Updated April 22, 2020
By Charlie Campbell. Follow Charlie on Twitter @draftcampbell.
The 2020 NFL Draft is just one day away! Here are some rumors that I have heard from sources with the draft just hours away.
Since the start of the 2020 NFL Draft process, the Miami Dolphins have been known to be seeking to find their quarterback of the future. Whether they take Tua Tagovailoa or Justin Herbert, the Dolphins are going to come away with their next franchise quarterback. There has been speculation about the Chargers jumping Miami in a trade with the Lions or Giants, and that would leave the other quarterback there for the Dolphins at No. 5.
Miami also has picks at No. 18 and No. 26, so the team could conceivably address another need at No. 5, like offensive tackle, and then aim to take the quarterback with the 18th pick. There aren't any quarterback-needy teams picking between No. 5 and No. 18, while the top offensive tackles will be off the board by the eighteenth. Hence, the Dolphins could consider that route in order to land a franchise left tackle to go with their quarterback of the future.
However after speaking with Dolphins sources, they believe that the team will take a quarterback first. There's too much pressure for the Dolphins to take their franchise quarterback, and they don't want to risk something unforeseen happening and not land a quarterback. Between ownership and the front office, they want a signal-caller with the fifth selection of the 2020 NFL Draft.
Hence, team sources say the Miami will probably look to trade up from the 18th pick in order to get an offensive tackle. The team has a huge hole at tackle after trading Laremy Tunsil, but also has a lot of draft currency with two extra first-round picks (Nos. 18 and 26), two second-round picks and a high third-round pick. Sources say that after the Dolphins use their first selection on a quarterback, general manager Chris Grier will be working the phones trying to find a trade parnter to get back into the top 10 or close to it for one of the top offensive tackles.
Dolphins sources say that if the Dolphins can trade up, Alabama offensive tackle Jedrick Wills might be their top target, but they also like Georgia offensive tackle Andrew Thomas. It would probably be one of those two Miami would move up for. The organization scouted Wills in person, including having owner Stephen Ross travel to watch the Crimson Tide. Sources say that was for Wills along with Tua Tagovailoa. Miami general manager Chris Grier also has a close relationship with Georgia head coach Kirby Smart, and sources say that Miami likes Thomas as well.
Along with the Dolphins, there could be a large group that want to trade into the top 10, with teams like the Buccaneers, Falcons, and Eagles rumored to be wanting to move up. Tampa Bay is seeking an offensive tackle. Atlanta could be looking for a No. 1 cornerback or defensive line help, and Philadelphia could be targeting a top wide receiver. The challenge for these teams might be finding a team that is willing to move down, because NFL sources say after the top-dozen picks the top-shelf talent will be gone.
Carolina at No. 7 is probably the highest any of them could hope to get, but in speaking with sources, it does not sound like the Panthers are really seeking a trading down. The organization will listen to offers, but I hear Carolina is more likely to stay at No. 7 to get top-shelf talent.
The next pick belongs to the Arizona Cardinals, and there could be a bidding war for that slot. The Cardinals are without a second-round pick due to the DeAndre Hopkins trade, so it would make sense for them to move down to be able to land picks to upgrade their defense and offensive line. Don't be surprised if Arizona general manager Steve Keim turns the eighth pick into a bounty of picks for his team. If the Cardinals don't trade down, it sounds like they will take an offensive tackle or Clemson linebacker Isaiah Simmons.
With the ninth pick, the Jaguars could consider moving down, but they already have another first-round pick, so they may not want to bypass an elite player given that their coach and general manager are on the hot seat.
The Browns at pick No. 10 could easily move down as well. Cleveland's regime of Paul DePodesta and Andrew Berry did a lot of trades to collect a plethora of picks during their 1-31 stretch. They were committed to that philosophy and could go back to it this year.
Thus, it sounds like the Cardinals and Browns are the two teams picking late in the top 10 that are the most willing to move down.
Every year in the NFL draft, there are a number of consensus second-round graded players who end up getting selected in the first round. This year will be no different, as the consensus around the league has teams with 25 players who have graded out as first-rounders. That number will vary up or down a little by teams, but overall, there are 25 true first-round picks in the 2020 NFL Draft. Thus, some players with second-round grades will get selected in the top 32 on the opening night of the 2020 NFL Draft.