2011 NFL Mock Draft: Round 3 Updated Mar. 31st

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MOCK DRAFT: Round 1: 17-32: Round 2: Round 3

65. Carolina Panthers: OG Orlando Franklin, Miami-

The Panthers could go a number of different routes, but if they want to give Jimmy Clausen a legitimate chance they need to improve the line in front of him. They are set at center and tackle, but their guard play was pretty poor last season. Franklin would be a very good addition with this pick and should help improve both their run and pass blocking. I think it is key that the Panthers grab an instant starter with this pick, and I feel that Franklin can step right in.

66. Cincinnati Bengals: DT Allen Bailey, Miami-

The Bengals need some help in the middle of their defensive line, and Bailey is the top guy on the board. Bailey is a bit of a tweener, but he has the better frame for DT. He’s not exceptionally quick off the line, but he still disrupts a number of plays in the backfield. The Bengals could go with a more traditional DT, but Bailey is good value here.

67. Denver Broncos: FS Quinton Carter, Oklahoma-

I know this is a lot of defensive picks for the Broncos, but that was their biggest issue last season. For the most part their offensive line looks good, and they have decent receivers and quarterbacks. While I am not 100% sold on Moreno, he was a first rounder two years ago so he deserves at least one more shot. Free safety was a huge hole for this team last year, and Carter should fill it quite well. With a rebuild D-line and an improving secondary, Denver’s defense (and subsequently the entire team) could make a quick turnaround.

68. Buffalo Bills: OT Marcus Gilbert, Florida-

If the Bills don’t address their offensive line issues in the top 3 rounds this year, they should just fire their G.M. on the spot. Buffalo has some decent weapons at RB and WR, but until they get some protection their offense will always be second rate.

69. Arizona Cardinals: OT/G James Brewer, Indiana-

The Cardinals have to add talent to their offensive line and even if they do address this position in an earlier round a versatile player like Brewer could be a fit here. I think he is limited to either RT or G, but both of those are needs for Arizona. I like Brewer more than most and do see a little bit of the Roger Saffold comparison some people make.

70. Cleveland Browns: DE Pernell McPhee, Miss. State-

The Browns need to add some 4-3 linemen, and McPhee profiles well as a strong left end. He offers decent pass rush and should be a very good run defender as well.

71. Dallas Cowboys: FS Marcus Gilchrest, Clemson-

Dallas needs to go back to fixing their secondary and adding a FS would be the next logical step. While some teams might like Gilchrest as a corner I think he is a much better fit as a free safety. He should at least be a nickel safety as a rookie, and could end up starting next season.

72. New Orleans Saints (from Washington): RB Shane Vereen, California-

Reggie Bush is likely done in New Orleans, and while Thomas was resigned he has been nicked up a bit and Chris Ivory is coming off a big injury, meaning RB is still high on the Saints wish list. Vereen would be a nice change of pace back and fill the role that Bush once held.

73. Houston Texans: CB Davon House, New Mexico State-

Pretty much as long as this pick is on defense the Texans will be making the right choice. House adds quality depth to their corner backs, a group that got torched nonstop last year.

74. New England Patriots (from Minnesota): OLB Dontay Moch, Nevada-

New England needs to add some pass rushing talent this offseason and Moch is a good fit for them. He is a pure speed rusher, but given his athletic ability, his upside is immense. He would do well to go to a team like the Patriots, who already have a lot of surrounding talent so he doesn’t have to be a major focal point of their defense.

75. Detroit Lions: OLB Mason Foster, Washington-

The Lions need linebacker help desperately so doubling up in the 2nd and 3rd rounds makes a lot of sense. The Lions could go from having one of the worst linebacker corps, to one of the most promising. I’m a big Mason Foster fan, and think he is a very good starter at the next level.

76. San Francisco 49ers: QB Andy Dalton, TCU-

If the 49ers miss out in the first two rounds I fully expect them to target a quarterback in Round 3. Dalton has plenty of detractors and I think this is a bit high for him, but I see the 49ers reaching. Dalton does fit their offense pretty well and could have success given his work ethic and attitude, but I’m not too confident he is the answer.

77. Tennessee Titans: G Clint Boling, Georgia-

The Titans need to look to upgrade the interior of their offensive line. They likely won’t have a major passing attack next year, so anything the Titans can do to free up Chris Johnson, they have to make a priority. Boling is good value here and should immediately be added to the starting line.

78. St. Louis Rams: DT Jarvis Jenkins, Clemson-

The Rams took care of their offensive needs with their first two picks, but they need to make sure they don’t ignore their defensive ones. Although they need a FS, I think they go DT here. Right now they have nothing next to Fred Robbins in the middle, and he is in his early 30’s. Jenkins is a great get here, if he falls this far. He is a disruptive force on the interior and should really have an impact as a rookie.

79. Miami Dolphins: QB Colin Kaepernick, Nevada-

The Dolphins haven’t had much success with drafting mid-round quarterbacks lately, but Kaepernick could change all of that. He has incredible potential and I really believe he will develop into a starting quarterback in this league within two years.

80. Jacksonville Jaguars: WR Tandon Doss, Indiana-

The Jags will need to replace Mike Sims-Walker and Doss would be a good fit for them. Doss in many ways is similar to Walker with good size and speed. He doesn’t excel in any one area, but is just a quality receiver across the board.

81. Oakland Raiders: OT Joesph Barksdale, LSU-

The Raiders biggest weakness is the play of their offensive line, so multiple upgrades are needed. Barksdale has a lot of potential, he could end up being their starting right tackle, and has the ability to play there for the next 10 years. If the Raiders can add Wiz and Barksdale, their offense could quickly become one of the better units in the NFL.

