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University of  Maryland wide Receiver Torrey Smith has declared for the upcoming 2011 NFL Draft. The 6’1″, 200 pound receiver caught 65 passes for 1045 yards and 12 touchdowns.
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While his touchdown tally and his overall production was impressive, he had four games that yielded 689 yards (172.3 per game) and eight touchdowns. That gave him 366 yards (40.7 ypg) and four touchdowns in his remaining nine games.
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Smith has great speed and athleticism. He developed into a legitimate receiving threat this year. He;ll likely go in the late first round or in the second.
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My guess is that he’ll make his biggest splash next year returning kicks. It will take him some time to adjust to the speed and complexity of the NFL. Depending on where he gets drafted, he’s the type of guy you take a flier on late in your draft.

Now that we’ve had time to digest the 2010 NFL Draft, it’s time to start thinking of the incoming class in terms of fantasy value. I’ll start by ranking the rookie running backs.


1. Ryan Matthews, San Diego Chargers

Matthews wasn’t the first RB to come off the board, but he found the best home. Norv Turne has already stated that he wants to get Matthews plenty of touches both on the ground and through the air. He’s the feature back in a high-powered offense. He has the size that should get him the red zone carries. He has little competition as Darren Sproles is a change of pace back and third down specialist.


2. C.J. Spiller, Buffalo Bills

He was the first RB selected and the #2 fantasy prospect for 2010. He is lightning quick with the ability to score any time he touches the ball. Speed backs like Chris Johnson and Jamaal Charles excelled last year with similar skill sets. Competition in the form of Fred Jackson prevents Spiller for being the top rookie prospect. He could actually slide a notch if it looks like it’s going to be a 50-50 split with Jackson.


3. Jahvid Best, Detroit Lions

Best should get plenty of opportunities with the Lions as Kevin Smith recovers from his ACL injury. Best has injury concerns of his own, but possesses a great deal of talent. The Lions have done an outstanding job rebuilding their team. While they aren’t likely to be playoff contenders, they should be more competitive in 2010 meaning a more balanced offensive attack. Best stands to receive the lion’s share (pun intended) of the carries.


4. Ben Tate, Houston Texans

The Texans would have loved to land Matthews, but Tate is a great consolation prize. Not only do he have great speed and size, but he has experience with zone blocking schemes which the Texans use.


5. Toby Gerhart, Minnesota Vikings

I am convinced that the Vikings will rely on the run more in 2010. Adrian Peterson won’t be the only Viking RB to have fantasy relevance. With Chester Taylor in Chicago, Gerhart has an excellent chance of filling his role. If Adrian Peterson’s fumbling woes continue, Gerhart could steal even more carries.

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A look back at the first round of the 2010 NFL Draft.

1. St. Louis Rams: Sam Bradford, QB, Oklahoma
Grade: A
The Rams couldn’t pass up their franchise QB.

2. Detroit Lions: Ndamukong Suh, DT, Nebraska
Grade: A
While protecting Stafford should have been a priority, talents like Suh don’t come along very often. This is a deep class for offensive lineman so Stafford will get his protection later.

3. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Gerald McCoy, DT, Oklahoma
Grade: A
McCoy could be the defensive rookie of the year. Great fit for their defense.

4. Washington Redskins: Trent Williams, T, Oklahoma
Grade: A
Whether it was Okung or Williams, the Skins did the right thing by adding in the trenches. Williams is a better athlete than Okung and fits Washington’s system better.

5. Kansas City Chiefs: Eric Berry, FS, Tennessee
Grade: A
Berry also could be the defensive rookie of the year. He’s a special talent at safety, which has become one of the most important positions on defense in recent years.

6. Seattle Seahawks: Russell Okung, T, Oklahoma State
Grade: A
Out with Walter Jones. In with Okung. I love this pick.

7. Cleveland Browns: Joe Haden, CB, Florida
Grade: A-
The Browns needed to improve their secondary and Haden is a great choice. There was a clear drop-off after the sixth pick.

8. Oakland Raiders: Rolando McClain, LB, Alabama
Grade: B+
Should they have gone with an offensive lineman? Perhaps. Inside LBs don’t typically go this high. That said, McClain has the goods. He too could challenge for the defensive rookie of the year. Cut Al some slack after this pick.

