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2014 NFL Mock Draft: 'Raptor' picks Eric Ebron, Kyle Van Noy for Giants

A (hopefully) less-wildly inaccurate mock draft. Now with TWO rounds!

Jeff Gross

With the NFL combine this weekend, there's time to squeeze in one more mock draft before the Big Boards get shaken up by the Underwear Olympics. Whether or not the combine should have the effect it does on prospect rankings is debateable, but it does.

Also, like Jesse, I decided to not include trades in this mock draft. I'm sure there will be some, maybe even a lot, but there won't be any here. Even though I decided to avoid muddying the waters in my mock any more than necessary, it's going to be interesting to see how the changing value of draft picks will impact trades.

So, without further ado, let's get to it.

Round 1


Blake Bortles, QB, UCF - There's some minor rumbling that Bortles is tops in Houston's QB rankings. I like Bridgewater, but they might like Bortles' size and arm strength in the QB friendly division.


Jadeveon Clowney, DE, South Carolina - This is where I expect Clowney to go, but not to St. Louis. I think they are going to turn this pick into more picks and keep making RG3 the gift that keeps on giving. A Team trading up for Manziel could be a possibility too)


Teddy Bridgewater, QB, Louisville - The Jags need a QB, and Bridgewater is not only the best one on the board, he might be the best one in the draft. He has an average arm, but he is accurate, quick, and makes good decisions. His arm won't be an issue playing 12 games a year in favorable conditions.


Johnny Manziel, QB, Texas A&M - Reportedly, Michael Lombardi is infatuated with Manziel, and they need a quarterback as much as any team in the league. Cleveland has amassed a number of talented skill players, but they need somebody to tie it all together. Johnathan American Rules Football comes with risks, but he could be an electric playmaker.


Sammy Watkins, WR, Clemson - With the top 3 QB's gone, the Raiders might decide to take a chance and hope there is a viable starter in round 2 while getting the best WR in the draft.


Jake Matthews, OT, Texas A&M - Of the Falcons' needs, Tackle is the only one where value presents itself. Not only do they need a running game, but Matt Ryan took a beating last season. Matthews is the best OT in the draft.


Kony Ealy, DE, Missouri - This is a bit of a reach, but the Bucc's need a pass rush, and Ealy is the only remaining 1st rounder who fits what Lovie Smith is going to want to do. Ealy's upside isn't as high as Clowney's, but in any other draft he'd be in consideration for 1st DE taken.


Khalil Mack, LB, Buffalo - Mack is the most explosive pass rusher on the board, and Minnesota DC George Edwards wants to implement an "attacking" defense. Mack attacks, and he can do most things they would ask a SAM to do.


Mike Evans, WR, Texas A&M - The Bills need to keep building on their offense and Evans is a receiver that defenses have to respect. He could emerge as the true no. 1 receiver that Buffalo needs.


Darqueze Dennard, CB, Michigan St. - Dennard is the best cover corner in this draft, and the Lions can't go on with a 33 year old being their most consistent cornerback.


Greg Robinson, OT, Auburn - The mandate from Titans' ownership seems to be to improve the run game, and Robinson is a dominating run blocker. He could go anywhere in the top-10, but he dropped here due to questions about readiness (red shirt sophomore), and effectiveness outside of Auburn's scheme.


Eric Ebron, TE, North Carolina - I was incredibly torn on this pick. I went with Ebron because he is a rare athlete who not only helps to shrink the question mark at TE, he helps to bolster a paper-thin receiving corps.


Anthony Barr, LB, UCLA - Barr is the best player on the board. He instantly improves their linebacking corps, helping with pass rush as well as coverage abilities.


Ha-Ha Clinton-Dix, S, Alabama - Chicago's safety situation helped to contribute to what turned out to be a defensive meltdown last season. Clinton-Dix should stabilize the back end of their defense and help an anemic run defense.


Justin Gilbert, CB, Oklahoma St. - Gilbert was my other choice for the Giants at 12. He is a terrific athlete and has the potential to be an excellent corner. He has great ball skills and is electric with the ball in his hands.


Timmy Jernigan, DT, FSU - Hageman might be the most physically gifted DT in this class, but Jernigan was more consistent. Dallas needs that in the middle of their defensive line.


