Skip to main content

Hot 150: Gil Brandt's top-ranked prospects for 2019 NFL Draft

Soon, the latest group of NFL prospects will be divvied up by their new employers at the 2019 NFL Draft in Nashville, Tennessee. But before the picks start flying in Music City (Round 1 begins Thursday, April 25 at 8:00 p.m. ET), let's take a look at my top 150 prospects in this class.

1) Nick Bosa | Edge | Ohio State | Junior

A three-year player, Bosa had good but not off-the-charts numbers. Thanks to
a core muscle injury, he missed most of the 2018 season. A very good competitor -- like his father, John, and brother, Joey -- Bosa has very strong hands to go with an outstanding work ethic. He will play many years at a very high level and will have double-digit sacks as a rookie.

2) Quinnen Williams | DT | Alabama | Sophomore (RS)

Marked his first year as a starter in 2018. He has very good height (6-foot-3) and speed (4.83-second 40-yard dash at the NFL Scouting Combine) and boasts great explosion and strength. He should be a very good pass rusher as a tackle. He will overpower you. Athletic and tough, Williams may end up being the best player in the draft. There are lots of Pro Bowl and All-Pro honors in his future.

3) Josh Allen | Edge | Kentucky | Senior

Allen stayed in school for his senior year, motivated in part by the birth of his son, and it paid off for him, boosting his earning potential by millions of dollars after he posted 17.0 sacks in 2018. He can play in space (with his 4.63 40 speed) or rush the passer. He has good strength (having posted 28 lifts). Allen will be a first-year starter in the NFL and has Pro Bowl potential. Staying in school helped him a lot.

4) Ed Oliver | DT | Houston | Junior

An undersized (6-1 7/8, 287 pounds) three-year player with exceptional quickness and change of direction, Oliver is strong (32 lifts) and athletic (he posted a 36-inch vertical jump and 10-foot broad jump). Though not as powerful as
Rams star Aaron Donald, he is a very good player and will be a disruptive force.

5) Montez Sweat | Edge | Mississippi State | Senior

The five-year player started school at Michigan State as a tight end. There were questions about a pre-existing heart condition at the NFL Scouting Combine, but he did not have to go back to Indianapolis for a medical re-check. Sweat has a very quick first step and collected 22 sacks from 2017 to '18. He needs to get stronger, but should play for a long time at a high level in the NFL.

6) T.J. Hockenson | TE | Iowa | Sophomore (RS)

Hockenson, who played two seasons at Iowa after redshirting in 2016, can and will block and is a very good receiver downfield. He will help his team's running game. The very competitive Hockenson played faster than his 4.7 40 time. He also posted a 37.5-inch vertical jump and a 7.02-second three-cone drill at the combine. He will play a long time at a high level and should be a first-year starter in the NFL.

7) Kyler Murray | QB | Oklahoma | Junior (RS)

Murray lacks ideal height, but had very few passes blocked at Oklahoma. He was a winner in high school while playing in the best 6A division in Texas. He has a very quick release and is smart. Murray is a very good runner -- though he has not been timed, I would say he would most likely run a 4.4 40. He's also been very well-coached by Lincoln Riley at OU and by his father, Kevin Murray, who was a quarterback of note at Texas A&M; the elder Murray's college career included putting up 36 points in a Cotton Bowl win over Auburn after the 1986 season. Kyler Murray completed over 90 percent of his passes at Oklahoma's pro day (61 of 67 attempts) and boasts above-average velocity and accuracy.

8) Devin White | LB | LSU | Junior

White is very much like Roquan Smith, who was picked eighth overall by the Chicago Bears in 2018. White has the speed to cover downfield against the pass; he's also a very good tackler who can blitz and make tackles from sideline to sideline. He needs to do a better job getting off blocks, but the former high school running back is a very good athlete.

9) Jonah Williams | OG | Alabama | Junior

Williams is a three-year player who started every game since his true freshman year. He is a tactician who plays the game like Hall of Famer Forrest Gregg and recent Browns stalwart Joe Thomas. He needs to get stronger -- and he will. He's a smart player with very good feet and outstanding work habits who can play guard or center. He will play a long time at a high level.

10) Christian Wilkins | DT | Clemson | Senior

Wilkins had a very good pro-day workout. At the combine, he ran a 5.04 40 at 315 pounds. The very disruptive player won the William Campbell Trophy, a.k.a. the academic Heisman. The very high-character person has very good quickness for his size and is extremely flexible. He's a better pass rusher than run stopper. Random fact: Wilkins has seven siblings.

