Mock draft mania

The first mock drafts of ESPN draft gurus Mel Kiper and Todd McShay have been released in Insider pieces. Earlier this week, I put out my first AFC West mock draft.

Let’s review the choices:

Denver, No. 2

Kiper’s pick: Patrick Peterson, CB, LSU

My thoughts: Kiper has Carolina taking Auburn defensive tackle Nick Fairley with the No. 1 pick. If that is the case, the Peterson pick is fine. Even if Champ Bailey is re-signed, Denver could use Peterson. It’d have a terrific pair of cornerbacks.

McShay’s Pick: Fairley

My thoughts: I think this is Denver’s best bet. If he’s available, Denver needs to take him. He is would be the centerpiece of John Fox’s new defense.

My pick: Fairley

San Diego, No. 18

Kiper’s pick: Cameron Jordan, DE, California

My thoughts: He’s a playmaking 3-4 defensive end. That unit could use a spark.

McShay’s Pick: Akeem Ayers, LB, UCLA

My thoughts: I can see this fit as well. Ayers is a 3-4 linebacker, who could step in and play right away.

My pick: Julio Jones, WR, Alabama

Kansas City, No. 21

Kiper’s pick: Stephen Paea, DT, Oregon State

My thoughts: It would be the third time in four years that Kansas City goes to the defensive line with its first pick. Paea seems like a guy who will make or break his status as a first-round pick in during his workouts.

McShay’s Pick: Aldon Smith, DE, Missouri

My thoughts: Smith is a pass rusher who could help this unit. I can see this happening.

My pick: Anthony Castonzo, OT, Boston College

Oakland does not have a first-round pick. It traded its pick (No. 17) to New England for defensive tackle Richard Seymour in September 2009. I had the Raiders’ taking Penn State offensive lineman Stefan Wisniewski with the No. 48 pick.