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2016 NFL mock draft: Only local prospects allowed

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What if NFL teams were stuck drafting players who are just a short drive away?

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In the earliest years of scouting NFL talent, teams were filled with local prospects. It's not that local talent was preferred, but that resources were limited and many players slipped through the cracks just because there was no way to evaluate what they had to offer.

The Indianapolis Colts rolled the dice in the 1956 NFL Draft and selected Dick Donlin, a wide receiver from a small school in Minnesota, who they had never seen play before, but heard legends of his abilities. He was cut without ever playing a game for the team.

So, what if teams had those same limited resources today? Maybe a zombie apocalypse forced teams to stick to guys that are close by ... I don't know. Whatever the reason, here's a projection of how the 2016 NFL Draft would look if teams only selected players who played less than 300 miles away.

1. Los Angeles Rams - Myles Jack, LB, UCLA - 15 miles away

It's hard to imagine the Rams would've traded up to No. 1 if they knew the top quarterback prospect available to them was USC's Cody Kessler. Too late now. Fortunately, Jack isn't a terrible consolation and a dynamic addition to the middle of a defense that already has some of the best pass young rushing talent.

2. Cleveland Browns - Joey Bosa, DE, Ohio State - 140 miles away

Like the Rams, there isn't a top quarterback prospect within a reasonable distance for the Browns. Connor Cook, Christian Hackenberg and Cardale Jones are options, but without a top three prospect on the board, it makes much more sense for the Browns to just grab one of the top defensive prospects with the No. 2 pick.

3. San Diego Chargers - Kenny Clark, DT, UCLA - 130 miles away

Jack is gone and that means the first-round talent in Southern California is just about tapped. Some believe Clark could sneak into the back half of the first day and it certainly wouldn't hurt for the Chargers to add talent to its defensive line, which could desperately use upgrades across the board.

4. Dallas Cowboys - William Jackson III, CB, Houston - 260 miles away

Upgrading at cornerback is a big need for the Cowboys, but most believe Jalen Ramsey is the only one worth taking in the top five, with Vernon Hargreaves behind him. But Florida is a long way from Texas and the Cowboys will instead grab Jackson, a lengthy and talented defensive back who could by one of the first cornerbacks off the board in two weeks.

5. Jacksonville Jaguars - Jalen Ramsey, DB, Florida State - 170 miles away

Even if the Jaguars had the whole draft class available to them, it's easy to imagine Ramsey would be the team's pick, so it doesn't take much to argue the fit. With Tashaun Gipson added to the Jacksonville secondary, Ramsey plugs in right away at cornerback where his press coverage skills will fit perfectly.

6. Baltimore Ravens - Kendall Fuller, CB, Virginia Tech - 290 miles away

A common theme you'll find in this mock draft is that teams in the Northeast don't have the best talent pool to select from. Fuller is a very talented cornerback, but an oft-injured one, who presents a lot of upside and a lot of risk, as well. Yitzi Weiss of Baltimore Beatdown selected Fuller in our bloggers mock draft, although it was early in the second round, not the first.

7. San Francisco 49ers - Jared Goff, QB, California - 45 miles away

No trade necessary, the 49ers get one of the top two quarterbacks in the draft just by sitting at No. 7. Whether Colin Kaepernick gets traded or not, the 49ers could use a top young quarterback to be the new face of the franchise and Goff fits the bill.

8. Philadelphia Eagles - Christian Hackenberg, QB, Penn State - 190 miles away

Like the Ravens, the Eagles' choices in the top 10 aren't great. There's chatter the Eagles could trade up to No. 2 and grab whichever quarterback the Rams don't grab, but in this mock draft, neither of those prospects are options anyway. So the Eagles get their quarterback at No. 8, instead, even if he's not the ideal choice. I'm sorry for this one, Eagles fans.

