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2017 NFL mock draft: 3 rounds to welcome the offseason

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Some of the first-round picks are getting locked in while the depth gets revealed in the second and third rounds.

NCAA Football: Texas at Texas Tech Michael C. Johnson-USA TODAY Sports

With the pesky Super Bowl out of the way, it’s officially draft season with all 32 teams now looking ahead to the 2017 NFL Draft.

This week’s mock draft is a three-round affair that shows off some of the strengths of this year’s draft. Most notably, that’s on the defensive side of the ball, where it won’t be hard for teams that need defensive backs and defensive linemen to get help beyond Day 1.

1. Cleveland Browns: Myles Garrett, DE, Texas A&M

The real intrigue for the Browns is how quickly they pursue a quarterback like Jimmy Garoppolo and how much they’d have to give up for him. Unless the Browns fail to make a move on a veteran quarterback, Garrett remains the overwhelming favorite to be picked No. 1.

2. San Francisco 49ers: Mitch Trubisky, QB, North Carolina

Last week it was DeShone Kizer for San Francisco, this week it’s Trubisky and next week it could very well be Deshaun Watson. This one continues to be fully up in the air.

3. Chicago Bears: DeShone Kizer, QB, Notre Dame

Pretty much everything you could say about the quarterbacks and San Francisco you can do so for the Bears.

4. Jacksonville Jaguars: Jonathan Allen, DL, Alabama

The draft’s second-best player looks like he’ll be available for the Jaguars, and he provides a versatile player up front.

5. Tennessee Titans (via Los Angeles Rams): Jamal Adams, S, LSU

Adams is a complete safety who can roam, playing close to the line of scrimmage or dropping in coverage to break up passes.

6. New York Jets: Leonard Fournette, RB, LSU

Fournette in New York can be the focal point of an offense that is generally without direction. He can be for the Jets what Ezekiel Elliott was for the Cowboys, as long as the offensive line in New York gets a little bit better.

7. Los Angeles Chargers: Malik Hooker, S, Ohio State

It was announced last week that Hooker underwent surgery for both a torn labrum and a hernia. We’ll get a better gauge on how this will impact his draft status at the scouting combine in a few weeks.

8. Carolina Panthers: Dalvin Cook, RB, Florida State

A running back like Cook could really take the pressure off quarterback Cam Newton and give him a weapon in the pass offense.

9. Cincinnati Bengals: Reuben Foster, MLB, Alabama

The Bengals are one of the teams picking high in the draft that only need a couple key pieces to return to the playoffs. A player like Foster could step in straight away and make an impact in the middle of the defense.

10. Buffalo Bills: Deshaun Watson, QB, Clemson

I keep going back and forth on whether or not the Bills should use the No. 10 pick on a quarterback. If the Bills do want a quarterback high in the draft, you have to wonder if they’ll explore a trade up instead of hoping one falls here like Watson did.

11. New Orleans Saints: Solomon Thomas, DE, Stanford

Thomas can be the wrecking ball of a defensive end the Saints need up front. He’s comfortable on the edge, but has the powerful playing style to move inside on some downs.

12. Cleveland Browns (via Philadelphia Eagles): Marshon Lattimore, CB, Ohio State

If the Browns can hold onto the No. 12 pick, they could potentially go after whichever player they see as being the top cornerback prospect. With Joe Haden’s future uncertain, Cleveland could get a player like Lattimore to be the new shutdown outside player.

13. Arizona Cardinals: Mike Williams, WR, Clemson

Although Larry Fitzgerald has said he’ll be back, the Cardinals could start to look longterm at wide receiver, especially if all three top quarterbacks are gone.

14. Philadelphia Eagles (via Minnesota Vikings): Corey Davis, WR, Western Michigan

The Eagles will closely monitor what happens with the two picks in front of them, and if the top options at cornerback and wide receiver are gone, it might be smart to consider a trade down. If they don’t, Davis could be the target because his grade isn’t much lower than Williams’.

15. Indianapolis Colts: Tim Williams, OLB, Alabama

The opinion on Williams seems to be greatly mixed. Those who love him see the big impact he made on limited snaps. Those that don’t question why he wasn’t on the field more. He could be a player who’s draft position is based largely on his timing numbers at the scouting combine.

16. Baltimore Ravens: Quincy Wilson, CB, Florida

With Williams coming off the board a pick before them, the Ravens could turn to the secondary. Wilson is a player that can line up at either cornerback or safety.