11) Andre Dillard | OT | Washington State | Senior (RS)

A very athletic player who plays left tackle, Dillard gave up one sack in 2018. He is hard to evaluate because of the wide splits the linemen at Washington State take. At this time, Dillard is better in the passing game than the ground game. He has very good speed (4.96 40) at 315 pounds, though he needs to add strength (and will). This very smooth player will start in Year 1 and play a long time.

12) Josh Jacobs | RB | Alabama | Junior

Jacobs didn't work out at the combine due to a groin ailment, but had a great pro day. The 5-11, 219-pound back ran a 4.62 40 with a 35-inch vertical. He has power to go along with outstanding quickness, and he can even line up as the quarterback in the Wildcat. He started just three games in three years and only posted 251 carries, playing behind very good running backs in his first two years at Alabama.

13) Jawaan Taylor | OT | Florida | Junior

Taylor did not run or jump at the combine. He has very long arms (35 1/8 inches) and looks to have good speed and quickness. He plays right tackle, but could be a guard. He needs to use his hands better. Taylor is strong (24 lifts) and a good run blocker and hard worker. He will be a good NFL player.

14) Devin Bush | LB | Michigan | Junior

A three-year player whose father had a long NFL career, Bush is undersized (5-11, 234 pounds), but long on speed (4.43 40) and athletic ability (6.93 three-cone, 40.5-inch vertical jump). He's a three-down player who has great energy and toughness and good instincts. The very competitive Bush will bring a grittiness to whichever defense he joins. He has very good character. Bush will most likely be a weak-side linebacker in the NFL and should make the team he joins better while starting as a rookie.

15) Rashan Gary | Edge | Michigan | Junior

Gary is a very athletic player who has the traits to be special. He ran a 4.58 40 with a 38-inch vertical jump and 26 lifts. He was a great high school player. He posted just 10.5 career sacks at Michigan and has had injury problems, which makes him something of a risk. This three-year player should have performed better than he did in a great program like Michigan.

16) D.K. Metcalf | WR | Mississippi | Sophomore (RS)

Metcalf is big (6-3 3/8, 228 pounds), fast (4.33 40) and athletic (40.5-inch vertical, 11-2 broad jump, 27 lifts). He's somewhat of a straight-line runner who makes great catches. Drops come from a lack of concentration. He posted five plays of 50-plus yards and nine plays of 30-plus yards at Ole Miss. It will be tough for corners to cover him. He needs to run better routes. His father, Terrance, was an NFL player. He had a neck injury in college which will need to be checked out. All that said, Metcalf has a chance to be special.

17) Daniel Jones | QB | Duke | Junior (RS)

Not a power thrower, Jones is more of a touch passer. He's very tough and a hard worker who wants to get better every day. Jones completed 60.5 percent of his passes in 2018, but was hampered by drops from his receivers. He's very athletic and can run. This well-coached player makes me think of Danny White, who was a quarterback for the Cowboys in the 1980s. Jones has size (6-5 1/8) and 4.7 speed. He's very savvy, and I think he will be a good NFL quarterback. There are lots of things to like about him.

18) Clelin Ferrell | Edge | Clemson | Junior (RS)

Due to turf toe, we do not have him timed in the 40. He has size (6-4 3/8, 264 pounds) with long arms. Ferrell posted 27 career sacks. He gives good effort every play. Still, without a confirmed 40 time, one must beware. He is a good player, much like Shaq Lawson, who was drafted in the first round out of Clemson by the Bills in 2016.

19) Marquise Brown | WR | Oklahoma | Junior

He has not run in the pre-draft process due to Lisfranc surgery. At 166 pounds, Brown looks like DeSean Jackson when the veteran receiver was coming out of Cal. Brown has very good hands, which measured 9 inches. He's very explosive and great running after the catch. He plays bigger than his size and runs good routes.

20) Drew Lock | QB | Missouri | Senior

Lock has size (6-3 3/4) and ran a 4.69 40 at the combine. He has a quick delivery to go with a strong arm, though he needs to work on his footwork. He is a very good athlete. Lock will need a quarterback coach who can work with him to improve his accuracy. He has the tools and lots of upside, but he'll need some help to get better. If he has the requisite work habits, he can be an NFL starter. He needs more loft on his deep throws. Lock completed 63 percent of his passes with 28 touchdowns against eight interceptions in 2018.

21) Brian Burns | Edge | Florida State | Junior

At the combine, he measured 6-4 3/4, weighed 249 pounds and ran a 4.53 40. Burns can rush the passer and has very good take-off. The three-year player also has the athletic ability to drop into space, though he needs to get stronger. Burns has great upside and can be a Pro Bowler.

22) Noah Fant | TE | Iowa | Junior

Fant ran a 4.5 40 in Indy at 249 pounds. He's a better receiver than blocker, but he will drop some balls. He has very good athletic ability and will be hard to play against because of his speed.

