Mar. 23, 2018
FullerMetrics NFL Mock Draft 3.0
Free agency is now a week old, and many of the big names have found a new team to call home. Kirk Cousins joined an already-dangerous Minnesota Vikings team, Case Keenum will get another chance to start in Denver, Richard Sherman gets a chance to get revenge on Seattle by staying in the NFC West with San Fran, and Allen Robinson makes the Chicago receiving corps no longer the worst in the league. Oh, and the Jets traded up to #3 just to guarantee they'll have a solid shot at a new franchise quarterback. With the top three being Cleveland and both New York teams, there's a decent chance the draft will start with three Quarterbacks. I wouldn't be surprised to see Buffalo try and climb up into the Top 5, but for now, we're sticking with the current pick allotment. Third time's the charm, right?
1. Cleveland Browns: Sam Darnold, QB, USC
I stayed away from taking Allen in 2.0, but Cleveland made two major acquisitions that change this pick: they traded for Tyrod Taylor and signed Carlos Hyde. Taylor is a formidable short-term option, so they don't need a start-ready quarterback, and that was Allen's biggest weakness. Signing Hyde means they're most likely not drafting Saquon Barkley. Darnold or Josh Allen are both ideal picks for #1 now.
2. New York Giants: Josh Allen, QB, Wyoming
The Giants signed Jonathan Stewart, so they can afford to pass on Saquon Barkley and take a long-term franchise Quarterback option here in Josh Allen.
3. New York Jets: Josh Rosen, QB, UCLA
The Jets traded up for their next attempt at a franchise Quarterback, and they might just get that in Rosen. They re-signed Josh McCown and signed Teddy Bridgewater, so they have short-term options, and Rosen is a perfect pro-style fit in New York.
4. Cleveland Browns: Saquon Barkley, RB, Penn State
Saquon Barkley is just simply too good to pass up on here at #4. They could take Minkah Fitzpatrick or Denzel Ward as replacement for Jason McCourty, but imagine how much pressure would be alleviated from Sam Darnold & Tyrod Taylor at Quarterback if their backfield has Carlod Hyde AND Saquon Barkley. That's a solid offense.
5. Denver Broncos: Quenton Nelson, G, Notre Dame
The only big signing Denver's made so far is Case Keenum, a new starting Quarterback. This leaves Guard as the team's top need, and re-signing Billy Turner is obviously not enough. Quenton Nelson can step in an instantly be the best O-Lineman on the team.
6. Indianapolis Colts: Bradley Chubb, DE/OLB, North Carolina State
Indy has been quiet in free agency, with DE Denico Autry as their only current signing. For the third-worst Sacking team in 2017, Bradley Chubb is a must-get with Saquon Barkley off the board.
7. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Minkah Fitzpatrick, DB, Florida State
The Bucs would love if Saquon Barkley was still on the board, but he's gone. Re-signing Brent Grimes alleviates some of the need for Cornerback, but he's also not getting any younger. Strong Safety T.J. Ward is still a free agent, leaving a hole in the secondary, and Minkah Fitzpatrick has the skill and versatility to be a difference-maker anywhere in the secondary.
8. Chicago Bears: Tremaine Edmunds, OLB, Virginia Tech
Chicago signed Allen Robinson and Taylor Gabriel and re-signed Cameron Meredith, so Wide Receiver is already much improved. The Bears also re-signed Kyle Fuller and Prince Amukamara, closing a major hole at Corner. This leaves an edge rusher as the top priority, as Pernell McPhee and Lamarr Houston are both gone. Tremaine Edmunds is the best stand-up 4-3 Outside Linebacker in the draft, so this pick is easy.
9. San Francisco 49ers: Derwin James, SS, Florida State
San Fran signed Richard Sherman, so Cornerback isn't their biggest need anymore. Marcus Davenport, the next best edge rusher, is a bit of a reach at #9, and Roquan Smith is a sideline-to-sideline playmaker that San Fran could certainly need if/when Reggie Ragland is suspended.
