#1 Cleveland Browns (1-15):
Texas A&M Edge Myles Garrett
Not only is Garrett hands down the best player in the draft, he is at second most valuable position on the field. If you plan on beating an elite quarterback, you better have the guys to get pressure on him without rushing more than four guys. Garrett is that elite edge rusher prospect that will fit perfectly on a talent-starved Cleveland roster switching to an attacking 4-3 defense led by Gregg Williams. Garrett’s combination of size, strength, and speed doesn’t come around every draft. Garrett is coming in at 6’5″, 270 pounds and potential 4.40 speed. That doesn’t come around too often.
#2 San Francisco 49ers (2-14):
North Carolina Quarterback Mitch Trubisky
With Kyle Shanahan coming over as head coach, if he is unable to land his buddy Kirk Cousins from Washington, he will look to take his pick from the, questionable to say the least, QB crop in this class. If they go QB the choice will end up being Trubisky, the only knock on his play, is the lack thereof. The one year starter is a QB guru’s dream when it comes to physical tools. Big, strong, athletic, more mobile than most, and has the arm that allows him to make the throws needed to be a success QB in the NFL. Trubisky reminds me of a more mobile Matt Ryan, smart and accurate.
#3 Chicago Bears (3-13):
LSU Safety Jamal Adams
The Bears have spent a good amount of money in free agency and draft resources on the front 7 part of the defense in recent offseasons. The move is to now bolster the secondary. I could see them targeting a big body DT in the second round due to the abundance of them in this draft. Jamal Adams is the most complete safety in this draft and would make an immediate impact in a rather unintimidating group. Corner would be ideal here but with Adams being the best defensive back in the draft class, Chicago won’t hesitate to get the versatile energetic player from LSU. I have Adams here instead of Hooker because I think he is a better tackler and more aggressive in the run game, but you can’t go wrong either way. Quarterback is a need as well, but I can see them targeting a QB in later rounds or even through guys available in the league.
#4 Jacksonville Jaguars (3-13):
Alabama Defensive Tackle Jonathan Allen
Jacksonville has a rather talented and young defense. They invested heavily into the defense last year and I think that will continue this year. Signing Tashuan Gipson and drafting Jalen Ramsey should have bolstered the secondary but with a league worst seven interceptions, they need a lot of work. Malik Jackson is solid, but Allen next him with Dante Fowler on the outside, it creates a nice core of big boys for the trenches. With the Titans’ emerging offense led by a strong offensive line and mobile QB, a good, young, and fast defensive line could be a good core to winning the division. Jaguars would love an offensive linemen here for themselves but a top line offensive line prospect just doesn’t exist in this class.
#5 Tennessee Titans (9-7) via Goff Trade w/ LA**
Clemson Wide Reciever Mike Williams
With two first rounders this year I would not be surprised to see Tennessee trade back with this pick and get Quincy Wilson in the 8-12 range, especially if someone is hot and bothered about a Deshone Kizer here. If they stay put they will take the best player available, as well as fulfilling one of their biggest needs. They built up the offensive line last year and gave Mariota two good backs to help him on the ground, now a true number one target would be ideal here and that’s exactly what Williams is. He’s everything you want in a receiver and more. A Mariota, Derrick Henry, Williams trio could be very productive one that can lead to many exciting years with Conklin and Lewan as bookends on the offensive line. Look for Tennessee to use basically the rest of the draft on the defensive side of the ball.
#6 New York Jets (5-11):
Ohio State Safety Malik Hooker
Jets have a rather aging team with a strong defensive line. Where the team could use huge improvement is in the secondary. Once again Hooker is the best player available and fills a need. As much as Reuben Foster would have fun sitting behind their defensive line with clear lanes to the running back, that doesn’t help them from getting beat over the top as they did multiple times this year. With a strong cornerback class, I could see the Jets target a couple of corners later in the draft. Offensively the Jets have pieces in play, but as usual, they just need better quarterback play. Even though they spent on a second round pick on Christian Hackenberg last year, I could see the Jets as player for a QB already in the league (Tony Romo, Kirk, AJ McCarron, Mike Glennon, Tyrod Taylor, etc).
#7 Los Angeles Chargers (5-11):
Florida Cornerback Quincy Wilson
Could see the Chargers go receiver here, but I could see them as big players for Alshon Jeffery if he hits open market. With Gus Bradley as new defensive coordinator, due to his Seattle background and previous draft picks, (Jalen Ramsey last year), it is clear he like cornerbacks that he can throw on an island. This draft is loaded with corners and it will really be the coach’s preference. Quincy Wilson, Marshon Lattimore, Gareon Conley, Teez Tabor, and Marlon Humphrey all good corner prospects. Due to Wilson’s size and speed combination, he projects as simply the best man-up corner and can be the guy the team relies on to cover the opposing team’s best receiver threat. A Wilson and Casey Hayward combo on the outside will be an issue for any team especially in a division with Thomas/Sanders and Cooper/Crabtree duos.
