2013 NFL Draft: Final Mock Draft, 1 Round

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2013 NFL Draft

NFL Draft
Jerry Lal-USA TODAY Sports

The 2013 NFL Draft is almost here, so it’s time for one final update to the 1-round mock draft. This is a draft that has more mystery than any in recent memory. Even the No. 1 overall pick is still up in the air. In the past, the team picking no. 1 overall is at the very least in negotiations with their selection if they haven’t already agreed to terms by now. But here were are less than 48 hours from the draft and there’s nothing.

This final projection is based on a culmination of a full offseason of information. Some of that information is obviously been wrong, but the key is to just sort through what you believe is real and what is among the piles of misinformation and smokescreens that are out there. The most important thing to consider finalizing a mock draft like this to remove what I would do, and instead try and figure out what the team would do. Clearly, what I would do differs greatly from what all information says some teams are going to do.

When it comes to player selection, teams really have two schools of thought. They can draft the player they believe best fits a particular position of need for their team, or they can draft who they believe it the best player available among all positions of need. In a draft like this one where the talent pool is solid, but not top-heavy, I expect to see lots of picks based on need rather than simply best player available, because I don’t see a huge disparity in talent among many prospects.

So without further ado, here’s my final 2013 NFL mock draft. Feel free to share it and comment on your team’s picks.

Curt covers the Pittsburgh Steelers, the NFL draft and college football for Rant Sports. Connect with Curt on Twitter @nfldraftboard.

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1.1-Kansas City Chiefs-Luke Joeckel, OT Texas A&M

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The Chiefs are still up in the air about this top pick, but it just has to be Joeckel. He's clearly the top player in this draft and would fill a vital piece of the puzzle for the Chiefs' offense.

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1.2-Jacksonville Jaguars-Geno Smith, QB West Virginia

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There is a great deal of discussion about the Jaguars taking an offensive tackle or defensive end here, but with a new head coach and new front office, they have to make a splash and that means a quarterback. Smith is the best quarterback in this class even if he is a rather polarizing figure, and the pick makes so much sense here.

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1.3-Oakland Raiders-Star Lotulelei, DT Utah

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The Raiders are a bit of a mystery, so instead I lean toward the best player available. Lotulelei, now with a clean bill of health, is a frightening prospect for NFL offenses. As a 3-technique tackle on the Raiders front line, Lotulelei can rush the passer and stuff the run, providing them a dynamic playmaker.

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1.4-Philadelphia Eagles-Dion Jordan, DE/LB Oregon

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Defensive end might not be the greatest need, but it's hard to see new head coach Chip Kelly passing on his former player. Jordan is an amazing athlete, and would be an easy plug-and-play end for Kelly along the defensive line.

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1.5-Detroit Lions-Eric Fisher, OT Central Michigan

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The two positions of primary need for the Lions are offensive tackle and defensive end. With Jordan off the board, Fisher becomes an easy pick. With a franchise quarterback in Matt Stafford, the Lions must do their best to protect him, and Fisher is that guy.

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1.6-Cleveland Browns-Dee Milliner, CB Alabama

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This is one of those picks I disagree with that seem to be a foregone conclusion. Milliner would have a spot opposite cornerback Joe Haden in the Browns secondary, but I would think they could do more with this pick to help the offense.

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1.7-Arizona Cardinals-Chance Warmack, OG Alabama

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First big curveball of the round. Many have speculated that the Cardinals are happy with their offensive tackles and will instead look to add to the interior offensive line. Warmack is an amazing prospect and I have no problem with him going this high, but it definitely shapes the rest of the round.

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1.8-Buffalo Bills-Ryan Nassib, QB Syracuse

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I'm not sure if the Bills will take Nassib at No. 8, but I'm confident they want him in the first round. Nassib isn't the most talented quarterback in this draft, but in the right system, I believe he can be very successful.

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1.9-New York Jets-Barkevious Mingo, DE/LB LSU

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Some believe the Jets are going to use one of their two 1st round picks on a cornerback, but I disagree. Mingo is a value pick here over the next best cornerback and would fill a much more immediate need. The Jets need to win now and Mingo will help with that.

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1.10-Tennessee Titans-Ezekiel Ansah, DE BYU

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I have Ansah lower than most in this, but it's just how the draft has played out. The Titans would likely be ecstatic to have this raw, athletic pass rusher fall to them.

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1.11-San Diego Chargers-Lane Johnson, OT Oklahoma

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Many are projecting Johnson to go before the Chargers pick at 11 but I think if that's an issue, the Chargers would likely go up and get him. So, I expect them to draft him one way or another.

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1.12-Miami Dolphins-Jarvis Jones, DE/LB Georgia

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The Dolphins are working hard to try and sign offensive tackle Branden Albert, but even if they don't, they can't draft the fourth tackle this high. Instead, they will look to defense where they can add an explosive pass rusher in Jones. The Dolphins are another team I expect to see try and trade down.

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1.13-New York Jets(from Tampa Bay)-Tavon Austin, WR West Virginia

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With the Jets' second pick of the round, they will look to add some explosion to the offense. This team struggles to move the football and score touchdowns, and Austin is very good at both. He would immediately become the best Jets player on offense the minute he signs his contract.

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1.14-Carolina Panthers-Desmond Trufant, CB Washington

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With Austin off the board, I expect the Panthers to look to defense. Trufant is a fabulous player and could do a great job making them forget about cornerback Chris Gamble in a hurry. Defensive tackle is an option here as well, but Trufant fills a definite need.

