Evan Silva

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Draft 2011: NFL Mock 3.0

Monday, March 28, 2011




33. Patriots: Mark Ingram, running back, Alabama.

Most mocks have Ingram pegged for the first round, but he lacks special talent at a non-premium position. Still, the Patriots would be hard pressed to pass on such an NFL-ready running back.

34. Bills: Colin Kaepernick, quarterback, Nevada.

Kaepernick is an ideal fit for Bills coach Chan Gailey, who runs a variation of the Pistol Spread offense and loves athletic quarterbacks. A team could be intrigued enough with Kaepernick's cannon arm and 4.5 speed, however, to trade back into the end of the first round to draft him.

35. Bengals: Mikel Leshoure, running back, Illinois.

The Bengals are re-implementing a power run offense after last year's failed attempt at a high-flying, pass-first system. Free agent Cedric Benson averaged 3.46 yards per carry in 2010.

36. Broncos: Kyle Rudolph, tight end, Notre Dame.

The Broncos cut Daniel Graham, and can upgrade their team speed with a field-stretching tight end early in round two. Coming from a pro-style offense, Rudolph is also an experienced blocker.

37. Browns: Adrian Clayborn, defensive end, Iowa.

The Browns will strongly consider defensive linemen at No. 6 overall, but A.J. Green proved too rare a talent to overlook. Clayborn would be a day-one starter at right end in the new 4-3 defense.

38. Cardinals: Danny Watkins, guard/tackle, Baylor.

Arizona had one of the poorest run-blocking lines in football last year, particularly on the interior. Watkins plays with a mean streak and would start at left guard, replacing free agent Alan Faneca.

39. Titans: Ryan Mallett, quarterback, Arkansas.

Mallett has a top-ten arm and a ten-cent head. He isn't worth a first-round pick, but Arkansas' all-time passing leader would make sense as a project for new OC Chris Palmer's vertical offense.

40. Cowboys: Cameron Heyward, defensive end, Ohio State.

Three of the Cowboys' top three ends are unsigned for 2011. After going defensive back in the first, Dallas can bolster its second biggest need area with a stout "five technique" at No. 40.

41. Redskins: Christian Ballard, defensive end, Iowa.

Ballard is a superb athlete with ideal length for a 3-4 defensive end. The Skins have weaknesses throughout their roster, but this is very good value for a player many project to go in the first round.

42. Texans: Brandon Harris, cornerback, Miami.

Harris doesn't have the size or speed to be a first-round pick, but he's worth a second-round stab from a team with the worst secondary in football. Unless the Texans can somehow pull off Nnamdi Asomugha when free agency begins, it's going to be a nightmare spot again next season.

43. Vikings: Ben Ijalana, tackle/guard, Villanova.

A rising small-school talent, Ijalana should begin receiving consideration at No. 32 from the Packers. The division rival Vikings should view him as a plug-and-play starter at right guard. Minnesota will have to wait for a new CBA or lockout injunction to find a quarterback for the 2011 season.

44. Lions: Akeem Ayers, linebacker, UCLA.

Ayers has great film, but running in the 4.8s at the Combine will eliminate him from first-round contention on most teams' draft boards. In Detroit, he could be everything Julian Peterson wasn't.

45. 49ers: Chris Carter, linebacker, Fresno State.

Defensive Player of the Year in the WAC, Carter has generated surprisingly little pre-draft buzz despite running in the 4.6s in Indianapolis with an impressive 1.62 ten-yard split. This draft isn't especially strong for 3-4 outside 'backers, pushing a productive player like Carter up the board.

46. Broncos: Stephen Paea, defensive tackle, Oregon State.

Paea's meniscus tear isn't a long-term concern, and the Broncos shouldn't stop drafting defensive linemen after Dareus at No. 2. They could field one of the most promising front fours in NFL with Dareus and Paea manning the interior, and Elvis Dumervil and Robert Ayers flying off the edge.

47. Rams: Ryan Williams, running back, Virginia Tech.

The Rams haven't taken upgrading their No. 2 tailback spot seriously enough in recent drafts, but Steven Jackson's career low 3.76 yards per carry will spur G.M. Billy Devaney to act. He's known to be strongly considering Alabama's Mark Ingram at No. 14 overall if Julio Jones is off the board.

48: Raiders: Stefen Wisniewski, center/guard, Penn State.

The Raiders recently hired Wisniewski's uncle, Steve, as an assistant offensive line coach, and happen to have pressing needs at guard and center. Wisniewski can play either position.

49. Jaguars: Rahim Moore, safety, UCLA.

It's no secret that Jacksonville had the worst safeties in football last season, and Moore is the best one in this year's draft. He could help make up for Shack Harris' 2007 miss on Reggie Nelson.


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Evan Silva is a senior football editor for Rotoworld.com. He can be found on Twitter .
Email :Evan Silva



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