BY JOHN HUFFSTETLER, Feedcrossing.com syndication
That said, mock drafts are still great because you can make bets with friends, learn about the top prospects, see which teams are in good or bad positions, and narrow down those four or five guys that your team is probably targeting.
So here’s a (hopefully) interesting look at the first round of the draft that begins this Thursday night.
1. Indianapolis Colts – Andrew Luck, QB, Stanford – I don’t think I need to say too much about this one. He’s the best quarterback I’ve ever seen and will be one of the next faces of the NFL.
2. Washington Redskins (from St. Louis) – Robert Griffin III, QB, Baylor – This is another no-brainer. Perfect fit for Shanahan’s scheme and brings the star power that this franchise desperately needs.
3. Minnesota Vikings – Matt Kalil, OT, USC – I think that the Vikings front office will be torn between Kalil and Morris Claiborne. Claiborne is the better prospect in my book, but I think at the end of the day the Vikings will have to take Kalil to help out both Christian Ponder and Adrian Peterson. This team is rebuilding, and a franchise left tackle is a must.
4. Cleveland Browns – Trent Richardson, RB, Alabama – I think that the Browns will be intrigued by both Claiborne and Justin Blackmon, but this team needs playmakers more than another shutdown corner and it’s a deep receiver class. The running back position is becoming less and less important in today’s NFL, but Richardson is an elite talent who should have eight Pro Bowl caliber years in him. To me, the Browns have to take him.
5. Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Morris Claiborne, CB, LSU – Bucs fans are probably praying for Richardson to slip past the Browns, as he could make them one of the scariest offenses in the NFL, but Claiborne is still a great pick. Aqib Talib is talented but unreliable and Ronde Barber is on his last legs. Claiborne projects as a true shutdown corner at the next level. (more…)