It's either a quarterback or a blue-chip defender like Jalen Ramsey for the Bears. The conservative John Fox may push for Ramsey or another defensive player, but I think Chicago ultimately has to take a potential franchise signal-caller. Jay Cutler's days in Chicago are numbered, so the Bears need to start over and rebuild. They can do that by drafting Jared Goff.
NFL teams are concerned with Connor Cook's accuracy and inconsistency, and he has dropped in this mock after a couple of pedestrian performances. With Cardale Jones struggling at times, and Christian Hackenberg falling off, Jared Goff has become the top signal-caller in this class, despite the weird offense he plays in. Goff has actually been pretty decent thus far, so this isn't completely by default, though there are some definite concerns teams have about him.
Pick change; previously Connor Cook, QB
Rd. 1, Pk. 5
Connor Cook, QB, Michigan State
You know those Geico "It's What You Do" commercials? Well, they could easily do one for desperate NFL teams because they reach for quarterbacks. It's what they do. And it's hard to blame them, either, given the state the league is in. If you don't have a quarterback, you're screwed.
The Browns most certainly don't have one, and no, Johnny Manziel is not the answer. If the NFL awarded six points for rolling $20s in bathrooms, he would be a Pro Bowler, but sadly, that is not the case. Manziel seems to have gotten better lately, but only marginally. He made three great plays versus Tennessee, but was very mediocre otherwise. He's not a starting-caliber quarterback, and there's a reason Mike Pettine is choosing to play Josh McCown over him.
I expect Cleveland to target a signal-caller in the 2016 NFL Draft. In a previous update, that would've been Jared Goff, but the California quarterback has risen ahead of Connor Cook, who has some accuracy and consistency issues that NFL teams are legitimately worried about. Still, the Browns, like most NFL teams, would reach for Cook, because that's what they do.
Pick change; previously Jared Goff, QB
Rd. 2, Pk. 6
Christian Hackenberg, QB, Penn State
Three games shouldn't drop a prospect a whole round, but my premise behind slotting Christian Hackenberg in the top five was that he would go that high if he put together a strong 2015 campaign. It doesn't look like that's going to happen now, so it's realistic could drop to the second day. If so, I'm sure the Texans would take a chance on him, given that Bill O'Brien got the most out of him when he was at Penn State.
Rd. 2, Pk. 29
Cody Kessler, QB, USC
I don't know why the Cardinals traded for Matt Barkley, but here's a young quarterback who actually might have a future in the NFL.
Rd. 1, Pk. 1
Connor Cook, QB, Michigan State
The Bears look to rebuild by grabbing a new franchise quarterback.
Cook's completed 58 percent of his passes this season for 838 yards for nine touchdowns and one interception. He connected on 58 percent of his passes in 2014 for 3,214 yards with 24 touchdowns and eight interceptions.
Cook has shown NFL evaluators that he has a big arm, pocket presence, reasonably precise throwing, and the mobility to avoid rushers and roll out. The 6-foot-4, 218-pounder plays in a pro-style system and has shown steady improvement with his ability to function out of the pocket while working through his progressions. Cook does need to improve his accuracy though. He will make some amazing throws and then miss on routine passes. The senior should be able to become more accurate in 2015.
Cook completed 59 percent of his passes in 2013 for 2,755 yards with 22 touchdowns and six interceptions. He improved throughout the season and was very impressive against Ohio State and Stanford to close out the year.
Rd. 1, Pk. 7
Cardale Jones, QB, Ohio State
Obviously, Cleveland is uncomfortable with Johnny Manziel and Josh McCown is not the long-term starter. Jones could stay in Ohio and give the Browns a rare physical talent.
Since an impressive opener against Virginia Tech, Jones has not played well for the Buckeyes. He made some devastating throws versus the Hokies that illustrated his natural passing skills. Aside from his right-arm cannon, Jones also showed his running ability and how difficult he is to sack with his huge size. Since then, he disappointed in games against Hawaii and Northern Illinois. Jones has completed 57 percent of his passes this season for 622 yards with four touchdowns and four interceptions. He also has 147 yards on 31 carries and a score.
Jones put on a display in 2014 after entering the starting lineup behind Braxton Miller and J.T. Barrett. The 6-foot-5, 250-pound Jones has great size and a cannon for an arm. In his three starts, he completed 61 percent of his passes for 860 yards with seven touchdowns and two interceptions. Jones has a ton of upside and could be a tremendous play-maker if he improves his football I.Q. and field vision.
