Over at SB Nation, Brian Galliford has put together his final 2011 NFL MOck Draft before the Scouting Combine, which begins Wednesday (Feb. 23-Mar. 1). Nick Fairley, the big defensive tackle from Auburn, is the first to go, to the Carolina Panthers with the No. 1 overall pick -- no surprise there.
Galliford then has the Denver Broncos taking LSU CB Patrick Peterson, and Missouri QB Blaine Gabbert going to the Buffalo Bills with the No. 3 pick.
The New England Patriots' first of two opening-round selections comes at No. 17, where Galliford has them drafting J.J. Watt, defensive end out of Wisconsin.
The 2010 draft class was full of promising young talent for New England, but they need to continue re-stocking their defense with more young talent. Watt is the prototypical five-technique that will help as both a run defender and pass rusher in Bill Belichick's defense.
Bill Belichick and company then have the No. 28 selection, where they're projected to take Justin Houston, an OLB from Georgia.
After adding a potentially elite five-technique end in Watt, the Patriots can continue to bolster their young defense here with Houston, an explosive edge rusher that would team up with '10 second-round pick Jermaine Cunningham to give the Pats two promising outside linebackers.