Someone a lot smarter than me once said doing an NFL Mock Draft is an exercise in futility. They're probably right, but sometimes futility is fun. I love to do mock drafts, and people clearly love to read them.
So, I hope you enjoy this two round mock draft. Maybe you'll even gain some insight: that's the end-game of these exercises after all.
And if you're wondering why I don't have Team A picking Player A, I probably considered it. But, this is all one big guessing game. After all, the best drafts are the ones filled with chaos and unpredictability.
I didn't predict any trades, but there will be plenty throughout the draft.
Hit me up on Twitter if you want to chat about the NFL Draft.
1. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Jameis Winston, QB, FSU
This one seems set in stone.
2. Tennessee Titans: Marcus Mariota, QB, Oregon
I’ve swung back towards Mariota being the pick here in the past few weeks. The Titans’ beat writer is also in this camp. And if the Titans do decide to move down, the pick will likely be Mariota anyway.
3. Jacksonville Jaguars: Leonard Williams, DT, USC
I think an edge rusher like Dante Fowler or Vic Beasley is a better fit for the 4-3 LEO end Gus Bradley likes to use. But, Leonard Williams might be the best player in the draft. The Jags can find a place for Williams to play. Don’t be shocked if Amari Cooper is the pick here either.
4. Oakland Raiders: Kevin White, WR, WVU
If Williams is off the board, I think this comes down to Cooper and Kevin White. A trade down is an option, as is a pass rusher to pair with budding superstar Khalil Mack. In the end, I think the Raiders elect to help out QB David Carr. It’s a toss-up between White and Cooper.
5. Washington Redskins: Dante Fowler, OLB, UF
The Redskins still have Trent Murphy and Ryan Kerrigan at OLB, but do need to replace Brian Orakpo. Fowler can step in right away as a 3-4 OLB. Finding another pass blocker or even safety would be ideal, but the value just isn’t there this early. Washington would love to trade down.
6. New York Jets: Vic Beasley, OLB, Clemson
The Jets would love Mariota, but unless they move up, I don’t think they’ll get him. Pass rusher is the next biggest need, and the value on Beasley is good. Don’t rule out Cooper here.
7. Chicago Bears: Amari Cooper, WR, Alabama
This is about as low as Cooper will go. If he’s still on the board, it’s a no-brainer. Cooper and White switching spots makes sense too.
8. Atlanta Falcons: Bud Dupree, DE, UK
The issues that Shane Ray and Randy Gregory have hurt their stock and help Dupree’s. Todd Gurley could be in play, but that would be foolish (Head to the 2:10 mark). Dupree will be a solid pass rusher for the Falcons, which fills a big need.
9. New York Giants: Brandon Schreff, OT, Iowa
The Giants need some O-line help, and Schreff can start right away. He reminds me a bit of Zack Martin, in the sense that Schreff will be a good tackle or a great guard.
10. St. Louis Rams: Andrus Peat, OT, Stanford
I originally had Ereck Flowers here, but I think the Rams might like Peat more. Either one wouldn’t surprise me and neither would LSU’s La’el Collins. The Rams would love for Schreff to slip to them.
11. Minnesota Vikings: Trae Waynes, CB, MSU
The temptation to pair DeVante Parker and Teddy Bridgewater up again will be strong. But Waynes is the top corner and the Vikings need at least one more. They can get a wide out later in the draft. An offensive lineman isn’t out of the question either.
12. Cleveland Browns: Danny Shelton, NG, Washington
Shelton fills a need and is good value here. The Browns might even move up to make sure they get him. It was reported they offered both firsts to move up and take Mariota, but they'll need to offer more than that.
13. New Orleans Saints: DeVante Parker, WR, Louisville
This is the first pick where I really don’t have a strong inclination in one direction. The Saints need a pass rusher, but I don’t think Dupree will last. I don’t think they’ll pull the trigger on Randy Gregory or Shane Ray. There aren’t any corners worth taking this high outside of Waynes. That leaves Parker as the top guy left via process of elimination. I’m not confident in it, but it does make sense.
14. Miami Dolphins: Todd Gurley, RB, UGA
The Dolphins are high on Gurley. They’d love for Parker to be on the board, but he might not last that long. I worry about Gurley’s injury issues at UGA, but he’s talented.
