(Bills Mafia, I’m sorry. I wish you were in the NFC, too.)
Now, we can all set our sights ahead to the NFL offseason with a focus on the NFL Draft. Over the next couple of months, The Turf will bring you NFL draft coverage with several mock drafts and position profiles.
As a Bears fan, I understand. This is a crucial offseason. Your team also has several other key issues to address if they want to win moving forward.
So, here is our mock draft version 1.0 (With Trades):
1. Jacksonville Jaguars: Trevor Lawrence, Quarterback, Clemson
I could hear Jaguars fans in Chicago from Jacksonville yelling “DUVAL!!!” when they found out that the beloved landed the top pick. Trevor is the highest graded Quarterback since Peyton Manning, and unless Urban Meyer screws this up, Jacksonville should enjoy playoff births for the next ten years at the minimum.
Team Needs: QB, OT, CB, TE
2. Houston Texans- Justin Fields, Quarterback, Ohio State
TRADE: New York Jets send pick #2, #23 (From Seahawks), 2022 #1, #2 and 2023 #1 for Quarterback Deshaun Watson
With the Jets, the Texans found the suitor who was willing to give the most up. Deshaun will be pleased to go to his “preferred destination” with the coach he likes.
In return, the Texans take a stab at their next franchise Quarterback in Justin Fields. Justin was magnificent in 2019 but seemed to take somewhat of a step back in 2020 until his six-touchdown dominant performance in the Sugar Bowl. At 6’3. 228 pounds, Fields projects into a Dak Prescott-like Quarterback for the Texans. That’s nice, and all, WHY ARE EVEN IN THIS POSITION WHERE YOU ARE DRAFTING A QUARTERBACK YOU HOPE IS AS GOOD AS THE QUARTERBACK YOU ALREADY HAVE!?!?!
Team Needs: IOL, CB, EDGE, TE
3. Miami Dolphins (From Houston): Devonta Smith, WR, Alabama
Miami opts to trust in the process with Tua and take his former college running mate in Devonta Smith. Devonta Smith was otherworldly this season for the Crimson Tide, becoming the first receiver to win the Heisman Trophy since Desmond Howard did in 1991. Smith, who can do everything on a football field, will help ease Tua’s transition as a full-time starter. Remember when they did this together?
Team Needs: WR, RB, LB
4. Detroit Lions: Zach Wilson, Quarterback, BYU
TRADE: Detroit Lions send pick’s #7, #72, and next year’s third-round pick to the Atlanta Falcons for #4
With news that Matthew Stafford has requested a trade, fans of the Lions will finally get to see a full reset. Now the question becomes- how should they go about this? I’m not so sure, but Wilson from BYU is intriguing. Wilson, with his pinpoint accuracy, has the ability to launch the ball off-platform 50 yards down-the-field. Maybe Wilson will heed New Coach’s suggestion to “bite a knee cap” if he is picked off.
Team Needs: QB, WR, CB
5. Cincinnati Bengals: Penei Sewell, OT, Oregon
The Bengals need to run-up to the podium if Sewell is available at #5. According to Cincinnati.com, Joe Burrow wasn’t protected much last season: “At the time of Burrow’s season-ending left knee injury in Week 11, he had been sacked 32 times, which was the third-most in the NFL. Entering his final game, Burrow had taken 72 hits.” Sewell is a perfect first step to take in protecting Burrow. At 6’6, 325 pounds, Penei is dominant against the run and the pass and will anchor the Bengals o-line for the next decade.
Team Needs: OL, Edge Rusher, CB
6. Philadelphia Eagles: Jam’arr Chase, WR, LSU
The Eagles need help everywhere, but especially at the receiver position. Chase opted out of the 2020 season but was the most dynamic receiver in College Football in 2019, where he went off for 1,780 yards and 20 touchdowns. The Eagles tab Chase to be their #1 receiver, especially after seeing his former teammate Justin Jefferson’s success in 2020.
