NFL mock draft: What’s changed after the Eagles-Browns trade?
(Editor’s note: On Tuesday, Peter released his two-round mock draft. On Wednesday, the Eagles and Browns made a trade that shakes up things just enough that we felt compelled to update the board. The four picks that are different from Tuesday’s version of this mock are denoted with an asterisk.)
1. Los Angeles (7-9): Jared Goff, QB, Cal, Jr.
The read I get is that the Rams are leaning towards Goff, the talented 215-pounder out of Cal. That doesn’t mean the winds of change in Los Angeles can’t lead to a late push for Carson Wentz. It’s either/or at the moment. Goff gets the slot for now. Stay tuned.
*2. Philadelphia (7-9): Carson Wentz, QB, North Dakota State, Sr.
The Eagles wanted Marcus Mariota a season ago and didn’t get him. They get their guy this time around. Sources tell me owner Jeffrey Lurie loved meeting with Wentz up in North Dakota a few weeks ago and the wheels were already in motion.
3. San Diego (4-12): Joey Bosa, DE, Ohio State, Jr.
And we start with the big surprise at three. Bosa’s all ball, and any question marks off the field will be addressed by whatever team takes him. I believe San Diego likes Bosa more than Jaley Ramsey and DeForest Buckner — my pick for them in the previous mock draft — at the moment.
4. Dallas (4-12): Ezekiel Elliott, RB, Ohio State, Jr.
Yep. This is where it gets really fun. Tunsil and Jack and Ramsey all on the board, and the Cowboys go with Elliott. Jerry and Stephen Jones are not messing around. They believe they’re a few players away from Super Bowl contention. Elliott could be the workhorse DeMarco Murray was … and more.
5. Jacksonville (5-11): Jalen Ramsey, DB, Florida State, Jr.
Gus Bradley’s already added Malik Jackson, Prince Amukamara, and Tashaun Gipson, and gets Dante Fowler back to his defense this year. Ramsey is the top player on many teams’ boards this year. The Jags rebuild their defense in one offseason.
6. Baltimore (5-11): Laremy Tunsil, OT, Ole Miss, Jr.
Tunsil’s got all the goods, but could trickle down in the draft because of other teams’ needs. The Ravens take the top offensive tackle. Joe Flacco gets a good one.
7. San Francisco (5-11): DeForest Buckner, DE, Oregon, Sr.
If the 49ers can’t get one of the top two quarterbacks, I’d circle Buckner as a logical choice. The mere thought of Buckner and fellow Oregon Duck Arik Armstead lining up alongside each other on the defensive line could strike fear across the NFC West. Buckner’s got the biggest hands in the draft and is as good a kid as he is a performer. All business. How Chip Kelly — who recruited him way back when — likes his players.
*8. Cleveland (3-13): Paxton Lynch, QB, Memphis, Jr.
The Browns could make even more trades in this draft, and I’m not convinced they’re even picking at 8. If they keep it, I think Lynch could be the perfect quarterback for Hue Jackson — big, mobile and able to take a hit.
9. Tampa Bay (6-10): Vernon Hargreaves III, CB, Florida, Jr.
The Buccaneers have revamped their roster through free agency. It’s hard not liking the additions of veterans Brent Grimes and Robert Ayers on defense and coming to terms with Doug Martin so he’s back in Tampa Bay. Adding Hargreaves, the No. 2 defensive back in this draft, as the crown jewel of the defensive backfield would make a whole lot of sense. A local kid, Hargreaves was one of the few bright spots at Florida during his time there.
10. New York Giants (6-10): Leonard Floyd, OLB, Georgia, Jr.
I keep hearing that the Giants’ front office and coaching staff has a place in their hearts for Floyd. For all the additions the Giants made on defense, they still need an outside linebacker who can come off the edge.
*11. Chicago (6-10): Ronnie Stanley, OT, Notre Dame, Jr.
The Bears need defense, but if Stanley slips out of the top 10, this could be the perfect fit. Stanley starred at nearby Notre Dame, can play either left or right tackle, and can do so right away.
12. New Orleans (7-9): Noah Spence, OLB, Eastern Kentucky, Jr.
The Saints have a need on defense in multiple areas and think Hargreaves could be the guy considering their porous pass defense in recent years. But with him off my board here, I like Spence, the electric outside rusher out of Eastern Kentucky, to end up with Sean Payton and Dennis Allen. Spence was once a hot recruit for Urban Meyer. He’s answered the questions off the field. I believe his name is going to be called a lot earlier than many expect.