9. Buffalo Bills: C.J. Spiller, RB, Clemson
Grade: B-
Sure, he’s an amazing talent and the anti-Marshawn Lynch, but weren’t there other holes to fill? Fred Jackson was adequate and RBs have short shelf lives.

10. Jacksonville Jaguars: Tyson Alualu, DL, California
Grade: D
With the 10th pick of the 2010 NFL Draft Al Davis on behalf of the Jaguars selects Tyson Alualu.

11. San Francisco 49ers: Anthony Davis, T, Rutgers
Grade: B
I love the pick, but I’m not sure they needed to trade up to get him.

12. San Diego Chargers: Ryan Mathews, RB, Fresno State
Grade: A-
I love the pick, but did they really have to jump up 16 spots? Maybe in order to keep him out of the Texans’ hands. The Chargers got the best every down RB in the draft.

13. Philadelphia Eagles: Brandon Graham, DE, Michigan
Grade: D
I don’t have a problem with the pick, but they gave up a king’s ransom to get him. If they had grabbed Earl Thomas I would have been more understanding.

14. Seattle Seahawks: Earl Thomas, S, Texas
Grade: A
I love what the Seahawks did in the first round. They already got their LT and they added a ball hawking safety a few spots later.

15. New York Giants: Jason Pierre-Paul, DE, South Florida
Grade: C
I guess the G-Men didn’t pay attention to the Vernon Gholston fiasco. Just because you’re a gifted athlete doesn’t mean you can play at this level.

16. Tennessee Titans: Derrick Morgan, DE, Georgia Tech
Grade: A
The Titans hit a HR with Morgan. They needed to bolster their pass rush and got one of the better talents without having to move up.
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2010 NFL Mock Draft #9

20 April 2010

The draft was a wild one. Click here for my Round 1 Grades.

 

Here’s my final mock draft.

1. St. Louis Rams: Sam Bradford, QB, Oklahoma
The Rams could (should) trade down. Either way looks like Sam I Am is the pick.

2. Detroit Lions: Russell Okung, OT, Oklahoma State
While I think Suh is a better talent, Okung is a wiser decision. If you saw the Blind Side, you know you have to protect your QB.

3. Tampa Bay Buccaneeers: Ndamukong Suh, DT, Nebraska
Suh will go earlier if there is a trade, but if he’s there I can’t see Suh slipping past three.

4. Washington Redskins: Bryan Bulaga, OT, Iowa
Okung is the more likely pick if he’s there. Either way they have to protect McNabb.

5. Kansas City Chiefs: Trent Williams, OT, Oklahoma
The Chiefs need to strengthen their offensive line to give Matt Cassel time and open holes for the dual-headed RB attack.

6. Seattle Seahawks: Gerald McCoy, DT, Oklahoma
McCoy is too talented to slide past #6.

7. Cleveland Browns: Eric Berry, S, Tennessee
Berry could end up being the best defensive player in this class. Plus, he fills a need.

8. Oakland Raiders: Bruce Campbell, OT, Maryland
I’m a nervous that this pick has stuck in every mock. Al usually avoids the conventional.

9. Buffalo Bills: Jimmy Clausen, QB, Notre Dame
The Bills need Clausen to fall to them.

10. Jacksonville Jaguars: Joe Haden
Jags typically go best player available, which I think is Haden.

11. Denver Broncos: Rolando McClain, LB, Alabama
The Broncos have a need at middle linebacker, and McClain has the ability. More importantly he’s a great character guy.

12. Miami Dolphins: Dan Williams, DT, Tennessee
I guess we can stop speculating whether Parcels will take a WR in the first round. With Marshall on board, Williams is virtually a no-brainer.

13. San Franciso 49ers: Earl Thomas, S, Texas
Thomas has a ton of ability. He also has some flexibility as he could likely play either safety or corner for the Niners.

14. Seattle Seahawks: Dez Bryant, WR, Oklahoma State
The Seahawks struck out with T.J. Houshmandzadeh. He’s a possession receiver. He’s not going to stretch defenses. That’s what Bryant will be used for.

