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TJ's 2013 Mock 1.0

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I take it as assumed for this draft that we have re-signed the Flesh Zeppelin long term (1 year means a draft pick at ORT) and also obtained the services of a decent safety in FA...preferably Kerry Rhodes or Michael Huff. I acknowlege the need at S, but I don't like the top level safeties in this draft too much.

1) MLB Arthur Brown

I know many of you want to move Burfict inside, but I want to keep him at weakside because, well, if it ain't broke don't fix it. I dont want Rey in the middle, because he sucked there. He was however a bit better at strongside in previous year, so maybe a return there will revive his career. All this leads me to needing an ILB, and I want a kid who is speedy, a sure tackler, and a quick decision maker there. His profile at cbssports.com (http://www.cbssports.com/nfl/draft/players/1619684) suggests he would be a top 15 talent if he were a couple of inches taller. And he is faster, sheds blocks better, is more athletic than, and covers better than similarly sized Khaseem Greene. So -- screw the height, gimme the talent -- gimme Arthur Brown, the top MLB of this draft. All that said, I do think we could trade down a bit and still get this guy while picking up an extra 3 or 4.

from http://bleacherreport.com/articles/1513956-why-arthur-brown-is-the-best-defender-in-this-years-class : "One of the most athletic defensive players in this class" and "Brown was named team captain both seasons he attended Kansas State. His college career began at the University of Miami. Brown has always been considered quiet and unassuming, but worked to develop his vocal leadership and communication skills going into his senior year."

from http://www.sbnation.com/nfl-mock-draft/2013/3/14/4097350/2013-nfl-draft-stock-report-arthur-brown-datone-jones : "has the versatility to play multiple positions in multiple schemes"

from http://www.behindthesteelcurtain.com/2013/3/15/4099192/nfl-draft-prospects-steelers-linebackers-kansas-state : "In zone coverage Arthur Brown excels because of his excellent short area quickness. His quickness was displayed against West Virginia when he was asked to cover Tavon Austin on underneath routes." and "He also shows the ability to slip blocks as well"

from http://www.cbssports.com/nfl/draft/blog/rob-rang/21862387/pro-days-ksus-brown-harper-quiet-critics-with-impressive-workout "the 6-0, 241-pound linebacker answered any concerns about his straight-line speed, timing between 4.56-4.66 seconds in the 40-yard dash, according to multiple sources in Manhattan"

from http://www.sbnation.com/nfl-mock-draft/2013/3/11/4088974/2013-nfl-mock-draft-free-agency : "There is no more athletic linebacker in the draft than Brown."

from http://boards.buffalobills.com/showthread.php?456801-Walterfootball-2013-NFL-Draft-Stock-Pro-Days-Part-II : "He has been impressive in the team interviews with his passion and commitment to football. The senior had 100 tackles, seven tackles for a loss, two interceptions, four passes broken up and a sack in 2012. He was excellent for Kansas State and was a team leader. "

from http://www.nationalfootballpost.com/Draft-Rumblings-Risers-Fallers-Around-The-NFL.html : "No doubt shorter than ideal at 6’0, his ability to read and react to the play so quickly, elite speed and explosive closing burst to give him sideline range has teams confident he will be a three down linebacker in the NFL. Not only an outstanding player on the field, but regarded as a team leader with all the intangibles, Brown is a favorite amongst scouts and coaches. Although Brown may not make it into the first round of the Draft, we hear it is 50/50, he is viewed by many teams as the most complete inside linebacker in the Draft who has no character issues"

2a) RB Eddie Lacy

All the tape I have watched shows me a guy who is big, reasonably fast, fairly elusive, and very hard or the first tackler to bring down. He looks natural as a receiver as well. He also has about half the treadwear on him (350-ish carries in college career) as most of the other top-tier RBs in this draft class, who averaged around 600 carries apiece. Along then same lines, when you look at his stats, keep in mind he was playing only about half time. This is a bellcow RB, and I believe he will be available with our "Carson" pick in round 2. I am not worried about his injury status.

2b) OC Barret Jones

Oh yes I did. Oh hell yes. Double dipped on the NCAA Champion Crimson Tide. Army has sung the praises of this player, and I echo his sentiments. The only reason this highly talented and highly versatile player lasts this long is because he is hurt right now. Not badly, but it's kept him from doing his combine/pro day/dog-n-pony show stuff. But get this - he PLAYED the championship game with this painful lisfranc injury. This speaks volumes to me about his toughness and dedication. I think Cook and Robinson are capable, but me, Mr "GIMME A LINEMAN' wants DOMINANT lineman, and I think he is ready to go - and takes over the starting OC job - well before the fall season starts.

