FLOWERY BRANCH — Falcons general manager Thomas Dimitroff has watched the flurry of trades in front of the team with intense scrutnity.
First, it was the Washington’s trade for Donovan McNabb, which effectively took the Redskins out of the quarterback
market at the No. 4 spot in this draft.
This week, Miami’s trade for Brandon Marshall took them out of the Dez Bryant derby at the 11th spot. Denver, which picks 12th, is now free to take Bryant or Georgia Tech’s Demaryius Thomas to replace Marshall.
Miami can now take defense. Both of those deals had the Falcons re-adjusting their draft scenarios.
“For instance, Miami ,we now know they are not going to go in a certain direction,” Dimitroff said. “Does that make them more apt to pick a defensive end that might affect us, of course it does. We consider that. But it’s not something that’s going to drive our focus going forward. Our focus right now is our final comparatives.”
Also, don’t be surprised if the Falcons are active during the draft, making a move to get into the second round. New England coach/czar/emperor Bill Belichick, owner of three second round picks, called Dimitroff during coach Mike Smith’s golf tournament on Tuesday.
I don’t think he called just to chat about old times.
Belichick might want to move up to 19 and sling one of those second rounders to the Falcons, with the Falcons dropping back to 22 and still getting their man, Florida center Maurkice Pouncey. That’s a likely scenario if, as predicted in The Real Deal Mock 1.0 (below), Missouri’s Sean Weatherspoon and Michigan’s Brandon Graham are off the board.
The other previous seven Mock were simple warm-ups, here’s the “Real Deal Mock 1.0″ that will run in Sunday’s newspaper. Also, we’ll have the final version on Thursday morning the day of the draft.
1. St. Louis Rams: Sam Bradford, QB, Oklahoma, 6-foot-4, 236-pounds. In the last two drafts, the Rams passed on quarterbacks Mark Sanchez, Matt Ryan and Joe Flacco. This time they pull the trigger.
2. Detroit Lions: Ndamukong Suh, DT, Nebraska, 6-4, 302. Head coach Jim Schwartz, a former defensive
coordinator, values a strong front line.
3. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Gerald McCoy, DT, Oklahoma, 6-4, 298. The Bucs get someone to anchor the defensive front and hope that he’s another Warren Sapp.
4. Washington Redskins: Trent Williams, OT, Oklahoma, 6-5, 318. New coach Mike Shanahan wants someone to help get his running attack rolling.
5. Kansas City Chiefs: Russell Okung, OT, Oklahoma State, 6-5, 307. The Chiefs go with Okung to help anchor the line with last season’s 15th pick Branden Albert.
6. Seattle Seahawks: Derrick Morgan, DE, Georgia Tech, 6-4, 272. With the retirement of defensive end Patrick Kerney and the trade of defensive end Darryl Tapp, the Seahawks take Morgan.
7. Cleveland Browns: Eric Berry, DB, Tennessee, 5-11 5/8, 211. Only five safeties have been taken in the top 10 over the last 10 years. Berry, of Creekside High, becomes the sixth.
8. Oakland Raiders: Anthony Davis, OT, Rutgers, 6-6, 325. The Raiders are comfortable with the explanation from Rutgers coach Greg Schiano about Davis’ fluctuating weight.
9. Buffalo Bills: Brian Bulaga, OT, Iowa, 6-6, 312. Chan Gailey gets a road-grading blocker to help power the Bills rushing attack.
10. Jacksonville Jaguars: Rolando McClain, LB, Alabama, 6-4, 256. The Jags are not scared off by the fact that McClain has Crohn’s disease.
11. Denver Broncos: Dez Bryant, WR, Oklahoma, 6-2, 225: With the trade of Brandon Marshall, the Broncos are thin at wide receiver.
12. Miami Dolphins: Sergio Kindle, LB, Texas, 6-4, 255: The Dolphins have to replace outside linebackers Joey Porter and Jason Taylor.
