2022 Two-Round NFL Mock Draft


Justin Siejak, Sports Writer

2022 Two Round NFL Mock Draft
Written by Justin Siejak

Round 1

1. Jacksonville Jaguars – Aidan Hutchinson, DE, Michigan
Jacksonville finds themselves selecting number one overall again for the second year in a row. Last year, they addressed the most important position on the field by selecting their future quarterback in Trevor Lawrence. This year, I think they look to find more of an identity to their defense, and they kick that off with selecting arguably the best player in this year’s class in Michigan’s Aidan Hutchinson.
Hutchinson probably would’ve gone in last year’s first round as well, but instead, he stayed another year at Michigan. Doing so, Hutchinson skyrocketed his value in this year’s draft. He went from being a fringe first rounder in last year’s draft, to being the consensus number one overall pick in this year’s draft.
Probably the safest pick at number one overall, Hutchinson will come in and be an instant impact player for Jacksonville. He comes in and provides a leadership quality that the Jacksonville defense could desperately use. Joining an edge room that already includes young promising players such as Josh Allen and K’Lavon Chaisson, Hutchinson gives Jacksonville another legit rusher to get after the quarterback.
2. Detroit Lions – Kayvon Thibodeaux, DE, Oregon
The Lions go back to back years selecting a stud player from Oregon in the top 10. The conversation of Thibodeaux taking a tumble in this draft is quite puzzling to me. If not for Aidan Hutchinson’s insane year at Michigan, Thibodeaux was going to go number one overall. Questions surrounding his effort and motor are the reason for his rumored fall, however, I just don’t see it when I watch the tape.
What I do see is a dominant athlete, who has an incredible upside as a pass rusher. Not to mention that he is one the best in the class at defending the run. Detroit desperately needs talent, and while they could gamble on Malik Willis with this pick, I truly believe that Thibodeaux is the right pick.
After cutting ties with edge rusher Trey Flowers, the Lions are still on the search for an impact pass rusher, and Thibodeaux is the guy to fill the gap. While he may not be on the same level from a prospect viewpoint as someone like Myles Garrett, Thibodeaux has all the tools to become a perennial double-digit sack artist in the NFL. Thibodeaux comes in and instantly makes the Detroit defense better.
3. Houston Texans – Ahmad “Sauce” Gardner, CB, Cincinnati
Some may think that this may be too high for the lockdown corner from Cincinnati, but Sauce Gardner is absolutely worth the number three overall pick.
Fun fact, Gardner miraculously scored more touchdowns (two) during his three years with the Bearcats than he gave up. An absolute lockdown “island” corner is so valuable in the NFL now, as a good portion of the league’s offenses have turned to a pass heavy approach. Gardner’s long frame and fluidity makes it almost impossible for receivers to separate from him in man coverage.
Gardner comes to a relatively weak secondary and instantly gives them a star. More importantly, Gardner gives this defense some swagger. Gardner knows what he can do on the field, and he is very confident in his ability. Gardner should be the first pick, in which could be a foundational draft class for the Houston Texans.
4. New York Jets – Evan Neal, OT, Alabama
In classic Jets fashion, a blue chip player falls right into the lap of the Jets at number four. What’s fortunate for the Jets is that this blue chip player actually fits a need for the team as well.
The Jets offensive line has not been good…for a very long time. They’ve invested high picks on guys such as Mekhi Becton and Alijah Vera-Tucker recently, but still, the unit has not been great. Becton has had injury issues, and Vera-Tucker was just a rookie last year. Evan Neal is the best tackle in this draft.
Allowing just two sacks in his senior season, Neal can match up with the best of pass rushers thanks to his absurd athleticism. He has to be the most lean 350 lb. person I have ever seen. Because of this, Neal’s potential as a moving run blocker is excellent. The scary thing is, he’s still so raw. If Neal can fix some balance issues, he could easily become one of the best tackles in football.
The Jets need to surround young quarterback Zach Wilson with as much help as possible, and with this pick, they give Wilson a potential long time starter on the offensive line.
5. New York Giants – Ikem Ekwonu, OT, NC State
I honestly considered Mississippi State’s Charles Cross for this pick as well, but Ekwonu’s talent was too much to not pass up.
Ekwonu is the best run blocking tackle in this year’s draft. He is an absolute MAULER in the run game. With his ability to move in the run game, if the Giants wanted to, they could honestly slot him in at guard and I think he would still be a pro bowler. However, I think he fits in perfectly on the right side of the Giants line across Andrew Thomas.
The Giants desperately need some help on the offensive line. Both in the pass and run game. We know how dominant Ekwonu is in the run game, which could potentially benefit Saquon Barkley, but how does he hold up in blocking the quarterback? Well, he isn’t a finished product as a pass protector, but he has the potential and athleticism to improve in that aspect of his game. At the very least, Ekwonu gives the Giants a steady presence on the right side of the line in the run game his rookie year. From then on, I believe he’ll only get better in pass pro, and become the total package.
6. Carolina Panthers – Malik Willis, QB, Liberty
While I do believe there is absolutely a trade down scenario in the cards here for Carolina, I think Malik Willis is just too electric of a player to pass up on at six.
Carolina has been looking for stability at the quarterback position since Cam Newton, and because of this, they have not been contenders, or even a playoff team for that matter. They gave up a considerable amount of assets in a questionable move to acquire Sam Darnold last year, and a year later, the deal looks just as bad as we thought it was when it happened.
Willis is one of the most electric quarterbacks we’ve seen declare for the draft in some time. As a matter of fact, I would say he is the MOST unique player in this draft. With the mobility reminiscent of Lamar Jackson and an absolute cannon of an arm, Willis offers an incredible amount of upside.
