Friday, April 27, 2007

Da Kirsch's NFL Mock Draft 2007

It's that time of year again, and my friend Da Kirsch - who has been preparing for this since last year's draft, in which he did an excellent job in retrospect - finally sent me his long awaited mock draft for the first round of this weekend's NFL Draft 2007. And now, let's turn it over to Da Kirsch.
Thanks, Ezzie. Its that time of the year again when the most devoted of football fans (me included) will spend most of their weekend watching their favorite teams change the lives of 224 young men. If the draft goes anything like last year than there will be second guessing of every pick even the first (Mario Williams getting picked ahead of Reggie Bush and Vince Young HUH?!?). Well here is my mock draft the odds of getting even the top 10 picks are large enough so i added some commentary on who each team might pick as a replacement.
And here we go:

1) Oakland Raiders - Jamarcus Russell, QB, LSU:
This pick depends on whether or not Trent Green goes to Miami. The speculation is that if Green goes to Miami then Daunte Culpepper will reunite with Randy Moss in Oakland which then means the Raiders will select Calvin Johnson.
2) Detroit Lions - Gaines Adams, DE, Clemson:
It's no secret the Lions would love to trade down to gain a few extra picks. They feel that taking Adams 2nd is too early and are trying to make a deal with the Buccaneers for the 4th pick where the they would select Adams. They might just take Calvin Johnson, the top rated player, and try to work out a deal later on draft day, because even if they dont work something out at least they have the best player in the draft.
3) Cleveland Browns - Adrian Peterson, RB, Oklahoma:
This is a dangerous selection for the Browns given Peterson's injury history, but with high risk comes high reward. Peterson can become a franchise back in the mold of Terrell Davis.
4) Tampa Bay Buccaneers - Calvin Johnson, WR, Georgia Tech:
If Johnson is still on the board at 4 it will be the easiest pick to make. They will try very hard to get Johnson if Detroit takes him at 2, but are not going to overspend for him the way the Giants did for Eli Manning 3 years ago.
5) Arizona Cardinals - Joe Thomas, OT, Wisconsin:
With the departure of Leonard Davis they need some protection for Matt Leinart and they will slot Thomas in at RT (because Leinart is a lefty) for at least the next 10 years.
6) Washington Redskins - Amobi Okoye, DT, Louisville:
The Redskins need DL help bad so they could go a few ways with this pick Okoye, Jamaal Anderson, or trade down to gain more picks (they don't have a 2nd or 3rd round pick). Rest assured that if they don't move down they will take a D-Lineman as they only had 19 sacks last year.
7) Minnesota Vikings - Brady Quinn, QB, Notre Dame:
The Vikings desperately need an identity at QB. They've tried an unqualified backup (Travaris Jackson) and a just out of retirement veteran (Brad Johnson) - neither a long term solution. Quinn is the most NFL-ready prospect in the draft, who will be similar to Matt Leinart.
8) Atlanta Falcons - Laron Landry, S, LSU:
Landry, the best DB in the draft, will help solidify their secondary and defense overall. He has sub-4.40 speed and is great in both run and pass coverage. Look for him to be an Ed Reed-type player without the attitude.
9) Miami Dolphins - Levi Brown, OT, Penn State:
The consensus is that the Dolphins are looking to upgrade their line though they have needs at receiver and secondary. If they don't take Brown they will choose Leon Hall, the CB from Michigan, or Ted Ginn Jr., the WR from Ohio State.
10) Houston Texans - Ted Ginn, Jr., WR, Ohio State:
They hope that Brown falls to them here, but with the Dolphins already taking Brown they take the next best overall player. Ginn Jr. will help stretch the field playing along side Andre Johnson and the aging Eric Moulds, and eventually will take over the #2 WR spot from Moulds. Personally I think if Brown is off the board they will trade down, but have not heard anything about that yet.
11) San Francisco 49ers - Alan Branch, DT, Michigan:
Branch will be a perfect fit in the 3-4 defense the 49ers will be playing this season; his size is perfect for a nose tackle. They might try to get Ginn if he is out there, but look for them to add someone to help that defense.
12) Buffalo Bills - Patrick Willis, LB, Ole Miss:
After reaching on both first round picks last year the Bills fill a big need and get great value in Willis. After losing both London Fletcher and Takeo Spikes, this pick is a no-brainer. May also go with Leon Hall to replace the departure of Nate Clements.
13) St. Louis Rams - Jamaal Anderson, DE, Arkansas:
With Ginn off the board they turn to DE. They have needs at WR, DB, and LB also but they also need help on DL and Anderson, a top 10 prospect, will help.
14) Carolina Panthers - Greg Olsen, TE, Miami:
The Panthers need a downfield threat to take some pressure away from Steve Smith and Olsen with a great combination of power, size, and speed will help.
15) Pittsburgh Steelers - Adam Carricker, DL/LB, Nebraska:
With only their 3rd coach in team history don't look for the Steelers to change the way they play. They are going to love Carriker's versatility ala Joey Porter who is getting older.
16) Green Bay Packers - Marshawn Lynch, RB, California:
This pick has been predicted since February. The Packers' needs are great but none more so than at RB where they have had a guy who walked off the street (Samkon Gado) playing for them the last 2 years. Ahman Green is unreliable and Lynch will step in right away and take over the job. He has the versatility to be a Tiki Barber-type back.
