NFL Mock Draft V Sees Defensive End Da’Quan Bowers Taking Over Panthers No. 1 Pick


NFL Mock Draft V Sees Defensive End Da'Quan Bowers Taking Over Panthers No. 1 Pick Cam Newton's stock has fluctuated, Ryan Mallett's has gone in the tank and the top-two defensive players in the draft left the combine with some questions about their physical standing. The draft is eight weeks away, and no one is close to set in stone at the top of the board.

With the chaos at the combine, there have been major changes at the top of the mock draft, and there's a new No. 1 for the first time.

Let's open up Mock Draft V, the fifth edition of 13 mock drafts that will run every Thursday until April 28.

1. Carolina Panthers
2010 Record: 2-14
Needs: Quarterback, defensive tackle, outside linebacker, guard, wide receiver, tight end, defensive end
The Pick: Clemson defensive end Da'Quan Bowers
Previous Pick: Auburn defensive tackle Nick Fairley
Analysis: Bowers' knee issues have resurfaced, but only because he's healing a little slower than expected, according to reports. It's nothing major, and in the end, it shouldn't scare away teams from drafting him.

2. Denver Broncos
2010 Record: 4-12
Needs: Defensive end, cornerback, safety, outside linebacker
The Pick: Alabama defensive lineman Marcell Dareus
Previous Pick: Clemson defensive end Da'Quan Bowers
Analysis: Dareus is a heck of a player, and his size makes him a more intriguing prospect than Nick Fairley (we'll get to that later). For the time being, Dareus is our top-rated 4-3 defensive tackle.

3. Buffalo Bills
2010 Record: 4-12
Needs: Quarterback, tackle, defensive end, outside linebacker, tight end, cornerback, safety
The Pick: Texas A&M outside linebacker Von Miller
Analysis: Miller seems to be the only top-five prospect without any major question marks. At the end of this process, that might actually be enough to vault him to the top of the draft board. Could Miller be the first linebacker taken No. 1 since the Falcons selected Aundray Bruce in 1988?

4. Cincinnati Bengals
2010 Record: 4-12
Needs: Defensive end, quarterback, running back, wide receiver, inside linebacker, safety
The Pick: North Carolina defensive end Robert Quinn
Analysis: It's tough to buy the notion that the Bengals could entice quarterback Carson Palmer to stick around by drafting a wide receiver.

5. Arizona Cardinals
2010 Record: 5-11
Needs: Quarterback, left tackle, guard, outside linebacker, cornerback
The Pick: LSU cornerback Patrick Peterson
Analysis: It might not be a good sign that teams are already open to the slim notion of moving Peterson to safety, but that move would likely be years away. At the very least, it could extend his career.

6. Cleveland Browns
2010 Record: 5-11
Needs: Wide receiver, tackle, guard, defensive end, inside linebacker, outside linebacker, cornerback, safety
The Pick: Georgia wide receiver A.J. Green
Analysis: Green was only the second-best receiver at the combine, but so what? His game tape hasn't changed.

7. San Francisco 49ers
2010 Record: 6-10
Needs: Quarterback, outside linebacker, defensive tackle, defensive end, safety, wide receiver
The Pick: Missouri quarterback Blaine Gabbert
Previous Pick: Nebraska cornerback Prince Amukamara
Analysis: Gabbert had a quiet week at the combine, which was a great thing for a quarterback. Let the other guys take the spotlight, while Gabbert stays in control.

8. Tennessee Titans
2010 Record: 6-10
Needs: Quarterback, inside linebacker, defensive end, guard
The Pick: Auburn defensive tackle Nick Fairley
Previous Picks: Missouri quarterback Blaine Gabbert, Alabama defensive lineman Marcell Dareus
Analysis: Fairley is a heck of a player, but he only weighed in at 291 pounds in Indy and didn't finish in the top 15 in the bench press among defensive linemen. Ndamukong Suh, meanwhile, was 16 pounds heavier at last year's combine, and that size is important for a top-notch defensive tackle. Fairley is extremely athletic, but he'll have to put on some good weight to impress teams in the next two months.

9. Dallas Cowboys
2010 Record: 6-10
Needs: Tackle, defensive end, guard, safety, cornerback
The Pick: USC tackle Tyron Smith
Previous Pick: Alabama defensive lineman Marcell Dareus, Colorado tackle Nate Solder
Analysis: Smith emerged as the clear-cut No. 1 tackle at the combine, which should help Jerry Jones make this decision. For the time being, let's take him at his word that he's ready to improve the offensive line.

10. Washington Redskins
2010 Record: 6-10
Needs: Quarterback, right tackle, wide receiver, right guard, cornerback, safety, defensive end
The Pick: Auburn quarterback Cam Newton
Previous Pick: Arkansas quarterback Ryan Mallett
Analysis: Owner Dan Snyder loves polarizing figures, and if Newton is still around at this spot, the Redskins could add the draft's greatest star, throwing accuracy be damned.

Click here for picks 11-20 | Click here for picks 21-32

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