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1.15-New Orleans Saints-Sheldon Richardson, DE/DT Missouri

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The Saints are working hard to transition to a 3-4 defense and have put some nice pieces in place, but Richardson is one of those special players who can line up outside as an end or inside to rush the passer in nickel that a team just can't pass on.

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1.16-St. Louis Rams-Kenny Vaccaro, S Texas

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Rams head coach Jeff Fisher is not going to be able to pass on Vaccaro. He's too talented and too explosive to leave on the board. This Rams defense is very good, but a player like Vaccaro could put them right over the top.

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1.17-Pittsburgh Steelers-Arthur Brown, LB Kansas State

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The Steelers are a franchise with multiple needs and a philosophy of drafting the highest-rated player. In this case, that's Brown. He can play inside in the 3-4 and cover sideline to sideline, and use his speed to blitz as well.

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1.18-Dallas Cowboys-Jonathan Cooper, OG North Carolina

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The Cowboys have made no secret that they want an offensive guard in this draft. That tells me even if a player like Cooper doesn't fall to them like he did here, they will find a way to get him. Cooper is a pretty underrated prospect with a fabulous skills set and a very high ceiling.

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1.19-New York Giants-Sharrif Floyd, DT Florida

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Floyd's first-round tumble ends with the Giants. Floyd is a player some teams have said doesn't have a true NFL position and teams don't know what to do with him. If there's a team that can make use of Floyd's raw talent, it's the Giants.

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1.20-Chicago Bears-Manti Te'o, LB Notre Dame

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The Bears need an inside linebacker and like him or not, Te'o is a very talented one who fits what the Bears ask of their inside linebackers. Te'o has been in a position to take a lot of criticism, but the fact is he's a hard-nosed football player who will add to this Bears defense.

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1.21-Cincinnati Bengals-DJ Fluker, OT Alabama

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The Bengals are in a nice spot as they have multiple spots they can upgrade and several players who would help them, but Fluker might be the only one who'd come in and start day one, so he gets the nod for me.

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1.22-St. Louis(from Washington)-Cordarrelle Patterson, WR Tennessee

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After snatching up a playmaker on defense earlier in the round, the Rams will look to the offense and Patterson. There are few players who can do what Patterson does after the catch, and he would be a great addition to a struggling Rams offense.

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1.23-Minnesota Vikings-Xavier Rhodes, CB FSU

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Not many people are talking about the Vikings defense but there is a definite need at cornerback for them, and Rhodes at this point in the round would be a tremendous value. Rhodes has great instincts and ball skills, and would be great in a zone system.

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1.24-Indianapolis Colts-Bjoern Werner, DE/LB FSU

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Last season, the Colts did a nice job switching to a 3-4 defense on the run. This draft, they add Werner, who would be a great 3-4 rush outside linebacker and can drop down, hand on the ground as well. This is another pick that combines the best player on the board with a need.

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1.25-Minnesota Vikings(from St. Louis)-DeAndre Hopkins, WR Clemson

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I understand that some have dinged Hopkins a little from an incident where a hotel room was trashed at the NFL Scouting Combine, but his talent is elite and the Vikings could really use him on the outside with wide receiver Greg Jennings.

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1.26-Green Bay Packers-Jonathan Cyprien, S FIU

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The Packers are looking to get more athletic in the defensive secondary, and Cyprien is the name that keeps getting tossed around. I'm not sure if I'd draft Cyprien this high, but most pundits believe that he will be. There's no doubt Cyprien is a nice, rangy safety prospect who does a little of everything well, but he'll need to produce early to justify a selection this high.

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1.27-Houston Texans-Menelik Watson, OT FSU

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I have been putting a wide receiver here for the Texans for some time, but it's clear the Texans need a new right tackle. Watson is an athletic project type player who's just skilled enough to entice a team to take him in the hopes that all that potential comes to fruition.

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1.28-Denver Broncos-Tank Carradine, DE FSU

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Carradine will slide a little because he's coming off a torn ACL injury just five months ago, but he's already shown he's well on his way to a full recovery. If the Broncos can snatch him up at this point in the round to bolster their pass rush, they'd have a hard time letting him go. Carradine, at full health, is as good an all-around defensive end as there is in the entire draft, so it's just a matter of where to play him.

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1.29-New England Patriots-Datone Jones, DE UCLA

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Watching Jones play, I can see him as the type of player the Patriots could get the most of out of. Jones can play inside or outside, rush the passer or stuff the run, and would offer a lot of versatility.

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1.30-Atlanta Falcons-Tyler Eifert, TE Notre Dame

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Tight end might not be the greatest position of need for the Falcons, but a team that uses their tight end like they do would have to view this as a steal and impossible to pass up. They can address their other positions of greater need later on, but for now they steal Eifert to make a great offense even better.

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1.31-San Francisco 49ers-Sylvester Williams, DT North Carolina

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The 49ers are in a position where they can fill some depth in the first round. Williams is a bit of a sleeper prospect, but I really like him as a guy who could develop very quickly into a dominant nose tackle. There are multiple positions the 49ers could go, but Williams is too talented to pass up on here.

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1.32-Baltimore Ravens-Damontre Moore, DE Texas A&M

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The Ravens looked like a team that was going to be lost in 2013 with the talent they were losing in the offseason. They've recovered very well, but still need to add another pass rusher. Moore slides because he's not the elite athlete like some other rushers in this draft, but put on the film and you can see he can play.