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2019 NFL Mock Draft Post Free Agency (1.0)

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2019 NFL Mock Draft Post Free Agency (1.0)

Chris Urban, Editor

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This year’s draft is around the corner on April 25th and we are in the heat of the latest NFL combine and free agency buzz. Ole Miss wide receiver D.K. Metcalf earned millions this week by putting together a jaw-dropping performance on several different fitness tests. Mississippi State defensive lineman Montez Sweat ran a 4.41 40 yard dash at 6’6 260 pounds, an NFL combine record for someone at his position! To put into perspective, that’s a faster 40 time than Dallas Cowboys star running back Ezekiel Elliott’s 4.47 time. Odell Beckham Jr. to the Browns, Antonio Brown in Oakland, and Le’Veon Bell with the Jets. What a crazy time to be alive in the NFL.

Now that some of the combine buzz and free agency frenzy is settling in, let’s delve into what each team will do in this year’s first round.

1. Arizona Cardinals Select: Kyler Murray, QB, Oklahoma (Junior)

If the Arizona Cardinals want to fully hand the keys over to new head coach Kliff Kingsbury, they need to let him take his quarterback. Last October, Kingsbury praised highly of Murray saying that “if I was picking number one overall, I would absolutely select him [Kyler]. He’s an incredible athlete that’s won football games his entire life.” I believe Kyler Murray is the perfect fit for Kingsbury’s explosive Air Raid offense. Rumors have picked up between the Cardinals and Redskins over Cards QB Josh Rosen. Last year’s number 10 overall pick, Josh Rosen has good value for QB-needy teams that the Cardinals can cash in on. Murray’s 5’10 207 pound frame certainly raises legitimate questions, although, his incredible athletic abilities including an accurate and strong arm with quick legs outweigh the concerns. Short quarterbacks such as Doug Flutie and Drew Brees have proven great success in the NFL.

2. San Francisco 49ers Select: Quinnen Williams, DT, Alabama (Sophomore)

The 49ers received LB/Edge Rusher Dee Ford from the Chiefs in exchange for a 2020 second round selection. This signing sets up the ‘Niners to invest in the middle of their strong defensive line. Quinnen Williams has Aaron Donald upside. His 4.84 40 yard dash is just a hint of his athleticism at 6’4 295 lbs. Already equipped with Solomon Thomas, DeForest Buckner, and Dee Ford, this defensive line with Williams could be among the league’s best. Quinnen dominated LSU earlier this year posting 10 total tackles and 2.5 sacks, proving his large impact on any given game.

3. New York Jets Select: Nick Bosa, EDGE, Ohio State (Junior)

The New York Jets cashed in this free agency period grabbing C.J. Mosley and Le’Veon Bell from the Ravens and Steelers. These key additions this offseason set them up well to choose the best available player left on the board, hence Nick Bosa. The New York Jets front office will be living it up in the war room if Bosa is on the board at number 3 overall. Proclaimed by many as the best overall prospect in the entire draft for months, Nick Bosa, like his brother Joey, is an explosive and versatile pass rusher with all the intangibles to be great. Bosa suffered a core muscle injury in early October and missed the rest of his junior year. This season, Bosa was on his way to another fantastic season recording 4.0 sacks and 14 total tackles in 3 games.

4. Oakland Raiders Select: Josh Allen, OLB/EDGE, Kentucky (Senior)

Jon Gruden and the Oakland Raiders made a splash in free agency trading for Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Antonio Brown. This move impacts this selection greatly: trading for Brown ensures they are committed to Derek Carr, therefore, Oakland will focus on the best available defensive prospect left on the board instead of a QB or WR. If the Raiders want to replace Khalil Mack’s ultra-productive presence up front, why not replace him with college football’s most productive edge rusher. Utilizing an elite burst and finesse moves off the snap, Allen can create havoc for opposing NFL tackles. Allen has some pop to his game too, every year getting stronger at his overall game. Allen recorded 88 total tackles, 21.5 tackles for loss, 17.0 sacks, and 5 forced fumbles in 13 games in the SEC. Allen statistics progressively got better each year from freshman year as a two-star recruit. Allen is a prime example of a player that benefited big-time from staying in school.

