With the NFL Draft less than two days away, fans are starting to get antsy with the extra time the NFL added due to the scheduling conflict that moved the selection show until May. This is also happening for many reasons, with the uncertainty of the first round being to biggest factor. Unlike years past, this draft seems to have more questions than answers and teams are playing their draft strategies close to the vest. With that in play, it has become more difficult than usual to predict how things will fall.NFL Mock Draft. As always, we would truly appreciate any and all feedback on this attempt at a mock draft or any of our articles at Steelers101. Feel free to interact with us on these picks by commenting on the post, on our facebook fan page or on twitter @Steelers_101.
1. Houston Texans – DE Jadeveon Clowney – South Carolina – While a trade scenario is likely being worked out, Clowney will be the pick at number one by either the Texans or another franchise. Yes, they could pull the trigger on Blake Bortles, but he does not bring the value of Clowney.
2. St. Louis Rams – OT Greg Robinson – Auburn – The Rams are in a solid position and could go many different ways. After some internal debate about the selection, they take a tackle with traits to be elite.
3. Jacksonville Jaguars – OLB Khalil Mack – Buffalo – The Jaguars would love to see Clowney fall, but will likely be happy with the selection either way. Mack is a playmaker that can come in and make an impact on the defense.
4. Cleveland Browns – QB Johnny Manziel – Texas A&M The Browns need a franchise quarterback and Manziel has the arm strength and swagger to play by the lake. Derek Carr also could be in play at this spot, but either way, it appears the Browns will attempt to find their quarterback of the future.
5. Oakland Raiders – WR Sammy Watkins – Clemson – Even though they have issues across the board, they decide to play it safe and take Watkins. It would also not be a surprise to see Jake Matthews at this spot if they decide to build the offensive line before adding a weapon.
6. Atlanta Falcons – OT Jake Matthews – Texas A&M – If the Falcons stay put, they will likely select Matthews, who fills a huge void. At this point, they also appear poised to make a move up for Clowney. If that is the case, Blake Bortles is likely the selection that falls into this spot.
7. Tampa Bay Buccaneers – WR Mike Evans – Texas A&M – The Buccaneers clearly need a top wide out, and Evans has the potential to make an impact from the start. They too could look at Bortles, but decide to pull the trigger on a number one receiving option.
8. Minnesota Vikings – DT Aaron Donald – Pittsburgh - The Vikings look at Donald as the perfect fit for their needs entering the draft. The undersized defensive tackle can come in and be the final piece to their revamped unit.
9. Buffalo Bills – OT Taylor Lewan – Michigan – The Bills could go some different ways with this selection, but decide to play it safe with Lewan, a player that could come in and help protect second-year quarterback E.J. Manuel.
10.Detroit Lions – CB Justin Gilbert – Oklahoma State –The Lions must improve their secondary and Gilbert could make an impact. A fluid safety with ball hawk abilities, he could start day one. Ha Ha Clinton-Dix or Eric Ebron could also be in play with this selection.
11. Tennessee Titans – OLB Anthony Barr – UCLA -The Titans could reach for a quarterback, but learned from past mistakes and go a different direction. Barr is a bit raw, but he is a pass rusher that could come in and make an impact.
12. New York Giants – OT Zach Martin – Notre Dame –.The Giants could use this pick on either their offensive or defensive lines and grab a player that can make an impact. Martin would be a versatile lineman that could come in and help solidify the unit.
13. St. Louis Rams – CB Darqueze Dennard – Michigan State – The Rams could grab a wide out, but decide to add depth to their secondary. Dennard is all over the board as a prospect, but may be the most game ready of all the corners in this draft.
14. Chicago Bears – S Ha Ha Clinton-Dix – Alabama – The Bears would have loved for Aaron Donald to fall, but he doesn’t. Instead they add arguably the best safety in the draft.
15. Pittsburgh Steelers– CB Kyle Fuller – Virginia Tech – The Steelers could go with a wide out (Odell Beckham Jr.), but decide to take a cover guy. Fuller is a solid athlete and experienced cornerback who is rising as the process is winding down. This would also be a prime spot for a trade for someone interested in Blake Bortles or one of the wide receivers.
16. Dallas Cowboys – DT Timmy Jernigan _ Florida State – The Cowboys want to build their defensive line and Jernigan is a talented performer who could have gone higher, providing the Cowboys with some value at this selection.
17. Baltimore Ravens – S Calvin Pryor – Louisville – The Ravens do what they always do and wait on a prospect to fall. In this case, they look at Pryor, who can come in and create an intimidating safety combination with Matt Elam.
18. New York Jets – WR Odell Beckham Jr. – LSU – The Jets must add some more offensive weapons and Beckham has the ability to be a game changer. Plus, he would be a great compliment to free agent signee Eric Decker.
19. Miami Dolphins – TE Eric Ebron – North Carolina – The Dolphins wanted an offensive tackle, but got lucky and had one of the higher ranked offensive players fall into their lap. Ebron may not come at a position of huge need, but he can be a weapon in that offense.
20. Arizona Cardinals – QB Blake Bortles – UCF –The Cardinals have needs but decide to peg their potential quarterback of the future. Bortles is big and can make every throw needed for their offense.
21. Green Bay Packers – LB C.J. Mosley – Alabama – The Packers were hoping to see a safety fall to this spot. Instead the grab a linebacker that could come in and help their front seven.
22. Philadelphia Eagles – WR Marquise Lee – USC – The Eagles would love for Beckham to fall and may trade up for him. If they stay, they add Lee to give them one of the more dynamic receiving corps in the league. Not as explosive as Brandin Cooks, but he is an elite route runner and a perfect fit.
23. Kansas City Chiefs – CB Jason Verrett – TCU – The Chiefs can go many ways to add talent to their roster. Verrett is a talented cornerback and a player that could be a solid addition to their secondary.
24. Cincinnati Bengals – CB Bradley Roby – Ohio State – The Bengals continue to build their defense with the selection of Roby, who is the top rated defensive back left on their board.
25. San Diego Chargers – DT Ra’Shede Hageman – Minnesota – The Chargers can go many ways to add talent to their roster, with the top corners gone, they grab a versatile defensive tackle with tremendous natural abilities.
26. Cleveland Browns – WR Brandin Cooks – Oregon State – The Browns have a true number one (Josh Gordon) on the roster, but add Cooks to give them one of the more dynamic receiving corps in the league.
27. New Orleans Saints – DE Dee Ford – Auburn – Ford is an interesting prospect that could come in and play multiple roles in the Saints defense.
28. Carolina – WR Cody Latimer – Indiana – The Panthers need help to find some young talent for Cam Newton and Latimer may be the one of the best all-around targets on the board.
29. New England Patriots – NT Louis Nix – Notre Dame – The Patriots would love for one of the top cornerbacks to fall into their laps, but it does not happen. Instead, they grab the top rated defensive tackles on their board.
30. San Francisco 49ers – DE Kony Ealy – Missouri – The 49ers may trade up for a wide receiver and could go many ways with this selection, but decide to pull the trigger on Ealy. One of the top rated defensive ends in this class, he could come in and add to their rotation early on.
31. Denver Broncos – LB Ryan Shazier – Ohio State –The Broncos decide to add to their defense. Shazier is athletic and potentially a steal at this point of the draft.
32. Seattle Seahawks – DE Demarcus Lawrence – Boise State – The Seahawks decide to keep adding depth to their defense. Lawrence has the look of a player that could come in and compete day one.
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