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NFL Mock Draft, final version

April 26, 2012 by Steel Haven

Round 1

  1. Indianapolis Colts

    QB Andrew Luck, Stanford

    The decision has been made. The way things played out they really had no choice except starting over with Luck. Last year at this time no one would have believed this could happen.
    • Needs: QB, OG, TE, WR, NT, CB
  2. Washington Redskins (from St. Louis)

    QB Robert Griffin III, Baylor

    Locked in to RGIII with the Colts announcing they will take Luck. Was there really ever any question? Needed a franchise QB in the worst possible way and paid a king's ransom to move up for RGIII. His performances on the field at Baylor and workouts in the post season indicate he is worth the price.
    • Needs: QB, RT/G, ILB, S, NT, CB
  3. Minnesota Vikings

    OT Matt Kalil, USC

    The draft starts here. Reportedly are trying hard to trade out of this pick. Should they fail the safe selection is Kailil. He can be plugged into the left side for years protecting Christian Ponder�s blind side. Claiborne has talent and is a legitimate option, although perhaps a bit of a smoke screen to get more team interested in trading up.
    • Needs: CB, LT, S, OG, WR, LB
    • Hope might be available: no one
    • Other Options: WR J Blackmon, CB M Claiborne, trade down
  4. Cleveland Browns

    RB Trent Richardson, Alabama

    Desperately need offensive playmakers after allowing Peyton Hillis to walk and failing to find a difference maker at receiver despite using three second rounders on the position in the last three drafts. While backs have tended to slide on draft day Richardson is in a special class with the likes of Purple Jesus. His game breaking ability would take pressure off Colt McCoy and the defense.
    • Needs: QB, WR, RB, RT/G, CB, OLB
    • Hope might be available: no one
    • Other Options: WR J Blackmon, Cb M Claiborne, QB R Tannehill, trade down
  5. Tampa Bay Buccaneers

    CB Morris Claiborne, LSU

    Claiborne is arguably better than last year�s number five pick, former teammate Patrick Peterson. He provides value and fills a need even after the signing of Eric Wright given Aqib Talib�s off the field issues and Ronde Barber�s advancing age.
    • Needs: RB, CB, LB, OT, DT, FB/TE
    • Hope might be available: RB T Richardson
    • Other Options: DT F Cox, LB L Kuechly, trade up/down
  6. St. Louis Rams (from Washington)

    WR Justin Blackmon, Oklahoma St

    Blackmon often looked like a man among boys on the field last season albeit against suspect Big 12 defenses. He provides a big, explosive target for franchise QB Sam Bradford. The Rams are clearly more than just one player away so trading down for extra picks made sense especially considering the unprecedented bounty they received from the Redskins.
    • Needs: WR, OT, DT, OLB, RB, CB
    • Hope might be available: OT M Kalil, RB T Richardson
    • Other Options: DT F Cox, trade up
  7. Jacksonville Jaguars

    DT Fletcher Cox, Mississippi St

    Another top ten team working hard to get out of their pick. Rumors have the Eagles moving up for Cox. Should that fail then Cox makes some sense at this spot as insurance because of the off season eye injury suffered by Terrance Knighton. Gene Smith is known for taking the best player on his board, although his player valuation often does not mesh with consensus. Cox's stellar combine performance was sort of lost in the shuffle due to the hype surrounding Poe. Game tape is the difference. Despite being raw Cox is an explosive, high motor interior defender that consistently makes plays.
    • Needs: WR, DE, OT, G/C, CB, DT
    • Hope might be available: WR J Blackmon
    • Other Options: WR M Floyd, CB S Gilmore, DE/OLB M Ingram, trade down
  8. Miami Dolphins

