And while there's still plenty of time before the real NFL Draft takes place in April, the combine didn't do a whole lot to change our thinking-- at least, not at the onset of the first round. The top seven picks in our Mock Draft 2.0 stayed the same from Mock Draft 1.0, which means Ndamukong Suh (pictured) is still tabbed for St. Louis at No. 1, with Gerald McCoy penciled in as Detroit's selection
But things start to get real interesting with the eighth pick in our newest mock, as a player not selected period in our first go-round lands with the Raiders. That move set off some dominoes that fell throughout the remainder of the round.
Check out all the updated picks below.
- 1. Rams: Ndamukong Suh, DT, Nebraska (Previous Pick: Suh)
An incredibly strong showing at the combine by the beast of a defensive tackle will help to stave off all the talk of drafting Sam Bradford.
-- Matt Snyder
- 2. Lions: Gerald McCoy, DT, Oklahoma (Previous Pick: McCoy)
With Suh off the board and Detroit no longer in need of a QB, there just aren't a lot of guys the Lions could justify picking here. Maybe an OT, maybe Eric Berry -- though Louis Delmas makes that questionable. So it's the best player method and if Suh's No. 1, McCoy's 1a.
-- Chris Burke
- 3. Buccaneers: Eric Berry, S, Tennessee (Previous Pick: Berry)
It's a shame that Berry is falling on draft boards due to the fact that he's a safety. He's a field general -- and a smart one at that. You should also consider that he's versatile enough to play in pass coverage and hit like a linebacker. Only Suh is more dominant at his position than Berry at his.
-- Knox Bardeen
- 4. Redskins: Russell Okung, OT, Oklahoma State (Previous Pick: Okung)
If the first three picks fall this way, the Redskins will probably use their entire time trying to decide if Bradford or Jimmy Clausen is their QB of the future. But the truth is, you could put Peyton Manning behind that Washington line and he'd have issues. It needs a fix and Okung's a great start.
- 5. Chiefs: Anthony Davis, OT, Rutgers (Previous Pick: Davis)
With neither of the big-name QB's being taken before the four-spot, a trade down here seems really likely (particularly if it's one that can land Kansas City Rolando McClain in a few picks). That being said, the Chiefs may be interested in protecting their franchise signal-caller, so either Bryan Bulaga or Davis fit the mold.
-- Will Brinson
- 6. Seahawks: Sam Bradford, QB, Oklahoma (Previous Pick: Bradford)
Hard to imagine that a) Pete Carroll believes he's safe at QB right now, and b) that he wouldn't be interested in landing a franchise guy here. Bradford fits that mold, particularly if he falls out of the top five thanks to injury concern.
- 7. Browns: Joe Haden, CB, Florida (Previous Pick: Haden)
Okay, he didn't run that well at the combine. But how did a strong combine work out for Courtney Brown? Or Gerard Warren, Tim Couch and William Green? Haden was terrific during games and that matters more than a bad sprint in underwear. Plus, he's still faster than any Brown not named Josh Cribbs, right?
-- Josh Alper
- 8. Raiders: Bruce Campbell, OT, Maryland (Previous Pick: Jason Pierre-Paul)
Campbell's an interesting case of draft-itis, because he's got (clearly) monster talent, most of which was flashed at the combine, when he ran a beastly 40 and put up all-around excellent numbers. So why, then, does Campbell's list of college accolades read like this: "ACC Lineman of the Week, Week 7, 2008"? (Read: Not a whole lot of love for a guy supposedly so great.) But who is more likely to pair overhyped former teammates -- you remember Darrius Heyward-Bey, of course -- than Al Davis? No one, that's who.
- 9. Bills: Jimmy Clausen, QB, Notre Dame (Previous Pick: Clausen)
The Bills absolutely need a franchise QB. Is Clausen that guy? Maybe, maybe not. But after years of continually missing out on the top QB prospects, the Bills can ill-afford to pass on Clausen and be wrong. Developing a franchise QB in Buffalo should buy coach Chan Gailey and his staff a few years, at the least.
