Todd Salem NFL Mock Draft - 19 April 2012

1. Andrew Luck 2. Robert Griffin III 3. Matt Kalil 4. Trent Richardson 5. Morris Claiborne
Round 1
1Indianapolis Colts 2012 NFL Mock Draft College Football Draft ProfilesIndianapolisAndrew LuckQBStanford
Luck is the best prospect in his field since Crazy Joe Davola applied to be Pagliaccio, the sad clown.
2Washington Redskins 2012 NFL Mock Draft College Football Draft ProfilesWashington (from Stl)Robert Griffin IIIQBBaylor
The Redskins traded up for this purpose. There has not been great success when two quarterbacks are taken this high in drafts. Of course, as the gambler's fallacy indicates, that really is irrelevant to this pick.
3Minnesota Vikings 2012 NFL Mock Draft College Football Draft ProfilesMinnesotaMatt KalilOTUSC
Although not everyone agrees Kalil is a prospect deserving of this high a selection, the fit is too perfect for Minnesota to pass up. They desperately need offensive line help at the tackle position and no other player is close to Kalil in that regard.
4Cleveland Browns 2012 NFL Mock Draft College Football Draft ProfilesClevelandTrent RichardsonRBAlabama
In the current NFL, teams are shying away from one-back offenses. This should not preclude Cleveland from selecting the best back in this draft to fortify a backfield void of any reliable runners.
5Tampa Bay Buccaneers 2012 NFL Mock Draft College Football Draft ProfilesTampa BayMorris ClaiborneCBLSU
If Claiborne gets by Minnesota at three, he will certainly be swept up by the Bucs at five. Learning from, and eventually replacing the legendary Ronde Barber seems like a nice story as well.
6Saint Louis Rams 2012 NFL Mock Draft College Football Draft ProfilesSt. Louis (from Was)Justin BlackmonWROklahoma State
Overanalyzing Justin Blackmon is officially in full-steam-ahead mode. He was projected at two after the season ended. Then people began to pick him apart, saying he's too small, even though he played all year like a monster. The Rams need a wide receiver. Sometimes the draft is simple and experts try to make it anything but.
7Jacksonville Jaguars 2012 NFL Mock Draft College Football Draft ProfilesJacksonvilleMichael FloydWRNotre Dame
The Jaguars have a ton of needs. A team in this situation should take the best player available but there is just no consensus on who that would be. They need d-line help. They could use a defensive back and offensive linemen. They also need weapons on offense. Floyd is a big name to help answer one of those questions.
8Miami Dolphins 2012 NFL Mock Draft College Football Draft ProfilesMiamiRyan TannehillQBTexas A&M
This seems to be a done deal. Miami failed in all their previous attempts to find a replacement for the capable Matt Moore so they will turn to someone who most assuredly will be much worse than Moore in 2012 if he is forced into action. 
9Carolina Panthers 2012 NFL Mock Draft College Football Draft ProfilesCarolinaStephon GilmoreCBSouth Carolina
The Panthers need help all over the defense. Taking a DT or rush end here is a possibility but, as a slight reach, Carolina will take who they believe to be the next best defensive back after Morris Claiborne.
10Buffalo Bills 2012 NFL Mock Draft College Football Draft ProfilesBuffaloRiley ReiffOTIowa
The best offensive lineman on the board is where Buffalo turns for this pick. They already gave quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick that illustrious new deal. Now they need to give him some help and see whether he was worth it. 
11Kansas City Chiefs 2012 NFL Mock Draft College Football Draft ProfilesKansas CityQuinton CoplesDENorth Carolina
Teams are all over the map on Coples. He had a tumultuous time at North Carolina but has the talents to be a top 10 pick. Kansas City may have preferred an interior defensive lineman in this slot but Coples' ability is hard to pass up.
