Many Expert 1st Round NFL Mock Draft!
By Team DFW!
This past week we collected 20 top fantasy minds and football fanatics to mock the NFL first round (with some of us taking on two teams) in a mock done via MFL. And here are the results sports fans!!
1.01 OT Laremy Tunsi, Mississippi (via Bryan Sweet): Areas of need: RT, CB The Titans filed several holes in free agency, shoring up the RB position with DeMarco Murray and helped the interior of the O-Line with the addition of Ben Jones at C. The team has openly said the #1 pick is up for trade, but I don’t see a player worthy of the cost to move into the slot unless a team is desperate for one of the top QBs. As such, I think the Titans stay put and get the top tackle on the board to protect its franchise QB. Tunsil will step in day one at LT and shift Taylor Lewan to RT, killing two birds with one stone. The only other consideration would be Jalen Ramsey, but putting together a solid line in front of Mariota is a more pressing concern.
1.02 DE Joey Bosa, Ohio State (via Luke Grilli): Everyone probably figured the Browns would go with Wentz here, but I can’t do it. Wentz may (or may not be) the best QB in a mediocre class. Instead of drafting QBs with no potential for long term success, why not go for a player who you can build around? Other than Jalen Ramsey, Joey Bosa may be the player to make the most impact from Day 1 and Edge Rusher is a major need for the Brownies. It also helps that he went to OSU which will make the Cleveland fans love him even more. Now…do I expect the Browns to make this move? No. I expect them to do Browns things by wasting an early pick and taking Carson Wentz 2nd overall, even though they have Josh McCown and RG3 on the roster already. Will RG3 turn his career around in Cleveland? Probably not, but he will have a better shot to do so if the Cleveland brain trust surrounds him with players that will make his life a lot easier.
1.03 FS/CB Jalen Ramsey, Florida State (via Nate Clever): SD needs major OL and secondary help. With top OL off the board and no trade offers made to move up SD selects the best player available that is 100 percent healthy and fills a huge need with Weddle moving on..
1.04 QB Carson Wentz, North Dakota State (via Gary Davenport): Wow. Did NOT expect to be put in this position. We have needs to fill (especially along the D-Line) and would have liked Bosa here, and a trade down would likely be in the cards were they permitted. In this exercise they aren’t, however. So the heir apparent to Antonio Ramiro Romo it is. How ’bout them Cowboys?
1.05 OLB Myles Jack, UCLA (via Robert Bell): Jack is the best player available and at position of need.
1.06 DE DeForest Buckner, Oregon (via Mike Semaniuk): If I’m Ozzie Newsome, I have a chub because I never pick this high. This as an opportunity to add a difference maker on the defensive side of the ball to continue with the defense wins mentality.
1.07 QB Jared Goff, California (via Bruce Kimbrough): With Kapernick up in the air at this time and with my first two pick already gone, the 49ers have to draft there future QB here. Goff is a great fit here having played at Cal and is already a favorite in the Bay Area and fits the 49ers Pro Style offence with a NFL arm with touch and quick release, Moves well in the pocket, Solid tools to a starting QB in the NFL.
1.08 OT Ronnie Stanley, Notre Dame (via Jamie Will): When I saw that Wentz didn’t go at 2, I was thinking that the Eagles’ brain trust had gotten their wish and that one of the top two QBs would fall into their laps at 8. But sure enough, the damn Cowboys had to ruin everything followed by the logical pick by Chip’s new boys at 7. Sitting at 8, the Eagles still have a wealth of opportunity because they have a dearth of top-end talent across the board. Particular needs include OT, RB, CB and I could choose from any of those right now. I made the safe pick and went with Stanley because the potential for long-term stability on the line trumped the more “sexy” picks, namely Zeke. Some reports have thrown ice cold water on Stanley’s outlook in the past week, but I still believe he is a strong option here with immense potential.
1.09 CB Vernon Hargreaves III, Florida (via Bill Cervi): If the draft plays out like ours did, the Bucs will face a very tough decision at 1.9. Honestly I would shop this pick with Elliot still on the board and the Giants up next. I bet there would be a team willing to move up and nab him. Absent a trade, the Bucs really need to address their deficiencies in their secondary and D-Line. I am going to go with Hargreaves here over Clemson DE Kevin Dodd. Hargreaves is not a burner, but he is an instinctive, explosive, quick twitch athlete with fantastic ball skills. He should jump into the starting line up day one and he has a chance to become a top 15 CB in the league.
