KCCD Editor: Elliot Dennis
1. Pittsburgh Steelers: Jadeveon Clowney, DE, South Carolina
I always thought I would have Teddy Bridgewater at the top of my first 2014 mock draft, but with the Steelers getting the first pick based on strength of schedule, and them having a franchise signal caller (Big Ben), they will select an elite prospect to add to their defense. Clowney is a can’t-miss prospect.
2. New York Giants: Jake Matthews, OT, Texas A&M
In this situation, a team would probably trade up with the Giants for Teddy. However, I don’t mock trades so this is the pick. The Giants pass on Teddy due to them having Eli Manning (despite his recent struggles). At least they get an elite tackle prospect to protect him.
3. Jacksonville Jaguars: Teddy Bridgewater, QB, Louisville
The Jags get their franchise quarterback. Although they don’t have the first selection as of the standings through week 5, I believe they will be the team to land the first pick in the 2014 draft. They get Teddy regardless, he’s a can’t-miss QB prospect.
4. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Marcus Mariota, QB, Oregon
The Bucs recently released Josh Freeman and are starting third round pick Mike Glennon in his place. If they land this pick, he clearly hasn’t shown much to give hope for the future. Will Mariota come out? That remains to be seen with him being a redshirt sophomore. However, he’s a special talent at QB and gives the Bucs a serious upgrade.
5. Carolina Panthers: Sammy Watkins, WR, Clemson
Back-to-back Clemson players come off the board. The biggest problem with Carolina is the lack of weapons for Cam Newton to work with. Ever since the team drafted Cam, they haven’t made much of an attempt to put quality talent around him. Adding a stud receiver like Watkins helps.
6. St. Louis Rams (via WASH): Mike Evans, WR, Texas A&M
The Rams have spent quite a few picks on the receiver position the past couple of drafts, but none possess the type of talent Mike Evans does. He’s built like a TE and provides a huge matchup nightmare. Definitely an upgrade and a big help for Sam Bradford.
7. Minnesota Vikings: Tajh Boyd, QB, Clemson
The Christian Ponder experiment hasn’t worked out and the Vikings brought Josh Freeman in this week. He probably won’t prove to be a better option (as evidenced by his performance in Tampa), so the Vikings will look to move on. Boyd is a talented signal caller and provides an instant upgrade.
8. Atlanta Falcons: Anthony Barr, DE/OLB, UCLA
The Falcons defense is atrocious and lacks any type of pass rush. Anthony Barr is an exceptional talent and could play a Von Miller type of role for the Falcons defense, something they desperately need.
9. St. Louis Rams: Bradley Roby, CB, Ohio State
Courtland Finnegan has really struggled this season (QBs have a perfect rating when throwing at him) and the Rams need to replace him. Roby would have been drafted this high if he came out last season and has the talent to become a lock-down corner.
10. San Diego Chargers: Taylor Lewan, OT, Michigan
The Chargers added DJ Fluker to play right tackle in the 2013 draft, but Phillip Rivers needs much better protection on his blind-side. Lewan is definitely a guy that can help that.
11. Philadelphia Eagles: Louis Nix, DT, Notre Dame
The Eagles rush defense is bad and they need to find an upgrade on their defensive front. Nix has been a stud on the Notre Dame defensive line for the past two seasons and provides a much needed presence on the defensive line for the Eagles.
12. Oakland Raiders: Austin Seferian-Jenkins, TE, Washington
The Raiders need to find a new starting tight end in the 2014 offseason. Mychal Rivera is okay, but Seferian-Jenkins is a special talent and a matchup nightmare at the TE position. Easily an upgrade.
13. Buffalo Bills: Jason Verrett, CB, TCU
The Bills are currently starting Justin Rogers at cornerback and he’s getting torched. An upgrade is needed.
14. Houston Texans: Brett Hundley, QB, UCLA
A replacement for Matt Schaub needs to be found this offseason. If the Texans want to actually contend for a Super Bowl they need to hope to land a guy like Hundley. Luckily the 2014 draft class is loaded with potential franchise signal callers.
