Today, I'll bring you a guest mock draft. Brandon Suydam is a man who takes the day off for the NFL Draft, eats, breathes and sleeps NFL football. I am pleased to bring you the mock draft of a person I believe should be working as a football analyst because he knows the game so well.
1. Arizona Cardinals -Kyler Murray QB Oklahoma
The long-awaited will-they won’t-they is done. With the first pick on the 2019 NFL Draft, the Cardinals will select their QB of the future. Everyone knows the story on Murray, a Heisman Trophy winner who was drafted to play baseball by the MLB’s Oakland Athletics. A kid with such resounding talent, he could waver on whether he would choose quarterback or shortstop and still get drafted in first rounds. Arizona has long looked for a young franchise QB, but they think they found him in the form of Murray, who looks to be the new breed of QBs like Patrick Mahomes and DeShaun Watson. Not since drafting Matt Leinart in 2006 have the Cardinals fan base been so excited, and rightfully so with Murray and new head coach Kliff Kingsbury.
2. San Francisco 49ers -Nick Bosa DE Ohio St
Not since Aldon Smith was mentally all there have the 49ers had an elite pass rusher, and even then, that was for about two good seasons. “Baby Bosa” brings a pedigree of consistency and relentlessness that Justin Smith would be proud of. No team needs a better draft than John Lynch and Kyle Shanahan, and no team needs a pass rush like the 49ers do. This is a dream come true for the bay area’s true professional football team.
3. New York Jets -Josh Allen OLB Kentucky
I want to say its Quinnen Williams here, but that’s the old Jets. That’s the Jets that loaded their front-line defense and didn’t account for an elite pass rusher. That’s the Jets that spent high first-round picks on Muhammad Wilkerson and Sheldon Richardson. They’ve been there and done that. If there’s one thing new head coach Adam Gase understands is you need to get to Tom Brady, and you need an elite pass rush to chase around the Bills Josh Allen. Well, this is awkward. Insert Kentucky’s Josh Allen. He’s a bit of the classic “tweener”, but this dude knows how to get to a QB. Allen will help rebuild this promising young Jets defensive unit.
4. Oakland Raiders-Quinnen Williams DT Alabama
The king of the draft process Mike Mayock has been given the keys to the Oak-Vegas Raiders with a caveat, head coach Jon Gruden having a heavy influence. Nothing excites me more than this pairing, and they would’ve loved for Allen or Bosa to fall to them. Quinnen Williams is the pick and this isn’t one to laugh at. Williams is the best player available and is at a position of need. The truth is, the Raiders need ANY talented defensive player as they likely wouldn’t stop Quinnen’s alma mater Alabama any day.
5. Tampa Bay Buccaneers- Devin White LB LSU
Bruce Arians has a full plate of issues to take care of. Besides figuring out if Jameis Winston is the QB of the Bucs ship, they have a mess of a defense. Gerald McCoy isn’t getting any younger, Vita Vea looks promising on clogging the middle for year two and Lavonte David is still one of the best coverage outside linebackers in football. What will make everyone better on defense is a legit Mike linebacker and that’s what Devin White can bring to the plunder. So eat your hearts out Bucs fans and enjoy the fruits of your bounty! Yar, land ‘ho!
6. New York Giants- Ed Oliver DT Houston
Year two under Pat Shurmur could be a solid year for New York’s older brother of football with a few key fixes. One is keeping Eli Manning upright and the other is adding talent everywhere on defense. A lot of people are putting a QB here, like Duke’s Daniel Jones or even Dwayne Haskins of Ohio State. I just don’t see it this early for a team that needs so much other help. Ed Oliver was once projected to go number one, but an up and down season pulled the reins on that. Oliver has size, speed and the capability to stop the run like recently shipped out Damon ‘Snacks’ Harrison was so good at, but unlike ‘Snacks’, Ed can get to the QB. Something that has become increasingly difficult to find in an interior lineman.
7. Jacksonville Jaguars- Jawaan Taylor OT Florida
Blake Bortles is gone and Nick Foles is the new signal caller. Tell me how this an upgrade? It’s hard not to go with one of the promising tight ends from the great state of Iowa in Noah Fant, but when given the choice of keeping Foles upright and giving him a target, they’ll go with upright. Taylor is mean and physical and can play either side of the line. Give Foles a better offensive line, five seconds to throw, and watch the magic happen baby! Or so we hope...