12Seattle Seahawks 2012 NFL Mock Draft College Football Draft ProfilesSeattleMelvin IngramDESouth Carolina
The Chiefs essentially make Seattle's pick much easier for them. The Seahawks need a pass rusher and would have had a difficult decision on whether to take the undersized Ingram or the questionable character of Coples. Now, there is no choice.
13Arizona Cardinals 2012 NFL Mock Draft College Football Draft ProfilesArizonaJonathan MartinOTStanford
Martin was tremendous during his time at Stanford. For some reason, his draft stock has dropped since he stopped playing games. It dropped a bit too far and Arizona will split the difference, filling a need on the offensive line and getting a skilled player to do so.
14Dallas Cowboys 2012 NFL Mock Draft College Football Draft ProfilesDallasMark BarronSAlabama
Dallas could go a number of different directions here, grabbing a guard like David DeCastro or a corner like Dre Kirkpatrick. However, instead they will reach (position-wise) and grab safety Mark Barron. Barron is by far the best player at his position in this draft and although safety is rarely filled this early in round one, Dallas will be hoping Barron can be a playmaker from the defensive backfield.
15Philadelphia Eagles 2012 NFL Mock Draft College Football Draft ProfilesPhiladelphiaFletcher CoxDTMississippi State
Even with Cullen Jenkins added as part of the Dream Team dream, Philadelphia could still use some interior defensive line help. With a number of tackles still remaining on the board, it will just be a matter of who Andy Reid and company prefer for their scheme.
16New York Jets 2012 NFL Mock Draft College Football Draft ProfilesNew York JetsKendall WrightWRBaylor
New York is faced with two glaring needs: pass rushing and weapons at wide receiver. With no one really worth the 16th pick from a pass rush stand point, the Jets may be searching to trade this selection. They may have to settle on Wright, the speedy wide receiver. It will be a reach either way.
17Cincinnati Bengals 2012 NFL Mock Draft College Football Draft ProfilesCincinnati (from Oak)David DeCastroGStanford
Suring up the offensive line in front of Andy Dalton will be an important task. With DeCastro falling this far, the Bengals will be sure to swoop him up with the first of their first round selections.
18San Diego Chargers 2012 NFL Mock Draft College Football Draft ProfilesSan DiegoCourtney UpshawDE/LBAlabama
With the departure of Mike Tolbert and the injury history of Ryan Mathews, San Diego may be trying to trade down to grab a running back. Nevertheless, pass rushing is still a team need and Upshaw is the highest rated prospect left that fits that bill.
19Chicago Bears 2012 NFL Mock Draft College Football Draft ProfilesChicagoCordy GlennOTGeorgia
Hoping he can play offensive tackle in the NFL, Chicago will take a chance on Glenn, who was a guard in college and may be better suited to that. Jay Cutler had trouble staying upright and healthy behind the Bears' line though, so Glenn is worth the risk.
20Tennessee Titans 2012 NFL Mock Draft College Football Draft ProfilesTennesseeDontari PoeDTMemphis
A great combine mixed with mediocre play in actual football games means a player will be taken in the first round…for some reason. Poe has talent and could be considered one of the best players on the board at this point but it still seems risky.
21Cincinnati Bengals 2012 NFL Mock Draft College Football Draft ProfilesCincinnatiJanoris JenkinsCBNorth Alabama
Ridiculously talented, Jenkins is a transfer from the University of Florida. He has certainly had his share of off-field issues but the cornerback ability is nothing to raise your nose at. Cincinnati already filled a need at O-line with their 17th pick so it makes sense to turn to DB here.
22Cleveland Browns 2012 NFL Mock Draft College Football Draft ProfilesCleveland (from Atl)Mike AdamsOTOhio State
Unless they find a quarterback steal in day two, it seems to make the most sense for Cleveland to give Colt McCoy a chance this season, and build up the roster around him. He really had very little chance last year with what they gave him as a supporting cast. With Richardson and now an offensive tackle, McCoy's success or failure will be more on him than on his situation.
