We are finally within striking distance of the most important part of any NFL franchise’s hopes of becoming a Super Bowl Champion, become a playoff contender, or rebuild their roster from scratch. Who is rising or falling on draft boards this week? Let’s Dive In!
1. Cleveland Browns
Myles Garrett (DE/OLB) Texas A&M
This is inevitable. Best player in the draft without question. Moving on.
2. San Francisco 49ers
Solomon Thomas (DE) Stanford
The team is rebuilding and needs to stack their roster with young talent. Thomas is a perfect fit as they are transitioning into a 4-3 defense and do not have a true defensive end to make that defense go. He is only 21 years-old and has a very high ceiling. It will be hard to pass on a kid that could be very similar to standout Joey Bosa.
3. Chicago Bears
Marshon Lattimore (CB) Ohio State
The Bears play in a division against Aaron Rodgers and Matthew Stafford. They already need help in the secondary and need a long-term solution at cornerback in the draft. They did sign a number of cornerbacks this off-season to create a hodgepodge depth chart. Amukumara, Porter, Cooper, and Fuller create a group of veterans that can at least help the secondary overall, but are not long-term solutions. Lattimore is the top cornerback to get and will immediately help them in a division against some high-octane passing offenses.
4. Jacksonville Jaguars
Jonathan Allen (DL) Alabama
They just need the best player on the board and I don’t think they overthink it. Allen could play all 4 positions of the defensive line in Jacksonville and will help them continue to create a better defensive team. Tom Coughlin knows that you need good trenches to win in the NFL and will take the best available player that fits that role.
5. Tennessee Titans
O.J. Howard (TE) Alabama
Offensive weapons are the key for the Titans’ offense moving forward. O.J. Howard fits nicely as an in-line tight end with big play ability. He can block for the Tennessee ground and pound offense and is a big target for Marcus Mariota. Howard makes a sensible selection with what GM Jon Robinson is trying to build in Tennessee.
6. New York Jets
Jamal Adams (S) LSU
The Jets are not going after a quarterback at #6 overall. They have 3 quarterbacks on their roster with circumstances that tell me they are all competing for the starting spot in 2017. Josh McCown has $6 million reasons, Bryce Petty was not awful last season when he played, and Christian Hackenberg was a second round pick last year that the Jets will want to take a closer look at. They are eyeing the 2018 Draft for their future quarterback as Sam Darnold and Josh Allen will be available next year. Jamal Adams is the kind of versatile player that Bowles would love to have roaming in his secondary as they build their defense in 2017, waiting for 2018 to come along.
7. Los Angeles Chargers
Malik Hooker (FS) Ohio State
This seems to be the fit in most mock drafts I see out on the internet, and it makes a ton of sense. A play-maker in the secondary that the Chargers need on the back-end of their defense. Especially if fellow Ohio State alum Joey Bosa continues to terrorize the quarterback.
8. Carolina Panthers
Leonard Fournette (RB) LSU
How can the Panthers pass on Fournette? They need somebody to take the load off of Newton so he doesn’t hurt himself again or take more big hits this season. Fournette can take goal line touches and unnecessary carries from Newton so that the offense can function more efficiently. Fournette and Stewart can split carries and become a two headed monster rushing attack in Carolina.
9. Cincinnati Bengals
Ryan Ramczyck (OT) Wisconsin
Andy Dalton was sacked 41 times last season. They lost Andrew Whitworth and Kevin Zietler in free agency and have nothing to show for it. Cedric Ogbuehi played some tackle last season, but ultimately ended up benched as well. They could put Ramczyck at left tackle, Ogbuehi at right tackle, Jake Fisher at possibly guard or right tackle depending on Ogbuehi’s performance but drafting Ramczyck creates more confidence that they will have two solid bookends protecting Andy Dalton.
10. Buffalo Bills
Corey Davis (WR) Western Michigan
Sean McDermott is a defensive minded head coach, and I want to give him a defensive player here, but he knows he lacks offense on his team. Sammy Watkins‘ injury history has made it difficult for their passing game to get off the ground. Corey Davis will give it an immediate boost and make the offense more explosive with an already steady run game.