Mock Drafts

2016 NFL Mock Draft: Pre-Bowl Season Edition

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1. Tennessee Titans: 2-9

The Pick: Laremy Tunsil, OT, Ole Miss

The best offensive tackle in this draft class goes to one of the teams that needs an offensive tackle the most. With Marcus Mariota at the helm for many years to come, Laremy Tunsil would be a great investment to protect the franchise quarterback. Tunsil is an elite tackle in pass protection with a ton of room to grow. He has the potential to become an All-Pro offensive tackle in the NFL.

2. Cleveland Browns: 2-9

The Pick: Paxton Lynch, QB, Memphis

The Cleveland Browns obviously don’t believe in Johnny Manziel; therefore, quarterback will be atop their list of needs once again. Paxton Lynch is the hottest name at quarterback and he is the only signal caller who doesn’t have a glaring weakness. If the Browns can get past the level of competition he has faced, Lynch could be the next small-school quarterback to go high in the draft.

3. Dallas Cowboys: 3-8

The Pick: Joey Bosa, DE, Ohio State

Defensive end isn’t the biggest for the Dallas Cowboys, especially if they re-sign Greg Hardy, but Joey Bosa is just too good to pass up at this juncture. Bosa is an elite power-rusher and equally as good against the run. He would be a plug and play right defensive end for the Cowboys and give them one of the best young pass-rushes in the NFL with Randy Gregory, Demarcus Lawrence and potentially Greg Hardy.

4. San Diego Chargers: 3-8

The Pick: Ronnie Stanley, OT, Notre Dame

Viewed by many as the top offensive lineman in college football, Ronnie Stanley would be a great fit on the San Diego Chargers’ offensive line. Stanley is great as a run-blocker and a pass-protect and he would instantly give the Charger a cornerstone left tackle for the next 10 years. Stanley is just too good of a value to pass up at this point.

5. San Francisco 49ers: 3-8

The Pick: Jared Goff, QB, California

Benching Colin Kaepernick put the San Francisco 49ers in the quarterback market and they could opt to select hometown hero Jared Goff. While he isn’t as great as he was billed to be early on, Goff is one of the most accurate passers in college football and the 49ers could be a good spot to see him develop. Goff needs to add some bulk to take the pounding the NFL throws at you, but he has the highest ceiling among draft-eligible quarterbacks.

6. Miami Dolphins: 4-7

The Pick: Vernon Hargreaves III, CB, Florida

Even though the Miami Dolphins have Brent Grimes, they are void of any other competent cornerbacks, which makes Vernon Hargreaves, III the easy pick here. Hargreaves is one of the most talented cornerbacks to come into the draft since Patrick Peterson. The only knock on him is that he isn’t the biggest cornerback and there are questions about whether he can cover the monster receivers like Dez Bryant in the NFL.

7. Jacksonville Jaguars: 4-7

The Pick: Jalen Ramsey, DB, Florida State

The Jacksonville Jaguars have one of the worst secondaries in the NFL, which makes Jalen Ramsey a great value for them here. Ramsey hasn’t been the best cornerback, which is why the Jaguars would be smart to move him back to safety where he has shown elite skills. Ramsey has the ability to become one of the best free safeties in the NFL and give the Jaguars their Earl Thomas to roam the middle of the field.

8. Baltimore Ravens: 4-7

The Pick: Robert Nkemdiche, DL, Ole Miss

The Baltimore Ravens aren’t in the market for a player like Robert Nkemdiche, but general manager Ozzie Newsome is a proponent of selecting the best player available, which is easily Nkemdiche as this point. A freak athletically, Nkemdiche has the highest ceiling of any prospect in this draft; however, his deficiencies, if left unchecked, could never allow him to reach his potential.

9. Philadelphia Eagles: 4-7

The Pick: Connor Cook, Michigan State, QB

The Philadelphia Eagles have been harmed by awful quarterback play for the entire season. Whether head coach Chip Kelly returns or not, quarterback will be at the top of the Eagles’ wish list. Connor Cook has some leadership concerns, but as a pass he is as talented as any in college football. He can make all the throws and he showcases good footwork in the pocket. Cook would allow the Eagles to grow with a new quarterback and set their franchises future up well.

