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April 16th, 2018 NFL Mock Draft Print E-mail
Written by Denis Krusos   
Monday, 16 April 2018 12:35

1) Cleveland Browns-  QB Josh Allen, Wyoming- Tyrod Taylor gives Allen a redshirt season to learn a pro offense and adjust to the NFL.  Allen has an arm that is as good as Brett Favre’s.  And that includes throwing the ball with touch and loft and not just rockets.  Carson Wentz, Ben Roethlisberger, Steve McNair, Tony Romo, Phil Simms and Terry Bradshaw are just some of the quality NFL quarterbacks that went to small schools.  Allen’s size, athleticism and arm strength are an excellent fit for playing in cold weather games late in the season.  The concerns over Allen’s accuracy are overblown.  His footwork can become more consistent, and he was not asked to throw many bubble screens that inflate so many college quarterbacks’ completion percentage.  He also was not throwing to receivers that were NFL draft prospects.  Allen played in his team's bowl game, the Senior Bowl and threw at the Combine.  Cleveland is comfortable drafting him.

 

2) New York Giants- QB Sam Darnold, USC- Dave Gettleman has made a lot of noise about being committed to Eli Manning.  The two-time Super Bowl MVP will be the starter in 2018.  However, Eli will be 38 next season and Darnold is too good to not groom to be Big Blue’s future quarterback.  

 

3) New York Jets-  QB Josh Rosen, UCLA- The Jets really like Rosen's pinpoint accuracy, competitiveness and the fact that he played in a pro-style offense.  Gang Green hasn’t had a quarterback with this much passing talent since Joe Namath.

 

4) Cleveland Browns- RB Saquon Barkley- The Browns need Josh Allen to be the answer at quarterback.  Barklley can take a lot of pressure off of Allen with his running and also be a reliable check-down option in the passing game.  The Browns revamp their dormant offense in one draft.

 

5) Denver Broncos- QB Baker Mayfield, Oklahoma- The signing of Case Keenum to a two-year deal means the Heisman Trophy winner can become comfortable in an NFL offense before taking over.  The Broncos are now set long-term at quarterback.

 

6) Indianapolis Colts- DE Bradley Chubb, North Carolina State- Indy has many holes and putting pressure on the quarterback is a big one.  Chubb is a cornerstone addition to the Colts defense.

 

7) Tampa Bay Buccaneers- G Quinton Nelson, Notre Dame- The Bucs were one of the most disappointing teams last year and so was their offensive line.  Jameis Winston is best throwing downfield from play-action passes.  He needs time and a running game to do this.  Nelson would be a terrific pick for Tampa Bay.

 

8) Chicago Bears- S Derwin James, Florida State- James is a great athlete and immediately improves Chicago’s secondary with his versatility.  The Bears choose the best player available.

 

9) San Francisco 49ers- LB Tremaine Edmunds, Virginia Tech- Edmunds is versatile as he can play outside or inside linebacker.  His upside is too high for the 49ers to pass on him, especially with Reuben Foster’s off-the-field problems.

 

10) Oakland Raiders- CB Denzel Ward, Ohio State- Oakland’s secondary was torched last year.  Ward has the speed, quickness and awareness to be a good number one cornerback.

 

11) Miami Dolphins- S/CB Minkah Fitzpatrick, Alabama- The tight end must be covered well in today’s NFL.  Fitzpatrick has the size and strength to do this.  He also can help in run support and in coverage downfield.  Fitzpatick is too talented to pass on.

 

12) Buffalo Bills- QB Lamar Jackson, Louisville- Jaclson has a better arm than Tyrod Taylor and is more explosive. 

 

13) Washington Redskins-CB-Josh Jackson, Iowa- Kendall Fuller was traded to the Chiefs.  Jackson has good size and excellent ball skills.  He’ll fit in nicely in the NFC East.

