Here. We. Go! It’s Mock Draft season! The first, second and third waves of free agency have come and gone. We’re down to depth-chart fillers like Matt Cassel and Troy Niklas. NFL front offices are working OT to finalize their draft boards, find potential trade partners and send out as many false signals as possible. Let’s dive into the top half of the first round, shall we:
|1||Cleveland Browns||Sam Darnold (USC)||QB|
|2||New York Giants||Josh Rosen (UCLA)||QB|
|3||New York Jets||Baker Mayfield (Oklahoma)||QB|
|4||Cleveland Browns||Bradley Chubb (NC State)||DE|
|5||Denver Broncos||Saquon Barkley (PSU)||RB|
|6||Indianapolis Colts||Quenton Nelson (Notre Dame)||OL|
|7||Tampa Bay Bucs||Josh Allen (Wyoming)||QB|
|8||Chicago Bears||Denzel Ward (OSU)||CB|
|9||San Francisco 49ers||Derwin James (FSU)||S|
|10||Oakland Raiders||Maurice Hurst (Michigan)||DL|
|11||Miami Dolphins||Roquan Smith (Georgia)||LB|
|12||Buffalo Bills||Trumaine Edmunds (VA Tech)||LB|
|13||Washington Redskins||Josh Jackson (Iowa)||CB|
|14||Green Bay Packers||Harold Landry (BC)||LB|
|15||Arizona Cardinals||Vita Vea (Washington)||DT|
|16||Baltimore Ravens||Minkah Fitzpatrick (Alabama)||CB|
It’s no secret, this years crop of QB prospects have NFL talent evaluators creaming their pants. It’s the reason the Cleveland Browns have literally been tanking for the last two years (1-31, hullo!). It’s the reason they passed on passed on Wentz, Trubisky and Watson. They are taking a QB first overall. They were ALWAYS going to take a QB first overall. Darnold has the most upside; time will tell if the weight of Cleveland suck will crush this kids soul or not.
Without mentioning his name, this is the three-year average from the Giants starting QB:
372/596 (62%), 3977 yards, 27 TDs, 14 Ints, 0.333 benchings
Yikes. If I ever die like that old dude in the DaVinci Code, and I need to pass on the message that my evil killer was in some way mediocre (a word I clearly can’t spell without spell-checker), I’m going to scrawl that stat line on my dying corpse. I’ll most likely be in a Tebowing pose as well, just putting that out there.
Let’s remember, those state are with throwing to the best WR in football (most of the time). Eli’s also 37. It’s time to put him out to pasture and draft the QB of the future. The G-Men have no intention of picking in the top 5 again any time soon, and somehow I doubt the sales pitch to convince Shurmur to coach the team was: “we’re going to NOT let you pick the QB you want to groom for the future AND trade way the best offensive weapon in the game”. The Giants will either draft Rosen/Mayfield or trade down. And they won’t move Beckham. The trade talk is a weak attempt to try to gain some leverage in negotiations. Trading Jason Pierre Lobster Claw was more about trading that contract than it was moving that 7-and-a-half fingered freak show. OBJ ’bout to get paid!
Clearly the Jets have no problem with sloppy seconds (or thirds)! Some things never change. It’s not really a stretch to envision the Jets picking the one bust QB from this class, while 4 other guys go on to have HOF careers. Can’t blame the Jets for trying, they were probably going to fuck up all those second round picks they gave to the Colts anyways. I love Mayfield the QB prospect, but I’ll flip on that crotch-grabbing asshole as soon as he holds up that green jersey.
So Peter King said a “friend” of John Dorsey’s (Cleveland’s GM) said the Browns won’t trade out of No. 4. Luckily (for my wife), I wasn’t reading SI during breakfast, because I would have been shooting milk and Cheerios out of my nose from laughing so hard. Seriously Pete. You’re citing a “friend”. Ummm, was this friend named Keter Ping?
I have the Browns taking Chubb at 4 (mostly because I don’t bother with mocking trades). It’s cool to think about Chubb and Myles Garrett on the same D-line. Until you realize it’s Cleveland, and neither of those guys can cover Antonio Brown, so they’ll still get creamed by the Steelers.
Denver is the true wildcard. Correction: John Elways ego is the true wildcard. Horse-teeth still thinks he has an elite defense and that Case Keenum is good. John Elway backed QBs fall into two distinct groups: Those named Peyton Manning, and those that suck at playing quarterback (see: Osweiler, Paxton Lynch, Trevor Semen (sic)). Which category do you think Case Keenum will fall into?!? I’ve got the Broncos taking the “just one player away from contending” guy in Barkley. On the other hand, Elway gets mega stiffys for QB’s over 6′-6″, so can he resists the urge to lasso in Josh Allen?
In five years from now we are going to look back and realize that the Colts were the true laughing-stock of the league, not the Browns. Since 1998….(don’t grab your calculator, it’s 20 years ago)…the Colts have had EITHER Peyton Manning or Andrew Luck under contract. They’ve got 1 Superbowl victory to show for it (if I had an editor he’d probably add a note here saying that Superbowl victory was against Rex Freaking Grossman. Not sayin, just sayin. Good point fake editor!). The Colts weren’t able to protect Manning and he literally broke his neck [insert Peyton Manning neck and/or forehead joke here]….and they are trying their damnedest to double down and get Andrew Luck killed on the field of play. Josh McDaniels got one peek behind the curtain and sabotaged his own career instead of joining this clownshow. I’ve got the Colts drafting the best guard prospect I’ve ever evaluated…..which means he’ll probably be out of the league in five years.
I don’t think the Bucs take a QB at 7, but it seems like the ideal spot (in this mock) for the Bills, Dolphins or Cardinals to move up and grab Allen (the last “blue chip” QB prospect).
Denzel Ward is my highest rated corner, but whomever lands Jackson and Fitzpatrick won’t be disappointed.
Roquan Smith is my favorite player to watch in this draft. He’s all over the place.
Stay tuned for picks 17 -32……(but not really, because I’ll probably move on to Mock 2.0 and start all over from the top).