2014 NFL Mock Draft
By Clint Clearwater
April 23, 2014
Well, the NFL Draft is only 14 days away! So stay tuned over the next 2 weeks for as many updates as I can!
As always, thanks for reading and feel free to shoot me any emails! Follow me @clintclearwater
1. Houston: Jadeveon Clowney, DE, South Carolina
After a lot of updates I still like Clowney here. Clowney is the most talented player in the country and that’s why he’s the pick here. This definitely doesn’t fill the biggest need but he’s simply too good to pass on here and you can never have too many pass rushers. He’s an elite talent, capable of changing games on the defensive side of the ball; that’s rare. I really don’t know what else to say, Clowney needs to be the pick here.
2. St. Louis: Sammy Watkins, WR, Clemson
There have been talks about the Rams interest in Johnny Manziel over the last couple of days and I find that very interesting. At the beginning of this off season, I entertained the idea of the Rams taking Manziel because I thought he would be a good fit. Right now, I don’t think they will take him at number 2 overall. There’s a little too much uncertainty for me so I have them taking the pro ready playmaker Watkins. Sammy Watkins is my number 1 rated prospect in this draft. I think he’s a playmaker from day 1 and I believe he’s even got a chance to go number overall in this draft; he’s that talented.
3. Jacksonville: Johnny Manziel, QB, Texas A&M
I still like Manziel here for the Jaguars. Manziel has a factor in his game that is special. He’s got skill that can’t be taught. Sure, he’s got red flags; immaturity, off-the-field, leadership concerns; I really don’t know. Teams will decide that in their own war rooms. What I do know is Manziel is special and today’s NFL is perfect for him. To me, Jacksonville needs to grab him here if he’s available. He would bring a boost of excitement and production to a struggling offensive team. If the Jaguars land him here they can start fresh and try to turn their franchise around.
4. Cleveland: Khalil Mack, DE/OLB, Buffalo
Khalil Mack is one of the elite prospects in this draft. He’s a versatile guy that can be a defensive playmaker from day 1. He’s also a guy who could be selected number 1 overall so the fact that the Browns can get him here is awesome. He is terrific at rushing the passer and can also drop into coverage.
5. Oakland: Greg Robinson, OT, Auburn
Oakland would be wise to grab Greg Robinson here. They need OT help and I can’t see Robinson lasting much longer than this. Greg Robinson is a highly athletic OT that has a very high ceiling; he’s only going to get better.
6. Atlanta: Jake Matthews, OT, Texas A&M
Protecting Matt Ryan must be a priority for the Falcons. Jake Matthews is one of the best prospects in this draft. This pick makes too much sense. With all the top pass rushers gone, the Falcons will look to protecting their franchise QB.
7. Tampa Bay: Mike Evans, WR, Texas A&M
Tampa Bay has a big hole at WR and Evans is one of the top wide outs in this draft. He’s got elite size, great strength, strong hands and good speed.
8. Minnesota: Blake Bortles, QB, UCF
Minnesota needs major help at QB. Blake Bortles is arguably the top QB in this draft so the Vikings need to take a long, hard look at him here. He’s an athletic QB with a great arm that can really drive the football down the field. I’ve watched a lot of tape on him over the last couple months and my main concern with him is the quickness of his release. He will need to improve on that in the NFL. However, he’s going to be an upgrade to what the Vikings currently have so that’s why I have them taking him here.
9. Buffalo: Eric Ebron, TE, North Carolina
Ebron is an athletic freak that will be a major weapon for E.J. Manuel. He’s got great size, strong hands and will create mismatches all over the field. He’s definitely worthy of being a top 10 pick.
10. Detroit: Haha Clinton-Dix, S, Alabama
Detriot needs a strong presence in their secondary and Clinton-Dix could be it. He’s a safety with great range, toughness and instincts. He has tremendous coverage skills and can really lay down some vicious hits. In today’s pass first league, you need good safeties on your team and Clinton-Dix is poised to become a terrific pro safety.
11. Trade: St. Louis (from Tenn): Taylor Lewan, OT, Michigan
St. Louis trades up here to get Lewan. The Rams are desperate to get some OT help and Lewan is amazing value here. He’s a pro ready guy that plays with a nasty streak. With Jake Long coming off an injury the need some stability here at the OT position.
12. New York Giants: Aaron Donald, DT, Pittsburgh
Aaron Donald is arguably one of the best defensive players in this draft. The Giants need some DT help and Donald, although a bit undersized, is a great fit here in New York.
13. Trade: Tennessee (from St. Louis): Justin Gilbert, CB, Oklahoma St.
Tennessee trades down and still lands a great prospect in a position of need. Justin Gilbert is coming off a terrific year and a very impressive combine. He’s got great change of direction speed, is good at press coverage, is a fantastic playmaker and has good ball skills. He’s an immediate starter and could be the first corner taken in this draft.
14. Chicago: Calvin Pryor, S, Louisville
Chicago needs to grab a safety in this draft and Pryor is really a good pick here. I don’t think he’s got the coverage skills that Clinton-Dix has but he’s tough, quick and extremely physical. He will bring an intimidating presence to the Bear’s secondary.
15. Pittsburgh: Darqueze Dennard, CB, Michigan St.
The Steelers need to get younger on defense and with Dennard still on the board he could be their pick here. He’s tough, physical and, as he proved at the Combine, he’s fast enough for the NFL. I really am high on Dennard and I think he’s a terrific pick here for the Steelers.
