I’m taking a break from ranking NFL head coaches because we are smack dab in the middle of NFL Draft season and I’ve written NOTHING on the subject yet.
I know. That’s very out-of-character for a guy who’s as obsessed with the NFL Draft as myself, but it’s time to end that shit.
It’s time to buckle down and get serious folks.
Here we are…..MY VERY FIRST NFL MOCK DRAFT OF THE YEAR BOOOOOOOOOOOYYYYYYYYY!!!!!!!!
1. Arizona Cardinals – Kyler Murray (QB), Oklahoma
The Arizona Cardinals selected QB Josh Rosen in the first-round of last year’s NFL Draft, so drafting a QB in the first-round of this year’s draft seems like overkill. However, the Cardinals just hired new head coach Kliff Kingsbury to come in and make this team’s offense one of the most explosive in the NFL. That’s the whole reason he was hired guys and it’s no secret that Kingsbury loves him some Kyler Murray. It wouldn’t shock me one bit to see the Cardinals take Murray with the #1 overall pick and hold on to Rosen and trade him to a QB-needy team who is desperate down the road. Rosen is a very good QB who was put in a shitty situation last season and he deserves more time and he’ll get it. However, with Arizona going out and grabbing an offensive-minded guy, one has to think he’s going to use the draft to fill his team up with players who fit his scheme. Kyler Murray has drawn comparisons to Michael Vick and Patrick Mahomes and he will look good in an Arizona uniform next season.
2. San Francisco 49ers – Nick Bosa (EDGE), Ohio State
The 49ers need some help on the edge. They went out and signed free agent Dee Ford and he’s likely going to be a big help, but he has a history of injuries and inconsistent play, so who knows what they are getting there? By drafting Nick Bosa, they are getting the best pass-rusher in the draft and a guy who a lot of people consider the safest pick in the draft.
3. New York Jets – Quinnen Williams (DT), Alabama
I personally think Quinnen Williams is going to be the best player in the draft. The dude is a monster on the defensive line and I think he’s going to make an impact immediately. There hasn’t been an interior defensive lineman that’s come into the NFL in years who is as ready to play as Williams is right now. He’s going to be a stud and the Jets defensive line will benefit tremendously.
4. Oakland Raiders – Josh Allen (EDGE), Kentucky
Jon Gruden doesn’t know how to run an NFL team and it’s pretty apparent he has no idea what he’s doing (who the hell says they can’t pay a guy like Khalil Mack and then they turn around and pay Antonio Brown big money just a few months later?). Gruden is a guy who gets a name boost because he won a Super Bowl title with Tony Dungy’s guys and for some reason, that makes Raiders fans think the guy is smart. Gruden is barely above .500 as a head coach guys. He sucks and he’s ruining the Raiders. With that said, he does have a pretty good GM on his side named Mike Mayock. Mayock is considered an NFL Draft expert by a lot of people (myself included) and the one area where Oakland will likely have a lot of success with Mayock as GM is the draft. He’ll draft either Josh Allen or Nick Bosa because the Raiders need some help on the edge since they stupidly traded Mack like a bunch of fools.
5. Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Devin White (LB), LSU
Tampa Bay could go a number of different ways with this pick as they need a lot of help on the defensive side of the ball. They could use help at linebacker, on the edges, cornerback, and safety. I could see them picking the best defensive player available and in this case, it’s Devin White who is a stud linebacker out of LSU who excells in pass coverage.
6. New York Giants – Jawann Taylor (OT), Florida
Is this the year the New York Giants finally draft Eli Manning’s potential replacement? No. They won’t. I’m going to go on record right now and say that the New York Giants are going to be one of the worst teams in the NFL over the next few seasons. Why? Because this team seems to be married to an over-the-hill QB who is way past his prime and is no longer any good. Instead of getting Eli out-of-town because the front office has too much respect for him (Peyton was better and even he was traded guys…..), the Giants are driving actual GREAT football players out of town (Odell Beckham) and are trying to recapture the good old days with Eli. It’s such a bad plan that it makes most smart football fans bust out in laughter. Since the Giants refuse to give up on Eli and send his old ass down the road, they might as well protect the guy. New York’s offensive line has been absolute shit the last few seasons. Jawann Taylor would make Giants fans forget about the days of Ereck Flowers and Bobby Hart stinking things up on the offensive line….
7. Jacksonville Jaguars – Dwayne Haskins (QB), Ohio State
What will the Jaguars do with the seventh overall pick? The Jaguars still have a pretty good roster, they just went backwards last year due to horrible QB play from Blake Bortles. The Jags signed Nick Foles this off-season and some people think that he’s going to be the answer at QB for Jacksonville. He’s not. Do people remember that Foles was regulated to a back-up QB position after stinking it up as a starter? Yes, he won the Super Bowl, but that was largely because he had a head coach who did a great job hiding Foles’ weaknesses. He’s not going to have that in Jacksonville and I’m willing to bet big money we will see Foles struggle and be benched by seasons’ end. But who will replace him? DWAYNE HASKINS THAT’S WHO! Draft this guy with the seventh overall pick, let him sit behind Foles for a bit and maybe….just maybe…..Jacksonville will finally have a good QB.
