|NFL Mock Draft – 3/30/2017|
|1. Cleveland Browns
DE – Myles Garrett: Texas A&M
Cleveland has shown little to no indication that they are willing to move out of the first spot in the draft and have not backed away from their opinion of Myles Garrett being head and shoulders above any other prospect in this class. I’m inclined to take their apparent view point at face value and lock Garrett in as the #1 overall selection in the 2017 draft.
|2. San Francisco 49ers
DE – Solomon Thomas: Stanford
The more I compare Solomon Thomas and Jonathan Allen the more I believe that Thomas is clearly the better player when it comes to defensive lineman in this draft class. The 49ers need to add versatile lineman that can play both the end and the interior depending on down and distance. Solomon will be an instant impact player at the next level and an immediate starter for San Francisco.
previous pick:: (NYJ) QB – Mitchell Trubisky: North Carolina
|3. Los Angeles Chargers (via CHI)
DT – Jonathan Allen: Alabama
The Chargers decide to pull the trigger and make the move up the board to go after what many analysts view as the top prospect on the defensive line. Making a move to the 4-3 opens up the need for an interior rusher to pair with last years first round selection, Joey Bosa. The premium to move up in this draft may be on a bit of a reduction as no clear cut options at quarterback have emerged, making this move for Los Angeles a bit easier to digest.
previous pick:: (CHI) DE – Solomon Thomas: Stanford
|4. Cleveland Browns (via JAC)
QB – DeShaun Watson: Clemson
The Browns loaded up with an extra second round pick for the price of $16,000,000 thanks to the Brock Osweiler trade. The have all the ammunition they need to move back up in the first round and take their pick at quarterback. It’s difficult to gauge which direction the Browns may go in but they have shown some interest in DeShaun.
previous pick:: (JAC) RB – Leonard Fournette: L.S.U.
Fan of the Browns? Check out Matt McKinnie’s interview with tight end Gary Barnidge – CLICK HERE
|5. Tennessee Titans
DE – Derek Barnett: Tennessee
The Titans stay in state and go after an edge rusher with athletic question marks in Derek Barnett. With only two years left on both starting OLBs Brian Orakpo and Derek Morgan to go along with what looks like a potentially empty cupboard for depth the Titans can fix up one side of the edge long term with the drafting of Barnett.
previous pick:: (LAC via CIN) S – Jamal Adams, L.S.U.
|6. New York Jets
QB – Mitchell Trubisky: N. Carolina
The Jets can hold their current spot and still come away with at least one option at quarterback and it just happens to be one that they covet. Trubisky’s pro day left some people questioning what exactly his true worth is in this draft but New York has little choice but to try and fix the most important position on the field early in this draft.
previous pick:: (SF) WR – Mike Williams: Clemson
|7. Chicago Bears (via LAC)
CB – Marshon Lattimore: Ohio State
The Bears are able to move back and acquire more ammunition in this draft while still being able to target a position of need with the best player available at corner in this draft class, Marshon Lattimore. Chicago’s secondary is a disaster an I would not be surprised if they addressed the position with multiple picks.
previous pick:: (LAC) S – Malik Hooker: Ohio State
|8. Carolina Panthers
S – Jamal Adams: L.S.U.
It’s surprising how little thought is being put into Carolina going after a safety in this draft but there is an obvious need. I fully expect them to go after one at some point in this draft, it’s just a question of whether or not they consider it a solid return on the 8th overall pick. Jamal Adams is our highest ranked safety and a top 5 player on our big board. I believe this to be a solid fit for player and team.
previous pick:: (NO) CB – Marshon Lattimore: Ohio State
|9. Arizona Cardinals (via CIN)
TE – O.J. Howard: Alabama
O.J. Howard is a top five talent in this draft but the position he plays may see him slide a little in the draft. The Cardinals recognize the opportunity to move up and acquire an immediate starter with one of the highest ceilings in this class while solidifying the position for years to come.
previous pick:: (CIN) DT – Jonathan Allen, Alabama
|10. Buffalo Bills
S – Jabrill Peppers: Michigan
It’s a pick that everyone groaned over when I read it out loud, but it was relayed to me last weekend that the Bills would like to either move up for a quarterback or down for picks and, you guessed it, Jabrill Peppers. Probably the most polarizing pick in the draft, Peppers is a plus athlete with question marks all around including what position will he actually play at the next level. This is a reach pick and I like it just as little as everyone in the room.
