More, more, more, more, MORE. Here is my second 2009 NFL mock draft. It has more of everything. It took more time. I did more research. I did more thinking. I read more scouting reports. I looked at more stats. More is better, right? I hope so.
1. Detroit Lions (0-16) - Eugene Monroe, OT, Virginia
The Detroit Lions have successfully (kind of) completed the first 0-16 regular season ever. There are very few positions that don't need help on this team. Those positions are weak-side linebacker where Ernie Sims plays and running back thanks to Kevin Smith's surprisingly productive rookie season, during which he raked in almost 1,000 yards. In my opinion, there are two possibilities here for the Lions. They could take Matt Stafford, who's strong arm is beloved by scouts, or offensive line. They could give Drew Stanton a chance since they spent a second-rounder on him. They need to protect their quarterback and provide room for Kevin Smith. Eugene Monroe, not Andre Smith, is more NFL-ready, in my opinion. He can handle speed off of the edge and isn't bad in the running-game.
Previous Pick: Matt Stafford
2. Saint Louis Rams (2-14) - Andre Smith, OT, Detroit Lions
The Rams desperately need to upgrade their offensive line. For the past few seasons they have needed help there, but have looked to other problems on their team. I think they will be psyched if Andre Smith is availabe, I would be psyched if Andre Smith, Eugene Monroe, Jason Smith or Michae Oher were available. The only hard part would be choosing between them, whether it's all four of them or just three of them. Andre Smith either is or was rated as the top prospect in the entire draft by nearly everyone. He dominated this season at Alabama. Durability used to be a question for Smith, but he didn't miss a single game due to injury last season. He has flawless footwork and amazing agility. However, he is only 6'4", which is short for a left tackle, and that could push him to right tackle.
Previous Pick: Andre Smith
3. Kansas City Chiefs (2-14) - Brian Orakpo, DE, Texas
The chiefs could use help at several positions. They could take an offensive tackle to take Branden Albert's place and move Albert to guard where he belongs, or a good defensive end to fill the void left by Jared Allen. Quarterback is not a need for them. Tyler Thigpen had a surprisingly good season and he is only 24 years old. Even if it was a need, Scott Pioli would not take a quarterback on the first round, it's a big risk for a high price. This could very well be another #1 pick spent on the defensive line, which isn't a bad thing. Brian Orakpo was an extremely productive part of Texas' defense. He beat lineman left and right all year long, including Phil Loadholt from Oklahoma. He has the speed needed to get around the edge and he is very strong as well.
Previous Pick: Michael Oher
4. Seattle Seahawks (4-12) - Michael Crabtree, WR, Texas Tech
The Seahawks had a very disappointing season this year, mostly because they were riddled with injuries all season. They had plenty of injuries at the wide receiver position, but even without injuries their wide receiving corps is mediocre at best. Their young tight end, John Carlson, was the only player on the team with over 50 receptions. Many have attributed Crabtree's success to Texas Tech's pass-happy offense, but Crabtree has all the things needed to be an amazing receiver. He is very fast and has the ability to go up the middle. His physicality allows him to bounce off of tacklers and his speed allows him to draw corners in, then blow right by them. However, Texas Tech doesn't use all the routes Crabtree will need to run for their offense.
Previous Pick: Michael Crabtree
5. Cleveland Browns (4-12) - Aaron Curry, OLB, Wake Forest
The Cleveland Browns had an extremely disappointing season, just one season after being a massive surprise. I imagine Browns fans don't have much to cheer about, but they should be extremely happy if they draft Aaron Curry. Willie McGinest is 37 years old and Kamerion Wimbley has been a bust thus far. Curry has great size and great bulk to go along with his extreme quickness and 4.6 40 speed. His physicality and toughness are impressive, but he can be too aggressive and overpursue at times. He managed to get to the quarterback often enough in college despite his small variety of moves. He is a great warp-up tackler who has laid the ball carrier out on many occasions. He is very smart and is one of the top linebacker prospects in years.
