Mock Draft 3.0 Draft Night Eve

Previous Mocks:

Mock Draft 1.0 Pre Free Agency

Mock Draft 2.0 Post Free Agency

 

3001624_SP_Cardinals_2 1. Arizona Cardinals: Kyler Murray, QB, Oklahoma

NCAA Football: College Football Playoff Semifinal-Orange Bowl-Alabama vs Oklahoma

There has been so much smokescreen involved with this pick. The most recent one, where the Cards reportedly floated the idea of drafting Murray to drum up ticket sales, and that they view Bosa as a generational prospect, reeks of a team trying to force a 1-2 switch with the Niners. It might happen, but I expect Murray to end up with the Cards regardless. They desperately need more offensive line talent though.

 

49ers helmet 2. San Francisco 49ers: Nick Bosa, Edge, Ohio State

Bosa

If the Niners stand pat at two, they’ll get the best player in the class. Bosa is ready immediately to contribute opposite Dee Ford, and give some serious juice to this Niners defense.

 

skins helmet 3. TRADE: Washington Redskins: Dwayne Haskins, QB, Ohio State

Big Ten Championship - Northwestern v Ohio State

INDIANAPOLIS, INDIANA – DECEMBER 01: Dwyane Haskins #7 of the Ohio State Buckeyes throws a pass in the second quarter against the Northwestern Wildcats at Lucas Oil Stadium on December 01, 2018 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)

Trade details: Redskins receive 3, Jets receive 15, 48, 2020 2nd, 3rd

The Jets and Redskins look like logical trade partners, and Haskins and the Redskins have emerged as a hot item. Haskins has a good chance to begin this year as the starter, and massively improves the potential of this team.

 

raiders helmet 4. Oakland Raiders: Quinnen Williams, DI, Alabama

College Football Playoff National Championship Presented By AT&T - Alabama v Clemson

The Raiders stand pat at four and let an exceptional talent fall to them. Williams would be the number one overall pick in many drafts, and has generational potential. He also happens to be incredibly safe, with an easily translatable skill set, and should wreak havoc in the middle for Oakland.

bucs helmet 2 5. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Josh Allen, Edge, Kentucky

Josh Allen

The early run on QBs suits the Bucs just fine, as they get an instant contributor that they sorely need opposite JPP. The Bucs are installing a 3-4 defense, and Allen is a perfect fit as a versatile linebacker with exceptional coverage ability and pass rush skills.

 

giants helmet 6. New York Giants: Ed Oliver, DI, Houston

Ed Oliver

Ed Oliver has shot up boards in the lead up to the draft. His pro day was especially impressive. If he’s there and Josh Allen isn’t, this should be the pick for the Giants. Oliver helps rebuild a once-fearsome defensive line as a seriously athletic interior presence with basically limitless potential.

 

jags 7. Jacksonville Jaguars: Jawaan Taylor, T, Florida

Jawaan Taylor

Taylor is expected by many to be the first tackle off the board, and it’s easy to see why with his prototypical size for the position and outstanding foot quickness. He also has excellent play strength, though inconsistent fundamentals. His tape is impressive and the Jags have a serious need.

 

Lions 2 8. Detroit Lions: Jonah Williams, OL, Alabama

Jonah Williams

Williams can play anywhere on the offensive line, and he should be an upgrade in most spots on the Lions line, but they have a glaring need at the guard position that T.J. Lang just vacated via retirement.

 

bengals 9. TRADE Cincinnati Bengals: Drew Lock, QB, Missouri

Drew Lock

Trade Details: Bengals receive 9, 112, Bills receive 11, 72

With new coach Zac Taylor in place, I expect the Bengals to move on from the mostly fruitless Andy Dalton era. Though Lock may not start right away, he has a great chance to be the franchise quarterback within a year or two. The Bengals move up a couple of spots, to get ahead of the Broncos, and other teams like the Giants who might have been interested.

 

Broncos 10. Denver Broncos: Devin White, LB, LSU

devin-white

In this scenario, the Broncos get an ideal replacement for Danny Trevathan, and more recently Brandon Marshall. Pairing White with last year’s pick Josey Jewell gives the Broncos a completely retooled middle of the defense that should dominate together for years.

 

texans 11. TRADE Houston Texans: Andre Dillard, T, Washington State

Andre Dillard

Trade Details: Texans receive 11, Bills receive 23, 54, 2020 3rd

The Texans have been rumored to trade up for offensive line help, and Dillard looks to be the guy they’re targeting. Dillard would mark a huge upgrade at the offensive line, and fix one of the biggest holes on the Texans, giving them an excellent prospect with actual potential at the tackle position.

 

Packers 12. Green Bay Packers: T.J. Hockenson, TE, Iowa

TJ Hockenson

The Packers tried to shore up the tight end position with Jimmy Graham last year, and he was largely a disappointment. Hockenson could be the next great player at the position, with a great mix of blocking and receiving skills.

 

miami 13. Miami Dolphins: Rashan Gary, DL, Michigan

Rashan Gary

Gary tumbles a bit in this mock, but the Dolphins continue to build a young, dynamic defense with Gary, who is described by many as a freak. He’s waiting for anyone to develop him, and new coach Brian Flores seems like an ideal fit for his unique skillset.

 

falcons helmet 14. Atlanta Falcons: Christian Wilkins, DI, Clemson

Christian Wilkins

The Falcons learned the value of depth on defense last year, with so many injuries to key players. Wilkins may not seem to fill a need, but he has top ten talent and production at a key position.

 

jets helmet 15. New York Jets: Noah Fant, TE, Iowa

Noah Fant

The Jets get a player they value, and pick up a lion’s ransom in the bargain. Darnold will love having a dynamic target like Fant down the seam.

 

Panthers 16. Carolina Panthers: Brian Burns, Edge, Florida State

Brian Burns

Edge has been a big need for the Panthers for awhile, and Julius Peppers has gamely performed in that role, but with his retirement, the need can no longer be ignored. Burns happens to have an outstanding pass rushing skill set, and profiles similarly as a pro to new-teammate Mario Addison, though much longer and bendier.

 

giants helmet 17. New York Giants: Daniel Jones, QB, Duke

Daniel Jones

The Giants stay home here and their coveted QB falls to them. The David Cutcliffe connection is real, and I imagine if Eli had to choose his own successor, he’d recommend Daniel Jones. Besides that, Jones should be ready to take over when needed as the Giants shift to a more run-heavy, short-passing offense.

 

Vikings helmet 18. Minnesota Vikings: Cody Ford, T/G, Oklahoma

Cody Ford

Ford is an excellent find here for the Vikings, as he fills a major need wherever he slides in. A unanimous All-American, Ford gave up only seven pressures as the starter at right tackle all season.

 

ten-titans-home 19. Tennessee Titans: Clelin Ferrell, Edge, Clemson

Clelin Ferrell

Especially after Derrick Morgan fell off, and with Brian Orakpo getting ever older, a player like Ferrell makes too much sense here. He might go before this, due to his schematic versatility.

 

pit-steelers-revolution 20. Pittsburgh Steelers: Rock Ya Sin, CB, Temple

Rock Ya Sin

Mike Tomlin is said to majorly covet Ya Sin, and views him as an ideal fit, for his notoriusly-difficult-for-cornerbacks scheme. That’s enough for me to believe he’ll pass up on maybe more talented options. Don’t be surprised if the Steelers trade back and still net Ya Sin.

 

Colts 21. TRADE: Indianapolis Colts: Jerry Tillery, DI, Notre Dame

Jerry Tillery

Trade Details: Colts receive 21, 124, Seahawks receive 26, 59

The Seahawks, even after the Frank Clark trade, are still light on picks, so scooping up another second rounder to drop back five spots is a relative bargain. They also scoop up a premiere talent in Tillery, who tied with Quinnen Williams for the highest pass rushing grade of interior defensive lineman.

 

Ravens 22. Baltimore Ravens: A.J. Brown, WR, Ole Miss

AJ Brown

I still think Brown will be the pick here. He’s the ideal, rugged, dependable chain mover that helps in the running game that Harbaugh wants and needs for his transitioning offense. Basically, he’s what the Ravens hoped they were getting from Crabtree last year.

 

Bills 23. Buffalo Bills: D.K. Metcalf, WR, Ole Miss

DK Metcalf

After picking up a boatload of picks, the Bills find a potential number one receiver of the future in Metcalf. He profiles athletically similar to Julio Jones, but doesn’t have the same production and polish, which is why he’s still available at this point.

 

raiders helmet 24. Oakland Raiders: Josh Jacobs, RB, Alabama

NCAA Football: College Football Playoff National Championship-Clemson vs Alabama

The ideal running back for the Gruden offense, Jacobs represents excellent value here, as I believe he has top fifteen talent and looks to me like a more rugged Alvin Kamara on tape.

 

Eagles 25. Philadelphia Eagles: Devin Bush, LB, Michigan

Devin Bush

The tumble of Bush isn’t indicative of his talent or potential, just how the board fell. The Eagles gladly end it, finding an ideal Jordan Hicks replacement and scooping him up with open arms.

 

Seahawks helmet 26. Seattle Seahawks: Nasir Adderley, S, Delaware

Nasir Adderley

Adderley is the best center fielder in the draft, and an ideal replacement for Earl Thomas, filling one of the weakest spots on the Seahawks’ defense. Sweat could be a consideration here, considering the obvious edge need after the Frank Clark trade, but the Seahawks haven’t visited with him and probably don’t have enough info to be comfortable with his medical.

 

raiders helmet 27. Oakland Raiders: Montez Sweat, Edge, Mississippi State

Montez Sweat

The heart condition tumble isn’t anything new to the Raiders, as they scooped up Maurice Hurst in the fifth round last year. The condition isn’t considered as bad for Sweat, so the Raiders pounce here, having done plenty of pre-draft work on him. He represents incredible value here as a height-weight-speed specimen with solid tape.

