This is posted prior to free agency, so team's needs are not completely finalized.
1. Houston Texans: Reggie Bush RB USC
As long as the Texans stay in the top spot, they are selecting Bush. They gave Carr his cheese and now will look to build around him. They can start casting Bush's bust for Canton, but they would be a better team if they select OT Ferguson. Look for the Texans to entertain offers fromt the Titans and Jets.
2. New Orleans Saints: Vince Young QB Texas
This is a tough call since Payton will likely not have final say in this matter. I think Benson will go with the antithesis of Brooks and select the man that single handedly led the Longhorns to the National Championship and has been active in the Houston community. The Saints need someone that can lead them to a championship as much as they need someone to help rebuild the New Orleans community.
3. Tennesse Titans: Matt Leinart QB USC
If the Saints pass on Leinart, then the Titans will be jumping over each over in the draft room to make the call on Leinart. He would fit in perfectly with Norm Chow and give a lot of hope to the future of the Titans. If Leinart is gone I see them trying to replace the aging Brad Hopkins with the man Fisher coached in the Senior Bowl, D'Brickashaw Ferguson.
4. New York Jets: D'Brickashaw Ferguson OT UVA
A strong OT will go a long way to improving this offense. This will improve both their run and pass games and also help keep their QB upright and healthy. The Jets should just take Ferguson, solidify the OT for the next ten years and move on, but with this being the first draft with Mangini and Tannenbaum at their respective helms, I'm not sure what to expect yet.
5. Green Bay Packers: A.J. Hawk LB Ohio State
This pick fills a need for the Packers and he will be a solid player from day one. I think they would select a cornerback if there was one rated high enough and then pick up a quality LB in the second round, but unless Hill or Williams hits a home run at the combine, the Pack is going with Hawk.
T6. Oakland Raiders: Mario Williams DE North Carolina State
Whoever wins the coin flip between Oak and SF in March will select Williams, as he fits in nicely as a 3-4 DE at 6'7" 290 lbs..In a strange twist, the Raiders have their OC and DC signed but no head coach and this makes predictions tough. DC Ryan, from his time in New England, will see his chance to grab someone in the mold of Richard Seymor, and he will lobby hard for this selection.
T6. San Francisco 49ers: Michael Huff S Texas
If they have the opportunity to select either Hawk or Williams they will so, respectively. This team needs playmakers with character. Since there isn't any top flight WRs and they don't need to spent a top pick on RB, they will look to fill a hole on the defensive side of the ball. They will take their highest rated player in the defensive pool. Haloti Ngata would do a nice job anchoring the NT spot or they could pick the top CB of the draft, eitither Williams or Hill. Williams would be a good choice if only for the fact that the Niners play Fitzgerald and Bolding twice a year. I think they will go with the hard hitting SS from Texas and inject some attitude and leadership in their defense.
8. Buffalo Bills: Haloti Ngata DT Oregon
At 6'5" 345 lbs, Ngata will provide the inside force the Bills desperately need. Once Pat Williams left via free agency, teams pounded away at the spine of the defense and broke it. He hasgreat bulk and athleticism and if the Bills retain Adams, thy. e will have a dominant inside presenceJauron will see that his team is pretty solid and all that he needs to help his ball control offense and green QB is a dominant defense. If Clemets leaves, the Bills might select a CB.
9. Detroit Lions: Jimmy Williams CB VT
They might reach and take Santonio Holmes, but Marinelli will look for someone that can step in and play right away. The Lions have a need at both CB and FS and Williams is versatile enough to man both spots. He has an intriguing combination of size and speed and will match up nicely against the likes of Muhammed, Walker and any Minn WR. As long as Bly hasn't burned any bridges in Detroit, than the Lions will have a corner that can play against the small, quick WRs and one in Williams that can man up on the larger WRs.
10. Arizona Cardinals: Marcus McNeill OT Auburn
The woes of the Arizona running attack will be remedied by the mauling RT from Auburn. McNeill is a massive man (6'9 338) and he likes to use his size to drive defenders into the ground. This should provide the shot in the arm that the Cardinals need and they are competent at most other positions, so OL is top priority. He also stayed in school all four years and Green will like this kids makeup.
