Mock Draft 2.0

5 weeks into the NFL season, I knew I had to write up another Mock Draft. The top of the draft order is already taking shape, with the Giants, Falcons, and Jets trying to get the first pick, at least I hope that’s what their goal is.

In the College Football world, we’ve had 4 weeks of ACC and Big 12 play, and two weeks of the SEC. Most of the prospects have pretty much maintained their draft status so far. Although, to be fair, a lot of the top prospects haven’t played yet, either due to opt outs or their conference having not started the season yet.

If everything stays the same with the draft order and my mock draft is accurate, get ready for some major shakeups in the NFL, particularly with the QB position. This mock draft is heavy with quarterbacks, offensive linemen, wide receivers, and cornerbacks. As usual during the season, the order on all of my mock drafts are based on the up-to-date draft order listed on Tankathon.

1) New York Giants

Trevor Lawrence, QB, Clemson

The Giants just drafted Daniel Jones at 6 overall in 2019, but if the Giants end up at the first overall pick, this is the move they have to make. They can probably get back some picks for Jones, somewhere around a second and fifth rounder. Lawrence is my top ranked QB, second ranked overall player, and has been the projected first overall pick for this draft for several years now. The Giants could take Oregon OT Penei Sewell or trade this pick away, but trading Jones and taking Lawrence would be the right move.

2) Atlanta Falcons

Micah Parsons, LB, Penn State

The Falcons don’t need to move on from Matt Ryan, and a dead cap hit of $50 million in 2021 makes that conversation a non-starter anyway. The offensive side of the ball still appears to be set, so they will need to look at their defense. Micah Parsons is the top ranked defensive player on my Big Board. It would be very unusual for a linebacker to be drafted this highly though, so I don’t really expect it to happen. The best option for the Falcons, if they are picking at this spot, is to trade out to a quarterback needy team and gather as much draft capital as possible.

3) New York Jets

Trey Lance, QB, North Dakota State University

Similarly to the Giants, if the Jets are in this spot, they will need to move on from Sam Darnold. Yes, the coaching for Darnold has been rough, to put it nicely, but Darnold also hasn’t shown very much to be excited about. Trey Lance does show a lot of excitement on the field. Just like the Giants with Daniel Jones, Darnold could fetch somewhere around a second and fifth round pick, meaning the Jets can lock up Trey Lance here, and have two second round picks to supply him with weapons.

4) Los Angeles Chargers

Penei Sewell, OT, Oregon

The best prospect in this draft class, Penei Sewell takes the “QB needy teams and good QB prospects” slide to the fourth overall spot. The Chargers would be leaping with joy to land Sewell here, and that’s nothing compared to how excited Herbert would be to be reunited with his college left tackle. The Chargers offensive line is still quite woeful after years of minimal effort to make it better. Now is the chance, with your QB of the future entering his second year and the top left tackle landing in your lap.

5) Washington Football Team

Justin Fields, QB, Ohio State

Stop me if you’ve heard this before, a young QB didn’t pan out so the team is drafting early again. This situation is slightly different than the Giants’ and the Jets’, as Washington has already moved on from Dwayne Haskins. They can replace him in this draft with the guy who replaced him under center at Ohio State after he went pro. We still haven’t seen Fields play yet this season, but even if he didn’t play at all, I’d feel comfortable drafting him this high with the tape we already have on him. Washington won’t get anywhere near the same draft capital that the Giants and Jets will get for their quarterbacks, but it doesn’t really matter in this situation. It’s best to move on early as soon as you’ve realized the mistake, than holding on for a few more years of lackluster play on the field.

6) Minnesota Vikings

Shaun Wade, CB, Ohio State

The Vikings have a young defense that has already shown flashes of greatness, but they still need to add more talent to that side of the ball. Shaun Wade should be a lock in the top 10, and I’m extremely excited that he decided to play this year after the Big Ten announced they would have a season. With a full season of tape as an outside cornerback, I firmly believe Wade will not only clement himself as the top prospect at his position in this draft, but one of the better cornerback prospects of the last few years.

7) Jacksonville Jaguars

Dillon Radunz, OT, North Dakota State University

The Jaguars have some pieces put together to compete in games, but they’re still missing a few pieces to actually win those games. The biggest one is at left tackle. I thought they would fill that spot in the last Draft with their two first round picks, but they decided to go with an edge rusher and a cornerback, and I can’t blame them as both of those guys look pretty good so far. Before the season started, I assumed the Jags would be the worst team in the league and Minshew would be benched at some point. They certainly does not look like the case as of now. Minshew is having a pretty good season so far and is making the case to be the long-term answer at quarterback in Jacksonville. He will need to put together a few more wins to solidify that, but he’s impressed me so far.

