By Eric “E.” White
It’s that time of year again, ladies and germs! The playoffs are going strong and the Super Bowl is among us. For the other 30 teams, however, they are gearing up for the draft. It’s a little early, but it’s never TOO early to make a mock draft. Here’s my take on the first round:
1. Titans – Laremy Tunsil (OT, Ole Miss)
If the Titans want success with Mariota, they need to beef up that offensive line. Tunsil is the best pass blocker in the NCAA, and quite frankly, the Titans need a lot. Might as well polish off the offensive end in the first round in what is becoming a thin draft for offensive linemen.
2. Browns- Jared Goff (QB, Cal)
The next quarterback career to die in Cleveland? Maybe not. With virtually no offensive line, Goff led the Cal Bears to a winning record in a dynamic PAC-12. Could he do the same for the dumpster fire that is the Cleveland Browns? Hopefully, we’ll find out.
3. Chargers – Joey Bosa (DE, Ohio State)
The Chargers need D-Line so bad it hurts me. Bosa is a freak. Plain and simple.
4. Cowboys – Jalen Ramsey (DB, Florida State)
The Cowboys are in need of some serious help. Ideally, they need offensive weapons in the latter rounds. This is a case of taking the best available player. Ramsey with Brandon Carr and Orlando Scandrick would 100% polish off that Dallas defense.
5. Jaguars – Shaq Lawson (DE, Clemson)
I have Lawson skyrocketing into the Top 5. The man led the NCAA in tackles and yards for loss this past year. Can you imagine Dante Fowler and Shaq Lawson? The Jags are so close to being a contender. Bolster up that defense, and you have your AFC South dominator in a few years.
6. Ravens – Vernon Hargreaves (DB, Florida)
The Ravens secondary was atrocious last year. This makes the most sense to me.
7. 49ers – Myles Jack (OLB, UCLA)
Watch Myles Jack right now and let me know if you don’t say “holy crap.” He can do it all. The Niners are in a rebuilding stage and Chip Kelly loves his linebackers. Seems like a match made in heaven to me.
8. Dolphins – Ronnie Stanley (OT, Notre Dame)
The ‘Fins have everything but a functional offensive line, and Stanley is the answer, in my opinion. Drop someone, move someone inside, whatever. Stanley is the most versatile lineman in the draft and a fast-paced offense under a new coach in Adam Gase would excel with him.
9. Bucs – LaQuan Treadwell (WR, Ole Miss)
The Bucs are so close to being a contender for the first time in 15 years. Jameis would have a field day with Treadwell and Evans. With Vincent Jackson on the brink of retirement, this could be an incredible move.
10. Giants – Robert Nkemdiche (DT, Ole Miss)
Ole Miss goin’ back to back like Drake on this one. Get some meat on that line! Nkemdiche has all the tools to get in that backfield and create sacks. He honestly reminds of former Giant Justin Tuck. Very disruptive. Despite his off the field issues, he’s too good to let him past the Top 10.
11. Bears – Reggie Ragland (MLB, Alabama)
Get this man a get-well card… he’s SICK. Ragland is a vicious tackler and a vocal leader to boast. The Monsters of the Midway need to revitalize that legendary defense, and Ragland could do just that.
12. Saints – A’Shawn Robinson (DT, Alabama)
The Saints need to rebuild. NOW. Robinson is a little overrated in my opinion, a smidge slow off the snap, but he’s the best available at that spot. Plus, let’s be real, the Saints defense is bad. Like really bad. Also, have you seen Robinson’s face? That’s one mean face.
13. Eagles – Taylor Decker (OT/G, Ohio State)
Decker is the most versatile lineman in the draft when it comes to transitioning positions. Unlike Tunsil and Stanley, Decker can move inside and outside with ease. With the Eagles needing help inside, and Jason Peters not getting any younger, this would be safe and successful.
14. Raiders – Mackensie Alexander (DB, Clemson)
Everyone seems to be riding the Mackensie Alexander hype train. I don’t buy it, but there’s no denying the glaring hole in the Raiders secondary. This pick would be the best bet for the Silver and Black Attack.
15. Rams – Jack Conklin (OT, Michigan State)
I think the Rams organization has very little faith in their quarterback situation, but I wouldn’t blame them first. Have you seen that offensive line? Neither have I, because it doesn’t exist. Conklin is big, beefy, and a phenomenal pass blocker. I say worry about the quarterback in the second round, or give Foles another shot.
