The NFL season is only in its sixth week, but that doesn't mean it's too early to look ahead to the next NFL Draft. This is also a wonderful opportunity to indulge the unhealthy obsession I have with the Draft. The first two versions were well received, so it's time for volume three.
The draft order is based on my Power Rankings. The actual NFL Draft order will assuredly look much different come April, so don't put too much stock into where teams are drafting. In fact, the actual Draft order can't look this way because there isn't an AFC South team high enough. The Power Rankings don't factor in the Thursday Night game either. This is an exercise in trying to project team needs and where prospects could end up going. I don't have a full list of team needs, but I'll get to that once the season begins to wind down.
If you hate what I wrote (or agree, but c'mon this is the internet) or just want to talk NFL Draft, hit me up on Twitter. With all that out of the way, let's dive into the picks.
1. Detroit Lions: Robert Nkemdiche, DT, Ole Miss
Just like last week, a new #1 pick thanks to a new draft order. I don't really expect the Lions to pick this high, but if they do, they'd likely jump all over the chance to taken an elite DT prospect. A corner like Vernon Hargreaves is also an option, as is an OT. The Lions miss Nick Fairley and Ndamukong Suh, and Nkedmiche is more thna talented enough to be the No. 1 overall pick.
2. Jacksonville Jaguars: Joey Bosa, DE, Ohio State
The Jaguars will get Dante Fowler back at one DE spot, but have a need at the other. Bosa is one of the safest picks in the draft and worthy of No. 1 overall consideration. Most of the Jaguars' top needs don't match up with the top talent in the draft.
3. Miami Dolphins: Ronnie Stanley, OT, Notre Dame
Stanley fills a massive need for the Dolphins, who need help on the offensive line. This is good value for him too, as Stanley might be the top OT off the board.
4. San Francisco 49ers: Vernon Hargreaves, CB, Florida
The 49ers need better players at corner, and Hargreaves is the best CB in the class. While Hagreaves isn't as long as GM Trent Baalke likes, he's a heck of a player.
5. Houston Texans: Jared Goff, QB, California
If the Texans can get Goff, QB guru Bill O'Brien could do wonders with him. If this is how the draft order shakes out, don't be surprised if a team tries to move up ahead of the Texans, or force the Texans themselves to move up.
6. New Orleans Saints: Laquon Treadwell, WR, Ole Miss
The Saints could very well spend this pick on a defensive player, but Treadwell fills a need too. Marques Colston is declining rapidly, and the Saints need more weapons. Treadwell can replace Colston right away and give Drew Brees, or whomever the Saints start next season, a big weapon.
7. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Laremy Tunsil, OT, Ole Miss
The Bucs desperately need offensive line help and Tunsil gets the nod after Stanley had some minor issues against Clemson. Either player would fill a huge need and be a great pick. Of course, Tunsil hasn't played yet this season because of a NCAA investigation.
8. Tennessee Titans: Jalen Ramsey, CB, FSU
The Titans have major needs in the secondary and Ramsey might be the best player left on the board. This fills a need and is good value.
9. Kansas City Chiefs: Jack Cocklin, OT, Michigan State
This might be a bit high for Conklin in the wake of his knee injury, but the Chiefs could use some offensive line help. I strongly considered Taylor Decker here as well.
10. Baltimore Ravens: Leonard Floyd, OLB, Georgia
A WR makes sense too, but the Ravens need more pass rushers. Most of their current options are aging rapidly. Floyd's partner in crime, Jordan Jenkins, could be a first rounder too.
11. Chicago Bears: Christian Hackenberg, QB, Penn State
I'm not sold on this one, but the Bears are looking to replace Jay Cutler. To be fair, Cutler has played well this season, but the Bears could look to enter a full-on rebuilding phase and shed Cutler's massive contract. Hackenberg isn't the perfect prospect, but he does have all the tools. Adam Gase, assuming he doesn't get a head coaching job, could do wonders with Hackenberg.
12. Cleveland Browns: Tyler Boyd, WR, Pittsburgh
Boyd is one of several WRs who could be the top one off the board. The Browns could look at an inside linebacker, like Jaylon Smith, but I think WR is a more pressing need. Of course, Ray Farmer doesn't appear to like WRs.
13. Dallas Cowboys: Jaylon Smith, OLB, Notre Dame
If Smith fell to Dallas, Jerry Jones should do backflips. He'd be a stud in Rod Marinelli's defense. Of course, I wouldn't be surprised if Smith went higher than this. He's one of my favorite prospects in the the draft.