However, no prospect is perfect, and Willis is far from it. He has to be able to refine his decision making skills to become the player we think he can be. Willis can sit behind Darnold until Darnold starts to “Darnold” and hopefully be the franchise guy that Carolina has been needing for some time.
7. New York Giants (via CHI) – Jermaine Johnson, EDGE, Florida State
The Giants acquired this pick during last year’s draft when Chicago moved up to select Justin Fields, and with this pick, they get an edge rusher who can seriously put some pressure on opposing quarterbacks.
Jermaine Johnson is one of my favorite players in this draft. This dude is a flat out beast. Athletic enough to beat you with speed, but also has a variety of moves and counters to use when things don’t go to plan. Johnson was a transfer from Georgia, who completely dominated the opposition when he got to Florida State. Racking up 12 sacks and two forced fumbles in his senior year, Johnson showed he can consistently create havoc in the backfield, which is exactly what the Giants need.
On top of this, Johnson showed out at the Senior Bowl. So much so, that he completely dominated everyone the entire week of practice, and said “eh I’ve shown what I can do” and skipped the actual game. There was no question that Johnson was the best player on the field all week in Mobile. Johnson will create a promising, young rushing duo with Azeez Ojulari who enjoyed a solid rookie campaign. With their top two picks, the Giants get better on both sides of the line.
8. Atlanta Falcons – Travon Walker, EDGE, Georgia
I think we should pump the brakes on Walker a tad.
He’s an incredible prospect, with potentially the best athletic profile in this draft at any position. Despite this, I’ve been seeing him mocked to Jacksonville at number one, and he is currently the betting favorite to go number two to the Lions. I love a freakish edge rusher just as much as the next guy, but that’s the issue, Walker isn’t a dominant rusher…yet.
Walker might already be the best run defender in the draft at the edge position, but this doesn’t warrant a top two selection. When I look at players taken in the top five, one of the things I value most is production, and there just isn’t much there in terms of sacks when speaking of Walker.
However, my outlook on Walker isn’t all negative. In fact, I think he’s a great prospect, and honestly could go to the Giants at pick seven. He’s just not a finished product, which is why I think he’s the perfect pick for Atlanta here at number eight. Atlanta won’t be good for some time so Walker doesn’t have to be instantly good. Combine that with the fact that a great coach in Dean Pees could refine his pass rushing plans, and you have something.
Atlanta needs an edge badly, and they keep Walker in state here at number eight overall.
9. Seattle Seahawks (via DEN) – Charles Cross, OT, Mississippi State
Seattle acquired this pick in the Russell Wilson trade, and with this pick, they snag a cornerstone tackle.
Obviously, Seattle needs a quarterback, that’s no secret. However, I just don’t see a scenario in which the team takes a quarterback at number nine overall as no quarterbacks left on the board really meet the value of number nine overall. Instead, Seattle takes the best player remaining on the board in my opinion in Charles Cross.
Cross is an absolute technician as a pass blocker, and provides comfort for any quarterback. Likely filling in on the left side of the line as Duane Brown’s replacement, Cross would be the immediate starter for Seattle. Seattle’s offensive line is not good, and it probably still won’t be this coming year. Cross is a good building block to add to the unit to protect Drew Lock or whoever they plan on being the future quarterback.
10. New York Jets (via SEA) – Drake London, WR, USC
The Jets acquired this pick back in 2020 when they traded Jamal Adams to Seattle, and with it they get a BIG weapon for Zach Wilson.
Keep. Surrounding. The. Young. Quarterback. It’s simple. The Jets were clearly trying to get an elite wideout to pair with Zach Wilson this offseason. It was reported that they tried to acquire multiple receivers such as Tyreek Hill, DK Metcalf, and even A.J Brown. They clearly want to surround Wilson with as many weapons as he needs. In this scenario, they don’t need to surrender any draft capital.
London is a freak. He’s not the fastest, but he may be the best at contested catches coming out of the draft in a long time, and certainly in this draft. London, who measured in at 6”3 at the combine, uses his big frame to box defensive backs out and win the 50/50 balls. Talented not only in contested catch situations, but also in getting yards after the catch, which is incredible considering his build.
I give the Jets London for the simple fact that they don’t have anyone like him on the roster. I thought about giving them Garrett Wilson as well, I just think London provides a new element to the Jets offense. Zach Wilson gets a big time weapon at 10 to pair with Elijah Moore.
11. Washington Commanders – Garrett Wilson, WR, Ohio State
Washington completes the Ohio State wide receiver trio!
I’m still not sure why the Commanders traded for Carson Wentz. Maybe they are waiting until next year’s draft to make a move for a promising young quarterback. In the meantime, Commander Carson is the guy. Curtis Samuel has struggled staying healthy in the past couple years, and I like Dyami Brown as a third option rather than as a number two. Garrett Wilson is my highest ranked receiver in this year’s class, and adding him to the Commander offense could be electric. Wilson is a stud in the slot, and you can put him there and watch him perform day one. Adding this type of threat to the offense can also free up Terry McLaurin for more one on one scenarios.
The duo of Wilson and McLaurin would instantly vault to the top of the list when it comes to route running duos in the NFL. He can go up and win the contested ball, while also being one of the best YAC receivers in this year’s draft. Washington’s offense could use more juice, and Wilson provides that and more.
12. Minnesota Vikings – Derek Stingley Jr., CB, LSU
The board has fallen absolutely perfect for the Vikings, as a potential star cornerback falls right into their lap at 12.
