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Mcshays and Kipers newest mock


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Kiper

Carolina PanthersRecord: 2-14

* Cam Newton, QB, AuburnThere are immediate needs, and there is a decision that you believe will change the direction of your franchise for years to come. While I don't believe Carolina is locked onto this pick -- if you're heard me at all lately, you'll know I see this is one of the more unpredictable top 10's I can ever remember -- if they really see Newton as the transformative player that can be both a Pro Bowl quarterback and face of the franchise who draws a lot of buzz, they can make this pick. If talent alone was all they were concerned with, Newton would be an easy choice. But this pick also requires a belief in his development and maturity. Certainly, however, Newton's potential is significant.

Denver BroncosRecord: 4-12

* Marcell Dareus, DT, AlabamaThere are several guys Denver could take here to bolster their defense, but Dareus makes a lot of sense. A scheme-versatile player who can be a disruptive, penetrating force as an interior lineman, or a fantastic pass-rusher as a defensive end in a 3-4 scheme, Dareus is a safe pick. He doesn't have remarkable quickness, but his agility and versatility at a full 319 pounds is the stuff of an elite lineman. Denver could also consider a corner or linebacker here, but Dareus fills a significant, immediate need.

Buffalo BillsRecord: 4-12

Von Miller, LB, Texas A&MFew have seen their stock rise as much as Miller has since the season wrapped up. The pass-rush skills were there, as was a developed ability to drop and make reads. The tape shows a guy who can do anything on the football field, and do it explosively. Miller offers immediate help at one of the top two positions of need for the Bills. They simply can't get enough value here in drafting an offensive lineman, and Miller will impact games next year more than any rookie in the draft if you asked me today.

Cincinnati BengalsRecord: 4-12

* A.J. Green, WR, Georgia

Cincinnati is still dealing with a headache at the quarterback situation, but whether their answer is to trade Carson Palmer away, woo him back, or perhaps try to import the likes of Kevin Kolb, Matt Hasselbeck, Donovan McNabb or someone else, they'll need to help whoever will be throwing the ball in 2011 and beyond. By drafting the best pure pass-catching talent in the draft, they can accomplish that. Green is an immediate starter and the rare big-time, physical, fast receiver who has the route-running skills and understanding to match his skill-set.

Arizona CardinalsRecord: 5-11

* Blaine Gabbert, QB, Missouri

I could also see Arizona getting creative and looking for a veteran arm such as Kolb, but Gabbert is the quarterback in the draft most likely to help a team soonest, and if he's available here, it might be tough for Arizona to pass on him. He offers elite size, accuracy, athleticism and the smarts to pick things up quickly at the NFL level. This is a pick I could see going in several directions, but if Arizona isn't confident they can get a suitable veteran fix in at quarterback, Gabbert is a good choice.

Cleveland BrownsRecord: 5-11

* Julio Jones, WR, AlabamaThere are a lot of Browns fans probably hoping that Green falls to this spot, but if Jones is the one available, he's an outstanding consolation prize. His size and speed combination is the best in the draft at the position, and his development as a wideout over the past year shows a determination and work ethic that will be loved by the coaching staff. The Browns need a true No. 1 at wide receiver, and if healthy, Jones can be that guy. A gifted athlete, he blocks as hard as he runs routes. Great when healthy, still really good when battling through pain.

San Francisco 49ersRecord: 6-10

* Patrick Peterson, CB, LSUI picked Peterson to fall to this point in my previous mock draft, and I still do. And consider the history of top athletes falling: In 1987, I had Rod Woodson rated similarly, and he fell to No. 10 overall. In 1989, Deion Sanders was far and away the best athlete on the board, yet he fell to No. 5. I had Champ Bailey as the best athlete and the top corner available in the 1999 draft, yet he fell to No. 7. In Peterson, you get safety size, the best overall athlete in the draft, a dangerous returner and, ultimately, a starter and potential impact player from Day 1.

Tennessee TitansRecord: 6-10

* Nick Fairley, DT, AuburnDefensive line probably falls lower on the list of team needs behind the obvious question of who will be taking snaps, but it's not a minor need. And to get the most productive interior lineman in the college game last year, a player who was simply unblockable in a number of key games, is a solid get for the Titans at No. 8 overall. Fairley gives you immediate help at a spot they need to address, and he offers the value of a top-five pick. Disruptive versus both the run and the pass, he will help this defense now, and they can look for a linebacker later on.

Dallas CowboysRecord: 6-10

* Tyron Smith, OT, USCA number of times this year, I've noted how Dallas might look to trade down. After all, picking in the top 10 of this draft wasn't likely to allow them to get full value if they targeted an offensive tackle, something many wish Jerry Jones would have done in 2010. Well, in Smith, they have the option of taking a player who projects as a future blindside tackle, and he's in a perfect spot in terms of value, having risen all the way to No. 9 on the Big Board. It's a need pick, and a player who could help Dallas in short order.

