Hey all, this is my annual NFL mock draft. The NFL is the only sport I will do mock drafts for, as it is the only sport that I have enough knowledge of the prospects to do it. This mock will project trades in the first round, but not the second. I will also give explanations for the first round, but round two will just be the team and the player.
1. Tampa Bay Buccaneers- Jameis Winston, QB Florida State
Not too much to deliberate on this pick, the Bucs could use a franchise QB, and they have expressed a lot of interest in the former Seminole.
2. Philadelphia Eagles- Marcus Mariota, QB Oregon
Trade: Eagles send picks #19, #20, and #84 to the Titans in exchange for pick #2
It’s a match made in heaven, Chip Kelley gets his guy in Marcus Mariota. The Eagles have to make a few trades to get this done, first of course the Bradford-Foles trade, then he flips Bradford to the Browns for pick #19, then of course their two firsts and a third to the Titans. Kelley and the Eagles may have to overpay a bit to get this pick, but they could have easily had to pay a lot more for their quarterback of the future.
3. Chicago Bears- Leonard Williams, DE/DT USC
Trade: Bears send picks #7 and #39 to the Jaguars in exchange for pick #3
Leonard Williams is the best player left on the board, but the Jaguars do not have much of a need for him. Jacksonville finds a suitable trade partner, staying within the top ten and picking up an extra second by sending their pick to Chiago. The Bears make the move to get the top defensive lineman in the draft, filling the huge hole they have had in the middle of their line the last two seasons.
4. Oakland Raiders- Kevin White, WR West Virginia
The Oakland Raiders do not have a number one receiver for second-year QB Derek Carr, and they have a history of loving athletic players, White is just that. White shot up draft boards at the combine after he ran a 4.35 40 yard-dash, what makes it more impressive is the fact the he stands tall at 6’3.
5. Washington Redskins- Dante Fowler Jr., OLB Florida
The Redskins just lost top pass-rusher Brian Orakpo to the Titans, and now fill his void with this Florida standout. While Fowler certainly has talent, it will be important to watch him off the field, as he has had tough time staying out of trouble.
6. New York Jets- Vic Beasly, OLB Clemson
The Jets have done well adding to their team this offseason, bringing back corners Darrelle Revis and Antione Cromarti, and trading for WR Brandon Marshall, and now they add pass rusher Vic Beasly. Beasly had a great season for Clemson last season picking up 11.0 sacks, and will instantly plug in as a starting OLB for the Jets.
7. Jacksonville Jaguars- Brandon Scherff, OG/OT Iowa
Trade: Jaguars send pick #2 to the Bears in exchange for picks #7 and #39
The Jags have a need for interior line, but were originally too high to select Scherff. Now that they have traded back, they are in a good spot to take the top interior lineman, and possibly the top offensive lineman in the draft.
8. Atlanta Falcons- Shane Ray, DE/OLB Missouri
The Falcons were thought to be interested in trading up for pass rusher Jadeveon Clowney last year, but the Texans took him first and they settled for OT Jake Matthews. This year they get their pass rusher in Missouri standout Shane Ray.
9. New York Giants- Danny Shelton, DT Washington
The Giants are a bit thin at defensive tackle, and with this pick they add a monster on the inside to go next to Johnathan Hankins in Danny Shelton.
10. St. Louis Rams- Amari Cooper, WR Alabama
The Rams have a huge need at offensive line, and only a minor one at wide receiver. But as they showed last year with the pick of defensive tackle Aaron Donald, the Rams aren’t afraid to take the top player available early, even if it is not their most important need. That pick worked out as Donald ended up becoming the Defensive Rookie of the Year. The Rams will hope for more of the same from Cooper as he will plug-in as the number one receiver the Rams have been looking for since the Greatest Show on Turf days when they had Torry Holt and Isaac Bruce running routes for them.
11. Minnesota Vikings- Trae Waynes, CB Michigan State
Waynes is the first corner off the board, he has good ability to play the ball, picking off three passes last year for the Spartans. Combine that with his athleticism, and Waynes could really help a Vikings secondary that has been struggling.
