Brugler Mock Draft 5.0: Allen to Broncos
NFL Draft Scout
There is intrigue at No. 1 as the Browns sort through which quarterback they will select, but the Giants at No. 2 offer a much more complex decision.
Do they draft the quarterback of the future? What about the pass rusher? Could they really select a running back that high? Or do they trade out of the pick altogether?
The options for New York are clear. However, it is tough to separate a favorite among those options with only a week left in the process. With 37-year-old Eli Manning winding down a productive career, quarterback obviously makes sense. There is no such thing as too much pass rush so Bradley Chubb is in play.
And a trade-back situation will be enticing if a team is willing to give up multiple first-round picks. But general manager Dave Gettleman has said on numerous occasions that he is looking for a future Hall of Famer, the type of pick that will make the biggest impact. Add in the fact that he drafted a running back in the top-10 last year in Carolina, and Barkley shouldn't be ruled out as a strong possibility at No. 2.
1 -- Cleveland Browns: Sam Darnold, QB, USC (6-3, 221, 4.85)
Dating back to the day after the 2017 NFL Draft, I have slotted Darnold to Cleveland in every single mock draft I have done. The Josh Allen-to-Cleveland rumors are getting louder, but I'm sticking with Darnold, who is the best quarterback in this class.
2 -- New York Giants: Saquon Barkley, RB, Penn State (6-0, 233, 4.40)
A quarterback is going No. 1, we just don't know which one. At No. 2, it is tough to nail down the position, let alone the player. General manager Dave Gettleman is looking for "impact" with this pick and Barkley offers that.
3 -- New York Jets: Baker Mayfield, QB, Oklahoma (6-0, 214, 4.75)
The Jets are searching for a quarterback to infuse energy into the offense and Mayfield not only fits that description, but he is also ready to play as a NFL rookie.
4 -- Cleveland Browns: Bradley Chubb, DE, N.C. State (6-4, 269, 4.65)
With multiple quarterbacks available, this pick is a prime spot for a trade, but Cleveland might see more value with staying put, especially if the draft's top pass rusher is still on the board, giving the Browns a ferocious tandem of Chubb and Myles Garrett.
5 -- Denver Broncos: Josh Allen, QB, Wyoming (6-5, 237, 4.76)
With Case Keenum set as the starter, the Broncos could go with an offensive lineman (Quenton Nelson) or cornerback (Denzel Ward) here, but the opportunity to potentially solve the long-term answer at quarterback will be an enticing option for John Elway.
6 -- Indianapolis Colts: Denzel Ward, CB, Ohio State (5-11, 183, 4.32)
Notre Dame's Quenton Nelson and Georgia's Roquan Smith make sense here, but Indianapolis has a strong need at cornerback, making this marriage a good balance of answering need and taking arguably the best player.
7 -- Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Derwin James, S, Florida State (6-2, 215, 4.47)
James is one of the best athletes in the draft and his versatility to play anywhere on the field will appeal to every team selecting in the top 10, especially Tampa Bay, which has a need at safety.
8 -- Chicago Bears: Quenton Nelson, OG, Notre Dame (6-5, 325, 5.22)
Reuniting Nelson with his college offensive line coach Harry Hiestand would be a great story, but more importantly, the Bears are drafting a future Pro Bowler and protecting the team's young quarterback.
9 -- San Francisco 49ers: Tremaine Edmunds, LB, Virginia Tech (6-4, 253, 4.54)
With 2017 first-rounder Reuben Foster's future very much up in the air, linebacker becomes even more of a need for San Francisco, and there could be two logical options available for the 49ers at this pick.
10 -- Oakland Raiders: Roquan Smith, LB, Georgia (6-1, 236, 4.51)
Jon Gruden coached Hall of Fame linebacker Derrick Brooks for seven seasons in Tampa and Smith has similar play speed, size and overall conviction to play the position at a very high level.
11 -- Miami Dolphins: Josh Rosen, QB, UCLA (6-4, 220, 4.97)
The Dolphins might not be targeting a quarterback in the first round, but if one were to fall to them, it would be tough to pass, especially Rosen, who will either push Ryan Tannehill to be better or overtake him on the depth chart.
12 -- Buffalo Bills: Lamar Jackson, QB, Louisville (6-2, 216, 4.44)
With the draft assets to make a move up the draft board for a quarterback, the Bills are the team to watch, but if a trade partner cannot be found, Jackson (and the rest of the draft picks) isn't a bad fallback plan.
13 -- Washington Redskins: Minkah Fitzpatrick, CB/S, Alabama (6-0, 204, 4.46)
The Redskins need help at every level of the defense, including in the secondary where Fitzpatrick is a jack of all trades and master of all trades, boasting the skill-set to thrive at cornerback, safety and nickel.
14 -- Green Bay Packers: Harold Landry, DE, Boston College (6-2, 252, 4.64)
The Packers are expected to go with either a cornerback or pass rusher at this pick and if that is the case, there will be several options available. However, an easy argument could be made that Landry is the best of the group.
