The Sporting News - Mock Draft

by Dan Pampei
April 19, 2002 

With the draft almost here, the misinformation is staggering. Sometimes, the more you know, the more you don't know. But here's our best attempt at calling the first round.

1. Houston: David Carr, QB, Fresno State. The Texans already have signed Carr. He's the perfect building block for an expansion team.

2. Carolina: Julius Peppers, DE, North Carolina. Quentin Jammer also is a possibility, as is Joey Harrington, but Peppers, the local product, is the best match for the Panthers. More than anything, the Panthers need a player capable of big plays, and Peppers is that.

3. Detroit: Joey Harrington, QB, Oregon. The Lions also have discussed trading down where they would take cornerback Phillip Buchanon. This pick all depends on how committed the Lions are to 2001 draftee Mike McMahon. Harrington might be too good to pass on here, and the Lions have said he might have more potential than Carr. The Lions also could go for Jammer. 

4. Buffalo: Mike Williams, OT, Texas. There is nothing the Bills need more than an offensive line anchor. This pick seems like a lock, which probably means the Bills will surprise everyone. GM Tom Donahoe likes to trade down, so that can't be discounted.

5. San Diego: Quentin Jammer, CB, Texas. The Chargers would love to see him fall to them, or they could move up to get him. If Jammer is off the board, they'll pick either Mike Williams or Bryant McKinnie.

6. Dallas: Roy Williams, S, Oklahoma. He doesn't fill a need because he plays the same position as Darren Woodson. But some think Williams is the best player in the draft at any position. If Jammer is still available, the Cowboys would take him. They also could trade with the Lions to get Jammer.

7. Minnesota: Ryan Sims, DT, North Carolina. If one of the top two offensive tackles falls, the Vikings could go that way. Either way, they figure to add a lineman, and improving their defense is the No. 1 priority. Coach Mike Tice loves Sims.

8. Kansas City: Albert Haynesworth, DT, Tennessee. The Chiefs need to bulk up the middle of their defense, which has been a problem area. They love Haynesworth's potential. The other possibilities here are Harrington and Donte Stallworth.

9. Jacksonville: Bryant McKinnie, OT, Miami. The Jags need a replacement for Tony Boselli, and McKinnie would be a great value with the ninth pick. They also could go for a defensive tackle, or even a running back like T.J. Duckett.

10. Cincinnati: Phillip Buchanon, CB, Miami. Even though they added free agent Jeff Burris and re-signed Artrell Hawkins, the Bengals could use a shutdown corner. They also could go with Harrington or Roy Williams if they are available. If Buchanon is gone, tight end Jeremy Shockey would appeal to the Bengals. Trading down is yet another possibility.

11. Indianapolis: Wendell Bryant, DT, Wisconsin. He would be a good fit for Tony Dungy's gap shooting front. The Colts have been unpredictable in the draft, but they need some help on their defensive line.

12. Arizona: John Henderson, DT, Tennessee. The Cardinals are hoping one of the top four defensive tackles falls to them, so they can address their biggest need, the defensive front. If all four are taken, look for them to take linebacker Napoleon Harris.

13. New Orleans: Donte Stallworth, WR, Tennessee. The Saints always are a threat to move. They also like Antonio Bryant quite a bit, so they could take a defensive end here like Charles Grant and try to get Bryant or another receiver with their second pick. But Stallworth represents the best value, and he fills a need.

14. Tennessee: Ashley Lelie, WR, Hawaii. The Titans can't pass up his talent, even though it isn't a primary need. Other possibilities include G/C Andre Gurode, a defensive back or a defensive tackle.

15. New York Giants: Jeremy Shockey, TE, Miami. The Giants need a receiver more, but the top two might not fall to them. Shockey also can improve their offense. Chances are excellent the Giants will take an offensive skill player.

16. Cleveland: T.J. Duckett, RB, Michigan State. The Browns have to improve their running game, and Duckett is the highest-rated back on most boards. They also like Shockey and offensive tackle Levi Jones. Another possibility is trading down and selecting Clinton Portis, who played for Butch Davis at Miami.

