My last mock was not explained well, because I see our offence having more problems than most people and our defence having less. After that mock draft, I realized that explaining our offence's deficiencies would take a fanpost itself. This mock draft will be based off of the needs addressed in that fanpost. I will also be predicting FA moves, based on what has happened so far.
Free Agency Gains
Chris Ivory, HB, Age: 26
He is technically a RFA, but I doubt the Saints want to pay out for a 2nd or 1st round tender, because he is one of their five power backs. The thing is with having so many is that other teams can pay more for them. I think we make the move to improve our short yardage running. BJGE put up good numbers, but that was because our OL was good enough to open the right hole. BJGE can't cut back to the opposite side, so we should get one that can. Ivory can.
Chris Ivory beast 56 yard run against the Falcons. Can you remember a time BJGE ever did anything like this when he got into the open? Didn't think so.
You can't gain without losing. Hopefully we gain more than we lose.
Terrence Newman, CB
Newman revived his career here, but is the oldest CB. He played well, but not as well as Jones or Hall. I haven't heard any news about us re-signing him and I don't view his re-signing as critical as re-signing Jones, Johnson, or Smith. This may be the guy we let go we wish we didn't.
Nate Clements, SS
Clements should not be on a roster at this point. He is lethargic and stiff in the hips. He just played one season longer than he should have.
Manny Lawson, OLB
With the SOLBs we have coming in, I doubt we re-sign him. He was invisible out there and pretty much did nothing. I wasn't even aware he was starting for the first couple games.
Rey Maualuga, MLB
After an average season, that ended in an awful game, I doubt he comes back. Burfict can play his position so much better and Howard will be coming back to play Will.
The 2013 NFL Draft
Matt Elam, Strong Safety, Florida
Elam is the Strong safety we need and will likely be gone by our first second round pick. Unless we act here, he will be going to the Rams at the latest. It is very rare a SS gets picked this early, but Elam isn't your average SS propect. His range and coverage ability have boosted his stock. He can lay the lumber as well as anyone, so that will give us a duo of rangy safeties back there that can blow someone's blocks off.
Jonathan Banks, CB, Mississippi State
Banks is a big, athletic CB that is falling because of his injury. This is his first injury, so I am not that worried. KirkPatrick or Banks should be able to step up in the wake of Terrence Newman's absence. Our pass D should be a strong point for the 2013 season, because our secondary will be as strong as our DL.
Khaled Holmes, C, Southern California
Holmes is a projected third round pick, but I doubt he will fall out of the first 16 picks, especially after the combine. He is a true mauler that needs to touch up his pass blocking technique. He is agile and quick off the ball, giving him an edge against DTs and the ability to reach the MLB when he has to. He won't be a finished project when he enters the league, but I think he could be the best of this class in a few years.
Jelani Jenkins, OLB, Florida
Jenkins is the coverage LBer everyone has wanted. There are a number of reasons why he has fallen. First, he has never been a full time player. UF has had 4 great LBers the HC wants to get snaps and they only have 3 LBers out there at any one time. The LBers rotated out and took turns, sometimes it was Bostic, others it was Jenkins. The second reason is he was injured for an extended part of his senior campaign. He injured his thumb against Texas A&M, but didn't return to the lineup when he was fully healed. This probably means nothing, as UF has 3 other great LBers and the coach might have wanted 'till he was fully healed, not 'healthy enough to play'.
Kenjon Barner, HB, Oregon
Barner is an interesting prospect, as he is really explosive, but doesn't have the size to play his desired position in a full time capacity. In this, he is Tavon Austin without the hype. He would be a great receiving back, though and complement to Chris Ivory. Barner is a big play waiting to happen and he could break a long one if the D decides to leave him uncovered on a blitz.
Michael Williams, TE, Alabama
Williams is a huge blocking TE. His size (6'6" 270 lbs.) screams size mismatch. He was underutilized in Bama's offence, as Bama force-fed Lacy. He did prove that he was under-utilized this past year, as he became a bigger part of the passing game. Bama needed someone to step up desperately and he did. He doubled his previous season high in every receiving category. He wasn't always used as a seam threat, but proved indispensable near the goaline. Hopefully he could blossom in our passing game and start over the underacheiving Gresham. If not, we greatly improved our TE depth and short yardage running.
Brendon Kaufman, WR, Eastern Washington
Kaufman was a great WR at a division II school. Scouts truly question his level of competition, despite him doing well against FBS teams. He has the size to be successful at 6'4" and 215 lbs. He isn't slow, but will never be considered speed demon either. What he did in college was use his size and body control to catch the ball deep.
Terry Hawthorne, CB, Illinois
Hawthorne played at Illinois, which runs a lot of zone, but he doesn't look lost in man and doesn't get beat up at the LOS. He didn't have a great season in terms of INTs, but he did his job in zone. His atheticism (sub or near sub 4.4 40) could get him drafted early, but not many teams will touch a zone corner. He has the ability to play man, but is inexperienced.
Ben Cottom, TE, Nebraska
Cottom broke multiple records at Nebraska for TEs. His 7 TDs his senoir season broke the record by a good margin. Cottom needs to improve his blocking to work his way into the lineup, but he is an intriguing prospect.
Sean Renfree, QB, Duke
Renfree was injured on the last play of his senior season. Before that, he had a huge arm and underrated speed.
Kyler Reed, TE, Nebraska
Reed was a good blocking TE that was a complementary player to Cottom. He can catch and has the ability to play the TE position in the NFL.
We improved our secondary to match our aging pieces and losses. We upgraded our OL with the addition of Holmes, Ivory and Barner, our running game should be kicking. Kaufman should come in and take the last roster spot for WRs. Hopefully he proves to be solid depth if Sanu or Jones gets injured.