A Way Too Early 2019 Mock Draft
1) Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2-14)
Shea Patterson QB Michigan
- I am not a believer in this coaching staff under Dirk Koetter who looks more of the part of a good OC, but not made out to be a head coach. Actually, even as the OC, Jameis Winston was still unable to find his footing. Plus, I am still not convinced this defense is good enough at the corners, pass rush, and safety spots to really compete in the competitive NFC South. I know they have Winston under contract for one more season so they may find it better to trade this pick for a haul, but I am not sold they want to give Winston a new contract if this is how it goes. Patterson will be eligible to come out and after all the hoopla from Ole Miss that caused him to move to Ann Arbor, I doubt he stays longer than he needs to in college. His talents are similar to Johnny Manziel\'s, but he is a bigger athlete with a stronger arm and under Jim Harbaugh should have a good understanding of a pro system. I think he is the front runner to emerge for this class.
2) Arizona Cardinals (2-14)
Dexter Lawrence DT Clemson
- A trade down is most likely so they can get a haul of picks to upgrade this roster. I think Rosen and Bradford will have a tough time playing behind the leaky o-line in Arizona that will cause them to be inconsistent and banged up. Plus, this defense is definitely not as good as it once was. Lawrence is a rare defensive tackle with great athleticism and speed up the middle to be taken this high in the draft. He would be an immediate upgrade over what they currently have on their roster upfront on the defensive line.
3) Cincinnati Bengals (3-13)
Drew Lock QB Missouri
- I think had the Bengals been in position to take a top quarterback they would have with how poorly Dalton has become. Under the current regime with a content Marvin Lewis who knows he won\'t get fired and a bad overall roster I think they will have trouble even beating the ascending Browns in division. A new direction is needed, but until their owner Paul Brown sells the team they will remain in mediocrity. Drafting an actually talented quarterback like Lock can maybe lift the vibe of this organization. Lock is a talented and big gun slinging type quarterback with a ton of talent. His mechanics and accuracy need work, but so does Josh Allen who was taken high with the same skill set.
4) New York Jets (3-13)
Ed Oliver DT Houston
- This has nothing to do with Sam Darnold, but more so with the roster as a hole and the coaching staff. Much like the Bears, Rams, and Eagles they need to bring in a smart offensive mind to work with Darnold and then they need to retool the defense. Leonard Williams is a nice player, but his pass rushing skills have been lacking the past few seasons. Oliver has been a known first rounder for quite a while now with his size, speed, and pass rushing prowess from the inside. He and Lawrence will be this year\'s versions of Gerald McCoy and Ndamukong Suh going in the top 5 picks possibly.
5) New York Giants (3-13)
Nick Bosa DE/OLB Ohio St
- I don\'t believe adding just a running back will cure all their woes. They still have a bad right side of their o-line and a transitioning defense moving to a 3-4 front. Plus, they also play in a division with three teams with better overall talent on their rosters. Maybe one more good draft will get them over the hump with Eli one last time. Bosa could go sooner, but the two tackles are the better prospects at a harder position to find in an interior pass rusher. Meanwhile, Bosa is a versatile end like his brother with a similar ferocity and bend around the edge. He should be a great building block standing up on the edge for the Giants new 3-4 front.
6) Cleveland Browns (4-12)
Trey Adams OT Washington
- Adams if not for a knee injury would have been a top 10 pick in this past draft. He has the skills, footwork, and athleticism you want from a tackle especially on the left side. His strength is a tad lacking, but he counters it with great technique and speed. The Browns take a small step gathering a few wins, but if they can add Adams to fill the void left by Joe Thomas at the left tackle spot they may be able to take another bigger step next season.
7) Miami Dolphins (4-12)
Clayton Thorson QB Northwestern
- I think the Dolphins goofed up watching the Jets and Bills get their guys for the future and they just sat there standing pat. Now come next year with another mediocre season I bet Adam Gase and the front office will be out of a job making them start over again. Luckily, for them there are a few intriguing names among the quarterbacks who can appeal to them. My favorite is Thorson who has good size, a strong arm, solid mobility, and is said to be a great leader. Obviously he is going to be smart also coming from Northwestern. He actually reminds me a bit of Dan Marino skills wise and could finally give them their replacement for Marino that they have been looking for for so long.
