Avengers Assemble: Mock Draft 2019
2019 Mock Draft
As an undergraduate during the Eighties, I skipped classes to watch the Draft on ESPN during the week. I should have attended my Finance and English courses; nevertheless, the annual allocation of college talent consumed my spare time, and I had to watch the original reality TV.
As a teacher, I enjoy my April vacation writing Draft analysis and making guest appearances on Podcasts as well as taping NFL Draft Profiles with my partner Andy Singleton.
Lastly, I asked four distinguished Fantasy Football minds to join me in providing a breakdown of the upcoming NFL Draft. The football soothsayers, and I rotated picks and drafted for all 32 teams in the first round. Enjoy the picks and analysis.
Shane P. Hallam, firstname.lastname@example.org
@ShanePHallam and Fakepigskin.com
John Laub, @GridironSchol91
Tim Torch, email@example.com
@TimNFL, DraftWire.com and BrownsWire.com
Tyler Markings, firstname.lastname@example.org
@TPM_Sports and Goingfor2.com
Please follow all of the fantasy football diehards on Twitter.
1. Arizona Cardinals: QB Kyler Murray, Oklahoma
New head coach, new system, and new quarterback. Giving first-time NFL Head Coach Kliff Kingsbury his quarterback is the right move if you want this marriage to succeed. The offensive and defensive sides of the ball still have plenty of holes, but getting your guy is imperative.
2. San Francisco 49ers: DT Quinnen Williams, Alabama
Over the past three Drafts, the 49ers selected two defensive ends—Solomon Thomas (2017) and DeForest Buckner (2016)—in the first round. It would be a redundant use of draft capital to acquire another defensive end. The Crimson Tide luminary explodes off the snap and disrupts opponents with power, explosiveness and athleticism in the middle of the defense.
3. New York Jets: Edge Nick Bosa, Ohio State
The Jets can use some defensive stoutness upfront, and Bosa provides a versatile option for Gregg Williams’ unit. He can play the Myles Garrett role and be a pass rusher at times while standing up against the run. If you get a chance at a defensive gamechanger, you take it.
Shane P. Hallam
4. Oakland Raiders: DT Ed Oliver, Houston
The Raiders have many pressing needs especially defensively. I think the best pick for coach Gruden and company with Bosa off the board is Ed Oliver. He is a versatile defensive lineman who will cause chaos in the middle rushing the passer and contribute versus the run as well.
5. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: OT Jonah Williams, Alabama
This pick should be traded to a team looking for their quarterback of the future. Without a trade the Buccaneers should be inclined to protect their current, or future, quarterback. Williams provides versatility to play multiple positions at a high level and can step in immediately.
6. New York Giants: OT Jawaan Taylor, Florida
Last year, General Manager Dave Gettleman improved the offensive line by signing free agent LT Nate Solder and drafting OG Will Hernandez. The rebuild continues with the Gators’ Jawaan Taylor. The 6-foot-5 and 312-pound tackle is a nasty run blocker with prodigious long—and strong—arms, vice-like hands and light feet.
7. Jacksonville Jaguars: Edge Montez Sweat, Mississippi State
This was a near worst case scenario for the Jaguars with Jonah Williams and Jawaan Taylor off the board. Montez Sweat has shown himself to be a dynamic playmaker that can create pressure. It adds to a stout Jaguars front seven and frees them up to go offense the rest of the way.
Shane P. Hallam
8. Detroit Lions: Edge Josh Allen, Kentucky
After losing Ezekiel Ansah, the Lions desperately need a pass rusher. Josh Allen fits that role and has the potential to be the best edge rusher in the class. While Allen is not a perfect prospect by any means, he does have elite size, speed, and explosiveness and is great off the edge. He needs to work on putting together a better arsenal of moves, but that shouldn’t be a problem with NFL coaching.
9. Buffalo Bills: Edge Brian Burns, Florida State
In today’s NFL, it is either about getting to the quarterback or upgrading around the offensive leader. In this scenario, the Bills are opting to get after the quarterback. On paper, the Bills may have a top-10 defense and here I can see them adding a true terror off the edge. Burns possesses an elite initial step and has the bend to cause problems around the corner.