    QB Ryan Tannehill, Texas A&M

    Basically struck out in attempts to improve at the QB position via free agency settling for David Garrard to compete with Matt Moore. Tannehill has been rising up draft boards despite being limited in the offseason due to a broken foot after starting only 19 games because he began his career at receiver. He would benefit from knowing the offense if reunited with his college coach, new offensive coordinator Mike Sherman. Owner Stephen Ross is reportedly pushing for this pick so any fears in the front office that Tannehill is not the answer may not matter.
    • Needs: QB, WR, RT/G, S, DE, OLB
    • Hope might be available: WR J Blackmon
    • Other Options: S M Barron, DE Q Coples, WR M Floyd
  9. Carolina Panthers

    DT Dontari Poe, Memphis

    The athletically gifted Poe's climb up draft boards after his breakout combine performance has stalled due to his pedestrian play at Memphis. How much of that was caused by a lack of coaching and supporting talent? Cox being off the board forces their hand. The combination of need and upside would definitely be enticing.
    • Needs: DT, CB, LB, WR, RT/OG, DE
    • Hope might be available: DT F Cox
    • Other Options: CB S Gilmore, LB L Kuechly, trade down
  10. Buffalo Bills

    WR Michael Floyd, Notre Dame

    Signing Mario Williams was a coup. Adding Mark Anderson opposite him provides new defensive coordinator Dave Wannstedt with a formidable front for the move to a 4-3 alignment. The signings allow GM Buddy Nix to focus on other areas. A lot of rumors have been swirling about this pick. One thing appears certain. This is another top ten team that would prefer to deal, either up or down in their case. Floyd has the size, speed and athleticism to develop into a number one target. He would provide a dynamic upgrade opposite resigned Steve Johnson.
    • Needs: OT, OLB, WR, CB, QB, DT
    • Hope might be available: WR J Blackmon, M Kalil
    • Other Options: S M Barron, CB S Gilmore, LB L Kuechly, OT R Reiff, trade up/down
  11. Kansas City Chiefs

    LB Luke Kuechly, Boston College

    Thoughts that Kuechly might be a two down run stuffer were put to rest with his excellent workouts in the post season. He is an every down player that should be able to step in immediately as an upgrade over former rookie free agent Jovan Belcher.
    • Needs: NT, OG/C, QB, CB, ILB, S
    • Hope might be available: NT D Poe, QB R Tannehill
    • Other Options: G D DeCastro, trade up/down
  12. Seattle Seahawks

    DE Quinton Coples, UNC

    A top five talent that slides due to concerns about his passion for the game. Coples didn't perform well in his final season as things fell apart around him in Chapel Hill. He also reportedly did not come across well in post season interviews, a part of the process often overlooked. Players coach Pete Carroll gambles that he can provide the proper motivation.
    • Needs: LB, DE, OG, RB, CB, WR
    • Hope might be available: LB L Kuechly, QB R Tannehill
    • Other Options: OG D DeCastro, DE M Ingram, trade up/down
  13. Arizona Cardinals

    OT Riley Reiff, Iowa

    Reiff�s stock is in decline due to concerns over relatively short arms and a lack of top athleticism. The view that Iowa offensive lineman are a product of the system doesn�t help. The underwhelming Levi Brown was resigned to fill one hole at tackle. The steady, productive Reiff would fill the other. Who plays the left side and the right side can be determined later.
    • Needs: OT, OLB, WR, ILB, OG, S
    • Hope might be available: WR M Floyd, LB L Kuechly
    • Other Options: OG D DeCastro, OLB M Ingram
  14. Dallas Cowboys

    S Mark Barron, Alabama

    The Cowboys secondary collapsed down the stretch as they missed the playoffs for a second straight season. Terrence Newman has been replaced by Brandon Carr. Finding help at safety is the next priority and the drop off from Barron to the next best option is the greatest at any position in the draft.
    • Needs: DE/NT, S, OG/C, WR, TE/FB, CB
    • Hope might be available: NT D Poe
    • Other Options: NT M Brockers, OG D DeCastro, trade up
  15. Philadelphia Eagles

