NFL Mock Draft – First Round: Indianapolis Colts get Defensive

18 Apr 1998: First overall pick Peyton Manning shows off his jersey after being selected by the Indianapolis Colts in the first round of the 1998 NFL Draft at Madison Square Garden in Manhattan, New York. Mandatory Credit: Ezra C. Shaw /Allsport
18 Apr 1998: First overall pick Peyton Manning shows off his jersey after being selected by the Indianapolis Colts in the first round of the 1998 NFL Draft at Madison Square Garden in Manhattan, New York. Mandatory Credit: Ezra C. Shaw /Allsport /
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#20: Cincinnati Bengals – Kelvin Harmon, WR NC State

The Bengals have been looking for a #2 receiver behind A.J. Green for a long time. They thought John Ross could be that guy, but he has not really panned out. Tyler Boyd has looked decent, but he is just not much of a downfield threat. Kelvin Harmon is a threat. Andy Dalton would love throwing to him.

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#21: Baltimore Ravens – Clelin Ferrell, DE Clemson

Ferrell has the size, speed and strength to become a fierce edge rusher in this league. Although this draft class is is chock full of defensive line talent, Ferrell is probably the most athletically gifted defensive end in the class. He also is an elite run-stopper.

#22: Minnesota Vikings – Cody Ford, G Oklahoma

The Vikings have really failed to get their offense going this year under Kirk Cousins. They certainly have the receivers and the running back talent to succeed offensively, but the offensive line has not cooperated. Getting a powerful mauling guard, comparable to Quenton Nelson, would be a good way to get the run game going.

#23: Washington Redskins – Amani Oruwariye, CB Penn State

Josh Norman has not been stellar in Washington. Moving on from the expensive, former all-pro corner may be best for Washington this off season. Oruwariye is an elite cornerback in pass coverage, but as many Big Ten cornerbacks have to be, he is a very good tackler in the run game.

#24: Houston Texans – Brian Burns, OLB Florida State

Jadeveon Clowney could possibly leave in free agency, and J.J. Watt is not getting any younger, so bringing in a young edge rusher would not be the worst idea in the world. Burns possessed great length and athleticism, as well as speed. He would be a formidable replacement for Clowney if he were to sign elsewhere as an unrestricted free agent.

#25: Carolina Panthers – Deandre Baker, CB Georgia

With the exception of rookie corner Donte Jackson, the Panthers’ cornerbacks are really, really bad. Baker does not possess the height a lot of GM’s in this league look for, at 5’10, but he makes plays happen like no other. He broke up nine passes and intercepted six more in 2017, and is producing similarly this season. Baker could be a day-one starter for the Panthers.

#26: Oakland Raiders (Via CHI) – Daniel Jones, QB Duke

With Derek Carr‘s monstrous contract eating up a good chunk of the Raiders’ cap space and a lack of production on his end, the Raiders should seriously consider moving on from Carr. Drafting a quarterback with one of their THREE first round picks is not the most outlandish move in the world.

#27: Los Angeles Chargers – Yodny Cajuste, OT West Virginia

Philip Rivers is getting up there in age, but his production is still elite. The Chargers must keep Rivers upright to be a contender, and adding first round talent to the offensive line would certainly help. At 6’5, 322, Cajuste certainly has the size, but also possesses the raw talent to be a consistent starting left tackle in the NFL.

#28: New England Patriots – Albert Okwuegbunam, TE Missouri

The Patriots are starting to see Gronk slowly digress in production. And there were rumors New England even tried to trade him last season, but Tom Brady probably would have thrown a hissy. Okwuegbunam is a mismatch against literally any defensive position and could make for another terrifying Brady weapon.

#29: Pittsburgh Steelers – Will Grier, QB West Virginia

Ben Roethlisberger HAS to be close to the end of his career. He seems to have a major injury and hint at retirement every other game. Josh Dobbs could be a formidable backup, but he is certainly not a starting NFL quarterback. Grier has shown he throws the ball with elite precision, and can make a play when his team needs it. Grier can be a day-one starter for Pittsburgh whenever Big Ben calls it quits.

#30: Green Bay Packers (via NO) – Trevon Diggs, CB Alabama

The Packers drafted a couple cornerbacks last year and they have been pretty good. Why not do it again? Diggs is a former receiver and has great knowledge of how receivers think (see: Richard Sherman). The Packers should cut ties with Tramon Williams and replace him with a younger, better version of him.

#31: Kansas City Chiefs – Mack Wilson, LB Alabama

The Chiefs inability to cover in space was exposed by the Los Angeles Rams on Monday Night as the Rams threw all over the Chiefs defense. A good cover linebacker could come in and help fix that issue. That is exactly what Mack Wilson does for the Crimson Tide. He has ridiculous coverage skills for a linebacker his size.

#32 Los Angeles Rams – Kendall Sheffield, CB OSU

The Rams were expecting phenomenal play from their cornerbacks after acquiring both Marcus Peters and Aqib Talib in the off season. Talib never played a snap, and Peters has looked like burnt toast when he has been on the field, so I would imagine Sean McVay would be looking for cornerback help in this round. Sheffield has unreal speed, to keep up with the speedy receivers like Tyler Lockett, who have burnt Peters many times this season. Sheffield may end up being the fastest player in the draft.