11. St. Louis Rams: Chad Greenway LB Iowa
The most pressing issue for this new coaching staff is improving the defense. Afters many years of drafting defensive busts in the first round, the Rams go back to the well. This time Haslett helps the Rams by recognizing the talent that Greenway brings. They also desperately need secondary help and Williams or Hill are possibilities, but when you face the leagues's best rusher twice a year you better be looking to shore up the middle.
12. Cleveland Browns: Mathais Kiwanuka DE BC
The Browns solely need help at both the DL and OLB. They especially need a NT to anchor their 3-4 defense, but none are available so look for them to score a pash rusher. Mathais has great speed off the edge, but needs to learn how to play low to the ground inorder to avoid neutralization. Coach Crennel will educate Kiwanuka and he will develop his OLB potential, where he can best use his blazing pass rushing skills. In Mathais, Coach Crennel might see a potential Willie McGinest and teach him to act the part.
13. Baltimore Ravens: Jonathan Scott OT Texas
The biggest weakness on the Ravens squad was their OLine. Scott has the footwork to play left tackle and the size and strength to anchor the right side. This selection will give the Ravens more versitility along the line and help keep their lame duck QB upright and their run game on schedule. This selection will help take some of the heat off of their OL and their coach for that matter. Perhaps this will allow Ogden to finish his career in Baltimore, most likely as a guard. With Scott, and last year's 2nd round pick, Adam Terry, the Ravens will have their future bookends in place.
14. Philadelphia Eagles: Thomas Howard OLB UTEP
Here is a team with a nice draft spot and not a whole lot of needs, that makes them a perfect candidate to make a deal. Most draftniks have the Iggles taking Santonio Holmes, but I think they have learned their lesson about taking WRs in 1st round. The next greatest need for the Iggles is at OLB. Howard performed extremely well at the Senior Bowl practices and I think his stock will make a DeMarcus Ware-esque leap once the Combine results are digested. Howard and last years pick, McCoy, will solidify the the future of the Eagles LB corps.
15. Atlanta Falcons: Darnell Bing S USC
The Falcons have to be concerned with the way their defense played last year. After a hot start, the defense became susceptible to both the run and the pass. Injuries played a large part, but weaknesses were exposed. Bing plays hard and fast and has been a part of two National Championships. Mora likes winners and he's gonna like what Bing brings to his run defense. If not Bing, then I wouldn't fault the Falcons for selecting Tamba Hali, both would fill needs.
16. Miami Dolphins: Tye Hill CB Clemson
I'm calling Saban on his bluff. There is no way he publically states he wants Jay Cutler and then takes him. The public recognition is most likely a ploy to increase Cutler's stock enough so that he is gone before Miami selects and thus gives Miami better value for their pick. With an aging Sam Madison reaching his crossroads, look for the Phins to replenish their CB corps via the speedy Hill. he was very impressive during Senior Bowl practices. I would not be surprised if they select someone like Eric Winston from Miami to replace McIntosh at LT.
17. Minnesota Vikings: LenDale White RB USC
This is probably the first pick in which value trumps need. First they need that mind eraser device from Men In Black with a 200 mile radius. Next they need a LB to anchor the middle and a CB to watch Smoot's back. Since I already gave away all the good LBs and CB, I believe the Vikings will select White. Culpepper is gonna be miserable trying to learn the WCO and they're gonna need someone to pound the rock take the pressure down an atmosphere or two. DeAngelo Williams would be the same as Mewelde and probably not gonna happen.
18. Dallas Cowboys: Winston Justice OT USC
This draft is rich in OT, but having five in the top 20 is probably a little much and will be amended after free agency. Coach Parcells needs to improve his offensive line play and having a healthy Flozell Adams and Marco Riveria will help but last year's RT play was shotty. Justice protected Leinart's blind side in college was a part of a dominant rushing attack. His stock dropped abit to his rusty play after a year off and his run ins with the law. I'm sure Coach Parcells will get thru to Justic and turn him into a permanent starter.