8) Miami Dolphins (via HOU)

Marvin Wilson, DL, Florida State

The Dolphins are one of the best up-and-coming teams in the NFL. They’ve quickly vastly improved their roster in just one offseason, adding a lot of players to their defense and their QB of the future in Tua Tagovailoa. They still have a hole in the middle of their defensive line, that Marvin Wilson would fill perfectly. He’s my second ranked defensive player and a dominant force on the defensive line. Not only is he a gap stuffer against the run, he is one of the best pass rushers in this draft class.

9) Detroit Lions

Gregory Rousseau, EDGE, Miami

Speaking of great pass rushers, Rousseau is the best pass rusher in this draft class. He opted out of the 2020 college football season, but the tape he already had is enough for us to realize his potential. The Lions have tried to address their pass rush the past few seasons, but it just hasn’t worked out. They added the top cornerback in last years draft in Jeff Okudah, and now they can add the top pass rusher in this class to their struggling defense.

10) Denver Broncos

Sam Cosmi, OT, Texas

The Broncos aggressively upgraded their offensive weapons in the last two drafts, but their offensive line has still gone ignored, for the most part. Sam Cosmi can come in and start on the right side for his first season, before permanently taking over the left tackle position the following year. While this offense has some serious potential, they will only go as far as their offensive line will take them.

11) Philadelphia Eagles

Ja’Marr Chase, WR, LSU

The Eagles have some serious problems. They may end up in the playoffs this season, winning a very weak NFC East division with Dak Prescott now out for the year for the Cowboys. But they will most likely get easily handled in the Wild Card round. QB Carson Wentz has been shockingly bad; injuries and age are destroying their offensive line; the receiving corps is also banged up, but doesn’t have enough fire power; and the defense is still quite bad. Picking in this spot, the Eagles have a chance to grab the best offensive weapon in this draft class. Adding Chase to last year’s first round pick in WR Jalen Reagor, the Eagles would instantly be an offense to reckon with.

12) Cincinnati Bengals

Alex Leatherwood, OT, Alabama

I think it’s safe to say the Bengals have found their QB of the future in Joe Burrow. Now, they need to protect him. He has already taken too many hard hits, as well as gaining the habit of not trusting his offensive line, which is a horrible habit for a young QB. We saw what happened with Andrew Luck, with the Colts not addressing the offensive line for too long and cutting Luck’s career short due to too many lingering injuries. Obviously, nobody wants to see the same thing happen to Burrow. There are questions about Leatherwood needing to kick inside due to shorter arms, but I think he’ll be fine at tackle. Worst case scenario, the Bengals would be getting the best interior offensive lineman in this draft class.

13) Miami Dolphins

Jaylen Waddle, WR, Alabama

The second pick of this draft for the Dolphins after adding DL Marvin Wilson, the Dolphins have the opportunity to reunite Tagovailoa with one of his college receivers in Waddle. Adding Waddle next to DeVante Parker makes me excited for this offense. Waddle is just pure speed; it’s hard not to see Henry Ruggs in him, but I think Waddle is even better. Not to get too ahead of myself, but the Dolphins adding a running back in the second round would instantly make this one of the better offenses in the NFL.

14) San Francisco 49ers

Caleb Farley, CB, Virginia Tech

There is no other way to put it, the 49ers got bit by the injury bug this season; but this injury bug has taken on the form of a Murder Hornet. The will get back their offensive weapons, running backs, and pass rushers later this season or for next season. The real problem on this roster is the secondary. Richard Sherman is also hurt, but he’s also aging and could be much slower next season. Beyond Sherman, I’m really not a fan of this secondary. The guys they have aren’t near the top of their position, and the 49ers haven’t really invested in the secondary the past few drafts. Caleb Farley opted out of this college football season, but the tape he already has shows a prospect who should be drafted in the top 15. He can pair with, and learn from, Richard Sherman for a year or two and gain the skills to be a great cornerback in this league.

15) New England Patriots

Rondale Moore, WR, Purdue

Do I think Bill Belichick will address the biggest position of need for the Patriots in the first round? No, I do not. Because Belichick never seems to go the obvious route in the draft, but I will. The Patriots desperately need weapons on offense and Rondale Moore is one of the best playmakers in this draft class. If the Patriots stick with Cam Newton next season, Newton, Julian Edelman, and Moore would make a great offensive trio.