    DT Michael Brockers, LSU

    Brockers is somewhat of a wild card coming out as a redshirt sophomore after being part of a rotation inside at LSU. His upside is tough to ignore especially considering the mediocre collection of players the Eagles lined up next to Cullen Jenkins last season.
    • Needs: OLB, DT, SS, CB, DE, QB
    • Hope might be available: S M Barron, DE Q Coples, DT F Cox, DT D Poe
    • Other Options: CB S Gilmore, DE C Jones, trade up
  16. New York Jets

    OLB/DE Melvin Ingram, South Carolina

    Got lucky picking Aaron Maybin up off the scrap heap last season. Still have no other edge rushers. Ingram's big play ability led to frequent appearances in ESPN highlights. He showed the athleticism in the post season to drop into coverage after spending his college career almost exclusively chasing quarterbacks.
    • Needs: OLB, RT, S, WR, OG, CB
    • Hope might be available: S M Barron, WR M Floyd
    • Other Options: OG D DeCastro, OLB C Jones, OLB W Mercilus, OLB C Upshaw, trade up
  17. Cincinnati Bengals (from Oakland)

    CB Stephon Gilmore, South Carolina

    Signing veterans Jason Allen, Terence Newman and re-signing Pacman Jones provides depth at corner. The moves do not preclude adding a more talented youngster at the position. Gilmore could legitimately be picked in the top ten. His combination of size, speed and agility is difficult to ignore.
    • Needs: DE, WR, OG, SS, RB, CB
    • Hope might be available: S M Barron, DE Q Coples, WR M Floyd
    • Other Options: G D DeCastro, CB D Kirkpatrick, DE C Upshaw
  18. San Diego Chargers

    OG David DeCastro, Stanford

    DeCastro is considered one of the surest things in this year�s draft. An immediate starter with limited bust potential that could go significantly earlier than this even though he plays a position that is not usually drafted even this high.
    • Needs: CB, OG, OT, OLB, NT, RB
    • Hope might be available: CB S Gilmore
    • Other Options: CB D Kirkpatrick, OLB C Jones, OLB W Mercilus
  19. Chicago Bears

    DE Chandler Jones, Syracuse

    Resigned Israel Idonije is at best a stopgap opposite Julius Peppers. Jones somewhat surprisingly came out early despite missing five games last season due to a knee injury. He has the frame to add bulk and can rush the passer with his hand on the ground from any place on the line. His explosiveness and athleticism in combination with Peppers would cause nightmares for offensive coordinators.
    • Needs: OT, DE, CB, WR, RG/C, DT
    • Hope might be available: CB S Gilmore, OT R Reiff
    • Other Options: G/T C Glenn, CB D Kirkpatrick, DE W Mercilus
  20. Tennessee Titans

    DE Whitney Mercilus, Illinois

    Looking to add another edge rusher to the rotation with Kamerion Wimbley and Karl Klug. Mercilius is the son of Haitian immigrants and got a late start on the football field. He basically came out of nowhere as a junior to win the Ted Hendricks award as the nation�s top DE and then declared for the draft.
    • Needs: CB, DE, C/G, OLB, DT, WR
    • Hope might be available: OG D DeCastro, S Gilmore
    • Other Options: G/T C Glenn, CB D Kirkpatrick, C P Konz, DE C Upshaw
  21. Cincinnati Bengals

    DE Courtney Upshaw, Alabama

    Signing busts Derrick Harvey and Jamaal Anderson does not solve their issues at end. Upshaw is a classic tweener that lacks the length and agility most teams look for in a 3-4 OLB despite his experience in the scheme. In a 4-3 scheme his weaknesses are less apparent. His on the field performance at the highest level of college football is difficult to ignore.
    • Hope might be available: DE W Mercilus
    • Other Options: G/T C Glenn, CB D Kirkpatrick, WR K Wright
  22. Cleveland Browns (from Atlanta)

