The NFL Draft is always exciting whether you’re picking first or last. While brain storming how to introduce some of the top prospects in next year’s crop, I thought, what better way than to do an extremely early mock draft. The draft order will be determined by the Super Bowls odds of each team according to FanDuel Sportsbook. Without further ado, let’s get into it.
1st Overall Detroit Lions: EDGE Kayvon Thibodeaux- Oregon
The Lions could use a quarterback and have a few bigger needs but there is no one that fits a need and is worth the first overall pick so they should opt to go with Kayvon here. The standout pass rusher is an athletic freak with a ridiculously high ceiling. He has ideal size at 6’5″ 260 lbs and will be the perfect building block for new head coach Dan Campbell. He will be the perfect compliment to Romeo Okwara in the pass rush.
2nd Overall Houston Texans: CB Derek Stingley Jr.- LSU
The last of the key pieces from LSU’s 2019 National Championship run in Stingley. Rarely do you see a cornerback go this high but Derek is more than deserving. The 6’1″ cover man is as sticky as it gets and can play any coverage scheme. He is a day one lockdown guy who has proved that he can lockdown every WR1 the SEC can throw at him. He is ready to lock up guys like Julio Jones, A.J. Brown, and Michael Pittman from day one.
3rd Overall Jacksonville Jaguars: SAF Kyle Hamilton- Notre Dame
It’s been a long time since I have graded a safety as high as I have Hamilton. He can play in the deep middle, at the line, in the box, or in the slot and will make plays no matter where he is. Kyle is a jaw dropping 6’4″ and plays an incredibly physical brand of football. He is as versatile as Derwin James and Jamal Adams only 3 inches taller and 5 pounds heavier. This guy is going to be a stud from the first snap he plays.
4th Overall New York Jets: DL DeMarvin Leal- Texas A&M
While in San Fran, Robert Saleh’s defense ran through Arik Armstead, DeForest Buckner, and Nick Bosa. The Jets have two great lineman in Quinnen Williams and Carl Lawson but DeMarvin Leal could really get the gears turning in New York. Leal is extremely athletic and versatile in how he plays and reminds me a lot of Quinnen Williams funny enough. An interior presence of Williams and DeMarvin Leal could be game changing for this Jets defense.
5th Overall New York Giants: QB Matt Corrall- Ole Miss
I still think this may be a bit early but hey, the Giants are known for reaching on quarterbacks in the top ten picks. Matt Corrall is having an incredible season so far and is going to start sky rocketing up draft boards. If the Giants some how make a good decision and move on from Jones, I bet Corrall could actually be the guy to lead this team somewhere.
6th Overall Atlanta Falcons: WR Chris Olave- Ohio State
The Falcons are beyond the point where one player can take them from worst to first but I think Olave could be a step in the right direction. Calvin Ridley and Kyle Pitts are two established threats on the offensive side of the ball and I think adding Olave could open up a ton of opportunities for the three of them. Chris is a savvy route runner who uses his long speed and crafty footwork to create seperation and big plays.
7th Overall Cincinnati Bengals: OT Evan Neal- Alabama
This is the latest I see Evan Neal going. He is a hulking 6’7″ 251 lbs at the left tackle position and could silence the left tackle chatter in Ohio for good. Joe Burrow hasn’t been stellar in his first two showings this year but he also hasn’t had much time in the pocket. If the Bengals could snag Evan Neal, they could sure up the left side of the line and move Jonah Williams to guard. This could leave the Bengals in a position where they just put their best five guys out there.
8th Overall Carolina Panthers: OT Jaxson Kirkland- Washington
I doubt the Panthers pick here but if they do, Kirkland would be an awesome pick for them. Jaxson is a smooth operator who shows great power, athleticism, and body control as a 6’7″ blind side protector. In the pass game, Jaxson is one of the best in this class at using leverage to wipe out opposing pass rushers. In the run game, Kirkland is a mauler who is extremely powerful at the point of attack and gets upfield quick. He will be the best solution in Charlotte since a healthy Michael Oher was there.
9th Overall Las Vegas Raiders: CB Andrew Booth Jr.
Did you know Mike Mayock and Jon Gruden like Clemson players? Assuming they’re still employed by the Raiders next year and are picking 9th overall, I see no other scenario but Booth Jr. being a Raider. Mayock took and big swing and missed bad on Damon Arnette and with Casey Heyward Jr. on a one year deal, I think they will opt to pair up former Clemson CB Trayvon Mullen with Booth Jr.. Booth Jr. is an incredible cover man who will be a bonafide CB1 from day one.
10th Overall Washington Football Team: QB Spencer Rattler- Oklahoma
It’s time Ron Rivera and the Football Team solve their quarterback dilemma. Tons of people think Rattler will be the first signal caller off the board and despite my disagreeing, I see the un-deniable physical traits that could make him a great NFL quarterback. His inconsistence in Lincoln Riley’s scheme that always seems to have a top ten pick at the helm makes me worry a bit but I think that Ron Rivera is one of the best coaches in the NFL to under take a project like Rattler.
