Here. We. Go.
The final mock. After weeks (ok months) of “research” (defined to include watching an endless supply of college game tape with fistfuls of chicken wings and buckets of Coors Light) it’s time to put our “knowledge” to work. So many questions heading into the Draft, so many rumors flying around; it’s hard to decipher what’s legit and what’s bullshit. But that’s why we’re here.
The question on everyone’s mind: Will Ginger King and Roid Rage continue their streak of more correct First Round picks than Kiper and McShay? Ginger please, we got this locked down. Anyway, on to the final mock.
|1||Cleveland Browns||Myles Garrett (Texas A&M)||DE|
|2||San Francisco||Solomon Thomas (Stanford)||DE|
|3||Chicago Bears||Jamal Adams (LSU)||S|
|4||Jacksonville Jaguars||Leonard Fournette (LSU)||RB|
|5||Tennessee Titans||O.J. Howard (Alabama)||TE|
|6||NY Jets||Jonathon Allen (Alabama)||DE|
|7||Los Angeles Chargers||Mike Williams (Clemson)||WR|
|8||Carolina Panthers||Christian McCaffrey (Stanford)||RB|
|9||Cincinnati Bengals||Derek Barnett (Tennessee)||DE|
|10||Buffalo Bills||Marshon Lattimore (OSU)||CB|
|11||New Orleans Saints||Taco Charlton (Michigan)||DE|
|12||Cleveland Browns||Mitchell Trubisky (UNC)||QB|
|13||Arizona Cardinals||Patrick Mahomes (Texas Tech)||QB|
|14||Philadelphia Eagles||Gareon Conley (OSU)||CB|
|15||Indianapolis Colts||Malik Hooker (OSU)||S|
|16||Baltimore Ravens||Corey Davis (Western Michigan)||WR|
|17||Washington Redskins||Reuben Foster (Alabama)||LB|
|18||Tennessee Titans||Haasan Reddick (Temple)||LB|
|19||Tampa Bay Bucs||Dalvin Cook (FSU)||RB|
|20||Denver Broncos||Ryan Ramcyk (Wisconsin)||OL|
|21||Detroit Lions||David Njoku (Miami)||TE|
|22||Miami Dolphins||Zach Cunningham (Vanderbilt)||LB|
|23||New York Giants||Garett Bolles (Utah)||OL|
|24||Oakland Raiders||Jarad Davis (Florida)||LB|
|25||Houston Texans||Cam Robinson (Alabama)||OL|
|26||Seattle Seahawks||Kevin King (Washington)||CB|
|27||Kansas City Chiefs||Marlon Humphrey (Alabama)||CB|
|28||Dallas Cowboys||Adoree Jackson (USC)||CB|
|29||Green Bay Packers||TJ Watt (Wisconsin)||LB|
|30||Pittsburgh Steelers||Jabrill Peppers (Michigan)||S|
|31||Atlanta Falcons||Charles Harris (Missouri)||LB|
|32||New Orleans Saints||John Ross (Washington)||WR|
Instant Analysis: Obviously, this is not how the First Round will shake out, as trades will throw everything off…and we think there will be a lot of trades. Potentially starting at #2 with the Niners. I also think another team looking to trade down is Tennessee at 5. I think there’s no way the Browns come out of the First Round without Myles Garrett and Mitchell Trubisky. I think the Browns will take Myles at #1, and then find a way to climb back into the Top 10. Perfect trade would be with the Titans. Keep your eye on that.
Another trading spot will be the end of the First Round. I wouldn’t be surprised to see a team at the top of Round 2 (say, Chicago or Cleveland if they somehow managed to screw up and not get Trubisky) trade into the bottom of the First Round to grab a quarterback. But why would they do that? Simple. All draft picks are required to sign a 4 year contract…but only First Round picks have a team option for a fifth year. If you feel that there’s a player out there (usually a qb) that you’re in love with, it’s better to draft them in the bottom of the first than the top of the second. If you’re right (and let’s be honest, all GMs think they’re right), you get them for an extra year at a good price. If you’re wrong, well then you won’t be around to not exercise the option. Win-win.
Elsewhere, I’ve had Njoku to the Giants forever, and for my own selfish reasons I hope he ends up there. But the Giants have a terrible time keeping their picks a secret. There’s either a front office leak, or someone like to hit the “reply all” button on emails, but there have been multiple drafts where teams have traded up ahead of the Giants to draft the player they really want. In 2012, the Bucs traded up to get Doug Martin. Last year, the Titans and the Bears traded up to get ahead of the Giants to draft Jack Conklin and Leonard Floyd, respectively, the Giant’s top 2 coveted players. This year, I think the G-Men are in love with Njoku and (dark horse) Zach Cunningham. I know they haven’t drafted a first round linebacker in 30+ years but that doesn’t mean they haven’t tried (see Floyd, Leonard). I think they lose out on both of them this year and “settle” for Bolles, which isn’t much of a settle, seeing as how he would immediately compete for the left tackle position.
Big question is how much will “character concerns” affect draft status? There are a handful of first round talent players – Jabrill Peppers, Reuben Foster, Gareon Conley, Joe Mixon, etc. I still think that Mixon doesn’t get drafted tonight, because…um, that video. But the others? I don’t think it affects them that much. That reminds me: Hey rookies, change your social media passwords today. You don’t want this to appear around 7:45 pm tonight: