The week of the 2019 NFL Scouting Combine is has arrived, so now is a good time to drop Mock 2.0, as things have changed quite a bit over the past month—including Kyler Murray officially deciding his future is in football. As stated for the first mock, it is still very early the draft process, but I’m trying to project the best I can.
1. ARI: Kyler Murray, QB, Oklahoma
If the Cardinals view Kyler Murray as a top-end quarterback prospect, they simply cannot pass on him with the No. 1 overall pick. Remember, the Jets seemed to have significant interest in Kliff Kingsbury before he was hired by Arizona, and I find it difficult to believe the new head coach chose Josh Rosen over Sam Darnold; perhaps he was instead sold by the opportunity to select Murray.
2. SF: Nick Bosa, DE, Ohio State
The 49ers are likely hoping for anyone other than Nick Bosa to be the first pick in April’s draft, and they would obviously get their wish if the Cardinals take Murray. Bosa is a dominant, well-rounded edge defender and the perfect piece to hopefully lift a San Francisco defensive line that already includes three first-round picks.
3. NYJ: Josh Allen, OLB, Kentucky
Surprisingly, the Jets will remain a 3-4 defense under Gregg Williams, and I think Josh Allen—who is currently atop my Big Board—would finally give the AFC East someone to consistently get after Tom Brady. The explosive Kentucky star can also drop back in coverage, stop the run, and bring intensity that New York’s coaching staff would surely love.
4. JAX (mock trade w/ OAK): Dwayne Haskins, QB, Ohio State
The Jaguars might get desperate for an answer at quarterback if they are unable to sign Nick Foles, and that desperation would only increase with Murray off the board. Dwayne Haskins is a pure pocket passer that will hit the “layups” and can rely on play-action passes to push the ball downfield in a run-heavy offense. I would be surprised if Jacksonville drafted anyone other than Murray or Haskins if they go quarterback.
5. TB: Quinnen Williams, DE, Alabama
Tampa Bay needs help all over the place on defense, but the interior of the defensive line looks to be in decent shape with Gerald McCoy and 2018 first-round pick Vita Vea up front. That said, Quinnen Williams might be viewed as the best player available here, and a trio of he, McCoy, and Vea is certainly intriguing for a team that won’t waste time trying to win under Bruce Arians.
6. NYG: Devin White, ILB, LSU
New York already has promising second-year players Lorenzo Carter and B.J. Hill—both of whom were Day 2 picks last year—in their defensive front, and adding Devin White would give them three building blocks to lead the unit. White’s combination of intelligence, speed, and physicality should make him an instant star.
7. OAK (mock trade w/ JAX): Deandre Baker, CB, Georgia
Last week, Jon Gruden said “there’s a lot of potential for trades” in regards to Oakland’s three first-round picks, and I think we could see them move down if Bosa and Allen are off the board. Deandre Baker profiles as a premier shutdown corner after not allowing a touchdown in either of the past two years at Georgia.
8. DEN (mock trade w/ DET): Drew Lock, QB, Missouri
Even after trading for Joe Flacco, there seems to be quite a bit of smoke about John Elway targeting Drew Lock. Personally, I think Denver could be set for the next five years with Flacco, but Elway might want to replicate Kansas City’s plan of allowing a rookie to learn for a year behind an established starter. Lock is an above-average athlete with tremendous arm strength.
9. BUF: D.K. Metcalf, WR, Ole Miss
Buffalo is a candidate to take the first offensive lineman off the board here, but if D.K. Metcalf blows up the Combine, they could decide to pair his superhero upside with Josh Allen’s limitless potential. Metcalf might not need to do much more than run posts, digs, comebacks, outs, and go routes to become a dangerous No. 1 receiver.
10. DET (mock trade w/ DEN): Rashan Gary, DE, Michigan
Detroit is probably the toughest team to peg in the top ten, but I think they are the most logical candidate to draft Rashan Gary—who to my surprise, usually goes somewhere in the No. 2 to No. 4 range in mocks. A front four of Gary, Da’Shawn Hand, Damon Harrison, and A’Shawn Robinson would bring upside and depth to Matt Patricia’s interchangeable defense.
