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Justin Bales | Archive | Email |
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NFL Mock Draft: Version 3.0
4/24/17

Version 1.0 - 3/6/17
Version 2.0 - 4/3/17


Editor's note: Predict the top ten picks of the NFL Draft for a chance to win FFToday prizes. Enter our NFL Draft Contest now.


1. Cleveland Browns – DE Myles Garrett, Texas A&M

The Browns could opt to take their pick of the litter with the quarterbacks, but Garrett is the most likely option. Adam Schefter reported that the Browns are extremely high on Garrett, who is the most gifted defensive lineman in the draft. He recently put on a show during the NFL Combine and the Browns could use a difference maker on defense. It would be shocking if Cleveland passes on Garrett, who most people see as the best player in the draft.

Previous Pick: DE Myles Garrett, Texas A&M

2. San Francisco 49ers Solomon Thomas, DE, Stanford

The 49ers have plenty of needs, but Thomas is the fastest rising prospect in the NFL Draft right now. Hes an athletic defensive lineman, who will be able to play multiple positions if needed but will likely end up playing the role of a 4-3 defensive end for the majority of his career. Hes a great pass rusher, which is a position the 49ers desperately need to upgrade. It isnt out of the question that they select a cornerback, quarterback or any other position here, but Thomas is the odds on favorite at this time.

Previous Pick: DE Solomon Thomas, Stanford

3. Chicago Bears – Malik Hooker, S, Ohio State

I’ve had Hooker going to the Los Angeles Chargers for the entire draft process, but it’s unlikely he lasts that long on draft day. There have been rumors the Bears love Hooker, and they are in desperate need of help in the secondary. He’s a player that forces a high amount of turnovers and he’s a difference-maker with the ball in his hands. The only current knock on him is his current injury status but the Bears are in a position to wait for a player to get healthy.

Previous Pick: DE/DT Jonathan Allen, Alabama

4. Jacksonville Jaguars Leonard Fournette, RB, LSU

Im extremely skeptical about the Jaguars using this pick on Fournette, but it does make sense in theory. The Jaguars have expressed interest in adding talent around Blake Bortles, and Fournette would be a massive upgrade over T.J. Yeldon and Chris Ivory. This would allow the Jaguars to rely more on controlling the clock and an emerging defense rather than Bortles arm. Normally it would be difficult to mock a running back this high, but the success that the Cowboys found with Zeke Elliott will cause other teams to try to replicate that game plan.

Previous Pick: RB Leonard Fournette, LSU

5. Tennessee Titans Marshon Lattimore, CB, Ohio State

The Titans are in dire need of a cornerback. They have a decision to make between the two Ohio State cornerbacks in this draft, but Lattimore is the consensus top option. Hes an athletic player that has the potential to turn into a shut down corner in the NFL. He would immediately be an upgrade on a terrible Tennessee secondary.

Previous Pick: Jamal Adams, S, LSU

6. New York Jets Jamal Adams, S, LSU

It is highly likely that the Jets deal this pick to the Browns, who will be looking to take Mitchell Trubisky. This mock doesnt project trades, which means the Jets will stay here. They could certainly go after Trubisky themselves, but their recent trade talk suggests they arent interested in him here. They have a huge need at safety and Adams has the potential to be a top-3 pick in this draft. He recently dominated his Pro Day, as he ran the 40-yard dash significantly faster than many projected. Hes a high upside safety that will lead New Yorks defense for years to come.

Previous Pick: CB Marshon Lattimore, Ohio State

7. Los Angeles Chargers Jonathan Allen, DE/DT, Alabama

This is an interesting spot for the Chargers. They need a safety, but both of the top safeties are off the board. They arent in a great spot to take a player of need, so they will opt to go with the best player available strategy. Allen was seen as the second best player in this draft for some time, but his stock fell after a poor Combine performance. Hes a versatile player, and he will add depth to an impressive Chargers defensive line. He has played well against the pass and run in the NCAA and hes one of the most NFL ready players in the draft.

Previous Pick: Malik Hooker, S, Ohio State

The Panthers are in the market for a running back and McCaffrey may be the best fit for the offense.


