IC NFL Mock Draft 2012
Published: Thursday, April 26, 2012
Updated: Thursday, April 26, 2012 12:04
Skebba: Gilmore will bring some stability to Detroit’s secondary, which is one of the weakest areas of this young Lions team. He ran a 4.40 at the combine and has excellent speed to keep up with burners on the outside. Gilmore excels in zone coverage and knows his assignments on every play. He’s also a great run defender who tackles well and hits hard.
24. Pittsburgh Steelers -
Dont’a Hightower ILB
Delwiche: Pittsburgh has always been a defensive-minded team, so adding a linebacker like Hightower would be nothing out of the ordinary. Hightower is the perfect choice to inject some youth in an otherwise aging defense.
25. Denver Broncos -
Dontari Poe DT
Pentecost: If the Steelers do not nab Poe as the heir to Casey Hampton, the Broncos could swoop in to take him. At 6-foot-4, 346 pounds, Poe is obviously a physical force but he possesses impressive speed as well. He needs to develop in a number of areas but he has the potential to be an impact player.
26. Houston Texans -
Andre Branch DE
Skebba: With the departure of All-Pro Mario Williams, Branch could fill the void at either defensive end or linebacker. At 6-foot-4, 260 pounds, Branch could play both positions. J.J. Watt could use a running mate on the other end and Branch could also shift to linebacker to form a nice tandem with Brian Cushing. His pass-rushing ability and explosiveness could definitely be better.
27. New England Patroits -
Chandler Jones DE
Delwiche: New England was strong offensively, but the defense allowed way too many yards last year. Assuming the Patriots do not trade this pick or their pick at 31, drafting Jones here makes sense.
28. Green Bay Packers -
Shea McClellin OLB
Pentecost: Last year, the Packers defense experienced a huge drop off from their championship campaign in 2010. By season’s end, the pass rush was as bad as any facet of the unit. New England has shown interest in the Boise linebacker as well but if he is still on the board, with his mix of size and speed, McClellin could be part of the solution for Green Bay’s struggling defense.
29. Baltimore Ravens -
Peter Konz C
Skebba: Konz is just the latest in a long line of dominant offensive linemen from Wisconsin. His 6-foot-5, 314-pound frame is ideal for the center position and he possesses very good mobility. Konz is an exceptional run-blocker who can pull to either side and create some big lanes for All-Pro back Ray Rice. Baltimore signed 35 year old Matt Birk recently, but Konz would provide a great long-term solution.
30. San Francisco 49ers -
Stephen Hill WR
Delwiche: San Francisco had arguably the best defense in the NFL least year, but the offense lacked production. Drafting Hill is a good choice, giving the Niners another weapon offensively and opening up space for Vernon Davis.
31. New England Patriots -
Janoris Jenkins CB
Pentecost: Some consider him to be the best corner in the draft but character issues are expected to cause a number of potential suitors to shy away from Jenkins. The former Florida Gator can plug a hole in a porous New England secondary and with plenty of veteran leadership on the Patriots squad, he might be provided with the kind of mentorship that will allow him to change his reputation as well.
32. New York Giants -
Coby Fleenor TE
Skebba: In recent years, NFL teams have put an emphasis to find tall and big, yet speedy tight ends such as Vernon Davis and Jermichael Finley. Fleener could definitely fit that mold at 6-foot-6, 250 pounds with 4.5 speed. He is reliable pass catcher and has great athleticism and leaping ability. With the departure of wide receiver Mario Manningham, Fleener could provide Eli Manning with another nice target.