5. Tampa Bay Buccaneers Select: Devin White, LB, LSU (Junior)

This 6’1 240 lbs thumper kills two birds with one stone: he fills a great need on the Bucs defense and is the best player available on the board. Losing Kwon Alexander this offseason to the 49ers is a big loss to an already depleted Bucs defense. Devin White boasts sideline-to-sideline speed along with plus tackling, football IQ and production. LSU is among college football’s most consistent producers in developing elite NFL defenders, proving that Tampa can’t go very wrong with this pick.

6. New York Giants Select: Dwayne Haskins, QB, Ohio State (Sophomore)

GM Dave Gettleman and the Giants have entered full rebuild mode by trading Odell Beckham Jr. to the Browns. The first step in a rebuild is to draft and develop a young QB. Haskins answers the call, throwing for 50 TD’s and shredding just about every defense in college football this season at Ohio State. Leading all of college football in passing yards (4,891) and touchdowns (50), Haskins is the perfect QB to develop under Eli Manning for a season or two and become their guy moving forward.

7. Jacksonville Jaguars Select: Jawaan Taylor, OT, Florida (Junior)

Nick Foles is the new man in northeast Florida, and why not protect him with the most athletically capable offensive lineman in this class.

8. Detroit Lions Select: Rashan Gary, DL, Michigan (Junior)

Detroit is weak up front, and they don’t need to look further than their own state. Rashan Gary had an excellent combine along with a multifaceted skill set that translates well into the NFL. Adding Trey Flowers from the Patriots during free agency also helps them fix their woes on the defensive line.

9. Buffalo Bills Select: Ed Oliver, DT,  Houston (Junior)

The Bills busy offseason allows them to select the best player available: enter Ed Oliver. The consensus number one overall pick a year ago, Oliver provides a much needed disruptive presence for Buffalo’s decimated defensive tackle position.

10. Denver Broncos Select: Drew Lock, QB, Missouri (Senior)

The whirlwind at quarterback for the Broncos must end soon considering their awesome defensive play. Bringing in Joe Flacco from the Ravens is the perfect stop-gap QB that Drew Lock can develop under. Lock’s game is similar to Flacco, making a nice match in Denver. Lock possesses the best arm talent in this draft class. His nickname of “Golden Arm” at Mizzou certainly reins true.

11. Cincinnati Bengals Select: Greedy Williams, CB, LSU (Sophomore)

The Bengals 32nd ranked pass defensive rating last year desperately needs  help. LSU’s Greedy Williams is this draft’s best defensive back, and one that can develop into a top 10 guy in the NFL.

12. Green Bay Packers Select: Montez Sweat, EDGE, Mississippi State (Senior)

Sweat’s blazing 4.41 40 yard dash has teams drooling over his NFL outlook as a speed/finesse pass rusher in the NFL. The departure of Clay Matthews needs to be filled.

13. Miami Dolphins Select: Daniel Jones, QB, Duke (Senior)

Trading Ryan Tannehill to the Titans leaves an open void at the QB spot. Daniel Jones showed out at the Senior Bowl in Mobile, Alabama, earning the MVP of the game. Jones can develop under the wily veteran QB Ryan Fitzpatrick who was brought over from the Bucs.

14. Atlanta Falcons Select: Jonah Williams, OT/OG, Alabama (Junior)

The Falcons offensive line at times struggled and had QB Matt Ryan pulling grass out of his facemask often. This refined offensive lineman will help keep Ryan upright and have more time to throw to his plethora of receivers

15. Washington Redskins Select: D.K. Metcalf, WR, Ole Miss (Sophomore)

Losing Jamison Crowder to free agency doesn’t help this thin group of receivers. Metcalf brings size, blazing speed, and physicality to a weak group of pass catchers in D.C.

16. Carolina Panthers Select: T.J. Hockenson, TE, Iowa (Sophomore)

Another team void of playmaking talent, Carolina is bringing in the 2018 John Mackey Award Winner (CFB Best TE). Hockenson provides well-rounded blocking skills along with impressive receiving ability. The Panthers are killing two birds with one stone here.

17. New York Giants (From CLE) Select: Clelin Ferrell, EDGE, Clemson (Junior)

As part of the OBJ trade to Cleveland, the Giants are getting a versatile and productive pass rusher that got better each year in the ACC. The departure of Oliver Vernon to the Browns leaves a spot for Ferrell to run with.

