The NFL Draft is tomorrow, with the first round starting Thursday at 8 pm in Philadelphia. We’ve got the first round covered in our mock draft for everyone and their favorite teams. This did not include trades. We’ve split it into two parts. This is part two.
- Washington Redskins: John Ross, Wide Receiver, Washington,
The Skins need help in terms of wide receiver. Josh Doctson didn’t play last year after being drafted in the first round, and they lost DeSean Jackson and Pierre Garcon to free agency this offseason. Ross would almost immediately replace Jackson’s speed, while Bruce Allen (just threw up in my mouth a little) brought in Terrelle Pryor to help replace the production of Garcon. Please note, I don’t think this is the right pick for the Redskins. Their defense is really really bad. And they need help rushing the passer, especially because their best defensive tackle, Chris Baker, joined DeSean in Tampa Bay this offseason. Will Compton is the little engine who almost could, showing so much effort and flashing speed to get to the hole, but lacking the size to actually take down the opposing players alone. Compton had over a hundred tackles, but almost half were assisted tackles. Management hopes that Zach Brown can fill the spot, BUT WHY DOES THE TEAM INSIST ON SIGNING GOOD PLAYERS TO ONE YEAR DEALS?!?!?!?!?! I hate that I’m a fan of this dysfunctional organization, and I hate that they will probably ignore all of their needs for a flashy pick like Ross. Book it.
18.Tennessee Titans: Corey Davis, WR, Western Michigan
We talked about the Titans going Offensive for their first pick, with OJ Howard. I think they do the same thing again, drafting Corey Davis, to help add another weapon for Mariota’s toy box. They could trade back and bolster their secondary in the later rounds. They could also draft Gareon Conley here, taking the second best cornerback to help the team defensively. Adoree Jackson, the cornerback from USC, could also be picked here. Jackson has blazing speed and is great in one on one coverage. Another could be Teez Tabor or Sidney Jones. Really any offensive skill player, or any of the first round graded cornerbacks would fit here. Having to face DeAndre Hopkins, Will Fuller, T.Y. Hilton and both of the Allen’s twice a year is quite a feat. Boosting your secondary helps with that.
19. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Budda Baker, S, Washington
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have almost made their jump, narrowly missing out on the playoffs (not really though cus like 45 different outcomes had to happen). Doug Martin missed a lot of last season due to injury and will be suspended for the first three games of the season. If Dalvin Cook is there, I would expect that the Bucs pull the trigger and reunite Cook and Jameis Winston together. If he’s not here, maybe David Njoku from Miami to help add another weapon for Winston to throw to. They could also use an upgrade in the secondary, with Chris Conte being one of their starting safeties. Chris Conte has a bevy of hilarious mishaps from when he was with the Chicago Bears, and that should let you know why they need to upgrade. I could see them reaching a little and drafting Washington safety Bubba Baker. Baker is a step down from Hooker and Adams but is still a first round talent. The Bucs could probably even trade back and hope to get him later in round one or early in day two.
- Denver Broncos: Ryan Ramcyzk, OT, Wisconsin
The Broncos have needs, with Peyton Manning and DeMarcus Ware retiring in the past two offseasons. Last year, they drafted Paxton Lynch in the first round as a their QB for the future, but he couldn’t take the starting job from 7th round pick Trevor Siemian. They still have some decent weapons with Demaryius Thomas and Emmanuel Sanders at wide receiver. They also jettisoned Russell Okung out of Denver, leaving a hole on their offensive line. Which is why I think Ramcyzk is the pick here. Cam Robinson could also be the pick if he’s available, but Ramcyzk is a solid offensive lineman, and could help develop either Siemian or Lynch into a better quarterback. They could use another pass rusher, to replace Ware, but I don’t see that happening this early. Ramcyzk comes from a long line of Wisconsin maulers, and I think his talent translates to the NFL game.
- Detroit Lions: TJ Watt, OLB/DE, Wisconsin
The Lions were a surprise for many people last year, winning 8 games in the fourth quarter last year, a feat no other team has done. Their offense was fantastic, but nonexistent in the playoffs, and their poor defense showed against Seattle. That’s why pretty much any defensive position is in play for the Lions. TJ Watt could help provide some pass rush for their unit, though I don’t think he will be nearly as successful as his brother. If Reddick is available, I think he could be the pick here. The Lions just recently release DeAndre Levy, who had started at linebacker for the Lions the past seven seasons. I also think that Zach Cunningham, the linebacker from Vanderbilt, could picked here as well. I think if any of the pass rushers start to slip, the Lions would jump on the chance to pair someone like Charlton or Harris with their stud defensive lineman, Ziggy Ansah. Given that most of the players I’ve mentioned have already been picked, I’m slotting TJ Watt here for the Lions.
