clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

2017 NFL mock draft: Free agency fallout

Did we just learn that teams don’t like the incoming rookie quarterbacks?

NFL: Combine Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

The 2017 NFL draft continues to round into shape, and the first week of free agency eliminated key needs for a few teams. The moves made also give some indication of what the league thinks (or doesn’t think) of this year’s quarterback prospects.

We also now have three teams with two first-round picks following the trade between the Saints and Patriots that sent wide receiver Brandin Cooks to New England.

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

Nothing about what the Browns have done, or will do, in free agency will change this pick. Garrett is the draft’s best player and should start house shopping in Cleveland.

2. San Francisco 49ers: Malik Hooker, S, Ohio State

What the 49ers will do is so hard to gauge. Do they think they can go with Brian Hoyer for at least a year as starting quarterback? If so, that could open them up to taking Hooker. While Jimmie Ward will get a chance to prove himself as a safety this offseason, Hooker can be a transcendent talent at the position. The Ed Reed comparisons are real.

3. Chicago Bears: Jonathan Allen, DE, Alabama

By signing Mike Glennon, the Bears are probably feeling like they don’t need to take a quarterback at No. 3. The same for defensive back since they’ve brought in Prince Amukamara, Marcus Cooper and Quintin Demps. If that is indeed the case, they could target Allen to be the key piece of their defensive line.

4. Jacksonville Jaguars: Leonard Fournette, RB, LSU

The Jaguars made two big splashes by signing cornerback A.J. Bouye and defensive lineman Calais Campbell. Now they can look for a difference-maker on offense, like Fournette. He can take the burden off quarterback Blake Bortles, who probably isn’t as bad as last season suggested.

5. Tennessee Titans (via Los Angeles Rams): Marshon Lattimore, CB, Ohio State

Although the Titans signed Logan Ryan to a three-year deal, that shouldn’t stop Tennessee from bringing in Lattimore. Ryan isn’t the type of No. 1 cornerback that Lattimore can be, but the combination of the two could help finally fix the team’s woeful pass defense.

6. New York Jets: Jamal Adams, S, LSU

If their interest in Tony Jefferson is any indication, the Jets want to move on from Calvin Pryor. They could do that with Adams, a good strong safety who could develop into a Landon Collins-type of player. Hooker and Fournette would be considered if they are available.

7. Los Angeles Chargers: Marlon Humphrey, CB, Alabama

The Chargers have the pieces necessary on the line and at linebacker to fit Gus Bradley’s defense. But what they don’t have is the type of big cornerback he prefers. At just over 6’0, Humphrey is a solid fit who plays physical.

8. Carolina Panthers: Solomon Thomas, DE, Stanford

The Panthers were already in need of a defensive end, and that becomes even more evident with the questionable trade of Kony Ealy. Thomas, arguably the hottest prospect in the draft, seems locked into the first 10 picks.

9. Cincinnati Bengals: John Ross, WR, Washington

This is a repeat pick from last week’s mock draft that just makes more sense the more you think about it.

10. Buffalo Bills: Mike Williams, WR, Clemson

By retaining Tyrod Taylor, that should mean the Bills don’t take a quarterback with this pick. Instead, they can take a player like Williams who will be a nice vertical threat for Taylor.

11. New Orleans Saints: Derek Barnett, DE, Tennessee

This is a question the Saints front office might face on draft night: Do you take the third pass rusher or the third cornerback? Because the depth at cornerback is better, my pick is pass rusher. Barnett may not blow you away athletically, but he just gets the job done.

12. Cleveland Browns (via Philadelphia Eagles): Deshaun Watson, QB, Clemson

With all the moves in free agency thus far, the biggest losers are the quarterbacks in this year’s draft. They could be in for a slide, and that could benefit a team like the Browns. Watson gets the nod over Mitchell Trubisky because he has more experience and athleticism.

13. Arizona Cardinals: Mitchell Trubisky, QB, North Carolina

If the quarterbacks do fall, a team like the Cardinals could start grooming their future franchise signal caller. Trubisky has good skills and would be a good understudy for Carson Palmer.

14. Philadelphia Eagles (via Minnesota Vikings): Quincy Wilson, CB, Florida

The Eagles brought in veteran wide receivers Torrey Smith and Alshon Jeffery, so that should eliminate that position as the team’s top need. Wilson’s size and ability to play the ball make him a hot commodity.

