2020 NFL Mock Draft: Patriots find next Rob Gronkowski, Jacob Eason slips into first round
Miami gets flashy in the latest 2020 NFL mock draft projections
The full 2020 NFL Draft order is coming into focus. With four weeks remaining in the NFL season, only eight teams are left standing. Three-quarters of the league have already turned their attention to the offseason. Head coaches, new and old, are assessing their rosters in an attempt to spend February 2021 in Tampa, Florida.
With the first two picks being fairly cut and dry, the real conversation starts at No. 3 overall with a Detroit Lions team capable of going in a number of directions. Four quarterbacks are taken in the first round, which is good news for teams not in the market for the position.
CBS Sports has identified some of the potential glaring weaknesses on each team's roster to compute the latest mock draft projections. The draft order is based on team records through Wild Card Weekend.
Alright, let's get to it.
Round 1 - Pick 1
Round 1 - Pick 2
Round 1 - Pick 3
Round 1 - Pick 4
Alabama • Jr • 6'5" / 320 lbs
Dave Gettleman values the offensive line and Nate Solder was an issue this season. While Isaiah Simmons would make a lot of sense with this pick as well, Wills is the choice due to previous tendencies of their general manager.
Round 1 - Pick 5
Alabama • Jr • 6'1" / 218 lbs
I fought the good fight for so long saying that Miami had a plan for Josh Rosen. I am turning my head on the concept for at least this week. Tagovailoa is a top-five caliber leader when healthy. The Dolphins do not need to force him into action before he is ready.
Round 1 - Pick 6
Auburn • Sr • 6'5" / 318 lbs
Los Angeles has been in search of a defensive tackle for quite some time. Brown can press the pocket in addition to drawing some attention from their talented pass rushers, Melvin Ingram and Joey Bosa. Will the Chargers have to address the quarterback position this offseason as well?
Round 1 - Pick 7
Georgia • Jr • 6'5" / 320 lbs
Greg Little is not the answer for Carolina at left tackle. Andrew Thomas has been the unchallenged top offensive tackle prospect available for awhile but Wills actually feels like the safer option right now.
Round 1 - Pick 8
CeeDee Lamb WR
Oklahoma • Jr • 6'2" / 189 lbs
The end of Larry Fitzgerald's career is drawing near. Arizona has a promising young quarterback and some unproven talents at the wide receiver position. Rather than praying on a grab bag of players to develop, the Cardinals add a surefire No. 1 caliber wide receiver.
Round 1 - Pick 9
Jerry Jeudy WR
Alabama • Jr • 6'1" / 192 lbs
D.J. Chark and Jeudy would be a dynamic combination. Jeudy's attention to detail at the position is impressive. It appears Jacksonville will trudge forward with Gardner Minshew at quarterback so they add another weapon to his arsenal.
Round 1 - Pick 10
Clemson • Jr • 6'4" / 230 lbs
Cleveland desperately needs offensive tackle help. If Andrew Thomas or Jedrick Wills were on the board, their selection would appear to be pretty easy. Instead, both are off the board, so the Browns could target front seven help. Simmons is the best open field tackler in this draft class. He is a special player.
Round 1 - Pick 12
Oregon • Sr • 6'6" / 237 lbs
It is becoming widely accepted that the Raiders need a new quarterback. Washington's Jacob Eason and Herbert would seem to be the most likely because of their ability to push the ball downfield. In this scenario, Jon Gruden gets Herbert.
Round 1 - Pick 13
Jacob Eason QB
Washington • Jr • 6'6" / 227 lbs
Jacoby Brissett is a solid quarterback and maybe he would fare better if he was able to stay healthy. Under the circumstances, Indianapolis needs to explore adding a quarterback to compete. Eason has huge upside for Frank Reich to work his magic.
Round 1 - Pick 14
Georgia • Jr • 5'9" / 215 lbs
In an ideal world, Tampa Bay would add an offensive tackle or a cornerback. Quarterback can not be ruled out based on recent comments from Bruce Arians. All of that being considered, Swift is the best talent available.
Round 1 - Pick 16
A.J. Epenesa EDGE
Iowa • Jr • 6'6" / 280 lbs
Epenesa falling to No. 16 is the best value in the first round to this point. He is a gifted pass rusher, which is where Atlanta needs some improvement. Dan Quinn's team ended the season strong. It is imperative that they come out of the gates aggressive in 2020.
Round 1 - Pick 17
LSU • Jr • 6'3" / 203 lbs
Delpit is the second best value in the first round. His situation feels similar to Derwin James a few years ago. He is a fantastic talent, but his senior season did not reach the levels many had expected. Dallas needs some help in their secondary so Delpit is a natural fit to contribute early.
