Chris and I are back with selections 5-8 of the 2014 Mock First Round Draft. Chris has the odd numbers and I have the even.
5. Oakland Raiders – Derek Carr, QB, Fresno St.
This time last year rumors were that the Raiders loved cornerback D.J. Hayden and were prepared to take him with the number 3 pick. This year I’m starting to hear they’re smitten over Derek Carr. I think that Oakland will try to trade down like they did last year, but we’re not predicting trades here, and unlike last year, I think the Raiders could actually lose out on their guy by moving down. Carr is a more traditional passer than probably any other first round caliber QB in this draft, and has the biggest arm, so him going this high is definitely plausible.
6. Atlanta Falcons – Greg Robinson, OT, Auburn
The Falcons would love to get Clowney for their pathetic pass rush but that isn’t going to happen. Atlanta is thrilled though to get Robinson who is a tremendous athlete and potential anchor of the offensive line.
While both Jake Matthews and Taylor Lewan are available, Robinson is head and shoulders above them in terms of both ability and potential and adds to that great size.
7. Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Mike Evans, WR, Texas A&M
Tampa just traded away Mike Williams. That means the 31 year old Vincent Jackson is the only real threat at receiver on the roster. Mike Evans has drawn a lot of comparisons to Jackson, so this could be a great fit for him to learn from the veteran. Manizel or Bridgewater are possible here, but Josh McCown will get the keys to the offense for at least one season, and the Bucs desperately need some weapons around him.
8. Minnesota Vikings – Johnny Manziel, QB Texas A&M
Few teams have had more instability at the quarterback position in recent years than the Vikings. While there will be a lot of sentiment to take the more ‘NFL ready’ Teddy Bridgewater, Manziel brings too much excitement and potential. Minnesota will be opening a new stadium in two years and who better to fill it than Manziel? With a solid running attack the pressure won’t be as great on the former Heisman Trophy winner.
Marc Uhlmann writes for and co-owns www.steelcityblitz.com. Follow him on Twitter @steeldad and follow the website at @SCBlitz. He can be heard weekly on Trib-Live Radio talking Steelers and is a blogger for ESPN 970 in Pittsburgh.