Washington RedskinsRecord: 6-10

* J.J. Watt, DE, WisconsinWashington has serious needs on the offensive side of the ball, but if Gabbert and Newton are gone, and Green and Jones too, they should address another need or look to trade down. One pressing need on the other side of the ball is at defensive end, and Watt has a chance to be a tremendous player at that position. A high-energy guy capable of diagnosing plays, contributing in various schemes, and holding up well against the run while getting after quarterbacks in the pass game, he's the kind of low-risk pick that makes sense for the Skins.

Houston TexansRecord: 6-10

* Robert Quinn, LB, North CarolinaHouston has needs all over the defensive side of the ball, and Quinn is the best player still on the board if they can get him here. A gifted natual pass-rusher, Quinn sat out all of 2010, but his talent should overcome any questions about rust. A physical specimen, Wade Phillips can find a way to use Quinn in his scheme, and DeMarcus Ware will be what he has in mind when he gets Quinn into camp. Yes, the secondary needs help, but the fastest way to make that group look better is get a pass rush.

Minnesota VikingsRecord:6-10

* Da'Quan Bowers, DE, ClemsonBowers has seen his stock take a slight hit in the past few weeks as he faces questions about just how healthy his knee is coming off surgery for a torn meniscus. That said, the Viking should be giddy to get a pass-rushing talent like Bowers at No. 12. Once the No. 1 player in the country coming out of high school, many believe Bowers has the skill-set of a No. 1 overall NFL draft pick. While he won't be this year, he's a great pass-rusher and can give the Vikings an upgrade on the edge. With time to fully recuperate from a minor injury, his future is bright.

Detroit LionsRecord: 6-10

Prince Amukamara, CB, NebraskaThere may be questions about how perfectly Amukamara fits Detroit's scheme, but it's hard to believe they'd pass up perhaps the best pure cover corner in the draft at this position. The Lions are desparate for an upgrade at the cornerback position, and Amukamara is capable of contributing very early. Great awareness, instincts, ball skills and underrated speed. He also has better-than-average size for the position.

St. Louis RamsRecord: 7-9

* Corey Liuget, DT, IllinoisA selection I'm sticking with from the previous mock, Liuget is a relentless player who displays leverage, power and the ability to locate the ball well against both the rush and the pass. He fills an immediate need at defensive tackle. I said before that if a receiver were to fall to this position, I think St. Louis would jump, but their position of biggest need doesn't offer a sensible value matchup right here. I also can see the Rams going for an outside linebacker at this spot. If they're that intent on a pass-catcher with their first pick, the Rams could also move off this spot.

Miami DolphinsRecord: 7-9

* Mark Ingram, RB, AlabamaSticking with this angle from the previous mocks, Miami goes with the top back on the board. Ingram didn't drop among evaluators even without a good 40 at the combine, because he was never expected to shine in that area. Ingram is a producer. The most complete back in this class, he has great balance, runs with great pad level, balance and leverage, and explodes from contact. Once he gets through the initial hole, he's a terror on the second level. A good fit here.

Jacksonville JaguarsRecord: 8-8

* Aldon Smith, DE, MissouriAnother guy I'm sticking with from the previous mock, Smith offers a raw talent package with a lot of upside. He's a player who could easily have been a top-10 pick in 2012 had he stuck around Missouri for another year of development. The Jags went for veterans to spackle over the holes at defensive end last year, but it's time to develop some edge talent to go with what is a really promising defensive interior. Smith is an ideal developmental option who can still help in 2011.

New England Patriots (from Oakland)Record: 14-2

Cameron Jordan, DE, CalI have 3-4 defensive end among the top three needs for the Patriots, and Jordan offers the best value available at this position. Considering how many early picks they have, the Pats can make their picks in a different order: Considering a wide variety of needs, lining those up against the best available players on the board, and trying to maximize every pick. Jordan maximizes this one as a player who fits their system, has the smarts and experience to pick it up quickly, and offers pass-rushing help.

San Diego ChargersRecord: 9-7

* Muhammad Wilkerson, DL, TempleThe No. 10 overall player on my Big Board over the past couple weeks, Wilkerson fits what the Chargers are looking for, as a defensive tackle who could line up as a 3-4 defensive end. I really thought Wilkerson could be a top-10 pick if he stuck around Temple for another year, but he was dominant enough in 2010 that he may have felt there was little left to prove. He can anchor, but Wilkerson is a guy who loves to pursue, and can cause problems for quarterbacks as a penetrator.

New York GiantsRecord: 10-6

Mike Pouncey, OL, FloridaI don't think Pouncey is quite as versatile as his brother, who was taken at No. 18 overall last year and became a Pro Bowl player in his first year with the Steelers. But Mike offers a very similar skill set. He can play guard or center, gets to the second level very well and should help the Giants in the running game. I'd slot him in at guard to start and only look for help at center in a backup role, but he's easily the top interior lineman in the draft.