23) Cody Ford | OT | Oklahoma | Junior (RS)

Ford played right tackle at Oklahoma, but might be best at guard. He is a wide body -- you need to hire a taxi to get around him. He has been well-coached at OU and is very tough. Ford should start and play a long time. He is a great athlete who loves the game.

24) Dexter Lawrence | DT | Clemson | Junior

Lawrence is big (6-4 1/2, 342 pounds) and strong (36 lifts) with speed (5.05 40). He's very good against the run, but not a great pass rusher -- and he comes out in obvious pass-rushing situations. Lawrence missed the postseason after
testing positive for performance-enhancing substances.

25) Dwayne Haskins | QB | Ohio State | Sophomore (RS)

Haskins started just one year for the Buckeyes. He did not run well at the combine (5.04 40) and did not do any shuttles or the broad jump. At his pro day, it looked like he moved better and had a very good workout. Haskins is a pocket passer with very good touch and arm strength, though he lacks foot quickness. He had great receivers to work with at Ohio State, where he completed 70 percent of his passes. Ninety percent of his passes came from the pocket. He's tough and competitive. Someone will trade up from the middle of Round 1 to get him.

26) Deandre Baker | CB | Georgia | Senior

This tough, four-year player can play press coverage, though he does not have good hands. After posting a 4.52 40 at the combine, Baker ran better at his pro day, where he covered well but dropped some balls. He will start, but I'm not sure he'll ever be a Pro Bowl player.

27) Greedy Williams | CB | LSU | Sophomore (RS)

Williams has the height (6-1 7/8) and speed (4.37 40) needed for the position. The three-year player only played during two seasons at LSU, having redshirted in 2016. He's not a very good tackler; he's more of a drag-down type. Williams has good ball skills, though he didn't play well against Alabama in 2018.

28) Garrett Bradbury | C | N.C. State | Senior (RS)

Bradbury came to N.C. State as a tight end. He's very strong (34 lifts) and has 4.92 speed at 306 pounds. He has great quickness and does a good job as a run or pass blocker. The very competitive Bradbury will play a long time at a high level.

29) Parris Campbell | WR | Ohio State | Senior (RS)

Campbell has 4.31 speed with athletic ability (40-inch vertical, 11-3 broad jump). He's a lot like former Buckeye Curtis Samuel, a second-round pick by the Panthers in 2017. Campbell has good hands and lots of upside, though he needs work on deep balls.

30) Byron Murphy | CB | Washington | Sophomore (RS)

A three-year player who has played in just 20 games, though he started every one, Murphy has 4.55 speed but above-average ball skills to go with great technique and outstanding competitiveness and toughness. He should be very good in zone coverage.

31) Connor McGovern | OL | Penn State | Junior

The 6-5 7/8, 311-pound McGovern has 34 1/8-inch arms. He has not been timed in the 40 or measured in the vertical jump. He can play guard or center. McGovern is strong and plays with power. He has good short-area quickness and can get to the second level. He has a good chance to start in Year 1.

32) Jeffery Simmons | DT | Mississippi State | Junior

Simmons was not invited to the combine because he did not meet the criteria under the NFL's policy about past issues involving violence; Simmons was arrested in 2016 following a physical altercation with a woman. He tore his ACL working out in February. Simmons lifted 28 times in late March. He has a great first step and would likely have been a top-10 pick if not for character/health concerns. He's a high-risk, high-reward prospect. How early will someone take a chance?

33) A.J. Brown | WR | Mississippi | Junior

Brown, who lined up mostly as a slot receiver, ran a 4.49 40 at 226 pounds. He needs to lose weight; that's too heavy for a wide receiver. He has a thick body and tracks the ball well, though he has trouble with low throws. He's much better than former Mississippi product Laquon Treadwell, who was drafted in the first round in 2016.

34) L.J. Collier | Edge | TCU | Senior (RS)

He has pass-rush ability, is athletic and possesses lots of upside. Collier has very strong hands with very good quickness and can convert speed to power. He plays the run OK, but will get better. Well-coached at TCU, he posted 4.91 speed at 283 pounds.

35) Irv Smith Jr. | TE | Alabama | Junior

This three-year player has good athletic ability and can run after the catch. He can line up in-line or split out wide. Smith is not a good blocker, though he posted a good 2018 season and will improve.

36) Kaleb McGary | OT | Washington | Senior (RS)

McGary has size (6-7 1/18), quickness (7.66 three-cone) and toughness. He ran a 5.05 40 at 317 pounds. He needs to work on pass protection, and I'm not sure he can play left tackle, though he is a very good run blocker, and he could play many years in the NFL at right tackle.