15 -- Arizona Cardinals: Vita Vea, DT, Washington (6-4, 347, 5.10)
Arizona is expected to mix-and-match their defensive front and Vea has the unique blend of athleticism and power to line up as the nose just as easily as outside the offensive tackle, providing the Cardinals with a versatile presence.
16 -- Baltimore Ravens: Mike McGlinchey, OT, Notre Dame (6-8, 309, 5.25)
With Alex Lewis expected to move to left guard, McGlinchey would provide an immediate upgrade over James Hurst as the Ravens starting right tackle. He played both left and right tackle for the Fighting Irish.
17 -- Los Angeles Chargers: Leighton Vander Esch, LB, Boise State (6-4, 256, 4.65)
The Chargers are looking to add talent at linebacker and Vander Esch has a great chance to land somewhere in the teens. He is an ascending player with a scheme-diverse skill-set.
18 -- Seattle Seahawks: Marcus Davenport, DE, UTSA (6-6, 264, 4.58)
The Seahawks are revamping several pieces on defense, including the pass rush. And Davenport has the athletic profile that fits what Pete Carroll and John Schneider typically covet.
19 -- Dallas Cowboys: Calvin Ridley, WR, Alabama (6-0, 189, 4.43)
At some point in the first two rounds, the Cowboys are expected to address the wide receiver position, and there is a chance that no receivers are drafted in the first 18 picks. Although not a traditional "X" receiver, Ridley is this draft's top pass-catcher.
20 -- Detroit Lions: Taven Bryan, DT, Florida (6-5, 291, 4.98)
While A'Shawn Robinson is a solid interior defender, the Lions lack an up-field threat who can create consistent interior disruption. Bryan has the raw skill-set to fix that.
21 -- Cincinnati Bengals: James Daniels, OG/C, Iowa (6-3, 306, 5.15)
Arguably the best center prospect since Alex Mack, Daniels, who won't turn 21 years old until week two of the NFL season, can play center or guard and upgrades the Bengals' interior from the get-go.
22 -- Buffalo Bills: Isaiah Wynn, OG, Georgia (6-3, 313, 5.05)
With Cordy Glenn, Richie Incognito and Eric Wood gone, the Bills offensive line looks dramatically different from last season and more help is needed. Wynn played left tackle at Georgia, but projects best inside as a guard.
23 -- New England Patriots: Courtland Sutton, WR, SMU (6-3, 218, 4.54)
Wide receiver isn't at the top of New England's needs list, but the Patriots have shown steady interest in the talented wideout, who has the raw talent to develop into a true NFL No. 1 receiving threat.
24 -- Carolina Panthers: D.J. Moore, WR, Maryland (6-0, 210, 4.42)
The Steve Smith comparisons are thrown around too liberally, but it is tough to watch Moore's film and not at least get a Steve Smith vibe. He can create before and after the catch, creating explosive plays.
25 -- Tennessee Titans: Rashaan Evans, LB, Alabama (6-2, 232, 4.70)
The Titans will be shopping for linebackers early in the draft and Evans has the athletic and aggressive profile that allows him to be an every-down player, fitting the Tennessee scheme.
26 -- Atlanta Falcons: Da'Ron Payne, DT, Alabama (6-2, 311, 4.90)
With Dontari Poe now in Carolina, the Falcons have holes on the interior defensive line. Payne has a unique mix of power and quickness to play a variety of roles up front.
27 -- New Orleans Saints: Josh Jackson, CB, Iowa (6-0, 196, 4.48)
The Saints ranked near the bottom of the league in allowing chunk plays (20-yards-plus plays). Despite drafting the defensive Rookie of the Year last season (cornerback Marshon Lattimore), more help is needed on the depth chart.
28 -- Pittsburgh Steelers: Justin Reid, FS, Stanford (6-0, 207, 4.40)
Legitimate free safety prospects are a hot commodity in this draft class because there is much more demand than supply. Reid might not have any elite traits, but he is well rounded and reliable across the board.
29 -- Jacksonville Jaguars: Connor Williams, OT, Texas (6-5, 296, 5.05)
Whether he plays tackle or guard in the league, Williams has the versatility to play either, providing the Jaguars with immediate depth at both positions and a player to groom into a starter in 2019.
30 -- Minnesota Vikings: Will Hernandez, OG, UTEP (6-2, 327, 5.14)
If Hernandez is still available at this point in the draft, it would be a good mix of both answering a need and drafting the best player available for the Vikings.
31 -- New England Patriots: Kolton Miller, OT, UCLA (609, 309, 4.91)
With Nate Solder no longer in New England, Miller will likely appeal to the Patriots, who is very similar to Solder as a prospect due to his inconsistency, but rare size/athleticism combo.
32 -- Philadelphia Eagles: Derrius Guice, RB, LSU (5-10, 224, 4.49)
That noise you hear? That's a collective groan from the rest of the NFC East who don't want to see a physical, violent ball-carrier like Guice added to the division.