    WR Kendall Wright, Baylor

    Simply put they need all the offensive weapons they can get. Wright has the speed to stretch the field on the outside and quickness to make big plays out of short passes from the slot.
    • Hope might be available: OT R Reiff
    • Other Options: TE C Fleener, T/G C Glenn, CB D Kirkpatrick, RB D Martin, QB B Weeden
  23. Detroit Lions

    CB Dre Kirkpatrick, Alabama

    Martin Mayhew is known for selecting the best player available regardless of need. Here need meets value. Eric Wright left via free agency leaving a hole across from Chris Houston. Kirkpatrick drops into their laps due to some concerns about his playmaking ability after intercepting only three passes in the last two years. Mayhew and Jim Schwartz would have to be thrilled.
    • Needs: CB, OT, RB, WR, SS, C/G
    • Hope might be available: OT R Reiff
    • Other Options: T/G C Glenn, OT J Martin, RB D Martin
  24. Pittsburgh Steelers

    ILB Dont'a Hightower, Alabama

    Aging James Farrior was released. Larry Foote is nothing more than a stop gap at this point in his career. Hightower has the ability to step in immediately as a run stuffing interior presence next to the more mercurial Lawrence Timmons. His leadership qualities would also be welcome on a team forced to shed much of its veteran presence due to age and cap constraints.
    • Needs: OT, OG, NT/DE, ILB, FS/CB, RB
    • Hope might be available: OLB W Mercilus, NT D Poe
    • Other Options: T/G C Glenn, OT J Martin, OLB N Perry, OG A Silatolu, OG K Zeitler
  25. Denver Broncos

    T/G Cordy Glenn, Georgia

    The focus is Peyton Manning. Both finding him more weapons and most importantly protecting him. Glenn is a four years starter that has played multiple positions. He showed at the Senior Bowl that he has the athleticism to stay outside in addition to the ability to move inside to guard. Glenn could play RT allowing Orlando Franklin to move to LG or just slide inside himself. The objective is getting Zane Beadles off the field to help keep Manning upright.
    • Needs: DT, WR, LB, RT/G, C, RB
    • Hope might be available: MLB D Hightower, WR K Wright
    • Other Options: WR S Hill, C/G P Konz, DT J Worthy
  26. Houston Texans

    TE Coby Fleener, Stanford

    A dynamic playmaker in the passing game to replace Joel Dreesen. Fleener presents size, speed matchup problems for defensive backs and linebackers in coverage. He needs a lot of work as a blocker.
    • Needs: RT/G, NT, WR, OLB, TE, CB
    • Hope might be available: T/G C Glenn, WR K Wright
    • Other Options: WR S Hill, OT J Martin, OLB S McClellin, G K Zeitler
  27. New England Patriots (from New Orleans)

    OLB/DE Shea McClellin, Boise St

    McClellin has the versatility to put his hand on the ground or stand up in Bill Belichick�s multiple schemes. He is one of this draft's fastest risers flashing top athleticism in the post season to go along with the high motor and productivity he displayed in college.
    • Needs: OLB/DE, DT/DE, CB, S, RB, T/G
    • Hope might be available: S M Barron, OLB/DE W Mercilus
    • Other Options: OLB/DE N Perry, DT/DE J Worthy, trade up/down/out
  28. Green Bay Packers

    OLB/DE Nick Perry, USC

    Looking for a presence outside opposite Clay Matthews. Perry prefers to play with his hand on the ground in a 4-3 and has limited experience in space. His natural athleticism is too impressive to ignore at this point.
    • Needs: OLB, DE, S, CB, RB, C/G
    • Hope might be available: OLB S McClellin
    • Other Options: C/G P Konz, S H Smith, DE/DT J Worthy
  29. Baltimore Ravens

