Chris and I decided to put out a first round mock draft of our own just to get a feel for how the draft could unfold. Chris is selecting the odd numbered teams while I’ll handle the even numbered ones. We’ll reveal our picks four at a time and will give brief write-ups for each selection.
1.Houston – Jadaveon Clowney, DE, SC
Normally I’m a quarterback guy when you’re picking top 5 and you need one. But all the QB’s in this draft have big question marks. That, coupled with the fact that you have a potential hall of fame skill set in Clowney makes him the pick… Find a QB in round 2 or trade for a kirk cousins and draft the closest thing to a can’t miss player.
2. St. Louis – Sammy Watkins, WR, Clemson
There is rampant speculation that the Rams will shop this pick heavily leading right up to the draft and while that may happen, Watkins is too good to pass up should they stay at #2. Other options include tackles Greg Robinson and Jake Matthews but Watkins provides the Rams with game-breaking ability that they need.
3. Jacksonville – Khalil Mack, DE/OLB, Buffalo
If I were a Jaguars fan, I would want this pick to be Blake Bortles. The Jaguars may improve, but they’re never going to make any real noise in their division with Chad Henne at quarterback. That’s still definitely an option, but I think they go a different direction. Head coach Gus Bradley is definitely a defensive minded coach, and Khalil Mack is a great fit in his aggressive defensive scheme. Expect Mack to make an impact as a pass rusher right away, and for the Jaguars to look to add competition for Henne later in the draft.
4. Cleveland Browns – Blake Bortles, QB, UCF
With Sammy Watkins having gone #2 to the Rams, the Browns would more than likely look to trade down. They also have the Colts first round pick at #26. With no trade partner and all three highly rated QBs still on the board, the Browns select Blake Bortles. With the promising Brian Hoyer likely starting, Bortles can learn the position without having to do it on the fly and could potentially give them a ‘Big Ben’ type QB for the future.
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.