- Miami Dolphins: Jarrad Davis, ILB, Florida
The Dolphins made the playoffs for the first time since 2008, but ended the season without a bang, losing by double digits to both the New England Patriots and the Pittsburgh Steelers. Their offense clicked, even with Matt Moore quarterbacking the team (his brain is still somewhere in Heinz Field). Defense should be the focus here. I think they go after either a linebacker or a defensive end here. Most DE at this point have already been drafted, so I think they will go towards a linebacker, specifically an inside linebacker. I think that Jarrad Davis, out of Florida, would be the pick here. Davis is a smart player with great character. His intangibles have shot him up big boards. It continues to strengthen the middle of their defense, and adds intelligence in one of the most necessary positions on defense.
- New York Giants: Garett Bolles, OT, Utah
The Giants tripped into the playoffs, barely beat the Deadskins in week 17, before having Aaron Rodgers and his god-like ability to throw the football ended their season in the playoffs. The Giants weren’t great this year. I mean OBJ is a stud, as is Sterling Shepard and Victor Cruz had a solid comeback this year. None of that matters though if Eli Manning continues to regress. Manning was bad this year, which led a lot of mock drafts initially to have DeShaun Watson here. I don’t think the Giants will draft a QB in the first round. Instead I think they will focus on their offensive line. They didn’t lose much in the offseason, only losing “Snacks” Hankins and Marshall Newhouse. I think they go with Garett Bolles, the tackle out of Utah. I think Bolles will probably play right tackle in the NFL, because the Giants used their 2015 first round pick on Ereck Flowers, who has started 31 games for the Giants since being drafted. They also have some lack of depth at the linebacker position, which would lend itself well if Jarrad Davis or Zach Cunningham are still there at 23. Ultimately though, I think the Giants try to squeeze every last productive play out of Eli Manning, and in doing so, draft a tackle to protect him.
- Oakland Raiders: Marlon Humphrey, CB, Alabama.
The Raiders were an injury away from competing for a championship, but Derek Carr broke his leg, and the Raiders narrowly missed out on their division title. They made the playoffs, and their team looked pretty bad without their franchise signal caller. There defense wasn’t as stout as they seemed in the regular season, and it showed that they have some holes. Offensively, the Raiders lost Latavius Murray, their starting running back, in the offseason. I don’t think that’s where they draft here. Ideally, I think they want to help bolster their defense, and will do so in their positions of need, CB and linebacker. Again, Cunningham could be the pick here, but I also don’t think that will happen. I think the Raiders will draft a cornerback, specifically Marlon Humphrey from Alabama or Adoree Jackson from USC. Humphrey is a great prospect and other mocks have him as high as the top 10. Jackson, on the other hand, is quickly rising up draft boards due to his speed and man coverage ability. I don’t think Jackson rises up this high, and I think Humphrey is the pick.
- Houston Texans: DeShaun Watson, QB, Clemson
The Texans are a pretty good team without a quarterback. It’s not Tom Savage, and we saw that last year. It’s not Brock Osweiler, who was shipped to Cleveland for practically nothing. I think the Texans pick a quarterback here. DeShone Kizer, DeShaun Watson, and Pat Mahomes are all in play here. I think Watson is the pick though. His senior year was fantastic and ended it pulling a Vince Young against the Alabama defense to win a National Championship. Mahomes might have more potential, but I think that Watson has better day one talent. They guy is a winner, and I think he gets his chance with the Texans.
- Seattle Seahawks: Obi Melifonwu, S, UConn
I think the Seahawks could trade this pick and trade back to acquire more draft capital. They don’t need to rebuilt their team, but their defense is getting older, specifically with their defensive line and their secondary. Michael Bennett is 30, Cliff Avril has been in the league for over ten years as has defensive lineman Ahtyba Rubin. In the secondary, Kam Chancellor is a pending free agent, and their cornerbacks lack experience, besides one loud-mouthed Richard Sherman. I think they draft in the secondary here. Someone like Obi Melifonwu, the safety out of UConn, or Adoree Jackson would help make their team younger, and revitalize the Legion of Boom. I think Melifonwu would be the ideal pick here. His combine jolted him up the draft boards, and while he’s a little raw in terms of pure football talent, being slotted behind veterans like Earl Thomas, and Kam Chancellor should help him develop into a solid starting safety in the league.
- Kansas City Chiefs: Zach Cunningham, LB, Vanderbilt
The Chiefs are like most Andy Reid teams. They’re pretty damn good in the regular season, but fail to overly impress in the postseason. Alex Smith is the best game manager in the NFL, but he needs weapons. Travis Kelce, Jeremy Maclin and Tyreek Hill are all solid playmakers. But they need more help. Someone like Zay Jones, WR out of East Carolina, could be the pick if they want to boost their offensive attack. On the other side of the ball, they could benefit from drafting an inside linebacker. Derrick Johnson has been a stalwart for the Chiefs for the past 12 years, but he is coming off his second achilles surgery. They could also benefit from adding a cornerback, so maybe Jackson. I think they need to address their biggest pending need, which for me is your middle linebacker. Cunningham finally comes off the board, and goes to the Kool-Aid man (aka Andy Reid in his Chiefs pullover) and eventually replaces one of the better middle linebackers in the past decade.
