It looks like we're all scrambling to make our draft thoughts a matter of public record on the off chance we guess right! Here are my thoughts: I believe this draft will be highly skewed toward the offense early on. The obvious rationale is that when a 2-14 team drafts a franchise QB and starts him immediately, priority #1 is to give him all he needs to be successful. Pagano has stated that he wants a run-first offense, and my belief is that he wants to build a premier run-blocking line. That would enable the team to win the game running the football, and enable Luck to check to pass plays and win through the air when teams over-commit to stopping the run. The defensive needs will just have to wait until later (like, the 5th round) this year. With all that in mind, I see rounds 2-4 including an OL, a pass-catching TE, and a WR.
-OL - We seem to be one OL short of a solid, run-blocking line. I see the line as of today as: LT Costanzo, LG Reitz, C Satele, RG McGlynn, RT Ijalana. I see Justice as a back-up tackle reclamation project who has more athletic ability than Linkenbach (which is a low bar). I see McGlynn a good utility infielder, who is the first interior lineman to join the lineup in the event of injury. Given that it's much easier to find a good guard than a tackle, I'd keep Ijalana at OT and try to find a new starting RG.
-TE - Pass-catching TEs are all the rage, and we have none. I personally believe that Edridge will thrive in the run-first offense, but a receiving TE is necessary as a safety valve and as a primary target in a ball-control offense.
-WR - I think we're fine this year, but it doesn't make much sense for Luck to be developing a special relationship with receivers who won't be in Indy in three years. There's old Wayne, underwhelming Avery, and not-explosive Collie...clearly, more is needed.
All that being said, here's my official mock:
1) Andrew Luck, QB, Stanford. No further comment.
2) Kevin Zeitler, OG, Wisconsin. The missing run-blocking OL.
3) Marvin Jones, WR, California. I love this guy. He's billed as a possession receiver who runs great routes, has great hands, and gets separation. However, he ran a 4.46 at the combine, which tells me he can stretch the field too. Love this guy...
4) Michael Egnew, TE, Missouri. Typical receiving TE. He'll fit the bill nicely.
5) Keith Tandy, CB, West Virginia. Physical type favored by Pagano. Of course, he needs some work in coverage as he converted to DB after a celebrated HS career as a QB.
5C) Nick Jean-Baptiste, NT, Baylor. It was apparent that there were no prospects available to the Colts who could start immediately and be an upgrade from McKinney. Many like Ta'amu, but while he's the right size and shape, I don't think he's that good of a football player. Really, we're looking for a 2nd- or 3rd-string NT, and there's a good crop of potential picks here.
6C) Drake Dunsmore, WB/TE, Northwestern. Here's another option at receiving TE. He's also someone who's versatile enough to design ways to get him involved as a WBor a FB. In summary, another potential weapon for Luck.
7) Noah Keller, ILB, Ohio. I love Conner and Angerer as ILB in the 3-4. However, we have virtually nothing behind them. Keller isn't well known, but he's fast (4.63). high-character, and a great run defender.
7 from Jet trade) Tyler Shoemaker, WR, Boise St. A former walk-on who works his butt off. His hands aren't natural, but he has size (6'1", 214), speed (4.44), and quickness. I like him more than most. Here's another chance to build Luck's new receiving corps.
7C "Mr. Irrelevant") Chaz Powell, CB, Penn St. Another Pagano-style physical CB. I also like Stanford S Delano Howell, but I seem to like David Caldwell and Joe Lefeged more than most. We did a lot of development last year when it comes to Caldwell and Lefeged, and I think they're both good back-ups and potential future starters.
Top college FA prospects: 1) Delano Howell, S, Stanford, 2) Jewell Hampton, RB, S. Illinois, 3) Blake DeChristopher, OT, Virginia Tech, 4) Joel Foreman, OG, Michigan St., and 5) Terrrence Frederick, CB, Texas A&M.
The main thing that would confound my mock is that if Fleener lasted until our 2nd rounder (at which point I' d pounce on him!). If we should be so fortunate, my mock would like this: 1) Luck 2) Fleener 3) Kelechi Osemele, OG, Iowa St. I believe that Brandon Brooks of Miami (Ohio) will climb in Round 2 and Osemele will fall to us in the 2nd. He's a great run-blocker and I'd take him. 4) Greg Childs, WR, Arkansas. Lots of options at WR in the 4th. Other options include McNutt, Jarius Wright, and Ryan Broyle. It's a very deep WR class. 5)-7C) Same as above!