15. New York Giants: Derrick Morgan, DE, Georgia Tech
With Osi unhappy, the Giants are smart to add a talented DE to the mix.

16. Tennessee Titans: Jason Paul-Pierre, DE/LB, South Florida
JPP is an absolute beast. They hit a HR with The Freak (Kearse) once upon a time. They look to add another off the charts talented pass rusher.
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2010 NFL Mock Draft #8

6 April 2010

Click here for my most recent 2010 NFL Mock Draft
Updated 4/20/10

The McNabb trade certainly changes Washington’s direction with the #4 pick.

1. St. Louis Rams:  Sam Bradford, QB, Oklahoma
His Pro Day only cemented the fact that the Rams are taking Bradford with the #1 pick.

2. Detroit Lions:  Russell Okung, OT, Oklahoma State
Suh is an option, but protecting Matthew Stafford is the smart thing to do. Matt Millen would want Dez Bryant with or without shoes.

3. Tampa Bay Buccaneeers:  Ndamukong Suh, DT, Nebraska
Perhaps the best player in the draft goes #3. Tampa takes a step in the right direction to restore their defense.

4. Washington Redskins:  Bryan Bulaga, OT, Iowa
They just added a veteran QB that has a history of injuries. They better protect him.

5. Kansas City Chiefs:  Trent Williams, OT, Oklahoma
The Chiefs invested heavily in Matt Cassel last year, and brought in Thomas Jones this year. They need help in the trenches for Jamaal Charles and those two investments.

6. Seattle Seahawks: Gerald McCoy, DT, Oklahoma
Maybe McCoy is the best player in the draft. He’s a great value at #6.

7. Cleveland Browns: Eric Berry, S, Tennessee
They added Sheldon Brown at CB to bolster their secondary. They go one step forward by adding the top safety in the draft.

8. Oakland Raiders: Bruce Campbell, OT, Maryland
Big. Fast. Fills a need. Al Davis is hard to predict though.

9. Buffalo Bills:  Jimmy Clausen, QB, Notre Dame 
Washington’s trade allows the Bills to get their future QB.

10. Jacksonville Jaguars: Joe Haden 
My guess is Jacksonville moves down. If not they take the best CB in the draft. Haden salvaged his stock at his Pro Day.

11. Denver Broncos: Rolando McClain, LB, Alabama
McClain is a great fit in the Bronco’s system. He’s also one of the top defensive players in the draft.

12. Miami Dolphins: Dan Williams, DT, Tennessee
Williams will help plug a hole for the aging (and suspended) Jason Ferguson.

13. San Franciso 49ers:  Anthony Davis, OT, Rutgers
The Niners need to improve at RT and Davis should fit the bill. If Haden is still around, he’ll likely be the pick.

14. Seattle Seahawks: Dez Bryant, WR, Oklahoma State
They’ll have to leave him a note to bring his cleats, Bryant will upgrade their meager receiving corps.

15. New York Giants:  Derrick Morgan, DE, Georgia Tech
The G-Men thrive on putting pressure on the QB. Morgan gives them another weapon in their arsenal.

16.  Tennessee Titans:  Brandon Graham, DE/OLB, Michigan
Graham to Tennessee still makes sense. They need to get pressure on the likes of Peyton Manning and Matt Schaub.
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 | Posted by | Categories: NFL, NFL Draft | Tagged: Fantasy Football, NFL, NFL Draft |

Two quarterbacks displayed great accuracy during their recent pro days. Sam Bradford hit 49 of 50 of his passes, showing that his shoulder was just fine. He wasn’t able to prove that it could stand up to a hit, but it was good to see him display great accuracy and arm strength. Bradford remains a strong candidate for the first overall pick.

Colt McCoy went a step further by completing all of his 58 passes during his pro day. He doesn’t have the arm strength of a Bradford or a Jimmy Clausen, but his accuracy is unmatched.  McCoy lacks the prototypical height and arm strength of an NFL quarterback, but is a leader and a winner. McCoy will likely go in the second round.

