1. Indianapolis Colts: Andrew Luck, QB, Stanford
Reports state that the Colts plan to draft Luck even if they decide to keep Peyton Manning for another year.
2. Washington Redskins (TRADE): Robert Griffin III, QB, Baylor
The St. Louis Rams announced the other day that they intend to trade their second overall pick in the draft. The Redskins will likely give up several picks in order to get their franchise quarterback.
3. Minnesota Vikings: Matt Kalil, OT, USC
The Vikings used last year’s first round pick on quarterback Christian Ponder, meaning it is likely that the team will look to find a franchise left tackle to protect Ponder.
4. Cleveland Browns: Trent Richardson, RB, Alabama
Rather than trading up to get RG3, the Browns need to build around the quarterback they already have, Colt McCoy. If the Browns retain Peyton Hillis, the Browns could have one deadly backfield of Richardson and Hillis.
5. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Morris Claiborne, CB, LSU
With the uncertain futures of cornerbacks Aqib Talib and Ronde Barber, this pick is a no-brainer. Claiborne is the best player in this year’s draft and would be a steal for the Bucs.
6. St. Louis Rams (TRADE): Justin Blackmon, WR, Oklahoma State
This is one of the picks that the Rams would receive in the trade with the Redskins. While I don’t believe Blackmon is the best wide receiver in this year’s draft, all signs point to him being a top-10 pick.
7. Jacksonville Jaguars: Riley Reiff, OT, Iowa
The Jaguars have needs at basically every position, but the team’s main goal should be to build around quarterback Blaine Gabbert. Reiff can play both LT and RT and would find an immediate role in the Jaguars’ offense.
8. Miami Dolphins: Melvin Ingram, DE/OLB, South Carolina
If the Dolphins decide to stay put and not trade up for Robert Griffin III, Ingram makes sense here. He can play both defensive end and outside linebacker and would fit well in Miami’s young and budding defense.
9. Carolina Panthers: Jonathan Martin, OT, Stanford
Reports have stated that the Panthers intend to address the offensive tackle position in the draft. Drafting Martin, who is best suited at right tackle, gives the Panthers a long-term tackle to protect quarterback Cam Newton.
10. Buffalo Bills: Michael Floyd, WR, Notre Dame
Even if the Bills manage to sign wide receiver Steve Johnson to a long-term deal, the team still needs a wide receiver. After giving quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick an extension, the Bills need to build around him and that starts with Floyd, my top wide receiver in this year’s draft.
11. Kansas City Chiefs: Dontari Poe, DT, Memphis
Dontari Poe was certainly the winner of the NFL Combine, greatly improving his draft stock. He may remind some of Baltimore Ravens defensive tackle Haloti Ngata and would help fill the void that the Chiefs have at nose tackle.
12. Seattle Seahawks: Quinton Coples, DE, North Carolina
Head coach Pete Carroll indicated that he wanted to improve the team’s pass rush in the draft and Coples would certainly help. I am not very high on Coples but getting him outside of the top-10 would be a solid pick for the Seahawks.
13. Arizona Cardinals: David DeCastro, OG, Stanford
Regardless of who will be playing quarterback for the Cardinals in 2012, the team still needs an upgrade in pass protection. DeCastro is one of the best guards to come out of college in the last decade and will be a Pro Bowl selection several times in his career.
14. Dallas Cowboys: Janoris Jenkins, CB, North Alabama
This pick is going to come down to either Janoris Jenkins or Alabama cornerback Dre Kirkpatrick. The Cowboys need to upgrade the secondary and Jenkins is more talented than Kirkpatrick so this is a logical pick for the Cowboys.
15. Philadelphia Eagles: Luke Kuechly, ILB, Boston College
Is Kuechly falls to this spot, it would be a steal for the Eagles. Kuechly was one of the winners at the combine and would help solidify the middle linebacker spot for the Eagles.
16. New York Jets: Courtney Upshaw, OLB, Alabama
There’s a good chance that Upshaw, the best outside linebacker in the draft, will be gone by the time the Jets pick. But if he is available at this spot, there’s no reason why the Jets shouldn’t take him.
17. Cincinnati Bengals: Dre Kirkpatrick, CB, Alabama
It appears that cornerback Leon Hall will not be ready for the beginning of the 2012 season due to injury and drafting Kirkpatrick helps bolster the secondary.
