The football season is going way too quickly. I feel like I have not had enough time to enjoy it with the NFL kicking off it’s fifth week and college football entering week six in which teams can at the very least guarantee themselves a bowl game.
The NFL Draft is my personal passion, which is why I study the college game moreso than the pro level. I love evaluating prospects, ranking them and creating big boards and mock drafts for our viewers. While it may seem a bit early to be talking draft, it’s never too early to check out a mock draft.
Keep in mind that these rankings will change from a prospect standpoint. The NFL teams will also be much more established as I truly don’t see teams like Kansas City and Seattle finishing with top 15-20 picks. This is just to get an idea as to who to start watching out for as well as what positions some teams may be looking to upgrade next May.
*Order established from Week 4 records and SOS*
1. Detroit Lions – Ronnie Stanley, OT, Notre Dame
There is no push in the run game in Detroit, while we’re starting to realize that Riley Reiff is just adequate, perhaps slightly above. Plug in Stanley, run the ball and help out Stafford.
2. Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Joey Bosa, DE, Ohio State
Bosa may be the best player in the nation. The Buccaneers defensive line would be feared again.
3. Miami Dolphins – Laremy Tunsil, OT, Ole Miss
I don’t believe that this off-field stuff is anything to be super worried about in terms of character, and it’s too bad that the Rebels have been without him. But he’s every bit as talented as we thought he’d be as one of the top overall recruits in the country. Time for the Dolphins to shore that line up.
4. Cleveland Browns – Jared Goff, QB, California
The Manziel project will likely get another chance by the end of the season, but I think the Browns grab a first round QB and let Johnny’s last year be his year to earn it over a talented rookie who we’d prefer not to have start in Week 1.
5. New Orleans Saints – Jalen Ramsey, CB, Florida State
P.J. Williams will come back next year and fight for the #2 corner spot, while Jalen Ramsey is talented enough to start from day one. The Saints won’t start competing again until they can stop the pass in this passing league.
6. Houston Texans – Christian Hackenberg, QB, Penn State
Oh come on, it’s too perfect. Hack was one of Bill O’Brien’s guys, the Texans need a QB to go with DeAndre Hopkins, Cecil Shorts and Arian Foster, and he’s a top talent despite his early struggles.
7. Jacksonville Jaguars – Jaylon Smith, LB, Notre Dame
This. kid. is. good. He’s got a Patrick Willis feel and I believe that a three man LB crew featuring Telvin and Jaylon Smith with Paul Posluszny would be dominate. Don’t forget that Dante Fowler should be returning and you could see a significant Jaguars defensive turnaround.
8. Philadelphia Eagles – Trevone Boykin, QB, TCU
Not long ago I didn’t have a lot of faith in Boykin as an NFL caliber QB. But this is the kind of kid that would fit perfectly in Chip Kelly’s offense. He has the arm to throw the ball down field, can run the read option and is all about fast pace scoring. Boykin’s really growing on me.
9. Chicago Bears – Connor Cook, QB, Michigan State
There are some very talented quarterbacks potentially in this draft and Cook is still a first round caliber player. The Bears need to cut ties with Jay Cutler and let Cook develop with 1-2 few more productive years from Matt Forte. Alshon Jeffery is the safety valve over the top, while Martellus Bennett is a big bodied tight end that Cook with thrive with.
10. San Francisco 49ers – Robert Nkemdiche, DT, Ole Miss
Nkemdiche honestly is more likely to be a top five pick, but screw it, it’s the beginning of October. Things change. The 49ers just need so much help. Quarterback is an option here, but the top guys are gone. Cardale Jones could be an option here, but I think the 49ers will want to go with somebody more NFL ready.
11. Baltimore Ravens – Laquon Treadwell, WR, Ole Miss
Steve Smith is in his last season and Breshad Perriman may not play at all this season. The Ravens need to bring in more talent at WR, and while they’ll be unproven, Treadwell and Perriman could make for a nasty down field combo for Joe Flacco to toss the football around too.
12. Kansas City Chiefs – Vernon Hargreaves, CB, Florida
Another potential Top 10 pick, Hargreaves isn’t the biggest guy, but he sure does have that NFL recovery speed and ability to pick the ball right out of the air. This kid’s going to be special.
