Those changes -- in draft order, apparent team needs, player stock, etc. -- are well displayed in our Mock Draft 2.0, which features 29 picks varying from the first go-round. Just three teams held steady from Mock Draft 1.1 to this latest incarnation. So who goes No. 1? Where's Cam Newton headed? What do the 2010 playoff teams look for in Round 1?
FanHouse's NFL team has the answers ...
- 1. Panthers: Nick Fairley, DE/DT, Auburn (Previous pick: A.J. Green)
With the first pick in the draft, Carolina will happily take the best overall player. Fairley can play immediately and wreak havoc in the pass rush as well as be a formidable force against the run. He's a physical beast and even has upside.
-- Knox Bardeen
- 2. Broncos: Patrick Peterson, CB, LSU (Previous pick: Prince Amukamara)
Champ Bailey is almost certainly leaving the roost, creating a pretty big opening in the defensive backfield. Peterson has the size and athleticism to fill it with little problem, and he'll add life to the return game to boot.
-- Josh Alper
- 3. Bills: Von Miller, LB, Texas A&M (Previous pick: Ryan Mallett)
With an endless number of holes on offense and defense, the Bills will be drafting the best player available. While the team desperately needs a franchise QB, it won't pass on Miller, a legitimate top-five prospect that Buffalo had the opportunity to coach closely at the Senior Bowl.
-- R.J. White
- 4. Bengals: Da'Quan Bowers, DE, Clemson (Previous pick: Bowers)
It's hard to see Bowers slipping any further than this, even with minor knee surgery putting his NFL Combine status in doubt. That said, the Bengals would be thrilled to sit at this spot and choose between Bowers, A.J. Green and Cam Newton.
-- Chris Burke
- 5. Cardinals: Marcell Dareus, DL, Alabama (Previous pick: Nick Fairley)
Yes, they desperately need a quarterback, but the chances of Ken Whisenhunt putting his job security in the hands of Newton or anyone else seem quite slim. The NFC West can be won in other ways, including by adding a dynamic player like Dareus to a front seven that needs to put more pressure on the quarterback. He can play end in a 3-4 or inside in a 4-3, giving the Cards flexibility, and he'll get to the passer in both situations.
- 6. Browns: A.J. Green, WR, Georgia (Previous Pick: Justin Blackmon)
With the Browns looking committed to Colt McCoy at quarterback, it's time to find the youngster some weapons. Green, who could come off the board before this in April, certainly fits the bill.
- 7. 49ers: Prince Amukamara, CB, Nebraska (Previous pick: Cam Newton)
Jim Harbaugh and Alex Smith have been getting very chummy out in the Bay Area, something that strengthens the possibility that the two men will be working together whenever the 2011 season gets underway. That means fixing the league's 24th-ranked defense will take first priority for the 49ers. Amukamara isn't far behind Peterson as an athlete or as a player, which will make him a fine replacement for Nate Clements
- 8. Titans: Blaine Gabbert, QB, Missouri (Previous pick: Marcel Dareus)
With Vince Young officially out of the Titans' long-term plans, Tennessee needs to find its next franchise quarterback. While Newton may be a little too close to Young for the organization's comfort, Gabbert has emerged as another top-10 option at quarterback. The team may want to also sign a short-term veteran like Marc Bulger, as Gabbert will likely need a year or two preparation before he's thrown under center.
- 9. Cowboys: J.J. Watt, DE, Wisconsin (Previous pick: Patrick Peterson)
The Cowboys have multiple free agents at the defensive end position scheduled to leave this offseason, and since the organization has always placed a premium on building a strong front seven on defense, it makes sense to bring in Watt, who could be the best 3-4 end in this draft.
- 10. Redskins: Cam Newton, QB, Auburn (Previous pick: Jake Locker)
The Redskins obviously weren't satisfied with Donovan McNabb, who saw himself benched in favor of Rex Grossman late last season. Anyone that's seen him play knows Grossman isn't the answer at quarterback, and Dan Snyder is well suited to grab a buzzworthy name like Newton, who shined at his pre-Combine individual workout. Expect Newton to start from Day 1.