18. San Diego Chargers: Mark Barron, S, Alabama
Due to hernia surgery, Barron has been slipping down some draft boards. But regardless of the injury, he is still the best safety in this year’s draft. Safety is not an immediate need for the Chargers but drafting Barron could help the team move on from Bob Sanders, who was a bust in 2011.
19. Chicago Bears: Kendall Wright, WR, Baylor
After a poor performance at the combine, some experts including SI’s Peter King think that Wright will fall out of the first round. However, I’m not buying it. Wright is much faster than the 4.61 that he ran at the combine and is still a top talent that would fit well in Chicago’s offense.
20. Tennessee Titans: Nick Perry, DE/OLB, Southern California
I’ve been doing a lot of studying on Perry lately and the more tape I watch of him, the more there is to like. He is best suited at defensive end but is versatile enough to stand up and play outside linebacker.
21. Cincinnati Bengals: Cordy Glenn, OT/OG, Georgia
The Bengals need to bolster their offensive line in order to protect franchise quarterback Andy Dalton. Glenn will likely play offensive tackle in the NFL due to his long arms, but also has experience at guard and would have no trouble making the transition.
22. Cleveland Browns: Ryan Tannehill, QB, Texas A&M
Bear with me here. I know I have the Browns selecting Trent Richardson and I said that they should build around Colt McCoy. But, this pick may not necessarily be for the Browns. With two first-round picks, the Browns would certainly be willing to trade this pick to a team looking to trade up for Tannehill. Expect teams such as the Seattle Seahawks and Miami Dolphins to possibly make a push to trade for this pick.
23. Detroit Lions: Zach Brown, OLB, North Carolina
With the uncertain future of Cliff Avril and an aging outside linebacker in Stephen Tulloch, outside pass rush is a need for the Lions. Brown may be a bit of a reach here, but he is too fast and too talented to pass up.
24. Pittsburgh Steelers: Devon Still, DT, Penn State
The Steelers have needs at every defensive position, but defensive tackle is the most-needed upgrade. With Casey Hampton recovering from a torn ACL, Still could find himself starting in Week 1.
25. Denver Broncos: Fletcher Cox, DT/DE, Mississippi State
Outside of Brodrick Bunkley, the Broncos are not very talented at defensive tackle. Cox is a very underrated prospect that will move up draft boards prior to April. The former Mississippi State Bulldog will find an immediate role in the Broncos’ defense, as he is versatile enough to play defensive tackle or defensive end.
26. Houston Texans: Stephen Hill, WR, Georgia Tech
It’s apparent that the Texans intend to draft a wide receiver in the first round, and Hill is the best receiver available at this point. After an impressive showing at the combine, Hill is climbing up draft boards and would be a solid pick for the Texans.
27. New England Patriots: Michael Brockers, DT, LSU
Some mock drafts have Brockers going as high as No.9 to the Carolina Panthers. But, I don’t see that happening. Brockers had a poor showing at the combine and will likely be available when the Patriots pick. Drafting Brockers would help a Patriots defensive line that is aging and is in need of an upgrade.
28. Green Bay Packers: Whitney Mercilus, DE, Illinois
I’m not too high on Mercilus, but he is still considered a first-round talent. The Packers need a pass rusher to go alongside outside linebacker Clay Matthews and Mercilus is the best pass rusher available.
29. Baltimore Ravens: Dont’a Hightower, ILB, Alabama
The Ravens need to address the interior offensive line in the draft, but any offensive line pick would be a reach here. Wisconin center Peter Konz is injury prone and does not warrant a first-round pick. Getting Hightower here would give the Ravens a long-term replacement for middle linebacker Ray Lewis.
30. San Francisco 49ers: Alshon Jeffrey, WR, South Carolina
Alshon Jeffrey’s draft stock is slipping at record speed. Once considered a top-10 pick, the former South Carolina Gamecock may not even get drafted in the first round. But, the 49ers are in desperate need of an impact wide receiver and Jeffrey is the best receiver available.
31. New England Patriots: Bruce Irvin, DE/OLB, West Virginia
Even though I have the Patriots drafting defense with their first pick, I think they do it again. Irvin is a guy that I’ve been high on all year and would help serve as the heir to Andre Carter.
32. New York Giants: Orson Charles, TE, Georgia
It’s no secret that the Giants need to address the tight end position in the draft, making Charles the logical choice. Charles is not a great blocker, but he is the most versatile tight end in this year’s class and would give quarterback Eli Manning a solid option in the middle of the field.