Posted: Thu April 25, 2013 11:43AM; Updated: Thu April 25, 2013 7:30PM
Don Banks
Don Banks>INSIDE THE NFL

2013 NFL Mock Draft 7.0

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A possible No. 1 pick at the start of 2012, Matt Barkley's draft stock has been a rollercoaster since.
A possible No. 1 pick at the start of 2012, Matt Barkley's draft stock has been a rollercoaster since.
Jeff Lewis/Icon SMI

Stuff we're hearing as my final mock gets put to bed and the first round of the NFL Draft mercifully approaches:

• Most everybody in the league now thinks the top three offensive tackle prospects -- Eric Fisher, Luke Joeckel and Lane Johnson -- will go in the top five, meaning trades by No. 6 Cleveland, No. 11 San Diego and No. 12 Miami are much less likely.

• The 49ers and Falcons are among the teams that want to move up in the right scenario (I have both doing so in this, my last mock attempt), while the two-pick teams like the Jets, Rams and Vikings are open to moving down with one of their selections (see below).

• There's going to be a run on cornerbacks starting somewhere in the mid-to-late 20s, and it'll extend well into the second round.

• The Browns have been focused this offseason on getting tougher as a team across the board, but in the final analysis, I have them going for a franchise quarterback in Geno Smith in the first round. Maybe a small part of the reasoning is taking Smith will be a useful distraction from the fact owner Jimmy Haslam's other business is under investigation.

• Prospects like Georgia linebacker Alec Ogletree and Cal receiver Keenan Allen are falling, while playmakers like West Virginia's Tavon Austin and Notre Dame tight end Tyler Eifert are rising.

• When the smoke clears late Thursday night, quarterbacks Geno Smith and Matt Barkley will definitely be in the first round, with a decent likelihood of Ryan Nassib and maybe even E.J. Manuel joining them.

 
1
Eric Fisher
OT Central Michigan
Sr.6-7306
 
 
I've had Fisher to the Chiefs since my 5.0 mock, and while there were times this week where I read the tea leaves in favor of Luke Joeckel to K.C., that's not where the eagle finally landed. If the Chiefs can't move Branden Albert to Miami, Fisher might be a better short-term fit than Joeckel at right tackle. In an unpredictable draft, we might as well start the unpredictability right at the top.
 
2
Luke Joeckel
OT Texas A&M
Jr.6-6306
 
 
I've been led to believe first-time Jaguars GM David Caldwell will not take chances with the first pick he ever makes for the franchise. He's looking for a cornerstone player in this slot, and that spells going with the guy who has looked like Mr. Clean since January, even though the defense needs an impact player.
 
3
Sharrif Floyd
DT Florida
Jr.6-3297
 
 
The teams that want the third offensive tackle, Oklahoma's Lane Johnson, could give the Raiders the ability to trade down, perhaps still getting Floyd at a lower slot. But if Oakland sticks, the big ex-Gator still makes the most sense for a Raiders defensive line that is devoid of talent in the middle.
 
4
Star Lotulelei
DT Utah
Sr.6-3320
 
 
Again, if Lane Johnson remains available, the Eagles should have trade options, or could even take the athletically freakish ex-Sooner themselves. But Philly has been focused on finding talent to make the transition to a 3-4 defense work, and Lotulelei is the best available Vince Wilfork-type cog among the defensive linemen.
 
5
Lane Johnson
OT Oklahoma
Jr.6-6303
 
 
The Lions are said to be captivated by BYU defensive end Ziggy Ansah and I'm sure new defensive line coach Jim Washburn will be furiously lobbying for him. But Detroit's need at offensive tackle should win out, and logically that tips the scale in favor of Johnson.
 
6
Geno Smith
QB West Virginia
Sr.6-2218
 
 
I really don't know where else to put the draft's consensus top-rated quarterback. The Browns definitely covet him, but I don't think they wanted to take him at No. 6. The problem is, with all three offensive tackles gone, their chances of moving down to No. 11 or 12 and getting him there just evaporated. I've been told Cleveland isn't going cornerback in this slot, so if it's not Smith, the pick is likely Oregon outside linebacker Dion Jordan.
 
7
Ziggy Ansah
DE BYU
Sr.6-5271
 
 
The Cardinals didn't really expect to have Ansah fall in their laps, but they're not unhappy about the development whatsoever. Arizona might have trade-down options from teams that want one of the draft's best pass rushers, but they won't get a deal that they can't say no to.
 