Previous Pick: James Laurinaitis
6. Cincinnati Bengals (4-11-1) - Jason Smith, OT, Baylor
The Bengals, yet again, had a horrid season. They were the last team to record a win this season, since the Lions failed to do so the entire season. Therefore, they have a number of needs they can address in this draft. They could use a big improvement at defensive end, defensive tackle, linebacker and offensive line. Their offensive tackles were torn apart by injuries and now are potential free agents. I was considering putting Beanie Wells here, but Cedric Benson was actually pretty impressive down the line last season. This offensive tackle class is extremely strong. Todd McShay has Jason Smith as his first overall pick, just a testament to the quality of tackles. He is phenomenal in the passing game, but only barely above-average in the running game.
Previous Pick: Brian Orakpo
7. Oakland Raiders (5-11) - Jeremy Maclin, WR, Missouri
The Raiders had yet another bad season. However, they have some promise in their young talent in Nmadi Asomungha (if he stays), JaMarcus Russell and Darren McFadden. The Raiders could use help at the defensive end and offensive line positions, neither of those are very flashy though. Another need is wide receiver, is there a more flashy position? I think Al Davis is most likely going for a wide receiver than a defensive or offensive lineman. Maclin is an extremely flashy player. He was possibly the fastest player in the nation last season, but it is close with Percy Harvin. Maclin caught the ball, ran the ball and returned kicks with Missouri. He is pretty small and hasn't learned all of the routes he will be forced to run, but his speed is remarkable.
Previous Pick: Eugene Monroe
8. Jacksonville Jaguars (5-11) - Rey Maualuga, ILB, USC
A lot of people have the Jaguars taking an offensive tackle here, however I think they need a guard more so than a tackle, but there aren't any guards worth the #8 pick in the draft. Some other needs for the Jaguars are a middle linebacker and a franchise wide receiver, or even a cornerback. Jack Del Rio and the currently starting inside linebacker, Mike Peterson, seem to have disagreements constantly. Maualuga is a big and powerful middle linebacker who can easily stop the run. He would be best suited in a 3-4, but he is versatile enough to play in a 4-3. His size and aggressiveness would be perfect for the Jaguars. He is an immense presence and delivers massive hits. Unfortunately, he is always trying to lay opponents out and can miss some tackles because of it.
Previous Pick: Aaron Curry
9. Green Bay Packers (6-10) - Malcolm Jenkins, CB, Ohio State
The Packers most likely aren't as bad as their 6-10 record suggests they are. Some upgrades they could want are drafting a good defensive lineman or a good cover corner. Their two current corners are superb, but they are getting older. One is 34 and the other is 32 years old. The Packers will be switching to a 3-4 defense next season under Dom Capers and none of the defensive ends worth this pick are fits in a 3-4 scheme. Some say Michael Johnson, but he definitely is not a fit and he isn't worth this pick. If Malcolm Jenkins is available at this point, I see the Packers taking him. Jenkins is definitely the best corner in this draft. Jenkins has great instincts and almost always gets perfect positioning. He has great technique and experience and he can reportedly run a 4.3 40.
Previous Pick: Michael Johnson
10. San Francisco 49ers (7-9) - Matt Stafford QB, Georgia
The 49ers started off the season as the last couple of seasons have gone for them. Needless to say, they lost plenty of games. The organization decided to fire the current head coach and hire Mike Singletary as the interim head coach. It seemed like a shaky start when Singletary had a confrontation with Vernon Davis. However, he managed to turn it around and the 49ers quietly had a good end to the season. They do still have needs. Perhaps above all, they need stability at quarterback. The 49ers should be ecstatic if Stafford falls to them. They also need a pass rushing outside linebacker as well as a cornerback who they need for the future. Matt Stafford could fall here if the Lions pass on him and no one trades up for him. Scouts love Stafford's powerful arm and his accuracy is pretty good too.
Previous Pick: Mark Sanchez
11. Buffalo Bills (7-9) - Everette Brown, DE, Florida State
The Bills had a very good start at the beginning of the season and it seemed very promising. Unfortunately, the season took a turn for the worse and the Bills slid all the way down to 7-9. They aren't too far away from the playoffs. The Bills could use a good right guard to replace Jason Whittle. Otherwise, they could use a tight end or another defensive end. Last season the team totaled only 24 sacks and the team leaders in sacks only had 4 sacks each. Everette Brown was productive for the Seminoles ever since he started his limited role as a freshman. Brown has the size he needs to be a defensive end at 6'4", 252 pounds. He is very fast and quick and reached the quarterback nearly at will in college. He must get a lot stronger so that he woun't be pushed around.
