With the NFL season officially over -- and the AAF season officially underway (Go Iron) -- your head is going to be overrun by numerous amounts of mock drafts between now and April.
So that's why I've decided to get a little (maybe a lot) crazy with my 6.0 Mock Draft for your entertainment.
Quarterbacks control every single draft class. Whether it's stacked at the top or scarce all around, the flow of every draft weekend comes and goes as the quarterbacks do. With a huge question mark over this 2019 quarertback class, that leaves the door of possibilities wide open when it comes to predicting what could happen.
In this mock draft, I have nearly half of the teams selecting in the first round not selecting in their original draft spots via trades both up and down. It's an unlikely reality as a whole, but I wanted to give some fans an idea of what it could look like if their team moved up or down.
We know it will happen, we just don't know which teams will be aggressive yet.
Here's my guess at a ton of trades that could be in the realm of realism when draft weekend rolls around.
1. Oakland Raiders (via ARI): Nick Bosa, EDGE, Ohio State
*TRADE* ARI sends No. 1 to OAK for No. 4 and No. 27.
In the words of legendary coach Jon Gruden, it's hard to find good pass rushers in this league. That's why when you trade away one of the best ones you have, you better do everything you can to replace him.
The Raiders have three first round picks. I would suggest they use them to get a pass rusher. Now, could they sit at No. 4 and wait to get one there? Sure, but there's a chance that all three teams in front of them could choose an edge rusher. I don't think it's Oakland's style to sit and wait. Due to them not paying the price of a pick for a quarterback, I think they can give Arizona just one of their extra first round picks to get up and get Bosa.
2. San Francisco 49ers: Josh Allen, EDGE, Kentucky
San Francisco needs the best talent on the defensive line they can get, but unfortunately for them Quinnen Williams would start eating into other high draft assets like Solomon Thomas and DeForest Buckner on the inside -- they sort of just need Thomas to figure it out in the middle and upgrade elsewhere.
San Fran would benefit much more by getting themselves one of the best edge players in this stacked edge class at No. 2. Now, I don't think the talent gap between that of Josh Allen, Brian Burns and Jachai Polite is that far, if spacious at all, but it seems the NFL really likes Allen the most, so mocking him here makes sense.
3. Washington Redskins (via NYJ): Kyler Murray, QB, Oklahoma
*TRADE* NYJ send No. 3 to WAS for No. 15, No. 46 and a first rounder in 2020.
Unless Washington wants to start *checks notes* 32 year old Josh Johnson for an entire season in 2019, they better draft a quarterback, and in this class they better draft one high.
Alex Smith isn't playing in 2019. There's just no way. He might not even play again with that leg injury. With Smith commanding $20 million in cap space, it's unlikely they'll be able to sign a big name quarterback in free agency either.
That brings us to the draft and the desperation to get into the Top 5. If Washington is trading one second rounder this year and one first rounder next year to move up, you can bet they're going to swing for the fences with which guy they choose.
That's Kyler Murray.
4. Arizona Cardinals (via OAK): Quinnen Williams, iDL, Alabama
*TRADE* OAK sends No. 4 and No. 27 to ARI for No. 1.
Well, this worked out lovely for the Cardinals now didn't it?
This would be the beauty of a trade back by the Cardinals. If they can stay in the Top 5 and yet acquire more premium Top 50 picks, they should absolutely do it. The Cardinals' roster needs help beyond just one pick at No. 1, especially since that pick won't be a quarterback.
Quinnen Williams is one of the best football players in this draft class, and getting him at No. 4 would feel like a steal.
5. Jackson ville Jaguars (via TB): Dwayne Haskins, QB, Ohio State
*TRADE* TB sends No. 5 and No. 135 to JAX for No. 7, No. 69 and a third round pick in 2020.
I do think that some team is going to trade up into the Top 5 for a quarterback, and once that happens I can see the other handful of teams that also need one starting to get very restless as the clock ticks.
