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2015 NFL Draft Preview and Open Thread: Alabama Crimson Tide

Who goes where and when?

Look for Landon Collins in Chicago for the NFL Draft.
Look for Landon Collins in Chicago for the NFL Draft.
Marvin Gentry-USA TODAY Sports

The 2015 NFL Draft is upon us and all eyes fall upon two quarterbacks who could not be more different. On one side is FSU's Jameis Winston who looks to have NFL talent but has ginormous off-field issues. On the other side is choirboy Marcus Mariota who raises concern as to how his game can translate to the next level. The NFL is riddled with west coast QB flops. After those two, there is quite a drop-off at the position.

Before getting into this year's class, take a look back at the Class of 2014. C.J. Mosley and Ha Ha Clinton-Dix were selected in the first round of last year's draft and both ended up on the 2014 NFL All-Rookie Team. Eight Crimson Tide players in all were selected.

Player Pos Pick Team
C.J. Mosley ILB Pick 17, Round 1 (17) Ravens
Ha Ha Clinton-Dix FS Pick 21, Round 1 (21) Packers
Cyrus Kouandjio OT Pick 12, Round 2 (44) Bills
Kevin Norwood WR Pick 23, Round 4 (123) Seahawks
Ed Stinson DE Pick 20, Round 5 (160) Cardinals
AJ McCarron QB Pick 24, Round 5 (164) Bengals
Vinnie Sunseri SS Pick 27, Round 5 (167) Saints
Jeoffrey Pagan DE Pick 1, Round 6 (177) Texans

The 2015 NFL Draft should see almost as many Alabama names called.

Thursday, April 30, Round One:

The first name is scheduled to be called in the seven o'clock hour, central time. If you just cannot wait, the NFL Network and ESPN kickoff their coverages at noon. The NFL Network will air the "NFL Draft Gold Carpet" coverage beginning at 5:00 PM. Landon Collins will be in Chicago for the draft. However, Amari Cooper, Winston, Mariota, and a few others have all declined invitations to attend. Maybe it is a coincident. Maybe trades are afoot. Or maybe it is the new trend. Whichever it is, it should be fun watching NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell sweat as three of the top picks will not be there to hug him.

It looked like for a long time that Southern Cal DE Leonard Williams would be the top pick but he has slipped as of late. One thing that seems certain is that Alabama All-American Cooper will be a top 10 pick with the consensus having him picked fourth by the Raiders.

Amari Cooper – The nation's top college wide receiver should be on his way to Oakland. If he slides by the black and silver, Chicago Bears might just take him at #7. If those two pass, it is doubtful he gets past the St. Louis Rams at #10.
Landon Collins – It seems like just yesterday that Collins was committing to the Tide on national TV despite his mother's wishes. As the top safety, Collins too is expected to be a first rounder. I think mom has come around. The Minnesota Vikings could be takers at #11. However, the Philadelphia Eagles at the #20 seem to covet him.

Friday, May 1, Rounds Two & Three:

Round Two coverage begins at 6:00 PM CT. Live coverage again begins at noon CT for the two networks. Due to the NBA Playoffs, ESPN2 will air Rounds 2 and 3.

For Crimson Tide fans, there may only be one name called on this day with an outside shot at two.

T.J. Yeldon, RB – This is a pretty deep class for running backs. You can see my thoughts and some interesting comments on the RBs from this January 2015 post. Yeldon should be a second-rounder but could slide into the third. At the very worst, he goes in the fourth round.

Saturday, May 2, Rounds Four thru Seven:

Come Saturday, you may be fatigued of draft coverage overload. However, this is where many Tide players will be selected.

Arie Kouandjio, OG – Due to a fine senior season, it is possible that Arie could be picked on Day 2. However, it is looking like he might be a fourth rounder at this point.
Jalston Fowler, FB – Clearly the best fullback on the baord, Nudie looks like a fifth rounder. He could go earlier. He could go later. But you will definitely hear his name called begore the day is out.
Austin Shepherd, OT – Could go as high as the fifth round.
Xzavier Dickson, OLB – XZ-man has had some good workouts since the season ended and seen his stock rise. Fifth is a possibility but Round 6 is more likely.
Trey DePriest, ILB - Thanks to a thin year at linebacker, Trey should hear his name called on Day 3, possibly as high as Round 5 but more likely 6-7.

Sunday, May 3, Free Agent Free-For-All:

Some undrafted players could be getting phone calls as soon as Mr. Irrelevant is selected. For others, it could take weeks or the call may never come.

Blake Sims, ATH – He has been auditioning at quarterback but is open to other positions. His athleticism should get him a contract somewhere. Seventh round is not out of the realm of possibilities but more likely he signs as a free agent.
Brandon Ivory, DT - Could be good for depth.
Christion Jones, WR - Could have value as a special teams player.
Nick Perry, S - Could have value as a special teams player.
Brian Vogler, TE
DeAndrew White, WR
Leon Brown, OG

2015 NFL Draft

1. Tampa Bay Buccaneers - Jameis Winston, QB, FSU
2. Tennessee Titans - Marcus Mariota, QB, Oregon
3. Jacksonville Jaguars - Dante Fowler, DE, Florida
4. Oakland Raiders - Amari Cooper, WR, ALABAMA
5. Washington Redskins - Brandon Scherff, OT, Iowa - who???
6. New York Jets - Leonard Williams, DT, Southern Cal
7. Chicago Bears - Kevin White, WR, West Virginia
8. Atlanta Falcons - Vic Beasley, OLB, Clemson
9. New York Giants - Eric Flowers, OT, Miami
10. St. Louis Rams - Todd Gurley, RB, Georgia - a bit of a gamble
11. Minnesota Vikings - Trae Waynes, CB, Michigan State
12. Cleveland Browns - Danny Shelton, NT, Washington
13. New Orleans Saints - Andrus Peat, OT, Stanford - this is a little early to draft a project.
14. Miami Dolphins - DeVante Parker, WR, Louisville - third WR picked
15. San Diego Chargers (from San Francisco) - Melvin Gordon, RB, Wisconsin - are RBs back in vogue in the NFL?
16. Houston Texans - Kevin Johnson, CB, Wake Forest
17. San Francisco 49ers (from San Diego) - Arik Armstead, DE, Oregon
18. Kansas City Chiefs - Nyquillus Dillwad, Washington
19. Cleveland Browns (from Buffalo) - Cameron Erving, C, FSU
20. Philadelphia Eagles - Nelson somebody, WR, Southern Cal - never a dull moment with crazy Uncle Chip.
21. Cincinnati Bengals - Cedric Ogbuehi, OT, Texas A&M
22. Pittsburgh Steelers - Bud Dupree, DT, Kentucky - boy, did he slide.
23. Denver Broncos (from Detroit) - Shane Ray, DE, Mizzou - marijuana arrest cost him around 12-15 slots.
24. Arizona Cardinals - D.J. Humphries, OT, Florida
25. Carolina Panthers - Shaq Thompson, OLB, Washington - a third player from UW.
26. Baltimore Ravens - Breshad Perriman, WR, UCF
27. Dallas Cowboys - Jammie Jammie-Jammie, CB, UConn
28. Detroit Lions (from Denver) - Tyus Jones, G, Duke
29. Indianapolis Colts - Emoji
30. Green Bay Packers - .......
31. New Orleans Saints (from Seattle) - bleh
32. New England Patriots - Bobby Boucher, LB, University of Louisiana

* You never can tell with the draft. A lot of unexpected picks were made. Landon Collins was not chosen in the first round. Although he and his family, friends and fans are disappointed, he undoubtedly will be picked in Round 2. Right?

See ya tomorrow.