The Vikings have a promising young player in Cameron Dantzler at cornerback, but outside that, there is nothing to get excited about. Patrick Peterson re-signed with the team this offseason, but now at 31 years old, his prime has passed. This is where Stingley comes into play. Derek Stingley’s freshman campaign may have been one of the best cornerback seasons we have seen in a long time. Despite this, he falls to 12 because of inconsistencies in his play and injuries. Although the past two seasons haven’t been ideal for Stingley, the freshman year tape was just so good that teams will bet on getting that freshman version of Stingley to stick around.
Stingley offers an immense amount of upside, and when it’s all said and done, could easily become the best cornerback of this class. It’s just a matter of staying healthy and consistent. At just 20 years old, I believe Stingley absolutely has his best football in front of him, and could grow into one of the league’s top young cornerbacks. Minnesota snags a blue chip player that happens to meet their biggest need.
13. Houston Texans (via CLE) – Kyle Hamilton, S, Notre Dame
After acquiring this pick from Cleveland in the Deshaun Watson trade, Houston adds the top player on the board in Notre Dame’s Kyle Hamilton.
It is a very real shot that Houston looks to add a playmaker at the wide receiver position here at 13. Jameson Williams and Chris Olave both make a lot of sense. But with the way the board has fallen, a legit blue chip player in Kyle Hamilton could be an absolute steal of a selection. Widely regarded as a top five player in this class, Hamilton did just about everything for the Notre Dame defense. From playing in the box, to being a true safety, Hamilton is a chess piece on defense. Houston lost standout safety Justin Reid this offseason to the Chiefs, and are very thin at the position. Hamilton can step in on day one and be an instant game changer for Houston’s defense.
Adding two superstars in Gardner and Hamilton gives Houston an identity on defense. New Head Coach Lovie Smith would be elated to land these two future stars.
14. Baltimore Ravens – George Karlaftis, DE, Purdue
This pick may be a bit off the board for the Ravens, but I actually really like the fit.
When looking at the Ravens defensive line, we see their starting edge rushers to be Derek Wolfe and Calais Campbell. What do we notice about these two players? Both are over 30 years old, and are both larger bodies to fit the type of defense the Ravens play. Enter Karlaftis.
Karlaftis fits that big body mold to play that 3-4 end that the Ravens will need once these older guys retire or move on to another team. Karlaftis also tested like a great athlete at the combine, so if you really wanted to, I think he has potential to be a stand up edge rusher in some packages as well. He has the versatility to kick inside with his size, and immediately adds talent to the somewhat random defensive line that the Ravens have assembled.
Ranking just 21st in sacks, Karlaftis could come in and make an immediate impact, as I think he is ready to step in and contribute day one as opposed to other pass rushers.
15. Philadelphia Eagles (via MIA) – Jameson Williams, WR, Alabama
The Eagles should be SPRINTING to run this card in if Williams is available at 15.
Howie Roseman is ecstatic to see that Jameson Williams falls to 15 in this mock. Adding DeVonta Smith in last year’s draft was a great move, and he enjoyed himself a solid rookie campaign. Despite this, Smith can’t carry the entire receiving load. Jalen Reagor has yet to pan out, and Quez Watkins is nothing to write home about. This is where Jameson Williams comes in, and fits the Eagles WR2 mold to a tee.
Williams has game changing speed, but unlike other speedsters that have come out in recent years, Williams has some height on him. Measuring in at 6”2, Williams has both that next gear to separate downfield, but also a larger frame that absolutely increases his catch radius. When I see Williams play, he reminds me of a healthy Will Fuller. A deep threat on every play that will make teams adjust their defense when he’s on the field. Williams falls this low due to tearing his ACL in the National Championship, however, reports are that Williams is ahead of schedule with his recovery.
Although they never played together at Alabama, the Eagles select Williams at 15, making it two back-to-back 1st round Alabama receiver selections for Philly.
16. New Orleans Saints (via PHI) – Chris Olave, WR, Ohio State
The Saints would’ve loved to have landed Jameson Williams, instead, they land highly accomplished Ohio State receiver Chris Olave.
Outside of Michael Thomas, the Saints have virtually nothing solid at the wide receiver position. Olave offers the potential to step in and be an instant impact receiver for Jameis Winston. When I think of Chris Olave, I think of two words. Smooth and consistent. Olave has produced for Ohio State dating back to his freshman year. He has looked polished as a receiver for years now, and likely would have also been a first round selection in last year’s draft as well.
Olave can come in and be that vertical threat that the Saints could desperately use and that Jameis would love to have. Assuming Michael Thomas comes back healthy next year, the duo of Thomas and Olave creates a nice little Ohio State tandem for the Saints.
Olave steps into a wide open receiving room in New Orleans, and I believe has the potential to be an offensive rookie of the year candidate.
17. Los Angeles Chargers – Jordan Davis, DT, Georgia
The Chargers are the best fit in the draft for Jordan Davis.
Davis, who has the potential to go even higher in this draft due to his mind boggling combine, slots in as the instant starter at the one technique spot for the Chargers. Formally, the Chargers one tech defensive lineman was Linval Joseph, and he actually played great in that role. However, Joseph is now a free agent and is trending towards the end of his NFL career. Davis comes in and fills that gap and some.
Davis is a plus athlete for his side, which gives him upside as a potential interior pass rusher. More importantly though, Davis is exceptional at eating blocks and stopping the run…exactly what the Chargers defense needs. Allowing close to 140 rushing yards per game in 2021, the Chargers need someone to assist stopping the run. Adding Austin Johnson in free agency helps in this area, but it never hurts to add at a position with need. It also just so happens that the player being selected moves at an unreal rate for a 340 lb. body.
Davis comes into LA and not only helps against the run, but also lines up on a monstrous defensive line alongside names including Joey Bosa and Khalil Mack.