15. San Francisco 49ers: Arik Armstead, DE, USC
With Ray McDonald gone and Justin Smith contemplating retirement, a player like Armstead fills a need. This is about the right range for him too. A corner or receiver makes sense as well.
16. Houston Texans: Landon Collins, S, Alabama
Shane Ray or Randy Gregory would have made sense about a month ago, but they are dropping. Gurley might be the pick if he’s still on the board. Collins fills a need, but I wouldn’t be shocked if the Texans moved down or took a wide out.
17. San Diego Chargers: Melvin Gordon, RB, Wisconsin
If Gurley is still on the board, he’s the pick. He won’t get past No. 17. If he’s gone, it comes down to either Gordon or an OT. And I think the same is true if the Titans and Chargers end up making a trade.
18. Kansas City Chiefs: Eric Kendricks, MLB, UCLA
The current Chiefs’ regime has a tendency to make some odd picks (see Ford, Dee). I’m not totally convinced this will be the pick, but it could happen. A wide out, pass rusher or cornerback are options are well. I’m not really sure what the Chiefs will end up doing.
19. Cleveland Browns (via Bills): Breshad Perriman, WR, UCF
Perriman is going to go off the board too high on draft day. I’d rather have Jaelen Strong or Nelson Agholor. Still, this is the right range for Perriman and he fills a need.
20. Philadelphia Eagles: Eric Rowe, CB/S, Utah
Don’t be shocked if Rowe ends up being the pick here. It might be a bit of a reach, but Chip Kelly doesn’t care about “value.” Chip Kelly does whatever he wants. It’s his world. We’re just living in it.
A different defensive back, a wide out or a wild draft day trade for Mariota are also options.
21. Cincinnati Bengals: Ereck Flowers, OT, Miami (Fl)
The Bengals don’t appear to be very high on La’el Collins.
That leaves Flowers as the top offensive tackle on the board. It’s good value and he fills a need. A wide out or defensive lineman could be an option too.
22. Pittsburgh Steelers: Randy Gregory, OLB, Nebraska
Shane Ray could be an option here, but I think it’s a bit too early for him. If Gregory is still on the board, I think the Steelers take the risk. Any of the defensive backs, specifically Kevin Johnson, are in play here.
23. Detroit Lions: Malcolm Brown, DT, Texas
With Ndamukong Suh in Miami and Nick Fairley in St. Louis, the Lions need another DT. Brown is a good fit and the top one on the board. The Lions could elect to add an offensive lineman like FSU’s Cameron Erving or a running back.
24. Arizona Cardinals: Kevin Johnson, CB, Wake
The Cardinals have Patrick Peterson, but need a second CB. Johnson is the top one left, but he might be off the board.
Oh, he can also do this.
25. Carolina Panthers: D.J. Humphries, OT, Florida
The Panthers desperately a tackle to prevent Cam Newton from getting killed. Florida’s D.J. Humphries, a Charlotte native, might be the best on left. LSU's La'el Collins and Pittsburgh’s T.J. Clemmings could also be options. A wide out makes sense too.
26. Baltimore Ravens: Nelson Agholor, WR, USC
I think this comes down to a wide receiver or a cornerback. There should be plenty of options for Ozzie Newsome. I like Agholor, and the Ravens need a young weapon for Flacco. Jaelen Strong is another possibility at wide out.
27. Dallas Cowboys: Marcus Peters, CB, Washington
The Cowboys have a need at corner, and Peters might be the most talented one in the draft. He’s had his issues at Washington, but Dallas might be the team to look past them. I wouldn’t be shocked if Peters is gone before this pick. Unless Gordon or Gurley slip, Dallas should invest in the defense.
28. Denver Broncos: La'el Collins, OT, LSU
I expect this pick to be an offensive lineman. It could be FSU’s Erving, Pittsburgh’s J.T. Clemmings or one of the guys already off the board. After all, the Broncos used all 60 of their visits on lineman or tight ends.
29. Indianpolis Colts: Eddie Goldman, DT, FSU
I originally had Cam Erving here, but I don’t think the Colts will spend on high pick on a center. An OT could be an option, but Goldman is good value and fills a big need. The Colts would be ecstatic if Landon Collins slides down to them.
30. Green Bay Packers: Jalen Collins, CB, LSU
The Packer have a need at corner, and Collins is the best one left on the board. Eddie Goldman could be an option if he’s still on the board and the same is true of Eric Kendricks. A trade down might be the end result.
