Chris and I are back with selections 9-12 of the 2014 Mock First Round Draft. Chris has the odd numbers and I have the even.
See Picks 5-8
9. Buffalo Bills – Jake Matthews, OT, Texas A&M
I was really close to going with Eric Ebron here. The Bills went outside the box in 2013 selecting quarterback EJ Manuel. Their number one priority should be turning him into a franchise signal caller. Ebron would certainly help out Manuel but Matthews is a steal at this point and a safer pick. He still helps out Manuel, and with the Bills adding Mike Williams to go along with Stevie Johnson, Robert Woods, and Marquis Goodwin, he has plenty of pass catchers to throw to.
10. Detroit Lions – Justin Gilbert, CB, Oklahoma State
The Lions have desperately needed upgrades in their secondary for some time now and the fast and athletic Gilbert will accomplish that. He isn’t as physical as Darqueze Dennard, but he has better speed and good ball skills which translates well to the NFC North. With receivers like Alshon Jeffrey, Brandon Marshall and Jordy Nelson, Gilbert’s skills are a must. He will will also provide upgrades in their return game as well.
11. Tennessee Titans – Anthony Barr, OLB, UCLA
Ray Horton’s taken over the Titans defense and needs parts to implement his scheme. Horton worked under Dick Lebeau for 5+ years so Steelers fans should be familiar with what the Titans want to do. In his scheme, pressure from the edge is the straw that stirs the drink. Barr is raw, and isn’t going to be an immediate pro bowler but the potential is there to be very good.
12. New York Giants – Taylor Lewan, OT, Michigan
It’s very possible the Giants could with tight end Eric Ebron here but I think the offensive line desperately needs to be rebuilt. Lewan offers the scrappy, tenacious attitude that Tom Coughlin likes and he could be a plug and play starter from day one. Last year, the G-Men struggled to protect Eli Manning and that resulted in hurried throws and turnovers. Lewan is a great start in terms of getting the Giants back to dominating the line of scrimmage.