16. Lions- DeForest Buckner (DE, Oregon)
He’s big, he’s long, he’s kind of slow, but this man can cut through a line. Perfect for a fleeting Lions front seven. I know many people have him in the Top 10, but I think come Combine time, people will start to see he’s not this star everyone thinks he is. But hey, I’ve been wrong before.
17. Falcons- Jaylon Smith (MLB, Notre Dame)
Scouts love to overlook injured players. But I’m sorry, teams are going to feel stupid when they pass up on the monster that is Jaylon Smith. He is a guy I can see being a perennial Pro Bowler.
18. Colts- Ezekiel Elliot (RB, Ohio State)
Let it be known that Brian and I laugh at the debauchery that is the Colts scouting team. They SHOULD take and O-Lineman. They SHOULD take a guy to bulk up their front seven. But no… they’ll take a stunning running back that will become mediocre due to an offensive line consisting of Anthony Castonzo and his awkward white man dance moves. I hope to God that a team with a real offensive line jumps on Zeke so he can showcase his explosion out of the backfield.
19. Bills- Leonard Floyd (OLB, Georgia)
I think Tyrod did a good enough job last year to keep his spot as the starter at quarterback. So, the next best thing that the Bills could use is an outside linebacker, and while Floyd is not the best pass rusher, he’s a great down-field-tackler.
20. Jets- Paxton Lynch (QB, Memphis)
Fitzmagic can only do so much for his squad. Lynch has so many intangibles and loves to spread the wealth to his receivers. Todd Bowles would love this guy.
21. Redskins- Shon Coleman (OT, Auburn)
First off, great story for this guy. I have respect for anyone that beats cancer, let alone play football after recovery. Pretty solid run blocker, also. Could do wonders for that three-back system in Washington.
22. Texans- Carson Wentz (QB, North Dakota State)
I am on the hype train. Carson Wentz has a CANNON. He may even move up to Top 10 if other teams buy in as well. Brian Hoyer, please… PLEASE… take a seat.
23. Vikings- Corey Coleman (WR, Baylor)
Corey Coleman was one of the hottest receivers in the nation this past year. He’s a phenomenal route runner and also quite the deep threat. Teddy needs some more weapons, so Coleman makes the most sense.
24. Bengals- Jarran Reed (DT, Alabama)
Jarran Reed and Geno Atkins up the middle should be banned in every state and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico. Cincinnati would become known as #SackCity if this were to happen. Regardless of front office issues and my issues with Marvin Lewis STILL being the head coach, they really know how to find talent in these drafts.
25. Steelers- Kendall Fuller (DB, Virginia Tech)
Yea, the Steelers secondary is trash. That’s all I got.
26. Seahawks- Andrew Billings (DT, Baylor)
Is it fair? Probably not. Just in case the Seahawks weren’t scary enough defensively, here’s a guy to create even bigger holes for Bobby Wagner and K.J. Wright to get in the backfield. Oh boy.
27. Packers- Carl Nassib (DE, Penn State)
The Packers could use an edge rusher, and Nassib would be a perfect fit there. The man has so much speed off the snap and is quite the slasher against tough offensive lines. Look for him to be a sleeper in this first round. He’s probably my favorite prospect at that position.
28. Chiefs- Josh Doctson (WR, TCU)
Maclin and Doctson would be a great 1-2 for Alex Smith. Andy Reid loves possession receivers, and Doctson, while dynamic, has some of the best hands in the draft. Definitely an extra weapon to have.
29. Cardinals- Jonathan Bullard (DE, Florida)
Bullard is EXPLOSIVE. On top of that, he has a massive wingspan, perfect for deflecting passes. I can see him being a nice addition to the unit for Arians.
30. Broncos- Derrick Henry (RB, Alabama)
The culture’s about to change in Denver. It’s not the most logical pick, nor is it the dumbest pick. But just imagine Derrick Henry plowing up the middle for the Broncos. That’s filthy.
31. Panthers- Noah Spence (OLB, Eastern Kentucky)
The most under the radar player in this draft is going to make an impact wherever he goes. I actually saw Noah Spence play my high school in States a few years ago. He’s just as dominant now as he was then. Despite off the field issues, I think he’s going to be just fine. Kuechly, Davis, and Spence… WHAT???