18. Philadelphia Eagles (via NO) – Trent McDuffie, CB, Washington
The Eagles secondary outside of Darius Slay is kind of a mess. Fortunately, Trent McDuffie falls to 18 and can offer his services to Philly in a multitude of ways.
McDuffie is one of the most steady players in this draft. I would go as far as to say that if there was a bust proof player in this draft, it’s McDuffie. Playing lights out at Washington, McDuffie proved he was ready for the NFL. He’s a bit on the shorter side for the position (5”11) but I still think he can play boundary corner with no issue. Some teams may see him as a slot-type player only, and that’s why he falls to 18 in this mock. So what, this guy is so good that I think you could throw him at outside corner, slot corner, or even safety and he’ll be fine. McDuffie would provide a starting corner presence across from Darius Slay most likely from day one.
The Eagles not only get a position of need at 18, but also one of the top ranked players left on the board.
19. New Orleans Saints (via PHI) – Trevor Penning, OT, Northern Iowa
Looking at the Saints roster, really the only glaring needs are at receiver, left tackle, and quarterback.
The Saints filled the receiver need in this mock with Chris Olave at 16 already, and with no quarterback matching the value of pick 19, the Saints get their replacement for Terron Armstead in Trevor Penning. Penning is a super raw player. He kind of got bullied around at the senior bowl due to his lack of technique. On the bright side, Penning was also the one doing the bullying.
There are reps where Penning will get bull rushed into the quarterback because he lacks a consistent anchor, and there are reps where Penning mauls a guy into the ground and finishes the play by falling onto him. That’s the story with Penning. He’s a great athlete for his size, and with his nasty mentality to finish plays with aggression, I think the Saints can work with him to fill in the gap at left tackle. The Saints won’t be true contenders next year, so Penning does not need to step in and become the guy right away.
If Penning can clean up his technique, with his athleticism and mean streak, this could be an absolute hit for the Saints with their second first round pick.
20. Pittsburgh Steelers – Andrew Booth Jr., CB, Clemson
Steelers fans may clamor for the hometown kid Kenny Pickett here at 20, but in reality, they should be excited about landing a stud cornerback in Andrew Booth Jr.
This team’s biggest need is cornerback. They signed Levi Wallace in the offseason, which is fine, but he should not be your number one cornerback. Justin Layne is also not a good option to trot out there consistently. Booth has the potential to finish as the top corner in this draft class. He has the best ball skills out of all the cornerbacks in this draft, and routinely makes circus catches for interceptions.
Booth is a weapon on the defensive side of the ball, and is a genuine threat to make a play on every down. I can confidently say that if Booth Jr gets drafted to the Steelers, he would be the best cornerback on the roster. Booth both makes ridiculous plays on the ball, and is a willing tackler. This would be a stellar pick for the Steelers.
Pittsburgh gets their starting boundary corner in the first round in Andrew Booth Jr.
21. New England Patriots – Devin Lloyd, LB, Utah
This is the ultimate “Patriots pick.”
The Patriots desperately need a linebacker that can move. The team likely isn’t re-signing Donta Hightower, and are now left with just Mack Wilson and Ja’Whaun Bentley as true linebackers in the middle. Devin Lloyd offers versatility, and leadership. Lloyd can do whatever the Patriots may ask him to do. Tallying 110 tackles, four interceptions, and eight sacks for Utah in 2021, Lloyd shows that he can succeed in any facet of the game. He can cover, play the run, and rush the passer. He also has the ability to make game changing plays by creating turnovers with his explosive play.
Lloyd would likely slot in at sam linebacker and start day one, giving the Patriots a true stud in the linebacking core. Arguably the best linebacker in this year’s draft, snagging Lloyd at pick 21 would be a home run for the Patriots, who are in desperate need of a young, electric linebacker.
Bill Belichick gets his impact linebacker in Devin Lloyd in the first round.
22. Green Bay Packers (via LV) – Treylon Burks, WR, Arkansas
The Packers need to address wide receiver, and it would be wise to do so with their first pick out of two in the first round.
Trading Davante Adams to the Raiders and losing Marquez Valdez-Scantling to the Chiefs leaves the wide receiver position considerably weak for the Packers. They signed Sammy Watkins, and still have Allen Lazard and Randall Cobb, but this receiver room just flat out needs more talent. I think Treylon Burks is a solid fit for this Packers offense.
Burks is a mountain of a man, who just so happens to move like a sub five foot receiver. Primarily a slot receiver, Burks gives the Packers offense a different type of threat that they don’t currently have on the roster. Burks’ main selling point is his versatility. He’s not the greatest route runner, but once the ball is in his hands, good luck stopping him. He’s a vertical threat, who may be able to assume the “wide back” role for the Packers.
Burks gives Aaron Rodgers a deep threat who can make a play at just about any position on the field.
23. Arizona Cardinals – Arnold Ebiketie, EDGE, Penn State
The Cardinals need to find someone to fill the gap that Chandler Jones left once he signed with the Raiders. Arnold Ebiketie is that guy.
I’m much higher on Ebiketie than the majority of other people in the draft community. I think he is an incredible pass rusher with an array of moves to get to the quarterback. When looking at this roster, it’s very thin when it comes to pass rush talent. JJ Watt and Markus Golden are the two names that stick out to me. However, Watt is trending towards the end of his career, and Markus Golden would benefit from adding another rusher opposite of him. Ebiketie can step right in and immediately offer a pass rush presence on passing downs.
Still relatively new to the game as well, as he only started playing football in his sophomore year of high school, Ebiketie can be coached up to get even better in other areas of his game. He has the length and athleticism to be a double digit sack artist in the NFL, and it would not surprise me to see his name amongst defensive rookie of the year candidates at the end of the 2022-2023 season.