8) Seattle Seahawks (6-10)
Clelin Ferrell DE Clemson
- I can imagine this being the year the floor will drop on them and they will begin searching for a new coaching staff and GM. John Schneider has not done well at drafting the further way Carroll gets from his scouting days at USC and it really shows in the production from his recent picks. However, if they still remain in control I think a new edge rusher will be in the plans over a blocker. Ferrell will give them a nice jolt on the edge after losing Michael Bennett and possibly Cliff Avril as well as Frank Clark next season. Ferrell would have been a lock first rounder in this past draft had he left Clemson early.
9) Oakland Raiders (7-9)
DeAndre Baker CB Georgia
- The Raiders are a hard team to predict for now with Jon Gruden in charge and his tendency to go with "football guys" over actual data or value. I would have them take a corner to finally find a lock down corner that they so desperately want. However, I can see a receiver or a pass rusher be in play. Especially, if they let Khalil Mack some how slip away. Baker is a good pick though having a lot of the same traits that made Denzel Ward a top pick. Plus, he has a lot more experience than what Ward had coming into the draft.
10) Buffalo Bills (7-9)
Jonah Williams OT Alabama
- I was kind of surprised with how little attention they played to their o-line in the draft. It may rival the Cardinals, Seahawks, and Giants as one of the worst o-lines in the league. Williams is a known commodity and is only a matter of time until he is eligible to be one of the top tackles taken in this draft. He is a big, athletic, and nasty blocker who has been terrific for the Tide against the tough competition up front in the SEC. This pick will allow them to move Dion Dawkins to the right side where I think he would be a better fit than on the left side.
11) Jacksonville Jaguars (7-9)
Justin Herbert QB Oregon
- Jacksonville has one of the best rosters in the league, but they still have the fourth best quarterback when everyone is healthy in their own conference. Until they find an upgrade they will have a tough time finding consistency. Hebert is another intriguing quarterback who can emerge by the time the draft rolls around. He has the athleticism that makes Mariota special, but with more natural quarterbacking skills. His size is a worry, but down in the warm AFC South it really should not be an issue.
12) Detroit Lions (7-9)
Rashan Gary DT Michigan
- The Lions failed to really find a pass rusher in this past draft to compliment Ziggy Ansah and with him playing on a franchise tag I am not sure he will be on the roster come next year. They need to take the best lineman available at this juncture whether if it\'s on the edge or the inside. The Lions generally put up a fence around talented players from Michigan and Gary could be the player they covet. He has the talent to rival Oliver and Lawrence, but is rarely turned loose at Michigan. If he has a good season and looks good leading up to the draft he should be a lock first rounder.
13) Chicago Bears (8-8)
Joe Jackson DE/OLB Miami
- The Bears generally had a good draft, but they failed to really resolve the pass rushing issues across from Leonard Floyd. With how bad their injury history has been it might come and bite them in the butt by the end of the season. Jackson is an ascending prospect under Mark Richt and company after being under coached by the previous regime. He has the length, size, and athleticism that Ryan Pace covets and may have his sights set on him come draft day next year.
14) Baltimore Ravens (8-8)
Josh Allen OLB/ILB Kentucky
- The Ravens have both C.J. Mosely and Terrell Suggs heading to free agency next off season. With such little cap wiggle room I doubt they will be able to retain both of them. Allen could have been a first rounder in the past draft, but he would have just been confused with Josh Allen the quarterback. Now he comes into this draft his own man and a much higher rated player without Roquan Smith and Tremaine Edmunds in front of him. His size and talent reminds me of Mosely and could be a good compliment or replacement for the former Bama product.
15) Kansas City Chiefs (8-8)
Brian Burns OLB Florida St
- A new pass rusher off the edge was needed in this past draft, but they failed to address this issue. Dee Ford and Justin Houston have not had the best track record of health. Meanwhile, Ford is a free agent this coming off season and Houston may be cut to clear some cap space. Burns is a big and long athlete on the edge who was a beast even on a bad Florida St defense last year. He needs to gain weight much like Leonard Floyd did, but his talents much like Floyd is much too good to let fall much further.