17. Washington: Taco Charlton, DE, Michigan

There will be a lot of debate about whether Charlton or Michigan State’s Malik McDowell make more sense for Washington. Both are scheme fits, but Charlton is coming off a more productive season and just barely gets the nod.

18. Tennessee Titans: Marlon Humphrey, CB, Alabama

With Wilson and Lattimore gone, they should go after the cornerback with the greatest potential. That would be Humphrey, just a redshirt sophomore, who has experience pressing receivers at the line of scrimmage.

19. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Jabrill Peppers, S, Michigan

Although many are down on Peppers because of his lack of a true position, I still see him as a top 20 pick. Tampa needs a playmaking safety, and Peppers fits.

20. Denver Broncos: Ryan Ramczyk, OT, Wisconsin

It’s unusual that the team picking 20th in the draft will have their choice of the top offensive lineman, but that’s the case in 2017. Ramczyk gets the nod over Alabama’s Cam Robinson because he’s a little better as a pass blocker.

21. Detroit Lions: Malik McDowell, DT, Michigan State

If McDowell is available, he’d be a great fit in Detroit. He can line up inside to provide the pressure the Lions need up the middle and move outside in certain situations.

22. Miami Dolphins: Zach Cunningham, LB, Vanderbilt

Cunningham continues to be the choice for Miami because he’s the versatile and athletic linebacker they desperately need.

23. New York Giants: O.J. Howard, TE, Alabama

I’m stuck on Howard to the Giants because he’s easily locked in as the No. 1 tight end in the draft this year, and fits a need for New York.

24. Oakland Raiders: Haason Reddick, LB, Temple

This might seem like a bit of a stretch, but Reddick showed at the Senior Bowl he can work at inside linebacker, but he can move outside to get after the quarterback.

25. Houston Texans: Cam Robinson, OT, Alabama

Houston needs talent on the offensive line, and Robinson is a player they could start at guard because of his run blocking, or shift over to right tackle.

26. Seattle Seahawks: Garrett Bolles, OT, Utah

The Seahawks have to get better up front, and Bolles gets the nod over Western Kentucky’s Forrest Lamp solely thanks to his superior length.

27. Kansas City Chiefs: Jarrad Davis, LB, Florida

For the Chiefs, Davis could be the longterm answer at middle linebacker with Derrick Johnson coming back from a torn Achilles’ tendon.

28. Dallas Cowboys: Derek Barnett, DE, Tennessee

If Barnett happens to fall in the draft – which could happen if he doesn’t test well – the Cowboys should pounce.

29. Green Bay Packers: Takkarist McKinley, OLB, UCLA

With Nick Perry entering free agency, the Packers could find an upgrade over him with McKinley, a high-effort edge rusher.

30. Pittsburgh Steelers: Ryan Anderson, LB, Alabama

Anderson doesn’t get a lot of first-round consideration, but if there’s a run on linebackers he could be the pick for Pittsburgh. He’s not a pure pass rusher, but he can get the job done and handle the run.

31. Atlanta Falcons: Dan Feeney, G, Indiana

The Falcons need a defensive lineman who can create pressure up the middle, but getting better at right guard is also a priority. Feeney is the draft’s best pure guard prospect and could slot into the starting lineup immediately.

32. New England Patriots: Carl Lawson, DE, Auburn

Lawson is a player the Patriots could use up front on the line, or move out to linebacker.

SECOND ROUND

The second round could start with a trade, where the Browns send pick No. 33 and a future pick to the Patriots for Jimmy Garoppolo. That’s the only trade being projected in the mock draft (this week).

33. New England Patriots: John Ross, WR, Washington

34. San Francisco 49ers: Raekwon McMillan, MLB, Ohio State

35. Chicago Bears: Teez Tabor, CB, Florida

36. Jacksonville Jaguars: Forrest Lamp, OT, Western Kentucky

37. Los Angeles Rams: Gareon Conley, CB, Ohio State

The Rams could use an offensive lineman, but Conley can be the No. 1 cornerback the team has needed. He could very likely carry a first-round grade from many teams.

