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Mocking the draft: Take 4

03.10.10 at 1:49 pm ET
By isn’€™t batting an eye when it comes to the 2010 NFL Draft. From interviews with experts to original mock drafts to weekly looks at potential Patriots, this is the place to be leading up to draft weekend, April 22-24.

The fourth crack at’s mock draft is, like past editions, a little clearer given the events of the previous days. Free agency has taught us a lot, and the trades that have taken place make certain picks a little less likely. As usual, some players have moved up and down the mock since last week and we now welcome Jahvid Best, Maurkice Pouncey and Cam Thomas. Here’s how we see things shaking out.

1.  St. Louis (1-15) Sam Bradford, QB, Oklahoma The McNabb rumors appear to be just that, and unless the Rams get a franchise quarterback some other way, Bradford remains the choice to go in this spot.

2.  Detroit (2-14) Ndamukong Suh, DT, Nebraska Believe it or not, the Lions have actually done very well for themselves this offseason and appear to have some direction. Nate Burleson will be a solid No. 2 receiver and Kyle Vanden Bosch begins to strengthen the defensive line. Adding Suh or McCoy will bring them one step closer to respectability.

3.  Tampa Bay (3-13) Gerald McCoy, DT, Oklahoma So far, the Buccaneers‘ offseason has been slightly less exciting than “The English Patient,” but landing perhaps the most lively player in the draft would change that.

4.  Washington (4-12) Russell Okung, OT, Oklahoma State Considering that the Redskins gave Jason Campbell a first-round tender, we’ll refrain from assigning Washington a quarterback here until Campbell is traded.

5.  Kansas City (4-12)Eric Berry, S, Tennessee It’s hard to project what a team with so many needs will do in such a deep draft, but the best player available method is smart for a team that’s at least a couple of years away from contending.

6.  Seattle (5-11)  Jimmy Clausen, QB, Notre Dame The Jason Campbell news means Clausen just may end up with the guy who failed to convince him to attend USC. Clausen is a better prospect this year than Mark Sanchez was a year ago.

7.  Cleveland (5-11) Jason Pierre-Paul, DE/OLB, South Florida The fact that he said he hasn’t been working on becoming a 3-4 outside linebacker is  worrisome, but the Browns need someone on the defensive side of the ball that people will fear, even if it takes time.

8.  Oakland (5-11) Anthony Davis, OT, Rutgers Bruce Campbell was the fastest tackle at the combine, but apparently it is Davis with whom the Raiders fell in love in Indy.

9.  Buffalo (6-10)  Dan Williams, DT, Tennessee Bryan Bulaga would be great in this spot, but if the Bills want to transition to the 3-4 without too many hiccups, they need a nose tackle.

10.  Jacksonville (7-9) Dez Bryant, WR, Oklahoma State The prediction remains that the Jaguars move down (the Patriots are actually a logical trade partner considering New England has Jacksonville’s second-rounder) and take Tim Tebow in the late first/early second round. Considering that they have already addressed the team’s biggest need ‘€” pass-rushing defensive end ‘€” with the Aaron Kampman acquisition, they could move down, take Tebow, and address the organization’s biggest need: ticket sales.

11.  Denver [from Chicago] (7-9) Jared Odrick, DT, Penn State Even with the Jarvis Green signing, the Broncos need help on their defensive line. Odrick would start over Kenny Peterson or Ryan McBean any day of the week.

12.  Miami (7-9) Joe Haden, CB, Florida The Karlos Dansby signing takes Rolando McClain out of the argument, and with Dan Williams gone, cornerback is the option, though teams have begun to sour on Haden.

13.  San Francisco (8-8) Bryan Bulaga, OT, Iowa This would be the ideal scenario for the 49ers. Bulaga is a top-10 talent and could allow San Francisco to bump fourth-year lineman Joe Staley to the right side.

14.  Seattle [from Denver] (8-8) C.J. Spiller, RB, Clemson I still believe that this draft is far too good to justify going with a running back in the first round, but Clausen and Spiller would give Pete Carroll’s offense a new identity.