 

Patriots 28. TRADE New England Patriots: Will Grier, QB, West Virginia

NCAA Football: Kansas at West Virginia

I’ve heard a lot of love from the Patriots for Will Grier and it feels genuine. Grier is a highly accomplished college passer with a mature approach. He’ll be an ideal understudy for Brady and will either be the heir apparent, or a solid trade chip in a couple of years.

 

Seahawks helmet 29. Seattle Seahawks: Lonnie Johnson Jr., CB, Kentucky

Lonnie Johnson Jr

The Seahawks still covet long, athletic corners, and they don’t come much more tantalizing than Johnson. With the extra second round picks, they should find better value at edge, but Johnson has a special combination of height, weight and speed.

 

Packers 30. Green Bay Packers: Kaleb McGary, T, Washington

Kaleb McGary

The Packers, strangely, don’t have many visits with players in this range, suggesting they may try to trade out, be it down or up. If they stay, McGary’s rare size and foot quickness make him a potential first round surprise, and he is one of the very few Packers visits that fits the range. The Packers need to find a replacement for Brian Bulaga.

 

rams helmet 31. Los Angeles Rams: Byron Murphy, CB, Washington

Byron Murphy

The Rams find outstanding value here and continue to stock a stacked secondary against poor play and injuries. Murphy might be the best corner in the draft, so the Rams happily scoop him up.

 

chargers 32. Los Angeles Chargers: Mack Wilson, LB, Alabama

Mack Wilson

Any number of defensive players could be considered here, but I’ve believed for a long time that linebacker is their biggest need. The Chargers seem to like Mack Wilson, and after picking up extra draft capital and dropping back, they can be excused for what might be considered a minor reach.

 

 

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Mock Draft 2.0 Post Free Agency

Previous Mocks: Mock Draft 1.0 Pre-Free Agency

3001624_SP_Cardinals_2 1. Arizona Cardinals: Kyler Murray, QB, Cardinals

NCAA Football: College Football Playoff Semifinal-Orange Bowl-Alabama vs Oklahoma

While this may not be the best move for the team from a team-building perspective, the belief is that new head coach Kliff Kingsbury will use this pick to begin to make his mark on this team. He has stated that Josh Rosen is a fit for his system, but that hasn’t stopped the endless flood of rumors coming out of the building that Murray will be the pick. From a football perspective, this is intriguing, because the success of this pick will hinge on the Cardinals ability to build an offensive line capable of giving Murray enough early protection to do what he does best and create down the field. The problem, of course, being that the ideal situation would be to take a top offensive lineman in this draft. You can’t have both in this scenario, so it looks as though the Cards will be going into the season with many of the same issues that plagued them last year, unless they trade back out of this pick.

 

49ers helmet 2. San Francisco 49ers: Nick Bosa, DE, Ohio State

Bosa

This is the ideal scenario for John Lynch, and 49ers fans everywhere. Nick Bosa is a well-developed and pro ready edge defender, who will be able to pair up with DeForest Buckner, Arik Armstead, Solomon Thomas and new addition Dee Ford to wreak havoc on the offenses of the NFC West. Bosa still has some growing to do in his game, but he has incredible tools and a mature, technique-sound approach.

 

jets helmet 3. New York Jets: Josh Allen, DE, Kentucky

Josh Allen

This fit just feels inevitable. The Jets are trying to rebuild their 3-4 with special talents at all 3 levels. With Jamal Adams in the secondary and CJ Moseley manning the middle, the outstanding pass rusher is the next piece and Josh Allen gives them that and more. Allen is a very well-rounded prospect who was a more traditional coverage linebacker first, but became a pass rushing force as his college career went along. His athleticism and prowess will bring needed juice to a Jets pass rush that had only Leonard Williams and Henry Anderson to scare opposing offenses.

 

raiders helmet 4. Oakland Raiders: Devin White, LB LSU

devin-white

Adding Brandon Marshall and Vontaze Burfict is nice, but neither is a long-term answer at a position that has too long been the black hole on the Raiders. Devin White brings a young stud into the position for potentially five years, and maybe more than that, for which the entire defense can be built around. This is an intelligent, forward-thinking move for Jon Gruden and has a very Mike Mayock feel to it.

 

bucs helmet 2 5. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Quinnen Williams, DT, Alabama

College Football Playoff National Championship Presented By AT&T - Alabama v Clemson

The Bucs must be pinching themselves with Williams falling to them at fifth, Gerald McCoy is on his way out and though they just spent high draft capital on Vita Vea, he doesn’t bring the incredible game-wrecking ability and insane athleticism that Williams does. The two could form a special duo to kickstart a young and ascending Bucs defense, provided they solve their issue at safety, opposite Justin Evans.

 

giants helmet 6. New York Giants: Rashan Gary, DL, Michigan

Rashan Gary

Though Haskins could be the pick here, GM Dave Gettleman’s MO is to build the trenches first. He’s done some great work on the offensive line so far, with the recent addition of Kevin Zeitler transforming the unit. The defensive line, however, has bled talent, losing JPP, Snacks Harrison and Olivier Vernon since he took over. Rashan Gary is not a fully realized player, but figures to be a moldable chess piece that will fill holes that need to be plugged. He’s a great piece to the puzzle on this Giants defensive rebuild.

 

jags 7. Jacksonville Jaguars: D.K. Metcalf, WR, Ole Miss

DK Metcalf

Though the Jags need to continue to build the O-line, it’s hard to imagine them passing up the chance to give QB Nick Foles his big weapon. Metcalf fills the role Allen Robinson vacated last offseason, and has much higher physical upside. With his absolutely eye-popping measurables, it’s hard to believe some team in the top ten won’t fall in love with the potential.

 

Lions 2 8. Detroit Lions: Montez Sweat, DE, Mississippi State

Montez Sweat

Trey Flowers is a great addition and a great piece to be the glue on this Lions defense, however, he is not an adequate replacement to what Ziggy Ansah brought at his peak. Montez Sweat could be, and it’s hard to imagine the Lions passing up the chance to draft such a unique talent as this 6’6 255 lb pass rusher that runs a 4.4 and actually has very solid tape. Sweat will go in the top 15, and probably in the top ten.

 

giants helmet 9. Buffalo Bills TRADE to New York Giants: Drew Lock, QB, Missouri

Drew Lock

I find it highly suspicious that people have speculated seemingly every quarterback but Drew Lock to the Giants. This is especially considering that Lock would have a fairly ideal scenario here in which the regime continues to voice its unwavering support of Eli Manning as the starting QB. Lock absolutely needs to sit and develop with NFL coaching, and he could do worse than sitting behind a highly intelligent and accomplished veteran like Manning. Once he is ready to take over, he’ll have the benefit of one of the most dynamic young running backs in the game and what’s shaping up to be a very solid offensive line. Of course, Elway is in love with Lock, the latest version of himself, so the Giants have to leapfrog the Broncos to make this happen. The Bills, meanwhile, see far more value in sliding back and picking up extra draft capital, waiting for better value later in the round. They have the unique position of having their franchise quarterback in place, and having few glaring holes on the roster after a highly active offseason.

 

Broncos 10. Denver Broncos: Jonah Williams, T/G/C, Alabama

Jonah Williams

With the temptation of Lock gone, the Broncos can focus on building around Joe Flacco and waiting for next year’s superior crop of QBs. In that vein, a player like Jonah Williams, who is very intelligent and had great interviews at the combine, to go along with dominant tape, figures to plug right in wherever the Broncos need him. That may be at left tackle, where he played well for Alabama the last two years. The concern of short arms with him is viable, but the Broncos are betting on a player with an extremely high floor, similar to the departed Matt Paradis.

 

bengals 11. Cincinnati Bengals: Deandre Baker, CB, Georgia

NCAA Football: SEC Championship-Alabama vs Georgia

It seems like the Bengals always need secondary help, but drafting a player like Baker could add a physical edge to a secondary, and defense overall, that scared no one last year in the second half of the season. The offense for the Bengals is a mess, but the new regime needs to hit on this pick, and Baker has the mentality of a lockdown corner. This addition could unlock the entire defense and allow the Bengals to shift to a more Ravens-esque type of squad (tough, physical defense and running game).

 

Packers 12. Green Bay Packers: Andre Dillard, T, Washington State

Andre Dillard

With David Bahktiari in place, drafting a tackle may not make sense on the surface, but Dillard has special measurables that indicate his ability to be incredibly effective on the right side, where incumbent Byran Bulaga will soon need to be replaced. For a team with few holes after a strong defensive free agency, improving Aaron Rodgers’ protection is paramount for success under new coach Matt LaFleur.

 

miami 13. Miami Dolphins: Ed Oliver, DT, Houston

Ed Oliver

They never really replaced the departed Ndamokung Suh, and continue to build a young, talented defense. They have Jerome Baker manning the middle, Xavien Howard and Minkah Fitzpatrick are patrolling the secondary, but adding a dynamic athlete like Ed Oliver could be a boon once this team is ready to compete in a year or two. Oliver will probably take some time to reach his potential, I expect him to begin to reach his prime around year three.

 

falcons helmet 14. Atlanta Falcons: Josh Jacobs, RB, Alabama

NCAA Football: College Football Playoff National Championship-Clemson vs Alabama

Surprise! The Falcons know they can’t afford to go into the season with just Devonta Freeman, and they have very few holes on the roster as it stands. Jacobs fills the Tevin Coleman role with a bigger, stronger Alvin Kamara-type back in Jacobs. He has fresh legs with under 300 college carries, but shows an excellent all-around game, with notably stunning balance, something that has been the calling card of young stud backs Kamara and Ezekiel Elliott.