16) Carolina Panthers

Trey Smith, OL, Tennessee

The Panthers are one of the surprise teams this season, and they’ve won 3 straight games without their best player in Christian McCaffrey. Their offensive line has played well so far, but they can use a boost on the inside not just for next season, but for the future. They drafted 100% defensive players in the 2020 NFL Draft, so they will need to look more into he offensive side in this draft. Teddy Bridgewater looks like the future at QB, they’re obviously set at running back, and they have good receiving options. They can look at improving their offensive line.

17) Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Quincy Roche, EDGE, Miami

The Bucs are going through some growing pains and fighting through injuries, but they have one of the best rosters in the league. However, they are still missing that great pass rush. Shaquille Barrett has a breakout season last year, but that production hasn’t kept up this year. The Bucs will most likely have a lot of leads, so a great pass rush is needed to shut down the opposing teams when they pass a lot to catch up.

18) Indianapolis Colts

Sage Surratt, WR, Wake Forest

I hate to say it, but it T.Y. Hilton just does not look like the same player he once was. The Colts have recently invested in receivers, but not in the first round. Their offense is just boring to watch and they need an infusion of play-making ability. Surratt can step in Day One and provide that for them. Not only is he an exciting receiver after the catch, but he is great at coming down with 50-50 balls, something Philip Rivers likes to throw a lot.

19) Dallas Cowboys

Patrick Surtain II, CB, Alabama

The Cowboys have major defensive problems. Their offense is explosive so opposing teams are forced to pass a lot to catch up, and they’ve been able to do that with ease. The Cowboys have good defensive pieces in their front seven, but their secondary is pretty bad. They can add the second best content back in this class here in Patrick Surtain II.

20) New Orleans Saints

DeVonta Smith, WR, Alabama

Without Michael Thomas, the Saints offense has to go through Alvin Kamara to really get anything going. They need more offensive weapons and Smith can provide that instantly. You might remember him as the Alabama receiver that caught 4 touchdown passes against Ole Miss last year. That’s the kind of explosiveness that Smith can immediately provide to the Saints and take some weight off of Thomas and Kamara’s shoulders.

21) Las Vegas Raiders

Tyson Campbell, CB, Georgia

The Raiders just put together one of the biggest upsets of the season so far in defeating the Chiefs. But it is the Chiefs I have in mind with this mock draft selection. You have to beat the teams in your division first, and the Chiefs have the best passing offense in the league. Although the Raiders won, they gave up 32 points. Tyson Campbell is a long corner with speed, so he can keep up with Tyreek Hill, but can also get his hand in the way when he is beat. The Raiders can pair up last year’s first round draft pick in CB Damon Arnette with Campbell and have an elite duo to match up against the Chiefs offense for years to come.

22) Arizona Cardinals

Cade Mays, OT, Tennessee

I really thought the Cardinals were going to take a left tackle in last year’s draft with all of those great tackle prospects in the top 10, but Isaiah Simmons fell into their laps, so I can’t blame them. However, they still have one of the worst offensive lines and they absolutely need to improve it. Their offensive has so much potential, but I’m afraid it’s limited until they provide more protection up front for Kyler Murray. Cade Mays can potentially step in at left tackle right away, but he can definitely start at right tackle for his first season before making the switch back to left in his second year.

23) Kansas City Chiefs

Creed Humphrey, OL, Oklahoma

As usual, the Chiefs don’t have many needs. However, the interior of their offensive line is quite bad. They had some rough spots last season, but they didn’t address it in the draft or in free agency. Creed Humphrey is Ana bailouts mauler that can serve as Patrick Mahomes’ center for the next 10 years. Not to mention create clearer rushing lanes for Clyde Edwards-Helaire.

24) Baltimore Ravens

Rashod Bateman, WR, Minnesota

Typically, the Ravens get out to an early lead and dominate heir opponent. But when they have to come back from a deficit, their offense looks very pedestrian. The best answer is also the most obvious answer, their running game is much better than their passing game. Lamar Jackson is a huge threat on the ground and can pick apart defenses at times, but he still shows limitations in the passing game. The Ravens need to surround him with better weapons if they want a real shot at the Super Bowl. Rashod Bateman is a great fit in Baltimore and would be a fun target for Jackson.