17) Jacksonville Jaguars - Reggie Nelson, S, Florida:
One of the most versatile players in the draft will fit in great in the Jaguars defense. Nelson is fast enough to play man and is tough enough to play the run. He is a "center field" type safety who will be all over the field making plays.
18) Cincinnati Bengals - Leon Hall, CB, Michigan:
With the way they have drafted in the past they look to a player who not only is great athlete but also has great character. Hall who is tough in man coverage and has some playmaking ability will solidify the Bengals secondary and bring some class to this organization.
19) Tennessee Titans - Darrelle Revis, CB, Pittsburgh:
With Pacman Jones suspended for the season and his future in doubt they need to get a replacement for him. He has good size and plays well in zone. They might look for a receiver here but it would be a reach for Dwayne Bowe of LSU or Dwayne Jarret of USC whose stock has plummeted from first round to late 2nd.
20) New York Giants - Lawrence Timmons, LB, FSU:
The Giants have needs at LB, OL, and DB, but here they get the best available player. The more popular pick would be Penn St. LB Paul Posluzny but he has a history of injury, and the new GM has to be a little cautious after the way he handled the offseason. Joe Staley OT from Central Michigan would be the pick at OL, but although his stock is rising, taking him here would be too early.
21) Denver Broncos - Chris Houston, CB, Arkansas:
They would like to return their secondary to the elite unit it was last year and after the losses the Broncos had in the offseason, they take Houston, a gifted athelete with great speed. They may take Staley here, he fits perfectly into their zone blocking scheme, because he won't be around when they pick again.
22) Dallas Cowboys - Robert Meachem, WR, Tennessee:
They addressed most of their needs in free agency so look for the Cowboys to add a #2 (and future #1) reciever who has size (6'2"), speed (4.38/40), and production (this year 71rec., 1298yds., 11tds.) They could take Miami S Brandon Meriweather to line up opposite Roy Williams.
23) Kansas City Chiefs - Steve Smith, WR, USC:
This is one of my favorite players in the draft for a few reasons:
  • 1. He has outplayed more heralded receivers his whole career (Mike Williams & Dwayne Jarret).
  • 2. He is consistent.
  • 3. Great character and personality (most people don't even know who he is).
  • 4. Always shows up on gameday and gives the extra effort. Turned out great combine numbers and would be the receiver KC has lacked for a decade.
24) New England Patriots - Michael Griffin, DB, Texas:
Can play CB or S and that versatilitly fits perfectly in Coach Bellichek's scheme. Could also select a LB here, but Griffin won't be available when they pick again at 28.
25) New York Jets - Jarvis Moss, DE, Florida:
The Jets had a good season under first year coach Eric Mangini and, like his mentor, he too likes versatility: Moss can play DE or LB (in a 3-4 scheme) and Mangini will find ways for this talented pass rusher to get to the QB.
26) Philadelphia Eagles - Brandon Meriweather, S, Miami (FL):
Playing games in the NFC East means recievers like T.O., Plaxico Burress, and Santana Moss - players that can change a game with one catch. It's important to have safeties that hit hard and cover ground. Meriwether will join an athletic secondary that is filled Pro-Bowlers and great players.
27) New Orleans Saints - Paul Posluszny, LB, Penn State:
The Saints need a leader on defefnse and Posluszny will provide that. He will help stop the run, a big problem area for the Saints last year. They might go for a DT like Justin Harrell of Tennessee, but this is a player Sean Peyton will love.
28) New England Patriots - Jon Beason, LB, Miami:
Their biggest weaknesses last year were WR and LB depth. Beason will add speed and depth to an aging LB core excluding FA pickup Adalius Thomas. The Patriots always are the Oakland Athletics of the NFL they have the best war room and always pull a pick out of nowhere(Logan Mankins) so they might suprise all of us with another.
29) Baltimore Ravens - Ryan Kalil, C, USC:
Kalil is an offensive lineman who is versatile and can play multiple positions. He would add youth to a very old line, and though he won't replace Future HOFer Jonathan Ogden, it's a good start at rebuilding the line into the powerhouse of the past.
30) San Diego Chargers - Dwayne Bowe, WR, LSU:
This is the Chargers' biggest need other than CB, but there isn't much value here. Bowe arrived after a stellar Senior Bowl and has the size and speed needed to be a productive WR in the NFL.
31) Chicago Bears - Tony Ugoh, OL, Arkansas:
The Bears would select a LB if one of the top 5 fell to them here, but that's not likely, so they add a cog to their OL who can help protect erratic QB Rex Grossman. They also need a backup RB, but look for them to add one in the second round like Auburn's Kenny Irons or Louisville's Michael Bush.
32) Indianapolis Colts - Justin Harrell, DT, Tennessee:
The biggest problem the Colts had last year was stopping the run and that problem miraculously went away in the playoffs, so look for them to add a run-stopper like Harrel or Ohio St. DT Quinn Pitcock, who for some reason's stock has fallen. Also look for them to add depth to the RB group in later rounds.

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