Pick change; previously Tyler Boyd, WR
Rd. 2, Pk. 9
Jacoby Brissett, QB, N.C. State
The Redskins grab their future starting quarterback.
Brissett is thick-bodied, big-armed pocket passer. The 6-foot-4, 235-pounder doesn't get a lot of attention, but there is a buzz building about him in NFL circles.
Brissett has completed 78 percent of his passes in 2015 for 809 yards with six touchdowns and zero interceptions. As a junior, he completed 60 percent of his passes for 2,606 yards with 23 touchdowns and five interceptions. In 2011 and 2012, Brissett was a backup at Florida. Former Gators head coach Will Muschamp mistakenly chose Jeff Driskel instead of Brissett to be the starter, and that paved the way for Brissett to transfer.
Pick change; previously Nate Andrews, S
Rd. 2, Pk. 10
Christian Hackenberg, QB, Penn State
If Hackenberg doesn't get hot, he could easily slide down draft boards despite the scouting community entering the season loving his potential. After what I've heard from sources, I have a hard time envisioning Bill O'Brien passing on him.
This season, Hackenberg has completed 53 percent of his passes through four games for 668 yards with four touchdowns and two interceptions. He's had two bad performances and two good ones. Hackenberg still has a ways to go to improve his accuracy and precision on some throws, but he also makes some great passes that are dropped by his receivers.
Hackenberg completed 56 percent of his passes in 2014 for 2,677 yards with 12 touchdowns and 15 interceptions. He played better than the numbers indicate as his supporting cast was a huge liability and the offensive line was awful. To end the season, Hackenberg led a huge overtime, comeback win over Boston College, completing 34-of-50 passes for 371 yards and four touchdowns.
Hackenberg (6-4, 234) was the star recruit for Bill O'Brien at Penn State and proved the hype wasn't misplaced during an impressive 2013 season that saw him named the Big Ten Freshman of the Year. Hackenberg completed 59 percent of his passes for 2,955 yards with 20 touchdowns and 10 interceptions that season. He also ran for four touchdowns. Hackenberg has great size, a strong arm and pocket presence. He also showed better field vision while playing for O'Brien. Hackenberg does need to get more accurate and improve his decision-making.
Rd. 2, Pk. 20
The Bills are competing well with Tyrod Taylor, but they will need to upgrade their quarterback position to make a run in the postseason.
Against three easy opponents and Texas, Goff has completed 69 percent of his pass for 1,240 yards with 11 touchdowns and three interceptions. While listed at 6-foot-4, 215-pounds, those numbers are said to be inflated, and the junior needs development toward an NFL build.
Goff enjoyed a breakout 2014 season. The sophomore completed 62 percent of his passes for 3,973 yards with 35 touchdowns and seven interceptions. Goff displayed real pocket-passing potential while playing with a less-than-ideal supporting cast. He became the starter as a freshman in 2013 and completed 60 percent of his passes for 3,508 yards with 18 touchdowns and 10 interceptions.
With the Skins getting the first pick something with the QB Position likely went wrong.Cousins and RG3 are turnover machines,and Dan Snyder does not want his franchise to relay on Colt McCoy. Hackenberg has all the intangibles to be a superstar.He does need to to cut down the INT's but with O-Line that will get improved after Inking Trent Williams and a progressing Brandon Sherieff.The Redskins are a few Off seasons away from turning their future QB Into one of the best rookies since Andrew Luck
Geno Smith is not the option at QB.Ryan Fitzpatrick is not going to stick around after his time in the league and it seems that with a new GM and HC Toad Bowels that they dont want to wait around and put the weight on 4-Round Pick Bryce Petty.Petty is going to have a decent time somewhere but its not in New York.Jones has a big frame and can scramble occasionally for the first down.He has a strong arm and is a pocket passer that if your the jets you can pass up on.
Again like Washington if they have a top pick something went wrong at the Quarterback position. Jay Cutler wont have much help after Kevin white missing a few months due to a shin injury and Brandon Marshall to the Jets.But after signing a 7yr/$126M contract you should be able to produce with out your big time stars. Conner Cook is what you look for in a QB,Good passing ability and winning games.With a 23-3 Record and losing 1 in Conference match up,Cook could be the future a team is looking for