Spring game mock draft

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Football
The-Ozone's 2013 Spring Game Mock Draft
By The-Ozone Staff

Welcome to The-Ozone's second annual Spring Game Mock Draft. The format is the same as past Spring Game drafts. Once a position is opened, that position is then drafted until there are no players left at that position to draft.

The Spring Game Draft has been an Ohio State tradition that extends all the way back to the Jim Tressel era. The-Ozone's Spring Game Mock Draft tradition extends all the way back to last year.

This year we pit Brandon Castel against Patrick Murphy. Pat was given the first pick of the draft.

1st Pick – Running Back

Murphy: Carlos Hyde
Castel: Warren Ball
Murphy: Bri’onte Dunn

Murphy: “When looking at the running back spot, you have to go with the proven horse. Hyde is the guy at the position and has continued to improve in the offseason. Meyer has raved about him, so I couldn’t pass that up. After Brandon decided on Ball, I was happy to take Dunn who has carried the ball in game situations and has two touchdowns.”

Castel: “With Jordan Hall and Rod Smith out of the equation, I wasn’t surprised to see Pat go after Hyde with the first pick. We’ll see how much he actually plays, but it left me with an interesting decision. In the end, Ball has been consistently impressive to me this spring. I think he is more of a workhorse, and he’ll have to be for my offense.”

Gerdeman's Analysis: Maybe I'm not the right guy to judge this objectively because I think Warren Ball is really, really good. I don't expect Carlos Hyde to play much, so this basically comes down to Ball versus Bri'onte Dunn, and I think Ball will do more in the passing game than Dunn. Congratulations to Brandon on a very un-Browns-like draft here.

2nd Pick – Offensive Tackle

Castel: Jack Mewhort
Murphy: Taylor Decker
Castel: Chase Farris
Murphy: Kyle Dodson
Castel: Darryl Baldwin

Castel: “I could have gone a number of directions with my first pick, but why not start with Captain Jack? Actually, I just wanted to make sure I got the best offensive lineman on the board and also set myself up to get either Decker or Farris on the other side.”

Murphy: “Mewhort would have been my pick to start too, but Decker seemed the next best thing. While he is young, there’s been a lot of good talk around the big man. Dodson will have to rise to the occasion for my team and prove himself.”

Gerdeman's Analysis: I see two offensive lines that are going to have some issues with their pass blocking. All I can envision is Noah Spence against Chase Farris and Adolphus Washington and Jamal Marcus against Taylor Decker and Kyle Dodson. No offense to any of these offensive linemen, but we've seen how these matchups have gone this spring. I guess I'll give the nod to Brandon for taking Jack Mewhort, but heck, even Al Davis could have done that. Even to this day.

3rd Pick – Interior Offensive Line

Murphy: Andrew Norwell
Castel: Corey Linsley
Murphy: Marcus Hall
Castel: Pat Elflein
Murphy: Jacoby Boren
Castel: Eric Kramer
Murphy: Tommy Brown

Murphy: “Linsley’s limited practice time in the spring worried me, so I went safe with Norwell first. Hall and Boren are likely starters this year, but will want to show they can do it in game action. Brown is a wait and see, but will get reps in this game.”

Castel: “We’ll see how much Linsley plays, but if he’s healthy he’s a no-brainer. I’m a little bothered Pat ended up with three probable starters in Decker, Norwell and Hall, but I like my potential with Farris and Elflein. They are probably the 6th and 7th guys up front right now.”

Gerdeman's Analysis: I have to admit, Pat getting Norwell, Hall and Boren is pretty impressive. They have all played together this spring, whereas Linsley and Elflein have not. Plus, we just don't know how much Linsley is going to play.

4th Pick – Wide Receiver

Castel: Michael Thomas
Murphy: Devin Smith
Castel: Philly Brown
Murphy: Evan Spencer
Castel: Chris Fields
Murphy: Frank Epitropoulos

Castel: “My first big shocker of the draft was taking Thomas as the first receiver off the board. He’s been my guy all spring, so this should not come as a surprise, but it was more than that. I think he’s due for another big performance on Saturday, and I knew I would still be able to get Philly or Devin on the turn.”