8. Carolina Panthers Christian McCaffrey, RB/WR, Stanford

Everything about this pick screams no to me, but it makes sense. The Panthers need help at running back and they tend to shy away from players with questionable off-field issues, such as Dalvin Cook. McCaffrey will be able to take over in the backfield, while also creating a mismatch on the outside. Hes the type of player that will immediately benefit Cam Newton and the entire Panthers offense.

Previous Pick: CB Marlon Humphrey, Alabama

9. Cincinnati Bengals Derek Barnett, DE, Tennessee

Barnett is a top notch defensive end, but gets somewhat lost in the shuffle in a draft filled with elite pass rushers. The Bengals are in need of another pass-rushing defensive end, and Barnett could make an immediate impact. He was the all-time sack leader at Tennessee, and Barnett makes a ton of sense as a high-upside selection for Cincinnati.

Previous Pick: Derek Barnett, DE, Tennessee

10. Buffalo Bills O.J. Howard, TE, Alabama

The Bills recently stated that their number two wide receiver is currently on their team, and while I dont believe that to be true, I do think that drafting Howard here makes more sense than drafting someone like Mike Williams. There are plenty of questions surrounding Williams while there are very few surrounding Howard. He struggled to post elite production at Alabama, but he is an elite blocker, who has the potential to develop into an elite receiving tight end. He could immediately take pressure off of Sammy Watkins by working the middle of the field and Howard is a more likely option than a wide receiver here.

Previous Pick: TE O.J. Howard, Alabama

11. New Orleans Saints Gareon Conley, CB, Ohio State

Conley is flying up the draft boards right now, and it wouldnt be shocking if he is selected in the top-10. He was overshadowed at Ohio State by Marshon Lattimore, but he displayed elite versatility as he was able to play well in man and zone coverage, while also displaying an ability to play on both the left and right side of the field. The Saints are currently relying on injury-prone P.J. Williams at cornerback and Conley could immediately step in and fill a void.

Previous Pick: DE Taco Charlton, Michigan

12. Cleveland Browns Mitchell Trubisky, QB, North Carolina

It wouldnt be surprising to see teams trade up for quarterbacks, as that is a position that always tends to be over-drafted. The Browns are a team that desperately needs to find a franchise quarterback. There have been reports that they are in love with Trubisky, but there are other reports stating that they like Deshaun Watson more. They are a team that needs the most talented player and Trubisky simply has more upside than Watson. Hes a young player that the Browns could build around for the next decade.

Previous Pick: QB Mitchell Trubisky, North Carolina

13. Arizona Cardinals Corey Davis, WR, Western Michigan

Larry Fitzgerald is on his last legs, and Michael Floyd is out of Arizona. That means they are going to need someone to step in as the top receiver after Fitzgerald retires, but John Brown and J.J. Nelson dont fit the mold. Corey Davis does, boasting great size with good routes and strong hands. Hell make a great red-zone option for Arizona this season, while learning behind Fitzgerald. He will make an outstanding replacement that can take over as soon as Fitz announces hes done.

Previous Pick: Corey Davis, WR, Western Michigan

14. Philadelphia Eagles Mike Williams, WR, Clemson

The Eagles upgraded the wide receiver position in free agency, but that is not going to help them in the long term. Alshon Jeffery signed a one year contract, while there are whispers that Jordan Matthews is currently on his way out. How soon that happens remains to be seen. Regardless, the Eagles are going to need to find a star wide receiver of the future for their franchise quarterback. Williams fits the bill, as he is a massive target who has elite high-point abilities. Hes a player that can work all levels of the field and he will be able to take over for Alshon Jeffery when he leaves next season.

Previous Pick: CB Gareon Conley, Ohio State

15. Indianapolis Colts Cam Robinson, OT, Alabama

The Colts must hate the idea of keeping Andrew Luck healthy, which makes me question this pick. Robinson is a player that is projected to become a right tackle or guard, but some teams believe hell be able to handle himself at left tackle. That type of versatility will help Indianapolis, who absolutely need to find someone who can protect their franchise quarterback. Robinson is a three-year starter in the SEC, which means he has been playing against great pass rushers throughout college. There are a few concerns about his inconsistencies, but the Colts do not have much of a choice here.