19. San Diego Chargers: Santonio Holmes WR Ohio State
The Chargers will be estatic that Holmes fell to them. As of now, he is the head of this years relatively weak WR class. Santonio is quick, runs good routes, catches the ball with his hands and is a willing run blocker. Marty will love this kid's attitude and will be glad to have him on the team. A.J. Smith will be looking for McCardell's replacement and will score with Holmes.
20. Kansas City Chiefs: Brodrick Bunkley DT Florida St.
Coach Edwards does not need to worry about his offense for at least one more year. This year look for the Chiefs to give DC Cunningham some run support via Bunkley. He has an attacking style that puts him in poistion to get to the QB or blow up the run for a loss. The Chiefs need another man in the DL rotation since Sims and Dalton have not been consistent. The big question is whether or not Bunkley can bulk up and maintain his quickness. If Coach Edwards lights a fire under him, they will be rewarded.
21. New England Patriots: Max Jean-Gilles OG Georgia
They would love to find some help in run support, but they will probably find some retreads to pit against their veterans who are coming back from injuries. In Max they will have a behemoth that in time will lock up and destroy any challenger. If needed he can slide out to tackle but would eventually be exploited by speed rushers. Max will increase Dillon's productivity and take some pressure off the now single Brady.
22. Denver Broncos (from Wash): Tamba Hali DE Penn State
The Broncos run defense was one of the best in the league, maybe because their pass defense broke down. They are set at CB due to the emergence of some rookies, but if given enough time they broke down. In steps Hali, a strong character guy that can play both DT and DE. The Broncos won't want to tie up too much money in the DL, so this pick signals some cuts. Hali has a great work ethic and will put in the time that will make people forget Slo Mo's selection.
23. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Davin Joseph OG Oklahoma
The Bucs need to upgrade their offensive line if they wish to continue the success that they earned this year. Their pass protection lacked a certain, I don't know, ability to be able to protect. Griese, then Simms, were constantly harassed and had many balls knocked down due to difficulties playing in space. Joseph is gonna be a guard in the Pros but when called upon he manned the LT spot at OU. Strong and a good run blocker, Davin also possess the quickness to pass protect in the disruptive NFC South.
24. Cincinnati Bengals: Claude Wroten DT LSU
The Bengals have had a terrible time trying to find a DT to plug the middle. Wroten brings a quickness to get upfield and the size to be stout at the point of attack. This pick gives them another pass rusher that can collaspe the middle of the pocket. Coach Lewis will have to develop this JUCO transfer a little, but it fills a need. The Bengals could also take the first TE off the board.
25. New York Giants: Donte Whitner S Ohio State
As evident from the GMen's playoff loss, they need someone that can tackle. True, their LB corps was depleted and they will come back, but they need someone to have their back. Whitner is versatile enough to cover the man in the slot or drop back and roam as a FS. He likes to play close to the line, but also has that Bob Sanders closing speed to make plays from the 15 yds. deep. He might be a little undersized for the new type of TE but a move to FS will help.
26. Chicago Bears: Vernon Davis TE Maryland
Anyone that watched the Bears last year know that they need playmakers on offense. The obvious holes are a 2nd WR and a TE. I think the Bears will find great value in the taking the 1st TE. Vernon Davis is a well documented work out warrior, but what intrigues the Bears the most is his speed. They have a solid possession man outside in Muhammed, but need someone to stretch the field. They will use him much like the Chargers use Gates.
27. Carolina Panthers: Marcedes Lewis TE UCLA
Both teams interested in TEs get the guys they want. Whereas the Bears need speed, the Panthers need size. Lewis won the Mackey Award as NCAA's best TE thanks largely to his soft hands and ability to create mismatches. Steve Smith can stretch the field and Marcedes will provide the Panthers with a great red zone target. I could also see the Panthers drafting Rodrique Wright DT Texas.