10. Oakland Raiders: Roquan Smith, LB, Georgia
Oakland signed Rashaan Melvin, so the need for Cornerback after cutting Sean Smith was addressed. That leaves Roquan as the ideal pick for both positional need and talent available.
11. Miami Dolphins: Vita Vea, DT, Washington
The 'Fins could still take Baker Mayfield here, as they've worked him out more than any other team so far, but cutting Ndamukong Suh leaves a major hole at Defensive Tackle. Vita Vea is the perfect option to replace Suh. Need over want here.
12. Buffalo Bills: Baker Mayfield, QB, Oklahoma
Buffalo will likely try to move up even earlier than #12 to get their next Quarterback, but in this mock draft, Baker Mayfield still falls to #12. It's hard to see Buffalo going anywhere else than Quarterback after balking on all of the free agents options and trading up in the draft to get closer to the start-ready Quarterback range.
13. Washington Redskins: Denzel Ward, CB, Ohio State
Washington re-signed ILB Zach Brown, but let Bashaud Breeland go in free agency. Both he and DeAngelo Hall leave a hole at corner, and the best natural Cornerback in the draft is still available at #13. No-brainer here.
14. Green Bay Packers: Marcus Davenport, OLB, UT-San Antonio
Cornerback is still a major weakness, and it's more likely that they address it now since Muhammad Wilkerson was signed to add a pash rusher, but they're still missing young pass rushing talent on the edge. Marcus Davenport remains the man here.
15. Arizona Cardinals: Calvin Ridley, WR, Alabama
Arizona signed Sam Bradford and Mike Glennon, but they haven't brought in anyone new for them to target. John and Jaron Brown are both gone, leaving Larry Fitzgerald as the only legitimate option. Calvin Ridley didn't shine at the combine, but he showed his efficiency and production deserving of a WR2 status.
16. Baltimore Ravens: Mike McGlinchey, T, Notre Dame
The Ravens signed John Brown and after Ryan Grant failed his physical, Baltimore signed newly-cut Michael Crabtree. Center Ryan Jensen is gone, but #16 may be a bit of a reach for James Daniels, Isaiah Wynn or Billy Price. Re-signing James Hurst and cutting Austin Howard shows Baltimore admits they need new starters, so Mike McGlinchey once again makes sense as the new starting Right Tackle.
17. Los Angeles Chargers: Da'Ron Payne, DT, Alabama
The Bolts have been quiet in free agency, with their only moves including re-signing Michael Schofield, signing Virgil Green for the departing Antonio Gates, and letting Jeremiah Attaochu sign elsewhere. Stopping the run with a new D-Tackle is still the biggest need, and Da'Ron Payne fits perfectly.
18. Seattle Seahawks: Josh Jackson, CB, Iowa
Seattle cut Richard Sherman and Jeremy Lane, and they haven't signed any new corners, making Cornerback the overwhelmingly-largest need. Joshua Jackson is the best corner available, and his combination of length and athleticism make him a dream fit for Seattle anyways.
19. Dallas Cowboys: Isaiah Wynn, G, Georgia
D-Tackle is still probably the biggest need, but they are talking to Ndamukong Suh and the best DT on the board, Taven Bryan, would be a definite stretch at #19. At this point, the franchise lies in the hands of Dak Prescott and Ezekiel Elliott, meaning a new long-term option to replace Jonathan Cooper at Guard is a likely draft scenario. Isaiah Wynn would be an instant starting upgrade with a high long-term ceiling.
20. Detroit Lions: James Daniels, C, Iowa
Detroit signed LaGarrette Blount, so he, Ameer Abdullah and Theo Riddick stand as the 2018 backfield. Signing Devon Kennard makes up for the loss of Tahir Whitehead, so the biggest need is now Center. James Daniels and Billy Price would both be instant upgrades over free agent Travis Swanson, and Daniels has the upper hand after Price's torn pectoral injury at the combine.