10. Denver Broncos: TE T.J. Hockenson, Iowa
A dream scenario for John Elway and the organization. Denver cannot pass on a top five talent in this class and can grab a quarterback in the second round. Hockenson is a mean-spirted blocker and a highly valuable pass catcher. He checks all the boxes that foreshadow a Pro Bowl career.
11. Cincinnati Bengals: LB Devin White, LSU
Linebacker may be the most glaring hole for the Bengals and grabbing Devin White fills an immediate need. White can step in first day of training camp and keep runners in front of him plus he can cover tight ends. He is a day one starter and potential rookie Pro Bowler off the top.
Shane P. Hallam
12. Green Bay Packers: Edge Rashan Gary, Michigan
The Packers have just lost their long-time pass disrupter in Clay Matthews and need to fill that gap. In comes Rashan Gary. While Gary will be better in a hands down role, he is plenty talented in bull rushing tackles on route to disrupting both the quarterback and the running game. To win this division, you have to stop Stafford, Cousins, and Trubisky.
13. Miami Dolphins: QB Dwayne Haskins, Ohio State
Rebuild mode isn’t easy, and I don’t know if this is really the place for the Dolphins to make a quarterback investment. If the Dolphins go with the Buckeyes’ triggerman, it would likely mean he will have the 2018 season to simmer and learn behind a veteran gunslinger, who knows his way around the block.
14. Atlanta Falcons: Edge Clelin Ferrell, Clemson
In a division with Drew Brees, Cam Newton and Jameis Winston, the Falcons must collapse the pocket and pressure the quarterback. The former Tigers’ star owns the archetypal frame at 6-foot-4 and 264 pounds. Ferrell totaled 21 sacks over the past two seasons and can set the edge versus the run. A no brainer in coach Dan Quinn’s scheme.
15. Washington Redskins: QB Daniel Jones, Duke
I don’t love Daniel Jones, but he has some traits that can be coached up. If Jones sits for a year behind Case Keenum, it could serve him well and allow him to flourish into a franchise cornerstone. With Haskins off the board, this seems ideal for a team searching for a long-term solution behind center.
Shane P. Hallam
16. Carolina Panthers: OT Cody Ford, Oklahoma
The Panthers have plenty of holes to fill, but I felt like offensive tackle is the most important. Cody Ford can step in to protect Cam Newton, which has now hit an even more critical point with Cam’s ongoing shoulder injury. At this point in our draft, I think Cody Ford out of Oklahoma is just the man to step in and protect the franchise QB.
17. New York Giants: WR D.K. Metcalf, Mississippi
As the Giants offense is currently constructed, Evan Engram is the best deep threat on the team. SCARY. D.K. Metcalf is the ultimate “traits prospect” and would infuse a vertical element to the Giants’ offense immediately.
18. Minnesota Vikings: OT Andre Dillard, Washington State
Coach Mike Zimmer looks at the team’s draft board and can’t believe the quality of prospects available at cornerback. Last year, Minnesota grabbed CB Mike Hughes; however, the front office overrides Zimmer’s desires this year. Andre Dillard is a massive prospect at 6-foot-5 and 315 pounds and excels with inordinate athleticism and agile feet.
19. Tennessee Titans: CB Greedy Williams, LSU
The most physically impressive cornerback gives the Titans’ secondary a much-needed shot in the arm. Greedy has a chance to be a Stephon Gilmore type of corner. Though Greedy is not the most technically sound defensive back, he has the make up speed, size, and physicality to be a special player. Getting that at No. 19 could prove to be a real steal.
Shane P. Hallam
20. Pittsburgh Steelers: CB Byron Murphy, Washington
The Steelers have some options on who to go in the first round. I went with Byron Murphy who is talented enough to be an outside or a slot corner. Cleveland brought in some serious fire power this year, and Nelson is not the man you want matched up on Odell Beckham or Jarvis Landry. Murphy will have a lot of work to do at the NFL level; nonetheless, he is capable of being a good corner.
21. Seattle Seahawks: S Nasir Adderley, Delaware
Losing Earl Thomas to injury last year, and again this year to free agency, has taken its toll on the young defense in Seattle. Gifting them a ball-hawk in their secondary would get the Seahawks revamped defense back on track.