 

skins helmet 15. Washington Redskins: Dwayne Haskins, QB, Ohio State

Big Ten Championship - Northwestern v Ohio State

It’s hard to imagine such a talent as Haskins to fall this far, but I’ve heard very little hype about Haskins in NFL circles so far. I wouldn’t be surprised if a team like Cincinnati tried him out, but in this scenario, the Redskins stand pat and get my favorite QB prospect in the entire draft at 15. Haskins has a rare, vintage pocket passing style to go with solid functional athleticism. He’s a perfect replacement for Alex Smith, and adds more juice at this point in their respective careers.

 

Panthers 16. Carolina Panthers: Byron Murphy, CB, Washington

Byron Murphy

It seems like the Panthers have been trying to fix their mess of a secondary for years now, but quietly they’re really only one or two pieces away with James Bradberry, Donte Jackson and Eric Reid in place. Adding Byron Murphy locks down the ever-important Nickel slot, while also giving them excellent insurance, should one of their starters be injured or underperform. I could also see a tackle or edge rusher here, but there’s no great left tackles left available. Brian Burns, however, is a real option here as well.

 

Bills 17. Buffalo Bills: Jawaan Taylor, T/G, Florida

Jawaan Taylor

The Bills have an excellent young left tackle in place with Dion Dawkins, and got their stud center in free agency in Mitch Morse, With Jon Feliciano and Ty Nsheke also in place, they can afford to slide Taylor wherever he fits on the offensive line. What they’ll get is a massive human with excellent anchor and solid movement skills for his size. He’s still learning the game, especially the leverage aspect of it, and where he should set up his blocks on the edge, so starting at guard could be the way to go. Either way, continuing to invest in Josh Allen’s protection is a great idea and fits the profile for coach Sean McDermott.

 

Vikings helmet 18. Minnesota Vikings: Devin Bush, LB, Michigan

Devin Bush

The Vikings must allow Anthony Barr to be more of a Jack linebacker (pass rusher primarily on the edge) if he is to reach his potential and hide his weaknesses in coverage. With that, they need a true off-the-ball dynamic athlete at linebacker, who can run with the speedy slot receivers and tight ends of the NFC when called upon. Devin Bush is that athlete, and boasts solid instincts in the run game as well.

 

ten-titans-home 19. Tennessee Titans: Chris Lindstrom, G, Boston College

Chris Lindstrom

The number one goal for coach Mike Vrabel this offseason should be improving protection for his fragile starting QB. Lindstrom is a rock-solid prospect who should be a day 1 above-average starter, and certainly improve on the departed duo of Josh Kline and Quinton Spain.

 

pit-steelers-revolution 20. Pittsburgh Steelers: Brian Burns, DE, Florida State

Brian Burns

Burns would be a stand-up rush linebacker with the Steelers, and with his long lanky frame and arms, that may just be an excellent NFL fit for him. The Steelers lack pass rush juice off the edge, opposite TJ Watt, and it’s been a big problem with their recent defensive iterations. Burns has an excellent first step and constantly pops on tape, as a relentless and bendy edge rusher.

 

Seahawks helmet 21. Seattle Seahawks: Noah Fant, TE, Iowa

Noah Fant

A reliable target, and dynamic athlete down the seam is something that has been notably missing throughout Russel Wilson’s career. The Jimmy Graham trade ultimately didn’t add this element, but the addition of Fant will, and suddenly would make this offense very difficult to stop, considering the power running game, and excellent route runners already in place at receiver in Doug Baldwin and Tyler Lockett.

 

Ravens 22. Baltimore Ravens: A.J. Brown, WR, Ole Miss

AJ Brown

This is the rugged, tough wide receiver that John Harbaugh wants. Brown is a fluid route runner, who makes his hay in the short to intermediate range of the field. He presents a very friendly target for quarterbacks and has a great feel for finding holes in zones and creating early separation in man. He would become Lamar Jackson’s best friend instantly.

 

texans 23. Houston Texans: Greg Little, OT, Ole Miss

Greg Little, Kenny Hebert

Greg Little is everywhere in the draft process, but he makes too much sense for the Texans, where he will be an improvement over their current situation, pretty much regardless, as Matt Kalil is slotted as the current starter. Besides that, he has an ideal body for the position, and reminds me of former Ole Miss stud Laremy Tunsil.

 

raiders helmet 24. Oakland Raiders: T.J. Hockenson, TE, Iowa

TJ Hockenson

This is the perfect tight end for Jon Gruden and his run-first offense. Hockenson will be a favorite of Derek Carr for his pass blocking ability, and excellent feel for leveraging himself open in coverage. His biggest strength, though, is as a stud run blocker, he can be an extra offensive tackle when needed, despite his relative small size. Hockenson is a rare throwback tight end in the mold of prime Jason Witten. It wouldn’t surprise me if he’s taken earlier than this.

 

Eagles 25. Philadelphia Eagles: Mack Wilson, LB, Alabama

Mack Wilson

Wilson is an ideal replacement for Jordan Hicks, as a pass coverage-first linebacker. Hicks was even more raw coming out of college, so perhaps Jim Schwartz can give his magic touch to Wilson, who seems like he’s just waiting for someone to tap his enormous potential. At the moment, he’s a run and chase linebacker, with adept coverage skills, who needs to improve his understanding of running lanes.

 

Colts 26. Indianapolis Colts: Dexter Lawrence, DT, Clemson

NCAA Football: Clemson at Texas A&M

Lawrence is a perfect addition to what is shaping up to be an incredibly well-rounded defense for Indy. A big anchor on the interior of the D-line who adds some pass rush juice as well, Lawrence is a player that can add a physical edge, especially to the Indy run defense, which will make them all the harder to bully.

 

raiders helmet 27. Oakland Raiders: Taylor Rapp, S, Washington

Taylor Rapp

All I keep hearing about Rapp is that he’s one of the safest and most intelligent players in the draft, safe is the key word here. The Raiders simply must hit with these first round picks. Mayock will be under the microscope and a player like Rapp should improve the Raiders defense regardless.

 

chargers 28. Los Angeles Chargers: Will Grier, QB, West Virginia

NCAA Football: Kansas at West Virginia

Some team is going to come after Grier at the end of the first round, there’s a lot of love for him around the league. Why not the Chargers? They’ve continued to recycle the talent under Philip Rivers and look capable of continuing their winning ways beyond his career, so long as they shore up the succession plan.

 

chiefs helmet 29. Kansas City Chiefs: Nasir Adderley, S, Delaware

Nasir Adderley

Pairing a deep center fielder with a sideline to sideline playmaker like Tyrann Mathieu would be a great start for a fully re-tooled Chiefs secondary.

 

Packers 30. Green Bay Packers: Irv Smith Jr., TE, Alabama

Irv Smith Jr

After shoring up Rodgers’ protection, the Packers could stand to add a tight end of the future and Irv Smith has as much upside as anyone in this draft that didn’t play college football at Iowa. He set receiving records for the position at Alabama, with over 700 yards and 7 TDs in 2018, so his receiving game comes fairly pro-ready.

 

rams helmet 31. Los Angeles Rams: Jeffery Simmons, DT, Mississippi State

Jeffery Simmons

The Rams are in a position in this round where they can afford to swing for the fences with a top ten prospect like Simmons. His fall comes primarily due to a predraft injury, but some teams are also concerned about a domestic violence incident his freshman year. His game profiles similar to Fletcher Cox, and pairing that with Aaron Donald long-term sounds like a great recipe for the Rams.

 

Patriots 32. New England Patriots: Daniel Jones, QB, Duke

Daniel Jones

The Patriots continue to bring in young quarterbacks behind Brady, and if Jones isn’t the one to finally take up the mantle, he’ll continue in a rich tradition of yielding draft capital a couple of years down the road. Jones profiles as a tantalizing pro-ready prospect, but with limited upside he tumbles to a very grateful New England.

 

 

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Mock Draft 1.0 Pre Free Agency

3001624_SP_Cardinals_2 1. Arizona Cardinals: Kyler Murray, QB, Cardinals

NCAA Football: College Football Playoff Semifinal-Orange Bowl-Alabama vs Oklahoma

Dec 29, 2018; Miami Gardens, FL, USA; Oklahoma Sooners quarterback Kyler Murray (1) throws against the Alabama Crimson Tide during the fourth quarter of the 2018 Orange Bowl college football playoff semifinal game at Hard Rock Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

Murray is the pick, according to multiple sources. Personally, I’d build around Rosen, but if Kingsbury wants his guy, he should be able to convince the front office.

 

49ers helmet 2. San Francisco 49ers: Nick Bosa, DE, Ohio State

Bosa

Edge is a desperate need for the Niners, and Bosa is the best prospect in the draft, regardless of position. Perfect fit.

 

jets helmet 3. New York Jets: Josh Allen, OLB, Kentucky

Josh Allen

The Jets have needed a blue-chip edge rusher forever, and here’s Josh Allen, fresh off a 17 sack season. He’s a perfect fit for their 3-4 defense.

 

raiders helmet 4. Oakland Raiders: Quinnen Williams, DT, Alabama

College Football Playoff National Championship Presented By AT&T - Alabama v Clemson

The Raiders love Williams, need help everywhere, and Williams happens to be the highest player left on the board. He’s probably their number two guy.

 

bucs helmet 2 5. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Devin White, LB, LSU

devin-white

With Kwon Alexander headed for free agency, a replacement is needed, and the Bucs can’t do much better than the next great LB from the factory at LSU.

 

giants helmet 6. New York Giants: Dwayne Haskins, QB, Ohio State

Big Ten Championship - Northwestern v Ohio State

The Giants and Haskins are a perfect fit. Haskins slides right in as an ideal backup to Manning, with his pocket passing skills, and has the kind of high upside to take over as starter quickly and go to pro bowls.

 

jags 7. Jacksonville Jaguars: Jonah Williams, T/G, Alabama

Jonah Williams

The Jags are a team ready to compete right now, and Williams slides in as an immediate high-impact starter on an offensive line that desperately needs to do a better job facilitating its offense.

