21. Seattle Seahawks: Deionte Thompson, S, Alabama
What? Not mocking an available Rashan Gary to the Seahawks is widely considered blasphemy — BUT I DON’T CARE!!!
Thompson is an attractive fit for the Seahawks model of building defense. They have thrived under the prowling eyes of Earl Thomas as a single high free safety. And while Thompson struggled in the 2018 CFB Playoff, it doesn’t change his value and role in the NFL.
I considered Greedy Williams here as well, but the emergence of Tre’ Flowers as a viable NFL corner takes the urgency out of that projection.
22. Baltimore Ravens: Marquise Brown, WR, Oklahoma
The Ravens took a risk on QB Lamar Jackson last spring and Jackson’s selection bore fruit immediately: he helped kick-start the Ravens to the playoffs.
But Jackson still needs help as a passer. And my best solution is Hollywood Brown. Why? Because Hollywood has speed to burn and runs really crisp routes. His separation skills will ease the need for Lamar to be a pinpoint passer, instead Lamar’s general accuracy can get a wide open Hollywood Brown the football downfield.
23. Houston Texans: Jawaan Taylor, OT, Florida
The Texans need offensive line, no matter what. I don’t even care if it’s a reach. The good news? Jawaan Taylor isn’t a reach. Holy smokes. I just did this guy’s film over the weekend in Mobile, AL and I was not disappointed!
Taylor is a mammoth offensive tackle and his mobility is stunning to see in action. Yes, Taylor needs to clean up his hand placement and punch. But there’s ample tools to work with and Taylor’s grip strength allows him to clamp down on pass rushers of all shapes and sizes.
24. Oakland Raiders (via Chicago Bears): Rashan Gary, iDL, Michigan
The Raiders’ slew of picks need to accomplish a few things but it can be centered around a central theme: add play-makers. And with the earlier addition of D.K. Metcalf, Raider Nation can rest easy knowing there’s a new Sheriff in town as a weapon.
Rashan Gary can help amplify the disruption on the defensive side of the football. Gary can play defensive end and then kick inside to rush the passer alongside Maurice Hurst on third downs. Gary’s potent hands and ability to defend the run make him a diverse player with explosive qualities…he’s a rare “high ceiling” guy with a firm skill set in other aspects of the game that should allow him to grow as a starter.
25. Philadelphia Eagles: Jeffery Simmons, iDL, Mississippi State
The Eagles had success their first time dipping their bucket into the Mississippi State iDL pool (Fletcher Cox). Why not go again? The Eagles’ defensive system under Jim Schwartz calls for chaos up front: the defensive line is designed to get into the backfield and make a mess of things.
Putting Simmons between Fletcher Cox and Derek Barnett/Michael Bennett/Brandon Graham (Graham is a free agent) would certainly free up everyone on the line to make a mess of opposing backfields.
26. Indianapolis Colts: Deandre Baker, CB, Georgia
I would have loved to slot a 3T here for the Colts but the Eagles and Falcons had other plans for Indy. No worries. Indianapolis invested heavily at DE last spring, so how about a little love for the secondary? Deandre Baker is one of the best cornerbacks in the country, adding him to a secondary that will need to be on their A-game to battle Houston each year will come in handy.
Baker has tremendous ball skills and plays a physical brand of football, perhaps he can be the ball hawk CB to compliment FS Malik Hooker on the back end.
27. Oakland Raiders (via Dallas Cowboys): T.J. Hockenson, TE, Iowa
Don’t say I never do anything for you, Raider Nation. Landing Hockenson and Metcalf in the same class? This is a tremendous pairing to go with QB Derek Carr in Coach Gruden’s second season. Hockenson is a throwback at heart: he’s a mauler in the ground game but a receiving threat in his own right.
The Raiders should be thrilled to target a potential replacement for free agent TE Jared Cook and know he’s more versatile than the incumbent.
28. Los Angeles Chargers: Dexter Lawrence, iDL, Clemson
The Chargers’ defensive front is getting a little long in the tooth, but the mammoth Lawrence can go a long way in getting this squad to anchor more effectively. The Chargers saw their season end at the hands of the Patriots, thanks in large part to their inability to stop the run.
Lawrence’s specialty? You guessed it. Stopping the run.
29. Kansas City Chiefs: Nasir Adderley, S, Delaware
Speaking of poor performances from 2018, shouts to the Chiefs secondary. How do you combat such a poor showing, despite finishing first in the league in sacks (52) last year? You have to upgrade the secondary.
Senior Bowl standout Nasir Adderley would be a welcomed addition for the Chiefs. Adderley’s showing at the 2019 Senior Bowl suggests he’s a true safety: his man to man skills are frustrating and ineffective, but that’s just fine.
Let Adderley acclimate to life in the NFL as a Safety and he will prosper. Adding him to the Chiefs secondary gives the team much needed reinforcements on the back end.
30. Green Bay Packers (via New Orleans Saints): Noah Fant, TE, Iowa
Sure, Hockenson would have been a terrific add. But let’s not act like Noah Fant is some scrub, either. Fant has elite receiving traits and quietly got better as a blocker this past season for the Hawkeyes before leaving early for the 2019 NFL Draft.
The Packers, having already addressed the pass rush at 12 with Brian Burns, need to give QB Aaron Rodgers someone new to throw the ball to. Fant can be a big factor in the middle of the field, up the seam and in the red zone.
31. New England Patriots: Montez Sweat, EDGE, Mississippi State
One of the standouts from last week’s Senior Bowl practices, Sweat makes sense for the Patriots when considering their tendencies and situation. The Pats like guys who can stack up the line of scrimmage: check. The Patriots like to invest their early picks on trench players: check. The Patriots like guys with length: check.
The Patriots are potentially losing Trey Flowers to free agency this off-season, so the time to consider an heir is now. With a little luck (Patriots get a ton of it, to be honest), maybe Sweat can be the guy.
32. Los Angeles Rams: Mack Wilson, LB, Alabama
The Rams won’t have Brockers, Suh and Donald forever. So it’s time to consider upgrading elsewhere (with cheap labor) to help keep the defense operational. The Rams watched Corey Littleton get abused in coverage by Alvin Kamara…perhaps a cover linebacker could help?
Wilson can do both, he’s a great athlete but also effective knifing into the line of scrimmage to challenge the play.