2014 NFL Mock Draft: Browns nab Sammy Watkins, Teddy Bridgewater
Jadeveon Clowney has two things: Super talent and question marks. The Texans like the former enough to spend No. 1 on him. In Cleveland, they get a game-breaking WR early and a QB late in the first.
1. Houston Texans -- South Carolina OLB/DE Jadeveon Clowney: Two weeks in a row, Clowney stays on top, which is tough in a country full of rumors and speculation about the top pick. Clowney has elite skills, though it's too bad it didn't show much in the 2013 season. If getting Andrew Luck to the ground is the top priority for the Texans, this guy should help, but there is risk.
2. St. Louis Rams -- Auburn OT Greg Robinson: I believe the Rams will trade down, but if they stay here Robinson has all the traits of a future pro bowl tackle. Former NFL offensive line coach Bob Wylie told me Robinson is so athletic he can get out of situations and recover better than many guys to come down the road.
3. Jacksonville Jaguars -- UCF QB Blake Bortles: The Jags need a QB for the future and this young man has the size, athletic ability and skills to be a solid NFL starter.
4. Cleveland Browns -- Clemson WR Sammy Watkins: Later in the first round, Cleveland gets its quarterback, but for now it's a game-breaking WR opposite Josh Gordon .
5. Oakland Raiders -- Texas A&M QB Johnny Manziel: It's a risky pick with Matt Schaub on the roster and the pressure to play Manziel right away. I wouldn't be surprised to see the Raiders move down instead of using this pick.
6. Atlanta Falcons -- Buffalo OLB Khalil Mack: The Falcons are in a great spot to take a pass rusher of a 10-year starter at left tackle. Today it's the pass rusher, but tomorrow it could be a tackle like Jake Matthews.
7. Tampa Bay Buccaneers -- Texas A&M WR Mike Evans: The Bucs traded away Mike Williams and they are too far down the draft board to get Watkins, so it's the next best thing. Evans is a faster more explosive version of Vincent Jackson . You better have big corners when you play Tampa.
8. Minnesota Vikings -- Alabama S Hasean Clinton-Dix: Why take a quarterback here and ignore a position where the Vikings need a Dan One starter. They can come back around in the second round for LSU QB Zach Mettenberger.
9. Buffalo Bills -- Texas A&M OT Jake Matthews: Doug Marrone knows the value of a 10-year starter at left tackle and can't believe Matthews, maybe the safest pick in the draft, is still on the board.
10. Detroit Lions -- Oklahoma State CB Justin Gilbert: I've said corner all along for the Lions and talk about trading up for Watkins is just that: Talk. Why would Detroit give away this year's first, next year's first and a second to grab a receiver when they need someone who can cover the great receivers in the NFC North?
11. Tennessee Titans -- UCLA OLB/DE Anthony Barr: Barr is an emerging pass rusher and solid defensive player with untapped potential after only two years on defense. He fits any scheme.
12. New York Giants -- Michigan OT Taylor Lewan: The Giants win when they protect Eli Manning and run the ball. Lewan gives them a better chance to do both things right away.
13. St. Louis Rams -- Louisville S Calvin Pryor: The Rams already got their offensive tackle at No. 2, and now a plug-in safety. Pryor hits like a strong safety and covers the deep middle like a free safety. Jeff Fisher gets a versatile back-end guy to complement a pretty good defense.
14. Chicago Bears -- Pittsburgh DT Aaron Donald: Some believe they need a bigger stout guy to clog up the middle. Get one in a later round because there are a number of third-day wide bodies. Donald is an elite pass rusher and one-gap penetrator who made almost 100 plays made behind the line of scrimmage in college.
15. Pittsburgh Steelers -- Michigan State CB Darqueze Dennard: The Steelers have many needs, but if Dennard falls this far one of their biggest needs is met. Rookies rarely start in Pittsburgh, but this guy will and will be there a long time.
16. Dallas Cowboys -- Florida State DT Tim Jernigan: The Cowboys are desperate for defensive-line quality and many believe Jernigan is next-best after Donald. Defensive coordinator Rod Marinelli may fool all of us with a different person in this spot, but for now let's just say Jernigan better be in great shape for his new coach.
17. Baltimore Ravens -- Alabama OT Cyrus Kouandjio: Big Cyrus had a very good pro day and doctors declared him ready to go after a knee issue surfaced at the combine. The Ravens have to do a better job of protecting Joe Flacco so it comes down to Zach Martin or Kouandijo. The upside is with the later and Ozzie Newsome is an Alabama guy.