-- R.J. White
- 10. Jaguars: Jason Pierre-Paul, DE, USF (Previous Pick: Derrick Morgan)
Having both Pierre-Paul and Derrick Morgan available at this pick forces the Jaguars to make an interesting decision. Both shined at the combine, and both should be early first-round selections. The Jags go with Pierre-Paul here, though, due to his enormous upside potential. To be this good after only one year of Division I football speaks volumes for what he can turn himself into.
- 11. Broncos (From Bears): Rolando McClain, LB, Alabama (Previous Pick: McClain)
Same stuff applies as the last time around: Brandon Marshall may or may not need to be replaced and Dez Bryant is on the board, but McClain fills a better need. And given that Marshall appears to be less a "problem child" and more a "tortured kid dealing with a horrifically tragic memory that won't go away," there's a lot more hope that he could end up working out.
- 12. Dolphins: Dez Bryant, WR, Oklahoma State (Previous Pick: Bryant)
With McClain gone, the Dolphins look to add a target for Chad Henne. They get the best receiver in the draft in Bryant -- a game-changing player to spread the field and make things happen.
- 13. 49ers: Bryan Bulaga, OT, Iowa (Previous Pick: Trent Williams)
Mike Singletary just peed his old school pants on the ground. Er, um, right. Whatever ... if the Niners end up landing a talent like Bulaga this late in the draft, Singletary will be excited. Bonus if Oakland reaches for Campbell and lets Bulaga go: for the second year in a row, San Fran will have gotten a massive upgrade on their draft pick because Al Davis is insane.
- 14. Seahawks (From Broncos): Derrick Morgan, DE, GT (Previous Pick: Spiller)
It's really, really hard to shake the idea that Carroll would pass on a guy like C.J. Spiller, who epitomizes what Reggie Bush was for him at USC. But Patrick Kerney isn't getting any younger and Morgan reps some serious upside at this spot in the draft, not to mention fills a position of need.
- 15. Giants: Brian Price, DT, UCLA (Previous Pick: Price)
The Giants need help all over the defense, including the middle of the defensive line. Price can fill that need, and his seven sacks as a junior give hope that he can help revitalize a pass-rushing attack that was wildly overrated last season.
- 16. Titans: Carlos Dunlap, DE, Florida (Previous Pick: Everson Griffen)
Tennessee needs to get younger at defensive end, as Jevon Kearse has already been told he won't be back and Kyle Vanden Bosch is an unrestricted free agent. Thankfully, there are plenty of chances to fix that in a deep DL draft. Dunlap isn't The Freak Jr., but like Kearse, another ex-Gator, Dunlap does have extremely long arms and plenty of athleticism.
-- J.J. Cooper
- 17. 49ers (From Panthers): Earl Thomas, S, Texas (Previous Pick: Thomas)
In the words of the Talking Heads, "Same as it ever was." Thomas is still a great value here -- although given Haden's combine performance, he might actually be sitting there when San Fran gets up to make its pick. Either that or Thomas could go earlier.
- 18. Steelers: Mike Iupati, G, Idaho (Previous Pick: Iupati)
Pittsburgh has needs at safety, cornerback and on the offensive line. Thomas going at No. 17 means the Steelers would be better off waiting until the second round or trading down for a safety, and there's no CB -- other than Haden who is already gone -- who fits at No. 18. So Iupati's instant impact at guard is the best bet.
- 19. Falcons: Sergio Kindle, OLB/DE, Texas (Previous Pick: Kindle)
The Falcons' brass say they are happy with their defensive line, meaning the team either goes with a linebacker or a defensive back. Kindle had a good combine and is an explosive playmaker that some feel is more polished heading into the draft this year than Brian Orakpo was last year.
- 20. Texans: C.J. Spiller, RB, Clemson (Previous Pick: Taylor Mays)
The Texans need help on defense, especially at defensive back given Dunta Robinson's departure, but perhaps the best defense is an even more explosive offense (or maybe winning the field-position battle). Maybe this is the year the Texans stop making-do at running back and draft a high-pick, multi-purpose running back (without a fumbling history).
-- Stephanie Stradley
- 21. Bengals: Taylor Mays, S, USC (Previous Pick: Dunlap)
Mays is a big, physical safety that would be a great addition to the Bengals secondary, even though there are huge questions surrounding his ability to actually defend or tackle. He will make some big plays and step up against the run, though. That said, don't be shocked if Golden Tate slips into this pick -- Cincinnati needs a No. 2 receiver and Tate's stock keeps rising.