21. Cincinnati Bengals: Connor Williams, OT, Texas
Cincy traded for Cordy Glenn, meaning former Left Tackle Cedric Ogbuehi can play elsewhere on the line. Clint Boling is the only Guard guaranteed a spot, and Right Tackle is also a need. Will Hernandez is a solid Guard, Billy Price could also fill the void at Center, and Connor Williams is a talented Tackle left on the board. Cincy will take the best O-Lineman available and nab Williams as their new Right Tackls.
22. Buffalo Bills: Billy Price, G/C, Ohio State
Buffalo re-signed Kyle Williams and paid big money for Star Lotulelei, covering the D-Tackle need. The Bills still don't have an answer for Center Eric Wood's career-ending neck injury, and Billy Price fills the void instantly.
23. Los Angeles Rams: Rashaan Evans, LB, Alabama
The Rams went with a corner in my last mock draft, but acquiring Marcus Peters, Sam Shield, Aqib Talib AND re-signing Nickell Robey-Coleman and Lamarcus Joyner eliminates that need. Their newest top need is Linebacker, after trading Alec Ogletree and Robert Quinn. Rashaan Evans is the best available 4-3 Outside Linebacker, and he could take some reps inside as well. If they wanted to immediately replace Ogletree, they could also go with Leighton Vander Esch
24. Carolina Panthers: Will Hernandez, G, UT-El Paso
Signing Dontari Poe fills the void Star Lotulelei left, and Bashaud Breeland is a needed addition at Cornerback. Andrew Norwell is gone, so Guard becomes an instant need. With plenty of talented receiving options available on Day 2, taking a starting Guard right away makes sense. Will Hernandez is a starting-ready Guard.
25. Tennessee Titans: Leighton Vander Esch, ILB, Boise State
Tennessee made two big signings in CB Malcolm Butler and RB Dion Lewis, but in doing so, they let defensive anchor Avery Williamson go. Leighton Vander Esch is the best Inside Linebacker available, and he's as solid of a tackler as they come in this draft.
26. Atlanta Falcons: Taven Bryan, DT, Florida
Atlanta let Adrian Clayborn and Dontari Poe both sign elsewhere in free agency, and while Takk McKinley could step into Clayborn's shoes, the void at D-Tackle is still present. Taven Bryan fits well as a 4-3 Defensive Tackle, and most likely could start seeing decent minutes right away.
27. New Orleans Saints: Lamar Jackson, QB, Louisville
The Saints have been smart in free agency, signing CB Patrick Robinson and LB Demario Davis on relatively affordable deals to fill major needs. Drew Brees is back for two final years, and while they signed Tom Savage to replace Chase Daniels as a younger back-up option, it's highly unlikely they see him as the next franchise quarterback. Lamar Jackson needs some time to learn under a pocket passer, and who better to learn under than Drew Brees?
28. Pittsburgh Steelers: Jessie Bates, S, Wake Forest
Pittsburgh cut Mike Mitchell, William Gay and Robert Golden to gain more cap space. J.J. Wilcox and Sean Davis shouldn't be the premier options at Safety. Jessie Bates is a rising name on draft boards, and his versatility at both Safety positions will make him an attractive pick for Pittsburgh.
29. Jacksonville Jaguars: D.J. Chark, WR, LSU
Re-signing Marquis Lee and not cutting Allen Hurns makes it seem like Jacksonville is riding with those two as their top options. They also signed Austin Seferian-Jenkins and Niles Paul as better Tight End options alongside Marcedes Lewis. Still, they could use a third solid receiving option, and combine hero D.J. Chark makes a lot of sense.