38. New York Jets: Charles Harris, DE/OLB, Missouri

39. Los Angeles Chargers: JuJu Smith-Schuster, WR, Southern California

40. Carolina Panthers: DeMarcus Walker, DE, Florida State

41. Cincinnati Bengals: Montravius Adams, DT, Auburn

42. Buffalo Bills: Sidney Jones, CB, Washington

43. New Orleans Saints: Tre’Davious White, CB, LSU

44. Philadelphia Eagles: Desmond King, CB, Iowa

45. Arizona Cardinals: Patrick Mahomes, QB, Texas Tech

46. Minnesota Vikings: Adam Bisnowaty, OT, Pittsburgh

The Vikings haven’t been able to find consistency at left tackle, and that’s what a four-year starter like Bisnowaty can provide. He can struggle against speed rushers at times, but the hope would be that he can be coached up in that area and let his excellent technique take over.

47. Indianapolis Colts: Christian McCaffrey, RB, Stanford

48. Baltimore Ravens: Dawuane Smoot, DE, Illinois

49. Washington: Budda Baker, S, Washington

50. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Jaleel Johnson, DT, Iowa

51. Denver Broncos: Dorian Johnson, G, Pittsburgh

52. Cleveland Browns (via Tennessee Titans): Caleb Brantley, DL, Florida

53. Detroit Lions: Adoree Jackson, CB, Southern California

54. Miami Dolphins: David Njoku, TE, Miami

55. New York Giants: Pat Elflein, G/C, Ohio State

56. Oakland Raiders: Carlos Watkins, DT, Clemson

57. Houston Texans: T.J. Watt, LB, Wisconsin

58. Seattle Seahawks: Dalvin Tomlinson, DT, Alabama

59. Kansas City Chiefs: Eddie Vanderdoes, DT, UCLA

60. Dallas Cowboys: Cordrea Tankersley, CB, Clemson

61. Green Bay Packers: Kevin King, CB, Washington

62. Pittsburgh Steelers: Chidobe Awuzie, CB, Colorado

63. Atlanta Falcons: Chris Wormley, DT, Michigan

64. New England Patriots: Alvin Kamara, RB, Tennessee

THIRD ROUND

65. Cleveland Browns: Obi Melifonwu S, Connecticut

66. San Francisco 49ers: Derek Rivers, DE/OLB, Youngstown State

67. Chicago Bears: Bucky Hodges, TE, Virginia Tech

68. Jacksonville Jaguars: Joe Mixon, RB, Oklahoma

69. Tennessee Titans (via Los Angeles Rams): Cooper Kupp, WR, Eastern Washington

70. New York Jets: Cameron Sutton, CB, Tennessee

71. Los Angeles Chargers: Zach Banner, OT, Southern California

72. Carolina Panthers: Antonio Garcia, OT, Troy

73. Cincinnati Bengals: Ethan Pocic, C, LSU

74. Buffalo Bills: Chad Hansen, WR, California

75. New Orleans Saints: Tyus Bowser, LB, Houston

76. Philadelphia Eagles: D’Onta Foreman, RB, Texas

77. Arizona Cardinals: Jourdan Lewis, CB, Michigan

78. Minnesota Vikings: Jarron Jones, DT, Notre Dame

79. Indianapolis Colts: Roderick Johnson, OT, Florida State

80. Baltimore Ravens: Isaiah Ford, WR, Virginia Tech

81. Washington: Curtis Samuel, RB/WR, Ohio State

82. Tennessee Titans: Larry Ogunjobi, DT, Charlotte

83. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Avery Gennesy, OT, Texas A&M

84. Denver Broncos: Jake Butt, TE, Michigan

85. Detroit Lions: Kendell Beckwith, LB, LSU

86. Minnesota Vikings (via Miami Dolphins): Samaje Perine, RB, Oklahoma

87. New York Giants: Alex Anzalone, LB, Florida

88. Oakland Raiders: Rasul Douglas, CB, West Virginiah

89. Houston Texans: Brad Kaaya, QB, Miami

90. Seattle Seahawks: Anthony Walker, LB, Northwestern

91. Kansas City Chiefs: Marcus Maye, S, Florida

92. Dallas Cowboys: Jeremy Sprinkle, TE, Arkansas

93. Green Bay Packers: Kareem Hunt, RB, Toledo

94. Pittsburgh Steelers: Dion Dawkins, OT/G, Temple

95. Atlanta Falcons: Tanoh Kpassagnon, DE, Villanova

96. New England Patriots: Jordan Leggett, TE, Clemson


Deshaun Watson interview at the Super Bowl