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It's mock draft season!!! Other than the actual draft, this is my favorite part of the offseason. This is the time of year where everyone puts on their GM socks, and plans out the team's future. Here is our plan.
Most draftniks are in the game for all the pomp and circumstance. Everyone has their own opinions, and agendas. Common ground is very rarely found amongst these draft hungry heathens. For the first time EVER (might not be the first) I bring you a collaborative mock draft. Jets fan/twitter superstar, @DrewFromJersey and I, have put our muscular draft brains together for a draft 1st (still probably not the 1st). We tirelessly bounced ideas and opinions off of each other for what seemed like days. I have never been in a draft day war room, but our countless DMs back and forth, felt war roomish. Here are the results of our efforts.
Ezekiel Ansah, DE, BYU
Even though improved, our pass rush is still amongst the bottom half of the NFL. We have great young talent in Wilkerson and Coples, but we need more. Not only that, we will probably be without two starting OLBers. Pace and Thomas will most likely be gone come April. Ansah might not be your prototypical OLBer, but we don't run your prototypical 3-4 either. In fact, our defense is so all over the place, it would be silly to draft a guy that only fit as a 3-4 OLB. Between personnel and coaches we have acquired over the last two years, our D seems to be slowly moving toward a 4-3 base anyhow. Ansah is a big, sexy chunk of clay for Rex and Dunbar to mold into possibly the next JPP.
Larry Warford, G, Kentucky
Our guard situation going into 2013 is in dire condition. When Vlad is the only starting option, something has to be done. Either Slauson or Moore, will probably be brought back, but probably not both. This leaves a starting position up for grabs. Free agents are expensive, and this draft has some decent guard depth. Larry Warford is very good guard prospect. He might not hold a candle to Warmack, but that doesn't mean he isn't an NFL ready guard. His tape speaks for itself. If he wasn't on such a horrible team, he would most certainly be getting more attention. He can start right away, and learn under one of the best guards in the game, Moore.
Travis Kelce, TE, Cincinnati
Drew and I, are more than ready to move on from Dustin Keller. I have had enough of his inconsistency and injuries. For a 1st round pick, he has been playing like a 5th. It's time to get cheaper, younger, and better. TE is another position that has a lot of depth this year. One of our favorite TE prospects is Travis Kelce. At 6'6" 260, Kelce is a very physical specimen. His biggest strength is how well rounded he is. A TE that can block as well as he receives is something we have been missing for a while. He can be our very own Gronk 2.0 without the gimpy dancing after a Super Bowl loss hopefully.
Christine Michael, RB, Texas A&M
Like Keller, we are sick and tired of Shonn Greene. The days of stumbling for 1 or 2 yards needs to be a thing of the past. We need a RB that can fit right in with Powell and McKnight to make a formidable WCO, RB stable. By the 4th round, we believe that most of our favorite RBs will be taken already. This doesn't mean there aren't any good options. A RB that will be rising from not until the draft is Christine Michael. Christine possesses size, speed, balance, and versatility which will allow him to thrive in our new offense. His East/West performance got everyone's attention. If Christine has a great combine, he might just be out of reach for us in the 4th. Right now, this is a decent placement for him.
Conner Vernon, WR, Duke
Conner Vernon is my favorite, under the radar WR. Everywhere you look, you will see people giving Vernon high praise, but you won't see his stock rise very much. What you get from Vernon, is a WR with decent size, and quickness. Conner's hands are amongst the most reliable in the draft. We could line him up on the outside or in the slot, and receive valuable results. Our receiver situation isn't has horrid as everyone thinks. This group just couldn't stay healthy the entire season. I expect Hill to make strides in his 2nd year. If you match him up with a healthy Holmes, and Kerley, you will have an AVG starting 3. Depth is ABSOLUTELY needed. A cheap vet like Braylon is an option, but young talent like Conner Vernon could go a long way for the health at the position.
Dexter McCoil, FS, Tulsa
Other than guard and outside linebacker, the safety positions will be greatly depleted as well. We could be without our 2012 #1, #2, and #3 safeties going into 2013. Unless we get blessed with a cap miracle, we will be looking to youth and inexperience to carry our safeties. One of my favorite under the radar safeties, in this deep safety draft, is Dexter McCoil. I have been keeping tabs on him since his JR season. Dexter topped off an impressive college career with 18 INTs. He had no less than 5 a year, since he was a freshman. McCoil is a very tall and physical safety, that can cover, or roam the deep half of the field. As mentioned above, this is a deep safety class, and Dex is from a small school. This should allow him to fall come April.
Brandon McGee, CB, Miami
If someone is going to be traded this offseason, it will probably be either Cromartie or Revis. Whoever it is, will force a shift in the CB depth chart. Everyone will get a promotion if there isn't a vet brought in. Why not bring in a tall CB like McGee to fill out the ranks. He has shown some skill, but is incredibly inconsistent. Maybe with some proper coaching, he can become something in the NFL.