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My First Top 7 Mock (1/9/11)

I have the 49ers taking Jake Locker at #7. After the combine, he will regain most of the luster he lost during his senior season. Remember, the guy runs a 4.39 40, has a rocket arm, and has the leadership skills (and upper body strength) of a Tim Tebow. This is Jim Harbaugh's guy. Mallet doesn't fit the West Coast offense, Gabbert may or may not be a fit (that's a wild-card), and Newton is a multi-year project who lacks the intelligence Harbaugh desires. Its quite possible that Harbaugh falls in love with a 2nd or 3rd round quarterback like Ponder or Stanzi and we take Amukamura instead, but I think we go quarterback. acquiring Vince Young or Kolb would change the equation as well.

One interesting piece of information is that I've heard Jim Harbaugh absolutely despises the Washington coaching staff -- any insight on this?

1. Carolina (2-14) - WR AJ Green, Georgia. There are stil a lot of questions to be answered about Carolina's draft strategy, since they don't even havea new coach yet. But AJ Green is the surest thing at #1. Da'Quan Bowers may be the most talented player at the top of the draft, but there are times when he doesn't show up at all. Nick Fairley is a one-year wonder so far. But AJ Green is the best WR prospect to come out at least since Calvin Johnson -- he immediately makes Jimmy Clausen a lot, lot better. A trade-down would make a lot of sense for Carolina since they don't have a second-round pick.

2. Denver (4-12) - CB Patrick Peterson, LSU. Again, no coach yet. But the secondary is the biggest hole on the Broncos by far. Statistically, an argument could be made to improve the pass-rush, but Elvis Dumervil missed the entire season and will be back in '11.

3. Buffalo (4-12) - DL Nick Fairley, Auburn - The Bills are getting better, but they need upgrades on the offensive and defensive lines. Fairley can play almost anywhere on the D-Line, so he is a great fit...Buffalo gave up almost 5 yards a carry in 2010, terrible. QB coult be an option, but Gailey has one more year up there, and if he fails to get them to 7 or 8 wins next year he will be fired and a new regime will br brought in. If Fitzpatrick's development stalls, Buffalo will be picking in the Top 5 next year and will have a chance at Andrew Luck, Landry Jones, Matt Barkley, or Nick Foles.

4. Cincinnati (4-12) - Da'Quan Bowers, DE, Clemson. Very poor pass-rush in Cincinatti, and with Marv Lewis returning for 2011, so is Carson Palmer. Again, if they fail in 2011, they will be looking QB in 2012 with a new regime and new coach.

5. Arizona (5-11) - DE Robert Quinn, UNC. Big upgrade at pass-rusher for Arizona. All the talk is that AZ is going to go with a veteran quarterback via free agency -- they are not in rebuilding mode. High trade-down possibility here.

6. Cleveland (5-11) - WR Julio Jones, Alabama. Cleveland can go three ways here: D-Line, WR, or corner just because Amukamura is the best player available. Cleveland has a poor run defense, but they could also take Amukamura and have two shutdown corners for years to come. I see that as unlikely, so they'll go with Julio Jones to help out Colt McCoy. Cleveland is probably going to hire an offensive coach as well, which makes this decision even more likely

7. San Francisco (6-10) - QB Jake Locker, Washington. We have a ton of choices here. We can plug our biggest need, cornerback, by taking Amukamura, or we can build an even more dominant defensive line by taking Dareus or JJ Watt, or we can have our pick of quarterbacks. From what I've read, Harbaugh puts a very high premium on athletic instincts and intangibles at quartberback, so I think Mallett is out as an option. Gabbert has decent mobility, but is still more of a pocket passer. The three athletic quarterbacks are Jake Locker, Cam Newton, and Christian Ponder (2nd Round). Cam is a 2 or 3 year project. So when all is said and done, I think the 49ers take QB Jake Locker at #7. He has all the tools required to be a superior player in the West Coast offense, period. He had an awful senior season, and he should regain most of the #1 overall status he lost after the combine. Locker has the leadership skills of a Tim Tebow, and ran a 4.39 40-yard dash! Amazing arm strength, upper body strength, vision, etc. Locker's measurables compare favorably to John Elway (the baseball background helps that comparison)...and the Steve Young comparisons fly around too (I heard Young is very, very, very high on Jake Locker...does anyone have a link?). I would be very happy with this pick.

[ Edited by nickbradley on Jan 9, 2011 at 06:46:26 ]
Jones and locker won't go in the top ten.
Originally posted by LBSI9ers:
Jones and locker won't go in the top ten.

