The time has come. We’ve been waiting for Draft Day for months and with already three trades into the top ten, you can expect more moves to come in the first round. Here’s my full mock draft of the first 31 picks in the NFL Draft with predicted trades.
- LOS ANGELES RAMS: JARED GOFF (QB/CAL) Welcome to Hollywood, Mr. Goff. The former Golden Bear will play in USC’s Coliseum for his rookie year and will get the fortune of handing the ball off to Todd Gurley. The Rams give up the house to land their first potential franchise quarterback since Kurt Warner.
2. PHILADELPHIA EAGLES: EZEKIEL ELLIOTT (RB/OHIO STATE) I know, I know. This is insane. Is it really? Many have forgotten that GM Howie Roseman loves Elliott and he’s finally back in control. Roseman AND Head Coach Doug Pederson come from the school of Andy Reid which means a dynamic running back has tons of value in their offensive system. Elliott is a three-down back that can be a weapon out of the backfield, carry the ball 20-plus times a game, and pass protect efficiently. Also, Carson Wentz says he has not talked to the Eagles AT ALL since the big trade. FINALLY, Philadelphia is making sure they get the best running back in the draft before their NFC East rival, the Dallas Cowboys do.
3. SAN DIEGO CHARGERS: JALEN RAMSEY (DB/FLORIDA STATE)In my humble opinion, Ramsey is the best player in the draft. He automatically starts at safety for the Chargers but can cover the top wideout on opposing teams as well as line up in the nickel. Tunsil would be a great pick but it looks like San Diego has made moves to solidify the offensive line this offseason.
4. DALLAS COWBOYS: JOEY BOSA (DE/OHIO STATE) The Cowboys really want Elliott but too bad, so sad. Joey Bosa is the best player on their board and they need pass rush help desperately. Jerry Jones does not care about potential off the field issues so Bosa won’t have to worry.
5. JACKSONVILLE JAGUARS: MYLES JACK (LB/UCLA)No-brainer here. Jack fits perfectly into Gus Bradley’s 4-3 defense. Don’t forget Bradley was Jim Mora Jr.’s defensive coordinator in Seattle. You can bet that the Jags head coach has been doing his homework. I don’t believe in the “Jack will slide” rumors because of his knee injury. If Jacksonville’s doctors think he’ll be good to go, this is the pick.
6. BALTIMORE RAVENS: LAREMY TUNSIL (OT/OLE MISS) – This is too easy for Ozzie Newsome. Arguably the best player in the draft, Tunsil protects big-money QB Joe Flacco immediately.
7. SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS: DEFOREST BUCKNER (DE/OREGON) – Watch for Trent Baalke to trade down here because he loves generating picks but if Buckner is available, I think Chip Kelly gets what he wants. Kelly was still at Oregon when his staff was recruiting Buckner so there’s history. Buckner and the 49ers’ 2015 first-round pick Arik Armstead (former teammate) would be an intimidating tandem to block.
8.*TRADE* CLEVELAND BROWNS/CHICAGO BEARS: VERNON HARGREAVES III (CB/FLORIDA)
– This is what you call striking gold. Hargreaves is a top ten talent and the Bears have a significant need at corner. Tracy Porter is not going to cut it and VH3 can line up opposite Kyle Fuller for years to come.
9. TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS: RONNIE STANLEY (OT/NOTRE DAME) – Protecting the Bucs’ first overall pick is a major priority. Tampa Bay likes Stanley and he should be available at this point.
10. NEW YORK GIANTS: DARRON LEE (LB/OHIO STATE) – The G-Men are seriously thin at the linebacker position when it comes to talent. Lee flies to the ball with his 4.4 speed and can rush the passer.
11. CLEVELAND BROWNS: JACK CONKLIN (OT/MICHIGAN STATE) – It’s been reported the Browns want to take Jack Conklin to fill a hole at right tackle and they also come out with extra picks on this trade-back.
12. NEW ORLEANS SAINTS: JARRAN REED (DT/ALABAMA) – Reed is the prototypical run-stuffer and the Saints desperately need help in that department. Reed brings penetration and can take on double teams.
13. MIAMI DOLPHINS: ELI APPLE (CB/OHIO STATE) – Apple is a long, rangy corner that plays physical. Dolphins GM Mike Tannenbaum drafted Darrelle Revis in the top 15 in the 2007 draft and he will look to replicate that success here.
14. OAKLAND RAIDERS: SHAQ LAWSON (DE/CLEMSON) – Lawson is a productive pass rusher and run stopper that can play on the interior and on the edge. He would definitely make plays opposite Khalil Mack. Don’t forget Mario Edwards is a question mark while he rehabs from his neck injury and Aldon Smith is suspended.