12. Cleveland Browns- DeVante Parker, WR Louisville
Parker is going a bit under the radar in this draft due to the top receiver talent in this draft, but don’t be fooled, he can play. Excellent hands and good route running ability will help the Browns ease the pain of yet another Josh Gordon suspension.
13. New Orleans Saints- La’el Collins, OT LSU
With the Saints trading away Ben Grubbs, they could use another lineman to beef up their line. La’el Collins is the best pure offensive tackle in the draft, and would be an excellent pickup for the Saints.
14. Kansas City Chiefs- Breshad Perriman, WR Central Florida
Trade: Chiefs send picks #18 and #80 to the Dolphins in exchange for pick #14
The Chiefs could still use a wide receiver despite the big signing of Jeremy Maclin this offseason, and trade up to make sure the 49ers and/or Texans don’t steal names off their draft board. Perriman is a good receiver, but his combination of size and speed can make him a true threat in the NFL, as he runs a sub 4.3 40 at 6’2.
15. San Fransisco 49ers- Arik Armstead, DT Oregon
With Justin Smith possibly moving on from the NFL, that leaves a hole in the middle of the 49ers defense. Arik Armstead is the perfect man to replace him and can man the middle of the ‘niners line for years to come.
16. Houston Texans- Jaelen Strong, WR Arizona State
The Texans lost long-time receiver Andre Johnson to the division-rival Colts this offseason, now they are going to need someone to line up with DeAndre Hopkins. Strong has tremendous hands and will have the chance to make an immediate impact on the Texans.
17. Pittsburg Steelers- Marcus Peters, CB Washington
Trade: Steelers send picks #22 and #87 to the Chargers in exchange for pick #17
The Chargers have their eye on a running back, but have the opportunity to trade back and wait for one of the top two to fall to them. The Steelers on the other hand trade ahead of the Dolphins to help their secondary and get their man in Peters.
18. Miami Dolphins- Todd Gurley, RB Georgia
Trade: Dolphins send pick #14 to the Chiefs in exchange for picks #18 and #80
The Dolphins are able to pick up an extra third, as well as take the top running back in this draft, all is well in Miami.
19. Tennessee Titans- Randy Gregory, OLB Nebraska
Trade: Eagles send Sam Bradford to Browns in exchange for pick #19. Titans send pick #2 to the Eagles in exchange for picks #19, #20, and #84
Linebacker isn’t a big need for the Titans at this point, but Randy Gregory is a great value here, as he was overshadowed by all the other linebackers in this draft.
20. Tennessee Titans- Andrus Peat, OT Stanford
Trade: Titans send pick #2 to the Eagles in exchange for picks #19, #20, and #84
With their second straight selection, the Titans take tackle Andrus Peat to plug in on their offensive line after the failed experiment of Michael Oher.
21. Cincinnati Bengals- Bud Dupree, OLB Kentucky
Like Randy Gregory, Dupree falls due to strong talent at outside linebacker. The Bengals have no problem with that as they will gladly scoop him up at #21
22. San Diego Chargers- Melvin Gordon, RB Wisconsin
Trade: Chargers trade pick #17 to the Steelers in exchange for picks #22 and #87
The Chargers wanted a running back, and they got their guy in Gordon. Georgia’s Todd Gurley is said to be the superior back the of the two, but he is off the board and Gordon is a close second, plus he doesn’t come in to the league straight off a torn ACL.
23. Detroit Lions- Ereck Flowers, OT Miami
The Lions could use some help on their line, and love the idea of scooping up Flowers here.
24. Arizona Cardinals- DJ Humphries, OT Florida
With all of the top running backs and outside linebackers off the board, the Cardinals decide their best move would be to upgrade their line and take Humphries.
25. Baltimore Ravens- Landon Collins, S Alabama
Trade: Ravens send picks #26 and #125 to the Panthers in exchange for pick #25
With the Ravens having 10 selections in this draft, they do not mind trading away one of them in order to move up and secure their safety. Collins will fill a void on the Ravens defense that has been there since Ed Reed left.
