons and through trades have accumulated plenty of draft picks to select young talent. Again this season they have two first round picks and after adding Greg Robinson to the offense, they will add a playmaker on the defensive side of the ball. HaHa Clinton Dix could help bolster a St. Louis backend that was abysmal in many ways last season. Clinton-Dix has tremendous ball skills and his experience in the SEC are all attributes that will contribute to the Rams selecting him in the first round.

14. Chicago Bears- Louis Nix- NT: Notre Dame- The Bears haven't had a player on the defensive front that has caused havoc since the days of Tommie Harris. This team really needs a massive and versatile defensive tackle that can push the pocket inside. Louis Nix lost 23 pounds leading up to the combine and still measures in at a massive 330 pounds, which perfectly fits what Chicago needs. His versatility and rushing abilities were proven in one of the top colleges in the nation, adding to the confidence of making this selection.

15. Pittsburgh Steelers- Justin Gilbert- CB: Oklahoma State- Justin Gilbert had an outstanding combine and displayed perennial 4.35 speed, which has accelerated him to becoming the top cornerback prospect in this draft. The Steelers need to upgrade the play of Ike Taylor and Gilbert is the perfect candidate to fill the position. His ball skills are rather stellar, but he has struggled to compete with wide receivers who are more athletic than him. The Steelers need to find an athletic specimen to develop and Gilbert perfectly fits that mold.

16. Dallas Cowboys- Kony Ealy- DE: Missouri- DeMarcus Ware is another year older and Cuzzin Jerruh is trying to get an astronomical contract specification that he will not receive. Anthony Spencer is hitting free agency and the Cowboys need to find a versatile pass rusher who can take over ball games. Ealy has pure explosion and the hip movement out of his technique is very smooth. Pair this with several dominant games in the SEC and he is worth the pick for the Dallas Cowboys.

17. Baltimore Ravens- Marquise Lee- WR: USC- Marquise Lee would be a perfect compliment to Ravens wide receiver Torrey Smith in 2014. The Ravens desperately missed Anquan Boldin last season and need a receiver that can haul in receptions and move the ball down the field. Durability has been a major concern with Lee, but after a combine which resulted in a nice field workout and a nice 4.52 40-yard dash, this pick continues to make more sense for a Ravens team that is in desperate need of an offensive injection.

18. New York Jets- Odell Beckham Jr.- WR: LSU- Odell Beckham Jr. has significantly improved his draft stock and after an amazing scouting combine, he has put himself into 1st round consideration. His 4.43 40-yard dash caused scouts jaws to drop and many among the NFL are impressed with his speed and playmaking abilities. Many among the NFL are concerned after he recorded just seven bench press reps and seemingly has focused more on speed than strength. The Jets need wide receiver help and with some more looks at Beckham Jr. before May, the likelihood of this pick will intensify.

19. Miami Dolphins- Zack Martin- OT: Notre Dame- The Dolphins never recovered from losing Jake Long last season and it effected their play last season. Ryan Tannehill was on his back for the majority of the snaps last season and after the Dolphins fell flat on their face with Jonathan Martin, they need to redeem themselves. Zack Martin is a smart four-year starter and is able to get to the second level with the best of the offensive tackles in this class. He needs work as a pass blocker and needs to show more consistency in this avenue, but his awesome Senior Bowl performance will help his draft stock.

20. Arizona Cardinals- Eric Ebron- TE: North Carolina- The Cardinals tight end situation hasn't been the best over the past few seasons and they could significantly change this by adding Eric Ebron. His freaky athletic frame and ability to route run like a wide receiver are all areas that will cause him to be the first tight end taken in this draft. Arizona needs a tight end to fit within Bruce Arian's scheme and with Rob Housler as the only tight end currently under contract, this pick makes even more sense.

21. Green Bay Packers- C.J. Mosley- LB: Alabama- C.J. Mosley's name has fell off the beating path a bit, which is a significant mistake. His ability to play within one of the toughest conferences in college football adds to his marketability. The Packers were shredded at the linebacker position last season and with a poor overall defense, they will take the best defensive player available, which in this case would be a good decision. Mosley could be immediately inserted into the Packers defense- making him an even more attractive selection for Ted Thompson.

22. Philadelphia Eagles- Calvin Pryor- S: Louisville- The Eagles have one of the worst backends in the league and with Calvin Pryor available at this pick, they could significantly improve their defense. Earl Wolff needs a dynamic playmaker next to him and with the hard-hitting philosophy Pryor provides, the Eagles would be adding a perennial safety for the future in this Louisville product.

