2014 NFL Draft first round pick-by-pick analysis

2014 NFL Draft first round pick-by-pick analysis
May 8, 2014, 3:00 pm
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Rounds 2 and 3 of the 2014 NFL Draft take place on Friday, with Rounds 4 through 7 on Saturday. (USATSI)

Programming note: Watch Jimmie Ward's introductory press conference Friday afternoon at 2:00 p.m. on Comcast SportsNet Bay Area, and streaming live on CSNBayArea.com

32. Minnesota Vikings (trade with Seattle) -- Teddy Bridgewater, QB, 6-2/214, Louisville
PROS: Bridgewater had a combined 23-3 record in his final two seasons at Louisville, and he possesses the best footwork of any quarterback in this year’s draft. He posted a 72-24 career touchdown-to-interception ratio in college.
CONS: Bridgewater reportedly finished the 2013 season at 188 pounds, far too light for an NFL quarterback. He also struggled with accuracy at his pro day.

31. Denver Broncos -- Bradley Roby, CB, 5-11/194, Ohio State
PROS: Outstanding speed, acceleration and agility help Roby mirror the best route-running receivers. He is extremely clean in his movements and willing to go for the big hit.
CONS: Roby peeks into the backfield too often leaving him susceptible to double moves. He doesn’t play the ball too well in the air, despite his eight career interceptions. He was boxed out against bigger receivers near the end zone and consistently missed tackles when going for big hits instead of wrapping up under control.

30. San Francisco 49ers -- Jimmie Ward, FS, 5-11/193, Northern Illinois
PROS: Flew around the field at Northern Illinois. Good, aggressive, tough run supporting safety. Can play nickel corner. Over 95 tackles in each of the past three seasons. Grabbed seven interceptions as a senior.
CONS: Lacks size and strength for an NFL safety. He will lower his head and leave his feet when tackling at times. Durability is an issue (didn't work out at the Combine because of a foot injury).

29. New England Patriots -- Dominique Easley, DE/DT, 6-2/288, Florida
PROS: Easley has natural leverage and a strong, quick initial punch. He has a great motor to go along with experience at both DT and DE.
CONS: Easley can get manipulated by longer-armed offensive lineman. Durability is a big concern — ACL surgery on both knees. 

28. Carolina Panthers -- Kelvin Benjamin, WR, 6-5/240, Florida State
PROS: Benjamin has enormous size and a huge catching radius. He adjusts to the ball well and catches it high, as seen on the game-winning TD against Auburn.
CONS: Not many NFL receivers have experienced success at 240 pounds. A relative one-year wonder who takes awhile to get his speed going and explode out of cuts, Benjamin has inconsistent hands and focus.

27. Arizona Cardinals (trade with New Orleans) -- Deone Bucannon, SS, 6-1/211, SS, Washington State
PROS: Bucannon is a hard-hitting safety that thrives in the box with his aggressive play. Bucannon has long arms and good size.
CONS: He can get exposed in pass coverage, specifically man-to-man. He looked lost against Oregon’s speed.

26. Philadelphia Eagles (trade with Cleveland-- Marcus Smith, DE/OLB, 6-3/251, Louisville
PROS: Pass-rushing specialist, Smith posses’ great burst to come around the edge and a quick first step.
CONS: Smith lacks ideal size. He is far from a finished product and can get overpowered in the run game.

25. San Diego Chargers -- Jason Verrett, CB, 5-9/189, TCU
PROS: Verrett is an explosive athlete that is effortless in his movements with quick feet and fluidity. A super competitor, he plays aggressive in both the run and pass game (nine career interceptions). He is always on balance, a testament to his great footwork.
CONS: Verrett’s size brings about a number of serious concerns with strength. He has difficulty shedding blocks and there are durability questions after shoulder surgery in March 2014. He has issues with taller receivers/tight ends. Additionally, he has a tendency to be a bit too grabby down the field.

24. Cincinnati Bengals -- Darqueze Dennard, CB, 5-11/199, Michigan St.
PROS: A physical, aggressive, premier shutdown corner, Dennard was a member of the Spartans "no fly zone." He offers exquisite press-man coverage with great anticipation and reaction, and is the best tackler among all draft-eligible corners.
CONS: He has perceived athletic limitations. Dennard isn’t an all-world athlete, showing stiff hips at the Combine. He wasn’t asked to play a lot of zone coverage and didn’t play against the greatest passing offenses.

23. Kansas City Chiefs - Dee Ford, DE/OLB, 6-2/252, Auburn
PROS:
Ford is a menace in the pass game. He has one of the best motors in the draft and uses his speed and acceleration nicely to get to the quarterback. He produced in college with 10.5 sacks in his final 10 games.
CONS: Ford gets overpowered in the run game at times due to his 252-pound frame. He couldn't work out at the Combine because of medical concerns (back).