25) Chicago Bears

Jalen Mayfield, OT, Michigan

One of the most surprising teams this season, the Bears seem to be winning by sheer serene inaction. This offense is still shockingly bad, unless they’re down double digits in the fourth quarter. The Bears have a lot of good weapons, but their quarterback and offensive line play are still inconsistent, at best. At this point in the draft, the Bears aren’t finding their QB of the future. Instead, they can help fix the offensive line. Mayfield only has one season of starting college ball under his belt, but thankfully he decided to opt back into the season after the Big Ten announced the start of the season this fall. This year will be huge for him, but I think he’ll come out as a first round prospect.

26) Cleveland Browns

Jevon Holland, S, Oregon

The Browns have attempted to fix their secondary with Denzel Ward, Greedy Williams, and Grant Delpit, but it’s still not enough. They have a good and explosive offense and a great front seven on their defense, but their secondary gives up too many points. With Syracuse S Andre Cisco our for the year with an injury, Holland becomes the new best safety in this draft class, and he deserves to be in the first round. Holland is Oregon’s defensive leader. He has a ton of range and he also has the versatility to line up in the slot. The Browns have the pieces on this defense to make Holland a perfect addition.

27) Jacksonville Jaguars (via LAR)

Travis Etienne, RB, Clemson

Etienne is certainly better than 27th overall, but running backs just aren’t as valued early in draft’s as most other positions. In fact, I usually don’t mock running backs in the first round at all. But Etienne is just that good. Whenever Clemson is on offense, you just can’t pull your eyes away from the TV because every time Etienne touches the ball, something amazing can happen, and it usually does. I know the Jaguars found RB James Robinson in the undrafted pool of the 2020 NFL Draft, but I don’t believe his production will keep up. Etienne would immediately make the Jags offense much more explosive, plus they already got their left tackle earlier in this draft in Radunz. I love this fit.

28) Buffalo Bills

Kyle Pitts, TE, Florida

The Bills offense has been seemingly unstoppable at times this season. Take away the Titans game form this last week, and the Bills have been able to score at will. They are still missing the tight end though that can really pull everything together. Kyle Pitts has been simply dominant so far and looks like the clear top tight end prospect. He’s really just a big receiver listed as a tight end, but he’s still exactly what the Bills need. Josh Allen doesn’t have a lot of options besides Stefan Diggs, and adding Pitts to this team would surely make him very happy.

29) Green Bay Packers

Chris Olave, WR, Ohio State

Yet another year of mocking a wide receiver to the Packers in the first round, lets see if it actually happens this time. Chris Olave has an amazing connection with his college QB in Justin Fields, and I’m sure the Packers would want to replicate that in Green Bay. Olave would be an excellent second receiver to DeVante Adams and would finally give them a first round receiver to throw to.

30) Pittsburgh Steelers

Kyle Trask, QB, Florida

We all saw how things happened in Pittsburgh after Ben Roethlisberger missed a majority of the season with an injury. Big Ben isn’t getting any younger, and the Steelers need to start preparing for a future without him. Trask is the clear-cut fourth best QB in this draft class and a great option to groom for a few seasons until Roethlisberger decides to call it quits. Trask has exploded in the Gators’ offense this season and his tape shows a ton of potential. This is just a perfect landing spot for both sides.

31) Tennessee Titans

Joseph Ossai, EDGE, Texas

The Titans are still one of the top teams in the league, yet they still are struggling to find a consistent pass rush. They landed the top late addition this offseason in Jadeveon Clowney, but he still hasn’t recorded a sack this season. They also added veteran Vic Beasley, who had one phenomenal season in Atlanta but hasn’t done much since. I’m a big fan of the young pass rusher Harold Landry, but he still lacks the consistency I’m looking for. Adding Ossai to this group would make them versatile, fresh, and dangerous. This is one of my favorite fits in this mock draft.

32) New York Jets (via SEA)

Najee Harris, RB, Alabama

Here I am, breaking my “no running backs in the first round” rule yet again. But I just love Najee Harris too much to not take him in the first round. The Jets just released Le’Veon Bell and the future at running back for them is muddy, at best. Whether they keep Sam Darnold or take a QB early in this draft, the QB of the Jets needs some weight lifted of their shoulders. Ideally, they can land a good receiver here, but haven’t used up al of my first round receivers, Harris is too good to pass up. Harris can dominate a defense and take over a game, exactly the kind of thing a young QB needs lined up next to him in the backfield.

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