Marqise Lee, WR, - The Ravens need to replace the reliability that Anquan Bolden, and Lee could provide that. He is also an explosive threat that defenses have to respect along with Torrey Smith and Jacoby Jones.


Calvin Pryor, S, Louiville - The Jets desperately need help on the offense. However, this is a Ryan team, so the lesser need on defense get addressed. It's still a need though, and the versatile Pryor could fit well in Rex's multiple defense.


Zack Martin, OT/G, Notre Dame - The Dolphins basically need to rebuild their offensive line. With toughness, strength, intelligence, and good-enough footwork, Martin can play anywhere along the new line.


Cyrus Kouandijo, OT, Alabama - The Cardinals need to upgrade their left tackle, and the LT out of 'Bama is one of the more physically gifted in the draft. He had a poor showing against Dee Ford, but so has everyone else lately.


C.J. Mosley, LB, Alabama - Green Bay needs upgrades all over their defense, and they get good value with Mosley. He can play inside or outside, and has the speed to cover if/when their offense forces opposing teams to be pass happy.


Trent Murphy, DE/OLB, Stanford - If you can't beat 'em, draft 'em. Stanford became the bane of Chip's existence in Oregon, and Trent Murphy can provide some much needed edge rush ability, eventually taking over for Trent Cole.


Jace Amaro, TE, Texas Tech - Alex Smith could benefit from another receiving option. Amaro is a Height/Weight/Speed mismatch who could thrive on Smith's underneath passes in Andy Reid's offense.


Jason Verrett, CB, TCU - Verrett is an excellent cover corner, however he suffers from a limited stature. He would be a nice compliment to Cincy's nasty front 7, and step in immediately in the slot.


David Yankey, G, Stanford - San Diego continues to build on a line that saw the massive (pun intended) addition DJ Fluker last year. Yankey is one of the draft's top guards, a solid run blocker and pass protector.


Odell Beckham Jr, WR, LSU - The Browns got their QB, now they need a No. 2 starting receiver to compliment Josh Gordon. Beckham Jr has some of the best hands in the draft, and is dynamic after the catch.


Dee Ford, OLB, Auburn - Ford has been having his way with every offensive lineman who has lined up across from him. He had a strong game against Alabama in the Iron Bowl, gave FSU fits in the BCS game, then dominated the Senior Bowl. Ford is the prefect fit for a Ryan defense.


Allen Robinson, WR, Penn St. - It might not look like it, but Steve Smith isn't getting any younger. And even if he is indeed immortal, Carolina needs to start building their offense. Robinson is a prototypical No.1 receiver, who size, speed, and hands will make Cam a very happy QB.


Louis Nix III, DT, Notre Dame - This isn't even fair. Nix fell due to injury concerns and a drop in production. With Wilfork coming off a torn Achilles and his career coming to a close, Darth Hoodie gets the closest thing to come out in a while. Nix has the body of a Nose Tackle, the feet of a one-gap pass rusher, and the strength and temperament of a runaway bulldozer.


Stanley Jean-Baptiste, CB, Nebraska - Richard Sherman made SJB a lot of money. Also, with Carlos Rogers possibly leaving via free agency, San Francisco could look to replace him in the draft. Jean-Baptiste is raw, but the 9'ers have been taking chances on high-upside projects, with the thought that their depth will give them time to grow.


Xavier Su'a-Filo, G, UCLA - The Broncos are desperate for help at cornerback, but keeping Peyton upright has to be their top priority. Su'a-Filo is a mean, athletic guard prospect who can pass protect and generate movement in the run game. He can also play tackle if the need arises.


Antonio Richardson, OT, Tennessee - Russell Wilson needs protecting, and Seattle's offense is built on their rushing attack. "Tiny" (6-6, 330lb) Richardson can step in immediately at right tackle and help both of those areas.

Round 2

1. (33)

Scott Crichton, DE/OLB, Oregon St. - The Texans addressed their QB spot. Now they need to add somebody to put pressure on other quarterbacks. Crichton is a hybrid DE/OLB who does everything well, with no weaknesses in his game.

2. (34)

Stephon Tuitt, DE/DT, Notre Dame - The Redskins had one of the worst defenses in the league last year. Fixing it starts up front with Tuitt. He's a natural fit at 5-tech, and can help shore up Washington's run defense while also providing some pressure from the defensive line

3. (35)

Ryan Shazier, LB, Ohio St. - Shazier is undersized, and might even need to switch to safety at the next level. BUT, he is a whirlwind out there, flying all over the field. The Browns could use an upgrade at S or LB.