11. CIN: T.J. Hockenson, TE, Iowa
The Cincinnati offense already has a star receiver (A.J. Green), star running back (Joe Mixon), and an excellent No. 2 wideout (Tyler Boyd), so using a top-15 pick on a tight end could give Andy Dalton all the help he needs in what is likely a make-or-break year. T.J. Hockenson bulldozes people in the running game and seems to fit what new head coach Zac Taylor wants to do as an all-around weapon that won’t need to leave the field.
12. GB: Christian Wilkins, DE, Clemson
Green Bay should run the card up to the podium if Christian Wilkins is available when they’re on the clock, as I think he’s a top-five prospect and arguably the best leader in the entire draft. Wilkins and 2018 first-round pick Jaire Alexander—who tackles and sets the tone at cornerback—would almost be too good to be true for the Packers.
13. CAR (mock trade w/ MIA): Jonah Williams, OT, Alabama
Protecting Cam Newton is probably priority No. 1 for the Panthers this offseason, and despite concerns about arm length, I believe Jonah Williams can immediately man the blindside at the next level. We saw 2017 second-rounder Taylor Moton emerge at right tackle last year, so he and Williams would suddenly give Carolina a couple bookends for 2019 and beyond.
14. ATL: Cody Ford, G, Oklahoma
Cody Ford played right tackle for the Sooners, but he projects more as an athletic, mauling guard in the NFL, which is exactly what Atlanta needs to get Devonta Freeman back on track coming off a lost season. Ford can slot in at either left guard or right guard to boost the rushing attack and give Matt Ryan more time to find his collection of weapons.
15. WAS: Jachai Polite, OLB, Florida
This might be low for a pure sack artist like Jachai Polite (I had him going fifth overall to the Bucs in my first mock), but teams that run a 4-3 might not feel comfortable spending an early pick on what would be an undersized defensive end. Still, Polite is extremely slippery off the edge, and Washington needs some juice to compliment Jonathan Allen and Daron Payne inside.
16. MIA (mock trade w/ CAR): Ed Oliver, DL, Houston
Miami is apparently all-in on the 2020 quarterbacks (Jake Fromm, Tua Tagovailoa, and Justin Herbert), so it makes sense to move down a few spots for future assets. Ed Oliver might not have a perfect positional fit, but Brian Flores will know how to maximize a unique skillset that can create havoc with pure quickness to shoot gaps and get upfield.
17. CLE: Dexter Lawrence, DT, Clemson
Baker Mayfield provided a spark when he took over as Cleveland’s starter last year, but the real reason for the team’s turnaround was play in the trenches, particularly when Gregg Williams took over as interim head coach. Left tackle was just addressed by re-signing Greg Robinson, so a run-stuffing defensive tackle like Dexter Lawrence is really all that’s missing for the Browns to absolutely bully people on both sides of the ball.
18. MIN: Greg Little, OT, Ole Miss
Minnesota will be playing with fire if they avoid a best-player-available approach to reach for one of their multiple needs on the offensive line, but I think Greg Little—despite what others in the media seem to believe—is not only the top tackle in the class, but also worth trading up for. Little is as polished as it gets in pass protection, and that’s what the Vikings need to get the most out of Kirk Cousins.
19. TEN: Clelin Ferrell, OLB, Clemson
While a more natural fit playing defensive end in a 4-3 scheme, Clelin Ferrell is a technically-sound, battle-tested defender that can set the edge and stop the run, which makes him the ideal candidate to play opposite Harold Landry at outside linebacker. Ferrell totaled 50.5 tackles for loss and 27.0 sacks for Clemson over the past three years.
20. PIT: Byron Murphy, CB, Washington
Even without Le’Veon Bell and Antonio Brown, the Steelers are set offensively, but they have holes to fill on the other side of the ball. Individual teams will likely view the cornerback position very differently based on play style, so it will be interesting to see how players come off the board. Byron Murphy can play both man and zone coverage for a Pittsburgh defense that’s trying to establish an identity.
21. PHI (mock trade w/ SEA): Greedy Williams, CB, LSU
If Murphy comes off the board ahead of Greedy Williams, Philadelphia could pounce on an opportunity to trade up with the Seahawks (who have traded down in each of the past seven years) to take the LSU product. Williams would hopefully give the Eagles a reliable option on the outside to slow down the likes of Amari Cooper and Odell Beckham Jr. in the division.
