And here we are folks, back again for the annual exercise in Cleveland Browns futility better known as the NFL Draft. This is our Super Bowl. This is what we live for. Pretty much because the Browns are terrible and this is the one time each and every year where we feel like maybe the Browns are going to do something right. Of course, as I mentioned last year in the 2011 version of this article, there are two rules to live by when it comes to the NFL Draft:
- The Browns and Bengals will find a way to eff it all up
- The Steelers and Ravens will find a way to get it all right and turn chicken crap into chicken salad
Well… some how, some way the Bengals managed not to eff things up when they took A.J. Green and Andy Dalton. The end result? The playoffs. THE FLIPPIN’ PLAYOFFS! Seriously, if the lowly Cincinnati Bengals can find a way to pick the right guys in the draft then why can’t the Browns?
Oh yeah, that’s right… we trade down, and trade down some more, and pick linemen. Defensive, offensive… it doesn’t matter. The Browns love them some linemen (With the exception of Joe Haden and TJ Ward. Crazy concept, those two picks have worked). That’s why I’m so scared of tonight. I’m afraid the Browns are going to get too cute and get the wrong people or get bamboozled, lose out on Trent Richardson, and get paralyzed with fear and take… offensive lineman Matt Kalil.
But let’s not worry about that right now. Today is a day of positive thinking. So without further adieu… I give you my 2012 NFL “Mock Draft.” You can find the 2011 version here.
- The Colts are on the clock and everyone expects them to take Stanford’s stud quarterback prospect Andrew Luck. As Roger Goodell walks up to the podium he’s followed by Colts owner Jim Irsay who has chosen some rather odd attire for tonight’s festivities, a brown trench coat and boom box. Before Goodell can utter the words, “The Indianapolis Colts select… Andrew Luck, Quarterback, Stanford.” Irsay butts in and declares his love for Peyton Manning and begs and pleads for him to return to the Colts. His last gasp effort? He lifts the boom box over his head and starts playing Rick Astley’s ”Never Gonna Give You Up.” The 400 million people watching have just been Rick Rolled in very awkward fashion by Jim Irsay… And we’re off and running.
- With the second pick, those thieving bastards the Washington Redskins step up to the podium. First order of business… Dan Snyder invites Mike Holmgren up to the podium to apologize for stealing away the second overall pick when they swooped in and made that blockbuster trade with St. Louis. Mike Holmgren accepts the apology and they hug it out. Snyder then pushes Holmgren and he falls backward over Robert Griffin III who has positioned himself on all fours behind Holmgren. “Eff You, Holmgren!” Yes, the Browns and Mike Holmgren just got school boyed by Dan Snyder and the Redskins… again.
- The Minnesota Vikings have several areas of need. For anyone who’s paid attention they’re most in need of a new stadium. With the third overall pick the Vikings select the Roman Coloseum. Sure it needs a few renovations but pretty much everyone agree it’s better than the Metrodome. The talking heads on ESPN love the pick. Roger Goodell is already hanging his head and shaking it in frustration. He awards the Vikings Matt Kalil.
- And here we go. The Browns are on the clock. A lot has been made about this pick and what exactly the Browns will do. Will they go offense? Will they go defense? No one really knows, but everyone is in agreement that Trent Richardson is the pick here. With the Vikings having successfully held on to the third pick he’s still there and Browns fans have started printing the jerseys. Roger Goodell steps up to the podium with Mike Holmgren in tow, “We have a trade. The Cleveland Browns have agreed to trade the rights to the 4th overall pick to the Cleveland Browns for the 22nd overall pick and The Hunger Games trilogy.” Yes, the Cleveland Browns have traded down and up at the same time… with themselves. Well played Mike Holmgren. He smiles with delight, you can tell he has big plans for when and where to read those three books. “With the fourth overall pick the Cleveland Browns select, Morris Claiborne, Cornerback, LSU” NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!
- Tampa Bay can’t get to the podium fast enough. They quickly side step the four Browns fans in attendance who have stormed the stage and started tearing apart Holmgren like a zombie who hasn’t gotten ahold of any quality brains in a long time. It’s awkward to say the least. Tampa takes Trent Richardson and runs off the stage as fast as humanly possible.
- The Rams are up next. It was a rough go in 2011 for the Rams. They were the sexy pick to win the NFC West and then went 2-14. Never before have more people been wrong about the same thing. Thanks to the NFL for having suspended new defensive coordinator Gregg Williams for at least the season, they know its going to be tough to find a replacement at this point. So with the 6th pick, the Rams select Dog the Bounty Hunter. Roger Goodell is staring at Jeff Fisher in disgust. Fisher defends the pick saying Dog can give his defense the kind of toughness they need and doesn’t see the big deal in selecting a bounty hunter. Goodell pulls out a bottle of Jack, takes a swig and give St. Louis Justin Blackmon the wide receiver out of OK. St.
