Mock drafts have been out for 2013 since the last pick of the 2012 draft was announced. Here at CraveOnline, we've chosen to hold off on the speculation until college and NFL games have actually been played. Before this season began, the Saints wouldn't have been in anyone's top 5 picks and Geno Smith wouldn't have even cracked the first round. Listed below are my picks and analysis for the top 10 selections in the 2013 draft, and my projected selections for picks 11-32 as well.
Draft position is determined by standings as of 10/5/12
1. Cleveland - Geno Smith - QB, West Virginia - Let's be honest, if the Browns finish with the worst record in the NFL some of the blame is going to go on the shoulders of one of the oldest rookies to ever enter the NFL in QB Brandon Weeden. Combine that with the media storm that is about to surround Smith just like with Cam Newton and Robert Griffin III, and I see the Browns re-investing their future in another first round QB.
2. New Orleans - Jarvis Jones - OLB, Georgia - New Orleans' offense hasn't been all bad this year, but the defense has been atrocious. With Johnathan Vilma's fall from grace, this defense needs a new field general and Jones has the natural ability to play any linebacker position and make an impact on the field.
3. Tennessee - Barkevious Mingo - DE, LSU - Tennessee's defense used to be known for having superstar defensive ends, they'll look to get that status back by drafting the dominant pass rusher out of LSU.
4. Kansas City - Matt Barkley - QB, USC - Patience has been running thin on the failed experiment that is Matt Cassel. I have almost no faith in USC quarterbacks because they all seem to have reached their ceiling once they hit the draft. But the Chiefs are going to be looking for a new QB this off-season.
5. Oakland - Dee Milliner - CB, Alabama - The Raiders need a lot more than just one player, but their secondary has been slowly dissolving over the years. The rebuild will begin with the best cover corner in the draft.
6. Carolina - Justin Hunter - WR, Tennessee - Brandon Lafell has finally started to develop as a weapon for Cam Newton. But with Steve Smith getting older the Panthers will need another good option for Cam, and Hunter is a big and fast target.
7. Tampa Bay - Manti Te'o - ILB, Notre Dame - Coach Schiano is looking for leaders for his young team, and Te'o is a natural leader in the middle of the defense.
8. Miami - Robert Woods - WR, USC - Miami needs weapons for Ryan Tannehill to throw to, and with the top WR already gone, they reach a bit for the USC standout. The only real criticism of Woods is that he may not have much potential to grow.
9. Detroit - Chance Warmack - OG, Alabama - Detroit drafted O-line in 2012 and they'll go back to the well in 2013. Matthew Stafford has proven to be fragile at times and needs talent up front to protect him. Warmack has been rumored to be the best guard prospect to come out in years.
10. Jacksonville - Star Lotulelei - DT, Utah - The Jaguars are another team that needs multiple pieces to become relevant again. Drafting Lotulelei will give them a big piece in the middle of the defense to make opposing offenses one dimensional.
11. Indianapolis - Johnathan Jenkins - DT, Georgia
12. Pittsburgh - Johnathan Hankins - DT, Ohio State
13. Seattle - Bjoern Warner - DE, Florida State
14. New York G - Jonathan Cooper - OG, North Carolina
15. Buffalo - Corey Lemonier - DE, Auburn
16. Dallas - Brennan Williams - OT, North Carolina
17. Green Bay - Marcus Lattimore - RB South Carolina
18. St. Louis (via Was) - Sylvester Williams - DT, North Carolina
19. Denver - Sam Montgomery - DE, LSU
20. New England - David Amerson - CB, NC State
21. New York J - Logan Thomas - QB, Virginia Tech
22. St. Louis - Kenny Vaccaro - S, Texas
23. Philadelphia - Luke Joeckel - OT, Texas A&M
24. Chicago - Dallas Thomas - OT, Tennessee
25. San Francisco - Kawann Short - DT, Purdue
26. Cincinnati - Alec Ogletree - ILB, Georgia
27. Minnesota - Keenan Allen - WR, California
28. San Diego - Bennie Logan - DT, LSU
29. Baltimore - William Gholston - DE, Michigan State
30. Arizona - Ricky Wagner - OT, Wisconsin
31. Atlanta - Shawn Williams - S, Georgia
32. Houston - Marquess Wilson - WR, Washington State
J. Lance Moose is a contributor and lead football writer for CraveOnline Sports. You can follow him on Twitter, and subscribe on Facebook facebook.com/CraveOnlineSports
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