13. Tennessee Titans – Jack Conklin, OT, Michigan State
The offensive line still needs some work, Conklin is a Top 10 talent and will be in this league for a very long time.
14. Washington Redskins – Mike Williams, WR, Clemson
They really do have so many needs and I’m not sold on their WR corps. Quarterback is likely high on their replacement list, but there isn’t a more proven one here available.
15. San Diego Chargers – Jordan Jenkins, DE/OLB, Georgia
This guy can get to the quarterback in a hurry and could remind Chargers fans of the Shawne Merriman days when their defense got consistent pressure on the quarterback with take-downs.
16. Minnesota Vikings – Taylor Decker, OT, Ohio State
It’s not working out, Matt Kalil. Sorry bro. Decker is doing a heck of a job for the Buckeyes who still have struggled throwing the football. Decker paves the way in the run game.
17. Oakland Raiders – Myles Jack, LB, UCLA
I’ll tell you what, Jack is a play maker int he middle of the defense. Unfortunately, he’ll be coming off of season ending knee surgery and has some folks scared that he’s an off-field issue waiting to happen.
18. Seattle Seahawks – Kenny Clark, DT, UCLA
Clark can really make plays in the middle of the defensive line. He’s got the ability to eat up defenders as a 34 end or inside in a 43. He takes up space while getting penetration as well. Will his motor hold up?
19. Pittsburgh Steelers – Vonn Bell, SAF, Ohio State
Bell has lived up to the expectations coming out of high school and has established himself as a leader in the defensive secondary. Pittsburgh loves OSU defensive products and could upgrade against the pass.
20. New York Giants – Su’a Cravens, LB, USC
Cravens would fill in nicely on the weak side at the next level. Despite being a bit under sized, he’s quick, aggressive and plays with solid discipline.
21. Buffalo Bills – Shaq Lawson, DE/OLB, Clemson
Mario Williams isn’t getting any younger and you can never have too many talented pass rushers.
22. St. Louis Rams – Josh Doctson, WR, TCU
Doctson just keeps getting better and better. He’s sneaking his way into the first round discussion with each week. The Rams haven’t had a true #1 in quite some time and it’s time to develop one.
23. New York Jets – Ezekiel Elliott, RB, Ohio State
Chris Ivory still has to prove that he can keep it together for 16 games. Ivory is solid, but you utilize two RB’s more often than not this league. Elliott reminds us a bit of Arian Foster with his one-cut ability and effectiveness on the stretch runs.
24. Dallas Cowboys – A’Shawn Robinson, DT, Alabama
The Cowboys need to shore up that defensive line and stop giving up so many yards on the ground. Robinson can play a 43 NT and 34 DE. His versatility will aid with the Cowboys defensive schemes.
25. Indianapolis Colts – De’Forrest Buckner, DE, Oregon
Buckner is a huge body who reminds us physically of Calais Campbell coming out of Miami (Fl.) several years ago. The Colts 34 defense is struggling against the run as a whole.
26. Arizona Cardinals – Cardale Jones, QB, Ohio State
The Cardinals are going to have to replace Carson Palmer soon and while he looks great through four weeks, he still has to last an entire season. Jones is the down field passer that they want. A guy who can stand tall in the pocket and deliver, while also being able to take a few hits. If Palmer lasts this season and plays in 2016, it can be a perfect fit for Jones to learn the offense and step in partially through 2016, or 2017.
27. Atlanta Falcons – Austin Johnson, DT, Penn State
Defensive tackles are invaluable in a 43 and Johnson is a force against the run.
28. Denver Broncos – Shilique Calhoun, DE, Michigan State
Calhoun is a talented edge setter who would be an ideal fit as Von Miller and DeMarcus Ware come off the edge free.
29. Carolina Panthers – Tyler Boyd, WR, Pittsburgh
Kelvin Benjamin will be back, which will then give Cam Newton two legitimate down field targets for his big arm.
30. Cincinnati Bengals – Jayron Kearse, SAF, Clemson
Kearse can make plays in the defensive secondary and isn’t shy when needed in run support. The safeties in Cincinnati aren’t aiding in giving up big plays.
31. Green Bay Packers – Darron Lee, LB, Ohio State
There’s still some help needed outside of the defensive ends. Lee is versatile, being able to get to the quarterback and having the athletic ability to make plays in coverage.
32. *New England Patriots (forfeit)