#8 Carolina Panthers (6-10):
LSU Running Back Leonard Fournette RB LSU
It’s no doubt that a lot of the Panthers’ failures this year came from a drop off in defense, but with a deep defensive draft they can get quality players in the top of the second round. What is completely understated is Cam Newton’s drop off. At this point in his career, Cam is what he is, he hits the home runs but struggles with completion percentage due to his unorthodox delivery. What Cam thrives off of is his ability to control the game through the ground to set up his home run throws. The big drop off was the Panthers going from second in running in the NFL to 10th. Fournette will give them that bruising back to wear away defenses with Newton’s physicality, if you don’t hit them hard it’ll be a long game for any team playing that duo with Newton (250 pounds) and Fournette (235 pounds) get ready for almost 500 pounds of running come at you for 4 quarters.
#9 Cincinnati Bengals (6-9-1):
Alabama Linebacker Reuben Foster
For a player like Foster to be available at nine is a steal for Cincinnati. Karlos Dansby and Rey Maualuga are quality players but there best days are behind them. Vontaze Burfict and Foster behind Carlos Dunlap and Geno Atkins is exactly what the Bengals need to thrive in the tough AFC North and to attempt to keep Le’Veon Bell in check. Foster could be the anchor of the Bengals defense with not only his physical play and versatility, but also his mental capacity to control a defense in cold weather division is huge asset for the Bengals. Look for them to target offensive line later in the draft, but once again with a player like Foster is available, it would be moronic to target an offensive linemen this early in the draft.
#10 Buffalo Bills (6-10):
Western Michigan Wide Receiver Corey Davis
This pick heavily decides on the Tyrod Taylor situation. In a quarterback-starved league it would be somewhat silly to chuck a competent one to the curb with a weak class in this draft. Corey Davis is electric. He has the size and ball skills along with that second gear few players possess. He would be an excellent receiver to go with Watkins to give secondaries a massive headache. An offensive core of Corey Davis, Watkins, Charles Clay, LeSean McCoy, Tyrod behind a physical offensive line would be great for the Bills. If they part ways with Taylor, look for this team to target Kizer or even Watson. Davis is a great player with a lot of upside.
#11 New Orleans Saints (7-9):
Ohio State Cornerback Marshon Lattimore
New Orleans would sure love to have four picks in the top 11 to rebuild their entire secondary. Lattimore is good building block to start the retooling of very weak secondary. Lattimore is another excellent corner in an extremely talented group. The Saints need a lot of defensive help, in daily fantasy world when picking the quarterback going against the Saints usually guarantees you 25+ points. Lattimore along with FA signings (Stephon Gilmore or Trumaine Johnson) could be a good start to improving a team’s biggest weakness.
#12 Cleveland Browns (1-15) via Wentz Trade w/ PHI**
Stanford Defensive End Solomon Thomas
You don’t go 1-15 by accident. The Browns have an abundance of holes. Yes the Browns need a quarterback, they could be trade up partners later in this round to get their guy, but they have young pieces in play. The offensive line, which was mangled last year (two starting guards on IR) isn’t as bad as advertised. The running backs and receivers are young and growing Isaiah Crowell, Duke Johnson, Corey Coleman, and Terrelle Pryor is manageable. The biggest area of need is the front 7. Already drafting Garrett and switching to the 4-3 Solomon benefits them tremendously. Solomon possesses similar explosion and pass rush ability as Aaron Donald did in the same role with the Rams. He needs to bulk up about 10 pounds or so to get to where he needs to be. Garrett, Danny Shelton, Thomas, Emmanuel Ogbah with Christian Kirksey and Jamie Collins at linebacker isn’t going to rock anybody’s world on paper, but it’s a good young core to build around in the AFC North. Cleveland needs to build a team that can win tough games in the cold and a Thomas and Garrett combo would finally be a step in the right direction for a team that hasn’t seem to have a direction in the last two decades.
#13 Arizona Cardinals (7-8-1):
Notre Dame Quarterback DeShone Kizer
While Palmer was an MVP candidate last year for Arizona, he showed his age this year. It’s time for Bruce Arians to get a quarterback he can mold into a long term guy. Kizer possesses all of the tools needed and then some. He’s got the size and arm strength needed to succeed at this level, as well as mobility for a guy his size. Arians loves to stretch the field vertically and Kizer throws one of the better deep balls in this draft along with Patrick Mahome from Texas Tech. He can sit a year or even 10 games behind Palmer while learning the ropes of the NFL. Kizer and Dohnson two good young building blocks of a strong offense.
