The Jameis Winston era might be over in Tampa Bay.
It doesn’t get much worse as a former No. 1 overall pick than being benched for/outplayed by 35-year-old Ryan Fitzpatrick.
With Fitzpatrick clearly not being the long-term plan at the signal-caller position, either GM Jason Licht or the next GM in Tampa will likely turn their attention to a quarterback who doesn’t have a propensity to make bad decisions and give the ball to the other team often.
That’s NC State’s Ryan Finley.
The draft order for this mock is based on SportsLine’s current win projections.
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1. Oakland Raiders
Nick Bosa, DE, Ohio State. By losing last night, the Raiders “won” the game dubbed my some as the Nick Bosa Bowl. Bosa is the most impressive prospects in this class. He’s got it all and can have a similar impact to the one his brother instantly made with the Chargers back in 2016. Gruden needs to make the obvious pick here.
2. San Francisco 49ers
Greedy Williams, CB, LSU. The 49ers would be interested in a trade down, but without trades in this mock, they pick a player with Richard Sherman-like size and length on the outside. Williams is a ball hawk with fluid athleticism.
3. New York Giants
Ed Oliver, DT, Houston. Even though the Giants picked B.J. Hill in the third round of the 2018 Draft and have gotten good contributions from 2017 pick Dalvin Tomlinson, they can’t pass on Oliver, who’s made for the modern-day NFL. Once labeled as “undersized” defensive tackles, players like Oliver are now trendy because of their pass-rush ability and how their low center of gravity helps them against bigger blockers inside. Oliver has athleticism in the Aaron Donald realm, a rarity.
4. Arizona Cardinals
Jonah Williams, OT, Alabama. Be smart, Cardinals. Get Josh Rosen some high-caliber talent on the offensive line. Williams is plenty gifted enough and has already aced the finest details of playing the position.
5. Buffalo Bills
Deandre Baker, CB, Georgia. No Bosa. No Oliver. No Williams. Let’s go with someone to solidify the No. 2 CB spot for the Bills and add to an already strong defense. Baker is actually comparable to Tre’Davious White in that he’s not a large cornerback but has tremendous instincts, requisite athleticism, and outstanding ball skills.
6. Cleveland Browns
N’Keal Harry, WR, Arizona State. Harry at least momentarily silenced his doubters, who believe he’s stiff and not explosive, with a 92-yard punt return score against USC. No, he didn’t make 10 defenders miss en route to the end zone but did run across the entire field and accelerate up the sideline. Cleveland needs a WR1 on the outside. Harry can be that guy.
7. New York Jets
Josh Allen, EDGE, Kentucky. I put the “EDGE” label on Allen because he’s not solely a defensive end and not a classic outside linebacker. He’s been impressive in coverage this season — four pass breakups — but has consistently demonstrated explosiveness and bend to the quarterback. If he keeps his job, Todd Bowles should love Allen as a prospect.
8. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Ryan Finley, QB, NC State. The Jameis Winston era has fallen on some extraordinarily difficult times. Finley is a refined pocket passer who’s tossed just 20 interceptions in his last 1,145 attempts at NC State. That’s an interception rate of 1.7%.
9. Jacksonville Jaguars
Greg Little, OT, Ole Miss. I have a hunch the Jaguars will find their next quarterback in free agency or on the trade market. If there’s something else Jacksonville needs, it’s offensive line help, particularly on the edges (despite the presence of Cam Robinson). Greg Little is a big, long, athletic specimen like Robinson but is more polished in pass-protection.
10. Atlanta Falcons
Ben Powers, OG, Oklahoma. Powers looks like a tackle but locks down interior pass-rushers with a quality anchor and good footwork. He’s impressive on combo blocks too. Some may call this a reach, but Powers is a plug-and-play starter in an offense that features tons of passing.
11. Indianapolis Colts
Quinnen Williams, DT, Alabama. The Colts are now heavily invested in their offensive line, and it’s finally paying off. How about more talent on the other side of the ball? Williams has been phenomenal this season in his first year as a full-time starter for Alabama. Hand use. Burst. Power. Complete skill set.
12. Tennessee Titans
Clelin Ferrell, DE, Clemson. The Titans have to plan for the future at the edge position beyond Harold Landry. Ferrell is an awesome edge-setter and has the athleticism to win on the outside in passing situations.
13. Miami Dolphins
Zach Allen, DE, Boston College. The Dolphins need to create more pressure on the opposing quarterback, and their best pass-rusher is Cameron Wake. Allen has an NFL body and has shown a more developed array of pass-rushing moves this season than what he put on display in 2017.
14. Denver Broncos
Devin White, LB, LSU. The Broncos have gotten great production from 2018 fifth-round pick Josey Jewell in the first half of his debut season in the NFL, and he needs an athletic partner at linebacker. That’s where the explosive White fits in with the Broncos.
