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2018 NFL Mock Draft by sportsguru221 - 2.1
Published at 2/28/2018 7:46:11 PM

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Round 1

Picks 1-16
1. Browns: Josh Allen, Quarterback, Wyoming

The Browns are rumored to be very high on Josh Allen, and I think there is some truth to those rumors. This is of course assuming Kirk Cousins decides to sign elsewhere. Even if the Browns are able to sign another QB like AJ McCarron, they shoud draft a QB. For a team with Cleveland's track record of quarterbacks, the problem of having too many QB's should be a problem they welcome.

A lot is being made about Josh Allen's accuracy, and while it can be improved, I feel like a lot of people are exaggerating about it. Remember, Allen was dealing with a receiving core that dropped close to 10% of the passes thrown to them, much more than any other top QB in this draft. He has the best set of physical tools/skills out of any QB in this class, the best arm, and quite possibly the best intangibles and committment to the game. The Browns could use someone with his potential at QB on their roster.


2. Giants: Josh Rosen, Quarterback, UCLA

Everyone knows Eli Manning is near the end. Yes, he didn't get a lot of help from the offensive line or the nearly non-existent running game, but he's been struggling for the past couple years now, not just in 2017. The Giants need to start planning for the future.

Josh Rosen seems like the consensus best QB in the draft, and I can see why. He's the most polished, the most accurate, and has an NFL arm. There are concerns about his intagibles, mental makeup, and commitment to the game, but I don't think the Giants can afford to pass up on his talent.


3. Colts: Bradley Chubb, Defensive End, N.C. State

Saquon Barkley is a real possibility here, but the Colts can still get a really good RB at the top of the second round, and the same can't be said for a pass rusher.

Jabaal Sheard is currently the top pass rusher for the Colts, and he's average at best. An elite pass rusher like Bradley Chubb could totally turn this defense around.


4. Browns: Saquon Barkley, Running Back, Penn State

Isaiah Crowell is a free agent, and due to his frustrating inconsistency, the Browns are most likely content to let him walk. Duke Johnson is still on the roster, but he's more of a receiving back and they could use a replacement as the primary ball handler in the backfield. Enter Saquon Barkley.

Barkley is argubaly the best player in the draft, so getting him at 4 can be seen as a really good value pick. The Browns are desperate for some offensive play makers to make the QB's job easier, and Barkley definitely satisfies that need.




5. Broncos: Quenton Nelson, Offensive Guard, Notre Dame

I think Denver has the inside track to signing Kirk Cousins, and assuming that they do, QB is obviously off the table here. Protecting their new franchise QB is a logical next step for the Broncos.

This might be a little high for a guard, but Quenton Nelson is a special lineman. Scouts are saying he's the most dominant interior lineman to come out since Iowa's Brandon Scherrf in 2015, who coincidentally went 5th overall as well to the Redskins. He would be an excellent fit at left guard on this offensive line, which was a huge liability in 2017, and help immediately improve the pass and the run blocking for the team.


6. Jets: Sam Darnold, Quarterback, USC

Josh McCown is a free agent, and Christian Hackenberg is as good as gone, leaving the Jets with just Bryce Petty on the roster....yikes. Needless to say, QB is a position the Jets must address this offseason, even if they are able to re-sign the injury prone 38-year-old (soon to be 39) quarterback McCown.

Sam Darnold had some problems in 2017 with USC, perhaps most notably his struggles against Ohio State in the Cotton Bowl, however his potential is undeniable. After getting off to a rought start to the season, he rebounded decently well and had a formidable 8-game stretch where he looked like the no.1 overall pick he was projected to be in the preseason. He's not ready yet, but after some grooming, could end up developing into a franchise QB.


7. Buccaneers: Minkah Fitzpatrick, Safety, Alabama

Tampa Bay had the worst pass defense in the NFL last year, and it doesn't take an NFL expert to realize they should focus on upgrading their secondary. So, why not take the best defensive back in the draft?

Fitzpatrick is as close to a dominant DB as you can get playing for a dominant Alabama defense in 2017. He has size, athleticism, and versatility with his ability to play corner or safety. He'd be a welcome addition to a lackluster Tampa Bay secondary.


8. Bears: Arden Key, Defensive End, LSU

I feel like wide receiver would be ideal here, but there aren't any wide receivers worth taking in the top ten in this year's draft. The Bears could, however, use another pass rusher to pair with Leonard Floyd. OLB is a very thin position on the roster.

