Our 2013 Community Mock Draft [is underway]! In this annual exercise we put the fates of all 32 teams in the hands of our community. This exercise accomplishes several things. For one, we often have a bit of tunnel vision when it comes to the NFL. We will get a glimpse into the needs of each of the franchises. It also helps us get familiar with each of the first-round prospects because like last year in a trade up for Morris Claiborne, you never quite know what the future holds for Dallas.
Every GM has been informed of their team's needs and is ready to roll. Let's see who will be selected with the 13th pick in the draft!
Selection: (TE) [Tyler Eifert, Notre Dame]
Here's our GM with his explanation of the selection:
Why the pick: With the Bucs letting Josh Freeman enter the last year of his contract they need to find out if he is "The Guy". A true #1 TE has been missing in Tampa and Eifert gives Josh what Schiano & Co hope is the missing piece added with 2 excellent WR's (Jackson and Williams) and an outstanding young RB (Martin). Eifert is by far the top TE prospect in 2013. As a senior his blocking improved greatly and is now considered a "plus" in-line Y blocker in both the run game and as a pass protector.
His greatest asset is still his huge catch radius stemming from vacuum like hands and outstanding body control and athleticism. The biggest testament to his skill set was Alabama covering him with Dee Milliner in the national championship game where he was "held" to 6 catches for 61 yds. Tampa surely needs CB's and D-lineman. The draft is very deep at CB and there are plenty of Vet CB's on the market plus they are still working on a deal to bring Revis Island to Florida. There are also some pass rushers and DT's available day 2 which could be game 1 starters.
HIGH PRIORITY TEAM NEEDS (lower number indicates higher priority) according to Drafttek.com
-- Threat Level Red (priority 1-2): Cornerback
-- Threat Level Orange (priority 3-4): Right Tackle, 4-3 Defensive Tackle, Guard, Slot Receiver, 4-3 DE, 4-3 Outside Linebacker, 4-3 MLB
-- Threat Level Yellow (priority 5-6): Quarterback, Feature Wideout, Tight End, Center, Left Tackle
-- Threat Level Green (priority 9): Possession Receiver, COP Back, Feature Running Back, Free Safety, Strong Safety
NFL.com Draft Grade: 83.3
-- Drafttek.com ranked #26 Overall, #1 at the position
-- Russ Lande, National Football Post: #13 Overall, #1 at the position
SUMMARY - Tyler Eifert is an impressive physical specimen that is ready to make an instant impact in the NFL. He has the size, fluidity and physicality to run strong routes and create consistent separation against LBs, and possesses the body control to adjust to balls outside of his frame. He has soft hands that allow him to pluck the ball away from his body naturally, and consistently wins 50/50 balls because of his explosive leaping ability and strength at the POA. While he is an inconsistent blocker because of his tendency to get too far out front of himself and lose his balance, he is a willing combatant at the LOS and shows the ability to use his size and natural quickness to get his feet around and seal his man out when playing in-line. Eifert is a matchup nightmare capable of playing in-line or flexed out in the slot and is ready to make huge plays in the passing game for whichever team drafts him in the 1st round.
-- CBSSports.com ranked #24 overall, #1 at the position
-- DraftInsider.Net ranked #18 overall, #1 at the position
-- DraftCountdown ranked #21 overall, #1 at the position
-- Scout.com ranked #26 overall, #2 at the position
-- Mike Mayock ranked #1 at the position
-- NFLDraftScout.com profile (Dane Brugler):
STRENGTHS: Solid frame with fluid body control and ballskills. Tough in a crowd, showing strong hands to make contested catches and a physical demeanor to come down with the ball in tight spaces.
Does a nice job gaining position in coverage with very good footwork, taking pride in his routes and showing much improvement in this area. Elevates well to go up and attack the ball, just needs a chance and chances are he'll come down with it - very good at mid-air adjustments, making a lot of catches with his feet off the ground.
Strong at the line of scrimmage to release and beat press coverage, using his hands and size very well. Has an excellent sense of his surroundings and always knows where the sticks are located, getting turned to show his QB his numbers. Willing blocker and doesn't shy from contact, flashing the aggressiveness and take-on strength to sustain, seal and finish in the run game.
Lines up in-line, in the slot and outside the numbers, showing the versatility to put his hand on the ground and hold his own in the trenches. Team-first guy and proudly wore the "C" on his jersey, giving full effort whether as a receiver or blocker.
Was productive in his three seasons, leaving Notre Dame with just about every school receiving record for a tight end including catches (140) and receiving yards (1,840). Eifert was a Mackey Award finalist in 2011 before winning the award in 2012.
WEAKNESSES: Has done a nice job adding weight to his frame, but appears maxed out physically. Lacks elite quickness in his break to consistently separate and is still growing as a route-runner. Has good, but not great, straight-line speed and can be caught from behind by linebackers. Will have some dropped passes at times and, while not a large concern, has room to improve his focus through the catch. Still growing as a blocker and needs to use better angles.
Now On The Clock: [ ]
Previous Picks: Chiefs: OT Luke Joeckel, Jaguars: CB Dee Milliner, Raiders: DE/OLB Jarvis Jones, Eagles: DE/OLB Dion Jordan, Lions: DE Ziggy Ansah, Browns: DE Sharrif Floyd, Cardinals: OT Eric Fisher, Bills: QB Geno Smith, Jets: DT Star Lotulelei, Titans: OG Chance Warmack, Chargers: OT Lane Johnson, Dolphins: CB Xavier Rhodes