2018 NFL Mock Draft: Browns get Myles Garrett a running mate in Bradley Chubb
With Garrett and Chubb, Cleveland will have two tremendous defensive ends for the next decade
Bradley Chubb has compiled 42.5 tackles for loss and 20 sacks the past two seasons at NC State, and he plays with a non-stop motor from his defensive end spot. At 6-feet-4 and 275 pounds, he has a résumé worthy of No. 1 pick consideration, regardless of which team will ultimately hold that selection.
Beyond a few exceptions, with this mock, I'm going to assume all teams addressed their biggest needs in free agency or plan to do so late in the draft, so the majority of these first-round picks will be "secondary" needs for each franchise.
As we're heading into Week 11, I've used the official draft order.
1. Cleveland Browns
Bradley Chubb, DE, NC State. What? Another defensive end? Sure, why not? Myles Garrett has lived up to the billing in his rookie year. Beyond him though, the Browns have essentially no semblance of a pass rush. Chubb can play the strongside defensive end spot opposite Garrett and opposing offensive tackles will have their hands full against the Browns for a long time.
2. San Francisco 49ers
Quenton Nelson, G, Notre Dame. Jimmy Garoppolo needs a more imposing group of wide receivers. With loads of money to spend in free agency, expect GM John Lynch to address that. How about up front though? Nelson is the best offensive lineman in this class and will be a pick made with Aaron Donald and the Seahawks pass-rush in mind.
3. New York Giants
Sam Darnold, QB, USC. OK, so maybe quarterback is the biggest need for the Giants, yet offensive line will be a popular mock choice for the G-Men. Instead, they get another high-profile signal-caller at the ground floor of the rebuilding process. He'll have some fun battles with Carson Wentz in the NFC East.
4. Indianapolis Colts
Derwin James, S, Florida State. The Colts need better off-ball linebackers. They also need a complement to Malik Hooker on the back end. James is the ideal prospect to be both for the Indianapolis defense. He does it all at linebacker, corner, and safety, and is supremely athletic.
5. Cincinnati Bengals
Josh Rosen, QB, UCLA. If Cincinnati wanted to continue with Andy Dalton as its quarterback -- I know, big "if" -- a variety of pass-catchers would help. In this mock, the Bengals are in the midst of a restart, particularly on offense. Rosen can make mistakes, but is a by-the-book pocket passer.
6. Denver Broncos
Connor Williams, OT, Texas. The Broncos drafted Garett Bolles in the first round of the 2017 draft. That doesn't stop John Elway from selecting another offensive tackle in Williams, a "boring to watch" pass protector who holds his own for the run game as well.
7. Los Angeles Chargers
Lamar Jackson, QB, Louisville. Hello, Los Angeles' newest sports celebrity. No, the Chargers don't have a monstrous need at quarterback, but it's inching up the list. Jackson will help Anthony Lynn's club move into the future of how the quarterback position just might be played at the NFL level with the elite dual-threat signal-caller.
8. Cleveland Browns from Texans
Mason Rudolph, QB, Oklahoma State. Here's an exception to the rule for this mock draft. There are only so many adequate free-agent quarterbacks out there, and the Browns definitely have plenty of needs, quarterback being one of them. Rudolph is the opposite of DeShone Kizer. He's experienced, comfortable in the pocket, and accurate.
9. Chicago Bears
Orland Brown, OT, Oklahoma. Mitchell Trubisky is in dire need of weapons. Big time. So here, the Bears land arguably the finest offensive tackle in this class to protect his blindside. At 6-foot-8, and 340-something pounds, Brown is a redwood tree on the field, and he's outstanding in the run game.
10. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Arden Key, DE, LSU. The Buccaneers will look for a few defensive backs in free agency. They have to. That'll leave a gaping hole at defensive end. Key is the perfect prospect to fill that void, all 6-6 and 265 pounds of him. When fully healthy, Key has All-Pro potential.
11. New York Jets
Ogbonnia Okoronkwo, OLB, Oklahoma. The Jets need a quarterback, even if Josh McCown has been more than serviceable this season. The Jets will set their sights on many of the top signal-callers, however, with most of them gone at this juncture, they'll turn to Okoronkwo, an outside speed rusher who is comfortable dropping into coverage.
12. Baltimore Ravens
Saquon Barkley, RB, Penn State. Baltimore must find Joe Flacco wideout help. Ozzie Newsome will do his typically shrewd work in free agency on that front. So here, the Ravens can continue to rebuild the offense with the electric Barkley.
13. Arizona Cardinals
Baker Mayfield, QB, Oklahoma. No, it doesn't seem like Bruce Arians would be interested in a smaller, improvisational quarterback after working with Ben Roethlisberger and Carson Palmer in his career. That makes this selection even more intriguing. With Mayfield, the Cardinals would take on a new identity on offense, yet his downfield accuracy would seemingly appeal to Arians.
14. Oakland Raiders
Roquan Smith, LB, Georgia. This pick makes too much sense to alter. Can't do it. Smith is proving to be the premier three-down linebacker in the 2018 class, and this connection is one of the few exceptions in this mock. Oakland needs a play-making linebacker in the worst way.
15. Washington Redskins
Courtland Sutton, WR, SMU. If Kirk Cousins leaves, quarterback will obviously be the most glaring necessity for Washington, and they've invested at wide receiver recently in the draft. They can't pass on Sutton here. He has a comparable skill set to Josh Doctson, who has started to come on for the Redskins.
