Happy Thanksgiving! Enjoy the turkey and stuffing, but make sure to carve out some time for football. The Chargers currently hold the #1 pick at the moment, and they have the pick of the litter of some very talented players in the trenches. Let’s dive into the draft and see what this Thanksgiving edition of the mock draft holds for us…

  1. San Diego Chargers – Joey Bosa – EDGE, Ohio State
    • Joey Bosa is the best player on the board and a clear choice for the Chargers, who don’t have an identity on defense at the moment. Bosa is a franchise pass rusher and can line up as a pass rushing outside linebacker in their base defense and slide inside to defensive end in the nickel. He is a strong, athletic edge rusher who has been dominating offensive tackles at the college level for three years and an easy choice for the first pick.
  2. Tennessee Titans – Laremy Tunsil – OT, Ole Miss
    • If the Titans want Mariota to succeed, they need to keep him upright. They have Taylor Lewan at left tackle, but nothing else besides that. Laremy Tunsil is the best tackle prospect in the class and can come in and compete with Lewan at left tackle or start immediately at right tackle.
  3. Cleveland Browns – Jared Goff – QB, California
    • The Browns don’t have a quarterback right now. They wanted Johnny Manziel to win the job, but his off-the-field issues have prevented the front office from trusting him, and Josh McCown is nothing more than a stopgap. Jared Goff looks to be a franchise quarterback with all the tools you want from a starter. He gives the Browns something stable to build around and can start from day one.
  4. Baltimore Ravens – Jalen Ramsey – CB, Florida State
    • The Ravens know the importance of having an enforcer in the secondary and, at the moment, they lack one of those. Jalen Ramsey is a versatile defensive back that can start at any position in the secondary. Right now, they lack a shutdown cornerback and Ramsey can come in and solve that problem right away.
  5. Dallas Cowboys – Jaylon Smith – LB, Notre Dame
    • Linebacker is one of the biggest issues for the Cowboys as Sean Lee is continuously injured and their backups are very inexperienced. Luckily, they can grab Jaylon Smith here, who might be the transcendent talent at linebacker. Smith is a very athletic sideline-to-sideline linebacker who can start immediately for the Cowboys.
  6. San Francisco 49ers – Paxton Lynch – QB, Memphis
    • Colin Kaepernick is on his way out the door and no front office wants to pin their hopes on Blaine Gabbert. Paxton Lynch might not be as NFL-ready as Jared Goff, but is talented and may have a higher ceiling. The transition might be rough for Lynch, but he has all the makings of a future starter.
  7. Detroit Lions – Robert Nkemdiche – DL, Ole Miss
    • Nkemdiche is a Top-3 talent and may not make it this far, but the Lions grab him in this scenario. Nkemdiche might not be an elite pass rusher at the moment, but arguably possesses a higher ceiling than any other prospect in this class.
  8. Miami Dolphins – Vernon Hargreaves – CB, Florida
    • Brent Grimes is an elite corner, but the Dolphins can grab Hargreaves here to pair up with him. Hargreaves is very technically sound, but is limited due to his height. The Dolphins won’t ask him to be a #1 cornerback right away, which will help with his transition to the NFL.
  9. Oakland Raiders – Ronnie Stanley – OT, Notre Dame
    • The Raiders have their quarterback, wide receiver and pass rusher and now they grab their franchise left tackle. The best way to help a young quarterback grow is to give him protection and someone to throw to and the Raiders can fulfill both of those criteria by selecting Stanley here.
  10. Philadelphia Eagles – Connor Cook – QB, Michigan State
    • It looks as if Chip Kelly won’t be in Philadelphia next year and the new coach might not want to deal with Sam Bradford and his injury problems. As such, the Eagles grab Cook to be their franchise quarterback. Cook might be the most NFL-ready quarterback in the class, but doesn’t have the ceiling that Goff or Lynch have.
  11. Louis Rams – Laquon Treadwell – WR, Ole Miss
    • Tavon Austin is an electric playmaker, but not a true #1 receiver. Laquon Treadwell can be that guy for the Rams. There are concerns with his speed, but they won’t ask him to be a guy to stretch the field because they already have Austin. The Rams don’t have a quarterback at the moment, but Treadwell can help ease the transition for whomever they grab in the second round.
  12. New Orleans Saints – Mackensie Alexander – CB, Clemson
    • The Saints defense has been absolutely torched this season and they need defensive backs badly. Mackensie Alexander is the third best cornerback prospect and has good size and length as well. He might not be the most NFL-ready but is good enough to step in right way for the Saints.
  13. Chicago Bears – Myles Jack – LB, UCLA
    • Jack would be a lot higher on this list if not for his season-ending injury. At the end of the draft process, he may be a Top-5 prospect but he falls here. Jack is a very talented linebacker who is athletic, smart and versatile. If you doubt his abilities, know that he has been asked to cover slot receivers man-to-man and succeeded.
  14. Jacksonville Jaguars – Andrew Billings – DL, Baylor
    • The Jaguars already have their edge rusher in Dante Fowler, who isn’t playing this year due to injury. Sen’Derrick Marks is a very good defensive lineman, but they don’t have much of an interior presence besides him. Billings is a monster of a man who can eats up space and is very, very good in the run game.
  15. Washington Redskins – Michael Thomas – WR, Ohio State
    • Whether or not Kirk Cousins is the answer at quarterback, the Redskins need help at receiver. DeSean Jackson is a playmaker, but not a #1 receiver. Michael Thomas has all the physical abilities and has been a consistent receiver this year for the Buckeyes despite their tumultuous quarterback situation.
