On Tuesday, defensive tackle Travis Johnson, running back Darius Walker and SportsRadio 610's Marc Vandermeer joined Texans TV's Brooke Bentley for the first-ever HoustonTexans.com Mock Draft, completing all of the first round picks.
Each participant was designated eight teams, and a random selection order determined that Johnson would pick first, followed by Vandermeer, Bentley and Walker. The mock draft was filmed prior to the announcement of Jake Long as the No. 1 pick, as well as Kansas City's trade of defensive end Jared Allen to Minnesota, which gave the Chiefs the Vikings' No. 17 pick.
To see the results of Part 1 (picks 1-15), click here. Here's what happened in Part 2 (picks 16-31, including the Texans' No. 18 pick):
16. Arizona Cardinals (Darius Walker): Rashard Mendenhall, RB, Illinois
Walker: "I would pick a replacement for Edgerrin James – now, not really a replacement because Edgerrin James is still there, but I think he's getting old, I think he'll be 30 before the season starts, so I think they need to get a young back in, someone to groom and get ready to take over."
Writer's take: The Cardinals could opt for a cornerback to help their dreadful pass defense, but Mendenhall looks ready to contribute right away as an explosive backfield threat.
17. *Minnesota Vikings (Travis Johnson): Derrick Harvey, DE, Florida
Johnson: "This is kind of a sad situation for me because right now, Kenechi Udeze, we don't know when he'll be back. He's a dear friend of mine, so it's kind of a touching situation, but you do need to bring in a replacement for a guy right now you don't know if he's ever going to be able to play with that leukemia."
Writer's take: Johnson could not have been more right, as the Vikings actually ensured that they would find Udeze's replacement before the draft by trading for Allen. If the Chiefs don't take a d-end at No. 5, Harvey is a definite possibility here for them.
18. Houston Texans (Marc Vandermeer): Mike Jenkins, CB, South Florida Vandermeer: "Rashard Mendenhall almost dropped to the Texans at No. 18 … that would have made things very difficult for them. I still say that cornerback, with Dunta Robinson still on the mend here, you never know what happens in the future. It's a big need. It's a good time to take one. Let's go with Mike Jenkins of South Florida. We talk about running back, and I know a lot of mocks out there have Jonathan Stewart being selected by the Texans. Fact is, the guy's a little banged up anyway and let's go with what appears to be a surer thing with Mike Jenkins at a position of need for the Texans."
Writer's take: Several mock drafts agree with Vandermeer's pick of Jenkins, who is ranked by some services as one of the top two corners in the draft. Offensive tackle Chris Williams is also a trendy pick among Internet mock drafts.
19. Philadelphia Eagles (Brooke Bentley): Gosder Cherilus, T, Boston College
Bentley: "The o-line at Philly is getting a little old. John Runyan definitely isn't getting any younger. (Cherilus) is another guy who's enormous. He actually has pretty good speed – he ran a five flat forty at the combine – and he can play right and left tackle, so I think he'd bring some versatility to that offensive line."
Writer's take: Johnson disagreed with the pick, saying that Brandon Albert is the most versatile lineman in the draft. Still, Cherilus provides a potential solution to the seemingly failed Winston Justice experiment.
20. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (Walker): Limas Sweed, WR, Texas
Walker: "I think that Joey Galloway is getting old; he's like 37. Michael Clayton, he hasn't lived up to potential since his rookie season, so I think they go with a wide receiver, somebody like Sweed. I think he's a great player – big guy, strong hands, can go get the ball, a go-getter, good speed. I think they go with him."
Writer's take: Galloway is actually 36, but Walker's point is duly noted. Bucs wideout Ike Hilliard is also 32.
21. Washington Redskins (Johnson): Malcolm Kelly, WR, Oklahoma
Johnson: "Let's not look at his 40 time and say, 'OK, this guy's not a pure receiver,' because let's not forget, Jerry Rice ran a 4.7, but Jerry Rice is still Jerry Rice. So Malcolm Kelly, to me, is the best pick for Washington, especially if this trade to get Chad Johnson doesn't go through."
Writer's take: Though Kelly's stock tumbled after he trashed OU following his subpar Pro Day workout, the Redskins are hot on his trail. According to the Washington Post, the team has spent considerable time with Kelly lately and loves his 6-4, 218-pound frame.
22. Dallas (Vandermeer): Felix Jones, RB, Arkansas Vandermeer: "I think that Jerry Jones would get thrown out of the Arkansas alumni association if he didn't select Felix Jones right here who drops down to him. He didn't make the deal for Darren McFadden, which would've been crazy, I think, but right here he gets Felix Jones, an outstanding playmaker who I think could have as good a career almost as a Darren McFadden."
Writer's take: Practically every mock draft on the web has Jones as the pick here. It's difficult to see any team taking him in the first 21 picks, and it's also difficult to imagine a better complement to Marion Barber III than the speed-burning Jones.
23. Pittsburgh Steelers (Bentley): Brandon Albert, G/T, Virginia
Bentley: "With Alan Faneca leaving, I think you've got to get a guard in there."