Tampa Bay BuccaneersRecord: 10-6

Ryan Kerrigan, DE, PurdueTampa has its solution on the interior, having taken defensive tackles with picks in Rounds 1 and 2 last year, and now it's time to find pass-rush help from the edge. Kerrigan may be a little light to start immediately as an every down 4-3 defensive end. But while offering top-flight pass-rush skills -- he was completely unblockable while leading the country in TFL last year -- Kerrigan is no pushover against the run either. The Bucs need to find a way to get to opposing passers, and Kerrigan can be a big part of the answer. Given recent personnel issues at corner, a reach at that position also isn't out of question.

Kansas City ChiefsRecord: 10-6

* Akeem Ayers, OLB, UCLAAyers surprised a lot of people with some mediocre workouts at the combine, given his reputation for athleticism, but he bounced back at his pro day. And as I've said before, the tape doesn't lie. This is a guy with the range of skills to help a team early. A good fit on the edge in the Chiefs' system, Ayers fills an obvious need at outside linebacker in the 3-4 and isn't just a pass-rusher. More in the Mike Vrabel mold, he can cover, rush and tackle well against the run.

Indianapolis ColtsRecord: 10-6

Anthony Castonzo, OT, Boston CollegeOne more that stays the same from previous mocks, I just really like the fit. The Colts have to improve on the offensive line and even while Peyton Manning is a maestro working out of the shotgun, they need to be able to do more both in the run game and in pass protection. Castonzo is a smart, versatile tackle who has been consistently rated as a first-round tackle option. Indy has brought in some quarterbacks to work out, but Castonzo is more of an immediate help.

Philadelphia EaglesRecord: 10-6

Gabe Carimi, OT, WisconsinI have offensive tackle as the top need for a team that has to make sure they don't take the athleticism of their starting quarterback for granted. In Carimi they get a guy who loves to run block and will sustain those blocks. But he can also take on great pass-rushers, and has shown enough that it figures he could fill in at either tackle position early, potentially starting on the right side with the goal to become a starting left tackle.

New Orleans SaintsRecord: 11-5

Phil Taylor, DT, BaylorTaylor is a real load, and the best pure anchor tackle on the board. Listed at 334 pounds, Taylor probably played closer to 350 during an impressive final season at Baylor. You can stack blockers on him, but Taylor won't give ground, and will free up linebackers to make more plays in the running game. The Saints can't go wrong if they get a really good defensive tackle or defensive end with this pick.

Jake LockerRecord: 7-9

Jake Locker, QB, WashingtonLocker has worked hard to help scouts forget about a bad season of tape, and did enough at his recent pro day to get more positive vibes attached to his stock among evaluators. As we've said before, Locker has a big-time arm, a great attitude, elite athleticism for the position, but has unfortunately lacked accuracy, the one trait most of us believe is the most innate. But I wouldn't put it past him to improve that, given the kind of kid he is, and his range of talent. This isn't an endorsement of Locker as a guy who should step in and start for the Seahawks if Matt Hasselbeck isn't back in 2011, but even if Seattle makes a move for a short-term answer at quarterback, Locker could be hard to pass up if Pete Carroll thinks he's a solution for the long run.

Baltimore RavensRecord: 12-4

* Jimmy Smith, CB, ColoradoAnother pick who sticks. The Ravens didn't take a cornerback with any of their picks in 2010 and Smith has proven that he has all the physical tools to back up solid tape. With the Ravens' leadership on defense in the form of Ray Lewis still in place, Smith has a chance to be a steal if he takes direction from the vets. A burner with shut-down skills, good ball awareness and elite size for the position, he adds immediate depth with the chance to start early.

Atlanta FalconsRecord: 13-3

Adrian Clayborn, DE, IowaThe Falcons are a solid team without a true glaring need, but a 4-3 defensive end with the ability to rush the passer and great awareness and discipline against the run can help them in 2011. That's Clayborn in a nutshell. His coaches rave, as do players that have had to face him. He has good size, a reputation for relentlessness and the respect of his peers. Atlanta could look for a wideout to diversify an attack that went too often in one direction last year, but Clayborn is the better value here.

New England PatriotsRecord: 14-2

* Justin Houston, LB, GeorgiaHouston is an interesting player. He shows a lot of natural pass-rush skills as a 3-4 outside linebacker, but a lot of people see him as a player capable of growing into the 4-3 defensive end position. I prefer him at the former, and see him as a great fit in Bill Belichick's system. Starting as a pass-rush specialist, Houston should be able to develop into an every-down player. A lot of natural ability here; Houston is another guy who would probably go in the top 10 had he waited a year, making him a potential steal at this point.

Chicago BearsRecord: 11-5

Nate Solder, OT, ColoradoI've said before that Chicago should be thrilled if Solder is available here. He has added bulk to a 6-foot-8 frame, making him a guy who could help in a run game that really fell off in 2010. All the questions about his toughness aside, Chicago let Jay Cutler take far too many hits over the past two seasons. Mike Martz will run the ball if he can block for it. Solder has the frame to become a bulldozer, and the athleticism to move along the line and help on either side.