Team Needs: Interior O-line, CB, WR
7. Atlanta Falcons: (From Detroit) Micah Parsons, Edge, Penn State
In 2019, Parsons wreaked havoc on the Big Ten, finishing with 109 tackles (14 for loss), five sacks, and forced four fumbles. The Falcons desperately need to get to the quarterback as they have finished in the bottom 10 in total sacks both in 2019 and 2020 (57 total). New Coach Arthur Smith will have the opportunity to build his team with this trade.
Team Needs: Edge Rusher, DB, QB
8. San Francisco 49ers: Trey Lance, QB, North Dakota St.
TRADE: San Francisco sends #12, #107, and 2022 Third Round to the Carolina Panthers for #8
With tons of question marks surrounding Jimmy Garoppolo‘s health and potential, the 49ers trade up to take their future QB in Trey Lance. While Lance only played one year at the FCS level, grooming him shouldn’t be an issue for head coach Kyle Shanahan. Lance impressively threw 28 touchdowns to 0 interceptions in 2019, but his ability to run the ball (1,100 yards, 14 TD in 2019!!!!) will provide an extra element to the 49er offense.
Team Needs: CB, OL, QB
9. Denver Broncos : Kwity Paye, Edge, Michigan
With extra attention paid to the offense in the last draft, the Broncos can afford to get younger on defense here. Enter Paye, whose explosive upside may be too much for Vic Fangio to ignore. Paye was a quick riser on draft boards this season with an insane 4.5-second 40-yard dash. Look for Denver to pursue a veteran QB like Matt Stafford in free agency.
Team Needs: CB, Edge Rusher, QB
10. Dallas Cowboys : Rashawn Slater, OT, Northwestern
The Cowboys suffered an absurd amount of injuries on their offensive line in the 2020 season, including losing their top two tackles most of last season. Bringing in a player like Slater, who can move inside or play the tackle position, will be smart moving forward. Slater burst onto the scene in 2019 by stonewalling Chase Young.
Team Needs: CB, OL, LB
11. New York Giants : Patrick Surtain II, CB, Alabama
The Giants hit the jackpot last offseason with the signing of cornerback James Bradberry. The corner on the other side, however, was the problem. At #11, they have a chance to fix this issue by tabbing the best corner on the board in Surtain. Safety Xavier McKinney, who was Suratin’s teammate at Alabama, should have some pull here if it comes down to him and Caleb Farley. Surtain is a shutdown corner, as evident by only allowing one play over 20 yards in 2020.
Team Needs: Edge, CB, WR
12. Carolina Panthers (From San Francisco): Kyle Pitts, TE, Florida
With the top four quarterbacks off the board, the Panthers look to diversify their offensive weapons with this pick. Carolina didn’t get much out of its’ tight end group last season, so they decide to bring in one of the best tight end prospects in the last five years. Pitts can line up in the slot or on the boundary, drawing comparisons between Darren Walker and Travis Kelce.
Team Needs: QB, OL, CB
13. Los Angeles Chargers : Caleb Farley, CB, Virginia Tech
The Chargers have dyer offensive line needs, but with the top two tackles off the board, a corner of Farley’s caliber may be too tempting to pass up. Farley opted out of the 2020 season, but with his big stature (6’2. 207) and ability to press at the line, he should project as a #1 shutdown corner in new coach Brandon Staley’s system.
Team Needs: OL, TE, CB
14. Minnesota Vikings (OL, DT, Edge): Gregory Rousseau, DE, Miami
The Vikings had a huge down year in the pass rush department with a season-ending injury to Danielle Hunter and Everson Griffen leaving to free agency. The physically imposing Rousseau (6’7. 265 pounds) opted out of the 2020 season but was an animal in 2019, finishing the year with 15.5 sacks, 195.5 tackles for loss, and two forced fumbles. The Vikings should regain some defensive mojo back with Rousseau and Hunter.
15. New England Patriots : Mac Jones, QB, Alabama
I’m sure the Patriots could see some similarities in Jones as they saw in a young Tom Brady. Like Brady, Jones isn’t the best athlete; however, as Arnav Sharma points out, “he makes up for his deficiencies with his quick processing ability, great decision-making, and his elite anticipation.” The Patriots need weapons; however, they will have many free agency options (Kenny Golladay) and in the later rounds. A stop-gap like resigning Cam Newton will allow Jones to take time adapting to the NFL game.