Previous Pick: Eben Britton
12. Denver Broncos (8-8) - B.J. Raji, DT, Boston College
The Broncos were so close to reaching the playoffs this season and they are one of the most talented teams not to reach the playoffs. They would love to build on their excellent 2008 draft which included Boise State's Ryan Clady as well as Eddie Royal. The passing game was great, led by Jay Cutler and Brandon Marshall, and their running game was mediocre. However, their pass defense and running defense were both near the bottom of the league, 26th and 27th. They need any player who is good at stopping the run. B.J. Raji is certainly capable of stopping the run, as he did his entire career at Boston College. He is not a good pass rusher at all, however. He often occupies more than one blocker and is capable of filling many holes. His excellent strength will help Denver very much.
Previous Pick: B.J. Raji
13. Washington Redskins (8-8) - Michael Oher, OT, Ole Miss
The Redskins have a few positions that could use some help. They could use a good, young defensive end because Jason Taylor is getting old and was plagued with injuries last season. It is very difficult to tell how much longer he will hold up. Also, they need a good offensive tackle. Their current right tackle is getting older and is coming off an injury. Michael Oher could take his place and once Samuels', their left tackle, is done, Oher could move over and take his place at left tackle. Oher could have gone into the draft last season and been one of the top lineman, but decided to stay again. He is durable and he has size and mobility. He should work on his strength and run-blocking for the NFL.
Previous Pick: Jason Smith
14. New Orleans Saints (8-8) - James Laurinaitis, ILB, Ohio State
The Saints are pretty much all set on offense, except possibly for running back. Reggie Bush has been a bust so far, but I think Deuce McAlister might have a few years left in him. Center could use a little work as well. However, they really need to bolster their defense. Jonathan Vilma has been playing well, but the rest of the linebackers are lacking. Their entire secondary could use help as well. James Laurinaitis could definitely provide some help to their linebacker corps. Laurinaitis was an absolute beast in college and left as one of the most decorated defensive players. He racked up ten tackles every game at Ohio State. He reads and reacts right away and his instincts are remarkable. Ha can drop back into coverage when needed. He isn't always an impact player and not much of a big hitter.
Previous Pick: Malcolm Jenkins
15. Houston Texans (8-8) - Vontae Davis, CB, Illinois
The Texans had a very good season, especially by their standards. They should have been a few games better than 8-8 because of a few games against the Colts (Cough, Sage Rosenfels, cough). However, they still do have a few needs. They could use a defensive end to line up opposite of Mario Williams, to distract the opposing team's attention. Or they could draft an outside linebacker, safety or a top-notch corner. They could go with Vernon Davis' brother, Vontae Davis, to line up across from Dunta Robinson. Vontae certainly has the same athletic genes as his brother, Vernon. He is a reliable tackler, he had over 200 in 3 years at Illinois, and he was a shutdown corner. He had only 2 interceptions last season because teams refused to throw to him, he cuts the field in half.
Previous Pick: Vontae Davis
16. San Diego Chargers (8-8) - Chris "Beanie" Wells, RB, Ohio State
The Chargers started the season off sloppily, but they turned it around and fought their way back to the playoffs. They have a few needs; an offensive tackle who would be groomed under Marcus McNeil and a nose tackle who would learn under Jamal Williams. They also could draft an outside linebacker, which isn't an incredibly pressing need for them. Another need is running back. The situation with LaDainian Tomlinson could work out several different ways. Even if they resign him I could see the Chargers taking Beanie Wells here. LDT is 30 years old and is aging like milk. He has had a steady decline and is getting injured often. Darren Sproles isn't an every-down back, either. Wells has lots of talent and can break many tackles. However, a running back with a foot injury is scary.
