BBV Community Mock Draft 2011: With The 27th Pick, Atlanta Selects ...

Kyle Rudolph, TE, Notre Dame. [Full profile]

Playing the role of general manager for the Atlanta Falcons is 'pataroons.' Here is his rationale for the selection of Rudolph:

In 2010, the Atlanta Falcons put together an impressive campaign that saw them finish the regular season 13-3, the best record in the NFC. It's clear that the Falcons are the real deal, and legitimate Superbowl contenders heading into the alleged 2011 NFL season. However, despite last years success, their top-tier defense, the franchise QB and a 2010 offensive squad that was 5th in the league in points scored, something is missing from this team that will prevent them from ever bringing Atlanta to the promised land. In a league dominated by the Big Play, the Falcons just can't seem to keep up.

In 2010 the Falcons were 31st in offensive plays of 20 yards or more, and 26th in average yards per play. Despite this glaring hole in the offense, most 'draft experts' consider their most pressing needs to be Offensive Tackle, Cornerback and perhaps most importantly, Defensive End. So far in this mock draft, six defensive ends are already off the board. If the draft were to actually unfold like this, that would be the most defensive ends ever taken in the first round of an NFL draft (and we are only on pick 27). Many mock drafts have OLB Justin Houston tied to Atlanta (whom some scouts project as a 4-3 DE), and the Falcons have reportedly planned a workout with him. However, after the Baltimore Ravens snagged the 270-pound sack machine, it became clear I am going to have to look in a different direction with this pick.

My strategy here, since I am the GM and I can do whatever I want, is to draft a player who will address their need for an explosive offensive weapon. I know, I know, I'm committing the cardinal sin of drafting based on need, and not on best player available. This is my compromise of the two methods, a strategy I'd like to call drafting the 'Best Playmaker Available' (patent pending).

Which brings me to my selection for the 27th pick of the BBV Community Mock Draft - Notre Dame tight end Kyle Rudolph.

The 6-foot-6, 265-pound Cincinnati native is the consensus top prospect for his position, and may even be the only tight end taken in the first few rounds of the draft. Realistically, this may be a bit too early for a TE with injury concerns to be drafted, but with Tony Gonzalez a day older and a step slower, it'd be hard to pass on the opportunity to grab Matt Ryan another weapon for his arsenal- a TE who runs like a wide receiver and who can stretch the field vertically. Considering Rudolph will most certainly be gone by the second round, I would have absolutely no reservations in securing his services for my Atlanta squad.

My take: I love this player, so I find it virtually impossible to argue with this pick. Gonzalez is a Hall of Fame tight end, but he can't do it forever and the Falcons can use more weapons for Ryan. The Falcons could also go for an offensive lineman like Derek Sherrod of Mississippi State. Defensive end and cornerback are other Atlanta needs, but I'm not sure there is value at those spots right now.

-- We have made a trade at No. 28. No, not that kind of trade. My son is bowing out of making the next three picks for New England. So, making the 28th pick is 'DManInBLUE.' The Patriots are now on the clock.

Round 1

Pos Team Player Pos School Drafter
1 Carolina Cam Newton
QB
Auburn
Tito
2 Denver Nick Fairley
DT
Auburn
Mike Fiammetta
3 Buffalo Patrick Peterson
CB
LSU
Bigbluethruandthru
4 Cincinnati Blaine Gabbert
QB
Missouri
BitterEli
5 Arizona Von Miller
OLB
Texas A&M
gmen2thebowl
6 Cleveland Marcell Dareus
DL
Alabama
Bobely
7 San Francisco
A.J. Green
WR
Georgia
Pat19
8 Tennessee Da'Quan Bowers DE
Clemson
RealLT
9 Dallas
Prince Amukamara
CB
Nebraska
Simms-McConkey
10 Washington Julio Jones
WR
Alabama
jcalafiore
11 Houston
Robert Quinn
DE/OLB
North Carolina
daddyzander
12 Minnesota Tyron Smith
OT
USC
RolloT
13 Detroit Anthony Castonzo
OT
Boston College
Ed Valentine
14 St. Louis
Aldon Smith
DE
Missouri
GiantNomad
15 Miami
Mark Ingram
RB
Alabama
HenneGivenSunday
16 Jacksonville Cameron Jordan
DE
California
ct17
17 New England
Mike Pouncey
OG/C
Florida
Ryan Valentine
18 San Diego
J.J. Watt
DE
Wisconsin
Anthony P
19 N.Y. Giants Akeem Ayers
OLB
UCLA
Ed Valentine
20 Tampa Bay
Jimmy Smith
CB
Tampa Bay
willgfass
21 Kansas City
Phil Taylor
DT
Baylor
The Blood Of Eli
22 Indianapolis Gabe Carimi
OT
Wisconsin
dannymac56
23 Philadelphia Nate Solder
OT
Colorado
JimmyK
24 New Orleans
Ryan Kerrigan
DE
Purdue
Charles L.
25 Seattle Jake Locker
QB
Washington
Ejaay
26 Baltimore Justin Houston
OLB
Georgia
LarrySoprano
27 Atlanta Kyle Rudolph
TE
Notre Dame
pataroons
28 New England



DManInBLUE
29 Chicago


You're my boy, Blue
30 New York Jets



PlaxicoBurress
31 Pittsburgh


stephen_ross
32 Green Bay



NYG28

Round 2

Pos Team Player Pos School Drafter
33 New England



Ryan Valentine?
34 Buffalo


Bigbluethruandthru
35 Cincinnati


BitterEli
36 Denver



Mike Fiammetta
37 Cleveland


Bobely
38 Arizona



gmen2thebowl
39 Tennessee


RealLT
40 Dallas


Simms-McConkey
41 Washington


jcalafiore
42 Houston


daddyzander
43 Minnesota


RolloT
44 Detroit


BigBlueIntervention
45 San Francisco



Pat19
46 Denver



Mike Fiammetta
47 St. Louis



GiantNomad
48 Oakland


G Fan In England
49 Jacksonville



ct17
50 San Diego



Anthony P
51 Tampa Bay



willgfass
52 N.Y. Giants


Ed Valentine
53 Indianapolis



dannymac56
54 Philadelphia


JImmyK
55 Kansas City



The Blood Of Eli
56 New Orleans



Charles L.
57 Seattle


Ejaay
58 Baltimore


LarrySoprano
59 Atlanta


pataroons
60 New England



Ryan Valentine?
61 San Diego



Anthony P
62 Chicago



You're my boy, Blue
63 Pittsburgh


stephen_ross
64 Green Bay



NYG28
X
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