    OG Kevin Zeitler, Wisconsin

    Resigning of Matt Birk solidifies the center position in the short term. The loss of Ben Grubbs opens up a huge gap at guard. Zeitler is a powerful interior blocker that fits the scheme.
    • Needs: OG, WR, OLB, DE, S, RB
    • Hope might be available: ILB D Hightower, OLB N Perry
    • Other Options: WR S Hill, C/G P Konz, S H Smith, G A Silatolu, DE/DT J Worthy
  30. San Francisco 49ers

    G/T Amini Silatolu, Midwestern St

    Silatolu is a versatile mauler that dominated at a lower level of competition. Adam Snyder signed with the Cardinals. Anthony Davis has struggled since the Niners traded up for him in the first round in 2010. Help is needed on the right side of the offensive line.
    • Needs: DE, OG, WR, CB, RT, OLB
    • Hope might be available: TE C Fleener, OG K Zeitler
    • Other Options: WR S Hill, OT J Martin, DE/DT J Worthy
  31. New England Patriots

    DE/DT Jerel Worthy, Michigan St

    Worthy adds athleticism and disruptive ability to the interior line. While best suited to the 4-3, Bill Belichick can find creative ways to get him involved in multiple fronts.
    • Hope might be available: G/T A Silatolu
    • Other Options: WR S Hill, CB J Jenkins, RB D Martin, S H Smith, trade up/down/out
  32. New York Giants

    C/G Peter Konz, Wisconsin

    David Baas could not stay healthy last season. Beside him David Diehl, Mitch Petrus and Kevin Boothe all struggled. Konz combines intelligence, good technique and solid athleticism. He has the skills to step in immediately and play at a high level. Baas could be added to the competition at right guard while still providing depth in the middle if he can stay on the field.
    • Needs: OT, G/C, WR, RB, TE, CB
    • Hope might be available: TE C Fleener, G A Silatolu, G K Zeitler
    • Other Options: OT M Adams, WR S Hill, RB D Martin

Round 2

  1. St. Louis Rams - OT Jonathon Martin, Stanford
    Project that could eventually move Rodger Saffold to the right side.
  2. Indianapolis Colts - WR Stephen Hill, Georgia Tech
    Explosive downfield playmaker to develop along with Luck.
  3. Minnesota Vikings - WR Rueben Randle, LSU
    Never replaced Sidney Rice.
  4. Tampa Bay Buccaneers - RB Doug Martin, Boise St
    Need a versatile compliment to between the tackles pounder LaGarrette Blount.
  5. Cleveland Browns - QB Brandon Weeden, Oklahoma St
    Overage prospect provides immediate competition for Colt McCoy.
  6. Jacksonville Jaguars - DE/OLB Andre Branch, Clemson
    Replacement for Aaron Kampman opposite Jeremy Mincey.
  7. St. Louis Rams (From Washington) - DT Devon Still, Penn St
    Completes overhaul of interior line with newly signed Kendall Langford and Trevor Laws.
  8. Carolina Panthers - CB Janoris Jenkins, North Alabama
    Gamble on fluid cover corner for pass defense that was last in YPA (8.4).
  9. Buffalo Bills - OT Mike Adams, Ohio St
    Project will need to develop quickly to replace Demetrius Bell.
  10. Miami Dolphins - WR Alshon Jeffery, South Carolina
    Trade of Brandon Marshall left them with nothing at receiver.
  11. Seattle Seahawks - OLB Lavonte David, Nebraska
    Versatile, slightly undersized linebacker that can play every down.
  12. Kansas City Chiefs - QB Brock Osweiler, Arizona St
    High upside project for new coordinator Brian Daboll.
  13. Dallas Cowboys - DE/DT Kendall Reyes, UConn
    Need an upgrade opposite Jason Hatcher.
  14. Philadelphia Eagles - OLB Zach Brown, North Carolina
    Trading for DeMeco Ryans was only the first step in upgrading the linebacker corps.
  15. New York Jets - OT Bobbie Massie, Mississippi
    Wayne Hunter is abysmal and must be replaced.
  16. New England Patriots (from Oakland) - S Harrison Smith, Notre Dame
    Could have taken him at 31. Tremendous value.
  17. San Diego Chargers - OLB/DE Vinny Curry, Marshall
    Still looking for outside pass rushers even after adding Jarrett Johnson.
  18. Chicago Bears - CB Josh Robinson, Central Florida
    Early entrant opened some eyes at the combine.
  19. Philadelphia Eagles (from Arizona) - QB Kirk Cousins, Michigan St
    Perfect fit in west coast offense to groom behind Michael Vick.
  20. Tennessee Titans - CB/S Trumaine Johnson, Montana
    Cortland Finnegan signed with the Rams and former head coach Jeff Fisher.
  21. Cincinnati Bengals - WR Mohamed Sanu, Rutgers
    Possession receiver provides nice compliment to gamebreaker AJ Green.
  22. Detroit Lions - OT Mitchell Schwartz, California
    Impressive Senior Bowl performance has some thinking he can handle the left side at the next level. .
  23. Atlanta Falcons

