2015 NFL Mock Draft (What I would like to see happen)
How have you all been enjoying your time away from football? The NBA Playoffs just started this past weekend which hopefully will be as exciting as last year. We are getting close to finishing the first month of the MLB Season. Some interesting stories already going on there. The madness from a month ago regarding the NFL Free Agency period has taken a headline/breaking news nosedive until yesterday's Tim Tebow to the Eagles headline. I'll leave it up to you if think that was breaking news.
The 2015 NFL Schedule will be released on Tuesday (4/21). Some of us, or most of us I am sure, will watch the coverage and start planning out a road trip like if you were Jimmy Goldstein. Or maybe you just want to see if the bar was worth it to watch that Monday Night or Thursday Night game (I have a very strong feeling the Broncos-Vikings game will be on prime time).
The 2015 NFL Draft is a week from Thursday meaning you have probably read every mock draft that has been written in cyberspace. There are those that you might have seen that are very similar while there are others that are very different. Well, for the next week, I will offer you two mock drafts. The later one will be like the vast majority in terms of "what will probably happen". This one here is "What I would like to see happen". Enjoy.
1. New Orleans Saints: Jameis Winston, QB, Florida State.Trade!! The Tampa Bay Buccaneers' front office are worried about potentially handing the keys to a troubled Quarterback right off the bat so they trade their first overall pick to New Orleans for their 13th overall pick along with a second and one of their fifth round picks. In fantasyland, the amount of picks given from New Orleans might work out. Now in any possible dream scenario, Winston could go to New England or Denver to fill the shoes of Tom Brady and Peyton Manning respectively. However, my thinking for this pick is that Drew Brees will act as a better mentor for Winston than Manning and Brady (no disrespect to them). Brees probably has at least two years left and, as the acting starting quarterback, the FSU product will sit for a year or two. The Saints are thinking of the future.
2. Oakland Raiders: Leonard Williams, DE/DT, USC. Another trade! This time it involves a defensive player, who probably is the best overall prospect in this draft. The Titans had the second overall pick and just swapped spots with the Raiders along with getting their second and fourth round pick for 2016. Again, this trade scenario could work in fantasyland. Back in February, Williams talked about wanting to be the number one overall pick but wouldn't mind playing for Oakland; sighting that he loved the team's colors and tradition. There you go.
3. Jacksonville Jaguars: Dante Fowler, Jr., OLB, Florida. A rather popular pick in mock drafts, adding Fowler will add a boost to the Jaguars defense. He could be used as a rusher coming off the edge or down the middle. His coverage ability is pretty decent when he is not rushing the passer.
4. Tennessee Titans: Vic Beasley, OLB, Clemson. Marcus Mariota would be a choice for Tennessee but I think Zach Mettenberger will be fine at the quarterback position for the Titans. That is just my hunch. Beasley will fit here in Tennessee's 3-4 scheme as a primary pass rusher/run stopper after trading their second overall pick to Oakland.
5. Washington Redskins: Shane Ray, DE, Missouri. The pass rusher frenzy continues. A Cornerback could be in play here like Marcus Peters or Trae Waynes but Ray's high motor and aggressive style of play could make Washington fans forget about the injury-ridden Brian Orakpo.
6. Philadelphia Eagles: Marcus Mariota, QB, Oregon. Chip Kelly trades the Eagles' twentieth overall pick, 2015 second and fourth round pick and QB Matt Barkley to the Jets to reunite with his old college quarterback. The Eagles do have Mark Sanchez, Sam Bradford and the recently signed Tim Tebow, but one of these three quarterbacks won't be on Philly's roster until the regular season begins. This hypothetical trade needed to be done to overlap the Bears.
7. Chicago Bears: Landon Collins, S, Alabama. A Wide Receiver could be tempting but this draft is pretty deep at that position. The Bears need lots of help on defense and what better way than to draft one of the better prospects . Collins could be lined up inside the box to help with the short routes where he is much suited for than at the usual safety position. He could also serve as a possible linebacker in the 3-4 which the Bears will run under Vic Fangio.
8. Atlanta Falcons: Danny Shelton, DT, Washington. A big defensive lineman weighing just shy of 340 lbs, Shelton primarily played nose tackle but he could also serve as a three-technique (lined up a bit outside of guard, but far from offensive tackle) defensive lineman for Head Coach Dan Quinn, who was Seattle's defensive coordinator the past two seasons.
9. New York Giants: Malcom Brown, DT, Texas. A fairly active player during his time in Austin, Brown could add depth to the Giants defensive line and eventually replace the 34-years young Cullen Jenkins.
10. St. Louis Rams: Brandon Scherff, OL, Iowa. The Rams are stocked on the defensive line, so they select the most coveted offensive linemen in this draft. Scherff played offensive tackle at Iowa, but there are some that think he can play offensive guard also. I agree with that.