15.  New York Giants (8-8) Rolando McClain, ILB, Alabama Making Antrelle Rolle the highest-paid safety was questionable, but if the Giants are that invested in upgrading their defense, McClain makes all the sense in the world.

16.  Tennessee (8-8) Derrick Morgan, DE, Georgia Tech This is a pick that has been predicted for weeks with the potential departure of Vanden Bosch. Now that he’s officially gone, it’s only logical to replace him with Morgan.

17.  San Francisco [from Carolina] (8-8) Earl Thomas, S, Texas When NFL Network draft guru Mike Mayock calls somebody the most instinctive safety of the last 10 years, people listen. It’s still crazy to think that three safeties could go in the first round, but Berry, Thomas and Taylor Mays all are good enough.

18.  Pittsburgh (9-7) Kyle Wilson, CB, Boise St. Former Browns scout Daniel Jeremiah says that some teams have Wilson ahead of Joe Haden on their boards. Whether or not he’s the best corner in this draft, he’d be a good value at No. 18 and fills a need in Pittsburgh.

19.  Atlanta (9-7) Brandon Graham, DE/OLB, Michigan Yes, Graham is undersized even if he stays on the line in a 4-3, but if even one team is as high on his motor as the entire country seems to be, he’ll be gone in the first round. John Abraham isn’t getting any younger.

20.  Houston (9-7) Devin McCourty, CB, Rutgers The Texans should have used the money they gave Kevin Walter to try to retain Dunta Robinson. Now a team that was already thin at CB has no choice but to go cornerback in the first round.

21.  Cincinnati (10-6) Arrelious Benn, WR, Illinois The Bengals are another team that should be high on Odrick, but they might need to move up to get him. Benn has good speed and strength for his size and will eventually be the No. 1 receiver in Cincinnati when Chad Ochocinco is gone.

22.  New England (10-6) Ricky Sapp, DE/OLB, Clemson Sapp makes an awful lot of sense as far as landing a fast outside linebacker goes, but at this point the Patriots’ best option may be to move up and try to secure Odrick. They have the ammunition to do so, and following the loss of Jarvis Green, defensive end may be their biggest need. If they stay put, however, they fill their second-greatest need with Sapp.

23.  Green Bay (11-5) Bruce Campbell, OT, Maryland Campbell should go a little higher than here, but even if he’s off the board the Packers can still add to their offensive line with someone like Trent Williams.

24.  Philadelphia (11-5) Sergio Kindle, DE, Texas Should Kindle fall this far, he would be tough to pass on, though Taylor Mays could also get some consideration here.

25.  Baltimore (9-7) Jermaine Gresham, TE, Oklahoma Todd Heap is nowhere near the tight end he once was, and if the Ravens are this committed to giving Joe Flacco elite targets they may be willing to take a risk on Gresham.

26.  Arizona (10-6) Taylor Mays, S, USC With Antrelle Rolle among the players lost over the last week, the Cardinals have to replace their stars before filling other needs. Otherwise, nose tackle could be given some attention.

27.  Dallas (11-5) Mike Iupati, OG, Idaho With starting left guard Kyle Rosier a year away from free agency, the Cowboys could land Iupati at a great value and spend the 2010 season grooming him to take over in 2011.

28.  San Diego (13-3) Ryan Mathews, RB, Fresno State Guaranteed to be a better pick than Buster Davis was. Remember that?

29.  New York Jets (9-7) Everson Griffen, DE, USC With cornerback no longer a need, the Jets can go in a few different directions, but Griffen or Carlos Dunlap would be the best available player.

30.  Minnesota (12-4) Jahvid Best, RB, California The Vikings are better off building a lethal 1-2 punch with Adrian Peterson and Best than going after Chargers castoff LaDainian Tomlinson.

31.  Indianapolis (14-2) Maurkice Pouncey, OL, Florida The Colts will be in the market for a guard following the release of Ryan Lilja, and Pouncey has the versatility to play multiple positions on the line.

32.  New Orleans (13-3) Carlos Dunlap, DE, Florida Based on talent, Dunlap doesn’t belong at the bottom of the first round. Based on motivation, any pick in the the first round could be a reach for the former Gator.

Read More: 2010 NFL Draft, Mock Draft,



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