NFL Mock Draft 1.0

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1. Buccaneers- Jameis Winston QB, Florida State

Winston’s arm talent and ability to make NFL throws have drawn much praise, but at the combine his football IQ impressed a number of coaches and scouts.

2. Titans- Leonard Williams DL, USC

Marcus Mariota is a possibility here, but if the Titans are really sold on moving forward with Zach Mettenberger, a trade down or drafting Williams is the most likely scenario. Williams is a versatile and athletic defensive lineman who can play as an end in a 3-4 or a 4-3. Expect to see whoever drafts Williams to eventually utilize him as an interior pass rusher in passing situations.

3. Jaguars- Dante Fowler Jr. DE, Florida

Fowler is an explosive pass rusher who fits in the Jaguars 4-3 scheme better than Nebraska’s Randy Gregory. Fowler also offers more as a run defender with the ability to hold up at the point of attack and set the edge effectively.

Florida defensive end Dante Fowler Jr.

Florida defensive end Dante Fowler Jr.

4. Raiders- Kevin White WR, West Virginia

The Raiders desperately need help at the wide receiver spot and the selection here basically comes down to who they like more between White and Alabama’s Amari Cooper. White has a terrific blend of speed, size and ball skills. White is less polished than Cooper, but has greater upside.

5. Redskins- Randy Gregory OLB, Nebraska

Gregory is a freakish athlete with great hips giving him the ability to change directions quickly while dropping in coverage, playing the run or performing counter moves as a pass rusher. His smaller frame may be exposed at the point of attack in the run game and considering his athleticism, you’d like to see more off-the-snap explosiveness from Gregory as a pass rusher.

6. Jets- Marcus Mariota QB, Oregon

If Mariota falls to the Jets here, a blockbuster trade offer is certainly possible. I don’t think the Jets are sold on taking Mariota here if he falls, and I could see them being enticed by Missouri’s Shane Rey. Mariota may need time to develop and an offensive system that adapts to his skillset, but his leadership and work ethic would be an asset for any team.

7. Bears-Danny Shelton DT, Washington

Shelton and the Bears pairing here seems too good to be true. He’s a massive body who is stout against the run and can push the pocket in the passing game. For his size, Shelton’s movement is impressive.

8. Falcons- Shane Ray DE, Falcons

The Falcons are desperate for a pass rusher and Ray is the best on the board at this point. Ray may be overly reliant on his initial burst and speed rush as a pass rusher, and will need to be more active with his hands and develop better counters in the NFL. His build is also a concern and he will likely have to put on some weight to excel as a consistent every-down player.

9. Giants- Trae Waynes CB, Michigan State 

The Giants could look at Iowa tackle Brandon Scherff here or help along the defensive line, but Waynes offers the best value at a needed position. Waynes is can play man or zone coverage and displays proper technique and recognition skills in coverage. Waynes answered criticisms regarding his athleticism and speed with an impressive 40 time and good overall workout at the combine.

Michigan State cornerback Trae Waynes

Michigan State cornerback Trae Waynes

10. Rams- Amari Cooper WR, Alabama

The Rams are desperate for receiver help and if Cooper or Kevin White fall to them at No. 10, they would have to be ecstatic. Cooper is the more pro-ready of the two due to his route running combined with his solid hands and overall skill set.

11. Vikings- DeVante Parker WR, Louisville

Parker is a rangy wideout with an outstanding catch radius due to his long arms and soft hands. Parker consistently displays excellent body control allowing him to elevate and bring down balls in coverage. Parker impressed with his 40 time at the combine, but his physicality remains a concern.

12. Browns- Malcolm Brown DT, Texas

I would think the Brows would scarf up White, Cooper or Parker here if one fell to them, but with another 1st rounder later, I think the Browns will pursue better value here than to reach on a wideout. Brown offers that value and another major need as well. Brown displays the quickness to get into the backfield and also excels with his hand use allowing him to keep blockers at bay and then disengage and discard to make a play.

13. Saints- Vic Beasley OLB, Saints

With Waynes off the board the Saints will look at pass rusher and offensive line. Scherff and Stanford’s Andrus Peat are possible options, but after blowing up the combine, Beasley’s stock in on the rise. Beasley is a tremendous overall athlete with good hips who can bend and dip under tackles as a pass rusher. Has gained needed weight since the end of last season.

