It is impossible to predict pick for pick what will happen in any mock draft, but especially when the draft is still two months away. This mock is not only what I believe would best put teams in a position to be successful in the future, but also what I think could happen come draft day. I 100% expect to miss some picks when we look back on this in April, but that’s what makes it fun.
Without further ado, MOCK DRAFT 1.0
1. CINCINNATI BENGALS: JOE BURROW, QB, LSU
Can we officially lock this pick in yet? I’m tired of the crap about Burrow not being the guy at number one. He sealed his fate months ago by putting up the best college football season by a quarterback ever. Cincinnati gets their guy, and I expect a long and successful career from Jeaux Burreaux.
2. WASHINGTON REDSKINS: CHASE YOUNG, EDGE, OSU
Chase Young is officially the best prospect I have scouted (previously Quenton Nelson). Young is exactly what the Redskins need across from their promising 2nd year talent in Montez Sweat. This duo will be a feared one in the NFC East for years to come. Expect Young to have a similar impact to that of Nick Bosa in his rookie season.
3. DETROIT LIONS: JEFFREY OKUDAH, CB, OSU
Slay has been subject to trade rumors for, what feels like, forever, and if Detroit deals their star defensive back, they will need someone to lock up number one wide receivers. I believe Okudah will do just that for years. If this mock draft included trades, this pick would be dealt. Okudah is a salivating talent for Detroit, but I doubt Detroit picks a player 3rd overall.
4. NEW YORK GIANTS: JEDRICK WILLS, OT, ALABAMA
The first Alabama player off the board is a good one. Currently my top tackle in the draft, Wills is a powerful blocker on both run and pass reps. Daniel Jones struggled to hold onto the ball, fumbling 18 times in his rookie season. Dave Gettleman loves the big guys, and Wills is a franchise level tackle.
5. MIAMI DOLPHINS: JUSTIN HERBERT, QB, OREGON
The Dolphins are reportedly very high on Herbert. They have holes all over the roster, but as we all know, the biggest piece to a successful team is a great quarterback. Herbert has all the tools to be just that. He has all the physical tools needed, and has a lot of room to grow as well. Flores has established a great culture in Miami, and that would definitely be a great aide to whatever young quarterback leads this team in the coming years.
6. LOS ANGELES CHARGERS: TUA TAGOVAILOA, QB, ALABAMA
It has just been reported as I type this that Tua passed his medical exams with flying colors. Great news, as I am a big fan of the Hawaiian quarterback. Phillip Rivers is out, which hurts to see. This roster is built to win right now, which certainly calls for a move in Free Agency to acquire a bridge starter until Tua is cleared to put on the pads again.
7. CAROLINA PANTHERS: ISAIAH SIMMONS, LB, CLEMSON
Luke Kuechly shocked the world in January when he decided to prematurely retire. This leaves the Panthers in a bad spot at linebacker, but Simmons has the potential to be an all pro at the position. Simmons can play all over whatever defense he suits up for. His length, coverage ability, and explosiveness would be a great face for the Powder Blue defense.
8. ARIZONA CARDINALS: CEEDEE LAMB, WR, OKLAHOMA
I was hesitant to declare this as the pick for a long time, but I’ve finally come around. Although I think protecting Kyler Murray should be the team’s number one priority, he also needs receivers who can make plays for him. Lamb has a fantastic catch radius and creates a splash after the catch.
9. JACKSONVILLE JAGUARS: JERRY JEUDY, WR, ALABAMA
Jeudy is my number one wide receiver in the loaded class. He is an all around receiver who specifically wins as a route runner. He would be a great target for whoever is behind center next year. Jacksonville’s passing game found a lot of success from a RAC standpoint next year, and Jeudy would certainly add to that.
10. CLEVELAND BROWNS: ANDREW THOMAS, OT, GEORGIA
Baker Mayfield was considerably worse in his second year, but it doesn’t help that his offensive line was very bad. Thomas is a safe tackle prospect. His tenacity as a run blocker would open up lanes for the 3rd year running back, Nick Chubb, and if he can continue to develop on passing downs, Cleveland can pick up their tackle of the future.
11. NEW YORK JETS: MEKHI BECTON, OT, LOUISVILLE
Sam Darnold was punished this past season, and the 2nd year QB was still able to lead his team to a 7-9 record. The Jets had great success when the line played at a quality level (Win over Dallas). Becton is an absolute mauler with good movement ability. This would be a great step by the front office.
12. LAS VEGAS RAIDERS: JORDAN LOVE, QB, UTAH STATE
Derek Carr hasn’t had a secure spot on the team since the hiring of Jon Gruden, and with the reports of the team pursuing Tom Brady along with Carr’s recent social media posts, it is clear he is out in Vegas. Love is a high upside QB who could develop into a much better QB than Carr.
13. INDIANAPOLIS COLTS: DERRICK BROWN, DL, AUBURN
With all of the top quarterbacks off the board, Derrick Brown has to be the pick. Indy get the best player available and sures up that defensive line that seems to produce without top talent. An elite presence inside has the AFC South shaking in their boots.
14. TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS: JAVON KINLAW, DL, SOUTH CAROLINA
Tampa has an elite edge presence from Shaq Barrett, and Vita Vea looks great entering his third season, but outside of those two, the defensive line needs serious help. They could use a corner alongside Sean Murphy-Bunting, but Arians has had success with mid-late round DBs in the past. Kinlaw has some of the best splash film I’ve seen. If he can work towards consistency, I love him in Tampa.