14. Oakland Raiders: Myles Jack, OLB, UCLA
Jack and Khalil Mack would give the Raiders one of the, if not the, best LB duos in the NFL. He's already turned pro, and should be a first rounder even with his knee injury.
15. Philadelphia Eagles: Taylor Decker, OT, Ohio State
The Eagles need offensive line help, as shown by their failure to effectively move the ball on offense. This might be a tad too high for Decker, but he's the last OTs truly worth a first rounder.
16. Washington Redskins: Kenny Clark, DT, UCLA
Clark continues to rise, and for good reason. This is more of a value pick for the Redskins, although the new regime likes to build from the trenches. The Redskins need a QB, plus secondary and offensive line help, but Clark gives them a building block on the defensive line.
17. St. Louis Rams: Michael Thomas, WR, Ohio State
The Rams need more weapons, and Thomas could be a first rounder.
18. San Diego Chargers: Shaq Lawson, OLB, Clemson
I liked the way Lawson played against Notre Dame, which is why he jumps into the first round. He just missed out last time. The Chargers have missed on pass rushers in recent drafts, but could change that by taking Lawson.
19. Indianapolis Colts: Su'a Cravens, S, USC
For the sake of Andrew Luck, the Colts need to upgrade their offensive line. However, there aren't any worth drafting at this point. Of course, the Colts will likely be in a position to take a guard at the end of round one in the real draft. Cravens is a 'tweener, as it's not clear if he's best as a safety or linebacker. Either way, the Colts could use his presence in the box.
20. New York Giants: Ezekiel Elliott, RB, Ohio State
Elliott is the clear top RB in this year's class and the only one truly worth a first round pick. Shane Vereen is a solid third down back, but Rashad Jennings and Andre Williams haven't looked like anything special this season.
21. Seattle Seahawks: Vadal Alexander, OG, LSU
The Seahawks offensive line has not look good this season. Alexander is the best OG in the draft and he'd be an upgrade right away.
22. Buffalo Bills: A'Shawn Robinson, DT, Alabama
The Bills are loaded at multiple positions, but could use some depth on the defensive line. Plus, Kevin Williams is aging. Robinson has Top 20 potential.
23. Minnesota Vikings: Josh Doctson, WR, TCU
The Vikings are close to being a dangerous team. Mike Wallace is a deep threat, but Teddy Bridgewater needs more weapons. Doctson fills that role and will likely rise as the Draft approaches, especially if he continues playing well. If you're wondering where Clemson WR Mike Williams is, I'm worried his neck injury will scare teams.
24. Pittsburgh Steelers: Reggie Ragland, ILB, Alabama
I like Lawrence Timmons, but he's got a $15 million cap hit next season and might not be back, especially at that price. Ragland can step in and replace Timmons. Corner is also a big need for the Steelers.
25. New York Jets: Jordan Jenkins, OLB, Georgia
Jenkins can provide the Jets with the pass rusher they need. I strongly considered Paxton Lynch, who as I write this is torching Ole Miss' defense. Don't be surprised if Lynch makes the next edition, after I've gotten a chance to watch more of him.
26. Carolina Panthers: Germain Ifedi, OT, Texas A&M
The Panthers should not be starting Michael Oher. Cam Newton needs better protection.
27. Arizona Cardinals: Shilique Calhoun, OLB, Michigan State
The Cardinals need another pass rusher and Calhoun could be a first rounder.
28. Atlanta Falcons: Darron Lee, LB, Ohio State
Lee is a Ryan Shazier clone. The Falcons need help at LB and Lee would be great value and fit at this point.
29. Denver Broncos: DeForest Buckner, DE, Oregon
The Broncos could use an offensive lineman, but the pickings are slim. With limited needs, the Broncos can take the best player on the board. That's Buckner, who would be a great fit in Denver's 3-4 scheme.
30. Cincinnati Bengals: Andrew Billings, DT, Baylor
Billings is the best defensive player on Baylor, and yes, that includes Shawn Oakman. Billings would be an incredible compliment to Geno Atkins.
31. Green Bay Packers: Austin Johnson, DL, Penn State
The Packers could lose Mike Daniels this offseason. Even if they bring him back, adding some more depth won't hurt. Another LB could be an option too.
32. New England Patriots: No Draft Pick
The Patriots were stripped of their first round pick as punishment for deflating footballs.Back to the NFL Newsfeed