Updated: April 26 at 4:30 following news that the Browns will select Baker Mayfield
1. Cleveland Browns – Baker Mayfield (QB/Oklahoma)
I originally had Sam Darnold here, but not it’s being reported that Baker Mayfield will be the pick. I can’t wait for the Browns to select someone else now so I look foolish.
2. New York Giants – Saquon Barkley (RB/Penn State)
This pick really should be a quarterback for reasons I stated earlier, but unless this is a colossal smokescreen, it looks like Barkley will be the pick. Barkley himself really isn’t a bad player, but the value here is terrible for New York. This is a running back-heavy draft and the Giants lack an heir for Eli Manning.
3. New York Jets – Sam Darnold (QB/USC)
With Mayfield gone, the Jets luck out and get the best overall arm talent in the class. Hopefully it ends better than the last USC quarterback they took in the first round.
4. Cleveland Browns – Bradley Chubb (DE/N.C. State)
As Walter Football pointed out in their latest mock draft, selecting here along with their No. 1 overall selection this year and last year could cause financial issues in the future, so Cleveland is a trade down candidate. If they stand pat, however, and Barkley is gone, getting the draft’s best edge rusher is not a bad consolation prize. Him and last year’s No. 1 overall pick Myles Garrett would terrorize opposing quarterbacks for the next five years.
5. Denver Broncos – Quenton Nelson (G/Notre Dame)
Josh Allen is definitely in play here too, but it sounds like John Elway hasn’t quite given up on Paxton Lynch yet. The offensive line was addressed last year when they selected Garrett Bolles, but they’re nowhere near finished. Denver has made it known they are willing to trade down too.
6. Indianapolis Colts – Roquan Smith (ILB/Georgia)
This is a bit early for Smith, but Indianapolis has also made it known they want to trade down, so they could do so and snag him. Indianapolis lacks an identity on defense and need some leadership, something Smith provides.
7. Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Derwin James (S/Florida State)
This should be Saquon Barkley’s floor should he drop, but he is gone so the Buccaneers need to address other positions. Tampa Bay was heavily tuned into James’ pro day.
8. Chicago Bears – Denzel Ward (CB/Ohio State)
According to Tony Pauline, the Bears are down to Quenton Nelson and Denzel Ward. They spent a lot of money in the secondary in free agency this year, bringing back Kyle Fuller and Prince Amukamura, but in this pass heavy league, you can never have enough cornerbacks.
9. San Francisco 49ers – Tremaine Edmunds (LB/Virginia Tech)
Roquan Smith and Minkah Fitzpatrick could be options here too, but it seems like the 49ers like Edmunds the most. Reuben Foster had a phenomenal rookie year, but his legal troubles make him a liability and the 49ers reportedly can’t count on him going forward.
10. Oakland Raiders – Minkah Fitzpatrick (S/CB/Alabama)
With Josh Rosen still on the board and the players they like gone, Oakland could trade down with a quarterback-needy team like Buffalo, New England or Arizona. Mike Mayock has linked Fitzpatrick to Oakland along with Tremaine Edmunds, Roquan Smith and Derwin James. I also wouldn’t rule out Marcus Davenport, but I think it’s a little early for him.
11. Miami Dolphins – Jaire Alexander (CB/Louisville)
Miami would love either Roquan Smith or Tremaine Edmunds, but they likely won’t land either player unless they trade up. Alexander had a private visit with Miami, who is heavily interested in him There are whispers that a quarterback could be taken here as well, but I just don’t see it.
12. Buffalo Bills – Josh Allen (QB/Wyoming)
Buffalo lands their quarterback without having to move up. Allen has a cannon for an arm and is used to playing in the colds, both are big positives for playing in Buffalo.
13. Washington Redskins – Vita Vea (NT/Washington)
Addressing their run-stopping unit is Washington’s biggest need on draft day, but I wouldn’t be shocked if they took Josh Rosen now that he has fallen. Vea could be selected by Oakland as well.
14. Green Bay Packers – Josh Jackson (CB/Iowa)
Green Bay has been heavily invested at upgrading their secondary during the draft process, specifically to Minkah Fitzpatrick and Jackson. With Fitzpatrick gone, Jackson is the option here.
15. Arizona Cardinals – Josh Rosen (QB/UCLA)
Rosen takes a bit of a slide as there are concerns over his medical history and personality, but I think ultimately someone trades up and selects him, so he may not last to 15. Arizona is definitely one of the teams who could trade up, but New England has the most ammunition.