8
Tavon Austin
WR West Virginia
Sr.5-9174
 
 
All day Wednesday I was convinced the Bills had to take Syracuse quarterback Ryan Nassib at No. 8 or risk losing out on him altogether. Then the Matt Barkley-to-the-Bills chatter started percolating. More on that later. For now, in a draft woefully thin on offensive playmakers in the top 10, Austin is a weapon who will make any Bills starting quarterback look and play better.
 
9
Dee Milliner
CB Alabama
Jr.6-0201
 
 
Acquired from Jets. I'm connecting some dots here, but the 49ers are talking trade up with teams high in the round, and we know they think Milliner can help a secondary that was San Francisco's defensive weak link last season. The Jets love and need Milliner as well, but New York has multiple holes, believes it's a deep draft (especially at cornerback), and is willing to move out of the top 10 to hasten its rebuilding program.
 
10
Dion Jordan
DE/OLB Oregon
Sr.6-6248
 
 
The Titans would have their pick between top-rated guards Chance Warmack and Jonathan Cooper, but Jordan is potentially too special in the pass-rush department to pass up. Tennessee is convinced the guard market doesn't have a severe drop-off in the second round, but premiere defensive talents are never plentiful.
 
11
Jonathan Cooper
OG North Carolina
Sr.6-2311
 
 
The Chargers could be on the move up if Lane Johnson lingers past No. 5 Detroit, but if they stay at No. 11, San Diego would take Cooper and still address its glaring need to add quality to an offensive line that resembled a disaster site last season.
 
12
Tyler Eifert
TE Notre Dame
Sr.6-5250
 
 
There are so many ways the Dolphins could go, with cornerback Xavier Rhodes or offensive tackle D.J. Fluker representing the most conventional picks. But in a division where the Patriots' double-tight end look changed the paradigm, Eifert gives Miami a weapon with which to compete. And besides, the Dolphins think the hated Jets might take him at No. 13, and who wants to give them that satisfaction?
 
13
Barkevious Mingo
DE/OLB LSU
Sr.6-4241
 
 
Well, at least we were prescient about the Revis trade going down before the draft, despite all the hand-wringing reports about the Bucs' impatience and the Jets pressing the "pause button." We have the Jets trading out of their No. 9 slot with San Francisco, so that means Mingo should make for a fairly easy card to turn in. Unless Houston cornerback D.J. Hayden is New York's surprise choice.
 
14
Sheldon Richardson
DT Missouri
Jr.6-2294
 
 
The Panthers sit tight and watch a player they like and need come to them, as many presumed he would for months now. Richardson is an explosive and athletic playmaker who should upgrade one of the weakest units on Carolina's depth chart.
 
15
Kenny Vaccaro
S Texas
Sr.6-0214
 
 
With both Roman Harper and Malcolm Jenkins leaving a lot to be desired at safety, the Saints would be giddy to see Vaccaro last until their pick comes up. Alabama offensive tackle D.J. Fluker has to be considered another need-based possibility.
 
16
Chance Warmack
OG Alabama
Sr.6-2317
 
 
This is considerably lower than we've had Warmack in any of our mocks, but events conspired to push the talented Crimson Tider down to mid-round. The Rams would pounce on Vaccaro if he gets past No. 15 New Orleans, but they won't complain about getting an elite player like Warmack in such a value slot.
 
17
Jarvis Jones
OLB Georgia
Jr.6-2245
 
 
The Steelers defense thrives in part due to playmaking linebackers off the edge in the 3-4. Some in the league think Jones is a one-speed player who won't replicate his SEC success in the NFL, but he does appear to possess a skill set the Steelers need.
 
18
D.J. Fluker
OT Alabama
Sr.6-5339
 
 
The Cowboys clearly could use another offensive tackle, and Fluker is a top-12 talent in the estimation of many. All I know is that if longtime Cowboys personnel executive Gil Brandt thinks Fluker belongs with Dallas in his mock, that's good enough for me.
 
19
Tank Carradine
DE Florida State
Sr.6-4276
 
 
The Giants are definitely one of the teams most interested in Carradine, and he does fit their profile of never shying away from first-round pass rushers. Georgia linebacker Alec Ogletree is another sensible and available option, but word is his stock is dropping as draft night approaches.
 
