2018 NFL MOCK DRAFT 1.0
From guest writer
1 – Cleveland Browns – Sam Darnold QB-USC
With hearing that the Browns won’t be spending big bucks on a free agent QB, rumors say they are looking for a free agent band aid for a temporary fix. This leads me to believe they draft their future QB with this pick. I believe their future is Sam Darnold. The Browns have a nice, young offensive core in place and Darnold can get this ship turned around in the future.
2 – New York Giants – Saquon Barkley RB – Penn State
After blowing up the combine along with an outstanding game tape that leaves you drooling, the Giants really need a play maker at the RB position. He might have the best overall talent in the draft. With new GM Dave Gettleman wanting to address the offensive line also, this could be a dangerous combination in the making.
3 – Indianapolis Colts – Bradley Chubb DE/OLB NC STATE.
The Colts have more needs that can be mentioned but they can finally get a promising piece to build their defense around. Chubb offers quickness and power off the edge that the Colts haven’t had in a while.
4 – Cleveland Browns – Minkah Fitzpatrick DB Alabama
After securing a QB at number one overall Cleveland can go to work on making a below average defense much better. Minkah will be an immediate starter at just about any position in the defensive backfield with the Browns. With John Dorsey as the new GM a plethora of picks and cap space this draft could be the start of something huge in Cleveland.
5 – Denver Broncos – Josh Rosen QB UCLA
This pick could go a few different ways depending on how the free agent QB market shakes out. Denver is interested in a few quarter backs in free agency also. In this mock I’ll give them a QB that Elway and the coaching staff could groom to takeover within due time. Rosen has nice size and really knows the X’s and O’s of the game.
6 – New York Jets – Baker Mayfield QB Oklahoma
The Jets have outright bungled drafting QBs over the past few years and have not developed anything they can trust on game day. McCown is a solid veteran but nothing special for the future. Baker doesn’t have great size but has the “IT” gene in his football DNA. He’s a gamer and has an obvious animal competitive nature that the Jets desperately need in their locker room.
7 – Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Quenton Nelson OL Notre Dame
This could very well be the best value pick in the top ten this year. Quenton is one of the best prospects in this draft. Nelson is very reminiscent of another recent Notre Dame offensive lineman, Zack Martin. Nelson plays with a nasty disposition and is powerful, fluid on the move and technically sound. A solid pick to protect Winston in Tampa and hopefully help to get the running game going.
8 – Chicago Bears – Derwin James DB Florida State
After a stellar career at FSU, Derwin used a terrific combine showing to vault into the top 10 of this draft. I have him landing in Chicago. Derwin also brings a great locker room presence and is well respected by his teammates. The Bears can pair Derwin with recent draft pick Eddie Jackson to form a nice young safety combo going forward.
9 – San Francisco 49ers – Roquan Smith LB Georgia
There is a glaring hole in the middle of San Francisco’s defense with or without troubled LB Reuben Foster. Roquan Smith might be just too good to pass on at this point. Roquan can bring speed and play making ability to a linebacker group they haven’t seen since Patrick Willis.
10 – Oakland Raiders – Denzel Ward CB Ohio State
A tenacious DB with speed to burn as evident from his recent combine efforts. Denzel is the first draft pick of new head coach Jon Gruden. Denzel should be able to walk right in and be a steady contributor and eventually take a starting job before week one.
11 – Miami Dolphins – Josh Allen QB Wyoming
After trading for DE Robert Quinn this off season, the move immediately helps the defense. The Fins will get nice value in Allen here. Allen has prototypical size and an absolute cannon for an arm. With Tannehill’s recent injury and journeyman QB Jay Cutler back in the press box this makes to be a great pick for the Dolphins future.
12 – Cincinnati Bengals – Vita Vea DT Washington
This pick makes too much sense. Vita is an absolute disruptive beast on the inside. Vea possesses more than just a run stuffing quality that merits this high of a selection. Vea can stack and shed to make tackles with ease and can make some plays in the backfield. Vea is the game wrecker you have to game plan for. This is a solid pick for the Bengals.
13 – Washington Redskins – Calvin Ridley WR Alabama
Big moves are happenings in Washington this off season. The switch of Alex Smith forKirk Cousins combined with Terrelle Pryor on his way out and Josh Doctson underwhelming, Washington will turn the card in for the best WR in this draft. Ridley easily creates separation and will be a nice new target for new QB Alex Smith to grow with.
14 – Green Bay Packers – Tremaine Edmunds LB Virginia Tech
Edmunds will be able to play multiple spots for Green Bay’s defense. Edmunds will be able to help this defense out a great deal right from the start. He is good in all phases of the game and has nice athleticism paired with size and speed. Edmunds would compete for playing time as soon s he is drafted.
15 – Arizona Cardinals – Isaiah Wynn OL Georgia
Isiah will come from paving the way for Georgia’s awesome ground game on Saturday’s to the paving the way for David Johnson in Arizona on Sunday’s . Wynn could solidify the interior part of the offensive line and be a pro bowl starter in the future. Wynn will be a great player in this league for a decade and more.
