Mock draft No. 8: Geno Smith moves up to No. 3, gives Raiders their QB
At this point, less than two weeks from the NFL Draft, there aren't a lot of changes. But Pat Kirwan sees the Raiders moving Geno Smith up to No 3 overall, shoring up things at QB.
1. Kansas City Chiefs -- Luke Joeckel, OT, Texas A&M: Not much has changed at the top. Soon, the Chiefs will attempt to negotiate with their top pick. If Joeckel is a problem with signability, KC could get serious about Eric Fisher. I don't think it will happen, but it is a possibility.
2. Jacksonville Jaguars -- Sharrif Floyd, DT, Florida: The Jaguars should give serious consideration to QB Geno Smith or CB Dee Milliner (best corner in the draft, an instant starter). Someone has to cover division receivers like Andre Johnson and Reggie Wayne. But Floyd solidifies the inside of a porous defensive line and football starts up front. I would move down, if at all possible, from this spot.
3. Oakland Raiders -- Geno Smith, QB, West Virginia: The Raiders released Tommy Kelly and Richard Seymour is a free agent, so Oakland is in desperate need of defensive line help like Star Lotulelei. However, until they get their QB situation solved this team isn't going anywhere. Smith could generate hope for the fan base.
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4. Philadelphia Eagles -- Dion Jordan, OLB, Oregon: Chip Kelly coached him and needs a guy like Jordan for the new 3-4 defense. Mike Vick is a short-term answer at QB and Nick Foles should be in a different offense. The Eagles could miss on Geno Smith, but could come back later for EJ Manuel.
5. Detroit Lions -- Eric Fisher, OT, Central Michigan: Jeff Backus retired, Gosder Cherilus left in free agency and the Lions throw the ball more than any team. They must protect Matthew Stafford. Eric Fisher is a solid pass blocker already, and is a plug-in left tackle.
6. Cleveland Browns -- Dee Milliner, CB, Alabama: The Browns need a corner like Dee Milliner and I'm starting to think he may fall right in their lap. If Milliner is gone and they can't trade down, CB Xavier Rhodes or an OLB like Jarvis Jones or Barkevious Mingo make sense.
7. Arizona Cardinals -- Lane Johnson, OT, Oklahoma: The Cardinals took care of their QB situation by trading for Carson Palmer. Now they have to protect him, because Bruce Ariens likes to throw it 40 times a game.
8. Buffalo Bills -- Chance Warmack, OG, Alabama: Kevin Kolb is on board as a QB, allowing the Bills wait until the second round to get a QB like Ryan Nassib or even Matt Barkley. Warmack replaces Andy Levitre. Kolb's contract does not secure him as the starter in Buffalo.
9. New York Jets -- Jarvis Jones, OLB, Georgia: The Jets need a pass rusher and a guy with attitude. Jones made 74 plays behind the line of scrimmage at Georgia. His slow 40 time only reminds Rex Ryan of another guy Ryan coached who had a slow 40 time: Terrell Suggs.
10. Tennessee Titans -- Xavier Rhodes, CB, Florida State: If the Dolphins, Chargers or Bucs think Rhodes will fall to them, they could be in for a disappointment. Rhodes has all the physical tools and can "press" the growing number of big wide receivers.
11. San Diego Chargers -- Barkevious Mingo, OLB/DE, LSU: The Chargers would love a left tackle here, but that looks less likely every week. Mingo is a super athlete who has pass rush skills. If they want Lane Johnson, they should give Cleveland a call at No. 6.
12. Miami Dolphins -- D.J. Fluker, OT, Alabama: The Dolphins have the salary cap space for a veteran RT like Andre Smith, Tyson Clabo or Eric Winston. But they haven't made that move and the draft is less than two weeks away. Fluker is a plug-in right tackle who permits Jonathan Martin to move to the left side. I count nine teams looking to replace or fill the right tackle position. Fluker is the No. 1 right tackle.
13. Tampa Bay Buccaneers -- Desmond Trufant, CB, Washington: The Bucs need corner help in the worst way and Trufant has the experience, speed and quickness to be a Day One starter. They may consider a pass rusher, like Ezekiel Ansah, in this spot.
14. Carolina Panthers -- Star Lotulelei, DT, Utah: The Panthers have struggled inside on the defensive line for two seasons. They would be fortunate if Lotulelei falls to them. If he's gone, they could grab Sheldon Richardson.
