Pat Leonard’s Mock Draft 3.0: Giants risk it with Miami pass rusher Jaelan Phillips
The Daily News’ first mock draft explored several trade possibilities. The second mock envisioned how the board would look if teams stayed put.
Mock No. 3 shakes it all up, sending some players skyrocketing up the board, predicting some juicy trades, and landing the Giants a risky but intriguing defensive prospect.
These drafts are compiled based on what we’re hearing and what fits we like for certain players and teams. The idea will be to try and predict the top 32 picks in our final mock next Thursday, the day of the NFL Draft’s first round.
Let’s get to it.
There is no room for nuance anymore in social discourse. Sports Illustrated profiled Lawrence as a guy who doesn’t see football as his everything but is passionate and great anyway. Somehow this became an indictment of his commitment. The Jaguars tune out the noise.
When is the last time a quarterback was considered such a lock for the No. 2 pick but also no challenge at all to the QB at No. 1? Strange dynamic.
The Niners have great poker faces. It could be Justin Fields or Trey Lance, too. But I don’t buy that the 49ers made this trade without knowing who they wanted.
The noise has died down on Atlanta possibly trading back, but I think it will ramp back up, maybe on draft night itself. Denver comes up from No. 9 needs to upgrade at QB.
Jerry Jones can’t help himself and trades up from No. 10 when the top position prospect falls due to the run of QBs.
The Fins could go either offense or defense, but after trading back from No. 3 to No. 12, they moved back into the top 10 for a playmaker.
I keep thinking about Lions coach Dan Campbell saying his players will bite off opponents’ kneecaps if they have to. Give me the nasty and precocious left tackle to help Detroit’s rebuild.
No prospect’s name has heated up more in the last week than Waddle. GM Howie Roseman is tired of hearing about passing on Justin Jefferson last year. Roseman obtained significant draft capital by trading back from No. 6 to No. 12, so he trades back up for Waddle and still comes out ahead.
The third Alabama player in the top nine picks, and the second straight, addresses a critical position of need for GM Terry Fontenot’s club.
Cincy bleeds the Cowboys of draft picks in a trade down and still lands a stud O-lineman to protect QB Joe Burrow coming off his torn ACL.
Dave Gettleman and Joe Judge took a chance on free agent wide receiver Kenny Golladay this offseason despite an injury history and a background that needed vetting. They take another risk at No. 11 on the best pure pass rusher in this class. They need one to try and slow down the new offensive weapons the Cowboys and Eagles just added.
Like the Dolphins and Eagles, the Panthers are poised to pounce on Deshaun Watson if and when they can. But owner David Tepper wants his QB position solved and creates competition with Sam Darnold by adding Fields.
Justin Herbert launching bombs for the Heisman-winner to run under. A scary combination.
Last year’s first-round corner Jeff Gladney was arrested in early April on an assault charge. Mike Zimmer already needed to upgrade his defense. The corner need means Horn.
Bill Belichick has drafted three Wolverines the past two years, including defensive ends Chase Winovich and Josh Uche. He stacks his defensive front with an immediate contributor.
Brian Flores moves up from No. 18 to take the Nittany Lions’ defensive playmaker.
Offensive line could be the pick here, but Owusu-Koramoah might be what Jon Gruden needs to field a competitive defense for 16 games.
The order of the second tier of receivers is unpredictable. But I can see Kliff Kingsbury rolling with the undersized but electric Moore, who led the SEC in catches and receiving yards per game in 2020. Arizona slides back two spots and still gets its man.
Ron Rivera’s offense could use more talent, depth and versatility up front. This is also a value pick if Vera-Tucker slips this low, based on high opinions of him around the league.
It’s quiet around this 2020 opt-out, but he could be a good fit for a Bears team that swung and missed on Golladay in free agency.
Unless there is a run on offensive linemen prior to this pick, it’s hard to see the Colts not drafting a replacement for retired LT Anthony Castonzo.
Every year there are countless boom or bust prospects. Collins profiles as a solid player who will be a productive pro for a long time.
The defense is Robert Saleh’s baby, and he helps it to follow up on the Wilson quarterback pick at No. 2.
The Steelers try to upgrade their O-line to protect QB Ben Roethlisberger, who is on his last legs.
Urban Meyer has a million options here. He could give his No. 1 pick Lawrence another weapon in the backfield.
With Jadeveon Clowney signed opposite Myles Garrett, Barmore helps the Browns load up to attack opponents’ O-lines.
An exciting young pass rusher with upside goes to a defense well known for making quarterbacks lives’ miserable.
Keeping my second mock pick as is here. Never count out the sneaky Saints.
Jeopardy host Aaron Rodgers: What is a first-round receiver finally drafted onto your offense?
Hard to know if some team will take a gamble higher on Farley, who is coming off back surgery. If he falls, Buffalo could use a player of his caliber on the outside.
Patrick Mahomes needs an O-line upgrade after losing starting tackles Eric Fisher and Mitchell Schwartz and spending most of the Super Bowl on the ground.
The Bucs won their championship by terrorizing Mahomes with their pass rush. Bolstering their talent and depth there doesn’t hurt.