While I do not have to sit in an airport to get to the NFL draft this year (thank God!) and write this mock draft, I did still sketch my two full-round mock draft complete with trades. Keep in mind, these are picks based on rumors, where players have made visits and other general information based on team needs. Enjoy!
1.1. Cleveland Browns: Sam Darnold, USC quarterback/Josh Allen, Wyoming QB
Cleveland is going to take the quarterback that they feel is the best in the draft. At this moment, I can’t quite pinpoint who they believe it will be, but it will be one of these two.
1.2. New York Giants: Saquon Barkley, Penn State RB
The Browns are going to mess up in drafting a quarterback first thinking that Saquon will be there at 4. He won’t. The G-Men are going to take their own equivalent of Ezekiel Elliott in the NFC East.
1.3. New York Jets: Baker Mayfield, Oklahoma QB
The Jets traded up this year to get who they believe will be their franchise quarterback and recent reports have the Jets super high on Mayfield.
1.4. Buffalo Bills (via trade): Sam Darnold, USC QB/Josh Allen, Wyoming QB
In a mock trade, I think the Bills package their No. 12, No. 96, and 2019 1st-Round Pick to move up and secure their franchise quarterback in being the one that the Browns did not pick.
1.5. Denver Broncos: Quenton Nelson, Notre Dame G
The Broncos got Case Keenum in the off-season and claim he is going to be their guy. If this is the truth, they’re going to need to give him the necessary protection, and that starts with the best Guard in the draft.
1.6. Indianapolis Colts: Bradley Chubb, NC State DE
The Colts get the steal of the draft as they successfully traded DOWN and still get to walk away with who they would have drafted in their original spot. The Colts are in need of a franchise defensive player and get the best one in the draft.
1.7. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Derwin James, Florida State S
The Bucs have had weak safety play for years and if Nelson and Chubb are off the board, this is the best available player that fits their defensive scheme. Pairing James and Evans together will be great.
1.8. Chicago Bears: Minkah Fitzpatrick, Alabama CB/S
Minkah & Derwin are interchangeable in picks 7 & 8, I think I just liked giving Derwin to Tampa Bay because he’s a Florida boy, but either way this pair of defensive back powerhouses deserve to go 7 and 8 to these two secondary needy teams.
1.9. San Francisco 49ers: Tremaine Edmunds, Virginia Tech OLB
It was really hard to pinpoint what Shanahan will do with this pick but I feel really good about this, especially with the recent legal trouble for Reuben Foster.
1.10. Oakland Raiders: Roquan Smith, Georgia LB
Toddy McShay has said that Roquan Smith is going to be the selection so why deviate? He’s a great defensive player that automatically upgrades the defense.
1.11. Miami Dolphins, Vita Vea, Washington NT
The Dolphins seemed quite happy to let Ndamukong Suh walk this off-season and I can’t help but wonder, if having Vita on their draft board had anything to do with it. He would be a great replacement with less cost, less headaches, and more longevity.
1.12. Cleveland Browns (via trade): Denzel Ward, Ohio State CB
It is kind of criminal that I let Denzel Ward slide to 12 but I just didn’t see the needs outweighing the talent in the previous picks. The Browns need another corner and Denzel Ward would be a coup being an Ohio State guy.
1.14. Green Bay Packers: Joshua Jackson, CB
With the trade of Damarious Randall, I don’t foresee any universe where Green Bay isn’t looking for corner help. The next best corner is going to be Joshua Jackson who performed awesomely at the combine.
1.15. Arizona Cardinals: Josh Rosen, UCLA QB
The Cardinals got screwed last year in the draft, being leap-frogged by the Texans and the Chiefs to get DeShaun Watson & Pat Mahones stolen from under them. They are still in need of a franchise quarterback having Sam Bradford as a mere stopgap and will pull the trigger on Josh Rosen here at 15.
1.16. Baltimore Ravens: Calvin Ridley, Alabama WR
Baltimore is notorious for taking the best player available and this one just happens to help their receiving corps and is arguably the best, if not one of the best, receivers in the draft.