30. Minnesota Vikings: Jaire Alexander, CB, Louisville
Xavier Rhodes is an all-pro corner, but Trae Waynes made a lot of mistakes opposite of him. Minnesota's missing depth behind those two with Terrance Newman, Marcus Sherels and Tramaine Brock all free agents. Jaire Alexander is an athletic Corner who defended his physicality during the combine.
31. New England Patriots: Kolton Miller, LT, UCLA
New England let LT Nate Solder, RB Dion Lewis, WR Danny Amendola, and corners Malcolm Butler and Johnson Bademosi leave already this offseason. They signed Jeremy Hill to replace Lewis, traded for Cordarrelle Patterson to replace Amendola, and traded for Jason McCourty to fill the Cornerback void. That still leaves no Left Tackle option. Kolton Miller is 6'8" and had a solid combine. Protecting the NFL MVP with a rookie Left Tackle is a gamble, but it was a gamble to let Nate Solder walk away as well.
32. Philadelphia Eagles: Mike Gesicki, TE, Penn State
Philly needed to clear some cap space, and Brent Celek was one of the casualties. That means both he and Trey Burton will play elsewhere, leaving the Eagles with no options alongside Zach Ertz. Mike Gesicki gets to stay in-state AND stay in the first round here.
33. Cleveland Browns: Mike Hughes, CB, Central Florida
34. New York Giants: Harold Landry, DE/OLB, Boston College
35. Cleveland Browns: Courtland Sutton, WR, SMU
36. Indianapolis Colts: Derrius Guice, RB, LSU
37. Indianapolis Colts: Malik Jefferson, LB, Texas
38. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Ronald Jones II, RB, USC
39. Chicago Bears: Isaiah Oliver, CB, Colorado
40. Denver Broncos: Orlando Brown, OT, Oklahoma
41. Oakland Raiders: Brian O'Neill, OT, Pittsburgh
42. Miami Dolphins: Dallas Goedert, TE, South Dakota State
43. New England Patriots: Donte Jackson, CB, LSU
44. Washington: James Washington, WR, Oklahoma State
45. Green Bay Packers: Ronnie Harrison, SS, Alabama
46. Cincinnati Bengals: Sam Hubbard, DE, Ohio State
47. Arizona Cardinals: Carlton Davis, CB, Auburn
48. Los Angeles Chargers: Mason Rudolph, QB, Oklahoma State
49. Indianapolis Colts: Braden Smith, G, Auburn
50. Dallas Cowboys: Maurice Hurst, DT, Michigan
51. Detroit Lions: Harrison Phillips, DL, Stanford
52. Baltimore Ravens: Frank Ragnow, C, Arkansas
53. Buffalo Bills: M.J. Stewart, CB, North Carolina
54. Kansas City Chiefs: Justin Reid, S, Stanford
55. Carolina Panthers: Christian Kirk, WR, Texas A&M
56. Buffalo Bills: Lorenzo Carter, LB, Georgia
57. Tennessee Titans: Arden Key, DE/OLB, LSU
58. Atlanta Falcons: D.J. Moore, WR, Maryland
59. San Francisco 49ers: Jerome Baker, LB, Ohio State
60. Pittsburgh Steelers: Josey Jewell, ILB, Iowa
61. Jacksonville Jaguars: Dorance Armstrong, DE/OLB, Kansas
62. Minnesota Vikings: Chuckwuma Okorafor, OT, Western Michigan
63. New England Patriots: Hayden Hurst, TE, South Carolina
64. Cleveland Browns: Marcus Allen, S, Penn State
Green Bay Packers Big Board:
1. Tremaine Edmunds, OLB, Virginia Tech
2. Denzel Ward, CB, Ohio State
3. Marcus Davenport, OLB, UT-San Antonio
4. Derwin James, SS, Florida State
5. Josh Jackson, CB, Iowa
6. Roquan Smith, LB, Georgia
7. Harold Landry, OLB, Boston College
8. Jaire Alexander, CB, Louisville
9. Mike Hughes, CB, Central Florida
10. Connor Williams, OT, Texas