1st Round Mock Draft - Pre Combine(ish)

Chopper0080

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1 Cleveland Myles Garrett DE Texas A&M
-Dynamic pass rusher-played through injury over past season-cornerstone defensive player

2 San Francisco Patrick Mahomes QB Texas Tech
-Similar physical traits to Jay Cutler who Kyle's dad liked. Best potential of the top QBs in draft. Kyle and J Lynch will want to win sooner vs later. Kyle believes he can develop QBs with traits.

3 Chicago Jonathan Allen DE Alabama
-John Fox will pressure GM to overspend for vet QB in the season where his job is on the line. Fox does not care for rookie QBs. Will get a physical defensive lineman to solidify front.

4 Jacksonville Jamal Adams S LSU
-Jags need leadership on defense, and have a need at S. Adams brings both of these traits, and is versatile.

5 Tenessee Sidney Jones CB Washington
-Best CB in draft based on ability to play multiple techniques. Is a willing tackler. Will help an improving front 7.

6 NY Jets Mitch Trubisky QB North Carolina
-Bowles needs a young QB who he can develop over the year to have a chance at another year as a head coach. Trubisky needs experience but has tools to manage an offense in his rookie year.

7 LA Chargers Malik Hooker S Ohio State
-Chargers need a playmaker in the back of the defense to replace Eric Weddle. They have a good front 7 and good CBs. Need to eliminate big plays to give Rivers and the offense a chance to win.

8 Carolina Solomon Thomas DE Stanford
-Panthers GM values defensive linemen, and is not afraid of bigger DEs. Thomas gives the Panthers defense a versatile front 7 player who can rush the passer.

9 Cincinnati Leonard Fournette RB LSU
-Bengals seem tied to Andy Dalton, and Fournette can be the playmaker that Jeremy Hill didn't turn out to be. Best chance for the Bengals to have a dynamic offense and compete in the North is with a RB like Fournette.

10 Buffalo Reuben Foster ILB Alabama
-Bills new coach likes fast, athletic LBs like he had in Carolina. Foster fits this mold, and brings leadership to a team lacking it.

11 New Orleans Marshon Lattimore CB Ohio State
-Saints have a dynamic offense, but a terrible defense. CB has been a huge issue, but Lattimore plugs a hoel immediately. He is not versatile in his technique, but can learn on the fly. Has size to match up with big NFC South WRs.

12 Cleveland Deshaun Watson QB Clemson
-Hue Jackson needs a signal caller to develop, and will take a shot with Watson. Watson has a winning mentality which Cleveland lacks, and mobile skill set Jackson has shown he can work with.

13 Arizona O.J. Howard TE Alabama
-Top 2 CBs, Ss and pass rushers are gone so Cardinals grab a piece to help improve their offense. Cardinals will continue to focus the offense on David Johnson, and Howard both improves the running game, takes hits off of Fitzgerald, and opens up the deep middle play action passing game. Seems like a luxury but has been a need for years.

14 Indianapolis Takkarist McKinley OLB UCLA
-Indy has improved the offense line enough that they can look to improve the defense. Tak provides speed pressure off the edge in a 3-4, and could be a foundation piece for the new GM going along with his experience in KC.

15 Philadelphia Mike Williams WR Clemson
-Wentz needs a reliable WR, and Williams has the more reliable hands than Corey Davis. A big threat, Williams will help improve the Eagles red zone offense.

16 Baltimore Tre'Davious White CB LSU
-A polished CB, White can hit the ground running on a Ravens defense which is getting old. his reliability will be appreciated next to Jimmy Smith. White comes off as a Ravens type of player.

17 Washington Dalvin Cook RB Florida State
-Washington needs a dynamic running threat, and offensive weapons to lighten the load off of Cousins. The defense has come together, and Cook will help do the same for the offense.

18 Tenessee Corey Davis WR Western Michigan
-Titans needs a wide receiver to bring Mariota along. Davis brings size as a blocker, and dynamic tools to a bit of a plodding offense.

19 Tampa Bay Budda Baker S Washington
-Tampa needs versatilty, leadership and consistency out of their S position. Licht finds a way to help shore up the back end of the defense while also adding a playmaker. Similar skills to Mathieu.

20 Denver Garett Bolles T Utah
-Broncos need a OT. Bolles is the best OT in the draft. Match made in heaven. I don't believe Bolles will fall this far, but I can't see where he goes higher.

21 Detroit Haason Reddick LB Temple
-Lions need a run and hit LB, and Reddick fits the bill. Can be a leader on the defense, and bring another athlete to get after QBs.

