Finally, the draft is here.
We believe the Falcons are sitting tight at the 14th spot right now, waiting to see what happens at the start of the draft, which will be held Thursday through Saturday in Nashville, Tenn.
If Houston DT Ed Oliver slips or if they find out that Green Bay is going to snap up Clemson DT Christian Wilkins, look for the trade up to seven (Jacksonville) or eight (Detroit).
Let’s get right to the Final Mock.
Here’s a look at our Final Mock Draft (We stick to the no-projected-trade rule while reserving the right come back in if trades are announced before 6 p.m. Thursday.):
1. Arizona Cardinals (3-13) – Kyler Murray, QB, Oklahoma: Murray’s father, Kevin Murray, played quarterback at Texas A&M from 1983-86. Murray doesn’t mind the comparisons to Seattle quarterback Russell Wilson. “I’ve studied a lot of quarterbacks in the league, but him in particular just because we’re similar in height,” Murray said. “He’s had a lot of success, obviously. I’ve gotten to talk to him a couple of times. It’s good to have him in my corner as a resource. Obviously, I look up to him. Watching him do it at 5-11 and kind of putting doubters to rest.”
2. San Francisco 49ers (4-12) – Nick Bosa, DE, Ohio State:Tried to clean up his digital image with the 49ers in mind. “You can make an argument that (the top player in the draft) is Nick Bosa, Quinnen Williams and Josh Allen, any one of those three you could argue are the best players in the draft,” ESPN draft analyst Mel Kiper said.
3. New York Jets (4-12) – Ed Oliver, DT, Houston: Oliver crushed his Pro Day. He was triple-teamed most of the season and still made a bushel of plays in the backfield. Jets defensive coordinator Gregg Williams was with the Rams when they drafted Aaron Donald and he’s reportedly pushing for Oliver while others want to trade the pick.
4. Oakland Raiders (4-12) – Quinnen Williams, DT, Alabama:Williams dazzled at the combine with a 4.83 time in the 40-yard dash. He didn’t perform the bench press at the combine or at his Pro Day after having hand surgery. Williams was asked at the combine who had the toughest offensive line he faced last season. “Probably the Georgia offensive line,” Williams said. Some consider him the top player in the draft.
5. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (5-11) – Devin White, LB, LSU: The Bucs get White to help replace Kwon Alexander, who left in free agency. White is the latest speedy linebacker to come out of LSU in the Deion Jones mold. “I’m a big Devin White fan,” Kiper said.
6. New York Giants (5-11) – Josh Allen, DE, Kentucky: The Giants will pass on Ohio State quarterback Dwayne Haskins and select a pass rusher. Allen caught the NFL’s attention by getting 17 sacks for the Wildcats last season. Allen had 21.5 tackles for losses last season.
7. Jacksonville Jaguars (5-11) – Jawaan Taylor, OT, Florida: He made 33 starts for the Gators and will be the first offensive tackle taken in the draft. (Look for the Falcons to come up to get Christian Wilkins here. The Jags’ pick is worth 1,500 and Falcons’ pick is worth 1,100 on the trade value chart. Throw in the second round, which is 450 points and you have a deal.)
8. Detroit Lions (6-10) – T.J. Hockenson, TE, Iowa: He’s 6-5 and 250 pounds. He can run routes and projects well as an in-line blocker.
9. Buffalo Bills (6-10) – Jonah Williams, T, Alabama: Versatile lineman who could be a perennial Pro Bowl guard at the next level. He was short with the media at his pro day. He’s probably just got tired of the guard questions.
10. Denver Broncos (6-10) – Drew Lock, QB, Missouri: Denver GM John Elway is going to keep swinging until he gets the quarterback thing right. “One of the best things I do is I’m able to make plays out of the pocket,” Lock said. “I’m not just the typical guy that’s going to stand in there and take shots. I want to be able to get out of the pocket when the pocket breaks down. I’m going to be a little more athletic than some people would peg me as in some of the (combine) drills.”
11. Cincinnati Bengals (6-10) – Devin Bush, LB, Michigan: An active sideline-to-sideline player who would add some teeth to the Bengals’ defense. “I’m a tough player,” Bush said. “I play hard, and my film speaks for itself.” The Bengals must replace Vontaze Burfict.