82. San Diego Chargers: WR Randall Cobb, Kentucky-

Last year the Chargers dealt with a number of receiver issues, and while for the most part it didn’t affect their overall play, I’m guessing they don’t want to be unprepared again. I know they typically favor bigger receivers, but Cobb is great value for them at this pick and should have a lot of freedom underneath (think Wes Welker), with Jackson stretching the field deep. Cobb also could end up being their primary kick returner if Darren Sproles leaves during free agency.

83. New York Giants: DT Jurrell Casey USC-

Does New York need another defensive tackle? No, but the Giants know they need to keep that front four strong if they want to contend. Casey offers good value for the pick, and the two things the Giants do the most in the draft is select on value and stockpile D-linemen.

84. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: MLB Quan Sturdivant, North Carolina-

The Buccaneers defensive front 7 needs quite a bit of work, but after this draft, they could be in pretty good shape. Sturdivant is a player that not many people are talking about, but that I feel can step in from day one as a starter.

85. Philadelphia Eagles: OLB Nate Irving, North Carolina St.-

The Eagles linebackers last season were one of their biggest weak spots and an area that needs to be upgraded. Irving is an intriguing prospect and one that I feel will develop into a start player. He is pretty good in coverage, and is a very sure tackler. While he isn’t perfect, I like what I’ve seen from his instincts as well.

86. Kansas City Chiefs: NT Kendrick Ellis, Hampton-

The Chiefs defense improved a lot last season, and it looks like former first rounders Glenn Dorsey and Tyson Jackson are going to finally start producing, but they need to add a man in the middle. Ellis has a lot of potential and could develop into a frontline NT.

87. Indianapolis Colts: G John Moffitt, Wisconsin-

The Colts offensive line was pretty bad last season. While it didn’t always amount to sacks, opponents put constant pressure on Manning. Moffitt can play anywhere on the interior and will also be a major addition in run blocking as well.

88. New Orleans Saints: DT Lawrence Guy, Arizona State-

Yes I know the Saints signed Shaun Rogers to fill their DT void, but you need to have depth at the position as even the best defensive tackles in the league play only between 75-80% of the snaps. Also Rogers was only signed for one season, so he could very well be gone leaving the Saints looking for another DT in a year. Guy is an underrated DT, but one that I think has a lot of promise going forward. He will be a good fit in a rotational role for the Saints this year, and hopefully develop into a fulltime starter next season.

89. San Diego Chargers (from Seattle): ILB Colin McCarthy, Miami-

The Chargers could use some youth added to their linebacking corps. While McCarthy is a bit of a reach here I love his upside for the interior of a 3-4. He probably won’t be a starter in year one, but should quickly work his way into that role by year two.

90. Baltimore Ravens: OT Chris Hairston, Clemson-

The Ravens have multiple offensive linemen who are free agents this offseason and I doubt they can resign them all. Hairston could help out at either RT or G, and replace anyone the Ravens might have lost.

91. Atlanta Falcons: RB Jordan Todman, Connecticut-

The Falcons need to add weapons and speed this offseason and Todman would be a nice value for them here. While Michael Turner is the top back in Atlanta, their speed back, J. Norwood, is a free agent and always injured, so the Falcons need a replacement. Todman should be able to contribute immediately and could even be the long term starter, if Turner starts to wear down in the next couple of years.

92. New England Patriots: SS Tyler Sash, Iowa-

The Patriots could need to find a new strong safety given Brandon Merriweather’s legal problems. Even if he isn’t suspended or worse due to his involvement with a shooting, Merriweather was the weakest link for the Patriots secondary last season, so competition isn’t the worst thing in the world. I love Sash’s upside and think he can start at either safety position.

93. Chicago Bears: CB Curtis Marsh, Utah State-

For the Bears to contend this year they will have to get through Aaron Rodgers and his arsenal of weapons. To do so Chicago needs to upgrade their secondary and adding a corner like Marsh would go a long way to satisfying that goal. Marsh has starter potential and should be at worst the nickel corner next season.

94. New York Jets: WR Niles Paul, Nebraska-

The Jets are likely to lose one of their top receivers this offseason to free agency, and he will need to be replaced. While they could choose a bigger target if Edwards leaves, I really like Paul and think he can flourish in that offense. Paul has great secondary skills, and should contribute early.

95. Pittsburgh Steelers: CB Kendrick Bruney, North Carolina-

The Steelers have two weaknesses, their offensive line and their corner backs. I know Bruney fell in some people’s eyes with a slow Combine time, but I like his upside. He is very instinctive and should be at least a nickel corner as a rookie.

96. Green Bay Packers: RB Kendall Hunter, Oklahoma State-

Some might question this pick, but Hunter is excellent value here, and is a great change of pace back to James Starks. Ryan Grant will be a free agent next season and it is doubtful the Packers will invest serious money into him. Hunter could be the 3rd back this year and develop into a bigger role in year two.

97. Carolina Panthers (supplemental pick): TE Luke Stocker, Tennessee-

I know the Panthers signed Jeremy Shockey this offseason, but it was for only one season and Shockey isn’t exactly the picture of health. Adding a long term option would be a good idea for the Panthers. Whether their quarterback of the future is Clausen, a draft pick this year or next, he will need some reliable underneath targets to throw to. Stocker is a good enough blocker that he could stay in and block while Shockey is more involved in the passing game.

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