Oh boy, it’s mock draft season!
I’ve done dozens of these already to get a feel for how boards are coming together and now I’m ready to start analyzing results.
Senior Bowl practices just started and the combine is a month away, so things are sure to change, but charting those changes is a big part of the fun!
With that, here’s PFTW’s first mock of 2019:
It’s no secret I think Edge is the biggest need, but even with Jachai Polite on the board, I couldn’t pass up Ed Oliver, who I think could be one of the most impactful players in this class. I’m hoping an edge target slips to the end of the round.
At the end of the round, the Cardinals offered me the first pick in rounds 3, 4, 5, and 6. I said heck no because even though Jachai Polite went right at 13, Brian Burns and Montez Sweat both fell to 30. I’m a big believer in the potential of Brian Burns, so I sat tight and grabbed him. I think a good combine could propel him much like Marcus Davenport last year. Thrilled to get an Edge talent of his caliber this late to pair with Oliver.
Noah Fant and Montez Sweat immediately went 31 and 32, taking away a couple of my round 2 targets.
The rest of my prime Round 2 targets went pretty quick in the top of the round, but Garrett Brumfield was a nice consolation prize. An athletic guard with pulling ability, he should plug right in at Right Guard and instantly upgrade the line. I’m not a fan of taking a guard this high, but he’s a great value at a position of need.
In almost every mock I’ve done, I’ve found Round 3 to be a talent desert – there just don’t seem to be a lot of guys I’m excited to pick that high. So when the Chargers offered me a Trade to move down from 11 to 27 and add a 4th, 5th, and 6th, I jumped at it.
When the pick finally came up, I couldn’t find a lot of value that I liked, but Tight End is a huge need and I there was only one left that I had real interest in, so I took Jace Sternberger.
He’s got size and raw abilities, but isn’t a finished product even though he was a consensus All American. He needs to polish his routes and blocking technique, but has the tools to develop into a decent well-rounded starter. At this point in the draft, I think it’s a solid selection.
I’m very high on MVS and have hope for EQ and J’Mon Moore. I also think slot is a bigger need than perimeter receiver, but I couldn’t lay off the potential of DeMarkus Lodge. He’s polished and, though a good perimeter receiver, may still be a fit in the slot with athleticism.
It took me a while, but I finally got around to safety with the 16th pick in the 4th, which (ironically enough) was the pick we got for Ha Ha. Darnell Savage, in addition to having a great name for a safety, has the tools to be a solid starter. Fast and aggressive, sometimes overly aggressive, a lot of his scouting reports read like Kentrell Brice, with the notable exception of cover skills. Some project Savage as a corner because he can match up in the slot and on tight ends, which is a serious need.
With the 28th pick in the round (which I got in the trade with the Chargers) I took Offensive Tackle Bobby Evans. He moves well in space (so well that Kyle Crabbs projects him as a left tackle), which should make him a good fit in the new blocking scheme. He’d be a welcome addition to the Right Tackle platoon for when Bryan Bulaga eventually goes down.
I’m not going all the way through the Day 3 picks yet, but my trade gave me a couple extra picks, which means this mock still leaves me with 2 picks in the 5th and 3 in the 6th to go with my 7th rounder. Nice ammo for mining gems on a team that could use some serious depth filling.
Ed Oliver becomes an immediate impact starter. Teamed with Kenny Clark and Mike Daniels, this could be the most feared three-man front in the league. Brian Burns probably starts week one, providing a huge jolt to the edge.
Garrett Brumfield plugs directly into RG and Bobby Evans slips next to him at RT when Bulaga misses a week… and maybe doesn’t relinquish the role.
Jace Sternberger and DeMarkus Lodge provide some extra weapons for QB1 while Darnell Savage challenges for a starting role while becoming an ironically popular jersey choice.
Overall, I’d be thrilled if things worked out this way, but I see no way Burns makes it to 30… that won’t stop me from enjoying this fantasy, though.
Check out our PFTW 2019 Mock Draft Archive to see how other scenarios played out!