13. Miami (6-10): Eli Apple, CB, Ohio State, Soph.
The Dolphins would love to get their hands on Ezekiel Elliott, but if he’s not available and Apple, the 6-foot-1 press corner, is there, this could be the guy. But I repeat: Don’t be shocked if the Dolphins try to trade up for Elliott.
14. Oakland (7-9): Kevin Dodd, DE, Clemson, Jr.
Oakland could very well trade back here. Keep an eye on that happening if they don’t love a player. Dodd’s 24 years old and kind of just burst on to the scene in 2015. But he was darn good and played his best in the biggest games. Teams are all over the board on where he’ll end up going, but I like Oakland to get the best pass rusher on their board. With Aldon Smith still suspended until at least November, Dodd could be the pass rusher opposite Khalil Mack on Ken Norton’s D.
15. Tennessee (3-13): Myles Jack, LB, UCLA, Jr.
I’ve spoken to many teams and there’s no consensus on where Jack goes (or drops) in this NFL Draft. Teams need to be willing to absorb a potential risk with a meniscus that’s not 100 percent. I’m looking at the first 14 teams in this draft class and I just can’t find one without a major need elsewhere. Jack could still be the best player in this draft. Jon Robinson, with his six picks in the first 76 selections, would be the perfect GM to grab the former UCLA star.
16. Detroit (7-9): Sheldon Rankins, DT, Louisville, Sr.
The Lions are under new stewardship with former Patriots staffer Bob Quinn in the saddle. New England was always big on the best player on their board, especially if he roamed the defensive line. Rankins was the top defensive player at Senior Bowl practices this year and can start right on Day One for the Lions up front.
17. Atlanta (8-8): Jarran Reed, DT, Alabama, Sr.
A nifty interior lineman who starred under Nick Saban in Tuscaloosa, Reed is the type of defensive tackle who could immediately make Dan Quinn’s defense a better unit. Reed recorded 111 tackles and can establish the run defense Atlanta so sorely needs.
18. Indianapolis (8-8): Jack Conklin, OT, Michigan State, Jr.
Big, sturdy OT who can play — and protect — right from the get-go. Conklin could go top 10. Indy would be pleased to see him here.
19. Buffalo (8-8): Darron Lee, LB, Ohio State, Soph.
Lee can do it all, and in a world of undersized linebackers finding their place — and more — on an NFL defense, he could fit the prototype. Talented kid from a great program who’d help the Bills right away.
*20. New York Jets (10-6): Shaq Lawson, DE, Clemson, Jr.
The Jets may look loaded along the defensive line, but with the loss of Snacks Harrison and Mo Wilkerson likely in the future, that depth might be impacted over the long term. Lawson would be a great fit next to Sheldon Richardson and Leonard Williams.
21. Washington (9-7): William Jackson III, CB, Houston, Sr.
Washington needs some defensive backfield help, either at safety or corner. Jackson III is a burner and should be taken in the first round.
22. Houston (9-7): Josh Doctson, WR, TCU, Sr.
I’ve got Doctson as the top wide receiver on my board. He can be the perfect complement to DeAndre Hopkins in the Houston offense and will be a highlight-reel regular on Sundays for years to come.
23. Minnesota (11-5): Will Fuller, WR, Notre Dame, Jr.
Fuller’s name has been rising on a lot of draft boards and the mock drafts are finally starting to catch up. A burner, yes, but Fuller can contribute in a variety of ways underneath and in the special teams game too. Stephon Diggs was a revelation last year. Fuller could be one too.
24. Cincinnati (12-4): Kamalei Correa, OLB, Boise State, Jr.
Correa could go as high as the top 15. The Bengals can sit back and watch how this draft plays out, but I could see them snagging the high-energy pass rusher out of Boise State if he drops to 24.
25. Pittsburgh (10-6): Taylor Decker, OT, Ohio State, Sr.
Decker’s likely going to go earlier in the first round, but I could see him taking a bit of a tumble if the pass rushers go early as they do here. Defensive back may take priority, but offensive line’s a need in Pittsburgh, too.