New York JetsRecord: 11-5

Cameron Heyward, DE, Ohio St.We've discussed the possibility of taking a safety at this spot, but I don't think the Jets would be wise to neglect early talent at a position they really need to address. Heyward is a player that holds up against the run, has shown a decent repertoire of pass-rush skills, and can play through pain. Rex Ryan needs to infuse some talent to his defensive front, because he has to blitz to get any pressure on opposing quarterbacks at this point, and you never want that to be the case.

Pittsburgh SteelersRecord: 12-4

* Aaron Williams, CB, TexasWilliams is the classic young, talented risk-taker at the cornerback position. He has a a lot of natural ability, likes to steal a look into the backfield and turn errant passes into six points going the other way. While some see him ultimately becoming a great cover safety, I'm not ready to push him off the the edge. **** LeBeau was a great cornerback, and would do well working with a talen like Williams.

Green Bay PackersRecord: 10-6

Derek Sherrod, OT, Mississippi St.Green Bay could also go with an outside linebacker here to take some pressure off Clay Matthews Jr., but I've waffled on this pick and tend to think that if they believe they can get a player they can develop into the long range answer on the blindside, it'd be really hard to pass up. Sherrod has been a consistent player, and could be the answer to replace Chad Clifton. When you have a quarterback like Aaron Rodgers, you're going to win a lot of games. Priority No. 1 has to be to keep him upright.

Round 2

A pick-by-pick projection of Round 2 selections in the 2011 NFL draft.

Pick Team Player Position School

33. New England (from Car.) Danny Watkins OG Baylor

34. Buffalo Martez Wilson LB Illinois

35. Cincinnati Andy Dalton QB TCU

36. Denver Rahim Moore S UCLA

37. Cleveland Jabaal Sheard DE Pittsburgh

38. Arizona Brooks Reed LB Arizona

39. Tennessee Ryan Mallett QB Arkansas

40. Dallas Brandon Harris CB Miami (Fla)

41. Washington Christian Ponder QB Florida St.

42. Houston Curtis Brown CB Texas

43. Minnesota Stephen Paea DT Oregon St.

44. Detroit Bruce Carter LB North Carolina

45. San Francisco Dontay Moch LB Nevada

46. Denver (from Miami) Kyle Rudolph TE Notre Dame

47. St. Louis Leonard Hankerson WR Miami (Fla)

48. Oakland Clint Boling OL Georgia

49. Jacksonville Torrey Smith WR Maryland

50. San Diego Randall Cobb WR Kentucky

51. Tampa Bay Jah Reid OT Central Florida

52. New York Giants Quan Sturdivant LB North Carolina

53. Indianapolis Mikel Leshoure RB Illinois

54. Philadelphia Brandon Burton CB Utah

55. Kansas City Orlando Franklin OL Miami (Fla)

56. New Orleans Rodney Hudson OL Florida St.

57. Seattle DeMarcus Van Dyke CB Miami (Fla)

58. Baltimore Titus Young WR Boise St.

59. Atlanta Jerrel Jernigan WR Troy

60. New England Daniel Thomas RB Kansas St.

61. San Diego (from NY Jets) Ras-I Dowling CB Virginia

62. Chicago Marvin Austin DT North Carolina

63. Pittsburgh Ben Ijalana OT Villanova

64. Green Bay Tandon Doss WR Indiana

Round 3

A pick-by-pick projection of Round 3 selections in the 2011 NFL draft.

