After a trade at the QB position for the Broncos on Wednesday and more info leaking, I have adjusted my mock draft!
|8||Panthers||Jaycee Horn||CB||South Carolina|
|9||Broncos||Micah Parson||LB||Penn State|
|10||Cowboys||Patrick Surtain II||CB||Alabama|
|13||Chargers||Christian Darrisaw||OT||Virginia Tech|
|15||Patriots||Trey Lance||QB||North Dakota State|
|19||Football Team||Justin Fields||QB||Ohio State|
|22||Titans||Elijah Moore||WR||Ole Miss|
|23||Jets||Gregory Rousseau||ED||Miami (FL)|
|25||Jaguars||Caleb Farley||CB||Virginia Tech|
|26||Browns||Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah||LB||Notre Dame|
|27||Ravens||Jaelan Phillips||ED||Miami (FL)|
|28||Saints||Greg Newsome II||CB||Northwestern|
|30||Bills||Jayson Oweh||ED||Penn State|
|31||Ravens||Terrace Marshall Jr.||WR||LSU|
|32||Buccaneers||Asante Samuel Jr||CB||Florida State|
|9||Broncos||Justin Fields||QB||Ohio State|
|10||Cowboys||Patrick Surtain II||CB||Alabama|
|11||Giants||Micah Parsons||LB||Penn State|
|13||Chargers||Christian Darrisaw||OT||Virginia Tech|
|15||Patriots||Trey Lance||QB||North Dakota State|
|19||Football Team||Walker Little||OT||Stanford|
|22||Titans||Jaycee Horn||CB||South Carolina|
|23||Jets||Gregory Rousseau||ED||Miami (FL)|
|26||Browns||Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah||LB||Notre Dame|
|27||Ravens||Jaelan Phillips||ED||Miami (FL)|
|28||Saints||Greg Newsome II||CB||Northwestern|
|30||Bills||Jayson Oweh||ED||Penn State|
|31||Ravens||Terrace Marshall Jr.||WR||LSU|
Favorite Pick: Round 1, Pick 8 Overall – Isaiah Simmons, LB, Clemson – Could easily argue Simmons is the second-best defensive player in the draft behind Chase Young. Simmons is a guy who played basically every position but DT in college and can line up at any of those again in pro ball. He would be my favorite to be the defensive rookie of the year, and immediately improves the Cardinals defense.
Least Favorite Pick: None – Josh Jones from Houston was their only other selection in the first two days, and he could have been a first rounder but instead slips to the third round. The Cardinals draft was fantastic, and this is just another example of it.
Day Three Sleeper: Round 7, Pick 222 Overall – Eno Benjamin, RB, Arizona State – Likely fell based upon his performance at the combine, otherwise he would have been an early day three selection. He is short, but has plenty of size despite the lack of height that allows him to run between the tackles, and has solid hands making him a three-down back. Doubtful he will ever be a workhorse back, but he can be a valuable part of a quality backfield.
Undrafted Free Agent to Watch: Jake Benzinger, OT, Wake Forest – The guy I really wanted the Cardinals to take a shot on was Khalil Tate, who ultimately signed with the Philadelphia Eagles, but instead I have to settle for an offensive lineman who is a practice squad guy at best. Benzinger is a long 6’7” but weights in under 300 lbs. He needs to add some strength and improve his strength if he wants to ever suit up. That said, he is the guy in the UDFA class I “like” most with the Cardinals.
Los Angeles Rams
Favorite Pick: Round 2, Pick 57 – Van Jefferson, WR, Florida – Son of long time NFL receiver Shawn Jefferson, Van wowed scouts at the Senior Bowl with his route running, intelligence, and drive to learn more about being an NFL receiver. Based purely on what he did on the field, this is just an average selection, but I personally love the fit as he can be an elite third receiver.
Least Favorite Pick: Round 3, Pick 84 Overall – Terrell Lewis, Edge, Alabama – A long injury history leaves plenty of questions as to the future availability of Lewis, but he was productive on an elite Alabama defense. If he remains healthy, he should add productivity off the edge for the Rams, but he was much more of a round four selection for me, so it was a bit of a reach here.
Day Three Sleeper: Round 4, Pick 136 Overall – Brycen Hopkins, TE, Purdue – The Rams approached the draft from a best player perspective rather than a need perspective, and this is an example of it. Hopkins will see very little playing time his rookie season with Tyler Higbee and Gerald Everett ahead of him, but Everett is a free agent following the season, and Hopkins gives them a ready-made replacement.
Undrafted Free Agent to Watch: Trishton Jackson, WR, Syracuse – Torsten did a deep dive into the Rams draft but did not dive into their UDFA class at all. He was excited Bryce Perkins signed with the team, but the guy I am highest on is Jackson. He gets separation better than his 4.50 40-yard dash would suggest, and he does struggle to make contested grabs, but he is very raw and has plenty of improvement in his game. He is most likely a practice squad guy who can get the call up if there are injuries to receivers on the team.
San Francisco 49ers
Favorite Pick: Round 1, Pick 14 – Javon Kinlaw, DT, South Carolina – I had Kinlaw as a top ten selection, so slipping down to the 49ers (even after trading back) is an absolute steal for the team. The 49ers traded DeForest Buckner for this selection and get a player who can be just as good as Buckner, cost less, and added selections with the trade. Overall, as good a selection as any in the draft.
Least Favorite Pick: Round 1, Pick 25 – Brandon Aiyuk, WR, Arizona State – Tee Higgins, Michael Pittman Jr., Laviska Shenault Jr., Van Jefferson, and Denzel Mims all went later than Aiyuk and are receivers I liked more. That said, this was as deep a receiver group as any draft has ever had, so this is a quality selection to me in most seasons and he will have success in the bay, there were just others I liked more.
Day Three Sleeper: Round 5, Pick 153 Overall – Colton McKivitz, OT, West Virginia – Not a fantastic lineman, but he is a guy who can play both tackles and both guard spots, so the versatility brings a ton of value with this pick. The 49ers added Trent Williams via trade during the draft, and now add a backup lineman that can help out across the line, just strengthens a team that had a lead late in the Super Bowl.