16) San Francisco 49ers (9-7)
Alex Bars OG Notre Dame
- The 49ers have three of their starting guards up for free agency. None of the three names Laken Tomlinson, Jonathan Cooper, or Zane Beadles have much long term appeal. Nor does the lone one on the roster after next year Joshua Garnett. I can Bars being elevated after Nelson\'s and McGlinchey\'s rookie seasons if they play well. Plus, the 49ers already have McGlinchey and most likely saw what Bars can do when evaluating their current first round picks tape. Bars is a talented road grading guard who may be out of position this season out of need for Notre Dame, but they do create good blockers over the years.
17) Houston Texans (9-7)
Bryce Love RB Stanford
- I thought they would look at running back with how much they are falling out of favor with Lamar Miller, but maybe they want to see what D\'Onta Foreman can do when he comes back. If he falters then they may look to take the best back in a weaker class this upcoming draft. Love could have been a first rounder, but was smart to return to school to repeat his great season to prove himself. His size is a bit of an issue, but he is a pure better runner than McCaffrey was and has shown good grit. He should interview well and win himself a lot of fans among scouts, GMs, coaches, and the media leading up to the draft.
18) Washington Redskins (9-7)
Sam Beal CB Western Michigan
- The Redskins generally had a very good draft in my opinion, but missed out on an opportunity on upgrading the corner spot across from Josh Norman. They do have some solid veteran depth with Quinton Dunbar and Orlando Scandrick, but none of them are long term solutions. Neither is Norman for that matter as he continues to age. Beal is a long and intriguing corner who needs to put on some strength, but his speed and ball skills are all plus traits. He should be in consideration for a first round selection.
19) Dallas Cowboys (9-7)
Zach Allen DE Boston College
- DeMarcus Lawrence could leave after this season if he is not locked up long term. Even if he is and Taco Charlton does not turn the corner they may still look to upgrade that defensive front. Zach Allen could have been a first rounder in a weak class this past draft, but he went back to school to hone his pass rushing repertoire. He kind of reminds me of Shaq Lawson as a pure power rusher with great edge setting abilities. If he can expand his pass rushing moves he could be a great value here.
20) Green Bay Packers (10-6)
Austin Bryant OLB Clemson
- I thought they did a good job upgrading their secondary, but continue to ignore the issue at pass rush. Nick Perry is a lazy player who doesn\'t put the work in and Clay Matthews is gassed at this point of his career. Both can give you a good game or two, but neither is good enough to take some pressure off their talented secondary. Bryant is the more athletic player among the Clemson defensive linemen with more of a natural fit to stand up and rusher the passer. He is a bit more raw and slight, but he is just as good as Lawrence and Ferrell moving forward.
21) Denver Broncos (9-7)
Michael Jackson CB Miami
- No not the King of Pop, but close in terms of football. The Broncos may be in the market for a corner after not really addressing it until later in the draft. Jackson is a big corner who dominated last year in terms of causing turnovers and making the Turnover Chain in Miami into a legitimate award almost. His size and talents alone should make him a first round candidate. For the Broncos his swagger and skills will be much loved after letting Aqib Talib go this off season.
22) Tennessee Titans (10-6)
A.J. Brown WR Ole Miss
- I think the devaluation of receivers is finally taking place where teams are more hesitant to make receivers a high draft pick. However, the Titans are close to competing more consistently, but I think they need another receiver to lift them over the hump. I am not sold on Corey Davis as the man and a little competition never hurt anyone. Brown is a speedier receiver with solid size, hands, and routes. If he puts a good season together without Shea Patterson there it should only help his draft stock.
23) Carolina Panthers (11-5)
Chauncey Gardner-Johnson S Florida
- I think it was an oversight on their part not finding a replacement for Mike Adams who was terrible for them down the stretch. They can rectify it this time next year with a first round safety possibly. Gardner-Johnson is the man now after clawing his way up the depth chart in Florida and has flashed good all around talent. He should have better tape now that he has less compliments around him or at the very least better tape to show without the reliance of other talent around him.
24) Philadelphia Eagles (11-5)
Greg Little OT Ole Miss
- No wonder Ole Miss got caught cheating never in a million years would they legitimately have three first round caliber players that were on their roster at one time. The Eagles have everything, but who knows how many more seasons Jason Peters can give them and eventually Lane Johnson will be moving to left tackle at what they are paying him for. That will flip Hal Vaitai over to the right side, but he was really weaker there two season ago. A new tackle like Little who has a lot of potential to mold into a talented tackle could be the pick to stash away on their roster.