1.10 WR Laquon Treadwell, Mississippi (via Jay Myers): I really didn’t expect Zeke to be here so the plan was to take Treadwell to play opposite Beckham to give them a more physical short to medium target to keep teams a bit more honest in coverage on ODB. The health of Cruz is still unknown and they lost Randle in FA so the cupboard is a bit bare. I think the more immediate need for them is another receiving option, so the pick is still Treadwell as I believe they look at RB in round 2 or something like RB like Jonathan Williams in the 3rd. While I might take Doctson over Treadwell in dynasty drafts I think Treadwell is the better fit for the Giants moving Cruz to the slot.
1.11 RB Ezekiel Elliott, Ohio State (via Andy at DynastyBlitz): With Tunsil and Stanley gone, the Bears decide that Langford (who they had already tried to leap frog with CJ Anderson) was not ready to be a full time starter, while the impressive Zeke is.
1.12 DE Shaq Lawson, Clemson (via Patrick Anderson): This comes as a no-brainer if Lawson indeed falls to the Saints. Violent hands and great ball awareness make him a great asset against both the pass and the run which is exactly what this abysmal offense needs. What he lacks in stature he makes up for in quickness and versatility locking him as a day 1 starter in New Orleans.
1.13 OT Jack Conklin, Michigan State (via Roto-Bob): Spence on the Board hurts, but with too much $ tied up on defense now, we have to ignore the CB we like and the DL. the Fins are still missing several pieces but with a cap situation like the niners of old , picks need to play now. The OL is a joke and QB Ryan needs time to find Landry, Parker , Cameron and Stills . . Ajayi and the run game is an afterthought this year in Miami. So the war room got pretty heated. GM Butterfield wanted a warrior masher . . . hence a reach for Vadal Alexander, G from LSU – but I did listen to all the scouts and watched the film. What’s not to love about taking Conklin. A Walk on Michigan State and leader of the Spartans and taking the crown from hated Ohio State. Just ask Deforest Buckner what he thinks. Conklin is what the fish needs, a mauler, a guy who plays better than his measurements because he wants it more. Added benefit the Jets and Bills following us don’t get him. One of my favorite sources – PFF ranked him top 3 OT each of the last 3 years. Perhaps Vadal will be in there in round 2 :) . . . he will. As for RB . . yeah we are rolling the dice for a camp cut. Heavy overtures for Ware are a screen as we are close to a deal for Darren Sproles.
1.14 LB Jaylon Smith, Notre Dame (via Josh Johnson): This is the best player in the draft. The looming medical is huge but worth the risk here even if missing the season. Oakland has come a long way but they are still not a legitimate playoff team in 2016. Imagine 2017 with Khalil Mack and Aldon and Jaylon Smith in the same front seven! Raise the silver and black flag into the playoff picture. Passing on Ragland was tough but he belongs in 3-4 where he can be the stay home LB or the non-coverage backer. William Jackson III was also a big consideration.
1.15 QB Connor Cook, Michigan State (via John Orr): The Rams could really use an upgrade at WR and QB. They must get talent and someone to build with. I think taking Cook here would be worth the risk. Let him develop and with Two second round picks they can land a wr and center or another position. If we had the option to trade o might have taken a play maker and tried to move back up into the first to get Cook then. I will go QB. Fisher has not drafted a QB higher then the third round so he will go after the position this year.
1.16 OT Taylor Decker, Ohio State (via Bryan Sweet): With Treadwell, Lawson and Hargreaves off the board, this came down to the top DL or OL on the board for this pick. The depth at the D-Line positions is quite deep and I think the Lions can get a guy in round two who can rotate in and not necessarily have to start day one because of the presence of Ngata and Tyrunn Walker. Decker looks more like a RT than the LT the Lions have needed seemingly since Gary Danielson was QB, but his natural ability and leadership qualities should make him a mainstay on Detroit’s O-Line for a decade or more. If he can be coached out of his bad habits (hand placement, knee bend, plays too high), he might become a serviceable LT but should excel at RT immediately.