Undrafted Free Agent to Watch: Salvon Ahmed, RB, Washington – The 49ers rode the running game to the Super Bowl a season ago behind the likes of Raheem Mostert and Matt Breida. Breida is gone but Tevin Coleman is healthy, despite that, depth at RB is always a position to keep an eye on for this club. Ahmed is a guy that will bring the most value as a pass catcher, something the 49ers could certainly use.
Favorite Pick: Round 3, Pick 69 Overall – Damien Lewis, G, LSU – Other than the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, there may not be a team in the NFL that has had more trouble across the offensive line than the Seahawks. He is a bruising run blocker and stands his ground well in pass protection. He has a real shot to start at left guard right from the start. He will never be a Pro Bowler but he should be a long time starter for the Seahawks.
Least Favorite Pick: Round 1, Pick 27 Overall – Jordyn Brooks, LB, Texas Tech – A guy I did not have in my three-round mock, he goes in the first round. Granted, I would not have faulted a team if they took him on day two, but this was far too early for me. The linebacker group this season was not the best this season, but it Brooks does fit the Seahawks defense well. Basically, I don’t dislike the fit, just don’t like the cost.
Day Three Sleeper: Round 4, Pick 144 Overall – DeeJay Dallas, RB, Miami – Chris Carson, Rashaad Penny, and Travis Homer was the RB depth chart before the draft, not exactly a backfield that scares you. Dallas isn’t a back that will scare you either, but he is a quality receiver and pass blocker, making him a guy Russell Wilson could come to rely on rather early on.
Undrafted Free Agent to Watch: Anthony Gordon, QB, Washington State – Quick, go look up the Seahawks QB depth chart. Spoiler alert, Gordon is the only one listed behind Russell Wilson. Even had he landed with another team, he likely would have been an UDFA to watch he might be the best QB that went undrafted (toss up for me between him and Steven Montez). Mike Leach QBs are always tough to project at the next level, and Gordon was not the decisive passer as his predecessor Gardner Minshew, but he isn’t afraid of a challenge so he will be a very interesting watch in the preseason.
Favorite Pick: Round 1, Pick 16 Overall – A.J. Terrell, CB, Clemson – The Falcons had a massive need for corner in the draft, and Terrell was easily the best available to them when their pick came around. There are definitely some out there who are not fans of Terrell, but I am not one of them. He is quick, fast, has length, but struggles with open field tackles. The Falcons need a number one corner, and I am not sure he will quite riste to that level, but he can be a very good number two.
Least Favorite Pick: Round 2, Pick 47 – Marlon Davidson, DL, Auburn – I don’t dislike Marlon Davidson, I just can’t get a good sense on what he will be. He is 6’3” and just over 300 lbs., but isn’t really a defensive tackle, but he isn’t really an edge rusher either. A guy I felt was a first round type talent, AJ Epenesa, was still available here who could play a similar role, just at a higher level.
Day Three Sleeper: Round 7, Pick 228 Overall – Sterling Hofrichter, P, Syracuse – Yes, a punter! In 2019 the Falcons were third from the bottom in net punting average, and Hofrichter is a guy who provides good hangtime leading to limited returns. He can easily boot the ball out of the endzone, or have it hang if you want to try and pin the opponent deep. He made a 52-yard field goal in college, so he can fill in as a kicker in a pinch.
Undrafted Free Agent to Watch: Jared Pinkney, TE, Vanderbilt – Pinkney was my sleeper TE in the draft, much less UDFA. He has good size and is not afraid to block to go with good hands in the passing game. His big downfall is his lack of speed, something that will limit the big plays, but he is quick enough to get open in tight spaces. With Austin Hooper gone and Hayden Hurst brought in, I see Pinkney as the number two TE this season for the Falcons.
Favorite Pick: Round 2 Pick 38 Overall & Round 2, Pick 64 Overall – Yetur Gross-Matos, Edge, Penn State & Jeremy Chinn, S, Southern Illinois – I liked Gross-Matos as a first round selection, so early second is a steal. He is a true edge rusher with length, size, motor, and excellent hands when engaged. Chinn has the upside of the best safety in the draft despite coming from a small school. He ran a 4.45 40-yard dash at the combine, can cover a receiver one on one, and will come downhill and lay the lumber on a running back, basically he does it all.
Least Favorite Pick: Round 1, Pick 7 Overall – Derrick Brown, DT, Auburn – I actually really like the fit, but Isaiah Simmons was still on the board and is probably the third best player in the draft. At 6’5” and 326 lbs., Brown takes up plenty of space in the middle and can stuff the run game. He was not a great pass rusher at Auburn even though many scouts feel he will become a solid rusher, that is enough to put mild doubt on the selection for me.
Day Three Sleeper: Round 4, Pick 113 Overall – Troy Pride, CB, Notre Dame – He won’t lose many receivers deep as he has plenty of speed, and he will come down with the ball if is gets near his hands. Pride has good instincts and reads the ball well. His footwork in and out of a receiver’s breaks and biting on the double move are concerns that caused him to slip to day three rather than being a second day selection.
Undrafted Free Agent to Watch: Giovanni Ricci, TE, Western Michigan – After going all defense in the draft, the Panthers are relying heavily on UDFA to bring competition on the offensive side of the ball, and I am not a big fan of it. Ricci was a high school QB turned college WR before finally moving in to TE two seasons ago. He is still light and can get moved around when blocking, but his history as a true receiver makes him a weapon in the passing game.
New Orleans Saints
Favorite Pick: Round 3, Pick 74 Overall – Zack Baun, LB, Wisconsin – I would not have had an issue with a team selecting him at the end of round one, and I had him as the first man off the board on day two in my mock draft. A diluted sample at the combine raised some eyebrows and caused him to fall right into the Saints laps. He will likely be in a battle with Alex Anzalone for the starting job to open the season, but by season two he should have a strong hold on the position.
