Tuesday, March 1, 2011

BASJ'S NFL Early Mock Draft: Picks #1-10

The NFL Combine has completed, and with just 7 weeks until the NFL Draft, every sports site and their mother's are starting to project how the first round will play out. I figured I'd do a Bay Area Sports Journal's version of the first round mock, as things stand on March 1, 2011. Now there's still plenty of time for things to change, and trades to happen, but here's how I see the chips falling on draft day in New York on April 28th, starting with the top-10, providing 10-picks per post spread out between now and April's draft, so here is Part 1:

1.) Carolina Panthers: Marcell Dareus, DE, Auburn: Right now, Carolina hopes they have their man in Claussen and receivers Steve Smith and David Gettis will rebound, cause they have a championship caliber run game. They need to rebuild that defense and Dareus could be a huge anchor in the middle of it. Though they could very well trade down. (Other Possibility: Da'Quan Bowers, DE)

2.) Denver Broncos: Da'Quan Bowers, DE, Clemson: Arguably top D-lineman in draft, Fox (HC) and Xanders (GM) would be giddy. Denver has the trickery offense with all those receivers and Knowshon Moreno carrying the load and Tim Tebow competing with Kyle Orton at QB, so their pretty square offensively. They just need to work on that defensive front and Bowers would be a great add. (Or: Cameron Jordan, DE)

3.) Buffalo Bills: Cameron Jordan, DE, California: The other Cameron could end up in Buffalo, though I think Bill's fans would rather have Newton. It's too bad there's not a lights out back in this draft cause that's what they really need. And a QB, and a receiver and more but we'll stop there. They'll take the best front-end defender who at that point should be Cam Jordan. (Or: Patrick Peterson, CB)

4.) Cincinnati Bengals: A.J. Green, WR, Georgia
: Arguably the drafts most talented offensive player, he could go higher, but I think the Bengals would love to get a new, coachable non-diva WR without their own reality TV Show, for Carson Palmer to throw to. I think Green could even go #1 if Carolina considers dealing Steve Smith, or even if they don't. (Or: Nick Farily, DT)

5.) Arizona Cardinals: Blaine Gabbart, Q: The Cards have need a new QB of the future now that Matt Lienhart was a bust and wasn't cutting it. They have to go QB this time whether it's the big armed Gabbert, or the suprise pick and athletic Cam Newton, one of them will be in DC. Barring any deals of course: (Or: Ryan Mallet, QB)

6.) Cleveland Browns: Von Miller, OLB, Tex. A&M: Cleveland needs to learn how to keep teams off the boards, and hope their youth-led offense can do it's thing. Miller is a beast and the best linebacker in the draft. He should provide an instant impact and a huge upgrade to that LB group, while helping improve the defense as a whole. Cleveland probably will want to go offense, which could very well happen if J. Jones or A. Green are still on the board. (Or: Julio Jones, WR)

7.) San Francisco 49ers: Patrick Peterson, CB, LSU: A lot of scouts have him going top-5, as he's the best all-around corner in the draft, and since the Niners won't be getting their QB, they may as well focus on fine-tuning the defense. They'd be candidates to trade down too if Jim Harbough wants Jake Locker, so keep an eye out for that. Otherwise, I think it's a defensive player. (Or: Prince Amukamara, CB) *Jake Locker, QB if trade down.

8.) Tennessee Titans:
Ryan Mallet, QB, Arkansas: Biggest arm in draft and probably would go higher if not for small off-field issue. Has thrown 62 TD passes the last 2 seasons at Ark. and would be a huge change of pace from the weaker armed, more versatile Vince Young. (Or. Blaine Gabbert, QB)

9.) Washington Redskins: Julo Jones, WR, Alabama: The Skins could also use a QB here too, but I think they wouldn't pass on Jones' talent if he falls to them at 9 (a top-5 on a lot of teams boards). (Or: Jake Locker, QB)

10.) Dallas Cowboys: J.J. Watt, DE, Wisconsin: The 'Boys are pretty much stacked all around, they need health and they need their players to click. Watt would be a nice add to a defense that struggled big time in 2010. If they feel the need to upgrade at corner, they could go with "The Prince", but I think they stay defensive front: (Or: Aldon Smith, DE)

-Up Next In BASJ's Series of NFL Mocks: Picks 11-20 (set to post late March)-

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