2011 NFL Mock Draft 9.0


1. Carolina Panthers: Blaine Gabbert, QB, Missouri: Often times, it seems as though a non-quarterback will be drafted first overall. However, come draft day, you can count on teams taking signal callers when in doubt.

2. Denver Broncos: Marcell Dareus, DT, Alabama: Denver is sniffing around Von Miller and Blaine Gabbert, but I fully expect they will take the best defensive lineman available.

3. Buffalo Bills: Von Miller, OLB, Texas AM: The Bills could take Cam Newton here, but Von Miller is the type of athlete scouts drool over, and Chan Gailey got a great look at Miller at the Senior Bowl.

4. Cincinnati Bengals: Patrick Peterson, CB, LSU: With Jonathan Joseph hitting free agency and Leon Hall under contract for only one more season, Cincinnati has a great excuse to take the best player available.

5. Arizona Cardinals: Robert Quinn, OLB, North Carolina: The top talent at a position of weakness for the Cards.

6. Cleveland Browns: A.J. Green, WR, Georgia: The Browns desperately need a threat on the outside to make their offense dangerous. Green will remind them of Braylon Edwards without the drops or the attitude.

7. San Francisco 49ers: Nick Fairley, DE, Auburn: San Francisco really wants an elite defensive line, and adding Fairley to a group that already includes Aubrayo Franklin and Justin Smith will accomplish their goal.

8. Tennessee Titans: Cam Newton, QB, Auburn: Tennessee is a quarterback away from returning to the playoffs, and he has the arm to get the ball to Kenny Britt and co. down the field.

9. Dallas Cowboys: Prince Amukamara, CB, Nebraska: The Cowboys have nothing in the secondary, and they could allow Gerald Sensabaugh to walk.

10. Washington Redskins: Julio Jones, WR, Alabama: Washington needs to land the biggest difference maker available with this spot on either side of the ball.

11. Houston Texans: Aldon Smith, OLB, Missouri: Smith is an excellent pass rusher who could go higher than most anticipate. He will be a key piece in Houston’s transition to the 3-4.

12. Minnesota Vikings: Da’Quan Bowers, DE, Clemson: Expect Bowers to fall on draft day due to medical concerns, but Minnesota would be more than happy to pair him with Jared Allen.

13. Detroit Lions: Anthony Castonzo, OT, Boston College: The new top offensive tackle prospect should go in the first half of round one, and Detroit is a great landing spot.

14. St. Louis Rams: J.J. Watt, DE, Wisconsin: Steve Spagnuolo loves his defensive linemen, and he needs somebody to pair with Chris Long.

15. Miami Dolphins: Mark Ingram, RB, Alabama: Simply too obvious of a partnering here.

16. Jacksonville Jaguars: Ryan Kerrigan, DE, Purdue: The Jags are never afraid of adding defensive linemen when they need them.

17. New England Patriots: Tyron Smith, OT, USC: The Patriots need to get younger along the offensive line, and Tyron Smith is great value and has unlimited potential.

18. San Diego Chargers: Cameron Jordan, DE, California: Great value and Jordan fills a big need.

19. New York Giants: Mike Pouncey, C/G, Florida: Pouncey’s stock is soaring and the Giants need young talent to protect Eli Manning.

20. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Adrian Clayborn, DE, Iowa: The Bucs will take the best pass rusher available.

21. Kansas City Chiefs: Phil Taylor, NT, Baylor: Scott Pioli will be itching to cement his defensive line in this draft.

22. Indianapolis Colts: Nate Solder, OT, Colorado: A very gifted pass protector as the Colts continue to build around Peyton Manning.

23. Philadelphia Eagles: Gabe Carimi, OT, Wisconsin: The Eagles need to do a much better job of protecting the passer and Gabe Carimi would be an ideal right tackle for them. He fits the mold of a Reid offensive tackle perfectly, and the pick makes almost too much sense here.

24. New Orleans Saints: Corey Liuget, DT, Illinois: New Orleans will be looking for somebody to pair with Sedrick Ellis up front.

25. Seattle Seahawks: Christian Ponder, QB, Florida State: It’s beginning to look like Christian Ponder will sneak into the first round while Jake Locker and Ryan Mallett will be on the outside looking in.

26. Baltimore Ravens: Justin Houston, OLB, Georgia: The explosive edge rusher Baltimore needs to complement Terrell Suggs.

27. Atlanta Falcons: Muhammad Wilkerson, DT, Temple: Atlanta gets good value here, and they could certainly use another impact defensive lineman.

28. New England Patriots: Cameron Heyward, DE, Ohio State: A strong, tough 5-technique that will thrive in New England under coach Bill Belichick.

29. New York Jets: Jimmy Smith, CB, Colorado: With Antonio Cromartie as good as gone, Rex Ryan will add another lanky cover man with serious character concerns to replace him.

30. Chicago Bears: Brandon Harris, CB, Miami: After Tim Jennings was shredded in the NFC Championship Game, the Bears should look to draft his replacement.

31. Pittsburgh Steelers: Derek Sherrod, OT, Mississippi State: With a lot of questions on the offensive line, the Steelers should aim for some stability at the tackle position with this pick.

32. Green Bay Packers: Rahim Moore, S, UCLA: Without a slam-dunk pick, the Packers could add Rahim Moore, who will pair with Nick Collins and make the Green Bay secondary even tougher to crack.

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