8. Detroit Lions- Devin Bush LB Michigan
No, we’re not putting Bush here because he’s from Michigan. He can legitimately help Matt Patricia’s defense in year two. Once again, talented tight ends are available and they could go back to the offensive line and grab Jonah Williams of Alabama or Garrett Bradbury of North Carolina State. Unfortunately for those guys, Bush’s talent outweighs the needs on offense. This could be one of the early steals of the draft with how versatile Bush can be. He legitimately reminds me of Lavonte David with his coverage skills, but he is also a relentless pursuit player. Keep an eye on him a few years into his NFL career.
9. Buffalo Bills- Jonah Williams OT/OG Alabama
Josh Allen moves around like a magician and has the arm of Daunte Culpepper, but every QB needs an offensive line and the Bills is laughable. Seriously, if you’re in New York state and you hear laughter, its either someone laughing at all the accents or its about western New York’s Bills and that offensive line. Williams is either huge guard who can move mountains, or he’s a huge tackle who will wait for the mountains to come to him and then move them. I would throw him on the right side, and watch the man go to work in the run game while punishing pass rushers attempting to make the move to get to the squirrely Allen. The Bills get a behemoth, building well for the post-Brady AFC East. However long that will take.
10. Denver Broncos- T.J. Hockenson TE Iowa
One of the first-round tight ends goes at 10! Joe Flacco is in heaven as he finds a new target on his new team. Flacco had his best statistical seasons when Dennis Pitta played at a high level and that’s what Elway and company are going for here. Once again, why aren’t the QB’s being taken? The Broncos have nothing to gain by picking a first round QB. They can either have a surprise season and Flacco can redeem himself into a Denver playoff berth, or Denver is middling or worse next season for a better QB class.
11. Cincinnati Bengals- Greedy Williams CB LSU
The Bengals finally, FINALLY have a new head coach, but they also have a roster in flux. Seems like every mock draft has Cincy grabbing a new QB. I just don’t see it. I think maybe the Bengals grab one later. Let’s be completely honest here, Andy Dalton is at least the man for next season and this defense needs help. Insert Greedy Williams, the best-projected DB in the draft who can play on the outside as a true corner or also move inside and play some safety. Think Tyrann Mathieu in versatility and Antonio Cromartie in skill.
12. Green Bay Packers- Rashan Gary DE Michigan
Green Bay has moved on from Mike McCarthy in the prime of Aaron Rodgers career. Less talked about is how they moved on from franchise sack leader and perpetual roughing the passer penalty receiver Clay Matthews. Even LESS talked about is the release of former first-round draft pick Nick Perry. The point is, they need a pass rusher and more big guys up front. This could be Mississippi State’s Montez Sweat or even Florida State’s Brian Burns. In the end, Green Bay goes with the former Wolverine.
13. Miami Dolphins- Dwayne Haskins QB Ohio St
The Dolphins have once again moved on to a new regime, and I’m not entirely convinced former head coach Adam Gase was the issue here. With all the reports of toxicity in the organization last season, including a report that the coaching staff had no communication with star receiver Devante Parker after being out with an injury, and an assistant being caught with cocaine the season before, maybe a change was necessary. Though, do you really think the Dolphins can afford to start Ryan Fitzpatrick and his dad bod for the first year of their new era? Haskins was once thought to be a top overall pick before Kyler Murray made his decision to get pummelled by bodies rather than balls. The real wild thing about his slipping was that he hasn’t done anything wrong. He tested well at the combine and pro days, and supposedly put together good interviews. Haskins also hasn’t blown anyone out of the water. Seems like a Josh Freeman or Jake Locker 2.0, but taking a QB is a must for the Dolphins.
14. Atlanta Falcons Montez Sweat DE Mississippi St
Sweat opposite Vic Beasley will be nasty for the dirty birds. They can look strong and hard at Brian Burns here, but Sweat looks like the stronger more effective rusher. I can’t see the Falcons continuing their struggles from last season if they add more talent to the defense and learn to get Julio Jones scoring again. This team is better than their 2018 record and it should show if Sweat gets off to a strong start for Dan Quinn and company.
15. Washington Redskins- Brian Burns OLB Florida St
Alex Smith is on injured reserve for the foreseeable future and this team needs a QB like they need a new team name. Kidding, I love the Redskins and personally believe its all about respect … But what do I know? I’m a Cleveland Indians fan! The truer statement is they need a franchise QB and I don’t think anyone left is worth a mid-first-round pick risk. Burns is worth the risk. A classic development-type prospect with more speed than strength and actually compares well to the aforementioned Vic Beasley. Good pick for a Washington team that needs to step up on defense to make up for what could be a very inept offense next season.
