2014 NFL Mock Draft: Way Early!
This is entirely too early, but why not drop a 2014 NFL Mock Draft for fun? That’s what this is all about. There is no way to really project what will actually happen before an entire year of games are to be played but this isn’t the Mock Draft HQ for nothing.
With that said, let’s get rolling on 2014 early (Updated 2-6-14):
1. Texans: Jadeveon Clowney DE South Carolina
Back to Clowney #1. He’s had a few speeding tickets, but nothing that has caused any real concern. Teams are in love with his raw talent it’s just the question of will he get comfortable once he gets paid.
I almost changed this pick, but hearing the press conference after Gary Kubiak was fired tells me this won’t be a QB. This team feels they have the talent to make the playoffs next season barring they find a QB. These are Bob McNair’s words, not mine. That tells me they will trade for a QB or acquire someone in free agency.
The Texans are also giving up 118 rushing yards per game which isn’t horrible, but needs to come down by about 20%. They will go with the BPA.
2. Rams: Jake Matthews OT Texas AM
Sam Bradford will be back and the young receivers will be coming off their hypothetical red shirt year without their franchise passer. The key is keeping him upright but there are questions at both tackles. Long is showing age, and Saffold can walk.
This pick will be Bridgewater or Bortles when it’s said and done, it’s just that I’m not projecting a trade right now.
3. Jaguars: Teddy Bridgewater QB Louisville
First and Foremost, the Jaguars stink. There is no correct way to say it. This franchise needs to be rebuilt from the ground up. There are things to like such as Justin Blackmon and Cecil Shorts. There is a whole lot to dislike. With this pick the Jaguars absolutely should consider all options including Jadeveon Clowney or trading out and getting multiples.
All and all in the end they opt for the quarterback with baited breath. Bridgewater doesn’t project to a first team all pro but what are they going to do? Trot Chad Henne out there for 16 more games of mediocrity?
4. Browns: Blake Bortles QB UCF
The Browns have decided to fire the coaching staff, again. They traded Trent Richarson after less than 20 career games with the franchise. That only means one thing- they are trying to get it right at all costs. It all starts at QB. Brandon Weeden is not the answer. He’s too frazzled in the pocket and makes bad decisions. Bortles is a big mobile guy who has all the tools.
5. Raiders: Johnny Manziel QB Texas AM
Speaking of not having quarterbacks…(checks phone) the Raiders are so desperate I’m expecting that call any minute now. Terrelle Pryor plays the wrong position so they’re going to need a real QB. Who else other than the Heisman winner should the Silver and Black gamble on? Kansas City, San Diego, and Denver are all extremely good. It’s going to take a special player for this team to compete again.
6. Falcons: Anthony Barr OLB UCLA
The Falcons cannot get their defense off the field and that is becoming a problem. They need a defensive end or a pass rusher to help boost the entire defense’s effectiveness.
7. Buccaneers: Khalil Mack OLB Buffalo
The Buccaneers found a quarterback for a few years in Mike Glennon. He isn’t a Pro Bowl QB, but with the talent level at the position so thin these days he is more than adequate to start. Mack is simply way too good to pass up and this is a QB deep draft.
For those wondering Stephon Tuitt falls to round two for this projection.
8. Vikings: Derek Carr QB Fresno State
Minnesota was so desperate they auditioned Josh Freeman, who failed. Stepping into a competitive NFC North is a concern but he should be fine with some guy named Adrian Peterson to hand the ball to.
This pick was previously Brett Hundley, but he decided to return to UCLA for another season.
9. Bills: Mike Evans WR Texas AM
The Bills need a legit #1 wide receiver. They have a young player in Robert Woods but he looks more the part of a complementary piece.
10. Lions: Sammy Watkins WR Clemson
The Lions tried to develop a young guy next to Calvin Johnson in Titus Young. They have now turned to journeymen which is working but eventually you have to have a legit #2.
11. Titans: Greg Robinson OT Auburn
The Titans have a young team but still issues protecting the quarterback. They invested in a guard last year, it only makes sense to round out that investment in your quarterback Jake Locker with a young tackle.
12. Giants: Timmy Jernigan DT Florida State
Got to protect your franchise QB, which is what the Giants couldn’t do all year long. With no OT available they look towards a long term replacement for some of the guys they may lose this off season on the defensive line.
(Previous pick: Cameron Erving OT Florida State)
13. Rams: HaHa Clinton-Dix S Alabama
The only weak spot in this defense is their back line. I can’t remember the last time a Rams safety was highly regarded in the league. And for that reason HaHa to St. Louis.