22 Miami Taco Charlton DE Michigan
-Miami needs youth at DE, and Charlton brings yong and power. Charlton helps round out an improving defense in Miami.

23 NY Giants David Njoku TE Miami-Fl
-Giants need help in may places, but Njoku brings size and speed to their offense that they lack. Been years since Giants have had a legit threat at TE.

24 Oakland Christian McCaffrey RB Stanford
-Oakland needs defensive help, but will continue to give Carr weapons to use. McCaffrey gives Carr a checkdown option, as well as boosting the running game.

25 Houston Jalen Tabor CB Florida
-Texans will likely lose AJ Bouye in free agency which will create a hole in an otherwise pretty solid roster. Tabor adds depth to CB position, and will be able to step right in behind a very good front 7.

26 Seattle Ryan Ramczyk T Wisconsin
-Seattle normally doesn't draft linemen high, but this is a project OT who could develop into to pretty good player.

27 Kansas City Antonio Garcia T Troy
-KC will draft and develop Fisher's replacement at LT prior to him leaving. Garcia brings similar traits, but with hopefully better return.

28 Dallas Derek Barnett DE Tennessee
-Dallas needs to improve the defense, and solid DE is a great start to doing so. They could grab a CB, but Dallas does not blitz too much, so pass rushers are a must.

29 Green Bay T.J. Watt OLB Wisconsin
-Green Bay likely loses Nick Perry outside and will draft his replacement. Watt may be similar to Clay Matthews, but this could allow the team to move Clay around more often.

30 Pittsburgh Gareon Conley CB Ohio State
-The Steelers hit last year with Artie Burns, and will hit again with Conley. Conley provides another CB to matchup with teams, and allow their pass rushers to get home.

31 Atlanta
Tarell Basham DE Ohio
-Atlanta takes another DE to help get after QBs. A similar approach to the Colts years ago, Falcons figure to play with leads and will want pass rushers to rotate.

32 New England Marlon Humphrey CB Alabama
-New England is a tough team to draft for as their holes don't align great with the draft. Humphrey is a player who Bill will be comfortable with as he played under Saban. Bill is also comfortable with children of former players, and Humphrey would provide them with leverage in the Malcolm Butler.

###

Well guys, that is it. Hopefully this gives you all something to think about. I may throw up a second round, but life is busy. If you have questions, let me know. There are some missing names, but that speaks the depth of the draft. I am sire there will be some trades made, and this is the best projecting that I could do. Might not be what I would do, but it should match up with player grades and team needs. The QBs don't really grade out where they go, but you either have a QB or you get fired. Too many teams with coaches jobs on the line for these guys to fall to where they probably should go. A great defensive draft which will push some WRs, interior OL and RBs down. My guess is that round 2 will be more offensive heavy or at least more even.
 

JeffGollin

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Check out the Nate Davis mock in today's USA Today sports section. It was the most well-thought-out mocks I've seen to date.

(Note - Cards grab Corey Davis at #13 in this mock).
 
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Harry

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It's certainly not impossible they take Howard but I find it hard to imagine. If Fitz leaves next year the WR cupboard is nearly bear at the position BA builds his offense around. Since rookie WRs rarely have a major impact year one the odds are better if they draft one this year and develop him. They could wait until round 2 but there will mostly be only 1 dimensional receivers by then. It's also possible both Williams and Davis are taken before the Cards select. They might take Howard in that event, but trading down seems more likely to me.
 

juza76

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It's certainly not impossible they take Howard but I find it hard to imagine. If Fitz leaves next year the WR cupboard is nearly bear at the position BA builds his offense around. Since rookie WRs rarely have a major impact year one the odds are better if they draft one this year and develop him. They could wait until round 2 but there will mostly be only 1 dimensional receivers by then. It's also possible both Williams and Davis are taken before the Cards select. They might take Howard in that event, but trading down seems more likely to me.
Howard can play fitz role under bruce arians , playing in the middle, and making great blocks on the line but being a better vertical threat
Is a tigh end but with athletic ability to play Wr

He put versatility in the position
One of the most complete tigh ends
 
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Chopper0080

Chopper0080

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It's certainly not impossible they take Howard but I find it hard to imagine. If Fitz leaves next year the WR cupboard is nearly bear at the position BA builds his offense around. Since rookie WRs rarely have a major impact year one the odds are better if they draft one this year and develop him. They could wait until round 2 but there will mostly be only 1 dimensional receivers by then. It's also possible both Williams and Davis are taken before the Cards select. They might take Howard in that event, but trading down seems more likely to me.