Ebiketie fits the Cardinals defense well, and could carve himself a significant role on the Arizona defensive line.
24. Dallas Cowboys – Zion Johnson, OG, Boston College
I hadn’t yet looked at the Cowboys guard situation until writing this mock. Woof.
Outside of all pro Zack Martin, this team is THIN on the interior. Slated to start right now at the left guard position for the Cowboys is Connor McGovern. McGovern is a fine player, but there’s plenty of reason for the Cowboys to want to upgrade at that position. On top of this, there is little to no depth on both sides of the interior for this team. Zion Johnson is as “plug and play” as it gets. He has plenty of experience playing the left guard position, as he has seen significant playing time since his time as a freshman at Davidson.
He’s a smooth player, with a pop to his punch when he makes first contact. Johnson enjoyed himself a solid Senior Bowl week, and more than likely solidified his spot as a first round pick. He’s a smart player, who has a veteran feel to his play, despite being just 22 years old. Johnson sures up a need for Dallas. He’ll be in the lineup week one.
Dallas finds nice value at 24.
25. Buffalo Bills – Kyler Gordon, CB, Washington
Buffalo needs a cornerback to play opposite of Tre’Davious White, and Kyler Gordon might be a match made in heaven.
Losing Levi Wallace to the Steelers in free agency leaves Buffalo with a question mark at cornerback across from Tre’Davious White. Kyler Gordon can fill that gap. While I do think the Bills could heavily consider Florida’s Kaiir Elam with this selection, it’s the medicals that may scare Brandon Beane away. Under Beane, the Bills have not selected an injury riddled player in the first round. Kyler Gordon has little to no injury history, and on top of that, is a phenomenal player.
A capable player in both man and zone, Gordon can be used where the Bills may wish to use him. He has ideal size (6”0) and has all the athleticism in the world to make plays on the ball. One of the most notable traits that Gordon possesses is his secure tackling. Head Coach Sean McDermott covets defensive backs that can tackle, and Gordon’s secure tackling surely shows up on tape.
Gordon would give the Bills a steady player to play across from Tre’Davious White once he returns from injury. Gordon allows Dane Jackson and Cam Lewis to play more natural depth roles, and gives the team an above average second cornerback.
Buffalo’s only true need is at CB2, and they fill that need with Kyler Gordon.
26. Tennessee Titans – Kenyon Green, OG, Texas A&M
If the Titans want to be able to keep things rolling on the offensive line, they need an upgrade on the interior.
Kenyon Green is another player that likely could step into the Tennessee facility tomorrow and be slated to be a starter. Playing some time at right tackle for A&M, Green didn’t look comfortable. However, when kicked inside, Green looked like a natural fit. Green has a great feel on the interior, especially in the run game, which is why his resume could be appealing to Tennessee. He’s a powerful blocker, who knows how to find work.
His 6”4, 300 plus pound frame is an NFL ready body. Green has great hands, and oftentimes kills interior pass rushers drive with his anchor. Another positive about Green’s game is that he’s versatile. If the Titans like him better at right guard, they can slot him there. If they like him better at left guard, he works just as fine there too. Green is an NFL ready run blocker, who in Tennessee’s scheme, could be one of the most important pieces on the offense.
Green provides a steady presence on the interior for the Titans, and would be a perfect match given Green’s skills and Tennessee’s offensive identity.
27. Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Devonte Wyatt, DL, Georgia
One of the top players left on the board, Wyatt is an absolute steal for Tampa Bay at 27.
When looking along the defensive line of Georgia, players like Jordan Davis and Travon Walker received a lot of the hype. Devonte Wyatt deserved that same level of hype. Being such a disruptive player, Wyatt was consistently giving offensive lines fits because of his ability to move and create havoc. Wyatt and Davis were an incredible tandem at Georgia.
Some would say Davis was Batman and Wyatt was Robin, or even vice versa. This is an interesting thought because Wyatt joining Tampa Bay means he gets a similar running mate to Jordan Davis. Vita Vea has a stature comparable to Jordan Davis, and Devonte Wyatt could seamlessly fulfill the same role he played at Georgia with Tampa Bay. Likely being an edge in Tampa Bay’s 3-4 defense, Wyatt has all the potential in the world to win his one-on-one matchups in the NFL. If he can gather a few more rushing moves, I really like Wyatt’s upside with the Buccaneers.
Tampa Bay fills a hole on their defensive line with the stud of out Georgia.
28. Green Bay Packers – Drake Jackson, DE, USC
Green Bay has a long and heavy pass rushing rotation, and losing Za’Darius Smith means Green Bay needs another guy to rush the passer.
Rashan Gary has really taken strides as a player, and Preston Smith is a veteran who has proven himself in the NFL, but outside of that, the rushing rotation for the Packers is underwhelming. Drake Jackson is one of my favorite players in this draft. If I were a scout, I’d be standing on the table for this guy. He is a total maniac coming off the edge, and has been so since coming into college football. Jackson isn’t the strongest in this class, and may not even be close to the top of that list, but what he lacks in strength he makes up for in bend.
Jackson weighed in a full 20 pounds heavier at his pro day since his weigh in at the combine, which shows me he understands teams want him to be larger. Once he puts on some more muscle, and some more mass, I think Jackson can be coached up in the run game to help him become a more complete player. For now, Jackson would probably be relegated to passing downs only. Personally, I think he’ll be very good in this situation early in his career. Jackson is certainly a developmental player, but the frame and athleticism are there for this guy to become a great player.
Jackson gives Green Bay another rusher to participate in their lengthy rushing rotation.
