2013 NFL Mock Draft – Part 3

Draftacular. That’s all I can say about where we’ve been with this mock so far. Part 1 and Part 2 were flawless and it’s about to continue with an exhilarating third edition. Here’s a quick reminder about where we’ve been.

1. Kansas City Chiefs: Luke Joeckel, OT (Texas A&M)
2. Jacksonville Jaguars: Dion Jordan, OLB/DE (Oregon)
3.* Miami Dolphins: Eric Fisher, OT (Central Michigan)
4. Philadelphia Eagles: Sharrif Floyd, DT (Florida)
5. Detroit Lions: Dee Milliner, CB (Alabama)
6. Cleveland Browns: Xavier Rhodes, CB (Florida State)
7. Arizona Cardinals: Lane Johnson, OT (Oklahoma)
8.* San Diego Chargers: Chance Warmack, OG (Alabama)
9. New York Jets: Ezekiel Ansah, DE (BYU)
10. Tennessee Titans: Jonathan Cooper, OG (North Carolina)
11.* Buffalo Bills - Barkevious Mingo, OLB/DE (LSU)
12.* Oakland Raiders: Star Lotulelei, DT (Utah)
13. New York Jets: Tavon Austin, WR (West Virginia)
14. Carolina Panthers: Sheldon Richardson, DT (Missouri)
15. New Orleans Saints: Kenny Vaccaro, FS (Texas)
16. St. Louis Rams: Alec Ogletree, LB (Georgia)

Buckle up, this is where the draft starts getting extra mocktastic.

Part 3

Jarvis Jones

Jarvis Jones

17. Pittsburgh Steelers: Jarvis Jones, LB (Georgia)
Frank: There was a string of NFL drafts a while back where every year, I felt like one of the best, underrated players in the draft fell to the Steelers and immediately made them a much better team. Polamalu in 2003, Roethlisberger in 2004, Heath Miller in 2005, all fell into that category, as did David DeCastro last year (until he got hurt). I think Jarvis Jones, who at one point was a projected top pick in this draft, could easily fall into that category. This will immediately draw comparisons with his teammate Ogletree going one pick earlier to see who ends up with the better career. I’d bet on Jones. With James Harrison leaving, Jones slides right into this defense as a 3-4 pass rusher. They could also use a WR, but have had great luck in the past picking up offensive weapons later in the draft with Sanders and Wallace, so I expect them to look at WRs in Round 2 or 3.

D.J. Fluker

D.J. Fluker

18. Dallas Cowboys: D.J. Fluker, OT (Alabama)
Conor: I’m the opposite of a Cowboys fan, but that being said I cannot in good conscience draft them a kicker in the first round of the NFL draft. Instead what I can do is help make them better. The Dallas Cowboys finished 31st in the league last year in rushing and I have to assume they’d want to protect their highest paid player in team history – Tony Romo (I’m still confused about the contract). Fluker gives the Cowboys a chance to improve one of the worst offensive lines in the league. He has the strength, size and surprising quickness to develop into a top-notch right tackle.

Tank Carradine

Tank Carradine

19. New York Giants: Tank Carradine, DL (Florida State)
Zach: I wrote this the other day in my round-up of the best 11 GMs in sports: Jerry Reese always keeps calm and takes the best available pass rusher. In this case, it’s Tank Carradine. The Giants like him, the guys like Ogletree and Fluker that would have filled greater needs are gone and DL is actually a logical place to upgrade because of the defection of Osi Umenyiora in free agency and with the aging Justin Tuck in the final year of his contract. The 6’5, 275-pound Carradine would allow Tuck to slide inside on passing downs as he normally does and spell the smaller Jason Pierre-Paul on first and second down if needed. If I don’t end up nailing this pick, I’m actually going to scratch my head in confusion. And write a frustrated email to Jerry Reese for making me a liar in two different posts.

Tyler Eifert

Tyler Eifert

20. Chicago Bears: Tyler Eifert, TE (Notre Dame)
Adam: Here’s something interesting about the Bears – they have a good quarterback and a great receiver, but they still finished last year as the four-worst passing team in the NFL. They have two huge needs: protection for Jay Cutler and more receiving threats. It just happens that Tyler Eifert happens to fill both those needs at once. The Bears definitely need help at linebacker and interior O-line in this draft, but Mant’i Teo isn’t first-round good and signing Jermon Bushrod in free agency makes the O-line strong enough to avoid a first-round reach. Eifert is a nice complement to Brandon Marshall and shouldn’t take away from Matt Forte’s touches. Anything to take the pressure off the Cutler-Marshall connection helps.