I think trading down is exactly what the Cards want to do, but I just don't know if any offers will be worth it due to the depth of the draft.

One reason that I believe Keim and Arians will be hesitant is due to Palmer and Fitzgerald. I'm not sure they will want to invest a first round draft pick in a player who is entirely QB dependent with the future of the QB position up in the air like it is. My guess is that they will add a mid level FA wide out on a short term deal vs spending a 1st but I could definitely be wrong.
 
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Chopper0080

Chopper0080

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Check out the Nate Davis mock in today's USA Today sports section. It was the most well-thought-out mocks I've seen to date.

(Note - Cards grab Corey Davis at #13 in this mock).

I will. thanks for the heads up.
 
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Great write up Chopper. The 2 players I would like the Cards to pick at 13 are O.J. Howard & Pat Mahomes. I think if San Fran get him we may be in trouble in a few years.
 

Ohcrap75

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If it plays out like this it would be a toss up between OJ and C Davis... The versatility and match up problems our offense could present with Howard is really growing on me.... We could go hurry up and either run power run game or flex him, Larry and DJ out with Smokie... How many defenses have a personnel package that can handle both of those without subbing?
 

Finito

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Mahomes will be there in round 3-4. Scouts and draft experts say he's a flat out nightmare mechanically. Years away if ever.

I would love Howard the more I think about it. He helps in both the passing and his run blocking coming from that Alabama offense is too notch. Really a complete player
 

Krangodnzr

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Mahomes will be there in round 3-4. Scouts and draft experts say he's a flat out nightmare mechanically. Years away if ever.

I would love Howard the more I think about it. He helps in both the passing and his run blocking coming from that Alabama offense is too notch. Really a complete player

Mahomes will not go round 3-4. He has generational traits. Matt Miller says he has the strongest arm in a decade.

He's strong, a pretty good athlete, a leader. And even though he has horrific mechanocs, his arm talent overcomes it.

He reminds me a bit of a bigger Russell Wilson, but a better arm.
 
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Chopper0080

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Mahomes will not go round 3-4. He has generational traits. Matt Miller says he has the strongest arm in a decade.

He's strong, a pretty good athlete, a leader. And even though he has horrific mechanocs, his arm talent overcomes it.

He reminds me a bit of a bigger Russell Wilson, but a better arm.

and I know Kyle Shannahan believes he can coach up anyone. That is why, if any QB is taken at #2, Shannahan and Lynch will take Mahomes.
 
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Chopper0080

Chopper0080

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If we take a tight end that high in the first round I will drive out to Glendale and beat the entire war room with a bag of moldy Limburger cheese.

The question is, do you prefer the 3rd best DL, pass rusher, CB or S, OR do you prefer the best TE or WR. If you prefer the best TE or WR, who is least affected by a QB change in 2018 and who helps David Johnson the most. In my mind, the answer is OJ Howard.
 

WildBB

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and I know Kyle Shannahan believes he can coach up anyone. That is why, if any QB is taken at #2, Shannahan and Lynch will take Mahomes.

Who after Garrett would anyone be willing to trade up for? My guess is the generational player could be Fournette. Can't envision Mahomes going that high. Top 10 would be a big reach, imo.
 

Cardiac

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Really really really enjoy your mocks Chopper, you have a great grasp of other teams needs and philosophies so your choices usually make a ton of sense.

I'm on board with Howard if you project him to be the next Tony Gonzalez. Heck even a Whiten or Gates would be acceptable. :)
 

Mitch

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I too really enjoy your mocks and applaud you for your insight and diligence.

Howard is a superb talent, no question. Is he worthy of the #13 pick? I say, yes. I just wish the Cardinals were more TE centric, like the Patriots.

If the Cardinals re-sign Gresham and Fells (or another UFA TE) to multi-year deals, then it's probably less likely they will select a TE at #13. If they don't, then that may tell us something about their draft board.
 
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Mahomes will be there in round 3-4. Scouts and draft experts say he's a flat out nightmare mechanically. Years away if ever.

I would love Howard the more I think about it. He helps in both the passing and his run blocking coming from that Alabama offense is too notch. Really a complete player

Mahomes will most likely go in rd 1& there is no way he is going to be there past rd 2.
 
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Chopper0080

Chopper0080

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Who after Garrett would anyone be willing to trade up for? My guess is the generational player could be Fournette. Can't envision Mahomes going that high. Top 10 would be a big reach, imo.
If you need a QB and think a player is your best shot at one, it isn't a reach. You can't win in this league without a QB.
 
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