Mock Monitor: 7.0

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Remember that nice, pretty, clear picture we got from last week's Mock Monitor that suggested the Falcons would be drafting Iowa defensive end Adrian Clayborn with the No. 27 pick?

Yeah, kiss that goodbye.

We go from starting to understand where the experts congregating to once again edging closer to not knowing what anyone's thinking this week as Clayborn barely holds onto the consensus pick spot.

Behind Clayborn, who received four of this week's picks from our sampling of mock drafts, we have Georgia defensive end Justin Houston and Wisconsin offensive tackle Gabe Carimi tied with three picks each.

Florida center/guard Mike Pouncey has two picks this week.

So, what does this tell us?

We could go with a cornerback in the first round of the Draft.

Wait... what?

There's a school of thought out there that persists and contends the Falcons will select a CB at No. 27. Granted, it's a small contingent, but since I've talked about defensive ends to death here lately, I want to switch things up and focus on a couple of projections I find awfully curious.

At the start of the Mock Monitor this year, we saw quite a few mocks projecting that the Falcons would take a wide receiver. Another curious selection to me, but OK. I took the bait and now we've seen that shift almost completely away from that position. FoxSports.com is the lone wide receiver holdout, primarily because their mock hasn't been updated since February.

Now with a month to go until teams start selecting, the mocks have shown a turn toward cornerback slightly. In previous Mock Monitors, we've seen the CB pick come and go, but now it's coming back again as Yahoo.com and NFL.com both have the Falcons addressing that position in the first round.

The two picks right now are Colorado CB Jimmy Smith (pictured above) and Miami CB Brandon Harris.

I have a hard time believing the Falcons will go this route. If we take the current roster into consideration, it's difficult for me to see how this is a need that has to be addressed in the first round. If rumors are true that the Falcons won't be re-signing Brian Williams, the Falcons will need to identify a third cornerback to take his spot. Likely, that would happen in mid or late rounds.

Of course, anything can happen between now and April to sway that opinion, but with needs on both lines, I can see that taking priority over the defensive backfield.

But let's take Smith for example today. Smith has been projected several times by our prognosticators. Chad Reuter of CBS has flirted with the idea of the Falcons drafting Smith, and Pat Kirwan of NFL.com currently has the Falcons snagging him at No. 27.

Smith is no doubt a talented cornerback. He has fantastic size at that position, standing at 6-foot-2 and weighing in at 205, which is the quality I find most attractive in him. I've heard there are some character issues with him, so the interview process at the Combine — if the Falcons did, indeed, have a formal interview with him — would have been extremely important to find out the details.

With his excellent size comes some pretty good speed. He runs about a 4.4 in the 40, and you definitely like to see someone that big run that fast, especially considering some of the wide receivers the Falcons have to contend with in the division.

So what are your thoughts? Do the Falcons look CB at No. 27 or do they go a different route? Vote below.

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