Cameron Jordan

Cameron Jordan to the St. Louis Rams?

While we all assume the Rams are interested in a receiver (most likely Julio Jones) in the 1st round, they really haven’t tipped their hand yet about their intentions.

Personally, I believe Jones will be off the board which will force the Rams to look in a different direction.

Jordan would be a great fit in St. Louis

Considering the wealth of defensive lineman with top-15 grades, it would seem logical that the Rams would target one at No. 14. I currently have them selecting Muhammad Wilkerson in my latest mock draft.

Another possibility which is flying under the radar is Cal defensive end Cameron Jordan. I have Jordan rated as the 4th overall player in this draft class and, while the consensus is that he’s in the 10-20 range, I have feeling I’m not the only one extremely high on him.

The Rams have reportedly schedule a visit with Jordan, one of the few sure-fire 1st-round picks they have been linked to this offseason. There’s no reason for them to feign an interest in Jordan, which leads me to believe they’re genuinely considering him in the 1st round.

While defensive end isn’t a glaring need, it’s possible that they are one of the teams that view him as a top-10 talent. Additionally, he seems to fit their scheme perfectly. In the Billy Devaney era the Rams have targeted true three-down lineman (like Jordan), as opposed to guys who are more pure pass rushers (such as Aldon Smith).

Ultimately I probably will not match the Rams up with Jordan in my final mock draft, but I won’t be at all shocked if he becomes their selection on draft day.

Posted on by Ryan McCrystal in 2011 NFL Draft, Rams 1 Comment

A.J. Green to the Browns? Not so fast…

Browns fans want A.J. Green. And after two years of Mohamed Massaquoi and Brian Robiskie, I don’t blame them.

There’s no denying the fact that the Browns need a wide receiver, and as a result many mock drafts currently have them selecting Green with the 6th overall selection.

I can’t say that Green isn’t a possibility for the Browns, but it’s less likely than you may think.

For starters, I think there is a very strong possibility that Green is off the board by No. 6. The Panthers, Bills and Bengals could all realistically take Green before the Browns even get a shot at him. [I currently have him going to Cincinnati.]

The real reason, however, that I don’t see Green winding up in Cleveland is that the Browns simply have far greater needs elsewhere. Everyone wants their team to get a shiny new toy to play with on offense, and Green certainly fits that description, but receivers don’t turn franchises around. Just ask Calvin Johnson and Lions or Andre Johnson and the Texans. Arguably the game’s two best receivers have a combined zero playoff appearances.

In order to rebuild the Browns, president Mike Holmgren and GM Tom Heckert (it’s actually Heckert who controls most of the draft day decisions, although Holmgren has the power to overrule) first must fix the defense.

The hiring of Dick Jauron as defensive coordinator means the Browns are transitioning back to a 4-3 scheme. That alone means they need to focus on defense in the draft, but on top of that they recently cut ties with two of their most productive linemen, Shaun Rogers and Kenyon Coleman. Additionally, Robaire Smith, Matt Roth and Brian Schaefering are set to become free agents.

If the season started today, the Browns would probably be forced to start Derreck Robinson and Marcus Benard at defensive end with Ahtyba Rubin and Travis Ivey at tackle. Yikes.

If this were a normal year, the Browns could attempt to address the defensive line in March and early April by bringing in some veteran free agents. Unfortunately it doesn’t appear as though that will be an option. As a result, the Browns may be forced to fill that void in the draft.

Fortunately for the Browns, this is the year you want to need a defensive lineman. Between Da’Quan Bowers, Nick Fairley, Marcell Dareus, Robert Quinn, Cameron Jordan or J.J. Watt, someone is sure to impress Cleveland’s staff and I strongly suspect someone from that group will wind up wearing the orange and brown in 2011.