26. Carolina Panthers- Cedric Obguehi, OT Texas A&M
Trade: Panthers send pick #25 to the Ravens in exchange for picks #26 and #125
The Panthers want a tackle in the first round, but want to try and pick up one more pick before taking one. With this trade the Panthers only move down one spot, pick up a fourth, and add a guy who would have been a top 20 pick had it not been for an injury in his final college season.
27. Dallas Cowboys- Kevin Johnson, CB Wake Forest
It was clear the Cowboys needed help at corner when Morris Claiborne was getting a lot of playing time. They pick up Kevin Johnson in order to help fix that need.
28. Denver Broncos- TJ Clemmings, OT Pittsburg
The Broncos decide that Peyton Manning isn’t getting enough protection, and pick up Clemmings to give him more time.
29. Indianapolis Colts- Malcom Brown, DT Texas
The Colts picked up Kendall Langford through free agency, but go for a long term solution at defensive tackle here in Malcom Brown.
30. Green Bay Packers- Eryk Kendricks, ILB UCLA
Last season the Packers were forced to move Clay Matthews inside due to poor play from the rest of their inside ‘backers, they will make sure that doesn’t happen again this year and pick up Kendricks.
31. New Orleans Saints- Dorial Green-Beckham, WR Missouri
Green-Beckham is arguably one of the top four receivers in this class, but with his off the field issues his draft stock took a major hit. The Saints are happy to take the chance on him and hope Drew Brees can teach him a thing or two.
32. New England Patriots- Nelson Agholor, WR USC
The Patriots could use more firepower outside of Gronkowski and Edleman, Agholor provides that and will be a good value pick for the Patriots.
33. Tennessee Titans- Jalen Collins, CB LSU
34. Tampa Bay Buccanears- Jake Fisher, OT Oregon
35. Oakland Raiders- Ronald Darby, CB Florida State
36. Jacksonville Jaguars- Tevin Coleman, RB Indiana
37. New York Jets- Cameron Erving, OL Florida State
38. Washington Redskins- PJ Williams, CB Florida States
39. Jacksonville Jaguars (via Chicago)- Eli Harold, OLB Virginia
40. New York Giants- Damarious Randall, S Arizona State
41. St. Louis Rams- Laken Tomlinson, OG Duke
42. Atlanta Falcons- Maxx Williams, TE Minnesota
43. Cleveland Browns- Eddie Goldman, DT Florida State
44. New Orleans Saints- Clive Walford, TE Miami
45. Minnesota Vikings- Rob Havenstein, OT Wisconsin
46. San Fransisco 49ers- Paul Dawson, ILB TCU
47. Miami Dolphins- Phillip Dorsett, WR Miami
48. San Diego Chargers- AJ Cann, OG South Carolina
49. Kansas City Chiefs- Jarvis Harrison, OG Texas A&M
50. Buffalo Bills- Brett Hundley, QB UCLA
51. Houston Texans- Devin Smith, WR Ohio State
52. Philadelphia Eagles- Derron Smith, S Fresno State
53. Cincinnati Bengals- Michael Bennett, DT Ohio State
54. Detroit Lions- Carl Davis, DT Iowa
55. Arizona Cardinals- TJ Yeldon, RB Alabama
56. Pittsburg Steelers- Tre Jackson, OG Florida State
57. Carolina Panthers- Chris Conley, WR Georgia
58. Baltimore Ravens- Duke Johnson, RB Miami
59. Denver Broncos- Garrett Grayson, QB Colorado State
60. Dallas Cowboys- Ameer Abdullah, RB Nebraska
61. Indianapolis Colts- Donovan Smith, OT Pennsylvania State
62. Green Bay Packers- Quinten Rollins, CB Miami (OH)
63. Seattle Seahawks- Ali Marpet, C Hobert & William Smith
64. New England Patriots- Mitch Morse, OG Missouri