15. Green Bay Packers: HaHa Clinton-Dix, S, Alabama
The Packers secondary could use some help. Pairing Clinton-Dix next to Morgan Burnett would help improve the secondary significantly.
16. New York Jets: Marquise Lee, WR, USC
The Jets need to focus on getting Geno Smith more weapons this upcoming offseason.
17. Cleveland Browns: Zach Mettenberger, QB, LSU
This pick just makes a lot of sense. Head coach Rob Chudzinski likes QBs with big-time arms and Mettenberger has just that. He’s really improved his draft standing by playing under new OC Cam Cameron this season.
18. Chicago Bears: Ryan Shazier, OLB, Ohio State
The Bears biggest weakness on defense is their linebacking corps. Shazier is a special player for the Buckeyes and would replace James Anderson.
19. Cincinnati Bengals: Aaron Lynch, DE, USF
Michael Johnson is an impending free agent and will command a big contract, if they can’t lock him up this pick would make a lot of sense. Lynch has big time talent.
20. Miami Dolphins: Cyrus Kouandjio, OT, Alabama
The biggest weakness for the Dolphins is their offensive tackles. They didn’t land Branden Albert in a trade last offseason, so this pick would fill that hole.
21. Dallas Cowboys: Stephon Tuitt, DT, Notre Dame
As the Cowboys keep transitioning to the 4-3, they need to keep adding players to fit their scheme. While Tuitt does fit the 3-4, he’d also be a good fit in the 4-3.
22. Arizona Cardinals: C.J. Mosley, ILB, Alabama
The Cardinals need help a lot of places, one of which would be ILB next to Daryl Washington. Mosley is a top-15 talent that falls here.
23. San Francisco 49ers: Jordan Matthews, WR, Vanderbilt
The struggles in the 49ers passing game is evident. Even with Michael Crabtree coming back next season, the 49ers will need to give Kaepernick more options to throw to on the outside.
24. Detroit Lions: Khalil Mack, OLB, Buffalo
The Lions need to keep upgrading their defense. Mack is a stud OLB that has been dominating offenses all season.
25. Tennessee Titans: Antonio Richardson, OT, Tennessee
With David Stewart’s contract expiring (and declining play) and Michael Roos aging, the Titans need to look for a new player to plug in at tackle.
26. Baltimore Ravens: Brandon Coleman, WR, Rutgers
The Ravens passing game is a mess. Outside of Torrey Smith, the Ravens really don’t have another great option at wide receiver.
27. Cleveland Browns (via IND): DeAnthony Thomas, WR/RB, Oregon
The Browns need playmakers all on the offense. They have Josh Gordon, Jordan Cameron, and who else? Greg Little is a flop. DAT is versatile and an all-around weapon.
28. New England Patriots: Ra’shede Hageman, DT, Minnesota
The Patriots would be a bad team without Tom Brady. They need to get better everywhere. Hageman has been dominating defenses all season for the Gophers and would give the Pats a stud on the interior of their offensive line.
29. Seattle Seahawks: Cyril Richardson, OG, Baylor
By far the Seahawks biggest problem is their offensive line, Russell Wilson is constantly under pressure. Upgrades are needed all-along the offensive line.
30. Kansas City Chiefs: A.J. Johnson, ILB, Tennessee
The glaring hole in the Chiefs defense is at inside linebacker next to Derrick Johnson. AJ Johnson would provide an upgrade over Akeem Jordan.
31. New Orleans Saints: Kyle Van Noy, DE/OLB, BYU
The Saints need to keep the transition to the 3-4 going, so taking a talented rush linebacker here would be a good bet.
32. Denver Broncos: Ifo Ekpre-Olomu, CB, Oregon
The Broncos offense is awesome, the defense? Eh. Champ Bailey is getting old and has hardly seen the field this year due to injury. A replacement is needed.