"You want to hear the most annoying sound in the world?"
Yeah, that's Mel Kiper releasing his next round of Mock picks and adjusting his "Big Board" while attempting to elevate certain prospects at the expense of other kids entering the draft. Jerk!
Well, I've always claimed that I could do better than the "Coifed One" and now I have proof. After running 50 Mock Drafts on Fanspeak Basic*, I give you my findings.
* (I didn't use the Fanspeak option where we could trade picks. Each draft was done without trades. This was the best of them. Also, the version of the On the Clock draft system with trading is the best $5.00 I've spent since that visit to Dream Girls on 1st Avenue last week).
Now before I unveil my picks, I want to speak about my rationale behind them. I've taken Age, Durability, Recovery of Injury, Contract Status, and Legal Woes into account prior to making each pick. Instead of addressing a specific need under one position, I've treated "Pass Rusher" as a position despite the more common labels such as DE/OLB.
So here we go:
30 OLB DEE FORD, AUBURNWith Aldon Smith's legal troubles, Big Mar has convinced me that the NIners need more pass rushers. I know the Niners have Lemons and he did display some flashes last year, but the more pressure the Niners can put on the other team's QB, the better it is for the Niners' secondary.
I was pleasantly surprised that Ford was available to me at this pick. After 50 tries, I received this result 10% of the time. Ford represents the best pass rusher in this part of the draft without moving up and not being named Clowney. Getting Ford lined up outside of Justin/Tank/Ray would bring some serious heat against the likes of the Texas Rangers' Russell Wilson, Lead Footed Carson Palmer and Sam "I'm a Deer in Headlights' Bradford.
56 WR ALLEN ROBINSON, PENN STATEI next addressed the Niners' need for another WR. Boldin is about to be 34 years old and although he played well last year, I think Robinson can learn from him to be a star. Crabtree is entering the final year of his contract and as many have mentioned, he will want to get paid. Jon Baldwin is also entering the last year of his contract. This selection will give the Niners some consistency at the WR for the next couple of years with Boldin, The General and Robinson lining up as Kap's targets.
I know what some of you are saying: He's not a burner. Yeah, I tried to address that, but I feel that after doing a bunch of research, Robinson has that "special" quality that alot of the prospects in this draft lack. I also believe that he will be an excellent addition to the Niners as he is not afraid to block.
61 S DEONE BUCANNON, WASHINGTON STATEOk, I'm admitting that I'm totally biased on this pick. Being a former Coug player under Mike Price I've always got those "Homer" glasses on even when my Alma Mater went 4-29 under former Niner Asst. Paul Wullff. But it's different with Deone; This guy is really a stud. He's got range, speed, skill, and hits like Ronnie Lott. I really think he will be a force in the backfield with Reid once he's given his chance.I wouldn't be surprised if he out plays Bethea and takes the starting job despite Bethea's contract. Ok, maybe that's the Coug Homer in me, but I like his potential a great deal and there hasn't been much to root for watching WAZZU football for the last 8 years.
77 CB KEITH MCGILL, UTAHFinally, I'm addressing the position that the entire world thinks the Niners biggest need is. I took a different route because the more "liked" CB's were all taken in the early rounds. When I had the chance, I jumped at McGill. I like what I saw on his video. He's got some size to him and isn't afraid to play the run. At 6'2', 213 lbs, I see a very strong CB with decent speed to keep up with the Larry Fitzgerald's, Sidney Rice's, and whomever the Lambs put out there. Yes, I know a knock on McGill is that he suffered from some injuries while in college at Utah. Watching Pac-12 Football for the last three years, I can tell you that Utah's defense has been on the field alot as their offense has some issues. McGill always made an impact in the game's he played in.
94 C WESTON RICHBURG, COLORADO STATENow, I will say this: I am not in the camp that necessarily believes the Niners need a center with alot of the guys currently on the team that can play multiple positions, but I can't ignore a talent like Richburg when he's available in the Third Round.
As a former OL, I love guys like this. He's smart, athletic, mean and strong. His combine numbers were pretty good, but I really liked his durability. After Jesse Sapolu, the Niners have had a terrible run of injuries/departures to their centers: Dalman and Heitmann suffered career ending neck injuries while Baas and Goodie left as Free Agents. If Kilgore falters, Richburg would be there to take over for the next 10 years. He's great on sweeps and pulling and has made alot of the line calls. This is the best center in the draft and I was able to snag him in the Third Round.
100 DE KAREEM MARTIN, NORTH CAROLINAThanks to the Ninja's excellent strategy in allowing Dashon Goldson to leave and acquiring this Comp pick, I was able to address the Pass Rushing issue for the second time in this mock draft by selecting a player CBS Sports compares to Justin Tuck.
