We have a Conditional pick from the Jaguars for Lowery. Will say it is a Seventh round pick.
Advancing from my prediction of a 8-8 season or there abouts. I think we will be selecting anywhere from 15-25 in the draft. Keep that in mind when reading the following, if we are picking higher or lower, obviously that changes some of the selections:
First Round Selection: Riley Reiff OT (Iowa)
Riley is now playing as a LT, protecting the blindside. However he has seen extensive work at RT and I think he can do a great job at that level in the NFL. He is NFL ready straight away, he has a lot of attributes that most lineman need to work on. His technique is solid, his hand placement is good, he has the quickness to protect against finess moves and the strength to tackle the bull rush. He holds his player up, recognises his assignments and follows the ball until the whistle. I have seen him keep the QB clean against the high ranking teams.
At Iowa he is being coached by one of the best at refining offensive line talent in Kirk Ferentz, he is a typical Iowa prospect. He is big, strong, lives for football and understands the fundamentals of his position. The big question mark is if he declares for the draft as he has another year of eligibility and right now he projects he will stay in Iowa. However didn't Bulaga say something similar. With Riley I think the Jets line looks great for 2012 and beyond.
Second Round Selection: Dwight Jones WR (UNC)
Dwight Jones stock will depend on how he finishes the season. He had a poor game v Clemson but he is your prototypical target received. 6-4, 225 with a 4.45 forty yard dash. He isn't the most refined of receivers and needs work with his foot work and coming in and out of his breaks but he runs some great routes. He tracks the ball well and extends, he creates separation which give the QB an opening and he goes up to get the ball well. I've heard he hesitates going over the middle, but I completely disagree. He protects himself like any receiver should, but if there is a play the to be made. He is going to get it.
He is not electric off the line but he soon gets into his stride and has a second gear to get behind defences. He is by all means a Braylon Edwards type of receiver. He can be choppy at times, but with work he can refine his route running. With his talent, his attributes and confidence. I see him making a real impact in the NFL. His strength off the line will fair him well against press coverage too. 2nd round bargain in my opinion, and would really add to our receiving core.
Third round selection: Markelle Martin S (Oklahoma State)
Maybe I am kidding myself believing there is even a slight chance that Martin is still here. He is a mid 2nd round selection but sometimes the smallest thing at the combine can cause players to drop. I absolutely love everything about Martin. He hits like a truck, he is as physical as they come (Just ask Jevan Snead) but he is also intelligent. He does struggle a little bit with bigger receivers, tight ends. However he is effective in run support and in coverage, he can track the slot with his fluid athleticism.
He is by no means a finished article, but then you are never going to get one of those past the first round in the NFL draft. He can go AWOL in his coverage at times and get fooled with double moves. He will need to work hard to get down a NFL play book. However he does have closing speed and once he hits you, 9/10 he is bringing you down. He has good lateral speed and he looks like a great communicator and a born leader.
Fourth Round Selection: Mychal Kendricks LB (Cal)
Mychal can play all positions associated with a linebacker, inside and outside. He is a generous 6'1 and 240lbs but he is as intelligent as they come. He shows a nice burst off the edge but he is not a one trick pony. He may be more suited in the middle, with his ability to really drop back and cover ground. 8.5 sacks and 15 tackles for loss as a Junior shows he knows how to get into the backfield. He has experienced some shoulder problems this year which has limited his output.
Mychal has a non stop motor who lives for football. He lays the wood, but doesn't get pulled from his assignments. Not a ball watcher who has great transition in coverage. His size may be a problem for some, but there is a lot to love with this player. In the 4th round, I'll take his hunger and motor every day of the week.
Fifth Round Selection: Quentin Saulsberry OG (Miss State)
I always find it hard to rank offensive lineman as we get past the 2nd round as they can rise or fall depending on team needs. They are usually not reached for so I'm taking a stab in the dark with Quentin being in the 5th round. I love him for his versatility. He has played 4 positions in college across the offensive line and has looked comfortable at each one. More suited to a guard with his interior run blocking ability, but has the foot quickness to play on the outside.
He's a leader and good communicator which is why there were no reservations placing him as the centre when injuries forced their hand. He does need work at staying low and hand placement and he will never be an all star. However he works his butt off and is one of those valuable back-ups who will never receive the headlines but during the season you will be thankful you have.
Sixth Round Selection: Cooper Helfet TE (Duke)
I know that most people here will be asking the question what the he'll is he doing, and I don't blame you. This is a little bit of a faith pick. His stats are not eye catching, he plays for the Duke Blue Devils and has only been their two years after a transfer. Well he is hardly surrounded by a ton of talent, but at 6-4 and 240 lbs he is a match-up problem. I know a lot of you are high on Cumberland but athletic tight ends like Helfet can be used in a lot of ways. He has good hands, good route running ability and can block a bit as well.
The Patriots always seem to take a couple of tight ends, and I wouldn't be surprised to see them take Helfet. He's another option to cause problems, I would like to see him and Keller in a double tight end set. Size, strength and catching ability. 6th round, I'll take it.
Seventh Round Selection: Chris Owusu WR (Stanford)
Before this year I would have said that it was likely Chris was still here in the 7th round, however this year he has already had 5 more receptions than he had the entire 2010 season, has 1 less TD and around 50 yards short of his 2010 totals. So will he be here? Unlikely but not impossible. He doesn't really dazzle in any aspect of his game. 6'2 200 lb's and a smart route runner as you would expect. He is a deep threat who has some moves in his arsenal, as he comes back to the ball well, his hesitation move gets defensive backs biting in college. He does has some injury concerns and he has succeeded a concussion the past week. With NFL getting increasingly worries about concussions, this may hurt his stock. I would take a gamble, but I think he goes before the 7th, maybe even a 5th.
Seventh Round Selection: Tysyn Hartman FS (Kansas State)
6'2, 205lbs converted CB with some injury issues. He had his knee in a brace for the entire 2010 season although he feels as though he is now entirely healthy and faster on his feet. A team captain with great communication (can you see the trend with these picks). A solid dependable defender who won't light you up with excitement. I've seen enough of Hartman without seeing a great deal if that makes sense.
I know a lot will disagree with this draft, but I just feel that we need to concentrate on offence early with some defence thrown in for good measure. With eight selections, I have gone 5 on offence and 3 on defence. I hope we keep our selections this year to add depth. Tis is an extremely deep draft to be a part of. You could well see 3rd round talent go in the 5th round and 5th round talent go in the 7th round.