While Bradford and McCoy seemingly did everything right, wide receiver Dez Bryant did not fare as well. Not only did he forget his cleats, but ran a 4.52 forty time. Bryant needed to be better prepared after already having some character issues. Bryant was suspended for ten games for lying to the NCAA about his relationship with Deion Sanders. Bryant will still likely be the first receiver to come off the board, thanks to his 87 catch, 1480 yard, 19 TD sophomore season. It just appears to be later than originally expected.

They say when there’s smoke, there’s a fire, and I think Smokey the Bear was awakened from his hibernation for this one. When the Eagles will settle for a top 42 pick for Donovan McNabb, it may be too difficult for a team to resist.

I’ll assume that he won’t net the Eagles a first round pick, mainly because of his age and contract demands. You’re looking at picks 33-42.

33.  St. Louis Rams – If they opt to go with Suh with the #1 overall, I can see this scenario. McNabb wouldn’t be happy going to a losing team with limited weapons though.

34.  Detroit Lions – Obviously they aren’t interested, but could possibly work a three-way deal.

35.  Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Ditto.

36.  Kansas City Chiefs – Ditto.  Considering Scott Pioli’s penchant for trading down this wouldn’t surprise me.

37.  Washington Redskins – I’m not sure Shanahan would want an aging vet. It would give them an upgrade at QB and they could use their first pick to add an offensive lineman.

38.  Cleveland Browns – Maybe, but McNabb would not be happy there.

39.  Oakland Raiders – Now we’re talking. Of course, McNabb wouldn’t be happy there either.

40.  San Diego Chargers – Only if it’s a three-way deal.

41.  Buffalo Bills – I’m sure they are interested. I just don’t know if they can pull off a deal financially. Plus, McNabb would not be happy there.

42.  Tampa Bay Buccaneers – A second chance for Tampa to make a three-way deal.

Minnesota is a possible option, depending on the route Brett Favre takes. I’m assuming he’ll be back so they’ll have no interest in McNabb. If they do, it wouldn’t be until after the draft anyway.

He’d be an upgrade for Carolina, but I don’t think they would want to take him on fiscally.

If Arizona truly feels Matt Leinart is a lost cause, they could enter into the picture. Their second round pick is #58 so they would have to work a three-way deal or add to the package to get McNabb.

Seattle has two first round picks and the 60th pick. They have the pieces in places to make a run at McNabb. They’d have to either add to that 60th pick or trade down. Maybe their 14th pick could net them Tampa Bay’s two second round picks, one they could send to Philly for Donovan.

If Big Ben’s court case took a turn for the worst, Pittsburgh could have some interest. I don’t see this as a likely scenario. 

Despite his immense talent, the options are limited for Donovan and the Eagles, which is why they lowered their demands.

2010 NFL Mock Draft #7

24 March 2010

Click here for my most recent 2010 NFL Mock Draft
Updated 4/20/10

I slid Dez Bryant down due to character issues, but forgot to find him a home. Let’s try this again.

1. St. Louis Rams: Sam Bradford, QB, Oklahoma
I think the Rams are zeroed in on Bradford as their future signal caller.

2. Detroit Lions: Russell Okung, OT, Oklahoma State
I’m still leaning towards Okung for the Lions, though Suh is still a big possibility.

3. Tampa Bay Buccaneeers: Ndamukong Suh, DT, Nebraska
The Bucs find themselves in a great position. They have the choice of two elite players that play the same position. Suh has more upside.

4. Washington Redskins: Jimmy Clausen, QB, Notre Dame
I don’t want to pick Clausen this high, but after the success of Ryan & Flacco and Stafford and Sanchez the past two years, the Skins find themselves taking Clausen. They’ve had success at that position our of Notre Dame before.

5. Kansas City Chiefs: Bryan Bulaga, OT, Iowa
The Chiefs could go DT with McCoy or OT with Bulaga. Their offensive line is a bigger need.

6. Seattle Seahawks: Gerald McCoy, DT, Oklahoma
Seattle needs help at QB and on their offensive line, but McCoy is too much of a value to pass up.

7. Cleveland Browns: Eric Berry, S, Tennessee
Even though Joe Haden improved his stock with his 40 at his pro day, Berry is still the pick to try to bolster Cleveland’s putrid secondary.

8. Oakland Raiders: Bruce Campbell, OT, Maryland
Still locked in with Campbell.

9. Buffalo Bills: Trent Williams, OT, Oklahoma
Teams are built in the trenches. Williams becomes the fourth top ten offensive lineman taken.