Least Favorite Pick: Round 1, Pick 24 Overall – Cesar Ruiz, C, Michigan – This isn’t a bad selection for a team that is a true Super Bowl contender. The Saints rave about Taysom Hill as a future franchise QB, but they had Teddy Bridgewater as the starter when Drew Brees went down a season ago and brought in Jameis Winston this season. To me this screams uncertainty that Hill is a true QB should something happen to Brees again this year, so going with a center to protect the middle is a good move. Only issue with it is the fact they likely could have gotten him later had they traded back.
Day Three Sleeper: Round 3, Pick 105 Overall – Adam Trautman, TE, Dayton – Ok, he was actually a day two selection, but the Saints only had one selection on day three, a QB who has no spot on the roster after the Saints signed Jameis Winston. Dayton could have a top five pick in the NBA draft, and they get a second day selection in the NFL draft. Trautman is a quality blocking TE with plenty of size to hold up in the run game and go get contested balls. He is not a fast receiver, so he won’t be a guy who stretches the field but should be a dangerous red zone target.
Undrafted Free Agent to Watch: Malcolm Roach, DL, Texas – I am calling Roach a D-lineman rather than a tackle or end because he can really play any position along the line. He is probably best from the outside shoulder of the guards in, and he will never be a disruptive force, but he has enough talent, leadership abilities, and makeup to stick and do the job. He is the kind of guy who nobody ever notices but his coaches and teammates, and that should be enough to keep him around a while.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Favorite Pick: Round 1, Pick 13 Overall – Tristan Wirfs, OT, Iowa – Have I mentioned in any of my draft reports I thought Wirfs was the top tackle in the draft? The Bucs line has been pitiful for years, and Tom Brady is not exactly a mobile QB. Wirfs will step in day one and be the best player on the o-line, and they get him at pick 13, an absolute steal in my book.
Least Favorite Pick: Round 3, Pick 76 Overall – Ke’Shawn Vaughn, RB, Vanderbilt – I actually think Vaughn will be a solid player for the Bucs, but I had Zach Moss much higher on my board than Vaughn. Ronald Jones is still the lead back in Tampa, and Vaughn is a between the tackles runner, not the outside receiver that has always been successful with Brady. I just don’t like the fit currently for the team.
Day Three Sleeper: Round 5, Pick 161 Overall – Tyler Johnson, WR, Minnesota – Too many drops in college, and that is the quickest way to lose the trust of Brady, but he is an excellent route runner, so he will always be where Brady wants him to be. The top end speed is not great, but the vision once he has the ball and ability to break tackles helps him overcome the lack of speed. Mike Evans, Chris Godwin, and the plethora of TEs is an embarrassment of riches for Tampa, but they did not really have a quality third receiver option, not they do.
Undrafted Free Agent to Watch: Reid Sinnett, QB, Sand Diego – Do I really like Sinnett? No. Is he in as good a spot as there can be for a young QB that lacks high level experience? No! Sinnett is a big body, smart QB who only started one season at a FCS school. His arm strength is nothing special, but he has plenty of touch. He needs to fight to make the practice squad, but could really develop in the Tampa QB room.
Favorite Pick: Round 2, Pick 50 Overall – Jaylon Johnson, CB, Utah – Likely to be a situational corner early on with Kyle Fuller, Artie Burns, and Buster Skrine the corners ahead of him, Johnson will have a shot to leap ahead of Skrine this season and become the nickel back on a great defense. He has good size and toughness that will allow him to play press and line up against big receivers and even a tight end when needed.
Least Favorite Pick: Round 2, Pick 43 Overall – Cole Kmet, TE, Notre Dame – I love the player, but this is early even for me and it gives the Bears something like 10 TEs on their roster. With Jimmy Graham in the twighlight of his career, Kmet could easily be the top TE on the team by mid-season, but Mitch Trubisky and Nick Foles means the team is still going to struggle.
Day Three Sleeper: Round 5, Pick 155 Overall – Trevis Gipson, Edge, Tulsa – He can play with his hand in the dirt or upright as a blitzing backer, Gipson gets to learn from the best in the league Khalil Mack and another who is no slouch in Robert Quinn. He is a pass rush only type guy, so he will be situational, but has the upside to become a productive member of the Bears D.
Undrafted Free Agent to Watch: Trevon McSwain, DT, Duke – More of a tweener on the defensive line as he is not a run stuffer given he is 6’6” and weighed in at 285 lbs., but not really a natural pass rusher. He will likely be a running game option as depth on the back end of the roster.
Favorite Pick: Round 1, Pick 3 Overall – Jeff Okudah, CB, Ohio State – Hands down the best defensive back in the draft, Okudah goes to a Lions team that desperately needed corner help. The Lions gave up the most passing yards per game and tied for last in interceptions, they con only go up from there and Okudah is just the kind of guy to help.
Least Favorite Pick: None – The day two selections for the Lions were D’Andre Swift, Julian Okwara, and Jonah Jackson, all guys I really like. Swift will likely be the lead back early on given his biggest competition is Kerryon Johnson, while Jackson could be leading the way for him as the best guard on the roster. Okwara will have to overtake his brother, Romeo, on the defensive line to earn himself a starting gig, but the brotherly competition should be fun to watch.
Day Three Sleeper: Round 5, Pick 166 Overall – Quintez Cephus, WR, Wisconsin – Cephus was not the most highly touted receiver in this deep draft class, and there was plenty of inconsistencies from him in a run first offense, but he flashed brilliance. There was always one or two plays a game in Madison that made you sit up and take note of Cephus, the question is can he do it consistently, and if he can that ceiling is massive.
Undrafted Free Agent to Watch: Hunter Bryant, TE, Washington – I felt there was a better chance Bryant went on day two than go undrafted, so this had to be the top target for the Lions. With Jesse James and TJ Hockenson ahead of him on the depth chart, he will be a matchup third option early on, but could easily surpass James early in the season.
Green Bay Packers
Favorite Pick: Round 2, Pick 62 Overall – A.J. Dillon, RB, Boston College – Despite popular reaction, I easily could have gone Jordan Love here although, that may just be an indictment on how poor the draft as a whole was for the Packers. Dillon is a huge, bruising back that can pound the rock. He can carry a heavy workload, but he really does not help much in the passing game so his fit with Aaron Rodgers and Aaron Jones remains to be seen.