29. Kansas City Chiefs (via MIA) – Daxton Hill, S, Michigan
Daxton Hill is one of the most versatile players in this year’s draft.
Juan Thornhill has struggled to stay in the lineup consistently since being drafted in 2019. They also don’t seem to be interested in signing Tyrann Mathieu back, so this could be a completely new looking defense. What better way to start a new looking secondary than bringing in a player that can play numerous positions on the field.
Daxton Hill is one of the few safeties in this year’s draft that I can truly say I would trust playing deep safety at a high level his rookie season. He’s a rangy, reactive player that really pops out on film the way he flies around out on the field. Hill has great speed for his position in which he showcased at the combine when he ran a 4.38 40-yard dash. Hill, who in my personal opinion is the second best safety in the class, could also be considered as one of the top slot cornerbacks in this draft. He’s smooth playing against slot receivers and has great size for the position standing at 6”0.
Hill offers plenty more than just being a traditional safety, and the Chiefs would be smart to pick him up at the back end of the first round.
30. Kansas City Chiefs – George Pickens, WR, Georgia
Parting ways with Tyreek Hill leaves Kansas City without a true “X” receiver. Enter George Pickens.
Pickens is another one of my favorite players in this draft. If not for an ACL tear, Pickens may be talked about as one of the top three receivers taken in this draft. A true number one receiver, Pickens could give Patrick Mahomes a weapon he hasn’t had before. Standing 6”3, Pickens has the ability to be the bigger weapon Mahomes has not yet had in his career on the perimeter. He moves well for his size, and arguably has the best hands out of any receiver in this draft.
Pickens would be a nice change of pace compared to what Kansas City already has on their roster. JuJu Smith-Schuster is likely the big slot, while Marquez Valdez-Scantling and Mecole Hardman are the vertical threats. Pickens is the one piece that this offense is missing and I honestly think it could be the best possible landing spot for him out of any team in the NFL. It makes sense for both sides. And oh yeah, it’ll also make sense for fans to tune in to Mahomes throwing a bomb to Pickens who follows up with an absurd concentration catch.
Kansas City could seriously benefit from adding another receiver, and Pickens is my “pick” *wink* for the Chiefs here.
31. Cincinnati Bengals – Kaiir Elam, CB, Florida
The Bengals could do right in upgrading at the cornerback position, and with pick 31, they take the best available corner in Florida’s Kaiir Elam.
Elam comes from good genetics, as his nephew is Matt Elam, who was a first round pick back in 2013. His father, Abram, also played high level college football, and would go on to play some time in the NFL. He has a long, wiry frame, which allows him to use his lengthy arms to get hands on the ball when it’s in the air. His traits on the field all point to him being able to play press coverage at the next level at an above average rate.
Additionally, Elam is only 20 years old, and is a coachable player. This tells us that it is very possible that his best football is ahead of him, which is saying a lot, as he was quite an accomplished player at Florida, notching All-SEC honors in 2020 because of his play. Straight away, Elam would have a shot at playing a large role for the Bengals, who allowed almost 250 passing yards per game in 2021.
The Bengals could use another solid player to slot next to Chidobe Awuzie for years to come, and I think Elam can be that guy, with the upside to become a true CB1 years down the line.
32. Detroit Lions (via LAR) – Desmond Ridder, QB, Cincinnati
In my opinion, winning and leadership are two traits that almost always transfer to the NFL, and the Lions could use both of those things. Desmond Ridder, who is both a leader and a winner, is sitting right here at 32 for them to take. Ironically, Detroit gets Ridder with the pick that they received in the Matt Stafford deal.
One of the main reasons it could be wise for the Lions to pull the trigger on a quarterback with the last pick in the first round is because of the five-year option that is automatically built into every first round pick’s contract. This gives the team an option to have the rights to a player for an additional year, as opposed to the normal four year rookie term. Rookie deals are becoming oh so valuable in today’s NFL, and even more so at the quarterback position.
Ridder may also just be the most NFL ready quarterback in this year’s draft. He has most of the tools you look for in a quarterback. Size, mobility, arm talent, and just as I referenced before, he’s a leader and a winner. On top of all that he may be the smartest quarterback in this year’s draft when it comes to pre-snap recognition. He knows how to read defenses and can tell when something will be open before it happens. If he can clean up basic mechanical issues to fix some accuracy problems, it’s all there for the Lions.
The Lions will need to at some point replace Jared Goff, why not give Ridder a shot here at the end of the first?

Round 2

33. Jacksonville Jaguars – Tyler Linderbaum, IOL, Iowa – Jacksonville goes best player remaining on the board at the start of the first. Linderbaum is a top talent in the draft, but because of positional value, he falls to round two. Day one starter for Jacksonville.
34. Detroit Lions – Jahan Dotson, WR, Penn State – Detroit should add more weapons to the offense in this draft, and fortunately for them, Jahan Dotson falls to them in round two. Dotson is a first round talent, who is a crafty route runner. He’s quick on his feet and can make plays after the catch. Detroit gives Desmond Ridder a future running mate.
35. New York Jets – Boye Mafe, EDGE, Minnesota – The Jets added Evan Neal and Drake London in round one, but did not grab a pass rusher. Mafe is an athlete, who is a bit of a raw player, but once he refines his skills he could be a legit rusher. He dominated the Senior Bowl, and would provide some nice talent to the Jets defensive line.
36. New York Giants – Lewis Cine, S, Georgia – The Giants could stand to upgrade Julian Love. Lewis Cine is a big hitter, who can hold his own in man coverage. If he could improve on his range, Cine could seriously become an elite safety in the league. No nonsense type of player that Wink Martindale would love.