From Pittsburgh Steelers
Round 1 - Pick 18
Tee Higgins WR
Clemson • Jr • 6'4" / 215 lbs
In previous versions of my mock drafts, Miami targeted the trenches heavily, so adding a quarterback and wide receiver with their first two picks is a big departure from the previous plan. It is simply difficult to ignore the individual talents and the heights they may be able to reach together.
From Chicago Bears
Round 1 - Pick 19
Javon Kinlaw DL
South Carolina • Sr • 6'6" / 310 lbs
The Raiders have an aged Johnathan Hankins and Maurice Hurst, who did not receive a clean medical bill at the NFL combine, at the defensive tackle position. Kinlaw is great value at this point in the first round. It gives them another quality piece to a defensive line that includes a few promising players in Clelin Ferrell and Maxx Crosby.
From Los Angeles Rams
Round 1 - Pick 20
LSU • Sr • 6'0" / 200 lbs
The Jaguars need some help at cornerback following last year's decision to trade Jalen Ramsey. Fulton has great athletic traits but needs to trust his eyes more. There are times when he panics and grabs in coverage.
Round 1 - Pick 21
LSU • Jr • 6'3" / 192 lbs
Philadelphia clearly needs some improvement at the wide receiver position. Jefferson displays great body control and is capable of making plays downfield in that offense. It is a start for the Eagles, but they should probably address the position even further.
Round 1 - Pick 22
Colorado • Jr • 6'2" / 220 lbs
There are a handful of teams that found themselves in desperate need of an upgrade at the wide receiver position by year's end. In a pass-happy league, there is more of an emphasis of finding a player who is able to make plays downfield. Buffalo had John Brown but can he be trusted long-term? They need more production at the position regardless.
Round 1 - Pick 23
Cole Kmet TE
Notre Dame • Jr • 6'5" / 250 lbs
In watching Cole Kmet, there are evident shades of Rob Gronkowski. It was a natural fit. Kmet has developed well as a player. He is not overly fast but he is strong. His hands have proven to be very reliable as well.
Round 1 - Pick 24
Bryce Hall CB
Virginia • Sr • 6'1" / 200 lbs
Some teams may be scared away from the ankle injury he sustained during the season but he should be ready to roll by the time NFL training camp rolls around. Medical checks at the NFL combine will be important. Hall is a special talent when healthy. He does a great job of tracking the ball through the air.
Round 1 - Pick 25
Oklahoma • Jr • 6'2" / 234 lbs
Murray is a fluid mover at the linebacker position. He can add a heat-seeking missile element to that defense with Jurrell Casey and Jeffery Simmons entrenched in front of him. Tennessee becomes more dynamic at the linebacker position.
Round 1 - Pick 26
Oklahoma • Sr • 6'2" / 302 lbs
Gallimore played with such passion this season. The phrase 'contract year' is prevalent in the NFL when a player knows they are coming due for a new contract after the season. The Oklahoma product must have seen his payday potential and took it up a notch.
From Houston Texans
Round 1 - Pick 27
Oklahoma • Soph • 6'5" / 316 lbs
Humphrey is a rock at the heart of that defense. Using kids opening presents at Christmas as an example, Tua Tagovailoa and Tee Higgins were like receiving the latest video game console and a dirt bike, while adding Humphrey is like getting a pair of pants. You know you need it, but are you really excited about it?
Round 1 - Pick 28
K'Lavon Chaisson EDGE
LSU • Soph • 6'4" / 250 lbs
Seattle needs to upgrade the Sam and Will linebacker positions, as K.J. Wright and Mychal Kendricks are not long-term solutions. Chaisson, when healthy, is a difference-maker as a pass rusher.
Round 1 - Pick 29
Round 1 - Pick 30
USC • Jr • 6'6" / 310 lbs
Starting right tackle Bryan Bulaga is scheduled to be an unrestricted free agent this offseason. Hypothetically speaking, if he does not return, the team needs a replacement. Jackson is a bit raw but may have more upside than any other player at the position. His athleticism will test well.
Round 1 - Pick 31
Alabama • Jr • 6'1" / 200 lbs
McKinney continues to be a personal favorite because he is capable of fulfilling so many roles on defense. He can be moved around and disguised in that San Francisco defense, which will complicate quarterback reads pre-snap.
Round 1 - Pick 32
Yetur Gross-Matos EDGE
Penn State • Jr • 6'5" / 264 lbs
Outside linebacker is not the issue it had previously been. Jaylon Ferguson and Matt Judon showed growth during the second half of the season, but Judon is scheduled to be an unrestricted free agent this offseason. Baltimore may need to address the issue through the draft.
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