Previous Pick: Rey Maualuga
17. New York Jets (9-7) - Tyson Jackson, DE, LSU
This pick took me longer to figure out than any other pick they have. There were a few factors that made it difficult to figure it out. They did a good job of filling holes last offseason, leading to few holes this season. They could use an upgrade at defensive end, an extra offensive lineman or two or an inside linebacker. Another need is corner, as their pass defense was horrendous. However, after Maualuga and Laurinaitis, there aren't many inside linebackers worth of this pick, and after Davis and Jenkins, no one is as good as Tyson Jackson here. Jackson, unlike nearly every other defensive end in this draft, is perfect for a 3-4 defense. He is not a speed rusher, he is a bull-rusher. He is very powerful and he has great toughness. He will stop the run, but will have difficulty getting the sack.
Previous Pick: Knowshon Moreno
18. Chicago Bears (9-7) - Aaron Maybin, DE, Penn State
The Chicago Bears have multiple areas of need on this team. They could use help at defensive end as well as the offensive line, other than that they could use a receiver to line up opposite of Devin Hester who made notable strides as a receiver last season. While the Bears could take someone like Darrius Heyward-Bey, Percy Harvin or Hakeem Nicks, I see them going towards the staple of their team; defense. Maybin is seen by some as one of the top defensive ends in the game. Maybin has always been productive, even when he played a very limited role at Penn State as a freshman. He is a full-out pass rusher who uses his speed to run right around the tackles he faces. He has great speed and is strong for his size. He will only be in on passing situations, but could become a sack-leader.
Previous Pick: Jeremy Maclin
19. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (9-7) - Knowshon Moreno, RB, Georgia
When I had heard that Warrick Dunn led the Bucs in rushing this season, I admittedly thought for a second 'Didn't he retire?' Well, of course, he didn't. The Buccaneers' quarterback situation isn't that great either. However, Cadillac Williams has proved to be good, but injury-prone, Warrick Dunn is geting older and Earnest Johnson is coming off an injury. Those seem like sufficient reasons to use this pick on a young, promising running back in Knowshon Moreno. Moreno can, and has, run in between the tackles. He is a great value pick here at #19, not many teams need a running back which is why he could fall all the way to here. Moreno has great vision and he makes great cuts. He is a monster in the open field and his athleticism is remarkable.
Previous Pick: Nate Davis
20. Detroit Lions (from Dallas) (9-7) - Michael Johnson, DE, Georgia Tech
The Lions addressed their huge need for an offensive lineman by taking Eugene Monroe first overall, now they should look at the opposite line. They could take Mark Sanchez here if they are interested or they could go with someone like Brandon Cushing. But I think that if they didn't take a quarterback first overall, they won't at #20 either. They could be thrilled that Michael Johnson, who's stock is rising, is available. I wouldn't be. You can write my name down under the doubter category for him. I see him as a one-dimensional player, even more one-dimensional than Maybin. Johnson wasn't even a full time starter at Georgia Tech until his senior year. He wasn't even good enough to go into the game during possible running situations until his final year. Doesn't sound too great to me.
Previous Pick: Chris Wells
21. Philadelphia Eagles (9-6-1) - Brandon Pettigrew, TE, Oklahoma State
The Eagles have two very big needs, in my opinion. They are already a very good team, but they lost in the NFC title game for the fourth time in five tries under Andy Reid. But, they could use a good offensive tackle because Tra Thomas is able to be a free agent next season. Also, they could use a good tight end because L.J. Smith just isn't as good as you would like your starting tight end to be. I see them going after Brandon Pettigrew first because it is possible that they could resign Tra Thomas and Pettigrew is a rare talent. He has outstanding size and amazing talent. He can block well in the running game as well as in the passing game. That's not all he can do in the passing game, though. He is a great route runner and his hands are exceptional.
Previous Pick: Brandon Pettigrew
22. Minnesota Vikings (10-6) - Mark Sanchez, QB, USC
The Vikings have two glaring needs, as well as some other decent sized holes. They really need a quarterback, Tarvaris Jackson is just too inconsistent, a right offensive tackle like Phil Loadholt, a left defensive end and two young defensive tackles. Phil Loadholt could be available in the second round, and no defensive ends and defensive tackles are worth this pick. That leaves quarterback. Tarvaris Jackson shows promise at times, and ruin at others. This inconsistency can't be continued if the Vikings want to keep winning. Mark Sanchez might provide that consistency. He is a pretty big risk after declaring for the draft, with just one season under his belt. There are plenty of doubters, even his old head coach in
Pete Carroll. If Mark Sanchez ever produces, I don't think it will be early.