37. Houston Texans – Christian Watson, WR, North Dakota State – The Texans need more offensive talent to surround Davis Mills. Adding Watson gives the Texans two vertical threats on offense with Cooks and Watson. He’s a big body, who can be used in a myriad of ways on offense. The Texans went defense with their two first picks, so here they add to the offense.
38. New York Jets (via CAR) – Nakobe Dean, LB, Georgia – This is a value pick for the Jets. They need to upgrade at weakside linebacker, and I think Dean can fill that role. He’s scheme dependent, but I think this is a Rob Salah player, so they can make it work. Dean plays like his head is on fire, and could really make an impact on this defense.
39. Chicago Bears – Skyy Moore, WR, Western Michigan – This receiver room just isn’t very good. Give Justin Fields some weapons. Moore is a player who plays bigger than his frame. He can make crazy plays happen with the ball in his hands. Simplify it for Field, easy passes to players that can make plays on their own.
40. Seattle Seahawks (via DEN) – Roger McCreary, CB, Auburn – This team has a lot of holes, but cornerback sticks out like a sore thumb. Maybe not the typical build Seattle looks for in corners, but he’s the most talented corner left on the board. He could be a boundary cornerback, but likely projects as a slot. Seattle gets better in the secondary with their first of back-to-back picks.
41. Seattle Seahawks – Sam Howell, QB, North Carolina – With Kenny Pickett and Matt Corral still on the board, Seattle goes Howell due to his ability to throw a consistently accurate deep ball. His skill set matches their offense. He has a similar stature to what they had in Russell Wilson, and has a mobile aspect to his game as well. If Drew Lock doesn’t look good, which he very well may not, Seattle can play Howell and start grooming him for the future.
42. Indianapolis Colts (via WAS) – Calvin Austin III, WR, Memphis – The Colts almost have to reach for a receiver with their first pick in the draft. They traded for Matt Ryan, and currently his only proven weapon in the receiving room is Michael Pittman Jr. Calvin Austin has ridiculous speed, and could be the gadget guy that they wanted Parris Campbell to be. Colts add a weapon who can contribute right away.
43. Atlanta Falcons – Kenny Pickett, QB, Pittsburgh – Personally, I’m not the biggest Kenny Pickett guy. I think he’s antsy in the pocket with a low ceiling as a quarterback. Still, if a player that you may consider taking at number eight is still here at 43, you take him. Ironically enough I think Pickett and Marcus Mariota have similar skill sets. Falcons take a shot on a talented, yet limited quarterback.
44. Cleveland Browns – Travis Jones, DT, Connecticut – Cleveland’s interior defensive line is currently a mess. Young, unproven, and inconsistent players such as Jordan Elliott and Malik McDowell are currently slated as the starters for the team. They need to improve this position. Travis Jones is a good run stuffer, who has upside as a pass rusher as well. He’s a good athlete at his size, and would most likely be the day one starter at defensive tackle for Cleveland.
45. Baltimore Ravens – David Ojabo, EDGE, Michigan – Baltimore could look to add a corner at this selection, but with the way the board fell, I don’t like the value for any of the remaining corners. Instead, Baltimore reunites Odafe Oweh and David Ojabo. Ojabo likely will have to redshirt his rookie year due to his ACL tear. Once he is healthy though, he could develop into a consistent rusher off the edge. Baltimore doubles down at edge and gets a steal of a player in the second round.
46. Minnesota Vikings – Jalen Pitre, S, Baylor – There have been rumors about the Vikings looking for an eventual replacement for Harrison Smith as he continues to age. The way that the board fell here allows Minnesota to do so in selecting Baylor’s Jalen Pitre. While he won’t be “the guy” at safety in year one likely, there shouldn’t be any issue in finding him playing time. He can play multiple positions at a high level.
47. Washington Commanders (via IND) – Dylan Parham, G, Memphis – Washington needs a replacement at right guard after losing Brandon Scherff to the Jaguars in free agency. Parham is a seamless fit. He played right guard at Memphis at a high level. Parham comes to a team that really could use the guard help, and likely is the week one starter at right guard blocking for Carson Wentz.
48. Chicago Bears (via LAC) – Perrion Winfrey, DT, Oklahoma – Chicago lost a lot of defensive line talent this offseason. It seems as if new GM Ryan Poles is ready to restart this defensive line with some younger talent. Perrion Winfrey was one of the best players left on the board. Winfrey is an explosive interior defensive lineman, who plays with violence and heavy hands. I really like the thought of Winfrey becoming a foundational player along this revamped Chicago defensive line.
49. New Orleans Saints – Matt Corral, QB, Ole Miss – Corral falls right into the Saints lap at pick 49. Kind of a tough player to evaluate, due to his scheme at Ole Miss, Corral still does have some traits that I think teams will like. He’s a quick hitter, who throws an accurate ball. No one is sure what the Saints’ plans are at quarterback for the future, but I don’t think it involves either Jameis Winston or Ian Book. Saints take the last of the big five quarterbacks.
50. Kansas City Chiefs (via MIA) – Tariq Woolen, CB, UTSA – The Chiefs lost Charvarius Ward in the offseason to San Francisco, and will need to look for a replacement. Tariq Woolen is a raw prospect, but is one of the most athletically gifted in this class. He has the length and size to play outside, and oh yeah… he ran a 4.26 40-yard dash. Woolen is a gamble, but I believe some team will fall in love with the athletic profile, and it could be the Chiefs.
51. Philadelphia Eagles – Christian Harris, LB, Alabama – Kyzir White was signed to a one-year deal, but that does not solidify the linebacker position in Philly. Harris actually has a bit of a different skill set than White anyways. He’s a great blitzer, and has a ton of sack production during the college football playoffs. He may not be a coverage linebacker, but he doesn’t need to be in this linebacker room. Philly takes an athletic freak at linebacker to bolster the defense.