There have been some off-the-field concerns with Key, but his talent and potential cannot be ignored. Battling double teams all year, Key was still able to generate pressure on opposing quarterbacks while playing for a program that has a reputation of producing quality NFL defensive players. He was much more disruptive(4 sacks in 2017, after recording 14.5 TFL, 12 sacks and 3 FF's in 2016) than the numbers indicate. He also missed some games and struggled through several injuries that no doubt inhibited his play.


9. 49ers: Joshua Jackson, Cornerback, Iowa

The 49ers have perhaps the worst CB corps in the NFL. San Fran has other directions they can go here, however I don't think they can pass up on the opporutnity to upgrade argubaly the weakest area on their roster by selecting the best corner in the draft.

Josh Jackson is a superior CB prospect with excellent size (6'1) and instincts. He had an impressive 18 pass breakups to go along with 8 INT's in 2017, with 3 of those INT's coming against Ohio State. He basically has everything you want in an NFL corner.


10. Raiders: Roquan Smith, Outside Linebacker, Georgia

Any addition to any level of the defense cannot be considered a bad move for the Raiders. That's how bad their defense is. Middle linebacker was arguably the weakest position on their defense, so getting a player like Roquan Smith should immediately upgrade their porous defense.

Smith has been an outstanding defender for Georgia over the past 2 years. He has NFL size and speed, to go along with the requisite instincts it takes to be an impact NFL linebacker. He's above-average in both run stopping and pass coverage.


11. Dolphins: Denzel Ward, Cornerback, Ohio State

I thought about giving the Dolphins an OT here, but I don't think they're ready to give up on Tunsil. I decided to shift my focus to their secondary, which was definitely a weak unit for them in 2017.

Denzel Ward was the best CB on a very impressive OSU defense. He shadowed multiple big name receivers, and recorded 15 pass breakups and 2 INT's in 2017. The INT total could have been higher if opposing QB's didn't routinely avoid looking in Ward's direction. He's slightly shorter than ideal NFL corner size (5'), however he makes up for it with his excellent ball skills, speed/quickness, and instincts.


12. Bengals: Mike McGlinchey, Offensive Tackle, Notre Dame

Unless the position is addressed via free agency, and it's not looking likely due to the lack of options available, the Bengals have to get an OT early in the draft. Jake Fisher and Cedric Ogbuehi cannot be allowed to start at OT again, that is unless Cincinnati wants to reserve a room in the nearest hospital for Andy Dalton.

McGlinchey is the consensus best OT in the draft, and I can see why. He has the size and length you want to see out of an NFL tackle, in addition to the consistent production. He'll be an immiediate upgrade on the blind side.


13. Redskins: Da'Ron Payne, Defensive Tackle, Alabama

The Redskins must do something to improve their run defense. Alfred Morris gashed the team like it was nothing, and if Alfred Morris is running over you, then you know your run defense sucks.

Da'ron Payne is just what the doctor ordered. A huge d-tackle who's versatile and athletic for his size. He was an excellent run plugger on a dominant Bama defense, and should do the same in the NFL.


14. Packers: Marcus Davenport, Defensive End, Texas-San Antonio

Clay Matthews might become a cap casualty this offseason. Even if he sticks around, they could still use some depth at OLB considering Matthews has started to decline and is injury prone. You can never have too many pass rushers.

Davenport has shot up draft boards, and rightfully so. He is a physically imposing d-lineman with the size and athletic ability NFL scouts salivate over. He had very good production at a small school, and showed well at the Senior Bowl.


15. Cardinals: Baker Mayfield, Quarterback, Oklahoma

Arizona is going to need to do something about the QB position, considering they currently have 0 under contract for 2018. They'll most likely sign one in free agency (Sam Bradford? Josh McCown? Case Keenum?), and draft one in April. Honestly, signing Kaepernick wouldn't be the worst move either.

There's been a lot of mocks of Baker going in the top ten, but I'm not buying that. He's undersized (6'0) and played in a gimmicky college spread system. I'm not doubting his intangibles or leadership ability, but I have concerns about his style of play translating to the NFL (see Tim Tebow and Johnny Manziel, who played in similar systems with similar styles of play). He's worth at shot here at 15 though, especially considering Arizona's desperate need for a QB.


16. Ravens: Calvin Ridley, Wide Receiver, Alabama

The Ravens desperately need to give Flacco some receiver help. Jeremy Maclin misses half the year every year because he's so injury prone, Breshaud Perrimand is a cold hard bust, and those are the top two receivers on their depth chart.

Calvin Ridley was the top option all year for Alabama, and produced some good numbers despite having Jalen Hurd throwing him the ball. He's got solid size, speed, athleticism, and excellent route running. There are concerns about his thin frame, but that's nothing an NFL strength and conditioning program can't fix. He should be able to beat out Perriman for a starting job in 2018.


Picks 1-16
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