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2012 NFL Mock Draft Updated on 04/08/2012.
1. Indianapolis Colts: Andrew Luck, QB-Stanford
Whether Peyton Manning returns to Indianapolis or not, this is the clear-cut choice the Colts will make. The way Irsay has cleaned out the staff and management, it appears he is cutting the ties that would make Peyton reluctant to leave. Luck should be a day one starter, and the consensus is that there hasn’t been a better quarterback prospect to enter the draft since Elway. The Colts defensive issues can be resolved in later rounds and in free agency.
2. TRADE: Washington Redskins VIA STL.- Robert Griffin III, QB, Baylor
The Redskins gave up a lot to move up to this pick, but if RG3 plays as well as he is expected to, it will be well worth it. The Redskins have been a revolving door of quarterbacks over the last few years. With a tough defense in place, adding a playmaker like RG3 will greatly boost the Redskins offense and chance to compete in the tough NFC East.
3. Minnesota Vikings: Matt Kalil, OT-USC
The Vikings have many areas they could address, including wide receiver. Kalil is a sure-fire pick, and will immediately improve the Vikings offensive line. After investing their first round pick last year on Christian Ponder, the Vikes will be dedicated to improving the O-Line and keeping him upright. Kalil had an excellent combine and also has NFL family ties (his brother plays for the Panthers) .
4. Cleveland Browns: Trent Richardson, RB, Alabama
It appears that the Browns will pick up Richardson here rather than Blackmon. Richardson would be the focus of the offense, and will relieve some of the pressure placed upon the passing game for the Browns with how versatile he is. Blackmon would only be a luxury with this pick. Without a bonafide starter at quarterback, Richardson will improve the Browns more than Blackmon would.
5. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Morris Claiborne, CB, LSU
The Buccaneers were one of the biggest disappointments last season. They have made a splash in free agency so far this season, signing big contracts with receiver Vincent Jackson, guard Carl Nicks, and cornerback Eric Wright. Between Aqib Talib’s legal issues, and Wright’s inconsistency, Claiborne would be a solid pick here. If Richardson fell to the Bucs, they would likely take him.