Posted on by Ryan McCrystal in 2011 NFL Draft, Browns 4 Comments

Cameron Jordan scouting report

Cameron Jordan DE California #97

Ht: 6’4″

Wt: 287

Strengths:
Elite size/athleticism combination. Impressive strength. Holds up well at the point of attack against the run. Has the strength to use the bull rush as well as the speed to come off the edge. Explosive off the snap. Has experience lining up with his hands off the ground as a pass rusher. A true three-down lineman. Plays with a motor that never dies. NFL bloodlines – father, Steve Jordan, was a six-time Pro Bowl tight end for the Vikings.
Weaknesses:
Doesn’t have the speed to be an elite pass rusher. Arrested on a DUI charge in 2008.
Comments:
Jordan is one of the most polished prospects in this year’s draft class. Typically defensive ends don’t come off the board early unless they’re projected to be impact pass rushers, but Jordan is unique. We see a lot of specialized players these days – either pass rushers or run stuffers – but Jordan excels at both. He has the ability to play end in a 3-4 or 4-3 scheme, which increases his chances of coming off the board early.
Posted on by Ryan McCrystal in Scouting Reports - 2011 Comments Off

A quick “what if Luck stays in school” mock draft

It seems like every day a new reporter finds “sources” to tell him that Andrew Luck is leaning toward staying in school. I’m inclined to call “BS” on anyone who says Luck is leaning towards staying at Stanford, especially since it sounds as though Jim Harbaugh is as good as gone. But I’ll humor those who think he’s staying for a moment and throw together a quick mock draft based on the scenario that he stays. Here’s the top 10 of the “what if Luck stays” mock draft…

1. Panthers – Da’Quan Bowers – DE – Clemson
The Panthers don’t need a quarterback, so they won’t take one unless Luck is there. Their pass rush was abysmal this season, and they missed Julius Peppers even more than anyone could have anticipated. Bowers is coming off a monster year and should be an instant-impact pass rusher at the next level.

2. Broncos – Patrick Peterson – CB – LSU
With Josh McDaniels gone, the Broncos may be ready to give up on Tim Tebow after just three games. However, I don’t think they’ll reach for someone like Newton or Mallett with the second pick. The safe bet is to take Peterson, the best available player. Champ Bailiey may not return, and even if he does he’s on the downswing of his career.

3. Bengals – A.J. Green – WR – Georgia
One of the biggest decisions any team has to make this offseason is the Bengals’ looming decision about Carson Palmer. They could cut him loose and draft a new franchise quarterback here. I don’t think they’re willing to give up yet, however. A.J. Green is an elite talent and could be the young receiver Palmer needs to get the offense back on track.

4. Bills – Ryan Mallett – QB – Arkansas
The Bills need a quarterback to build around and should be able to get one in this year’s draft. But who will it be? Mallett, Locker and Newton are all worth considering. It’s pure speculation at this point, but I think Chan Gailey and Buddy Nix will lean toward the strong-armed Mallett.

5. Cardinals – Prince Amukamara – CB – Nebraska
The Cardinals are another team in need of a quarterback, but I expect Ken Whisenhunt to push for them to bring in a veteran.  As a result, they’ll turn their attention to the defense in the draft, landing either Amukamara, Cameron Jordan or Nick Fairley here.

6. 49ers – Cam Newton – QB – Auburn
Until a GM and a coach are in place it’s tough to predict how the 49ers will handle the draft. But one thing is certain: they need a quarterback. If they need to make a decision between Newton and Locker, expect Newton to be their guy.

7. Cowboys – Cameron Jordan – DE – California
Jordan isn’t nearly the most well-known of the top 3-4 defensive ends, but I believe he is the best of the bunch. The Cowboys will be looking to improve the defense, making Jordan a strong possibility here.

8. Texans – Nick Fairley – DT – Auburn
The Texans need to address their secondary, but with Peterson and Amukamara off the board they must turn their attention to the defensive line. Fairley is an elite pass-rushing interior lineman who reminds me of Ndamukong Suh.

9. Lions – Robert Quinn – DE – North Carolina
The Lions offense is progressing, but the defense still has some holes. Kyle Vanden Bosch hasn’t worked out and the Lions will likely look to upgrade their pass rush this offseason. Quinn may be the best pass-rushing end available in this draft class.

10. Browns – Julio Jones – WR – Alabama
The Browns are now committed to Colt McCoy, but now they need to supply him with some weapons. Jones, Justin Blackmon, Michael Floyd, Jon Baldwin and Torrey Smith could all be options depending on who leaves early for the draft.

Posted on by Ryan McCrystal in 2011 NFL Draft, 49ers, Bengals, Bills, Broncos, Browns, Cardinals, Cowboys, Lions, Panthers, Texans 1 Comment