"Mock draft," like every other bit of terminology tied to scouting and the NFL Draft these days, is a code phrase. It is an educated guess that, fittingly, usually ends up being mocked. Sometimes these guesses are based on actual sourcing, while most others are a combo product of looking at a team's current roster, its historical tendencies, which prospects it has brought in for private workouts and intuition.
This is the latter.
But make no mistake, this is a very valuable service I'm providing the fine and well-mannered readers of The Falcoholic. Disregard the fact that these predictions will be rendered moot in a few days' time, or the fact that I claim to have no inside sources at my disposal. Enjoy the ride and embrace my ability to weave jargon-filled sentences with the finesse of atouchdown catch. Because what's more fun than guessing games?
Round 1 - OLB/DE Vic Beasley (Trade)
As I mentioned over in the site-wide first-round mock, I would like to think Beasley is the "defender" Atlanta is targeting in a potential trade up into the top five. I've liked his abilities as an edge rusher since he made UGA look silly in Death Valley two years, and I certainly like him now.
Long-winded thoughts on Beasley can be found here. The short version: he's worth trading up to acquire. How far and what they would have to give up are the big questions. My conservative guess is a fourth-rounder this year and a second-rounder next year.
Round 2 - FS Demarious Randall, Arizona State
Electric safety that many are viewing as No. 1 at his position in this draft class. It's clear based on the reported private workouts that Dan Quinn is not satisfied with the current makeup of the secondary. Landing Randall here would be a great value and gives the Falcons an immediate contributor.
Round 3 - RB David Johnson, Northern Iowa
The Falcons need another running back. Tevin Coleman is too north-south and impatient to fit a zone blocking scheme. Jay Ajayi is a little too "creative" with his lateral movements. Johnson is the steady in-between, a tough, dependable runner that can handle whatever Kyle Shanahan throws his way.
Round 4 - Traded
Had this pick not been hypothetically sent away to land Beasley, I like Texas linebacker Jordan Hicks here.
Round 5 - WR Vince Mayle, Washington State
Fantastically exciting prospect who stands a good chance of being gone by this point in the draft. His size makes him a potential WR/TE/FB hybrid that could be used in a number of different roles on offense. Also caught 106 passes for 1,483 yards and nine touchdowns last season in Mike Leach's air raid offensive attack. Do want.
Round 6 - CB Justin Coleman, Tennessee
This is not going to be an offense-heavy draft. Quinn will stick with what he knows -- defense, and especially defensive backs -- and improve those areas as best he can. Coleman is small for a Seattle-brand corner, but he's a physical player with strong instincts and high energy. Those are all traits Quinn seems to like.
Round 7 - OL Antoine Everett, McNeese State
Did I steal this pick from Dave? Maybe. But I'll add this anecdote:
I got the chance to meet UGA offensive line coach Rob Sale this spring. Sale spent the last three years as O-line coach at McNeese State, and the man knows his stuff having come up under the Nick Saban coaching tree at Alabama. Everett would make a nice swing player, and I have no doubt his fundamentals will be strong.
Round 7 (Comp) - LB Neiron Ball, Florida
You might think it's strange the Falcons wait this long to address linebacker. But withand now in the fold, plus a combination of , and perhaps all in the mix for the other inside linebacker spot, this might be a position the Falcons look to patch over in favor of focusing on the secondary headed into next season.
Ball can fit in at a couple of different linebacker spots and has good physical tools that would make him a solid depth pick.
Well, that's it. Agree or disagree, please let me know, and happy drafting!