Least Favorite Pick: Round 3, Pick 94 Overall – Josiah Deguara, H-Back, Cincinnati – He was listed as a tight end when drafted, but in reality he is a receiving fullback. The highest of upsides for him is to be a poor man’s Kyle Juszczyk…which isn’t worth a third-round pick.
Day Three Sleeper: Round 6, Pick 192 Overall – Jon Runyan, G, Michigan – A college tackle with great bloodlines, Runyan moving inside to guard becomes incredibly intriguing. They did go with a trio of interior offensive linemen in the sixth round, with Jake Hanson and Simon Stepaniak drafted later in the round, but it is Runyan I believe is the hit if there is only one in the group.
Undrafted Free Agent to Watch: A likely late round draft pick until he ran the slowest 40-yard dash among any corner, 4.65, but he had a good final season at Florida State. He is long but lean, so he isn’t much of a tackler, but his big hands allow him to win contested balls that typically go to the receiver. He will likely fit in as the last DB on the roster but could surprise people with a pick or two this season.
Favorite Pick: Round 1, Pick 22 Overall – Justin Jefferson, WR, LSU – Good route runner who can go up and the contested ball. At LSU he worked primarily as a slot receiver, a position Adam Thielen plays often, but he saw plenty of time out wide. He will immediately step in to the Stefon Diggs role and, while it will take time, he can get to that level.
Least Favorite Pick: None – Jeff Gladney may have been better suited as an early round two pick, but no way he gets back to the Vikings and this was a position of need, so I really have no issues with any of their picks in the first three rounds.
Day Three Sleeper: Round 4, Pick 132 Overall – Troy Dye, LB, Oregon – A guy I expected to go day steps into a veteran heavy linebacking group he can learn from. His size and ability to cover ground screams safety, but he is more of a linebacker in overall abilities. Look for him to be a backer who sees coverage on the tight end often, while being a sure-fire tackler in the run game.
Undrafted Free Agent to Watch: Another slot receiver to the Vikings may not seem like the greatest fit, but Davis has a shot to make it as a sixth receiver. He runs decent enough routes and relies on quickness over speed despite good length for a slot option. Nothing special, but easily a guy who could have been drafted on day three without anyone giving it a second thought, so this could be a sneaky pick up for the Vikings.
Favorite Pick: Round 1, Pick 17 Overall – CeeDee Lamb, WR, Oklahoma – With Amari Cooper resigning this was not really a position of need, but the value was just too good to pass up for Jerry Jones and the Cowboys. He is a player who is always a threat to make the big play and could easily become a number one receiver. Going into an offense with Cooper and Michael Gallup already ahead of him, Lamb will get plenty of favorable matchups and be a force to be reckoned with from day one.
Least Favorite Pick: None – The Cowboys got value at every pick filling both needs and just going after the best player available. They took a corner in round two that could have gone in round one and a defensive tackle in round three that could have gone in round two. On day three they added a corner with the skillset of a day two draft pick, a seventh-round flyer at QB, and the two guys I am highlighting as sleepers.
Day Three Sleeper: Round 4, Pick 146 Overall & Round 5, Pick 179 Overall – Tyler Biadasz, C, Wisconsin & Bradlee Anae, Edge, Utah – Both these picks I expected to go on day two of the draft but fall right into to Cowboys’ laps. Biadasz will have a chance to start right away with the retirement of fellow Wisconsin center Travis Frederick and, while he will never be the same quality, he can certainly be a league average to better center early on. Anae it a technical wizard in the pas rush and may need the least amount of coaching to have success in the NFL. This gives him a rather high floor although the length and strength could limit his upside.
Undrafted Free Agent to Watch: Rico Dowdle, RB, South Carolina – The Cowboys were busy in UDFA as well, signing two TEs that have a shot to make the team in Charlie Taumpoepeau and Sean McKeon, two WRs who will likely battle for the final spot at the position in Kendrick Rogers and Stephen Guidry, and Terence Steele is a player who has a shot to stick as the swing tackle. Instead I pick Dowdle although he will have competition from two TCU running backs also headed to Cowboys camp. He is a determined RB who can catch the ball well but struggles in pass protection. With Zeke Elliot and Tony Pollard the only sure fire RBs on the Cowboys roster, Dowdle will have plenty of opportunities to make the team.
New York Giants
Favorite Pick: Round 2, Pick 36 Overall – Xavier McKinney, S, Alabama – I was certain McKinney would be a first round pick with fits for him in Dallas, Atlanta, Miami, and so many others. He was productive as a tackler to go along with the ability to blitz and turn the ball over. Had he gone in the top half of the first round it would not have been a pick I disliked, sliding to the second round makes it an absolute steal.
Least Favorite Pick: Round 1, Pick 4 Overall – Andrew Thomas, OT, Georgia – I have said it before and I will say it again, I don’t dislike Thomas the player, but Wirfs was still on the board and he was easily my top tackle. He has plenty of experience at the college level after starting three seasons in the SEC, he is polished. He may be the best run blocking tackle in the draft, so lining him up in front of Saquon Barkley does make a lot of sense.
Day Three Sleeper: Round 6, Pick 183 Overall – Cameron Brown, LB, Penn State – Brown ran a better 40 than his play would suggest, but it is hard to dislike a LB coming out of LB U. Brown does not have the flare of linebackers past at Penn State, but he should be able to allow that speed he showed at the combine translate to quality special teams play until he is ready to see consistent snaps on D.
Undrafted Free Agent to Watch: Case Cookus, QB, Northern Arizona – The current backup QBs behind Daniel Jones are Colt McCoy and Alex Tanney, both over 30. McCoy is exactly the kind of guy you want as a backup, but I could see Cookus beating out Tanney if the Giants decide to keep three QBs. He has a good arm and is decisive with the ball, although there is an injury history that is concerning.
Favorite Pick: Round 2, Pick 53 Overall – Jalen Hurts, QB, Oklahoma – One of the most important positions on the Eagles is backup QB given Carson Wentz injury history so, unlike most, I actually really like this pick for the Eagles. Hurts should slide right in as the primary backup behind Wentz, and with a style that translates better than existing backups on the roster Nate Sudfeld and Kyle Lauletta. There is plenty of talk of Hurts being a Taysom Hill style player as well, and the Eagles could use all the playmaking help they can get.
