Last update: Sunday, April 13, 2015. A mock draft with 10 trades!
Next update: Every week.
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Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Jameis Winston, QB, Florida State
There will be 10 trades in this particular mock draft, but the Buccaneers won't be dealing their pick. As we reported all the way back in November, the Buccaneers coveted the No. 1 spot so they could finally obtain a franchise quarterback. They managed to land the top choice, so it wouldn't make sense for them to relinquish it. Unless some team offers four first-round picks, Tampa won't be moving out of this spot.
Cleveland Browns: Marcus Mariota, QB, Oregon
*** Trade 1: Cleveland trades No. 12, No. 19, a 2015 third-round pick and RB Terrance West to the Titans for the No. 2 selection. ***
I considered not projecting a trade here either, but the demand for Marcus Mariota is too high. I ultimately believe that Tennessee will stay put and select Marcus Mariota, but a deal like this is certainly a possibility.
The Browns and Chargers are the two favorites to move up because they have the most to offer. San Diego can give up Philip Rivers, while Cleveland has two first-round choices. Chicago has to be mentioned as well if Tennessee likes Jay Cutler enough, but I hope the Titans' front office recognizes that Cutler is a worthless bum and would not be worth acquiring over the possibility of drafting Mariota.
The Browns will have to give up both of their first-rounders as well as a second-day choice. I'm throwing Terrance West in as well; the Browns have Isaiah Crowell, who is better, while West could start at running back for the Titans.
Jacksonville Jaguars: Dante Fowler, DE/OLB, Florida
Dante Fowler is a perfect pick for the Jaguars; he fills a big need, happens to be the top player available, and is perfect for the system. Because of that, I didn't consider the Jaguars moving out of this spot.
Atlanta Falcons: Vic Beasley, DE/OLB, Clemson
*** Trade 2: Atlanta trades No. 8 and second-round pick to Oakland for the No. 4 selection, fourth-round pick. ***
There are so many options available for the Raiders. They could take Leonard Williams, Kevin White, Amari Cooper and Brandon Scherff, so why not move down? The Raiders can move up from the fourth to the second round just for moving down four spots.
The Falcons, meanwhile, have to be eying Vic Beasley. He's perfect for their scheme, while there are issues with the other pass-rushers. Shane Ray is not a good fit for the system; Randy Gregory has major character issues; and Alvin Dupree is a slight reach at No. 8.
Washington Redskins: Leonard Williams, DE/DT, USC
I'm sure there will be some people who are surprised that Leonard Williams is available at No. 5, but many teams won't be. That's because some NFL organizations don't view Williams as the clear-cut No. 1 prospect in this class like the media does, citing his consistency issues. We've spoken to a couple of teams that expect Williams to come off the board with the fourth or fifth selection.
New York Giants: Amari Cooper, WR, Alabama
*** Trade 3: New York Giants trade No. 9 and third-round pick to New York Jets for the No. 6 selection. ***
There's no way that Amari Cooper and Kevin White get past the Bears and Raiders, so the Giants will have to make a move in this scenario. They drafted Odell Beckham Jr. in the first round last year, but they're still desperate for receiving help, given that Victor Cruz is coming off a torn patellar tendon and may never be the same again. Eli Manning needs another weapon to go along with Beckham.
Chicago Bears: Kevin White, WR, West Virginia
My reasoning for the Bears picking Kevin White in my real 2015 NFL Mock Draft: Brandon Marshall was traded to the Jets, so Jay Cutler will need someone to throw to besides Alshon Jeffery. Kevin White, who blew up the Combine, is the same type of big target that Marshall was.
New Orleans Saints: Shane Ray, DE/OLB, Missouri
*** Trade 4: New Orleans trades No. 13 and third-round pick to Oakland for the No. 8 selection. ***
The Raiders move down again, as they continue to collect picks to fill all of their many needs. They're losing a bit on the trade value chart here, but not by a substantial margin.
The Saints, meanwhile, get the edge rusher they desperately need. It's unlikely that either Alvin Dupree or Shane Ray will make it to No. 13, so New Orleans could be poised to move up during the 2015 NFL Draft, considering how many extra selections they have.
New York Jets: Alvin Dupree, DE/OLB, Kentucky
I have the Jets picking Shane Ray at No. 6 in my real mock, so being able to slide down three spots, pick up a third-round pick and still obtain a potent pass-rusher seems like a great strategy.
San Diego Chargers: Danny Shelton, NT, Washington
*** Trade 5: San Diego trades No. 17 and second-round pick to St. Louis for the No. 10 selection. ***
The Chargers are rumored to be interested in trading up for Marcus Mariota. That could certainly happen, but perhaps San Diego will move up for another player. That could be Danny Shelton, the top nose tackle by a wide margin. He would fill a huge need the Chargers have at nose tackle.
Minnesota Vikings: Trae Waynes, CB, Michigan State
Same analysis as the real mock draft: The Vikings could use an early selection on a cornerback so that they have a long-term starter across from Xavier Rhodes. Trae Waynes was slotted at No. 6 a couple of weeks ago, so taking him with the 11th pick presents solid value. Plus, he's a perfect fit for Mike Zimmer's scheme.
Tennessee Titans: Brandon Scherff, OT/G, Iowa
Some publications criticized the Titans for taking Taylor Lewan last year, citing that he didn't fill a need. It's now clearer than ever why Tennessee chose Lewan, who is a cornerstone of the offensive line. There are holes at right tackle and guard, and Brandon Scherff, another Big Ten blocker, can fill both needs.
Oakland Raiders: Malcom Brown, DE/DT, Texas
The Raiders might take Leonard Williams with the fourth-overall pick, but here's someone they could target if they trade down. Malcom Brown would fill a big need at defensive tackle, as he could start next to the newly acquired Dan Williams.
Miami Dolphins: DeVante Parker, WR, Louisville
This pick makes a ton of sense, so I'll keep it. The Dolphins have shown interest in all of the receivers, including DeVante Parker.
San Francisco 49ers: Jalen Collins, CB, LSU
Here's another similar pick: The 49ers need help at cornerback after losing multiple players at the position this offseason. Jalen Collins should be the second cornerback off the board on April 30.
Houston Texans: Todd Gurley, RB, Georgia
I've had Todd Gurley going to the Texans for some time in my real 2015 NFL Mock Draft, and I don't see why I would change that in this version.
@jsemmens I've been to the Big Board in the past, but it's still an inefficient way of going about a mock. Not to mention, reports and the people writing them change, no? I come to Walt's site because I used to like his insight on every player. Now, it's simply team needs and a very limited amount of actual analysis. You definitely need SOME amount of explanation behind a pick with regards to team need, but you need much more of the player evaluation angle. Any dummy can write why a particular team "needs" a specific position; it takes a pretty good eye to understand what player needs to fill it. Again, just my 2 cents.
@dawg66 I see where you're coming from. I really do. But I'm sure as a Browns fan you can understand, they have needs EVERYWHERE. You aren't gonna win a super bowl unless you have a QB. Case in point pretty much every super bowl winning quarterback ever. Second, yes you have Terrelle Pryor and Corey Coleman. Terrelle Pryor is a slot receiver which is gonna get you nowhere unless you play for New England. Corey Coleman has yet to prove a damn thing. Mike Williams, however, just took down Alabama pretty much BY HIMSELF. It's the right range for him and I'm positive Huge Jackson wouldn't pass over him at this point, meaning pre-combine and interviews.
Here's my mock based on team need, prospect value and prevailing opinion as well as some ideas of my own. Please let me know about the team(s) that you follow more closely, and any picks that you agree or disagree with. Please comment, and feel free to rate.