Our first mock draft played it very straight and came out with some favorable falls. This one had a… different feel.
Here’s the final results:
This was a nightmare scenario to start. I want a top 5 Edge or a top 2 DL to start the draft (and I’m a little on the fence for that 5th Edge). This draft started with SEVEN Edge guys and the two big Defensive Lineman going before 12.
I was very upset.
What would I do?
Luckily, I got bailed out by the Patriots, who offered two second-round picks and a third if I moved down from 12 to 31. Trading down worked out well last year, so I took a shot (which wasn’t hard considering how bleak the prime talent looked at 12).
When 30 finally rolled around, the Bengals offered me another 3rd to drop down to pick 10 in the second. I figured “Ok, let’s get real silly.” (Editor’s Note: this means I took the trade)
When I got to 31, Montez Sweat was somehow still there. I don’t know how you get 7 Edge guys in the top 9 picks and then Montez Sweat (who I had above a couple of the 7 Edge guys drafted, like Zach Allen who went 9th) just falls for 22 more picks. If I was forced to stay at 12, he’d probably the guy I would have taken (even if it I admit it’s a bit of a reach) but I got a couple more seconds and a third to do it. Bonus for me!
Ok, a lot to do here.
The two guys I really wanted in the second (Nassir Adderly and Dalton Risner) both got snatched ahead of me at 10, so I went with TJ Hockenson. I love the guy, I just don’t like taking a Tight End that early. Still, he’s a complete player and would let the Packers cut Jimmy Graham.
With the 12th pick in the round, I grabbed Deionte Thompson. I’m not as high (or low) as some are, but he’s a premium player at a position of huge need. I had my choice of a lot of interior OL, but I’ll take my chances that one falls.
At 24, my favorite interior OL were gone, so I went receiver and grabbed Deebo Samuel, who I think would be a great fit in the slot with his very smooth releases.
At 31, I was really feeling that this board wasn’t going my way. I grabbed Elgton Jenkins, who is listed as a Center on most boards, but I envision as a Guard (and it’s very nice to have a backup center). He doesn’t play with the power of his supposedly 6’4″ 313 frame, but he moves very smoothly, which I think will come in handy with the team’s new zone blocking scheme.
I didn’t come away with the players I targeted, but I can’t be upset with the amount of talent I got with 4 second round picks.
Guys, (*chuckles*) you’re not gonna believe this.
At the start of the 3rd round, the Falcons wanted me to move from 8 to 15 and they’d give me an extra 4th rounder.
How could I say no?
With the 11th pick, I took Jaquan Johnson. Atticus loves the guy mostly because he’s from Miami, but also because teams actively schemed away from him all year, which tells me something. Ball skills are a little rough, but he has a more physical presence. Guys like Josh Jackson or Tramon Williams could fill the need at Free Safety, but Johnson could be the Strong Safety they’ve lacked.
At 15, I went with Connor McGovern because line depth is so bad and he’s a guy I think could be a nice swing player. At 33, I went with Darnell Savage to potentially pair with Johnson as a Free Safety, infusing some youthful potential in a position spot in need of competition.
At 12, I was disappointed to watch my target (Tight End Jace Sternberger) go at 10… maybe I should have traded up. Instead, I grabbed Dakota Allen. I don’t think ILB is as big of a need as others do, but they could use another guy with the potential to break out in that competition and he is a solid value in the 4th, especially the way this draft is panning out.
At 15, I took a flier on Tytus Howard, a project for RT. An athlete who, at 6’5″ 311, outgrew playing Quarterback and Tight End and became a Tackle. That’s the kind of athleticism that should fit well in the new zone blocking scheme. He needs polish, but Bulaga can hold down the fort for most of the year while Howard picks up a couple test starts when Bulaga is banged up.
Picking back to back, I took Oshane Ximines at 16. Not a physical freak with a lot of size or bend, but he has a great motor, good hand technique. and nice moves. He reminds me a little of a poor man’s Aaron Kampman… just a little… and very poor…
I’m still not going all the way through in my mocks, and with how long this one took, I’m really glad.
My thought going through this draft was that I kept seeing my targets go a pick or two ahead of me. But when I step back and look at the results, this is a crazy amazing class with a ton of potential on sheer numbers alone.
Montez Sweat, TJ Hockenson, Deionte Thompson, and Elgton Jenkins should all be immediate starters. Jaquan Johnson and Darnell Savage could be the starting safety tandem. Deebo Samuel could challenge for the starting Slot Receiver position. Connor McGovern and Tytus Howard bring much-needed depth on the Interior Offensive Line and Dakota Allen and Oshane Ximines round out some depth in the front seven.
Even if half these guys flame out, it could be a class with 5 future starters. Our first mock had more premier, high-end players, but this one just has so much potential.
I’m a big fan of trading down and this haul shows why.
Check out our PFTW 2019 Mock Draft Archive to see how other scenarios played out!