- 11. Texans: Robert Quinn, LB, North Carolina (Previous pick: Von Miller)
Wade Phillips is in town, and that means it's time for a schematic change on defense for the Texans. Quinn's game tape may be over a year old, but the pass-rusher has the ability to generate tons of pressure, a trait that should come to the surface at the combine. If he lives up to his potential, Quinn should give Phillips his new DeMarcus Ware-type player to build the defense around.
- 12. Vikings: Ryan Kerrigan, DE, Purdue (Previous pick: Robert Quinn)
Cameron Jordan would make sense here as well for the Vikings, who need to revamp on the defensive line. But it's hard to dispute Kerrigan's motor and ability to get to the quarterback. He could be a difference-maker right away.
- 13. Lions: Nate Solder, OT, Colorado (Previous pick: Derek Sherrod)
The Lions absolutely have to continue upgrading their line -- or risk losing Matthew Stafford to injury yet again -- and Solder is at the top of the OL board in this draft.
- 14. Rams: Julio Jones, WR, Alabama (Previous pick: Jones)
They've got the quarterback, running back and coordinator, now they just need an impact receiver. Enter Jones -- size, speed and hands aplenty for the burgeoning boys from Missouri.
- 15. Dolphins: Mark Ingram, RB, Alabama (Previous pick: Blaine Gabbert)
Most mock drafts slot Ingram in here, and there's a good reason for it: The Dolphins' top two running backs are free agents, and the former Heisman Trophy winner is undoubtedly one of the top talents in this draft. The game plan could change if Ronnie Brown or Ricky Williams are re-signed, but for now, Ingram is the slam dunk pick here.
- 16. Jaguars: Cameron Jordan, DE, Cal (Previous pick: Adrian Clayborn)
Jordan has been shooting up draft boards after a strong Senior Bowl week. A talented pass rusher that also stacks up against the run, Jordan should fill the hole Derrick Harvey has failed to fill for Jacksonville to this point.
- 17. Patriots (from Raiders): Tyron Smith, OT, USC (Previous pick: Akeem Ayers)
The athletic Smith is primed to have an eye-opening combine, which should stick him right in the middle of the first round, if not higher. The Patriots are set up to have an impressive draft with several quality picks, and they'll look to take the best talent at this point of the draft. That's Smith, who will replace free agent Matt Light.
- 18. Chargers: Adrian Clayborn, DE, Iowa (Previous pick: Ryan Kerrigan)
The Chargers could use help up front and could get a steal in a player who seemed to have top-10 talent entering his senior season. It's a roll of the dice, but it's the kind of gamble that has a good chance of paying off with a player of Clayborn's size and speed.
- 19. Giants: Akeem Ayers, OLB, UCLA (Previous pick: Anthony Castonzo)
The Giants are pretty well off at most positions, but Clint Sintim has been a disappointment on the strong side, ultimately losing his starting job to past-his-prime defender Keith Bulluck. Ayers does everything well, and that should translate into success as an NFL starter.
- 20. Buccaneers: Aldon Smith, DE, Missouri (Previous pick: Cameron Heyward)
The Bucs shored up the interior of their defensive line last season in the draft and are now in dire need of a pass-rushing defensive end. Smith is a gifted pass-rusher with great range on the outside. He could stand to add some bulk, but already possesses the capability to turn inside and rush the passer through a gap. Smith has the athleticism and length that the Bucs just can't pass up with this pick.
- 21. Chiefs: Justin Houston, LB, Georgia (Previous pick: Jonathan Baldwin)
Mike Vrabel needs replacing on a defense that can't afford to miss a beat if the Chiefs hope to turn last year's success into the start of something big. With Tamba Hali on the other side, Houston could become a pass-rushing force right out of the gate.
