McShay: Mock draft update (6.0)
As draft night approaches, Todd McShay updates several of his picks
We are just a few days away from the 2014 NFL draft, and we have some updates to make to our latest mock draft, released last Tuesday. For this updated version, 6.0, we are leaving the analysis the same for the picks that haven't changed at all, and updating it only for the new picks. We've included the date each was written so that you can tell which picks are new and which ones are the same as last week's.
Two prospects to keep an eye on are Pittsburgh defensive tackle Aaron Donald and Notre Dame offensive tackle Zack Martin. I moved both of them up here, but I expect that I'll have them up even higher -- with both in the top 13 picks -- by the time I release my final mock draft on Thursday. It has been difficult to project exact fits for them, but they are players who could continue to move up the board.
Here is our latest projection for all 32 first-round picks in the 2014 draft.
Analysis (April 29): I still think this is the best and most logical pick for the Texans at No. 1. They obviously need a quarterback, but there isn't one rated highly enough to justify taking him over the best prospect in this draft. Clowney is the most talented defensive lineman I've ever evaluated, and you simply don't get many opportunities to take a player with his physical ability. Houston can either target a quarterback with the No. 33 pick or trade back into the first round to take one.
Analysis (April 29): If Clowney goes No. 1, I think this pick will come down to Robinson and Clemson WR Sammy Watkins. The Rams still lack a legitimate No. 1 target, but they also need to better protect QB Sam Bradford, and Robinson is dominant at the point of attack and has very good athleticism for his size. One bit of buzz to throw out there: Don't rule out Johnny Manziel landing in St. Louis. It sounds insane, and I don't think the Rams would take him at No. 2 and he won't likely be there at No. 13, but if they were to move down or back from either spot, it would be a possibility. Some people around the league think the Rams are capable of taking him even if they still believe that Bradford can be the guy for them.
Analysis (April 29): The Jaguars are another team that needs a quarterback, and it's certainly possible that they could go in that direction here. Khalil Mack also makes a lot of sense as a guy who could fill the "Leo" role in the Jags' defense. But Jacksonville has a need at receiver because of the uncertainty surrounding Justin Blackmon, and Watkins brings very good speed, acceleration, competitiveness and run-after-catch ability to the position.