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2018 NFL Mock Draft -- Ender's 1st-Round (1.0)

Author:
Ender
Air Date:
January 21, 2018

'Ender' is a long time friend of FFM and CFM, and a student of the NFL and Mock Draft process. I've invited him to share his insight's on the NFL Draft this season with Mock Drafts and any other draft intel. here's his first Mock Draft of 2018 and for FFM/CFM...

2018 Mock Draft 1st-Round (1.0)

 

1) Cleveland Browns-QB Sam Darnold 

How can this pick not be a quarterback? The football gods have demanded it. The media and fans are already in a frenzy because the Browns passed on Wentz, Dak, Trubisky, Mahomes, and Watson. They simply can't do it again. The only way the pick isn't a quarterback is if the media can't decide on a clear-cut best qb. Then the Browns have a small pass to take Barkley at #1 and a qb at 4. Before this is done though we will see 3-5 different qbs debated here as well as Barkley and perhaps Fitzpatrick. Dorsey will favor mobility and “playmaking” ability so I expect Darnold or possibly Allen if the media can talk themselves into the idea that he is Wentz 2.0, which is possible considering the wide ranging debate with the perceived top 5 qbs. Let's see where the media converges after the combine.

 

2) New York Giants-RB Saquon Barkley 

Everyone else is picking qb here, but Gettleman is a best player available guy. He also loves smashmouth, old-school, “tough guy” football from a bygone era. This spot screams Barkley.

 

3) Indianapolis Colts-EDGE Bradley Chubb 

Indy desperately wants Barkley but he's gone. Unless this is a trade back for a team that wants the next qb there's no really great fit at this point. Too early for a linebacker and none of the offensive lineman seem worth #3 at this point. Chubb is considered in the same class as Bosa so 3-5 seems about his range as a safe top pick.

 

4) Cleveland Browns-S Derwin James 

The Browns secondary could use an upgrade and no other position makes much sense here. James will get some talk as the best player in class similar to Jalen Ramsey, and we've seen Dorsey take safeties this highly before.

 

5) Denver Broncos-G Quenton Nelson 

Yes, the Broncos need a qb, but right now I suspect Elway will throw himself at Kirk Cousins. Worked out pretty well last time and this go around they will get more than 3 years. It's early for a guard, but there is precedent for one this high and Nelson is considered elite in a class with few elites and many solids.

 

6) New York Jets-QB Josh Rosen 

Similar to the Browns the media and fans will crucify this team if their first pick isn't a qb. Rosen isn't being viewed in the best light by many, but he'll get a pass to be an a*****e in New York so long as he wins.

 

7) Tampa Bay Buccaneers-CB/S Minkah Fitzpatrick 

The Bucs are desperate for a pass rusher but with Chubb off the board and Key having off field issues there just isn't good value here. Enter Fitzpatrick who can play anywhere in the secondary and provides good versatility for an underrated defense.

 

8) Chicago Bears-WR Courtland Sutton 

Everyone knows the Bears have to bring in new receivers. Many slot Ridley here by default, but I suspect Sutton rises up as an AJ Green-lite prospect. If Corey Davis and Mike Williams can go top 10 then so can Sutton.

 

9) San Francisco 49'ers-CB Joshua Jackson 

Many mocks have a receiver here, but Shanahan thinks he can out-scheme opponents. A long, athletic cornerback for their Pete Carroll-style defense makes a ton of sense.

 

10) Oakland Raiders-LB Tremaine Edmunds 

The defense sucks and could use a talented, rangy linebacker to help Khalil Mack. This is too early for Roquon Smith. Linebackers that go this high generally have prototype size to go along with ability.

 

11) Miami Dolphins-RB Derrius Guice 

The Dolphins are absolutely adding another rb to the mix, and I have to think it's a star and not a compliment to Drake, no matter how much he deserves a shot. Many see Guice as being just as good as Barkley only lacking Barkley's long speed.

 

12) Cincinnati Bengals-OT Mike McGlinchey 

The Bengals could easily go with a cornerback or d-lineman like they often do, but their offensive line is severely depleted and Mixon is wasting away trying to find a hole to run through. McGlinchey may not last this long or another tackle like Connor Williams could rise up, but for now McGlinchey is considered the safest of the tackles.

 

13) Washington Redskins-QB Josh Allen 

Assuming that Cousins signs elsewhere, the Skins have to select a quarterback. They are a prime trade up candidate, perhaps with the Colts at 3. Mayfield could make more sense from a scheme point of view as Gruden would rather throw short than long. Let's see if Baker can rise to the top based on his leadership skills and production.

 

14) Green Bay Packers-EDGE Ogbonnia Okoronkwo 

Clay Matthews is getting older and less effective every year. He's good friends with Rodgers and stars in commercials but could be a cap casualty this offseason. Okoronkwo is a similar style player and could transition easily to Matthews's spot.

 

15) Arizona Cardinals-QB Baker Mayfield 

The Cardinals are another prime trade up candidate unless they can find a veteran free agent like Sam Bradford. If the qb position is addressed then this pick is likely to be an offensive lineman like Connor Williams or Orlando Brown.

