Chat with Mel Kiper
Welcome to SportsNation! On Wednesday, NFL draft guru Mel Kiper Jr. will be by to discuss the college football and NFL seasons.
Kiper has served as expert analyst for ESPN's annual NFL draft coverage since 1984. His pre-draft predictions are frequently the most accurate. Kiper is also analyst for College GameDay on ESPN Radio. He also contributes to SportsCenter and ESPN.com.
Send your questions now and join Kiper Wednesday at 1 p.m. ET!
Buzzmaster (1:02 PM)
Hey everyone, we've only got Mel until 1:25 today! Let's get started!
Mel- Will Detroit trade up to get Prince Amukamara? He is the forgotten DB with Patrick Peterson getting most of the attention.
Mel Kiper (1:02 PM)
They would have to go up from 13 to 8 to get him. That's easier said than done, because Dallas would love to get him. If someone's interested in moving down, then that would be a viable situation.
Draft experts (including you) always tell people to look at the film, not the combine stats. But, the film on Jake Locker stinks. Poor accuracy and was absolutely terrible in his biggest games. Cutler didn't win a lot of games either, but his stats were alot better and his team was alot worse. It seems like Locker was overhyped 2 years ago and people don't want to look foolish and drop him now. Please justify how he is rated so high.
Mel Kiper (1:05 PM)
He's a great kid. He has great talent. He is a big strong arm, athletic kid. Tough as nails. The biggest issue is accuracy. On third down he was 51%. That's just not good enough. When you think about the combine, he threw well there. He wasn't the No. 1 player going into this year, but he has a chance to be a late first round pick. He didn't have a great supporting cast. He had a very leaky OL. Very average weapons in the passing game. He did play through some injuries. He did make some great throws. Against Nebraska. Against BYU. He just needs some more consistency.
Pete (New Mexico)
Mel, love the Fairley pick. Who will Broncos draft in Round 2?
Mel Kiper (1:05 PM)
Defense is their dominant issue. DE, CB, S. Pass catching TE. They could also sure up the OL.
Matthew (Sandy Hook, CT)
It seems as though opinions are varied on Penn State C Stefen Wisniewski - some people have him going in the first round, some in the third or later. What's the deal with this guy's draft stock?
Mel Kiper (1:06 PM)
First of all, is he a center or a guard? He was a center as a junior and moved to guard this season. I like the fire and determination he plays with every snap. He comes from good blood lines. I project him as a 3-4 rounder.
Chris Fiegler (Latham,NY)
What NFL Team will Auburn QB Cam Newton will end up with?
Mel Kiper (1:08 PM)
Pro days are set up for success. Combines for QBs can be a recipe for disaster. I would advise QBs to not throw at the combine. Newton did and it hurt his stock a little bit. He has a great arm. He has a chance to be an outstanding QB in the NFL, given the time and if the intangibles are there. I have him ranked No. 10, but I think he could go in the top 5, maybe 4 to Cincinnati.
Mel, you moved Justin Houston from #32 all the way up to #20 to the Bucs. Why the big jump up the board?
Mel Kiper (1:09 PM)
He can be a 4-3 DE. I liked that he was productive in certain games. There were games where he had the wow factor. There were other games where he was a little quiet. I don't think you can play him on his feet. I see him as a 4-3 DE. They went DT in the first and second round and I think they have to address the DE spot this year. I'm not as high on Houston as others. I think he's a little overrated.
Mel, has Stephen Paea moved back into the first round with his show of strength? Could a 3-4 team look at him to play nose tackle?
Mel Kiper (1:11 PM)
He's coming off the injury from the Senior Bowl practice. He's a powerhouse. There's no surprise he benced 49 reps. This kid has a chance to be a heckuva NT. He'll be a penetrating NT. For a team like KC at 21 that needs help at NT, I could see that as a possibility. I think he's probably a second round pick as the best NT in the draft.
So not saying Newton #3 anymore to the Bills, who is their newly slotted selection?
Mel Kiper (1:12 PM)
I have them taking Marcell Dareus. He's hot right now. He's up to 319 pounds. He was big at Alabama. He had the suspension to begin the year and the ankle injury. This is a kid that as a junior in 2009 had 6.5 sacks. Defensive MVP of the BCS title game. Lots of versatility.