16. Dallas: Anthony Barr, DE/OLB, UCLA
The Cowboys also need to get younger on defense; in particular, they need young pass rushers. A lot of people are high on Anthony Barr; many believe he will go before this. I think he’s got a ton of potential but needs to get stronger. Nevertheless, he’s a good value and need pick here for the Cowboys.
17. Baltimore: Brandin Cooks, WR, Oregon St.
Cooks is a special receiver. He’s not the biggest guy but he makes plays all over the field. He’s explosive, quick and dangerous with the football in his hands. Baltimore needs some receiver help and Cooks is one of the best players available.
18. New York Jets: Bradley Roby, CB, Ohio St.
The Jets need some CB help. Roby is a guy who has first round talent. He’s definitely had some issues over the course of last year but his skillset is undeniable. He’s tough, tackles well, has good ball skills and is a fierce competitor. I wouldn’t be surprised seeing him go to the Jets here.
19. Miami: Marqise Lee, WR, USC
This may seem surprising and a bit unlikely but the Dolphins are not likely to have Mike Wallace in a year or two due to his salary. With that in mind it would be wise for them to take advantage of this deep and talented receiver draft class. Lee, in my opinion, is one of the best receivers in the country. I think he’s amazing value at 19 and I think he could be a great weapon for young Tannehill.
20. Arizona: Zack Martin, OT, Notre Dame
The Cardinals have a new LT but they may not be done with addressing their offensive line needs. Martin is fantastic value here; they really have to be surprised he lasted this long. He’s a strong and physical guy that is both a good run and pass blocker. This is a solid pick for the Cardinals.
21. Green Bay: C.J. Mosley, LB, Alabama
The Packers get a tremendous value and need pick here. Mosley is an extremely talented linebacker. I love his tape and I believe he’s going to be a solid top 15 pick. I like his quickness, explosion, his ability to take on and shed blocks and his coverage skills. I also think he’s a leader and has good football I.Q. The Packers need some LB help so Mosley not only is a good value pick here but fills a need.
22. Philadelphia: Kyle Fuller, CB, Virginia Tech
I have been a fan of Fuller all year. I thought his injury and the games he missed kind of hurt his draft stock, but he bounced back at the Combine running a very impressive 40 time. Most people were concerned with his overall speed but not anymore. I think he’s a quick and aggressive corner that has shown tremendous improvement over the last two seasons. The Eagles need some corner help and I believe that Fuller could be their guy.
23. Kansas City: Odell Beckham Jr. WR, LSU
Kansas City needs help at WR and Beckham Jr is one of the most explosive receivers in the country. He’s a dynamic playmaker that will be a huge burst on Kansas City’s offenses.
24. Cincinnati: Timmy Jernigan, DT, Florida St.
The Bengals will be pretty happy if they can land Jernigan here. He’s a special player that is going to make an impact early in his career so the fact that the Bengals can get him here is fantastic. He doesn’t fill the biggest need but he’s a tremendous value pick.
25. Trade: Tennessee (from San Diego): Derek Carr, QB, Fresno St.
The Titans trade ahead of the Browns here to select Derek Carr. It’s no secret how much the Browns like Carr so the Titans trade one spot ahead of them to select him. Carr has one of the strongest arms in this draft class. He can make all the NFL throws, has good accuracy and can make plays with his legs. Inconsistency is my biggest question mark on him and I wonder just how good he really can be. Nevertheless, the Titans may be in the market for a new signal caller and getting Carr here at pick 25 is a good value value pick for the Titans.
26. Cleveland: Jason Verrett, CB, TCU
I am a big fan of Verrett. I really think if you put the tape on and watch his film he belongs in the first round. He’s not the biggest guy but he’s tough, physical, has tremendous coverage skills and ball skills. He reminds me of Brent Grimes. After missing out on some QBs the Browns stick to their big board and continue to add talent to their roster.
27. New Orleans: Xavier Su’a-Filo, G, UCLA
The Saints could use an upgrade at their guard positions and they get one here. Su’a-Filo is a tough and athletic lineman that has potential to become a very impressive player. He’s got good versatility and good strength and I believe will continue to get better and better.
28. Trade: San Francisco (from Carolina): Dee Ford, DE/OLB, Auburn
The 49ers trade above the Patriots to grab a talented pass rusher. Dee Ford is one of the top players on the board. He’s an undersized guy but he makes up for that will strength and speed. I like him a lot as a 3-4 OLB and he could contribute early for the 49ers.
29. New England: Louis Nix, DT, Notre Dame
The Patriots will be looking for DT help in this draft and Nix is one of the top players on the board. He is a rare talent that has an elite skillset. He needs to be more consistent but he’s got potential to be special.
30. Trade: Carolina (from San Francisco): Cyrus Kouandjio, OT, Alabama
The Panthers get their new LT in Kouandjio. He has had a rough off season so far but I still think there’s a chance he gets into the first round. Based on tape Kouandjio is a strong and talented OT that can start early in his career.
31. Denver: Ryan Shazier, LB, Ohio St.
Shazier is an athletic LB they flies all over the field. He’s tough, aggressive and has a good motor. He needs to add a little more muscle and bulk but he will be an upgrade to Denver’s LB corp.
32. Seattle: Kony Ealy, DE, Missouri
Ealy is one of the best players still available. The Seahawks don’t have a ton of needs so they take the talented DE here. He’s a fantastic pass rusher that is aggressive and tough. He’s also very good at dropping into coverage, so he will be able to do a lot of things for Seattle.