McShay's 2017 NFL Mock Draft 2.0
— -- A lot has changed in the NFL since we published our first 2017 mock draft in December. The deadline for underclassmen to declare has officially passed, and the full draft order is now locked in after the New England Patriots defeated the Atlanta Falcons in Super Bowl LI.
With NFL evaluators digging more into college tape -- and several players having breakout performances?at the Senior Bowl a few weeks ago -- our Mock Draft 2.0 looks a little different from version 1.0.
Here is our second projection of the 32 first-round picks in the 2017 NFL draft.
1. Cleveland Browns, 1-15
Myles Garrett, OLB/DE, Texas A&M
Yes, the Browns need a quarterback, but they have a lot of other needs, too. Garrett, who has the tools to develop into an elite pass-rusher and a very disruptive run defender, is just too good for Cleveland to pass up for any of the quarterbacks in this class. Don't forget: The Browns could still trade for Jimmy Garoppolo or draft a QB with the 12th overall pick.
2. San Francisco 49ers, 2-14
Deshaun Watson, QB, Clemson
We don't have a first-round grade on Watson because of his inconsistent accuracy and decision-making (30 INTs the past two seasons). But his outstanding leadership skills and intangibles will help him during pre-draft meetings with teams, and he does have intriguing physical tools, including a good arm and athleticism. Kyle Shanahan's offense would be a good fit for Watson -- or UNC's Mitch Trubisky, who I thought about putting here. Shanahan has had success with mobile QBs in the past.?
3. Chicago Bears, 3-13
Jonathan Allen, DE, Alabama
Allen has elite strength and quickness. He's an excellent run-stopper, and he had?15 QB hurries and 10.5 sacks as an interior pass-rusher in 2016. The Bears could also be in the market for a quarterback, but Allen is the pick because of his elite skill set (No. 2 player on my board) and fit in Vic Fangio's base 3-4 scheme.
4. Jacksonville Jaguars, 3-13
Jamal Adams, S, LSU
Adams would give the Jaguars' improving defense another young playmaker in the secondary alongside CB Jalen Ramsey, last year's first-round pick. Adams shows great range and tackling ability against the run. He's a true tone-setter on defense. Jaguars safety Johnathan Cyprien is set to be a free agent.
5. Tennessee Titans, 9-7 (from Rams)
Corey Davis, WR,?Western Michigan
Talking to teams at the Senior Bowl, there's a lot of buzz about Davis. He has good size (6-2, 205), elite production and is a smooth route-runner. Davis won't run the 40 at the combine?because of an ankle injury,?but if he's in the 4.4s at his pro day as expected, he could be a surprise top-10 pick. Marcus Mariota needs more weapons on the perimeter.
6. New York Jets, 5-11
Marshon Lattimore, CB, Ohio State
Lattimore has elite cover skills and good length/size (6-0, 192). He has only one year of starting experience, but he showed good ball production, recording four interceptions and nine pass breakups. Darrelle Revis could be gone or could switch to safety, which would heighten the need for a naturally gifted cover-corner like Lattimore.
7. Los Angeles Chargers, 5-11
Malik Hooker, S, Ohio State
L.A.'s biggest need right now is at offensive tackle, but I don't see a player at that position worthy of a top-10 pick. Hooker would fill another void for the Chargers, who could use a rangy, instinctive safety patrolling the deep middle of the field.?Hooker tied for third in the FBS with seven interceptions in his first year as a starter.
8. Carolina Panthers, 6-10
Leonard Fournette, RB, LSU
This would be great value getting my third-ranked player at pick No. 8. Fournette is the best running back prospect I've evaluated since Adrian Peterson. His rare combination of size, power, agility and speed would be a good fit for Carolina's run-first scheme. Panthers RB Jonathan Stewart could be a cap casualty this offseason.
9. Cincinnati Bengals, 6-9-1
Solomon Thomas, DE, Stanford
A freakishly gifted athlete, Thomas dominated all season?(15 TFLs, eight sacks and seven QB hurries) and was a wrecking ball against North Carolina in the Sun Bowl.?At 6-foot-3 and 273 pounds, he has good size and strength, and he's stout against the run. Cincinnati could use some more pass-rush help after having just 33 sacks in 2016.
10. Buffalo Bills, 7-9
Mike Williams, WR, Clemson
Mitch Trubisky or DeShone Kizer could be in play here, depending on what happens with Tyrod Taylor. But the Bills have four WRs hitting free agency and would fill an immediate void with Williams. The Clemson standout has a good size-speed combination and shows the ability to create late separation when the ball is in the air.?