16. Miami Dolphins
Will Hernandez, G, UTEP. With Jay Ajayi gone and the 2018 draft oozing with skill runners, a back will be a trendy mock draft pick for the Dolphins. Instead, they fortify the interior of their offensive line, a desperate need, with one of the ultimate sleepers in this class. Hernandez has NFL size and strength and has dominated his admittedly lower level of competition for a while.
17. Dallas Cowboys
Christian Wilkins, DT, Clemson. More than anything, Dallas needs wide receiver help beyond Dez Bryant. I think Jerry and Co. will be aggressive to find Dak Prescott more weapons in free agency. With this pick of Wilkins, the Cowboys take some pressure off DeMarcus Lawrence on the edge. Wilkins moves unbelievably well for someone as big and wide as he is.
18. Detroit Lions
Bryce Love, RB, Stanford. The edge-rusher spot will stick out like a sore thumb for the Lions this upcoming offseason as a position which must be bolstered, so here, Detroit finds a uber-talented home-run hitting tailback. While he's similarly sized to Ameer Abdullah and Theo Riddick, he has legit feature back skills and flies down the field.
19. Green Bay Packers
Taven Bryan, DT, Florida. Green Bay must address the offensive line and find quality cornerbacks. Yes. Cornerbacks. Plural. In this first-round mock, they add a youthful talent to the defensive line in Bryan, a versatile 3-4 end in early downs and defensive tackle in clear-cut passing situations.
20. Atlanta Falcons
Maurice Hurst, DT, Michigan. The Falcons may look to upgrade their guard position and also find another complementary wide receiver. So in this mock, they bolster their defensive line with a player similar to Grady Jarrett in Maurice Hurst, a true, penetrating three-technique.
21. Buffalo Bills
Ryan Finley, QB, NC State. Buffalo's biggest need isn't quarterback, yet don't be surprised if the team moves on from Tyrod Taylor after this season. In steps Ryan Finley, a poised passer who's displayed improvement each season in college. The Bills will like his size -- he's 6-4 -- and refinement in the pocket.
22. Jacksonville Jaguars
James Washington, WR Oklahoma State. The Jaguars need a quarterback. They also could use offensive line reinforcement. They'll look to fill those needs later in the draft and via free agency, so wide receiver is the pick in Round 1. Washington is a threatening speedster with strong, reliable hands.
23. Tennessee Titans
Minkah Fitzpatrick, CB, Alabama. Tennessee doesn't have glaring needs across the board, but more edge-rushing talent would undoubtedly help the secondary. Speaking of the secondary, the Titans go cornerback instead of outside linebacker simply due to Fitzpatrick's size and athletic gifts. He can play boundary corner or safety.
24. Buffalo Bills from Chiefs
T.J. Edwards, LB, Wisconsin. The Bills need guard help and a reconstructed interior defensive line. Free agency -- and later rounds -- could be the method they use to address those needs. With Edwards, they get a smart, productive middle linebacker to pair next to 2017 rookie Matt Milano as the off-ball linebacker duo of the future. Edwards consistently beat blocks against the run and is proficient in coverage.
25. Seattle Seahawks
Clelin Ferrell, DE, Clemson. Offensive line. Offensive line. Offensive line. Let's say the Seahaws add a few proven blockers in free agency, thereby leaving a draft need at defensive end with Michael Bennett and Cliff Avril in the twilight of their illustrious careers. Ferrell is a lengthy, athletic specimen, which GM John Schneider will love.
26. Carolina Panthers
Harold Landry, DE, Boston College. Wide receiver is probably near the top of the Panthers offseason priority list, and it should be. Here, they address another need. Julius Peppers and Charles Johnson can't continue to be relied upon as the primary edge-rushers in Carolina. Landry hasn't had the same type of season he had in 2016, but is a quality run-defender and speed-to-power outside rusher.
27. Pittsburgh Steelers
Mark Andrews, TE, Oklahoma. Pittsburgh likes what it has with Jesse James, yet he's not a real game-breaker at the tight end position. Yes, the Steelers have other needs, but Andrews is a large target who can make defenders miss in the open field, which isn't something that's written about most tight end prospects.
28. Los Angeles Rams
Jordan Whitehead, S, Pittsburgh. The Rams are clicking on offense, and are led by the brilliance of Aaron Donald up front on defense. Whitehead is a complete safety with the twitchiness and coverage ability to make an impact at all levels of the field. He'll benefit from Los Angeles' underrated pass-rush.
29. Minnesota Vikings
Harrison Phillips, DT, Stanford. Phillips is the latest in a long line of polished defensive linemen from Stanford, guys who are as sturdy as they come and know how to use their hands to beat offensive linemen at the point of attack. Good luck finding a major "need" for the Vikings right now.
30. New England Patriots
Marcell Ateman, WR, Oklahoma State. New England needs defensive upgrades, especially in its front seven. That means Bill Belichick will probably go offense in with his first selection. Ateman gives the Patriots size at the receiver position they haven't had in some time. He's a jump-ball specialist who'll help move the chains.
31. New Orleans Saints
Deontay Burnett, WR, USC. The Saints don't need any more wideouts right? Well, they did trade Brandin Cooks this offseason. Burnett isn't the dynamic downfield threat Cooks was in colllege, but he's nifty in space and has sure hands. This is mainly a "plan for the future" pick, but Burnett should be able to contribute right away.
32. Philadelphia Eagles
Quin Blanding, S, Virginia. Clearly, the Eagles don't have many roster holes. They could address the off-ball linebacker position with Jordan Hicks coming off an injury and Nigel Bradham set to be a free-agent. The next need might be at safety, and Quin Blanding is the perfect, run-stopping specialist to learn how to round out his game from Malcolm Jenkins.
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