previous pick:: CB – Marlon Humphrey, Alabama
|11. New Orleans Saints
CB – Marlon Humphrey: Alabama
New Orleans has several holes on defense that they could potentially address at the top of the draft, however the availability of cornerback Marlon Humphrey at #11 overall may make the decision for them. Humphrey has the proper build and skill set to become a day one starter with pro bowl potential.
previous pick:: (CAR) OT – Garrett Bolles, Utah
|12. Jacksonville Jaguars (via CLE)
OT – Cameron Robinson: Alabama
Let the boiling rumor mill spill over as not once, but twice this week I’ve been told that the Jaguars are targeting offensive tackle Cameron Robinson of Alabama with their first pick in this draft. This is obviously a projection on what the Jaguars would expect him to develop into as Robinson’s game is not yet at the return value of this price but considering the current state of Jacksonville’s offensive line compared to the rest of the roster this pick does make a great deal of sense.
previous pick:: (CLE) CB – Gareon Conley, Ohio State
|13. Cincinnati Bengals (via ARI)
RB – Leonard Fournette: L.S.U.
The Bengals recognize that one of the best ways to keep Andy Dalton an effective passer is to have a truly dynamic ground game. Jeremy Hill and Gio Bernard are both trending in the wrong direction and the loss of Rex Burkhead in free agency only amplifies the need. There are also reports emerging that Cincinnati will be targeting a running back in this draft as early as pick #9. Fournette makes too much sense at this spot for Cincy to pass.
previous pick:: (ARI) ILB – Reuben Foster, Alabama
|14. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (via PHI)
TE – David Njoku: Miami
Tampa Bay makes the move up in the draft in order to secure a targeted player in tight end, David Njoku. It has been repeated to us since the combine that the Buccaneers will strongly consider all options available to make a run at Njoku and it makes a lot of sense. Considering the move for DeSean Jackson in free agency to pair with star wide receiver, Mike Evans, the Bucs could open the entire field up for Jameis Winston by adding a pass catching and potential game breaking threat to the middle of the field.
previous pick:: (PHI) CB – Chidobe Awuzie: Colorado
|15. Indianapolis Colts
ILB – Reuben Foster: Alabama
If the 2017 season were to start right now the Colts would be starting Sean Spence and Antonio Morrison at interior linebacker. The position has to be addressed early in this draft and with Reuben Foster available at the fourteenth pick the Colts are able to draft an immediate starter. If not for character concerns, most former and current scouts we have spoke to would consider Foster the top true linebacker in this draft class.
previous pick:: (IND) LB – Haason Reddick: Temple
|16. Baltimore Ravens
DE/OLB – Taco Charlton: Michigan
The Ravens will need to continue to add pieces for the future on defense and having a player that is viewed as a top 10 candidate fall to them at #16 would probably make for an easy decision. Taco Charlton has pass rushing ability that is only starting to show it’s potential and in a locker room with Terrell Suggs it’s easy to see him developing quickly.
previous pick:: OT – Cameron Robinson, Alabama
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|17. Washington Redskins
LB – Zach Cunningham: Vanderbilt
Zach Cunningham has shown his value to be rock solid throughout the pre-draft process and we consider him a first round lock. With the Redskins in need of talent at ILB we see this as an immediate return on the investment.
previous pick:: RB – Dalvin Cook: Florida State
|18. Tennessee Titans
WR – Corey Davis, Western Michigan
The Titans are showing some real interest in drafting wide receiver Corey Davis and with multiple picks in the first I would not be surprised if they pulled the trigger with #18. Davis has seen his stock slip some in certain circles but we still view him as the second best option at the position behind Isaiah “Zay” Jones.
previous pick:: (DET) TE – O.J. Howard, Alabama
|19. Philadelphia Eagles (via TB)
CB – Gareon Conley: Ohio State
The Eagles could consider quite a few options after moving back, but the most sense compared to value with what remains on the board would be corner back, Gareon Conley. The coverage skills are already there but questions regarding his ability to round out his game will be the only reason that Conley will fall down some in the first round.
previous pick:: (TB) DE – Derek Barnett: Tennessee
|20. Denver Broncos
OT – Ryan Ramczyk: Wisconsin
I’m still seeing an offensive lineman in the first round for the Broncos. Ramczyk happens to the most sense for Denver at this point in our latest mock.
|21. Detroit Lions
WR – Mike Williams: Clemson
The Lions don’t have a true #1 wide receiver for franchise quarterback, Matt Stafford. The option of Mike Williams filling that void would likely be too much for Detroit to pass up on. This would be a good fit and career jump-starter for Williams as he would be brought in to compete with Marvin Jones, a player that underwhelmed in 2016.