11. New Orleans Saints, 7-9
Taco Charlton, DE, Michigan
Charlton really came on strong in the second half of the season, posting 10 sacks in his final 10 games. He showed a lot of improvement with his hands and overall technique in 2016. The Saints need a pass-rusher opposite Cameron Jordan, and Charlton has the size, speed and power to be a difference-maker off the edge.
12. Cleveland Browns, 1-15 (from Eagles)
Mitch Trubisky, QB, North Carolina
After addressing the Browns' void at edge rusher with the No. 1 overall pick, it's time to take another swing at a quarterback. There's a lot to like about Trubisky's tape. He flashes the ability to go through progressions, and he's the most accurate QB in this class. I like Trubisky's mobility but have concerns about what his real size is and some of the critical errors he has made, including two bad interceptions versus Stanford. With just 13 career starts to evaluate, Trubisky's pre-draft interviews and measurables will play a big role in where he lands.?
13. Arizona Cardinals, 7-8-1
Reuben Foster, ILB, Alabama
If the right QB is available here, I wouldn't count the Cardinals out. With Watson and Trubisky off the board, though, Foster is the pick. He's one of the 10 best players in this draft; the only reason he might slide a bit is his position.?He shed weight and played much faster in 2016, proving to be an every-down linebacker. The Cardinals have six defensive starters set to hit free agency. Whom they re-sign will play a big role in the direction they take with this pick.
14. Philadelphia Eagles, 7-9 (from Vikings)
Teez Tabor, CB, Florida
Tabor needs to cut down on the number of big plays he allows, but he has?some of the best ball skills among cornerbacks in this draft class, with nine interceptions and 28 pass breakups in his past three seasons. He shows natural anticipation, if not the most consistent technique. Wide receivers Corey Davis or Mike Williams could also be in play if they slip this far.
15. Indianapolis Colts, 8-8
Dalvin Cook, RB, Florida State
Protecting and supporting Andrew Luck is priority No. 1 for the Colts, but drafting more O-linemen (they picked four last year) isn't the only way to do that. Indy can't bank on RB Frank Gore, who turns 34 in May, to continue to defy the odds. Cook, the No. 8 player on our board, is an explosive runner and a weapon in the passing game. He loves the game, too.
16. Baltimore Ravens, 8-8
Malik McDowell, DT, Michigan State
McDowell is arguably the best interior pass-rusher in this class. He didn't play with the same passion and toughness this season, which could cause him to slip a bit. But if you trust your defensive coaching staff and locker room to develop him and keep him motivated, McDowell could be a steal at this point in the first round. Another intriguing option is Michigan's Jabrill Peppers, given the Harbaugh connection and the Ravens' need at safety.
17. Washington Redskins, 8-7-1
Jabrill Peppers, S, Michigan
Peppers is a polarizing prospect in scouting circles.?He needs to be protected from deep zone coverage, and he did not have much ball production at Michigan, with just one career interception.?But he is a special athlete with elite speed and a unique knack for keeping blockers off his pads. His electrifying return ability will also be an asset in the NFL.?
18. Tennessee Titans, 9-7
Sidney Jones, CB, Washington
Alabama's O.J. Howard would be awfully tempting for an offense that features the TE heavily. But cornerback is far and away the Titans' top need, and at 6-foot and 181 pounds, Jones has great length and movement skills. While he needs to add strength, Jones is actually pretty?physical for a smaller-framed guy.
19. Tampa Bay Buccaneers, 9-7
O.J. Howard, TE, Alabama
The Buccaneers have bigger needs than tight end -- defensive line, safety and wide receiver among them -- but Howard, my No. 12 overall player, is the best value on the board. He was the best player on the field all week at the Senior Bowl, showing great athleticism for a guy who measured just over 6-foot-5? and 249 pounds.?
20. Denver Broncos, 9-7
Ryan Ramczyk, OT, Wisconsin
The first offensive lineman comes off the board at No. 20, which would be the lowest ever since the 1970 merger. This is a weak O-line class. Ramczyk, who's recovering from hip surgery, has the best tape of the group. He also has just one year of major college experience after transferring from?UW-Stevens Point (Division III). Long and well-built, Ramczyk would serve as a much-needed upgrade for the Broncos up front.