- 22. Colts: Anthony Costanzo, OT, Boston College (Previous pick: Nate Solder)
The Colts ignored the tackle position in last year's draft, even though it was arguably their most pressing need. After a disappointing season where Peyton Manning had trouble falling into a rhythm, they'll address the position early this year. Costanzo is a well-rounded tackle prospect who possesses first-rate intangibles, something Indianapolis is sure to appreciate.
- 23. Eagles: Jimmy Smith, CB, Colorado (Previous pick: Janoris Jenkins)
The Eagles' need for a quality cornerback can't be overstated; the pass defense sprung a leak early that turned into a flood when Asante Samuel was injured. There's an argument as to which cornerback deserves No. 3 status behind Peterson and Amukamura, but Smith has the highest potential to shine at the Combine.
- 24. Saints: Cameron Heyward, DE, Ohio State (Previous pick: Drake Nevis)
The guy was an absolute beast in Ohio State's bowl win, somewhat masking an up-and-down season overall. Still, when you talk about guys with the potential to be playmakers right out of the chute, Heyward has to be on the list. He could be a steal at 24 or lower.
- 25. Seahawks: Mike Pouncey, G/C, Florida (Previous pick: Allen Bailey)
It seemed like the Seahawks started a different offensive line every single week last season, which makes it all the more stunning that they actually played 18 games. Pouncey, along with Russell Okung, will help make that a thing of the past as the Pete Carroll era lurches forward.
- 26. Ravens: Titus Young, WR, Boise State (Previous pick: Stephen Paea)
This guy is flying up draft boards, and he would give the Ravens a young, downfield threat -- something this team is definitely missing. Combine him with Derrick Mason and Anquan Boldin, and you've got a three-man WR group that can stack up with just about any in the AFC.
- 27. Falcons: Kyle Rudolph, TE, Notre Dame (Previous pick: Jared Crick)
Is this the Falcons' biggest area of need? No. Probably not even close, assuming Tony Gonzalez returns in 2011. But Gonzalez is aging and Rudolph is a tremendous value pick at this spot. It comes down to taking the clear-cut No. 1 guy at a position vs. taking a reach elsewhere.
- 28. Patriots: Jonathan Baldwin, WR, Pittsburgh (Previous pick: Mark Ingram)
Having a copious amount of early picks, the Patriots have the advantage of selecting the best player available at each pick instead of focusing on one position. Here they go with Baldwin, a big threat with the size and speed to give the offense another Randy Moss-type threat.
- 29. Bears: Gabe Carimi, OT, Wisconsin (Previous pick: Carimi)
This was the Bears pick during our first mock, and I don't see any reason to change it. Carimi's a little raw, but should be able to step right in and play for Chicago. Don't sleep on the Bears taking WR Torrey Smith if he's here, though.
- 30. Jets: Brandon Harris, CB, Miami (Previous pick: J.J. Watt)
Word is that the Jets are planning to let Antonio Cromartie leave in free agency, and with Darrelle Revis lined up against the offense's top weapon, the other Jets cornerbacks figure to get plenty of work. That necessitates bringing in a talented cornerback in Harris that is willing to play physical on every play.
- 31. Steelers: Ben Ijalana, OT, Villanova (Previous pick: Mike Pouncey)
Harris would have looked good here, but with him off the board, the Steelers add some youth at tackle, where they are otherwise relying on Flozell Adams or bringing back Willie Colon in free agency.
-- J.J. Cooper
- 32. Packers: Mikel Leshoure, RB, Illinois (Previous pick: Aaron Williams)
As is often the case with the Super Bowl champions, it's hard to pinpoint major problem spots for the Packers. The offensive line could use some help, as could a couple spots on defense. But Green Bay's a "best player available" type of team and Leshoure would add a lot to a run game that may or may not get Ryan Grant back at 100 percent in 2011.