10. St. Louis Rams: 4-7

The Pick: Laquon Treadwell, WR, Ole Miss

The St. Louis Rams haven’t had a stud wide receiver since Torry Holt retired, Laquon Treadwell could potentially put an end to that. Treadwell is the most talented receiver in the NFL as he models his game after Dez Bryant. He physically dominates cornerbacks at the catch point and he is a sneaky good route runner. Treadwell would give the Rams a bonafide No. 1 receiver on the outside, which potentially could take their offense to new heights.

11. New Orleans Saints: 4-7

The Pick: Jaylon Smith, LB, Notre Dame

The New Orleans Saints have been hampered by poor play on defense for quite some time. The easiest way to change that is by getting a dominant linebacker to man the middle of the defense, which is what Jaylon Smith has the potential to be. Smith is a quick and athletic linebacker who can also be a downhill thumper. He could improve the Saints’ defense right away.

12. Detroit Lions: 4-7

The Pick: Mackensie Alexander, CB, Clemson

Mackensie Alexander has shot up draft boards with his play on the best defense in college football. Alexander is a physical, man-coverage cornerback who doesn’t give receivers any room to work. He shuts down opposing wide receiver with his length and aggressive nature. The Detroit Lions should be jumping for joy if Alexander makes it to them.

13. New York Giants: 5-6

The Pick: Shaq Lawson, DE, Clemson

The New York Giants need a dominant pass-rusher and while Shaw Lawson may never be that, he will be a very good defensive end for years to come. Lawson may have the highest floor among the edge-rushers in this draft, but his ceiling may not be as high as others. Lawson is a fantastic run defender who uses his hands and power to win as a pass-rusher.

14. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: 5-6

The Pick: Taylor Decker, OT, Ohio State

Jameis Winston has proven that he is one of the best young quarterbacks in the NFL, but he needs the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to protect him better if they want him to reach his potential. Taylor Decker is the most NFL ready offensive tackle outside of Laremy Tunsil and he could step in and improve the Buccaneers offensive line right away.

 15. Oakland Raiders: 5-6

The Pick: Reggie Ragland, LB, Alabama

Reggie Ragland has been the best linebacker in college football this season and the Oakland Raiders make the smart move to pounce on him here. He is the best run-defender in the nation and he doesn’t get enough credit for how good he is in coverage. Ragland has the size, athleticism and intelligence to become another great Alabama linebacker in the NFL.

16. Buffalo Bills: 5-6

The Pick: DeForest Buckner, DE, Oregon

DeForest Buckner has the size and strength to be a dominant defensive lineman in the NFL. Who better to harness that talent that head coach Rex Ryan. Buckner could play defensive end or tackle in Ryan’s multiple schemes and give him another chess piece to utilize on Sundays.

 17. Chicago Bears: 5-6

The Pick: Carl Lawson, DE, Auburn

The Chicago Bears potentially get the best value in the entire draft with Carl Lawson at pick No. 17. If he could stay healthy, Lawson would be fighting Joey Bosa for the best player in the entire draft. Lawson is the best pure pass-rusher in this draft with his ability to win in a variety of ways.

18. Atlanta Falcons: 6-5

The Pick: Kenny Clark, DT, UCLA

The Atlanta Falcons defensive line has faltered down the stretch and Kenny Clark could help change things up for the underwhelming unit. Clark is the best nose tackle in this draft because of his ability to not only plug gaps, but also penetrate and make plays in the backfield. Clark would not only make the defensive line better, but he would also free up Atlanta’s linebackers to make plays.

19. New York Jets: 6-5

The Pick: Jack Conklin, OT, Michigan State

The New York Jets need to improve their offensive line and Jack Conklin is the best one left on the board. Conklin is a solid tackle who has the ability to slide down to guard if need be. Conklin would give the Jets a good young offensive lineman who could be a solid player for years to come.

20. Pittsburgh Steelers: 6-5

The Pick: Tre’Davious White, CB, LSU

The Pittsburgh Steelers have had a hole at the cornerback position for a couple years and Tre’Davious White could be the answer to their problems. White is a long and rangy cornerback who excels in man and zone coverage.