21. Detroit Lions, 9-7
Derek Barnett, DE, Tennessee
Barnett isn't expected to put up big numbers during workouts, which could cause him to fall a bit in between now and late April. But he plays with good discipline, a consistent motor and impressive physicality. His production in the SEC the past three years is insane, including 52 TFLs and 33 sacks. The Lions have needs at every level of the defense, but pass-rusher tops the list.
22. Miami Dolphins, 10-6
David Njoku, TE, Miami
Njoku comes with loads of upside, thanks to rare athleticism for the position and big-play ability, including 16.2 yards per reception. There's not much of a gap between Njoku and Alabama's O.J. Howard for the No. 1 TE ranking. Both Jordan Cameron and Dion Sims are set to be free agents for the Dolphins, so the fit would make sense for Njoku to stay in Miami.
23. New York Giants, 11-5
Takkarist McKinley, DE/OLB, UCLA
Tight end would also be a strong possibility if either Howard or Njoku were still on the board. With both gone and Jason Pierre-Paul slated to become a free agent, the Giants could be in the market for another pass-rusher. McKinley has versatility, and I love his motor. He's a natural pass-rusher with elite speed off the edge, recording 18 TFLs and 10 sacks in 2016.?
24. Oakland Raiders, 12-4
Jarrad Davis, LB, Florida
At 6-foot-2 and 238 pounds, Davis' best fit is at weak-side linebacker. He's an explosive athlete with great range who profiles as an every-down player in the NFL. He could also play middle linebacker if he bulked up a bit. Oakland has needs at both positions and could use a? Kwon Alexander-type player like Davis at the second level.
25. Houston Texans, 9-7
Garett Bolles, OT, Utah
Quarterback is a possibility, but I don't see DeShone Kizer and Bill O'Brien being a good marriage. Upgrading the offensive line is also a priority, and Bolles has the athleticism that Houston needs up front. He's an underrated prospect who should continue to rise in a weak offensive line class.?
26. Seattle Seahawks, 10-5-1
Cam Robinson, OT, Alabama
Robinson has some athletic limitations and isn't an elite pass-blocker, but he has great size and experience in a zone-blocking scheme. The Seahawks are in desperate need of upgrading both offensive tackle spots. Robinson could be a good fit on the right side.?
27. Kansas City Chiefs, 12-4
Tre'Davious White, CB, LSU
White had a great 2016 season, playing with better physicality and improved recognition skills. He is one of the most experienced players in this class, having started 47 games in his LSU career. He also impressed at the Senior Bowl. The Chiefs badly need a youth infusion at inside linebacker, but there isn't one available who's worth drafting this high.
28. Dallas Cowboys, 13-3
Tim Williams, OLB, Alabama
Williams' 2015 tape was better than his 2016 tape. He also added a?misdemeanor gun charge to his record. The Cowboys have shown they're not afraid to take chances on talented prospects with character baggage. And make no mistake: Williams is ?talented, with 19.5 sacks the past two seasons. He shows excellent first-step quickness and explosive power.
29. Green Bay Packers, 10-6
Alvin Kamara, RB, Tennessee
Kamara is an underrated talent who will continue to rise as we get closer to the draft. He has the vision and lateral quickness you look for in a runner and the power to break a lot of tackles. Kamara averaged 6.2 yards per carry, showing the ability to create plays on his own, which is among the most important things a back can do.
30. Pittsburgh Steelers, 11-5
Charles Harris, OLB, Missouri
Harris is a twitchy, high-energy player who brings some versatility to the table. He led the SEC with 18.5 tackles for loss in 2015, and he had 16 sacks the past two seasons. He's not a finished product, but Harris has a lot of nice tools and profiles as a fringe first-rounder.
31. Atlanta Falcons, 11-5
Quincy Wilson, CB, Florida
Wilson was overshadowed by fellow Florida CB Teez Tabor this season, but some scouts I've talked to think Wilson has the higher ceiling of the two.?At 6-1, Wilson has a good length/speed combination. The Falcons found a gem from Florida's secondary in the 2016 draft in? Keanu Neal?and could go back to the well this year.
32. New England Patriots, 14-2
Haason Reddick, LB, Temple
Look for the Patriots to add a tight end early, perhaps Michigan's Jake Butt or Ole Miss' Evan Engram on Day 2. But given how the board fell, they could get better value by targeting Reddick here. He opened eyes at the Senior Bowl, proving he can thrive as an off-the-line LB. Reddick has a little Tedy Bruschi in him.