Pitt’s Kenny Pickett was the only quarterback drafted in the first round, leaving several passing prospects searching for a home in Rounds 2 and 3. For the first time since 2007, there is a good chance we have more quarterbacks drafted in the second round than the first round.
33. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (from JAX): Travis Jones, DL, UConn
34. Minnesota Vikings (from DET): Andrew Booth Jr., CB, Clemson
This should be a “run the card up” pick. The Vikings still need a cornerback after drafting Lewis Cine, and Booth is my CB1 and 7th overall ranked player in the NFL draft. He’s fluid, versatile and smart. Despite drafting Cine, the Vikings can’t go into the season with Cam Dantzler as their second cornerback. They can get a high end starter in Booth early in day two and should absolutely do so.
35. Tennessee Titans (from NYJ): Nakobe Dean, LB, Georgia
36. New York Giants: Malik Willis, QB, Liberty
37. Houston Texans: Arnold Ebiketie, Edge, Penn State
38. New York Jets (from CAR): Sean Rhyan, OT, UCLA
39. Chicago Bears: Christian Watson, NDSU
40. Seattle Seahawks (from DEN): Carson Strong, QB, Nevada
The Seahawks took the top pass protector in the NFL draft, so it only makes sense that they support him with a passer. The fact is Drew Lock isn’t the future. Instead, they should take the risk here and grab one of the best arms in the draft. He has limited mobility, so drafting Cross could be a very good combination move if they do add Strong. The Russel Wilson era is over, so it’s time to start the Carson Strong era in Tennessee.
Trade! CLE Receives: 54 (2), 121 (4), 183 (5), NE Receives: 44 (2)
44. New England Patriots (from CLE): Kyler Gordon, CB, Washington
45. Baltimore Ravens: Nik Bonitto, Edge, Oklahoma
46. Detroit Lions (from MIN): Chad Muma, LB, Wyoming
47. Washington Commanders (from IND): Roger McCreary, CB, Auburn
48. Chicago Bears (from LAC): Zach Tom, IOL, Wake Forest
Zach Tom will likely drop further than this (although I would’ve said that about Cole Strange, another IOL prospect), but he’s my biggest sleeper. He can legitimately play any offensive line position. That’s exactly what the Bears need. Aside from Teven Jenkins, they lack much talent along the line. If they want to set up Justin Fields for success, they need to protect him much better than they did last year, and the jack of all trades Tom is a good start.
49. New Orleans Saints: Jaquan Brisker, S, Penn State
50. Kansas City Chiefs (from MIA): Alec Pierce, WR, Cincinnati
51. Philadelphia Eagles: Leo Chenal, LB, Wisconsin
52. Pittsburgh Steelers: Dylan Parham, IOL, Memphis
53. Green Bay Packers (from LV): John Metchie III, WR, Alabama
Frankly, if the Packers don’t make a similar move, there is risk of their first ballot Hall of Fame quarterbacks retiring. They simply have never given Aaron Rodgers top tier offensive weapons in the NFL draft. John Metchie was just outside my top ten receivers, but it’s a deep draft. Metchie, similarly to former teammate (and in this situation new division rival) Jameson WIlliams is a speedy receiver that needs time to recover from an ACL tear. However, he brings true deep threat capabilities. Will he ever play with Rodgers, or only catch passes from Jordan Love? That remains to be seen, but the Packers are still getting a good player here.
54. Cleveland Browns (from NE): Josh Paschal, Edge, Kentucky
Trade! ARI Receives: 79 (3), 195 (6), 2023 3rd, Kemon Hall; LAC Receives: 55 (3), 2023 5th
Trade! ATL Receives: 73 (3), 2023 3rd; IND Receives: 58 (2), 151 (5), 2023 5th
58. Indianapolis Colts (from TEN via ATL): Darian Kinnard, OT, Kentucky
The Colts could continue to wait for their pick, as their first round pick was traded to the Eagles for Carson Wentz, but here they decide to trade up as the tackle options continue to thin out. Darian Kinnard is a versatile lineman who can play on the interior if needed. He’s large and athletic, and fills an immediate need for the Colts, who hope to take the next step to being competitors.
59. Green Bay Packers: Cameron Thomas, Edge, SDSU
60. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Jamaree Salyer, IOL, Georgia
61. San Francisco 49ers: Cam Taylor-Britt, CB, Nebraska
62. Kansas City Chiefs: Jalen Pitre, S, Baylor
63. Cincinnati Bengals: Tariq Woolen, CB, UTSA
The Bengals had one of my absolute favorite first round picks with Daxton Hill at pick 31 in the first round of the NFL Draft. Now they continue to support that secondary with Tariq Woolen. A speed demon, setting the 40 yard dash record for a defensive back at 4.26. He’s an elite athlete with developing cornerback traits. He’ll be joining a blossoming organization with a chance to become a starting cornerback quickly.