 

Lions 2 8. Detroit Lions: Ed Oliver, DT, Houston

Ed Oliver

The Lions have been looking for an interior disruptor like Oliver since Ndamokung Suh left. It’s time.

 

Bills 9. Buffalo Bills: Clelin Ferrell, DE, Clemson

Clelin Ferrell

The Bills have a solid tandem at edge, but rotational depth is important, and highly valued by Coach Sean McDermott. Don’t be surprised if the Bills trade back, too.

 

Broncos 10. Denver Broncos: Drew Lock, QB, Missouri

Drew Lock

Lock should be the apple of John Elway’s eye through the pre-draft process. Big arm, excellent measurables, extensive starting experience, intangible moxie. He can and should be the face of the franchise.

 

bengals 11. Cincinnati Bengals: Deandre Baker, CB, Georgia

NCAA Football: SEC Championship-Alabama vs Georgia

Baker is a stud, with real shutdown ability and a physical edge that fits right in with what the Bengals are building on that side of the ball.

 

Packers 12. Green Bay Packers: Montez Sweat, DE, Mississippi State

Montez Sweat

The Packers have a glaring need at rush end, and Sweat is a great fit for the Packers 3-4 base. He destroyed the combine and has solid tape and production.

 

miami 13. Miami Dolphins: Rashan Gary, DL, Michigan

Rashan Gary

The Dolphins are trying to build something special on the defensive side of the ball, and could do worse than adding a dynamic athlete like Gary to the defensive line.

 

falcons helmet 14. Atlanta Falcons: Greedy Williams, CB, LSU

Greedy Williams

The Falcons must shore up the spot opposite Desmond Trufant for the long term, and though Greedy Williams may not be an impact starter right away, he has sky-high potential with his height-weight-speed combo.

 

skins helmet 15. Washington Redskins: D.K. Metcalf, WR, Ole Miss

DK Metcalf

Metcalf is probably the highest upside receiver in the draft, and should help out whoever lines up at quarterback for the Skins in 2019. His combine was incredible, and he passes the eye test.

 

Panthers 16. Carolina Panthers: Byron Murphy, CB, Washington

Byron Murphy

The Panthers should continue to develop their secondary, which has been a huge liability, with a rock solid prospect like Murphy, who does a great job reading and reacting.

 

browns helmet 17. Cleveland Browns: Andre Dillard, T, Washington State

Andre Dillard

The Browns have improved the roster a lot, but need to find a franchise left tackle. Dilllard has maybe the best pass blocking resume, and profiles well as Baker Mayfield’s blindside protector.

 

Vikings helmet 18. Minnesota Vikings: Christian Wilkins, DT, Clemson

Christian Wilkins

Losing Sheldon Richardson, as the Vikings are expected to, would leave a big hole on the Vikings defensive line. The Vikings have bigger needs and would probably trade back in this scenario, but take a talent that has tumbled too far already in Wilkins.

 

ten-titans-home 19. Tennessee Titans: T.J. Hockenson, TE, Iowa

TJ Hockenson

The Titans find Mariota a rock-solid option with great hands, who will also help tremendously in the running game.

 

pit-steelers-revolution 20. Pittsburgh Steelers: Brian Burns, DE, Florida State

Brian Burns

Burns is a heck of a pass rusher, and would be great opposite TJ Watt. That pass rush would help the whole defense and mask the deficiencies at linebacker and in the secondary.

 

Seahawks helmet 21. Seattle Seahawks: Noah Fant, TE, Iowa

Noah Fant

After Jimmy Graham left, the Seahawks turned to Will Dissly who was solid. Fant is a perfect complement to him, and gives Wilson the seam stretching weapon he has really never had.

 

Ravens 22. Baltimore Ravens: Marquise Brown, WR, Oklahoma

Marquise Brown

Brown is among the most dynamic players in this draft, and would fit perfectly in the short passing and hard-nosed running game the Ravens are building with Lamar Jackson.

 

texans 23. Houston Texans: Jawaan Taylor, T/G, Florida

Jawaan Taylor

Taylor is a bit of a projection as an NFL player, but he has ideal size and great foot quickness and functional strength. Despite his rawness, he may already be better than any offensive lineman in Houston.

 

raiders helmet 24. Oakland Raiders: A.J. Brown, WR, Ole Miss

AJ Brown

Brown would give the Raiders and Derek Carr a reliable winner in the short to intermediate levels of the field. He’s a better, younger Michael Crabtree.

 

Eagles 25. Philadelphia Eagles: Parris Campbell, WR, Ohio State

Parris Campbell

The Eagles love dynamic receivers after the catch, and need more weapons for Wentz, especially if Agholor’s strong season in 2017 turns to have been a fluke.

 

Colts 26. Indianapolis Colts: Dexter Lawrence, DT, Clemson

NCAA Football: Clemson at Texas A&M

The Colts desperately need a dominant presence in the middle of the defensive line, and they don’t come much more imposing than Lawrence.

 

raiders helmet 27. Oakland Raiders: Josh Jacobs, RB, Alabama

NCAA Football: College Football Playoff National Championship-Clemson vs Alabama

Jacobs is a perfect lead runner for Gruden’s Raiders and continues to transform what was a very poor offense a year ago.

 

chargers 28. Los Angeles Chargers: Devin Bush, LB, Michigan

Devin Bush

The Chargers biggest need, for awhile now, has been a dynamic pass-coverage linebacker. Bush is it.

 

chiefs helmet 29. Kansas City Chiefs: Nasir Adderley, S, Delaware

Nasir Adderley

The Chiefs need serious help all over the defense, but secondary profiles as a good spot to improve here.

 

Packers 30. Green Bay Packers: Irv Smith Jr., TE, Alabama

Irv Smith Jr

After cleaning up the a hole on defense with the first pick, the Packers take a field stretching threat at tight end, who was extremely successful at Alabama.

 

rams helmet 31. Los Angeles Rams: Mack Wilson, LB, Alabama

Mack Wilson

The Rams need to continue to infuse young, cheap talent into their defense, since they’ll eventually need to pay big money to Jared Goff and maybe Cooper Kupp.

 

Patriots 32. New England Patriots: Daniel Jones, QB, Duke

Daniel Jones

Jones is a rock-solid QB prospect, with great size, great coaching and solid arm talent. The Patriots will either look to Jones as the successor or flip him for picks a couple of years down the road.

 

As always, drop your slant in the comments section by hitting the “Leave a Comment” button at the top of the article. If you enjoyed, find us on Facebook and Twitter, links below:

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Official After Review Mock Draft

giants helmet 1.  *TRADE* New York Giants via Arizona Cardinals: Dwayne Haskins, QB, Ohio State

Trade details: Giants Receive 1 overall, Cardinals Receive 2019 pick 6, 2020 1st, 2020 2nd, 2020 3rd

Pick by: Shae via Shae

 

raiders helmet 2. *TRADE* Oakland Raiders via San Francisco 49ers: Nick Bosa, DE, Ohio State

Trade details: Raiders receive 2 overall, DE/DT Solomon Thomas, 49ers receive 24 and 27, 140 and CB Gareon Conley

Pick by: Trentyn via Eric

 

jets helmet 3. New York Jets: Josh Allen, OLB, Kentucky

Pick by: Trentyn

 

raiders helmet 4. Oakland Raiders: Quinnen Williams, DT, Alabama

Pick by: Trentyn

 

bucs helmet 2 5. Tampa Bay Bucs: Tre Lamar, LB, Clemson

Pick by: Eric

 

3001624_SP_Cardinals_2 6. *TRADE* Arizona Cardinals via New York Giants: Montez Sweat, DE, Mississippi State

Trade details: Giants Receive 1 overall, Cardinals Receive 2019 pick 6, 2020 1st, 2020 2nd, 2020 3rd

Pick by: Shae via Shae

 

jags 7. Jacksonville Jaguars: Jawaan Taylor, T, Florida

Pick by: Shae

 

Lions 2 8. Detroit Lions: Jonah Williams, OL, Alabama

Pick by: Eric

 

miami 9. *TRADE* Miami Dolphins via Buffalo Bills: Kyler Murray, QB, Oklahoma

Trade details: Miami Dolphins receive 9 overall, Buffalo Bills receive 13, 48

Pick by: Shae via Trentyn

 

Broncos 10. Denver Broncos: Devin White, LB, LSU

Pick by: Trentyn

 

skins helmet11. *TRADE* Washington Redskins via Cincinnati Bengals: Daniel Jones, QB, Duke

Trade details: Redskins receive 11, Bengals receive 15, 76

Pick by: Trentyn via Eric

 

Packers12. Green Bay Packers : T.J. Hockenson, TE, Iowa

Pick by: Shae

 

Bills 13. Buffalo Bills: Ed Oliver, DT, Houston

Pick by: Trentyn

 

falcons helmet 14. Atlanta Falcons: DreMont Jones, DT, Ohio State

Pick by: Eric

 

bengals 15. *TRADE* Cincinnati Bengals via Washington Redskins: Germaine Pratt, LB, NC State

Trade details: Redskins receive 11, Bengals receive 15, 76

Pick by: Eric via Trentyn

 

chiefs helmet 16. *TRADE* Kansas City Chiefs via Carolina Panthers: Rashan Gary, DE/DT, Michigan

Trade details: Chiefs receive 16, Panthers receive 29, 61, 167, 2020 3rd

Pick by: Trentyn via Trentyn

 

giants helmet 17. New York Giants: Cody Ford, T/G, Oklahoma

Pick by: Shae

 

Vikings helmet 18. Minnesota Vikings: Andre Dillard, T, Washington State

Pick by: Eric

 

ten-titans-home 19. Tennessee Titans: Marquise Brown, WR, Oklahoma

Pick by: Shae

 

pit-steelers-revolution 20. Pittsburgh Steelers: Jonathan Abram, S, Mississippi State

