Josh Norris

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Norris: Final 2017 Mock Draft

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

This is my final mock. Until I change it at 7:50 pm ET on Thursday.

This mock draft is my best guess of what will happen. I know there are many who want to trade down or robotically recite the term “best player available.” Need is always factored in and one year away needs should be considered. Embrace it.

A few trades are mentioned as hypotheticals, but I wanted to keep the draft order as it currently stands. So read the reasonings, please. And the point of this is to be different. We all tune into the draft to be surprised.

1. Cleveland Browns - EDGE Myles Garrett, Texas A&M - Viewed as the draft’s top prospect. He is the unique prospect in this draft. Reportedly dealt with a high ankle injury this season. NFL teams have to rush the passer, and drafting players like Emmanuel Ogbah and Carl Nassib doesn’t prevent you from adding Garrett. I know Adam Schefter mentioned the team is “split” on this pick, but you cannot pass on Garrett. Trading up from 12 seems far more likely… if the team loves a quarterback.

2. San Francisco 49ers - S Jamal Adams, LSU - This pick is clouded in secrecy and zero speculation is currently sticking, likely due to there not being a clear second prospect. This is a total guess, but let me tell you my rationalization. One, the 49ers need a cornerstone piece, and by all accounts, Adams might be the best leader in the class. Plus, he played the same position as the new GM. Still, this wouldn’t turn guaranteed money to safeties on its head.

3. Chicago Bears - EDGE/DL Solomon Thomas, Stanford -I know local beat writers are suggesting a quarterback here, but I’ll ride with Thomas.

4. Jacksonville Jaguars - T Cam Robinson, Alabama - This a trade out prediction to No. 12. The Jaguars left tackle situation is not strong and Tom Coughlin focuses on the trenches.

5. Tennessee Titans (via LAR) - WR Mike Williams, Clemson - Williams could be picked here or in a trade. Or any of the three receivers, honestly. Adding a primary option for Mariota should be the top focus.

6. New York Jets - S Malik Hooker, Ohio State - Rich Cimini mentioned Hooker as a possible name Wednesday night, and it makes sense. He can be a true difference-maker in the secondary.

7. Los Angeles Chargers - RB Christian McCaffrey, Stanford - McCaffrey isn’t just a running back. He would be a versatile option for Ken Whisenhunt from a number of positions and alignments. He offers big play ability.

8. Carolina Panthers - RB Leonard Fournette, LSU - Panthers coach Ron Rivera used the term “evolve” multiple times after the Panthers season when speaking about offensive changes. We have no idea what that means since the team’s offense has changed very little this offseason. Adding Fournette would define that term. Dave Gettleman recently went out of his way to praise Fournette’s passing down ability.

9. Cincinnati Bengals - TE O.J. Howard, Alabama - The Bengals coaching staff appears to really like Howard. He might go off the board at No. 4. John Ross and Leonard Fournette are both options here.  

10. Buffalo Bills - LB Haason Reddick, Temple - Sean McDermott might prefer linebackers who can cover more ground. Reddick can do that along with pass rushing upside. Corey Davis is a possibility, and I won’t quit my Mitchell Trubisky suggestion here.

11. New Orleans Saints - CB Marshon Lattimore, Ohio State - As of now, the Saints are in need of a corner. Many see Lattimore as the top option. This pick could be flipped with the Jets, in terms of Hooker landing with the Saints.

12. Cleveland Browns (via PHI) - QB Mitchell Trubisky, UNC - The Browns move up to No. 4 here to secure their top two options. The coaching staff and front office both seem to love Garrett. If the coaching staff also loves Trubisky, why not spend resources to get him.

13. Arizona Cardinals - QB Deshaun Watson, Clemson - I know this name isn’t common with the Cardinals, but Steve Keim could be looking at a post-Arians, Palmer and Fitzgerald future.

14. Philadelphia Eagles (via MIN) - EDGE Charles Harris, Missouri - The Eagles could absolutely take a similar approach to the Panthers last season in terms of multiple corners after round one. Harris will likely be a top 15 selection and greatly improved his athletic testing at the school’s pro day. Barnett is possible, and there is late buzz for an offensive player like Corey Davis.

