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The Second Half of Our Early Mock Draft

Continuing our first mock draft of fseason, here is the second half of Round 1, picks 17-32. The NFL Combine numbers are a player's top-five figures in the measurable drills at his position (LJ—Long jump, VJ–Vertical jump):

17 NE (fr OAK) Nate Solder T Colorado
Ht 6'8" Wt 319 Combine 40: 5.05, VJ: 32.0"

Smart, tough and physical, Solder fits the mold of a Patriots O-lineman. He's athletic and mobile enough to protect Tom Brady's blindside and run-block out on the edge. He's got a great work ethic to boot.

18 SD Tyron Smith T Southern Cal
Ht 6'5" Wt 307 Combine No Top 5's

Extremely agile and athletic with great size, Smith has tremendous upside. His long arms make him an ideal LT down the road, but he could play immediately on the right side, where the 'Bolts have had some issues.

19 NYG Derek Sherrod T Mississippi St.
Ht 6'5" Wt 321 Combine 3-Cone: 7.43

Sherrod is a big, athletic tackle better suited to the left side. If he pans out, David Diehl can move inside to G and Will Beatty can move to the right side for Kareem McKenzie. Once Sherrod's technique improves, he could be a factor as a run blocker on the right side as well.

20 TB Ryan Kerrigan DE Purdue
Ht 6'4" Wt 267 Combine LJ: 10'2"

The Buccaneers need to do a better job of getting to the QB. Kerrigan has 33½ career sacks and 57 tackles for loss. A smart, hard-working athlete, he's a natural leader and will make an immediate impact on a young team on and off the field.

21 KC Akeem Ayers OLB UCLA
Ht 6'3" Wt 254 Combine No Top 5's

Ayers is an athletic playmaker who will complement Tamba Hali. He's probably not the pure pass rusher the team is looking for, but he owns the skill set necessary to be an impact OLB in the Chiefs' 3-4.

22 IND Corey Liuget DT Illinois
Ht 6'2" Wt 298 Combine No Top 5's

Liuget is ideally suited to play the 3-technique in a 4-3 scheme like Indy's. He's quick and strong, and though he's a penetrator in every sense of the word, he is a stout run defender who will immediately shore up the Colts' porous rushing defense.

23 PHI Jimmy Smith CB Colorado
Ht 6'2" Wt 211 Combine No Top 5's

The Eagles like to play a lot of man-coverage looks behind their blitz packages, and Smith is a big, physical press corner who can reroute receivers and make plays on the ball.

24 NO Adrian Clayborn DE Iowa
Ht 6'3" Wt 281 Combine 20 Shuttle: 4.13

Clayborn has good size, is a physical pass rusher, and fills a need for the Saints. Though he had a down year as a senior, he has the tools to be a viable pass rusher and playmaker.

25 SEA Gabe Carimi T Wisconsin
Ht 6'7" Wt 314 Combine VJ: 31.5", LJ: 9'1"

Carimi is a big man but he's an excellent physical run blocker, which is what the Seahawks need. He gives them a pair of bookend tackles to build around.

26 BAL Brandon Harris CB Miami
Ht 5'10" Wt 191 Combine No Top 5's

Ray Lewis will love this pure cover corner from The U. A stellar athlefte, Harris has got great feet, excellent speed and good instincts. He's a perfect fit for the Ravens, who need strong man coverage behind their extensive blitz packages.

27 ATL Kyle Rudolph TE Notre Dame
Ht 6'6" Wt 265 Combine No Top 5's

The Falcons get one more year of Tony Gonzalez and need to train the heir apparent. While Rudolph isn't the athlete Gonzalez is, he runs like a receiver when stretching the field vertically, is a high-effort runner after the catch, and is a capable in-line blocker.

28 NE Justin Houston OLB Georgia
Ht 6'3" Wt 270 Combine Bench: 30 reps; LJ: 10'5"

The Patriots have struggled to pressure the QB, and Houston, who has already played 3-4 OLB for the Bulldogs, has 33½ tackles for loss and 17½ sacks over the last two seasons.

29 CHI Mike Pouncey G Florida
Ht 6'5" Wt 303 Combine No Top 5's

The Bears' O-line still needs help despite improving over the course of last season. They gave up over 50 sacks and struggled to run the ball. Pouncey is a strong run blocker and a tenacious competitor when it comes to pass protection.

30 JETS Cameron Heyward DE Ohio St.
Ht 6'5" Wt 294 Combine No Top 5's

Jets fans might be leery of selecting another Buckeyes lineman after Vernon Gholston's slow start in the NFL, but Heyward, the son of Craig "Ironhead" Heyward, is a high-effort guy who loves to play the game and can line up just about anywhere on the D-line except the nose. He's a strong run defender and can be enough of a pass-rush threat from the 5-technique to be effective. Shaun Ellis can't play forever, and there are athletic standup pass rushers to be had later in the draft.

31 PIT Aaron Williams CB Texas
Ht 6'0" Wt 204 Combine LJ: 10'7"

Williams has prototypical height and good quickness and makes plays on the ball. His experience in zone coverage schemes makes him a nice fit for the Steelers, who need to shore up the secondary; the weak link in an otherwise stellar defense.

32 GB Danny Watkins T/G Baylor
Ht 6'3" Wt 310 Combine LJ: 10'7"

Watkins played LT in college, and played very well, but he may be a better guard in the NFL. For the Packers, who were racked with injury and age along the line, a versatile guy who is athletic enough to protect out on the edge and dominate as an interior run blocker is invaluable. Watkins, 25 years old, is a mature, high-effort player who can fill multiple roles.

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