First Murmurs on How the Top Ten Could Blow Up

NFL Network's Jason LaCanfora reported today that sources tell him that Fletcher Cox could be 'the guy' for the St. Louis Rams who sit at #6. This supports the notion that the Rams' defense under Fisher would be running something akin to the 'Wide 9' defense Philadelphia employs, furthermore this could be purely to bait a trade out of Philly who are rumored to be gaga for Fletcher Cox.

If the Rams shock and either trade the pick, or take Cox themselves we have a vacuum in the top ten, one which LaCanfora believe hinges on Ryan Tannehill for the Panthers.

few teams would love to see Tannehill go in the top four more than Carolina Panthers GM Marty Hurney. The Panthers pick ninth and already have a stud QB in Cam Newton. If three quarterbacks go in the top four, then in reality Hurney has the sixth overall pick, because he wouldn't take a quarterback in any circumstance.

[...]

All of a sudden there could be a scenario where Quinton Coples, a freak-of-nature-type athlete off the edge, and Morris Claiborne, the top corner in the draft, are both sitting there for the taking at the ninth overall pick.

This is a very salient point essentially saying the Panthers move up three draft spots solely because of the need at the QB position. Everyone seems to be playing chicken with Tannehill- the QB everyone has worked out, but nobody wants to tip their hand that they want.

After the jump we'll see how Tannehill going early, coupled with Cox going higher than expected could really shake up the Panthers draft choices.

More after the jump

Here's one scenario to think about...

1.1 Indianapolis Colts- Andrew Luck, QB, Stanford

- Locked and loaded, reports are that Luck has been told he's the pick

1.2 Washington Redskins- Robert Griffin III, QB, Baylor

- No surprises here

1.3 Minnesota Vikings- Matt Kalil, OT, USC

- Anti climactic as ever. All the hubub just sends Kalil to Minnesota where he should be.

1.4 Cleveland Browns- Trent Richardson, RB, Alabama

- They'll flirt with Justin Blackmon, but in the hard-nosed AFC North they can't afford to be cute. Defense, pound the rock... this is how they win.

1.5 Tampa Bay Buccaneers- Luke Kuechly, MLB, Boston College

- We may undervalue Kuechly here at CSR, but other teams aren't. Mike Mayock believes he's one of the best players in the draft, and Greg Cosell says he has "eyes better than any LB I've evaluated". There is nothing more important to a defensive coach than having an extension of himself on the field, and I wouldn't be surprised if Kuechly is pegged to be Tampa's general. They were a bad team last year because they lacked leadership, not because they lacked a cornerback.

1.6 St. Louis Rams- Fletcher Cox, DT, Mississippi State

- Give credit to the Rams' brain-trust for selling the world that they would go offense, but in reality Jeff Fisher is a defensive guy and adding Cox to a defensive line with Chris Long, Robert Quinn and Kendall Langford gives them the best defensive line in the NFC West.

1.7 Jacksonville Jaguars- Justin Blackmon, WR, Oklahoma State

- With Claiborne still available he's probably not the BPA, but he's close to it. The Jags are in dire need of a WR, and they get the best one in the draft.

1.8 Miami Dolphins- Ryan Tannehill, QB, Texas A&M

- New coach, an offensive coordinator who was his college coach... this is all too convenient.

1.9 Carolina Panthers- ??
Still on the board: Morris Claiborne, Quinton Coples, Michael Floyd

While most of us would scream at the TV to take Claiborne, it wouldn't surprise me to see Marty rake someone like Dallas over the coals and take most of their draft to let them move up for him. If the Panthers gained more picks they could reasonably risk taking Janoris Jenkins and hope the locker room could whip him into shape.

Crazier things have happened.

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