Least Favorite Pick: Round 1, Pick 21 Overall – Jalen Reagor, WR, TCU – One site liked Reagor better as a position change back to corner where he once played, not exactly a ringing endorsement. He is a shorter receiver and has relatively short arms for the position. That said, he battles with the ball in his hand and breaks plenty of tackles and wins on contested balls more often than not. It was a glaring position of need, I am just not sure he was the right guy for the job.
Day Three Sleeper: Round 6, Pick 210 Overall – Prince Tega Wanogho, OT, Auburn – I had Prince as a day two guy and was quite surprised to see him fall all the way to the end of round six. He is a touch smaller than a traditional NFL tackle and his shorter arms for his size allow rushers to get into his body too often. He has had some injury concerns but, if he stays healthy and gets coached up just a little, he could be a top end swing tackle or quality starter in time.
Undrafted Free Agent to Watch: Khalil Tate, QB/WR/RB, Arizona – Yes, multiple positions listed because I don’t know where the Eagles see him, but he may be the most intriguing UDFA this season. Tate was a blast to watch down in Tucson and oozes athleticism, but he does not have the arm or pocket presence to be a QB. He has the frame and ability with the ball in his hands to play RB, but the Eagles saw some success with QB turned WR Greg Ward Jr. a season ago and could find lightning in a bottle here as well.
Favorite Pick: Round 1, Pick 2 Overall – Chase Young, DE, Ohio State – Best player in the draft, a pass rusher with hall of fame potential, it is a no brainer to sit at pick two and take him. His production the second half of last season was not all that impressive, but blitzing with Ryan Kerrigan, Jonathan Allen, Da’Ron Payne, and Montez Sweat ahead of him will make it hard for opponents to shift the entire protection scheme his way. The Redskins could feature a defensive line of four consecutive first round picks, there is a lot of pressure on that group and I think Young has what it takes to push them over the top.
Least Favorite Pick: Round 3, Pick 66 Overall – Antonio Gibson, WR/RB, Memphis – What position is he going to play? He was a running back for the most part at Memphis but saw a lot of time at receiver. He is raw at both positions and not sure he projects as a starter at either. Guys who can do multiple things are gold in today’s NFL, I am just not sure he is good enough at any one thing to translate.
Day Three Sleeper: Round 4, Pick 142 Overall – Antonio Gandy-Golden, WR, Liberty – I admit, I knew very little about Gandy-Golden until after the first round, but then I saw his highlights and he immediately became a name I was watching for. He is long, athletic, good hands, and smart, all you want from a receiver. He dominated against lower level competition and did not have measurables that blow you away, but I think he works his way into a starting role this season.
Undrafted Free Agent to Watch: Steven Montez, QB, Colorado & Thaddeus Moss, TE, LSU – The ‘Skins brought in Kyle Allen and then go sign arguably the best QB available in UDFA, not a great sign for Dwayne Haskins. Montez has ideal QB size and three years as a starter under his belt. Add that to solid athleticism, accuracy, and touch and you have yourself the makings of a quality backup QB. Meanwhile Moss, the son of Randy Moss, was one of three tight ends I was stunned to see go undrafted. He is not flashy like his father, instead he seems to enjoy blocking and can make the big grab when needed.
Favorite Pick: Round 1, Pick 15 Overall – Jerry Jeudy, WR, Alabama – You can easily argue Jeudy was the best receiver in the draft and I had both the Raiders and 49ers taking receivers in my mock so I was shocked to see Jeudy slide to the Broncos. Courtland Sutton is a very good receiver, but he may be demoted to WR2 by week one, Jeudy is that talented. You can look at Alabama draft picks in the Nick Saban era and find plenty of inconsistency at the NFL level, but WR has been one position that has translated well, and Jeudy should continue that trend.
Least Favorite Pick: Round 3, Pick 77 Overall – Michael Ojemudia, CB, Iowa – Not a terrible selection and definitely a need given Chris Harris moved on to the Chargers, but there were better options here. I had Troy Pride, Josiah Scott, Bryce Hall, Cameron Dantzler, and Amik Robertson ahead of Ojemudia on my board and all guys I feel could have stepped in better than him. Ojemudia struggles in man coverage, and may be best suited to be a free safety in the long term, not exactly something the Broncos with Justin Simmons already there.
Day Three Sleeper: Round 4, Pick 118 Overall, Albert Okwuegbunam, TE, Missouri – Tight End was far from a need for the Broncos, but the fact Albert O was still on the board in day three was a luxury too good to pass up. He is not much of a blocker, but his big body allows him to win contested balls and he ran a sub-4.50 40-yard dash, so he can stretch the field. Adding him to Noah Fant, Jeff Heuerman, Troy Fumagali, Jake Butt, and Nick Vannett gives the Broncos as deep and competitive a TE room as any in the league.
Undrafted Free Agent to Watch: Kendall Hinton, WR, Wake Forest – The Broncos loaded up the offense with weapons in the draft, and they continued it in UDFA. Considered by many as one of the big snubs not invited to the NFL combine, Hinton likely would have truly raised his stock to a sure-fire draft pick had he gone. He is a slot receiver who should make the back end of the roster but could be in competition as one of the slot options in four and five wide sets by year two.
Kansas City Chiefs
Favorite Pick: Round 1, Pick 32 Overall – Clyde Edwards-Helaire, RB, LSU – The Broncos may have loaded up on offensive weapons in an attempt to keep up with the Chiefs, but the Chiefs went ahead and drafted one of the better all-around RBs in the draft and that offense just gets better. There is a real chance Edwards-Helaire is the go to back ahead of Damien Williams on Week 1. He is short, but sturdy, so he can run inside, but won’t be much of a goal line threat (hint to fantasy owners out there) so he will be more of a guy who is effective between the 20s.