25) Los Angeles Chargers (10-6)
Ken Webster CB Ole Miss
- They are really banking on Jason Verrett lasting a whole season next year after not drafting someone to fill out the depth. At least, someone who can take his spot or push him if he goes down or does not play up to expectations. Desmond King was a nice find, but he is better in his versatile role than a set outside corner. Another Ole Miss product can fly into the first round if he stays healthy. Webster smartly returned to school to prove his knee injury is behind him and with another solid season at his size should have him in first round considerations.
26) Indianapolis Colts (10-6)
Collin Johnson WR Texas
- T.Y. Hilton is a nice receiver, but Andrew Luck wouldn\'t be upset if they got him another toy to play with. Ryan Grant is on a one year deal, Chester Rodgers is what he is, and maybe Daurice Fountain turns into something. Still in my opinion to really maximize this newly built o-line they need to give Luck more weapons to utilize. Johnson is a massive receiver who dominated USC in their match up last year and has looked great with less then stellar quarterback play. If he runs a good 40 time he should be a first rounder.
27) Atlanta Falcons (12-4)
Beau Benzschawel OG Wisconsin
- A new guard was needed in this draft and now come next year both Andy Levitre and Ben Garland are both up for free agency. Neither of those guys were that great and should be replaced anyways. Guards and other blockers are now a hot commodity in this league scrambling to protect their franchise quarterbacks instead of giving them a new receiver. Benzschawel a former Badger should be a sound blocker with their great program history and he has some good strength to boot. I would not be shocked if he and other guards rise up boards come next draft season.
28) Los Angeles Rams (12-4)
Christian Wilkins DT Clemson
- Yes, all four Clemson defensive linemen are first round players. That just shows you how loaded they are up front and it\'s almost not fair. The Rams should look towards their defensive line since Donald is still going through contract disputes and Suh is mostly a one year rental for this season. Wilkins is a high motor and all around tackle who has hit his ceiling a bit, but that\'s not all bad. He will be a high caliber and active defender in the middle of the line and a great vocal leader as well.
29) Pittsburgh Steelers (10-6)
Anfree Jennings LB Alabama
- I thought they would have looked for a linebacker with Shazier\'s future up in the air, but maybe out of respect to him they will hold off for a year. However, a good linebacker is the crux of their defensive philosophy and without Shazier there they were really lacking in talent up the middle last year. Jennings is another talented Alabama backer who has good sideline to sideline ability. He does need to prove that he is healthy come next season and if he is there is a good chance he goes higher than this with a new emphasis on off ball linebacker play.
30) Minnesota Vikings (12-4)
Montez Sweat OLB/DE Mississippi St
- The Vikings have a lot of big free agents upcoming for them this off season from Anthony Barr to Danielle Hunter and Brian Robinson. All three of them are a big part of what they do on defense and could be sought after by other teams. If they even lose one of them they could use a versatile athlete like Sweat on their roster. He has the size to bulk up as an end or stay up on his feet as an outside linebacker. Much like Barr he is a bit of tweener who can thrive up North.
31) Green Bay Packers (from the New Orleans Saints (12-4)
Damien Harris RB Alabama
- The Packers could be in the market for a running back if none of the ones they drafted in the 2017 draft emerge as reliable starters. With the second of their first round picks they could definitely find a new guy to fill the role. Harris would have been one of the top backs last year, but somehow was convinced to stay in Tuscaloosa. Baring injury or over work he has a dynamic size and speed to him, which is rare coming from the normal big Alabama backs. He should be a reliable all around back for the Packers.
32) New England Patriots (12-4)
Jacob Eason QB Washington
- This is the year the Patriots just go out and win a Super Bowl one last time letting everyone head out into the sunset. Between Brady and Belichick this is just inevitable forcing for the first time in over a decade to have to hit the refresh button. Eason was on the inside track to being the top quarterback in 2019 had he not gotten hurt, but now with Washington he can reestablish himself in a more pass happy system. In fact, this could be a blessing in disguise for the big signal caller. I would not be shocked if he turns into a higher drafted prospect by next year.