  16. New York Jets – Ezekiel Elliott – RB, Ohio State
    • The Jets have quietly overachieved this season with Ryan Fitzpatrick at quarterback. Chris Ivory has a solid start to the year, but has fizzled out in recent weeks. Ezekiel Elliott is a three-down running back and the only first round talent in this draft. He’s a different back than Gurley or Gordon from last year, but has all the talent to step in and start right away.
  17. Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Shaq Lawson – EDGE, Clemson
    • Jameis Winston needs protection, but it’s not a dire need for the Bucs at the moment. They lack a quality pass rusher and Shaq Lawson is a player that probably will be a lot higher on draft boards come April. He’s a big, strong defensive end who is very tough to move. He’s not the pass rusher that Vic Beasley was last year, but is a talented prospect that the Bucs can add to their young defense.
  18. Seattle Seahawks – Taylor Decker – OT, Ohio State
    • The Seahawks have one of the worst offensive lines in football at the moment. Marshawn Lynch masked a lot of issues and trading away Max Unger doesn’t look like a good move now. Taylor Decker might not be a technically sound prospect, but can start right away for the Seahawks at either tackle spot.
  19. Houston Texans – Jack Conklin – OT, Michigan State
    • Quarterback might be a pressing need for the Texans, but there is no prospect worth selecting here, not even Christian Hackenberg. They take Jack Conklin here, who is a better projection at right tackle than left but still has a first round grade.
  20. Kansas City Chiefs – Josh Doctson – WR, TCU
    • Doctson is out for the year with an ankle injury, but should be healed by the Combine. He is a terrific wide receiver who can help draw attention away from Jeremy Maclin and Travis Kelce. He is an older prospect, but can develop into a #1 receiver quickly.
  21. New York Giants – Emmanuel Ogbah – EDGE, Oklahoma State
    • Jason Pierre-Paul will never be the same player again and the Giants need to draft a pass rusher now to replace him. Ogbah is a very talented defensive end that has many similar traits to JPP. He has been overshadowed by bad defensive play around him, but is a technically sound prospect that can help the Giants pass rush immediately.
  22. Buffalo Bills – Su’a Cravens – LB, USC
    • The Bills take Su’a Cravens here over offensive line help because of his versatility. Cravens plays at linebacker, but is also capably of playing safety as well. The Bills boast one of the best defensive fronts in the NFL, but need help at linebacker and in the secondary.
  23. Indianapolis Colts – Kenny Clark – DL, UCLA
    • Clark might not last this long in April, but falls to the Colts here. The Colts need offensive line help, but Clark is too good of a prospect to pass up. He is a space-eater and a very good pass rusher as well. He is a great fit for an already-young Colts defensive front.
  24. Atlanta Falcons – Kendall Fuller – CB, Virginia Tech
    • The Falcons have needs elsewhere, but are in a division with Cam Newton, Jameis Winston and Drew Brees. As such, secondary is their main concern. Fuller is out for the season with an injury, but will rise up draft boards as teams break down his tape. He is a lock down corner who has been a starter at Virginia Tech for three years and might be a better prospect than his brother was.
  25. Pittsburgh Steelers – A’Shawn Robinson – DL, Alabama
    • The Steelers have some young playmakers on the defensive line, but lack a dominant interior presence. A’Shawn Robinson is a very athletic mountain who is dominant on the inside. He can take up space, roll over guards and leap over linemen to block kicks as well, although the Steelers won’t ask him to do that last part.
  26. Minnesota Vikings – Jason Spriggs – OT, Indiana
    • The Vikings liked TJ Clemmings last year, but he has been anything but a liability unless he improves. Spriggs has risen up draft boards as of late and looks capable of playing either tackle position in the NFL.
  27. Green Bay Packers – Reggie Ragland – LB, Alabama
    • The Packers have few flaws, but lack a playmaker at inside linebacker. Clay Matthews thrives on the outside, so they draft Ragland here to make the tackles on the inside. He isn’t as good as C.J. Mosley was as a prospect coming out of Alabama, but is sneaky athletic for a man of his size.
  28. Denver Broncos –Spencer Drango – OL, Baylor
    • The Brock Osweiler show has officially begun and the Broncos first move should be to get him help on the offensive line. Drango projects better as a guard, but can step in and play right away for the Broncos.
  29. Arizona Cardinals – DeForest Buckner – EDGE, Oregon
    • Buckner has been overshadowed by poor play around him, but remains one of the most consistent defensive linemen in college football. The Cardinals can use him as an interior player in their base defense and kick him outside in their nickel package as well.
  30. Cincinnati Bengals – Corey Coleman – WR, Baylor
    • The Bengals might be the best offense in the NFL, but could draft Corey Coleman to draw some pressure away from A.J. Green. Coleman might be the best receiver in college football and is good enough to win one-on-one battles on the outside if teams decide to double-team A.J. Green.
  31. Carolina Panthers – Carl Lawson – EDGE, Auburn
    • The Panthers will be much better on offense next year when Kelvin Benjamin returns, so wide receiver isn’t a big need for them at the moment. They could use a good edge rusher, like Carl Lawson, to add to their already-terrific defense. Lawson might be the fourth-best option at defensive end, but it will help his development by being a rotational player because he’s only played two seasons of college football.
  32. New England Patriots – pick forfeit due to DeflateGate
    • They probably would have traded this pick for a two 4th rounders anyways.
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