In an effort no doubt to appease his editors, Mel Kiper has come out with his second pre-combine Mock Draft. If you've shelled out money to ESPN you can view it at: 2012 NFL Mock Draft 2.0. After his first mock draft of the year, I did a review of it and broke down some of his picks. I also decided I wasn't that much of a fan of who he picked for the Chargers (Georgia OT/OG Cordy Glenn) and how he chose that player ahead of some of the other choices available. This time around, Glenn would not be picked by the famous ESPN draft guru because he has him going even earlier. He also has some similar results, the big three of the pass rush (Courtney Upshaw, Quentin Coples and Melvin Ingram) all come off the board before the Chargers pick. As does safety Mark Barron. The top 4 OT come off the board before 18 as well, so do the top 2 CBs and top ILB. So, who gets selected by the Chargers in this the most famous of mocks?
On one hand, this pick would be great for causing confusion and chaos when talking about the 2012 receiving corps. You could also try to look for a 3rd Floyd and call them the Three Floyds. However, that sort of entertainment value is not enough for me to like this pick.
Sure, Michael Floyd is a big WR. Not quite as big as Vincent Jackson and Malcom Floyd, but still holding a height advantage on every NFL CB. He's also been productive with two 1,000 yards seasons in the last two years and 37 TD catches over his 4 seasons playing at Notre Dame. However, he's got some flags to go with that. He's had 3 different arrests related to alcohol, including a DUI that got him suspended last season. He's also broken his collarbone and missed time with a knee injury and a hamstring problem. He's not the most consistent receiver and seems get lazy at times during games. He doesn't have enough speed to get good separation and his route running needs work.
I know I've undersold him a lot here and maybe even to the point that you may be thinking, "How is this guy a first round pick?" He's still very talented and has the potential to be one of the better targets in the NFL. But, there's good targets and there are great ones. There are guys that aren't as likely to make an impact as a rookie. I don't think Michael Floyd can replace Vincent Jackson in 2012. Maybe he can down the line, but not yet. Draft him and you could end up with a situation like 2010 and Ryan Mathews. A player not quite ready to carry a load, but forced into a key role on an offense that isn't supposed to get bogged down by inexperience.
I'll take a look at who Mel Kiper should have taken for the Chargers after the jump.
After Mel Kiper takes Michael Floyd for the Chargers at pick #18, the next 2 off the board are Ohio State OT Mike Adams and Illinois DE/OLB Whitney Mercilus. Both these players would have been solid picks for the Chargers. Assuming the Chargers release Marcus McNeill, the options in free agency at the LT position are limited whereas they are more options at WR. You can also piecemeal a receiver corps, but you need a stud at LT. There's still risk though that Adams won't be ready in 2012. Whitney Mercilus could plug in a OLB and help rush the passer even if he's not an every down player as a rookie. The strange thing with him is that he's actually not Mel Kiper's next highest rated pass rusher. He actually like Marshall DE/OLB Vinny Curry and Clemson DE/OLB Andre Branch better according to his top 5 prospects by position list, but the mock has Curry going 27th overall to the Patriots and Branch falling out of the 1st round.. I'm not really sure who should rank higher, but whoever the Chargers like better probably should be the pick over a prospect like Michael Floyd.