Mock Draft No. 5: Eagles can't resist QB Smith's fit at No. 4 overall
Tackles top of this draft, but the Eagles are so smitten with Geno Smith (Jeff Lurie attended Smith's Pro Day), they take the QB at No. 4.
1. Kansas City Chiefs -- Eric Fisher, OT, Central Michigan: Fisher still keeps my top spot -- mostly because two NFL offensive line coaches swear he's better than Joeckel. The Chiefs reportedly are trying to move out of the top spot. Good luck doing that without a premiere QB in the top of the first round.
2. Jacksonville Jaguars -- Dion Jordan, DE, Oregon: Joeckel may have a higher grade, but the Jags need to improve the pass rush. Jordan can do it all -- as a rusher and when dropping into coverage.
3. Oakland Raiders -- Sharrif Floyd, DT, Florida: If Floyd goes ahead of the Raiders to Jacksonville, it will be interesting to see if the Raiders pull the trigger on acquiring Geno Smith.
4. Philadelphia Eagles -- Geno Smith, QB, West Virginia: It will be hard to pass on a QB with the skills and production to run Chip Kelly's offense. Owner Jeff Lurie was at his pro day, and that rarely happens.
5. Detroit Lions -- Luke Joeckel, OT, Texas A&M: Jeff Backus retired, so if this pick is not Joeckel, it will be Eric Fisher. Either is a plug-in starter for 10 years. QB Matthew Stafford is a right-handed pocket passer and needs to be protected.
6. Cleveland Browns -- Dee Milliner, CB, Alabama: The Browns are in need of a corner and Milliner is the best in the draft. I wouldn't be surprised to see a team try to trade up before Cleveland to get him.
7. Arizona Cardinals -- Jarvis Jones, OLB, Georgia: Jones will pass most physicals and led the nation in sacks last year. Jones made 74 plays behind the line of scrimmage in his college career and no team has too many players with those skills.
8. Buffalo Bills -- Matt Barkley, QB, Southern California: The Bills will be in full force at the Barkley pro day this week and they need a starting QB. Barkley is the most NFL ready and his arm strength issues will be resolved on March 27.
9. New York Jets -- Barkevious Mingo, DE/OLB, LSU: Mingo has rare athletic ability, similar to Jason Taylor when he came out of college. Mingo can rush standing up or with his hand on the ground. It's been a while since the Jets had a player like Mingo.
10. Tennessee Titans -- Star Lotulelei, DT, Utah: Lotulelei can be disruptive from the "3 technique" position and play on the nose. The Titans need a great inside pressure player and will be lucky if he's still on the board.
11. San Diego Chargers -- Lane Johnson, OT, Oklahoma: The Chargers need a left tackle and Johnson could be the last of the first-round candidates. He's capable against speed rushers, but needs work against power. I would not be surprised to see a team jump over San Diego to snag Johnson.
12. Miami Dolphins -- Xavier Rhodes, CB, Florida State: Miami lost Sean Smith in free agency and need a big corner to replace his skills. Rhodes has rare size, in addition to long arms, to make him disruptive.
13. Tampa Bay Buccaneers -- Bjoern Werner, DE Florida State: Werner is too good to pass up at this point in the draft. The Bucs need corner help and there should be good corners in the second and third rounds -- like Robert Alford, and Tharold Simon.
14. Carolina Panthers -- Sheldon Richardson, DT, Missouri: The Panthers need quality players on the inside of their defense. Richardson is explosive and capable of being an opening day starter at the "3 tech."
15. New Orleans Saints -- Ezekiel Ansah, DE/OLB, Brigham Young: The conversion from the 4-3 to the 3-4 is always a challenge. Ansah could be an OLB or a DE. He is not as raw as some believe -- his Senior Bowl performance backs that up.
16. St. Louis Rams -- Kenny Vaccaro, S, Texas: The Rams have two picks in the first round and the best safety in the draft is a good fit for an already-solid defense. Vacarro has match up skills and can handle a slot receiver or play deep middle and half-field coverages.
17. Pittsburgh Steelers -- Desmond Trufant, CB, Washington: The Steelers may consider an OLB like Damontre Moore here, but they need a starting corner opposite Ike Taylor. There's no way William Gay is the 2013 starter.