**Trade** Minnesota trades the 23rd overall pick and a fifth round pick (155 overall) to Cincinnati for the 21st overall pick

Why the Vikings do it
Adam: The Vikings lost Percy Harvin in the offseason and while Greg Jennings is a great replacement, the Vikes have made it pretty clear that they want to get a WR in the first round. It’s no secret that they like Tavon Austin and Cordarrelle Patterson more than the rest of the WR crop, so one of those two players is a near-must for this draft. The Rams are a huge threat to take a WR at 22, and while they may favor Keenan Allen, it isn’t worth waiting to find out. The Vikings ante up and jump two spots to lock in their guy. The security is worth the extra fifth rounder.

Why the Bengals do it
Conor: Marvin Lewis made it clear that he won’t be reaching with the 21 overall pick. The need is a safety on defense. The Bengals could either reach for someone like Matt Elam or John Cyprien a bit early or trade back a couple of spots giving them some more options later in the draft. Gaining an additional pick in the fifth round will allow the Bengals to strengthen areas of need without hurting themselves by reaching for a position player who isn’t the best available player.

Cordarrelle Patterson

Cordarrelle Patterson

21. Minnesota Vikings: Cordarrelle Patterson, WR (Tennessee)
Adam: The Vikings like Patterson and might move up even further than 21 to get him if necessary. They’ve been publicly advertising the 23rd pick as a means of securing one of the top WRs in this draft. With a second first-round pick coming up (25), Minnesota can be aggressive about finding the right receiver knowing that they can still make a value pick later. Patterson already creates space like an NFL wide receiver and creates separation as well as any receiver in this class. He’ll be a nice balance opposite Greg Jennings and the Vikings should have a dangerous offense if Christian Ponder turns out to be as good as they expect him to be.

Keenan Allen

Keenan Allen

22. St. Louis Rams: Keenan Allen, WR (California)
Zach: Well-played, Vikings. You swooped in ahead of me to take Patterson. Or was I going to take Patterson? Muah ha ha ha ha. Alright, to be honest, I thought about it since the Rams are likely to take a receiver in the first round and he will be one of the best available. But to be honest, I am very happy with Allen as a consolation prize. The 6’2, 204-pounder has drawn comparisons to Anquan Boldin with his toughness, route running and hands. And I love me some Anquan Boldin. Plus, I got a chance to see Allen play against UCLA when he was at Cal and he just always torched the Bruins. Sam Bradford should be happy to have him instead of the boom-or-bust Patterson. But then again there is a very real possibility they take Cordarelle at 16 and then use this pick on the best available safety or linebacker. Such is the life of a mock drafter.

Menelik Watson

Menelik Watson

23. Cincinnati Bengals: Menelik Watson, OT (Florida State)
Conor: The trade works out to perfection! Surprised? Given the Vikings and the Rams are both hungry for receivers the Bengals pick up a fifth round pick and are still able to strengthen the left side of their line. The Bengals are optimistic that Andre Smith will resign, but Watson gives them some much needed insurance. He’s also a big boy with some rare athletic ability and if the Bengals are able to hone in on some of his problem areas in his technique then he should work out just fine for the Bengals.

**Trade – Indianapolis trades the 24th overall pick and their sixth round pick (192) to the Philadelphia for their second round (35) and third round (67) round picks.

Why the Colts do it
Frank: The Colts only have a few picks in this draft, so they might as well make the most of their early round picks. Taking the Eagles 2nd rounder only moves them back 11 slots, and they pick up a 3rd rounder in the process. I see the Colts as a team with needs, but none that would be addressed perfectly with a player available in this spot, which is why I would be willing to hear offers from teams willing to move up and grab the still-available Geno Smith.

Why the Eagles do it
Adam: Philadelphia is looking for a mobile quarterback to fit into Chip Kelly’s system and Geno the best option in this year’s class. It’s a miracle that  our mock has shaken out to allow Geno to fall all the way to 24 and the Eagles pounce on this chance to make a deal with a Colts team that is very thin on picks this year. The cost isn’t too excessive, basically turning the second-rounder into Geno and losing the third rounder. Smith is an option for this team at 4, so they’d jump at the player/price combination that 24 offers.

Geno Smith

Geno Smith

24. Philadelphia Eagles: Geno Smith, QB (West Virginia)
Adam: Sure, Mike Vick at times has looked like a quarterback who will fit a Chip Kelly system, but he’s getting old and the picture for the position after him is awfully murky. Smith could come in as a backup and learn the offense for a little while before being pushed into a starting role. This would be a great value for the Eagles, considering there’s a shot he ends up going to them fourth overall. For better or worse, the NFL needs to brace for what Chip Kelly is going to try with Geno under center.

Come back tomorrow for the finale, Part 4.

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