Bill Shuler’s Educated (Sort Of) Wild Guess at the 2015 NFL Draft
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It's the biggest day in professional sports that does not involve a playing field, rink or court.
The NFL Draft gets underway Thursday evening in Chicago. I'm not one to pay a lot of attention to the various mock drafts and it's been a couple decades since I actually did one. In doing the mock draft, I assumed no trades. We'll start with this area's teams--in draft order.
The Chicago Bears hold the 7th overall pick. The Bears defense, once the trademark of the franchise, is a disaster. Old and slow is a polite description. They need help everywhere. The Bears start with Washington NT Danny Shelton. You build solid football teams starting at the line of scrimmage. This is a big guy. Ties up blockers. An excellent building block. Nothing good happens on either side of the ball if the 300 pounders aren't good.
The St. Louis Rams draft at #10. Protecting the QB has been an ongoing problem since Orlando Pace and his associates from the Greatest Show On Turf days moved on. The pick here is LSU offensive tackle La’el Collins. Keeping the QB healthy would be a refreshing change for the Rams. A linebacker or defensive back wouldn't be a bad idea either.
The Kansas City Chiefs draft 18th overall in the first round. Adding Jeremy Maclin lessens the needs at wide receiver. Some offensive line help also arrived via free agency. This is a tough one to figure since John Dorsey and the Chiefs may be in “best football player on the board” mode. That best football player at this point here is Stanford OT Andrus Peat. With this, the Chiefs offensive line finally moves back toward the high quality units of the 90’s and 00’s. However, lots of things could happen here. OLB Bud Dupree of Kentucky wouldn’t be a surprise. CB Jalen Collins of LSU wouldn’t be a stunner either if he’s available. DT Eddie Goldman of Florida State. also makes some sense if he’s there.
My entire first round mock draft/wild guess…..
1- TAMPA BAY-- Jameis Winston QB Florida State. QB’s with off field issues have a notoriously high failure rate. 18 interceptions last year is a huge red flag here too, but the Bucs will take their chances. They’ll be regretting this one by Thanksgiving of 2017.
WInston is also a solid bet for to be the Brady Quinn/Johnny Manziel plummeting pick of the year.
2-TENNESSEE- Marcus Mariotta. A pick for the future, but Mariotta’s work ethic is solid. Don’t expect much from him this season though.
3-JACKSONVILLE—Leonard Williams DE, USC.
4-OAKLAND—Vic Beasley DE/OLB Clemson. Note: The Raiders are still the Raiders. Anything can happen here. Shane Ray? Amari Cooper?
5-WASHINGTON- Amari Cooper, WR Alabama.
6-NY JETS –Kevin White WR West Virginia
7-CHICAGO—Danny Shelton NT Washington
8-ATLANTA—Randy Gregory OLB Nebraska. Has off field problems. This is a also pick where something really strange might happen. I’m not enthralled with the Falcon’s front office.
9-NY GIANTS—Arik Armstead DE Oregon.
10-ST LOUIS La’el Collins LSU OT.
11-MINNESOTA Trae Waynes CB Michigan State.
12- CLEVELAND Eddie Goldman DT Florida State.
13-NEW ORLEANS Brandon Scherff OT Iowa
14-MIAMI Marcus Peters CB Washington
15-SAN FRANCISCO Melvin Gordon RB Wisconsin
16—HOUSTON Landon Collins S Alabama
17—SAN DIEGO Todd Gurley RB Georgia
18—KANSAS CITY—Andrus Peat OT Stanford.
19—CLEVELAND DeVante Parker WR Louisville. Watch for Dorial Green-Beckham here.
20—PHILADELPHIA—Dorial Greene Beckham WR Missouri. The off field foolishness probably kept him out of the first 10 slots.
21—CINCINNATI—Kevin Johnson CB Wake Forest
22—PITTSBURGH—Dante Fowler DE Florida
23—DETROIT—DJ Humprhies OT Florida
24—ARIZONA Shane Ray DE Missouri. I’m anticipating a slide of several slots here following Ray’s legal issues earlier this week.
25—CAROLINA Erick Flowers OT Miami FL
26—BALTIMORE Jalen Collins CB LSU.
27—DALLAS Bud Dupree LB Kentucky
28—DENVER Cameron Erving C Florida State
29—INDIANAPOLIS TJ Clemmings OT Pittsburgh
30—GREEN BAY Malcolm Brown DT Texas
31—NEW ORLEANS Devin Smith WR Ohio State
32—NEW ENGLAND Denzel Perryman ILB Miami FL