11. Cleveland Browns
Ed Oliver, iDL, Houston
Is Ed Oliver going to fall because he wore the wrong coat on the sideline and then left the stadium? Because he didn’t play for the second half of the ultimate AAC game against Memphis? I don’t really know, because I don’t really understand what’s going on there. Oliver will have to account for the whole debacle and answer tough questions about his choices, but I think his fall in this mock had more to do with the heavy premium on EDGE rushers and the ascent of Quinnen Williams. Good news for Cleveland, as they continue to pour resources into their defensive front: Garrett – Ogunjobi – Oliver – Ogbah/Avery is a nice set-up.
12. Green Bay Packers
Josh Allen, EDGE, Kentucky
I didn’t originally think him a Round 1 player before the season, but Josh Allen’s improved 2018 tape has vaulted him into this conversation. I still think there are a few EDGEs worthy of this spot over Allen — Montez Sweat or Jachai Polite — but Allen’s production and athleticism are hard to argue with. He’s gotta take strides in terms of hand usage and set recognition, but DC Mike Pettine will like his coverage/rush versatility a ton.
13. Miami Dolphins
Tyler Biadasz, iOL, Wisconsin
While he’s only a redshirt sophomore, he is a future first-rounder, and if he comes out in the 2019 class, he’ll be treated as such. Biadasz is more than big enough to play guard at the next level on a Miami offensive line which oh so desperately needs it. With his mobility and angles on top of his power, Biadasz seems to me a Pro Bowl caliber player. The Dolphins have to answer questions at the quarterback position, but no matter who’s back there, they need bolstered trench play.
14. Denver Broncos
Greedy Williams, CB, LSU
Denver likely would have snagged Jeffery Simmons/Ed Oliver if Atlanta had taken Greedy; so if you really hate the pick for either team, just switch ‘em and don’t complain to me about it. We know Denver has found success in recent history with elite corner play, and that’s why they invest a first rounder in Greedy Williams. Williams has the frame, quickness, and eye discipline to play in almost any alignment, though he has struggled int he press this year. Off coverage, as Denver often deploys, is a great use of his skill set.
15. Philadelphia Eagles
Deionte Thompson, SAF, Alabama
The injury bug bit Philly bad this season, and it all began with a Week 3 injury to free safety Rodney McLeod. With again vets in Chris Maragos and Corey Graham as their stopgap options (both of whom missed major time this season) Philadelphia safety depth was exposed, and their corners left isolated on islands. Thompson comes in as McLeod’s heir in the deep middle, offering elite range to soften the load for the boundary corners in Jim Schwartz’s heavy Cover 3 scheme.
16. Cincinnati Bengals
Irv Smith Jr., TE, Alabama
I put three tight ends in the Top 20 because I just don’t care — I don’t think it’s ever happened. To be frank, however, this tight end class is B-O-N-K-E-R-S bonkers; and we should anticipate more tight ends going in Round 1 in the future, as the role of the tight end expands beyond that of blocker first, intermediate target second. Irv Smith Jr. offers silly speed and great hands for the position, with the same limited route tree that gave O.J. Howard questions when he came out. Smith will have to test like Howard to go Round 1, but I think he’ll blow the doors off the 40, 10-yard split, and vertical jump. Time to look beyond Eifert (and Marvin) for the Bengals.
17. Tennessee Titans
Montez Sweat, EDGE, Mississippi State
Feels like this Tennessee team is just a year (and another good draft) away from being really competitive. Whether or not that good draft includes a new QB (I don’t think so), adding another young EDGE to the mix of a high-flying defense makes too much sense: enter Sweat, a different style rusher to Landry in that he wins with hand usage and length before explosiveness and bend. Sweat, Casey, Landry, Jackson, Byard, and Evans — lot to like there, folks.
18. Indianapolis Colts
Jachai Polite, EDGE, Florida
I’d love to give Frank Reich and Andrew Luck some more offensive weapons in the passing game — looking at you, Kelvin Harmon — but honestly, I’m also down with watching them put up 400 yards a game throwing to *checks notes* Chester Rogers. Reich benefitted from a great pass rush in Philadelphia, and knows the value of a deep group — so bring in Polite, a super bendy rusher to put opposite Kemoko Turay and really stress offensive lines with wide alignments.
19. Seattle Seahawks
Jerry Tillery, iDL, Notre Dame
Man if Tillery doesn’t feel like a Seattle defensive lineman of yore: length, strength, power, and explosiveness. His tape is more inconsistent than you’d like to see, but I remember another interior penetrator with up-and-down film the Seahawks gambled on in Round 1. I’ll like Tillery more than I did Malik McDowell, and I think Seattle will as well: he offers tremendous upside and seems to be on a positive developmental track in his senior season. Super interesting dude, too.
20. Carolina Panthers
Yodny Cajuste, OT, West Virginia
I don’t know how many years it’s been that we’ve sat here, mocking offensive linemen to Carolina. You could have sold me on Wiscy’s David Edwards at tackle, or rather attacked the interior directly, with Boston College’s Chris Lindstrom or NC State Garrett Bradbury. As it is, I elected to go for Cajuste, who has played himself into Round 1 consideration with his athletic ability, flexibility, and length at the position. Carolina will bring back Matt Kalil and Daryl Williams from IR, and has seen good play from Taylor Moton — but they need better interior play, and Moton can bump inside. Never a problem, having too many offensive linemen who can play tackle.
21. Washington Redskins
Hakeem Butler, WR, Iowa State
Wanted to get Butler in about seven different spots (really, three: CLE, IND, TEN) before Washington cashed in on the pick. This might be a bit of a stretch for Butler, who will need to affirm some wild testing numbers that Iowa State claims he’s hit — but with his size and explosiveness, Butler is a stellar vertical threat that offers inaccuracy erasing ability with his length. Will Smith be willing to hit him deep? If not, go get a new quarterback (or just pay the one you already had, you dolts). Butler officially puts the cap on the “Josh Doctson: Starter?” experience.