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2014 NFL Mock Draft: Where the Top Defensive Ends Will Land

2014 NFL Mock Draft: Where the Top Defensive Ends Will Land
By Ryan Ratty on February 15, 2014

With the NFL Draft Scouting Combine coming up, NFL teams everywhere are setting up their board for this year's draft. In this article, I will write out my newest 2-round mock draft. But, I will also highlight where the top defensive ends will go. In today's NFL, pass rushers are at a premium. Because of that, the defensive end position has become extremely valuable and prominent. Without further ado, let's get started.

Round One

1. Houston Texans - Johnny Manziel, Quarterback, Texas A&M

2. St. Louis Rams (via Washington) - Sammy Watkins, Wide Receiver, Clemson

3. Jacksonville Jaguars - Teddy Bridgewater, Quarterback, Louisville

4. Cleveland Browns - Derek Carr, Quarterback, Fresno State

 

5. Oakland Raiders - Jadeveon Clowney, Defensive End, South Carolina

Analysis:

While Jadeveon Clowney may be the best overall prospect in this draft, the teams that passed on him have clear needs that need to be addressed. The Raiders should take a chance on Clowney because he will give them a vaunted pass rusher who can disrupt quarterbacks. The media may be overrating Clowney, but there is no denying that this kid has the talent to be something really special. Clowney has the frame and the athleticism to be one of the best pass rushers in the NFL. But, the concerns with him start when he looks like he doesn't want to be there. Clowney will be able to show scouts how impressive he really is at the scouting combine in Indianapolis.

 

6. Atlanta Falcons - Jake Matthews, Left Tackle, Texas A&M

7. Tampa Bay Buccaneers - Anthony Barr, Outside Linebacker, UCLA

 

8. Minnesota Vikings - Khalil Mack, Defensive End, Buffalo

Analysis:

It's not often you see as good of a player come from the Mid-American Conference. He has been extremely productive throughout his college career, but Mack started his senior season out with a bang. Against Ohio State in the national spotlight, Mack was all over the gridiron.

Mack had 2.5 sacks and he even returned an interception for a touchdown against the Buckeyes. Many will be turned away by the fact that Mack hails from such a small-school, but the talent is there in this guy. The Vikings could very well pick a quarterback here, but I think there are options in the later rounds that would still help this team win.

 

9. Buffalo Bills - Greg Robinson, Left Tackle, Auburn

10. Detroit Lions - Darqueze Dennard, Cornerback, Michigan State

 

11. Tennessee Titans - Kony Ealy, Defensive End, Missouri

Analysis:

Ealy is an interesting player in this year's draft. His draft stock is thriving mainly by his NFL potential. At 6'5", 275 pounds, Ealy could bulk up to add on to his frame. But, Ealy also runs a 4.77 40-yard dash. That's a pretty good number for an edge rusher in the NFL. One of the best traits for a pass rusher is arm length. Ealy has really long arms that help him shed opposing linemen. Ealy can be compared to Ezekiel Ansah because the latter went high because of his potential. If he can diagnose plays better against the run, there is no reason why Ealy can't be a top-20 pick.

 

12. New York Giants - Mike Evans, Wide Receiver, Texas A&M

13. St. Louis Rams - Ha Ha Clinton-Dix, Free Safety, Alabama

14. Chicago Bears - Ra'Shede Hageman, Defensive Tackle, Minnesota

15. Pittsburgh Steelers - Timmy Jernigan, Defensive Tackle, Florida State

16. Baltimore Ravens - Odell Beckham Jr., Wide Receiver, LSU

17. Dallas Cowboys - Aaron Donald, Defensive Tackle, Pittsburgh

18. New York Jets - Eric Ebron, Tight End, North Carolina

19. Miami Dolphins - Zack Martin, Left Tackle, Notre Dame

20. Arizona Cardinals - Blake Bortles, Quarterback, Central Florida

21. Green Bay Packers - C.J. Mosley, Inside Linebacker, Alabama

22. Philadelphia Eagles - Calvin Pryor, Free Safety, Louisville

23. Kansas City Chiefs - Kelvin Benjamin, Wide Receiver, Florida State

 

24. Cincinnati Bengals - Dee Ford, Defensive End, Auburn

Analysis:

Dee Ford's draft stock has really risen lately due to his MVP performance in the Senior Bowl. Many will say that Ford is just a speed rusher, but I think he is more than that. Against Texas A&M, Ford can be seen harrassing the quarterback and pushing back offensive linemen. The Eagles could use another pass rusher to help out Trent Cole and Fletcher Cox. The Eagles also have needs in the secondary, but this class is deeper at that position. Getting Ford would help this team's pass rush in 2014.