- 22. Patriots: Brandon Graham, DE/LB, Michigan (Previous Pick: Dan Williams)
Graham gets knocked for being a bit short, something that hasn't hurt Elvis Dumervil or Robert Mathis when they rush the passer. He runs well, though, and his game tape will look mighty good to a team that needs a jolt to help their front seven get after the quarterback.
- 23. Packers: Kyle Wilson, CB, Boise State (Previous Pick: Bryan Baluga)
Someone needs to help this pass defense. After watching his guys get absolutely destroyed in losses to Pittsburgh and Arizona, general manager Ted Thompson has to make an upgrade. And, no, getting Al Harris, 35, back healthy will not qualify as an upgrade. He should be no more than a nickel corner at this stage in his career.
-- Bruce Ciskie
- 24. Eagles: Trent Williams, OT, Oklahoma (Previous Pick: Patrick Robinson)
The Eagles could be looking for best available here, and with Williams falling to them, Andy Reid won't hesitate to spend another high pick on an offensive lineman. At his best, Williams can play right tackle for the Eagles. Or he could wind up on the inside of the line, where the Eagles have plenty of issues.
- 25. Ravens: Jermaine Gresham, TE, Oklahoma (Previous Pick: Golden Tate)
Back in the golden days, the Ravens could count on elite TE production from Todd Heap. Even though Heap is still with the team, multiple injuries have sapped much of his ability and value. As the best TE prospect in the draft and one of the best playmaking tight ends to come out in recent years, Gresham should be a hot commodity come draft day.
- 26. Cardinals: Everson Griffen, DE, USC (Previous Pick: Ricky Sapp)
Griffen has enough athleticism to play OLB pass rusher in a 3-4 or get down in a stance at DE in a 4-3 scheme. This will work well as the Cardinals look to fill lots of holes on its defense from mass departures earlier this offseason.
- 27. Cowboys: Jared Odrick, DT/DE, Penn St. (Previous Pick: Odrick)
This pick would likely hinge on Marcus Spears departing Dallas, and if he does, Odrick could fill his spot. The Cowboys could also look at bringing in secondary help, but the value just isn't there at pick No. 27.
- 28. Chargers: Jonathan Dwyer, RB, Georgia Tech (Previous Pick: Dwyer)
Even more so than during our first mock draft (what with LaDainian Tomlinson gone and Darren Sproles possibly exiting as well), San Diego needs to land a feature back with this pick. The good news is that they'll have their choice of whomever they want ... and seeing them trade up to lock down a guy they love (Spiller, Ryan Mathews or even Dwyer) wouldn't be shocking at all.
- 29. Jets: Golden Tate, WR, Notre Dame (Previous Pick: Kyle Wilson)
The Jets might have bigger needs, but the corners at this point are a bit difficult to distinguish from one another, and the thought of missing on another edge rusher after Vernon Gholston looms large. So they'll go best player available and take Tate off the board. His speed and hands will make Mark Sanchez look better in his second season and make the Jets a more difficult offense to defend.
- 30. Vikings: Devin McCourty, CB, Rutgers (Previous Pick: Dominique Franks)
The Vikings need a corner with Antoine Winfield getting old and Cedric Griffin rehabbing an ACL injury. McCourty turned in a very solid 4.48 time at the combine which helps alleviate some of the concerns about his speed.
- 31. Colts: Dan Williams, DT, Tennessee (Previous Pick: Maurkice Pouncey)
One would think the Colts would be delighted to see Williams fall here. He's a superb run stopper who could also keep the pressure off Dwight Freeney and Robert Mathis in the pass rush. Then again, the most difficult thing in a mock draft is trying to figure out which direction Bill Polian goes. The only thing we really know the Colts won't do is take a quarterback.
- 32. Saints: Sean Weatherspoon, OLB, Missouri (Previous Pick: Weatherspoon)
The Saints will look to upgrade speed and playmaking ability on the defensive side of the ball. Weatherspoon not only fits the bill here, he's a steal at the end of the first round.