16. Baltimore Ravens – Calvin Ridley (WR/Alabama)
Baltimore has added Michael Crabtree and Willie Snead this offseason to replace Jeremy Maclin and Mike Wallace, but neither of those players will stop Baltimore from taking a wide receiver in the first. Offensive line is in play here too with Mike McGlinchey available.
17. Los Angeles Chargers – Da’Ron Payne (DT/Alabama)
The Chargers need multiple upgrades on defense, specifically on the line where Brandon Mebane is old and no longer playing at a high level. Vita Vea would be ideal, but Payne is a solid option as well.
18. Seattle Seahawks – Mike McGlinchey (OT/Notre Dame)
Seattle is a trade down candidate since they don’t have another pick until the fourth round and they’re a team with a lot of needs. Tony Pauline reported that the Seahawks like Marcus Davenport, but I can’t see them doing anything but upgrading the offensive line if they stand pat.
19. Dallas Cowboys – Leighton Vander Esch (LB/Boise State)
Wide receiver is in consideration here since Dez Bryant was released, but the Cowboys don’t seem to like any of the wide receivers in the first round. Instead, they find an upgrade for Anthony Hitchens, who signed with the Chiefs.
20. Detroit Lions – Taven Bryan (DT/Florida)
A running back is needed here and I have mocked Derrius Guice to this spot several times, but it sounds like Detroit will wait until the second round to take one. Defensive tackle has been a position of need ever since Ndamukong Suh and Nick Fairley left.
21. Cincinnati Bengals – Frank Ragnow (C/Arkansas)
Cincinnati misses out on Mike McGlinchey, but can still get an impact offensive lineman. Former Bengal Dave Lapham has predicted the Bengals would select Ragnow and he has been very in-tune with Cincinnati’s selections in recent years.
22. Buffalo Bills – Will Hernandez (G/UTEP)
Buffalo will likely use this pick as a trade chip, but they do need to upgrade their offensive line in the wake of Eric Wood and Richie Incognito’s retirements.
23. New England Patriots – Marcus Davenport (DE/UTSA)
New England has two first rounders and could use them to move up and select a quarterback to sit behind Tom Brady, but with the top talent gone, they can address another area of need. The pass rush was a sore spot for the Patriots in 2017.
24. Carolina Panthers – D.J. Moore (WR/Maryland)
Cornerback is a need too, but the top guys are taken. The Panthers are interested in Hayden Hurst as well, but this is too early for him. Instead, they upgrade at receiver, where they lack a true No. 1 target.
25. Tennessee Titans – Harold Landry (DE/OLB/Boston College)
This is a best-case scenario for Tennessee because I would be surprised if he lasted this long. Both Brian Orakpo and Derrick Morgan enter free agency in 2019.
26. Atlanta Falcons – Isaiah Wynn (G/Georgia)
A defensive tackle is ideal, but unless Bryan falls to them, I don’t see anyone worth selecting at this spot. Guard has been a position in need of an upgrade as well and Andy Levitre is in the final year of his contract.
27. New Orleans Saints – Lamar Jackson (QB/Louisville)
Drew Brees just turned 39 and New Orleans needs to find his heir. While Baker Mayfield would be ideal, they have been heavily scouting Jackson.
28. Pittsburgh Steelers – Rashaan Evans (LB/Alabama)
Pittsburgh is in a tough spot because it seems that all of the guys they love were gone. Pittsburgh picked up Bud Dupree’s option, but that shouldn’t stop them from selecting another outside linebacker.
29. Jacksonville Jaguars – Hayden Hurst (TE/South Carolina)
Jaguars beat writer Ryan O’Halloran seems to believe the Jaguars are hoping Hurst is still available. There is definitely a first round buzz for him as Carolina is also interested.
30. Minnesota Vikings – Billy Price (C/Ohio State)
Cornerback is in play here too since Trae Waynes has been a disappointment, but the offensive line is this team’s weak link. Price partially tore his pectoral muscle, which has damaged his draft stock a bit, but it seems that there is still interest in him going in the first round.
31. New England Patriots – Mason Rudolph (QB/Oklahoma State)
I think Josh Rosen is their No. 1 choice, but they won’t land him unless they trade up. New England is a good landing spot for Rudolph, who will need a season or two to sit before he is ready for live action.
32. Philadelphia Eagles – Derrius Guice (RB/LSU)
The Eagles are a trade down candidate as they lack second and third round draft picks. Jay Ajayi was acquired last season and played much better in Philadelphia than he did in Miami, but it doesn’t appear the Eagles want him to be the bell cow.