>\n\nCurt Popejoy's 1 Round Mock Draft - 3/15/2011 \n\n\n\n

Curt Popejoy's 1 Round Mock Draft - 3/15/2011

Written by Curt Popejoy on 03/15/2011

1.1 Carolina Panthers Blaine Gabbert QB Missouri
Unless the Panthers think that Jimmy Clausen is the long term answer, they must pull the trigger on a QB here. I like Gabbert's football IQ over Newton's dynamic athletic ability, and as the financial risk isn't so great, thanks to the incoming Rookie Hard Cap you take the QB when you can get him.
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1.2 Denver Broncos Patrick Peterson CB LSU
Peterson is maybe the best DB prospect I've seen in at least the last 5 years. His combination of size and explosive speed is difficult to compare to other players. He really can do it all on the field and has the potential to be great from day one.
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1.3 Buffalo Bills Cam Newton QB Auburn
New coach means new QB. Ryan Fitzpatrick is a nice player, but he's not going to take them to the Super Bowl. Newton may not either, but I think at this point you have to take a chance.
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1.4 Cincinnati Bengals Nick Fairley DT Auburn
Fairley is the kind of guy to fit right into the Bengals. Talented but a bit of a loose cannon. But he should help shore up the middle of a soft run defense and help get some pressure up front.
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1.5 Arizona Cardinals Da'Quan Bowers DE Clemson
I'm sure the Cards would like to have a QB and if Newton and Gabbert are gone, it'll almost certainly mean they will deal for one or sign one off the free agent scrapheap. But it means they get Bowers who is a dynamic playmaker in the 3-4 or the 4-3.
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1.6 Cleveland Browns Marcell Dareus DE Alabama
Whether or not the Browns switch to the 4-3, Dareus is an impact player. he can play the 3 technique or the 5 technique and while he doesn't always look pretty when he's making plays, the fact is he flat out makes plays.
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1.7 San Francisco 49ers Jake Locker QB Washington
I am sticking with this until I hear something to lead me otherwise. I just have a funny feeling Harbaugh is going to pull the trigger on his former PAC-10 foe. But if Locker keeps stinking up this season, I'll need to dump him.
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1.8 Tennessee Titans Robert Quinn DE North Carolina
A year removed from football means a couple of things. One he's got a year fewer miles on his tires which is good. But on the other hand the reason he was off a year was because of character concerns. I think he's a pure 4-3 rush end and will be an immediate impact player in the NFL, but keep in mind some off field problems will likely follow.
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1.9 Dallas Cowboys Prince Amukamara CB Nebraska
The Cowboys secondary is almost certainly the unit that needs an upgrade the most, and Amukamara is a fabulous prospect who'd be the top CB in most drafts if not for Peterson.
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1.10 Washington Redskins A.J. Green WR Georgia
Come April I'm sure Green will end up going higher than this, but for this experiment he falls here. It would be a tremendous steal for the Redskins to get a weapon like this.
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1.11 Houston Texans Von Miller OLB Texas A&M
Miller paired up opposite Mario Williams would make the Texans questionable secondary seem much much better, and I am one who believe Miller is actually underrated as a prospect so this is great value as well.
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1.12 Minnesota Vikings Gabe Carimi OT Wisconsin
I am firmly on the Carimi bandwagon. I think he's got the best resume' of any tackle in this draft and for a team like Minnesota who wants to run the ball, Carimi is a perfect fit.
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1.13 Detroit Lions Adrian Clayborn DE Iowa
I love the versatility of Clayborn and he would really pair up well with Ndamukong Suh on that defensive line as an end.
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1.14 St Louis Rams Julio Jones WR Alabama
How happy would Sam Bradford be if he could get a weapon like Jones? The Rams are putting a new offense in that would fit what Jones is good at to a tee, so this pick makes perfect sense.
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1.15 Miami Dolphins Mark Ingram RB Alabama
I'd love to put Ingram higher because I think he's truly a special player, but running back is pretty underrated. For the Dolphins their RB situation is tenuous, so adding a feature back like Ingram is a must.
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1.16 Jacksonville Jaguars Ryan Kerrigan DE Purdue
Kerrigan is really impressing people, myself included. He's a great athlete, hard worker, and he makes plays all over the field. He'll really improve an anemic Jags pass rush.