Care to back that up with any justification? Julio Jones is rated as a top 10 talent, and could have gone in the Top 5 last year...some had him as the #1 prospect in 2009. Locker's measurables and intangibles are so off the charts he will be a top 10 pick after the combine -- and he's the best fit for the West Coast Offense.

[ Edited by nickbradley on Jan 9, 2011 at 07:00:03 ]
Sry but it's very unlikely that two receivers go in the top ten given the defensive talent in this draft. Green and blackmon will be higher on draft boards. If you can't figure out the locker situation on your own not sure what to say.
Originally posted by LBSI9ers:
Sry but it's very unlikely that two receivers go in the top ten given the defensive talent in this draft. Green and blackmon will be higher on draft boards. If you can't figure out the locker situation on your own not sure what to say.

Cleveland has a very difficult decision to make, as I discussed.
People make me laugh with Newton being years away. Guy came into the SEC the best conference in college football and scored 48 touch downs. He is so much more than a running QB which ignorant people label him. So you destroy the best college division in a single season but won't transition to the NFL. I don't get it.
I know a lot people aren't fans of Gabbert right now, but I can't see Locker going before him.

BTW... Young said he didn't like Locker in his KNBR interview last week. He said that he watched him play BYU and didn't like him at all.

http://www.knbr.com/portals/3/podcasts/razormrt/0105young.mp3

[ Edited by RedWaltz24 on Jan 9, 2011 at 07:34:44 ]
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Originally posted by RedWaltz24:
I know a lot people aren't fans of Gabbert right now, but I can't see Locker going before him.

I also bet Locker doesn't run under 4.4 at the combine or his pro day. He may have run a 4.39 on campus, but it was likely hand timed.

I think the kid may wow with his combine workout, but the make or break for Locker will be his pro day (I don't expect him to throw at the combine) and how he does in classroom situations when he interviews with teams.

His value is still hard to gauge right now.
Originally posted by nickbradley:
I have the 49ers taking Jake Locker at #7. After the combine, he will regain most of the luster he lost during his senior season. Remember, the guy runs a 4.39 40, has a rocket arm, and has the leadership skills (and upper body strength) of a Tim Tebow. This is Jim Harbaugh's guy. Mallet doesn't fit the West Coast offense, Gabbert may or may not be a fit (that's a wild-card), and Newton is a multi-year project who lacks the intelligence Harbaugh desires. Its quite possible that Harbaugh falls in love with a 2nd or 3rd round quarterback like Ponder or Stanzi and we take Amukamura instead, but I think we go quarterback. acquiring Vince Young or Kolb would change the equation as well.

One interesting piece of information is that I've heard Jim Harbaugh absolutely despises the Washington coaching staff -- any insight on this?

1. Carolina (2-14) - WR AJ Green, Georgia. There are stil a lot of questions to be answered about Carolina's draft strategy, since they don't even havea new coach yet. But AJ Green is the surest thing at #1. Da'Quan Bowers may be the most talented player at the top of the draft, but there are times when he doesn't show up at all. Nick Fairley is a one-year wonder so far. But AJ Green is the best WR prospect to come out at least since Calvin Johnson -- he immediately makes Jimmy Clausen a lot, lot better. A trade-down would make a lot of sense for Carolina since they don't have a second-round pick.

2. Denver (4-12) - CB Patrick Peterson, LSU. Again, no coach yet. But the secondary is the biggest hole on the Broncos by far. Statistically, an argument could be made to improve the pass-rush, but Elvis Dumervil missed the entire season and will be back in '11.

3. Buffalo (4-12) - DL Nick Fairley, Auburn - The Bills are getting better, but they need upgrades on the offensive and defensive lines. Fairley can play almost anywhere on the D-Line, so he is a great fit...Buffalo gave up almost 5 yards a carry in 2010, terrible. QB coult be an option, but Gailey has one more year up there, and if he fails to get them to 7 or 8 wins next year he will be fired and a new regime will br brought in. If Fitzpatrick's development stalls, Buffalo will be picking in the Top 5 next year and will have a chance at Andrew Luck, Landry Jones, Matt Barkley, or Nick Foles.

4. Cincinnati (4-12) - Da'Quan Bowers, DE, Clemson. Very poor pass-rush in Cincinatti, and with Marv Lewis returning for 2011, so is Carson Palmer. Again, if they fail in 2011, they will be looking QB in 2012 with a new regime and new coach.

5. Arizona (5-11) - DE Robert Quinn, UNC. Big upgrade at pass-rusher for Arizona. All the talk is that AZ is going to go with a veteran quarterback via free agency -- they are not in rebuilding mode. High trade-down possibility here.