Pick Team Player Position School

65. Carolina Allen Bailey DL Miami (Fla)

66. Cincinnati Ryan Williams RB Virginia Tech

67. Denver Christian Ballard DL Iowa

68. Buffalo Lance Kendricks TE Wisconsin

69. Arizona James Carpenter OT Alabama

70. Cleveland Jarvis Jenkins DT Clemson

71. Dallas Da'Norris Searcy S North Carolina

72. New Orleans (from Wash) Chris Carter LB Fresno St.

73. Houston Kendric Burney CB North Carolina

74. New England (from Minn) Jon Baldwin WR Pittsburgh

75. Detroit Marcus Gilbert OT Florida

76. San Francisco Colin Kaepernick QB Nevada

77. Tennessee John Moffitt OG Wisconsin

78. St. Louis Alex Green RB Hawaii

79. Miami Edmond Gates WR Abilene Christian

80. Jacksonville Quinton Carter S Oklahoma

81. Oakland Chimdi Chekwa CB Ohio St.

82. San Diego Marcus Cannon OT TCU

83. New York Giants Terrell McClain DT South Florida

84. Tampa Bay Colin McCarthy LB Miami (Fla)

85. Philadelphia Ross Homan LB Ohio St.

86. Kansas City Greg Salas WR Hawaii

87. Indianapolis Drake Nevis DT LSU

88. New Orleans Kendall Hunter RB Oklahoma St.

89. San Diego (from Seattle) Akeem Dent LB Georgia

90. Baltimore Will Rackley OL Lehigh

91. Atlanta DeMarco Murray RB Oklahoma

92. New England Marcus Gilchrist DB Clemson

93. Chicago Stefen Wisniewski OL Penn St.

94. New York Jets Greg Little WR North Carolina

95. Pittsburgh Austin Pettis WR Boise St.

96. Green Bay Cortez Allen CB The Citadel

97. Carolina (comp selection) Kenrick Ellis DT Hampton

Mcshays

Carolina PanthersRecord: 2-14

* Cam Newton, QB, AuburnNewton is not the No. 1 player on my board -- that would be Alabama DT Marcell Dareus -- and defensive tackle is as much of a need as quarterback, but I'm hearing a lot of buzz from people in the league that Carolina is leaning toward a quarterback. I'm also hearing the Panthers favor Newton over Missouri's Blaine Gabbert, and where there's smoke there's often fire. It's not that Gabbert's stock is falling, it's just that Carolina apparently likes Newton's incredible physical tools and immense upside.

Denver BroncosRecord: 4-12

* Marcell Dareus, DT, AlabamaThe Broncos are in desperate need of a true impact defensive tackle to anchor new coach John Fox's 4-3 defense and will be holding their breath until Carolina picks. Denver will be thrilled if Dareus falls here because he fits the mold of an every-down difference-maker and also carries minimal baggage.

Buffalo BillsRecord: 4-12

Von Miller, LB, Texas A&MThe Bills' most significant need is at left offensive tackle but there is not one on the board worth this pick and, although Gabbert would eventually provide a major upgrade at quarterback, Miller would be an immediate boost for a 3-4 defense that is in dire need of pass rushers. Former first-round pick Aaron Maybin has not realized his enormous potential and Miller is a plug-and-play impact rusher who could help fill the void by quickly becoming a double-digit sack man.

Cincinnati BengalsRecord: 4-12

* A.J. Green, WR, GeorgiaI'd sure like to be a fly on the wall in Cincinnati's draft room this year. It is clear as day that QB Carson Palmer has no intention of ever wearing a Bengals uniform again, but the team is standing firm to this point on Palmer as its starter, at least in the short term. Gabbert would make sense as a backup plan but I don't get the feeling the team is going to let Palmer off the hook that easily. Green is a higher-rated prospect anyway and has the physical tools to help the team move on after the departures of Chad Ochocinco and Terrell Owens. Green's size, athleticism and ball skills will make him the next big NFL star at wide receiver.

Arizona CardinalsRecord: 5-11

* Blaine Gabbert, QB, MissouriWith Miller off the board, Gabbert is a no-brainer here. The Cardinals might have a trying season in 2011 with a rookie quarterback at the helm but the team cannot believe that Max Hall or John Skelton is the long-term answer at the position. Gabbert might not be the first quarterback off the board but I believe his combination of intangibles, mental makeup and accuracy will make him the best quarterback from the 2011 class when all is said and done.

Cleveland BrownsRecord: 5-11

Robert Quinn, DE, North CarolinaIt appeared at one point that Clemson DE Da'Quan Bowers would be a steal here but concerns about Bowers' injured knee continue to increase. Quinn, meanwhile, is coming off a strong pro day workout, and while he's not as stout against the run he offers significantly more upside than Bowers as a pass rusher. Adding an impact right defensive end like Quinn would be a great start for the Browns as they transition to a 4-3 defense.

San Francisco 49ersRecord: 6-10

* Patrick Peterson, CB, LSUYes, the 49ers need a quarterback, but they would still hit the jackpot with Peterson. You'd be hard-pressed to find an NFL general manager who doesn't have Peterson as one of the top five overall players on the board, and for many teams he's in the discussion as the No. 1 overall prospect. San Francisco simply can't pass on the opportunity to fill a need with a player like Peterson. And new coach Jim Harbaugh likely has enough confidence in his ability to develop quarterbacks that he feels he can wait until the second round (or trade up into the end of the first) to get someone like Christian Ponder or Andy Dalton.

Tennessee TitansRecord: 6-10

* Nick Fairley, DT, AuburnThe Titans picked offensive skill players in the first round in 2008 and 2009 (RB Chris Johnson, WR Kenny Britt), but this year could mark a second straight defensive lineman in the first round after Tennessee took DE Derrick Morgan in 2010. Fairley is the most naturally gifted interior pass rusher in this draft and has a lot of upside, but the Titans need to decide if they are willing to take a chance on a player who could be a perennial Pro Bowler or turn into the next big DT bust thanks to questionable work ethic and football character.

Dallas CowboysRecord: 6-10

* Tyron Smith, OT, USCThis is not a splash pick but the Cowboys have a big need at offensive tackle and this is the area where the run on the top OTs will likely begin. And it's always better to be on the front end of a run than chasing it from behind. Dallas needs to protect QB Tony Romo and it appears current RT Marc Colombo is on his last leg, making Smith a good fit. He has the ability to play on either side and Smith's upside is greater than any other tackle in this draft.

