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T.J. the Sports Geek’s 2016 NFL Draft Preview


Well here we are again at the annual NFL Draft Preview. We have 31 picks in this year’s first round,so let’s see who we have selected for each team. 

Rams1. Los Angeles- Jared Goff,QB California

The Rams traded up to get this pick and with that they basically fucked up my prediction of a quarterback not getting selected here because they need a quarterback very badly and they’re getting a new start in a new/old city. The guy they’re coveting the most is Cal’s Jared Goff. He’s a gifted signal caller with a quality arm and is able to hit his receivers in a little window of space,he’s even great with his legs getting out of trouble. I think Goff is a good choice for the Rams who will get a California guy on California’s newest team.

Eagles2. Philadelphia- Carson Wentz, QB North Dakota State

The Eagles traded up with Cleveland to pick second and to me it doesn’t seem like much of a surprise that they’re after a quarterback at this spot. Therefore Carson Wentz will more than likely be their guy if the Rams take a pass on him. He’s very tall and athletic at 6-5 and reminds me of a Blake Bortles and has an accurate and powerful arm and has great pocket presence. I think Philadelphia has their guy in Wentz here as the quarterback of the future.

Chargers3. San Diego-Jalen Ramsey,S/CB Florida State

Quite possibly the best player in the draft, Ramsey would definitely fill a need for the Chargers as Eric Weddle left for Baltimore. He’s very capable of battling big time wide receivers and has great size at 6-1,210 lbs. He also has great leaping ability.If San Diego wants to draft a guy who is not only strong,but competitive, I think Ramsey should and will be their first choice.

Cowboys4. Dallas- Ezekiel Elliot, RB Ohio State

Dallas is still trying to fill the void left behind by DeMarco Murray’s departure last season and who knows how long they can hang with just Darren McFadden. Ezekiel Elliot combines his tremendous vision with his first step quickness and excellent balance. Elliot has been known to wear down defenses and even be a good receiver at times. I think he would be a great back in the Cowboys’ system and should be able to contribute immediately.

Jaguars5. Jacksonville- Myles Jack, OLB UCLA

Myles Jack very well could’ve been the top overall pick had he not injured his knee last season at UCLA. Jack has it all; the strength,the speed,the agility,versatility,and he’s a good guy off the field. The Jaguars drafted Donte Fowler,Jr. last season and he has yet to play a game. Having been compared to NaVarro Bowman,Jack should be ready to play and contribute to a Jacksonville team who needs a lot of help on the defensive side of the ball,not to mention this seems to be the guy they’re coveting.

Ravens6. Baltimore- Laremy Tunsil,OT Mississippi

Originally my top overall choice before the Rams-Titans trade,Tunsil falls to the Ravens and this young man is a steal at this spot. He has the great quickness of an NFL-ready tackle and is an excellent screen blocker with good body control and balance. I think this choice will benefit Baltimore as they have need a left tackle on that line. Ozzie Newsome drafting Tunsil would be a big start to filling that void.

49ers7. San Francisco- Ronnie Stanley, OT Notre Dame

The 49ers have more holes in their offensive line than Swiss cheese and selecting a tackle would probably be a wise decision. Stanley was very effective at Notre Dame and has a lot of potential to be a top level tackle. He has great strength and is actually very fast for an offensive lineman and is effective at blocking the edge, he does have things he needs to work on but he is definitely worth drafting at this spot for San Francisco. Yes,they need a quarterback,but they need offensive line help more.

Browns158. Cleveland- DeForest Buckner,DE Oregon

Cleveland needs a new everything and they need a guy like Buckner to bolster their line. At 6-7,the Pac-12’s Defensive Player of the Year is a quality run defender who is very versatile and can play in either a 3-4 or a 4-3 scheme with his incredible athleticism. He could be another version of Calais Campbell. On a team with so many holes,it’s time to Browns fill one of them wisely with the best available player in Buckner.

Buccaneers9. Tampa Bay- Vernon Hargreaves III,CB Florida

Tampa’s big need is secondary help. Florida’s Vernon Hargreaves III looks to be their guy. He’s a great cover corner who can play in virtually any type of coverage and a tough tackler. He was well liked by his teammates and has very good character and I always look at that as a plus. The Buccaneers would benefit well with this selection.

