Mock Draft 2.0 - 2022 NFL Draft
We are finally under two weeks until the 2022 NFL Draft. Until then, mock drafts fly around and predictions are made with speed.
Teams are making phone calls and deciding if they desire a higher selection, or stand firm with their current fate.
In this mock draft, several teams impatience throws caution in the wind, moving up to select a (potentially) franchise altering player.
Let's get after it.
1. Jacksonville Jaguars - Aidan Hutchinson, EDGE - Michigan
Endless possibilities. Trade this pick and gain capital, or stand firm and select the next generations great EDGE rusher? JAX ends up keeping the pick and taking Hutchinson. But don't rule out EDGE Travon Walker or OT Evan Neal.
*Seattle acquires the 2nd overall pick from Detroit for the 9th overall pick + future compensation*
2. Seattle Seahawks - Malik Willis, QB - Liberty
The first shock of the NFL Draft comes from Seattle. Armed with a bounty of picks from the Russell Wilson trade to Denver, Seattle moves up seven spots to nab its next franchise QB while still having plenty of picks later in the draft to bolster its roster.
3. Houston Texans - Evan Neal, OT - Alabama
With the first QB off the board due to a massive trade, Houston is undoubtably taking phone calls from QB hungry teams about moving up. While tempted, the Texans, with another first round pick waiting in the wings, keep the pick and add the drafts best OT.
4. New York Jets - Travon Walker, EDGE - Georgia
The Jets have a choice: Kayvon Thibodeaux or Travon Walker? They roll the dice with Walker, blocking the Giants from taking him.
5. New York Giants - Kayvon Thibodeaux, EDGE - Oregon
A "consolation prize" for the Giants after missing out on Walker, the G-Men make the easy call and draft Thibodeaux. With another pick and two premiere tackles still on the board, they can afford to wait on an O-Lineman with the 7th pick.
6. Carolina Panthers - Kenny Pickett, QB - Pittsburgh
What we do know: Carolina needs and wants a QB. What we don't know: When or how it'll happen... But... The Matt Ruhle/Kenny Pickett connection links these two together once more. With other QB hungry teams trying to make a move up, the Panthers exhale as Pickett makes it to the 6th pick.
7. New York Giants - Ikem Ekwonu, OT - NC State
The Giants have their pick between Ekwonu and Charles Cross. Ekwonu is considered by many as the second best in the draft behind Neal. The Giants help Daniel Jones make one final push to be the franchise QB.
8. Atlanta Falcons - Garrett Wilson, WR - Ohio State
I am extremely tempted to put 'Bama star WR Jameson Williams in this slot, but the Falcons need to be sure their first round pick can contribute quickly and be healthy to do so. And it's not as though Wilson isn't up to the challenge. He's widely considered the top WR in this years draft. Atlanta doesn't have the chance to grab a top EDGE here, so they go WR.
*Detroit acquires the 9th overall pick from Seattle for the 2nd overall pick + future compensation*
9. Detroit Lions - Kyle Hamilton, CB - Notre Dame
Absolutely best-case scenario for the Lions after moving down seven slots. The board plays in their favor with Hamilton falling to 9th overall, and the Lions, after stockpiling Seattle picks, adds a playmaker for the defense.
10. New York Jets - Ahmad Gardner, CB - Cincinnati
NYJ may have to take Sauce at No. 4 if they want him. But passing up on Walker wasn't an option. Here, it's a dream Sauce falls to them. That defense just changed for the better within an hours span.
11 .Washington Commanders - Drake London, WR - USC
With Wilson off the board at WR, the Commanders turn their attention to London. He gives new QB Carson Wentz a tantalizing duo in London and Terry McLaurin.
12. Minnesota Vikings - Derek Stingley Jr., CB - LSU
Match made in heaven. Stingley Jr. can learn under the wings of Patrick Peterson. I think this is one of the easier picks in the draft if Stingley Jr. is still available at No. 12 overall.
*New Orleans acquires the 13th overall pick from Houston for the 16th overall pick + future compensation*
13. New Orleans Saints - Charles Cross, OT - Mississippi State
The Saints wait no longer to move up and grab a top-8 potential talent in Charles Cross. If they don't draft a QB, the Saints are going to want to improve the offensive line. Cross accomplishes exactly that.
14. Baltimore Ravens - Tyler Linderbaum, OT - Iowa
Linderbaum could be a top 10 pick if the draft falls a certain way and teams are desperate for OT talent (which many are), but Baltimore would be thrilled to nab him at 14.
15. Philadelphia Eagles - Treylon Burks, WR - Arkansas
Another draft with a first round WR picked for the Eagles? Why not. Bolster the talent around Jalen Hurts and see what he can do with it. If Hurts isn't the guy, give whoever is the man under center another weapon for 2023.