10. Jacksonville Jaguars: Rolando McClain, LB, Alabama
The Jags go the best player available route and take McClain to play in the middle of their 4-3 defense. The Jags are a likely team to trade down.

11. Denver Broncos: Dan Williams, DT, Tennessee
The best two players at this point for the Broncos are McClain, who I just had go off the board and Dez Bryant. They are still dealing with a petulant WR in Brandon Marshall so I don’t see them adding another one. They instead bolster their defensive front.

12. Miami Dolphins: Jason Paul-Pierre, DE/LB, South Florida
I’ve had Williams going to the Dolphins in most of my mocks so instead of addressing the need at NT, I opted to address a need at OLB with JPP. He’s raw, but oozes talent and athleticism.

13. San Franciso 49ers: Joe Haden, CB, Florida
The Niners need to improve at RT and CB. Haden won’t be there at 17, thanks in part to an improved 40 time, so they’ll take him now and grab their RT later.

14. Seattle Seahawks: Dez Bryant, WR, Oklahoma State
T.J. Houshmandzadeh can’t stretch defenses. He’s worked well with diva WRs in the past. The Seahawks could use help on the line, but that can be addressed later.

15. New York Giants: Brian Price, DT, UCLA
The Giants are a team I’ve struggled trying to pinpoint what they’ll do. Adding Price to bolster their defensive line makes sense to me.

16.  Tennessee Titans:  Brandon Graham, DE/OLB, Michigan
One of Tennessee’s biggest need is putting pressure on the quarterback, namely Peyton Manning. Graham doesn’t have the prototypical size for the position, but is one of those guys who finds a way to get it done.

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2010 NFL Mock Draft #6

22 March 2010

Click here for my most recent 2010 NFL Mock Draft
Updated 4/20/10

With the 2010 NFL Draft a month a way, here’s my sixth look at the first round.

1. St. Louis Rams: Sam Bradford, QB, Oklahoma
I think the Rams are zeroed in on Bradford as their future signal caller.

2. Detroit Lions: Russell Okung, OT, Oklahoma State
I’m still leaning towards Okung for the Lions, though Suh is still a big possibility.

3. Tampa Bay Buccaneeers: Ndamukong Suh, DT, Nebraska
The Bucs find themselves in a great position. They have the choice of two elite players that play the same position. Suh has more upside.

4. Washington Redskins: Jimmy Clausen, QB, Notre Dame
I don’t want to pick Clausen this high, but after the success of Ryan & Flacco and Stafford and Sanchez the past two years, the Skins find themselves taking Clausen. They’ve had success at that position our of Notre Dame before.

5. Kansas City Chiefs: Bryan Bulaga, OT, Iowa
The Chiefs could go DT with McCoy or OT with Bulaga. Their offensive line is a bigger need.

6. Seattle Seahawks: Gerald McCoy, DT, Oklahoma
Seattle needs help at QB and on their offensive line, but McCoy is too much of a value to pass up.

7. Cleveland Browns: Eric Berry, S, Tennessee
Even though Joe Haden improved his stock with his 40 at his pro day, Berry is still the pick to try to bolster Cleveland’s putrid secondary.

8. Oakland Raiders: Bruce Campbell, OT, Maryland
Still locked in with Campbell.

9. Buffalo Bills: Trent Williams, OT, Oklahoma
Teams are built in the trenches. Williams becomes the fourth top ten offensive lineman taken.

10. Jacksonville Jaguars: Rolando McClain, LB, Alabama
The Jags go the best player available route and take McClain to play in the middle of their 4-3 defense. The Jags are a likely team to trade down.

11. Denver Broncos: Dan Williams, DT, Tennessee
The best two players at this point for the Broncos are McClain, who I just had go off the board and Dez Bryant. They are still dealing with a petulant WR in Brandon Marshall so I don’t see them adding another one. They instead bolster their defensive front.

12. Miami Dolphins: Jason Paul-Pierre, DE/LB, South Florida
I’ve had Williams going to the Dolphins in most of my mocks so instead of addressing the need at NT, I opted to address a need at OLB with JPP. He’s raw, but oozes talent and athleticism.

