The regular season is over and the top 20 picks in the upcoming draft are nearly set in stone. Unless your team is in the playoffs, you are already looking forward to May.
1. Houston Texans – QB – Teddy Bridgewater – Louisville
The Texans are sitting pretty with that number one pick. Teddy Bridgewater showed us all why he deserves to go first overall with his display in the Russell Athletic Bowl.
2. St. Louis Rams (Via WAS) – DE – Jadaveon Clowney – South Carolina
I believe the Rams will trade this pick away. If they don’t find a suitor, look for them to snag the best defensive player in the draft. Clowney matched with Robert Quinn on that defensive line will give teams nightmares.
3. Jacksonville Jaguars – QB – Derek Carr – Fresno State
The Jaguars will be completely rebuilding their offense this offseason. The first task is finding an answer at quarterback. Derek Carr has a very strong-arm and has shown flashes of greatness this season at Fresno State.
4. Cleveland Browns – WR – Sammy Watkins – Clemson
The Browns missed out on both AJ Green and Julio Jones a couple of years ago, but they won’t miss out on Watkins. He has the ability to be a number one target in the NFL. Pair him with Josh Gordon and you have one heck of a duo.
5. Oakland Raiders – QB – Johnny Manziel – Texas A&M
Oakland has been incredibly indecisive with their quarterback play. I don’t think they are confident in either McGloin or Pryor for the future. Manziel brings great athletic ability and incredible decision-making skills. He could be the weapon they have been missing.
6. Atlanta Falcons – OT – Jake Matthews – Texas A&M
The Falcons need help on both sides of their line. If Matthews falls to them at the sixth spot they will be adding the best overall draft prospect in the class. Matthews has all the makings to be the best offensive lineman in the league in just a couple of years.
7. Tampa Bay Buccaneers – OLB – Anthony Barr – UCLA
Anthony Barr would help the Buccaneers with their need to improve the pass rush. If you put Barr next to David in that linebacking corps, you will have the middle of the defense solved for the foreseeable future. Barr brings incredible defensive instincts matched with pure athleticism. He can get to the quarterback.
8. Minnesota Vikings – QB – Blake Bortles – UCF
Bortles has been climbing up draft boards very quickly over the past couple weeks. He is a very fundamentally sound quarterback. He has the size and arm strength mixed with the pocket poise you need to be a good NFL quarterback.
9. Buffalo Bills – OLB – Khalil Mack – Buffalo
Khalil Mack would be a huge addition to the Bills defense. He has the most upside of any defensive player picked so far and would give the Bills another good young linebacker. He possesses great pass rushing skills and a nose for the football.
10. Detroit Lions – CB – Darqueze Dennard – Michigan State
Very quick cover cornerback, Darqueze Dennard, has had a stellar season for the Spartans. He is a key player in that tough defense. Dennard has very quick feet and is capable of covering the whole field on every play.
11. Tennessee Titans – QB – Brett Hundley – UCLA
Although he is still very raw, Hundley is a great prospect. He has a very strong-arm and has shown flashes of brilliance at UCLA. Hundley is one of those guys who would benefit from sitting behind a veteran for a year or two to learn the game.
12. New York Giants – CB – Ifo Ekpre-Olomu – Oregon
Ekpre-Olomu has had a very solid season so far for the Ducks and is proving he can play at NFL speed. He is quick, smart, and tough enough to keep up with any receiver. The Giants are in need of some major help in the secondary and this addition would fill that void.
13. St. Louis Rams – OT – Cyrus Kouandjio – Alabama
The Rams elected to pass on Jake Matthews and go with Clowney with the second pick, and now they take advantage of a deep offensive lineman class. Kouandjio will be able to step on the field on the first day of training camp and make an impact. He has a lot of upside, and can develop into a brick wall within just a couple of years.
14. Chicago Bears- MLB – CJ Mosley – Alabama
Mosley has been a very productive player throughout his college career. He is great in pass coverage and is a good tackler. He is a big, tough, and intimidating football player, which is something the Bears defense needs without Urlacher.
15. Pittsburgh Steelers – OT – Cameron Erving – Florida State
Former defensive lineman, Cameron Erving has done a tremendous job blocking for quarterback, Jameis Winston at Florida State. He is having a very quiet, but very successful year. He has slid into the top 15 with a solid season.