23Detroit Lions 2012 NFL Mock Draft College Football Draft ProfilesDetroitDre KirkpatrickCBAlabama
The Lions are getting there, as picking in the early 20's would indicate. Some help in the defensive backfield would be huge and Kirkpatrick is the last of the cornerbacks with first round talent. If he is gone but one of the other two (Gilmore or Jenkins) is available, look for Detroit to take that DB instead as they all have similar grades.
24Pittsburgh Steelers 2012 NFL Mock Draft College Football Draft ProfilesPittsburghLuke KuechlyLBBoston College
The best linebacker in this draft falling to number 24 is just one of those things. Not many teams had inside linebacker as a team need, thus passing on Kuechly was nothing to regret later on. Meanwhile, Pittsburgh could actually use some ILB help and they might have taken a player of Kuechly talents at this point anyways, even if they did not need him.
25Denver Broncos 2012 NFL Mock Draft College Football Draft ProfilesDenverMichael BrockersDTLSU
Adding a large man to collect blockers inside of Von Miller and Elvis Dumervil seems like a saavy football move. Denver's defense was very good at times last season but lacked depth in the middle. The addition of Peyton Manning on offense might mean the Broncos would be looking for a wide receiver he likes here but DT is a more pressing need.
26Houston Texans 2012 NFL Mock Draft College Football Draft ProfilesHoustonStephen HillWRGeorgia Tech
Wide receiver seems like the pick here. It comes down to whether Houston would prefer Hill, the speedster out of Georgia Tech, or Alshon Jeffery, the big-bodied man from South Carolina. With the recent success of Demaryius Thomas from the same system as Hill, Houston may be more inclined to believe he can smoothly transition to the NFL from a triple option offense.
27New England Patriots 2012 NFL Mock Draft College Football Draft ProfilesNew England (from NO)Andre BranchDEClemson
With two picks at the back end of the first round, New England may look to trade one (or both) for more picks. If they do make selections, the Patriots would be in the market for people capable of getting to the quarterback. Although some people feel Branch doesn't have great instincts, he fits the bill.
28Green Bay Packers 2012 NFL Mock Draft College Football Draft ProfilesGreen BayShea McClellinLBBoise State
Shea McClellin has flown up draft boards. If he even makes it to 28, Green Bay may not be able to pass considering he also fits one of their biggest holes: outside linebacker across from Clay Matthews.
29Baltimore Ravens 2012 NFL Mock Draft College Football Draft ProfilesBaltimoreDont'a HightowerLBAlabama
The defense in Baltimore is getting old. They also now have holes to fill in the linebacking corps, a sentence not uttered in regards to the Ravens in quite a while. Hightower dropping this far, much like Kuechly, is very fortunate for Baltimore.
30San Francisco Giants 2012 NFL Mock Draft College Football Draft ProfilesSan FranciscoDwayne AllenTEClemson
Coach Jim Harbaugh is familiar with the skills and strengths of tight end Coby Fleener as he used to be his coach at Stanford. Harbaugh (and the rest of the 49ers staff) will not let this distract him from taking the better all-around tight end to pair with Vernon Davis.
31New England Patriots 2012 NFL Mock Draft College Football Draft ProfilesNew EnglandWhitney MercilusDE/LBIllinois
Doubling up on pass rushers may seem foolish but keep in mind the following two points: New England gives themselves a tremendous chance on hitting on at least one of these rushers, securing the hole they had. Also, this is the easiest way to hedge for the inevitable trade that is going to occur here.
32New York Giants 2012 NFL Mock Draft College Football Draft ProfilesNew York GiantsDoug MartinRBBoise State
The Giants are usually all about taking the best player available, regardless of position. If they have a certain player on their board who dropped considerably, this may still be the case. Otherwise, they have a hole to fill at running back, needing someone to complement Ahmad Bradshaw. Doug Martin is that guy.