previous pick:: WR – Zay Jones: East Carolina
|22. Seattle Seahawks (via MIA)
OT – Garett Bolles: Utah
The Seahawks decide to pay the premium for moving up in the first so they can grab the most athletically gifted offensive lineman in this class, Garett Bolles. This is the type of pick that will end up in our final mock as a suggested selection as the team need, player style and value all align near perfectly for Seattle and this mock pick.
previous pick:: (MIA) DE – Taco Charlton: Michigan
|23. New York Giants
LB – Haason Reddick, Temple
Just how high Reddick will go in the first round is one of the more frequent questions we discuss here. It’s an interesting study in how to project players given their body of work, level of competition and athletic testing in Indianapolis. Our own metric has his value relative to a pick between selection 8 and 14 but most of the feedback we are getting from both current and former scouts have Haason placed closer to the end of the first.
previous pick:: TE – David Njoku: Miami
|24. Oakland Raiders
DT – Malik McDowell: Michigan State
The Raiders may be the best fit for a player that has motivational questions but what appears to be a very high ceiling. Malik McDowell had the opportunity to put himself squarely in the top half of the draft with a solid set of draft interviews, but it appears he may have done very little to improve his stock.
previous pick:: LB – Zach Cunningham: Vanderbilt
|25. Houston Texans
S – Malik Hooker: Ohio State
This is the farthest drop Malik Hooker has had in our mocks, but there are some rumors starting to surface that Malik’s projection has some real concerns in regards to how quickly he can fix the holes in his game for him to become more than just a center fielder.
previous pick:: QB – DeShaun Watson: Clemson
|26. Miami Dolphins (via SEA)
DE – Carl Lawson: Auburn
The Dolphins make the move back to add some picks to the arsenal and still find some high end talent to add to the defensive line with Carl Lawson. One of the stronger athletes at the point of attack in this draft class, Larson will have the opportunity to get meaningful stats and develop his game behind Cameron Wake.
previous pick:: OG – Forrest Lamp: Western Kentucky
|27. Kansas City Chiefs
QB – Patrick Mahomes: Texas Tech
This pick comes from the repeated theme that the Chiefs will look to address the quarterback position somewhere in this draft. While I’m hesitant to believe they will make that choice in the first round, the value on Mahomes is better than the #27 overall selection and if given the opportunity it may prove too tempting to pass on.
previous pick:: (ATL) DE – Carl Lawson: Auburn
|28. Dallas Cowboys
CB – Fabian Moreau: U.C.L.A.
The Cowboys will need to address their issues in the defensive backfield and find themselves in the situation of being able to draft a player that is rising up warboards quickly. Fabian Moreau has all the physical traits neccessary to become a lock down corner at the professional level, but there will be an adjustment period so the return on this investment may not be realized until the 2019 season.
previous pick:: WR – John Ross: Washington
|29. Green Bay Packers
OLB – T.J. Watt: Wisconsin
The links between Green Bay and T.J. Watt are starting to build, and there is definitely a first round tilt to the conversation. Watt has continued to boost his stock throughout the pre-draft process and has done enough to lock himself somewhere in the bottom of the first round.
previous pick:: DE – Malik McDowell: Michigan State
|30. Pittsburgh Steelers
LB – Raekwon McMillan: Ohio State
A source that we confer with on the Steelers has linked Raekwon McMillan to them in more than one discussion and it does make sense on some levels. Although there are those in the scouting community that view Raekwon as a potential first round selection, our own metric places him closer to a mid second round value.
previous pick:: CB – Adoree Jackson: U.S.C.
Fan of the Steelers? Check out Matt McKinnie’s interview with lineman Chris Hubbard – CLICK HERE
|31. Atlanta Falcons
OG – Forrest Lamp: Western Kentucky
The Falcons will look to add talent in the middle of the line at some point in the draft, but it may prove to be too difficult to pass up on the best interior prospect in this class, Forrest Lamp. There’s a strong possibility that Forrest goes before this pick so the value here is high and the team need/fit makes this a solid return on the investment.
previous pick:: (KC) CB – Fabian Moreau: U.C.L.A.
|32. New Orleans Saints (via NE)
DE – Charles Harris: Missouri
The Saints double down on defense in the first round by addressing a need on the defensive line. Charles Harris’ draft value is an interesting stock to chart as there have been speculations of a top 10 pick followed by projections that put him out of the first altogether. Going off of our own metric, this is still just a bit early for Harris but the team need and draft slot pair well together. Charles has the floor of a solid rotational defensive lineman early in his career with a ceiling that sees him developing into an every down defensive end with pro bowl potential.
previous pick:: (ARI) QB – Patrick Mahomes: Texas Tech