13. San Francisco 49ers: Joe Haden, CB, Florida, 5-10 ¾, 193. The 49ers are not afraid of the slow 40-time he ran at the NFL scouting combine.
14. Seattle Seahawks: C.J. Spiller, RB, Clemson, 5-11, 196. He’s been compared to Reggie Bush and gets picked by Bush’s former college coach Pete Carroll.
15. New York Giants: Sean Weatherspoon, LB, Missouri, 6-1, 241. The Giants must replace Antonio Pierce, who was released over the offseason.
16. Tennessee Titans: Jason Pierre-Paul, DE, South Florida, 6-6, 265: The Titans are in the defensive end market after losing Kyle Vanden Bosch in free agency.
17. San Francisco 49ers: Jimmy Clausen, QB, Notre Dame, 6-2, 223. The 49ers have seen enough of Alex Smith to know he’s not a franchise quarterback.
18. Pittsburgh Steelers: Brandon Graham, DE, Michigan, 6-1, 263. He can play on three downs right away and
provide a pass rush.
19. Atlanta Falcons: Maurkice Pouncey, C/G, Florida, 6-5, 318. If Weatherspoon gets past the Giants, he’s the pick. If not, Pouncey will get a chance to man one of the guard spots while learning how to play center at the pro level under Todd McClure.
20. Houston Texans: Kyle Wilson, CB, Boise State, 5-10, 194. The Texans get a prospect to replace Dunta Robinson, who signed with the Falcons in free agency.
21. Cincinnati Bengals: Jermaine Gresham, TE, Oklahoma, 6-5, 261. The Bengals add a weapon for quarterback Carson Palmer after revamping the receiving corps.
22. New England Patriots: Jared Odrick, DE, Penn State, 6-5, 301. He has the size to play that hybrid defensive end/outside linebacker spot in the mold of Mike Vrabel.
23. Green Bay Packers: Charles Brown, OT, USC, 6-5, 292. The Packers have to add some offensive line help, but could trade down and add picks.
24. Philadelphia Eagles: Kareem Jackson, CB, Alabama, 5-10, 196. Played his career in the shadows of Javier Arenas, but he’s the better pro prospect.
25. Baltimore Ravens: Demaryius Thomas, WR, Georgia Tech, 6-3, 224. Perfect spot for Thomas, who can learn from veterans Anquan Boldin and Derrick Mason.
26. Arizona Cardinals: Dan Williams, DT, Tennessee, 6-2, 329. He is a brute force player who’ll fit nicely along side of Darnell Dockett.
27. Dallas Cowboys: Earl Thomas, S, Texas, 5-10 ¼, 208. The Cowboys like his versatility in coverage.
28. San Diego Chargers: Ryan Matthews, RB, Fresno State, 5-11, 220. The Chargers try to replace LaDainian Tomlinson with the NCAA’s leading rusher in 2009.
29. New York Jets: Everson Griffen, DE, USC, 6-3, 278. Is a natural fit for Rex Ryan’s defense.
30. Minnesota Vikings: Chris Cook, CB, Virginia, 6-2, 212. The Vikings need a big cornerback to go against the receivers they face in the NFC North.
31. Indianapolis Colts: Michael Iupati, G, Idaho, 6-5, 325. A small school product, who fits nicely in the Colts’ blocking scheme.
32. New Orleans Saints: Jerry Hughes, DE, Texas Christian, 6-2, 257. Hughes reminds some of a young Dwight Freeney.
Bruce Campbell, OT, Maryland; Colt McCoy, QB, Texas; Tim Tebow, QB, Florida; Taylor Mays, S, USC; Patrick Robinson, CB, Florida State; Jonathan Dwyer, RB, Georgia Tech; Brandon Spikes, LB, Florida; Carlos Dunlap, DE, Florida; Brian Price, DT, UCLA; Terrence Cody, DT, Alabama and Devin McCourty, CB, Rutgers.