6. Cleveland (5-11) - WR Julio Jones, Alabama. Cleveland can go three ways here: D-Line, WR, or corner just because Amukamura is the best player available. Cleveland has a poor run defense, but they could also take Amukamura and have two shutdown corners for years to come. I see that as unlikely, so they'll go with Julio Jones to help out Colt McCoy. Cleveland is probably going to hire an offensive coach as well, which makes this decision even more likely

7. San Francisco (6-10) - QB Jake Locker, Washington. We have a ton of choices here. We can plug our biggest need, cornerback, by taking Amukamura, or we can build an even more dominant defensive line by taking Dareus or JJ Watt, or we can have our pick of quarterbacks. From what I've read, Harbaugh puts a very high premium on athletic instincts and intangibles at quartberback, so I think Mallett is out as an option. Gabbert has decent mobility, but is still more of a pocket passer. The three athletic quarterbacks are Jake Locker, Cam Newton, and Christian Ponder (2nd Round). Cam is a 2 or 3 year project. So when all is said and done, I think the 49ers take QB Jake Locker at #7. He has all the tools required to be a superior player in the West Coast offense, period. He had an awful senior season, and he should regain most of the #1 overall status he lost after the combine. Locker has the leadership skills of a Tim Tebow, and ran a 4.39 40-yard dash! Amazing arm strength, upper body strength, vision, etc. Locker's measurables compare favorably to John Elway (the baseball background helps that comparison)...and the Steve Young comparisons fly around too (I heard Young is very, very, very high on Jake Locker...does anyone have a link?). I would be very happy with this pick.

Outstanding job.

This is an example of a realistic, well thought out mock with players going in the slots where they make the most amount of sense and has good commentary with each pick.

I'd be surprised if SF takes the 1st QB of the draft... as Gabbert is a possibility for teams like Carolina/Buffalo/Arizona. But it could happen. I too would be very happy with the Locker pick.
Originally posted by LBSI9ers:
People make me laugh with Newton being years away. Guy came into the SEC the best conference in college football and scored 48 touch downs. He is so much more than a running QB which ignorant people label him. So you destroy the best college division in a single season but won't transition to the NFL. I don't get it.

I agree. I think that after Newton dominates the Oregon Ducks defense, he will start to garner top ten talk. After the combine he will be the first pick by the Carolina Panthers. This obviously depends on who they get as their head coach. I think Newton can be something special.

My only disclaimer would be his penchant for getting into trouble. I wouldn't like for the 49ers to draft him.
Defense in the First

QB in the Second
Originally posted by LBSI9ers:
People make me laugh with Newton being years away. Guy came into the SEC the best conference in college football and scored 48 touch downs. He is so much more than a running QB which ignorant people label him. So you destroy the best college division in a single season but won't transition to the NFL. I don't get it.

The draft has been, and will always be, a crap shoot...



Originally posted by DynastyPart2:
Originally posted by LBSI9ers:
People make me laugh with Newton being years away. Guy came into the SEC the best conference in college football and scored 48 touch downs. He is so much more than a running QB which ignorant people label him. So you destroy the best college division in a single season but won't transition to the NFL. I don't get it.

I agree. I think that after Newton dominates the Oregon Ducks defense, he will start to garner top ten talk. After the combine he will be the first pick by the Carolina Panthers. This obviously depends on who they get as their head coach. I think Newton can be something special.

My only disclaimer would be his penchant for getting into trouble. I wouldn't like for the 49ers to draft him.

He's 21 years old. Kids make bad choices it's what you do after you make mistakes that matters.
What makes you think Cam Newton lacks intelligence? Have you seen his scores or something? iF that's part of the criteria, I don't think Vince Young is an option, but Newton could still be.

One thing that definitely should be part of finding a WCO QB is accuracy--which, if you've seen Locker play this year, you know is an issue. Yes he has "all the physical tools" but you could say that about Newton, Mallet, and Pryor....accuracy is what seperates QBs in the NFL, especially in this system.

I'd rather get Stanzi or Taylor in the 2nd or 3rd round, their more accurate, even if they lack ideal size, strength, etc.
Originally posted by LBSI9ers:
Sry but it's very unlikely that two receivers go in the top ten given the defensive talent in this draft. Green and blackmon will be higher on draft boards. If you can't figure out the locker situation on your own not sure what to say.

Have you followed the draft. Locker could easily go top 10. Everything changes in the offseason. This time 2 years ago everyone thought Jason Smith was a fringe 1st rounder, he went #2. Bradford--due to injury and playing in a spread--was falling out of the 1st on "expert" boards, Jimmy Claussen was a top 5 pick. The list goes on and on...