2015 NFL DRAFT

2014 NFL Mock Draft: Jadeveon Clowney or a new QB for the Jags?

By Dane Brugler | NFLDraftScout.com Senior Analyst

Does Jacksonville need a franchise QB badly enough to pass on Clowney? (USATSI)
Does Jacksonville need a franchise QB badly enough to pass on Clowney? (USATSI)

More NFL offseason: Mock Drafts | Prospect Rankings | Pro Days | Top free agents

The first wave of free agency passed and with the dust settled, some team needs -- and first-round outlooks -- shifted.

While several transactions in the past week changed depth charts, the draft is more about building young talent than filling particular needs. So while the free agency period will change some picks, it won't alter as dramatically as many think.

It's also officially pro day season as scouts, general managers and coaches travel the country and go campus-to-campus to put prospects through agility and positional drills. The on-campus pro days are more pieces to the overall puzzle as teams hope to put together a clear picture of this draft class. Over the next two weeks, Teddy Bridgewater, Blake Bortles, Derek Carr and Johnny Manziel will conduct their on-campus workouts -- expect a lot of "noise" -- positive and negative -- to follow.

NFL Mock Draft - 3/17/2014
Round 1
1. Houston Texans

(2-14)
Blake Bortles, QB, UCF: Losing the final 14 games of last season, the Texans earned this top spot. But despite the forgettable season, Houston isn't a complete rebuild and new head coach Bill O'Brien inherits a roster that only needs a few tweaks. If the Texans keep this pick, it would be a surprise if they didn't draft a quarterback. Bortles and Johnny Manziel are the favorites and I'll stick with the Central Florida product.
2. St. Louis Rams (from Washington)

(7-9)
Greg Robinson, OT, Auburn: Yes, the Rams brought back Rodger Saffold, but with his injury history and Jake Long coming off a serious injury, Robinson is still a strong possibility here. At the end of the day, I think St. Louis trades out of his pick, but if they stay at No. 2, I like the Auburn tackle here.
3. Jacksonville Jaguars

(4-12)
Jadeveon Clowney, DE, South Carolina: If Clowney is still on the board at No. 3, this pick gets interesting. The elusive "franchise" quarterback or the all-world pass rusher? Clowney has elite tools and can become something special in the NFL if he pushes himself, lining up as Gus Bradley's premier pass rusher on defense. If the Jaguars do go Clowney here, look for Derek Carr or Jimmy Garoppolo to be options in the late first or early second round for Jacksonville.
4. Cleveland Browns

(4-12)
Teddy Bridgewater, QB, Louisville: The Browns have a new head coach and general manager so right now it's anyone's guess the direction the franchise wants to go in the draft. But quarterback is still a strong need and with Bridgewater on the board, Cleveland cannot pass on the chance to upgrade the position.
5. Oakland Raiders

(4-12)
Sammy Watkins, WR, Clemson: The Raiders need upgrades at several positions, most importantly quarterback. But they might be left in a spot in which their primary targets are no longer on the board. If that's the case, Watkins would be a very nice consolation prize.
6. Atlanta Falcons

(4-12)
Khalil Mack, OLB, Buffalo: The Falcons have more than a few needs, but especially at pass rusher where the production has been underwhelming. Mack is a hybrid rusher who can play with his hand on the ground or rush from different angles, giving the Falcons an instant boost in the front seven.
7. Tampa Bay Buccaneers

(4-12)
Jake Matthews, OT, Texas A&M: With a new regime and free agency under way, the Buccaneers are one of the tougher teams to project and quarterback isn't completely out of the picture, as coach Lovie Smith reminded last week. If Donald Penn doesn't return, Matthews becomes a much more likely selection and would give the Bucs a solid starter with little bust factor.
8. Minnesota Vikings

(5-10-1)
Johnny Manziel, QB, Texas A&M: General Manager Chris Spielman swung and missed on Christian Ponder in the first round in 2011, can he go after another quarterback with question marks in the top 12? Minnesota needs to find an identity at quarterback and Manziel and Adrian Peterson in the same backfield would be fun.
9. Buffalo Bills

(6-10)
Eric Ebron, TE, North Carolina: The Bills need to add a big, physical presence in the receiving game, whether at wide receiver or tight end. Ebron is a freak athlete who will instantly help the Bills offense and second-year quarterback EJ Manuel.
10. Detroit Lions

(7-9)
Justin Gilbert, CB, Oklahoma State: The Lions have needs on defense, especially in the secondary at cornerback. Gilbert needs footwork and technique work, but his height, length and speed will push him up draft boards.
11. Tennessee Titans

(7-9)
Anthony Barr, OLB, UCLA: The Titans will move to a 3-4 base defense with new defensive coordinate Ray Horton as the architect, making edge speed a need for Tennessee. Barr is still raw in several areas, but he would be an excellent value here to groom.
12. NY Giants

(7-9)
Taylor Lewan, OT, Michigan: On paper, it appears the Giants have their starting tackles with William Beatty and Justin Pugh, but Lewan gives New York an upgrade at the position and gives them flexibility up front.
13. St. Louis Rams

(7-9)
Hasean Clinton-Dix, FS, Alabama: The Rams needs to continue and build the secondary with young, talented players and with TJ McDonald slotted for strong safety, Clinton-Dix would be an attractive option at free safety.
14. Chicago Bears