Pick by: Eric

 

Colts 21. *TRADE* Indianapolis Colts via Seattle Seahawks : DeAndre Baker, CB, Georgia

Trade details: Colts receive 21, Seahawks receive 26, 34

Pick by: Shae via Trentyn

 

Ravens 22. Baltimore Ravens: Devin Bush, LB, Michigan

Pick by: Trentyn

 

texans23. Houston Texans: Byron Murphy, CB, Washington

Pick by: Eric

 

49ers helmet 24.*TRADE* San Francisco 49ers via Oakland Raiders: Hakeem Butler, WR, Iowa State

Trade details: Raiders receive 2 overall, DE/DT Solomon Thomas, 49ers receive 24 and 27, 140 and CB Gareon Conley

Pick by: Eric via Trentyn

 

Eagles 25. Philadelphia Eagles: Christian Wilkins, DT, Clemson

Pick by: Shae

 

Patriots 26. *TRADE* New England Patriots via Seattle Seahawks: Drew Lock, QB, Missouri

Trade details: Patriots receive 26, Seahawks receive 32, 64

Pick by: Shae via Trentyn

 

49ers helmet 27. *TRADE* San Francisco 49ers via Oakland Raiders: Deionte Thompson, S, Alabama

Trade details: Raiders receive 2 overall, DE/DT Solomon Thomas, 49ers receive 24 and 27, 140 and CB Gareon Conley

Pick by: Eric via Trentyn

 

chargers 28. Los Angeles Chargers: Dalton Risner, T, Kansas State

Pick by: Eric

 

Panthers 29. *TRADE* Carolina Panthers via Kansas City Chiefs: Brian Burns, DE Florida State

Trade details: Chiefs receive 16, Panthers receive 29, 61, 167, 2020 3rd

Pick by: Trentyn via Trentyn

 

Eagles 30. *TRADE* Philadelphia Eagles via Green Bay Packers: Josh Jacobs, RB, Alabama

Trade details: Eagles receive 30, 114, Packers receive 57, 2020 2nd

Pick by: Shae via Shae

 

rams helmet 31. Los Angeles Rams: Mack Wilson, LB, Alabama

Pick by: Eric

 

Seahawks helmet 32. *TRADE* Seattle Seahawks via New England Patriots: Garrett Bradbury, C, NC State

Trade details: Patriots receive 26, Seahawks receive 32, 64

Pick by: Trentyn via Shae

 

As always, drop your slant in the comments section by hitting the “Leave a Comment” button at the top of the article. If you enjoyed, find us on Facebook and Twitter, links below:

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Mock Draft 2.0 (Draft Night Eve)

  1. Los Angeles Rams: Jared Goff, QB, Cal

6’4 215 lbs.

Jared Goff, Dylan Wynn

California quarterback Jared Goff (16) scrambles out of the pocket from Oregon State defensive end Dylan Wynn (45) during the first quarter of an NCAA college football game in Berkeley, Calif., Saturday, Oct. 19, 2013. (AP Photo/Tony Avelar)

 

The Rams traded a lion’s share to go up and grab their quarterback of the future. There are a couple of reasons I think it has to be Goff: One, he’s considered by many to be closer to a sure thing than Wentz. Two, the Eagles trade makes me believe they know which quarterback will be available and all indications are they covet Wentz. Either Howie Roseman royally whiffed, or Wentz makes it past pick 1 and Goff lands in L.A.

https://sportsslants.wordpress.com/2016/01/26/a-prospect-a-day-quarterbacks-jared-goff-scouting-report/

 

 

  1. Philadelphia Eagles: Carson Wentz, QB, ND State

6’5 232 lbs.

Wentz 2.jpg

New head coach Doug Pederson evidently wants Bradford and Chase Daniel only for the short term while he grooms his prize prospect, Carson Wentz. I personally can’t blame Pederson or the Eagles for coveting Wentz, my number one QB. His tape really pops and he shows all the potential to be a special franchise player. Still, it was a lot to give up and Wentz has a lot of pressure to live up to the deal that landed him.

https://sportsslants.wordpress.com/2016/01/28/a-prospect-a-day-quarterbacks-carson-wentz-scouting-report/

 

 

  1. San Diego Chargers: DeForest Buckner, DE, Oregon

6’6 287 lbs.

Buckner 1.jpg

Even with Tunsil now available, I maintain that the Chargers are sold on Buckner. He has a tantalizing blend of size, speed and football IQ but must continue to develop his game to live up to a top five draft status.

https://sportsslants.wordpress.com/2016/01/22/a-prospect-a-day-4-3-defensive-ends-deforest-buckner-scouting-report/

 

 

  1. Dallas Cowboys: Jalen Ramsey, DB, Florida State

6’1 202 lbs.

Ramsey.jpg

Word from Cowboys camp is Ramsey is their number one player overall so finding him at the 4 spot with a competent GM like Stephen Jones calling the shots, this is a no-brainer. They can mix and match Byron Jones and Jalen Ramsey as they please.

 

 

  1. Jacksonville Jaguars: Joey Bosa, DE, Ohio State

6’6 276 lbs.

Bosa.jpg

Jags GM David Caldwell and coach Gus Bradley will be bowling people over to get this pick in. Joey Bosa will be an immediate infusion of talent paired with former first-rounder Dante Fowler Jr. They must address the secondary this off-season as well, but Bosa is too talented.

https://sportsslants.wordpress.com/2016/01/21/a-prospect-a-day-4-3-defensive-ends-joey-bosa-scouting-report/

 

 

  1. Baltimore Ravens: Vernon Hargreaves, CB, Florida

5’11 192 lbs.

Hargreaves.jpg

Jimmy Smith is a slightly undersized corner who’s had success with the Ravens, so Newsome knows to target talent and traits over size. Of course the Ravens offense will continue to scare exactly no one until they get serious about bolstering that side of the ball.

 

 

  1. San Francisco 49ers: Myles Jack, LB, UCLA

6’1 245 lbs.

Jack.jpg

Word is Jack won’t slide past the Niners and it makes a lot of sense. Chip Kelly would be licking his lips at the thought of implementing the ultra-athletic Jack into his system, perhaps on offense as well as defense.

 

 

  1. Cleveland Browns: Laremy Tunsil, OT, Ole Miss.

6’5 305 lbs.

Tunsil.jpg

It’s time to think about life after Joe Thomas and Tunsil is the best player remaining on the board. Hue Jackson will want to protect his new project in RG3. Tunsil is ready to start now and Cleveland should be able to find a place for him. They tried to trade out of the pick, but couldn’t work a deal.

 

 

  1. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Shaq Lawson, DE, Clemson

6’3 270 lbs.

Shaq Lawson

Shaq Lawson

As predicted, Lawson has become a highly coveted prospect as teams fall in love with his 2015 tape and high character. He’s certainly a motivated young man, but he’s not quite up to a top ten talent level.

https://sportsslants.wordpress.com/2016/01/15/a-prospect-a-day-4-3-defensive-ends-shaq-lawson-scouting-report/

 

 

  1. TRADE Miami Dolphins (Via New York Giants): Ezekiel Elliott, RB, Ohio State

6’0 225 lbs.

Elliott

Ohio State plays Indiana at Ohio Stadium on Saturday, November 22, 2014 in Columbus, Ohio.

I’ve been seeing the Dolphins love for Elliott throughout the draft process. The inept Stephen Ross has been sitting on his hands rather than bothering to replace Lamar Miller. On the upside, Elliott and Jay Ajayi should be a potent duo, on the downside, Elliott is a running back, a majorly devalued position. The Dolphins would be better served to find a replacement for the departed Olivier Vernon.

https://sportsslants.wordpress.com/2016/01/31/a-prospect-a-day-running-backs-ezekiel-elliott-scouting-report/

 

 

  1. Chicago Bears: Ronnie Stanley, OT, Notre Dame

6’5 304 lbs.

NCAA Football: Georgia Tech at Notre Dame

Sep 19, 2015; South Bend, IN, USA; Notre Dame Fighting Irish offensive lineman Ronnie Stanley (78) prepares to block Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets linebacker Tyler Marcordes (35) at Notre Dame Stadium. Mandatory Credit: RVR Photos-USA TODAY Sports

Sep 19, 2015; South Bend, IN, USA; Notre Dame Fighting Irish offensive lineman Ronnie Stanley (78) prepares to block Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets linebacker Tyler Marcordes (35) at Notre Dame Stadium. Mandatory Credit: RVR Photos-USA TODAY Sports

It’s an open secret that the Bears got snaked here: they coveted Ezekiel Elliott. Still, they need to find a true replacement for Jermon Bushrod for current “franchise” quarterback Jay Cutler.

 

 

  1. TRADE Indiannapolis Colts (Via New Orleans Saints): Jack Conklin, OT, Michigan State

6’6 325 lbs.

Conklin

The Colts clearly fear here that the Giants want to invest further in their offensive line and jump ahead of them, the Titans and the Lions to snag Jack Conklin, who is a highly accomplished and polished pass protector. Protecting Andrew Luck must be priority number one for Grigson and company unless they want more comedy routines in week 17 (Ryan Lindley and Josh Freeman split starting duties, it’s like the beginning of a “walks into a bar” joke)

 

 

  1. TRADE New York Giants (Via Miami Dolphins): Leonard Floyd, OLB, Georgia

6’4 231 lbs.

Floyd

The Giants have apparently been coveting Floyd for a while now and it is understandable, albeit foolish. Floyd is just the kind of guy that gets over-drafted on athleticism. Get ready for the outrageous JPP-size expectations that come with playing in the Big Apple. In fact, JPP may have inspired the interest since his fireworks incident left him a few fingers short of a full hand.

 

 

  1. Oakland Raiders: Mackensie Alexander, CB, Clemson

5’11 195 lbs.

