Falling Quarterbacks: Fresh Perspective 1st Round Mock
Falling Quarterbacks: Fresh Perspective 1st Round Mock

This article is part of our NFL Draft series.

The 2014 quarterback class has overshadowed a draft that's loaded with great depth at wide receiver and numerous defensive positions. This mock has only three quarterbacks going in the first round, however, allowing the wideout talent to shine through with seven selections.

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1. Houston Texans - Teddy Bridgewater*, QB, Louisville (6-3, 205)

What sets Bridgewater apart from the rest of the quarterback prospects is his exceptional football IQ and polish as a passer.

2. St. Louis Rams (from WAS) - Jake Matthews, OT, Texas A&M (6-5, 305)

Not many expect Matthews to go ahead of college teammate Johnny Manziel, but I'm standing by it with this projection. The Rams need tackle help to protect Sam Bradford, who's coming off an ACL tear.

3. Jacksonville Jaguars - Jadeveon Clowney*, DE, South Carolina (6-5, 275)

Jacksonville is much more than a quarterback away from making the playoffs. For that reason, they should go with the safe choice in Clowney and give coach Gus Bradley something to work with on the defense.

4. Cleveland Browns - Johnny Manziel*, QB, Texas A&M (6-0, 210)

Early reports have the Browns in great favor of the young Johnny Football. Pairing Manziel with wideout Josh Gordon would give Cleveland a very exciting QB-WR duo.

5. Oakland Raiders - Sammy Watkins*, WR, Clemson (6-1, 205)

The Raiders could fall in love with UCF quarterback Blake Bortles in this spot, but Oakland's lack of WR and TE talent would stack the odds against him. Taking Watkins creates a foundation for a young QB to succeed once Oakland selects one.

6. Atlanta Falcons - Greg Robinson*, OT, Auburn (6-5, 320)

Atlanta's primary concern should be their lackluster rush offense that finished dead last in the NFL at 77.9 yards per game. Robinson would be a huge upgrade to an offensive line that had few positives in 2013.

7. Tampa Bay Buccaneers - Anthony Barr, DE/OLB, UCLA (6-4, 250)

New coaches Lovie Smith and Leslie Frazier (defensive coordinator) are defensive minded and rightfully so in an offensively loaded division. Barr is an explosive edge-rusher they would need to compete in the NFC South.

8. Minnesota Vikings - Blake Bortles*, QB, Central Florida (6-3, 230)

Minnesota could move up if they covet Manziel, but would have to be elated if they didn't and had Bortles drop to them here.

9. Buffalo Bills - Khalil Mack, DE/OLB, Buffalo (6-3, 250)

From the University of Buffalo to the Buffalo Bills would be a great side story and with all seriousness, Mack fits a big need as an elite outside linebacker prospect.

10. Detroit Lions - Marqise Lee*, WR, USC (6-0, 195)

Lee's speed and his potential to learn under the best is what would make him an adequate complement to the great Calvin Johnson.

11. Tennessee Titans - Taylor Lewan, OT, Michigan (6-7. 315)

The Titans might move on from right tackle David Stewart in the offseason, so taking a player like Lewan as a replacement has to be a consideration.

12. New York Giants - David Yankey*, OG, Stanford (6-5, 315)

The interior line is a huge need for the Giants and Yankey gives them the versatility to move him around if needed.

13. St. Louis Rams - Ha Ha Clinton-Dix*, S, Alabama (6-1, 210)

With the Rams addressing the offensive line with their first selection, they would be smart to grab one of the top safety prospects here.

14. Chicago Bears - Timmy Jernigan*, DT, Florida State (6-2, 300)

It would be shocking to see the Bears spend another first-round pick on the offensive line, especially after their 2013 run defense was historically bad.

15. Pittsburgh Steelers - Justin Gilbert, CB, Oklahoma State (6-0, 200)

Gilbert infuses some youth into a secondary that's become old fast. Ryan Clark, Troy Polamalu and Ike Taylor are all in their thirties.

16. Baltimore Ravens - Mike Evans*, WR, Texas A&M (6-5, 225)

Joe Flacco could use some improvements among his pass catchers. Evans' high potential would likely make him a number two receiver behind Torrey Smith by the end of the season, if not immediately.