16 – Baltimore Ravens – Marcus Davenport DE Texas/SA
Not the most polished DE in this draft and facing a lower level of play at Texas-San Antonio, Davenport still possesses the traits and size to be an eventual problem coming off the edge. It doesn’t hurt to learn from one of the best in Terrell Suggs in Baltimore.
17 – Los Angeles Chargers – Da’Ron Payne DT Alabama
The edges are fine but the middle is another thing. Sacks can become plentiful with Melvin Ingram and Joey Bosa off the edges, but the Chargers were continuously shredded in the running game. Insert Da’ron Payne in the middle to help them out. Payne is a monster and is one of the most disruptive DTs in this draft. He should help out immediately upon his arrival.
18 – Seattle Seahawks – Will Hernandez OL UTEP
A rapidly ascending prospect in Will Hernandez immediately becomes the best offensive lineman on a putrid offensive line. He brings power, nice footwork, and a nasty streak the Seahawks so desperately need. This pick makes sense in so many ways that it must happen.
19 – Dallas Cowboys – Arden Key DE LSU
Still an area of need in Dallas but this is just too good for the Cowboys to pass on. Most will say they won’t take this type of chance due to some off-field transgressions. I am hearing other news about Arden. If Key can clean up some off-field issues this can be a steal for the Cowboys.
20 – Detroit Lions – Harold Landry DE/OLB Boston College
With new Head Coach Matt Patricia coming over from New England it’s only fitting his first pick is on the defensive side of the ball. Harold Landry showed well at the combine and had a nice career at Boston College. He has nice size at 6’2” 250 lbs and a nice motor blended with a natural skill set.
21 – Buffalo Bills – Lamar Jackson QB Louisville
With the waffling that Buffalo’s front office has showed for Tyrod Taylor’s services along with Nathan Peterman having a dreadful meltdown, I believe they turn the card in for the very exciting Lamar Jackson. Just think about pairing Jackson with LeSean McCoy and you might have some excitement in Buffalo for 2018.
22 – Buffalo Bills – James Daniels C/G Iowa
With back to back picks in Buffalo they have a chance to replace Eric Wood who was lost due to injury. James Daniels can play any interior spot but will step right in at center for the next decade. He is an easy mover with adequate size and would be a nice value pick here for the Bills.
23 – Los Angeles Rams – Mike Hughes DB Central Florida.
Trumaine Johnson is set to leave via free agency and Lamarcus Joyner received the tag. This leaves CB a glaring need for the Rams. Hughes could step in right away and get reps or play sparingly and work his way into a starting rotation. Coming in at 5’11” 191 lbs Hughes offers good enough size to compete at a high level.
24 – Carolina Panthers – Derrius Guice RB LSU
Jonathan Stewart was released this off season in a bit of a shocker roster cut but they drafted McCaffrey last year at number eight overall in the first round. McCaffrey is not viewed as a ground and pound back which the Panthers need to make the offense work. Derrius could be a home run pick for the Panthers here.
25 – Tennessee Titans – Connor Williams OL Texas
Conner played OT at Texas but can swing into the guard position if needed for the Titans. It would be nice to add a prospect like Williams who could offer position flexibility with nice size at 6’5” 315 lbs. It would only help the Titans protect Mariota and also help out in the running game.
With the interior of the defensive line set to lose Dontari Poe in free agency the Falcons could look for help in the 1st round with DT Harrison Phillips. He doesn’t have the size of Poe, but he has a great motor and the skills and smarts to succeed in the NFL.
27 – New Orleans Saints – Dallas Goedert TE South Dakota State
After an epic draft last year, the Saints are built to win now. There are a few holes around the roster, but they could use help at TE. Dallas Goedert is a nice prospect with good size at 6’5” 265 lbs and a nice skill set. I expect Bress would fall in love with Goedert instantly.
28 – Pittsburgh Steelers – Ronald Jones RB USC
This would be a bit of a surprise selection because history shows that the Steelers usually go defensive in the first round. There is some general wonderment of what’s going happen long term with Le’Veon Bell and the soon retirement of Ben Roethlisberger. Ronald Jones gives Pittsburgh an instant jolt and could replace Bell if needed in most spots. This would be awesome value here
29 – Jacksonville Jaguars – Jaire Alexander CB Louisville
Not a lot of holes on this team that immediately standout but they might not be able to retain Aaron Colvin who played well last year. Alexander could compete for reps relatively early and get some playing time. This is a nice pairing for the Jags.
30 – Minnesota Vikings – Mike McGlinchey OT Notre Dame
Potential front runners for Kirk Cousins is all we are hearing right now. The Vikings need to protect their quarterback’s blindside and McGlinchey offers the tools, size and smarts to play right away in Minnesota. Paired with a solid defense, potential new franchise QB and good skill players on offense this pick makes sense
31 – New England Patriots – Josh Jackson CB Iowa
Benching Malcolm Butler in the Super Bowl was more than enough writing on the wall for his departure via free agency. Josh Jackson is a great value here for the Patriots. He has great size at 6’1” 192 lbs and should be able to adapt to this defense relatively quickly.
32 – Philadelphia Eagles – DJ Moore WR Maryland
Might not be the most needed pick considering that Philly has a nice set of WR’s, but Moore is a 1st round talent without question and might be too good to pass up. He reminds me of a Steve Smith or Golden Tate type player.