15. Indianapolis Colts: Takkarist McKinley, OLB, UCLA

Even with the signing of Jabaal Sheard, John Simon, and Barkevious Mingo, the Colts still need edge talent. That’s what the speedy McKinley can provide.

16. Baltimore Ravens: Haason Reddick, OLB, Temple

The rise of Reddick continues. The versatile linebacker can give the Ravens a player who has experience with his hand down or playing in space.

17. Washington: Reuben Foster, MLB, Alabama

Washington smartly added Terrell McClain and Stacy McGee to the defensive line, so the need for a middle linebacker elevates. Foster can be the leader of Washington’s defense with his range and ability playing from the middle.

18. Tennessee Titans: Corey Davis, WR, Western Michigan

The Titans should be elated if Davis happens to slip this far – and also fear a team leapfrogging them to get him.

19. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Dalvin Cook, RB, Florida State

The Buccaneers went into this offseason wanting to get a playmaking wide receiver, and they certainly got that by bringing in DeSean Jackson. They can add another playmaker on offense by drafting Cook, a do-everything runner who can command snaps early in his career.

20. Denver Broncos: Ryan Ramczyk, OT, Wisconsin

The Broncos wisely signed offensive linemen Ron Leary and Menelik Watson in the first week of free agency, and they can finish off their offensive line with Ramczyk, the draft’s best left tackle.

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

Detroit is another team that loaded up on offensive linemen in free agency, and that could open them up to adding a splash player on defense. McDowell is the type of athlete that the defense needs. He can play inside and outside.

22. Miami Dolphins: O.J. Howard, TE, Alabama

Miami has had a sneaky good offseason, trading for Julius Thomas and William Hayes and signing Nate Allen, Anthony Fasano, Ted Larsen, and Lawrence Timmons. Even with Thomas, they could use a player like Howard, a classic lead tight end who can catch and block.

23. New York Giants: David Njoku, TE, Miami

The Giants may have given Rhett Ellison a four-year contract, but he’s not the pass catcher Njoku can be. Saying Njoku can be the next Jeremy Shockey is a little hyperbolic, but he can give the Giants’ offense a dimension it currently does not have.

24. Oakland Raiders: Zach Cunningham, MLB, Vanderbilt

The Raiders would probably prefer if Foster fell into their laps, but Cunningham isn’t a bad consolation prize.

25. Houston Texans: DeShone Kizer, QB, Notre Dame

If Kizer happens to slide on draft night, this might be where his fall stops. Kizer has tools that can be molded, but he has to go to a team that can coach him up.

26. Seattle Seahawks: Garrett Bolles, OT, Utah

The Seahawks would do back flips if only one offensive tackle is taken before they pick in the first round. Signing a player like Luke Joeckel shouldn’t stop Seattle from going after Bolles or Ramczyk in the first round.

27. Kansas City Chiefs: Patrick Mahomes, QB, Texas Tech

This pick is starting to become rote, and for good reason. The only thing more obvious than Mahomes’ skills are his flaws. But in Kansas City, he’d get time to work on his footwork and learn how to stick in the pocket. He has franchise quarterback talent.

28. Dallas Cowboys: Jabrill Peppers, S, Michigan

I know the Cowboys need a pass rusher, but doesn’t Peppers sound like a splashy Jerry Jones pick? In the Dallas defense, he would be Barry Church’s replacement, and frankly, an upgrade.

29. Green Bay Packers: Forrest Lamp, OL, Western Kentucky

There’s a terrible joke somewhere in here about Forrest Lamp and Forrest Gregg, but you can make it yourself. Lamp would be a smart pickup for the Packers. Instead of shuffling pieces on the roster, Lamp could slot into the right guard spot vacated by T.J. Lang.

30. Pittsburgh Steelers: Carl Lawson, DE/OLB, Auburn

The Steelers would prefer if Reddick stayed in this range, but there would be nothing wrong with going for Lawson. He’s athletic enough to stand up more in the NFL than he did at Auburn, and he is the type of pass rusher the team needs.

31. Atlanta Falcons: Cam Robinson, OT, Alabama

Robinson’s talent, especially as a run blocker, is too great to let slide out of the first round. In Atlanta, he can push for a starting guard spot and potentially put some pressure on the team’s offensive tackles.

32. New Orleans Saints (via New England Patriots): Gareon Conley, CB, Ohio State

With reports out there saying the Saints were trying to acquire Malcolm Butler from the Patriots, that should show how much the team wants a cornerback. Conley had a stellar combine earlier this month and put himself into the first round mix.

How the NFL Draft became such a big deal