11. Cincinnati Bengals: Cody Ford, OT, Oklahoma
A mock draft that doesn’t have Devin White as the Bengals pick at No. 11? That was a tired idea and I wanted to go in a different direction this time.
Cincinnati made strides to improve its offensive line last offseason but there is still work to be done. The Bengals cannot continue to trot out Bobby Hart as its right tackle, and with his contract expired, the time is now to move on. Ford is a rare dude. He is a massive man with rare mobility for his size and the type of power expected for his frame.
12. Green Bay Packers: T.J. Hockenson, TE, Iowa
Calm down, Wisconsin. Your edge rusher comes at pick No. 30. And while you may prefer to see it with pick No. 12, Hockenson to the Packers is a match made in Heaven.
Green Bay has never truly provided Aaron Rodgers with a tight end like Hockenson. He combines all of the qualities found in a throwback tight end that can block and catch with the versatility to serve as a modern day weapon that is moved across the formation. Every team wants to have a good tight end but very few are actual difference makers. Hockenson has the upside to be a game-changing presence that can take Green Bay’s offense to new heights.
13. Miami Dolphins: Jonah Williams, OT, Alabama
The Dolphins are headed towards a total rebuild and that’s exactly what needs to happen. Stuck in perpetual mediocrity, Miami must build a new nucleus and establish a new course. Doing so with a young quarterback would be ideal but Miami is in no-man’s land picking at No. 13 when it comes to quarterback options and I wouldn’t be so eager to trade up in this year’s class.
Among the reasons Ryan Tannehill never panned out for Miami was the Dolphins’ inability to fortify the starting offensive line in front of him. A three-year starter for Alabama, Williams can step in at tackle or guard and become a much-needed building block up front and help solidify things for whenever the next franchise quarterback is identified.
14. Atlanta Falcons: Jeffery Simmons, iDL, Mississippi State
With glaring needs on the interior offensive and defensive lines, the strength of the 2019 Draft aligns wonderfully with what Atlanta needs. Whether or not Grady Jarrett is re-signed, Atlanta needs to get better up the middle defensively.
Simmons is an exciting interior defensive line prospect that plays with an unrelenting motor, impressive play strength, nuanced technique and the tenacity needed to beat blocks and make plays near the line of scrimmage.
15. Washington Redskins: D.K. Metcalf, WR, Ole Miss
If you follow my work, you should know what I think about Metcalf. I believe he has the highest ceiling of any offensive prospect in this year’s class and he’s an absolute freak. He has been fully medically cleared from his neck injury and all I can really say is, “You’re welcome, Hogettes!’
Washington needs a true alpha in the passing game and Metcalf has rare traits. He has explosive burst and dominant play strength that make him difficult to cover. He features an outstanding above-the-rim game and a massive wingspan to win at the catch point. He has every trait needed to develop as a route runner and become one of the NFL’s premiere receivers.
16. Carolina Panthers: Clelin Ferrell, EDGE, Clemson
Carolina can go in a number of different directions. The offensive line needs work and the safety position has been a question mark for several seasons. For the Panthers, it should be about prioritizing areas of concern and outside of quarterback play, being able to get after the opposing quarterbacks is paramount for fielding a winning team. The Patriots were the only team ranked in the bottom 10 of the NFL in sacks recorded on defense in 2018 that finished the season with a winning record. With Julius Peppers announcing his retirement, the need could not be greater for Carolina.
Racking up 50.5 tackles for loss and 27 sacks across the last three season at Clemson, Ferrell was one of college football’s most prolific EDGE rushers. He has prototypical size, excellent play strength, length and the technical refinement needed to be an impact rusher in the NFL.
17. Cleveland Browns: Christian Wilkins, iDL, Clemson
Cleveland has improved its roster so much in recent years and the core nucleus of building blocks has never been easier to identify for the Browns. Adding Wilkins to the mix would continue that trend of acquiring culture-changing players to the roster.
A mainstay on Clemson’s dominant defenses in recent years, Wilkins is a dynamic interior defender that can rush the passer and remain stout against the run. The defenses Steve Wilkes was part of in Carolina were top-tier units largely because the Panthers had a wrecking ball in Kawaan Short up front. Wilkins can be that type of player at the next level and pair nicely with Larry Ogunjobi to give the Browns one of the most exciting young defensive tackle duos in the league.
18. Minnesota Vikings: Garrett Bradbury, iOL, NC State
The days of the offensive line holding back the Vikings offense must come to an end and I expect Minnesota to make considerable investments to fortify things in front of franchise quarterback Kirk Cousins. With Gary Kubiak in the mix as the Associate Head Coach, Minnesota figures to transition to a zone-heavy run scheme and Bradbury is the perfect fit.
Bradburry shows advanced technique for a tight end convert and his rare lateral mobility that leads to hitting reach blocks on three techniques is unbelievable. His range and ability to work in space are top traits. While he isn’t the most powerful blocker, he has a knack for finding leverage points on defenders and creating movement in the run game while offering silky smooth footwork in pass protection.
19. Tennessee Titans: Chris Lindstrom, iOL, Boston College
Hello Titans, fans. We get it, you don’t think you need a cornerback despite Malcolm Butler, Logan Ryan and to a lesser degree, Adoree’ Jackson getting torched repeatedly in coverage last season. Let’s hope they all have bounce back years in 2019 and turn the attention to the interior offensive line where Tennessee also needs help.
A four-year starter for the Eagles dominant rushing attacks, Lindstrom has the play strength needed to create movement in the run game and his experience outside at tackle lends itself favorably to his ability to pass protect. Lindstrom can help fortify an NFL interior offensive line right away.
20. Pittsburgh Steelers: Byron Murphy, CB, Washington
With Artie Burns continuing to get torched left and right and Joe Haden’s contract expiring after next season, Pittsburgh needs to get the cornerback position right in a hurry. Coverage blunders became the norm for Pittsburgh last season and it has to stop.
Murphy is the best cornerback in the coming draft. He has lightning quick feet, fluid hips, explosive burst, ball skills and the overall coverage skills needed to become a lockdown guy in the NFL.