14. Bears: Louis Nix III NT Notre Dame
The Bears allow the most rushing yards in the game at 154 yards per.
15. Steelers: Davante Adams WR Fresno State
Jericho Cotchery is getting legit snaps for this team. In 2014. Anytime you’re relying on names of years past (we didn’t forget you signed Plax as well) it’s time to take a look at the position. They couldn’t pay Mike Wallace what Miami could and now you have a hole at receiver. Fill it.
16. Cowboys: C.J. Mosley OLB Alabama
Jerry Jones will make a pick on the defensive side, and I’m guessing that player will be a linebacker due to the struggles there this season.
(Previous pick: Vic Beasley DE Clemson)
17. Ravens: Marqise Lee WR USC
The Ravens lost a ton of toughness and some sure hands when they traded Anquan Boldin basically for free. Marqise Lee showed some of those same qualities in USC’s big win versus Stanford. It seems almost too good a fit.
18. Jets: Jace Amaro TE Texas Tech
If Geno is the man, you have to help him. There is no #1 on this team with Santonio Holmes looking like he lost a major step after injury. Plus, the Kellen Winslow Experiment did not work.
19. Dolphins: Taylor Lewan OT Michigan
After Jake Long bounced, it was only a matter of time before the Dolphins think long term. I don’t need to rehash all the drama on this offensive line.
20. Cardinals: Cyrus Kouandjio OT Alabama
The Cardinals seem to be headed back towards relevance with Carson Palmer of all people leading the way. I’m not saying they are going to be a great team but they are competitive again week in and week out. They have a nice combo in Mathieu and Peterson in the defensive backfield, now its time to add on the OL unit.
21. Packers: Eric Ebron TE North Carolina
Jermichael Finley suffered a really bad concussion (he could have died) and his career is in jeporady.
22. Eagles: Kyle Van Noy OLB BYU
The Eagles are rolling on offense, now its time to give defense some attention. Sooner it later it will be time to move on from Demeco Ryans.
23. Chiefs: Darqueze Dennard CB Michigan State
The Chiefs may go offensive tackle but with the struggles of Eric Fisher, I think Brandon Albert will remain with the team for now. The weakest unit of this defense is the cornerbacks, no debating.
24. Bengals: Jason Verrett CB TCU
The Bengals have gotten a lot from Adam Jones and Terrance Newman but it’s time for the young guns to show what they got. Dre Kirkpatrick needs to step in as their best corner as they draft a running buddy for the future.
(Previous pick: Ifo Ekpre-Olomu CB Oregon)
25. Chargers: Justin Gilbert CB Oklahoma State
Gilbert will give this defensive backfield a much needed boost in talent.
26. Browns: Kelvin Benjamin WR Florida State
The Browns are quietly building a very good defense but they are a mess on offense. When they draft the new QB of this franchise, it would be a good move to also draft a key weapon to put with Josh Gordon. Runningback is also an option but there will be some good ones still available with their next selection.
27. Saints: Ryan Shazier LB Ohio State
The Saints may draft a young offensive weapon but you can never have enough help to chase down Cam Newton.
28. Panthers: Antonio Richardson OT Tennessee
The Panthers are back, but going forward there are salary cap issues here. To put it simply: they overpaid a few people. Even if they manage to retain Jordan Gross this offensive line has had all sorts of issues.
29. 49ers: Marcus Roberson CB Florida
The 49ers get Carlos Rogers some help, to add with a young star safety in Eric Reid.
30. Patriots: Austin Seferian-Jenkins TE Washington
Do I need to say why? Gronk is an injury away from early retirement, and Aaron Hernandez is on trial. Jenkins is the closest thing to Hernandez in this draft and should be selected if he’s there.
31. Broncos: Stanley Jean-Baptiste CB Nebraska
Interior line is always an issue with this team, but this season that changed with Luis Vasquez and Manny Ramirez playing on Pro Bowl levels (Ramirez didnt make it though he should be an alternate). Time to turn to defense which is simply put a mess right now. The Broncos literally have no starting quality middle linebacker or corner on this roster.
32. Seahawks: Allen Robinson WR Penn State
Russell Wilson has to get more time in the pocket. He’s creative at eluding rushes but at 5’11 it’s probably not best that he’s on the run that much. Either way, OT or WR this pick must help him.
Round 2. Washington Redskins- Stephon Tuitt DE Notre Dame
Shanahan is gone. Whoever is the new coach will have tough decisions to make on this defense, mainly should they transition down to 4-3? This pick may change to a corner.