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2010 NFL Mock Draft: Rounds 1-3

Instead of sticking with the Broncos only, I figured I would be a little more bold than usual.  I've decided to take on the role of general manager for all 32 NFL teams, and make my first three round mock draft of the offseason.  I've placed a lot of focus on the Broncos in this draft in terms of trades, but I've also tried to include some other logical trades for other teams, which you will find following the jump.

This mock draft features some surprises, some picks that are almost unanimous, and I've thrown some other twists and turns in there, just to keep it interesting.  I've also included a full Broncos mock with analysis after my three rounds. 

More after the jump...

1.  St. Louis Rams:  Sam Bradford, QB, Oklahoma

2.  Detroit Lions:  Ndamukong Suh, DL, Nebraska

3.  Tampa Bay Buccaneers:  Gerald McCoy, DL, Oklahoma

4.  Washington Redskins:  Russell Okung, OL, Oklahoma State

5.  Kansas City Chiefs:  Eric Berry, S, Tennessee

6.  Seattle Seahawks:  Bryan Bulaga, OL, Iowa

7.  Cleveland Browns:  Jared Odrick, DL, Penn State

8.  Oakland Raiders:  Trent Williams, OL, Oklahoma

**Trade:  New York Giants trade pick #15, 76 to Buffalo Bills for pick #9**

9.  New York Giants (from Jacksonville):  Rolando McClain, ILB, Alabama

10.  Jacksonville Jaguars:  Derrick Morgan, DE, Georgia Tech

**Trade:  Denver Broncos trade pick #11 to Tennessee Titans for pick #16, 77**

11.  Tennessee Titans (from Broncos thru Bears):  Joe Haden, CB, Florida

12.  Miami Dolphins:  Dez Bryant, WR, Oklahoma State

13.  San Francisco 49ers:  C.J. Spiller, RB, Clemson

**Trade:  Seattle Seahawks trade pick #14 to Denver Broncos for WR Brandon Marshall**

**Trade:  Denver Broncos trade pick #14 to Cleveland Browns for pick #38, 2011 first round pick**

14.  Cleveland Browns (from Broncos):  Jimmy Clausen, QB, Notre Dame

15.  Buffalo Bills (from New York Giants):  Dan Williams, DL, Tennessee

16.  Denver Broncos (from Tennessee):  Maurkice Pouncey, C, Florida

17.  San Francisco 49ers (from Carolina):  Earl Thomas, S, Texas

**Trade:  Cincinnati Bengals trade pick #21, 152 to Pittsburgh Steelers for pick #18**

18.  Cincinnati Bengals (from Pittsburgh):  Taylor Mays, S, USC

19.  Atlanta Falcons:  Brandon Graham, DE, Michigan

20.  Houston Texans:  Kyle Wilson, CB, Boise State

21.  Pittsburgh Steelers (from Cincinnati):  Mike Iupati, OL, Idaho

22.  New England Patriots:  Sergio Kindle, OLB, Texas

23.  Green Bay Packers:  Charles Brown, OL, USC

24.  Philadelphia Eagles:  Jason Pierre-Paul, DE, South Florida

25.  Baltimore Ravens:  Devin McCourty, CB, Rutgers

26.  Arizona Cardinals:  Sean Weatherspoon, LB, Missouri

27.  Dallas CowboysAnthony Davis, OT, Rutgers

28.  San Diego Chargers:  Linval Joseph, DL, East Carolina

29.  New York Jets:  Golden Tate, WR, Notre Dame

30.  Minnesota Vikings:  Tim Tebow, QB, Florida

31.  Indianapolis Colts:  Roger Saffold, OL, Indiana

32.  New Orleans Saints:  Everson Griffen, DE, USC


Second Round

33.  St. Louis Rams:  Ryan Matthews, RB, Fresno State

34.  Detroit Lions:  Kareem Jackson, CB, Alabama

35.  Tampa Bay Buccaneers:  Demaryius Thomas, WR, Georgia Tech

36.  Kansas City Chiefs:  Terrence Cody, DT, Alabama

37.  Philadelphia Eagles:  Patrick Robinson, CB, Florida State

**TRADE:  Broncos trade pick #38 to Carolina Panthers for pick #48, 112**

38.  Carolina Panthers (from Broncos thru Browns):  Arrelious Benn, WR, Illinois

39.  Oakland Raiders:  Brian Price, DT, UCLA

**Trade:  Buffalo Bills trade RB Marshawn Lynch to San Diego Chargers for pick #40, 126**

40.  Buffalo Bills (from Chargers thru Seahawks):  Colt McCoy, QB, Texas

41.  Buffalo Bills:  Bruce Campbell, OL, Maryland

42.  Tampa Bay Buccaneers (from Bears):  Jerry Hughes, DE, TCU

43.  Miami Dolphins:  Ricky Sapp, LB, Clemson

44.  New England Patriots:  Jermaine Gresham, TE, Oklahoma

45.  Denver Broncos:  Toby Gerhart, RB, Stanford

46.  New York Giants:  Nate Allen, S, South Florida

47.  New England Patriots:  Jahvid Best, RB, Cal

48.  Denver Broncos (from Panthers):  Tyson Alualu, DL, Cal

