1. Cleveland Browns (0-16) – Josh Allen (QB/Wyoming)
It’s crazy to me that Allen is in contention for the No. 1 pick, but it seems to be a reality. The Browns seems to like Allen and he’s saying all the right things about wanting to win in Cleveland while Josh Rosen has said he doesn’t want to play for the Browns. Given that the Browns traded away the picks that became Carson Wentz and Deshaun Watson over the past two years as well, it’s hard to imagine them avoiding a quarterback with this pick, even if they have the No. 4 overall selection too.
Allen is big and comes with a rocket arm, but there are legitimate concerns about his accuracy and level of play since he’s coming from Wyoming, but I think Cleveland is an ideal destination for a guy who comes from a small school (and state) compared to New York or even Denver.
2. New York Giants (3-13) – Josh Rosen (QB/UCLA)
The reality for New York is that they are in a rebuild and the 37-year-old Eli Manning is no longer the long-term solution at quarterback. There are holes all across the roster, but it is imperative for them to find Manning’s heir since, as a team, you do not expect to have a draft pick this high very often.
Rosen, in many ways, is like Manning He’s a great intermediate thrower and a good (though not great) at the deep ball and he’s not afraid of throwing into tight windows – which can be both a blessing and a curse.
3. Indianapolis Colts (4-12) – Bradley Chubb (DE/N.C. State)
Indianapolis needs help at pretty much every position and I expect them to find a difference maker. Some are pounding the table for Saquon Barkley, but I think adding someone who can get to the quarterback is a more significant need.
Chubb is explosive off of the snap and come with a repertoire of moves in the pass rush that should help him excel at the NFL level.
4. Cleveland Browns (0-16) – Saquon Barkley (RB/Penn State)
Ultimately, I think Cleveland is trading this pick to one of the quarterback-needy teams but if they stand pat, Barkley would make an interesting draft selection. Isaiah Crowell regressed last year and is a free agent while Duke Johnson isn’t much more than a third down back. Cleveland may have to suffer through the growing pains of having a rookie quarterback and running back on offense, but it could also give them a great core on offense.
5. Denver Broncos (5-11) – Sam Darnold (QB/USC)
Right now, Denver is the favorite to land Kirk Cousins, so a lot could change here, but for now quarterback is a paramount need. They used a first round draft pick on Paxton Lynch two years ago, but he’s failed to even beat out Trevor Siemian and has been underwhelming when he’s actually on the field.
After 2016, Darnold looked like he could be the first player taken in this draft, but things changed last season as he committed too many turnovers and he lacks elite arm strength, but he possesses great accuracy and is mobile enough to be able to avoid sacks.
6. New York Jets (5-11) – Baker Mayfield (QB/Oklahoma)
The Jets are at a crossroads at quarterback as Josh McCown heads to free agency, Bryce Petty again failed to show any promise and they have done everything possible to keep Christian Hackenberg from stepping on the field. I wouldn’t rule out the Jets trading up with Cleveland on draft day.
Mayfield has a lot of hype following his Heisman Trophy-winning season, but I am skeptical about how he will translate as a pro. He’s undersized with poor field vision who didn’t operate under center while with Oklahoma, but he has a gunslinger attitude and can extend plays with his legs.
7. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (5-11) – Orlando Brown (OT/Oklahoma)
There is going to be a lot of pressure on the Buccaneers to win this season and to do so, Jameis Winston is going to need all of the protection he can get. Donovan Smith has been a failed experiment and it’s time to find an upgrade on the blind side.
8. Chicago Bears (5-11) – Minkah Fitzpatrick (CB/FS/Alabama)
The secondary is arguably the Bears best unit, but Chicago can’t really go wrong with taking the best available player. Fitzpatrick could ultimately replace Prince Amukamara, who is headed to free agency.
9. Oakland Raiders (6-10) – Roquan Smith (ILB/Georgia)
NaVorro Bowman played well in Oakland, but he is about to hit the open market and playing next to him is Nicholas Morrow, who struggled as a rookie. Smith is a field general who was everywhere the ball was last season.
10. San Francisco 49ers (6-10) – Quenton Nelson (G/Notre Dame)
San Francisco targets the best available player to upgrade the offensive line. Joshua Garnett was taken with a first round pick in 2016, but he was a reach selection who struggled as a rookie before missing all of 2017. Both Laken Tomlinson and Brandon Fusco are in their contract year.
11. Miami Dolphins (6-10) – Josh Jackson (CB/Iowa)
Miami has a pair of young cornerbacks who have shown some potential but have struggled as a whole in 2017. Plus, in a division that has been owned by Tom Brady and the Patriots over the past 17 years, you can never have enough talent in the secondary.
12. Cincinnati Bengals (7-9) – Mike McGlinchey (OT/Notre Dame)
The Bengals entered the 2017 season with major question marks on the offensive line and ended it just the same with everyone but Clint Boling struggling and Boling himself ultimately being moved from guard to left tackle. McGlinchey isn’t incredibly athletic and will struggled with speed rushers at the NFL, but overall he’s an upgrade over what the Bengals currently have.
13. Washington Redskins (7-9) – Da’Ron Payne (DT/Alabama)
Washington needs to upgrade a defensive front that finished dead last in rushing yards allowed. Getting Jonathan Allen back helps, but so does adding Payne to the Redskins hybrid defensive scheme.
14. Green Bay Packers (7-9) – Denzel Ward (CB/Ohio State)
It seems like every year the Packers have a glaring need at cornerback. They used their top pick on Kevin King last season, but he’s not enough as a complete overhaul is needed. Ward is undersized and will have trouble covering bigger receivers, but he’s speedy and has natural instincts for the position.
15. Arizona Cardinals (8-8) – Lamar Jackson (QB/Louisville)
I think this is too early for Jackson, and the pick will likely ultimately never happen as one of the teams at the top of the draft are bound to sign someone like Kirk Cousins or A.J. McCarron, but Arizona finds themselves in a very difficult place as they don’t have a lot of cap space to sign one of the top free agents nor do they have a great draft selection. Trading up is an option too, but the teams needs to resolve their quarterback situation as Carson Palmer retired with no heir in sight.
16. Baltimore Ravens (9-7) – Calvin Ridley (WR/Alabama)
The Ravens offense stalled last year as it relied on two receivers who are past their primes (Jeremy Maclin and Mike Wallace) and bust of a first round pick in Breshad Perriman. An overhaul of the position is desperately needed in Baltimore and the top receiver in this draft class can very easily fall to them. Ridley in many ways is like another former wide receiver from Alabama, Amari Cooper.
17. Los Angeles Chargers (9-7) – Connor Williams (OT/Texas)
Joseph Barksdale is a cut candidate this offseason and aside from Russell Okung, the Chargers have holes along the rest of the offensive line. Williams could become the long-term answer at left tackle since Okung is 30.
18. Seattle Seahawks (9-7) – Will Hernandez (G/UTEP)
Seattle is another team with massive issues along the offensive line. They acquired Duane Brown at the trade deadline and he immediately became their best offensive lineman. Hernandez’s stock has risen since the Senior Bowl.
19. Dallas Cowboys (9-7) – Courtland Sutton (WR/SMU)
Dallas doesn’t have much going on at wide receiver and it could get worse if they cut Dez Bryant, which is a possibility since the team is tight on cap space.
20. Detroit Lions (9-7) – Derrius Guice (RB/LSU)
For years, running back has been the biggest need for the Lions. Reggie Bush was the last running back to rush for 100 yards – which was in 2013. This is probably a bit early for Guice, but he certainly fills a need.
21. Buffalo Bills (9-7) – Vita Vea (DT/Washington)
Buffalo traded Marcell Dareus to Jacksonville at the deadline and their run defense immediately got worse. Meanwhile, Kyle Williams turns 35 this summer and while he’s the team’s best defensive tackle, he may not have many years left in the NFL.
22. Buffalo Bills (9-7) – Tremaine Edmunds (OLB/Virginia Tech)
I wouldn’t be surprised if Buffalo took someone like Mason Rudolph, but I have a feeling that the Bills will either sign someone in free agency or use their plethora of draft picks to move up to select one of the bigger fish. Lorenzo Alexander had a solid 2016 season, but we called him a one-hit wonder then and he regressed last year. Like Williams, he’s turning 35, so he’s not a long-term answer.
23. Los Angeles Rams (11-5) – Donte Jackson (CB/LSU)
Trumaine Johnson is an impending free agent, so if he signs elsewhere Los Angeles will need to find his replacement.
24. Carolina Panthers (11-5) – Marcus Davenport (DE/UTSA)
Julius Peppers played significant snaps as a pass rusher for the Panthers last year and while he wasn’t bad, he is 37-years-old.
25. Tennessee Titans (9-7) – Arden Key (DE/LSU)
Brian Orakpo took a step back last year while Derrick Morgan could potentially be a cap casualty due to his cap hit. Either way, Tennessee needs to find someone who can get to the quarterback this offseason. Key was once considered a top five talent, but slipped due to character concerns.
26. Atlanta Falcons (10-6) – Billy Price (C/G/Ohio State)
Alex Mack is one of the best centers in the NFL, but the Falcons lack quality guards next to him. Price played center for Ohio State, but he can is versatile enough to play center or guard at the NFL level.
27. New Orleans Saints (11-5) – Derwin James (S/Florida State)
It’s more than likely that James will be taken much higher than here, but just about every other team either has a significantly bigger need or they are set at both safety positions. James would be an upgrade over the underwhelming Vonn Bell.
28. Pittsburgh Steelers (13-3) – Rashaan Evans (OLB/Alabama)
Bud Dupree has struggled his entire NFL career and Pittsburgh will likely not pick up his fifth-year option. Malik Jefferson could also be an option with Ryan Shazier likely never playing again.
29. Jacksonville Jaguars (10-6) – Isaiah Wynn (G/Georgia)
Jacksonville could potentially go quarterback, but I think Blake Bortles played well enough last season for the team to roll the dice on him in the final year of his contract. One position of need of an upgrade is guard, where Patrick Omameh and A.J. Cann struggled last year and with the team focused on a running attack, this can’t be ignored.
30. Minnesota Vikings – Kolton Miller (OT/UCLA)
Whoever is taking the snaps for Minnesota this year is going to need a more servicable tackle than Riley Reiff or Mike Remmers. Miller could become a riser in this draft with a good combine after allowing just 15 total pressures last season.
31. New England Patriots (13-3) – Harold Landry (DE/OLB/Boston College)
New England desperately needs help on the edge after they ultimately had to rely on the 39-year-old James Harrison to be their key pass rusher in the playoffs. Landry is a stout pass rusher, but he could be a liability against the run at the NFL level.
32. Philadelphia Eagles (13-3) – Carlton Davis (CB/Auburn)
Philadelphia took Sidney Jones in the second round last year, but as they showed when they took Derek Barnett, they aren’t afraid to build on positions of strength and considering Jalen Mills surrendered nine touchdowns while playing out of position as an outside corner, they could use the depth.