2017 NFL Mock Draft

Mock draft 2.0: Year of the QB slide?

By Bucky Brooks |

NFL Media analyst

Published: March 1, 2017 at 04:27 p.m.

My first mock draft of 2017 came right after the conclusion of the Senior Bowl, which helped solidify, in my mind at least, the first-round statuses of a few players, like LSU CB Tre'Davious White, Alabama TE O.J. Howard and Temple pass rusher Haason Reddick.

While not a whole lot has transpired since then, you'll notice player movement from my first mock to this one. That's because I've had a chance to watch a lot more tape on this draft class and also speak to many within the league to get a better understanding of where the prospects are starting to slot onto draft boards.

With that said, we are entering a two-week period with two events that might have the biggest impact on the first round. The NFL Scouting Combine and free agency will further re-shape how the first 32 picks of the draft could unfold. For now, this is how I see it.<
  1. Pick No.
    1
    DE
    Texas A&M
    Browns opt for the best player available instead of reaching for a QB at the top of the draft. Garrett gives them a Julius Peppers-like edge rusher to build around.
  2. Pick No.
    2
    S
    Ohio St.
    John Lynch resists the temptation to reach on a QB to select a dynamic centerfielder with outstanding instincts and ball skills.
  3. Pick No.
    3
    S
    LSU
    Adams is exactly what the Bears need between the hashes -- a "pack leader" with a versatile game and a knack for playmaking.
  4. Pick No.
    4
    DE
    Stanford
    Tom Coughlin puts his personal touch on the Jaguars' transformation with the selection of Thomas. The ultra-athletic defender checks off all of the boxes (smart, tough, fast) on Coughlin's character sheet.
  5. Pick No.
    5
    CB
    Ohio St.
    The Titans need a legitimate CB1 to hold up in a division with a number of speedy pass catchers on the perimeter.
  6. Pick No.
    6
    DE
    Alabama
    Allen might not make sense on paper but his arrival could allow the Jets to trade Sheldon Richardson to acquire more playmakers on both sides of the ball.
  7. Pick No.
    7
    LB
    Michigan
    The Michigan standout would add some juice to the Chargers' secondary as a versatile playmaker. He will remind Chargers' fans of four-time Pro Bowler Eric Weddle.
  8. Pick No.
    8
    DE
    Tennessee
    Despite ranking near the top of the charts in sacks, the Panthers need a legitimate pass rusher off the edge to alleviate some of the stress on the back end. Barnett might be the best pure pass-rushing threat in the 2017 class.
  9. Pick No.
    9
    WR
    Western Michigan
    Finding a playmaker opposite A.J. Green should be a priority for the Bengals. Davis is an ideal WR2 with the size and route running skills to destroy cornerbacks on the backside.
  10. Pick No.
    10
    CB
    Washington
    With Stephon Gilmore set to depart as a free agent, the Bills could turn their attention toward finding an ideal CB1. Jones is the cleanest cover corner in this draft.
  11. Pick No.
    11
    Sean Payton has made upgrading the Saints' pass rush the No.1 priority this offseason.
  12. Pick No.
    12
    Nothing like a workhorse runner to alleviate the pressure on the QB to carry an offense. Given the Browns' uncertainty at their RB1 position, the LSU star could make sense at this point.
  13. Pick No.
    13
    WR
    Clemson
    The expected loss of Larry Fitzgerald to retirement after this coming season makes it imperative for the Cardinals to find a WR1 in this draft.
  14. Pick No.
    14
    WR
    Washington
    The Eagles could opt for a DeSean Jackson clone to add some speed and playmaking to the passing game.
  15. Pick No.
    15
    DE
    Michigan
    The Colts desperately need a pass rusher to energize a defense that's struggled of late.
  16. Pick No.
    16
    CB
    Florida
    It's time for the Ravens to find Jimmy Smith a partner on the island. Tabor is a long, rangy defender with a tenacious attitude and competitive spirit.
  17. Pick No.
    17
    QB
    North Carolina
    If the Redskins can't get Kirk Cousins signed to a long-term deal, they could opt to take a young QB to serve as an apprentice until he is ready for the starting job in 2018.
  18. Pick No.
    18
    S
    Washington
    Dick LeBeau would love to have a dynamic safety to feature in his exotic blitz schemes.
  19. Pick No.
    19
    RB
    Florida St.
    The Florida State star would add some spice to the Buccaneers offense as an electric runner-receiver out of the backfield.
  20. Pick No.
    20
    OT
    Utah
    Contrary to popular opinion, it was the Broncos' offensive line struggles that prevented them from making another run at the title, not other factors.
  21. Pick No.
    21
    OT
    Wisconsin
    The Lions need to make sure their prized possession (Matthew Stafford) stays upright in the pocket.
  22. Pick No.
    22
    LB
    Florida
    The 'Fins could use a rock-solid linebacker with positional flexibility and a pit-bull mentality between the tackles.
  23. Pick No.
    23
    QB
    Clemson
    Ben McAdoo's quick-rhythm passing game is ideally suited to Watson's game. With Eli Manning still a few years away from calling it quits, the Giants could patiently develop the Clemson standout until he is ready for the lead role.
  24. Pick No.
    24
    The Raiders can't continue to ignore their pressing need on the island. White is an experienced cover corner capable of snuffing out wide receivers with his length and athleticism.
  25. Pick No.
    25
    OT
    Alabama
    After struggling at right tackle for most of the season, the Texans could snag a premier road grader to shore up the running game.
  26. Pick No.
    26
    CB
    Florida
    The 'Hawks typically find their CB1s in the late stages of the draft but it might be time to invest in the position with Richard Sherman getting a little older.
  27. Pick No.
    27
    LB
    Alabama
    After watching Derrick Johnson suffer another injury, the Chiefs could decide to find a long-term replacement at the position. Foster not only brings some attitude and toughness, but he is an instinctive playmaker between the tackles.
  28. Pick No.
    28
    DE
    Missouri
    The Cowboys still need to find a legitimate pass rusher to feature off the edge. Harris is a blue-collar worker with a rugged game and non-stop motor that fits the Cowboys' profile.
  29. Pick No.
    29
    TE
    Alabama
    If Jared Cook departs, the Packers could target the Alabama standout to fill a key role in the passing game.
  30. Pick No.
    30
    DE
    Temple
    If Lawrence Timmons leaves via free agency, the Steelers could turn to the Temple star to fill the void in the middle of the defense.
  31. Pick No.
    31
    The Falcons could use some more sizzle in the return game. Jackson certainly provides that and gives the Dirty Birds another feisty defender to add to the secondary.
  32. Pick No.
    32
    DE
    Alabama
    If the Patriots can win without a dynamic rusher on the edge, imagine how the defense could play with an electric pass-rush specialist in the stable.
  33. 2017 NFL Mock Draft Central

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