» Michael Lombardi's mock draft
With each development that comes our way in the NFL, draft perspective changes. While general managers and coaches like to say they won't waver much from their post-combine draft boards, the eroding situation in Denver could make quarterback Jay Cutler available in a trade, which opens a door that could shift the tide of the April 25-26 draft.
Georgia quarterback Matthew Stafford had his pro-day workout Thursday in front of representatives from all 32 teams, including a top-heavy contingent from the Detroit Lions, who have the No. 1 overall pick. Stafford showcased his big arm, said the right things to the right people and did nothing to hurt himself. He will have a private workout with the Lions on March 31 in Athens, Ga. Clearly, the Lions are doing their due diligence. Whether they walk away smitten might not be known until draft day, but Stafford had an allegiance of fans among a lot of the teams who wouldn't have a problem scooping him up if he slides during the draft.
I still have the Lions taking Stafford with the No. 1 pick. I've never been overly solid on this, but I still don't think Detroit will pass on the strong-armed Stafford, then watch him develop into a potential star for another team. A quarterback -- Kansas State's Josh Freeman -- who three weeks ago could have been available to Detroit, which also holds the No. 20 pick, has skyrocketed up draft boards to the point where he might not be there when the Lions pick for the second time in the first round.
There also is a lot of trade talk heating up. Philadelphia supposedly wants to move into the top 15 -- it might have to move higher -- to get an offensive tackle. Cleveland has two quarterbacks (Brady Quinn, Derek Anderson) with trade value, which is a nice position to be in since so many teams need one. There's also the Julius Peppers-to-New England possibility, which shouldn't be dismissed since anything is possible this time of year.