At 6'6", 272 lbs and the longest arm length of any DE in this year's draft, Martin has shown the ability to edge pass rush and apply pressure to the QB. Ray and Cowboy can't play forever. Nobody knows if Tank will be able to return to form. TJE, Dorsey, Dobbs, etc haven't really shown the pass rushing ability that Fangio's defense needs to thrive. Martin has that potential. If both he and Tank pan out, then Ray and Cowboy can play less preserving them for the playoff run.
129 CB WALT AIKENS, LIBERTYEntering the Fourth Round, I started thinking what is the best player available that I think the Niners would take. I had a choice between QB AJ McCarron and Walt Aikens. Although McCarron would be able to come in an compete with McBlt and Gabbert for a roster spot with the added bonus that his Girl Friend is a freakin' hottie, I still chose Aikens.
Aikens went to Liberty after a theft incident at Illinois. He's been reformed to say the least. At 6'1', 203 lbs, Aikens is faster than he looks. He ran his 40 yd at 4.49. It's not blazing, but video of him says he's plays alot faster. Many will point that he didn't have quite the competition at the lower level that Liberty played at, so I watched the Senior Bowl and read everything I could about him there. He was impressive.
A combination of McGill and Aikens would not only bring some size to the CB position, but would set up great competition between Cox, Wright, Cook, and Culliver. All of those would be playing on one year contracts essentially. These two moves would bring some continuity to the position along with Brock. And if Buchannon can wrestle the job from Bethea, the Niners would have a very young, talented and cheap secondary for the next three years.
170 RB STORM JOHNSON, UCFOk, I know the Niners have Gore, Hunter, Lattibus, Hampton and LMJ (for now). But we lost Boobie, Gore is going to be 31, LMJ is being shopped for a trade, Hampton hasn't made the active 53 and Lattibus is coming off a serious knee injury. That isn't much to hang one's hat on going into a season where the Niners could win it all. IF that is the case, the Niners need a legitimate running game to impose their will on the other NFC West's defenses.
Johnson is an intriguing prospect as he has some size, some speed, and some toughness. For all of those qualities, here is being taken in the fifth round. RB's just don't have the same value as they did ten years ago. I had a choice of either Johnson or Dri Archer and I selected Johnson as he's got more versatility.
242 WR AUSTIN FRANKLIN, NEW MEXICO STATEAlright entering into the Seventh Round, I know many of you don't care about these prospects, but I know that some of these players can make a difference. They just need a chance.
Enter Austin Franklin. At 5'11', 190lbs, this guy is the ultimate slot receiver. He has very strong hands and will fight for extra yards. He's not lightning fast, but there's something about the way he can reach a point on the field that makes you think he's fast. Watching video of this guy, he reminded me alot of Andre Rison when he played for the Packers. I am in no way insinuating that he's as talented, just that I thought of Lisa Lopes' ex when I watched video of Franklin playing.
243 TE JORDAN NAJVAR, BAYLORI really like this guy. First, his name is pronounced "Nighver" like Diver. Then I start thinking about Diver Down, which makes me think of Van Halen which in turn makes me think of this girl I knew at WAZZU and that night with those fruit flavored things.
Anyway, I digress with this. What I really like about this guy is he likes to block! He was the blocking TE in Baylor's pass happy offense, but when they did throw him the ball, he was very solid in receiving. I've read that he has very soft hands and I like that. Anyone that knows me knows I love me some excellent TE's and my favorites in the past have been guys like All World Russ Francis and John Frank. This guy reminds me of John Frank and that's saying something.
245 ILB ANDREW JACKSON, WESTERN KENTUCKYAlright, it is very possible that Bow won't be back until the middle of the year. That is going to suck, but I want him to return healthy and be ready for the playoff push. In the meantime, Michael Wilhoite will be filling in for Bow next to Patrick. I was really hoping, like some of you, that Baalke would resign Black Costanzo. That isn't going to happen now due to the salary cap. So, the Niners will have to get a replacement for camp at least and Mr. Jackson is my choice.
There is one thing that I like about this guy: Production. A three year starter for the Hilltoppers, Jackson got better as each year progressed. What impressed me about this guy is against the bigger competition, he showed up and played his arse off. This past year, Western Kentucky played No. 1 Alabama and Jackson led the team in tackles against the Nation's supposed best OL. This guy is a baller!
Well, I hope I've proven that I can do Mel Kiper's job better than he can while entertaining us here at NN. I would like to thank Big Mar, 1950, and the folks over at Field Gulls for the inspiration.
This fanpost was brought to you by the Letter "Q" and the Numbers 4 and 9.
Stay Faithful my friends.