4. (36)

Dereck Carr, QB, Fresno St. - The Raiders' gamble pays off. Carr might have the biggest arm in the draft and put on a show at the Senior Bowl. He had some poor showings under pressure though, and that's what dropped him.

5. (37)

Aaron Donald, DT, Pittsburgh - The Falcons desperately need a pass rush, and not much affects quarterbacks like interior pressure. Donald has an awesome first step, excellent quickness, and an excellent understanding how to use his natural leverage. Size concerns drop the best defensive player in the country to the second round.

6. (38)

Gabe Jackson, G, Mississippi St. - Carl Nicks missed last season with MRSA, and might be a cap casualty. Jackson is a nimble mauler who can help Doug Martin

7. (39)

Bradley Roby, CB, Ohio St. - Will Blackmon is one of Jacksonville's starting corners... Isn't that enough? Roby came into the 2013 season as the prohibitive "Best Corner in The Country", however his stock dropped precipitously after a lackluster 2013 campaign. The Jags take a chance that he returns to shut-down form.

8. (40)

DaQuan Jones, DT, Penn St. - Rather than try their luck with yet another question mark quarterback, the Vikings take a defensive tackle to play next to Sharrif Floyd. Jones has the size, length, and quickness to compliment Floyd well.

9. (41)

Austin Seferian-Jenkins, TE, Washington - Scott Chandler is a free agent, and Seferian-Jenkins is a complete tight end. He gives EJ Manuel another big receiving weapon, solid pass protection, and run blocking for their run game.

10. (42)

Yawin Smallwood, ILB, UConn - Tennessee is switching to a 34 defense, and while they had a solid group of LB's for a 43, they need more and better ones for the 34. Smallwood can step in and allow Ayers and/or Brown to kick out and fill a void outside, filling two needs with one pick.

11. (43)

Kyle Van Noy, OLB, BYU - Need meets value and the Giants FINALLY draft a linebacker (and there was much rejoicing). Van Noy can do anything the Giants could ask at SAM linebacker. He has a prototypical frame for a 43 linebacker, smooth athleticism, excellent instincts, and a penchant for making big plays. Van Noy's calling card is his pass rush, but he is an effective run defender and capable in coverage.

12. (44)

Jimmy Garoppolo, QB, Eastern Illinois - Surprise pick! Jimmy G's name isn't widely known at this point, but the QB from Tony Romo's Alma Mater exploded this year, completing 66% of his passes for 5050 yards and 53 TD to 9 INT's (breaking Romo's records along the way). Jimmy G also impressed in both the Shrine Game and Senior Bowl (to which he earned his invitation at the Shrine Game) with a quick release, quick reads, accuracy, and an excellent feel on his passes. This is a warning shot at Sam Bradford, who's massive cap number and injury history have been holding the team back. Jimmy G could be Bradford's successor, or a trade piece in a year or two.

13. (45)

Kelvin Benjamin, WR, FSU - The Lions need another receiver to reap the 1-on-1 rewards of having Megatron on the team. Benjamin Megatron-lite (Starscream?). What quarterback (or offensive coordinator) wouldn't want ANOTHER 6'5", 235lb receiver with speed?

14. (46)

Jordan Matthews, WR, Vanderbilt - Matthews is the SEC's leading receiver, and one of the top receivers in SEC history, he falls due to questions about his speed, but a big, athletic, smooth, reliable receiver is what Big Ben needs.

15. (47)

Will Sutton, DT, Arizona St - Sutton was considered the top DT in the country at points this year, but he fell as the season went on due to effort issues. The Cowboys need to rebuild the middle of their defensive line after cutting Jay Ratliff and possibly losing Hatcher to free agency.

16. (48)

Morgan Moses, OT, Virginia - Big man, but not a big name at the moment. Moses has been underrated, but that is changing as the draft process rolls along. The big man is a dominant run blocker and reliable pass protector. He should be able to step in immediately at either left tackle or right tackle and make Joe Flacco's life easier.

