This mock draft is going off current standings and I will do one a month. Once the combine happens I will do two a month up until the draft. The players and teams will most likely change each one. This is based on record with strength of schedule used as the tie breaker. I wont include trades either, as the draft gets closer I may do one or two with trades at that point.
1. Browns- DeShone Kizer, QB ND 6`4 229.
Myles Garrett is by far the best player in the draft. However, the always struggling Cleveland Browns don`t have a QB. At this point they have already played four different people at that position. Right now I think Kaaya the QB out of Miami is the most pro-ready. However, Kizer has the bigger ceiling. Kizer does not have great talent around him right now which is hurting his on play on the field, not to mention his head coach is trying not to lose his job so hes doing everything he can. Kizer could easily be their signal caller for the next decade in Cleveland. If the Browns can get the best out of him, we could also see the Browns have their first QB rated in the top half of the league in a very long time. Kizer is a really big guy so he will be able to take the hits he will get standing behind that horrid offensive line. You can never say enough about having a quality player at the QB position. While they have missed the mark in the last 20-years, they cant go wrong with Kizer or Kaaya here. With a bad offensive line and a team who is always rebuilding going for the bigger guy who can extend plays and who`s best play is yet to come is the better choice.
2. Panthers- Jabril Peppers, S Michigan 6`1 207
The defense is just bad in Carolina, but the secondary is much more of a concern than the defensive line is. Peppers might end up in an elite class if he wins the Heisman which is more than an outside shot right now, as his stats are off the charts on defense and special teams. Peppers has the makings of the next elite defender, he is similar to Ramsey who was selected early by the Jags last year. Peppers though might be more of a true tackler with bigger play ability. There have already been comparisons to Deion Sanders and Woodson. With the Panthers having maybe the worst secondary in all of football putting Peppers at his true position at Safety not corner will immediately shut down the back third of the field. I could write about him all day he is that talented, he can even make a huge impact on special teams. My only concern with him is the fact he has yet to record a single interception in college. But, what he lacks in the interception game he makes up in tackling behind the line he already has 8 tackles for loss this year and 2 sacks. The Jags refuse to use Ramsey on special teams I would not look for the Panthers to make that mistake has he could be just as electric at the next level on special teams as Devin Hester was in his prime. It will remain to be seen if he can play true safety at the next level. I would also look for him to put on about 10 pounds before the combine.
3. Bears- Brad Kaaya, QB Miami 6`4 216
Once again another team will by pass the best player in the draft. Chicago seems all but done with the Jay Cutler era and Hoyer is not a long term starter. Kaaya is the most pro ready QB and with new coach Mark Richt is ready for a pro-style offense. While Richt has only had one year with him you can see the improvement over last year in his decision making and stats, leading the Miami Hurricanes to a top 25 ranking. Kaaya is a very smart QB, he has two seasons over 3200 yards and over a 140 QB rating. He also brought down his INTS from 14 to 5 last year. Kaaya has a big arm and very calm in the pocket. He wont make a ton of plays with his legs, but has that ability. With Kevin White and Alshon Jeffrey on the outside`s getting a big play QB will turn that team around quick fast and in a hurry.
4. 49ers- DeShaun Watson, QB Clemson 6`2 210
This should be a no brainier the most dynamic QB in the draft going to the Coach who made a living on mobile QB`s and a fast offense. He is everything he ever wanted and got in Mariota and more when he had him at Oregon. Watson does everything at a very high level, and has one of the more elite arm talents in the draft. What makes him so valuable though are his legs and his ability to use them, he doesn’t just tuck and run every down he keeps his eyes downfield, but when he does look out this kid can move. Watson should be able to thrive in that offense if they can get him anyone to him to throw too. That will be his biggest issue coming into the next level is the massive lack of talent the 49ers have on the outside. If they do in fact nab Watson here I would look for the next two picks to be some sort of combination of pass catchers. I would also look for him to gain a few pounds coming into the draft. 210 is a bit light for a QB who likes to run at the next level.
5. Jets- Myles Garrett, DE/OLB TAMU 6`5 262
For the second time in three drafts the Jets will land the best player in the draft, both of them being DL. However, unlike Williams Garrett has the ability to play DE/OLB where as Williams is more of a 3/4 DE/DT. The Jets are very weak at OLB so he will spend most of his time there and in 4-3 sets or nickel. This could also open the door for the Jets to get rid of the problem child Richardson who will be up for a big contract they may not be inclined to sign. No matter what they do with Garrett its never bad to get the best talent in the draft and put him on the field whenever you can.