18. Minnesota Vikings Select: Cody Ford, OT/OG, Oklahoma (Junior)

The biggest reason for the Vikings disappointing season last year can be attributed to poor offensive line play all season long. This 6’4 338 lbs mauler is capable of playing tackle or guard at the next level at a high mark.

19. Tennessee Titans Select: Byron Murphy, CB, Washington (Sophomore)

Murphy provides speed, instincts, and elite man coverage skills for an aging secondary.

20. Pittsburgh Steelers Select: Brian Burns, EDGE, Florida State (Junior)

His quickness and athleticism are elite. Burn’s freshman year was incredible recording 8.5 sacks in 8 games. Steelers go with the best player on the board.

21. Seattle Seahawks Select: DeAndre Baker, CB, Georgia (Senior)

Despite having one of the top defenses in the NFL, the Seattle Seahawks are in need of more secondary help. DeAndre Baker has shadowed the SEC’s best receivers and often won his matchups using his high football IQ and coverage skills.

22. Baltimore Ravens Select: Marquise “Hollywood” Brown, WR, Oklahoma (Junior)

Adding Earl Thomas from the Seahawks and Mark Ingram II from the Saints will help build a contender in Baltimore this year. Marquise Brown will replace John Brown and provide Lamar Jackson a lethal speedster with good hands. Marquise Brown was Kyler Murray’s go-to guy during his Heisman campaign this season.

23. Houston Texans Select: Greg Little, OT, Ole Miss (Junior)

The Texans must upgrade their LT position, protecting Deshaun Watson’s blindside. Watson needs more time in the pocket to pass to his duo of talented receivers.

24. Oakland Raiders (From CHI) Select: Josh Jacobs, RB, Alabama

Acquired from the Khalil Mack trade early in the 2018 season, the Raiders are getting the consensus best running back in this years draft class. A powerful and balanced runner with plus receiving and pass protecting, Jacobs is a true three-down NFL running back that the Raiders are looking for.

25. Philadelphia Eagles Select: Christian Wilkins, DL, Clemson (Senior)

The Eagles are getting a steal at this position with Wilkins. A four-year starter, that got better each and every year on the Tigers stout defensive line.

26. Indianapolis Colts Select: Deionte Thompson, S, Alabama (Junior)

The Colts impressive 10-6 regular season and divisional round run proved that drafting well is essential for NFL success. Deionte Thompson is the best safety prospect in this class and solidifies the Colts secondary.

27. Oakland Raiders (From DAL) Select Devin Bush Jr, ILB/MLB, Michigan (Junior)

This is Jon Gruden’s type of player. An instinctive, quick, tough, and productive linebacker is exactly what Jon Gruden wants. Acquired in the Amari Cooper trade, Bush has the potential to be one of the better linebackers in his NFL future.

28. Los Angeles Chargers Select: Andre Dillard, OT, Washington State (Senior)

If the Chargers still want another 2-3 elite years out of Phillip Rivers, they better keep him upright and give him more time in the pocket. Dillard is a nice value pick at this spot.

29. Kansas City Chiefs Select: A.J. Brown, WR, Ole Miss (Junior)

In lieu of Tyreek Hill’s domestic and battery charges that have flared up lately, the Chiefs are in need at the WR position. Brown is arguably this year’s best pure wide receiver, possessing plus route running, hands and production. The Ole Miss 1st round onslaught continues with this selection.

30. Green Bay Packers (From NO) Select: Noah Fant, Iowa (Junior)

Indeed, two Iowa TE’s are off the board in the 2019 first round. Although Fant is not the blocker of Hockenson, he brings great athleticism and receiving ability to the table. An impressive combine showing has QB Aaron Rodgers jumping out of his seat with this selection.

31. Los Angeles Rams Select: Dexter Lawrence, DT, Clemson (Senior)

LA was among the worst run defenses in the league last year. Dexter’s run-stuffing traits are a perfect fit for a blatant need.

32. New England Patriots Select: Irv Smith Jr, TE, Alabama (Junior)

Rob Gronkowski’s retirement and the loss of Dwayne Allen to free agency immediately leaves a void at the TE position. Irv Smith Jr combines respectable blocking along with solid overall athleticism, production, and potential to flourish with Brady.

Good luck to all teams selecting in the first round!

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2019 NFL Mock Draft Post Free Agency (1.0)