Murphy: “Brandon isn’t the only one who is big on Thomas, as I was not happy he took him first. With that said, I can’t complain with Smith and Spencer. I went Smith over Philly simply because of the big-play potential. It is a glorified scrimmage after all, so let’s go deep. Epitropoulos is a proud UA alumni so I was happy to welcome him (and he may be useful later).”

Gerdeman's Analysis: I've got to give the nod to Brandon here because not only did he get "his guy" Michael Thomas, but he also got Philly Brown, who has been a struggle for defenses to cover this spring. The steal of the draft, however, may be Chris Fields. With no Jordan Hall (assumedly), Fields is the only viable H-back in the game. That's like starting a DH when your opponent has to bat a pitcher.

5th Pick – Tight End


Murphy: Jeff Heuerman
Castel: Nick Vannett
Murphy: Blake Thomas
Castel: William Houston

Murphy: “As I just wrote about how important the tight ends were going to be, I felt they needed to come off the board early. There’s not a lot of explanation needed here. All the guys were taken in the depth chart order, as there has been no indication of that changing.”

Castel: “Not a lot of options here. Pat took the starter in Heuerman, but Vannett is a great consolation prize. I would have waited longer to open the tight end position because both of those guys are pretty good.”

Gerdeman's Analysis: I think Nick Vannett is going to surprise some people, but I'm going with Patrick in this one because not only did he get a tight end/fullback in Blake Thomas, he also drafted the only tight end to go 90 yards in a single bound this spring in Heuerman. That doesn't just happen because of broken coverage. Well, sometimes it does. At least if it happens again in Paul Brown Stadium, the employees will be used to seeing it.

6th Pick – Defensive Tackle

Castel: Michael Bennett
Murphy: Tommy Schutt
Castel: Joel Hale
Murphy: Chris Carter

Castel: “Thought about defensive end and Noah Spence here, but I felt there was more dropoff between Bennett (who I have liked for a while) and the second tackle, than there was between Spence and Adolphus Washington.”

Murphy: “Again, not much to explain here. Brandon went Bennett, so the next logical choice was Schutt. I will be interested to see how Carter does out there; he’s got a great name in Buckeye history.

Gerdeman's Analysis: Brandon got three-fourths of the starting defensive line, so he gets the nod here. However, I admire Patrick's gumption in selecting "Big Hungry" Chris Carter. Patrick is clearly not concerned about Carter's weight issues. Urban Meyer is concerned, but Patrick isn't. Win at all costs much, Pat? Now that I think about it, Patrick has the perfect interior offensive line to battle Brandon's defensive line. But it's still not good enough overall.

7th Pick – Quarterback

Murphy: Braxton Miller
Castel: Kenny Guiton and Cardale Jones

Murphy: “While Miller will be limited in what he’s allowed to do, he’s still the starting quarterback on this team. Getting the starters at quarterback and running back was big for me. Meyer said they will throw the ball around as they did last year, so we’ll see what Braxton can do with that arm.”

Castel: “I took Braxton in the second round of last year’s Mock Draft, but we didn’t know very much about Guiton back then. Both Miller and Guiton will be in black jerseys Saturday, so legs won’t be much of a factor. Jones, however, will be allowed to run around out there.”

Gerdeman's Analysis: Getting Braxton Miller is a nice pick for Patrick, but if Cardale Jones ends up being the backup for both teams, then Brandon's going to have both of his quarterbacks competing against eachother while Patrick's quarterback is admiring his newly-blonded hair. Personally, I would never draft a quarterback who is concerned about his hair enough to dye it. I would also never draft a quarterback who is concerned about his weight enough to diet. I would also never draft a quarterback who is concerned about his mortality enough to die yet. I'm sorry, what were we talking about? Oh yeah, I'm going with Patrick here because Cardale Jones is going to throw a couple of interceptions, and Braxton is only going to throw one.

8th Pick – Kicker/Punter


Castel: Drew Basil
Murphy: Everyone else

Castel: “Steal of the draft. That’s what Basil was. Maybe Epitropoulos can handle the punting duties for Pat, but who is going to kick field goals? Maybe they won’t have to with Miller, Hyde, Smith and Heuerman."