15. TENNESSEE TITANS: TAYLOR DECKER (OT/OHIO STATE) – Plays nasty and will protect Mariota for the next five years at least. Can play on both sides as well.
16. DETROIT LIONS: – SHELDON RANKINS (DT/LOUISVILLE) – Still recovering from losing Ndamukong Suh and Haloti Ngata is on his last legs. Rankins is a fit at the three-technique and will help out Ziggy Ansah.
17. ATLANTA FALCONS: LEONARD FLOYD (LB/GEORGIA) – Floyd stays in the Peach State and sparks the Falcon’s pass rush. He’s a tweener but Dan Quinn will figure out where to play him.
18. INDIANAPOLIS COLTS: RYAN KELLY (C/ALABAMA) – The Colts have a need at center and love Kelly who was a three-year starter for the Crimson Tide. He’s got experience in a pro-style offense and should be in sync with Andrew Luck.
19. BUFFALO BILLS: A’SHAWN ROBINSON (DT/ALABAMA) – Another Alabama player goes off the board. Robinson is a massive man that can eat up blocks and could learn a lot from Marcel Dareus and Kyle Williams. Key piece for Rex Ryan’s scheme.
20. NEW YORK JETS: NOAH SPENCE (LB/EASTERN KENTUCKY) – Spence has a high ceiling and can be productive in the Todd Bowles system when it comes to the edge. You have to hit Tom Brady again and again to win the AFC East.
21. WASHINGTON REDSKINS: LAQUON TREADWELL (WR/OLE MISS) – This would be a great value pick for Washington. There’s not a lot of size at the wideout position on the Redskins roster and in Jay Gruden’s west coast offense, a possession target is key.
22. HOUSTON TEXANS: WILL FULLER (WR/NOTRE DAME) – The run on receivers begins. The Texans know they have to surround Brock Osweiler with weapons and Fuller can take the top off the defense. This will dictate safety coverage between him and DeAndre Hopkins. Pick your poison.
23. MINNESOTA VIKINGS: JOSH DOCTSON (WR/TCU) – In my opinion, it’s between Doctson and Treadwell when you’re talking about the best receiver in the draft. Doctson will make his money in the red zone. Pair him up with Stefon Diggs and watch Teddy Bridgewater work.
24. CINCINNATI BENGALS: COREY COLEMAN (WR/BAYLOR) – Yes, that’s four wideouts in a row. The Bengals need to get Andy Dalton help now that Marvin Jones and Mohamed Sanu are gone. Coleman doesn’t have a lot to offer as far as route running but he’s got pure speed.
25. PITTSBURGH STEELERS: WILLIAM JACKSON III (CB/HOUSTON) – The Steelers get a big, physical, and fast cornerback they’ve been longing for in Jackson. He will have to learn fast by covering A.J. Green and Steve Smith Sr.
26. SEATTLE SEAHAWKS: GERMAIN IFEDI (OT/TEXAS A&M) – Ifedi is a dark horse pick and the Seahawks have a huge need at offensive tackle. Word around the league is Seattle has a lot of interest in him.
27. GREEN BAY PACKERS: REGGIE RAGLAND (LB/ALABAMA) – Clay Matthews can move back to the outside while Ragland steps in at middle linebacker. He already knows the 3-4 defense from his two years with Nick Saban.
28. KANSAS CITY CHIEFS: ROBERT NKEMDICHE (DT/OLE MISS) – Andy Reid has a track record for drafting defensive linemen in the first round. He takes a shot on Nkemdiche here despite the character issues. See Marcus Peters (2015 Draft).
29. ARIZONA CARDINALS: ARTIE BURNS (CB/MIAMI) – This may be a reach but I’m hearing the Cardinals will target a defensive back in the first round. Burns is physically gifted with long arms and is will be playing with a chip on his shoulder. His mother passed away last October which was the main factor in Burns leaving Miami for the NFL.
30. CAROLINA PANTHERS: KARL JOSEPH (S/WEST VIRGINIA) – Joseph is a beast. Plain and simple. The Panthers have one of the best front sevens in the league. The only thing missing is an enforcer on the back end. If Joseph can be the same player after the ACL tear, Carolina will reap the benefits.
31. DENVER BRONCOS: CARSON WENTZ (QB/NORTH DAKOTA STATE) – John Elway gets a poor man’s version of himself when he played. Big, mobile, with a strong arm, Wentz fits into Gary Kubiak’s system and has an elite team behind him. His long first-round wait is finally over.