Buccaneers general manager Jason Licht loves the draft. It's his favorite game to play. He also loves having the chance to get more picks and select more players. That's why I think a small move back to No. 7 with Jacksonville could be in the cards. This way the Jags get to jump the Giants to pick their quarterback and the Buccaneers get some extra picks to play with later.
Jacksonville MUST come away from this draft with either Murray or Haskins.
6. Miami Dolphins (via NYG): Drew Lock, QB, Missouri
*TRADE* NYG sends No. 6 to MIA for No. 13, No. 79 and second round pick in 2020.
Yeah, hey, remember that quarterback panic I was referencing earlier? Well, this is another step in that direction.
It's sort of like the Jaguars seeing Kyler Murray go off the board. If any team after Murray and Haskins gets selected is considering Drew Lock with their first pick, they're going to do what they need to do to get him. Free agency could certainly change this pick, but if Miami somehow goes into draft weekend with the quarterback set up they have now, they'll get desperate -- they have to.
On a more positive note, Lock still has a high ceiling as a quarterback, even if picking him here is high. That arm of his is fantastic and he seemed to have a great head on his shoulders when we talked to him at the Senior Bowl. He knows where he has to improve with footwork and mechanics to become as consistent as he needs to be.
7. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (via JAX): Jawaan Taylor, OT, Florida
*TRADE* JAX sends No. 7, No. 69 and a third round pick in 2020 to TB for No. 5 and No. 135.
Honestly, if Quinnen Williams is off the board, the Buccaneers have a lot of room to be flexible. Even with this pick, I am assuming left tackle Donovan Smith is going to be back, at least for 2019. But, the Bucs still need to work on an answer at right tackle with Demar Dotson aging.
The Bucs could pick any of Jonah Williams, Jawaan Taylor or Cody Ford here and I think it would be worth it, but the reason I went with Taylor is how good he is in pass protection. With new head coach Bruce Arians, the Bucs are sill going to be a vertical offense. That's going to require their offensive tackles to be comfortable in long pass sets while blocking for three or four seconds per snap. Taylor projects best for that, and for the right tackle position, if you ask me.
8. Detroit Lions: Brian Burns, EDGE, Florida State
If the draft board falls like this, Lions fans will be jumping for joy.
Burns is good enough to go anywhere from pick No.2 to this pick here at No. 8 -- I doubt he'd gets past Detroit. Edge play is a high need for the Lions, and they're certainly hoping the top of the draft is going to go as quarterback crazy as possible.
9. Buffalo Bills: Jonah Williams, OT, Alabama
The Bills could certainly get themselves a playmaker for quarterback Josh Allen to throw to, and because of that guys like D.K. Metcalf, Kelvin Harmon and even T.J. Hockenson could come into play. But you can't throw if you can't protect, and that's why I have the Bills taking Williams to bolster their trenches.
There will be plenty of playmakers to grab on Day 2.
10. Tennessee Titans (via DEN): Jachai Polite, EDGE, Florida
*TRADE* DEN sends No. 10 to TEN for No. 19, No. 83 and No. 157
Every year there's at least one team that comes out of nowhere to make a move that you didn't expect. For this mock draft, I'm predicting it's the Titans.
After watching three of the top four edge rushers go off the board, the Titans could be sitting at No. 19 sweating that when they go on the clock at No. 19 the pickings will be slim or none for the position they need most. I expect Denver to be in the draft market for a quarterback, but I also expect them to take a swing at one in free agency. If they land one, say a Nick Foles or a Teddy Bridgewater, they would likely be a trade partner via moving back in the draft in order to pick up some extra picks and players.
Tennessee would get a dynamic pass rusher to combine with Harold Landry with Brian Orakpo retiring and Derrick Morgan now over the age of 30.
11. Cincinnati Bengals: Devin White, LB, LSU
As stated before, this one is a very popular mock draft pick to the Cincinnati Bengals, but it makes a lot of sense.
