As we are now under a week away from the first night of the 2014 NFL Draft, I felt it necessary to give our readers here at Canal Street Chronicles one more mock draft. While most of my series has generally stayed the same, this last one includes some mix-ups that would certainly make for an exciting night if they were to occur, one of which includes our Saints taking a slight risk on a prospect. So without further adieu, here's my last mock draft of 2014. Enjoy!
1. Houston Texans - Jadaveon Clowney, DE, South Carolina
2. St. Louis Rams - Greg Robinson, OT, Auburn
3. Jacksonville Jaguars - Khalil Mack, OLB, Buffalo
4. Cleveland Browns - Sammy Watkins, WR, Clemson
5. Oakland Raiders - Jake Matthews, OT, Texas A&M
6. Atlanta Falcons - Taylor Lewan, OT, Michigan
7. Tampa Bay Buccaneers - Blake Bortles, QB, Central Florida
8. Minnesota Vikings - Teddy Bridgewater, QB, Louisville
9. Buffalo Bills - Mike Evans, WR, Texas A&M
10. Detroit Lions - Ha Ha Clinton-Dix, S, Alabama
11. Tennessee Titans - Justin Gilbert, CB, Oklahoma State
12. New York Giants - Eric Ebron, TE, North Carolina
13. St. Louis Rams - Derek Carr, QB, Fresno State
14. Chicago Bears - Aaron Donald, DT, Pittsburgh
15. Pittsburgh Steelers - Kony Ealy, DE, Missouri
16. Dallas Cowboys - Johnny Manziel, QB, Texas A&M
17. Baltimore Ravens - C.J. Mosley, ILB, Alabama
18. New York Jets - Brandin Cooks, WR, Oregon State
19. Miami Dolphins - Zach Martin, OT, Notre Dame
20. Arizona Cardinals - Calvin Pryor, S, Louisvile
21. Philadelphia Eagles - Odell Beckham Jr., WR, LSU
22. Green Bay Packers - Anthony Barr, OLB, UCLA
23. Kansas City Chiefs - Darqueze Dennard, CB, Michigan State
24. Cincinnati Bengals - Ryan Shazier, OLB, Ohio State
25. San Diego Chargers - Kyle Fuller, CB, Virginia Tech
26. Cleveland Browns - Marqise Lee, WR, USC
27. New Orleans Saints - Jordan Matthews, WR, Vanderbilt
As we all know, the Saints are in need of another receiving threat to add youth, depth, and talent to the group. Lucky for them, this is regarded as one of the deepest drafts in NFL history at the receiver position.
While Jordan Matthews hasn't been a regular in the conversation of whom will be selected in the first round, I believe he is worth taking a flier on in this position. After labeling him as a second-tier prospect at first, myself, I went back to take a deeper look at him. He is a guy that has a tremendous amount of upside and that could easily slide in to the Saints' third receiver spot behind Marques Colston and Kenny Stills.
Matthews, the SEC's current owner of the most yards and receptions in a career, has a great build for the receiver position - 6'3", 212 lbs - and boasts good straight-line speed, timing a 4.46 at the 40-yard dash. The Commodore is also extremely experienced at wide receiver, starting every game but two in his four-year career at Vanderbilt.
Even though cornerback is just as much, if not more, of a need as wide receiver, there will be numerous, excellent corners available in the later rounds as well. Stanley Jean-Baptiste, Keith McGill, and Pierre Desir are those of note. The Saints need to add another option for Drew Brees early in the draft, though, so that their offense can remain dynamic and explosive.
28. Carolina Panthers - Jason Verrett, CB, TCU
29. New England Patriots - Ra'Shede Hageman, DT, Minnesota
30. San Francisco 49ers - Kelvin Benjamin, WR, Florida State
31. Denver Broncos - Dee Ford, DE/OLB, Auburn
32. Seattle Seahawks - Bradley Roby, CB, Ohio State