Team Needs: QB, DT, Edge
16. Arizona Cardinals: Jaycee Horn, CB, South Carolina
With Patrick Peterson likely leaving for free agency, the Cardinals need to seek his successor. At 6;1, 205, Horn projects as a press-man corner, extremely physical at the line of scrimmage and in coverage. Against Florida, Horn covered display his physicality while going toe to toe against Kyle Pitts, only giving up only 4 catches for 57 yards.
Team Needs: CB, Edge, WR
17. Las Vegas Raiders: Azeez Ojulari, Edge. Georgia
Did you see Shaq Barrett in the NFC Title game against Rick Wagner? Barrett’s ability to bend around the corner is almost a mirror image of Ojulari. Ojulari has burst up draft boards with a three-sack and four tackle for loss performance against Cincinnati in their bowl game. Ojulari is the perfect fit for a Raiders team who only sacked the Quarterback a porous 21 times in 2020.
Team Needs: DT, OL, Edge
18. Miami Dolphins: Christian Darrisaw, Offensive Tackle, Virginia Tech
After taking Smith at #3, the Dolphins get to focus on taking the best available tackle on the board in Darrisaw. Darrisaw has an incredible ability to open the run game and block downfield. His selection should force Robert Hunt back into the guard role.
Team Needs: WR, ILB, IOL
19. Washington Football Team: Jaylen Waddle, WR, Alabama
Waddle was slowed down by an ankle injury this season which is the sole reason why he dropped so far in this mock. Before his injury, Waddle had 557 yards and four touchdowns in five games. In Washington, Waddle’s explosive playmaking ability will be a perfect complement to star Terry McLaurin. With the top five quarterbacks off the board, WTF opts for the most dynamic playmaker.
Team Needs: QB, WR, OL
20. Chicago Bears: Teven Jenkins, OT, Oklahoma State
Not many people knew about Jenkins a few months ago but his 2020 performance put him on the map. Why? In 2020, Jenkins had 496 pass blocks with 0 sacks or QB hits given up. The Bears need nasty up front and Jenkins brings it. Jenkins should be an extremely solid addition at right tackle to protect whoever is at Quarterback in 2021 for the Bears.
Team Needs: QB, OL, WR
21. Indianapolis Colts: Samuel Cosmi, OT, Texas
There’s a strong possibility this pick could head the Detroit Lions’ way in exchange for Matthew Stafford. If that doesn’t happen (or if they trade for Darnold), look for the Colts to replace the recently retired Anthony Castonzo with this pick. Cosmi’s extensive starting experience will allow him to step in at either right or left tackle immediately.
Team Needs: (QB, CB, Edge)
22. Tennessee Titans : Daviyon Nixon, Defensive Tackle, Iowa
The Titans have a huge question mark at receiver with Corey Davis set to hit free agency, However, tackle DaQuan Jones is also set to hit free agency. Enter Daviyon Nixon, who is one of the biggest risers in the draft over the past season. Nixon was named the Big Ten defensive player of the year, leading the big ten with 13.5 tackles for loss. Nixon has star potential.
Team Needs: Edge, WR, IDL
23. Houston Texans (From New York Jets) Asante Samuel Jr., CB, Florida State
Samuel is a quick and twitchy defender, but at 5’10, 185, his slender build may get pushed around a bit against the run. There are better corners on the board, but the Texans organization is pretty incompetent right now, and they may get enamored by the fact that Samuel’s father was an NFL player.
Team Needs: IOL, CB, EDGE, TE
24. Pittsburgh Steelers: Alex Leatherwood, OT, Alabama
I was so tempted to put Najee Harris here; however, the Steelers running issues were a product of a nightmarish offensive line. Insert Leatherwood, a mauler, and winner, who could play all 5 positions on the line. The Athletic’s Dane Brugler says describes Leatherwood well: “He plays like a robot because he is so consistent with his posture and technique.” Look for the Steelers to take an RB in round two.