    G/T Jeff Allen, Illinois

    Three year starter at left tackle lacks prototypical height. Immediate competition for last year's fourth rounder Joe Hawley at right guard. Also provides some insurance in case Sam Baker doesn't rebound and Will Svitek isn't up to the task starting full time at left tackle.
    • Needs: LB, G/C, LT, RB, TE, WR
  24. Pittsburgh Steelers

    OG Brandon Brooks, Miami, OH
    An offensive lineman desperately needs to be taken in the first two rounds. Brooks is expected to be the first player not invited to the combine to be drafted. Once thought of as a limited in the box mauler he showed much more athleticism than expected at his pro day.
    • Others: G/T J Allen, LB M Kendricks, OLB R Lewis, G/T K Osemele, OT M Schwartz, DE D Wolfe
  25. Denver Broncos - WR AJ Jenkins, Illinois
    Peyton Manning needs more weapons.
  26. Houston Texans - ILB/OLB Bobby Wagner, Utah St
    To talented to pass up. Combo coverage backer to provide depth inside and outside.
  27. New Orleans Saints (forfeited)
  28. Green Bay Packers - DE/DT Derek Wolfe, Cincinnati
    Ryan Pickett is aging and Cullen Jenkins was never adequately replaced.
  29. Baltimore Ravens - OLB/DE Bruce Irvin, West Virginia
    Replacement for Jarrett Johnson.
  30. San Francisco 49ers - OLB/DE Ronnell Lewis, Oklahoma
    Another edge rusher would make the defense that much scarier.
  31. New England Patriots - RB David Wilson, Virginia Tech
    Depth chart is extremely thin at RB. Wilson is a clear upgrade if he can hold onto the ball.
  32. New York Giants - TE Dwayne Allen, Clemson
    Jake Ballard and Travis Beckum both tore ACLs. Martellus Bennett is limitted.

