2012 NFL Mock Draft: Round 1, Picks 1-16, 3/13

NFL Draft

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1. Indianapolis Colts– QB Andrew Luck, Stanford:            

The Colts won’t debate this pick much, and even though they could auction this pick off to the highest bidder, I really can’t see them passing on Luck. Luck might not be the greatest thing since sliced bread, but he might be the most talented QB prospect in the last 10 years.

2. Washington Redskins (via St. Louis)– QB Robert Griffin, Baylor:         

The Redskins have made the deal to move up and draft RGIII. It cost them a huge amount of draft pick value and will basically define this franchise over the next 10 years. Griffin has immense upside and if handled correctly this trade could work out for the Redskins. For the first time in a long time the Redskins have a true offensive piece they can build around.

3. Minnesota Vikings-  OT Matt Kalil, USC:

The Vikings could go in other directions, but it would be pretty hard to pass up Matt Kalil. He’s a franchise LT, and can help make the lives easier of both Christian Ponder and Adrian Peterson. He is the most talented tackle to come out since Jake Long, and should have a similar immediate impact.

4. Cleveland Browns- RB Trent Richardson, Alabama:     

The Browns are in a tough spot if they miss out on RGIII. They could go any number of positions, but with picks at 22 and 37 they need to take the player whom they can’t ‘replace’ with a later pick. That is where Richardson comes in. As much as it doesn’t make much sense to spend a top 5 pick on a RB, Richardson is too good to pass up here.

5. Tampa Bay Buccaneers– CB Morris Claiborne, LSU:

The Bucs have to come out of this draft with at least one early round corner back, and if Claiborne is gone they might reach for Kirkpatrick. Kirkpatrick’s recent run in with the law might give them some pause, but they will have plenty of time to investigate to see if it cause for concern. If it checks out, they’d be wise to make him their top pick.

6. St. Louis Rams (via Washington)- OT Riley Reiff, Iowa:

A lot will depend on what happens in free agency, but this pick should come down to Reiff and Justin Blackmon. While there could be a big push for Blackmon, a front line LT is always worth more than a star WR, and it is even more pressing when the Rams offensive line is so bad overall. While that receiver corps won’t wow anyone they at least have some potential, and can fill out the position with one of their two 2nd rounders.

7. Jacksonville Jaguars– WR Justin Blackmon, Oklahoma State:     

While this has been a rough season for Blaine Gabbert, the Jaguars only have themselves to blame as they put him in a bad situation with limited weapons. Drafting Blackmon will go a long way to fixing the lack of weapons and will hopefully salvage this team.

8. Miami Dolphins- QB Ryan Tannehill, Texas A&M:

The Dolphins appear to be losing the Peyton Manning race and if they strike out on Matt Flynn, then Tannehill is the next logical choice. He knows OC Mike Sherman’s offense (at least partly) from college, and he’s got a very bright future ahead of him. He probably needs a year to develop, but Miami does have Matt Moore, so the lack of immediate impact shouldn’t be an issue.

9. Carolina Panthers– DT Micheal Brockers, LSU:

The Panthers could look to go in a variety of directions here, but the most obvious one would be defensive tackle. Micheal Brockers was a bit of a surprise entry to the draft, but he is a very welcome addition. The Panthers will love having him manning the middle of their defense and significantly improving their run defense.

10. Buffalo Bills- CB Dre Kirkpatrick, Alabama:        

The Bills two biggest needs are CB and DE. While it is possible they could look at moving up for Claiborne or Kirkpatrick, I think they will look to stay where they are. With the top two CB’s off the market the Bills will have no trouble moving on to their other big need. Ingram would be an excellent pick here, and give them the pass rusher they are desperately lacking.

11.  Kansas City Chiefs: ILB Luke Kuechly, Boston College:

The Chiefs are probably going to look defense here (though RT is an option), and if so I think going with Kuechly is a smart play. Teaming him with Derrick Johnson makes that defense pretty potent. Trading back could be an option, but it is going to be tough to pass up a talent like Kuechly.

12.  Seattle Seahawks– OG David DeCastro, Stanford:  

The Seahawks missed out on a top QB, but they can still grab an elite player in David DeCastro. Seattle has spent some significant resources on the offensive line lately, but most of those have been busts. They need a steady elite presence there, and that is where DeCastro comes in. He will quickly become Marshawn Lynch‘s new best friend, and will make any new QB’s job just a bit easier.

13. Arizona Cardinals-OT Cordy Glenn, Georgia:

The Cardinals desperately need to address their offensive line in this draft, with finding a LT a top priority. With Glenn climbing up draft boards, he is probably the safest pick here for the Cards. Even if he doesn’t make it as a tackle he can kick inside to guard and still give Arizona value.

14. Dallas Cowboys- CB Janoris Jenkins, North Alabama:

The Cowboys locked up Anthony Spencer with the franchise tag, meaning they could take a long look at the secondary here. Jenkins has some off the field red flags, but on the field he definitely warrants this selection.

15. Philadelphia Eagles-DT Dontari Poe, Memphis

The Eagles will probably look defense with this pick, and will choose between a DT, LB or CB. I think Poe might make the most sense since he’s a big body with quickness that can fill those big holes that the wide 9 formation leaves in the line.

16. New York Jets- OLB Melvin Ingram, South Carolina:

It’s really amazing that the Jets have been able to generate much pressure at all considering the lack of a truly great pass rusher. Outside of getting a better option at QB, the Jets need to come away with a pass rusher this offseason. Ingram is probably a top 10 if not top 5 talent, but will fall due to other teams having more pressing needs. He’ll be a steal for the Jets and generate a ton of pressure for them.

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