Mock draft raises tough questions in NFC West
Posted by ESPN.com's Mike Sando
Rob Rang's latest mock draft at CBSSports.com sends Wake Forest linebacker Aaron Curry to the Seahawks with the fourth overall choice, with USC quarterback Mark Sanchez landing in Cleveland at No. 5. Rang previously had Sanchez heading to Seattle.
Rang sends Baylor tackle Jason Smith to the Rams at No. 2 and Missouri receiver Jeremy Maclin to the 49ers at No. 10, with Connecticut running back Donald Brown heading to Arizona at No. 31. LSU defensive lineman Tyson Jackson vaults up the board to Kansas City at No. 3.
Mock drafts are easily mocked. I appreciate them as an opportunity to consider possible scenarios, knowing that one unanticipated choice can throw off the rest of the round.
With that in mind, I offer five somewhat rhetorical questions as the draft approaches:
1. Do NFL teams really value Smith and fellow tackle Eugene Monroe highly enough to draft them among the top five picks? I am not yet convinced.
2. Will tackle Andre Smith come off the board before Monroe and Jason Smith? Rang has Andre Smith heading to the Bengals. I tend to agree with that assessment.
3. Would the Seahawks really consider a quarterback at No. 4? I think they would have to consider it, but I also think the new staff likes Matt Hasselbeck and thinks he has a few strong seasons left. This decision becomes more difficult if Michael Crabtree and Aaron Curry aren't available.
4. Can the 49ers resist drafting one of the top four tackles, if available? I tend to think not. The decision becomes more complicated -- or at least more controversial -- if Sanchez remains available at No. 10.
5. Is there anyway Crabtree slips past the top five? That would surprise me. He might be one of the few prospects this year to qualify as a top-10 pick in any draft, based on the potential he has shown to this point.