Writer's take: Bentley didn't have to say much to justify the pick, as Johnson had vociferously sung Albert's praises earlier in the draft and there was no dissention with her selection. It was a surprise to see the massive and versatile Albert fall this far.
24. Tennessee Titans (Walker): Brandon Flowers, CB, Virginia Tech
Walker: "I think the Titans are going to go with a corner here. I think they're going to go with someone to give them depth at the corner position and come in and play right away. I think as far as what's left on the board, you've got to go with (Flowers). Great player, he has proven that he can play well. He's a hard hitter, as well. I think he can play well on special teams and be able to help the team out and play right away."
Writer's take: I expect the Titans to take a wide receiver to give Vince Young a premier target. With Young's college teammate Sweed off the board, they could grab Indiana's James Hardy or Cal's DeSean Jackson.
25. Seattle Seahawks (Johnson): Dustin Keller, TE, Purdue
Johnson: "The Seattle Seahawks, to me, need a tight end or a wide receiver. But I think they go with Dustin Keller. I think he's the best guy on the board for this job. You can't beat him. You've seen him run his 40, you've seen everything he did at the combine, his tape, he's a Big Ten player. You can't beat him."
Writer's take: I like USC's Fred Davis, last season's Mackey Award winner, a bit better. But Keller was incredibly productive at Purdue and impressed scouts with his 4.5 40 at the combine.
26. Jacksonville Jaguars (Vandermeer): Phillip Merling, DE, Clemson
Vandermeer: "I was going to take Calais Campbell had he been available, but I'll go with a defensive end here. They need playmaking from the defensive end position. Look, they need help on the d-line. You say, 'Help for a 12-win team,' but it's kind of a passing of the torch on the Jaguar d-line right now and Merling's the kind of guy who can help them out. Playmaking, runstopping from the defensive end spot."
Writer's take: If Merling falls this far, the d-line-hungry Jaguars should be ecstatic to have him. North Carolina defensive tackle Kentwan Balmer, whom Johnson called "agile, hostile and mobile," would also be an instant upgrade for the defensive line.
27. San Diego Chargers (Bentley): Aqib Talib, CB, Kansas
Bentley: "I think San Diego has to go with a corner. They have to replace Drayton Florence, and looking at the draft board, Aqib Talib's still up there. At the combine, people were saying top-15 pick (about Talib)."
Writer's take: Talib fell in our draft because of character concerns stemming from his admission at the combine that he tested positive for marijuana three times while in college. Talent-wise, he's a steal at No. 27.
28. Dallas Cowboys (Walker): James Hardy, WR, Indiana Walker: "They just got Felix Jones, so there's no need for a running back at this position. I think that they may go with someone to help T.O. out here. I really think that they need to get another guy on the other side who can make plays like to does so I think they probably go with Hardy. He's a big-time player, he's a big dude, strong hands. He's a go-getter, and also he's very physical in run protection and (run) blocking."
Writer's take: Receiver is a primary need for the Cowboys, so Jackson is another possibility. Balmer would be a tempting prospect for them at this point as well.
29. San Francisco 49ers (Johnson): Keith Rivers, LB, USC Johnson: "They need offense, they need offense, they need offense. I'm going to do something that they probably aren't going to do but I would do if I was the GM. I'm going to take somebody to go right next to Patrick Willis. I'm going to select Rivers, because he shouldn't have dropped this far in the draft but if he's available you have to take him because you're building that defense to be dominant. Side-by-side tandem, could be two great linebackers to be there together."
Writer's take: The 49ers come away with the coup of the draft by nabbing Rivers, who is projected as a probable top-10 pick.
30. Green Bay Packers (Vandermeer): Kenny Phillips, S, Miami Vandermeer: "I used to work there. A lot of friends that I talked to in Miami in the last couple of weeks actually told me he's not Sean Taylor, he's not one of those unbelievable jaw-dropping athletes, but he's such a hard worker, he's going to make plays, he's going to be able to play in this league for a long time and be solid at the safety position for you. (He) can really play either one in a pinch. And he's a good person, too; that never hurts."
Writer's take: While Phillips doesn't have the upside of some of the incredible NFL safeties to come out of "The U," the Packers need help in the secondary and Phillips is one of the best players left at this point.
--. New England (Bentley): Pick forfeited Bentley: "I don't have a pick because apparently I was caught spying, so I have to forfeit my pick."
Writer's take: The Patriots will console themselves with the instant starter they found with the No. 7 pick.
31. New York Giants (Walker): Mario Manningham, WR, Michigan Walker: "I think that they have a lot of players at every position, but I think that they would probably go with somebody to go on the other side of Plaxico (Burress), a wide receiver here at this position, end of the first round. (Manningham) is a great player, big-play ability, has done well and has had a great career at Michigan."
Writer's take: The Giants got a lot out of last year's second-round pick, wide receiver Steve Smith, so I wouldn't be surprised to see them address a more pressing need in the secondary with a player like Arkansas State's Tyrell Johnson.
*Pick traded to Kansas City Chiefs as part of a deal for defensive end Jared Allen.