Clemson outside linebacker Vic Beasley.

Clemson outside linebacker Vic Beasley.

14. Dolphins- Brandon Scherff T, Iowa

Many scouts have Scherff kicking inside to play guard, much in the form of All-Pro rookie guard Zach Martin last season. The Dolphins need help inside and Scherff’s raw power and strength could make him very effective generating push in the run game as a guard.

15. 49ers- Arik Armstead DE, Oregon

The 49ers could look at the secondary or receiver here, but whether Justin Smith retires or not, he 49ers are desperate for some depth on the defensive line. Armstead fills the bill in terms of size and play as a 3-4 end. He doesn’t offer much at this point as a pass rusher, failing to utilize his length to get off blockers and his combination of height and technique causes him to lack the leverage to generate push. Uses his hands well in the run to get off blocks and make plays.

16. Texans- Andrus Peat T, Stanford

Peat has a strong and thick lower body with excellent leg drive, but he sometimes struggles with his movement against speed rushers and he has a tendency to play too high by bending at the waist instead of the knees causing him to play off balance at times. Peat is likely better suited to play right tackle where his leverage and power can make him a road-grading run blocker.

17. Chargers- Ereck Flowers T, Miami

The Chargers could look at the defensive line here, but with the top prospects at the board, offensive line help presents the best value at a position of need. Flowers is an athletic tack with smooth hips and quick feet. Has a lot of upside and left tackle potential, but doesn’t use his hands well. It’s perplexing how wide Flowers’ hands get in pass protection.

18. Chiefs- Dorial Green-Beckham WR, Missouri

The Chiefs receiving corps was historically bad last year, and Green Beckham is an impressive athlete with a great build. Displayed his speed at the combine and projects as a downfield threat at the next level with tremendous size. Off the field incidents led to his dismissal from the team at Missouri.

19. Browns- Jaelen Strong WR, Arizona State 

Strong but won’t blow the top off defenses, but his 4.44 40 time at the combine certainly helped his stock. He’s still a bit raw as an overall receiver and doesn’t consistently separate with athleticism, but he possesses the subtle skills to generate space and make contested catches that should translate to the NFL. Very physical after the catch and collects YAC.

Arizona State wideout Jaelen Strong.

Arizona State wideout Jaelen Strong.

20. Eagles- Landon Collins S, Alabama

The Eagles would be ecstatic to get the experienced safety here. Whether he falls this far or not, secondary will certainly be a position of interest here. Collins is terrific against the run, showing physicality and toughness combined with excellent breakdown technique and angle pursuit to consistently finish in tackles. Good, but no great in coverage. Limited speed and a little stiff when turning to run. Will have to be more disciplined in the NFL to be an effective single-high safety.

21. Bengals- Bud Dupree OLB, Kentucky

Dupree is very raw, but his physical build and makeup oozes potential. Dupree is an explosive pass rusher with power who also has the physicality and toughness to set the edge as a run defender. He struggles to diagnose plays and needs to refine his pass rushing arsenal, but unlike body type and athleticism those skills can be coached up in the NFL. The Bengals need pass rushers and Dupree can offer that as he continues to develop into a well-rounded overall player.

22. Steelers- Jalen Collins CB, LSU

The Steelers desperately need to upgrade a secondary that has showed its age the past two seasons. If safety Landon Collins fell to this point, I would think the Steelers would scarf him up in a heartbeat. Otherwise, corners, Collins, Marcus Peters and Kevin Johnson are the top options. Collins has elite size combined with long arms and impressive downfield speed. With recovery speed and length, Collins can cover a lot of ground quickly in coverage. Needs to work on technique, but with coaching and more experience (just 10 starts at LSU), Collins has the potential to develop into a number one corner.

23. Lions- Eddie Goldman DT, Florida State

The Lions will be looking to add some defensive tackle help regardless of whether they bring back Ndamukong Suh. However, if Suh does leave in free agency, the Lions will need a disruptive force up front. Goldman fits the bill showcasing quickness and powerful leverage to penetrate in the run game and collapse the pocket as a pass rusher.

