Here’s Mel’s list (you’ll need an Insider subscription to see his notes on each prospect):
|11||Alshon Jeffery||WR||S. Carolina|
|12||Luke Kuechly||LB||Boston College|
|13||Manti Te’o||LB||Notre Dame|
|15||Vontaze Burfict||LB||Arizona St.|
|23||Janoris Jenkins||CB||N. Alabama|
|24||Robert Griffin III||QB||Baylor|
Let’s do the Redskins first.
Obviously, the Redskins will be looking (or at least should be looking) to draft their QB of the future. By all projections you’ll find out there, you’ll see “the Big 3” – Andrew Luck, who’s going to go first overall, and then Landry Jones and Matt Barkley, who are very good possibilities to go Top 10. If the season ended today, the Redskins would have the 9th overall pick.
Personally, I don’t see the Redskins winning too many more games, so they’ll likely draft a little higher. Just for fun though, let’s take a quick look at the teams near them, and their likelihood of drafting a QB:
|Pick||If the season ended today||Might they draft a QB?|
|1||Colts (0-9)||Complex question there with the Colts. Only they will know exactly how healthy Peyton Manning really is. I think if they have the #1 pick, they’ll take Luck, but I find it unlikely that they’ll go QB if they draft anywhere else.|
|4||Cardinals (2-6)||Gotta say no here. They signed Kevin Kolb to a 6 year, $65 million deal after trading DRC and a 2 for him. He’ll get at least another year to prove he’s a good NFL QB… or not.|
|5||Jaguars (2-6)||From what I’ve seen of Blaine Gabbert, he has looked awful, and almost a little afraid. In the past there’d be no way the Jags would go QB again in the first round, but with shrinking contracts for early picks (Gabbert’s deal was only 4 years, $12 million), it’s not crazy to think the Jags will go QB again if there’s a guy they really like. Factor in that they might have a new coach next year, and it’s a real possibility.|
|10||Browns (3-5)||Eesh. Personally, I’m not a Colt McCoy fan, although the Browns seem to really like him. Tough call here.|
The way I see it, the Redskins will definitely be competing with the Dolphins, Seahawks and Broncos, and possibly also the Jaguars, Browns, and Colts (if the Colts get the #1 overall pick).
In other words, it’s no gimme that the Skins will get their guy, unless, you know… they keep losing, which they should.
(Eagles, Cowboys, and Giants after the jump)…
Obviously, the biggest need for the Eagles is linebacker. Any linebacker. If you look at Kiper’s list, there are 6 in his top 21. This draft could be the year of the LB. Eagles fans would certainly love to see the Eagles take one in the first round since 19 freaking 79. My boy Tommy Lawlor loves Boston College’s tackling machine, Luke Kuechly. Kuechly’s stats this season almost look fake:
150 tackles? In 9 games? Really?
The Cowboys could really go any number of directions. Terence Newman will be 34 next season, and makes WAY too much money. There are no shortage of good corners available. They still need OL help, so that could be another direction. They pretty desperately need a legitimate DE that can play the run and also get some sort of consistent pressure on the QB, although the pickings in the first round there look to be slim this year. And finally, they’ll need to make a decision on Anthony Spencer, who is a free agent this year. Does he stay in Dallas? For what cost? If he goes, might the Cowboys look to replace him in the draft?
As for the Giants, see my notes on the Eagles. They too could use LB help. Michael Boley has been very good this year, and Mathias Kiwanuka is a good player, but I’m still not sure if he’s a legitimate LB. Other than that, you have a little bit of promise in Jacquain Williams, but I don’t think he’s much more than decent depth. There will likely be a few LB options on the board wherever the Giants pick.
However, their much larger need goes right back to the OL again. David Diehl will be 32 next year, and is already in decline. Kareem McKenzie was great in 2010, but his game has slipped this season. He’ll be 33 next year. Chris Snee will be 30. The Giants have very little depth behind their starting OL, and have been very fortunate to stay relatively healthy there this year. They’ve done a good job getting Will Beatty ready to play since they drafted him in 2009, but have mostly ignored the OL in the draft since. They need to reload here. Now. Unfortunately, the pickings are slim.