31. New Orleans Saints (Via Seattle): Shane Ray, OLB, Missouri
Before his issues, Ray could have been the pick at No. 13. Now, he might fall out of the first round all together. If the Saints go wide out with their first pick, I expect this to be a pass rusher and vice-versa.
32. New England Patriots: Cameron Erving, OL, FSU
The Patriots will probably end up trading this pick. That’s just what Bill Belichick does. If they do, it’s probably someone moving up for a lineman. Erving is versatile enough to play multiple spots. And, hey, the Patriots might take him anyway. New England also needs corner help baldy.
The likelihood of getting second round picks correct is incredibly low. Don’t get caught up in the exact team-player match. Focus more on where players are at and what position I have teams picking. That should provide a feel for the range of a player and what teams are looking for.
33. Titans: T.J. Clemmings, OT, Pittsburgh
Clemmings might not be on the board at the start of the second round. A corner or safety could be an option here too.
34. Buccaneers: Jake Fisher, OT, Oregon
Much like the Titans, the Bucs need help on the offensive line. They could move up to the late first to make sure they get their man. If they stay put, someone like Fisher makes sense.
35. Raiders: Owamagbe Odighizuwa, DE, UCLA
If the Raiders don’t take a WR in round one, they probably will here. “Owa” has potential, although he does have some injury red flags. He’d make for a nice pairing with Khalil Mack.
36. Jaguars: T.J. Yeldon, RB, Jaguars
No, I don’t like Yeldon compared to other running backs left. But, I do think the Jaguars like him and that he’ll be the third back off the board. A wide receiver could be an option here too.
37. Jets: Brett Hundley, QB, UCLA
I’m not sure if Hundley goes in Round 2. I wouldn’t be surprised if he went in Round 3 or if someone got desperate and moved into Round 1 for him. A guard, RB or another wide out could be the pick if it’s not Hundley.
38. Redskins: Bryon Jones, CB, UConn
There is a pretty good chance Jones goes in the first round. If he slips, Washington should be all over him. Washington needs a corner and could also look for an OT or WR.
39. Bears: Jordan Phillips, DT, Oklahoma
The Bears lack a true nose guard, which is exactly what Phillips is. They could look for a MLB here too.
40. Giants: Damarious Randall, S, ASU
If the Giants actually valued linebackers, I’d have them taking one. However, they rarely look to spend any assets on acquiring one. Instead, they take a safety, which fills another need. Don’t be shocked if Randall ends up being the first safety off the board.
41. Rams: Jaelen Strong, WR, Arizona State
Strong has legitimate chance to go off the board in the first round. Heck, he could go as early as No. 16. But, I think it’s more likely he slips a bit. The Rams have a need at wide out, and this is great value.
42. Falcons: Maxx Williams, TE, Minnesota
The Falcons have had their chances to properly replace Tony Gonzales, even when he was still playing. This about the range Williams should go. A defensive back is the other likely option.
43. Browns: Cedric Ogbuehi, OT, Texas A&M
If Williams is still on the board, the Browns might take him to replace Jordan Cameron. They’re looking to upgrade some more on the offensive line, and Ogbuehi might sneak into the tail end of the first round. A 3-4 DE or OLB could be the pick here too.
44. Saints: A.J Cann, OG, South Carolina
Another team likely hoping that Williams falls, the Saints cann still come away with a solid player. Awful puns aside, Cann fills a need created by trading away Ben Grubbs. A middle linebacker could be an option here too.
45. Vikings: Laken Tomlinson, OG, Duke
There’s a very good chance Tomlinson goes off the board before Cann. There’s a very good chance that I forgot about Tomlinson and didn’t want to waste the Cann pun. There’s a very good chance everyone hated the Cann pun.
On a serious note, the Vikings need a guard and this is good value.
46. 49ers: Dorial Green-Beckham, WR, Missouri
DGB could be the pick for the Niners’ first round. His range is that wide because of his off the field issues. They’re bad. I wouldn’t touch him, but somebody will because of his immense talent. He’s the most talented wide out in the draft. He’ll either be a superstar or flame out quickly. It doesn’t look like there is much room in-between.