64. Denver Broncos (from LAR): Troy Andersen, LB, Montana State
65. Jacksonville Jaguars: Phil Mathis, IDL, Alabama
66. Minnesota Vikings (from DET): Sam Howell, QB, UNC
67. New York Giants: Channing Tindall, LB, Georgia
68. Houston Texans: Kerby Joseph, S, Illinois
69. Tennessee Titans (from NYJ): Daniel Faalele, OT, Michigan
The Titans made a controversial move in the first round of the NFL Draft, trading AJ Brown to the Eagles and immediately drafting what they hope is his replacement in Treylon Burks. In the second round of this mock, they picked Nakobe Dean. They’re remaining glaring need is tackle, where they pick up the 6’9” Daniel Faalele. He’s still developing, but his insane frame grants him the chance to be dominant.
70. Jacksonville Jaguars (from CAR): Jalen Tolbert, WR, Southern Alabama
71. Chicago Bears: Khalil Shakir, WR, Boise State
72. Seattle Seahawks: Marcus Jones. CB, Houston
73. Atlanta Falcons (from WAS via IND): Bryan Cook, S, Cincinnati
74. Atlanta Falcons: Desmond Ridder, QB, Cincinnati
75. Denver Broncos: Nicholas Petit-Frere, OT, Ohio State
76. Baltimore Ravens: Wan’Dale Robinson, WR, Kentucky
77. Minnesota Vikings: Romeo Doubs, WR, Nevada
78. Cleveland Browns: DeMarvin Leal, IDL, Texas A&M
79. Arizona Cardinals (from LAC): Martin Emerson, CB, Mississippi State
Frankly, this draft has not gone well for the Cardinals. They traded a first for Hollywood Brown, and after having their first pick at 55 did not have many fits. So they trade back here and pickup their first player. It’s a sign things are turning around for them in the NFL Draft, though. Emerson is large, athletic and aggressive. He has immediately special teams value with a solid chance to turn into a starter on the cornerback-needy Cardinals.
80. Houston Texans (from NO): David Bell, WR, Purdue
81. New York Giants (from MIA): Trey McBride, TE, Colorado State
82. Atlanta Falcons (from IND): Brian Asamoah, LB, Oklahoma
83. Philadelphia Eagles: Rachaad White, RB, Arizona State
84. Pittsburgh Steelers: JT Woods, S, Baylor
85. New England Patriots: Damone Clark, LB, LSU
86. Las Vegas Raiders: Perrion Winfrey, IDL, Oklahoma
87. Arizona Cardinals: DeAngelo Malone, WKU
88. Dallas Cowboys: Kingsley Enagbare, Edge, South Carolina
89. Buffalo Bills: Cameron Jurgens, IOL, Nebraska
90. Tennessee Titans: Matt Corral, QB, Ole Miss
The Titans had to trade one of their best players partly because of Ryan Tannehill’s contract. I expect them to try to find a way out of that. After addressing some key needs, I think it’s time for them to try to grab his replacement in the NFL Draft. Matt Corral is a developmental quarterback who has significant flashes of great quarterback play. If they can get that consistently showing, they have their new QB.
91. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Mario Goodrich, CB, Clemson
92. Green Bay Packers: Abraham Lucas, OT, Washington State
93. San Francisco 49ers: Ed Ingram, IOL, LSU
94. New England Patriots (from KC): Alex Wright, Edge, UAB
95. Cincinnati Bengals: Luke Fortner, IOL, Kentucky
Trade! DEN Receives: 104 (3), 211 (6), 238 (7) 2023 6th; LAR Receives: 96 (3)
96. Los Angeles Rams (from LAR via DEN): Coby Bryant, CB, Cincinnati
So the Rams traded this pick, won a Super Bowl, and then shifted some late round capital to grab it back. Coby Bryant fell in this draft to a perfect spot for a Rams trade up and plays one of their biggest positions of need. He’s a smart and experienced starter who possesses good ball skills and size. He will be an immediate impact player on special teams with a chance to contribute on defense quickly. Denver picks up some late round picks to join the Russell Wilson era and the Broncos get their needed position.
97. Detroit Lions: Josh Jobe, CB, Alabama
98. Washington Commanders (from NO): Jelani Woods, TE, Virginia
99. Cleveland Browns: Justyn Ross, WR, Clemson
100. Arizona Cardinals (from BAL): Zyon McCollum, CB, Sam Houston State
101. Tennessee Titans (from NO via PHI): Greg Dulcich, TE, UCLA
102. Miami Dolphins (from SF): JoJo Domann, LB, Nebraska
103. Kansas City Chiefs: Brandon Smith, LB, Penn State
104. Denver Broncos (from LAR): Alontae Taylor, CB, Tennessee
105. San Francisco 49ers: Dominique Robinson, Edge, Miami (OH)