21. Houston Texans: 6-5

The Pick: Ezekiel Elliot, RB, Ohio State

Arian Foster has been one of the best running backs in the NFL for the last five years, but his injury history makes running back a top priority for the Houston Texans. There isn’t a better running back in this draft than Ezekiel Elliot. A well-rounded running back, Elliot can do it all in every phase of the game. Elliot gives the Texans a great running game, which will allow their offense to operate at a high level.

22. Seattle Seahawks: 6-5

The Pick: Jonathan Allen, DL, Alabama

The Seattle Seahawks love versatile defensive linemen and Jonathan Allen is the most versatile defensive lineman in college football. Allen has the ability to produce on the inside or outside and he would be a great chess piece, along with Michael Bennett, for head coach Pete Carroll to employ of Sundays.

23. Kansas City Chiefs: 6-5

The Pick: Myles Jack, LB, UCLA

Myles Jack is a top-15 type of talent at linebacker, but his knee injury causes him to fall all the way to the Chiefs in this scenario. Jack is the best coverage linebacker to come out of college football in quite some time, but teams will have to worry about his injury history. The Chiefs could have struck gold with one of the best talents in this draft.

24. Green Bay Packers: 7-4

The Pick: Noah Spence, OLB, Eastern Kentucky

The Green Bay Packers need to find more pass-rushers and Noah Spence is one of the best pass-rushing talents in this draft class. Spence has the potential to be a 12-15 sacks a year type of player with his athleticism and ability to get around the edge. He needs to broaden his pass-rush repertoire, but he is a steal at this point.

25. Indianapolis Colts: 5-6

The Pick: Vadal Alexander, OL, LSU

The Indianapolis Colts’ offensive line has been a problem for years now and it’s starting to rear its ugly head. LSU offensive lineman Vadal Alexender can play guard or tackle, but he would be a bigger upgrade at guard for the Colts. Alexander is great as a run-blocker and he is more than capable of doing is part in pass protection.

26. Washington Redskins: 5-6

The Pick: Andrew Billings, NT, Baylor

The Washington Redskins have an underrated front seven and, in this scenario, they choose to strengthen it even more with Andrew Billings. The Baylor defensive tackle is one of the most powerful defenders in college football and he would be great as a nose tackle in the Redskins defense.

27. Minnesota Vikings: 8-3

The Pick: Josh Doctson, WR, TCU

The Minnesota Vikings are an up and coming team that is a couple pieces away from becoming a perpetual Super Bowl contender. Josh Doctson has the ability to be one of the pieces that could push them over the top. Doctson is the best vertical threat in this draft and he would work well in offensive coordinator Norv Turners offense.

28. Arizona Cardinals: 9-2

The Pick: Jordan Jenkins, OLB, Georgia

The Arizona Cardinals have one of the best defenses in the NFL, but they don’t have many pass-rushers who can consistently get after the quarterback. Jordan Jenkins doesn’t have the best size, but you can’t deny his ability to make plays and get after the quarterback.

 29. Cincinnati Bengals: 9-2

The Pick: Corey Coleman, WR, Baylor

The Cincinnati Bengals have a very talented receiver corps with A.J. Green, but with the contracts of four receivers being up after this season Corey Coleman is too good to pass up. Coleman is the most productive receiver in college football with a dynamic ability with the ball in his hands. He would give the Bengals a great receiver who can be utilized in a variety of ways and strengthen an already talented Bengals offense.

30. Denver Broncos: 9-2

The Pick: A’Shawn Robinson, DT, Alabama

The Denver Broncos decide to go with the best player available strategy here with A’Shawn Robinson. They already have the best pass defense in football, so they decide to bolster their run defense with Robinson. He is a space eater who plugs gaps and could allow the Broncos to become an all time great defense.

31. New England Patriots: 10-1

The Pick: Forfeited. 

32. Carolina Panthers: 11-0

The Pick: Jayron Kearse, S, Clemson

Kam Chancellor has laid waste to the Panthers for years, but the Panthers will look to return the favor with their version of the Seahawk safety with Jayron Kearse. The Clemson safety is a physical safety who can play in the box, but who can also cover in space. Kearse has the potential to be the next great safety in the NFL, which are extremely rare to come by.


About John Owning

John Owning

John Owning is a NFL columnist for Football Insiders. He has years of experience covering the NFL, NFL draft and NCAA football. John's work has been featured on the Bleacher Report and DraftBreakdown.com