22. Cleveland Browns (trade with Philadelphia) -- Johnny Manziel, QB, 6-0/207, Texas A&M
PROS: Manziel has the same sized hands as Cam Newton (9 7/8”). He’s a competitor who rose to the occasion in biggest games. He has Houdini-like escapability with supreme ball-carrier vision and superb accuracy on the run. He throws the back-shoulder pass with the best of them.
CONS: Manziel would become the lightest quarterback drafted in the first round in over 20 years. He often leaves the pocket too early, leaving receivers open underneath, and making it hard for offensive linemen to sustain blocks. His reckless play can be a pro and a con.

21. Green Bay Packers -- Ha Ha Clinton-Dix, FS, 6-1/208, Alabama
PROS: Clinton-Dix has the build to add further weight in the future. He thrives in pass coverage, specifically in man-to-man across the middle. He possesses good speed and better hands, with seven interceptions over the past two seasons.
CONS: Ha Ha isn’t the best athlete and, as mentioned earlier, is relatively thin. He's not a huge hitter and drops his head too often on tackles instead of keeping his chin up and wrapping. His production dropped in his junior season.

20. New Orleans Saints (trade with Arizona) -- Brandin Cooks, WR, 5-10/189, Oregon St.
PROS: Cooks produced in college, even as defenses made him their main focus. He set Pac-12 single-season records with 128 receptions and 1,730 yards. A fluid receiver with video game-like jukes and dips, Cooks uses hesitation and agility to gain separation. He makes a mockery of defenders in the open field.
CONS: He has below-average size and, as a result, a short catch radius. Cooks gets rerouted far too easily and doesn’t play as fast as he timed in the 40 (4.33).

19. Miami Dolphins -- Ja’wuan James, OT, 6-6/311, Tennessee
PROS: James started 49 career games at right tackle in the SEC. He has outstanding size and arm length.
CONS: James looks slow in his motions and has some issues in run blocking with his pad level.

18. New York Jets -- Calvin Pryor, FS, 5-11/207, Louisville
PROS: Pryor is a big-time hitter from the free safety position with good body type with great closing speed. He plays with swagger and intimidates players coming over the middle. He has good range and is generally seen flying all over the field.
CONS: His swagger and aggressiveness can be a downfall at times, as he can be too violent. Pryor can overrun plays and take bad routes. He wasn’t asked to cover the slot or tight end consistently.

17. Baltimore Ravens -- C.J. Mosley, ILB, 6-2/234, Alabama
PROS: Mosley has average size, but plays bigger. He has ideal awareness and IQ, especially in the pass game. He sifts through traffic well and plays with great anticipation and lateral movement. He was a leader for the National Champion Crimson Tide.
CONS: A history of injuries -- elbow, hip, knee and shoulder -- could hinder Mosley in the long term. He plays a little too aggressive at times and could see issues with bigger tight ends.

16. Dallas Cowboys -- Zack Martin, OT/OG, 6-4/308, Notre Dame
PROS: Martin started the most games in Notre Dame history (52). He stays low and under control in blocks and can play all five positions on the offensive line. He's a low risk pick that plays technically sound, consistent football.
CONS: Small-armed lineman, probably best suited inside. Not the top-flight athlete of others.

15. Pittsburgh Steelers -- Ryan Shazier, OLB, 6-1/237, Ohio State
PROS: Shazier led the Big Ten with 143 tackles and 24 tackles for loss as a senior. An absolute stud athlete (ran unofficial 4.36 at pro day while tweaking his hamstring), Shazier is fluid, agile and always around the ball. He hits hard.
CONS: Shazier played below 220 pounds his senior year. He gets caught in traffic too often and needs to get stronger and keep his emotions more in check.

14. Chicago Bears -- Kyle Fuller, CB, 6-0/190, Virginia Tech
PROS: Fuller played both outside and the slot over 42 career starts. He has good bloodlines with multiple NFL family members and plays a physical brand of football. Fuller blocked a punt vs. Marshall and nearly blocked two more against Alabama. Fuller has solid route recognition and anticipation. A solid tackler, he plays the ball well with six interceptions and 32 pass deflections in his career.
CONS: Fuller has an extremely narrow body with durability concerns. He can be too aggressive and bite on double moves, and can be stiff in the hips.

13. St. Louis Rams -- Aaron Donald, DT, 6-1/285, Pittsburgh
PROS: A highly disruptive interior lineman that dominated competition in college, Donald was the NCAA leader in tackles for loss. He boasts a quick first step and a quicker spin move. He plays with great leverage and better motor.
CONS: Donald doesn’t have ideal height or arm length, and is likely maxed out. He was held in check by FSU's Tre’ Jackson, and can be overpowered in the run game and with double teams.

12. New York Giants -- Odell Beckham Jr., WR, 5-11/198, LSU
PROS: A supreme, smooth and versatile athlete, Beckham can play split-end, flanker, in the slot and return kicks. He’s got great leaping ability and adjusts well to the ball in the air. He played under former NFL offensive coordinator Cam Cameron as a junior.
CONS: Beckham doesn’t have ideal size or strength for an NFL wide receiver. He was held to three or fewer receptions against Florida, Alabama and Arkansas, and only scored touchdowns in two of 25 career SEC games.