11. Minnesota Vikings: Marcus Peters, CB, Washington. The Vikings take, who I think, is the number one rated defensive back in this draft to pair with Xavier Rhodes. Peters does have a red flag, but I believe Head Coach Mike Zimmer could straighten him out.
12: Cleveland Browns: Kevin White, WR, West Virginia. Josh Gordon's tenure with Cleveland is up in the air and Dwayne Bowe and Brian Hartline wouldn't be considered number one receivers. Kevin White will be given the opportunity to become Cleveland's go-to receiver for the next decade.
13. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Alvin Dupree, OLB, Kentucky. After trading the number one pick to New Orleans, the Buccaneers are in desperate need for an edge rusher.
14. Miami Dolphins: DeVante Parker, WR, Louisville. The Dolphins could trade down if things didn't go there way but with the lack of receivers taken early, Miami gets the six-three Louisville prospect to help out Ryan Tannehill.
15. San Francisco 49ers: Arik Armstead, DL, Oregon. The middle linebacker position would be a need but I don't think there would be any value in taking one at 15. I feel the defensive line needs to be addressed here when Darnell Dockett and Justin Smith are in their mid-thirties.
16. Houston Texans: Trae Waynes, CB, Michigah State. Waynes is a very good corner in man coverage that Houston could use in a division with Andrew Luck. Plus, Johnathan Joseph's contract expires after this season.
17. San Diego Chargers: Melvin Gordon, RB, Wisconsin. The Chargers could probably go either running back, offensive lineman, wide receiver, or outside linebacker. I feel that Gordon could give Philip Rivers (assuming he is still there, right?) an immediate impact on offense than Todd Gurley, whom I'm still a bit iffy on because of his ACL.
18. Kansas City Chiefs: La'el Collins, OT, LSU. I feel he is better at run blocking than pass protection. Played offensive tackle at LSU but at 6'4, Collins could be used as a guard.
19. Cleveland Browns: Shaq Thompson, LB, Washington. Whether he is used as a safety, linebacker, or even a running back, Cleveland's Mike Pettine would enjoy having this very athletic player around.
20. New York Jets: Randy Gregory, OLB, Nebraska. The failed drug test at the NFL combine causes Gregory to slip and land with the Jets who could use another pass rusher like him. He does need to bulk up however.
21. Cincinnati Bengals: Eddie Goldman, DL, Florida State. The defensive line for the Bengals haven't been very productive the past couple of years so they add Goldman to help boost it.
22. Pittsburgh Steelers: Kevin Johnson, CB, Wake Forest. Johnson would fill one of the many defensive holes for Pittsburgh due to his aggressive style of play.
23. Detroit Lions: Byron Jones, CB, Connecticut. The Lions take a chance on the very athletic Combine Wonder to help out their secondary. An offensive lineman or another receiver could be used here as well.
24. Arizona Cardinals: Eli Harold, OLB, Virginia. Harold adds youth to the outside linebacker position and brings a high energy style of play that will help Arizona's defense.
25. Carolina Panthers: Ereck Flowers, OT, Miami. Michael Oher was released by Tennessee in early February after signing a four-year deal with them last year. I don't think he will be a long term solution so Carolina needs all they help they can get in the offensive line. I think Flowers will help out a lot.
26. Baltimore Ravens: Amari Cooper, WR, Alabama. Torrey Smith is gone and Steve Smith isn't getting any younger. Cooper will help out Joe Flacco.
27. Dallas Cowboys: P.J. Williams, CB, Florida State. Dallas has invested lots of money on Morris Claiborne and Brandon Carr at the cornerback position and the returns hasn't really been there. P.J. Williams will work out well for the Cowboys' secondary.
28. Denver Broncos: Jordan Phillips, NT, Oklahoma. Phillips will fill the void that Terrance Knighton left at the nose tackle position.
29. Indianapolis Colts: Cameron Erving, OL, Florida State. "Protect 12". That is the note still on Ryan Grigson's (Colts GM) desk that was mentioned in the latest issue of Sports Illustrated. I think Erving is very talented and can fit anywhere in the offensive line.
30. Green Bay Packers: Eric Kendricks, LB, UCLA. The Packers select the middle linebacker out of UCLA so that Clay Matthews could stay at the OLB position.
31. New Orleans Saints: A.J. Cann, OG, South Carolina. Defense is a pressing need but I think the Saints would pick Cann to replace Ben Grubbs to improve the offensive line and help out their quarterback.
32. New England Patriots: Jaelen Strong, WR, Arizona State. The Patriots find another big target for Tom Brady to the end the first round. To me, this is a safer pick than if they were to pick, former Mizzou WR, Dorial Green-Beckham. This could be a spot where a trade could happen.
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