6. Colts- Mike Williams, WR Clemson 6`4 220.
Here is another team that could very well pick several different positions as they need everything but a QB. While a WR may not excite every fan in Indy there is a large gap between Williams and the next best pass catcher in this draft. There is enough RB, DL, and LB they can get one in the second round who still has a high talent level and even offensive line as maybe only one or two OL are fit for the top-20 of this draft. Williams will give the struggling luck a go-to receiver immediately and step in as the best pass catcher they have. This kid is big at 6`4 220 and can use it. He can go and high point the ball and use his body on the short routes. If Hopkins was not in the south, I think his kid would have enough talent the moment he gets drafted to be the most talent WR in this division the moment they pick him.
7. Dolphins- Lenoaerd Fournette, RB LSU 6`1 230.
The Dolphins have more questions in the backfield than a Jeopardy board. Foster cant stay healthy, and Ayjai has two bad knees and there is no certainty he can be an every down back for consecutive seasons. Fournette might be the best pure runner since Adrian Peterson. He will be the 3rd RB in the last three drafts who when he steps on the field becomes a top-10 RB. His stats have taken a dive over the last two seasons which could be directly linked to his injuries and the Les Miles offense. The injuries look to be more overuse ones than strength ones. However, that would be something to monitor going forward. He has as much talent maybe even more than the two before him in Elliot and Gurley. If he can stay healthy at the next level look for him to be right up there with both of them, I would also try and tell Dolphins fans to calm expectations. The offensive line in Miami might be worse than Gurley`s who is seeing the effects of that this season when teams stack the box.
8. Chargers- Quincy Wilson, CB Florida 6`1 213
The Chargers defense is slowly getting better, but they still lack depth and overall talent in the secondary. While they do have the new stand out Verrett they lack depth across the board. Wilson projects better as a CB at the next level rather than a safety, but with his size if he can gain some weight that would not be much of a surprise to put him there. With the Raiders and Broncos both having deep 1-2 sets at the WR position I would expect them to keep him here at CB and have maybe the best young CB tandem in the league sticking Wilson across from the already dangerous Verrett.
9. Bengals- Malik Hooker, S Ohio State 6`2 205.
The Bengals are in a tough spot here. At this point the draft is littered with DL, S, and RB. They don`t need another RB with the two headed monster they have now. So DL and S are the only options left, I have them going with Hooker who plays not to far away at Ohio State. The defense has taken a bit of a dive this year across the board for the Bengals. I don`t think they are excited about many of the options here, I would expect them to trade down for an OL or CB if they do end up here. But, I have them taking Hooker here. He is a great safety and can make all the plays they will need him to. The secondary is not getting any younger or better at this point and need all the help they can get. They are a bit high up for what they really want and that`s another corner or offensive tackle.
10. Jags- Jonathan Allen, DL Alabama 6`3 291.
Allen has played all four years at Alabama and started at LB before getting bigger and moved to the DL. Allen is an absolute monster on the defensive line and can rush the passer just as well as he can stop the run. Last year he had more sacks than the higher drafted Garrett with 12 sacks. The Jags are a mess on defense right now and the Malik Jackson experiment is not working out well, putting Allen inside next to Fowler could make for an awesome defensive line one that can do it all. I am really excited to see Allen head down to Jacksonville and play with Fowler, he should become not only a fan favorite but maybe the best DT in all of Florida. Yes, I said it even better than Suh or McCoy.
11. Saints- Christian McCaffrey, RB Stanford 6`0 201.
Sean Peyton is still there and Brees is just getting older. The last time Sean had a guy like this in Sproles he lit the league on fire. However, McCaffrey can even run through the tackles. I believe that he can play all three downs and with Ingram being able to be a goal line back, this could take lots of pressure off the aging Brees. I am not sure how many years he has left, but getting the most dynamic offensive player in the draft might get an extra year or two out of him. They can even use him in the return game and jump start the special teams. He didn`t break Berry Sanders all-purpose yard record in college for no reason, this kid has pure talent, speed, the ability to make people miss in the open field and he can break tackles with the best of them. If he can progress at the next level and elevate his play to become a better pure runner we could see four RB under 24 in the top-10 RB of the league.
