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NFL Draft Rumors: Matt Kalil, Dre Kirkpatrick, Kendall Wright, Browns, Chandler Jones, Chargers

Matt Kalil

Pro Football Talk‘s Mike Florio confirms a previous report from Charley Casserly that the Buffalo Bills are considering a move up for USC LT Matt Kalil.

Should the Bills be unable to trade up for him, Florio adds that Buffalo could end up moving back for a different offensive tackle. Georgia’s Cordy Glenn and Iowa’s Riley Reiff could both be in play for the Bills they choose to move down.

There has been plenty of mixed signals relating to the Bills‘ draft strategy in recent days. Some have suggested that S Mark Barron and ILB Luke Kuechly could also be in consideration for the No. 10 overall pick, but Rob Rang of CBS Sports believes it’s “total BS.

Buffalo clearly needs help at a number of positions, but as of now, offensive tackle looks to be their focus.

Dre Kirkpatrick

At one point, Alabama’s Dre Kirkpatrick was sitting right beyond Morris Claiborne as this year’s second-best corner, but he has since been surpassed by Stephen Gilmore and according to Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk, he could be dropping even further.

Florio is quick to point out that this perceived likely has more to do with the fact that he was overrated by the media, while NFL team’s weren’t exactly that high on him to begin with. This is not to say that he’ll drop out of the first-round, but there’s a chance he could slide back into the 17-20 range depending on what happens in the early portion of the draft.

We have him going to the Tennessee Titans in our final 2012 NFL Mock Draft.

Kendall Wright

Greg Bedard of the Boston Globe reports that the New England Patriots held an 11th-hour private workout with Baylor WR Kendall Wright this week. The visit took place at Baylor’s campus.

You see him running by a corner every game,” said an AFC scout. “If you would have asked me to guess (his forty time), I would have conservatively guessed 4.45. I would have thought he easily would have run a 4.3. But for him to run to run what he did, I was completely shocked. It kind of reminded me of when Chad (Ochocinco) came out of Oregon State, he ran like a 4.6 after running by people at the Senior Bowl. He played a lot faster than what he timed.”

Wright’s draft stock has been fluctuating some in the weeks leading up to the draft, but it’s been mentioned several times that he has the best tape of any receiver in this year’s draft class. Now that could have something to do with who was throwing him the ball, but Wright is clearly a solid weapon in the passing game. It would be surprising to say the least if he ends up being available to anyone after the Browns at #22. The Rams also brought him in for a late workout, so they could be eyeing him depending whether or not he drops.

Browns

Terry Pluto of the Cleveland Plain Dealer sees that the Browns taking LSU CB Morris Claiborne at No. 4 overall.

Many have Browns taking Alabama RB Trent Richardson with their first selection and there has been some mention of Oklahoma State WR Justin Blackmon being an option as well, but it would certainly be interesting to see the Browns take defensive player when their offense so anemic.

To me, Richardson makes too much sense, even with depreciated value of the running back position. They’re not going to be able to find a better option in the later rounds, even though David Wilson and Doug Martin should be viewed as quality options. Richardson’s upside is far too high to pass on.

Chandler Jones

The NFL Network’s Stacey Dales reports that the Patriotsreally, really like” Syracuse DE Chandler Jones, according to sources with knowledge of the situation.

Jones’ draft stock has probably risen the most in the last few weeks, but once again, that could have something to do with a miscalculation from the media in terms of his perceived value. Mike Mayock went as far to say that Jones will end up becoming the “best defensive player” in this year’s draft.

I’m gonna make a statement,” said Mayock. “Three years from now, I’m gonna say Chandler Jones is the best defensive player to come out of this draft.”

Mayock actually has Jones rated as the No. 9 overall prospect in his top-100 rankings. There’s a good chance that he’ll be gone even before the Patriots have an opportunity to consider him. We have him going to the Jets at #16 in our final 2012 NFL Mock Draft.

Chargers

According to Kevin Acee of the Union-Tribune San Diego, the Chargers will be taking Illinois DE Whitney Mercilus at No. 18 overall.

Clearly pass rush is an area of need for the Chargers and Mercilus led the nation in sacks last season, so there’s plenty of logic to the idea. Mercilus figures to be a better fit as a 3-4 outside linebacker which happens to be in line with San Diego’s current defensive scheme.

Draft plans can always change depending on who’s available to them. We have them taking Stanford G David DeCastro at No. 18 in our final 2012 NFL Mock Draft.

Draft Notes:

  • Arizona State ILB Vontaze Burfict and Virginia Tech CB Jayron Hosley tested positive for marijuana at the Combine.  (Jay Glazer)
  • The Dolphinsare not going to trade up” to draft Texas A&M QB Ryan Tannehill.  (Armando Salguero)
  • Some teams” have Stanford OL David DeCastro rated as the No. 3 offensive tackle in the draft. (Russ Lande)
  • Ravens reportedly “will jump” at the opportunity to draft Boise State LB Shea McClellin if he’s available at No. 29.(Tony Pauline)
  • North Alabama CB Janoris Jenkins has been left entirely off a “number” of teams’ draft boards. (Adam Schefter)
  • Some teams” view West Virginia OLB Bruce Irvin as “maybe” the top pass rusher in the draft, according to Adam Schefter.
  • Stanford TE Coby Fleener may not be an option for the Giants at No. 32 pick. (Mike Garafolo)
  • Tennessee DL Malik Jackson may appeal to 3-4 teams as a possible five-technique defensive end. (Russ Lande)

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