The Bengals have needs at linebacker and then basically everywhere along the offensive line. But something tells me they'll want to pick White head of guys like Cody Ford and Dalton Risner. If Jawaan Taylor or Jonah Williams make it to this pick, though, I could certainly see them pulling the trigger on one of them.
12. Green Bay Packers: T.J. Hockenson, TE, Iowa
It has been reported that the Packers will be having Jimmy Graham around for 2019, but even if that's the case, I don't think you can rely on Graham anywhere near like you used to be able to earlier in his career. And even if the Packers stick with Graham for another season, Hockenson remains a top choice for them.
At 6-foot-5, 245 pounds, Hockenson is a true full-time tight end. He can block and release off the line of scrimmage, and he can get up the seam and into his routes from the slot. This guy could elongate Aaron Rodgers' career for years much like Gronk has done with Brady.
13. New York Giants (via MIA): Cody Ford, OL, Oklahoma
*TRADE* MIA sends No. 13, No. 79 and second round pick in 2020 to NYG for No. 6.
I bet the Giants would be happy selecting Cody Ford at No. 6 overall, so if they can trade back, get an extra third and fourth round pick out of it (perhaps even more) and get Ford, they should certainly be pleased.
Ford can play both right tackle or inside at guard in the NFL. I like his tape at tackle, so I think that's where you give him a shot first opposite Nate Solder.
P.s. I know some people will be yelling that I don't even mention them targeting a quarterback. I think quarterback is their number one need, but until I hear they are interested in pulling the trigger in the first round, mocking them Murray or Haskins like they should seems pointless.
14. Cleveland Browns (via ATL): Greedy Williams, CB, LSU
*TRADE* ATL sends No. 14 and No. 111 to CLE for No. 17, No. 81 and No. 145.
Things are trending up for Cleveland in some big ways. In fact, their list of draft needs isn't a mile long like it usually is. And that fact combined with their 11 draft picks (not including compensatory picks) makes them a prime candidate to move up a bit. I think that if Greedy Williams gets within striking distance for them, they'll be willing to part ways with one or more of their many late round draft picks to go pair him with Denzel Ward.
In this trade I have Cleveland and Atlanta swapping first round picks (just three spots) with Cleveland also giving up two third round picks but getting an early fourth rounder back.
15. New York Jets (via WAS): Clelin Ferrell, EDGE, Clemson
*TRADE* WAS sends No. 15, No. 46 and a first rounder in 2020 to NYJ for No. 3.
Jumping all the way from No. 3 to No. 15 is a big risk for the Jets, especially for their needs of edge rusher and offensive tackle. But, even in a doomsday scenario that I have written before this pick, they still get their hands on a really good edge player in Clelin Ferrell.
The draft doesn't happen in a vacuum, but getting an extra first round pick (Washington will probably be bad in 2019, too) and an extra second round pick while still ending up with Clelin Ferrell would be a win for the Jets in my book.
16. Carolina Panthers: Montez Sweat, EDGE, Mississippi State
Carolina's biggest needs seems to be along the offensive line, on the edge at pass rusher and then also at safety. With Ford, Williams and Taylor gone, instead of over reaching for Greg Little, I think it would make more sense to get a guy like Montez Sweat on the edge.
Sweat had a nice Senior Bowl, and I am sure the NFL took notice. He's not much of a speed rusher, but Sweat does give you a high floor, albeit a low ceiling.
17. Atlanta Falcons (via CLE): Ed Oliver, iDL, Houston
*TRADE* CLE sends No. 17, No. 81 and No. 145 to ATL for No. 14 and No. 111.
This would be a big-time win for the Falcons if they could pull something like this off.
I really don't know where the NFL will be on Ed Oliver, as it stands today. He's small -- about 280 pounds, if that -- and the only success story of an interior player that small is Aaron Donald, who is an absolute freak. I am worried about Oliver being a tweener is the wrong system, and I think the NFL agrees with me. That's why he could last until this point or even later.