Round 3

  1. Indianapolis Colts - NT Brandon Thompson, Clemson
    Switch to 3-4 requires someone in the middle.
  2. St. Louis Rams - RB Lamar Miller, Miami, Fla
    Change of pace back to compliment Steven Jackson.
  3. Minnesota Vikings - CB Casey Hayward, Vanderbilt
    Newly signed Chris Carr and Zachary Bowman are short term stop gaps at best.
  4. Cleveland Browns - CB Brandon Boykin, Georgia
    Aging Sheldon Brown can't last forever.
  5. Tampa Bay Buccaneers - LB Mychal Kendricks, California
    Allows Mason Foster to move to the strong side getting Quincy Black off the field.
  6. Washington Redskins - G/T Kelechi Osemele, Iowa St
    Insurance for injury risks Kory Lichtensteiger and Jammal Brown.
  7. Jacksonville Jaguars - WR Brian Quick, Appalachian St
    Big, physical target to team with Laurent Robinson.
  8. Buffalo Bills - CB Dwight Bentley, UL Lafayette
    Depth needed behind Terrence McGee, Aaron Williams and Drayton Florence.
  9. Miami Dolphins - S Brandon Taylor, LSU
    Yeremaih Bell was released and Reshad Jones leaves something to be desired.
  10. Miami Dolphins (from Carolina thru Chicago) - DE Tyrone Crawford, Boise St
    Switch to 4-3 requires bookend for Cameron Wake.
  11. Kansas City Chiefs - NT Mike Martin, Michigan
    Tenacious, slightly undersized fighter to compete with Jerrell Powe behind aging Kelly Gregg.
  12. Seattle Seahawks - RB LaMichael James, Oregon
    Game breaking change of pace back compliments Marshawn Lynch.
  13. Houston Texans (from Philadelphia) - G/T James Brown, Troy
    Entire right side of line needs rebuilt after release of Eric Winston.
  14. New York Jets - WR Chris Givens, Wake Forest
    Smooth consistent route runner compliments Santonio Holmes.
  15. Oakland Raiders (used in 2011 supplemental draft)
  16. San Diego Chargers - CB Josh Norman, Coastal Carolina
    Quentin Jammer turns 33 before the beginning of the season.
  17. Chicago Bears - OT Donald Stephenson, Oklahoma
    Swing for the fences on high upside project with major off the field issues.
  18. Arizona Cardinals - OLB/DE Cam Johnson, UVa
    Competition for Sam Acho and O'Brien Schofield on the edge is necessary.
  19. Dallas Cowboys - C Phillip Blake, Baylor
    Fast rising Canadian started all 38 games of his major college career.
  20. Tennessee Titans - LB DeMario Davis, Arkansas St
    Looking for someone to team with Akeem Ayers and Colin McCarthy.
  21. Cincinnati Bengals - G/T Tony Bergstrom, Utah
    Overage prospect competes immediately with recently signed Travelle Wharton and Jacob Bell.
  22. Atlanta Falcons - TE Orson Charles, Georgia
    DUI in March drops him near the bottom of the third round.
  23. Detroit Lions - RB Chris Polk, Washington
    Injuries and off the field issues have decimated their running back corps. .
  24. Pittsburgh Steelers

    RB Isaiah Pead, Cincinnati

    MVP of the Senior Bowl. A multi-purpose back with good burst and quick feet. A nice compliment for Isaac Redman with the status of Rashard Mendenhall up in the air due to torn ACL in December. Counting on Jonathon Dwyer, John Clay or Baron Batch as the primary backup seems problematic at best.
    • Others: ILB D Davis, WR TY Hilton, OLB C Johnson, CB J Norman, RT/G B Mosely, NT A Ta'amu
  25. Denver Broncos - DT Alameda Ta�amu, Washington
    Loss of Broderick Bunkley leaves a hole in the middle of the defense.
  26. Philadelphia Eagles (from Houston) - CB Jamell Fleming, Oklahoma
    Disgruntled Asante Samuel shipped to Atlanta. .
  27. New Orleans Saints

    DE/DT Billy Winn, Boise St

    Did an incredible job filling needs in free agency before and after they forfeited their second rounder due to bounty-gate. This is basically a best player available scenario. Winn provides depth across the line with the ability to play inside as a 3-technique or outside in a 4-3.
    • Needs: WR, CB, DE, SS, OLB, DT
  28. Green Bay Packers - CB/S Leonard Johnson, Iowa St
    Corner depth that could also be tried inside at safety after release of Nick Collins.
  29. Baltimore Ravens - WR Marvin Jones, California
    Possession receiver with better timed speed than expected.
  30. San Francisco 49ers - DE Jared Crick, Nebraska
    Time to start grooming someone behind Justin Smith and Ray McDonald.
  31. New England Patriots - WR Ryan Broyles, Oklahoma
    College record setter ran a 4.6 40 only 5 months after tearing his ACL.
  32. New York Giants - WR TY Hilton, Fla International
    Competition for Jerrel Jernigan to replace Mario Manningham in the slot. .
  33. Oakland Raiders (compensatory)

