By Connor Rogers, Staff Writer
1. Kansas City Chiefs: Geno Smith, QB, West Virginia
There’s no clear cut number one pick in the draft this year. What is clear is that the Chiefs desperately need a quarterback. They have talent on offense, but no one under center to get the ball to their playmakers. Smith’s stock has tumbled recently, but he’s still talented and can develop when given playmakers.
2. Jacksonville Jaguars: Damontre Moore, DE, Texas A&M
The Jaguars desperately need a pass rush and Moore brings a lethal threat off the edge. He’s had big games against big competition to back up his gaudy statistics throughout his college career. The Jaguars need a lot of help and Moore is the type of talent on defense they can build around.
3. Oakland Raiders: Jarvis Jones, OLB, Georgia
If not for an underwhelming quarterback class, the Raiders would be taking Carson Palmer’s future replacement. Fortunately, they can land Jones who is in the top three overall players on every draft board. Jones can impact a game much like Von Miller has done for the Broncos, harassing opposing quarterbacks while playing steady against the run.
4. Detroit Lions: Manti Te’o, MLB, Notre Dame
The Lions have a lot of talent on both sides of the ball with very little leadership. Fortunately Te’o fills two needs, a wall of a middle linebacker and a born leader. With Ndamukong Suh playing in front of him, team’s would have a lot of trouble running the ball against the Lions.
5. Philadelphia Eagles: Dee Milliner, CB, Alabama
Milliner is the clear cut best corner in this years draft. With Domonique Rodgers-Cromartie set to test out free agency, Milliner can really help out the Eagles in pass coverage.
6. Arizona Cardinals: Luke Joekel, OT, Texas A&M
The Cardinals need help on the line no matter who lines up at quarterback for them next year. Joekel can step in at tackle right away and solidify whichever side he plays on.
7. Buffalo Bills: Star Lotulelei, DT, Utah
If Lotulelei slides this far, the Bills will be ecstatic. Possibly the best overall player in the draft, he’d help the Bills run defense which has been the worst in the league.
8. Tennessee Titans: Bjoern Werner, DE, FSU
Werner is dynamite off the edge, forcing the quarterback to move quickly. He play’s very similar to Jason Babin but has shown excellent consistency throughout his college career. The Titans need help on the defensive line and Werner is an excellent fit.
9. Cleveland Browns: Justin Hunter, WR, Tennessee
The Browns will be bringing in a new head coach who will most likely attempt developing Brandon Weeden, but he’ll need more weapons. Hunter has all the talent and skill to be an NFL number one wide out, especially playing on an offense featuring young studs Trent Richardson and Josh Gordon.
10. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Jonathan Banks, CB, Miss State
The Bucs desperately need dependable corners playing alongside former first round pick Mark Barron. Barron has played great against the run, but like all rookie safeties he’s still developing in pass coverage. Adding a stud corner like Banks is the fastest route to re-establishing a once very reliable secondary.
11. San Diego Chargers: Keenan Allen, WR, CAL
The Chargers would love to land Hunter at this spot and Allen is the next best option in this draft. He’ll bring number one receiver measurables to a team that desperately needs to replace the loss of Vincent Jackson.
12. New York Jets: Taylor Lewan, OT, Michigan
Lewan plays with an attitude, a much needed characteristic on the line. A large, athletic lineman who’s footwork needs some adjusting. The Jets need to rebuild what was once the best line in football and solidifying the other tackle position is the best way to start the renovation.
13. Carolina Panthers: Johnathan Hankins, DT, Ohio State
The Panthers need a run stuffing tackle who can split double teams, which is exactly what they’d get if they took Hankins. Putting a space eating tackle in front of former first round pick Luke Kuechly would improve the defense immensely.
14. Miami Dolphins: Tavon Austin, WR, WVU
This is about ten picks earlier than most predict Austin will go, but the Dolphins do this every year. They like to over reach for a need and Austin has incredible talent. If they let Reggie Bush walk, Austin can become that playmaker for Ryan Tannehill who is always a threat to take it to the house.
15. Pittsburgh Steelers: Barkevious Mingo, DE/OLB, LSU
James Harrison is going to be 35 years old and coming to the end of his contract. Mingo is a pass rush monster who always finds his way in the backfield. He’d be an excellent replacement even if he spends his first year in a very limited role behind Harrison.
16. St. Louis Rams: Jake Matthews, OT, Texas A&M
Luke Joeckel and Matthews were the best tackle combination in the country this year. The Rams need to protect quarterback Sam Bradford and Matthews would help protect an edge.