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Gimme's newspaper mock
I tried to use a variety of sources to get a feel for the players most likely to be taken in the first round, and what I found was there isn't anything close to a consensus about who belongs in the first round. So here's my attempt at a mock that will appear in our newspaper Thursday morning.
Feel free to offer any pointers, especially if there is something I've overlooked.
QB Andrew Luck, Stanford
The Colts began planning for this pick, and the rebuild around Luck, as soon as they learned that Peyton Manning would not return last season.
QB Robert Griffin III, Baylor
The Redskins traded four picks, including three first-round picks, to St. Louis to move into position to take one of the top two quarterbacks in this draft.
OT Matt Kalil, Southern California
The Vikings badly need to upgrade their line after Charles Johnson was overmatched at left tackle and left guard Steve Hutchinson was released for cap reasons.
RB Trent Richardson, Alabama
Former Arkansas Razorback Peyton Hillis (Conway) fell out of favor in Cleveland last year because of how he and the Browns handled his injuries, and instead of getting a long-term deal, heís now with Kansas City. That leaves the Browns with a big need at running back.
5. Tampa Bay
CB Morris Claiborne, LSU
Despite signing Eric Wright in free agency to start at cornerback, the Buccaneers face uncertainty at the other corner spot because Aqib Talib will go on trial for a felony assault with a deadly weapon charge in June and Ronde Barber is on the wrong side of 30 by six years.
6. St. Louis
WR Justin Blackmon, Oklahoma State
The Rams lost their top receiver from last year, Brandon Lloyd, in free agency, and he only led the team with 51 catches, so St. Louis is badly in need of a No. 1 target.
DE Quinton Coples, North Carolina
The only player the Jaguars had with more than four sacks last year was Jeremy Mincey, and Coples appears to be considered the top end available, although some questions about his work ethic could cause him to fall.
QB Ryan Tannehill, Texas A&M
The Dolphins lost out to Denver in the Peyton Manning sweepstakes and eventually had to settle on cast-off David Garrard, who was out of football for a year, as their best hope to wrest the starting spot from Matt Moore. Itís hard to see them bypassing Tannehill, even if they have to reach a bit to get him.
DT Fletcher Cox, Mississippi State
The Panthers were 25th in run defense last year and defensive-minded Coach Ron Rivera canít be happy about that or not getting much of a pass rush from anyone other than Charles Johnson.
OT Riley Reiff, Iowa
The Bills lost their starting left tackle to Philadelphia for the second time in three years, with Demetrees Bell following former Arkansas Razorback Jason Peters to the Eagles, and donít really have a replacement on the roster.
11. Kansas City
ILB Luke Kuechly, Boston College
The Chiefs are badly in need of an inside linebacker to pair with Derrick Johnson, and Kuechly is considered a top-10 prospect on many draft sites.
CB Stephen Gilmore, South Carolina
Brandon Browner led all NFC cornerbacks in penalties last year, and the Seahawks could definitely use an upgrade to pair with Richard Sherman.
WR Michael Floyd, Notre Dame
The Cardinals havenít had a complementary receiving threat to Larry Fitzgerald since trading Anquan Boldin to Baltimore in 2010.
S Mark Barron, Alabama
The Cowboys added Brodney Pool as a free agent to help out at safety, but he appears to be a short-term fix at best in a secondary that was the weakness of the defense last year.
OLB Melvin Ingram, South Carolina
The Eagles addressed their major defensive weakness by trading with Houston for inside linebacker DeMeco Ryans, but still need plenty of help at the outside spots.
16. New York Jets
OLB Whitney Mercilus, Illinois
The Jets need more pass rush from their outside linebacker spots after being led by six from Aaron Maybin last year. Mercilus broke out with 16 for the Illini last year.
G David DeCastro, Stanford
The Bengals found one starting guard option in free agency by signing Travelle Wharton, but still need help on the interior and could add a player considered a top-10 prospect by many draft analysts.
18. San Diego
DT Dontari Poe, Memphis
Poe can play end or nose tackle in San Diegoís scheme and the Chargers have needs at both positions.
G/T Cordy Glenn, Georgia
The Bears need offensive line help all along the line, but their tackle position might be the greatest need, so it would make sense to add Glenn who has the versatility to play guard and tackle.
CB Dre Kirkpatrick, Alabama
The Titans lost starting cornerback Cortland Finnegan in free agency and could replace him with the final sure first-round corner available.
DE Chandler Jones, Syracuse
The Bengals let two of their ends leave in free agency and replaced them with former first-round disappointments Derrick Harvey and Jamaal Anderson (Little Rock Central, Razorbacks).
WR Kendall Wright, Baylor
The Browns could pull a surprise and go after the next-best quarterback available, after trying to get in position to draft Robert Griffin III, but adding Wright would bolster a receiving corps with one primary threat, Greg Little.
OT Jonathan Martin, Stanford
The Lionsí most glaring need is cornerback and they could choose troubled North Alabama star Janoris Jenkins, but character concerns and a 34-year-old starting left tackle make Martin a safer choice.
DE Michael Brockers, LSU
The Steelers probably would like to add a nose tackle with Chris Hoke gone, but could slide Ziggy Hood over from end or even just play Brockers there because of his size.
DT Jerel Worthy, Michigan State
The Broncos were outbid in free agency for Brodrick Bunkley and will need to fill the hole created by his departure. But they will have to choose between Worthy and Penn Stateís Devon Still.
G/T Amini Silatolu, Midwestern State
With Fayettevilleís Mike Brisiel heading to Oakland in free agency and tackle Eric Winston being cut, the Texans could use some help on the offensive line. But Houston might go with the safer guard pick, Wisconsinís Kevin Zeitler.
27. New England
OLB Shea McClellin, Boise State
The Patriots lost one of their top pass rushers, Mark Anderson, in free agency and could turn to the versatile McClellin to fill a need.
28. Green Bay
OLB Courtney Upshaw, Alabama
The Packers have a premier pass rusher in Clay Matthews, but his play regressed last season with offenses able to focus on him because of a lack of help from the other outside linebacker spot.
ILB Donta Hightower, Alabama
Tide players go back-to-back as the Ravens begin preparing for the eventual retirement of Ray Lewis with a player who has a similar disposition. Plus, Hightower might be able to help at outside linebacker in the meantime.
30. San Francisco
G Kevin Zeitler, Wisconsin
The 49ers could use one more player to complete its offensive line after platooning at right guard last season and letting both players who started there leave in free agency.
31. New England
S Harrison Smith, Notre Dame
After addressing their pass rush, the Patriots could work on another position of need on the defensive side by adding a safety and allowing Devin McCourty to return to cornerback.
32. New York Giants
TE Coby Fleener, Stanford
The Giants added a blocking tight end by signing Dallasí Martellus Bennett, but could use a top-notch receiving threat at the position, especially with Jake Ballard expected to miss the 2012 season.
"'Room' always makes me chuckle. That's irrelevant. What we have on a given day really doesn't relate to what you're ultimately going to have and how you're going to manage."
Stephen Jones on salary cap limitations