Least Favorite Pick: Round 2, Pick 63 Overall – Willie Gay Jr., ILB, Mississippi State – I don’t necessarily dislike this pick, I just don’t love it. I liked Gay in the third round, so round two was a bit rich for me, plus there were other inside backers I liked btter. Zack Baun and Troy Dye are both guys I would have preferred, that said, Gay should be a quality player and this being my least favorite pick for the Chiefs is actually a complement to their draft.
Day Three Sleeper: Round 4, Pick 138 – L’Jarius Sneed, S, Louisiana Tech – I don’t like Sneed as a safety, but the Chiefs believe he can transition to corner where he played in 2018, and could bring good value there. He can fly once he gets going and will slide right in as a package defender for the team. Look for him to be a situational player in year one with a shot to be a starter by year two.
Undrafted Free Agent to Watch: Kalija Lipscomb, WR, Vanderbilt – Lipscomb plays like a big receiver but is only 6’ tall. He is no burner, so different from most Chiefs players, however he has long arms and very good hands that allow him to keep moving for the catch and run. He is likely a fifth or sixth option as receiver, but could offer Patrick Mahomes yet another weapon as his game speed is better than his 4.57 40-yard dash would suggest.
Las Vegas Raiders
Favorite Pick: Round 1, Pick 12 Overall – Henry Rugs III, WR, Alabama – Both first round Alabama receivers go to the AFC West with Ruggs being the surprise first WR off the board. At least, somewhat of a surprise, as this pick screams late owner Al Davis if anything. Ruggs ran a combine best 4.27 40-yard dash and was disappointed by it. Considering his biggest competition for targets is likely the TE duo of Darren Waller and Jason Witten (Tyrell Williams was the Raider number one receiver before this) Ruggs should have every chance to shine in Vegas.
Least Favorite Pick: Round 1, Pick 19 Overall – Damon Arnette, CB, Ohio State – A guy I had as my eighth corner going late in round two, Arnette was a shocker going pick 19 overall, fourth among corners. Then again, this is the Raiders who picked Clelin Ferrell fourth overall a season ago. Don’t get me wrong, Arnette will be a starting corner Week One, I am just not sure he was the best option here.
Day Three Sleeper: Round 4, Pick 139 Overall – Amik Robertson, CB, Louisiana Tech – Robertson will be given every opportunity to earn a spot as a nickel corner, but likely more of a dime back in season one. He is only 5’8” otherwise he would have been a day two selection and he packs a punch despite his smaller stature. I expect him to line up over the slot receiver for the entirety of his career, but I wouldn’t be shocked to see him become a quality blitzer from that position.
Undrafted Free Agent to Watch: Javin White, S, UNLV – Considering the Raiders didn’t have a ton of selections in the draft, and none after round four, it is a bit baffling to see their UDFA list at just seven as of my writing, and two of those are a kicker and long snapper. White is the best fit for the Raiders as he can play a downhill strong safety or linebacker. In order to be safety, he needs a lot of work on technique, while he probably needs to add 20 lbs. if he wants to be linebacker. Despite this, he is a hometown kid two times, growing up in Oakland (where the Raiders were) and going to school in Vegas (where the Raiders are) so he is as easy an UDFA to root for as there is in Raiders camp.
Los Angeles Chargers
Favorite Pick: Round 1, Pick 23 Overall – Kenneth Murray, ILB, Oklahoma – The Chargers moved back into the first round when they saw Murray still on the board late into round one, and got a guy who fits a need perfectly. They lost Thomas Davis, the team’s leading tackler a year ago, and Murray will slide right into that spot. He could battle for the team lead in tackles himself this season and will improve a run defense that was about league average a season ago.
Least Favorite Pick: Round 1, Pick 6 Overall – Justin Herbert , QB, Oregon – The fact the Chargers had two picks in round one and none on day two didn’t give a ton of options to choose from for least favorite, but I would have considered Herbert to be the selection to any team in the top half of round one. He has all the tools and has the look of a QB in LA, but the inconsistencies are a real concern as is his accuracy. The fact the Chargers have Tyrod Taylor may be the best part of this selection, as they can truly let Herbert work as the backup and soak in the speed of the NFL, but then again what team is really patient enough to let that happen these days?
Day Three Sleeper: Round 5, Pick 151 Overall – Joe Reed, WR, Virginia – This is one of those picks that only die-hard Chargers fans will truly appreciate this season. Reed averaged better than 28.5 yards per return during his time at Virginia and he amassed 17 tackles, meaning he can make an impact returning and covering kicks. As a receiver, he is a well-built slot receiver who was a HS running back so he will be a threat on shovel passes and coming around in jet sweeps. There might not be team that would have suited Reed better, so an excellent fit all around.
Undrafted Free Agent to Watch: Joe Graziano, DE, Northwestern – The UDFA class for the Chargers isn’t great, but there may not have been a more productive player in the class than Graziano. He was a very effective edge rusher in the Big Ten with Northwestern, and that alone is worthy of note. He saw plenty of future NFL offensive lineman and still managed to get to the QB, although his short arm and lack of burst doesn’t suggest he will have the same success at the next level. Overall, I doubt he makes the team, but he may be a practice squad guy asked to put on 20 lbs. or so and work as a hybrid lineman who can attack guards rather than tackles.
Favorite Pick: Round 2, Pick 40 Overall – Ross Blacklock, DT, TCU – One could easily argue Blacklock should have gone in the first round, so always good to see a team without a first-round pick get first round value. Blacklock will not be a run-stuffing plugger like they once had in Vince Wilfork, instead he will more often line up over a guard and work to get after the QB, and interior pass rush is becoming more and more important in today’s NFL.
Least Favorite Pick: Round 3, Pick 90 Overall – Jonathan Greenard, Edge, Florida – The value here isn’t poor and there really wasn’t a better edge rusher available at the time, but seeing guys like Bradlee Anae, Curtis Weaver, and Khalid Kareem fall to round five, the Texans would have been off going corner in this spot as I feel there was better value there at the time.
Day Three Sleeper: Round 4, Pick 126 Overall – Charlie Heck, OT, North Carolina – A Heck of a pick here (see what I did there?) The Texans have had plenty of trouble keeping Deshaun Watson upright in recent years, so adding depth to the O-line was definitely a need. Heck will likely never be a starter, but he can fill in at either tackle as a backup and be serviceable in the role.
