ESPN.com's 2005 mock draft


Welcome to ESPN.com's ninth annual live NFL mock draft, where ESPN.com senior writers John Clayton and Len Pasquarelli will project the first round of the draft. Pasquarelli and ESPN.com NFL editor Peter Lawrence-Riddell will be answering some user questions while the mock draft is going on, so start sending those in now.

Also, check out the latest mock draft from Scouts Inc., which starts at pick No. 1 and goes all the way to No. 255.

Moderator: The first pick will be coming up. We'll start with a question from Bill in Boston ... Hey Len, how hard is it this time of year to know what is true and what is just a smokescreen?

Len Pasquarelli, ESPN.com senior NFL writer: Great question. Pretty darn hard. I've been doing it 27 years now and even the people you trust lie to you. It's like you have to filter every shred of information and try to figure out how much truth there is to it.

Moderator: Lets take a Niners question before we get to their pick (which will be made by John Clayton) ... Rick from San Francisco asks, wouldn't it just make the 49ers look like a joke if money ends up being a big factor in what they do with the No. 1 pick?

Len Pasquarelli, ESPN.com senior NFL writer: Joke might be a little strong. But, yeah, for a team that needs so much, the so-called "signability" factor should not exist. In their draft meeting last Saturday, coach Mike Nolan strongly suggested the team just needs to take the player they deem best and worry about the finances later. Hey, Eli Manning, who was represented by Tom Condon, the same agent Alex Smith has retained, was in camp on time. Condon does not have a track record of holding guys out of camp. There's a reason the 49ers won two games in 2004. They need to start solving that reason by taking the best players, not the guys who might be willing to give them a Bay Area discount.