1.17 OLB Darron Lee, Ohio State (via Alan Satterlee): The Falcons focused on offense in free agency signing center Alex Mack and wide receiver Mohammad Sanu. They could use a tight end upgrade, but look for the Falcons’ draft to be highly-focused on defense as they have needs pretty much at every area — in the secondary, at linebacker and on the defensive line, especially for a unit that was dead last in sacking the quarterback last year. They get the party started with Ohio State LB Darren Lee, a safe, solid pick who falls into their lap a bit here and can center their defense for years.
1.18 ILB Reggie Ragland, Alabama (via Jay Leisten): The Colts are really in a tough spot here. They need to improve the O-line between their 2 young Tackles. If Conklin or Decker were available, as much as it may pain the owner that would be the pick. They also need Linebacker help in a bad way as much as I liked Sio Moore (traded from the Raiders) coming out his rookie year, he’s buried on a depth chart here with guys nearly 10 years his senior. That said with Reggie Ragland still on the board, as much as it may be early, hes the guy. Coming from Bama, he knows what it means to win, and be the leader of a winning defense. With the crew of veterans around him, he can build on his excellent instincts. It may take a bit of time to understand zone concepts and coverage at the NFL level, but he appears to be the type of player who will figure it out, like he did last year by focusing on being better in the run game, by diagnosing a run lane and filling the gap.
1.19 DT A’Shawn Robinson, Alabama (via Patrick Anderson): Versatility is what the Bills are looking for, and that’s what they find in Robinson. After getting double sniped with our eye on Darron Lee and Reggie Ragland, we go with a guy who we can pair up with Marcel Dareus on the Line and move them anywhere we want because of Robinson’s ability to be a five-technique DE in a 3-4 scheme. Opposing offenses can say hello the 1-2 punch!
1.20 WR Josh Doctson, TCU (via JunkYard Jake): Especially after the surprise retirement of D’Brickashaw Ferguson, the Jets are in dire need of OL help. Would have selected Stanley, Conklin, or Decker if they were available here. Thought about CB Eli Apple, to address the aging secondary, and OLB Leonard Floyd is potentially intriguing, but going to go with perhaps the best available player. While WR is not a position of immediate need for the Jets, Josh Doctson seems worthy of this spot by virtue of his great hands, and size/speed combination. Doctson played in a spread offense, so he will need to refine his route-running, but ended his college career with TCU school records in career TDs (29), season TDs (14 in 2015) as well as career, season and single-season receiving totals (2785,1327,267 respectively).
1.21 WR Corey Coleman, Baylor (via Nick Wagner): Washington G.M. Scott McCloughan has not been shy about his desire to trade down, stating he’d like to turn his eight 2016 draft picks into 12. If forced to remain at pick #21, drafting Coleman could allow the Skins to obtain additional picks by trading away either Pierre Garçon (who will be a free agent following the season) or DeSean Jackson, both of whom count over $9 million against the cap. While many expect the interior defensive line to be addressed, the position is deep enough for the team to wait until Day Two to land a quality tackle.
1.22 DT Sheldon Rankins, Louisville (via Gary Davenport): This is the point where people ask “Rick, what the hell are you doing? Rankins is too small to play the nose, and doesn’t have the length to be a 3-4 DE.” This is where I respond, “says you.” Rankins is a top-10 prospect on some draft boards, a ferocious and disruptive run stopper and a young man just starting to figure out what he can do as a pass-rusher. Oh…he played some end at Louisville too. It may be an unconventional pick, but I’m going to take the (YUUUGE!) value and trust in both the player’s talent and my staff’s ability to coach him up. Watt…Mercilus…Clowney…and now Rankins.
1.23 CB Eli Apple, Ohio State (via Dan Heins): Vikings and Rick Spielman are in a great spot. The young and talented team isn’t “lacking” in any area. Their #1 need is arguably WR and I will be shocked if Treadwell, Doctson, and Coleman are all gone at this point during the actual draft. But they are all gone here and that opens this spot up to tons of options. Ultimately Rick would probably trade about 6-7 spots down here and try and pick up enough ammo to jump back into the 1st with an additional 1st round pick as he as proven he loves to do in years past. The offensive line has been bolstered in FA. If it hadn’t, I love taking OT Jake Conklin here. LB Lenard Floyd would be an attractive pick here as he is versatile enough make Zimmer feel like a kid in a candy store moving him and Barr around while Kendricks holds down the middle. Ultimately their biggest need and Zimmers biggest soft spot comes at the DB spot. The addition of Eli Apple gives Zimmer a physical talent to develop along side of last year’s late bloomer Tre Waynes ,Xavier Rhodes, and Harrision Smith.
