Bills considering Blaine Gabbert at No. 3?

Buffalo Bills coach Chan Gailey is pictured on the sidelines during third quarter action against the Miami Dolphins at Ralph Wilson Stadium in Orchard Park, New York, September 12, 2010. REUTERS/Doug Benz (UNITED STATES – Tags: SPORT FOOTBALL)

While appearing on Mike and Mike on Thursday morning, ESPN’s Adam Schefter said that the Bills will give Missouri quarterback Blaine Gabbert a “long, hard look” at the No. 3 pick in tonight’s draft.

“I’ve been hearing buzz since last night,” Schefter said. “If Cam Newton was in play for the Bills, why wouldn’t Blaine Gabbert?”

I get what Schefter’s saying, although Newton would seemingly attract Chan Gailey more than Gabbert would, because the Buffalo head coach likes mobile quarterbacks. Of course, Ryan Fitzpatrick isn’t mobile and had some success under Gailey last season, so it’s not like Gailey only goes with mobile quarterbacks. Plus, Gabbert has above average athleticism for his size.

With the amount of needs the Bills have on defense, I wouldn’t think they would draft a quarterback at No. 3. This could just be a smokescreen in order to lure a QB-needy team up to No. 3 so that they can acquire more picks and still land a defender of their choice further down. But you never know – this draft is a mystery.

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Broncos to take linebacker Von Miller at No. 2?

NFL Network’s Kara Henderson is reporting that Texas A&M linebacker Von Miller may have surpassed Alabama defensive tackle Marcell Dareus as the favorite for the Broncos at No. 2 overall.

From Rotoworld:

“What we’re hearing right now,” said Henderson, “(is) the room may be shifting” toward Miller. According to Henderson, the Broncos believe Miller “can be a four-down player,” contributing on all three defensive downs as well as on special teams. Frankly, we’re not buying it. As good as Miller projects to be, he’s not a particularly good scheme fit for Denver’s new 4-3 defense. They also have much bigger needs inside.

Scouts have pointed out that Miller has trouble stacking up in the run game and lacks power to shed blocks. Thus, Rotoworld would be correct in their assessment that Miller wouldn’t be a fit for Denver in a 4-3 alignment. He would arguably be a better fit as a pass rushing outside linebacker in a 3-4.

I’m going to compile my final mock on Thursday morning (I know most of you can’t stand the anticipation, but try to get some sleep tonight…) but I like Dareus to Denver at No. 2 and Miller to Arizona at No. 5. Miller would seemingly be a great fit in the Cardinals’ 3-4 multiple front and they could certainly use a pass-rusher.

Mark Ingram receives clean bill of health

The University of Alabama Crimson Tide’s Mark Ingram celebrates scoring a touchdown against the University of Texas Longhorns during the fourth quarter in the NCAA’s BCS National Championship football game in Pasadena, January 7, 2010. REUTERS/Lori Shepler (UNITED STATES – Tags: SPORT FOOTBALL)

The Miami Herald is reporting that the famed Dr. James Andrews has given running back prospect Mark Ingram a clean bill of health heading into Thursday night’s NFL draft.

The Herald also points out that Ingram was not asked to return to Indianapolis for a medical recheck following the scouting combine. This is significant because potential draftees with medical red flags are often asked to return to Indy for further evaluations.

The health status of Ingram is important to the Dolphins, who hold the No. 15 overall pick. There’s a good chance that free agents Ronnie Brown and Ricky Williams have played their last snaps in South Beach and the Fish could snag a running back in the first round. Ingram would most likely be available at that spot and is arguably the best running back prospect in the draft.

Of course, Ingram’s clean bill of health doesn’t mean that the Dolphins will select him with the No. 15 pick – even though running back is arguably their biggest need. The interior of their offensive line is also a need, as is quarterback and even safety. It seems unlikely that Miami would take a signal caller in the first round, but it’s hard to figure what will go down on Thursday night at Radio City Music Hall. This year’s draft is shrouded in mystery.

A.J. Green to Falcons rumors heating up again

Just over a month ago, Jeff Schultz of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution wrote an article suggesting that the Falcons should do everything in their power to move up in order to select dynamic wide receiver prospect A.J. Green. If Peter King’s latest tweet comes to fruition, Schultz’s wish may become a reality.

Just days before the first round of the draft is set to take place on Thursday night, King tweets that Atlanta is seeking an “explosive outside threat” and is trying to “get way up” for either Green or Alabama’s Julio Jones. King does mention, however, that the situation is unlikely.

The reason that it’s unlikely is that the Falcons hold the No. 27th overall pick and there’s a very good chance that both Green and Jones will go in the top 10. If that’s the case, Atlanta has a ton of ground to cover in order to put itself in position to nab either wideout. Seeing as how teams can only trade picks from this year’s draft, a move like that could prove to be difficult. (The reason teams can’t deal picks from future drafts is because without a CBA in place, there is no 2012 draft. No draft = no draft picks to trade.)

That said, Falcons’ GM Thomas Dimitroff has made at least one bold move every offseason since arriving in Atlanta in 2008. He signed free agent Michael Turner in ’08, traded for tight end Tony Gonzalez in ’09 and signed corner Dunta Robinson to a lucrative deal last offseason. He also traded back into the ’08 draft to select offensive tackle Sam Baker, so he does have at least some history of trading up. (Although it’s important to note that he was also armed with multiple second round picks that year because of the DeAngelo Hall trade with Oakland, so he had more to work with in order to move up.)

As King suggests, it seems highly unlikely that the Falcons would be able to pull off a trade in order to get into the top 10. Cleveland, which holds the seventh overall pick, would seemingly make a great trade partner. But with needs at defensive end and along the offensive line (three of the five starters from last year’s O-line are free agents), would Dimitroff sacrifice most, if not all of his draft in order to make a deal like this? He knows he has a Super Bowl-caliber roster on his hands and adding a weapon opposite Roddy White to spread defenses vertically is a must. But at the end of the day, a deal like that may be too rich for Dimitroff and the Falcons’ blood.

NFL draft prospects Houston and Ballard tested positive for marijuana

According to a report by FOX Sports’ Jay Glazer and Alex Marvez, Georgia DE/LB Justin Houston tested positive for marijuana at February’s scouting combine. Iowa DL Christian Ballard also failed a drug test, which isn’t good considering he’s already facing question marks about his lack of production in relation to his immense talent.

In Houston’s case, the failed drug test could cost him the opportunity to be selected in the first round. He’s too good of a talent to fall out of the second round, but teams were already wary of his abilities to stand up and produce as an outside linebacker in a 3-4. For those observers who have watched tape on the former Bulldog, most of them say that he’s better with his hand in the dirt as a DE in a 4-3.

The other thing that was already hurting Houston’s draft stock was the fact that the defensive line position is deep in this year’s draft. When you couple the failed drug test with the questionable tape, it stands to reason that eight or nine defensive ends could be selected before Houston comes off the board. Granted, that may have happened anyway (even before FOX’s report came out), but the positive drug test certainly doesn’t help.

It never ceases to amaze me how NFL prospects are willing to potentially lose thousands (if not millions in some players’ cases) of dollars just so they can smoke a little ganja. Hopefully the crap Houston smoked was worth potentially falling into the second round and costing him guaranteed money on his first pro contract.

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