13. San Franciso 49ers: Joe Haden, CB, Florida
The Niners need to improve at RT and CB. Haden won’t be there at 17, thanks in part to an improved 40 time, so they’ll take him now and grab their RT later.

14. Seattle Seahawks: Anthony Davis, OT, Rutgers
The Seahawks will go with Davis as the upgrade both their offensive and defensive line in the first round.

15. New York Giants: Brian Price, DT, UCLA
The Giants are a team I’ve struggled trying to pinpoint what they’ll do. Adding Price to bolster their defensive line makes sense to me.

16.  Tennessee Titans:  Brandon Graham, DE/OLB, Michigan
One of Tennessee’s biggest need is putting pressure on the quarterback, namely Peyton Manning. Graham doesn’t have the prototypical size for the position, but is one of those guys who finds a way to get it done.
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2010 NFL Mock Draft #5

12 March 2010

Click here for my most recent 2010 NFL Mock Draft
Updated 4/20/10

Still looking for that right formula.

1.  St. Louis Rams:  Sam Bradford, QB, Oklahoma
Is Bradford the best player in the draft? No. Does he make the most sense fiscally? Not really, but for the money they Rams have to land a franchise QB.

2.  Detroit Lions:  Russell Okung, OT, Oklahoma State
Should they take Suh or McCoy? Probably. However, they need to protect the guy that’s sitting on a pile of 2009 Detroit Lions cash.

3.  Tampa Bay Buccaneeers:   Ndamukong Suh, DT, Nebraska
McCoy or Suh? Suh or McCoy? After a coin flip, and realizing Suh is the better NFL prospect, the Bucs take Suh.

4.  Washington Redskins:  Bryan Bulaga, OT, Iowa
I had them going Clausen in the last mock, but that pick doesn’t make a whole lot of sense. The Skins have really aged at the line so I’m going back to a lineman. This time it’s Bulaga, who continues to climb.

5.  Kansas City Chiefs:  Gerald McCoy, DT, Oklahoma
McCoy is too big of a talent for the Chiefs to pass on. Scott Pioli knows the value of a good defensive line.

6.  Seattle Seahawks:  Jimmy Clausen, QB, Notre Dame
Unless the Seahawks work a trade for McNabb or Kolb, they are going to have to add talent at the position, especially after trading Seneca Wallace.

7.  Cleveland Browns:  Eric Berry, S, Tennessee
I’ve been stuck on Haden the whole time, but with some urging have opened my eyes to Haden’s poor combine. He’s not fast enough to be a top 7 pick.

8.  Oakland Raiders:  Bruce Campbell, OT, Maryland
This one sticks. He’s huge. He’s fast. He has Al Davis written all over him.

9.  Buffalo Bills:  Trent Williams, OT, Oklahoma
The Bills need help on their offensive line as much as any position, with the possible exception of quarterback.

10.  Jacksonville Jaguars:  Dez Bryant, WR, Oklahoma State
The Jags need to improve their pass rush. Aaron Kampman should help. They could add another one later, but here the pick is to go with hands down the top receiver prospect.

11.  Denver Broncos:  Rolando McClain, LB, Alabama
To me this pick makes about as much sense as any in the first round. He just fits their system so perfectly. Plus, there’s an immediate need following the release of Andra Davis.

12.  Miami Dolphins:  Dan Williams, DT, Tennessee
Jason Ferguson is on his last legs and facing an 8-game suspension. They need to start thinking about the future.

13.  San Franciso 49ers:  Anthony Davis, OT, Rutgers
Davis fills a need at Left Tackle. He and Joe Staley will give them a pair of bookends for years to come.

14.  Seattle Seahawks:  Derrick Morgan, DE, Georgia Tech
The Seahawks need to improve their pass rush. They also need help on the offensive line, but that will wait.

15.  New York Giants:  Joe Haden, CB, Florida
Haden’s fall finally ends. The G-Men added Rolle at safety, but still need to upgrade their secondary. Haden is a steal.

16.  Tennessee Titans:  Brian Price, DT, UCLA
The Titans could use Price to help fill the void that Albert Haynesworth left.
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