IC NFL Mock Draft 2012
With the 2012 NFL Draft taking place tonight, the IC Sports staff has combined its NFL knowledge to produce our fourth annual mock draft.
The draft choices were picked by a consensus from Managing Editor Nate Pentecost, Sports Editor Jay Skebba and IC Sports contributor Nick Delwiche.
To keep the mock as accurate as possible, we have not included possible trades we believe could take place. So even if it is likely that the Vikings at No. 3 or Jaguars at No. 7 may wish to trade down, we have kept each team locked into their original draft position.
Picking a mock draft is nearly impossible, especially with the smokescreens that each team puts out before the draft begins. Then there’s the thought process that each team goes through. Even if 31 teams don’t see someone as first-round talent, it takes just one to make that selection. This is our best guess of how tonight’s draft will play out.
1. Indianapolis Colts - Andrew Luck Stanford QB
No surprise here. Tuesday Indianapolis confirmed the worst kept secret in sports – the Colts will be drafting the most complete quarterback prospect since John Elway. Andrew Luck will make an immediate impact for Indianapolis and should provide them with a franchise QB for years to come.
— Nate Pentecost is the Managing Editor and a senior majoring in communication. He has contributed to the Toledo Free Press and FOXSportsOhio.com.
2. Washington Redskins - Robert Griffin III Baylor QB
The Redskins moved up to the No. 2 pick last month to draft Robert Griffin III. Sending St. Louis three first round picks and one second rounder, they’re risking the future of the franchise on RGIII. Griffin has a cannon for an arm and has tremendous mobility, but sometimes looks uncomfortable inside the pocket.
— Jay Skebba is the Sports Editor and a junior majoring in communication.
3. Minnesota Vikings - Matt Kalil USC OT
The Vikings need more depth on the offensive line to protect Pro Bowl running back Adrian Peterson and second-year quarterback Christian Ponder. Matt Kalil offers a solid option at the No. 3 pick should the Vikings opt not to move the pick. Some candidates to trade up include Tampa Bay at five and Miami at eight.
— Nick Delwiche is an IC Sports contributor and a junior majoring in communication.
4. Cleveland Browns - Trent Richardson Alabama RB
Pentecost: Taking a running back with the fourth-overall pick is considered risky enough but Richardson also underwhelmed scouts with his 40-yard dash time (4.58 seconds) at Alabama’s Pro Day. If Richardson returns to his previous form the value adds up here though. Cleveland is in desperate need of playmakers and when he is right Richardson is powerful, explosive and has good pass-catching ability coming out of the backfield.
5. Tampa Bay Buccaneers - Morris Claiborne LSU CB
Skebba: Despite failing miserably on the Wonderlic test, Morris Claiborne is still a top-five prospect. The Buccaneers have several needs on defense, especially in the secondary. Claiborne has great speed and isn’t afraid of contact. He should significantly bolster a unit that ranked in the bottom third in passing defense last year. But don’t count out Richardson with this pick if he is still on the board as Tampa could use a running back to compliment LeGarrette Blount.
6. St. Louis Rams
Justin Blackmon WR
Delwiche: Picking up Blackmon at No. 6 will give the offense exactly what it needs -- a playmaker. A new toy for young quarterback Sam Bradford could do wonders to help a lackluster Rams offense.
7. Jacksonville Jaguars -
Fletcher Cox DT
Pentecost: Do not be surprised to see Jacksonville trade this pick. The Jags do not appear to have a franchise quarterback in Blaine Gabbert and they need to improve their offensive line and add depth at receiver, regardless. However, Cox is good interior rusher capable of fitting into any defensive scheme. He provides great value here if they choose not to or cannot move the pick.
8. Miami Dolphins -
Ryan Tannehill QB
Skebba: Since the end of the college season, Tannehill has shot up several team’s draft boards. He possesses an NFL-ready arm, but often locks on to his targets and has difficulty reading defenses. Tannehill is far from a sure thing, but the Dolphins are one of the most QB-desperate teams in the league. They’ll have hard time passing him up with his college head coach Mike Sherman taking over as offensive coordinator.
9. Carolina Panthers -
Melvin Ingram DE
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