1. Kansas City Chiefs: Luke Joeckel, OT, Texas A&M
A couple of recent moves (i.e. striking a trade for quarterback Alex Smith and releasing starting right tackle Eric Winston after only one season) has made the Chiefs’ decision with the No. 1 overall pick almost a foregone conclusion, though Eric Fisher is also an option.
2. Jacksonville Jaguars: Sharrif Floyd, DT, Florida
Sharrif Floyd is a very versatile and extremely explosive defensive tackle that has skyrocketed up draft boards after really raising eyebrows at the NFL Combine. Jacksonville also desperately needs help in the trenches and covets hometown products.
3. Oakland Raiders: Dion Jordan, DE/OLB, Oregon
Oakland finished next-to-last in the league in sacks last season. In addition, Phillip Wheeler is an impending free agent and Rolando McClain’s days are numbered with the Raiders. Enter Dion Jordan, arguably the top outside pass rusher in this year’s draft.
4. Philadelphia Eagles: Eric Fisher, OT, Central Michigan
There are a ton of different options for Chip Kelly and company here, but they can’t go wrong with Eric Fisher, who some consider the top left tackle in this draft. Philly needs fast, mobile linemen who can get out in space and make plays and Fisher fits the bill.
5. Detroit Lions: Dee Milliner, CB, Alabama
Detroit desperately needs to strengthen its secondary and general manager Martin Mayhew has the tendency to go with the best player available. The team hits two birds with one stone here, selecting Dee Milliner—the consensus top cornerback in this class.
6. Cleveland Browns: Bjoern Werner, DE, Florida State
Jabaal Sheard was the team’s top sack artist with seven last season and Juqua Parker-Thomas finished second with 6.0 sacks and he’s 35-years-old and an unrestricted free agent. Enter Bjoern Werner, perhaps the best 4-3 DE available this April and a great scheme fit.
7. Arizona Cardinals: Matt Barkley, QB, USC
John Skelton and Kevin Kolb are not franchise quarterbacks. Ryan Lindley and Brian Hoyer aren’t, either. Though the team must also address its offensive line, the Cardz decide to roll the dice and pick up its Matt Barkley, who they hope becomes the face of the franchise.
8. Buffalo Bills: Geno Smith, QB, West Virginia
Bills GM Buddy Nix has said he plans on drafting a franchise QB this April. Though that could easily end up being Ryan Nassib—the second-round prospect out of Syracuse who would be reunited with Doug Marrone—Nix won’t be able to pass on Geno Smith at No. 8.
9. New York Jets: Ezekiel Ansah, DE/OLB, BYU
Gang Green needs an overhaul on defense. The Jets take a chance on Ezekiel Ansah, a raw but versatile NFL-ready run defender who has seen his stock soar since the Senior Bowl. He looks to be a lock for the Top 10 now and will be a big boost to the Jets’ pass rush.
10. Tennessee Titans: Chance Warmack, OG, Alabama
The Titans have a few solid options at No. 10, but can’t go wrong with Chance Warmack, the top interior offensive lineman available. Warmack will give Chris Johnson more wiggle room and lanes to exploit and improve pass protection for starting signal-caller Jake Locker.
11. San Diego Chargers: Lane Johnson, OT, Oklahoma
San Diego surrendered 49 sacks in 2012 and finished 27th in rushing, 24th through the air and next-to-last in total offense. Lane Johnson is a lock for the Top 11 after a stellar showing at the Senior Bowl and scouting combine and will make life easier for Philip Rivers.
12. Miami Dolphins: Star Lotulelei, DT, Utah
Miami should find its new No. 1 WR via free agency (most likely Mike Wallace) and though the team also has needs on the offensive line and at CB, Star Lotulelei—who is a wild card right now—also addresses a need at DT and is too much of a steal to pass up at the No. 12 spot.
13. Tampa Bay Bucs: Xavier Rhodes, CB, Florida State
Tampa Bay must bolster its secondary right away on draft day. With Ronde Barber expected to return at the safety spot, the Bucs select local product Xavier Rhodes, a big and physical cornerback who will be a terrific fit in the team’s coverage scheme.
14. Carolina Panthers: Sheldon Richardson, DT, Missouri
The Panthers pounce on Sheldon Richardson, another prospect on the rise who addresses one of the team’s primary offseason needs. Richardson is also being recruited by one of the Panthers players—veteran wide receiver Steve Smith.
15. New Orleans Saints: Barkevious Mingo, DE/OLB, LSU
New Orleans needs to bolster its front seven this offseason. The team picks up Barkevious Mingo, who is arguably the top overall prospect available. He’s also a local product and a premier pass-rusher who will make life easier for an overmatched Saints secondary.
16. St. Louis Rams: Cordarrelle Patterson, WR, Tennessee
The Rams had a pressing need at receiver that they had to address via free agency and/or the draft and that was before Brandon Gibson and Danny Amendola hit the open market, so no surprise, St. Louis snatches up the No. 1 WR in this class, Cordarrelle Patterson.