- Jacksonville is on the clock. Despite the front office’s best efforts, their owner is still hung up on Tim Tebow. Jacksonville missed out on him in the draft, they missed out on him in a trade, he’ll be damned if he’s going to miss out on Tebow again. Despite the fact that Tebow is very much under contract with the Jets, Jacksonville selects Tim Tebow. This is the first time New York fans have ever cheered anything at the draft. They’re free of Tebow. Meanwhile, Goodell has aged 15 years in 7 picks. He pulls a name out of a hat and reads it. Melvin Ingram, defensive end, South Carolina.
- The Dolphins are a train wreck. They have been for a few years now. Then again when you look at the list of quarterbacks they’ve trotted out in that time frame it becomes a little more understandable. Because no one from Miami can ever show up on time for any sporting event, the fashionably late Dolphins missed the awkward moment with Jim Irsay. Owner Stephen Ross steps up to stage, shakes Goodell’s hand, and then the music kicks on and Ross tears away his suit revealing a rather flattering sequined number. “This one goes out to Peyton! Hey, I just met you, And this is crazy, But here’s my number,So call me, maybe? It’s hard to look right, At you baby, But here’s my number, So call me, maybe? Hey, I just met you, And this is crazy, But here’s my number, So call me, maybe? And all the other boys, Try to chase me, But here’s my number, So call me, maybe?!” He still hasn’t gotten the memo that Manning isn’t calling them. Meanwhile, Goodell is fashioning a noose out of his $2500 silk tie. Ryan Tannehill comes up on stage and asks to borrow it when he’s done.
- The Panthers struck gold last year with Cam Newton. Apparently that wasn’t enough to make Jerry Richardson happy. He still feels like the owners got ripped off in last year’s lockout. He decided to use the Panther’s time on the clock to give a Hitler’esque speech about taking back what’s there’s and locking the players out again. When the buzzer sounds Richardson selects Fletcher Cox DT Mississippi St.
- The Bills are the feel good story of the draft. They had a decent 2011 season and have high hopes for 2012, especially after signing the stud linebacker Mario Williams to a massive contract. ESPN cuts to Williams to find out who he thinks the Bills will take. You can tell living in Buffalo these past few weeks has had an interesting effect on him. He looks less like Mario Williams and more like Fat Albert. Terrified, the Bills run up to the podium and select Luke Kuechly, ILB Boston College.
- Speaking of Fat Albert… Kansas City hired Romeo Crennel to be the full-time coach for reasons unbeknownst to anyone who ever watched him coach the Browns. In typical Romeo fashion, he steps to the podium and flips a coin. It comes up heads. “Jolly gee willickers… looks like we’re taking safety Mark Barron, Alabama.”
- Seattle is on the clock. They signed Matt Flynn this offseason to, hopefully, give them a competent quarterbacking option this season. Something they lacked last season with the combination of Tavaris Jackson and Charlie Whitehurst. Before giving their pick, the executive board for the Seahawks comes up to the podium to eulogize Mike Holmgren, whose rotting corpse is still sitting over in the corner. In the janitor’s defense it may be a trap with the rabid Browns fans still watching, lurking in the shadows for more fresh meat. Seattle finishes their 15 minute rendition of “Amazing Grace” and selects Quinton Coples, DE North Carolina.
- The Cardinals had a rough go of things in 2011. Kevin Kolb underwhelmed thanks to injuries and the Cardinals slipped back into the mediocrity they came to know and love for so long. Apparently, they are in some sort of state of denial about losing out on Peyton Manning. Not to be outdone by Irsay and Ross, Bill Bidwell gets up on stage alone with a guitar. He starts strumming and immediately it becomes clear what’s going on. Rather than beg and plead for Manning to change his mind, Bidwell goes jaded lover, well as jaded as a cover of Taylor Swift’s “Tear Drops on My Guitar” can get. Feeling the vibe, OT from Iowa Reilly Reiff comes up on stage to sing backup. The camera pans to Goodell for his reaction and it’s at this point ESPN realizes he’s made a break for it. No wonder he hasn’t been heard of in almost five picks.