 

25. San Diego Chargers - Justin Gilbert, Cornerback, Oklahoma State

26. Cleveland Browns (via Indianapolis) - Jarvis Landry, Wide Receiver, LSU

27. New Orleans Saints - Louis Nix III, Defensive Tackle, Notre Dame

28. Carolina Panthers - Jordan Matthews, Wide Receiver, Vanderbilt

29. New England Patriots - Jace Amaro, Tight End, Texas Tech

30. San Fransisco 49ers - Marcus Roberson, Cornerback, Florida

31. Denver Broncos - Ryan Shazier, Outside Linebacker, Ohio State

32. Seattle Seahawks - Xavier Su'a-Filo, Left Guard, UCLA

 

Round Two

33. Houston Texans - Allen Robinson, Wide Receiver, Penn State

34. Washington Redskins - Bradley Roby, Cornerback, Ohio State

35. Cleveland Browns - David Yankey, Left Guard, Stanford

36. Oakland Raiders - Kyle Van Noy, Outside Linebacker

 

37. Atlanta Falcons - Stephon Tuitt, Defensive End, Notre Dame

Analysis:

Stephon Tuitt is a bit of a tweener, but I would place him at the defensive end position rather than the defensive tackle position. In 2012, Tuitt was dominating offenses. But, his play took a step back in 2013 just like Notre Dame's defense did the same. In just three years at Notre Dame, Tuitt had over 20 sacks. This ranks him fifth on a very long list of NFL players. Tuitt would be a much better fit in the 4-3 defense as a defensive end, but he could also play as a 5-technique in the 3-4.

 

38. Tampa Bay Buccaneers - Will Sutton, Defensive Tackle, Arizona State

39. Jacksonville Jaguars - Carlos Hyde, Running Back, Ohio State

40. Minnesota Vikings - Jimmy Garoppolo, Quarterback, Eastern Illinois

41. Buffalo Bills - Austin Seferian-Jenkins, Tight End, Washington

42. Tennessee Titans - Tre Mason, Running Back, Auburn

43. New York Giants - Stanley Jean-Baptiste, Cornerback, Nebraska

44. St. Louis Rams - Morgan Moses, Left Tackle, Virginia

45. Detroit Lions - Troy Niklas, Tight End, Notre Dame

46. Pittsburgh Steelers - Pierre Desir, Cornerback, Lindenwood

47. Dallas Cowboys - Ahmad Dixon, Free Safety, Baylor

48. Baltimore Ravens - Telvin Smith, Outside Linebacker, Florida State

49. New York Jets - Davante Adams, Wide Receiver, Fresno State

50. Miami Dolphins - Deone Bucannon, Strong Safety, Washington State

51. Chicago Bears - Shayne Skov, Inside Linebacker, Stanford

52. Arizona Cardinals - Cyrus Kouandjio, Left Tackle, Alabama

53. Green Bay Packers - Jason Verrett, Cornerback, TCU

54. Philadelphia Eagles - Kyle Fuller, Cornerback, Virginia Tech

55. San Fransisco 49ers (via Kansas City) - Cody Hoffman, Wide Receiver, BYU

56. Cincinnati Bengals - Dominique Easley, Defensive Tackle, Florida

57. San Diego Chargers - Seantrel Henderson, Left Tackle, Miami

58. Indianapolis Colts - Paul Richardson, Wide Receiver, Colorado

 

59. New Orleans Saints - Trevor Reilly, Defensive End, Utah

Analysis:

It is clear that Saints need to address their defense rather than their offense. In Rob Ryan's 30 front scheme, the 5-technique position is extremely valuable. With the releasing of Will Smith, the need of a defensive end is needed. This is why I have mocked Reilly to the Saints. He is a bit of a wild card, but Reilly has an intriguing frame that is perfect for a player to contribute in the 3-4. With long arms, Trevor Reilly could find his niche under Rob Ryan.

 

60. Carolina Panthers - Ed Reynolds, Free Safety, Stanford

61. New England Patriots - Loucheiz Purifoy, Cornerback, Florida

62. San Fransisco 49ers - Jeremiah Attaochu, Outside Linebacker, Georgia Tech

63. Denver Broncos - Jimmie Ward, Free Safety, Northern Illinois

64. Seattle Seahawks - DaQuan Jones, Defensive Tackle, Penn State

Follow me on Twitter: @ryanrattyDFW

Ryan Ratty

Ryan "The Statistician" Ratty

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