1. Indianapolis Colts: Andrew Luck, QB, Stanford
This pick has stayed the same since January and will remain the same until the Colts submit their pick on April 26th. Andrew Luck is the next franchise quarterback of the Indianapolis Colts.
2. Washington Redskins (Trade via St. Louis): Robert Griffin III, QB, Baylor
After giving up multiple first-round picks to move to this spot, all signs point to the Redskins making RG3 the next king of our nation’s capital.
3. Minnesota Vikings: Matt Kalil, OT, USC
Like the first two picks, this one is obvious. Kalil is without a doubt the best offensive lineman in the draft and will serve as Christian Ponder’s blind side protection for years to come.
4. Cleveland Browns: Trent Richardson, RB, Alabama
Building around quarterback Colt McCoy will be the theme of the draft for Cleveland. That begins with selecting the consensus top running back in the draft, Trent Richardson.
5. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Morris Claiborne, CB, LSU
In the pass-happy NFC South, the Bucs need to get a shutdown corner like Claiborne. Despite reportedly scoring a 4 on the Wonderlic test at the combine, Claiborne will still be selected here.
6. St. Louis Rams (Trade via Washington): Justin Blackmon, WR, Oklahoma State
While the Rams could trade down from this pick because of the overwhelming amount of holes the team needs to fill, Blackmon is a solid pick here. Sam Bradford needs a true No.1 receiver to build a relationship with for the rest of his career.
7. Jacksonville Jaguars: Michael Floyd, WR, Notre Dame
For quarterback Blaine Gabbert to develop, he needs a play-making receiver to throw to. Floyd is the best receiver available and will start from day one in Jacksonville.
8. Miami Dolphins: Ryan Tannehill, QB, Texas A&M
The Dolphins missed out on every available quarterback (Manning, Flynn, Smith, Griffin), leaving them with Tannehill. While he may not start right away, Tannehill would be a solid pick for Miami.
9. Carolina Panthers: Fletcher Cox, DT/DE, Mississippi State
The Panthers are set offensively, meaning defense will need to be the focus with this pick. Fletcher Cox is the best defensive lineman in the draft and the Panthers can’t pass him up.
10. Buffalo Bills: Riley Reiff, OT, Iowa
After addressing the defensive side of the ball in free agency, the Bills will likely draft an offensive player with this pick. Reiff fills the void left by Demetrius Bell, who recently signed with the Philadelphia Eagles.
11. Kansas City Chiefs: Dontari Poe, DT, Memphis
The Chiefs need a pure nose tackle to plug up the middle of their defense, making the 346 pound Poe the pick here.
12. Seattle Seahawks: Whitney Mercilus, OLB, Illinois
After a spectacular 2011 season, Whitney Mercilus is quickly rising up draft boards. The Seahawks need a pure pass rusher, and Mercilus could be a surprise pick here.
13. Arizona Cardinals: Melvin Ingram, DE/OLB, South Carolina
The Cardinals lacked a consistent pass rush in 2011, and having Melvin Ingram available here would be a dream scenario for Arizona.
14. Dallas Cowboys: Mark Barron, S, Alabama
The Cowboys need help in the secondary, and that starts with drafting Mark Barron. Dallas would love to pick Dontari Poe here but with him already off the board, the Cowboys would be happy to settle for Barron.
15. Philadelphia Eagles: Michael Brockers, DT, LSU
After settling the linebacker problem by trading for DeMeco Ryans, the Eagles need to improve the up-the-middle run defense. I do not believe that Michael Brockers is worthy of being this high of a pick, but all signs point to him being a top-20 pick in the draft.
16. New York Jets: Luke Kuechly, ILB, Boston College
The Jets need a high character leader on the defense, and Kuechly fills that role. If available, it’s unlikely that the Jets would pass up on the tackling machine from Boston College.
17. Cincinnati Bengals: David DeCastro, OG, Stanford
The Bengals need to address the interior offensive line in the first round of the draft in order to help keep quarterback Andy Dalton upright. David DeCastro is a physical and technically sound guard who can start from day one.