16. Carolina Panthers- Andre Dillard OT Washington St
No team needs a steady force at tackle like the Panthers after going all in on the Kalil brothers. Taylor Moton projects well on the right side, but someone needs to protect that ever important blindside. Dillard is a big bodied OT who has excelled under Mike Leach in Pullman.
17. New York Giants- Daniel Jones QB Duke
The Giants will leave Thursday night in Nashville in a great spot. They grabbed one of the best overall players in the draft to rebuild their defense in Ed Oliver at #6 and now grab the Eli Manning protege in Daniel Jones. This is the guy they wanted at 6 but they were willing to risk it. The best part is he doesn’t have to start right away. Ideally, they have a Ravens/Lamar Jackson-like season and leave the 2019/20 campaign with a franchise QB in place. The only difference is the New York Giants will handle Eli Manning with much more respect than other franchises would.
18. Minnesota Vikings- Garrett Bradbury C North Carolina State
This is a Vikings pick if I’ve ever seen one. Mike Zimmer’s team’s record does not reflect how good they can be. Give Kirk Cousins a cleaner pocket and a better run blocking group and this team can compete with the top tier teams in the league. Bradbury is legitimately the best true center in this draft and projects very well in the NFL. I often wonder why they aren’t drafted with as much precedence as other linemen, since they do so much for the line. This is a great pick here for the purple people eaters.
19. Tennessee Titans- Noah Fant TE Iowa
This is a classic cause and reaction pick. This team still employs Delanie Walker. But with the new NFL and the multi-tight end sets, having two elite tight ends is essential. I look at Noah Fant and see a young Jimmy Graham. He is big, athletic and could possibly be getting drafted too high, but at this point, much of the top players are off the board and Fant could really help out dink-and-dunk Mariota.
20. Pittsburgh Steelers- DK Metcalf WR Ole Miss
Who needs Antonio Brown now? DK Metcalf was one of the most intriguing prospects in years. He has the hype of David Boston, without the roids, and the potential of DeAndre Hopkins. I don’t think Juju Smith-Schuster is a number one receiver and the Steelers likely agree. After the worst, yes WORST offseason in Steelers franchise history, giving Big Ben a fresh face to throw to is a great move.
21. Seattle Seahawks- Christian Wilkins DT Clemson
Seattle is in a division with Todd Gurley and David Johnson. This is relevant because they need to stop the run. Wilkins isn’t the flashy top of the draft DT like Oliver or Williams, but he can stop a run and work a gap like a pro. You don’t always get a Warren Sapp or Aaron Donald, but sometimes you can get a Kevin or Pat Williams type of player to anchor your inside defensive line. Good pick for Pete Carroll’s rebuilding defense. It’s not an Earl Thomas, Kam Chancellor or Richard Sherman replacement, but there is more than one way to skin a cat ...er build a defense!
22. Baltimore Ravens- Marquise Brown WR Oklahoma
Go ahead and name me a current Ravens wide receiver. Hear that sound? That’s people saying Michael Crabtree. Well, he’s long gone, and so is former first-rounder Breshad Perriman. The Ravens haven’t had the best of luck with drafting wideouts in the first round, and, well every round. Most of their successful pass catchers either are brought in via free agency or play tight end. Anquan Boldin, Steve Smith, and Derrick Mason were all free agent additions. Which brings us to Marquise Brown. Honestly, the potential is off the charts, but I think he compares better to Golden Tate or DeSean Jackson. He’s shifty and blazingly fast and looks like a great addition to an offense that is suddenly speed heavy. This isn’t your older brothers Ravens offense, so look for Brown to fit right into the new flashy Ravens O!
23. Houston Texans- Cody Ford G Oklahoma
There are a bunch of solid defenders here for Bill O’Brien and the Texans to snatch up. Outside of Lonnie Johnson at corner, I just don’t see an incredible need for all these big defenders like Jeffery Simmons or Clelin Ferrell. Cody Ford adds a solid run blocker at guard who is improving in his pass blocking. This is a need just because it helps keep the offense running and more importantly DeShaun Watson upright.
24. Oakland Raiders- Clelin Ferrell DE Clemson
The Raiders rebuild continues after losing Khalil Mack. Is it really losing when you made the move? They grabbed themselves a great DT earlier in the draft with Quinnen Williams, and now they look at the edge rusher to pair together. Jon Gruden won a Super Bowl with a couple of cats named Warren Sapp and Simeon Rice, well, meet your Simeon Rice. Ferrell is big and a more traditional 4-3 end than Mack ever was. It’s unorthodox the way the Raiders have begun their rebuild, but it’s very orthodox when you look at the blueprint and the foundation they’ve laid down. This is Tampa 2.0.