Scott (Northglenn, CO)
How loud are you yelling at the Ravens to take a deep threat WR? Or do they take a CB/pass rusher in the first?
Mel Kiper (1:14 PM)
You can't take a vertical stretch receiver if there's none there. I have Hankerson going 21 to New England. But a pure speed option that the Ravens are looking for, you could look at it as a slot guy or pure WR. Titus Young is a second rounder. Cobb is a second rounder. Those are possibilties. Torrey Smith is a second rounder. I think the Ravens will look CB in the first round. They could also use a combo DE/OLB. The hope is that Kindle returns from his injury. He's a wild card now coming back.
Robert (woodinville )
Where are the strengths and weaknesses in this draft and how does it stack up compared to previous drafts?
Mel Kiper (1:16 PM)
The weaknesses are easy: TE, ILB, S. The strong spots, I think QB has a chance to be good. FB can be good: Henry Hynoski, Pitt; Anthony Sherman, UConn; Owen Merecic, Stanford. WR is not bad. Not much in the first round. Edmund Gates from Abiliene Christian is moving up. The OG/C combo types, lots of those. The DL is clearly the strength of the draft, along with some underrated CBs.
Mel - Can the skins get Mallet in round 2?
Mel Kiper (1:17 PM)
I don't think he fits their offense. He's not a West Coast offense guy. He belongs in an offense that will go vertical. Plus you need to be a mobile passer. You have to take advantage of that arm. He's in the second round area. Andy Dalton is a guy that figures to fit that offense well.
Ryan (IL) [via mobile]
Is Blaine Gabbert really worth the #1 pick, or is it more the new staff wanting their own guy instead of Clausen?
Mel Kiper (1:18 PM)
There are some that feel that Gabbert is worthy of being the No. 1 pick overall. I have im No. 8 on my Big Board, but I keep hearing rumblings that Carolina likes Gabbert at No. 1. I have heard people talk about him as a more mobile Drew Bledsoe. He could go 1, 3, 4 are possible destinations. Another thing would be with Washington, maybe there are some teams willing to trade up to get him.
Since Akeem Ayers' stock is down from a poor showing at the combine, should the Giants be able to take him at #19, would regard that as a good match considering New York's biggest need is an OLB?
Mel Kiper (1:20 PM)
For their scheme, he could fit that. He can be a 4-3 player. He's an average pass rusher. In the 3-4, he would be OK. I have him going to KC, but I think he could fit the Giants. The Giants could upgrade both the outside and the middle.
Tom (MN) [via mobile]
Has Dontay Moch moved into the top 15 overall?
Mel Kiper (1:20 PM)
No. He's a second round pick, I believe. It wouldn't shock me for someone to run as fast as he did for him to be a late first round pick, but I'm projecting him as a second round.
Matt (Stratford, NJ)
What are the chances the Eagles move up for a shot at gamechanging DB??
Mel Kiper (1:21 PM)
It's just not going to be possible. They need a CB. To get Amukamara they need to get into the top 10 and they're in the 20s. I don't see anyone looking to move in the top 10 to 23. That's a steep jump.
Better value in the 2nd - Kaepernek or Ponder?
Mel Kiper (1:22 PM)
I don't think either one would be great value. Kaepernick in the second would be overrated. And Ponder is expected to go in the second. So that would not be great value either.
Mel, it AJ Green falls to number 7-8 does a team like New England package their two first rounders to go up and get him??
Mel Kiper (1:23 PM)
I would think about it. A WR is what they need. OL is another big need. RB. They have 7 picks in the first four rounds. If they have a strong draft this year, they can try to get Brady a couple of more rings before he retires. With the talent level on hand and how young they are, I could easily see Brady with two more rings before he retires.
Scott (Northglenn, CO)
Who disapoionted at the combine that you still have faith in?
Mel Kiper (1:26 PM)
Cam Newton. He was one the disappointed. Ricky Stanzi. Jacquizz Rodgers. Dion Lewis. Vincent Brown. Lance Kendricks. Ahmad Black. Akeem Ayers is a big one. Not running the way you'd expect. Has to run better during his pro day. Aaron Williams. There are questions about whether he's a CB or S. I'm not as down on him as some are.
Mel Kiper (1:27 PM)
Sorry, we have to cut this short, but I have a draft conference call at 1:30. We'll try to go a little longer next week.
Buzzmaster (1:27 PM)