#14 Philadelphia Eagles (7-9) via Bradford Trade w/ MIN**
Washington Wide Receiver John Ross
They got their franchise QB last year and now it’s time to get him some weapons. Ross is WR3 in this draft but he’s a good one. He’s explosive and quick and can consistently get open and become a true weapon to build with. With a DeSean Jackson reunion possible, a Jackson, Jordan Mathews, Ross, and Zach Ertz is a solid group for Wentz to grow with. The running backs weren’t the issue for this offense. Dalvin Cook would be a good fit here too, but Ross fills a bigger hole and can give Wentz and the Philly offense some excitement and big plays in the passing game.
#15 Indianapolis Colts (8-8):
Tennessee Edge Derek Barnett
Indianapolis has struggled tremendously to build around one of the better quarterbacks in the league. One way they make his job easier is by building a defense to take some of the pressure off of Luck. Barnett is a highly productive pass rusher who should make a smooth transition to the NFL and cause havoc for opposing QBs. He has good size and good speed with a great motor to get after the QB. While Peyton had Dwight Freeney and Robert Mathis, Barnett could be a similar force to take the QB off his mark by causing pressure consistently.
#16 Baltimore Ravens (8-8):
Vanderbilt Linebacker Zach Cunningham
Baltimore would love to use this pick on an Edge rusher like Takkarist McKinley but now that All-Pro LB Zach Orr has retired, they have a bigger need. Baltimore was building up their defense back up to their reputation as a strong unit, Cunningham could step back into Orr’s role and be a force with Mosley as his counterpart at linebacker. Cunningham isn’t just a replacement for Orr, he is right behind Foster and is a top 20 pick in his own right. This is a good pick that fills a new found need and keeps the front 7 as a strength of the Ravens
#17 Washington Redskins (8-7-1):
Auburn Defensive Tackle Montravius Adams
Washington lacks a dominant cog in the middle. Ever since the Albert Haynesworth debacle, Washington has longed for that big force at the point of attack. At 6’4″ and 300 pounds, Adams can be that big boy in the middle to set the tempo for the entire defense. They need to sure up the trenches with as many big bodies as they can get. Ezekiel Elliot and that Dallas line isn’t going anywhere anytime soon. Top first round talent is an excellent source to get guys that can play, and play for a long time. Malik McDowell or Caleb Brantley are good options as well.
#18 Tennessee Titans (8-8):
Florida Cornerback Jalen Tabor
Tennessee adding Tabor and Mike Williams will do wonders for an already up and coming team. Tabor gives the Titans a young athletic corner to add to a building defense. With Williams almost completing a young and very impressive offense for Mariota to run, Tabor gives the Titans a potential number one corner. Titans have the potential to have an exciting draft and adding two players of this magnitude can put them that much closer to becoming a dominant team.
#19 Tampa Bay Buccaneers (9-7):
Another weapon from Florida State for Jameis Winston to grow with. They signed Doug Martin last year, but he’s unreliable and the running back shuffle was an issue for offensive continuity last year. Running backs have a short shelf life, probably best to part ways with Martin and allow Rodgers to spell Cook, as he is one of the more complete backs. Think about watching Winston, Mike Evans, and Dalvin Cook every Sunday for the long term.
#20 Denver Broncos (9-7):
Alabama Tight End OJ Howard
Not only is Howard a complete stud at the tight end position, but also solves a huge need. Paxton Lynch is being groomed to be the next great quarterback in Denver history while he has Demaryius Thomas and Emmanuel Sanders, Devontate Booker showed some flashes last year, he still needs that big physical mismatch to rely on. Throughout Denver’s historical success they had a good tight end. whether it was short term with Julius Thomas or the great Shannon Sharpe. Elway has shown he enjoys having a good tight end on his roster.
#21 Detroit Lions (9-7):
Alabama Edge Tim Williams
Detroit had a successful year, but they are in desperate need of someone other than Ziggy Ansah causing havoc on defense. Tim Williams is a good quality pass rusher. He is a smaller built prospect with room to grow at 6’4″ and 236 pounds. He is all upside similar to the way Ansah was when he was drafted. Let’s see if Detroit can strike gold twice and develop Williams into forming one of the more chaotic pass rushing duos.
#22 Miami Dolphins (9-7):
UCLA Edge Takkarist McKinley
McKinley might not be as explosive as Williams, but he has the edge in effort. McKinley will never let a lineman beat him with effort. McKinley worked his way into the first round by hustling whistle to whistle. After the failed Mario Williams experiment, Cameron Wake can take McKinley under his wing and help him become a very productive player at the NFL level.
#23 New York Giants (11-5):
Wisconsin Offensive Tackle Ryan Ramczyk
Ereck Flowers has been an utter disaster to say the least. The Giants have had no running game despite having good interior linemen. Flowers needs to be replaced. Ramczyk falls perfectly into their lap. He can be plugged right into the left tackle spot that overwhelms Flowers and with his size and athleticism help to get a ground game going. Running the ball effectively will help take pressure off Eli to enable him to be more efficient in the passing game. The Giants defense played well, they will need to add to the pass rush but offensive line is a bigger need.
