2014 NFL Mock Draft
By Clint Clearwater
April 4, 2014
Well, the regular season is now over and we can really start focusing on the NFL Draft! So stay tuned into the site all throughout this draft season for many updates
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. Trade: Atlanta(from St. Louis): Khalil Mack, DE/OLB, Buffalo
Atlanta needs to upgrade their pass rush and they do so by trading up for Khalil Mack. Mack who could be selected number 1 overall is a special talent that is terrific at rushing the passer and also has some coverage skills. He will be a versatile guy in Atlanta’s defensive scheme.
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: Sammy Watkins, WR, Clemson
A QB is tempting here but Watkins is way too good for the Browns to pass on. 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. If Cleveland goes Watkins here, I would expect them to try to land another QB later on in the draft.
5. Oakland: Blake Bortles, QB, UCF
Oakland is able to grab their QB of the future here in Bortles. Bortles is 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, I still like him as one of the top QBs in this class. He’s got all the tools you need and he could be the franchise QB that the Raiders have been searching for.
6. Trade: St. Louis (from Atlanta): Greg Robinson, OT, Auburn
St. Louis 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.
7. Tampa Bay: Jake Matthews, OT, Texas A&M
The Bucs grab one of the most polished and pro ready prospects in this draft. Jake Matthews has elite talent, size and comes from a family that has strong NFL ties. He has the potential to be an all-pro for years to come.
8. Minnesota: Haha Clinton-Dix, S, Alabama
Haha Clinton-Dix is a safety with great range, toughness and instincts. He has tremendous coverage skills and can really lay down some vicious hits. They Vikings could be looking for a safety to pair with Harrison Smith and Clinton-Dix could be their guy. This would give them a talented secondary for years to come.
9. Buffalo: Mike Evans, WR, Texas A&M
As I am working on this the Bills traded for receiver Mike Williams from the Bucs. This does kind of affect this selection but although I still think it’s a realistic option for the Bills. They need weapons for Manuel and Evans is a special guy that can come in and make a difference immediately. He’s got great size, strength and speed; and not to mention very reliable hands. This pick makes the Bills receiving corps one of the strongest in the NFL.
10. Detroit: Justin Gilbert, CB, Oklahoma St.
The Lions have been looking for a number 1 corner for years and I believe they found one here in Justin Gilbert. 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.
11. Tennessee: Teddy Bridgewater, QB, Louisville
The slide could end here for Teddy Bridgewater. The Titans don’t have much faith in Jake Locker and they could be seriously thinking about taking a chance on a QB in this draft. Bridgewater is a strong armed kid that is fairly accurate even on the run. I like his playmaking ability and how he keeps his eyes downfield on the move. I have issues with his size (mainly relating to his frame) and his release but if he’s available here the Titans may take him.
12. New York Giants: Taylor Lewan, OT, Michigan
New York goes O-line in the first round two years in a row. Lewan is a tough and physical prospect that has a mean streak. I think he’s pro ready and will start from day 1. They need to protect Manning better this year.
13. St. Louis: Calvin Pryor, S, Louisville
St. Louis 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 Ram’s secondary.
14. Chicago: Aaron Donald, DT, Pittsburgh
Aaron Donald had a crazy good Combine and his stock is soaring right now. Chicago needs DT help and Donald looks like a good fit here. He’s quick, powerful and strong and I believe he will certainly be a top 15 pick this May.
15. Pittsburgh: Eric Ebron, TE, North Carolina
The Steelers have needs along the D-line, CB and WR but with Ebron still available they have to take him here. He’s the best TE in this draft. He’s a capable blocker and one heck of a receiver. He’s a mismatch all over the field and an instant weapon for Big Ben.
16. Dallas: Kony Ealy, DE, Missouri
The Cowboys will be looking to upgrade their pass rush and with Ealy on the board this pick makes a lot of sense. Ealy is 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 Dallas.
17. Baltimore: Marqise Lee, WR, USC
The Ravens need offensive weapons and Lee is one of the best receivers in the country. He had a rough year, but I still have him rated very high. Getting him here at 16 is a steal for Baltimore.
18. New York Jets: Kelvin Benjamin, WR, Florida St.
The Jets are reportedly very intrigued by Benjamin so I have them taking him here. Benjamin has probably the most potential out of any of the WRs in this draft. He’s big, strong, and showed great speed and burst. I was talking to a couple of scouts down at the Senior Bowl and they told me that his burst out of cuts and his ability to turn and go was extremely impressive considering how big he is. There are a lot of people excited about him and I can’t see him getting out of the first round.
19. Miami: Darqueze Dennard, CB, Michigan St.
This isn’t the biggest need for Miami but I can’t drop Dennard too much lower. He’s such a talented CB, and I believe he may even be drafted higher than this. He’s tough, physical and, as he proved at the Combine, he’s fast enough for the NFL. Dolphins don’t have a pressing need for corners but you can never have too many good cornerbacks.
20. Arizona: Anthony Barr, DE/OLB, UCLA
Arizona needs to upgrade their pass rush and Barr is good value here. He’s a versatile guy that needs to continue to develop but has lots of potential.
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: Dee Ford, DE/OLB, Auburn
The Eagles need to address their pass rushing need and 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 Eagles.
23. Kansas City: 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. Kansas City needs some receiver help and Cooks is one of the best players available.
24. Cincinnati: Bradley Roby, CB, Ohio St.
The Bengals 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 Bengals here.
25. San Diego: 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 Chargers need some corner help and I believe that Fuller could be their guy.
26. Cleveland: Derek Carr, QB, Fresno St.
Cleveland decided to grab a receiver earlier so they will be looking for their QB later in this draft. Derek Carr had a phenomenal year this this past season. He showed great arm strength, good decision making and mobility. I expect him to go somewhere in the first round and the Browns could be the team to pull the trigger.
27. New Orleans: Timmy Jernigan, DT, Florida St.
The Saints 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 Saints can get him here is fantastic. He doesn’t fill a big need but he’s a tremendous value pick.
28. Carolina: Zack Martin, OT, Notre Dame
The Panthers will be looking for a new LT and 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 Panthers.
29. New England: Ra’Shede Hageman, DE, Minnesota
Hageman is a talented but inconsistent D-lineman. He flashes a lot but also disappears a lot during games. There’s no denying his talent but he needs to improve his overall consistency. The Patriots could see his potential and believe they can improve him. He’s a massive prospect that moves really well. He’s also very versatile and will be able to play multiple positions along their defensive line. I like him as a late 1st round pick.
30. San Francisco: Louis Nix, DT, Notre Dame
The 49ers don’t have a lot of needs so they can take the best player available. Nix is one of those best players on the board right now and he fills an important position. He is a rare talent that has an elite skillset. He needs to be more consistent but he’s got potential to be special.
31. Denver: 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. Even after signing Talib, I think the Broncos will take a corner early and with Verrett available this pick makes a lot of sense.
32. Seattle: Xavier Su’a-Filo, G, UCLA
The Seahawks 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.