11. Tennessee Titans -- Taylor Lewan, OT, 6-7/308, Michigan
PROS: The finesse-based, four-year starter at Michigan has good knee bend and good balance. He loves football and plays with tenacity. He played in both spread and pro-style offenses.
CONS: Lewan gets too emotional at times, resulting in too many penalties. He can play too tall and get abused from a straight power perspective. In addition, he has endured multiple off-the-field issues.

10. Detroit Lions -- Eric Ebron, TE, 6-4/250, UNC
PROS:
Ebron is an exceptional athlete with pure speed, agility, acceleration and jumping ability. He produced for the Tar Heels as a pass-catching tight end.
CONS: He needs to work on his aggression in both blocking and running routes. He doesn’t seek contact, and has plenty of room for improvement as a blocker.

9. Minnesota Vikings (trade with Cleveland/Buffalo) -- Anthony Barr, OLB, 6-5/255, UCLA
PROS: Barr has freakish athleticism for a player his size; he ran a 4.44 40-yard dash at his pro day. He is the quintessential 3-4 outside linebacker who can sink his hips, bull-rush or swim around opposing blockers.
CONS: Two years removed from playing running back, Barr is an extremely raw defender and went AWOL at times. He can also be controlled too easily by blockers in the run game, playing timid as if on offense.

8. Cleveland Browns (trade with Minnesota)-- Justin Gilbert, CB, 6-0/202, Oklahoma St.
PROS:
Gilbert’s athleticism allow him to make difficult movements seem elegant. He intercepted seven passes as a senior, returning two for scores, and had six career kickoff returns for touchdowns.
CONS: Gilbert takes extra steps in pass coverage, which can lead to easy early or intermediate receptions. He is far from a great tackler and resists physicality regularly in the run game. He can be too aggressive in the pass game.

7. Tampa Bay Buccaneers -- Mike Evans, WR, 6-5/231, Texas A&M
PROS:
Evans has exceptional size for a wide receiver. He uses his basketball background to “box out” defenders and attack the ball high. He also has surprising speed (4.53 40-yard dash) for someone of his stature. He is superb at the back-shoulder fade.
CONS: Evans takes some time to get up to full speed. He wasn’t asked to run all NFL-type routes in college, and benefited from Texas A&M’s air-raid offense and ad-lib (Johnny Football) plays.

6. Atlanta Falcons -- Jake Matthews, OT, 6-5/308, Texas A&M
PROS:
Matthews has the genes; his father Bruce is a Hall of Famer and his cousin is Clay Matthews. He is a technician who started at right tackle and left tackle in college. He is a great pass blocker who plays with controlled aggression.
CONS: He's lacks the athleticism of Greg Robinson, who played in a spread offense. He can be susceptible to the bull rush. Matthews only posted 24 bench press reps at the Combine.

5. Oakland Raiders -- Khalil Mack, OLB, 6-3/251, Buffalo
PROS:
Good size for his position, Mack is strong and plays with outside leverage. He uses his length and strong hands in the pass rush to swat blockers away, apply swim moves, sink and rip. He’s solid in pass coverage and dominated against Ohio State.
CONS: Mack played against the likes of Eastern Michigan, Massachusetts and Stony Brook.

4. Buffalo Bills (from Cleveland) -- Sammy Watkins, WR, 6-1/211, Clemson
PROS: Quick feet, good acceleration, smooth body control, formation versatile and world-class speed, Sammy Watkins fits the NFL bill at wide receiver. He is supremely agile and routinely turns short screens into long gains.
CONS: Watkins isn’t the biggest of wide receivers. He also saw a great deal of his production on quick screen/bubble routes, which are not common in the NFL. He was arrested in May 2012 on two counts of misdemeanor possession.

3. Jacksonville Jaguars -- Blake Bortles, QB, 6-5/232, Central Florida
PROS: When general managers envision quarterbacks, they envision Bortles. At 6-foot-5 and 232 pounds, Bortles stands tall in the pocket and can extend plays with surprising athletic ability and speed.
CONS: Bortles has a tendency to stare down receivers and trust his arm too much, forcing late throws. His deep-ball accuracy is a work in progress and, at times, so is his footwork at times -- specifically on short throws to the left hash.

2. St. Louis Rams -- Greg Robinson, OT, 6-5/332, Auburn
PROS: Rare athleticism for someone his size, Robinson has Hulk-like strength to go with massive 35-inch arms. He is a supreme run blocker with the ability to drive defenders down field.
CONS: Robinson only started two seasons in Auburn’s far-from-pro-style offense. He had difficulty with advanced speed defenders in the pass game (see Missouri matchup), and over extends his arms at times.

1. Houston Texans -- Jadeveon Clowney, DE/OLB, 6-6/266, South Carolina
PROS: God-like physical ability with rare combination of size, speed and explosive power. He splits double teams, plays with leverage and power and is used to being the focus of opponents. He displays great closing speed.
CONS: Clowney can gain more weight. He had inconsistent play as a junior after he started the season out of shape. He hasn’t shown top-notch leadership or discipline off the field.

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