Previous Pick: Phil Loadholt
23. New England Patriots (11-5) - Brian Cushing, OLB, USC
As a Patriots fan, I feel like I have a pretty good idea of what Pats' biggest needs are and what kinds of players the Patriots like to draft. After watching every single game the Patriots played this season, I believe our biggest needs are strong safety, cornerback and a young linebacker. We could also use some depth at offensive line. I think Belichick would love to have Brian Cushing playing alongside Jerod Mayo. Mayo and Cushing are both versatile players who can play inside and outside. Mayo was awesome last season and Thomas, Bruschi and Vrabel should all be back. Cushing would be able to come from the bench for any of those players. Cushing is smart and a hard worker. He is extremely competitive and seems like Belichick's type of player.
Previous Pick: Brian Cushing
24. Atlanta Falcons (11-5) - William Moore, SS, Missouri
The Falcons had amazing improvement this season thanks to newcomers Matt Ryan and Michael Turner. They don't have pressing needs wherever you look in this draft, thankfully. However, there are some holes still on this team. They do need to get the eventual replacements for their safety, Lawyer Milloy who is turning 35, the nose tackle, Grady Jackson who is also 35 and a linebacker for Keith Brooking, who is 33. I see this pick as either William Moore or Clint Sintim. However, why would they take the third best outside linebacker when they could take the number one safety. Moore does not have much experience, having started only two years at Missouri, but he won't be playing right away. He will learn under Lawyer Milloy. He is a big-hitter and a ball-hawking safety.
Previous Pick: William Moore
25. Miami Dolphins (11-5) - Clint Sintim, OLB, Virginia
The Dolphins, a year after going one overtime-win away from being winless, go 11-5 and reach the playoffs. That's a ten win improvement. That is amazing. Joey Porter also improved. He was rejuvenated into the prolific pass rusher he once was. He totaled 17.5 sacks on the year. However, opposite of Porter is Matt Roth. Roth only had 53 tackles and 5 sacks last season, he could use an improvement. They need an upgrade over him and they could use help in the secondary at both safety positions and cornerback. I see either Clint Sintim or Alphonso Smith as the likely pick here. Clint Sintim has struggled so far during senior week, but he is still a promising prospect. He has great size and can rush the quarterback, like Joey Porter. He is versatile and competitive as well.
Previous Pick: Clint Sintim
26. Baltimore Ravens (11-5) - Darrius Heyward-Bey, WR, Maryland
The Ravens are the third team in a row who improved greatly from last season. This team improved all the way to the AFC Championship and were oh-so close to winning that game. They could use some linebackers because their two inside linebackers are available for free agency. Other than that, they could use some youth in the secondary and a good receiver. The Ravens' defense is mostly what got Baltimore to the AFC Championship. The offense really needs to pick it up and score some points. Therefore they will draft a wide receiver. Some people have no idea who Darrius is. Well, he is the extremely talented receiver from Maryland. I know you're thinking 'Maryland?!', but don't underestimate him. He has great speed, size and unbelievable hands.
Previous Pick: Alphonso Smith
27. Indianapolis Colts (12-4) - Peria Jerry, DT, Ole Miss
The Colts were a little shaky in the beginning of the season with Peyton Manning coming off of surgery. But, the Colts managed to turn it around and Manning put the team on his back on his way to his third MVP award. The Colts could really use two quality defensive tackles and, to a lesser extent, a guard to take Pollack's place, moving him to center. It is well known that the Colts love speed on defense which is illustrated by the speed of their ends, Mathis and Freeney. Peria Jerry is very fast for a defensive tackle. He is a little undersized at 290 pounds, but the Colts haven't refrained from drafting smaller defenders before. Jerry put up great numbers against some of the best teams in the nation over the last couple years in the SEC. However, he is already 25 years old.