Murphy: “Brandon got it right. We won’t be kicking and we’ll be going for two. This is where Epitropoulos could be used outside of receiver, though it will be a big change for the other guys.”

Gerdeman's Analysis: This is Brandon's version of Mike Ditka's Ricky Williams draft. It will end up better for Brandon than it did for Ditka.

9th Pick –  Defensive End

Murphy: Noah Spence
Castel: Adolphus Washington
Murphy: J.T. Moore
Castel: Jamal Marcus
Murphy: Steve Miller
Castel: Tyquan Lewis
Murphy: Tracy Sprinkle

Murphy: “Spence was a big get for me. Let Cardale try and run around, we know Spence doesn’t mind hitting his quarterback teammates. Moore and Miller have both done this before and will want to make a mark. If a lot of attention is paid to Spence or Schutt, look for one of these guys to have a good day.

Castel: “I was disappointed to miss out on Spence because he’s been so impressive this spring. Easily the most noticeable player on defense with Roby and Shazier sidelined, but I’m perfectly content getting Washington here. I actually like my combination of Washington and Marcus, who has a world of talent just waiting to be found.”

Gerdeman's Analysis: Getting Noah Spence is almost good enough all by himself. I am expecting multiple sacks. However, I am very intrigued by this bookend duo of Adolphus Washington and Jamal Marcus. I have to lean with Brandon here because he has the one offensive tackle that has been able to block Spence this spring.

10th Pick – Cornerback

Castel: Doran Grant
Murphy: Eli Apple
Castel: Armani Reeves
Murphy: Adam Griffin
Castel: Cam Burrows

Castel: “Without Roby, this position was kind of a letdown. I was pleased to get the next two guys in the pecking order, though, especially with the way Grant has been playing this spring.”

Murphy: “No Roby made me decide to give some guys a chance. I debated between Apple and Burrows (no offense to Reeves) for a bit before I pulled the trigger on the New Jersey product. Griffin will be asked to do a lot…”

Gerdeman's Analysis: Friends don't let friends drink and draft, and I'm pretty sure Brandon slipped Patrick a mickey here. Brandon got the top three cornerbacks on my board. (It's an actual board.) However, the spring game has a way of finding unlikely stars, so don't be surprised to see Adam Griffin or Eli Apple make a couple of plays.

11th Pick – Linebacker

Murphy: Curtis Grant
Castel: David Perkins
Murphy: Josh Perry
Castel: Camren Williams

Murphy: “I will take Meyer’s assurance that Grant is all in right now and give him the shot. It’s all or nothing for the kid this year. Perry and Williams gave me something to think about, but in the end I went for size at the position.”

Castel: “I was surprised Grant lasted until the 11th round after Meyer declared him the starting middle linebacker this week, but I’m still not 100% sold. He was the starter after last spring too. Don’t get me wrong, I’m rooting for the kid, but I was perfectly happy getting Perkins and Williams. 

Gerdeman's Analysis: I'm going with Patrick here. Getting two starters who have played a ton of snaps in the spring was a nice move. Both Joshua Perry and Curtis Grant have had their moments this spring. I would keep an eye on David Perkins, however. He could make enough plays on his own tomorrow to top both Grant and Perry. Especially if Brutus touches the ball again.

12th Pick – Safety

Castel: Christian Bryant
Murphy: C.J. Barnett
Castel: Tyvis Powell
Murphy: Corey Brown
Castel: Ron Tanner

Castel: “Bryant and Barnett is a toss-up (Barnett went first last year), but I think Bryant still has a little bit more potential. I loved getting Tyvis Powell where I did. Looking back, that might have been one of the steals of the draft. He could be a starter for the Buckeyes this fall.”

Murphy: “It is interesting we let safety fall to the end. I was happy with Barnett after Brandon went Bryant first. Brown has played well, but Brandon did well to get Powell. Shows he knows what he’s doing some of the time.”

Gerdeman's Analysis: This one might be a push. If I was judging which draft would get yelled at most by Kerry Coombs, I'd have to go with Brandon, because he has Tyvis Powell. Actually, I'm probably going to go that way anyway because the combination of Powell and Christian Bryant intrigues me. Sorry Patrick. I did appreciate the dig at Brandon though. That is always welcome.

Last year's the-Ozone mock draft

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