18. New York Jets -- North Carolina TE Eric Ebron: It doesn't matter if it's Michael Vick or Geno Smith at QB for the Jets, he needs more weapons. A flexed tight end like Ebron helps the running game as well.
19. Miami Dolphins -- Notre Dame OT Zack Martin: Miami has taken Martin in every one of my mock drafts, which usually means the team will go elsewhere on May 8. Martin's versatility is the key reason I like him in a Dolphins uniform.
20. Arizona Cardinals -- Missouri DE Kony Ealy: Ealy has the talent to play on the edge and the size to move inside when the Cardinals want to slide the front around. For now he'll be in a rotation with Darnell Dockett , but a year from now he'll be the man.
21. Green Bay Packers -- Alabama LB C.J. Mosley : A couple of good linebackers to choose from here, but Mosley can line up at a number of spots in Dom Capers' packages and be effective. Last week it was Ohio State LB Ryan Shazier at this spot and it may very well be him again before May.
22. Philadelphia Eagles -- Oregon State WR Brandin Cooks: Cooks has traits like DeSean Jackson , and had 128 receptions last season. If the Eagles hold off on picking a receiver and go defense there are solid defenders left on the board. The Eagles reportedly tried to trade for Dion Jordan , indicating their desire for defensive help.
23. Kansas City Chiefs -- LSU WR Odell Beckham Jr.: Here's a mature young man who handles himself like a pro and he plays a position the Chiefs need to upgrade. Beckham's skills fit well in a West Coast offense.
24. Cincinnati Bengals -- Ohio State LB Ryan Shazier: The in-state linebacker has speed, production and is a three-down player. He can play WLB on run downs, Mike in the nickel and he has pass rush skills. Cincinnati would be lucky if he's still on the board.
25. San Diego Chargers -- Notre Dame NT Louis Nix: The Chargers need a nose tackle and many believe Nix is the best. I'm not so sure, but for now he's a Charger.
26. Cleveland Browns -- Louisville QB Teddy Bridgewater: Cleveland knew either Bridgewater or Derek Carr would be available at this spot, filling their need at QB. The Browns may feel Carr has a better arm for their winter woes on the Lake, but Bridgewater is a bargain at this point to some. I might wait and take Zach Mettenberger in the second round.
27. New Orleans Saints -- Auburn DE/OLB Dee Ford: Ford is a versatile hybrid edge rusher who put on a show at the Senior Bowl. Rob Ryan will use him in many different ways.
28. Carolina Panthers -- USC WR Marqise Lee: The Panthers may lose out on a left tackle in this draft if they stay in this spot, but since they need a big-time receiver, too, a player like Lee fills that hole. Forget his injury-plagued 2013, look at 2012. Lee had 118 receptions and 14 touchdowns.
29. New England Patriots -- Minnesota DT Ra'Shede Hageman: Some feel Hageman has fallen out of the first round, but coach Bill Belichick has a long history of taking big defensive linemen in the first round. Hageman's motor may run hot and cold but at 6-foot-6, 320 pounds, it's worth a shot for a team with an old front.
30. San Francisco 49ers -- Notre Dame DT Stephon Tuitt: The 49ers could take a receiver like Kelvin Benjamin but there is depth at WR, and the Niners have aging starters at the defensive five techniques. Tuitt is a big man who can run and had 41 plays behind the line of scrimmage in 35 college games.
31. Denver Broncos -- Ohio State CB Bradley Roby: I just got done watching enough game tapes on Roby to feel good about him late in the first round for the first time. He is an aggressive off-coverage player who can close on a receiver. He likes contact and would help right away in Denver.
32. Seattle Seahawks -- Texas Tech TE Jace Amaro: I believe the Seahawks like Amaro and he brings a dimension their offense really doesn't have -- a flex/slot tight end who creates matchup problems. Russell Wilson will love having a 6-5 guy who had 106 receptions last season roaming the middle of the field.
Our Latest Stories
Aaron Rodgers should win the MVP, but his bold claim at 4-6 could make him an all-timer
This Pittsburgh newspaper doesn't think very highly of the Patriots
The last time the two teams met, the Falcons won a nail-biter, 33-32
The former first-round pick has some things he would like to get off his chest
It looks like Jets owner Woody Johnson has a new job
Some fans in San Diego are really upset about the Chargers' move to Los Angeles