24. Cardinals- Eli Harold OLB, Virginia

A possible landing spot for Melvin Gordon here, but with Andre Ellington back from injury, I think the Cardinals look for running back help in the mid-round range. Harold fills a pressing need as an explosive speed rusher off the edge. Harold is far from an established player, and needs to improve as an edge setter, but he has rare quickness and can produce as a pass rusher right away.

Virginia pass rusher Eli Harold.

Virginia pass rusher Eli Harold.

25. Panthers- D.J. Humphries T, Florida

Humphries has some injury concerns coming out of Florida, but he has showcased exceptional feet and movement that are required to play left tackle. He has a mean streak, but his technique as a run blocker is a bit lacking. Would like to see him maintain better control once he gets his hands on guys.

26. Ravens- Marcus Peters CB, Washington

The Ravens could look at pass catchers here, but with the deep receiver class and the emphasis of value with this franchise during the draft process, I wouldn’t expect them to jump at one. Trading down is certainly a possibility with the Ravens, but corner is a position of need. Peters has some off the field issues, but that didn’t cause Baltimore to balk at Jimmy Smith a few years ago. Can flip hips efficiently and has high-end athleticism. Excellent ball skills.

27. Cowboys- Melvin Gordon RB, Wisconsin

Corner and defensive line are the biggest needs, but Jerry Jones’ flare for headlines will make Gordon or Georgia’s Todd Gurley real possibilities here if DeMarco Murray leaves in free agency. Gordon is a fluent runner with good acceleration and can get outside quickly off tackle. Needs to refine his style between the tackles and isn’t polished as a pass catcher and in protection.

28. Broncos- Carl Davis DL, Iowa

Whether the Broncos bring bag defensive mammoth Terrance “Pot Roast” Knighton could influence the pick here. Davis shot up draft boards after his performance at the Senior Bowl, but his consistency and motor remain questions. Davis is a big body who is stout against the run and generates power off the snap.

29. Colts- Cameron Erving C, Florida State

Defensive and offensive tackle are possibilities here, but Anthony Castonzo and Gosder Cherilus have been solid at the tackles. The real problem with the Colts line has been on the interior and Erving is the perfect value for defective interior line play because of his versatility that allows him to play both center and guard. Lacking a bit physically and in technique, Erving is hard-nosed and active as a blocker who competes and is certainly coachable. Good football character.

Florida State offensive lineman Cameron Erving

Florida State offensive lineman Cameron Erving

30. Packers- Jordan Phillips DT, Oklahoma

I could see a lot of different possibilities here for the Packers. A pass catcher to possibly replace free agent Randall Cobb or an offensive tackle if Bryan Bulaga doesn’t return. Inside linebackers Benardick McKinney and Denzel Perryman are also options. Phillips is a bit scary because his motor and effort are major concerns. His combination of massive size and good athleticism for his position should make him more of an impact player, but doesn’t reach his potential because of effort.

31. Seahawks- T.J. Clemmings T, Pittsburgh

The Seahawks will be looking for value here, and if Clemmings is still on the board he offers immense value especially considering Seattle’s line woes. Clemmings has the physical skills to play left tackle at the next level. Able to kick-slide in pass protection and maintain base, but he is a consistent impact blocker in the run game.

32. Patriots- Michael Bennett DT, Ohio State

With Vince Wilfork being released in New England, the Pats will be searching for new blood on the defensive line. If Bennett is the best defensive tackle prospect available here, I would expect New England to trade down. However, Bennett does offer the kind of flexibility on the defensive line that Bill Belichick craves.

Other First Round Prospects

  1. La’El Collins T, LSU
  2. Kevin Johnson CB, Wake Forest
  3. Maxx Williams TE, Minnesota
  4. Denzel Perryman ILB, Miami
  5. Benardrick McKinney ILB, Mississippi State
  6. Devin Smith WR, Ohio State
  7. Shaq Thompson OLB, Washington
  8. Todd Gurley RB, Georgia
  9. Breshad Perriman WR, Central Florida
  10. Cedric Ogbuehi T, Texas A&M
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One thought on “NFL Mock Draft 1.0

  1. Pingback: Mock Draft 2.0: Gordon Falls Out of 1st Round, Mariota Lands in the Big Apple | The Sports Realm

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