Alexander

The outrageous idea that Alexander will slide in the first round, or out of it completely will be dispelled tomorrow night. Alexander is a true shut-down corner in the making and the Raiders could use that to pair with Sean Smith. Their secondary is the true weakness of this budding defense.

 

 

  1. Tennessee Titans: Taylor Decker, OT, Ohio State

6’7 320 lbs.

Decker

Decker actually fits really well as the bookend opposite Taylor Lewan. Decker is big-bodied, highly atheletic and has immense strength at the point of attack. He lacks the polish of the higher prospects but is a really nice find for the Titans who gained quite a bit of value trading out of the number one pick.

 

 

  1. Detroit Lions: Kevin Dodd, DE Clemson

6’5 277 lbs.

Capital One Orange Bowl - Clemson v Oklahoma

MIAMI GARDENS, FL – DECEMBER 31: Samaje Perine #32 of the Oklahoma Sooners carries the ball as Kevin Dodd #98 of the Clemson Tigers attempts to tackle him in the first quarter during the 2015 Capital One Orange Bowl at Sun Life Stadium on December 31, 2015 in Miami Gardens, Florida. (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)

Dodd makes a ton of sense opposite Ziggy Ansah as the Lions attempt to maintain their defense at the top of the draft. The strategy makes some sense, especially if they’ve lost faith in Stafford’s ability to lead them deep into the playoffs.

 

 

  1. Atlanta Falcons: Reggie Ragland, LB, Alabama

6’1 259 lbs.

Ragland

The Falcons have been wanting for elite linebacker talent since Sean Weatherspoon began having severe injury issues. Ragland should help solidify a shaky core that includes the aforementioned and still injury prone Weatherspoon.

 

 

  1. TRADE New York Jets (Via New Orleans Saints): Paxton Lynch, QB, Memphis

6’7 245 lbs.

Lynch 1

The Jets, despite their posturing with Ryan Fitzpatrick, are not sold on their future at quarterback with Geno Smith. Lynch represents an upgrade, if only because he’s an unknown commodity, the Jets felt they needed to jump the Bills who looked poised to snag Lynch after his fall.

https://sportsslants.wordpress.com/2016/01/27/a-prospect-a-day-quarterbacks-paxton-lynch-scouting-report/

 

 

  1. Buffalo Bills: Sheldon Rankins, DT, Louisville

6’1 304 lbs.

Louisville Football v Memphis

Sheldon Rankins (98), Fumble

Sheldon Rankins (98), Fumble

Rumblings that Dareus is looking to leave point to Rex Ryan’s continual inability to control a 53-man roster. Instead of booting him like they should, the Bills decision makers allow him to commit nepotism while also replacing a proven talent with a relatively unknown rookie. Poor Bills, they’ll never make the playoffs. On the bright side, Rankins shows a lot of potential. He might even be on the level of the greats (like Dareus) one day.

 

 

  1. TRADE New Orleans Saints (Via New York Jets): Emmanuel Ogbah, DE, Oklahoma State

6’4 275 lbs.

Ogbah 2.jpg

Oklahoma State defensive end Emmanuel Ogbah (38) attempts to move around Central Arkansas Kyle Stouffer (76) during an NCAA college football game between Central Arkansas and Oklahoma St in Stillwater, Okla., Saturday, Sept. 12, 2015. (AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki)

The more I break it down, the more this makes sense. Payton and Loomis must know that the entire defense struggles because of their lack of push up front. Ogbah will fit right into the locker room as a hard-worker with relentless motor. Knowing Pay/Loo though, I should be expecting something off-the-wall like safety or tackle here.

https://sportsslants.wordpress.com/2016/01/24/a-prospect-a-day-4-3-defensive-ends-emmanuel-ogbah/

 

 

  1. Washington Redskins: Chris Jones, DT, Mississippi State

6’6 310 lbs.

Jones

Jones has been pegged to sneak into the first round due to his pass-rush ability. I buy it and GM Scot McCloughan has shown his desire to build from the trenches. I expect a defensive lineman here and Jones makes the most sense.

 

 

  1. Houston Texans: Will Fuller, WR, Notre Dame

6’0 186 lbs.

Fuller

Fuller the first receiver off the board? It could happen. The Texans apparently covet the speedy wide-out who is being given much more favorable reviews as teams recognize his strong route running ability.

https://sportsslants.wordpress.com/2016/03/03/a-prospect-a-day-wide-receivers-will-fuller-scouting-report/

 

 

  1. Minnesota Vikings: Laquon Treadwell, WR, Ole Miss

6’2 210 lbs.

Treadwell

The Vikings need another receiver with the word being that Mike Wallace wants out. Big surprise. And Cordarelle Patterson still isn’t progressing. Big surprise? That leaves Stefon Diggs and Charles Johnson. I’m not quite inspired with that corps. Of course, Treadwell is not the best receiver in this class, but landing with an accurate passer like Bridgewater should help considering his inability to separate from even college corners.

https://sportsslants.wordpress.com/2016/02/14/a-prospect-a-day-wide-receivers-laquon-treadwell-scouting-report/

 

 

  1. Cincinnati Bengals: Michael Thomas, WR, Ohio State

6’3 210 lbs.

Thomas

I’ve been hearing rumblings that Thomas is the top receiver on the Bengals board and the pick here should be a receiver after they were gutted in free agency. At the very least, they must find a replacement at WR2 for Marvin Jones.

https://sportsslants.wordpress.com/2016/02/17/a-prospect-a-day-wide-receivers-michael-thomas-scouting-report/

 

 

  1. Pittsburgh Steelers: Eli Apple, CB, Ohio State

6’1 200 lbs.

Apple

Too long the Steelers have ignored upgrading this position. It’s time and they know it. Their secondary was a big reason they lost a lot of games last season. Apple is a rising prospect with ideal size who has big-game experience. You’ll be hearing that a lot during the rest of this mock draft.

 

 

  1. Seattle Seahawks: Darron Lee, OLB, Ohio State

6’2 228 lbs.

Lee

The Seahawks have built such an impressive roster by snagging impressive athletes that fit in their scheme. Darron Lee is a potential fit as a Jack linebacker to replace Bruce Irvin, who’s leaving in free agency. In addition to impressive measurables, he’s ready for prime-time due to his big-game experience.

 

 

  1. Green Bay Packers: Noah Spence, LB, Eastern Kentucky

6’2 254 lbs.

Spence

The Packers have been trying to generate a pass rush with over-the-hill vet Julius Peppers. It was fun (and funny) while it lasted. But unless they want to continue to waste Rodgers’ prime years, they’d better get serious about building a defense from the ground up.

 

 

  1. Kansas City Chiefs: Josh Doctson, WR, TCU

6’3 195 lbs.

Doctson

Goodness knows the Chiefs offense is an unfinished puzzle. The best receiver in the draft could go a long way to helping Alex Smith and company ramp up their level of play, especially in the playoffs where the offense has consistently let them down.

https://sportsslants.wordpress.com/2016/02/25/a-prospect-a-day-wide-receivers-josh-doctson-scouting-report/

 

 

  1. Arizona Cardinals: Ryan Kelly, C, Alabama

6’4 311 lbs.

Ryan Kelly

Many teams love the Alabama product and it’s not hard to see why. He might be one of the most polished and accomplished players in the draft. The Cardinals desperately need to keep Palmer healthy and upright and taking a safe prospect like Kelly makes sense for a team like the Cardinals on the brink of Super Bowl contention.

 

 

  1. Carolina Panthers: William Jackson III, CB, Houston

6’0 189 lbs.

Jackson.jpg

Booting Josh Norman can only mean one thing: He’s a jackass. Moving past that, the Panthers must replace his production and ability in the secondary to continue to cover for the inept safety duo of Kurt Coleman and Roman Harper.

 

 

  1. Denver Broncos: Vernon Butler, DT, Louisiana Tech

6’3 325 lbs.

Butler

With the departure of Malik Jackson to contend with, the Broncos must bolster the part of their team that’s working: the defense. Proven to have adequate eye-sight and cognitive abilities, Elway recognizes his team was special due to defense and continues to refuel with an impressive talent from a small school who has been shooting up boards.

Eagles Seven-Round Mock Draft

NFL-Draft-Logo
Philadelphia_Eagles_logo_primary.svg
13: R1P13: JACK CONKLIN, OT, MICHIGAN STATE
6’6 308 lbs.
Conklin
FIT: Peters is either going to collapse all of his weight on his bad knee or fade into dust at some point within the next couple of seasons, both of which are likely to happen while he’s sitting on a bench avoiding injury. Conklin is insurance in case Lane Johnson never completes the switch to the blind side. Conklin should be able to start right away on either side.
                                     http://www.cbssports.com/nfl/draft/players/2001906/jack-conklin
77: R3P14: RYAN KELLY, C/G, ALABAMA
6’4 311 lbs.
Ryan Kelly
FIT: Finding Kelly here in the third is enough reason to snap him up for a team that has an o-line with more leaks than a $400 per month apartment’s piping system. Jason Kelce is the undisputed starter, but Kelly could immediately challenge for a guard spot currently occupied by borderline starters.
NOTE: Kelly’s possibility to fall this far may be due to teams valuing Nick Martin of Notre Dame more. Teams may also question his pass protection since he played in a run-heavy Alabama offense.
                                     http://www.cbssports.com/nfl/draft/players/1893142/ryan-kelly
79: R3P16: KARL JOSEPH, S, WEST VIRGINIA
5’11 205 lbs.
Joseph
FIT: Malcolm Jenkins is one of the safeties, the other is a big question mark. Walter Thurmond might not be the answer: watching him try to help cover an over-the-hill Calvin Johnson on Thanksgiving was good for some cheap laughs. He’s a UFA anyway. Joseph is a do-everything safety with play-making ability (5 interceptions in 4 games last year).
NOTE: His potential to fall this far is due to his medical, he suffered a season-ending knee injury and was unable to participate in the combine. He may also be knocked for a lack of size.
                                     http://www.cbssports.com/nfl/draft/players/1983624/karl-joseph
114: R4P15: CHARONE PEAKE, WR, CLEMSON
6’2 209 lbs.
Charone Peake, Justin Hughes