#24 Oakland Raiders (12-4):
Michigan State Defensive Tackle Malik McDowell
The Raiders need someone not named Khalil Mack to get pressure on the defensive front. McDowell is extremely raw but possess elite abilities that make him a terrific prospect. Motor concerns will always swirl his play, but the NFL isn’t a forgiven business, and he will either play hard or won’t be playing at all. He has versatility to play several spots up and down the defense. One of highest ceilings in this draft has potential to pay off big time if all breaks right for him at the next level. The tools are there.
#25 Houston Texans (9-7):
Clemson Quarterback Deshaun Watson QB Clemson
I can definitely see someone make a move into the teens to get Watson, but I don’t see him as a top 10 talent. The production is there, yes. Production doesn’t always lead to success at the next level. Watson needs to be far more consistent with his accuracy, he seems to struggle on the shorter and intermediate throws and hit on the long balls, that is not a recipe for success at the NFL level. He also needs how to sit in the pocket and make contested throws, running around will only get you so far and the hits will only add up. He cannot be worse than Brock Osweiler was this year and with a playoff roster, Watson might be able to do just enough to propel Houston to the level they want to be at. Lamar Miller, DeAndre Hopkins, Braxton Miller, and Will Fuller is a good group that fits Watson’s strengths.
#26 Seattle Seahawks (10-5-1):
Alabama Offensive Tackle Cam Robinson
If you watched a Seahawks games this year, you saw a lot of Russell Wilson scrambling, and it wasn’t by design. He was running for his life. Seattle will be a Super Bowl contender for the years to come but they have to do a better job of protecting their franchise guy. They did a good job of running the ball but need to be more efficient in pass blocking. Wilson has shown he can pick defenses apart, if he’s not running the minute the snap hits his hands. Robinson is a good tackle prospect that is OT2 in this draft. He will be an immediate upgrade for the struggling Seattle line. I wouldn’t be surprised if they draft more offensive linemen and look to add some in FA.
#27 Kansas City Chiefs (12-4):
Marlon Humphrey CB Alabama
The Chiefs have one of the better defenses in football, they could use maybe another big DT, but Humphrey is one of the best players available on the board at this time and he solves a need. It is a good fit, Kansas City needs someone else besides Marcus Peters and Eric Berry to make plays in the secondary. Humphrey gives the Chiefs another cornerback to lean on and help them make another run into January.
#28 Dallas Cowboys (13-3):
Michigan Defensive End Taco Charlton
The Cowboys desperately need a pass rusher, as their team leader in sacks only recorded six last season. The Randy Gregory Project went how everyone but the Cowboys thought it would go. Taco Charlton is a big bodied pass rusher that should be able to find success at the next level getting after the quarterback. Big strong powerful rusher, can never have too many of them.
#29 Green Bay Packers (10-6):
Washington Cornerback Sidney Jones
Rodgers was asked to put up ridiculous numbers because everyone else put numbers on them. The Packers need to help Rodgers out. He’s good enough to run the the regular season with, but when the playoffs come around and teams are flat out more talented than you, weaknesses get exposed. Packers need a defense and Jones is a great corner from a good program who can come over and be a piece of the puzzle and putting a defense behind Rodgers.
#30 Pittsburgh Steelers (11-5):
Miami Tight End David Njoku
Yes the Steelers have a high-powered offense but they are missing just one thing. The Green signing didn’t go as planned and Jesse James tried to fill the Heath Miller void but it wasn’t enough. Njoku is dynamic receiving tight end and will compliment Antonio Brown, Le’Veon Bell and Martavis Bryant as solid threat in the passing game. Think about a Steelers offense with a top flight tight end, that’s what Njoku could do for an already dynamic offense.
#31 Atlanta Falcons (11-5):
Florida Defensive Tackle Caleb Brantley
The Falcons need to keep adding young talent to the already young and fast defense. Brantley could be that big anchor on the line to enable the faster players on defense to roam around. Brantley is a solid defensive tackle that fits a need with Atlanta. A big body to help out Beasley get more favorable matchups on the edge will go a long way for this defense.
#32 New England Patriots (14-2):
Michigan Wolverine Jabrill Peppers
If Peppers doesn’t scream Bill Belichick, than I don’t know what does. If Peppers goes higher, which is possible, I can see Christian McCaffrey or Adoree Jackson here as well. Peppers problem isn’t his skill, it is his lack of position. With a bunch of starting corners available and simply better safeties, Peppers could slip. He fits perfectly in New England. If there is anyone who can use a player like Peppers unique talents effective it has to be Belichick.