9. Tampa Bay Buccaneers - Vernon Hargreaves, CB, Florida - 125 miles away

This is a fit that makes plenty of sense and could end up being a pairing that comes to fruition in two weeks. Johnthan Banks and Alterraun Verner had rough 2015 campaigns, and Hargreaves can be an instant starter for the Buccaneers as the team rebuilds its secondary.

10. New York Giants - Leonte Carroo, WR, Rutgers - 35 miles away

Pro Football Focus favorite, Carroo could've been a top-10 selection if he didn't struggle through injuries at Rutgers. Another boom-or-bust prospect, Carroo could be a great complement to Odell Beckham, Jr. and help an offense that has struggled to find a second option and can't rely on Victor Cruz to fill the role after losing Rueben Randle in free agency.

11. Chicago Bears - Ronnie Stanley, OT, Notre Dame - 80 miles away

Maybe Kyle Long can be a long-term option for the Bears at right tackle, but grabbing Ronnie Stanley will help the Bears shore up the offensive line and send Long back to guard where he's in his best fit.

12. New Orleans Saints - A'Shawn Robinson, DL, Alabama - 290 miles away

The Saints need to add defensive talent and Robinson is a flexible lineman who can move around the New Orleans line. Without much top LSU talent in the draft class, the Saints are one of only a few teams just within range of the talent pool in Tuscaloosa, Ala.

13. Miami Dolphins - Artie Burns, CB, Miami (Fla.) - 20 miles away

Many think the Dolphins end up targeting a cornerback with the No. 13 pick, but Burns is one of the few top prospects in South Florida. He's a raw talent, but one of the top athletes in the entire draft class and tested off the charts at the Miami Pro Day.

14. Oakland Raiders - Joshua Garnett, OL, Stanford - 30 miles away

After adding another top offensive lineman in free agency, Kelechi Osemele, adding interior offensive line talent isn't a huge need for the Raiders, but the team doesn't really have any noticeable holes that need to be filled. There isn't a ton of draft talent in the Bay Area after Goff goes off the board, but Garnett is one of the best guards in the draft and can help add depth and competition to the Raiders.

15. Tennessee Titans - Laremy Tunsil, OT, Ole Miss - 240 miles away

Trade down 14 spots and still land the player most expected them to take No. 1? Yeah, the Titans win this one. No other team is within 300 miles of Ole Miss, which means they get Laquon Treadwell in the second round, I guess.

16. Detroit Lions - Jack Conklin, OT, Michigan State - 90 miles away

The first of a short streak of picks that actually make plenty of sense and could happen, Conklin fills in at right tackle for the Lions opposite Riley Reiff and should help a team that was the worst in the NFL at rushing and allowed Matt Stafford to be sacked 89 times in the last two years.

17. Atlanta Falcons - Shaq Lawson, DE, Clemson - 120 miles away

Georgia's Leonard Floyd is another option for the Falcons, but Lawson is an easy fit and a strong pass rushing option for the team to pair with Vic Beasley.

18. Indianapolis Colts - Taylor Decker, OT, Ohio State - 175 miles away

The bigger issue for the Colts is along the interior of the offensive line, but Alabama center Ryan Kelly is way too far away and Decker at least helps the team protect Andrew Luck who battled through injuries throughout the 2015 season.

19. Buffalo Bills - Tyler Boyd, WR, Pittsburgh - 195 miles away

After three straight picks that have a strong chance at happening, here comes three straight teams in the Northeast that have limited options. Percy Harvin wasn't exactly the best case scenario for the Bills, but his retirement just removes another potential No. 2 receiver option for the Buffalo offense opposite Sammy Watkins. Boyd can add to the receiver corps along with Robert Woods and give Tyrod Taylor another option to work with.

20. New York Jets - Carl Nassib, OLB, Penn State - 230 miles away

The Jets have no shortage of talent along the defensive line, but can begin working inside out and add edge pass rushing talent. Lorenzo Mauldin is a promising young player, but adding Nassib can continue to bolster the position, even if he isn't considered to be a first-round prospect.