28. Jacksonville Jaguars: DeAngelo Williams RB Memphis
The slide ends. I actually think the Jags will try an trade up inorder to assure this pick. Williams is a proven workhouse and will provide the Jags will Taylors successor. Pair Williams up with Greg Jones and you have a formidable RB corps that will drive opposing DC's crazy. DeAngelo is a joy to watch, much like LT, and will electrify his team and probably win Rookie of the Year.
29. Denver Broncos: Laurence Maroney RB Minnesota
I like the Broncos taking Maroney for two reasons. First, Maroney is a nice cut and burst runner that would fit in nicely in the Denver zone blocking scheme. Second, I like Coach Shanahan stealing the Colts replacement for James. This selection fits in nicely with Shanahan's M.O. and will protect against Anderson's age and Bell's injuries.
30. Indianapolis Colts: Chad Jackson WR Florida
After glancing over the Colts roster, their defense looks to be good. They may look to draft an offensive lineman, especially if Greg Eslinger catches their attention in workouts. The Colts would like to replace Edge but will not reach for a RB. Therefore they will look to get good value at WR by taking the second guy off the board in Chad Jackson. He runs good routes and has a fine set of hands. He will set into the starting role in a year or two when Harrison retires or if they can't sign Wayne to a long term deal.
31. Seattle Seahawks: Antonio Cromartie CB Florida State
Hutchinson will be franchised so the next area of need is in the defense. Their are a couple of good LBs that they could pair with Tatupu, but they will want someone of Cromartie's size in the NFC West. Antonio is 6'3" and will match up against players like Fitzgerald and take away that jump ball they love to throw.
32. Pittsburgh Steelers: Martin Nance WR Miami, Ohio
This is a sweetheart pick. Should the Steelers lose Randle-El via free agency, they will surely need another WR and Big Ben has a history with this guy. Selecting Ko Simpson is also a possibility and probably make more sense, but Ben gets what he wants and the Steelers relive the 70's when they had Stallworth and Swann.
2nd Round (some of these picks might be wrong since I don't have info on traded picks)
1 (33). Houston Texans: Greg Eslinger OC Minnesota
If Bush is the first pick then the second pick needs to be OL. Eslinger was the best center in NCAA last year and gives the Texans a smart man to mind the line. I think the Texans should continue to take OL throughout the draft. If they could score Setterstrom in the third then they will have two more NFL caliber linemen who have been working together in college. They could also use a WR to start opposite AJ, but none of that matters if Carr is staring at the sky.
2 (34). New Orleans Saints: DeMarco Ryans OLB Alabama
The Saints need to upgrade their LB corps. They will estatic that Ryans is still on the board and he has a great chance to be starting from day one. At around 230 lbs, Ryan is a little on the light side and consequently he might have trouble with the rigors of the LB position in the NFL. He can be a great piece in the system but does not have the talent of a Vilma or young Ray Lewis, so he'll need support.
3 (35). Tennessee Titans: D'Qwell Jackson LB Maryland
Reese has already publically said he wants to get younger and faster at the LB position. The Titans will probably lose Sirmon and hopefully retain Vanden Bosch so they'll select an outside LB. D'Qwell does not have ideal size but he is quick and made plays on a shaky Maryland defense. If Vanden Bosch leaves look for the Titans to select Manny Lawson DE NCSU.
4 (36). NY Jets: Jay Cutler QB Purdue
There are so many areas that the Jets should address this pick could be anything, even OL. The Jets are obviously in the market for a QB. I hear the hype, but I'm not convinced he's in the same league as the Matt and Vince. Reminds me of this guy that was in Atlanta and Glanville used to bet people he could throw a football into the upper deck. Needs some time to develop his footwork, hopefully the coaching staff will realize that this.
5 (37). Green Bay Packers: Manny Lawson DE NCSU
This guy will probably move up my draft board following the combine. He surely benefited from having Williams on the other side. If he runs in the 4.5s in the 40 yd dash then this 6'5" 245 lbs specimen would surely be coveted as a 3-4 OLB and consequently will get a nice raise. The Packers would love to have someone across from KGB, and if they can resign some of their DT depth, then they will have the makings of a great DL.
