AFC North: We could see a lot of parity in Draft
by, 03-26-2012 at 02:54 PM (21254 Views)
I think Cleveland is really the only team that has an obvious need (QB) that won't have a shot at a franchise QB. However, other than that I think there will be a lot of parity amongst the draft selections in the AFC North and in my opinion there will be some scrambling to move in front of the other for certain draft picks.
4. Cleveland Browns – Justin Blackmon, WR, Oklahoma State (6’1” 215lbs). Blackmon was really impressive at his pro day and ran really well, which alleviated suspicions that he may not have the speed and quickness to gain separation in the NFL. Blackmon does a nice job getting in and out of his routes quickly and efficiently and he uses his hands really well to catch the ball rather than letting it get into his body. Cleveland needs a lot of things, but they have recently stated that they feel like they can be successful with Colt McCoy as long as they get him better weapons. Previous Pick: Morris Claiborne.
17. Cincinnati Bengals (from Oakland) – Stephon Gilmore, CB, South Carolina (6’1” 190lbs). The Bengals did try to keep Jon Joseph last off-season, but he had no interest in staying in Cinci. They have a good starting corner in Leon Hall and Nate Clements was ok, but as soon as Hall got injured their secondary was really exposed. Gilmore is a bit of a gambler at cornerback, but he’s got the size, long arms, and ball skills to be a very good starting perimeter corner in the NFL. Previous Pick: David DeCastro.
21. Cincinnati Bengals – Cordy Glenn, OG/T, Georgia (6’6” 345lbs). Glenn is an enormous road-grader of an offensive lineman. He’s got good footwork and long arms. Many scouts believe that he projects better as an offensive guard with the potential to play RT or LT in a pinch. I think the Bengals will give Glenn a long hard look if he is around at pick 21 now that they have signed Benjavarus Green-Ellis at RB and plan to use him as an every down back. Bobbie Williams was really missed when he broke his ankle and he’s likely to retire, so there is a definite need for an interior offensive lineman for the Bengals. Previous Pick: Lamar Miller.
22. Cleveland Browns (From Atlanta) – Nick Perry, DE, USC (6’3” 270lbs). Perry was a real head-turner at the combine. He showed up 20lbs heavier than his listed playing weight at USC and he put on one of the best 10-yard splits out of any defensive player, which for a 270-275lb man was truly impressive. The Browns stuck gold with Jabaal Sheard last year and look to expand upon their DL by getting arguably one of the better right ends in this entire draft. Perry brings a lot as a pass rusher and is an above average run stopper. I’m sure Browns fans will be doing a massive face palm at this point because they haven’t drafted a quarterback yet, but there are literally no other QB prospects worthy of a 1st round pick. Stay the course, build a standout defense, keep Colt McCoy healthy and give him weapons. See where the chips fall and hopefully take one of the QB’s in 2013. Previous Pick: Courtney Upshaw.
24. Pittsburgh Steelers – Stephen Hill, WR, Georgia Tech (6’4” 215lbs). Hear me out on this one before you jump all over it. Mike Wallace has recently declared that he wants more money than Larry Fitzgerald. It’s highly likely that he doesn’t get that kind of money, but it’s even more likely that the Steelers won’t be lining up to pay for Mike Wallace after this season when he becomes a UFA. Secondly, the Steelers are going to be pretty tight against the cap again next year, which means both Antonio Brown and Emmanuel Sanders, who are RFA’s, are going to probably get a 1st and 2nd round tender. At the end of the day, Pittsburgh could go from having one of the bright young WR units in the league to having a lot of nothing. Hill at least ensures a future deep threat with incredible size, which Roethlisberger likes, and it gives the Steelers the option to not pursue Mike Wallace. Previous Pick: Mike Adams.
29. Baltimore Ravens – Alshon Jeffrey, WR, South Carolina (6’4” 220lbs). I think a lot of Jeffrey’s stock will hinge on how he runs at SC’s pro-day this Wednesday, but if he drops here I think Baltimore would give a sincere look at the physical wide out. The Ravens have never had a receiver with his proportions and natural athleticism. He’s got great hands and is a mismatch for almost any cornerback. His routes are a little sloppy, but his wingspan is tremendous and Flacco could really benefit from having a bona fide red zone target at receiver. Ozzie, Bisciotti, and Harbaugh all stated that they want to get receivers who can catch the ball consistently and that was a major problem for Baltimore the last two seasons who have essentially been booted from the playoffs in back-to-back seasons from dropped would-be TD passes. Previous Pick: Dont’a Hightower.