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1.17 New England Patriots (from Oakland) Cameron Jordan DT California
I like Cameron Jordan, but I don't love him as a prospect. But I love him in this spot as a Patriot because Belichick loves these Swiss Army knife types of players and if there is anyone who can get the most out of him it'll be The Hoodie.
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1.18 San Diego Chargers J.J. Watt DE Wisconsin
I'm not sure if the hype machine will push Watt up too high for the Chargers but if not, this pick would be ideal for a team that needs to get younger and more athletic on defensive. I won't rule out Phil Taylor here as well if they chose to upgrade their NT rather than DE in the first.
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1.19 New York Giants Nate Solder OT Colorado
The Giants are a team that underperformed last year, but really don't have a lot of gaping holes on their roster. Adding a bigtime tackle to eventually start is a great move for a team that wants to get back to running the football.
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1.20 Tampa Bay Buccaneers Aldon Smith DE Missouri
The Bucs are a team on the up in a big way. Smith is an athletic player who reminds me a lot of Robert Mathis, and would be an explosive edge rusher from the first snap of the season.
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1.21 Kansas City Chiefs Akeem Ayers OLB UCLA
The Chiefs have greater needs than linebacker, namely safety and wide receiver but there are no players here that will give them what Ayers will, especially once they move him inside in that 3-4 defense.
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1.22 Indianapolis Colts Corey Liuget DT Illinois
The Colts needs to get tougher up front on defense is a broken record. Seems like every year the thought is that they need to get stout in the middle with a big tackle. This is another one of those years.
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1.23 Philadelphia Eagles Brandon Harris CB Miami (FL)
Not sure I'm sold on Harris as a first round pick, but this late in the round he's a safe pick. He's got a nice skillset and fills a need for the Eagles.
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1.24 New Orleans Saints Stephen Paea DT Oregon State
The speed of the Saints Defense cannot be denied, but they need to get stronger against the run, and drafting the strongest guy in the entire draft class is a step in the right direction.
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1.25 Seattle Seahawks Tyron Smith OT USC
This is a BPA pick for the Seahawks. They probably need a DT more than OT, but Smith is a player on the rise and the Seahawks still need to find a guy to fill the shoes of future Hall of Fame player Walter Jones.
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1.26 Baltimore Ravens Jonathan Baldwin WR Pittsburgh
Could have gone with a CB like Jimmy Smith or Davon House here, but wide out is also a must, and when you have a franchise QB you have to place weapons around him to make him successful.
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1.27 Atlanta Falcons Derek Sherrod OT Mississippi State
Sam Baker had a terrible year and could see himself at guard this year, and with 3 FA tackles on the roster, I doubt all are signed. This means drafting an OT is a top priority for a very talented football team.
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1.28 New England Patriots Phil Taylor DT Baylor
Another Patriots type player. Big zero technique nose guard who can maul double teams. The Patriots defense gets younger and better in two picks, which is typical Patriots.
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1.29 Chicago Bears Anthony Castonzo OT Boston College
Could have easily put Muhammed Wilkerson in there as well, so flipping the picks would be simple. But I like Castonzo's NFL potential much more and think that if the Bears are going to improve especially in the run game, upgrading their offensive line is a must.
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1.30 New York Jets Muhammad Wilkerson DT Temple
The Jets need a NT and while I'm not convinced Wilkerson is a top nose, he's definitely a top 5 technique prospect which should help their pass rush.
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1.31 Pittsburgh Steelers Jimmy Smith CB Colorado
The Steelers problems in their secondary became almost comedy in the Super Bowl. They mist get bigger, faster and more athletic in a hurry. Smith is a prospect who'd taken a hit because he's arrogant but there's no doubt he can play and Coach Tomlin will take care of the ego.
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1.32 Green Bay Packers Justin Houston DE Georgia
A CB makes sense here as well so I wouldn't be shocked if House were the pick, but Houston is a dominant pass rusher who would make a great pairing with Clay Matthews to take some heat off him, and bring the heat to opposing quarterbacks.
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 | Round 1 | 

Last Edited: 03/15/2011




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