Although there is no football this time of year, it is an exciting part of the NFL process nonetheless. Right now, 32 teams are gearing up for the 2013 NFL Draft that takes place at Radio City Music Hall in late April. For the most part, the evaluation process has been completed, with teams having their boards pretty much set.
Given the team needs and projected stock of incoming prospects, the pundits are getting a better idea of which players teams are going after. On Monday, CBS Sports draft analysts Rob Rang and Dane Brugler released their updated mock drafts.
For the most part, they differed on their selections, especially in the top 10. In fact, they only saw eye-to-eye on three players in the entire first round. One pick they did agree on was UCLA defensive end Datone Jones going 25th to the Seattle Seahawks.
Surprisingly, they agreed that one of the league's top defenses needed help on the edge. They both felt Jones could provide depth and has serious upside as a pass rusher.
Datone Jones, DE, UCLA: The camaraderie forged between Pete Carroll's coaching staff and the scouting staff under general manager John Schneider has resulted in several surprising but ultimately successful draft selections in recent years. The 6-4, 280-pound Jones will be viewed by some as a 'tweener but he might possess the combination of strength, length, burst and passion to aid as an interior pass rusher in Seattle's hybrid front.
Datone Jones, DE, UCLA: The Seahawks have one of the better defensive fronts in the NFC, but it wouldn't be surprising to see them add some depth, especially at pass rusher. Jones has the versatility to line up inside, outside and standing up, providing a pass rush from several different angles.
The Seahawks did just spend a high first on West Virginia defensive end Bruce Irvin in 2012. And they have gotten after the quarterback pretty efficiently. However, if Jones is the best player available at that point, the pick makes sense.
Given that they just landed a gem in Russell Wilson, one might expect them to look for an explosive playmaker for the offense. A receiver like Keenan Allen or Tavon Austin would be huge acquisitions for a Seattle team that is looking to overthrow the 49ers in the NFC West.