 

16) Baltimore Ravens-WR Calvin Ridley 

This one is too easy. The Ravens need a receiver after Perriman failed to do anything, and Ozzie can't resist an Alabama player.

 

17) Los Angeles Chargers-NT Vita Vea 

This is a natural fit to plug up the middle of the Chargers run defense, but I honestly think Vea is too talented to go this low. We'll see if a better spot opens up somewhere in the lower teens later.

 

18) Seattle Seahawks-OT Chukwuma Okorafor 

As always the Seahawks need offensive linemen. They often neglect to address the position but with so many solid tackles available at this juncture and their line so thin I think they finally take one. Williams, Brown, or Okorafor all make sense here depending on your preference, but Seattle tends to like athletes so Williams and Okorafor make the most sense. Williams is smooth but Okorafor is stronger and stouter, better built for the run game.

 

19) Dallas Cowboys-DT Maurice Hurst 

Scouts are comparing Hurst to Aaron Donald, but Hurst has nowhere near Donald's production. Still, his highlight reel plays will likely get him drafted in the 1st and Dallas is a great spot for a quick, inside tackle to make plays next to Lawrence.

 

20) Detroit Lions-CB Isaiah Oliver 

The Lions have needed a partner for Slay for years. The value is too good here not to grab a corner with excellent production. Oliver is a candidate to end up the first corner off the board though, so he may not be available here come the draft.

 

21) Buffalo Bills-LB Roquon Smith 

The Bills will likely be looking for another QB, but picking this late leaves them few options. This is the third of the trade up candidates. Would not be surprised to see McDermott go after Josh Allen, a mobile, strong armed guy in the mold of Cam Newton. If not a QB this spot makes more sense for the undersized Smith no matter how good a player he is. Fast, intelligent field general that McDermott will make into his Kuechly.

 

22) Buffalo Bills-NT Da'Ron Payne 

The defensive line needs an upgrade. The secondary played shockingly well and McDermott likely goes after corners a little later the way they did during his time with the Panthers.

 

23) Los Angeles Rams-CB Denzel Ward 

Cornerback is one of few weaknesses on this roster. Could also see a offensive lineman like Hernandez or Price going here.

 

24) Carolina Panthers-WR Christian Kirk 

It's obvious that Funchess isn't a #1 WR. Ateman could be another target, but maybe the team goes with a smaller, playmaker type to compliment Funchess instead of recreating the twin towers approach they had with Benjamin.

 

25) Tennessee Titans-EDGE Harold Landry 

Landry is a better fit for Lebeau's defense than Marcus Davenport but who knows if Lebeau will even be back. Linebacker and guard are top needs, so Tremaine Edmunds or Will Hernandez could be good choices too.

 

26) Atlanta Falcons-WR Marcell Ateman 

The defense wasn't bad and really improved as the season wore on. The most noticeable change from the Superbowl team was the incredible drop in points per game. I think Dimitroff tries to remedy that by adding another big, physical outside receiver to compliment Julio.

 

27) New Orleans Saints-EDGE Arden Key 

Would not be shocked to see Jimmy Graham resign here to fill the hole at receiving playmaker. Arden Key is considered as talented as anyone in this class but off field issues could hold him back. Here the Saints grab the local kid to team up with Cam Jordan for a ferocious pass rush.

 

28) Pittsburgh Steelers-EDGE Marcus Davenport 

A replacement for Alvin Dupree. I expect a veteran free agent to replace Shazier if he's expected out for a time. The offense is in good hands for one last run, so adding another pass rush threat is arguably the best move.

 

29) Jacksonville Jaguars-OT Orlando Brown 

A massive, run blocking offensive lineman sounds like Coughlin and Marrone's dream. Remember they want to run the ball every play. Connor Williams also an option which would kick Cam Robinson over to RT.

 

30) Philadelphia Eagles-OT Connor Williams 

Peters is old and he'll be coming back from a scary injury. A WR makes a lot of sense here, as does a linebacker. Philly is in good position to take best available player.

 

31) Minnesota Vikings-OG/OC Billy Price 

Price is the consensus best center available while also possessing the flexibility to play guard. Wouldn't be surprised if this pick was someone like Taven Bryan. Zimmer wants to maintain his strong and deep defensive line.

 

32) New England Patriots-QB Lamar Jackson 

If not New England then someone else desperate for a QB could jump here. Jackson might not even be here as his physical skills could ignite his draft stock depending on the narrative. New England took Petrino product Mallett a few years ago as Petrino uses similar verbiage to the Patriots. If they have their eye on Luke Falk instead then a linebacker or offensive tackle makes a ton of sense here. As always the Patriots can do whatever they feel like (assuming Belichick is back).

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About R.C. Fischer

R.C. Fischer is an NFL Draft analyst for College Football Metrics, and a football projections analyst and writer for Fantasy Football Metrics. 

Learn more about RC and the College Football Metrics system >>