23. Kansas City Chiefs- Kelvin Benjamin- WR: Florida State- The Chiefs are the story of improvement and with the strides they made, Kansas City isn’t far from becoming dominate in the league. The Chiefs haven’t gotten great production from Dwayne Bowe and Kelvin Benjamin could provide Alex Smith with a playmaker. Benjamin has a monstrous frame, but knows how to use it to his advantage. He is very rough around the edges, which could be similarly compared to rookie Cordarrelle Patterson who was drafted by the Vikings last season.

24. Cincinnati Bengals- Darqueze Dennard- CB: Michigan State- With Mike Zimmer leaving for Minnesota, the Bengals may not be able to get the maximum potential out of Terrance Newman and PacMan Jones anymore. Dennard was projected as a top-15 pick, but after an average scouting combine, his stock has dropped slightly in this mock draft. The Big Ten isn't a great conference to draft cornerbacks, as the elite quarterbacks aren't found within this conference. With that being said, Dennard is still a no-brainer selection for the Bengals at this juncture in the draft.

25. San Diego Chargers- Timmy Jernigan- DT: Florida State- The Chargers will select the best available player in this instance and Timmy Jernigan definitely lands in that category. He is a versatile defensive lineman who has great speed and hands. His ceiling could rise extensively with a great pro-day, but he perfectly fits the Chargers scheme and has the stamina and strength to be a three-down lineman for San Diego.

26. Cleveland Browns- Carlos Hyde- RB: Ohio State- Despite a disappointing scouting combine from Carlos Hyde, which resulted in an injury and a withdrawal from on-field drills, he still will be selected at this pick. It’s time to end the quandary the Browns face at running back. No more Willis McGahee, or Montario Hardesty’s of the past, it’s time for Ohio State product Carlos Hyde. This could be a bit of a reach, but the Browns need help at this position and with two first round picks it seems logical to make this move. Hyde is a powerful runner who can catch out of the backfield and create dynamic plays. Hyde is this year’s Eddie Lacy (possibly better) and it fills an immediate need as well. If he can prove himself at his pro-day and during private workouts, he will be strongly considered with this pick.

27. New Orleans Saints- Jason Verrett- CB: TCU- Rob Ryan quickly turned the Saints defense around, but their secondary still leaves little to be desired. To add to that, Malcolm Jenkins is a free agent and that worries the defensive staff in New Orleans. The Saints face top-tier passing attacks every week in the NFC South and if their pass defense continues to regress, things could get out of hand quickly. Jason Verrett is very undersized, but his speed and athleticism are second to none for a player at his position. A shoulder injury has caused Verrett to be placed with a slight red flag, but people from his camp said the injury at the scouting combine would have no long-term effects.

28. Carolina Panthers- Brandin Cooks- WR: Oregon State- The Panthers need to find a replacement for an aging Steve Smith and with Brandon LaFell’s inconsistencies, it seems like this pick is very logical. Cooks has amazing hands and after running a 4.33 40-yard dash at the combine, he blew away the wide receiver group. He would fit in well with Cam Newton and could provide more weapons through the air, which has been a major problem for this team in recent seasons. Cooks could be a nice successor to Steve Smith, while saving the Panthers money.

29. New England Patriots- Ra'Shede Hageman- DE/DT: Minnesota- Ra'Shede Hageman is a beast and with 313 pounds of pure explosion, Bill Belichick won't be able to resist the temptation to select him. Hageman is versatile on the defensive line and with Vince Wilfork aging and coming off a season-ending achilles injury, this pick would make perfect sense.

30. San Francisco 49ers- Kyle Fuller- CB: Virginia Tech- The 49ers cornerback situation is quietly an issue and with Carlos Rogers due roughly $6 million, the 49ers will upgrade their secondary. Fuller has great size and balls skills, which would be a nice compliment to Tramaine Brock's skill-set.  Fuller needs work from an education standpoint and many analysts believe he struggled with scheme comprehension in Virginia Tech. Jim Harbaugh can fix this and by adding a cornerback, they can rest easier.

31. Denver Broncos- Xavier Su'a Filo- OG: UCLA- The Broncos lost the Super Bowl because they couldn't protect Peyton Manning adequately and this trend was witnessed throughout the season. Xavier Su'a Filo had an awesome combine and I was extremely impressed with his footwork and pure athleticism that can be developed in this league. The top priority for the Broncos is to protect their savior and adding Su'a Filo would be the best way to do so.

32. Seattle Seahawks- Jace Amaro- TE: Texas Tech- The Seahawks will add another lethal weapon if they can land Jace Amaro with this pick. He is a lethal route runner and he was tops in the bench press at the combine, which was unexpected. The Seahawks aren't very explosive in the passing game at tight end and if Amaro were available, they would be adding extreme value by drafting him with the final pick in the first round.

That concludes my third mock draft of the 2014 NFL Draft. Look We will have it covered for you and will post our latest mock drafts after they are formulated.

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