17. Pittsburgh Steelers: Jarvis Jones, OLB, Georgia
Jarvis Jones is an extremely explosive and very physical complete linebacker who falls to the top of the second half of the first round for medical concerns (spinal stenosis). He’s a sure-fire steal for the Steelers and adds much-needed young talent to the defense.
18. Dallas Cowboys: Kenny Vaccaro, SS, Texas
Dallas is very interested in the top safety in this draft class out of Texas, Kenny Vaccaro. He’s one of the best prospects available at the No. 18 spot and addresses a top priority in the Cowboys’s secondary with the departure of safety Gerald Sensabaugh.
19. N. Y. Giants: Damontre Moore, DE/OLB, Texas A&M
Chris Canty and Osi Umenyiora are free agents. The G-Men just signed ex-Eagles DT Cullen Jenkins and complete the overhaul in the trenches with the addition of Damontre Moore, one of this year’s top pass-rushers who falls for his performance in Indianapolis.
20. Chicago Bears: D.J. Fluker, OT, Alabama
Chicago chooses to bolster its offensive line here with the addition of D.J. Fluker, who will open things up for Matt Forte and give Jay Cutler more time to find his targets and decrease his level of fear of getting pummeled each play behind the line of scrimmage.
21. Cincinnati Bengals: Alec Ogletree, OLB, Georgia
Alec Ogletree’s recent DUI might have hurt his draft stock with some teams, but it could have helped his chances of landing with the Bengals. All kidding aside, Manny Lawson is a free agent and Rey Maualuga’s days could also be numbered in Cincinnati.
22. St. Louis Rams: Jonathan Cooper, OG, North Carolina
St. Louis shores up another one of its biggest offseason needs: the offensive line. The Rams reel in Jonathan Cooper, who is a sure-fire steal at the No. 22 selection and adds more stability up front for Sam Bradford and more lanes for Isaiah Pead and Daryl Richardson.
23. Minnesota Vikings: Tavon Austin, WR, West Virginia
Minnesota must add weapons to its passing attack in the first round on draft day, especially after trading Percy Harvin. Marshall Faulk recently referred to Tavon Austin as “Percy Harvin and Wes Welker wrapped into one.” Austin is destined to be a star in the NFL.
24. Indianapolis Colts: Desmond Trufant, CB, Washington
Indianapolis picks up one of the top prospects available and addresses one of its most pressing needs in the process. Vontae Davis has to have help in the secondary and Desmond Trufant is a very physical, top-notch cover cornerback.
25. Minnesota Vikings: Johnathan Hankins, DT, Ohio State
The Vikings need upgrades in the front seven and especially up front in the trenches. Johnathan Hankins fits the bill at No. 23 and is one of the best prospects available. *****Seattle sent its first-round selection to Minnesota for Percy Harvin.*****
26. Green Bay Packers: Eddie Lacy, RB, Alabama
The Packers need to add some flare and power to their ground game. Eddie Lacy is the top running back in this year’s class and the late first-round prospect has the right mindset and skills set to be a perfect fit in the Packers’ prolific offense.
27. Houston Texans: Keenan Allen, WR, California
The Texans must add a playmaker in the first round this April who will have a significant and immediate as the No. 2 receiver opposite Andre Johnson. Keenan Allen fits the bill and will add much-needed versatility and new dimensions to Houston’s offense.
28.Denver Broncos: Kawann Short, DT, Purdue
The Broncos need to bolster their front seven this offseason and Kawann Short is the best option on their board who will be able to collapse the pocket and open up lanes for Denver’s star pass rushers. Kevin Vickerson and Justin Bannan are also free agents.
29.New England Patriots: Jesse Williams, DT, Alabama
Jesse Williams will provide the Patriots with a stronger interior pass rush and compliment Vince Wilfork in the trenches. He also has the size and scheme versatility that coach Bill Belichick covets at the line of scrimmage — and anywhere else on the field for that matter.
30. Atlanta Falcons: Tyler Eifert, TE, Notre Dame
Tyler Eifert emerged as the top tight end in Indianapolis and will be provide an immediate impact in the Falcons’ high-powered offense, but won’t have too much on his shoulders due to all of the assortment of weapons on offense, regardless of what happens with Tony Gonzalez.
31. San Francisco 49ers: Johnathan Cyprien, S, Florida Int’l
San Francisco selects Johnathan Cyprien, who comes the confides of Florida International. He’s also one of the top prospects at the position and is rising up draft boards. Cyprien addresses one of the team’s top needs and looks to have an immediate impact.
32. Baltimore Ravens: Kevin Minter, LB, LSU
The Ravens need to add new talent and new leadership to the middle of their defense with the departure of Ray Lewis, among other key players at several different positions. Enter Kevin Minter, an aggressive and hart-hitting inside linebacker with great instincts.
Oren Shiri is the Creative Director and an analyst at GridironGrit and Founder of NFL Draft Insiders. Be sure to ‘like’ Gridiron Grit on Facebook and follow @NFLorentime and @GridironGrit on Twitter to keep up with the latest coverage on college football, the NFL and more!