Undrafted Free Agent to Watch: Scottie Phillips, RB, Ole Miss – David Johnson is not the RB he once was, and Duke Johnson is purely a third down back and the RB depth chart is pretty barren after that for the Texans. This should open up a real opportunity for Phillips to earn a spot on the roster, and potentially as the primary backup to David Johnson. He was not a main target in the passing game in Oxford, but he has good enough hands to catch the ball and he is a big play back if he can get the edge.
Favorite Pick: Round 2, Pick 34 Overall – Michael Pittman, WR, USC – Watching the draft I immediately gained a soft spot for Pittman as they flashed him in his youth football jersey for the SCVAA Warriors, which happened to be the same organization I played for when I was a kid. After that, I looked at the player and the Colts may finally have a valid option opposite T.Y. Hilton. He was incredibly productive at USC, a Biletnikoff Award finalist, and the bloodlines that come from his father having played 11 seasons in the NFL. Another receiver who would garner first round consideration in another draft, but the depth this year assured he fell to round two.
Least Favorite Pick: Round 2, Pick 41 Overall – Jonathan Taylor, RB, Wisconsin – Looking at the highlights and numbers there is little doubt Taylor would be a favorite pick for the Colts, but the fumbles are too big a concern. He touched the ball more than 300 times in three consecutive seasons and averaged 5 fumbles a season. This means he is a turnover risk every time he touches the ball and he has as much wear and tear as any RB to enter the draft in recent memory, a recipe for disaster.
Day Three Sleeper: Round 4, Pick 122 Overall – Jacob Eason, QB, Washington – With the addition of Eason, the Colts may have the deepest QB room in all of the NFL as they now have Philip Rivers as the starter and Jacoby Brissett as the backup. I fully expected Eason to go on day two of the draft and was shocked to see him still on the board here for the Colts. He is big, potentially too big given recent history at the position, standing 6’6” and with a massive arm. His big problems are inconsistency, but the Colts should have a well above average backup QB and potentially someone who develops in to a quality starter.
Undrafted Free Agent to Watch: Rodrigo Blankenship, K, Georgia – The Colts had trouble at kicker a season ago as Adam Vinatieri finally started to look his age. Enter the goggle wearing star from Georgia, Rodrigo Blankenship. He may be remembered mostly for his miss against South Carolina, and he had three kicks blocked, but he was 6/9 from 50+ and made 92.7% of his kicks inside 40.
Favorite Pick: Round 2, Pick 42 Overall – Lavishka Shenault Jr., WR, Colorado – I really liked the first three selections by the Jaguars, as C.J. Henderson could become a lock down corner, and K’Lavon Chaisson will slide in as an immediate starter as an edge backer opposite Myles Jack. With Shenault though, the Jags get a multi-faceted playmaker who can score anytime he touches the ball and get do just that via a deep route, bubble screen, or even carrying the ball. He is my early favorite to be my top rookie in fantasy leagues this season.
Least Favorite Pick: Round 3, Pick 73 Overall – DaVon Hamilton, DT, Ohio State – As big a body as there is at DT in the draft, there was little doubt a team would fall in love with Hamilton, but not sure he is worth a third rounder. He only started for Ohio State one season and is athletic for a guy weighing in at 320 lbs., but he isn’t really a run stuffer, and he isn’t really a pass rusher. Overall, he is a guy that is good at a lot, but great at nothing, so the upside is rather limited.
Day Three Sleeper: Round 4, Pick 137 Overall – Josiah Scott, CB, Michigan State – I nearly went with fifth round selection Collin Johnson here, but I feel Scott has the quicker path to impact. He ran a 4.42 40-yard dash at the combine and came away with seven picks in 30 college games, including more than a pass defended a game. If he was a 6’ corner, he would have been day two pick if he had more prototypical size but being just 5’9” he is likely best suited as a slot corner in the NFL.
Undrafted Free Agent to Watch: J.R. Reed, S, Georgia – The Jaguars have actually had a very good UDFA class, but none are expected to shine brighter than Reed. Many had him as an early day three selection, instead he goes undrafted and the Jags were quick to sign him up. He is a smart safety and has the ball skills you expect as the son of former NFL receiver Jake Reed. He can go get the ball in the air and will be able to cover tight ends one-on-one.
Favorite Pick: Round 2, Pick 61 Overall – Kristian Fulton, CB, LSU – I had Fulton as a first-round pick, but he goes near the end of round two. He has the perfect size at 6’ and 195 lbs. while running a 4.46 40-yard dash. There is some concern about the makeup as he was suspended all of 2017 after falsifying a specimen for a drug test, otherwise he would have more tape and likely been a sure fire round one selection.
Least Favorite Pick: None – The Titans didn’t have a phenomenal draft, but I don’t feel they missed with any pick. Darrynton Evans is going to be a really good change of pace option for Derrick Henry, and their first-round pick of Isaiah Wilson should slide right in at right tackle.
Day Three Sleeper: Round 7, Pick 224 Overall – Cole McDonald, QB, Hawaii – Good athleticism, quality touch, looks off defenders well equals a seventh round pick that should be able to earn a spot as a long term backup in the league. His deep ball needs plenty of work, but an athletic game manager isn’t the worst thing to have as QB depth.
Undrafted Free Agent to Watch: Kobe Smith, DT, South Carolina – Often overshadowed by teammate Javon Kinlaw, Smith was the less sexy run stuffer to Kinlaw’s pass rushing acumen. Smith won’t be a guy who gets after the passer but is a guy who can play on early down to help stuff the run. He will never be a stand out star, but he is just the kind of ancillary piece a team needs to stay competitive.
Favorite Pick: All from the first two days – Seriously, what the heck do the Ravens do to ensure the right players fall to them every draft? Patrick Queen was the best LB in the draft for me, LB was the biggest need for the Ravens, and he falls right in their lap. Next round they go ahead and grab J.K Dobbins to start working with Mark Ingram and should be the featured back by the end of the season. Then Justin Madubuike slips to them as a DT that fits the Ravens way perfectly. Devin Duvernay is easily a second-round talent but, due to the depth in WR this year, falls to the end of round three and will be able to be a quality second receiver across Hollywood Brown. Malik Harrison is a quality player and basically just gravy for the Ravens in round three.