25.Philadelphia Eagles- Lonnie Johnson CB Kentucky
If anyone could use a young corner that can play inside out, it’s the Eagles. The other option here is Jeffery Simmons and pairing him with perennial pro bowler Fletcher Cox. I just think grabbing a solid corner with Johnson's’ potential is too good to pass up for the Nick Foles-less Eagles. If this team really wants to get back to where they were two seasons ago, they need that defense to become turnover enforcers once again. Well, also make sure that young QB stays healthy.
26. Indianapolis Colts- Jonathan Abram S Mississippi St
Mississippi State is going to have a lot of good players drafted, and rightfully so. Abram is the best safety in this draft and would be a great pairing with Malik Hooker who can play back in more of an Ed Reed type role. Every Ed Reed needs a strong safety to commit to playing in the box to free up that acrobatic ball-hawking style. This might be the most underrated pick of the draft, just like the position of safety itself.
27. Oakland Raiders- Josh Jacobs RB Alabama
Normally, being lightly used in college is a bad thing. When you’re Alabama’s third-best running back, you’re probably still a top-10 back in the nation talent wise. I was skeptical about whether a running back in this draft was a first rounder or not. Jacobs has a good amount of power and instincts for the hole when running, which would make him an ideal Jon Gruden back, as he is very well-rounded and loves to run north to south. He might be the Warrick Dunn of this draft and should be able to perform on all three downs.
28. San Diego Chargers- Jeffery Simmons DT Mississippi St
Mississippi State shows up one more time in the first round, and this time it’s big boy Simmons. I want more than anything for the Chargers to grab a QB here to be ready for when Rivers hangs up the cleats, but I think it would be a waste as I don’t think he would play well with others, much like Ben Roethlisberger. Simmons is coming off a torn ACL which really shouldn’t affect his stock too much. Los Angeles’ other team could use a fresh face in the trenches, and Simmons will add that while competing to stop the run. A solid pick for the Bolts.
29. Seattle Seahawks- Byron Murphy CB Washington
Honestly, pre-trade, I had the Chiefs selecting Murphy here and nothing has changed. Besides the fact, the Seahawks are now grabbing the versatile DB here instead. The Hawks grabbed Wilkins at 21 to shore up the interior defense, and now they nab Byron Murphy to help in the secondary. Unfortunately, there isn’t another player that can fill the Frank Clark role the way he has done so well for Seattle the last few seasons. So if you can’t get to the quarterback the way you would like, make sure no one is open to throw to.
30. Green Bay Packers- Chris Lindstrom G Boston College
The Pack need to rebuild that offensive line if they plan on squeezing out any more championships in Aaron Rodgers’ golden years. Lindstrom is an absolute steal here and should play right away protecting #12. Sure, they need a bunch of help on defense, but the best defense is a good offense…or something like that. Now find a running back that can stay healthy and get you 4 yards per carry and Green Bay is back in business under rookie head coach Matt LaFleur.
31. Los Angeles Rams- Elgton Jenkins- C/G Mississippi State
I told you Mississippi State would represent in the first round! Jenkins is one of the top true centers in the draft that is versatile enough to jump to guard if need be. The Rams may still be the most talented team in the NFL and surely could use a linebacker, rusher and another big man inside to stop the run. With Jenkins, you get something that may be more important than all of that, keeping a clean pocket for Jared Goff. It’s not a sexy pick, but sometimes the best picks are the ones that keep your team consistent.
32. New England Patriots- Dexter Lawrence DT Clemson
We’re here! The very end of the first round and the evil empire is up to the podium. Do they draft a Tom Brady replacement? Do they reach for the third tight end in the first round? No way! Bill Belichick doesn’t panic in Super Bowls and he certainly doesn’t panic picking 32nd in the first round. The Patriots have drafted Benjamin Watson, Logan Mankins, and Malcolm Brown at 32 after winning Super Bowls. What is the point of this stat besides seeing if my brother who hates useless stats is reading or not? The point is that sometimes you hit (Mankins!), sometimes you’re average (Benjamin Watson!) and sometimes you miss (Malcolm Brown) really bad. Lawrence could be a top 10 pick if the NFL hadn’t evolved past 350lb defensive tackles. The Patriots don’t care, they will beat you any way they can, and have proved it through the years. This is Vince Wilfork if I haven’t seen him before. Expect a bunch of run stuffing and a force that can pressure the pocket. Job well-done Pats, you win again. And again. And again.
Follow Brandon on twitter, @BamBamSuydam, and check him out on The Vision Obscured Podcast.