With the NFL draft right around the corner, The Pug’s final Mock Draft provides an in-depth look at where the future of the NFL is heading
It is that time again as the end of April nears, everyone gets a temporary fix from the football blues to see who their favorite franchise may pick as their next budding superstar to fill holes in their roster. The first round this year has potential for multiple trades, but for the sake of the mock draft, let’s take a look at where teams may go with the spots they are currently in. Whether you agree or disagree let us know about it in the comments section.
Pick 1: Cleveland Browns
Team Needs: QB, DL, LB, CB, S
Pick: Myles Garrett, DE, Texas A&M
— Demario Davis #56 (@demario__davis) March 6, 2017
The Cleveland Browns are officially on the clock, and there isn’t much of a decision to be made. Although some recently have thought the Browns would go after a quarterback with their number one pick, the Browns will do something right and draft the best available player in this year’s draft. There have been whispers of the Cowboy’s giving up their entire slew of picks to nab a much-needed pass rusher, but the Cowboys will ultimately balk at this proposal, and the Browns will have a stud on the line that is suddenly beginning to be noticed…
Pick 2: San Francisco 49ers
Team Needs: QB, LB OL, DL
Pick: Mitch Trubisky, QB, North Carolina
— Carolina Football (@TarHeelFootball) April 11, 2017
The San Francisco 49ers have a whole slew of needs, but with a new GM (John Lynch) and head coach (Kyle Shanahan) in town, the 49ers should waste no time in getting a quarterback. There are many that believe the 49ers will go a different route. That might be possible with John Lynch and his defensive background, but how excited does anyone believe Lynch and Shanahan would be in leading their new franchise into 2017 with Brian Hoyer and Matt Barkley as their quarterbacks.
Pick 3: Chicago Bears
Team Needs: CB, S, OL, TE
Pick: Malik Hooker, S, Ohio State
— Buckeye Videos+ (@BuckeyeVideos) April 13, 2017
The easy part is knowing the Bears need big time help in their secondary. They addressed their need for a quarterback by signing Mike Glennon and Mark Sanchez. May not be the sexiest names, but they believe Glennon could be the real deal and Sanchez is a solid backup. The could use help at the wide receiver position, but if they stick with the number three overall pick, there is more value in improving the secondary. Most believe that Marshon Lattimore will go here, but the Bears should find more value in Hooker. Three may seem like a bit of a reach, but Hooker would make an immediate impact to the secondary. Not to mention make players think twice about the middle of the field. As long as he gets the ok from the doctors that is….
Pick 4: Jacksonville Jaguars
Team Needs: TE, DL, OL
Pick: O.J. Howard, TE, Alabama
— #BuiltBySaban (@BuiltBySaban) April 17, 2017
Even with an ugly 3-13 record last season, the Jaguars showed their young defense is the real deal. Many worry that Blake Bortles isn’t the answer in Jacksonville, but giving up on him going into this year is a crazy thought. Giving up on the running duo of Chris Ivory and T.J. Yeldon after one season together also seems unwise. Many see the Jags making a push for Leonard Fournette, but they have a bigger hole to fill on offense at the tight end position. Howard is by and far the best tight end in this year’s draft class. Although the Jags brass may consider Solomon Thomas at this spot, Howard fills a huge hole on an offense looking for answers.
Pick 5: Tennessee Titans (from Rams)
Team Needs: CB, WR, LB
Pick: Solomon Thomas, DE, Stanford
— DLineVids (@DLineVids) February 22, 2017
Although not a glaring need, Thomas still being available at the five-spot will be too good for the Titans to pass up. A great trade down last year netted them the 5th pick from the Rams, and the Titans will grab the best available player at this spot, as they have another pick coming at 18, where they can still nab one of the top wide receivers in the draft, something the Titans desperately need. If the Jags don’t coop up Thomas at four, expect him to be with the Titans in 2017.
Pick 6: New York Jets
Team Needs: QB, OL, CB, S
Pick: Jamaal Adams, S, LSU
Sports Science compares Jamaal Adams to Earl Thomas.
— Marcus Mosher (@Marcus_Mosher) April 15, 2017
This pick is sure to make a couple of people disagree, but the Jets do believe in their young quarterbacks, and should use 2017 to develop them under freshly signed veteran Josh McCown. The biggest issue with the Jets after quarterback play from last season was the secondary. Although the Jets will consider Leonard Fournette, DeShaun Watson and Marshon Lattimore at this spot as well, Adams is the best fit. Especially with the Jets having little faith in Calvin Pryor, who they selected in the first round in 2014. Look for the Jets to be a major candidate to trade down in the draft and secure more picks to help them fill multiple holes.
Pick 7: Los Angeles Chargers
Team Needs: WR, DL, OL, S
Pick: Jonathan Allen, DE, Alabama
— DLineVids (@DLineVids) April 20, 2017
The Chargers were staring down a safety entering the draft, but with Allen and Hooker both off the board, they fill a need on the defensive line instead. Allen is a great talent who at the least will require attention and open up more opportunities for last year’s defensive rookie of the year Joey Bosa. The two young talents together could help form one of the most feared defensive line groups in the entire league sooner rather than later.
Pick 8: Carolina Panthers
Team Needs: OL, DL, RB
Pick: Leonard Fournette, RB, LSU
#7 for 7th Ward in New Orleans.
— NFL Network (@nflnetwork) April 15, 2017
A disappointing 6-10 campaign in 2016 puts the Panthers in the top ten, a year removed from a Super Bowl appearance. With health and age becoming significant worries for the Panthers lead back Jonathan Stewart, this pick is a no-brainer. Fournette will be a huge weapon in an offense that features Cam Newton. After sitting out of LSU’s bowl game to get ready for the NFL, the Panthers will give Fournette the change to be the star many believe he will be.
Pick 9: Cincinnati Bengals
Team Needs: OL, LB, DL
Pick: Reuben Foster, ILB, Alabama
Mayock on Reuben Foster:
Combine argument "wiped clean" by NFL teams, won't hurt him. Diluted sample disappointing, but he shouldn't slide.
— Chase Goodbread (@ChaseGoodbread) April 21, 2017
Another team that disappointed expectations in 2016, the Bengals need some serious help on both sides of the ball in the trenches. They also have a need at linebacker, and the best available at the nine spot belongs to Reuben Foster. in a draft class that doesn’t really have a top-tier offensive linemen, the Bengals give Vontaze Burfict some help. Foster reportedly failed a drug test at the combine for a diluted specimen, but according to most it shouldn’t hurt his stock. Foster would make an immediate impact to the Bengals defense that is desperately searching for a true leader.
Pick 10: Buffalo Bills
Team Needs: CB, S, WR, OL
Pick: Mike Williams, WR, Clemson
— NFL (@NFL) March 26, 2017
After toying with the idea of moving on from Tyrod Taylor this offseason, the Bills have decided to press forward with him under center. That move takes them out of the running for Deshaun Watson. now the Bills have to provide Taylor with weapons. Sure, they have Sammy Watkins who they move up to draft 4th overall in 2014. Watkins has been oft-injured, and even when he is healthy, usually has no help on the field. Reuniting Williams with his former college teammate will take some of the pressure off Watkins. this will allow the Bills to see if they want to go forward with Watkins, something they aren’t sold on yet.