    NT Josh Chapman, Alabama

    Switch to 3-4 alignment requires interior line presence and edge rushers. Chapman played the second half of last season on a torn ACL answering any questions about his dedication. He is a powerful two down run stuffer that should be able to step in immediately when healthy.
    • Needs: OLB, CB, NT, OG/C, TE, DE
4 (119) Pittsburgh Steelers

OLB Olivier Vernon, Miami, Fla

Vernon came out early despite being suspended for the first six games after accepting improper benefits. A top recruit that played as a true freshman. He has the athletic upside to wildly out perform his draft position. Clearly a project which isn't a bad thing at this position considering the current depth chart.
  • Others: NT L Fangupo, DE A Hicks, WR K Martin, TE A Robinson, S T Robinson
5 (159) Pittsburgh Steelers

CB Keith Tandy, West Virginia

Tandy is a well built zone corner that looks like a good fit schematically despite being a tad short (5'10") and lacking top recovery speed (4.47 40 at pro day). Solid in run support. Willing to make a big hit. Former record setting HS QB with good instincts. Would contribute immediately on special teams.
  • Others: CB C Greenwood, FB R Ellison, OG L Nix, WR E Page, OT N Potter
6 (193) Pittsburgh Steelers

OT Jeff Adams, Columbia

A project with upside. Tall, lean athletic body with huge wingspan, big hands and quick feet. Needs weight room work and professional instruction to improve technique. Three year starter on the left side. Obviously intelligent. I have no idea if he is on the Steelers radar, but with so many late round picks he is the type of prospect I hope is targeted with at least a couple of selections. The last player from Columbia selected in the NFL draft was Marcellus Wiley in 1997.
  • Others: FS J Bethel, TE D Carrier, WR J Fuller, OG R Johnson, RB M Smith
7 (231) Pittsburgh Steelers

DE Ryan Van Bergen, Michigan

Pulled over at his pro day for private discussion/workout along with Mike Martin by Mike Tomlin and John Mitchell. Four year letterman that started 38 games and played in 50. Played at multiple positions in multiple schemes due to coaching changes. The type of hard working team leader often preferred by the Steelers. The three seventh round compensatory picks can�t be traded which increases the possibility of this pick being packaged to move up for a targeted player in the fifth or sixth round.
  • Others: NT N Jean-Baptise, OG K Beachum, WR T Benford, OG D Dennis, RB J Hampton
7 (240) Pittsburgh Steelers (compensatory)

S Jeremy Jones, Wayne St, MI

Troy Polamalu and Ryan Clark are another year on the wrong side of 30. Depth behind them is thin with the barely adequate Ryan Mundy the top reserve. Jones is a ball hawking small school safety that intercepted 9 passes last season. He visited Pittsburgh.
  • Others: QB J Harris, TE C Harkey, ILB J Harris, S J Jones, FB E Igwenagu
7 (246) Pittsburgh Steelers (compensatory)

WR Toney Clemons, Colorado

Transfer from Michigan had solid if unspectacular numbers in moribund Colorado offense. Ran under 4.4 at his pro day at 6'2", 210 pounds. Another guest at the South Side complex so I will pencil him in as a high upside flier.
  • Others: CB B Jackson, OT M Jones, ILB S Loiseau, CB D Lynn, OLB J Miller
7 (248) Pittsburgh Steelers (compensatory)

NT John Hughes, Cincinnati

A plodding, two down run stuffer with limitted athleticism. Long arms help him tie up multiple blockers on the inside. Thinking his upside is that of Chris Hoke is probably wildly optimistic. Visited Pittsburgh along with three other Bearcats teammates. Veteran line coach John Mitchell knows what he is doing so if the Steelers are actually interested in him then maybe I am missing something.
  • Others: LS Z Nolan, DE E Owusu, FB D Paulson, S Q Richardson, K B Walsh
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