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2019 NFL Mock Draft by kkunert327 - Week 1
Published at 9/12/2018 9:19:08 PM
After one week of football let's see who can help those who took the L and those who got that first W. Of course, comments and feedback are always appreciated.
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The Lions look like a mess after their week one loss. They will probably compete with the likes of the Bills, and Cardinals for the worst team in the league. Part of the problem is how much salary cap Matthew Stafford takes that limits them in free agency. However, they also have not drafted very smartly particularly on the defensive line. Nor, have they spent money aggressively or wisely in free agency to upgrade their linebacking corp or running back situation. All of that is accumulating into a lost season.
I also, believe Bill Belichick's disciples are not the best head coaches because he only allocates jobs to them instead of teaching and grooming them to be head coaches like Andy Reid has or Mike Shanahan back in the day. However, I doubt they fire Matt Patricia one year in and even sticking with him after sexual misconduct allegations. With the top pick here, they can go in multiple directions thanks to this loaded d-line class. I would lean towards Nick Bosa since he plays a more valuable and impactful position on the edge. Finally giving them an intimidating pass rusher that can threaten the likes of Aaron Rodgers in division.
You have to feel for Bills fans after finally making the playoffs after a 20 year hiatus and then they come into this year with no hope. Makes sense since they decided to tear everything down from the team that made them successful. They also never really looked into upgrade what could be the NFL's worst offensive line along with the Cardinals and Giants. If I were the Bills I would avoid starting Josh Allen as long as I can to prevent him getting beaten like a pinata like David Carr was with the Texans back in the day.
With their top pick they definitely need to use it to fix their blocking. Even though there are tempting prospects like Ed Oliver, Rashan Gary, and others on the defensive line that could help this team. However, the blocking with Dion Dawkins at the left tackle spot and Jordan Mills at the right tackle spot gives them possibly the worst tackle duos. Jonah Williams is already accumulating a lot of attention from his great play this year. He should be the first tackle off the board and his versatility is also a plus to help the Bills where ever they need him first. Where ever they play him he should make life a lot easier for Josh Allen to grow.
The Cardinals are in the same boat as the Bills with a terrible o-line that will turn their hopefully franchise starting quarterback into a pinata. Unfortunetly, for the Cardinals they have Sam Bradford he of the paper skin and glass bones as the place holder. Rosen will probably start before he should and his health was his biggest drawback coming into the NFL. I would not be shocked if they steal a few games because I think their defense is better than what they showed in week one, but it is going to be a long trying season for this team with their rookie head coach.
Again, like the Bills the Cardinals could take advantage of this great defensive line class and help their susceptible d-line. However, the tackle and edge rusher class is light years deeper than the offensive tackle group. In my opinion, there are three top tackle prospects in Jonah Williams, Greg Little, and Trey Adams. Adams may be the most athletic, but he also comes with injury risk. So, in this scenario Williams and Little get snatched up first. Little could go in front of Williams even due to his more prototypical size at tackle, but he is the more raw talent among the three.
Adding a running back, an okay left tackle that they are now over paying, and avoiding upgrading a weak secondary is only a few reasons why I think the Giants are going to have a tough time finding wins. Not only that, but I think the writing has been on the wall for five years to replace the rapidly eroding Eli Manning. For some reason this franchise is terrified to move on from Manning and have some sort of hopes he will find the magic that helped his legacy in those two Super Bowl runs. Which, I think are more outliers than what the real Eli Manning ever was.
Unfortunetly, for the Giants there is no Sam Darnold, Patrick Mahomes, Jared Goff, or Carson Wentz type quarterback here to take that would help them. However, there are a few intriguing names that can rise above the rest. One being Jarrett Stidham who plays in the tough SEC West and if he plays well like he did against Washington for the whole season he should have plenty good tape to be the first quarterback taken. He looks much more in command of the offense this season and should flash his strong skills as a signal caller to scouts this season. That along with his mobility make him a good candidate to possible survive behind the Giants porous o-line.
This pick is not the one they got from the Bears. This pick is from their own short comings in one of the toughest divisions and the fact that they looked lifeless last night. Their defense not shockingly could not get to the quarterback all night and was out coached coming out of the second half. I think trading Khalil Mack was a big hit in talent, but also a big hit in the locker room where his leadership was a great centering force. It also, does not help that Derek Carr from two years ago is still missing and has yet to be seen. It's up to Jon Gruden to get that out of him, but it did not look good last night.
After trading what some consider is this era's Lawrence Taylor in Khalil Mack. Maybe they will take this draft class' version of Aaron Donald in Ed Oliver to lighten the blow. Not saying Oliver is Donald just yet, but his talent is considered maybe the best at the tackle position since Donald got drafted. His athletic talent and length makes him a versatile interior force. He should only continue to get better as he grows into his body over time and hopefully lessen the wound of losing Mack.