- After a brief intermission to pull Goodell out of the ventilation system, things get back on track. The Cowboys pick at 14 and could really use a defensive player. Jerry Jones, master of everything in Dallas, steps up on stage and flashes that signature smile and turns on the charm. The Giants fans in attendance are going ape shit. With that said, Jones makes a pick that may turn into a draft day steal. Jones, an Arkansas alumni, selects Bobby Petrino. Petrino, who’s in attendance for reasons unknown to anyone, waddles on stage wearing nothing but a neck brace and bath robe with 6 platinum blondes in tow. Goodell goes back to his hat ‘o names and selects Michael Brockers, DT LSU.
- As if Giants fans weren’t already irate enough thanks to the shenanigans that just took place with the Cowboys, now the Eagles are on the clock. In order to keep their whole dream team persona in tact, the Eagles take the obvious choice here at 15… Michael Jordan. What position Jordan is going to play they have no idea, but they figure why not give him a shot at a third major sport? Unfortunately, Jordan is too busy golfing to show up… for anything. Bobcat fans are nodding in agreement. Having been spurned, the Eagles take CB Stephon Gilmore, South Carolina.
- Before the Jets can make their pick at 16, ESPN cuts in with breaking news. Dallas selection Bobby Petrino has accepted the head coaching job at ITT Technical Institute. Meanwhile, the Jets feel like they need to make a splash here to help fans forget about how 2011 ended. With that in mind, the Jets select writer/director Christopher Nolan. Who better to reboot the Jets than the man who successfully rebooted the Batman franchise and helped fans forget about bat suits with nipples? Roger Goodell gives a standing ovation. Rumor has it he’s a huge fan of “Memento.” Nolan announces the star of his new darker, edgier New York Jets will be WR Michael Floyd, Notre Dame.
- The Bengals are up with the first of their 97 draft picks in this years draft. I’d make fun of them, but… well they’re doing everything right and made the playoffs last year. As a Browns fan… they give me hope for the future, damn it! After all, if the Bengals can get the draft right, then there’s a chance the Browns could too. The Bengals take CB Dre Kirkpatrick, Alabama. Medics immediately run over to Goodell to check for signs of an aneurysm. If anything’s going to cause one, the Bengals making a smart pick is probably right up there.
- San Diego is on the clock at 18, but nobody from the organization can be found. ESPN cuts in saying that apparently the front office had better things to do than go to New York in April, after all… they live in San Diego and the draft is blacked out to their fans anyways. Goodell awards San Diego DE Whitney Mercilus, Illinois.
- The Bears make their way onto the stage. 2011 was a tale of two seasons, before Jay Cutler got hurt, and after Jay Cutler got hurt. Logic tells us they should probably snag a QB here to back up Cutler, maybe Branden Weeden. Nope, that’s not the Bears style. Instead they select Matt Forte. The logic being that Forte wants a huge contract and the Bears don’t want to give it to him so… draft him again and force him to sign another rookie contract. Goodell is speechless and works on polishing off the bottle of Jack he opened earlier in the round. In a drunken haze, he forces the Bears to take DE Chandler Jones, Syracuse.
- The Tennessee Titans are up. Roger Goodell is noticeably uncomfortable. He knows what’s coming. As if the three teams involved with Peyton Manning haven’t made that clear enough already. Plus, Bud Adams is 89 years old. This isn’t going to end well. Adams makes his way to the stage and starts ranting. No Music… no song and dance… just your typical crazy old man style ranting. He rants away on everything from Peyton Manning and all those people standing out on his lawn every Sunday to politics and why Charlie Chaplin was the greatest actor ever. Everyone eventually just tunes him out until he falls asleep. Once he’s out cold Goodell give the Titans WR Stephen Hill, Georgia Tech.
- The Bengals are back on the clock. They select G David DeCastro, Stanford. Goodell is excited. He feels like he’s back in control of the draft. Go figure the Bengals would be the team to restore order. Also, Ozzie Guillen is a HUGE fan of this pick… too soon?
- And here come the Browns to restore a little chaos. Goodell goes from gleeful to glum in record time. Tom Heckert makes his way to the stage to join Mike Holmgren’s rotting corpse. The Browns fans appear from the shadows… all you can see is their eyes glowing with hate. Heckert reassures them not to worry, they’ve learned from their mistake and they’re taking offense this time. No need to fear. With the 22nd pick the Browns take Offensive Tackle Jonathan Martin, Stanford. The Browns fans make their move. Tom Heckert never had a chance.
