Pre-Free Agency Mock Draft, Round 2

I published round 1 in four parts on Sunday. For those who missed it… well, it’s in the previous four posts in this blog. Go find and read it now.

I’m going to try to knock out round 2 here in one post, with mostly short thoughts on the selections. Beginning with the late first round, we really move into the area where the talent pool is a little flatter and teams will draft according to individual evaluations or need.

(Update, 3/11 12:16 pm: I’ve changed a couple of picks to reflect a spot where I left a prospect off the board mistakenly thinking he’d been drafted.)

(Update, 3/11, 4:13 pm: I’ve edited this round to reflect the changes brought on by the Percy Harvin trade.)

33. Jacksonville Jaguars – Alex Okafor, DE, Texas

Can’t go wrong with the top prospect available here, period; I just think the Jags still need outside pass-rushing help badly, and Okafor seems like a fine pick here.

34. San Francisco 49ers (from Kansas City) – Matt Elam, S, Florida

I’ve seen Jonathan Cyprien of Florida International moving up draft boards lately, but I still think Elam is a better prospect, and he will replace Dashon Goldson in the starting lineup.

35. Philadelphia Eagles – John Jenkins, DT, Georgia

They’ll need someone to play nose tackle in their 3-4, and Jenkins fits the bill.

36. Detroit Lions – Menelik Watson, OT, Florida St.

The Lions still need help along the offensive line, and Jeff Backus is 35 and may not return. Gosder Cherilus is also a free agent. Watson gives them a potential starting tackle.

37. Cincinnati Bengals (from Oakland) – Cordarrelle Patterson, WR, Tennessee.

Lots of mocks have Gio Bernard to the Bengals, and I like the fit, but Patterson is too talented to keep slipping down the board. Bengals could use a solid #2 opposite A.J. Green.

38. Arizona Cardinals – Larry Warford, G, Kentucky

If Levi Brown comes back healthy and Bobby Massie continues to improve at RT, the line may not be half bad this year with Warford a serious improvement at one guard spot.

39. Cleveland Browns – No Selection (forfeited in Supplemental Draft)

The Browns took Josh Gordon with this selection, and while I like him so far– he put up decent numbers as a very young rookie with a very mediocre quarterback– this pick speaks to the moral hazard inherent in the supplemental draft: the last regime– the Mike Holmgren / Tom Heckert team– knew they would probably be fired if they didn’t produce results in 2012, so they felt safe in really overpaying for Gordon, since the only way they would have to face the consequences of losing the pick is if he turned out to be great enough to help turn the team around anyway. The Browns should have paid less, and probably would have if their management team at the time had been more worried about the franchise’s long-term health than securing their own jobs.

39. New York Jets – E.J. Manuel, QB, Florida St.

Jesus Christ, the Jets better bring in someone to play quarterback this year.

40. Tennessee Titans – Jonathan Cyprien, S, Florida International

Could step in next to Michael Griffin right away.

41. Buffalo Bills – DeAndre Hopkins, WR, Clemson

The Bills need to bring in talent in the passing game, and Hopkins seems like a great place to start.

42. Miami Dolphins – Justin Hunter, WR, Tennessee

The Dolphins need to bring in talent in the passing game, and Hunter seems like a great place to start.

43. Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Sylvester Williams, DT, North Carolina

Roy Miller is a free agent and the Bucs could use someone next to Gerald McCoy.

44. Carolina Panthers – Eric Reid, S, LSU

The Panthers were flat-out abysmal at this position last year. They need to try something new.

45. New Orleans Saints – no selection (forfeited in the bounty scandal)

I’m a New Orleans Saints fan, so I’ll just say that there are plenty of unbiased reporters who think the whole way the NFL handled the case totally stinks.

45. San Diego Chargers – Eddie Lacy, RB, Alabama

Ryan Mathews can’t stay healthy– it’s time for the Chargers to admit they made a mistake with him.

46. St. Louis Rams – Justin Pugh, OT, Syracuse

Even with the Cooper pick in round 1 they could still use help on the line.

47. Dallas Cowboys – Barrett Jones, G/C, Alabama

This offensive line needs tons of help, and Jones can play multiple positions (although unfortunately for Dallas, not all at once).

48. Pittsburgh Steelers – Giovanni Bernard, RB, North Carolina

Rashard Mendenhall is certainly gone, and the team has already made it known they don’t think anyone else on the roster can be a featured back.

49. New York Giants – Arthur Brown, LB, Kansas State

The team’s linebacking corps is weak, and Brown is one of the top 4-3 outside ‘backers in the draft.

50. Chicago Bears – Kyle Long, G/T, Oregon

They still need help badly on the offensive line.

51. Washington Redskins – Jesse Williams, DT, Alabama

Any 3-4 defense can use a long-term solution at nose tackle.

52. Minnesota Vikings – Terrance Williams, WR, Baylor

They just traded their only NFL-capable wide receiver. Drafting two this early is not a stretch.

53. Cincinnati Bengals – Blidi Wreh-Wilson, CB, Connecticut

They could use some depth here, especially if Adam Jones walks.

54. Miami Dolphins (from Indianapolis) – Cornellius “Tank” Carradine, DE, Florida St.

Could use someone opposite Cameron Wake.

55. Green Bay Packers – Jamar Taylor, CB, Boise St.

Woodson is out and Tramon Williams has really fallen off.

56. Seattle Seahawks – Sam Montgomery, DE, LSU

A stout run-stopper who may be able to provide help rushing the passer as well.

57. Houston Texans – Robert Woods, WR, USC

They need a WR opposite Andre Johnson, and the youngsters haven’t come along yet.

58. Denver Broncos – Zach Ertz, TE, Stanford

Tamme and Dreesen are nothing special.

59. New England Patriots – Quinton Patton, WR, Louisiana Tech

They need to find some wide receivers in a bad way.

60. Atlanta Falcons – Darius Slay, CB, Mississippi St.

They need help at cornerback now that they’ve released Dunta Robinson.

61. San Francisco 49ers – Corey Lemonier, OLB, Auburn

A little higher than mocked, but I’ve been impressed with him and San Francisco needs an OLB opposite Aldon Smith.

62. Baltimore Ravens – Da’Rick Rogers, WR, Tennessee Tech

The Ravens have had success with troubled players in the past.

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