15. Detroit Lions
A.J. Brown, WR, Ole Miss. With Golden Tate gone, the Lions have to think about taking a wide receiver early in the 2019 draft. Brown can jump right into Tate’s slot position and win after the catch. He’s a “big slot” too at 6-foot-1, and 230 pounds.
16. Green Bay Packers
Jachai Polite, EDGE, Florida. The Packers need more talent on the outside of their defensive front. Polite is a 3-4 outside linebacker all the way in the NFL and wins with speed and the ability to flatten to the quarterback.
17. Minnesota Vikings
Dre’Mont Jones, DT, Ohio State. The Vikings could certainly re-sign Sheldon Richardson, but if they don’t, they’ll need another attacking three technique to play next to Linval Joseph. Jones is a polished inside pass-rusher with active hands.
18. Oakland Raiders (from Dallas)
Kelvin Harmon, WR, NC State. Where do the Raiders start after picking Bosa? Really, it could be at any position here. But without Amari Cooper and Martavis Bryant’s contract up after the season, wide receiver is a gigantic need. Harmon is a well-rounded receiver who can thrive at any level of the field and be consistent in the red zone.
19. Philadelphia Eagles
Dalton Risner, OT, Kansas State. Although it hasn’t happened yet, I do think Lane Johnson will ultimately take over for the retired Jason Peters at left tackle. When that happens, the Eagles will need a lockdown right tackle. Risner is the best pure right tackle in this class.
20. Cincinnati Bengals
Kaden Smith, TE, Stanford. The Bengals offense has been effective this year. It was at its best with Andy Dalton under center when Tyler Eifert was healthy. Smith is the most impressive pass-catching tight end in this class.
21. Baltimore Ravens
Anthony Johnson, WR, Buffalo. The Ravens rebuilt their receiver group this offseason with the acquisitions of John Brown and Michael Crabtree. Brown only inked a one-year deal, and Crabtree is 31. Johnson can give some of what both of those veteran receivers provide.
22. Oakland Raiders from Bears
Te’von Coney, LB, Notre Dame. Coney is a step ahead of everyone else on the field and a steady, wrap-up tackler. He holds his own in coverage too. The Raiders need a field general on the defensive side of the ball.
23. Pittsburgh Steelers
Amani Oruwariye, CB, Penn State. Oruwariye is a trendy pick for the Steelers because he’s a long, twitchy cornerback with high-caliber ball skills, and Pittsburgh needs to reshape its secondary.
24. Houston Texans
Mitch Hyatt, OT, Clemson. A bit of a surprise here, but the Texans have to add more talent to the offensive line. Hyatt is a super-experienced left tackle who’s steadily improved in each of his seasons at Clemson.
25. Carolina Panthers
Deionte Thompson, S, Alabama. Even with Eric Reid in the mix, the Panthers have a need at safety, and Thompson can be a rangy interception-machine as the deep center fielder in Carolina.
26. Seattle Seahawks
JJ Arcega-Whiteside, WR, Stanford. The best jump-ball receiver in college football lands with the Seahawks, a team that places a big emphasis on the ability to come down with the football when you’re not exactly open.
27. Washington Redskins
Bryce Hall, CB, Virginia. Not the twitchiest corner in the class, but Hall might have the best awareness and aggressiveness when playing the football as it arrives. He currently leads the nation with 16 pass breakups. He’d be a nice heir to Josh Norman on the outside.
28. Los Angeles Chargers
Jerry Tillery, DT, Notre Dame. A tall but dynamic defensive tackle prospect, Tillery wins with heavy hands and deceptively quick burst off the snap. He’d been a welcomed addition on the inside of Los Angeles’ defensive line.
29. Green Bay Packers from Saints
Jeffery Simmons, DL, Mississippi State. Even with Dean Lowry playing better and Muhammad Wilkerson set to return next season, the Packers go with a refined defensive line prospect in Simmons to pair with Kenny Clark and Mike Daniels up front.
30. New England Patriots
Marquise Brown, WR, Oklahoma. If there’s a decision-maker with the courage to pick a tiny YAC receiver in the first round it’s Bill Belichick. Brown has a much more well-rounded skill set than he’ll likely be given credit for, and he’d be a tremendous addition to the Patriots’ quick passing game.
31. Kansas City Chiefs
Taylor Rapp, S, Washington. Eric Berry has been a star in Kansas City his entire career but turns 30 in December. Rapp is a twitchy, versatile safety who can make plays at any level of the field.
32. Los Angeles Rams
Ben Burr-Kirven, LB, Washington. The trade for Dante Fowler alleviates the Rams’ need for a ferocious edge presence. Burr-Kirven can be the replacement for Mark Barron, another smaller safety-like player at the second level. BBK beats blocks with ease and is comfortable in coverage.
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