The quarterbacks get all the glory. And it's deserved. But what about everyone else?
Just like last year, I've been assigned to rank the best of the rest in this draft class: the top NON-quarterbacks. Here's the interesting thing about this year's group, though: There are no running backs or wide receivers. I expect only one RB (Josh Jacobs) to go in Round 1. And I think the strength of this receiver class will be in the second round, with maybe a couple going at the end of the first.
Without further ado, here's my list of the best non-QB prospects -- and their potential landing spots -- in this amazing and wide-open draft, Schein Nine style.
Talking to Bosa on my SiriusXM Radio show, the Ohio State edge menace believes he is the best player in the 2019 NFL Draft. I believe he is right. I think Nick will be a better version of his brother, Joey. Considering Joey has stacked up 28.5 sacks in 35 NFL games -- nabbing Defensive Rookie of the Year honors and a Pro Bowl bid in the process -- that speaks volumes.
I think Quinnen Williams is a little safer, but Bosa has more upside to be a star. Bosa told me he is totally recovered from the core muscle injury that halted his final year at Ohio State after just three games (and four sacks, by the way). The year before, Bosa was the Big Ten Defensive Lineman of the Year, with 16 tackles for loss and 8.5 sacks, despite being the focus of every opposing offense's blocking scheme.
My friend and CBS Sports Network colleague Aaron Taylor called Williams the defensive equivalent of one of last year's draft darlings, offensive guard Quenton Nelson. I get it and I love it. Williams is a sure-fire star in the trenches, which is exactly what we all thought about Nelson at this time a year ago. Nelson, of course, was first-team All-Pro as a rookie -- so, yeah, we all nailed that.
Williams undoubtedly sits atop many draft boards. Yes, the 21-year-old only had one season of serious production in Tuscaloosa, but that one season produced 70 tackles, 18.5 tackles for loss and seven sacks. Those are absurd numbers for an interior defensive lineman. In related news, Williams earned the highest single-season grade Pro Football Focus has ever given a college interior defender.
Potential landing spot: In theory, he'd be the perfect Arizona Cardinal -- if they weren't locked in on Kyler Murray. Williams will be in play at No. 2 overall. If (when) San Fran picks Bosa, the Jetshave to take Williams. I don't want to hear about Ed Oliver's fit in Gregg Williams' scheme. I don't want to hear about trading down. This cat is going to be a star for a long time. If Bosa's gone, any other move is illogical. If the Jets were to inexplicably pass and allow Williams to reach the fourth pick, Mike Mayock would sprint the card in for Williams and own his first draft.
The Kentucky star is an edge-rushing freak. His 17 sacks and five forced fumbles in 2018 are eye-popping numbers. Not to mention, the team-high 88 tackles and 21.5 tackles for loss. No wonder he was SEC Defensive Player of the Year and a consensus first-team All-American.
Allen's athleticism pops off the tape. The 6-foot-5, 262-pounder provides positional versatility, with coverage ability that a creative defensive coordinator could put to use. Allen's the kind of true hybrid linebacker who can redefine a defense.
Potential landing spot: I think Allen would fill a major hole for the Raiders -- you know, the void left by that terrible Khalil Mack trade. Oakland finished dead last in the NFL with 13 sacks last season. The next-lowest team total was ... 30. If Bosa or Williams fall to the Raiders (picking at No. 4), Buccaneers (No. 5) or Giants (No. 6), those guys would be no-brainer picks. But I presume they'll be gone within the first three selections, at which point Allen would have to look mighty tasty to the Silver and Black.
I like Oliver. A lot. Even with a mixed bag in his last year at Houston. To be honest, he spent much of his time in college playing out of position at 0-tech (lined up right over the center) -- and he still dominated.
Oliver's an athletic freak. I don't care that he's slightly undersized for an NFL defensive tackle -- he possesses speed and explosiveness that you can't teach, and uses leverage to his advantage. Forget the Aaron Donald comparisons. There's only one Aaron Donald. Think about a more athletic Geno Atkins. Atkins, by the way, has made seven Pro Bowls over nine seasons in Cincinnati.