- After a successful 2011 season that saw the Lions return to the playoffs for the first time in years, this draft could be what helps them get to that next level. Unfortunately they have the reputation of being a bunch of thugs. In an effort to rectify this the Lions select… WWE Superstar Brock Lesnar? So the plan is to go so far into thug territory that they come back around to good guys? Does thuggishness work like that? Is it circular? Just in case it isn’t Goodell lets them draft OLB Courtney Upshaw, Alabama.
- And here come the Steelers… I hate the Steelers. In an attempt to give Cleveland the finger, the Rooney’s come up on stage and select the rabid Browns fans who are still chowing down on what’s left of Holmgren and Heckert. In the post selection interview the Rooney’s explain that they love their tenacity and feel like they’ll be a great addition to their defense. After learning the Browns fans will never play for them, the Steelers opt for T Cordy Glenn, Georgia.
- The Denver
TebowsMannings had the best offseason of anyone in the league. They scored Peyton Manning, ridded themselves of Tebow mania, and are set up to have a pretty decent run over the next few years. John Elway takes the stage and flashes that stupid horse face smile of his. Everyone in the room hates him, especially the Jets fans. He takes the mic and says, “We don’t need anybody… we have Peyton Manning.” and walks off stage. Goodell, always a fan of arogance, fist bumps him on the way down. Of course, they have to take someone so behind the scenes they take DT Dontari Poe, Memphis.
- Houston finally made the playoffs last season. That was a huge step for a team that had finished 8-8 something like 16 years in a row… even though they’ve only been in existence since 2002. Looking to build on that success, the Texans select TE Coby Fleener, Stanford. Seriously, this team has been so consistently boring for their entire existence that making fun of how boring they’ve been is the only joke to make here… moving on.
- The Patriots hardly ever take someone in the first round. They’re more likely to trade this pick away to anyone who will have it. With that in mind, Goodell stumbles to the podium and announces the Patriots have traded the 27th overall pick in the draft for a bag of Cheetos and a 12 pack of Coke Zero. That Bill Belichick is a crafty bastard. The new owner of the 27th pick takes DE Nick Perry, USC.
- The Packers weren’t happy with how 2011 ended. They were supposed to win the Super Bowl and then the Giants came out of nowhere to knock them out of the playoffs. They’re angry. You won’t like them when they’re angry. Keeping up with that theme the Packers select The Incredible Hulk. With the Jack Daniels having fully taken hold, Goodell jumps out of his chair, rips off his suit coat and screams, “Hulk angry! Hulk smash!” In order to settle things down, the Packers decide to take DE Shea McClellin, Boise St. instead.
- Baltimore is on the clock. They came so close to making the Super Bowl last season. Good thing they have the self-proclaimed best QB in the NFL in Joe Flacco. Knowing that, the Ravens decide that in order to make the Super Bowl they’re going to need all the help they can get. With that said, Ozzie Newsome steps up to the podium and selects Lord Voldemort. It’s a smart and savvy pick by Newsome. Voldemort should fit right in with the Ravens, what with them being evil and all. In case Voldemort is already off the board, the backup plan is ILB Dont’a Hightower, Alabama to replace zombie Ray Lewis.
- San Franciso needs a quarterback. Sure Alex Smith had a decent year leading the 49ers to the NFC title game, but does anyone REALLY trust him? Not so much. How else do you explain all those Peyton Manning rumors. With that in mind Jim Harbaugh steps up to the podium and selects QB Jim Harbaugh. Yes, Harbaugh essentially brought himself out of retirement… by picking himself. It’s a savvy move. Goodell could care less. He’s just happy Nobody with the 49ers broke into song and dance over Peyton Manning.
- The Patriots are back on the clock. They really like the haul they got for the 27th pick as those Cheetos really hit the spot in the war room. Rumors have been swirling though that Tom Brady is unhappy with what’s around him. In an effort to ease any growing hostility the Patriots are doing whatever it takes to get some quality talent around Brady. So, the Patriots trade the 31st pick in the draft for the $10 meal box from taco bell and a large meat lovers pizza from Pizza Hut. The real key piece of this trade was the tacos. The pizza was more of a throw in just to make the values line up. The new owner of the 31st pick takes Free Safety Harrison Smith, Notre Dame.
- The Giants won the Super Bowl in 2011 and as such, they have the pleasure of selecting last. Roger Goodell is excited to see the Giants take the stage. It means this annual nightmare known as the first round of the draft is almost over. He thought moving the first round to a primetime event would be a good idea. All it did was expose the idiocy of the people he’s forced to deal with on a daily basis and increase the likelihood of him developing cirrhosis of the liver. Anyways, with the 32nd pick in the draft, the New York football Giants select… OT Mike Adams, Ohio State.