Previous Pick: Cam Robinson, OT, Alabama

16. Baltimore Ravens Dalvin Cook, RB, Florida State

Cook underperformed at the NFL Combine, but he has such elite tape and production in college that teams are likely to overlook that. The Ravens recently stated that they need help at running back and Cook is an elite prospect. He could step into the starting role and be a workhorse running back. Hes the type of player that teams can build their offense around, and he would solve the Ravens running back issues for quite some time.

Previous Pick: Dalvin Cook, RB, Florida State

17. Washington Redskins Reuben Foster, ILB, Alabama

Foster is an elite prospect, but there are a ton of question marks surrounding him, which has caused his value to fall. He has suffered multiple concussions during his time at Alabama. He also recently had rotator cuff surgery and was kicked out of the NFL Combine after getting into an argument with a hospital worker. There are no questions about his talent though, and the Redskins need major help in their front seven. Foster would immediately help their run defense, which was lacking last season. If the Redskins can get over his question marks, Foster is an elite value pick here.

Previous Pick: Reuben Foster, ILB, Alabama

18. Tennessee Titans John Ross, WR, Washington

There have been mixed reviews on the wide receivers in this class and some believe Ross could work his way into the top-10. Thats a long shot though, and it remains likely that hes the third receiver off the board. He is a prospect with elite speed and great college production. He is seen as a bit one-dimensional and he has plenty of question marks surrounding his health. The Titans missed out on Brandin Cooks this offseason, but they will get their wide receiver of the future here.

Previous Pick: WR Mike Williams, Clemson

19. Tampa Bay Buccaneers Obi Melifonwu, S, UConn

The Bucs will be looking for help at running back but they will need to look elsewhere with the top three runners all off the board. Melifonwus stock is on the rise after displaying great athleticism at the Combine. Hes a huge player, who has the potential to become an elite safety in the NFL. He needs time to develop in coverage, though. He also fits a huge need for the Bucs who are lacking at the safety position.

Previous Pick: Christian McCaffrey, RB/WR, Stanford

20. Denver Broncos Ryan Ramczyk, OT, Wisconsin

The Broncos badly need an offensive tackle. Ramczyk is the best tackle on the board, and he has the potential to become a solid left tackle for a long time. He has looked good in both run and pass blocking during his time at Wisconsin. Hes a fairly athletic player, and he should immediately help the Broncos offensive line. Hell likely start at right tackle as a rookie before moving to left tackle later in his career.

Previous Pick: Ryan Ramczyk, OT, Wisconsin

21. Detroit Lions Takkarist McKinley, OLB, UCLA

The Lions need quite a bit of help in the front seven and McKinley is an interesting option. He isnt an ideal fit, but hes an athletic player that could be taught to play multiple positions. Hes raw, which means it could be easier to mold him into a 4-3 outside linebacker or defensive end. This is a big of a risky pick, but the Lions were rewarded when taking a raw player in Ziggy Ansah and they will be looking to hit the lottery again here.

Previous Pick: Takkarist McKinley, OLB, UCLA

22. Miami Dolphins Haason Reddick, LB, Temple

Reddick flew under the radar before dominating at the NFL Combine. He displayed elite athleticism, but there are plenty of question marks surrounding him. His position is a bit unknown, as some teams peg him as a defensive end, while some believe hes an outside linebacker, and others see him as an inside linebacker. The Dolphins need help at defensive end and outside linebacker, and Reddick would give them a bit of versatility for the future.

Previous Pick: Haason Reddick, LB, Temple

23. New York Giants Garett Bolles, OT, Utah

The Giants offensive line continues to be one of their biggest weaknesses. Bolles isnt a prospect that is completely ready to step into the offense right now, but he comes with plenty of upside. He has the potential to move inside if needed and he could immediately compete as the Giants swing lineman. He also has the potential to turn into a starting left tackle, which would allow New York to move Ereck Flowers to another position after struggling early in his career at left tackle.

Previous Pick: Garett Bolles, OT, Utah

24. Oakland Raiders Kevin King, CB, Washington

The Raiders are going to address defense with this pick. They could opt to use this pick on their front seven or in the secondary. There have been recent reports that King is flying up draft boards and there have been links to Oakland. It would make a lot of sense, as he could immediately help the secondary but also develop behind two capable starters.

