2014 NFL Mock Draft: Tampa Bay Buccaneers Build an Impressive Linebacking Corps


Aug 31, 2013; Atlanta, GA, USA; Alabama Crimson Tide linebacker C.J. Mosley (32) tries on the trophy after defeating Virginia Tech Hokies in the 2013 Chick-fil-A Kickoff game at the Georgia Dome. Alabama won 35-10. Mandatory Credit: Paul Abell-USA TODAY Sports

The 2014 NFL Draft is just a few months away, so with Senior Bowl reports filling the headlines and rumors of players coming and going during the offseason starting to pick up, it’s time to start thinking about mock drafts.

There are two different ways to do mock drafts. A mock drafter can predict what he thinks will happen, or he can draft as if he were the GM. In this mock, I did the latter. That means you won’t see Johnny Manziel, who I believe is a day three talent in the draft.

I provided a bit of background on the first ten picks, but I am always happy to explain any of my picks. Post any questions or comments in the comment section under the article, and I’ll respond. I follow the Buccaneers more closely than I do any other team, so my knowledge of other teams isn’t as strong, so if your team is listed with a questionable pick, just let me know.

For any players I wasn’t familiar with, I referred to the scouting reports and rankings found at CBS Sports.

1. Houston Texans
Teddy Bridgewater
Quarterback, Louisville

Matt Schaub and Case Keenum are not the answer for a new coach looking to make a positive first impression.

2. St. Louis Rams (from Washington)
Sammy Watkins
Wide Receiver, Clemson

Watkins is everything the Rams wanted to get from Tavon Austin and then some. He’s got very good hands in space and is dynamic with the ball in his hands. The short passing game with Sam Bradford adds another weapon.

3. Jacksonville Jaguars
Jadeveon Clowney
Defensive End, South Carolina

There are more holes in Jacksonville than just the QB position. Clowney is the best player in this draft, and the Jaguars are a smart team, building for the long-term.

4. Cleveland Browns
Blake Bortles
Quarterback, UCF

I know most people believe Johnny Manziel will be the pick here, but I am drafting as if I was the GM. I believe Bortles is a much better quarterback than Manziel, and he’s the pick for the Browns.

5. Oakland Raiders
Jake Matthews
Tackle, Texas A&M

The Raiders need to start laying a foundation for what their team will be when it’s hopefully successful in the future. A franchise player at tackle is a key part of that foundation.

6. Atlanta Falcons
Anthony Barr
Linebacker, UCLA

The Falcons were a mess on defense this season, so Mike Smith looks to save his defensive reputation by adding an electric athlete as a pass rusher.

7. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
C.J. Mosley
Linebacker, Alabama

Mason Foster was the right fit for Greg Schiano’s aggressive, downhill defense in 2012 and 2013, but he’ll struggle if he’s asked to do anything resembling what Lovie Smith has asked of his MLBs in the past. Foster remains a contributor at SLB while Mosley roams the middle of the field.

8. Minnesota Vikings
Kony Ealy
Defensive End, Missouri

Ealy has shot up lots of draft boards recently, and he may be the right man to replace Jared Allen for a new regime in Minnesota.

9. Buffalo Bills
Mike Evans
Wide Receiver, Texas A&M

The weapons in Buffalo all seem like secondary options waiting for a top wide receiver to complete the set. Mike Evans is that guy.

10. Detroit Lions
Darqueze Dennard
Cornerback, Michigan State

The Lions need to solidify their defensive backfield, so they add the best corner in this class.

11. Tennessee Titans
Khalil Mack
Linebacker, Buffalo

12. New York Giants
Greg Robinson
Tackle, Auburn

13. St. Louis Rams
Taylor Lewan
Tackle, Michigan

14. Chicago Bears
Hasean Clinton-Dix
Safety, Alabama

15. Pittsburgh Steelers
Justin Gilbert
Cornerback, Oklahoma State

16. Baltimore Ravens
Marqise Lee
Wide Receiver, USC

17. Dallas Cowboys
RaShede Hageman
Defensive Tackle, Minnesota

18. New York Jets
Eric Ebron
Tight End, UNC

19. Miami Dolphins
Zach Martin
Offensive Lineman, Notre Dame

20. Arizona Cardinals
Cyrus Kouandjio
Tackle, Alabama

21. Green Bay Packers
Louis Nix III
Defensive Tackle, Notre Dame

22. Philadelphia Eagles
Trent Murphy
Linebacker, Stanford

23. Kansas City Chiefs
Allen Robinson
Wide Receiver, Penn State

24. Cincinnati Bengals
Ryan Shazier
Linebacker, Ohio State

25. San Diego Chargers
Jason Verrett
Cornerback, TCU

26. Cleveland Browns (from Indianapolis)
David Yankey
Guard, Stanford

27. New Orleans Saints
Scott Crichton
Defensive End, Oregon State

28. Carolina Panthers
Kelvin Benjamin
Wide Receiver, Florida State

29. New England Patriots
Stephon Tuitt
Defensive Tackle, Norte Dame

30. San Francisco 49ers
Marcus Roberson
Cornerback, Florida

31. Denver Broncos
Louchiez Purifoy
Cornerback, Florida

32. Seattle Seahawks
Jace Amaro
Tight End, Texas Tech

For more mock drafts, check out the following sites:


Walter Football

Hail Redskins Mock Draft Database