Least Favorite Pick: None – Seriously, I could try and make a case for Malik Harrison, but I would just be blowing smoke, so I am gonna say I did not have a least favorite pick for the Ravens.
Day Three Sleeper: Round 7, Pick 219 Overall – Geno Stone, S, Iowa – James Proche in the end of round six is another guy to keep an eye on and he easily could have been a selection on day two, but I am going deeper sleeper than that. Nothing about him is prototypical, but he is an intelligent center fielding safety that the Ravens will almost certainly get the most out of.
Undrafted Free Agent to Watch: Tyler Huntley, QB, Utah – The Ravens brought in Trace McSorley a season ago as a sixth-round pick and, despite being inactive most regular season games, he balled out in the preseason. Now they bring in Tyler Huntley to add to the QB room, but he has the athleticism to potentially shift to WR. I thought he was a draftable guy based purely on athleticism, although the he is quite skinny which is a concern and the time it takes to let the ball loose may be what prevents him from sticking at QB.
Favorite Pick: Round 1, Pick 1 Overall – Joe Burrow, QB, LSU – Burrow was set to go first overall for months and it came to fruition despite reports of the Dolphins making a real push to trade up. Burrow has possibly the greatest single season in college football history and pulled off the rare feat of Heisman Trophy winner, National Champion, and first overall pick all within the same year. If there is a knock it is the fact he was little more than average in seasons prior, but there is no arguing what he did in 2019.
Least Favorite Pick: Round 3, Pick 65 Overall – Logan Wilson, LB, Wyoming – I didn’t dislike this pick, but I didn’t love it either and you can’t argue with Joe Burrow at the top of the draft and Tee Higgins at the top of round two. Zack Baun was still on the board when the Bengals selected Wilson and I don’t think there is much argument that Wilson is a better prospect. Given the new CBA rules, a diluted urine sample doesn’t have the same impact it once did, so that should not have prevented the Bengals from selecting Baun.
Day Three Sleeper: Round 5, Pick 147 Overall – Khalid Hareem, Edge, Notre Dame – Kareem was never a dominant pass rusher at Notre Dame and that won’t be what the Bengals are looking for from him despite his size being that of a traditional edge rusher. Instead, he will be the kind of guy who lines up on the right tackle and stuffs him in his place allowing the second level to come up and stop the run. He is first and second down depth, and quality value at this point in the draft.
Undrafted Free Agent to Watch: None – Again, I am not going to force a name I don’t believe in. The Bengals had a quality draft, but they haven’t brought in much talent thus far in UDFA. Not a knock, it is still somewhat early, just none that I see as worthy of calling out.
Favorite Pick: Round 2, Pick 44 Overall – Grant Delpit, S, LSU – A throwback strong safety, Delpit is a downhill defender looking for the big hit to dislodge the football in the passing game and can stop a running back in the open field. His final season at LSU was hampered by injuries after a stellar 2018. Had he repeated what he did a season ago, he would have been a first-round pick, so grabbing him in round two is a great grab for Cleveland.
Least Favorite Pick: Round 1, Pick 10 Overall – Jedrick Wills, OT, Alabama – Said it in regards to the Jets first round selection, I don’t dislike Jedrick Wills, I just love Tristan Wirfs. Wills’ size screams for a potential move down to guard at some point in the future but he will probably be the week one left tackle, something I just feel there were better plug and play options at this spot.
Day Three Sleeper: Round 4, Pick 115 Overall – Harrison Bryant, TE, Florida Atlantic – The Browns have no shortage in pass catching TEs as they bring back David Njoku, signed Austin Hooper, and now draft Harrison Bryant. Bryant will be the clear cut third option at tight end this season but could have a breakout sophomore campaign if they cut ties with Njoku. Unlike Njoku, Bryant is a quality blocker and will bring a multi-dimensional skill set to the club.
Undrafted Free Agent to Watch: Kevin Davidson, QB, Princeton – Anytime there is an Ivy League QB added in UDFA it is worthy of keeping an eye on. Davidson did not see the field much his first three seasons but broke out in his senior year. He is an intelligent QB, not just because he is an Ivy Leaguer, with good touch and accuracy in short to intermediate throws. He does not have a big arm and struggles with the deep ball, so a trip to the practice squad is most likely for Davidson.
Favorite Pick: Round 2, Pick 49 Overall – Chase Claypool, WR, Notre Dame – it seems you could really highlight any team that took a WR in this draft and call it a favorite pick or a day three sleeper simply based on the depth at the position this year. Claypool fell right around where he should have been drafted, but you can make the argument to take him in round one, so the Steelers first pick coming in round two and getting Claypool is good value. He is a big body pass catcher that just missed a 4.40-flat 40-yard dash. Full package at receiver that should be a quality number two or three option.
Least Favorite Pick: Round 3, Pick 102 Overall – Alex Highsmith, Edge, Charlotte – Highsmith was productive in the Sun Belt, but he does not have great size or strength, making him primarily a third down edge rusher. Taking him on day three may have made him a sleeper, but on day two ahead of guys like Bradlee Anae and Curtis Weaver I just don’t like the pick.
Day Three Sleeper: Round 4, Pick 135 Overall – Kevin Dotson, G, Louisiana – Dotson was seen by more scouts than would typically be at a Rajin’ Cajun game thanks to fellow line-mate Robert Hunt, but Dotson made the most of the exposure. He is a punishing run blocker who regularly took care of the first level defenders and moved onto the second level. He will be a two position backup to start, but could easily be a starting guard by 2021.
Undrafted Free Agent to Watch: Josiah Coatney, DT, Ole Miss – It wasn’t much of a surprise to see Coatney go undrafted, but he has landed in a great spot for his game. He has ideal size for a DT but can get knocked back too easily and does not excel in pass rush. Overall, he will really have to battle to make the team and will likely start on a practice squad, but I anticipate enough development to stick around and see some playing time over the next few seasons.