Three Cardinal players in mock draft

December, 21, 2011
12/21/11
3:00
PM ET
On the heels of Mel Kiper's latest Big Board, Todd McShay released his first mock draft .

Here's how Stanford's players break down, plus comments from McShay:
  • No shocker at No. 1, McShay (and the rest of the country for that matter) has Andrew Luck heading to the Indianapolis Colts: "Luck is a once-in-a-generation quarterback prospect, and Colts legend Peyton Manning will be 36 next season and is coming off multiple neck surgeries. Given the financial implications, it looks like the smart decision is to draft Luck and part ways with Manning."
  • Offensive tackle Jonathan Martin checks in at No. 12 and McShay has him bound for the Kansas City Chiefs: "Barry Richardson will be a free agent after this season and Branden Albert might be a better fit at guard, so Martin would be a good fit here. The Chiefs need to solidify their offensive line and Martin projects as a very good right tackle given his run-blocking prowess."
  • Not too far behind, McShay has guard David DeCastro going at No. 18 to the Cincinnati Bengals: "DeCastro isn't a sexy pick, but he's by far the best interior lineman in the 2012 class and ready to be an NFL starter right now. Both current Bengals starters -- Bobbie Williams and Nate Livings-- are set to become free agents, and DeCastro is the best player available at a need position."

Interesting to note that McShay's mock draft doesn't include a first-round tight end. Since 2000, at least one tight end has gone in the first round of the draft, and Stanford's Coby Fleener is certainly one of the top two tight ends in the country. Following the Notre Dame victory, head coach David Shaw said they are scouting the country but "we just can't find anyone like him."

In last season's Orange Bowl, Fleener caught six balls for 173 yards and three touchdowns. Another performance like that in another BCS bowl game could do wonders for his draft stock.

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