15. Indianapolis Colts - EDGE Tyus Bowser, Houston - Edge rusher is the Colts top priority. Bowser has plenty of upside.

16. Baltimore Ravens - OL Forrest Lamp, WKU - Build the offensive line that has lost a number of players in recent offseasons.

17. Washington Redskins - DL Jon Allen, Alabama - The redskins’ top need falls in line with a player still on the board.

18. Tennessee Titans - CB Chidobe Awuzie, Colorado -Consider this pick as a possible trade out with Seattle. I’ve heard plenty of positive vibes about the Titans liking Awuzie as an outside or inside type.

19. Tampa Bay Bucs - RB Dalvin Cook, FSU - Another possible trade out spot with Seattle. 18 years of athletic testing says Dalvin will not be selected in round one, but who am I to argue with so many others who say he is going round one.

20. Denver Broncos - TE David Njoku, Miami - Obviously there is plenty of tackle chatter… but Njoku’s name keeps popping up.

21. Detroit Lions - EDGE Derek Barnett, Tennessee - Linebacker is likely the Lions top need, as is a third pass catcher, but Barnett might be too good to pass up in the Lions’ eyes.

22. Miami Dolphins - EDGE Jordan Willis, Kansas State - All signs point to an edge rusher, it is a question of which ones are still on the board.

23. New York Giants - OL Ryan Ramczyk, Wisconsin - This could be one of a number of offensive linemen… Ramczyk, Garett Bolles, Cam Robinson. Ereck Flowers was not and is not the answer at left tackle. Adding skill position players only goes so far when the offensive line is a weakness.

24. Oakland Raiders - LB Jarrad Davis, Florida - The biggest weakness on the Raiders is the linebacker spot, as the team cycled through player after player in an attempt to make something work. Davis is athletic and vicious at the point of attack. He might remind some of Deion Jones.

25. Houston Texans - S Obi Melifonwu, UConn - The team seems to have a void at safety. Corner is also a possibility with no right tackles remaining on my board.

26. Seattle Seahawks - T Garett Bolles, Utah - Again, this is a possible trade up with the Titans at 18 or Bucs at 19. The Seahawks have had recent contact with Bolles. Very recent.

27. Kansas City Chiefs - QB Patrick Mahomes, Texas Tech - Alex Smith is 32 years old and the Chiefs would save $17 million of his $20 million salary if he is not on the roster in 2018. All the buzz points to Mahomes landing in the first round. Personally, I don’t view him in that territory as there is no easy comparison of success in the NFL. Perhaps he creates a new mold. Andy Reid and company added Kevin Kolb in round two, then Michael Vick two years later, when Donovan McNabb was around Smith’s current age.

28. Dallas Cowboys - CB Adoree’ Jackson, USC - Bowser is possible if he is on the board. Tre’Davious White, Teez Tabor T.J. Watt and Takk McKinley are as well.

29. Green Bay Packers - LB Reuben Foster, Alabama - I believe Foster still goes round one. I just don’t know where. Coaches love his talent, evaluators just keep searching for information.

30. Pittsburgh Steelers - WR Corey Davis, Western Michigan - The Steelers will add a corner and a pass catcher early in the draft. Book it. Davis is the top receiver in this class. He can win in contested situations due to his natural size but shines creating separation and dominating after the catch.

31. Atlanta Falcons - EDGE Derek Rivers, Youngstown State - The Falcons have shown interest in Rivers. As they should since he’s a top end athlete and has traits to rush the passer in the NFL. The Falcons need help on the edge.

32. New Orleans Saints (via NE) - QB Davis Webb, Cal - This isn’t necessarily for the Saints. It could be for the browns moving up for a fifth-year option, or another club.

Josh Norris is an NFL Draft Analyst for Rotoworld and contributed to the Rams scouting department during training camp of 2010 and the 2011 NFL Draft. He can be found on Twitter .
Email :Josh Norris

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