1. Cleveland Browns – Myles Garrett (DE/Texas A&M)
Quarterback is an obvious need in Cleveland and I have mocked one to them for months, but there really isn’t a quarterback in this draft worthy of the top pick and Garrett looks like he is going to be very good. The Browns pass rush was practically non-existent in 2016, only accumulating 26 sacks on the year.
2. San Francisco 49ers – Mitch Trubisky (QB/North Carolina)
Kyle Shannahan is officially in town and his new order of business will be to find a new signal caller. Colin Kaepernick is unlikely to return and Blaine Gabbert was bad enough to be benched in favor of Kaepernick last season. Trubisky, however, may benefit from riding the bench for his first season. He has good awareness and is great on third down, but his arm strength is a concern and he has a tendency of locking onto receivers.
3. Chicago Bears – Jonathan Allen (DE/DT/Alabama)
Quarterback is a need here as well, but Chicago may opt to go for the best player available instead. Their defense was a mess last year across all levels. Allen would become an immediate replacement for Mitch Unrein.
4. Jacksonville Jaguars – Solomon Thomas (DE/Stanford)
Jacksonville has invested both a lot of money and draft picks along their defensive line only for it to be a liability last year. Having a strong pass rush is a priority in today’s NFL and drafting Thomas will allow them to use Yannick Ngakou to play more of a reserve role.
5. Tennessee Titans – Jamal Adams (S/LSU)
Fixing the secondary is definitely a priority for Tennessee this offseason. Malik Hooker could be in the mix here as well, but Adams is taking the top spot now in the wake of Hooker’s injuries.
6. New York Jets – Leonard Fournette (RB/LSU)
Matt Forte will likely return to the Jets due to his largely guaranteed salary, but the Fournette is a rare prospect that would help the Jets long-term. Quarterback, as usual for the Jets, is a need as well, so DeShone Kizer and DeShaun Watson are in the mix as well.
7. San Diego Chargers – Malik Hooker (S/Ohio State)
The Chargers lost Eric Weddle in a messy divorce last year and replaced him with Dwight Lowery. Lowery played well last year, but is not the long-term answer for San Diego. If Hooker is drafted, Lowery would likely begin the season as the starting free safety while Hooker recovers from his recent surgeries.
8. Carolina Panthers – Marshon Lattimore (CB/Ohio State)
The Panthers’ secondary was a disaster last year, with the exclamation point coming from a 300-yard performance by Julio Jones. Carolina used three of their five draft picks on cornerbacks last year, but none were as talented as Lattimore.
9. Cincinnati Bengals – Malik McDowell (DE/DT/Michigan State)
Michael Johnson has been one of the league’s worst defensive ends for three years now. I can’t imagine he remains on the team much longer. Without much to offer behind him, the Bengals will need to use an early pick on a defensive end.
10. Buffalo Bills – DeShaun Watson (QB/Clemson)
Buffalo looks like they are separating from Tyrod Taylor, who is easily the best quarterback Buffalo has had in 15 years. Replacing hill will be crucial for the success of new head coach Sean McDermott. Watson is back in the mix after a great showing in the National Championship last month.
11. New Orleans Saints – Reuben Foster (ILB/Alabama)
New Orleans is another team with issues on all three levels of their defense. Typically, this is a high pick for an inside linebacker, but Foster reportedly has been heavily sought after, so I wouldn’t be surprised if he went here.
12. Cleveland Browns – DeShone Kizer (QB/Notre Dame)
Cleveland waited and they are still getting their new signal caller. Drafting Kizer, however, means the team will likely try to spend 2017 with Robert Griffin III under center as Kizer isn’t quite pro-ready yet. Kizer has the athleticism and arm strength to be a good NFL quarterback, but he needs to improve both his mechanics and accuracy before being given the keys.
13. Arizona Cardinals – Mike Williams (WR/Clemson)
Quarterback would be ideal here, especially with Carson Palmer unsure of his future, but any quarterback worth taking at this slot is gone. Another position in need of an upgrade is wide receiver, where Larry Fitzgerald is aging and John Brown’s concussion history makes him a liability. J.J. Nelson was hot at the end of the year, but can he be depended on for a full 16 game season?
14. Indianapolis Colts – Dalvin Cook (RB/Florida State)
Ryan Grigson is finally out as general manager, replaced by Chris Ballard, who is tasked with rebuilding a roster before Andrew Luck’s best years are over. Cook would serve as an upgrade over the soon-to-be 34-year-old Frank Gore and provide a stable running game to take pressure off of Luck.
15. Philadelphia Eagles – Marlon Humphrey (CB/Alabama)
Another team with a struggling secondary, Philadelphia has already taken the first step in rebuilding their secondary by releasing Leodis McKelvin this week. Don’t be surprised if the Eagles spent multiple selections on secondary players as this draft is deep at the position.