1.24 WR Michael Thomas, Ohio State (via Sean Kirby): The Bengals need help at each level of the defense. However, with the extremely deep DT class and large/muddled next tiers of CBs and LBs, I’m going to address the teams biggest need after losing Marvin Jones and Mohamed Sanu. While I’m not sure Michael Thomas is the next best WR, I believe he fits the Bengals needs the best. Will Fuller might have rarer tools, but there’s no way Andy Dalton could utilize them properly. The Bengals need a reliable #2 possession receiver to complement AJ Green and the run game. It also puts Brandon LaFell in a much more comfortable complimentary role. I was really disappointed to see Doctson and Coleman taken in the last few picks. While Thomas might not be the first round pick the Bengals deserve, he’s the one they need right now.
1.25 CB William Jackson III, Houston (via Mike Krafick): Pittsburgh has to address the biggest weakness on their team, the secondary. I was hoping Apple would last but think Jackson is a good consolation pick with his combination of size and speed. His performance at the combine will boost his draft stock and likely put him in consideration for the first round. I’ll be extremely disappointed if Pittsburgh users this pick on any position other than CB or Safety.
1.26 DT Robert Nkemdiche, Mississippi (via Bill Latin): Considered the top-rated prospect in the nation when he signed with Ole Miss, the 3-technique tackle is considered one of the key cogs in turning around the Ole Miss program. His talent and frame are worthy of an early selection, but his lack of high-end production and character concerns could cause him to slide. With that said, he has the talent to be an impact starter in the league.
1.27 DE Noah Spence, Eastern Kentucky (via Jeff Melbostad): I wasn’t expecting to see Spence still on the board at this pick. It’s clear that teams have concerns with his off-field drug-related antics as well they should. Still, his talent and pass rushing ability make him worth the risk at this pick. Spence should fit in nicely as a 3-4 OLB in an offense that made an aged Julius Peppers fairly successful. Under his tutelage Spence should be able to blossom and hopefully stay out of trouble in small town GB. Not really expecting Spence at this pick, I had my heart set on a true DT (Nkemndiche/Billings/Reed) after the sudden BJ Raji retirement but this pick provides much more excitement and a pass-rushing, playmaking presence to take some pressure off Clay Matthews who may have to stay in the middle another year.
1.28 S Vonn Bell, Ohio State (via Wally Spurlin): Having lost S Husain Abdullah to retirement and CB Sean Smith via free agency the secondary needs to be addressed. We will go ahead and draft a player that is versatile enough to help replace both of the departed players. Bell is arguably the top cover S in this draft and could slide into a CB role if need be.
1.29 C Ryan Kelly, Alabama (via Bill Latin): Az needs a lot of help. We need edge rush, so first inclination was to fill that need. We need QB, but I don’t like reaching for anyone here. I-line is always welcome. With this pick the Az Cardinals select Ryan Kelly center from Alabama. Best center in the class. Lock it in for 10 years.
1.30 RB Derrick Henry, Alabama (via Alan Satterlee): This one falls right into the Panthers’ laps and it’s simply too tempting to pass up. Imagine the near 500 lbs of quarterback and running back — just the two of them in Cam Newton and Henry. In a word: unprecedented. GM Dave Gettleman likes to get ahead of aging players and Jonathan Stewart will turn 30 next year and again owed (too) big money with two years remaining on his contract. Stewart is also a major injury risk, plus he is simply is nowhere near Derrick Henry in terms of NFL impact and talent (Stewart averaged just 4.1 YPC somehow in this Panthers’ offense last year). Henry sounds scary on this team — impact player to a team coming off a Super Bowl appearance.
1.31 OT Germain Ifedi, Texas A&M (via Jay Myers): Might be a little early but after Denver traded Clady it opened up an immediate need at OT which will be addressed with the physical Ifedi.