Well, this is fun. Usually, Mondays at TDN offer one of the members of the scouting team a day filled with angry mentions thanks to whoever is up in the queue for the weekly mock draft effort. And then, by mid-week, someone else on the team has taken the critiques a step further, breaking down your effort in a meticulous fashion. I’ve lost count on the number of times my mock has been “mocked”. But now the shoe is on the other foot, as I’ve been given the task of dissecting a mock compiled from several other members of the TDN staff.
I’m more than happy to.
And so here is the end result put together by TDN’s Jaime Eisner, Ryan Fowler, Crissy Froyd, Jack McKessy, and Justin Melo. And, just as important, some of my gut reactions to this week’s effort.
One pick I’m over the moon for: Browns selecting Alabama WR Jameson Williams
The Browns obviously moved on from wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. this season amid struggles to maintain chemistry with quarterback Baker Mayfield. But even with Beckham Jr. among the ranks in Cleveland, I thought the wide receiver room was a little too thin. We’re seeing good things from Donovan Peoples-Jones in a limited role but where on earth is the outside passing production? Tight end David Njoku leads the team with 407 receiving yards but 149 of those came in Week 5 against the Los Angeles Chargers. This team needs more weapons outside desperately and Williams is skyrocketing up boards this winter. I’m very much in.
One pick I’m mad online about: Chiefs selecting Penn State WR Jahan Dotson
I’m gonna be honest, Jaime. I’m not mad because it is a bad pick. I’m mad because it obnoxiously makes all the sense in the world and continues to make this passing offense a nightmare for the AFC. But with that said, the Chiefs’ defense is 26th in yards allowed this season and has needed some late juice against Green Bay (seven points allowed versus Jordan Love), Las Vegas (14 points allowed) Dallas (nine points allowed), and Denver (nine points allowed) in their last four games to get the scoring defense back on track. Names like Jaquan Brisker and David Ojabo were left on the board—and I’d have loved those additions, too.
The ‘Hey, it could happen!’ pick: Broncos selecting Nevada QB Carson Strong
Denver needs an answer at quarterback that they currently don’t have. Drew Lock has yet to take the step many hoped for and has fully yielded the starting job to Teddy Bridgewater. And we know what Bridgewater is at this point; there’s a glass ceiling that is hard to shake off with Bridgewater’s calculated play. Enter Strong: a big-armed quarterback with a lot of the traits that you already know Broncos executive John Elway is going to like. Of course, Elway has yielded the general manager position to George Paton, but I still envision this pairing being a fit. If Strong can do well through the pre-draft process and help convince teams about some lingering questions regarding his medicals, I could see this coming to life.
The annoyingly good value picks:
- Dallas selecting Penn State safety Jaquan Brisker at No. 26
- Green Bay selecting Michigan EDGE David Ojabo at No. 30
- New England selecting Georgia NT Jordan Davis at No. 31
Dallas, Green Bay, and New England all hauling tremendous values after pick No. 25 isn’t fair to the rest of us. As an avid member of #JustDraftGoodPlayers, I love the value that Ryan and Jaime found with these three picks. But putting Davis in the heart of the Patriots’ line next to Christian Barmore is borderline unforgivable for Buffalo Bills, Miami Dolphins, and New York Jets fans.
One pick I’m totally stealing: Raiders selecting Texas A&M DL DeMarvin Leal
It is hard to say with confidence how things are going to shake out with the Raiders amid the mid-season coaching change. What impact does that have on Mike Mayock? We don’t know. But if the drafting criteria stays the same in Las Vegas, this pick is perfect. Leal is a big-school prospect with freakish size and athleticism. That’s kinda been a legitimate ‘thing’ for the Raiders for a while now.