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NFL Mock Draft 2014: Darqueze Dennard Strengthens the Secondary

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With the 27th pick in the NFL draft, the New Orleans Saints select...

Mike Carter-USA TODAY Sports

Other than Chris Johnson signing a two-year deal with the New York Jets, not much has occurred in the NFL world recently. The final scheduled Pro Days are coming to a close and multiple teams are starting to round out the top of their draft board. One of those teams, the Cleveland Browns, has expressed a large amount of interest in Derek Carr, whom they believe will be available with their second first round pick. I am expecting a shake-up at the quarterback position, which will change the entire landscape of the first round of the draft.

1. Houston Texans - Jadaveon Clowney, DE, South Carolina

2. St. Louis Rams - Greg Robinson, OT, Auburn

3. Jacksonville Jaguars - Johnny Manziel, QB, Texas A&M

4 Cleveland Browns - Sammy Watkins, WR, Clemson

5. Oakland Raiders - Jake Matthews, OT, Texas A&M

6. Atlanta Falcons - Khalil Mack, OLB, Buffalo

7. Tampa Bay Buccaneers - Taylor Lewan, OT, Michigan

8. Minnesota Vikings - Teddy Bridgewater, QB, Louisville

9. Buffalo Bills - Mike Evans, WR, Texas A&M

10. Detroit Lions - Kony Ealy, DE, Missouri

11. Tennessee Titans - Blake Bortles, QB, UCF

12. New York Giants - Eric Ebron, TE, North Carolina

13. St. Louis Rams - Ha Ha Clinton-Dix, S, Alabama

14. Chicago Bears - Aaron Donald, DT, Pittsburgh

15. Pittsburgh Steelers - Anthony Barr, OLB, UCLA

16. Dallas Cowboys - Ra'Shede Hageman, DT, Minnesota

17. Baltimore Ravens - Justin Gilbert, CB, Oklahoma State

18. New York Jets - Odell Beckham Jr., WR, LSU

19. Miami Dolphins - Zach Martin, OT, Notre Dame

20. Arizona Cardinals - Calvin Pryor, S, Louisvile

21. Philadelphia Eagles - Brandin Cooks, WR, Oregon State

22. Green Bay Packers - C.J. Mosley, ILB, Alabama

23. Kansas City Chiefs - Bradley Roby, CB, Ohio State

24. Cincinnati Bengals - Ryan Shazier, OLB, Ohio State

25. San Diego Chargers - Kyle Fuller, CB, Virginia Tech

26. Cleveland Browns - Derek Carr, QB, Fresno State

27. New Orleans Saints - Darqueze Dennard, CB, Michigan State

Mocking a receiver to the Saints with this pick is over for the time being because the Saints have brought Robert Meachem back on a one-year deal. This isn't a powerful addition by any means, but they now have four quality receivers on the roster and using a first round pick shouldn't be mandatory. A receiver should still be taken at some point in the draft, though.

A shake-up in the middle rounds and at quarterback, which is extremely possible, allows for Darqueze Dennard to fall to the Saints. Future Hall of Famer Champ Bailey was recently signed to alleviate pains at the corner position, but he will turn 36 in July. Dennard, the recipient of the Jim Thorpe award in 2013, is a physical, speedy corner that would thrive in Rob Ryan's scheme, which features a lot of press-man coverage.

I will say, if a guy such as Brandin Cooks or Odell Beckham Jr. somehow falls to the Saints, you can bet that the Saints' staff will (as they should) think long and hard about taking him.

28. Carolina Panthers - Marqise Lee, WR, USC

29. New England Patriots - Jace Amaro, TE, Texas Tech

30. San Francisco 49ers - Jason Verrett, CB, TCU

31. Denver Broncos - Dee Ford, DE/OLB, Auburn

32. Seattle Seahawks - Kelvin Benjamin, WR, Florida State