- Andrea Adelson, ESPN Staff Writer
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The first round of the NFL draft is just a week away, so it is time to provide you an update with the latest predictions, mock drafts and rankings from ESPN experts.
First, let us start with Mel Kiper Jr., who plays general manager for every single team and predicts the first three rounds of the draft. It is Insider content, but here is a look at where he has placed players from ACC schools. Oh, and be sure to read his ground rules to have a better understanding of his thought process.
North Carolina offensive guard Jonathan Cooper (10), Tennessee
North Carolina defensive tackle Sylvester Williams (18), Dallas
Offensive tackle Menelik Watson (27), Houston
Florida State cornerback Xavier Rhodes (28), Denver
Florida State defensive end Bjoern Werner (36), Detroit
Florida State Defensive end Cornellius Carradine (42), Miami
Syracuse safety Shamarko Thomas (46), St. Louis
Clemson receiver DeAndre Hopkins (55), Green Bay
Florida State quarterback EJ Manuel (68), Cleveland
Syracuse quarterback Ryan Nassib (71), Buffalo
NC State cornerback David Amerson (77), Miami
Florida State fullback Lonnie Pryor (95), Houston
NC State quarterback Mike Glennon (96), Kansas City
As Kiper Jr. states, that piece is not a mock draft. It's his preference for each team at that spot. His mock draft features Cooper, Williams and Rhodes. Disagree with his first-round picks? Well you can make your own mock draft. Two thumbs up on that tool.
Kiper also has updated his Big Board, ranking the Top 25 prospects. Only Cooper and Williams make that list.
Meanwhile, ESPN draft expert Todd McShay has revealed the Scouts Inc. tier rankings, which list prospects by their ratings. There are seven tiers and 109 players rated, with 17 from ACC schools (counting incoming members Pittsburgh and Syracuse).
McShay also has named his All-Satellite team, comprised of the best prospects when playing in space. North Carolina running back Giovani Bernard checks in at No. 5. McShay writes, "He has super-quick feet, good initial burst and outstanding lateral agility. Bernard can stop and start on a dime, strings together multiple moves and is a slippery runner between the tackles."
Want more? Kiper also has updated his top 5 prospects by position.
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