11th Overall Philadelphia Eagles: EDGE Drake Jackson- USC
This pick is assuming that the front office believes in Jalen Hurts as their starter. The Eagles just lost stud pass rusher, Brandon Graham, to a torn ACL, underwhelming 2017 first round pick Derek Barnett is going to be a free agent, and Ryan Kerrigan is only on a one year deal so it’s time for Howie Roseman to invest in the defensive trenches once more. Drake Jackson is a great speed rusher who shows great hand technique and footwork. He can beat tackles in a variety of ways and will produce early at the next level.
12th Overall New York Giants: OL Darian Kinnard- Kentucky
The Giants are a fan of “hog mollies” and might I say, Kinnard is quite the hog molly at an incredible 345 pounds. Darian is a tackle/guard capable player who is SEC battle tested and would allow the Giants to play their best combination of five lineman for new quarterback Matt Corrall.
13th Overall Denver Broncos: QB Sam Howell- North Carolina
The Broncos are playing pretty well with Teddy Bridgewater under center but we all know that he is more of a bridge quarterback rather than a franchise quarterback. I think Sam Howell would be the perfect fit in Denver with their bevy of weapons. Jerry Jeudy, Courtland Sutton, Tim Patrick, K.J. Hamler, Javonte Williams, Noah Fant, and Melvin Gordon make up quite the offensive arsenal and will make the transition easier for a rookie like Howell.
14th Overall Minnesota Vikings: CB Kaiir Elam- Florida
The Vikings have struck out on their first round picks with Jeff Gladney and Mike Hughes and I know defensive mastermind Mike Zimmer is not happy with Cameron Dantzler, an old Patrick Peterson, and Bashaun Breeland as his cornerbacks. The Vikings cannot go wrong with Kaiir Elam. The Florida stud is a 6’2″ sticky press man corner who can be the Vikings CB1 early in his career.
15th Overall New England Patriots: WR John Metchie III- Alabama
Mac Jones is off to a pretty good start as the new signal caller in Foxborough but his arsenal of Nelson Agholor, Kendrick Bourne, and Jakobi Meyers seems like a room of decent pass catchers without one bonafide WR1. I think that adding a guy like Metchie III would be exactly what they’re looking for. John Metchie already has chemistry with Mac and would be a great leader for the Patriots at receiver. Metchie III is a man coverage beater who plays with great route running prowess and a high football IQ.
16th Overall Philadelphia Eagles: CB Ahmad Gardner- Cincinnati
The Eagles need to infuse some serious talent into their defense and Drake Jackson is a great step in the right direction but they are in desperate need of a cornerback to play opposite Darius Slay. Gardner is an extremely physical man cover corner who has great size for the position at 6’2″. Ahmad started at cornerback as a true freshman and could take Darius Slay’s starting job as CB1 early in his career.
17th Overall Arizona Cardinals: CB Trent McDuffie- Washington
The one clear weakness on the Cardinals roster to me is cornerback. Robert Alford and Marco Wilson are not going to be the starting outside corners of any Super Bowl team and the cornerback spot must be addressed. McDuffie is a super smooth corner who plays with great body control and has the IQ and athleticism to play in man or zone coverage.
18th Overall Philadelphia Eagles: WR Garrett Wilson- Ohio State
The Eagles have invested two first round picks into wide receivers with Jalen Reagor and DeVonta Smith and I think they should do it one last time here with Wilson. In order to give Jalen Hurts, or whoever the signal caller is, the best chance to succeed they must load their offense with as many weapons as possible. Reagor is their deep threat, DeVonta Smith is their steady route running possession receiver, and Wilson can be their shifty gadget receiver. This would give the Eagles one of the most loaded receiver rooms in the league and would leave no more excuses for Hurts. A class of Drake Jackson, Ahmad Gardner, and Garrett Wilson would be ridiculously good for the future of the Eagles.
19th Overall Pittsburgh Steelers: IOL Kenyon Green- Texas A&M
The Steelers built a dominant career for Ben Roethlisberger around a dominant offensive line. This year’s line is less than stellar and the Steelers are not the kind of team to reach for need. Despite quarterback and cornerback being at the top of their wishlist this offseason, I think the guard spot is another huge area of need. Kenyon Green can be a staple inside for a long time coming and would be the first big step in building another powerful line.
20th Overall Dallas Cowboys: EDGE Aidan Hutchinson- Michigan
The Cowboys are just in week two and have already needed to switch Micah Parsons to defensive end out of necessity. DeMarcus Lawrence was dominant in week one but got injured, Randy Gregory is un-proven and often injured, Dorance Armstrong isn’t anything to write home about, and nor is Bradlee Anae. Aidan Hutchinson is a 6’6″ 265 pound freak athlete who opted to stay at Michigan for his senior season and it has paid off. He is always in the back field and would be an excellent addition to play across from DeMarcus Lawrence.