12. Buccaneers- Derek Barnett, DE Tennessee 6`3 265
The Buccaneers are no longer the defense of old. In recent years they have had back luck in trying to get pass rushers for that defense. Since letting Micheal Bennett go a few years ago they have been among the league worst in both pass rush and run stopping. Barnett should be able to fix at least one of the two, with pass rush being the most likely. He is freak athlete who makes his money disrupting every form of offense in the SEC. If Barnett can keep progressing next to McCoy on that defensive line, the Buccaneers might finally start going in the right direction along the DL.
13. Lions- Dalvin Cook- RB FSU 5`11 213
Right now the Lions are a mess at running back the Abduallah experiment has not seemed to pan out and he is now done for the year. Going forward he seems to project more as a pass catching RB or a gimmick player. Past him they have no real talent at the position. Cook once thought of as the best RB in the draft will put a stop to the lack of RB talent the Lions have seen over the past decade. It will also let Stafford take a break from the hits, which I think is almost more valuable than getting true stats from a running back. Cook will have not played behind an offensive line this bad since high school, so there will be a strong learning curve for him. Cook luckily can be a three down back and do anything they ask of him. This might end up being the best pick they had had since Megatron maybe not by why of stats but just of usefulness and ability.
14. Cardinals- Cam Robinson- OT Alabama 6`6 326
I struggled with this one I really did. Palmer is getting older, and starting to show the age. So a QB could easily be on the minds of everyone in the organization. But, sitting at 14 Trubisky or Kelly seem like a bit of a stretch here. If Palmer cant finish the season for any reason look for them to trade down and get a QB for the future. The Super Bowl window for the Cardinals looks to be just a hope now, and if Palmer regresses even a little it will be closed. So in the mean time, they will take Cam Robinson. The offensive line is not doing Palmer any favors and they need to get what they can out of him for the next year or two. Robinson will also pave the way for who ever comes in next. He is also elite in the run game and with a star in David Johnson at RB getting him even more help could change that offense from vertical to ground and pound. With Robinson and David Johnson getting better each year we may see the next 2,000 yard rusher. It doesnt really need to be said but Cam is huge standing 6`6 326. He is a massive book end for any line and will put a stopper on any DE in the league.
15. Ravens- Reuben Foster, LB Alabama 6`1 236
The Ravens get an awesome LB here who is another Alabama stand out. They seem to love the Alabama LB at this point and there is good reason. This kid can do it all and is a stand out at inside line backer. With the defense still in somewhat of a post-Ray Lewis transition Foster will come in and be a difference maker with his big play ability. Behind and emerging Timmy Jernigan on the DL they could end up with a top-10 or even top-5 rush defense. Foster is a great leader and will be able to make all the reads necessary day one at the inside position. He rarely misses a tackle and fills gaps in the run game, his only real question is his ability to cover at the next level. Alabama gets to the QB so fast he rarely has to be in coverage long so we will see if that becomes and issue.
16. Titans (from Rams)- Jalen Tabor, CB Florida 6`0 201
The Titans this draft are jumping for joy as they get back to back picks in this mock draft. They will be able to get the best two defenders on the board who fit that system. While they need a WR most likely more than anything, getting defense is a must. Tabor could end up being the best pure corner coming out of the draft. He wont end up all over the field like Peppers and I dont think has the excessive abilities in the tackling game to move over to safety. But, as far as corner goes and corner alone there might not be anyone better in this draft. This is a great steal for Titans at this slot. He still has some work to do and does not come out as polished as his counter part Wilson, but I think with a few years of work he will end up better than the earlier picked Wilson.
17. Titans- Malik McDowell, DL Michigan State 6`6 276
With the second pick in a row the Titans will fix the front. McDowell will come in and be the best player on the defensive line they have had since maybe Albert Haynesworth. Ya, they have been bad there for quite sometime. McDowell even being picked here at 17 might be a bit underrated, mainly due to the team he is on. This kid has elite ability to get up the field netting 4.5 sacks and 13 tackles for lass last season and 2 forced fumbles against some of the biggest OL in all of college football. Another just massive human Malik should be able to blow up gaps and punish the opposing player on offense and have his way to the QB against anyone in that division. With the rest of the division having weak offensive lines, getting McDowell here could already get them 1 or 2 more wins based on his ability alone.