Giants10. N.Y. Giants- Joey Bosa, DE/LB Ohio State

I think the Giants could use a pass rusher with their best one, Jason Pierre-Paul, having only 8½ fingers, it’s time they got one with 10. Bosa is too good to pass up at this spot,he has great size for a pass rusher and versatile and can play either defensive end or linebacker. He also has dangerous ability to stop the run and even force fumbles. The Giants can definitely use a player like Bosa. He has the talents that he can use fiercely at the next level and I highly doubt New York are going to pass him up. He does,however,need to work on not going offsides so much and he has had some character issues which is something I think will cause him to drop from where he was originally in this mock draft.

Bears11. Chicago- Leonard Floyd,LB Georgia

The Bears definitely need an outside linebacker and Leonard Floyd of Georgia is the best one available at this selection. He’s very fast, very tall at 6-6 and a natural pass rusher. Though he is thin at 244 lbs.,he should be adding more weight to his frame as his career goes on. I think Floyd would be a great addition to Chicago’s linebacking corps who should be able to have a great impact right away.

Saints12. New Orleans- Sheldon Rankins,DT Louisville

Though a little undersized at this position at 6-1, 300 lbs. , Rankins is a beast. He’s a very explosive lineman who explodes into blockers and at times can own the best blockers and stop the run effectively. He’s also a fierce pass rusher. The Saints do need to upgrade their shoddy defense big time and a guy like Rankins could be one of the building blocks of their defensive revamp.

Dolphins13. Miami- Eli Apple, CB Ohio State

Could Eli be the Apple of Miami’s eye? (Sorry,I couldn’t resist!) He very well could be as the Dolphins do need big time secondary help. He’s very competitive when the ball is in the air, has the play strength to get receivers off their routes. He’s also been praised for his strong work ethic. He’s very much worth drafting here considering he fits Miami’s defensive scheme well. I originally had him going later in the round,but the pick here makes good sense.

Raiders14. Oakland- Jarran Reed, DT Alabama

The Raiders are still looking for defensive line help and I think this guy can help. Reed’s a tremendous run defender and he swallows up blockers very well. He very much needs to work on his pass rushing skills,but he seems to be a high commodity in the weeks leading up to the draft. I think he lands with Oakland. If the Raiders don’t go for Reed,expect them to take a cornerback as they also need secondary help with Charles Woodson retiring.

Titans15. Tennessee- Jack Conklin,OT Michigan State

The Titans traded down to the Rams here and I think the top position on their radar is offensive tackle. Enter Jack Conklin. He’s a well-balanced blocker who is very dependable when it comes to pass protection. He’s also very durable and has great size. Tennessee needs to give Marcus Mariota some protection and Conklin is the best player available at thhat position in my view and will more than likely go here.

Lions16. Detroit- Shaq Lawson,DE Clemson

Detroit still needs to replace Ndamukong Suh and there’s a guy named Shaq Lawson who might be able to do that. Lawson is a terrific pass rusher who can beat a tackle with his speed and get to the quarterback. While he doesn’t have a lot of length, he does fit a big need for the Lions and since he is cleared medically to play,he should be able to contribute immediately.

Falcons17. Atlanta- Darron Lee, LB Ohio State

With the Falcons being last in the league in sacks last season, I think they can and need to bolster their linebacking corps. I think Ohio State’s Darron Lee is their guy. He’s a very versatile and agile linebacker with the speed to be a bold playmaker. He’s also capable of blitizing in the gap. A lot of other mock drafts have him going to Atlanta and I do as well.

Colts18. Indianapolis- Taylor Decker,OT Ohio State

The Colts need to upgrade their offensive line and give Andrew Luck some breathing room out there and the guy they should draft and bring in to help do so is OSU’s Taylor Decker. At 6-7, 310 lbs. Decker is a strong run blocker and is very physical. He would be great at right tackle in Indianapolis. If the Colts don’t take Decker,look for them to take Alabama’s Ryan Kelly.

Bills19. Buffalo- Reggie Ragland,LB Alabama

Last season the Bills did not get a lot out of their linebacking corps,so drafting one in the first round should be a high prioirity and I think Reggie Ragland can fit well into Rex Ryan’s plans. He’s a very instinctive player and tackles well in the open field and can blitz off the edge. I really like his size at 6-1, 260 lbs. and I feel like that’s an asset to his scouting report. He’d be great in Buffalo.

Jets20. N.Y. Jets-Paxton Lynch, QB Memphis

I think the Jets need to think about drafting a quarterback of the future at some point. Ryan Fitzpatrick has yet to re-sign and Geno Smith has turned out to be a bust. I think Paxton Lynch could be their next best bet. He has great height at 6-7 and has great hands and throws a pretty looking deep ball. He also has great mobility for a guy his size playing that position. If he slips away from New York at this spot,someone will take him soon enough making them regret it.