52. Pittsburgh Steelers – Logan Hall, DL, Houston – Pittsburgh goes best player left on the board while also grabbing a position of need. Hall is a bit of a tweener playing interior defensive line, so I kind of like him better as a 3-4 edge. He can give the Steelers valuable rotational snaps, and gives the Steelers a sense of youth to their quickly aging defensive line.
53. Green Bay Packers (via LVR) – Trey McBride, TE, Colorado State – The tight end position has recently become a question mark for the Packers. Robert Tonyan went down with an ACL tear, but even before that, he wasn’t playing even close to his 2020 form. The Packers have been trying to snag a consistent tight end for Aaron Rodgers for years with Jace Sternberger, and Josiah Deguara as names that come to mind. Green Bay gets the consensus TE1 with their second round pick.
54. New England Patriots – Tyler Smith, OL, Tulsa – In an interesting offseason move, New England traded Shaq Mason to the Buccaneers. They should be looking for someone to add to the interior offensive line. Tyler Smith played tackle at Tulsa, but due to his size, agility, and power, many teams view him as a guard. Smith is a boom or bust prospect, but being one of the youngest prospects in the draft, Smith has plenty of time to learn and grow as a player.
55. Arizona Cardinals – Breece Hall, RB, Iowa State – The board was not pretty at cornerback or wide receiver here for the Cardinals, so I went with the best player available. I like Hall’s fit with the Cardinals. He adds a completely new dynamic on first and second downs. James Connor is a good back, but I like him better as a short yardage, red zone kind of player. Hall is a dynamic back, and could add some explosiveness to the Cardinal backfield.
56. Dallas Cowboys – Nik Bonitto, EDGE, Oklahoma – Dallas lost Randy Gregory to the Broncos in free agency. They still have Demarcus Lawrence and other depth pieces, but now seriously lack athleticism and speed off the edge. This is why I believe Nik Bonitto is the perfect fit. He’s a speedster off the line of scrimmage, and could provide that missing pass rush piece. With good sack production in college, I think Bonitto fits in well as the Cowboys third down rusher.
57. Buffalo Bills – Kenneth Walker III, RB, Michigan State – Buffalo has very few holes on the roster, so they have the privilege of going wherever they want with this second pick. Kenneth Walker would be a great addition to the Buffalo offense. He adds home run hitting speed to the backfield, something that the Bills currently lack. He’s one of the shiftiest backs in the draft, displaying ridiculous cuts and jukes in the matter of seconds. Adding Walker to an already dangerous offense could elevate the Bills to be at the very top of the league when it comes to offensive production.
58. Atlanta Falcons (via TEN) – John Metchie III, WR, Alabama – Atlanta really needs a wide receiver. John Metchie is a skilled route runner, who has the skills to be a really good chain mover in the NFL. His game reminds me of Keenan Allen, with the way he moves against defensive backs. Metchie did however tear his ACL in December. While it’s still possible he comes back during the middle of the NFL season, Metchie will likely miss a good portion of his rookie season. Still, the talent is there, and Atlanta is in no rush to be good at the moment anyways.
59. Green Bay Packers – Bernhard Raimann, OT, Central Michigan – The Packers had a slew of injuries at the tackle position last year. Billy Turner was also signed away from the team in free agency, so the Packers will need to look to add to their tackle depth. Raimann is a super raw player. Converting from tight end to play tackle at Central Michigan, Raimann is relatively new to the position. Despite this, he played well. The Packers can bank on teaching him the position. Raimann is a solid depth piece for the Packers, and in due time could move into a starting role.
60. Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Greg Dulcich, TE, UCLA – Rob Gronkowski still hasn’t resigned with the team. Even if he does, it’s likely for one more year, and then he’s done. They lost OJ Howard in the offseason, and are left with just Cameron Brate as a proven player if Gronkowski decides to retire. Dulcich is a dynamic tight end, who can get vertical due to his speed at the position. Dulcich likely slots in as the long term tight end for Tampa Bay.
61. San Francisco 49ers – Jaquan Brisker, S, Penn State – The 49ers have only one proven safety on their roster in Jimmie Ward. Adding Jaquan Brisker with their first pick in the draft would be a steal. Brisker is a great athlete, who excels at moving into the box. You can bank on him to matchup with tight ends in man coverage. Brisker could be a week one starting player for the 49ers. They add a talented player at a position of need.
62. Kansas City Chiefs – Sam Williams, EDGE, Ole Miss – There are some other good edge players left on the board, but none are as talented as Sam Williams is as a pass rusher. Williams has a great get off, and the athleticism to move around tackles and finish plays. Williams can learn behind Frank Clark and continue to blossom as a player.
63. Cincinnati Bengals – Demarvin Leal, DL, Texas A&M – Larry Ogunjobi was not re-signed by the team, so it looks like they’ll look to address the interior defensive line in the draft. Demarvin Leal was a guy being talked about as a top ten pick last year. Now, because of lackluster tape, Leal falls into the second round. There are still a lot of traits to like about Leal however. He’s a long player with a strong rushing plan. Cincinnati banks on the early 2021 tape of Leal.
64. Denver Broncos (via LAR) – Quay Walker, LB, Georgia – The Broncos get potentially the steal of the draft with the last pick of the second round in Georgia’s Quay Walker. Walker is one of the more athletic linebackers in the draft. He’s a leader on and off the field, and that’s something the Broncos could use on defense. If Baron Browning does move to outside linebacker, Walker slots in as a nice partner to Josey Jewell in the middle.