18. Giants- Nick Chubb, RB Georgia 5`10 228
Giants fans finally get what they want a legit RB. The last time they had a good one was Tiki Barber which has been a while. Chubb seems to like being hurt, but when hes healthy he has talent coming out of his ears. If Chubb could stay healthy his talent is that of a top-10 pick easy. Chubb will bring the Giants offense the ability to do what ever they want, he can even catch out of the backfield. If his health gets better at the next level, he could be a corner stone in this offense for a long time.
19. Browns (from Eagles)- Justin Evans, S TAMU 6` 1 195
This may not be a sexy pick for the Browns who went out and nabbed the best QB in the draft according to most people. Evans however will bring them some talent in the secondary which has been lacking. Joe Haden is not what he once was and the Justin Gilbert pick dint work out. Evans will step on the filed and compete for the most talented defensive player they have. Which is good and bad depending on your view of life. I like this kid a lot and he should be able to stick at S at the next level. If he doesn’t come into the draft around 205 I would look for him to be slated over at CB, his big long frame could be good for the Browns internally. As the Bengals and Steelers both have an elite WR that they have issues covering.
20. Chiefs- Gareon Conley, CB Ohio State 6`2 185
We have already seen what KC can do with a talented CB in Peters. If they can get the same production out of Conley this team will be set. Conley could also slide out to safety if they need him to, but keeping him at CB will really set up that defense. There is a ton of talent in this draft in the secondary and Conley is no exception. He has the talent to be a top 3 CB in a draft, but its so loaded this year he has slid down to 20. They need to find a way to come up with an answer to both Denver and Oakland`s offenses and this is the best way to do it. If they can shut down their electric passing games and make them run KC can stay in every game. With his size at 6`2 he may end up at safety like I said earlier, but that will depend on where he comes in weight wise.
21. Packers- Royce Freeman, RB Oregon 5`11 230
This was another one I struggled with weather or not to go RB or DL here. Eddy Lacy seems to be more or less closer to bust than star. He cant seem to stay healthy, struggles with weight and no longer has the flashes of talent he once did. Freeman coming out of Oregon might take a season to get used to a pro-style of offense, but with his speed and hands he can be an every down back or create a 1-2 punch. With Freeman taking snaps Lacy might be able to regain some of his forum and they could create a similar backfield to that of the Falcons. Freeman is also not to be overlooked he is still fast at 230 lbs and should get even stronger and with his combo of speed and strength will be a nightmare to bring down.
22. Bills- Jamal Adams, S LSU 6`1 214
Rex can do some amazing things with a defense when he has the chance. This year we have seen the Bills defense regain the forum of a few years ago. The one thing they are really missing is a play maker at the safety position, they miss Byrd who left a few years ago in FA. LSU keeps turning out highlight DB`s in the NFL with Honey Badger, Peterson, and Claiborne. If Adams can step in and play like he has in college, his name will be up there by the end of his rookie year. He should also be a great match up with Gronk, the one player no team has been able to find an answer for. Unlike many of the current safeties in the NFL he will come in and be a true safety he has the size and strength to do so which seems to be more rare these days and more CB are being converted rather than drafting a true safety.
23. Broncos- Cordrea Tankersley, CB Clemson 6`1 195
Rarely do you get a talent like this so late in the draft, he could be another steal. In 2-3 seasons he could be another elite CB, he reminds me of Ronde Barber but a bit bigger with better jump. If he can learn from Talib and the Broncos really take an interest in him he has some amazing potential and ability. I really like this kid and loved him last year, if the class was not so deep he is another player who could have been drafted maybe 10 picks higher. Here we see yet another tall lengthy corner who should stay at the position and create a jump ball nightmare for any WR under 6`4
24. Redskins- Mitch Trubisky, QB North Carolina 6`3 220
This one could raise some eye brows and that`s ok. Face it Cousins is about as consistent as the weather man. When hes on hes on and he can sling it with the best of him, but when hes off hes off like a light switch and nothing is going on. Mitch could come in and challenge week one. With Cousins on a franchise tag this year if he wants a massive deal and the Skins wont give it to him, they will be forced to take him anyway. Even if they keep Cousins having Mitch on the roster will be a huge safety blanket and either give him time to learn or just move on from the inconsistent Cousins.
25. Falcons- Dan Freeney, G Indiana 6`4 311
To me this year there is no question the Falcons have the best offense in the NFL. They can throw it with the best of them and pound the rock with the best of them. The only thing they lack is an elite offensive lineman. Dan Freeney is that guy, he reminds me a lot of Zach Martin who the Cowboys drafted a few years ago and is that anchor they needed. Freeney I think would be more valuable at G, but could easily push inside to center and be just as effective. He is big and can move, the running backs will love him and he should end up as Matt Ryan’s new best friend.