Previous Pick: Malik McDowell, DT/DE, Michigan State

25. Houston Texans Patrick Mahomes, QB, Texas Tech

With Tony Romo headed to the broadcast booth, the current quarterbacks in Houston are Tom Savage and Brandon Weeden. There have been rumors swirling that Mahomes is the Texans preferred choice at quarterback, and he likely wont be available in the second round. He has been labeled a gunslinger because of the type of offense he played in during his time at Texas Tech, but he was able to control his turnovers. He also has a big arm and isnt afraid to pick up first downs with his legs. Even if the Texans are able to sign Romo, Mahomes could ultimately end up being their quarterback of the future.

Previous Pick: Patrick Mahomes, QB, Texas Tech

26. Seattle Seahawks Roderick Johnson, OT, Florida State

The Seahawks never seem to take offensive linemen in the first round, but they dont have much of a choice this offseason. Russell Wilson was sacked 41 times in 2016, and they need to keep their franchise quarterback upright in the future. Johnson is the best tackle available, even though he is more known for his run blocking. He has the potential to play both left and right tackle as well. He isnt the safest player in the draft, but he fills a hole in a solid Seahawks roster.

Previous Pick: Roderick Johnson, OT, Florida State

27. Kansas City Chiefs Deshaun Watson, QB, Clemson

The Chiefs are likely to take a quarterback at some point in this draft, and Watson makes a lot of sense if he falls to them. Kansas City needs a quarterback to groom for the future behind Alex Smith. Watson had an impressive college career at Clemson and he has shows flashes of NFL potential. This isnt an overly impressive class of quarterbacks but hes the best available on the board.

Previous Pick: DeShone Kizer, QB, Notre Dame

28. Dallas Cowboys Marlon Humphrey, CB, Alabama

Humphrey is a bit of a wildcard in this draft. There is a plethora of talent at cornerback, and hes a player that could get lost in the shuffle. With that being said, he also has the talent to be a top-15 pick. Humphrey is a big corner, who also comes with plus speed. He likely wont be ready to contribute immediately but he is the type of player that can develop into a shut down corner in the NFL.

Previous Pick: Evan Engram, TE, Ole Miss

29. Green Bay Packers Taco Charlton, DE, Michigan

Charlton could fall on draft day because of a lack of college production. Hes a bit of an odd fit in Green Bay, but hes the best player available at this pick. He is extremely long and athletic, which would immediately help the Green Bay pass rush. Charlton also has the attributes needed to stand up and play outside linebacker if need be and this is the type of versatility the Packers love to find on draft day.

Previous Pick: Jabrill Peppers, S/LB, Michigan

30. Pittsburgh Steelers Zach Cunningham, OLB, Vanderbilt

There have been rumors that Ben Roethlisberger has been lobbying for a tight end in the first round and that would make sense. It would also make sense that the Steelers want to keep Roethlisberger happy, as he has been contemplating retirement. Njoku is an extremely athletic tight end who has flashed elite upside in his short college career. He would immediately add another receiving threat to an already high scoring offense.

Previous Pick: Zach Cunningham, OLB, Vanderbilt

31. Atlanta Falcons Forrest Lamp, OG/C, Western Kentucky

Lamp is a player that has been gaining steam throughout the process. He tested well at the Combine, and hes a player that has the potential to play tackle, guard, or center. Hes coming from a small school, but hes a four year starter, who has plenty of tape to study. The Falcons have a need in the interior line and Lamp is a player that can fill multiple holes as a sixth lineman.

Previous Pick: Forrest Lamp, OG/C, Western Kentucky

32. New Orleans Saints Charles Harris, OLB, Missouri

The Saints were able to upgrade their secondary early in this draft, which means theyll be going after a pass rusher here. Some people have suggested Harris could be taken as high as the top-10, but that seems highly unlikely. Hes an athletic player that can get to the quarterback in a hurry. There are question marks surrounding his ability to stop the run but thats an aspect the Saints will be willing to overlook with this pick.

Previous Pick: Tre’Davious White, CB, LSU