49.  San Francisco 49ers:  Vladimir Ducasse, OL, UMass

50.  Kansas City Chiefs:  Jared Veldheer, OL, Hillsdale

51.  Houston Texans:  Morgan Burnett, S, Georgia Tech

52.  Pittsburgh Steelers:  Carlos Dunlap, DL, Florida

53.  New England Patriots:  Damian Williams, WR, USC

54.  Cincinnati Bengals:  Chris Cook, CB, Virginia

55.  Philadelphia Eagles:  Daryl Washington, LB, TCU

56.  Green Bay Packers:  Chad Jones, S, LSU

57.  Baltimore Ravens:  Rob Gronkowski, TE, Arizona

58.  Arizona Cardinals:  Lamarr Houston, DE, Texas

59.  Dallas Cowboys:  Brandon LaFell, WR, LSU

60.  Seattle Seahawks (from Chargers):  Torrell Troup, DL, UCF

61.  New York Jets:  Koa Misi, OLB, Utah

62.  Minnesota Vikings:  Brandon Ghee, CB, Wake Forest

63.  Indianapolis Colts:  Jon Asamoah, G, Illinois

64.  New Orleans Saints:  Reshad Jones, S, Georgia


Third Round

65.  St. Louis Rams:  Jimmy Graham, TE, Miami

66.  Detroit Lions:  Jonathan Dwyer, RB, Georgia Tech

67.  Tampa Bay Buccaneers:  Akwasi Owusu-Ansah, CB, Indiana (PA)

68.  Kansas City Chiefs:  Matt Tennant, C, Boston College

69.  Oakland Raiders:  Jacoby Ford, WR, Clemson

70.  Philadelphia Eagles (from Seahawks):  Sean Lee, LB, Penn State

71.  Cleveland Browns:  Donald Butler, LB, Washington

72.  Buffalo Bills:  Montario Hardesty, RB, Tennessee

73.  Miami Dolphins:  Cam Thomas, DL, North Carolina

74.  Jacksonville Jaguars:  Major Wright, S, Florida

75.  Chicago Bears:  John Jerry, OL, Ole Miss

76.  Buffalo Bills (from Giants):  Dexter McCluster, RB/WR, Ole Miss

77.  Denver Broncos (from Titans):  Brandon Spikes, LB, Florida

78.  Carolina Panthers:  Corey Wootton, DE, Northwestern

79.  San Francisco 49ers:  Alex Carrington, DE, Arkansas State

80.  Denver Broncos:  Carlton Mitchell, WR, South Florida

81.  Houston Texans:  Ben Tate, RB, Auburn

82.  Pittsburgh Steelers:  Dominique Franks, CB, Oklahoma

83.  Atlanta Falcons:  Thaddeus Gibson, OLB, Ohio State

**TRADE:  Cincinnati Bengals trade pick #84 to Denver Broncos for TE Tony Scheffler and future conditional pick**

84.  Denver Broncos (from Bengals):  Eric Decker, WR, Minnesota

85.  Cleveland Browns (from New England via Oakland):  Taylor Price, WR, Ohio

86.  Green Bay Packers:  Eric Norwood, LB, South Carolina

87.  Philadelphia Eagles:  J.D. Walton, OL, Baylor

88.  Arizona Cardinals (from Ravens):  Jason Worilds, DE/OLB, Virginia Tech

89.  Arizona Cardinals:  Kyle Calloway, OL, Iowa

90.  Dallas Cowboys:  Myron Rolle, S, Florida State

91.  San Diego Chargers:  Dezmon Briscoe, WR, Kansas

92.  Cleveland Browns (from Jets):  Jerome Murphy, CB, South Florida

93.  Minnesota Vikings:  Navorro Bowman, LB, Penn State

94.  Indianapolis Colts:  Amari Spievey, CB, Iowa

95.  New Orleans Saints:  Tony Pike, QB, Cincinnati

96.  Cincinnati Bengals:  Mardy Gilyard, WR, Cincinnati

97.  Tennessee Titans:  Greg Hardy, DE, Ole Miss

98.  Atlanta Falcons:  Walter Thurmond, CB, Oregon


Denver Broncos Mock (rounds 4-7)


Pick #112 (from Carolina):  Mike Johnson, OL, Alabama


Pick #114:  Armanti Edwards, ATH, Appalachian State


Pick #183:  Joe Hawley, OL, UNLV


Pick #220:  Danny Batten, LB, South Dakota State


Comments on Broncos Picks

1.  Round One, 16th overall:  Maurkice Pouncey, C, Florida

This pick is a no-brainer for me.  The Broncos do not currently have a viable center on their roster, so nabbing Pouncey on day one of the draft almost has to happen in my opinion.  Pouncey has been called the best center prospect to come along in "a decade", and likely will be the best for a while (perhaps his brother will emerge next year). 

Either way, Pouncey is a very intelligent lineman who is capable of starting right away, though playing the center position in the NFL is not easy by any stretch of the imagination.  He will have to learn on the fly, but that is something we need to be willing to risk with this pick.  If we go into the season with anyone but Pouncey starting at center, I fear running lanes will be hard to come by on the interior.  That is, of course, Dustin Fry is capable of moving some of the mountainous linemen that roam the NFL.