22. IND (mock trade w/ BAL): Montez Sweat, DE, Mississippi State
The Colts and Ravens also seem to be an ideal match for a trade in a couple months, as Indianapolis has a couple second-round picks, while Baltimore won’t be on the clock again until No. 86 overall. At a monstrous six-foot-six, Montez Sweat could end up going a lot higher than this, but Colts general manager Chris Ballard has the ammo to take advantage of the slight fall if that’s how things play out.
23. HOU: Andre Dillard, OT, Washington State
Houston has the No. 54 and No. 55 picks to work with if they want to potentially move up for the first or second left tackle off the board, but if not, there should still be options for them as they look to rebuild the offensive line. Andre Dillard is a experienced pass-protector that started 39 games on the blindside at Washington State.
24. OAK (via CHI): A.J. Brown, WR, Ole Miss
I don’t think it would be crazy for Oakland to take A.J. Brown in the top ten, so this would be excellent value for Jon Gruden and Mike Mayock. A 19th-round pick of the San Diego Padres in the 2016 MLB Draft, Brown is a smooth athlete that can play inside, play outside, track the ball, make people miss after the catch, and do basically anything teams want out of a No. 1 receiver.
25. SEA (mock trade w/ PHI): Jeffery Simmons, DT, Mississippi State
This might be way too high for a prospect that recently tore his ACL while training, and Jeffery Simmons gets a double red flag based on a prior assault arrest for hitting a woman. However, Simmons seems to have truly taken advantage of his second chance, and Seattle has a history of drafting guys with character concerns. If he doesn’t go on Day 1, we might see a bidding war for Simmons to start Day 2.
26. BAL (mock trade w/ IND): Josh Jacobs, RB, Alabama
In a very deep running back class, I don’t buy the talk of Josh Jacobs going in the top five, and if he gets past Buffalo and Green Bay, there isn’t really a clear landing spot until the 20s. Baltimore is going to run early and often with Lamar Jackson under center, though, so an early investment on the position might be wise, especially since Jacobs can also catch passes and block.
27. OAK (via DAL): Jaquan Johnson, S, Miami
It’s impossible to know how NFL teams view prospects without being in the building, but I’m not sure there’s a bigger disconnect between the media and the league than there is for evaluations of Jaquan Johnson, who is somehow viewed as a borderline Day 2/Day 3 pick by most analysts. For me, Johnson is worth considering early as a top-notch leader that can cover, tackle, and force turnovers.
28. LAC: Daniel Jones, QB, Duke
The final five or so picks on Day 1 will likely be the area where teams might want to trade up for a signal-caller, but Los Angeles would hold the cards if that’s the case. Daniel Jones throws with excellent touch to all levels of the field and possesses sneaky athleticism/mobility, and the Chargers have a strong enough roster that they can afford to get their quarterback of the future.
29. KC: Justin Layne, CB, Michigan State
I expect Justin Layne to be a “riser” for draft analysts after the Combine, as he’s a long, rangy corner at six-foot-three with above-average movement skills. The former wide receiver—who saw offensive snaps throughout his time at Michigan State—can be an elite boundary corner for the Chiefs, who need more size to match up against Josh Gordon (if he gets reinstated), JuJu Smith-Schuster, Mike Williams, and others in the postseason.
30. GB (via NO): Noah Fant, TE, Iowa
Noah Fant might not be around close to this long if he tests as well as I expect him to this weekend, but Green Bay clearly liked the mismatches that Jimmy Graham could create at tight end (or at least the idea of it), and the Iowa product is simply a younger option that can do a lot of the same things. It probably wouldn’t take long for Rodgers to build a connection with Fant in scoring territory.
31. LAR: Devin Bush, ILB, Michigan
Los Angeles could be in more trouble than people realize if they lose multiple offensive linemen to retirement and/or free agency, but assuming they can keep mostly everyone in place for 2019, I like Devin Bush as a fit at inside linebacker. The Michigan product can make plays all over the field and probably wouldn’t have to shed many blockers behind Aaron Donald and company.
32. NE: Brian Burns, DE, Florida State
The Patriots might be in the market for an edge defender if Trey Flowers goes elsewhere in free agency, and I think Brian Burns can bulk up in his six-foot-five frame to be an intimidating presence at the next level. Receiver could also be an option for the Patriots, but a trade is the most likely scenario if they don’t see value in Burns or someone else here.