2012 NFL Draft 1st Round Analysis
NFL teams got a lot accomplished in the First Round of the 2012 NFL Draft. Lots of moving up and down, as well as needs filled. A few surprises, but not as many as usual. SEC had the most picks with 9. Next was Big 12 with 5. A record of 19 underclassmen were drafted. My thoughts…
Indianapolis Colts – Andrew Luck
- Fitting that the prospect most comparable to Peyton Manning would become his successor. Anxious too see how he handles the lumps, and there will be many, under Bruce Arians. His poise and understanding of the game give the Colts a strong foundation to rebuild from the ground up. Top Offensive Prospects
Washington Redskins – Robert Griffin III
- Outstanding player and person who lifted his program to new heights. Incredible athlete who has the mental game to match. Arm stretches the field and he should fit right in with the Shanahan offense in D.C. He was a joy to watch from day one, improving every year.
Cleveland Browns – Trent Richardson
- He should step right in behind a good offense line and become the focal point of the offense. A cut above the rest of the RB class and I expect him to rush for over 1000 yards easily. No doubt will be a prized pick in Fantasy Football draft, as well as RG3.
Minnesota Vikings – Matt Kalil
- Hard to argue with a top rated on film and workouts who is a legacy and went to USC. LT is a huge hole for the OL and makes them instantly better. Protection much needed for the often injured second year QB, Ponder, who was selected in the 1st round last year.
Jacksonville Jaguars – Justin Blackmon
- Finallllly, they get a WR. One who compares to T.O. both his dynamic play-making ability, but also some goofs. While there’s a some risk and he isn’t as big as you like, he has the highest ceiling of all the receivers in the 2012 NFL Draft. They haven’t had a #1 WR since Jimmy Smith, but they’ve taken a lot of a poor ones early…Blackmon is better than all of them.
Dallas Cowboys – Morris Claiborne
- Physically lifted, 6’0 with really long arms. Tackles well and plays the ball like a receiver in the air, that’s how you in downfield in the NFL these days. Fills a huge need for the Cowboys and they are much improved by adding him, Carr, and dropping Newman.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Mark Barron
- I had a feeling that Shiano would go defense with the first pick, and he smartly decides to get a defensive captain in his secondary – much needed in the division. High floor, low risk player. Saban players are smart and NFL safties cost high picks.
Miami Dolphins – Ryan Tannehill
- Understand it, but don’t like it. He has the tools, time, and tutelage he needs to develop…also won’t cost much. Haven’t seen enough of him, but his team blew too many leads for me. Overdrafted, IMHO.
Carolina Panthers – Luke Kuechly
- One of the safest, if not the safest pick in the draft. A tackling machine. Very good in coverage, day one leader. Great combine just solidified his status.
Buffalo Bills – Stephon Gilmore
- Coverage was really a sore point for the squad last year, after having an underrated unit for years. Durable player, who is strong in coverage as well as blitzing. Buffalo has gone a great job adding pieces starting with the Draft last year, then free agency…this team will look brand new.
Kansas City Chiefs – Dontari Poe
- The story of the NFL Scouting Combine will be manning the middle of KC 3-4 defense. Risky pick, since many believe the film doesn’t match the speed. Time will tell. Mayock compares him to Ngata, both in size and in that he’s a freakish athlete with a good motor.
Philadelphia Eagles – Fletcher Cox
- He’s big and he can move. Versatile defensive lineman gives the Eagles much needed interior rush and flexibility which they crave. They finally make the expected and right move in a draft.
Arizona Cardinals – Michael Floyd
- A solid, polished receiver who immiately will contribute opposite of Larry Fitzgerald. Great hand – eye coordination and ball skills. Michael Irvin made a great comparison to Anquan Boldin and that’s what AZ will expect.
St. Louis Rams – Michael Brockers
- Huge body and carries the weight well. Not that experienced, one year starter, but can play when motivated. The Rams were abysmal against the run last year and Fisher has done a good job by adding pick so he can draft “his guys”.
Seattle Seahawks – Bruce Irvin
- The first surprise, an edge rusher supreme. Slender and stellar rusher at WVU. With today’s schemes they should find ways to use him, but a higher pick than anyone could have predicted and we’ll see if they can justify it.
New York Jets – Quinton Coples
- Not sure about the system fit or his senior tape. Nevertheless, looks like Julius Peppers on and off the field. The ultimate boom or bust, could be one of the best players in the draft.
Cincinnati Bengals – Dre Kirkpatrick
- Bengals add much need youth to their secondary to go with Newman, Hall, and Clements. Great tackler. Physical player who is well coached. Bengals now could go for DeCastro or Wright with their next pick.
San Diego Chargers – Melvin Ingram
- Excellent pash rusher from a number of position. A saw a lot of Gamecock games in the last few years and he always stood out. Will add much needed pass rushing to this unit which also added J. Johnson from the Ravens to set the edge.
Chicago Bears – Shea McClelin
- One of the biggest risers leading up to the draft will pair opposite with Julius Peppers to pressure the strong QBs of the division. Strong athlete with a good motor.
Tennessee Titans – Kendall Wright
- Really fluid and smooth receiver who can go downfield and making great moves after the catch underneath. Exciting playermaker who will be dynamite with Kenny Britt.
New England Patriots – Chandler Jones
- The pash rusher they needed. Ranked #9 on Mayock’s board. He likes his scheme versatility and thinks he’ll add weight in two years. NE hasn’t talked to Carter, so a gaping hole is filled.
Cleveland Browns – Brandon Weeden
- He can make all the throws, but I don’t like him under pressure. Nonetheless, he’ll provide immediate competition for Colt McCoy. Browns now have drafted a QB and RB, which look like two big upgrades.
Detroit Lions – Reily Reiff
- Finally addressing a hole for years, they get a Big 10 LT from Iowa. Seemingly, a perfect selection to protect Stafford against the dangerious rushers in the division: Peppers, Matthews, and Allen.
Pittsburgh Steelers – David DeCastro
- STEAL. Quintessential Steeler.
New England Patriots – Dont’a Hightower
- They move up again and get their man. 4 year starter and leader on Alabama’s defense. Might be an OLB or push Spikes. 11 tackles for a loss last season.
Houston Texans – Whitney Mercilus
- Pure pass rusher who looks like a freak. Great move to replace Mario Williams and the Texans have done a great job of drafting front seven players during their history. led the nation with 16 sacks and NCAA record-tying 9 forced fumbles. Really like the pick.
Cincinnati Bengals – Kevin Zeitler
- Technician as are most Wisconsin blockers. Big man who will step right in and play.
Green Bay Packers – Nick Perry
- Very athletic rusher, a bit in consistent though. Really impress me with his movement at the combine. Should get some good opportunities one on one with Matthews playing opposite of him.
Minnesota Vikings – Harrison Smith
- 2nd rated saftey in the Draft, looked strong during the combine and always brought his best for Irish. Sure tackler, who will be a reliable player for the Vikings who have needed a player like this for years. Big need they felt they had to trade up for.
San Francisco 49ers – A.J. Jenkins
- A surprise that they picked him over Hill, but he’s got tons of speed…which is sorely needed.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Doug Martin
- Schiano gets his Ray Rice. Excellent receiver to go with his strong inside running skills because he’s patient and powerful. Pounder with more speed than you may think. 3 down back who can protect.
New York Giants – David Wilson
Filling a need at RB and NYG is pretty good at doing that. Wilson has a lot of speed and is a good North to South runner.