Washington RedskinsRecord: 6-10

Julio Jones, WR, AlabamaJones is worth the pick despite recent surgery to repair a fracture in his foot, and in addition to his pass catching ability he is a perfect fit in an offensive system that requires its receivers to play big roles as blockers in the running game. The Redskins also need major help along the defensive front seven and could trade back in order to get more picks with which to address that need, but if they stay put here Jones makes the most sense.

Houston TexansRecord: 6-10

Muhammad Wilkerson, DE, TempleWith Miller and Quinn gone there is no outside linebacker on the board who can address the Texans' need for a pass rusher, and while California's Cameron Jordan or Wisconsin's J.J. Watt could also be the pick I believe Wilkerson has more upside than any other 3-4 end in this draft. Houston also has a need at cornerback, but new defensive coordinator Wade Phillips believes that if he has a solid front seven he can live with an average secondary.

Minnesota VikingsRecord:6-10

Cameron Jordan, DE, CaliforniaMinnesota's biggest need is at quarterback but any of the remaining QBs on the board would be a reach here. Offensive tackle is another need area and Boston College's Anthony Castonzo or Colorado's Nate Solder are possibilities, but with two defensive ends from last year -- Ray Edwards and Brian Robison -- set to hit free agency, Jordan provides better value than an offensive tackle. Bowers will be in play if his knee checks out but Jordan is a good option given his size, quickness, power and versatility.

Detroit LionsRecord: 6-10

Prince Amukamara, CB, NebraskaThis is the dream scenario for Detroit. With Peterson falling to the 49ers the door is open for Amukamara to slide to the Lions, who could address their biggest need with one of the top eight players on my board. Put Amukamara and his size, speed and instincts opposite Lions CB Chris Houston and Detroit suddenly has one of the better young cornerback tandems in the league.

St. Louis RamsRecord: 7-9

Corey Liuget, DT, IllinoisRams fans are surely crossing their fingers that Jones will fall to this point but that seems unlikely, and there is no outside linebacker on the board who can fill the Rams' second-biggest need. Several players could offer value here but Liuget would fill the biggest need. He is on the short side but is quick, stout and powerful, and his motor never stops running. And if there's anything we've learned about Rams coach Steve Spagnuolo it's that he can never have enough quality defensive linemen.

Miami DolphinsRecord: 7-9

Mike Pouncey, C/G, FloridaAt first glance this might seem a bit high for an interior offensive lineman, especially with so much talk about Alabama RB Mark Ingram landing in Miami and filling the Dolphins' top need, but NFL running backs have a short shelf life to begin with and Ingram comes to the league one year removed from a knee injury that limited his playing time in 2010. Rather than reaching for a quarterback to fill their No. 2 need, the Dolphins would be best-served to draft the best available offensive lineman in Pouncey, who has the tools and attitude to do for Miami's interior offensive line what his twin brother, Maurkice, did for the Steelers in 2010.

Jacksonville JaguarsRecord: 8-8

Ryan Kerrigan, DE, PurdueThe Jaguars have bigger needs but defensive end offers the most value here. I would be tempted to take a shot on Bowers or the upside offered by Missouri's Aldon Smith here, but Jags GM Gene Smith has proved he will take the player with the higher floor rather than the higher ceiling. Kerrigan has some limitations but Jacksonville knows exactly what it would be getting, which is a player with the overall skill set to immediately push for a starting job opposite Jaguars DE Aaron Kampman.

New England Patriots (from Oakland)Record: 14-2

J.J. Watt, DE, WisconsinWatt is best-suited for the kind of three-man front New England runs, which can utilize him primarily as a 5-technique but is also flexible enough to move him around and take advantage of his ability to do some things in space. The Patriots are always a trade possibility but because they already have six picks in the first three rounds it makes sense to address their needs along the front seven at this point.

San Diego ChargersRecord: 9-7

Aldon Smith, DE/OLB, MissouriSome teams likely view Smith as a right end in a 4-3 scheme but I think he has the potential to transition to outside linebacker in a 3-4. The Chargers have gotten only three career sacks from 2009 first-round pick Larry English and need a 3-4 pass rusher who can take some pressure off OLB Shaun Phillips. While Smith still has some developing to do, he can pressure the quarterback in tight spaces, which is important for a 3-4 OLB.

New York GiantsRecord: 10-6

Anthony Castonzo, OT, Boston CollegeThe ideal scenario for the Giants is Pouncey falling to them, and trading back is also a possibility if the right player is not available. Their biggest need is for a difference maker at linebacker and Ingram could also be in play, but with no impact linebacker available the best offensive lineman on the board would be the best option. Castonzo could play inside at guard as a rookie and then kick out to tackle, or the Giants could plug him in at tackle immediately and shuffle their existing personnel. Either way, Castonzo has the ability to be a quality starter for the next decade and the Giants would do well to start addressing the future of their offensive line.