1.17. Los Angeles Chargers: Leighton Vander Esch, Boise State LB
The Chargers need an upgrade at Linebacker, and Leighton’s draft stock has been slowly creeping up over the past few weeks.
1.18. Seattle Seahawks: Marcus Davenport, UTSA DE
With the Seahawks getting rid of Michael Bennett (and really their whole defensive roster) it seems they are in a bit of a defensive rebuild. Davenport is going to be a great player and will be a cornerstone of their rebuild on their line.
1.19. Dallas Cowboys: Courtland Sutton, SMU
Dallas revealed their draft plans when they cut Dez Bryant as neither newly acquired Allen Hurns or Deonte Thompson are WR1’s. Sutton is one of the best in the draft and the Cowboys will likely overlook their defensive needs in favor of shoring up their receiver group.
1.20. Detroit Lions: Harold Landry, Boston College DE/OLB
Landry is a safe and logical choice for a Lions team that could use defensive ends or linebackers.
1.21. Cincinnati Bengals: Mike McGlinchey, Notre Dame OT
Quite honestly, I don’t think McGlinchey will slide this far down, BUT if he does, the Bengals are going to snatch him up quick. Every aspect of the Bengals offensive line needs work and McGlinchey is the best available.
1.22. Buffalo Bills: Will Hernandez, UTEP G
Eric Wood & Richie Incognito both retired and Cordy Glenn was traded. Now the Bills are going to have to do major work to rebuild their offensive line (especially after trading up for a new quarterback) and it starts here with Hernandez who is a top quality guard.
1.23. New England Patriots: Kolton Miller, UCLA OT
The Patriots opted not to re-sign Nate Solder, probably due to injury concerns, so here they get his replacement. Miller is a great blind side protector.
1.24. Carolina Panthers: Jaire Alexander, Louisville CB
The Panthers have a couple of different holes to fill but I think their secondary will take precedence. Jaire is a great value here at 24.
1.25. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (via trade): Taven Bryan, Florida DT
In another mock trade, I have the Titans moving down simply because they have a good amount of needs that they could fill with multiple picks and the Bucs give them their 2nd, 4th, 5th, and 6th round picks to get another 1st round pick. The Bucs get Bryan, who will step right into their defensive line and improve it.
1.27. New Orleans Saints: Lamar Jackson, Louisville QB
The Saints were allegedly going for Pat Mahomes last year and missed out. This will be the year they get the successor to Brees and Jackson makes perfect sense for them. Jackson isn’t perfect but with Payton and Brees, they can coach him up for one to two years and have him ready for when Brees hangs the cleats up.
1.28. Pittsburgh Steelers: Justin Reid, Stanford S
Reid is a player that isn’t this high on a lot of mock drafts, but I don’t feel the same. The Steelers’ secondary is awful and they brought Reid in for a visit for a reason. I don’t feel like they would risk not being able to get a Safety of this quality in the 2nd round and they grab him here.
1.29. Jacksonville Jaguars: Hayden Hurst, South Carolina TE
Hayden Hurst is the best tight end in the draft and can be the blocking and receiving option that can help the Jags take another step forward. While I think they might opt to go receiver, Hurst is a good option.
1.30. Minnesota Vikings: Billy Price, Ohio State G/C
Vikings are getting some form of offensive lineman. They just gave Kirk Cousins a guaranteed $84 million contract and they are not going to waste time not having the necessary protection. Price is what I believe is the best available at this time and fills a need.
1.31. New England Patriots: Christian Kirk, Texas A&M WR/D.J. Moore, Maryland WR
The Patriots have lost both Cooks and Amendola this off-season and will be in the market for a new pass catching option. What’s interesting about this pick, is that one of these receivers could go to Jacksonville at 29 and Tight End Hayden Hurst could fall here.
1.32. Philadelphia Eagles: Donte Jackson, LSU CB
I am on the fence about whether Philly will trade this pick away just to recoup some picks and save some money left over, since they are a little salary strapped; but if they stay, I can see them picking up Jackson. Jackson will be a good replacement for Ronald Darby who is going to be aged out either this year or next.