On the Brandon Marshall Trade(s)

With Dez Bryant off the board, the phones will be ringing off the hook with teams who at one point considered Bryant strongly and now have to go to the alternative, which is Brandon Marshall.  While Marshall would be a very expensive #14 pick, the Seahawks have shown great interest in him, and if they want him, the Broncos will accept nothing less than a first round pick for Marshall.  Brandon himself opined that a deal would not get done until draft day, so don't think because there is no news that Marshall is destined to return to Denver.

In my opinion, we settled in getting the 14th overall pick for Marshall, but we got a nice haul in return for him.  With the other trades I made throughout the mock, I essentially obtained an additional 2011 first round selection (from Cleveland) and with the 2010 2nd round selection I acquired (38th overall) I moved back down again to #48 and picked up an extra 4th round pick.  A 1st, 2nd, and 4th out of the Marshall deal is what I'm talking about. 


2.  Second Round, 45th overall:  Toby Gerhart, RB, Stanford

We have been hot on Gerhart's trail this offseason, and it's no question as to why.  He is undoubtedly one of the best RB's in this class (Doak Walker Award recipient), and reminds me a lot of a faster version of Shonn Greene.  Bigger, too.  Gerhart is extremely powerful back with exceptional speed (4.53 40) and he is a two-sport athlete at Stanford.  He also wears number seven.  Remember the last time the Broncos acquired number seven from Stanford, a letterman in baseball and football? 

I like this pick even more.


3.  Second Round, 48th overall:  Tyson Alualu, DL, California

This pick was simply all about value.  When I correlated the players we have scouted in-depth to the best players available, Alualu just happened to fit the bill.  There are rumors that Alualu is a better fit for a 4-3 system, and while I normally agree with Mike Mayock, I think he is probably wrong about this.  Alualu is a high motor player, and with the luxury of an extra second round selection, I felt adding Alualu was appropriate in this slot. 


4.  Third Round, 77th overall:  Brandon Spikes, LB, Florida

This pick was almost a no-brainer to me.  I actually didn't realize that Spikes was still available while I was making the mock, so it was a refreshing surprise when I went through CBS' inside linebacker rankings.  Spikes was an outstanding performer at Florida, and though his timed speed is awful, his in-game action does not lie.  He will be a solid pro, and in the 3-4 scheme he is the perfect fit to replace the recently departed Andra Davis, also a former Gator (and one who fell in the draft because of speed).  Spikes will be a tackling machine.


5.  Third Round, 80th overall:  Carlton Mitchell, WR, South Florida

I was ecstatic to learn the Broncos had Mitchell in for a private visit, as he is one of my favorite wide receiver prospects in this draft.  It's easy to be enticed by his size/speed ratio, but it's his toughness after the catch and physicality that attract me the most.  He will help ease the pain of losing Brandon Marshall undoubtedly.  He is known as a tough, confident locker room leader.


6.  Third Round, 84th overall:  Eric Decker, WR, Minnesota

Prior to the offseason, I had Decker rated as a clear cut first round prospect.  After a serious injury to his foot, his draft stock has taken a serious fall.  Decker has, as I like to say, hands that are like bear claws lined with super glue.  Living in South Dakota, I got to see Decker play quite a bit, and there was never a defensive back that could completely take him out of a game.  He is an intelligent receiver with good size, and though he didn't work out this offseason, he claims he can run the 40 yard dash in 4.49 seconds, so he has good speed as well.


7.  Fourth Round, 112th overall:  Mike Johnson, OL, Alabama

Johnson is a versatile lineman who can play both guard or tackle, and we need the depth at both positions.  He is a team leader and was an All American at left guard for the National Champion Alabama Crimson Tide.  He is a pretty technically refined lineman, and at this point in the draft, he is excellent value.


8.  Fourth Round, 114th overall:  Armanti Edwards, ATH, Appalachian State

In order to do Edwards justice, I would have to fill an entire post with his accomplishments.  I will keep this analysis fairly short and simple.  Edwards has the potential to be a Josh Cribbs type player in this offense, and would be a huge weapon if we decided to implement the Wild Horses more often.  He is a phenomenal leader, has elite level athleticism, and can play a number of positions for us. 


9.  Sixth Round, 183rd overall:  Joe Hawley, OL, UNLV

Hawley is a hot prospect right now who has interviewed with multiple teams.  The Broncos need all the help they can get on the interior line, and Hawley has the potential to be a nice late round find for a team.  I reached for him quite a bit here in the sixth round, but that could be the most likely spot to land him come draft day.  He has great strength, and I think this is a very effective late round choice for depth.


10.  Seventh Round, 220th overall:  Danny Batten, LB, South Dakota State

The Broncos need pass rushers, and they love versatile players.  Batten fits the bill.  He played all along the defensive line at SDSU, and most recently played linebacker for the Jackrabbits.  The Broncos could put him inside, but his most likely spot in the NFL is on the outside rushing the passer, but he is also good in space.