17. Atlanta: Jabar Gaffney, WR, Florida. The Falcons would like a fast receiver and could trade up to get him with new owner Arthur Blank injecting some fire into the draft room. Linebacker Harris would fit if the Falcons decide to follow through with the plan of switching to a 3-4 defense. Florida State receiver Javon Walker also is on the radar, but this might be too high to take him.

18. Washington: Charles Grant, DE, Georgia. The Redskins really want to trade up to select Harrington. But if that doesn't work, they could go with a receiver or quarterback. They need an offensive lineman, and Toniu Fonoti makes the most sense, but that pick might not be splashy enough for owner Dan Snyder. Grant could be Bruce Smith's eventual replacement.

19. Denver: Antonio Bryant, WR, Pittsburgh. Here is a case where the strength of the draft meshes with a team's major need. If Gaffney is still there, he will be the Broncos' pick, and Lelie also would be possible. If the Broncos don't go for a receiver, they could go for a defensive end.

20. Seattle: Dwight Freeney, DE, Syracuse. The Seahawks would like to move up to acquire Shockey, who would fill a major need. If they can't move up, is this spot too high to use on Daniel Graham, the second best tight end? We think so.

21. Oakland: Kalimba Edwards, DE, South Carolina. The Raiders could move up in the round by using their surplus of picks to get a defensive tackle or wide receiver -- and they have been trying to do so. This team needs young defensive linemen, and Edwards could fit the Raider mold. 

22. New York Jets: Mike Rumph, CB, Miami. After losing Aaron Glenn and Marcus Coleman in the expansion draft, the Jets need corners, and Rumph will fit Herman Edwards' system. The Jets also could go for a defensive lineman, offensive lineman or safety.

23. Oakland: Javon Walker, WR, Florida State. The Raiders go for size and speed, and this guy has both. He also fills a major need with Tim Brown and Jerry Rice nearing retirement. Walker has climbed up the charts in the past week.

24. Baltimore: Levi Jones, OT, Arizona State. The Ravens have so many needs they could go in a lot of directions, but Jones could be an immediate starter and contributor. They also could take a pass rusher, safety, corner, defensive tackle or receiver.

25. New Orleans: Bryan Thomas, DE, Alabama Birmingham. After having lost Joe Johnson, the Saints need a pass rusher. This pick could be used on a wide receiver if the Saints don't get one earlier.

26. Philadelphia: Daniel Graham, TE, Colorado. The Eagles don't have many holes, but they like Graham and he fits their offense. The Eagles also could go for Harris, a defensive end, cornerback or center. Don't be surprised if they trade down.

27. San Francisco: Lito Sheppard, CB, Florida. The 49ers need a play-making corner to solidify their defense. They also could go for a receiver or an offensive lineman.

28. Green Bay: DeShaun Foster, RB, UCLA. The Packers really need a receiver more, but there might not be one available to their liking. Safety Ed Reed, also is possible, as he could allow Darren Sharper to play strong safety after LeRoy Butler retires. Another player the Packers like is linebacker Saleem Rasheed, but this might be too high to take him.

29. Chicago: Pat Ramsey, QB, Tulane. The Bears need a young passer to groom, and Ramsey's skills aren't that far off from the skills of the top QBs. They also could go for a pass rusher like Freeney or an offensive tackle like Mike Pearson.

30. Pittsburgh: Napoleon Harris, LB, Northwestern. He'd fit in the 3-4 defense nicely and would be a great value at this spot. Another possibility would be Miami safety Reed. They also might have a hard time passing an offensive lineman like Fonoti. A dark-horse pick is defensive end Ryan Denny.

31. St. Louis: Andre Davis, WR, Virginia Tech. The Rams spent three first-rounders on defense last year; now they can reload on offense. An offensive lineman also would make sense. They could be interested in a receiver like Josh Reed or even a running back.

32. New England: William Green, RB, Boston College. If he slides this far, the Pats can't ignore him, even after re-signing Antowain Smith. They also could be interested in a defensive tackle like Anthony Weaver, a wide receiver, offensive lineman or cornerback.