15. New Orleans Saints -- Kenny Vacarro, S, Texas: The Saints need an OLB who can rush in their new 3-4, but the best ones will be gone. Vacarro is a smart player who has matchup skills and toughness. Last year, the Saints safety play was not very good.
17. Pittsburgh Steelers -- Bjoern Werner, DE, Florida State: The Steelers have a number of needs, especially cornerback, wide receiver and pass rusher. Werner is a solid DE, stout enough to two-gap when asked and able to rush the passer on the throwing downs. The Steelers will see him as the long-term answer when Brett Keisel departs, but first will ease Werner into the rotation.
18. Dallas Cowboys -- Sheldon Richardson, DT, Missouri: The Cowboys might have considered D.J. Fluker, but since he's gone in this mock, it's time to take a "3 tech" defensive tackle for Monte Kiffin's 4-3 defense.
20. Chicago Bears -- Alec Ogeltree, LB, Georgia: Can play any of the linebacker spots. Even though, the Bears signed D.J. Williams and James Anderson, Ogeltree is too good to pass up. There will be some consideration for a wide receiver or a defensive lineman like Datone Jones.
21. Cincinnati Bengals -- Eddie Lacy, RB, Alabama: The Bengals are beefing up their defense and could add James Harrison, and possibly Karlos Dansby. Lacy balances up their offense and would touch the ball close to 20 times a game.
22. St. Louis Rams -- Eric Reid, S, LSU: The Rams miss on Texas safety Kenny Vacarro, and this pick could come down to S Jonathan Cyprien or Reid. I like both, but Reid has better deep skills and can still make plays at the line of scrimmage against the run. I could see the Rams moving down because of a tight salary cap and already grabbing a first-round pick at No. 16.
24. Indianapolis Colts -- Datone Jones, DE/DT, UCLA: Jones is a versatile defensive lineman and the Colts need him as a "5 tech" on run downs and over the guard in passing situations.
25. Minnesota Vikings -- Cordarrelle Patterson, WR, Tennessee: With Percy Harvin gone (and Sidney Rice the year before), it's time to get a top WR in the draft. Patterson is a bit raw but full of potential. Another WR like Keenan Allen or DeAndre Hopkins could be the choice.
26. Green Bay Packers -- Tyler Eifert, TE, Notre Dame: Some believe Jermichael Finley's days in Green Bay are numbered. But how about teaming Eifert up with Finley for a package similar to the Patriots with Gronkowski and Hernandez?
27. Houston Texans -- DeAndre Hopkins, WR, Clemson: Hopkins caught 18 touchdown passes last year and never drops the ball. The Texans need someone opposite Andre Johnson -- and really need someone who gets into the end zone.
28. Denver Broncos -- Johnathan Hankins, DT, Ohio State: John Fox has always liked big defensive tackles -- like Kris Jenkins back in Fox's Carolina days. While the Broncos need a pass rusher to replace Elvis Dumervil and Von Miller's old college teammate, Damontre Moore, is still on the board, Denver needs to clog up the middle first. The Broncos can come back around at pick No. 58 for a situational pass rusher.
29. New England Patriots -- Kawann Short, DL, Purdue: I wouldn't be surprised to see the Patriots move out of this spot, considering they only have five picks in the entire draft. A team looking for Matt Barkley, still on the board in this mock, might want to jump into this spot. If the Patriots stay here, a versatile defensive lineman like Short makes sense.
30. Atlanta Falcons -- Johnthan Banks, CB, Mississippi State: The Falcons lost Brent Grimes in free agency and released Dunta Robinson. Banks is a tall corner who didn't run fast at the combine but plays fast. His numbers (26 pass break-ups and 16 interceptions in the SEC) speak for themselves.
31. San Francisco 49ers -- Damontre Moore, OLB, Texas A&M: Recently signed Craig Dahl is not the answer as a replacement for Dashon Goldson and Donte Whitner is inconsistent. Jonathan Cyprien is a consideration, but Moore is 20 years old and has 72 plays behind the line of scrimmage and eight forced fumbles. The 49ers will be protecting a lot of leads this season and that turns opponents into one-dimensional passing teams.
32. Baltimore Ravens -- Kevin Minter, LB, LSU: Some believe Manti Te'o is a better pick for the Ravens. But I studied both and prefer Minter because he has better pass-drop awareness and plays under more control.
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