16. Baltimore Ravens – Tim Williams (DE/OLB/Alabama)
I think Derek Barnett is the better overall edge rusher, but Williams is a better fit for the Ravens defensive scheme. Both Elvis Dumervil and Terrell Suggs are getting old, and Baltimore needs to find someone who can fill their shoes – or at least rotate with them for now.
17. Washington Redskins – Quincy Wilson (CB/Florida)
Free safety could be looked at here with DeAngelo Hall getting older, but Bashaud Breeland is still far and away the worst player in this secondary. He can’t enter 2017 as a starter for Washington.
18. Tennessee Titans – Corey Davis (WR/Western Michigan)
Along with the need to rebuild the secondary, the Titans need a playmaker on offense for Marcus Mariota. Davis has a nose for the end zone and would give what was already the league’s best red zone offense another weapon.
19. Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Derek Barnett (DE/Tennessee)
The Buccaneers finished in the top 10 in sacks this year, but still lacked an elite edge rusher. Barnett falls a bit here, which makes him a great value pick for Tampa Bay.
20. Denver Broncos – Cam Robinson (OT/Alabama)
Donald Stephenson was easily the worst offensive tackle in football last year and has been pretty awful during his entire career. As a whole, Denver’s offensive line is pretty bad and the Broncos will likely focus on restructuring it during the offseason.
21. Detroit Lions – Zach Cunningham (LB/Vanderbilt)
A defensive tackle would be ideal, but there is nobody at that position worth drafting at this juncture. Tahir Whitehead is entering his contract year and his production took a steep decline in 2016.
22. Miami Dolphins – Dan Feeney (G/Indiana)
Branden Albert will likely be released following a poor 2016 campaign. If this happens, it will likely cause Laremy Tunsil to slide from guard to tackle. With Jermon Bushrod already struggling at the other guard position, it is definitely a position of need. Feeney isn’t just a run blocker, he can pass protect as well, shown by the fact that he allowed only two sacks in his college career.
23. New York Giants – O.J. Howard (TE/Alabama)
The Giants have some glaring holes, including left tackle and linebacker, but the best player available that fills a need for the Giants is Howard, who was stellar in the National Championship. Will Tye is a free agent this spring.
24. Oakland Raiders – Garrett Bolles (OT/Utah)
The Raiders have a great offensive line aside from right tackle, where Menelik Watson has struggled throughout his career. Bolles is a bit inexperiences, having only one year of FBS experience, but he is also seen as the most athletic tackle of the draft.
25. Houston Texans – Jalen Tabor (CB/Florida)
Houston may have to prepare for the loss of A.J. Bouye, who went from being the No. 4 cornerback on this roster to becoming one of the best cornerbacks in football. Bouye has shown interest in returning, but he may get too good of an offer from someone else.
26. Seattle Seahawks – Roderick Johnson (OT/Florida State)
Seattle’s offensive line is one of the worst in football and it has caused Russell Wilson to play injured and run for his life in 2016. The window of opportunity will close much faster on Seattle if they fail to fix their line.
27. Kansas City Chiefs – John Ross (WR/Washington)
Speed kills. Ross has an unofficial 40 time of 4.25 seconds and can play in the slot or outside for Andy Reid’s offense. Long-term, Ross could supplant Jeremy Maclin is the latter continues to decline.
28. Dallas Cowboys – Taco Charlton (DE/Michigan)
Even before the season began, the Cowboys were incredibly thin at defensive end. Neither Tyrone Crawford nor DeMarcus Lawrence have the ability to be the main edge rusher on a team.
29. Green Bay Packers – Sidney Jones (CB/Washington)
Green Bay cut Sam Shields earlier this week and both Damarious Randall and Ladarius Gunter struggled at cornerback this season. Jones would be an immediate upgrade.
30. Pittsburgh Steelers – Jabrill Peppers (SS/Michigan)
Some people have listed Peppers as a potential outside linebacker, but I am not even entertaining someone who weighs 205 pounds to line up there. Peppers is a hard-hitting safety with tremendous athleticism and ability to line up in the box and shut down the run.
31. Atlanta Falcons – Charles Harris (DE/OLB/Missouri)
Vic Beasley had a monster year and Grady Jarrett showed he could be a reliable interior rusher during the Super Bowl, but the Falcons need another guy who can terrorize opposing quarterbacks.
32. New England Patriots – Adoree’ Jackson (CB/USC)
I have mocked Christian McCaffrey here forever, but New England will likely stand pat at their running back situation. Strong safety is in need of an upgrade, but with Peppers gone, they will go to another need, which is cornerback. Malcolm Butler is an restricted free agent while Logan Ryan is an unrestricted. The Patriots have a ton of cap space, but will still likely be only able to keep just one of the two. Jackson can also return punts.