16. Baltimore Ravens – WR – Mike Evans – Texas A&M
Mike Evans is the number one target in the Texas A&M high flying offense. This 6-foot-5, 225 lb receiver is an instant size mismatch against cornerbacks. This pick would give the Ravens the big body receiver they lost when Anquan Boldin was dealt.
17. Dallas Cowboys – DT – Louis Nix – Notre Dame
Nix is a very disruptive defender. He is great against the run, and is great against the pass. He would instantly be the most athletic man on that line. He creates room for his teammates to step up and make plays.
18. New York Jets – WR – Marqise Lee – USC
Marqise Lee has the speed to open up the field for this offense. He is a threat to score any time you put the ball in his hands. He will be a top-notch receiver in this league and would turn the Jets into an offensive threat on Sundays.
19. Miami Dolphins – OT – Greg Robinson – Auburn
Greg Robinson has been a stonewall for the Auburn offensive line. With the uncertainty on the line in Miami, he would be a great addition. Robinson is a proven pass-protector who also steps up big in the running game.
20. Arizona Cardinals – TE – Jace Amaro – Texas Tech
Jace Amaro is a wide receiver with a tight end frame. He is huge mismatch for defenders. He could use some work as a blocker, but his athletic ability makes him dangerous. He would be added to a receiving corps that includes Larry Fitzgerald and the rising talent of Michael Floyd.
21. Green Bay Packers – S – Ha Ha Clinton-Dix – Alabama
While he was suspended earlier this season, he is still the best safety in this class. The Packers desperately need some help in the secondary and Clinton-Dix would fit in nicely.
22. San Diego Chargers – CB – Justin Gilbert – Oklahoma State
Justin Gilbert may be the most athletically gifted corner in this class. He is a playmaker. He is among the leaders in college football in interceptions. He can also be a threat on special teams as a returner.
23. Philadelphia Eagles – CB – Jason Verrett – TCU
Jason Verrett is very physical for his size. He is a play-maker on defense and has a nose for the football. This would be a big move for a defense lacking in talent. Verrett would be able to step in and keep up with the fast paced ways of Chip Kelly
24. Kansas City Chiefs – TE – Eric Ebron – North Carolina
The Chiefs receiving corps was an embarrassment this season. No one could catch the ball. Eric Ebron would become the best player on that offense behind Jamaal Charles. The Chiefs haven’t had a real playmaker since Tony Gonzalez left town. Now they will.
25. Cincinnati Bengals – CB – Bradley Roby – Ohio State
Roby has had a fairly inconsistent season, but is still the best cornerback option left on the board. He has both the size and speed to keep up with the best wide receivers in the league. He would help the Bengals defense become solid all over the board.
26. New Orleans Saints – OLB – Kyle Van Noy – BYU
Kyle Van Noy is a great football player. On defense he can do everything. He can drop into coverage with the best of them, as well as finding holes on the rush. He was one of the nations leaders in sacks a season ago, and has not cooled off.
27. Cleveland Browns (Via IND) – QB – AJ McCarron – Alabama
The Browns added Sammy Watkins with their first pick and now they select the man who will give him the ball. AJ McCarron is definitely not flashy, but he can get the job done. He is a proven leader and game manager. Like Hundley, he is another quarterback who would benefit from learning behind a veteran.
28. San Francisco 49ers – WR – DeVante Adams – Fresno State
DeVante Adams was on the receiving end of Derek Carr in Fresno State’s vertical offense. He can do everything as a receiver. Adams is a deep, big play threat and would instantly be a favorite among 49er fans.
29. New England Patriots – DE/OLB – Vic Beasley – Clemson
Beasley had a very good season for Clemson. He can play defensive end or outside linebacker. He has climbed up into the first round and will be a good fit on the Patriots defense.
30. Carolina Panthers – WR – Brandon Cooks – Oregon State
Brandon Cooks was the best wide receiver in college football this year. If he chooses to enter the draft, he could be the top slot receiver on the board. He would become a huge playmaker for the Panthers.
31. Denver Broncos – DE – Kony Ealy – Missouri
Kony Ealy is another versatile player in a deep defensive end draft class. He was a force for the surprising Mizzou defense. Ealy does a great job getting off the line and around the edge. He has the ability and technique to matchup with the best on Sundays.
32. Seattle Seahawks – OT – Tyler Lewan – Michigan
Lewan has experience at left tackle and has a lot of potential to be a force in the NFL. Lewan is a great run-blocker, and has the athleticism to be an outstanding pass-protector. He would help give Russell Wilson more time in the pocket.
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