21. Washington - Karl Joseph, S, West Virginia - 210 miles away

Not many project Joseph to be a first-round pick, but it's not an outlandish projection and a relatively easy choice with run stoppers like Andrew Billings far too distant in this scenario. A torn ACL cost Joseph most of his senior season, but that's an injury that doesn't negatively impact careers nearly as much in today's NFL and he can still immediately be a top player in the Washington secondary.

22. Houston Texans - Josh Doctson, WR, TCU - 270 miles away

The Texans need to give Brock Osweiler another receiver as the team continues to retool the offense, and luckily for Houston, two of the top receivers in the 2016 NFL Draft are in Texas. Baylor's Corey Coleman is another option, but Doctson is the top receiver in the entire class, in my opinion, and the Texans get to grab him in the back half of the first-round.

23. Minnesota Vikings - Joe Schobert, LB, Wisconsin - 270 miles away

For as rough as the talent pool is for teams in the Northeast, it's even worse for the Vikings. While they are the only team that has the option of taking North Dakota State's Carson Wentz, it's really just not a pick that makes sense with Teddy Bridgewater holding down the fort. Instead, the Vikings add defensive depth with Schobert, a productive and experienced linebacker who can contribute on special teams, as well.

24. Cincinnati Bengals - Will Fuller, WR, Notre Dame - 225 miles away

After losing Marvin Jones and Mohamed Sanu in free agency, the Bengals could stand to give Andy Dalton a speedy threat to work with A.J. Green and Tyler Eifert. Fuller fits the bill and gives Cincinnati an electrifying deep threat.

25. Pittsburgh Steelers - Eli Apple, CB, Ohio State - 185 miles away

There's a good chance that the Steelers' draft selection will be whichever cornerback slides to the tail end of the first round, but players like Hargreaves, Jackson and Mackensie Alexander are too far from Heinz Field to be considered. Luckily, Apple is within distance and a logical pick for Pittsburgh.

26. Seattle Seahawks - DeForest Buckner, DE, Oregon - 300 miles away

Yes, Pete Carroll gets everything he wants and you just have to deal with it. The Seahawks are the only team within range of Oregon, even if it's just barely and the pick doesn't require much explaining. Buckner is one of the best prospects in the draft and the Seahawks like those.

27. Green Bay Packers - Shilique Calhoun, OLB, Michigan State - 215 miles away

The Packers put Clay Matthews back at outside linebacker in 2015, but could stand to add more talent at the position after things with Mike Neal and Nick Perry haven't worked out too well, even if the latter was re-signed. Calhoun has upside to work with and could develop into the heir apparent for Julius Peppers.

28. Kansas City Chiefs - Cody Whitehair, G, Kansas State - 125 miles away

After losing Jeff Allen to the Houston Texans, the Chiefs can instantly fill the void by grabbing the top interior offensive lineman in the draft class.

29. Arizona Cardinals - Christian Westerman, G, Arizona State - 20 miles away

The Cardinals are on a bit of an island in the middle of Arizona and can really only look at in-state prospects. Westerman, a strong and balanced interior offensive line is likely the best prospect in the state and more depth for a team that doesn't have any glaring holes that need to be addressed.

30. Carolina Panthers - Mackensie Alexander, CB, Clemson - 140 miles away

There's no doubt that the Panthers have one cornerback spot locked down with Josh Norman, but the other side was an issue at times in 2015. Bene Benwikere is projected to start in 2016, but has primarily played as a slot cornerback and even if he succeeds on the outside, the cupboard is pretty bare behind him.

31. Denver Broncos - Rashard Higgins, WR, Colorado State - 60 miles away

Like the Vikings and Cardinals, the Broncos are on a bit of an island and don't have many schools around them to grab players from. Higgins was one of the most productive receivers in the nation and as reliable and smooth as they come, but there are questions if he has the top speed necessary to get separation in the NFL. His route running should help that though, and the Broncos could use more receiving depth after Demaryius Thomas and Emmanuel Sanders.