6 (38). Oakland Raiders: Bobby Carpenter LB Ohio State
Art Shell will love this guy and he'll fit in great in Oakland. He will provide a toughness to this defense that has been lacking recently. Provides great run stuffing ability in a division that has the likes of LT, LJ, and Shannahan's project. Merely dressed for their bowl game due to an ankle injury.
7 (39). San Francisco 49ers: Derek Hagan WR Arizona State
This is a need pick for the 49ers. They may have defections from their LB unit and thus require selecting another misshapen ball of clay for Singletary to mold. But they need a big bodied WR and Hagan fits that need. He runs good routes and uses his body to position hisself to make a completion. Did not show consistency at the Senior Bowl and doesn't have the speed to blow people away at the combine, but he is a good prospect in a weak WR class.
8 (40). Buffalo Bills: Richard Marshall CB Fresno State
The Bills are gonna be dealing with Nate Clements inorder to sign him long term. This selection is insurance. Should they franchise Clements, they will be able to give Marshall time to hone his skills. Besides losing a rock in the middle of the defense, the Bills also suffered in scoring defense and Marshall can provide that when on the field. They might also go with OL, but McNally would rather work with late round draft picks and guys off the street.
9 (41). Detroit Lions: Nick Mangold C Ohio State
The Lions need to improve their offensive line and the intelligent Mangold will be a great center in the NFL. He is a technician that can make the calls on the line. His athleticism will be valuable against the Bears but may be a concern against the likes of Grady Jackson and Pat Williams. The fact remains that the Lions need help in the run game and making the right calls will help production. Martz will probably lobby for another WR.
10 (42). Arizona Cardinals: Taitusi Lutui OG USC
The Cardinals are making a concerted effort to revitalize their run game. Lutui is a man amoung men and based on size alone should be able to dominate in the run game. He is not without baggage which Green will use to motivate this kid. Green has the mentality to turn Lutui into the Pro Bowler his talent predicates.
11. St. Louis Rams: Ashton Youboty CB OSU
They could pick defenders both days of the draft and still have holes for Haslett to fill. Youboty will need some time to adjust to the NFL game. His upside lies in his size, at over six feet, Youboty should make Larry Fitzgerald's jump ball route a little tougher. Most importantly they will have another body to use in their hopefully revamped secondary.
12. Cleveland Browns: Abdul Hodge MLB Iowa
Crennel and Savage should be going into this draft will the goal of solidifying their defense, especially against the run in a run heavy division. Hodge is not a athletic freak but he is stout at the point of attack and this enthausiasm on the field raises the play of his teammates. Crennel could use another leader on defense and will groom him in that role.
13. Baltimore Ravens: Jason Allen FS UTenn
The Raven's front office does a great job of setting up their draft boards and finding value in their picks. This year they will have Allen fall in their laps, due in large part to injuries. Jason performed well at the combine and will place another run stopping, ball hawking safety on the field.
14. Philadelphia Eagles: Daryn Colledge OT Boise St.
This guy had a solid showing at the Combine and proved to be one of the more quicker and explosive lineman in the draft. The biggest knock against him is out of his control: he did not get to play in big time games against big time players, and thus needs to prov his mettle. The Eagles would love to throw another guy into the mix for Runyan's job. Look for the Eagles to groom Colledge to be another one of their big time steals.
15. Atlanta Falcons: Darryl Tapp DE VT
This guy is intense and if anyone has seen Mora prior to the game, you know that this is a great match. The Falcons are in need of another relentless end to pair up with Kearny, to cover up their short comings in the secondary. Tapp literally carries the lunch pail to work and will never let anyone out hustle him.
16. Miami Dolphins
17. Minnesota Vikings
19. San Diego Chargers
20. Kansas City Chiefs
21. New England Patriots
22. Washington Redskins
23. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
24. Cincinnati Bengals
25. New York Giants
26. Chicago Bears
27. Carolina Panthers
28. Jacksonville Jaguars
29. Denver Broncos
30. Indianapolis Colts
31. Seattle Seahawks
32. Pittsburgh Steelers