Redskins21. Washington- A’Shawn Robinson, DT Alabama

I did have a cornerback going to Washington at this spot,but since they’ve signed Josh Norman, I have them bulking up their defensive line. For a guy who’s 6-3,305 lbs.,Robinson’s very fast and carries his weight very well. He’s very adapt at stopping the run against very good competition he’s great. He does need to work on his pass rushing skills,but overall I think this is the guy the Redskins need on their defensive line.

Texans22. Houston-Laquon Treadwell, WR Mississippi

Originally thought to be a top 10 pick, Mississippi’s Laquon Treadwell falls here to team up with DeAndre Hopkins so that Houston’s passing attack gets even better. He’s very physical and is capable of winning battles for the ball with receivers and he has good hands and long arms. He’s not characterized as a deep threat,but if Brock Osweiler can get the ball to him in the slot he will be worth drafting here.

Vikings23. Minnesota- Josh Doctson, WR Texas Christian

With Treadwell off the board,the Vikings look to get a receiver of their own and I think Texas Christian’s Josh Doctson will be that guy Teddy Bridgewater can throw to. He has a great vertical jump and rarely drops the ball,not to mention he has great run after the catch ability. I think Doctson will be able to contribute immediately to this Minnesota squad who needs guys like him to throw to.

Bengals24. Cincinnati- Will Fuller, WR Notre Dame

With Treadwell and Doctson off the board the Bengals will look to find a wideout to compliment A.J. Green. I think Will Fuller can be that guy. He’s very explosive and has elite speed,runs great routes,and is a threat to score on any possession. He’s also very durable and a good character guy,which is something this Bengals team needs following their implosion in the playoffs. He does need to add some weight to his frame,but this guy should be able to play a big part in Cincinnati’s offense.

Steelers25. Pittsburgh- William Jackson III, CB Houston

The Steelers are in much need for secondary help and Jackson being selected here makes sense. He has great speed and ball tracking skills and wowed many people at the combine with his athleticism. He did have some injury issues in the past,but the hope is that they’ve cleared up and he’s ready to go when the season starts. He’s definitely the best corner available at this point in the draft and Pittsburgh should take him.

Seahawks26. Seattle- Emmanuel Ogbah, DE Oklahoma St.

I think Seattle’s defense could use a guy who makes big splash plays and can get to the quarterback in a hurry and Ogbah’s that guy. He’s a very dangerous pass rusher and who’s quick to bat passes down and he’s even got great character. It’s hard to tell who the Seahawks might pick at this spot,but I think their defense is what they’ll be addressing the most as the pass rush was mediocre last season and I think they’ll choose Ogbah here who can improve that in a hurry.

Packers27. Green Bay- Hunter Henry, TE Arkansas

The Packers haven’t had a quality tight end in a while and I think it’s time they selected one who’s ready to play immediately. He’s got great size at 6-6,255 lbs. and uses that size to make downfield receptions. He has a lot of potential to be a long-term starter in this league and would be a great target for Aaron Rodgers and the fans in Green Bay would love him!

Chiefs28. Kansas City- Kendall Fuller,CB Virginia Tech

Coming from a family of NFLers, Fuller is a very savvy player who takes a direct path to the ball and is able to disrupt the quarterback. The Chiefs need defensive help,especially in the secondary and I think that Fuller is the best corner available at this spot. He will definitely look great in a Kansas City uniform.

Cardinals29. Arizona-Ryan Kelly,C Alabama

The Cardinals need to get a center on that offensive line who can offer up better pass protection for Carson Palmer. Ryan Kelly is a better than average athlete who pulls the line very well and blocks the run well. He has great experience and is great against elite talent. I think Arizona might gamble and draft him here if the defensive player they’re coveting is snatched up by this selection.

Panthers30. Carolina-Andrew Billings, DT Baylor

I think the Panthers could use more help on the defensive line and Billings would be a good option here. He’s a great run defender and has a very powerful bull rush. One knock on him is that he is too short at 6-0 for his position,but I think he has enough size to warrant a first-round pick,especially since he has risen on some draft boards to the early 20s. I think he lands in Carolina,though.

Broncos31. Denver- Germain Ifedi,OT Texas A&M

With Ryan Clady having been traded to the Jets, the Broncos need someone to help whoever the hell is their starting quarterback now and I think Texas A&M’s Germain Ifedi is the guy who should do so. He has terrific size at 6-5,324 lbs. and has long arms. He’s also dependable at pass and run protection with great athleticism. Ifedi even has a mean streak in him that I’m sure the coaching staff in Denver will appreciate.

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April 2016
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