33. Jacksonville Jaguars – Menelik Watson, OT, Florida State
Could add pass rush or a defensive back here, but instead GM David Caldwell fills a need on the offensive line with Menelik Watson out of Florida State.
34. San Francisco 49ers (via Kansas City Chiefs) – Matt Elam, S, Florida
With Dashon Goldson gone and the team’s first pick being a wide receiver, the 49ers cash in here with hard-hitting safety Matt Elam out of Florida. Elam is a little undersized, but he’d be a good match next to Donte Whitner.
35. Philadelphia Eagles – E.J. Manuel, QB, Florida State
This puts Philadelphia in an interesting spot with Michael Vick and Nick Foles already on the depth chart. Yet E.J. Manuel – like almost every QB in this class – is expected to hold a clipboard initially. This pick starts a bit of a domino effect with the next tier of quarterbacks.
36. Detroit Lions – Larry Warford, OG, Kentucky
Detroit gets a phone-booth guy in Kentucky’s Larry Warford to restore the offensive line in front of Matthew Stafford and new pick-up Reggie Bush. Detroit’s line instantly gets younger and meaner.
37. Cincinnati Bengals (via Raiders) – Kevin Minter, LB, Louisiana State
The Bengals call Kevin Minter’s name at pick 37. Minter is great value at this point. He can be placed right into the Cincinnati’s 4-3 front due to his fast and intelligent play.
38. Arizona Cardinals – Matt Barkley, QB, Southern California
The Cardinals went through four different starting quarterbacks in 2012. And taking a flier on Carson Palmer does not mean Arizona is satisfied long-term at QB. Matt Barkley could go in Round 1, but Arizona gets him at No. 38 here.
Cleveland Browns – WR Josh Gordon, Baylor (Supplemental Draft)
39. New York Jets – Zach Ertz, TE, Stanford
With Mark Sanchez and David Garrard duking it out, new Jets GM John Idzik steers clear of the quarterback position here. Stanford tight end Zach Ertz isn’t flashy, but he’s a sound route-runner with good hands. Now that Dustin Keller is gone, this fills one of New York’s needs.
40. Tennessee Titans – Jamar Taylor, CB, Boise State
It’s hard to imagine Jamar Taylor getting past the end of Round 1, let alone pick 40. The Titans have to improve the pass defense, and Taylor’s physical coverage would work well in Tennessee.
41. Buffalo Bills –Ryan Nassib, QB, Syracuse
Ryan Nassib is gaining a lot of steam heading into the draft and could be gone late in Round 1. That said, new Bills head coach Doug Marrone finds a way to continue the Syracuse regime in Buffalo here.
42. Cleveland Browns (via Miami Dolphins) – Johnthan Banks, CB, Mississippi State
The Browns find a counterpart to Joe Haden in the secondary, which moves the 5’9” Buster Skrine into the nickel. Cleveland did a lot to improve the front, and now the defensive backfield must undergo renovations as well. Banks has the length and ball skills to make a difference.
43. Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Jesse Williams, DT, Alabama
The Buccaneers find a two-gapping defensive tackle to pair with Gerald McCoy. Jesse Williams presents excellent value in the second round, and makes Tampa Bay’s front far more imposing.
44. Carolina Panthers – DT Johnathan Hankins, Ohio State
Sione Fua and Dwan Edwards are currently set to start for Carolina, but Johnathan Hankins may be the man to change that. The Ohio State product is a rugged run-stopper who could close down lanes for the Panthers.
New Orleans Saints – pick forfeited (league sanction)
45. San Diego Chargers – Keenan Allen, WR, Cal
Keenan Allen was flagged for a failed drug test as the combine, according to ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter. That, on top of his slow recovery from a knee injury and slow 4.7 40-yard dash at his pro day, results in him falling to pick 40. All of that is bad news for the California Golden Bear, but it’s also great news for the Chargers. Allen makes up for his average speed with smooth route-running and sure hands. Cal’s offense was a little frustrating to watch at times, but Allen shouldn’t fall any further than pick 45. Yes, offensive line and cornerback are needs here, yet San Diego gets an Anquan Boldin-like receiver instead.
46. St. Louis Rams – Quinton Patton, WR, Louisiana Tech
The Rams have some pieces for Sam Bradford to throw to, but the team’s “entire brain trust” was on hand to watch Louisiana Tech’s Quinton Patton work out, reports Tony Pauline of DraftInsider.net. Although he’s not a burner, Patton would be a nice possession guy to tandem with Brian Quick and Chris Givens in St. Louis.
47. Dallas Cowboys – Travis Frederick, OG/OC, Wisconsin
Travis Frederick is a road-grading interior lineman and may be the best center prospect in this class. While he can snap the ball, he also can be utilized as a pulling guard. Tony Romo has been under some heat over the last couple seasons, and this Badger fits the bill to help change that on the interior.
48. Pittsburgh Steelers – Justin Hunter, WR, Tennessee
Pittsburgh could use a Montee Ball-type of running back, but now isn’t the time at pick 48. Instead, the team grabs the best target on the board in Justin Hunter. A tremendous combination of size and speed allows Hunter to make plays down the field. His presence gives sense of renew with Mike Wallace now in Miami.