NFL Draft: Chris Smith Mock Draft 1.0

With the conclusion of the regular season comes clarity, and while we don’t know everything yet, we do know the first order for the first 18 picks of the NFL Draft. Now that we at least know the order of the top of the draft, it’s time for our first Mock Draft of the season. Although we know the first 18 picks, my first Mock will only cover the top 10, but I’ll give a few more picks each week so if your team isn’t listed today, stay tuned.

*Note: How cool is it that the Browns aren’t in the top 10 this year?*

1) Jacksonville Jaguars: Trevor Lawrence, QB, Clemson

This is probably the most obvious pick I’ve written about since I started scouting players prior to the 2006 NFL Draft. Lawrence presents a QB talent on par with Peyton Manning, Andrew Luck and John Elway. You don’t pass that up.

2) Philadelphia Eagles: Justin Fields, QB, Ohio State

There were so many ways this pick could have gone, so I decided to have our first trade of the draft. Before you stone me for overreacting to what happened in week 17, let’s consider a few things.

  • Philadelphia won’t have to move up very far (from 6) so it shouldn’t take a ton of picks
  • We know Philadelphia GM Howie Roseman loves to make these types of trades
  • The Eagles literally made this exact move in 2016 for a Quarterback with a similar physical profile so projecting Fields here is far from outlandish
  • Carson Wentz is likely gone and Jalen Hurts performed poorly over the final two weeks; the QB of the future may not be on this roster…yet

This is why I love NFL Draft season, anything can happen, and this just might.

3) Miami Dolphins: Devonta Smith, WR, Alabama

This pick came down to Smith, Penei Sewell, Ja’Marr Chase, all three are absolutely special. I gave Smith the edge because of his relationship with QB of the future Tua Tagovailoa. Tua looked uncomfortable at times as a rookie and this move is all about making Tua as comfortable as possible in year 2.

4) Atlanta Falcons: Trey Lance, QB, North Dakota State

There are a ton of holes on this Atlanta Falcons team. Which pick would help them the most? Maybe Sewell? But he didn’t play last season. Maybe a corner? But…which one of them is worth a top 4 pick? Matt Ryan is aging and the team now has two options.

  1. Trade Back and try to get several picks to fill more hole and try to make one last run
  2. Draft the QB of the future and let him learn from one of the best

Either is possible, in this mock they take option two.

But why Lance over Wilson? Wilson is probably the better play today. But Lance has an unreal ceiling and could have two full seasons to learn from Matt Ryan before starting. I’m not positive the Falcons take this route, but I am positive it’s the absolute best situation for Lance.

5) Cincinnati Bengals: Penei Sewell, OT, Oregon

Sewell is a strong candidate to be the best player in this draft. Circumstances drop him to 5th here in this mock and the Bengals pull a hammy running to the podium to hand in this card so quickly. Gotta stretch first guys.

6) New York Jets: Ja”Marr Chase, WR, LSU

Zack Wilson is a possibility, but I’m not positive the Jets view him as better than Darnold. Parsons is possible too. My feeling is that if they are keeping Darnold then they will look to bolster his success with a weapon like Chase to pair with 2020 rookie Denzel Mims.

7) San Francisco 49ers (via Lions): Zach Wilson, QB, BYU

This has been one of my favorite potential team fits. The 49ers will likely move on from Jimmy Garappolo this off-season if a better opportunity presents itself, and I believe this is that opportunity. Wilson is an aggressive passer that’s also very dangerous on the ground. There’s no better place for the dynamic young QB than with Kyle Shanahan.

8) Carolina Panthers: Micah Parsons, LB, Penn State

The Panthers will probably be eyeing QB here but with the top four options already off the board, the best defensive prospect in the draft feels like a real steal down here at eight. Parsons will step in and be the leader on this defense from day one.

9) Denver Broncos: Caleb Farley, CB, Virginia Tech

Analysts view Denver as a potential QB hotspot as well, but I don’t see the Broncos reaching for Kyle Trask or Mac Jones this early. Frankly, I don’t believe either would beat out Drew Lock either. The Defense on the other hand is both Aging and much less effective than it was a few years ago. Taking a talented young corner like Farley is a good first step to changing that.

10) Dallas Cowboys: Patrick Surtain II, CB, Alabama

I almost mocked an Offensive Tackle here, but in truth, the biggest need on this team is the same as it was in 2008, the Secondary. The only sure thing is 2020 rookie Trevon Diggs, who even as a rookie, was a big play magnet. With most of his fellow CB’s possibly leaving in free agency, the Cowboys look to the draft and who better to be Diggs’ running mate than his running mate from college?

*Begining 1/11/20 USN will be posting Mock Drafts every Monday, get your popcorn ready…It’s NFL Draft Season

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