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Averaging The Mocks 3.0: Choices Narrow For The Cowboys

Luke Kuechly, a familiar name, shows up again as the fourteenth best player.
Luke Kuechly, a familiar name, shows up again as the fourteenth best player.

With a free agency well under way, I thought it was time to revisit my Averaging the Mocks concept. For those who are not familiar with my idea, I have gone out and collected a bunch of mock drafts, trying to go with some credible sites (which usually means nationally known, for what that's worth). I then have assigned a weighted points value to each of the first 20 picks, and then seen what kind of a first round draft board that gives me. To check out my last version, go here.

This time around, I only used 16 mocks, as opposed to the 20 I had last time, because some of the ones I used before have not been updated. I thought this lack of consideration for my schedule was a bit rude, but there is not much I can do about that.

I was not sure how effective this was until the BTB Writer' mock got under way, and I decided to use it for my own board. It worked out all right, but what really struck me was how closely it predicted the overall draft order. I got 30 of the 32 first round names correct, and most of the selections were within one or two places of where this predicted them. I am very curious to see how this winds up playing out after the real draft.

Related: Cowboys 2012 Draft: Not Interested In David DeCastro? Looking At Defense?

I also have found it interesting to see what kind of changes happened after free agency and the needs of the teams were perceived to change. There has been a bit of churn on the board, at least in certain places.

See what came out after the jump.

I've got the previous version on the left for comparison.

Version 2, 03/03/2012
Version 3, 03/28/2012 Change
Pick Player Value Pick Player Value
1 Andrew Luck QB Stanford 400 1 Andrew Luck QB Stanford 320
2 Robert Griffin III QB Baylor 368 2 Robert Griffin III QB Baylor 304
3 Matt Kalil OT USC 366 3 Matt Kalil OT USC 284
4 Morris Claiborne CB LSU 325 4 Morris Claiborne CB LSU 257
5 Justin Blackmon WR Ok. St. 320 5 Justin Blackmon WR Ok. St. 249
6 Quinton Coples DE NC 256 6 Trent Richardson RB Alabama 241 +1
7 Trent Richardson RB Alabama 249 7 Quinton Coples DE NC 181 -1
8 Riley Reiff T Iowa 226 8 Riley Reiff T Iowa 160
9 Melvin Ingram OLB SC 181 9 Ryan Tannehill QB Texas A&M 157 +6
10 David DeCastro G Stanford 145 10 Melvin Ingram OLB SC 154 -1
11 Johnathan Martin T Stanford 144 11 Dontari Poe DT Memphis 151 +6
12 Dre Kirkpatrick CB Alabama 132 12 David DeCastro G Stanford 117 -2
13 Michael Brockers DT LSU 130 13 Michael Floyd WR ND 116 +5
14 Courtney Upshaw OLB Ala. 129 14 Luke Kuechly ILB Boston C. 105 +2
15 Ryan Tannehill QB Texas A&M 126 15 Michael Brockers DT LSU 103 -2
16 Luke Kuechly ILB Boston C. 123 16 Fletcher Cox DT Miss. St. 98 +8
17 Dontari Poe DT Memphis 111 17 Dre Kirkpatrick CB Alabama 67 -5
18 Michael Floyd WR ND 89 18 Courtney Upshaw OLB Ala. 62 -4
19 Nick Perry DE USC 64 19 Johnathan Martin T Stanford 37 -8
20 Devon Still DT PSU 60 20 Whitney Mercilus DE/OLB Ill. 32 +6
21 Janoris Jenkins CB N. Ala. 58 21 Cordy Glenn G Georgia 31 +1
22 Cordy Glenn G Georgia 31 22 Janoris Jenkins CB N. Ala. 26 -1
23 Mike Adams T Ohio St 30 23 Stephon Gilmore CB SC 25 new
24 Fletcher Cox DT Miss. St. 26 24 Mike Adams T Ohio St 19 -1
25 Kendall Wright WR Baylor 26 25 Mark Barron FS Alabama 18 +2
26 Whitney Mercilus DE/OLB Ill. 26 26 Nick Perry DE USC 10 -7
27 Mark Barron FS Alabama 16 27 Andre Branch DE Clemson 10 +3
28 Zach Brown OLB N. Carolina 13 28 Devon Still DT PSU 9 -8
29 Peter Konz C Wisconsin 12 29 Dont'a Hightower ILB Alabama 6 +3
30 Andre Branch DE Clemson 9 30 Kendall Wright WR Baylor 4 -5
31 Doug Martin RB Boise St 4 31 Lamar Miller RB Miami (Fl) 4 new
32 Dont'a Hightower ILB Alabama 3 32 Jerel Worthy DT MSU 1 new

Some things that came out of this:

It is getting stable at the top. The only change in the first eight spots was Trent Richardson and Quinton Coples swapping places. Andrew Luck has been the unanimous choice every week, but Robert Griffin III is now the unanimous number two, as well. If someone else breaks into the top eight, then a lot of people are going to be very surprised.

Things start to get interesting at number nine, where Ryan Tannehill continues his climb up the mocks. Actually, if he gets into the top ten, it is most likely he will actually go to the Miami Dolphins at eight, but the ranking here reflects the fact that some of the mockers think he is too much of a risk and have him much lower, in at least one case not even in the top twenty.

Some of the other notable big gainers are Dontari Poe, Michael Floyd, Fletcher Cox and Whitney Mercilus. Some may have impressed at their college Pro Days, while I think some of the movement may be because there is a bit of group-think that goes on among the mockers.

Big droppers are Dre Kirkpatrick, Johnathan Martin, Nick Perry, Devon Still and Kendall Wright.

So what does this mean for the Dallas Cowboys? As I did with the previous list, I have highlighted the scores that are clustered near their pick at 14. The names outside of that blue group are either almost certain to be gone, or far too much of a reach, if there is any validity to this at all. And the range of likely picks is getting smaller. According to this method, Dallas seems likely to pick David DeCastro, Luke Kuechly, Michael Brockers, or Fletcher Cox (I don't see WR Michael Floyd as a real possibility).

It will be interesting to see how this plays out. At the least, this will give us an objective idea of whether the mockers out there see the players at all the way the teams do. And I plan to have one last update the week before the draft.

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