 

14) Green Bay Packers- DE/OLB Harold Landry, Boston College- Clay Matthews is a better pitchman than pass rusher at this stage of his career.  Landry is skilled at getting to quarterbacks and Green Bay’s defense needs an infusion of talent.

 

15) Arizona Cardinals- OT Mike McGlinchey, Notre Dame- The former Irish standout is a a long-term answer at left tackle or right tackle.  His run blocking prowess and toughness will make David Johnson very happy.

 

16) Baltimore Ravens- WR Calvin Ridley, Alabama- The Ravens like Alabama players and have a big need for a talented, young receiver.  Ridley can get downfield to take advantage of Joe Flacco’s big arm.

 

17) Los Angeles Chargers- DT Vita Vea, Washington-  The Bolts surrendered 4.9 yards per carry last season and a bunch of 100 plus yard games to backs.  Vea is the massive, but surprisingly quick inside force that LA needs on their defensive line.

 

18) Seattle Seahawks-  DE Marcus Davenport, UTSA- Cliff Avril is likely to never play again due to a neck injury.  Michael Bennett was traded to the Eagles.  Davenport has the quick first step, length and size to develop into a force at defensive end.  The Hawks are rebuilding on defense.

 

19) Dallas Cowboys- WR D.J. Moore, Maryland- Dez Bryant is gone and Dak Prescott needs a receiver with a burst.  Moore has a good combination of size, quickness and speed.

 

20) Detroit Lions-DT Da’Ron Payne, Alabama- Matt Patricia adds a run stuffer to his defensive line.  Payne also is good at collapsing the pocket.

 

21) Cincinnati Bengals- LB Roquan Smith, Georgia- Vontaze Burfict is a loose cannon and unreliable.  Smith is a tackling machine and can play on all three downs.

 

22) Buffalo Bills- LB Rashaan Evans, Alabama- The Bills add a quarterback for their defense.  Evans was extremely productive at Alabama.  He’s an athletic, smart and instinctive linebacker that can grow into a lea

 

23) New England Patriots- OT Connor Williams, Texas- Nate Solder left as a free agent and Tom Brady needs a blind-side protector.  Williams had a down junior season due to a knee injury, but was terrific when healthy as a sophomore.  The Pats are counting on him returning to form.

 

24) Carolina Panthers-  WR Christian Kirk, Texas A & M- Cam Newton needs more weapons and Kirk looks like he could be a poor man’s version of Steve Smith.

 

25) Tennessee Titans- LB Leighton Vander Esch, Boise State- The Titans improved their secondary by signing Malcolm Butler.  The Titans have some age at linebacker and Vander Esch could be a long-term good starter.

 

26) Atlanta Falcons- DT Maurice Hurst, Michigan- Dontari Poe departed and Atlanta adds a talented defensive tackle with the quickness to penetrate and disrupt plays.

 

27) New Orleans Saints- DT Taven Bryan, Florida- The Saints defense was much improved last season and the addition of Bryan further strengthens their defensive line.

 

28) Pittsburgh Steelers- S Justin Reid, Stanford- Pittsburgh needs a good cover safety and Reid is exactly that.  His intelligence and excellent ball skills are what Pittsburgh has been missing at safety.

 

29) Jacksonville Jaguars- WR Courtland Sutton, SMU- The wide receiver position is not a strength for the Jags.  Sutton is big and physical, which is the identity of Jacksonville.  He can help in the red zone and provide Blake Bortles with a big catch radius.

 

30) Minnesota Vikings- OT Kolton Miller, UCLA- The Vikings continue to build their offensive line to protect Kirk Cousins.

 

31) New England Patriots – CB Jaire Alexander, Louisville- Malcolm Butler departed and Alexander has the speed, quick feet and ball skills to excel at cornerback.  The Pats still lack a good pass rush, but Alexander is the best player available and fills a need.

 

32) Philadelphia Eagles- TE Dallas Goedert, South Dakota State- Zach Ertz and Goedert in two-tight end formations would be big trouble for defenses to contend with.

 

 

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