The Legion Of Boom is no more and to me is a bigger problem the the lack of quality pieces on offense. Russell Wilson has shown the ability to operate an offense with a lack of great receivers, running backs, or a good offensive line. However, that is all for naught if he does not have a defense that limits the opposing offense. This year, might be the case where Wilson can put up great numbers, but the defense will let him down in the clutch all year long due to the lack of talent on that side of the ball. In particular at the corner position with the loss of Richard Sherman and others throughout the years.
Shaq Griffin at corner is a nice player, but I would rather him not be my number one corner on the outside going toe to toe with opposing top options. With their top this season I would aim towards a corner and luckily for them there is a 6'2" long wing spanned Greedy Williams there that fit what they look for in corners. Williams also comes from the acclaimed LSU corner back factory where every prospect they produce seemingly goes All-Pro or turns into a quality piece. Williams has been great thus far and has put himself at the top of the corner class thus far.
A new quarterback is needed and I think Adam Gase knows it. Not only that, but so does everyone else in the franchise. Ryan Tannehill had a shot to turn into a solid quarterback, unfortunately injuries have stunted his growth for good I think. He is already an older quarterback at 30 with very little upside left in him. His contract is not up for another two seasons, but after seeing divisional rivals like the Jets and Bills landing future franchise options the Dolphins have to feel a step behind.
This quarterback class is a complete mixed bag and almost like an ice cream shop. Everyone will have their favorites and prefer others over another also quality flavor. One guy that is bubbling up the board is Will Grier after a very good debut season with West Virginia last year, he has gotten off to a good start this season as well. The drawbacks for Grier is his older age of 23 when he reaches the NFL and his sometimes high maintenance family that has his younger brothers as Youtube stars that can turn teams away. However, he has shown the maturity, talent, and skills to be a pro quarterback at the next level.
The Bucs are another Florida team that will be looking to upgrade at the quarterback this up coming off season in my opinion. Jameis Winston cannot be trusted to handle the keys to the franchise with immaturity and his continued stagnation of his growth on the field as a signal caller. Ryan "Fitzmagic" coming in and looking great with the talent around him against the Saints does not help Winston's case at all. The franchise knows they cannot rely of Fitzpatrick next year to play like that or even the rest of the season, but it has to make them think they should be looking for another option.
This quarterback class is not the best, but I can see a handful going in the first round due to the need at the position and how deep the rest of the class is at other valuable positions. One intriguing quarterback name is Drew Lock who is this year's version of Josh Allen. A big, strong armed, and mobile quarterback who is extremely raw as a passer. Lock has more of a gunslinger approach to him that reminds me of Patrick Mahomes a bit more than Allen. If the Bucs play it smart they could allow Lock to develop behind Winston as he plays out the last year of his contract, where Winston should play motivated to get a big deal elsewhere in the off season.
I love Joe Thomas and how great of a person and player he is. However, I think he left the Browns in the lurch retiring sooner than he needed to. Just when they found their franchise quarterback hopefully and finally put together a solid roster he retires suddenly. Leaving them without a succession plan or option to turn to to take his place. That's not totally his fault, but if he gave the organization a heads up or played one more year letting them know it's his last they could have found an heir apparent to develop.
This year, they have to pick a new left tackle early in the draft to help out the development of Baker Mayfield who is not the biggest quarterback nor the strongest armed quarterback. He needs help to be successful and have a clean pocket in particular to help his deficiencies. Adams is a talented tackle who has a shot to be one of the best blindside blockers to come out of the draft in the past few seasons. The issues is his health that has slowed him down for the past couple seasons. If he can stay healthy for the rest of the year and display his talent he should be a lock first rounder.
The Colts should be competitive this season with the return of Andrew Luck who should continue to play better as the season rolls along. The one big drawback is the issues on the defensive side of the ball that will cause them to lose more games than win. Not like the talent on offense is amazing, but as long as Luck has some blocking he should run the offense at a high level and elevate it. If they give him a stout defense to balance it out they should start to emerge as the team to beat in the AFC South.
This draft is loaded with defensive line talent and so much so that a few top blue chippers could slide as teams reach at shallower positions. Which, should come at the delight of a team like the Colts where they can land a talented defender like Clelin Ferrell. Ferrell might not be the big name like Christian Wilkins or Dexter Lawrence from the Clemson defensive line, but he may be the most talented. He is the pass rushing talent on the outside with a great blend of size, speed, and skill that should only continue to get better as he refines his repertoire. On a team lacking pass rush like the Colts he should be a great weapon to build around moving forward for them.
The Bengals I think can be a sneaky good team throughout the year with the ability to win big games and beat teams they should not beat. However, I do not think this defense is talented enough in the back end to be good enough to keep teams in check like they did to the Colts week to week. I also do not think Dalton is a quarterback who can be a consistent player each week.