18. Dallas Cowboys -- Chance Warmack, G, Alabama: The Cowboys have not been active in free agency because of salary cap problems. Warmack is a Dallas throwback to the days of Larry Allen. He will protect the midline, where Tony Romo likes to throw, as well as open up holes for the running game.
19. New York Giants -- Jonathan Cooper, G North Carolina: A little run on guards in the second half of the first round. Cooper is a plug-in starter on the left side who can pull on sweeps, as well as protect Eli Manning.
20. Chicago Bears -- Alec Ogletree, LB, Georgia: Brian Urlacher is done in Chicago, D.J. Williams was signed -- and Ogletree is a perfect candidate to join the Bears linebackers. Ogletree told me he prefers inside but most teams have been talking about outside. Lance Briggs isn't getting any younger and Ogletree has a Bears mentality.
21. Cincinnati Bengals -- D.J. Fluker, OT, Alabama: If Andre Smith returns, then this pick doesn't happen. If Smith leaves for greener pastures, then big Fluker is a natural fit. One coach told me he thought Fluker could play on the left side. And if that's the case, he's long gone by No. 21.
22. St. Louis Rams: Tavon Austin, WR, West Virginia: Danny Amendola is now with the Patriots, and Austin is a playmaker who takes Amendola's spot in St. Louis. In the past two seasons, Austin averaged 107 receptions and 10 touchdowns -- plus 25.7 yards in kickoff returns and 13 yards per punt return. He could easily touch the ball 10 times a game as a rookie.
23. Minnesota Vikings -- Datone Jones, DE/DT, UCLA: Kevin Williams isn't getting any younger and Jones can play anywhere across the front. Jones is a versatile player who will get work at end on run downs and inside on passing downs.
24. Indianapolis Colts -- Damontre Moore, OLB, Texas A&M: The 20-year-old pass rusher may have run a slow 40 in Indy, but he still produced 73 plays behind the line of scrimmage in 23 college starts.
25. Minnesota Vikings -- Justin Hunter, WR, Tennessee: My surprise pick of the first round. He is a solid X receiver who has leaping ability and vertical speed. He averaged 17.1 yards per catch at Tennessee.
26. Green Bay Packers -- Eddie Lacy, RB, Alabama: Lacy is the best running back in the draft and the Packers need a guy who can handle 20 touches a game. Why reach for the fifth-best pass rusher or fifth-best offensive tackle?
27. Houston Texans -- Keenan Allen, WR, California: The Texans need a wide receiver opposite Andre Johnson. I might prefer DeAndre Hopkins (and his 18 touchdowns last season), but Allen could be higher rated on the draft board.
28. Denver Broncos -- Johnathan Hankins, DT, Ohio State: The Broncos signed wide body Terrence Knighton, but still need a disruptive defensive tackle with skills to penetrate. They could consider Sylvester Williams or Jesse Williams in this spot, too. One thing for sure: If they don't take one here, the good ones all will be gone by the next time they pick.
29. New England Patriots -- Cordarrelle Patterson, WR, Tennessee: Amazing if Patterson still is on the board here. If he's gone, they easily go after a defensive lineman or a corner, but I think they need another wide receiver with Brandon Lloyd gone.
30. Atlanta Falcons -- Alex Okafor, DE, Texas: The Falcons need a pass rusher in the worst way, even after reportedly landing Osi Umenyiora. Okafor is a good athlete who could play standing up or down in a three point. He's also a high character guy, a trait the Falcons value.
31. San Francisco 49ers -- Sylvester Williams, DT, North Carolina: The 49ers could take Alabama's Jesse Williams here, but Sylvester is my choice because of his athletic ability. The point is the draft sets up perfect for the 49ers without moving.
32. Baltimore Ravens -- Kevin Minter, LB, LSU: Some will call this a bit of a reach -- or the spot for Manti Te'o. The Ravens need a middle linebacker, and I believe Minter is better than Te'o. He gets off blocks better, is a better tackler and an upgrade in coverage.
Jackson's huge outing in a win over the Seminoles leads to vital change in the rankings
The 49ers have been competitive despite an 0-6 start. Are they getting the Cowboys at the right...
Week 6 in the NFL was filled with shocking results. Let's go that route with this mock dra...
The 2018 draft class is shaping up to be absolutely loaded at the running back spot
The top three quarterback prospects had average-at-best performances in Week 7
Cousins faces a potential future employer in 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan on Sunday