8. Detroit Lions – Montez Sweat (EDGE), Mississippi State
Lions head coach Matt Patricia loves signing free agents who used to play for the New England Patriots. Unfortunately for Patricia, there are no New England Patriots players in the draft for obvious reasons. With that said, I’m sure Patricia will ask Bill Belichick what Belichick’s big board looks like and he will copy it verbatim. Something tells me Belichick has Montez Sweat ranked pretty high on his board due to his size and length and the potential problems that’s going to cause for NFL offensive lineman.
9. Buffalo Bills – D.K. Metcalf (WR), Ole Miss
The Buffalo Bills were suitors in the Antonio Brown sweepstakes. They reportedly almost traded for Brown before the wide receiver supposedly told the team he had no interest in playing for them. If the whispers are true, the Bills are on the hunt for a true #1 wide receiver, something that is currently missing from their roster. D.K. Metcalf is a guy a lot of NFL fans are high on right now because the dude looks like a bodybuilder who can fly around a football field like Josh Gordon without the drug problems. Metcalf is going to be a stud in the NFL and he’ll give the Bills something they haven’t had in quite a while. A dominant wide receiver.
10. Denver Broncos – Ed Oliver (DT), Houston
The Broncos are another team that could go a number of different ways. They are a team that could potentially be suitors for Dwayne Haskins. Just because they traded for Joe Flacco in the off-season doesn’t mean the Broncos are out of the QB market just yet. The Broncos could also look at adding a linebacker or a game-changer at tight end like T.J. Hockenson. Personally though, I have the Broncos doing what they’ve done best and that’s drafting another defensive stud. Ed Oliver is a fantastic player who surprised everyone when he decided to play for the University of Houston a few years back. It’s not often that a top recruit decides to play for a non-Power Five school, but Oliver made that decision and it didn’t end up costing him in the end. This would be a perfect marriage.
11. Cincinnati Bengals – Andre Dillard (OT), Washington State
This pick came down to two players for me. Andre Dillard out of Washington State, an offensive tackle who might be the best pass protector in the draft. The other player was T.J. Hockenson, a tight end who reminds me of Travis Kelce. I went with Dillard because Andy Dalton likely wouldn’t be able to get the football to Hockenson much without some sort of protection.
12. Green Bay Packers – T.J. Hockenson (TE), Iowa
Green Bay Packers new head coach Matt LeFleur is an offensive-minded guy who is going to want to put his footprint on this offense immediately. The Packers need help at tight end and it just so happens that T.J. Hockenson is sitting right there and ready to become Aaron Rodgers new #1 target. Hockenson is a good blocking tight end who also has fantastic receiving skills and is just the complete overall package at that position.
13. Miami Dolphins – Brian Burns (EDGE), Florida State
The Miami Dolphins are openly tanking so they can improve their position in the NFL in a few years (some people call it the “Cleveland Browns plan”). It’s not a bad thing to do for a team like the Dolphins that have floundered in NFL purgatory for years now, but it does make predicting what they plan on doing in the draft a little harder. New Dolphins head coach Brian Flores is a defensive-minded guy and I could see him falling in love with a guy like Brian Burns, who just so happens to have played football at Florida State. Match made in heaven?
14. Atlanta Falcons – Christian Wilkins (DT), Clemson
One thing is clear for the Atlanta Falcons. THEY NEED DEFENSIVE PLAYERS! Seriously, just draft the best guy available at pretty much any position on the defensive side of the ball and they’ll be immediately better than last season. In this scenario, that player is Christian Wilkins who was a beast for Clemson, a school that pumps out defensive lineman like Olive Garden pumps out delicious bread sticks.
15. Washington Redskins – Cody Ford (Interior OL), Oklahoma
Sorry Washington fans. I know drafting an interior offensive lineman in the first-round is boring, but sometimes it’s needed. In this case, that’s exactly what Washington needs. They traded for QB Case Keenum in the off-season and even though I think Keenum is a below-average QB, they need to provide him with some protection to at least keep him at that level.
16. Carolina Panthers – Jonah Williams (OT), Alabama
The Panthers need an offensive tackle. They just released Matt Kalil (GOOD FOR THEM BY THE WAY!), and they need to find a replacement for him. Cam Newton is a good QB and the Panthers have Taylor Moton on one side to protect him, he just needs more help.
17. New York Giants – Greedy Williams (CB), LSU
The Giants got the best offensive tackle in the draft with their first pick, and they get the best cornerback in the draft with their second pick of the first-round here. New York is going to be a dumpster fire for the next few seasons, but at least they can take some baby steps with replacing the roster. Now if they could just replace that GM….
18. Minnesota Vikings – Garrett Bradbury (Interior OL), NC State
Not the most exciting pick for Vikings fans, but Minnesota has a lot of money invested in QB Kirk Cousins and they need to give him some protection. The Vikings offensive line is a mess right now and they have a lot of holes to fill.