One area they needed to upgrade for the longest time is the linebacking corp outside of the mercurial Vontaze Burfict that has been needing a big jolt of athleticism for a very long time. Devin White is a special backer according to some with the talent rivaling the likes of Luke Kuechly, Deion Jones, Roquan Smith, and others over the years that have looked the part as a top backer to build around. Maybe Devin White's leadership could even reign in Burfict a bit with his penchant to be over the line often on the field with his violence. White is a locker room changing pick to me and could be a step in a new direction for this team.
The Cowboys clearly need a receiver and probably should have addressed the position sooner in this past draft. Even going after the free agency market more aggressively would have been a prudent move. The issue for the Cowboys coming up is the looming contract stand off between them and Dak Prescott who's rookie deal is almost up. That could be why they have been wise with their salary cap keeping money aside for Prescott. However, if he continues to play like he did the past year and one game thus far he might not be the qb of the future.
With that said I can see the Cowboys looking at quarterback here if Prescott continues to disappoint. However, the Cowboys seem determined to find another diamond in the rough like they did with Tony Romo and are hoping they did with Dak. I like Prescott a lot as a leader, but he is a very limited throw and needs better weapons to move the ball after the catch since his arm is limited moving the ball down the field himself. Brown is the top option in this draft between his size, speed, and ability to make difficult catches. Bringing him in should give Dak a few options to look at between Zeke, Hurns, and now Brown to diversify this offense.
Another team that will be looking at this receiver class should be the Jets who need to make life easy for Darnold as he matures. Granted, it looked good against the Lions, but smart money says that it was not that tough of competition and Darnold's supporting cast will be more over matched moving forward. However, they have their franchise quarterback and it should make life easy moving forward.
Samuel if he stays healthy could challenge A.J. Brown for the top receiver spot in this class. The Gamecock is an all world talent with his speed, elusiveness, and quick twitch talent. If he stays healthy this season and looks like the pure athlete that he should at the Combine I would not be shocked if he ends up a top ten selection. Right now, I will hedge my bets that he is a mid first rounder. He should be a nice toy for Darnold to work with.
The Falcons I think need a shake up on offense with the coordinator Steve Sarkisian more than anything else. The red zone issues continue into week one of the new season and one reason why is when Sark takes Julio Jones off the field for four plays in the red zone. Not only that, but when Jones is on the field Matt Ryan continues to over target him even though opposing defenses are double even triple covering him. Until they shake that issue off I can see them having a very up and down season.
Unfortunately, the offense is going to bring down the defense this season, which is actually solid overall. However, if the offense continues to be stagnant with very good talent on it, they are better off bulking up the defense to slow down opposing offenses. One area of need is the tackle spot next to Grady Jarrett still, who has yet to reach his peak back in the Super Bowl that made him a big name on this defense. A guy like Raekwon Davis could be a force in the middle for them with his size, pass rushing skills, and rawness to hopefully play off of Jarrett, possibly even over taking him on the depth chart. With coach Dan Quinn to coach him up he should turn into a terrific player for them.
I think the Redskins roster overall is a lot better than people give them credit for and in my opinion it's the 2nd best in their division. However, I think they will regret letting go of Kirk Cousins, who let's be honest, is a much better quarterback than Alex Smith with more youthful upside. I also, think injuries are something this team cannot avoid after last year having 22 different o-line, they already lost their top back before the season even started. This team should be competitive and I would not be shocked if they sneak into the playoffs.
A big issue for this team is the fact that they do not have any viable corner across from Josh Norman that will limit opposing receivers and quarterbacks. If they can find another corner to rival Norman's talent then they can have a very strong nucleus on the defensive side of the ball to build around and compete in the NFC East moving forward. Mullen has been a very good and big corner for Clemson the past few seasons. He does benefit playing behind a terrific defensive line, but his skill set is one many coaches want to get their hands on. On a solid Redskins defense he should be able to acclimate himself very easily.
The Steelers I think are going to finally come up short this year from making the playoffs. There is a bad vibe emanating off of this team from Le'Veon Bell holding out, to that tie to the Browns, to the o-line not having Bell's back, and also the fact that this defense is just okay. Plus, the Ravens, Bengals, and even the Browns are all going to be difficult match ups this year. That does not include their match ups with the Patriots, Jags, and Chiefs who are also teams with better momentum right now than them. I think it starts at the top and a new head coach can help shake things up, but this is a franchise that has had only 3 head coaches so it might be a tall ask to actually fire Mike Tomlin.
One big area of need is a the linebacker spot where the loss of Ryan Shazier and it does not look to me that he is going to be playing football any time soon. They are plugging the hole up with journeymen backers, but they need that stud in the middle to call the plays and be a force for this defense to be successful. Josh Allen is a versatile, big, and athletic linebacker who could have been a first rounder in this past draft. So far, he is continuing that trend up boards this season.