17. Dallas Cowboys - Louis Nix*, DT, Notre Dame (6-2, 350)

The Cowboys need to do a better job of stopping the run in 2014. Nix allows them to do that by plugging up the middle.

18. New York Jets - Kelvin Benjamin*, WR, Florida State (6-5, 235)

If Watkins, Lee or Evans were to drop this far, they would be good bets for the Jets as well. The next best receiver in line is Benjamin, who was a key cog in the Seminoles' national title run.

19. Miami Dolphins - Cyrus Kouandjio*, OT, Alabama (6-5, 310)

The Jonathan Martin and Richie Incognito mess makes it fairly obvious that the Dolphins are looking for offensive line help. Kouandjio will help keep Ryan Tannehill upright.

20. Arizona Cardinals - Kony Ealy*, (3-4) OLB, Missouri (6-5, 275)

Ealy will impress at workouts and move up draft boards as we get closer to May. The Cardinals could take him if he's still available to replace the aging John Abraham.

21. Green Bay Packers - Eric Ebron*, TE, North Carolina (6-4, 245)

The uncertainty surrounding the future of Jermichael Finley will force the Packers hand and make them jump at this pick. Ebron brings a similar style to the table and could turn out to be a lot better.

22. Philadelphia Eagles - Darqueze Dennard, CB, Michigan State (5-11, 200)

Dennard would be a pick in the right direction for a team who gave up more passing yards per game than any team in the league in 2013.

23. Kansas City Chiefs - Stephon Tuitt*, (3-4) DE, Notre Dame (6-6, 310)

The Chiefs rush defense crumbled by the end of the year and Tuitt has a knack for stopping the run while providing an above average pass rush.

24. Cincinnati Bengals - Calvin Pryor*, S, Louisville (6-2, 210)

Pryor is a possibility here because the Bengals need to upgrade at safety, but they could go in a number of different directions.

25. San Diego Chargers - Bradley Roby*, CB, Ohio State (5-11, 190)

Roby had an inconsistent junior season and hurt his draft stock in the process. He could bounce back with a strong showing in workouts, though.

26. Cleveland Browns (from IND) - Carlos Hyde, RB, Ohio State (6-0, 235)

It's hard for a running back to go in the first round these days, but Hyde might have the size-speed combo to pull it off. Cleveland needs to do better than Willis McGahee.

27. New Orleans Saints - Marcus Roberson*, CB, Florida (6-0, 195)

Roberson will bring depth to the corner position and if the Saints are lucky, he can line up opposite Keenan Lewis and make an impact right away. New Orleans is in good shape because they don't have any glaring holes in their roster.

28. Carolina Panthers - Allen Robinson*, WR, Penn State (6-3, 210)

Robinson is the best receiver no one is talking about. Cam Newton would have a lot of fun throwing to Robinson, who posted back-to-back 1,000 yard seasons at Penn State.

29. New England Patriots - Zack Martin, G/OT, Notre Dame (6-4, 310)

It's time to reload on the offensive line and Martin is a perfect candidate to do so.

30. San Francisco 49ers - Odell Beckham*, WR, LSU (5-11, 195)

This draft is so stacked with wide receivers that Beckham or teammate Jarvis Landry could both fall this far despite being good enough to go sooner. I think Beckham would be an ideal fit for San Francisco.

31. Denver Broncos - Ra'Shede Hageman, DT, Minnesota (6-6, 310)

Peyton Manning has the offense rolling, so it will be the front office's job to build the defense back up and the defensive line is where they should go. Hageman is more explosive than Derek Wolfe and should help the Broncos' disruptiveness on the interior.

32. Seattle Seahawks - Davante Adams*, WR, Fresno State (6-2, 220)

Adams made Derek Carr look good at Fresno State and should be picked before his college teammate. Adams would give the Seahawks the physical receiver they've lacked since Sidney Rice's injuries.

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Nick Grays
Grays covers college football for RotoWire while keeping an emphasis on scouting prospects for the NFL. Fantasy football is the best!
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