A month ago I released the first mock draft for the upcoming 2017 NFL Draft. The NFL Draft isn’t until April 27th, but it’s never too early to start thinking mock draft. I repeat this will change in the coming months. I form most of my opinion on players during the Senior Bowl and Scouting Combine. Now that the Senior Bowl has ended I have a much better idea how I feel about some of the draft prospects this year. However, I haven’t done my homework on every player heading into the 2017 NFL Draft yet. My second mock draft will occur based on needs prior to free agency. Again these will change once free agency takes place. I stress this mock draft is far from a finished product. I also want to acknowledge that this is a mock draft. I am predicting what teams will do with their draft picks not suggesting who I think each team should select. For the most extensive NFL Draft coverage questions can be answered by tweeting at me @treydaubert.
1. Cleveland Browns: Mitch Trubisky, QB, North Carolina
There is no secret that Cleveland needs a quarterback. It appears that they prefer Trubisky at this early juncture (Trubiskey is actually born in raised in the Cleveland area). I’ve done my homework on Tribisky and, it appears the Browns are set to make another colossal mistake (Shocker, Not!). Here’s an excerpt from my article earlier in the season. Sure the smart move would be to take the once in a generation type of talent Myles Garrett. Then again this is Cleveland we are talking about. When it comes to Trubiskey I will release a further evaluation on the UNC prospect who has virtually no chance to become a franchise quarterback.
2. San Francisco 49ers: Myles Garrett, OLB-DE, Texas A&M
Garrett is the best defensive player in the draft and almost a clone of Von Miller. Garrett is not just a once in a generational type of talent but he is by far the best collegiate prospect in the draft. The Kyle Shanahan regime has no choice but to take Garrett.
3. Chicago Bears: Jonathan Allen, DE, Alabama
John Fox is a veteran defensive minded head coach. My guess is that he will try to lure a veteran quarterback to Chicago will addressing the defense in round 1. At Alabama, Allen recorded 10.5 sacks as a 5 technique which is incredible. He becomes a perfect fit for Vic Fangio’s 3-4 defense at defensive end.
4. Jacksonville Jaguars: Leonard Fournette, HB, LSU
Doug Marrone was announced as the Jaguars head coach this offseason. Marrone’s specialty is the offensive lineman and he is going to be a big advocate for running the ball. The idea of this would be to give the Jaguars a dependable running game with the goal of building Blake Bortles’ confidence. In previous years the Jags have beefed up the defense. The Jags take Fournette, the draft’s most talented prospect. Ezekiel Elliot went 4th overall last year so there is no reason this is too high.
5. Tennessee Titans via LA Rams: Jamal Adams, S, LSU
Dick LeBeau is desperate for his version of Troy Polamalu in this Titans defense. Adams is a really rangy safety who fits the mold. Taking a defensive back from LSU usually tends to work out pretty well.
6. New York Jets: Marshon Lattimore, CB, Ohio State
Lattimore is a long corner who fits a really big need for the Jets. The former Buckeye also had 4 picks last year which should be a welcome fit for the Jets. Darrell Revis will either be released or moved to safety as well so he can slide in the opposite of Buster Skrine.
7. Los Angeles Chargers: Malik Hooker, S, Ohio State
I love Malik Hooker. He is the closest thing I have seen to Ed Reed since the man himself. His instincts really separate Hooker from the rest of the group. After losing Eric Weddle last year, the Chargers would be wise to select Hooker in this slot. His 7 interceptions were 3rd best in college football. The only question mark is he did only start for 1 season and almost quit football prior to 2016.
8. Carolina Panthers: Marlon Humphrey, CB, Alabama
Humphrey is had a terrific year at Alabama. Teams almost refuse the ball to his side. After the Josh Norman departure last year I expect Carolina to target a corner like Humphrey.
9. Cincinnati Bengals: Soloman Thomas, DE, Stanford
As a red-shirt sophomore, I wasn’t even sure Thomas was going to declare but he is fly up draft boards and a player I need to do more work on. Thomas also looks versatile enough to play defensive tackle in sub packages. Teams value pass rushers and his 8 sacks are exactly what Ciny needs. The Bengals only had 33 as a team in 2016.
10. Buffalo Bills: Mike Williams, WR, Clemson
The Clemson connection continues in Buffalo as their G.M. seems to love guys from that school. Williams looks to be an excellent pairing to Sammy Watkins putting two freaks on the outside. Remind me again why the Bills didn’t keep Chris Hogan? Clemson, wide outs are always dependable (Sammy Watkins, DeAndre Hopkins, Martavis Bryant).
11. New Orleans Saints: Derek Barnett, DE-DT, Tennesee
The Saints defense is a complete mess. Taking Sheldon Rankins last year helps but I think the Saints will continue to bulk up the defensive line. Put Barnett on the other side of Cameron Jordan and let him go hunt. Barnett is the all-time leading sacker in Tennessee history.
12. Cleveland Browns Via Philadelphia Eagles: Corey Davis, WR, Western Michigan
Davis will miss the combine which could cause him to slide down the board a bit but there is no denying the Browns need weapons. Corey Coleman looks like a bust waiting to happen as well. Davis is a big physical receiver that could play well with Terrell Pryor on the other side.
13. Arizona Cardinals: O.J. Howard, TE, Alabama
Larry Fitzgerald is essentially the tight end at this point for the Cardinals so I’m not sure if this would work schematically but Arizona could use a big target in the middle of the field. Howard was really impressive during the Reese’s Senior Bowl proving he was more than just an inline blocker. Bruce Arians would be an interesting fit for Howard who could use him in the ground game blocking for David Johnson too.