But, for the Falcons, a guy like Oliver could make sense because they could play him next to Grady Jarrett on the inside or as a 5-tech on the edge. Flexibility of a defensive system will be key for Oliver, but I would trust Dan Quinn to figure it out.
18. Minnesota Vikings: Chris Lindstrom, iOL, Boston College
This one is going to be boring, but there's no way the Vikings can look anywhere else other than interior offensive line with their first pick in this draft.
Lindstrom played really well at the Senior Bowl, and he even earned the praise from fellow offensive lineman Dalton Risner at the event, who vouched for Lindstrom's talent as an interior player at the end of the week.
Plug him and play him.
19. Denver Broncos (via TEN): Christian Wilkins, iDL, Clemson
*TRADE* TEN sends No. 19 No. 83 and No. 157 to DEN for No. 10.
Whatever the result may be, whether that's trading up or down, I don't see the Broncos staying at No. 10 in this draft. They're either going to need a quarterback badly and will move up, or they will have somehow addressed that need before the draft and will move back.
In this scenario, I have them moving back to their benefit. While picking up an extra third and fifth round pick, the Broncos address one of their main needs with a player I think NFL teams will fall in love with by the time the draft rolls around. Wilkins is a guy you want on your football team, in character and talent.
20. Pittsburgh Steelers: Byron Murphy, CB, Washington
Whew. Avoided disaster by the skin of their teeth with this one.
If Greedy Williams, Byron Murphy, and all five of the top edge rushers are off the board when Pittsburgh goes on the clock, just turn off the TV if you're a Steelers fan. It would be the second year in a row where they would likely be making a massive reach for a player in the first round to help mask a massive need that likely won't work out in the long run.
But, thankfully, if Murphy is still on the board, they won't have to worry about that. They will get a true first-round cornerback.
21. Seattle Seahawks: Chauncey Gardner-Johnson, S, Florida
I truly cannot think of a player who screams SEATTLE SEAHAWKS more than Chauncey Garnder-Johnson.
Gardner-Johnson is a hybrid (plays both strong safety and nickel cornerback), physical, fast, chirping machine of a defensive back who has tons of talent that just needs to be harnessed. My only regret here is that he wouldn't get to play next to Earl Thomas. That would be amazing to watch.
But Thomas' likely departure is why the Seahawks will have such big needs at cornerback and safety come draft night. CGJ can help.
22. Baltimore Ravens: D.K. Metcalf, WR, Ole Miss
There likely won't be this much of a wait for the first wide receiver to be taken off the board, but due to the fact that the receiver class is so deep with talent, teams could be looking at other positions in the first round knowing they can get one or two offensive weapons in the later rounds.
If that's the case, this will be as far as Metcalf will fall, as the Ravens need wide receiver help badly and Metcalf has the highest ceiling of any receiver in this class.
23. Houston Texans: Dalton Risner, OL, Kansas State
Much like the situation in Minnesota, the Texans have to be targeting their offensive line with their first pick in the 2019 NFL Draft. They'll likely make a run at a few free agents, if they can, but that shouldn't change their priorities for round one.
With most of the top offensive tackles gone, selecting the versatile Risner here could actually play into their advantage. This way they could they have a solid piece they can move around the line no matter how their offensive line upgrades come over the next few seasons.
24. Oakland Raiders (via CHI): Kelvin Harmon, WR, N.C. State
After selecting Bosa at the top of the draft, it will be time to focus on helping the offense out in Oakland.
I feel like Harmon does not get talked about enough. It was almost as if we all watched Harmon early in the draft process and then went, "yup, he's good" and never reassured people of that -- or at least as much as we should have. Harmon has the size, speed and strength to be a true No. 1 in the NFL -- and he will be in Oakland if he gets selected here.
25. Philadelphia Eagles: Jeffery Simmons, iDL, Mississippi State
Jeffery Simmons wasn't invited to the NFL Scouting Combine due to a violent incident that occurred between he and a woman many years ago (I detail all of that in the hyperlink). This is only the start of people finding out what happened with Simmons that day.