20
Manti Te'o
LB Notre Dame
Sr.6-1241
 
 
With Notre Dame tight end Tyler Eifert off the board, the Bears could opt for a cornerback like Desmond Trufant or D.J. Hayden. But Te'o to the Bears seems to be gaining momentum and the move would fill the Brian Urlacher vacancy long term. Keeping him away from the division rival Vikings would be a bonus.
 
21
Eric Reid
S LSU
Jr.6-1213
 
 
The Bengals would consider it a dream scenario if Kenny Vaccaro gets to No. 21, but there's real depth at safety in the second half of the first round, and Reid appears to be their choice over Florida International's Johnathan Cyprien.
 
22
Bjoern Werner
DE Florida State
Jr.6-3266
 
 
Acquired from Rams. The Falcons need cornerback help, but they also are open to moving into the low 20s range to get a defensive end who can boost their flagging pass rush. The Rams are willing to move out of the No. 22 spot because, with Reid gone, they're not sure the likes of Georgia linebacker Alec Ogletree or Florida International safety Johnathan Cyprien are worth the value of the slot.
 
23
Cordarrelle Patterson
WR Tennessee
Jr.6-2216
 
 
The Vikings take something of a chance on a player with maturity issues, but one who has rare abilities to stretch the field and make big plays, elevating the quick-strike capacity of the entire offense.
 
24
Sylvester Williams
DT North Carolina
Sr.6-3313
 
 
Colts GM Ryan Grigson stands pat and lets the draft come to him, pocketing a still-ascending talent in Williams, who can penetrate, find the ballcarrier and hold the point of attack.
 
25
Matt Barkley
QB USC
Sr.6-2227
 
 
(Acquired from Vikings.) The Bills get their first-round quarterback, but not the one we first presumed. Dealing for the second Vikings' first-rounder, Buffalo bypasses Syracuse's Ryan Nassib and makes the bet that Barkley's junior season was the real deal.
 
26
Justin Pugh
OT Syracuse
Jr.6-4307
 
 
The always quiet Packers hope to hide in the weeds and snag Pugh when their turn comes around. If he's gone, SMU defensive end Margus Hunt and Purdue defensive tackle Kawann Short are viable options.
 
27
Justin Hunter
WR Tennessee
Jr.6-4196
 
 
The Texans get their No. 2 receiving threat to help draw coverage away from Andre Johnson. Clemson's DeAndre Hopkins is the other strong consideration for Houston.
 
28
Xavier Rhodes
CB Florida State
Jr.6-2210
 
 
Without a defensive end that makes sense for them, the Broncos turn their attention to finding Champ Bailey's eventual replacement at cornerback. Rhodes is a mid-round talent who could easily linger this long on the board.
 
29
D.J. Hayden
CB Houston
Sr.5-11191
 
 
The kid with the miracle story from 2012 on the health front joins a Patriots secondary that is seemingly always in need of an upgrade. The Patriots could always look to bail out for a team trying to move up and land a quarterback (Jacksonville for Ryan Nassib? Philadelphia for E.J. Manuel?), but if they sit tight, cornerback or receiver look like the obvious needs to address.
 
30
Johnathan Cyprien
S Florida International
Sr.6-0217
 
 
(Acquired from Falcons.) Having dropped down eight spots in our projected trade with Atlanta, the Rams feel more comfortable deciding between the athletically gifted but somewhat baggage-laden Alec Ogletree, and Florida International safety Johnathan Cyprien. Ogletree is rated higher, but the need at safety wins out, narrowly.
 
31
Desmond Trufant
CB Washington
Sr.5-11190
 
 
(Acquired from 49ers.) The Jets move way down in a deal with the 49ers, from No. 9 to 31, but still get one of the draft's most polished and pro-ready cornerbacks in Trufant. Take that, $16-million-a-year man, Darrelle Revis.
 
32
Alec Ogletree
LB Georgia
Jr.6-2242
 
 
Ravens feel fortunate to have one of the draft's most athletic, sideline-to-sideline defenders fill the hole they have at linebacker. Cyprien, or Florida safety Matt Elam, are other strong possibilities if Baltimore just misses out on Ogletree to St. Louis at No. 30.
 
MORE NFL DRAFT
KING'S RANKINGS: QB | RB | WR/TE | OL | DE/OLB | DB
BURKE: Big Board 5.0
STAPLES: Overrated, underrated prospects based on college
BANKS: Potential undrafted free agents who could star
GALLERY: Best NFL First-Round Picks by Draft Slot
 

Watch Don Banks and Andrew Perloff discuss the hottest draft topics on our Thursday live draft show at 3 p.m ET

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