15. DENVER BRONCOS: HENRY RUGGS, WR, ALABAMA
Drew Lock showed flashes in his time towards the end of the season but after trading away Emmanuel Sanders, Denver in in serious need of a wide receiver alongside Courtland Sutton. Ruggs is a human highlight reel. An offensive corps of Drew Lock, Courtland Sutton, Noah Fant, Phillip Lindsay, and Henry Ruggs sounds pretty good to me.
16. ATLANTA FALCONS: K’LAVON CHAISSON, EDGE, LSU
Former first round pick, Vic Beasley won’t be a Falcon next year. Dan Quinn needs his defense to make a big jump, and fast, if he wants to keep his job. Chaisson is a dynamic pass rusher and has loads of potential.
17. DALLAS COWBOYS: XAVIER MCKINNEY, S, ALABAMA
We’ve seen Dallas make moves towards improving their secondary this past season. McKinney would make an immediate impact as a Cowboy. He showed a lot of versatility at Alabama this past season. He’s great in coverage and a plus tackler. Dallas desperately needs a game wrecking safety.
18. MIAMI DOLPHINS: TRISTAN WIRFS, OT/OG, IOWA
Wirfs is my OT2, but the uncertainty about his position in the NFL will likely see him slide a little bit, similarly to Connor Williams. Miami gets a guy who can play RT or OG.
19. LAS VEGAS RAIDERS: JALEN REAGOR, WR, TCU
Since AB’s departure, this WR room has been bad. Darren Waller is a legit receiving tight end, but they need a playmaker at WR. Reagor has blazing speed, explosiveness, and an impressive catch radius for a receiver of his style.
20. JACKSONVILLE JAGUARS: PATRICK QUEEN, LB, LSU
The Jags’ defense has faded since its 2017 dominance. Adding a crafty offball linebacker of Queen’s talent would be a big step towards recreating that success.
21. PHILADELPHIA EAGLES: BRANDON AIYUK, WR, ARIZONA STATE
Carson Wentz is one of the best QBs in the NFL. His number one wide receiver to end the season was, former QB, Greg Ward. Aiyuk brings creativity after the catch and an ability to get open using his crisp route tree.
22. BUFFALO BILLS: AJ EPENESA, EDGE, IOWA
The Bills don’t have many needs, but I would love Epenesa in Buffalo. He brings a lot of power to the position and would make an immediate impact across from Jerry Hughes.
23. NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS: JOSH JONES, OT, HOUSTON
Isaiah Wynn’s health is a big concern and Belichick loves his linemen. Jones could come in and start immediately on either side of the line.
24. NEW ORLEANS SAINTS: JUSTIN JEFFERSON, WR, LSU
The Saints are a very well put together team, but outside of Michael Thomas, the wide receiver room isn’t great. Justin Jefferson would make an immediate impact and give Brees a legit WR two for what seems to be his last year in the league.
25. MINNESOTA VIKINGS: JEFF GLADNEY, CB, TCU
The Rhodes have been open for nearly two seasons. Xavier Rhodes regression has led to his likely departure from the team. The team is lacking a cornerback one, and although I’m high on Waynes and Hughes, they likely cannot progress to a level of play needed from a number one cornerback. Gladney is a gamer, and has all the tools you’d want from a shutdown corner.
26. MIAMI DOLPHINS: KRISTIAN FULTON, CB, LSU
Xavien Howard is one of the more underrated cornerbacks in the league, but he has troubles off the field. He was arrested this offseason for domestic violence and based off of his girlfriend’s report, it seems to be a recurring thing. Fulton has the traits of a lock down man corner, and would play an immediate role on the rejuvenated Miami team.
27. SEATTLE SEAHAWKS: YETUR GROSS-MATOS, EDGE, PENN STATE
Jadeveon Clowney appears to be “chasing the bag.” If he leaves, there will be a gaping hole at EDGE. Yetur has a long way to go mentally, but he has the physical tools and body makeup of a successful edge rusher. Even if Clowney stays, they need an EDGE two. LJ Collier is bad.
28. BALTIMORE RAVENS: KENNETH MURRAY, LB, OKLAHOMA
The Ravens need a linebacker. Kenneth Murray is a linebacker. He also played college ball at Oklahoma. If that isn’t enough to make the Ravens drool, he also is a tackle machine with sideline to sideline speed and plays with the tough nosed Ravens attitude.
29. TENNESSEE TITANS: TERRELL LEWIS, EDGE, ALABAMA
The Titans have one of the best young edge rushers in the NFL in Harold Landry. Across from him is a bit of a question mark. Lewis projects as a 3-4 OLB. Keep adding to your promising, young defense.
30. GREEN BAY PACKERS: ROSS BLACKLOCK, DL, TCU
I had mocked a WR to Green Bay all season, but this is a very deep class at receiver, and Blacklock would do tremendous things for this team’s run defense.
31. SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS: LLOYD CUSHENBERRY, IOL, LSU
The 49ers have a very well put together roster. The offensive line was the biggest issue this past season. That should say a lot. Cushenberry is the best interior offensive lineman here, and would come in right away as an impact starter.
32. KANSAS CITY CHIEFS: DAMON ARNETTE, CB, OHIO STATE
I like CJ Henderson here too, but I am a big fan of DBs who contribute in run defense. Arnette is a very sound CB prospect. He is best in man coverage, but is comfortable in zone as well. Arnette may not go this high due to his sole year of production, but he is definitely worth first round consideration.
Photo: USA Today Sports