18. San Diego Chargers: Courtney Upshaw, DE/OLB, Alabama
Despite signing outside linebacker Jarrett Johnson in free agency, the Chargers still need to address the pass rush. Upshaw is the best pass-rusher on the board and would find a significant role in San Diego’s defense.
19. Chicago Bears: Quinton Coples, DE, North Carolina
Drafting Baylor wide receiver Kendall Wright may be a bit of a reach here, so the Bears will shift their attention to the defensive side of the ball. Quinton Coples is a gifted pass-rusher who would excel playing opposite Julius Peppers.
20. Tennessee Titans: Dre Kirkpatrick, CB, Alabama
After losing Cortland Finnegan in free agency, the Titans need to find another physical and aggressive corner. No corner is more physical in this draft than Dre Kirkpatrick, making this an ideal pick for Tennessee.
21. Cincinnati Bengals: Janoris Jenkins, CB, North Alabama
After addressing the offensive line with the team’s first pick, the Bengals will shift their focus to the cornerback position. Leon Hall is still recovering from injury, and drafting a lockdown corner in Janoris Jenkins makes sense here.
22. Cleveland Browns: Jonathan Martin, OT, Stanford
To continue the process of building around Colt McCoy, the Browns take the best offensive lineman available, Jonathan Martin. Martin would immediately be plugged in at right tackle and provide the Browns with an instant upgrade on the offensive line.
23. Detroit Lions: Stephon Gilmore, CB, South Carolina
It’s no secret that the Lions’ biggest need is pass defense. With Stephon Gilmore quickly rising up draft boards, it is likely the Lions will take him if he’s available.
24. Pittsburgh Steelers: Dont’a Hightower, ILB, Alabama
At this point in the draft process, no pick seems more concrete than Dont’a Hightower to the Steelers. Sure, the team needs to find offensive line help, but drafting a franchise middle linebacker is more of a priority.
25. Denver Broncos: Jerel Worthy, DT, Michigan State
After losing Brodrick Bunkley in free agency, the Broncos now have a major need at defensive tackle. Jerel Worthy has the potential to make an impact right away, as his size will help plug up the middle of the defense.
26. Houston Texans: Kendall Wright, WR, Baylor
It is becoming more and more apparent that the Texans will draft a receiver to complement Andre Johnson with this pick. Kendall Wright slipped down some draft boards after a poor combine performance, but his play on the field speaks for itself and he is worthy of being selected in the first round.
27. New England Patriots: Nick Perry, DE/OLB, Southern California
The Patriots need to find an impact pass-rusher in the first round of the draft, and in this case Nick Perry is the best available. While he is still developing as an all-around player, he has a chance to find a large role in New England’s defense.
28. Green Bay Packers: Andre Branch, DE/OLB, Clemson
The Packers need to find a pass-rusher to take some of the pressure off of outside linebacker Clay Matthews. While Boise State outside linebacker Shea McClellin is the popular pick here, I think the Packers will go with the more talented outside linebacker, Andre Branch.
29. Baltimore Ravens: Stephen Hill, WR, Georgia Tech
I’ve been mocking Alabama linebacker Dont’a Hightower to the Ravens for a long time. But with Hightower gone in this scenario, I can see the Ravens taking a raw but talented prospect in Stephen Hill. The Ravens are in dire need of a big-bodied receiver that can be a go-to guy in the red zone. At 6’5, Hill fits the bill and has the potential to be the team’s No.1 receiver in a few years.
30 San Francisco 49ers: Peter Konz, C/G, Wisconsin
With the Ravens passing up on Peter Konz, the 49ers won’t hesitate taking him. After losing Adam Snyder in free agency, the 49ers need to upgrade the interior offensive line.
31. New England Patriots: Devon Still, DT, Penn State
Continuing with the theme of upgrading the defensive line, the Patriots take the best defensive tackle available, Devon Still. The former Nittany Lion could go higher than this pick, so if available, the Patriots would be happy taking Still.
32. New York Giants: Coby Fleener, TE, Stanford
Even though the Giants signed tight end Martellus Bennet in free agency, they still need more help at the position. Fleener is my second ranked tight end behind Georgia’s Orson Charles, but I have him here because he fits better in New York’s offense.