Team Needs: OT, Edge, QB
25. Jacksonville Jaguars: Trevon Moehrig, S, TCU
The team needs a starting safety next to Jarrod Wilson in the worst way, and Moehrig fits the bill. Trevon was the best at his position last year, winning the Jim Thorpe award for the best defensive back. The Jaguars think long and hard hereabout going offensive tackle here to possibly replace Cam Robinson. The drop-off, however, from Moehrig to the next safety is rather large, forcing their hand here.
Team Needs: QB, OT, CB, TE
26. Cleveland Browns: Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah, LB, Notre Dame
The Browns are in desperate need of linebacker help, and it just so happens that the Butkus Award winner (best linebacker) is still around at 25. Owusu is an incredibly versatile linebacker with the ability to cover receivers in the slot. Questions remain if he will be a linebacker or safety in the NFL, but the Browns much rather have him then having to piece together a bunch of free agents like they had to do in 2020.
Team Needs: LB, CB, Edge
27. Baltimore Ravens: Joseph Ossai, Edge Rusher, Texas
The Ravens clearly need edge help with Matt Judon, Yannick Ngakoue, Pernell McPhee, and Tyus Bowser, all hitting free agency. Ossai is one of the most versatile pass rushers in his class and should step in nicely in the Ravens’ hybrid scheme. Expect Baltimore to focus on the Wide Reciever position (Allen Robinson) in free agency.
Team Needs: WR, OL, Edge
28. New Orleans Saints: Kyle Trask, Quarterback Florida
This is a low-risk, high-reward pick for the Saints, who will require a franchise Quarterback with Drew Brees’ retirement and Jameis Winston’s likely departure in free agency. Outside of a horrid bowl game, the Heisman finalist was dominant this season, finishing the year with 4,125 yards, 43 touchdowns, and five interceptions. Trask can sit behind Hill for a year or two and get a free masterclass from Sean Payton. And Tim Tebow loves him:
“It’s his heart and his determination,” Tebow said on the Heisman finalists revealing show. “When no one believed in him, he believed in himself. He has come out and he has proved that he’s an unbelievable player. Eight school records. It is video game (numbers) for this kid. I’m gonna tell you why: It’s because he is extremely smart. He knows exactly what’s gonna happen before it happens, and he throws with great anticipation and accuracy. I think his anticipation is the best in the country, because he knows what the defense is doing and how to take advantage of that.247Sports
29. Green Bay Packers: Rondale Moore, Wide Receiver, Purdue
The Packers finally get Aaron Rodgers a weapon! But why Moore? Why not Bateman or Toney? The Packers have been missing a solid slot receiver ever since Randall Cobb left town. Although he is only 5-9, 181 pounds, Moore has “Tyreek Hill” like speed in his 4.33 forty yard dash. Moore will give Rodgers a dynamic playmaker in the open field.
Team Needs: WR, CB, IOL
30. Buffalo Bills: (CB, OL, Edge): Wyatt Davis, Guard, Ohio State
The Bills have big decisions to make on the offensive line with guards Jon Feliciano, Brian Winters, and right tackle Daryl Williams hitting free agency. At #30, the Bills bring in one of the best guards in Wyatt Davis. Todd McShay delivers the goods on Wyatt Davis: “In 666 pass-blocking snaps over the past two seasons, Davis has allowed just two sacks.” His experience with Ohio State should be valuable in January, protecting Josh Allen.
Team Needs: CB, OL, Edge
31. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Liam Eichenberg, OT, Notre Dame
The Buccaneers need for a left tackle was exacerbated in the NFC Title Game. Lucky for Tampa Bay, as Fansided points out, the Bucs can cut starter Donavan Smith this offseason with no dead cap hit. Backing up his Notre Dame pedigree, Liam didn’t allow one sack this season. He will be a plug-and-play tackle who can open up some run lanes next year.
Team Needs: Edge, DT, WR
32. Kansas City Chiefs : Kadarius Toney, WR, Florida
And the Chiefs rush to the podium to get Sammy Watkins replacement. It would not be fair as Patrick Mahomes would have another game-breaker any time Toney touches the football.
Team Needs: IOL, WR, Edge
All Team needs were courtesy of The Draft Network.
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