14. Philadelphia Eagles Via Minnesota Vikings: Jalen Tabor, CB, Florida
Florida seems to be a factory for defensive backs producing Keanu Neal and Vernon Hargreaves last year. Tabor is very similar to Hargreaves from a year ago who has excellent ball skills. Tabor had nine interceptions and 28 pass breakups in his past three years for the Gators.
15. Indianapolis Colts: Dalvin Cook, HB, Florida State
Andrew Luck hasn’t had a reliable ground game to work with during his entire career. Frank Gore is also somehow still in the league despite being born around the same time as dinosaurs. Cook is a real home run hitting back that should go top 15.
16. Baltimore Ravens: Taco Charlton, OLB-DE, Michigan
Ravens head coach John Harbaugh will likely be on the phone discussing a bunch of Michigan players with his brother Jim. Charlton is a safe bet commanding double teams regularly on the Michigan defensive line. Big Taco went on a tear late in the year recording 10 sacks during his final 10 games.
17. Washington Redskins: Forrest Lamp, G, Western Kentucky
Lamp looked pretty terrible in my opinion at the Senior Bowl but somehow still has a lot of buzz around him. It’s an odd circumstance for a small school player. The Redskins have made the offensive line a very important component when they decided to draft Brandon Scherff over Leonard Williams. Bill Callahan has a lot of say in Washington and gets another guard for his line.
18. Tennesee Titans: John Ross, WR, Washington
Ross was terrible in the College Playoff against Alabama who couldn’t beat press coverage to save his life. Nevertheless, the Titans want to do everything they can to help Marcus Mariota. Ross can fly and resembles a Desean Jackson type of player.
19. Tampa Bay Bucs: Jabrill Peppers, S-LB, Michigan
Peppers gives the Bucs a multi-faceted piece for their defense. Peppers can play linebacker in the nickel or safety. Truthfully I don’t know what position he is going to play but he plays well in the division that’s full of aerial attack quarterbacks.
20. Denver Broncos: Cam Robinson, LT, Alabama
Robinson is the best offensive line prospect in what is a weak group. Robinson does have a lazy streak in him from time to time but putting him in the right organization can fix that. No one has better tools than this guy who is similar to Laremy Tunsil from a year ago.
21. Detriot Lions: Quincy Wilson, CB, Florida
Detriot’s secondary is awful. Wilson is another productive Florida corner who is long and physical. Wilson probably has a higher ceiling than his counterpart Tabor. Both are first round picks.
22. Miami Dolphins: Sidney Jones, CB, Washington
While the Dolphins acquired Byron Maxwell last year, he isn’t the long-term answer. Jones gives the Fins the number one corner they really need. He also could be a nice fit in the slot matching up against those crafty New England wide outs.
23. New York Giants: David Njoku, TE, Miami
Teams are starting to fall in love with big play tight ends. Look no further than Njoku who 16.2 yards per reception. There is plenty of risks here though as he is sort of a one year wonder stemming from that new Mark Richt Miami offense. The combine will be a huge determining factor for the Hurricane tight end.
24. Oakland Raiders: Tre’Davious White, CB, LSU
Oakland whiffed on Sean Smith in free agency and could really use a corner. Tre White was tremendous during the Senior Bowl and projects as a number one corner in the league.
25. Houston Texans: Ryan Ramczyk, RT, Wisconsin
The Texans have a dominant left tackle but have a huge hole on the other side. Ramczyk can fill that void. You kind of know what you’re getting with these Big 10 linemen.
26. Seattle Seahawks: Garett Bolles, RT, Utah
Seattle has one of the worst offensive lines in football. It became the epitome of their demise in the playoffs. I’m personally against taking Bolles who is already 24 which is not a good look. At this point, Seattle must invest in the offensive line one way or another.
27. Kansas City Chiefs: Davis Webb, QB, California
This probably won’t happen but I’m telling you that Webb has all the makings to become a franchise quarterback. I think as we get closer to the draft process I think teams will start to see the light in regards to Davis Webb. The MVP of the Senior Bowl couldn’t have looked better to start off the draft process. The good news here is Webb gets a chance to sit and learn under quarterback guru Andy Reid.
28. Dallas Cowboys: Charles Harris, OLB-DE, Missouri
Harris is a skilled pass rusher and fills a big void. Guys like DeMarcus Lawrence and Randy Gregory have been huge failures. Harris led the SEC with 18.5 tackles for loss in 2015. He also has big sack production regarding 8 in 2015 and 2016.
29. Green Bay Packers: Malik McDowell, DE-DT, Michigan State
The Packers need that interior line pressure that has been missing since the days of B.J. Raji. Packers take a tough Big 10 defensive tackle for the middle of their defense.
30. Pittsburgh Steelers: Takkarist McKinley, OLB-DE, UCLA
James Harrison is literally 800 years old. Bud Dupree has also been sort of a bust since the start of his rookie year. McKinley has a great motor that the Steelers will love. His 10 sacks in 2016 are pretty impressive as well.
31. Atlanta Falcons: Jarrad Davis, LB, Florida
Dan Quinn loves Florida. He took Keanu Neal a year ago as it’s no surprise considering he use to coach for the Gators. Davis gives Atlanta another speedy linebacker to pair with Deon Jones and DeVondra Campbell.
McCaffrey is probably going to blow up the combine and might not make it this far but I’m telling you right now that McCaffrey is a Patriot if he is on the board. This is everything Bill Belichick wants. Father with NFL pedigree, check. Smart player who went to Stanford, check. Crafty weapon who can run and catch the ball out of the backfield, check.
For more NFL Draft coverage check out these links below.
2017 Reese’s Senior Bowl Coverage: