April 05, 2016 - Greg Gabriel
The NFP 2016 NFL Mock Draft 1.0
As many of you know, I am not a big fan of mock drafts. As soon as the first trade comes about, it throws off the whole order. That said, NFL fans love the mocks as they can argue whether or not they like an analysts selection for their club. Also, as I get further into the round, I am doing a lot of best available player type picks. 1 - Tennessee Titans – Laremy Tunsil – OT – Ole Miss – The Titans have their pick of the whole draft class and with the selection of QB Marcus Mariota last year they have to have quality linemen to protect him, Tunsil is the best tackle in this draft. 2 – Cleveland Browns – Carson Wentz – QB – North Dakota St. – Wentz might not be the second best player in this draft, but he is hands down the best quarterback and Cleveland has to finally get a quarterback in which to build a team around. 3 – San Diego Chargers – Jalen Ramsey – DB – Florida State – Ramsey has the versatility to play corner or safety and the Chargers have a need at both positions. He becomes an immediate upgrade. 4 – Dallas Cowboys – Jared Goff – QB – California – Jerry Jones has gone out of his way to say the Cowboys won’t draft a quarterback with this selection. This is the lying season, so why would Jones be telling us the truth? Tony Romo doesn’t have much left in the tank and this could be the Cowboys best chance to draft a top flight signal caller. 5- Jacksonville Jaguars – Vernon Hargreaves III – DC – Florida - The Jags like to stay in the State when they make their top selection. This year they are basically getting two top five picks as last year’s first round pick Dante Fowler hasn’t played yet. This year, Fowler's teammate helps shore up the secondary. 6 – Baltimore Ravens – Joey Bosa – DE/OLB – Ohio State – The Ravens stay with their highest rated player on their board and select a guy who can give them a strong outside pass rush. 7 – San Francisco 49ers – Myles Jack – LB – UCLA – The 49ers could have gone this route or selected Oregon defensive lineman DeForest Buckner. Looking at the San Francisco linebacker corps, the selection of Jack makes more sense. 8 – Philadelphia Eagles – Ronnie Stanley – OT – Notre Dame – The Eagles have done a lot of research on quarterbacks, but the #8 slot is too high to take Memphis QB Paxton Lynch. Unless they trade down, Stanley gives them a very good offensive lineman with upside. Some evaluators were down on Stanley going into his pro day, but he lit it up to solidify a top 10 selection. 9 - Tampa Bay Buccaneers – DeForest Buckner – DL – Oregon - Buckner might not fill a need, but he is clearly the best player on the board. The Bucs could look to trade down here with a team looking to get a shot at Buckner. 10 - New York Giants - Jack Conklin – OT – Michigan State – The Giants have to protect Eli Manning and Conklin is rated as the second best tackle in this draft by many clubs. Conklin gives the Giants a solid starter the day he signs his contract and will work well with last years’ top choice Ereck Flowers. 11 – Chicago Bears – Shaq Lawson – DE/OLB – Clemson – The Bears have to get some outside pass rushers. If Lawson’s shoulder gets by the medical people, this could very well be the player the Bears choose. 12 – New Orleans Saints – A’Shawn Robinson – Alabama – Yes, the Saints just signed free agent Nick Fairley, but the defensive line still needs more. Robinson just turned 21 and has unlimited upside. He could well be a very good one for years to come. 13 – Miami Dolphins – Zeke Elliott – RB – Ohio State – Some people have Elliott as a possible top 10 guy. I think that is too high for any running back. This could be is landing spot as RB is very important in an Adam Gase offense. 14 - Oakland Raiders – Corey Coleman – WR – Baylor – With Amari Cooper taken last year, wide receiver may not be a need, but put Coleman next to Cooper and Derek Carr has two potent weapons. 15 – Los Angeles Rams – Paxton Lynch – QB – Memphis – If Wentz and Goff go as high as I think they will go, the team wanting Lynch may have to trade up to get him. Lynch is the last of the legitimate first round QB’s and has great value here. 16 - Detroit Lions - Taylor Decker – OT – Ohio State – The lions have to find a way to protect Matt Stafford. Decker is the next best tackle on the board. 17 – Atlanta Falcons – Darron Lee – LB – Ohio State Atlanta has been active in free agency and they signed Courtney Upshaw recently, but Lee gives them a Will linebacker with speed and instincts. He will never come off the field. 18 – Indianapolis Colts – Eli Apple – DC – Ohio State – I’m going with value here as Apple is the next best player on the board. 19 – Buffalo Bills – Kevin Dodd – DE – Clemson – Dodd had a very strong 2015 with 12.0 sacks and we are just beginning to see how talented he is. Buffalo needs a pass rusher and he is the best one available. It wouldn’t surprise me if he went higher than this. 20 – New York Jets – William Jackson III – DC – Houston – I’m going with value again here as Jackson is the best player available and gives the Jets a potential great press cover corner across from Darrelle Revis. 21 – Washington Redskins – Sheldon Rankins – DT – Louisville – Rankins lacks ideal height, but he is very explosive and provides an inside pass rush. 22 – Houston Texans – Josh Doctson – WR – TCU – The Texans go with an in-state player who just happens to be the next best receiver available. 23 – Minnesota Vikings – Laquan Treadwell – WR – Mississippi – Until last week when Treadwell held his pro day, most felt he would be the first receiver off the board. When he ran 4.62 that dropped his stock. Still the tape shows he plays faster and he catches everything that gets close. 24 – Cincinnati Bengals – Kenny Clark – DT – UCLA – A strong inside player who will line up next to next to Geno Atkins. Clark is strong and can occupy blockers and that should free up Atkins. 25 – Pittsburgh Steelers – Mackenzie Alexander – DC – Clemson – Alexander lacks ideal size but he is a strong cover guy who can play man and zone. 26 – Seattle Seahawks – Chris Jones – DT – Mississippi St – Jones is a size/speed athlete whose best football should be in front of him. Will flourish in the Seahawks defense. 27 – Green Bay Packers – Jarran Reed – DT – Alabama – With B.J. Raji retired, the Pack needs to get some quality players with size on the D-Line. 28 – Kansas City Chiefs – Artie Burns – DC – Miami –One NFC scout told me Burns was the best corner in his area and he also saw Hargreaves and Mackenzie. Burns can be undisciplined but he has excellent natural talent. 29 – Arizona Cardinals – Derrick Henry – RB – Alabama – Do I feel that the Cards will select Henry? No, but I do believe someone will trade up and grab him in this area of the first round. 30 – Carolina Panthers – Keanu Neal – DS – Florida – The Panthers don’t have a lot of weaknesses but they could use a good young safety. Neal fits the mold of the other Panthers defensive players….tough and aggressive. 31 – Denver Broncos – Ryan Kelly – C – Alabama – Not really a huge need here, but Kelly is another player who I feel will get drafted in the later part of the opening round.