(8-8)
Calvin Pryor, FS, Louisville: The Bears need to add depth in the secondary, especially at safety where Major Wright is a free agent and Chris Conte is replaceable. Pryor has the athleticism and range to play the deep half of the field, but his best quality is attacking the run, adding a knockout punch to any defense.
15. Pittsburgh Steelers

(8-8)
Darqueze Dennard, CB, Michigan State: The Steelers have several needs on defense and although they usually address the cornerback position in the middle rounds, Dennard might be too attractive to pass up with this pick. Both general manager Kevin Colbert and head coach Mike Tomlin were present at his on-campus pro day last week.
16. Dallas Cowboys

(8-8)
Aaron Donald, DT, Pittsburgh: The Cowboys almost have to go defensive line with this pick and Donald will be an attractive prospect to play the three-technique spot for Dallas' four-man front with his explosive, relentless play style.
17. Baltimore Ravens

(8-8)
Mike Evans, WR, Texas A&M: The Ravens struggled to replace Anquan Boldin's production and presence last season and need a bigger, physical target to play opposite speedster Torrey Smith. Evans is a power forward on the football field and has a bright future with his ability to highpoint and attack the football.
18. NY Jets

(8-8)
Odell Beckham Jr., WR, LSU: Although he's been a turnover machine, Geno Smith will likely hold onto the starting gig for another year. The Jets added Eric Decker in free agency, but need more weapons to the offensive arsenal and Beckham helped himself at the Combine, pushing him into the top-20 conversation.
19. Miami Dolphins

(8-8)
Zack Martin, OT, Notre Dame: The Dolphins might be able to get by with their patchwork offensive line for now, but no question an upgrade is needed. Martin looks like an All-Pro guard, but he will likely begin at tackle in the NFL until he shows he can't hold up there, possibly lining up on the other side of newly signed Branden Albert.
20. Arizona Cardinals

(10-6)
Kyle Fuller, CB, Virginia Tech: Arizona has added some key contributors in the secondary through the early rounds of the draft with Patrick Peterson and Tyrann Mathieu and Fuller would make an excellent addition.
21. Green Bay Packers

(8-7-1)
Jimmie Ward, SS, Northern Illinois: Green Bay has a need at free safety and although it would be somewhat uncharacteristic for Ted Thompson to go safety in the first round, Ward gives the Packers an instant upgrade in the secondary.
22. Philadelphia Eagles

(10-6)
Bradley Roby, CB, Ohio State: Chip Kelly, who watched Roby in person at Ohio State's pro day last week, wants to get faster and tougher on defense and the former Buckeyes' cornerback will help accomplish that with his natural speed and aggressive mentality.
23. Kansas City Chiefs

(11-5)
Marqise Lee, WR, Southern California: Besides Dwayne Bowe, the Chiefs are lacking for impact targets in the passing game downfield. Lee is explosive down the field and if he stays healthy, he'll provide a productive option for Alex Smith opposite Dwayne Bowe.
24. Cincinnati Bengals

(11-5)
Jason Verrett, CB, TCU: Although shoulder surgery will likely keep Verrett shelved until training camp, he is an outstanding cover man who will be able to help the Bengals immediately in the secondary.
25. San Diego Chargers

(9-7)
Louis Nix, DT, Notre Dame: With Cam Thomas signing with the Steelers, San Diego can add some depth in the middle of their defensive line. Not sure they'll anticipate Nix still being on the board, but if he is, the pick would make sense.
26. Cleveland Browns (from Indianapolis)

(4-12)
Ryan Shazier, OLB, Ohio State: If the Browns go quarterback at No. 4 overall, their second first-round pick is a wildcard with several need areas on the roster. And with the recent release of veteran D'Qwell Jackson, inside linebacker shoots to the top of that list. Shazier would be an interesting fit in that role, but it's one he could handle.
27. New Orleans Saints

(11-5)
Brandin Cooks, WR, Oregon State: With the Saints are missing a big-play receiver on the outside who could potentially be a No. 1 threat for Drew Brees. Cooks is a more polished version of Tavon Austin with his explosive quickness, crisp routes and ability to create with the ball in his hands.
28. Carolina Panthers

(12-4)
Cyrus Kouandjio, OT, Alabama: The Panthers will likely look to help Cam Newton with this pick, possibly at offensive tackle where Jordan Gross recently announced his retirement. Kouandjio's draft stock is a mystery right now due to the knee durability concerns, but his fall could be the Panthers' gain.
29. New England Patriots

(12-4)
C.J. Mosley, ILB, Alabama: With the Brandon Spikes' tenure likely over in New England, the Patriots will be in the market to add depth at linebacker. And with Nick Saban likely giving Bill Belichick a ringing endorsement, Mosley makes sense.
30. San Francisco 49ers

(12-4)
Demarcus Lawrence, DE, Boise State: The 49ers have one of the most talented linebacker groups in the NFL and even their backups are impressive, but adding a pass rush presence like Lawrence will be difficult resist.
31. Denver Broncos

(13-3)
Kony Ealy, DE, Missouri: Injuries put a hurting on the Broncos' pass rush last season and Denver must develop depth in the front seven. Ealy has first-round tools and with some pro coaching, he should continue to blossom.
32. Seattle Seahawks

(13-3)
Xavier Su'a-Filo, OG, UCLA: Offensive guard has been an inconsistent position on the Seattle roster. Su'a-Filo has experience at tackle and guard, but projects best inside and will be the top guard in this class for several teams.
 
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