12. Green Bay Packers (6-9-1) – Christian Wilkins, DT, Clemson: At 6-4 and 312 pounds, he was a disruptive force for the Tigers. “He’s the most disruptive player (of the Clemson defensive line players),” NFL Network analyst Daniel Jeremiah said. “He gets caught in the run game sometimes. You’ll see him get washed and flat-backed. You just have to stomach some of that. It’s going to happen.”
13. Miami Dolphins (7-9) — Dwayne Haskins, QB, Ohio State: The classic dropback passer would be the heir apparent to Ryan Fitzpatrick. “I felt I was ready to be an NFL quarterback,” Haskins said about leaving Ohio State early. “I was pro-ready and thought I showed what I needed to show on film to make that jump.”
14. Atlanta Falcons (7-9) – Greedy Williams, CB, LSU: This is the move for the Falcons. Don’t trust them taking an offensive lineman here in Oklahoma’s Cody Ford. It’s too high to take Dexter Lawrence, who’s a two-down player at 342 pounds and can’t really take Montez Sweat, who has a heart issue and is dropping. It would be the third defensive end over the past five drafts. Williams is the safest pick and fills a big need.
15. Washington Redskins (7-9) – D.K. Metcalf, WR, Mississippi: Redskins can pass on a quarterback and get West Virginia’s Will Grier in the second round. Metcalf was the star of the combine, but projects as a one-trick pony. He can run very fast only in a straight line. His three-cone (change of direction) times were weak. He is the grandson of the great Terry Metcalf and nephew of Eric Metcalf, who both starred in the NFL. His dad, Terrence Metcalf, also played in the NFL with the Bears from 2002-08.
16. Carolina Panthers (7-9) – Clelin Ferrell, DE, Clemson: The Panthers need a replacement for Julius Peppers on defense. Ferrell can get after the quarterback. He had 21 sacks at Clemson and has the prototypical size at 6-5 and 265 pounds for a 4-3 defensive end.
17. New York Giants (5-11) (from Cleveland Browns) – Daniel Jones, QB, Duke: Mechanics are sound. Well-trained. Arm didn’t look special during first quarterback session at the combine. He’ll be a value pick for the future.
18. Minnesota Vikings (8-7-1) – Dexter Lawrence, DT, Clemson: Massive at 6-4 and 342 pounds. He finished his career with 162 tackles, 20 tackles for losses, 11 sacks, 43 quarterback pressures, five pass breakups, a caused fumble and three recovered fumbles. He played 1,541 snaps over 40 games, including 36 starts. He was a first-team All-American last season and was a three-time All-ACC pick. He’ll have to explain his suspension from the playoffs for using performance-enhancing drugs.
19. Tennessee Titans (9-7) – Montez Sweat, DE, Mississippi State: Sweat, who played at Stephenson High, is expected to be the first player from Georgia selected in the draft. He ran a ridiculous 4.41 seconds in the 40-yard dash at the combine. He started his career at Michigan State before transferring to a junior college and resurfacing at Mississippi State. “I watch a lot of pass-rushers,” Sweat said when asked who he models his game after. “I think old-time pass-rushers like Jason Taylor has a lot of my skill set. He’s long, he’s fast. I watch him a lot.”
20. Pittsburgh Steelers (9-6-1) – Deandre Baker, CB, Georgia: Baker won the Jim Thorpe Award — given to the top defensive back in college football — as a senior. Baker bypassed the Sugar Bowl to start preparing for the combine.
21. Seattle Seahawks (10-6) – Garrett Bradbury, C, N.C. State: Bradbury was the Dave Rimington Award winner, which goes to the nation’s top center.
22. Baltimore Ravens (10-6) – Marquise Brown, WR, Oklahoma: A nice weapon for quarterback Lamar Jackson. Had Lisfranc surgery on his foot and did not take part in the combine. He’s expected to be ready for training camp.
23. Houston Texans (11-5) – Cody Ford, OT, Oklahoma: The Texans must start rebuilding their offensive line to protect quarterback Deshaun Watson.