- Dallas Cowboys: Takkarist McKinley, DE, UCLA
The Cowboys offense is pretty much set. Dak Prescott will most likely have a sophomore slump, but that’s largely because he will be asked to do more with the offense, specifically through the passing game. Zeke Elliot will continue to dominate and their offensive line is perennially one of the best in the league Defensively, they aren’t nearly as stacked. Randy Gregory, whom the Boys drafted in the second round two years ago, has more suspension for substance abuse than he has career sacks (it’s three suspension vs one sack for those wondering). The Boys could use any help when it comes to pass rushers. And I think, because teams value this position so highly, someone like Takkarist McKinley could be drafted here as a reach. Likewise I think they could pursue Tyus Bowser, the DE from Houston. Hell, even someone like TJ Watt could be the pick if he’s still around. I think the Boys take Takkarist McKinley here. His recent shoulder surgery might have knocked him down, but the Cowboys have picked injured players before, taking Notre Dame LB, Jaylon Smith, last year. I think that the Boys reach here, or try and trade back to get him early in the second round. Either way, I expect Tak McKinley to be in Dallas next season.
- Green Bay Packers: Adoree Jackson, CB, USC
The Packers really need to upgrade their defensive presence. Last year injuries caused a lot of different players to play cornerback for the Packers. Jackson would present them with a legit star at cornerback, and would be there for years to come. I could also see them drafting TJ Watt if he’s around, for no other reason than to adding to their pass rush, while also getting a local guy. On offense, they desperately need a running back. Ty Montgomery was decent this year, but the guy is naturally a receiver. They would benefit from a out of the backfield type back, though I don’t think they can get that at 29. They could trade up, but it might be hard to get McCaffrey, who I think would be their ideal back. Jackson on the other hand, is seen as an early day two prospect, but I don’t think he makes it there. The Packers scoop up Jackson and their defense is instantly better.
- Pittsburgh Steelers: Jabrill Peppers, S, Michigan
The Steelers are in a weird position. Ben Roethlisberger pulled a Brett Favre and flirted with retirement, hopefully not in a bar bathroom. And just like every other time Ben Roethlisberger has had trouble in a bar bathroom, nothing happened. He didn’t retire, he simply did nothing. It might be smart to draft a QB at some point in this draft, but I don’t think it happens in the first round. A lot of people have DeShone Kizer here, as Ben’s replacement. I think Kizer would be available in the early second, so I could see the Steelers trading back. If they don’t trade back, a safety would be helpful. The Steelers haven’t had a strong presence in the backend of their defense since Troy Polamalu and his luscious locks of hair retired. Really, any member of the secondary would be an upgrade. Artie Burns was their first round pick from last year, but players like Jabrill Peppers, S from Michigan, Teez Tabor, CB from Florida, or even Kevin King, CB from Washington, would all make sense as upgrades to pair with Burns. They might be in line to draft a wide receiver later in the draft, depending on how they feel about Martavis Bryant, after his season long suspension last year. Ultimately I think the Steelers draft Peppers here. His versatility makes him an ideal prospect, and I highly doubt a diluted sample will stop the Rooney family from drafting him.
- Atlanta Falcons: Forrest Lamp, OG, Western Kentucky
The Falcons had Chris Chester, their starting right guard retire after the season. I think they replace him with the best guard in the draft with Lamp. Lamp played tackle for WKU, but his arms aren’t necessarily long enough to play there in the NFL. He moved to guard during the Senior Bowl and handled himself nicely. The guy also can snap the ball, so he’s essentially the most versatile lineman in the draft. If the Falcons decide to work on the defense, I’d suggest they go after Malik McDowell. Yes, they signed Dontari Poe to a deal this offseason, but they Falcons run a 4-3 and need another piece on the Dline to complement Poe.
- New Orleans Saints (from Patriots): Tre’Davious White, CB, LSU
It’s possible the Saints trade this pick. At this point in the draft, the difference between the 32nd pick and the 40th pick are not much different. That said, the Saints really need to upgrade their defense. I have them taking Taco Charlton at 11, and I think they use this pick to improve their secondary. Chidobe Awuzie, CB from Colorado, could be the pick here. He’s quick on the field and he has great football smarts. His problems are the fact that he plays smaller than he is, as well as his potential issue with holding opposing wide receivers. They could also go with Tre’Davious White, the CB out of LSU. White is fast, and he can catch up with his mistakes. He’s not the most physical tackler, and he can get beaten from above by taller wide receivers. Regardless, I think the Saints take the local kid in White.
To go to Picks 1-16, click here.