17. (49)

Jarvis Landry, WR, LSU - LSU is becoming a wide receiver factory, and the Jets get a good one. Landry has some of the best hands in the draft, which is a welcome change from the unreliable Holmes and physically gifted, but inept pass catcher, Hill.

18. (50)

Anthony Steen, G, Alabama - The Dolphins continue to rebuild their offensive line. Steen is dropping due to late-season surgery, but he is thick, technically proficient, with more quickness and agility than is expected by looking at him. Steen is the best available guard that fits what Miami wants to do with their blocking schemes.

19. (51)

Kelcy Quarles, DT, South Carolina - You can apply any negative adjective you want to the Bears' stable of defensive tackles. Quarles is a prototypical 3-tech, with room to add weight. Quarles, not Clowney, lead the Gamecocks in sacks (due in part to the attention teams payed Clowney), but he also manages to be stout against the run.

20. (52)

Jeremiah Attaochu, OLB, Georgia Tech - The pass rusher from GT is generating a buzz. Attaochu impressed in the senior bowl, proving to be a dangerous pass rusher who can still make plays against the run.

21. (53)

Ed Reynolds, S, Stanford - Reynolds missed 2011 with a torn ACL, but he proved to be a force for Stanford in 2012 and 2013. He doesn't have the recognition that Ha-Ha or Pryor do, but he is a big, rangy, savvy "do it all" safety who will be a massive upgrade for Green Bay.

22. (54)

LaMarcus Joyner, DB, FSU - This pains me. Joyner is one of my favorite players in the draft. He is a playmaker of the highest order (think Mathieu without the baggage). The Eagles are thin at safety and cornerback, and Joyner can excel at either.

23. (55)

Jackson Jeffcoat, DE, Texas - Cincy continues to add to a nasty defense. Jeffcoat is a prolific pass rusher with a knack for separating the ball from the QB. He has nice length, but could stand to add mass. He can start out as a rotational rusher, but he has the potential to develop into a starting RDE.

24. (56)

Davante Adams, WR, Fresno St. - Adams is good-sized receiver who put up terrific numbers against lesser competition. He has the size and catch radius you want to see from a no.1 or no.2 receiver, however there are questions about his speed. He would fit in well across from Crabtree, replacing Manningham or Boldin.

25. (57)

Michael Sam, DE/OLB, Missouri - Michael Sam was one of the best sack artists in college football. He showed up to the Senior Bowl much heavier than listed during the season. Playing at OLB in a 34 defense would allow him to play at a comfortable weight and put his burst and quickness to use against NFL linemen.

26. (58)

Telvin Smith, LB, FSU - Smith is another hybrid player. Like Shazier he might have to switch to safety in the NFL. However, his ability to play front 7 or back 7 will be a weapon in Rob Ryan's defense.

27. (59)

Cyril Richardson, G, Baylor - Andrew Luck needs better protection and the Colts need to get one of their running backs going. The guard from Baylor is a massive human being who can be shockingly agile for his size. His upside is tremendous, but whichever team drafts him needs to keep a close eye on his weight.

28. (60)

Marcus Roberson, CB, Florida - Roberson doesn't have the athletic upside of his partner Purifoy, but he is definitely the superior cover corner. As dominant as Carolina's front 7 were, they need to upgrade the back end. Roberson does that immediately.

29. (61)

Travis Swanson, C, Arkansas - Swanson is the best center in this draft, and the closest to being plug & play. With San Francisco's starting center turning 35 and thinking about retirement, this is an intersection of need and value.

30. (62)

Troy Niklas, TE, Notre Dame - Need and value meet again. The Patriots' receivers have shown some promise, but Gronk can't stay healthy. Niklas is a big, athletic, complete TE. He doesn't have the more extreme combination of size and athleticism that the big 3 TE's have, but he can also contribute more to NE's new found smash-mouth run game.

31. (63)

Louchiez Purifoy, CB, Florida - Purifoy is one of the most athletically gifted DB's in the draft, and a playmaker with the ball in his hand. He's unpolished as a cover corner, but with Peyton and Von Miller putting pressure on defenses, he is going to have opportunities to put his athleticism to good use.

32. (64)

Martavis Bryant, WR, Clemson - Bryant is an interesting receiver. Tall and long at 6-4 with long arms. However, he is whip-thin at 200 pounds. Bryant is a long strider with a huge catch radius, who could provide the down-field threat that the Seahawks are currently missing.