21st Overall Los Angeles Chargers: NT Jordan Davis- Georgia
Linval Joseph is set to be a free agent this offseason and I may be the biggest Jordan Davis fan on planet earth so this is a match made in heaven for me. The Chargers have some great talent in Joey Bosa, Uchenna Nwosu, Kenneth Murray, and Derwin James but there is no one in their line that is truly opening up holes. I think Jordan Davis can make a Vita Vea type of impact for the Chargers. Davis is an extremely athletic defensive lineman who plays at a mind boggling 6’6″ 330 lbs. Davis is expected to run a sub-5-second 40 yard dash and could take this defense from good to great if they decided to take him.
22nd Overall Tennessee Titans: ILB Christian Harris- Alabama
The Titans current starting linebackers, Jayon Brown and Rashaan Evans, are both set to be free agents so why not pair 2021 third round pick Monty Rice with another Bama backer in Christian Harris. Christian Harris can do it all as a linebacker and would fit perfectly in this Titans 3-4 defensive front. I bet Mike Vrabel would fall in love with Harris’ physical capabilities and they would be set for another 4 years at the linebacker spot.
23rd Overall New Orleans Saints: QB Malik Willis- Liberty
Until Jameis Winston can prove he deserves a contract extension, the pick will be a quarterback. Sean Payton is dying to get his hands on a raw athletic freak at quarterback and Malik Willis could be just that. Willis could be running in the 4.4 range at his 40 yard dash and has some incredible arm strength. Sean Payton and Malik Willis just seems like one of the best marriages in the draft to me and Willis could be a super star in the league with a guy like Payton.
24th Overall Cleveland Browns: EDGE George Karlaftis- Purdue
Jadeveon Clowney is still not that guy and the Browns need to find a true running mate for Myles Garrett. Karlaftis is a big defensive end who plays with great power and hand technique to get into the backfield in both the pass game and the run game. I think with Myles Garrett taking the double teams, Karlaftis could win his one on ones early and light up the box score.
25th Overall New York Jets: EDGE Myjai Sanders- Cincinnati
The Jets made a big move grabbing Leal and it’s time to complete this stellar defensive line with an edge rusher opposite Carl Lawson. If Robert Saleh can get a line of Carl Lawson, DeMarvin Leal, Quinnen Williams, and Myjai Sanders up and running he could run a top ten defense once more. Sanders is an athletic freak who has a ridiculously high ceiling as a pass rusher.
26th Overall Baltimore Ravens: SAF Brandon Joesph- Northwestern
The Ravens have always had elite safety play from the likes of Ed Reed, Eric Weddle, and Earl Thomas but they are lacking that type of play right now. In comes Brandon Joseph. He is a rangy safety who will fit best as a strong safety. He is capable of playing single high or in the slot. Joseph is a sound tackler with great body control and ball tracking ability. This would be a great fit for the Ravens defense.
27th Overall Green Bay Packers: ILB Nakobe Dean- Georgia
The Packers are in need of some inside linebacker help and thus far, Nakobe Dean has truly impressed me as the field general in Georgia’s historic defense. Dean is a sure tackler who is a great blitzer and cover man. I think he is a do it all guy who could wear the green dot for the Packers early in his career. I may be higher on him than most right now but I bet he will rise up boards as the college season contuinues.
28th Overall Miami Dolphins: C Tyler Linderbaum- Iowa
The Dolphins must continue to improve their offensive line and getting a big man in the middle would be a big step in the right direction. Tyler could slide in and improve their run game for whoever their running back is this time next year. He is also a stout pass defender who could help the Fins keep Tua upright which is something they’ve struggled to do.
29th Overall Buffalo Bills: TE Jalen Wydermyer- Texas A&M
This is a bit of a selfish pick but I would absolutely love to see Wydermyer in this offense. Josh Allen could have another weapon to add to his arsenal of Cole Beasley, Stefon Diggs, and Gabe Davis. Jalen is a less athletic Kyle Pitts who is also a good 15 pounds heavier. What he may lack in athleticism he makes up for in power.
30th Overall Detroit Lions: WR Treylon Burks- Arkansas
Head Coach Dan Campbell had the pleasure of watching a big physical receiver like Michael Thomas for years and now he wants one of his own. Treylon Burks is a hulking 6’3″ 225 lbs and plays a physical brand of football. Burks can also stretch the field with his physicality on jump balls.
31st Overall Tampa Bay Buccaneers: QB Carson Strong- Nevada
The Buccaneers need to start to think about a succession plan with Tom Brady getting up there in age and Carson Strong could be the perfect cantidate. Strong is a big pocket passer who has a live arm and a high ceiling while still being a raw athlete. Hence why sitting behind Tom Brady could be the best move for him. The Bucs could go from Brady to a developed Carson Strong and not skip a beat.
32nd Overall Kansas City Chiefs: SAF Daxton Hill- Michigan
The Chiefs’ safeties Daniel Sorensen and Tyrann Mathieu are both in contract years and one of those slots can be filled by Daxton Hill. Hill is a versatile play maker who can play both free and strong safety in any scheme. If the Chiefs could cough up the money to bring back Mathieu, Hill would be the perfect running mate on the back end for the Super Bowl hopeful Chiefs.