22. Baltimore Ravens: OT Dalton Risner, Kansas State
With a new front office, no one can be sure of the direction that the Ravens are going to take in the Draft. Baltimore has huge schisms on offense: The Ravens need playmakers at receiver and an upgrade along the front five. The former Wildcat offers versatility along the offensive line. Risner commenced his campus tenure at center (named Freshman All-American) before being moved to left tackle. A plug-and-play starter from kickoff in September.
23. Houston Texans: OT Kaleb McGary, Washington
McGary is a huge, athletic lineman who can play inside and out. The Texans have shown a lot of interest in McGary, and he seems a natural fit for an offensive line that can use a shot in the arm. A right tackle or guard candidate for Houston, McGary would add some aggression and power to the offense.
Shane P. Hallam
24. Oakland Raiders: LB Devin Bush, Jr., Michigan
Back to the Raiders. Devin Bush just felt like a perfect pick here as he can step in and play any of the three linebacker spots. Oakland needs help across the defensive depth chart, so grabbing a versatile guy like the former Wolverine could be just what they need to help drive this team in the right direction.
25. Philadelphia Eagles: RB Josh Jacobs, Alabama
I don’t believe the addition of Jordan Howard will be the apex of what the Eagles are doing in their backfield. They need a playmaker, they need a runner who is multi-dimensional and doesn’t need to be substituted on passing downs. Injecting Jacobs into their backfield will put the entire division on notice.
26. Indianapolis Colts: DT Jeffery Simmons, Mississippi St.
The Colts personnel ranks among the best in the NFL, and there are no gaping holes except at receiver. The wide outs are deep, and General Manager Chris Ballard can dip into the group later. I’m old school and a team can never have enough defensive lineman. At 6-foot-4 and 301 pounds, the former Bulldog is a physical and powerful defensive tackle with broad shoulders and thick lower body.
27. Oakland Raiders: TE Noah Fant, Iowa
I almost went receiver here, but instead went with Noah Fant. The Raiders need someone to fill the offensive void left by Jared Cook and who better than Fant? The former Iowa playmaker is a great receiving TE and a pretty good blocker as well. He will have to do some work to get ready for the professional game, but he has an elite skill set.
28. Los Angeles Chargers: DT Dexter Lawrence, Clemson
Lawrence’s versatility and size can give the Chargers a needed component along the defensive front. Brandon Mebane is 34-years old and nearing the end of his career while also needing someone to rotate in. Lawrence is quick off the snap but mostly a superior run defender that the Chargers can utilize on first and second downs.
Shane P. Hallam
29. Kansas City Chiefs: C Garrett Bradbury, North Carolina St.
PROTECT THIS HOUSE. It is an Under Armour logo and a mantra for how the Chiefs should feel about Patrick Mahomes. Moreover, with the loss of Mitch Morse, the center position needs upgraded and Bradbury has the profile of a Ryan Kelly, Colts level center. PROTECT MAHOMES’ HOUSE.
30. Green Bay Packers: S Chauncey Gardner-Johnson, Florida
The Packers double dip on the defensive side of the football. The former Gator is one of the heavy hitting and exhilarating defensive backs available. Last year, Gardner-Johnson totaled 71 tackles, recorded nine for loss and picked off four passes. He also scored two touchdowns. I hope the young man has winter apparel…Wisconsin is cold.
31. Los Angeles Rams: S Juan Thornhill, Virginia
Safety is a major hole in the Rams’ defense and they seem intent on addressing it early. There is heavy interest from Los Angeles in safety Juan Thornhill, who is extremely athletic with CB experience to boot to fill in the slot or dime situations. Though Eric Weddle figures to start, Thornhill could rotate in as a rookie and grow on the Rams stout defense.
Shane P. Hallam
32. New England Patriots: QB Drew Lock, Missouri
New England is blessed with being able to draft any position they want. While there is a need at receiver, if Drew Lock falls to pick No. 32, the Pats should draft him and never look back. I believe Lock has a higher ceiling than Haskins and their floors are very similar Let’s face facts, Brady isn’t getting any younger.