26. Seattle (10-6): Ryan Kelly, C/G, Alabama, Sr.
Kelly’s nasty. Nick Saban speaks as highly about the young man as any offensive line prospect in recent years. If you watch Seattle struggle with the Panthers in the playoffs, it’s no secret that offensive line is an area of need. The unit wasn’t the same without Max Unger. Here’s a strong, smart addition.
27. Green Bay (10-6): Andrew Billings, DT, Baylor, Jr.
With BJ Raji on his way out, Billings could be a natural fit. He’s the co-Big 12 Defensive Player of the Year and a clog in the middle. Billings can play nose tackle at the next level and be a force inside for Green Bay.
28. Kansas City (11-5): Emmanuel Ogbah, DE/OLB, Oklahoma State, Jr.
Another pass rusher off the board. Ogbah had 11 sacks as a sophomore because of his freakish athleticism. He then doubled down and had 13 sacks in 2015, even though he was a focus of opposing offenses’ blocking schemes. Needs work but fits in this defense.
29. Arizona (13-3): Robert Nkemdiche, DT, Ole Miss, Jr.
Nkemdiche was invited to the draft and I expect him to go in the first round. The off-the-field concerns are real question marks for teams, but he won’t be the first defensive lineman in NFL history with a troubled past. Is there any coach better for this kid than Bruce Arians? His line, so many times before, is "I’ll coach him up, baby." Arians can make it work.
30. Carolina (15-1): LaQuon Treadwell, WR, Ole Miss, Jr.
Treadwell’s not the top wide receiver on my board, but he, of course, can be a star at the next level. His 4.65 40-yard-dash may hurt him, but he’s a tough wideout who’ll have a chip on his shoulder if and when he slips this far. Is there a better collection of guys — Cam Newton, Josh Norman, Kawaan Short — who use that as fuel?
31. Denver (12-4): Connor Cook, QB, Michigan State, Sr.
Cook slips to 31 and the Broncos take him. Until they have another veteran quarterback on the roster, I can’t see them taking any other position in the first round.
NOTE: New England has no first-round pick.
32. Cleveland: Chris Jones, DT, Mississippi State, Jr.
33. Tennessee: Reggie Ragland, LB, Alabama, Sr.
34. Dallas: Christian Hackenberg, QB, Penn State, Jr.
35. San Diego: Keanu Neal, S, Florida, Jr.
36. Baltimore: Derrick Henry, RB, Alabama, Jr.
37. San Francisco: Cody Whitehair, OG, Kansas State, Sr.
38. Jacksonville: Jason Spriggs, OT, Indiana, Sr.
39. Tampa Bay: Karl Joseph, S, West Virginia, Sr.
40. New York Giants: Corey Coleman, WR, Baylor, Jr.
41. Chicago: A’Shawn Robinson, DT, Alabama, Jr.
42. Miami: Germain Ifedi, OT, Texas A&M, Jr.
43. Tennessee: Michael Thomas, WR, Ohio State, Jr.
44. Oakland: T.J. Green, S, Clemson, Jr.
45. Tennessee: Vernon Butler, DT, Louisiana Tech, Sr.
46. Detroit: Artie Burns, CB, Miami, Jr.
47. New Orleans: Hunter Henry, TE, Arkansas, Jr.
48. Indianapolis: Bronson Kaufusi, DE, BYU, Sr.
49. Buffalo: Von Bell, S, Ohio State, Jr.
50. Atlanta: Isaac Seumalo, C, Oregon State, Jr.
51. New York Jets: Nick Martin, OG, Notre Dame, Sr.
52. Houston: Justin Simmons, S, Boston College, Sr.
53. Washington: Kenny Clark, DT, UCLA, Jr.
54. Minnesota: Le’Raven Clark, OT, Texas Tech, Sr.
55. Cincinnati: Mackensie Alexander, CB, Clemson, Soph.
56. Seattle: Kenneth Dixon, RB, Louisiana Tech, Sr.
57. Green Bay: Shilique Calhoun, DE, Michigan State, Sr.
58. Pittsburgh: Su’a Cravens, S/LB, USC, Jr.
59. Kansas City: Kendall Fuller, CB, Virginia Tech, Jr.
60. New England: Josh Perry, LB, Ohio State, Sr.
61. New England: Yannick Ngakoue, DE/OLB, Maryland, Jr.
62. Carolina: LeShaun Sims, CB, Southern Utah, Sr.
63. Denver: Joshua Garnett, OG, Stanford, Sr.