Clemson wide receiver Charone Peake leaps for a pass over South Carolina State’s Justin Hughes during the first half of an NCAA college football game Saturday Aug. 31, 2013 at Memorial Stadium in Clemson, S.C.(AP Photo/ Richard Shiro)

FIT: Nelson Agholor and Jordan Matthews look to be the top two receivers going forward, but if the drop circus Eagles fans witnessed last year is any indication, this unit is in need of a serious influx of talent. Consider also that Riley Cooper was released and Seyi Ajirotutu is expected to make a significant contribution and this is clearly a disaster zone on the roster.
NOTE: His availability is likely due to his small hands and medical question marks.
                                     http://www.cbssports.com/nfl/draft/players/1850735/charone-peake
153: R5P14: TAJAE SHARPE, WR, MASSACHUSETTS
6’2 194 lbs.
Sharpe
FIT: Did I mention in the last blurb that Josh Huff is supposed to compete for playing time? Yikes. He’s practice-squad fodder, if at all rosterable. Sharpe should come in immediately and compete for that fourth receiver spot, possibly even third depending on Peake’s medical situation.
164: R5P25: NILE LAWRENCE-STAMPLE, DT, FLORIDA STATE
6’1 320 lbs.
Lawrence-Stample
FIT: This pick is largely contingent on the expectation that the Eagles transition to an attacking 4-3 under new coordinator Jim Schwartz. Before Rex Ryan ruined every Bill’s fans lives by miscasting every Buffalo defensive player, Schwartz used the immense pool of talent to create one of the best pass-rushing units in the league. While he has capable potential starters in Bennie Logan and Cedric Thornton at defensive tackle, there isn’t much depth behind them. Lawrence-Stample projects as a rotational tackle with the ability to swallow double teams and free up the Eagles’ many penetrators.
                                   http://www.cbssports.com/nfl/draft/players/1860756/nile-lawrence-stample
191: R6P13: TRAVIS FEENEY, OLB, WASHINGTON
6’4 230 lbs.
NCAA FOOTBALL, California at Washington

102613 – SEATTLE, WA – Washington’s Travis Feeney gets to Cal quarterback Jared Goff, dropping him after a 6-yard broken pass play in the first quarter. (UWFOOTBALL27)

FIT: Again assuming a Schwartz-led 4-3, the starters at linebacker are: WLB: Mychal Kendricks (solid), MLB: Kiko Alonso (fantastic), SLB: Jordan Hicks/Connor Barwin (depending on whether they use the Sam in coverage or as more of an enforcer. That considered, the cupboard is largely bare as far as backups go, Feeney has the speed and coverage skills to play Will or fill in at Mike and would be a fun chess piece for a creative coordinator like Schwartz.
NOTE: Feeney is being under-appreciated due to his unusual size, however his combine numbers could open the eyes of some teams. If he falls this far, he’d be a major steal.
                                   http://www.cbssports.com/nfl/draft/players/1884443/travis-feeney
231: R7P12: JONATHAN WILLIAMS, RB, ARKANSAS
5’11 220 lbs.
J. Williams
FIT: At least one of the starting trio: DeMarco Murray, Ryan Matthews and Darren Sproles likely won’t suit up for the Eagles this season. My money is on Murray, since he probably gets off to tape of the Cowboys o-line and is begging Jerry and company to buy him back. Can’t blame him either, as I also get off to tape of the Cowboys o-line. Just magnificent. That aside, Williams is a highly talented back out of Arkansas and the forgotten man in the Alex Collins backfield timeshare. He’s got all the traits teams desire and an injury bad enough to drop him into the seventh round, but not so bad that it could be career threatening. Perfect recipe for a team who can afford to wait for him to heal and develop.
                                   http://www.cbssports.com/nfl/draft/players/1999948/jonathan-williams
249: R7P30: WR KEYARRIS GARRETT, WR, TULSA
6’3 220 lbs.
Garrett
FIT: And behind Ajirotutu and Huff on the depth chart? Jonathan Krause, Freddie Martino, Xavier Rush and Seantavious Jones, that sounds more like a badminton starting lineup. A triple-dip at receiver doesn’t seem so gratuitous now does it? Besides that, Garrett is a massive player with traits to develop into an impressive talent. He could be the steal of the draft, found at this late stage.
NOTE: Garrett’s only chance of falling this far is if teams are scared by his lack of polish, there are far more accomplished receivers with more refined traits to be had ahead of him, so it is possible.
                                     http://www.cbssports.com/nfl/draft/players/1877398/keyarris-garrett

Mock Draft 1.0

1. Tennessee Titans: Laremy Tunsil, OT, Ole Miss

6’5 305 lbs.

Tunsil

Titans GM Jon Robinson said specifically that protecting his quarterback would be a priority this off-season. It would certainly help Mariota’s development if he wasn’t spending half his time on a professional field running for his life and the other half tasting turf.

2. Cleveland Browns: Carson Wentz, QB, ND State

6’5 232 lbs.

Wentz

New head coach Hue Jackson is taking a QB here, and it makes a lot of sense to bet on Wentz who has every trait teams could want in a franchise quarterback. Of course, the Browns better do something about that defense. Wentz is too much of a gamer not to turn into a pick machine if he feels the pressure to carry a game by himself.

https://sportsslants.wordpress.com/2016/01/28/a-prospect-a-day-quarterbacks-carson-wentz-scouting-report/

3. San Diego Chargers: DeForest Buckner, DE, Oregon

6’6 287 lbs.

Buckner 1

Oregon Ducks defensive lineman DeForest Buckner (44) celebrates after bringing down a back behind the line. The No. 18 Oregon Ducks face the Oregon State Beavers in the Civil War at Autzen Stadium in Eugene, Ore. on Nov. 27, 2015. (Cole Elsasser/Emerald)

Despite the Chargers having two superior prospects available in Ramsey and Bosa, they reach a bit for Buckner. GM Tom Telesco has proven unreliable in assembling a talented roster as of yet.

https://sportsslants.wordpress.com/2016/01/22/a-prospect-a-day-4-3-defensive-ends-deforest-buckner-scouting-report/

4. Dallas Cowboys: Jalen Ramsey, DB, Florida State

6’1 202 lbs.

Ramsey

Nov 28, 2015; Gainesville, FL, USA; Florida State Seminoles defensive back Jalen Ramsey (8) against the Florida Gators during the first quarter at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Word from Cowboys camp is Ramsey is their number one player overall so finding him at the 4 spot with a competent GM like Stephen Jones calling the shots, this is a no-brainer. They can mix and match Byron Jones and Jalen Ramsey as they please.

5. Jacksonville Jaguars: Joey Bosa, DE, Ohio State

6’6 276 lbs.

Bosa

Jags GM David Caldwell and coach Gus Bradley will be bowling people over to get this pick in. Joey Bosa will be an immediate infusion of talent paired with former first-rounder Dante Fowler Jr. They must address the secondary this off-season as well, but Bosa is too talented.

https://sportsslants.wordpress.com/2016/01/21/a-prospect-a-day-4-3-defensive-ends-joey-bosa-scouting-report/

6. Baltimore Ravens: Vernon Hargreaves, CB, Florida

5’11 192 lbs.

New Mexico State v Florida

GAINESVILLE, FL – SEPTEMBER 05: Vernon Hargreaves III #1 of the Florida Gators carries the ball for six yards acting as a receiver during the second quarter of the game against the New Mexico State Aggies at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium on September 5, 2015 in Gainesville, Florida. (Photo by Rob Foldy/Getty Images)

Jimmy Smith is a slightly undersized corner who’s had success with the Ravens, so Newsome knows to target talent and traits over size. Of course the Ravens offense will continue to scare exactly no one until they get serious about bolstering that side of the ball.

7. San Francisco 49ers: Ronnie Stanley, OT, Notre Dame

6’5 304 lbs.

NCAA Football: Georgia Tech at Notre Dame

Sep 19, 2015; South Bend, IN, USA; Notre Dame Fighting Irish offensive lineman Ronnie Stanley (78) prepares to block Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets linebacker Tyler Marcordes (35) at Notre Dame Stadium. Mandatory Credit: RVR Photos-USA TODAY Sports

Far be it from me to indicate GM Trent Baalke could make a good decision. Chip likes his tackles and Ronnie Stanley has all of the tools to thrive in his scheme.

8. Miami Dolphins: Mackensie Alexander, CB, Clemson

5’11 195 lbs.

Alexander

Brent Grimes is done. This is his replacement. The Dolphins are probably convinced that Suh is a long-term answer so they pass up the much more safe (and smart) option of A’Shawn Robinson here.

9. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Shaq Lawson, DE, Clemson

6’3 270 lbs.

Shaq Lawson

Lawson is expected to shoot up the boards after an excellent combine workout. Perhaps the hype will be enough to tempt a silly franchise like Tampa Bay into taking him in the top ten.

https://sportsslants.wordpress.com/2016/01/15/a-prospect-a-day-4-3-defensive-ends-shaq-lawson-scouting-report/

10. New York Giants: Myles Jack, LB, UCLA

6’1 245 lbs.

Myles Jack

UCLA linebacker Myles Jack in action against BYU during an NCAA college football game, Saturday, Sept. 19, 2015, in Pasadena, Calif. UCLA won 24-23. (AP Photo/Danny Moloshok)

It’s time. They’ve tried to get by with Jasper Brinkley, Jon Beason and Uani Unga, to absolutely disastrous results. Unless the decision-makers are clinically insane, they address the position here with a prospect that’s drawing comparisons to Thomas Davis.