*Houston acquires the 16th overall pick from New Orleans for the 13th overall pick + future compensation*
16. Houston Texans - Jermaine Johnson, EDGE - Florida State
More influx of talent for the Texans. With plenty of options on the board at this point, they turn their attention to the defensive end to find a pass rusher to build around.
17. Los Angeles Chargers - Jordan Davis, DT - Georgia
Run stuffer. Great player that will wreck havoc in an AFC West that needs players to stop high powered offenses. Davis is up to the task.
18. Philadelphia Eagles - George Karlaftis, EDGE - Purdue
Teams seem to be all over the place on Karlaftis draft slot, but what we do know is he can be a force to be reckon with. With Burks on board offensively with the first Eagles pick, Philly packs the EDGE with Karlaftis.
19. New Orleans Saints - Jameson Williams, WR - Alabama
Williams could easily be the pick at 13 for the Saints in their trade up with Houston, but they snag him at 19. The offense is entering a new era in New Orleans, but a QB will have to wait further more.
20. Pittsburgh Steelers - Desmond Ridder, QB - Cincinnati
Surprise! Matt Corral could be the pick here, too. But we go with Ridder who can give Mitch Trubisky a run for the starting gig in year 1. The Saints could take a long, hard look at Ridder with one of their first round picks, but he falls to Pittsburgh and the Steelers go for it.
21 .New England Patriots - Devin Lloyd, LB - Utah
Loyd is a machine. A perfect cog in the defensive machine for New England. Maybe TOO perfect of a fit.
22. Green Bay Packers - Chris Olave, WR - Ohio State
The draft could see Olave selected in the top-15, but with teams making deals and moving up to select players they want most, Olave is lost in the shuffle and falls to a WR starved team in Green Bay. The 20-year streak of not drafting a Day 1 WR is over.
23. Arizona Cardinals - Zion Johnson, OL - Boston College
The Cardinals would have loved an EDGE rusher, but with the top five prospects off the board, Arizona rolls with a plug-and-play lineman in Johnson.
24. Dallas Cowboys - Trevor Penning, OT - Northern Iowa
Not the loudest pick Dallas could have made here, but boy is it going to be a pick they love. Penning is a Day 1 starter and makes up for some of the lost pieces in the Dallas offseason.
25. Buffalo Bills - Andrew Booth Jr., CB - Clemson
This seems like a popular pairing, and for good reason. Give this defense another chess piece to use and create issues for opposing offenses. Also, never hurts to have more firepower to stop a loaded AFC.
26. Tennessee Titans - Nakobe Dean, LB - Georgia
Tennessee has many options at this point. Dean is a player who can make an immediate impact on a Titans defense that already has great pieces.
27. Tampa Bay Buccaneers - Boye Mafe, EDGE - Minnesota
Stock rising, Mafe has a chance to be on a top-flight defense and blend in, giving him a year to cash in on teams not accounting for him. He is going to be a popular name floating around the mid-to-late first round.
28. Green Bay Packers - Devonte Wyatt, DL - Georgia
Thought maybe the Pack could double-dip at WR (Christian Watson comes to mind). But with Wyatt on the board, they call his name. We know Green Bay is a team that loves drafting best available. And this fits the bill. But, it also fills a second major need in round 1. Georgia's George Pickens could be a Day 2 selection for Green Bay at WR.
29. Kansas City Chiefs - Daxton Hill, S - Michigan
The notion that Kansas city could draft a WR with one of these two back-to-back picks is real. However, there are many premiere defensive players left on the board and the Chiefs don't want to pass up on the chance to nab them. It the Honey Badger does leave KC, Hill is a perfect fit. Even if Tyrann Mathieu returns, Hill can play alongside or in the slot.
30. Kansas City Chiefs - Trent McDuffie, CB - Washington
Pick 30 is prime trade-zone candidate. In this spot, KC keeps it. Double-dipping in the secondary may not be a popular idea in round 1 for KC, but the loaded AFC West has to be stopped. Stocking up on DBs, talented DBs, is an excellent move for KC. McDuffie is also a possible top-15 pick. So to see him at 30 would be a gem of pick. McDuffie falling this far has nothing to do with him, more so how teams are drafting.
31 .Cincinnati Bengals - Kaiir Elam, CB - Florida
Finding ways to keep pace with the AFC is going to be tough, but grabbing Elam at the end of round 1 is a great addition. They would have loved McDuffie to fall one more spot, but Elam is fantastic.
32. Detroit Lions - Jahan Dotson, WR - Penn State
Daxton Hill was the hopeful pick for the Lions, but with him off the board, anything is on the table. That includes a QB. However, the Lions need playmakers who can contribute today, and Dotson can absolutely be a target for Jared Goff on Day 1.