Tampa Bay BuccaneersRecord: 10-6

Da'Quan Bowers, DE, ClemsonThe results of Bowers' re-check with NFL combine doctors and medical checks from team doctors during visits are still to come, but based strictly on his football skills Bowers is a top-10 talent. He's not truly elite because he is not an exceptional pass rusher but he brings everything else to the table and at this point is worth the risk. Tampa Bay has a huge need at end and this is a good spot to take a risk. If Bowers pans out alongside 2010 picks Gerald McCoy and Brian Price, the Bucs would have a revitalized defensive line to build around.

Kansas City ChiefsRecord: 10-6

Gabe Carimi, OT, WisconsinKansas City needs a nose tackle and a wide receiver but this is early for any of the true NTs on the board and there will be plenty of wideouts available in later rounds who can take advantage of the attention defenses pay to Chiefs WR Dwayne Bowe. Chiefs GM Scott Pioli has a history of drafting NFL-ready players with little or no baggage and, while Solder has more upside, Carimi would step in to provide an immediate upgrade and be a solid starter for years to come.

Indianapolis ColtsRecord: 10-6

Nate Solder, OT, ColoradoThis one is a no-brainer. The Colts' offensive line has struggled mightily over the last couple of seasons and Indianapolis must upgrade there. Not only do the Colts need to protect the face of their franchise in QB Peyton Manning, they also need to address a running game that ranked 29th in the NFL last season. Solder is a good fit for an offense that emphasizes quickness and athleticism over brute strength.

Philadelphia EaglesRecord: 10-6

Derek Sherrod, OT, Mississippi StateI struggled with this pick more than any other in the first round, having a hard time finding a player who fits Philadelphia's needs and was worthy of the pick. In the end, guard and tackle are priorities and Sherrod has the versatility to contribute at both positions. He's not explosive or dominant and is a bit of a reach here, but Sherrod consistently gets into position and rarely makes mistakes, and recent off-field issues for current OT Jason Peters could increase the urgency to address the offensive line. The Eagles could also consider the top available cornerbacks here, but all come with questions.

New Orleans SaintsRecord: 11-5

Adrian Clayborn, DE, IowaThere are some red flags surrounding Clayborn because he suffers from Erb's palsy, a condition stemming from difficult childbirth that affects the strength and range of motion in his right arm. However, he has top-20 talent and could provide pass-rush help right away at right end. Clayborn would help take some pressure off defensive coordinator Gregg Williams, who was forced to blitz more than he would like last season, and a secondary that was asked to do too much in 2010. How bad was the New Orleans pass rush last season? There were seven games in which the Saints recorded one or no sacks.

Jake LockerRecord: 7-9

Jake Locker, QB, WashingtonLocker is worth a late-first round pick in my opinion but there are some questions about whether he is a fit in Seattle's West Coast offense, which requires accurate throws and quick decisions in the pocket. However, new offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell comes in from Minnesota and brings a scheme that showed a lot of variety in recent seasons depending on the quarterback and also used the running game to set up play-action/bootleg packages. Bevell is capable of tweaking his offense to get Locker working on the run outside the pocket, where he is at his best. The ideal situation would be to bring free agent Matt Hasselbeck back on a short-term deal to help mentor Locker and give him time to develop.

Baltimore RavensRecord: 12-4

Brandon Harris, CB, MiamiWith no worthy offensive tackle to fill a need and wide receivers available later who can address holes at that position, this pick comes down to a defensive end like Ohio State's Cameron Heyward or a cornerback like Harris. Heyward comes with some medical concerns after offseason Tommy John surgery on his elbow and the risk might be too great after last year's first-round end, Sergio Kindle, did not play in 2010 because of injury. Colorado CB Jimmy Smith is more talented than Harris but comes with a lot of character flags, and while Harris needs some work he has the speed and athleticism to contribute as a sub-package corner early on and eventually become a starter.

Atlanta FalconsRecord: 13-3

Brooks Reed, DE, ArizonaThe Falcons are in the market for a pass rusher who can keep DE John Abraham fresh and be groomed as Abraham's eventual replacement, and while Reed's ideal fit is at 3-4 outside linebacker he has good size (6-foot-3, 263 pounds) and is a similar player to the Eagles' Brandon Graham, who the Falcons had interest in last year. Also, history tells us Atlanta prefers to draft seniors and Reed is an experienced player coming off a productive senior season.

New England PatriotsRecord: 14-2

Mark Ingram, RB, AlabamaI don't think the Patriots are eager to draft a running back in the first round but it is a position of need and if the only back with a first-round grade falls to them I expect Bill Belichick to cash in.

Chicago BearsRecord: 11-5

Marvin Austin, DT, North CarolinaAustin carries a second-round grade and would be a reach here, but there is a big dropoff in this class in the mid-20s and at this point the Bears could take any of about 15-20 players and not see a big difference in talent level. That offsets some of the reach, and the Bears are also desperate for an impact 3-technique tackle who can anchor the front in their Tampa 2 system. Austin is the only tackle on the board with the potential to do that, and if the Bears do their homework and are comfortable they have answered any character questions and can keep Austin focused, this could be an interesting surprise pick.