47. Dolphins: Phillip Dorsett, WR, Miami (Fl)
The Dolphins traded away Mike Wallace, and get a similar player in Dorsett to replace him. Much like Wallace, Dorsett is best running fly routes. There’s a good chance he goes before this, maybe even in the first round. A CB or MLB could be the pick here too.
48. Chargers: Eli Harold, OLB, UVA
Yet another player who might go in the first round. The Chargers have come up short in the pass rushing department, despite spending several picks on the spot. Maybe Harold changes that. A defensive back or offensive lineman could be the selection if he’s gone.
49. Chiefs: Devin Smith, WR, OSU
The Chiefs still need wide out help, even after adding Jeremy Maclin. Smith is the best one left, although the Chiefs could always take a different one. A defensive back is also an option.
50. Bills: Benardick McKinney, MLB, Mississippi State
The Bills have a big hole at MLB since trading Kiko Alonso. McKinney or Miami’s Denzel Perryman make sense here. If they fall in love with a QB, they could take him here.
51. Texans: Denzel Perryman, MLB, Miami (Fl)
The Texans need another MLB, and Perryman seems like a good fit. A WR, OC or pass rusher could be an option here too.
52. Eagles: Sammie Coates, WR, Auburn
Chip Kelly loves speed, and Coates can help provide that. He’s a great fit and this is the right range. A pass rusher or another secondary player make sense too.
53. Bengals: Grady Jarrett, DT, Clemson
The Bengals need someone to replace Domata Peko sooner rather than later. Maybe Jarrett is that guy. There are a few other DTs worth taking here, and the Bengals could go for a WR too.
54. Lions: Ronald Darby, CB, FSU
Darby could be off the board before this, but he certainly fills a need here. He might end being a better fit as a safety, but he looks like a solid secondary member.
55. Cardinals: Preston Smith, OLB, Mississippi State
The Cardinals need pass rushing help, and Smith has great value here. A running back like Duke Johnson is a possibility.
56. Steelers: Quinten Rollins, CB, Miami
The point guard-turned cornerback might very well be off the board by this point. He played just one season of college football, but he was the best player on the field more often than not. There is a slim chance he could sneak into the first round and he’ll be gone by the end of Friday. He could play corner or safety in the NFL. The Steelers desperately need secondary help and might even double down early.
57. Panthers: Tyler Lockett, WR, Kansas State
Lockett and Kelvin Benjamin are two complete different players, and that’s a good thing. If the Panthers go OT in the first round, expect a wide out in round two.
58. Ravens: P.J. Williams, CB, FSU
I thought about giving Williams to the Steelers, but I couldn’t give them Williams and Gregory. The Ravens need corner help and Williams is the top one left. Don’t be surprised if Rollins is the pick here. The Ravens love him.
59. Broncos: Carl Davis, DT, Iowa
With the loss of Pot Roast (Terrance Knighton), the Broncos need a new run stuffer. That’s exactly what Davis can do. Don’t rule out a TE here.
60. Cowboys: Shaq Thompson, LB, Washington
Ok, I really don’t think Thompson will fall this far, but I couldn’t find a spot for him. I love Thompson. I’m not sure if he’s a safety or a linebacker, but I don’t really care. He’s a freak athlete and the type of guy you find a way to play. I wouldn’t be shocked if he goes in the first round. A running back or another defensive player could be options too.
61. Colts: Ali Marpet, OG, Hobart
The Colts need a guard who can start right away, and Marpet might be the last of bunch in that regard. A center, defensive end, running back or inside linebacker could be options too. That’s a lot of needs for a playoff team, but Andrew Luck carries them.
62. Packers: Stephone Anthony, MLB, Clemson
This might be a bit of a reach, but the Packers need an inside linebacker and Anthony is best of the bunch left. They could look elsewhere on the defensive side of the ball here too.
63. Seahawks: Hroniss Grasu, C, Oregon
Don’t forget that the Seahawks dealt away Max Unger in the Jimmy Graham trade. Why not replace Unger with a fellow Duck?
64. Patriots: Mario Edwards, DE, FSU
I’m not totally sure about Edwards’ scheme fit in New England, but I think the Patriots can get the most out of him. He’s talented, but underachieved at FSU. I wouldn’t be shocked if he goes around the Patriots’ first round pick, or even after this. A corner is also an option.Back to the NFL Newsfeed