Previous Pick: Peria Jerry
28. Philadelphia Eagles (from Carolina) (12-4) - Eben Britton, OT, Arizona
The Eagles had their first pick at #21 and they drafted Brandon Pettigrew, with their first pick. Now they have one less hole to deal with. Their options here are offensive tackle, defensive end and wide receiver. The biggest hole out of those would be offensive tackle and what a perfect draft to have that hole in. They could take Percy Harvin or Hakeem Nicks, but Desean Jackson had a successful rookie season. Eben Britton is a great tackle available in 2009's draft class. He played primarily on the right side of the offensive line in his first three seasons, but as a senior he switched to the left side. Britton is big and strong and most likely will become even bigger and stronger over time. He has great awareness, but his lack of quickness could keep him on the right side of the line.
Previous Pick: Eben Britton
29. New York Giants (12-4) - Hakeem Nicks, WR, North Carolina
The giants started off this season like defending champions who were ready to repeat, winning eleven times in their first twelve games, but then going 1-3 in December. That December slump slipped into the playoffs as they lost to the Eagles. Domenik Hixon had the only 100+ yard receiving game, other than Plaxico Burress, for the Giants and that was in week 3. The Giants seemed to really miss Burress and Eli did as well. Eli said that he would love to have Plax back, so the Giants may look for a replacement here. Hakeem Nicks is much more similar to Burress than Percy Harvin is. Nicks is 6'2", 210 pounds, smaller than Plaxico is. He is a possession receiver who averaged 15.7 yards per catch at UNC. Watch highlights of the WVU-UNC bowl game and see the plays this guy made.
Previous Pick: Darrius Heyward-Bey
30. Tennessee Titans (13-3) - Alex Mack, C, Cal
The Titans had a very, very impressive season in 2008. They were the last team to record a loss and finished 13-3 in the regular season. They could add some explosiveness to their offense by drafting Percy Harvin, but I think there are smarter picks as Harvin is 5'11" and has a history of injuries. They could use a center to groom under Kevin Mawae as well as a corner to line up opposite of Cortland Finnegan, so they could take Alphonso Smith. On the Titans' depth chart, Mawae is the only center. Therefore they should draft Alex Mack to develop underneat Mawae. Mack is the top center in the draft and learning from Mawae would be very beneficial. He has good size and his athleticism is decent. He has good experience as a three year starter at Cal, going up against Sedrick Ellis.
Previous Pick: Alex Mack
31. Arizona Cardinals (9-7)* - LeSean McCoy, RB, Pittsburgh
The Cardinals obviously don't have too many needs or holes to fill on the team, if they did they wouldn't be playing football this time of year, but they do have a few. They could use a defensive lineman who is versatile enough to play every position. Evander Hood could be that player, but he may even be available to them in the second round. The other is running back. Edge is 30 and Tim Hightower has been given his chances. That's why I went with Pitt's phenomenal back, LeSean McCoy. McCoy has a wonderful mix of speed and power at his disposal and he is extremely difficult to bring down. In both of his seasons at Pitt he recorded over 1,000 yards and he averaged 4.8 yards per carry both seasons. However, he did not run much between the tackles, which is a big question mark.
Previous Pick: Evander Hood
32. Pittsburgh Steelers (12-4)* - Max Unger, C, Oregon
The Steelers, like the Cardinals, clearly don't have too many glaring needs and especially not on defense. Super Bowl teams rarely need a lot of help in the offseason. However, the Steelers' offensive line needs to be rebuilt. Much of their offensive line is up for free agency and it is unlikely that the Steelers will be able to resign every last one of them. They need help at tackle as well as at guard. Max Unger is the most versatile of all of the lineman in this draft class. He played left tackle until he moved to center as a junior. You won't seem him plowing through defenders, but he knows how to use his hands and gets good positioning and leverage. ESPN either did, or still does, have Unger listed at left tackle, but I see him at center in the NFL because of his lack of quickness.
Previous Pick: Max Unger
* Subject to change based on outcome fo the Super Bowl
Players Added: Everette Brown (#11), Tyson Jackson (#17), Aaron Maybin (#18), Hakeem Nicks (#29), LeSean McCoy (#31)
Players Dropped: Nate Davis (#19), Phil Loadhold (#22), Alphonso Smith (#26), Tory Kropog (#28), Evander Hood (#31)
Well there is my new and improved mock draft. Hopefully it is more accurate. Please comment with agreements or disagreements. Thanks.