24. Oakland Raiders (4-12) (from Chicago Bears) – Rock Ya Sin, CB, Temple: The former standout at Presbyterian and Southwest DeKalb High has been climbing up the draft boards. Teams like his toughness and agility. “He’s got great athletic ability,” Kiper said. “He’s got real good feet. Smooth hips. He almost had a 40 (inch) vertical (jump). He’ll support the run. He gets interceptions.” Played for Georgia Tech coach Geoff Collins at Temple.
25. Philadelphia Eagles (9-7) – Brian Burns, DE, Florida State: He’s a fast-riser in the pre-draft process. He ran a 4.53 in the 40-yard dash at the scouting combine.
26. Indianapolis Colts (10-6) – Byron Murphy, CB, Washington: Is the latest in the line of strong corners from Washington that began with Falcons cornerback Desmond Trufant, followed by Marcus Peters and Kevin King. He ran the 40-yard dash in 4.55 seconds.
27. Oakland Raiders (4-12) (from Dallas Cowboys) – Rashan Gary, DE, Michigan: He’s 6-foot-6 and 283 pounds. He can play end and slide inside to tackle. “Rashad Gary is an enigma,” Kiper said. “You expect more than 10 sacks in a career for a guy with that kind of talent. You expect 20-plus career sacks with that kind of talent and you didn’t get it. Will the scheme allow him to get turned it loose in the NFL? Will that allow him to be productive as a pro than he was in college. That’s a roll of the dice.”
28. Los Angeles Chargers (12-4) – Johnathan Abram, S, Mississippi State: Started his career at Georgia before transferring to play at his home-state school. He visited with the Falcons. His stock is rising after a strong combine. He ran the 40-yard dash in 4.45 seconds and has range.
“I just loved his tape,” Kiper said. “He’s 5-11 and half, 211 pounds, he ran 4.45. He can be in the box. He’s a guy who can make plays down the field. He’s got tremendous range. Real good instincts. Great blitzer. I just think he’s one of the best 20 to 25 football players in this draft.”
29. Seattle (From Kansas City Chiefs in the Frank Clark trade) – Noah Fant, TE, Iowa: Fant ran the 40-yard dash in 4.5 seconds.
30. Green Bay Packers (6-9-1) (from New Orleans Saints) – Josh Jacobs, RB, Alabama: Jacobs was dazzling at times last season for the Crimson Tide. “His attempts, his carries for his career, his yards for his career are basically like one season for a lot of running backs, which means he’s got a lot of tread left on the tires,” Kiper said. “He hasn’t been beaten up. He waited his turn.
31. Los Angeles Rams (13-3) – Jerry Tiller, DT, Notre Dame: The Rams elected to move on from Ndamukong Suh after the trip to the Super Bowl.
32. New England Patriots (11-5) – Irv Smith Jr., TE, Alabama. The Patriots have to get a replacement for Rob Gronkowski, who announced his retirement.
ON THE FRINGE: Players who dropped out of Mocks 1.0, 2.0, 3.0, 4.0 and 5.0:
Andre Dilliard, OT, Washington State.
Chris Lindstrom, OG, Boston College.
Terry McLaurin, WR, Ohio State: He’s a speedster. Ran the 40-yard dash in 4.35 seconds at the combine.
Trayvon Mullen, CB, Clemson: His physical style of play.
Nasir Adderley, S, Delaware: Adderley had a strong Senior Bowl performance. He’s a cousin of Pro Football Hall of Famer Herb Adderley. “I talk to him all the time,” Adderley said of his famous cousin. “Actually, I just texted him right before I got (to Indianapolis), and he's just extremely excited for me and so supportive. It was a blessing to have him in my corner.”
N’Keal Harry, WR, Arizona State: A big and physical receiver. He’d be a big target (6-2, 228 pounds). He ran the 40-yard dash in 4.53 seconds and lifted 225 pounds 27 times on the bench press.
Tyree Jackson, QB, Buffalo: Has a big arm.
Jachai Polite, LB, Florida: A speedy run-and-hit linebacker who can cover backs out of the backfield. Had bad interviews.
A.J. Brown, WR, Mississippi: Has first-round talent at a position that is under-valued.
Riley Ridley, WR, Georgia: Younger brother of Falcons wide receiver Calvin Ridley. Ran a slow 4.58 seconds in the 40-yard dash. Calvin Ridley ran a 4.43 seconds last season to secure a spot in the first round.
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