26. Texans- Jake Butt, TE Michigan 6`6 250
They gave their now QB savior a boat load of money and tons of WR. What he doesn’t have is a true pass catching TE. RB should be the pick here, but the next RB is far less talented and not worth this pick more than Butt or a DB. Butt is a TE which I think is part of his issue when you value him. TE are just not valued well coming into the draft, but post-draft have tons of value. You can never give a QB enough options and Butt looks to be the next Olsen and he can even protect in the run game, which is another question for the up and down Texans. His size 6`6 250 could create some nightmare match ups in the passing game, but they could also use that size as a third OT or even a FB. Butt has tremendous versatility at the next level, and that can never be undervalued.
27. Steelers- Dawuane Smoot, DL Illinois 6`3 255lb
The Steelers might have fielded the worst defense they have had in two decades this year. Smooth is a Harrison clone, he can play OLB or DE and do it all. He has tons of speed and great power in his hands and arms to get inside. Smoot should be a huge disruption in the backfield, this is another guy where the team he is on in college has effected his draft stock. This kid could come on tape next season and surprise us and look like one of the best DE/OLB in this draft. It will be on Pitt on if he can transition to OLB or stay at DE. I think he would be way more effective at OLB, but could be a liability in coverage. His 6`3 frame might be a bit smaller than they would want at a 3/4 DE, but he can do it none the less.
28. Seahawks- Charles Harris, DL Mizzou 6`3 255
Seattle still has one of the best defenses in the NFL, but with out that top-end pass rush the CB`s are starting to get a bit exposed. The Seahakws need to upgrade the pass rush and fast so the DB can get the job done. Harris is a monster on tape and projects well as a 4-3 DE at the next level. He should be just as effective as Bennett and create one of the best 4-3 pass rushes around. He could also push out to OLB if they need him too, but I think he is a bit more natural at DE.
29. Raiders- Armani Watts- S TAMU 5`11 200
Karl Joseph looks like a great pick the safety they got last year and this one should be no different. He is a powerhouse hitter back there and should slide in well as a FS. He can even come down into the box and play that hybrid Nickle CB/S/LB position that seems to be running through out the league. Watts is not as good now as Joseph when he came out of the draft, but is still one of the better talents in this draft at his position. If he can gain about 10lb or so coming into the draft he can be used all over the field.
30. Cowboys- Raekwon McMillan, LB Ohio State 6`2 243
The defense is still a mess at the front 7. McMillan comes from a winning team and loves to play smash mouth football. Putting him next to Sean Lee should greatly help out the rush defense and even give them a guy to match up with TE`s. McMillan will take a bit to adjust to the NFL`s speed and he will be asked to get more done in coverage, but is a great pick here for Dallas. His length could be an issue on the outside so sticking him inside is by far the best choice, even if his speed projects better to the outside.
31. Patriots- JuJu Smith-Schuster, WR USC 6`2 220
At some point the Pats have to look to the future at WR and that time is now. JuJu once thought of as the best WR in college football has fallen prey to some coaching and QB changes over the last few seasons. His talent is still there and there is lots of it. It would not surprise me at all if he breaks camp as the Pats #1 WR. He reminds me a lot of AJ Green, he is just a bit raw and would benefit greatly from having the same QB and Coach for more than one season. JuJu was one of the most talented WR`s colleges had ever seen when he came out of high school and that talent did not magically go away, he just got lost on a team in turmoil. I hope he can get to the next level and regain what we all wanted him to be when he came out of high school.
32. Eagles (from Vikings)- O.J Howard, TE Alabama 6`6 251
Now I am sure many of you are confused on why I have OJ rated higher than Butt and drafted later. Butt, has more big play ability than Howard does, but Howard is a better all around TE. Howard will fit in well with the Eagles, who seem to be looking for another pass catcher with Ertz in and out and the WR not preforming up to par. But, the TE here is a better pick than a less talented WR. Howard can also help in the run game, which will be leaned on heavily in Wentz`s second season. Guys will have tape on him now and Philly fans are hoping they go RB in the second round as the current backfield situation is a bit up in the air. Howard still has some good pass catching ability and I think can be used just as much as Butt can all over the field, I just think his ceiling is a bit lower than Butts and lacking the big play ability is an issue.