19. Tennessee Titans – Noah Fant (TE), Iowa
Mike Vrabel is a former tight end and he knows how important the position is. The Titans have Delanie Walker, but he’s 34 years old and is coming off an ankle injury that sidelined him for pretty much all season last year. They need to draft his replacement eventually.
20. Pittsburgh Steelers – N’Keal Harry (WR), Arizona State
Antonio Brown & Le’Veon Bell are gone. JuJu Smith-Schuster is still on the roster and he’s a very good wide receiver, but the once strong Steelers offense is desperately looking for some new playmakers. You know who N’Keal Harry draws comparisons to? JuJu Smith-Schuster. This just sounds like the perfect marriage.
21. Seattle Seahawks – Byron Murphy (CB), Washington
The Legion of Boom is no more. The once powerful Seattle secondary has been split up and the only thing left is memories. It’s time for a new Legion of Boom folks! The Seahawks need a lot of help in the secondary and drafting a guy like Byron Murphy would be a lot of help. It would also be an added bonus for Murphy who played college football in Seattle and would already feel at home.
22. Baltimore Ravens – Devin Bush (LB), Michigan
We are used to the Baltimore Ravens have a bunch of studs at linebacker. Unfortunately for Ravens fans, Terrell Suggs and C.J. Mosley both left in free agency and now the Ravens are left with a bunch of garbage to sort through. Everyone knows the Ravens are likely targeting defensive guys and a talent like Devin Bush would be an immediate upgrade over anyone else on their roster.
23. Houston Texans – Erik McCoy (Interior OL), Texas A&M
Everyone knows where the Houston Texans need the most help at. On the offensive line. Their offensive line was one of the worst in the league last year and if this team has any hope of making it to the next level, they need to upgrade that unit immediately.
24. Oakland Raiders – DeAndre Baker (CB), Georgia
The Raiders improved their defense by taking Josh Allen with the fourth overall pick. They would be smart to take a corner with the 24th pick. Why? Because some guy named Patrick Mahomes is going to be terrorizing the AFC West for the next few years and the Raiders are going to have to do their best to try and stop him.
25. Philadelphia Eagles – Josh Jacobs (RB), Alabama
Josh Jacobs is the best running back in the draft and he might be one of the most talented players overall as well. However, I just don’t know where he’s going to get drafted as it doesn’t seem like there’s a lot of buzz on running backs this year. The Eagles have a big hole at running back, so this makes a lot of sense….I just don’t know if we’ll see a running back drafted in the first-round this year.
26. Indianapolis Colts – Hakeem Butler (WR), Iowa State
The Colts were one of the surprise teams in the NFL last season. They made the playoffs when no one expected them to and now it’s time to keep the momentum going by giving Andrew Luck some more weapons. Luck is already one of the best QB’s in the league, now just imagine if he had more weapons to play with at his disposal. The Colts signed Devin Funchess to a one-year deal this off-season, but they still need playmakers at the wide receiver position.
27. Oakland Raiders – Drew Lock (QB), Missouri
Drew Lock is an interesting prospect. There are a number of different people who think he’s worthy of a first-round pick and there are other’s who disagree. With three picks in the first-round of the draft, the Raiders can take a gamble on him. We all know Jon Gruden reportedly isn’t in love with Derek Carr and the thought of drafting his own guy and bringing him in likely gives him a huge sports boner. If Lock comes in and looks good, it gives the Raiders a ton of potential options that could benefit the team tremendously over the next few seasons.
28. Los Angeles Chargers – A.J. Brown (WR), Ole Miss
The Chargers are a talented team that don’t have a whole lot of holes to fill. The biggest area where they need help is on the offensive line, but there’s no one really worth a first-round pick here. In this scenario, I would do what’s best for the team and that’s bless Philip Rivers with another weapon at the wide receiver position. The team lost Tyrell Williams in free agency and need to find a guy to replace him to keep the offense humming.
29. Kansas City Chiefs – Clelin Ferrell (EDGE), Clemson
The Kansas City Chiefs need help on the defensive side of the ball. They released pass-rusher Justin Houston in the off-season and traded Dee Ford to the San Francisco 49ers. They need guys to replace those players in order to keep the Super Bowl window alive while Mahomes continues to play on his rookie deal.
30. Green Bay Packers – Dalton Risner (OT), Kansas State
Green Bay’s best player is Aaron Rodgers and they need to get as much production out of him as they can. Drafting the best tight end in the draft was step one. Step two is getting your franchise QB some more protection.
31. Los Angeles Rams – Rashan Gary (EDGE), Michigan
Rashan Gary is a former #1 overall recruit coming out of high school and he had a lot of hype surrounding him when he signed on to play at Michigan. Unfortunately for Gary, his stock has taken some huge hits the last few months. Gary went from a sure-fire first-round pick to a guy who may fall all the way to end of the second-round. Sean McVay is a risk taker though and if anyone’s willing to gamble on a player like Gary, it’s McVay.
32. New England Patriots – Jerry Tillery (DT), Notre Dame
The Patriots will trade this pick, but it’s always fun to act like they might draft someone.