|There would be no draft slide this time for Rodgers in a redraft of the NFL.|
One of my favorite events of the last year has been DC Comics' re-launch of its titles with the so-called "New 52" series. That got me thinking, what would happen if the NFL wanted to launch its own "New 32," with every team receiving a full reboot?
You can actually do this on the "Madden" video game (by the way, did you hear Calvin Johnson is going to be on the cover?). But in the spirit of draft week, I decided to put together my own mock draft, to see just what the NFL's "New 32" would look like.
If you're wondering about the draft order, it's based on the teams' all-time winning percentage (thank you Pro Football Reference). One other thing -- ah, who am I kidding? If you haven't started flaming me in the comments by this point, you've at least rushed ahead to see who your favorite team has drafted.
And without further ado ...
QB Cam Newton
QB Drew Brees
QB Eli Manning
QB Tom Brady
QB Andrew Luck
It's a run on defenders! The value of shutdown corners is at an all-time high in the pass-happy NFL, and the Eagles know a thing or two about elite cornerbacks. Even so, the team goes with Revis over its own guys.
St. Louis has the chance to take an elite offensive player, but the opportunity to draft a linebacker who has been terrorizing the league for years is too good to pass up. Willis will be a great value, able to anchor Jeff Fisher's defense for years.
QB Matt Ryan
QB Tony Romo
Familiarity breeds contempt, but in this instance, it lands you a new quarterback. Romo would benefit from a fresh start elsewhere. Let's be honest; there's no way owner Dan Snyder would pass on an opportunity to tweak his rival, Jerry Jones.
DT Haloti Ngata
QB Sam Bradford
It's safe to say the Broncos would not consider Tim Tebow. But executive vice president of football operations John Elway does know the value of a good quarterback, so he makes a play for Bradford, still one of the bright young stars in the league.
Ware is a bit older than many of the players flying off the board, but the Steelers can't resist putting a guy like him in their system. Ware would look pretty nice in black and gold; he's the perfect player to continue the team's legacy at the position.
New Colts general manager Ryan Grigson knows the value of having a great tackle to anchor the line. But which one? There are a lot of great options on the board, but Thomas, who will dominate for another decade, seems like the safest bet.
The Vikings know what it's like to have a difference-maker at defensive end, but instead of reuniting with Jared Allen, Minnesota goes with the younger model in JPP. The Vikings benefit from teams that run a 3-4 defense, like the Chiefs, Steelers and Patriots, passing on Pierre-Paul, who fits perfectly in Minnesota.
OT Jake Long
A lineman doesn't make for a sexy pick, but it fits. While the Giants often don't make a big splash (they leave that to their neighbors at MetLife Stadium), they do make great football moves. Long would make great sense for them.
LB Von Miller
The Ravens have long made defense their hallmark. Miller is a younger player who can step into their 3-4 defense and carry the tradition on.
WR Hakeem Nicks
The Packers have had some elite receivers over the years, and Nicks would be a great piece to build their new offense around. Besides, it's not like they would take a running back.
QB Michael Vick
Owner Stephen Ross wants to make a splash and has longed for a big-time quarterback, so Vick makes perfect sense. The launch of the "New 32" allows the team to finally bring a quarterback to Miami.
RB Arian Foster
Owner Jerry Jones loves pass-rushers and playmakers, but at the tail end of a run on defensive stars, there wouldn't be much for him to choose from, leaving him to pick between Foster and TE Rob Gronkowski. Memories of Emmitt Smith carrying the Cowboys to three Super Bowls prompt Jones to grab the first running back taken in the draft.
Some prominent names would come off the board in the second round: Rob Gronkowski, Jimmy Graham, Troy Polamalu, Adrian Peterson, Maurice Jones-Drew, Andre Johnson, Jared Allen, Julius Peppers, James Harrison and more.