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On to the big day


The chalk wins again.

And while that was true on Day 15 of the 2011 reader mock draft, the big reality of the day was this feeling sort of like Christmas eve.

Yeah, the goings of the Miami Dolphins at No. 15 were great . . .

But overall, readers can't wait for Christmas.

In this admittedly weak analogy, Christmas for the reader mock draft is obviously Monday afternoon and Tuesday, when the Jaguars are "on the clock" with the No. 16 overall selection.

Throughout the weekend's comments regarding the Dolphins there was very definitely discussion about the Jaguars at No. 16, and soon after Friday's posting about the St. Louis Rams selecting Alabama wide receiver Julio Jones with the No. 14 overall selection, the always active DUUUUVAAAAL set the tone.

"I&39;m sure everyone wants to argue against the obvious pick,' DUUUUVAAAAL – four Us and four As – wrote, adding, "But what&39;s the point? It&39;s very obvious it&39;ll be (Alabama running back Mark) Ingram. End of discussion. Post the story John, we&39;re moving onto the Jaguars now."

Larry Zonk, like DUUUUVAAAAL one of the more active responders, weighed in shortly thereafter and was a bit more pointed with the idea.

"Time to start talking Jaguars instead of fish," Zonk wrote.

And you know? They were right. This is a reader mock draft, and it is very much time to get on to the Jaguars' selection, but we got one of our largest numbers of entries for the day, so it seemed only fair to spend detailing the Dolphins' selection a bit.

Ingram, the consensus best running back available, received a pretty overwhelming majority, but there were plenty who believed there was a chance the Dolphins would go a different direction. In all, at least nine other players got mentioned with this selection, with the possibility of Miami selecting a quarterback intriguing many of the readers.

Ryan Mallett, the quarterback from Arkansas who has been much-discussed before recent selections, was much-discussed again, as was Florida State quarterback Christian Ponder. Each got enough of the vote to merit serious consideration.

"J-School" Corby was among those making a strong push for Ponder here.

"I offer Ponder up because he has a lot of similarities to another quarterback (Dolphins Head Coach) Tony Sparano is familiar with: Tony Romo," Corby wrote, adding, "Miami&39;s offensive line, aside from Jake Long, isn&39;t spectacular, and Ponder&39;s got the moves to buy himself an extra second or two. He doesn&39;t have a cannon for an arm, but Miami&39;s offense really doesn&39;t require one. He also makes excellent decisions with the ball, and has very good accuracy. If his shoulder&39;s healed (and it seems like it is), Top 15 is not as big a reach as it might seem for him. . . .

"I kind of hope Miami passes on Ponder, because he&39;d be my pick to the Jaguars, but I get the sense that Miami&39;s interest in Ingram is a smokescreen, designed to shield their real interest in filling a much bigger, much more difficult need to fill at the quarterback position."

Mallett received even more support.

"They&39;ll attempt to resign Ronnie Brown and if the league is any indication, you can find impact running backs in the later rounds," Mark Barley wrote, adding, "While Ryan Mallet may need some work, he&39;s a big, strong-armed quarterback who can get the ball to his receivers."

It was also a day for variety, with Wisconsin defensive end J.J. Watt, Purdue defensive end Ryan Kerrigan, Florida guard Mike Pouncey and Boston College offensive tackle Anthony Castonzo also receiving varying degrees of interest.

But, as we mentioned at the outset, the chalk won, and considering the degree to which Miami seems to like big-time runners, there just wasn't a way to get Ingram out of the position.

"I could see them contemplating taking Ryan Mallett, but I am not sure they are ready to give up on Chad Henne yet so soon into his career," jagsfan22 wrote, adding, "Ronnie Brown and Ricky Williams are both free agents, so running back is a big need. Mark Ingram, one of the top players available, would be an enormous upgrade in Miami&39;s backfield."

Jesse Merritt wrote, "Ingram for this pick. Ricky Williams is done and even though Ronnie Brown started all 16 last season, you can't really expect him to do it again. Mark Ingram to the &39;phins at 15."

Despite the decidedly Ingram bent to the reader responses, this wasn't an easy pick. Several readers noted the Dolphins are a tough team to read, and they're right. It wouldn't be shocking of if Ingram is available at No. 15 to see them go a different direction, but for the purposes of this draft, that's who we'll slot in there. That makes the mock draft look like:

No. 1 | Carolina | Blaine Gabbert, QB, Missouri

No. 2 | Denver | Patrick Peterson, CB, Louisiana State

No. 3 | Buffalo | Von Miller, LB, Texas A&M

No. 4 | Cincinnati | Da'Quan Bowers, DE, Clemson

No. 5 | Arizona | Marcell Dareus, DT, Alabama

No. 6 | Cleveland | A.J. Green, WR, Georgia

No. 7 | San Francisco | Robert Quinn, DE, North Carolina

No. 8 | Tennessee | Nick Fairley, DT, Auburn

No. 9 | Dallas | Tyron Smith, OT, Southern California

No. 10 | Washington | Cam Newton, QB, Auburn

No. 11 | Houston | Prince Amukamara, CB, Nebraska

No. 12 | Minnesota | Jake Locker, QB, Washington

No. 13 | Detroit | Nate Solder, OT, Colorado

No. 14 | St. Louis | Julio Jones, WR, Alabama

No. 15 | Miami | Mark Ingram, RB, Alabama

Up next is Jacksonville at No. 16. The senior writer will break tradition here and not offer up anyone. Not because he doesn't have his ideas, but because most readers very much have their own idea here and they don't need him muddling up the mix. Not today.

Have at it.

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