Potential landing spot: I'd love the fit in Tampa Bay with the fifth overall pick, especially with Gerald McCoy's future up in the air. Meanwhile, Raiders defensive coordinator Paul Guenther had Atkins in Cincy, so maybe Oakland's a match at No. 4. If Oliver gets past the Bucs, any team in the top 10 should pounce.
The LSU linebacker is a tackling machine (see: 120-plus tackles in each of the past two seasons) and a leader (team captain during his final two years at LSU). Want athleticism? How does a 4.42 40-yard dash sound? A 39.5-inch vertical leap? I think this guy can be special on Sundays.
In the modern NFL, off-ball linebackers with true three-down ability aren't easy to find -- well, except if you're looking in Baton Rouge, apparently. Deion Jones and Kwon Alexander have certainly made their marks in the NFL as sideline-to-sideline terrors, but White is better than both of his LSU predecessors.
A three-year starter in the SEC, Taylor is battle-tested, having faced a litany of NFL-grade pass rushers in college football's best conference. That said, he's an absolute mauler in the run game who attacks defenders with bad intentions.
Potential landing spot: The Florida tackle is a bad man. Wherever he ends up, he'll step in, kick backside and take names from Day 1. And if that isn't the perfect description of a Doug Marrone/Tom Coughlin offensive lineman -- or player, in general -- than I don't know what is. I love that fit with the Jaguars at No. 7. He'd make sense for the Lions (No. 8) and Bills (No. 9), too.
I love the Iowa tight end. He's a well-rounded future star who immediately helps in all aspects of your offensive game plan: running and passing. In fact, he was a more prolific pass catcher last season (49 grabs for 760 yards and six touchdowns) than his mismatch TE teammate Noah Fant (39/519/7).
While Hockenson didn't blow anyone away with his 40 time at the combine (4.70), his play speed is much faster. And again, he's a spectacular blocker. For any team looking for a true "Y" tight end, Hockenson is the ideal prospect.
Potential landing spot: I expect him to get drafted in the top 10. Actually, when you think about it, he makes complete sense for every team picking in the 7-10 range: Jacksonville, Detroit, Buffalo and Denver. I think the Bills make the most sense. In theory, Hockenson would be the perfect fit to replace Rob Gronkowski in New England, but that's a pipe dream (or nightmare, depending on your perspective) because he'll be long gone by the time the Patriots are picking.
Perhaps the Michigan 'backer isn't getting enough love. That changes right here and right now. I already stated my affection for Devin White as an all-around linebacker who's perfect for modern defenses. Well, there isn't much separating that Devin and this Devin.
Anyone who watched the Michigan defense over the last two seasons -- a unit that ranked top three in total D each year -- couldn't help but notice the maize-and-blue missile in the No. 10 jersey flying around the field. Bush was a splash-play machine, very adept at blitzing as well as making plays in space.
Potential landing spot: I don't see how he would get past Green Bay at No. 12. He'd start and thrive for the Packers. If White goes fifth, I could see Bush going in that 7-10 range. He would be a great selection for Denver at 10.
NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported on Tuesday that Gary's shoulder has been flagged by teams, as he might need surgery at some point for a labral tear suffered during his college days. That makes me a little nervous, no doubt. But man, I love his raw talent. A 6-4, 277-pounder just isn't supposed to move that way. It's extraordinary.
I don't want to hear that he didn't deliver the goods in college. He commanded attention for Jim Harbaugh's team and was a great player who mucked things up so his teammates could put up stats. Gary's rare -- no doubt about it.
Potential landing spot: There was a point in time when I thought Gary was a lock for the top 10. Now, I'm not convinced, though Detroit should consider the local product at No. 8. But the Miami Dolphins are obviously taking a long view in the roster-building process. If they get him at No. 13 and get him healed for 2020 and beyond, it should be viewed as brilliant.