But, in summary, it was an incident with his family that got violent and Simmons felt the need to protect his family. Since then, all reports say he's been nothing but a model student and citizen. I can see a team like the Eagles and a coach like Doug Pederson taking a chance on Simmons. This would be a good spot for him in many ways.
26. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (via IND): Rashan Gary, iDL, Michigan
*TRADE* IND sends No. 26 to TB for No. 39 and No. 69.
I told you all that Bucs general manager Jason Licht loves to play the draft game.
After trading down with Jacksonville and getting two third round picks, I bet Licht would have no problem using one of those picks (knowing he still has a extra one next year) to move up from the top of the second round to the back of the first round to pick up another trench player, this time on the defensive side. Gary could be an interesting piece with the Bucs already having Vita Vea. Gary could also play 5-tech as a defensive end in Todd Bowles' defensive system.
Will Gary likely be gone before this? Yes. But if he's not, someone is going to trade up into the first round to get him.
27. Arizona Cardinals (via OAK): Yodny Cajuste, OT, WVU
*TRADE* Oakland sends No. 4 and No. 27 to Arizona for No. 1
After getting Quinnen Williams with their first pick in the first round, it would be wise of the Cardinals to go after offensive line with their next pick, whether that's at the top of round two if no trade down happens, or here if they do end up selecting in the first round twice.
Unlike many of the other top offensive tackles in this class, Cajuste is a true left tackle.
28. Los Angeles Chargers: Dexter Lawrence, iDL, Clemson
The Chargers have a few needs on the defensive side. Though their strategy to get creative with their safeties as nickel corners and linebackers worked against the Ravens in the first round of the playoffs, it didn't against New England. That's likely due to the fact that they weren't strong enough on the interior.
Though I'm not as high on Lawrence as others seem to be, getting him to anchor on the inside with some athletic upside and pairing that with Bosa and Ingram as solidified edge players would help a lot.
29. Kansas City Chiefs: Nasir Adderley, S, Delaware
The Chiefs could go many different directions with this pick, but all of those directions point to the defensive side of the ball. With Justin Houston aging and Dee Ford about to hit free agency, there are big question marks at edge rusher. But after spending back-to-back second round picks, first on Tanoh Kpassagnon and then on Breeland Speaks, at that position, it's more likely they'll look elsewhere.
At that point, just pick the talent; Nasir Adderley is that talent. As a free safety-type, Adderley can play a centerfield role that allows the Chiefs to play single high coverage which will allow them to get aggressive in what they do up front.
30. Green Bay Packers (via NO): Deionte Thompson, S, Alabama
The Packers would love to get themselves one of those Nasir Adderleys, but even with Adderley going off the board right in front of them, that does not alleviate the need to get an impact safety.
Thompson is a wildcard, much more of one than I expected back when the seasons started, but when he's on he has some fantastic free safety tape. Perhaps Green Bay can get that out of him again after the young Thompson struggled down the stretch.
31. Los Angeles Rams: Devin Bush, LB, Michigan
There really are not that many needs on the Rams' roster, but the one glaring need they have is in the middle of the field at linebacker. Appreciating Bush seems to be a slow burn for analysts in this draft class, but most are starting to come around to him being one of the better linebackers in this class with an aggressive mentality to tackle and eyes and instincts to cover. How he performs at the Combine will be telling of where he is picked.
32. New England Patriots: Noah Fant, TE, Iowa
Good Lord, this would be so unfair, wouldn't it? Going straight from Gronk to Fant?
I do think Rob Gronkowski will end up retiring before the season in 2019. He just sounds like a guy whose body is broken and has been through so much. Why not go out on top? If he does -- or even if he doesn't right now, they know he will soon -- the Pats will still need a weapon at that key position for them. If they can pick Fant, they won't hesitate.