37) Erik McCoy | C | Texas A&M | Junior (RS)

McCoy started every game for which he was available. A center who can also play guard, McCoy ran a 4.89 40 at the combine and recorded 29 lifts. He has the quickness needed for the position and makes good use of his hands when blocking.

38) Rock Ya-Sin | CB | Temple | Senior

I love the history of players who transfer up, which Ya-Sin did, coming from Presbyterian College. He ran a 4.51 40 at the combine and is able to find the ball. He had 14 passes defensed and gave up zero pass plays of 20-plus yards. He has good toughness and will tackle. Ya-Sin will be a starter.

39) Johnathan Abram | S | Mississippi State | Senior

This strong safety and special teams standout is at his best when playing up close to the line of scrimmage. Abram ran a 4.45 40 at the combine and has plenty of energy. He's OK -- not great -- in space. He will add great character and leadership to whichever team he ends up with, and will most likely start in Year 1.

40) Jerry Tillery | DT | Notre Dame | Senior

Tillery is a very talented but inconsistent player. The question is, how important is football to him? He can rush the passer and had four sacks in one game vs. Stanford last season. Tillery has long arms, 4.93 speed and can be a playmaker. Watch this player. No. 99 can be a big hit or a big miss. He has the skills to be very good.

41) Jaylon Ferguson | Edge | Louisiana Tech | Senior (RS)

Ferguson was disinvited from the combine after a background check revealed a conviction of simple battery during his freshman year. Ferguson added 10 pounds and did not work out well at his pro day. He's a very good pass rusher, and everyone's looking for good pass rushers; Ferguson will take 22 visits before the draft. He posted 17.5 sacks in 2018.

42) Dalton Risner | OT | Kansas State | Senior (RS)

Risner played right tackle at Kansas State, but his best NFL position might be guard. He can also play center. Risner has been well-coached and is a very smart player with good toughness, though he's not the best athlete. The 6-4 1/2, 312-pounder has 34-inch arms, and he does a good job in pass protection. He's steady, tough and most likely projects as a second-year starter.

43) Zach Allen | DE | Boston College | Senior

Allen has the traits you want: He has height (6-4) and speed and plays with lots of intensity. He needs to develop pass-rush moves, though he's good against the run and has good strength. He will be a solid player for a long time.

44) Deebo Samuel | WR | South Carolina | Senior (RS)

Samuel racked up 210 receiving yards in one game against Clemson last season. He returned four kickoffs for touchdowns in his South Carolina career. He will catch all routes and make people miss when they're trying to tackle him. He ran a 4.48 40 at the combine and had 28 total touchdowns in his career. Slot receiver might be his best position.

45) Miles Sanders | RB | Penn State | Junior

Last season was his first as a starter, and Sanders posted only 276 carries in his three years in school. He has outstanding vision as a runner and is a good receiver, though he has problems holding the ball. Sanders rushed for 1,274 yards in 2018. He ran a 4.49 40 at the combine and recorded a 36-inch vertical jump and 6.89 three-cone. He has starting ability.

46) Chris Lindstrom | OG | Boston College | Senior

Lindstrom came out of high school at 240 pounds. At the combine, he weighed 308 pounds and ran a 4.91 40. Lindstrom is a good pass-blocker, very competitive and smart. His father, Chris Lindstrom Sr., was an NFL player. The younger Lindstrom will start by Year 2.

47) N'Keal Harry | WR | Arizona State | Junior

Harry is a big wide receiver, a Michael Irvin type who has good run-after-the-catch ability. He can also return punts. Harry ran a 4.53 40 at the combine and ranks third in ASU history in both catches (213) and receiving yards (2,889). He's very strong, which he showed by putting the bar up 27 times. He should be a good third-down receiver.

48) David Montgomery | RB | Iowa State | Junior

Montgomery ran a 4.58 40 at his pro day, where he had a very good workout. He caught the ball well. Montgomery has good quickness, balance and toughness, and he will block. He played well for Iowa State. Montgomery reminds me of
Kareem Hunt when Hunt was at Toledo.

49) Nasir Adderley | S | Delaware | Senior

Adderley, who is related to Hall of Famer Herb Adderley, posted nine interceptions and 160 tackles over the past two seasons. He ran a 4.65 40 at his pro day and pulled out after his first run. He had a 38-inch vertical jump and a 10-9 broad jump. His best position is free safety.

50) Tytus Howard | OT | Alabama State | Senior (RS)

Howard didn't play the position until college. The former high school quarterback can play left tackle. He has long arms (34 inches) and ran well (5.05 40) at 322 pounds. There is lots of upside with this player. He'll be a good pass blocker at this level.

Follow Gil Brandt on Twitter _@GilBrandt_.

This article has been reproduced in a new format and may be missing content or contain faulty links. Please use the Contact Us link in our site footer to report an issue.

Related Content