11. Chicago Bears: A’Shawn Robinson, DT, Alabama

6’4 312 lbs.

Robinson

Last year, I had the Bears married to Danny Shelton, and they ignored their need. They still haven’t addressed the void left by Henry Melton. Robinson is a classic space-eater with surprising athleticism. He has all the traits to be dominant. Perhaps with their flashy receivers already in the fold, the Bears will turn to addressing their actual needs this off-season.

12. New Orleans Saints: Emmanuel Ogbah, DE, Oklahoma State

6’4 275 lbs.

Emmanuel Ogbah, Kyle Stouffer

Oklahoma State defensive end Emmanuel Ogbah (38) attempts to move around Central Arkansas Kyle Stouffer (76) during an NCAA college football game between Central Arkansas and Oklahoma St in Stillwater, Okla., Saturday, Sept. 12, 2015. (AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki)

 

 

The more I break it down, the more this makes sense. Payton and Loomis must know that the entire defense struggles because of their lack of push up front. Ogbah will fit right into the locker room as a hard-worker with relentless motor. Knowing Pay/Loo though, I should be expecting something off-the-wall like safety or tackle here.

https://sportsslants.wordpress.com/2016/01/24/a-prospect-a-day-4-3-defensive-ends-emmanuel-ogbah/

13. Philadelphia Eagles: Taylor Decker, OT, Ohio State

6’7 320 lbs.

Decker

Some team will fall in love with the potential of this big-bodied athletic prospect. He’s played on the big stage against some excellent pass rushers and held his own. It remains to be seen whether Coach Pederson is competent enough to put him in position to succeed though.

14. Oakland Raiders: Reggie Ragland, LB, Alabama

6’1 259 lbs.

Ragland

Reggie McKenzie, against all odds, has nailed his last couple of drafts as Raiders GM. He’ll recognize, eventually, that Curtis Lofton often is looking toward the sideline for instructions while in coverage. Ragland has the athleticism and instincts to grow into another in a long line of talented Alabama linebackers of the Saban era.

15. Los Angeles Rams: Jared Goff, QB, Cal

6’4 215 lbs.

Jared Goff, Dylan Wynn

California quarterback Jared Goff (16) scrambles out of the pocket from Oregon State defensive end Dylan Wynn (45) during the first quarter of an NCAA college football game in Berkeley, Calif., Saturday, Oct. 19, 2013. (AP Photo/Tony Avelar)

The Rams are ecstatic to see Goff here and snag him without a second thought. But perhaps that second thought should have been that they already signed Kirk Cousins in free agency (I jest).

https://sportsslants.wordpress.com/2016/01/26/a-prospect-a-day-quarterbacks-jared-goff-scouting-report/

16. Detroit Lions: Jack Conklin, OT, Michigan State

6’6 325 lbs.

Conklin

The Lions need to invest in whoever is behind center or that offense will never reach its potential. While we’re on the subject. Man, that Lions offense is going to suck.

17. Atlanta Falcons: Leonard Floyd, OLB, Georgia

6’4 231 lbs.

Floyd

Dan Quinn has proven to be obsessed with his side of the ball as a head coach. Plus, the Falcons still don’t have a pass rush. Leonard Floyd is another swing at bat for GM Dimitroff and company. Pairing him with Beasley could make for a potent combination in a few years.

18. Indiannapolis Colts: Jason Spriggs, OT, Indianna

6’5 301 lbs.

Spriggs

This is a case where the Colts would probably like to trade back, but in my inspired trade-free mock draft, they stay put and grab the next best offensive lineman available. Protecting Andrew Luck must be priority number one for Grigson and company unless they want more comedy routines in week 17 (Ryan Lindley and Josh Freeman split starting duties, it’s like the beginning of a “walks into a bar” joke)

19. Buffalo Bills: Sheldon Rankins, DT, Louisville

6’1 304 lbs.

Louisville Football v Memphis

Sheldon Rankins (98), Fumble

Rumblings that Dareus is looking to leave point to Rex Ryan’s continual inability to control a 53-man roster. Instead of booting him like they should, the Bills decision makers allow him to commit nepotism while also replacing a proven talent with a relatively unknown rookie. Poor Bills, they’ll never make the playoffs. On the bright side, Rankins shows a lot of potential. He might even be on the level of the greats (like Dareus) one day.

20. New York Jets: Cody Whitehair, G, Kansas State

6’3 301 lbs.

Whitehair

In his first season as coach of the Jets, Todd Bowles impressed with a simplistic west-coast passing game to go along with a power running attack and a suffocating defense. I love me some old-school football and Whitehair projects as a road-grading guard for Ivory (or Powell… Stacy… Ridley… umm) that also has the quickness to hold up in pass-protection.

21. Washington Redskins: Robert Nkemdiche, DE/DT, Ole Miss

6’4 296 lbs.

Nkemdiche

Second-year GM Scot McCloughan established a formula for building from the trenches. Last year, he shored up the O-line with Brandon Scherff. This year, he should follow suit on the defensive side with a blue-chip talent like Nkemdiche. Here’s hoping this basket case doesn’t end up doing the worm during a Monday Night Football game. Looking at you, Haynesworth.

https://sportsslants.wordpress.com/2016/01/26/robert-nkemdiche-dt-scouting-report/

22. Houston Texans: Paxton Lynch, QB, Memphis

6’7 245 lbs.

Lynch 1

The Texans stay put and take a talented prospect here in Lynch. He’s not ready to start right away, but he can’t be much worse than Hoyer was in that playoff game… right DeAndre Hopkins?

https://sportsslants.wordpress.com/2016/01/27/a-prospect-a-day-quarterbacks-paxton-lynch-scouting-report/

23. Minnesota Vikings: Laquon Treadwell, WR, Ole Miss

6’2 210 lbs.

Treadwell

The Vikings need another receiver with the word being that Mike Wallace wants out. Big surprise. And Cordarelle Patterson still isn’t progressing. Big surprise? That leaves Stefon Diggs and Charles Johnson. I’m not quite inspired with that corps. Of course, Treadwell is not the best receiver in this class, but landing with an accurate passer like Bridgewater should help considering his inability to separate from even college corners.

https://sportsslants.wordpress.com/2016/02/14/a-prospect-a-day-wide-receivers-laquon-treadwell-scouting-report/

24. Cincinnati Bengals: Andrew Billings, DT, Baylor

6’2 310 lbs.

Billings

The Bengals are constantly refueling their defense, it’s one of the reasons they have one of the most complete rosters in the NFL. Billings is 20 years old and figures to blow up the combine. Snagging him here is a steal. On an unrelated note: Does anyone else have an annual pity party for the Bengals during Wild Card Weekend?

25. Pittsburgh Steelers: Eli Apple, CB, Ohio State

6’1 200 lbs.

Apple

Too long the Steelers have ignored upgrading this position. It’s time and they know it. Their secondary was a big reason they lost a lot of games last season. Apple is a rising prospect with ideal size who has big-game experience. You’ll be hearing that a lot during the rest of this mock draft.

26. Seattle Seahawks: Darron Lee, OLB, Ohio State

6’2 228 lbs.

Lee

The Seahawks have built such an impressive roster by snagging impressive athletes that fit in their scheme. Darron Lee is a potential fit as a Jack linebacker to replace Bruce Irvin, who’s leaving in free agency. In addition to impressive measurables, he’s ready for prime-time due to his big-game experience.

27. Green Bay Packers: Noah Spence, LB, Eastern Kentucky

6’2 254 lbs.

Spence

The Packers have been trying to generate a pass rush with over-the-hill vet Julius Peppers. It was fun (and funny) while it lasted. But unless they want to continue to waste Rodgers’ prime years, they’d better get serious about building a defense from the ground up.

28. Kansas City Chiefs: Jaylon Smith, LB, Notre Dame

6’3 229 lbs.

Notre Dame v Arizona State

TEMPE, AZ – NOVEMBER 08: Quarterback Taylor Kelly #10 of the Arizona State Sun Devils rushes the football against linebacker Jaylon Smith #9 of the Notre Dame Fighting Irish during the college football game at Sun Devil Stadium on November 8, 2014 in Tempe, Arizona. The Sun Devils defeated the Fighting Irish 55-31. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

A perfect replacement for the departing great Derrick Johnson, once Smith is ready to go, he’ll headline a fearsome defensive unit that should only get better in the coming years. Andy Reid and John Dorsey are building a potential powerhouse.

29. Arizona Cardinals: Hunter Henry, TE, Arkansas

6’5 253 lbs.

Henry

Jermaine Gresham was, inexplicably, unused in Arians’ offense. However, a play-maker like Henry should allow Carson Palmer to be that much more potent. He can also add some juice to the emerging running game.

30. Carolina Panthers: Ezekiel Elliott, RB, Ohio State

6’0 225 lbs.

Elliott

Ohio State plays Indiana at Ohio Stadium on Saturday, November 22, 2014 in Columbus, Ohio.

Do the Panthers ever recognize or draft for their needs? Not since they double-dipped for Star Lotulelei and Kawann Short in the first and second rounds respectively. Still, you can’t argue with Gettleman’s strategy here. Elliott is a game changer at running back. Him and Cam Newton in the same backfield would give defensive coordinators absolute fits. Also big-game experience blah blah blah.

https://sportsslants.wordpress.com/2016/01/31/a-prospect-a-day-running-backs-ezekiel-elliott-scouting-report/

31. Denver Broncos: Vernon Butler, DT, Louisiana Tech

6’3 325 lbs.

Butler

Elway wants to hold onto Malik Jackson, but it seems like Jackson might chase the money. Proven to have adequate eye-sight and cognitive abilities, Elway recognizes his team was special due to defense and continues to refuel with an impressive talent from a small school who has been shooting up boards.