New York JetsRecord: 11-5

Phil Taylor, DT, BaylorThe Jets' search for a 3-4 nose tackle could follow the same logic as Chicago's for a 3-technique. Taylor is thick and can anchor against the run and he moves well for a big guy, but he also comes with some character baggage and his motor runs hot and cold. He would end up with a very good defensive coaching staff in New York, though, and the Jets have a need to groom the next centerpiece for their front seven. It's either Taylor with this pick or taking a chance on someone like Hampton's Kenrick Ellis in the third round.

Pittsburgh SteelersRecord: 12-4

Danny Watkins, G, BaylorWhat do you think the Las Vegas odds would have been at the start of the 2010 season that Baylor would have back-to-back picks in the first round? In all seriousness, Watkins is solid in pass protection and as a run blocker and brings a nasty disposition to the table. He would be a nice fit next to 2010 first-rounder and Pro Bowler Maurkice Pouncey. The Steelers could also opt for a cornerback like Williams or Harris, but the interior offensive line is Pittsburgh's top need.

Green Bay PackersRecord: 10-6

Cameron Heyward, DE, Ohio StateThe defending Super Bowl champions have a very good nose tackle in B.J. Raji but injuries, free agency and off-field issues have created all kinds of questions at defensive end. If Heyward checks out medically he would be a steal here with his strength, motor and versatility.

Round 2

Pick Team Player Position School

33. New England (from Car.) Clint Boling OG Georgia

34. Buffalo Christian Ponder QB Florida State

35. Cincinnati Andy Dalton QB TCU

36. Denver Kyle Rudolph TE Notre Dame

37. Cleveland Stephen Paea DT Oregon State

38. Arizona Akeem Ayers OLB UCLA

39. Tennessee Ryan Mallett QB Arkansas

40. Dallas Aaron Williams DB Texas

41. Washington Colin Kaepernick QB Nevada

42. Houston Justin Houston OLB Georgia

43. Minnesota Marcus Cannon OT TCU

44. Detroit Bruce Carter LB North Carolina

45. San Francisco Mikel Leshoure RB Illinois

46. Denver (from Miami) Rahim Moore S UCLA

47. St. Louis Randall Cobb WR Kentucky

48. Oakland Jimmy Smith CB Colorado

49. Jacksonville Mason Foster LB Washington

50. San Diego Allen Bailey DE Miami (FL)

51. Tampa Bay Ras-I Dowling CB Virginia

52. New York Giants Ryan Williams RB Virginia Tech

53. Indianapolis Christian Ballard DL Iowa

54. Philadelphia Martez Wilson LB Illinois

55. Kansas City Kelvin Sheppard ILB LSU

56. New Orleans Jurrell Casey DT USC

57. Seattle Orlando Franklin G Miami (FL)

58. Baltimore Torrey Smith WR Maryland

59. Atlanta Titus Young WR Boise State

60. New England James Carpenter OT Alabama

61. San Diego (from NY Jets) Jonathan Baldwin WR Pittsburgh

62. Chicago Benjamin Ijalana OT Villanova

63. Pittsburgh Johnny Patrick CB Louisville

64. Green Bay William Rackley G Lehigh

Round 3

Pick Team Player Position School

65. Carolina Jarvis Jenkins DT Clemson

66. Cincinnati Kendall Hunter RB Oklahoma State

67. Denver Quan Sturdivant LB North Carolina

68. Buffalo Lance Kendricks TE Wisconsin

69. Arizona Marcus Gilbert OT Florida

70. Cleveland Leonard Hankerson WR Miami (FL)

71. Dallas Brandon Hogan CB West Virginia

72. New Orleans (from Wash) Rodney Hudson G/C Florida State

73. Houston Jaiquawn Jarrett S Temple

74. New England (from Minn.) Jabaal Sheard DE Pittsburgh

75. Detroit Daniel Thomas RB Kansas State

76. San Francisco Kenrick Ellis NT Hampton

77. Tennessee Curtis Brown CB Texas

78. St. Louis Johnny White RB North Carolina

79. Miami Dion Lewis RB Pittsburgh

80. Jacksonville Greg Little WR North Carolina

81. Oakland Virgil Green TE Nevada

82. San Diego Lee Ziemba OT Auburn

83. New York Giants Terrell McClain DT South Florida

84. Tampa Bay Shane Vereen RB California

85. Philadelphia Joshua Thomas CB Buffalo

86. Kansas City Tandon Doss WR Indiana

87. Indianapolis John Moffitt G Wisconsin

88. New Orleans Joseph Lefeged S Rutgers

89. San Diego (from Seattle) Colin McCarthy LB Miami (FL)

90. Baltimore James Brewer OT Indiana

91. Atlanta Kendric Burney CB North Carolina

92. New England Marcus Gilchrist DB Clemson

93. Chicago Gregory Salas Hawaii

94. New York Jets Jerrel Jernigan WR Troy

95. Pittsburgh Luke Stocker TE Tennessee

96. Green Bay Christopher Carter OLB Fresno State

97. Carolina (compensatory) Edmund Gates WR Abilene Christian

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