3) S Matt Elam

I am as I said not a big fan of the safeties in this draft, but I think this guy will last into round 3 due to his less than ideal size. That said, i value speed and play-making ability over size at this spot, and his talents are good value for r3, when some think he could go near the end of round 1 or early round 2. Extra credit: Bengals defensive backs coach Mark Carrier ran his pro day drills

3+) OLB Zaviar Gooden

with this pick, I am assuming we traded down in round 1 and still got Brown, and packaged that r4 pick we added plus a 6 in exchange for a late r3 pick. Yeah, its a fantasy, but all mocks are to one degree or another. so -- this is the fastest LB in the draft. With his 4.47 speed and superb athletic ability I see him on special teams right off the bat replacing the departed Dan 'Scootin' Skuta as he is groomed to back up the two OLB spots.

4) OLT Terron Armstead

The most athletic OLT available, though admittedly a project, to be groomed to replace Whit (who is deteriorating faster than I'd exected) in the next couple of years. Played against weak competition most of his career, yes, but was impressive at the senior bowl, proving he can hang with the best already. He could be used as tackle eligible at some point as well due to his speed and size.

5) RB Marcus Lattimore

I figure this is about as low as I dare to go and still get this guy. I expect him to go through 2013 on injured reserve, and then be ready to compete for the starting RB job in 2014, and hopefully it can be run by committee to keep individual stats (and ergo salaries) down. I think is a good enough gamble to "waste" a 5th round pick on.

6a) WR Steadman Bailey

A very under-rated receiver, but highly productive.....moreso than his much lauded teammate Tavon Austin. Great hands, toughness, and athleticism. His precise route running will probably give him a chance to step in and contribute in year 1. Will compete for that much-talked about 2nd wide receiver spot. I think he lasts this long despite having 2nd round talent because he is neither a speed guy nor a size guy, and most teams are looking for one or the other or both at this point. In any case, as many have pointed out, we can't finish a draft without picking a wide receiver or three, so here's that mandatory pick.

if we have picks left, one of them needs to be a cover corner with world class speed, and maybe a developmental DE (athletic ability and durability over experience at this point in the draft).

I am also fine with the Honey Badger as one of these late picks, or as a UDCFA. Adam Jones was of similar mentality early in his career, and the more mature current version of Jones can get this kids head straight.

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I would live with that, though I think that Brown is a second rounder, I also think that Lattimore is looking like a 3rd rounder at this point, if your looking at 5 th rounder think Knile Davis or Christine Michael.

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Hey, you have to have a FEW other guys, non-lineman, to round out the team

and the linebackers at least have the word "line" in their name, right? :-) Got two of those.

and Besides, you didnt count the developmental DE :-)

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I actully like this draft alot. Wow if Elam is there in the 3rd that would be just crazy!! Love Lacy in the second with Barret Jones would be just crazy! This would be just an awesome draft if it happened.

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I want to add here that if Barkevius Mingo were to fall to 21, I want nothing to do with him

I know he has astonishing athletic numbers, but I value football production first and foremost and he simply wasn't that great a football player in 2012 after a very good 2011 season. That - and he played DE in college, and he'll have to transition to LB, probably OLB.

Some team will risk a fairly high pick purely on his athleticism - like the Jets did with Vernon Gholston - and they are welcome to him

I would be Ok with taking a player like this in round 4 or later, but he surely won't fall anywhere near that far, with some projections showing him in the top 10 overall

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I also don't like Fluker or Watson at 21 to replace the Flesh Zeppelin

Fluker because he seems to be all power and little movement, and he can be beaten pretty easily with a speed rusher. If all we did was run the ball, he would be a more attractive option

Watson is far more athletic but is 4 years older than the typical prospect - he'll be 25 when the season starts - and he only played one year at FSU so he is very raw.

I'd rather take a chance on a more balanced guy a bit later, like UNC's Brennan Williams, who may be available a bit later than otherwise expected due to a late season shoulder injury, one that should be all healed up by the start of training camp

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Why Arthur Brown over Kevin Minter

Many mocks have Minter selected in the final third of round 1, and few have Arthur brown in r1 at all, but Minter appears to be more a 2-down lLB whereas Brown has the smarts, speed, and coverage talents to play all downs.

Give me the guy who doesn't have to be pulled off the field on obvious passing downs

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