Albany, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Only Dave Gettleman knows what the New York Giants are going to do on Thursday, but we have some thoughts of our own.
This is the first ever NY Blitz mock draft and I can promise it won’t be the last.
This is actually the second version of my mock draft. I played around with the Pro Football Focus Draft Simulator and instantly second guessed every decision I made in my first mock draft write-up. This second version has a total of four trades, and they are as follows:
The Los Angeles Chargers trade the 6th overall pick, a second-rounder, and a third-rounder to the Detroit Lions for the 3rd overall pick.
Denver Broncos trade the 15th and the 77th overall pick to the Jacksonville Jaguars for the 9th overall selection.
The Miami Dolphins trade the 18th overall pick (Their second of three first round selections) to the Green Bay Packers for the 30th pick and the 62nd pick.
Finally, the Indianapolis Colts trade up into the first round, giving the Seattle Seahawks the 34th overall pick and the 122nd overall pick for the 27th overall selection.
Before we get into it, I’ll tell you that I used the PFF Mock Draft Simulator to help determine the trades, and ‘The Beast’ draft guide by The Athletic’s Dane Brugler for help with player analysis. Though I may be just a 24-year-old who’s primary professional obligation is to news, I love sports, specifically football, and more specifically, college football. I sometimes feel like I know what I’m talking about, but it’s entirely possible I don’t.
If you have any thoughts on what I’ve presented – I’d love to hear them – Jmiller@news10.com.
And here we go…
- Cincinnati Bengals: Joe Burrow, QB, LSU
- Michael Barth: Joe Burrow, QB
- Liana Bonavita: Joe Burrow, QB
The easiest pick in this year’s draft. Burrow has confidence to spare. He will make a greater leader both on and off the field for a team that has accomplished very little recently.
- Washington Redskins: Chase Young, DE, Ohio State
- Michael Barth: Chase Young, DE
- Liana Bonavita: Chase Young, DE
The second easiest pick in this year’s draft. Young will be an absolute force in the NFC East, especially if the other three teams perform the same way they did in 2019. Young tops 13 sacks as a rookie, and instantly becomes a leader on this defense.
- Los Angeles Chargers (from DET): Tua Tagovailoa, QB, Alabama
- Michael Barth: DET — Jeff Okudah, CB
- Liana Bonavita: DET — Jeff Okudah, CB
The Chargers trade their first three rounds of this draft for their new franchise QB. Tua is healthy now, and will continue to be healthy as he helps the lead this team into a new city, a new era, and the playoffs.
- New York Giants: Tristan Wirfs, OT, Iowa
- Michael Barth: Tristan Wirfs, OT
- Liana Bonavita: Tristan Wirfs, OT
The Giants field multiple calls for the fourth pick, but ultimately the Chargers moving up to three force big blue to stay where they are. I like Wirfs over Bama’s Jedrick Wills for two reasons. A) He played both Right and Left tackle in college, and B) his background as a multisport athlete has gifted him balance and strength, two things absolutely necessary to be successful against the speed of NFL rushers.
- Miami Dolphins: Justin Herbert, QB, Oregon
- Michael Barth: Justin Herbert, QB
- Liana Bonavita: Justin Herbert, QB
I don’t love Herbert, I don’t even really like him, but the Dolphins put in too much work in free agency to not take a QB with their first pick. Herbert has an average rookie season that ends up being overshadowed by other story lines in the AFC East.
- Detroit Lions: Isaiah Simmons, LB, Clemson
- Michael Barth: LAC — Tua Tagovailoa, QB
- Liana Bonavita: LAC — Tua Tagovailoa, QB
Detroit trades back and uses the extra time to decide that they need a play maker in the middle of the field, not a replacement for Darius Slay. Simmons is the player Matt Patricia has always dreamed of. He performs well in the ever-competitive NFC North, but under performs in his first meeting against Aaron Rodgers.
- Carolina Panthers: Derrick Brown, DL, Auburn
- Michael Barth: Isaiah Simmons, LB
- Liana Bonavita: Isaiah Simmons, LB
New head coach Matt Rhule is content playing it safe in his first year in the NFL. He’s happy with his offense, especially his running back, and decides to shore up the defense line. This isn’t a flashy pick, but Brown is a beast of a player and makes this defense better.
- Arizona Cardinals: Jedrick Wills, OT, Alabama
- Michael Barth: Jedrick Wills, OT
- Liana Bonavita: Jedrick Wills, OT
This is a decision made not just for the fan base, but for football fans everywhere. Wtahcing Kyler Murray run for his life last year was NOT fun. Watching Wills protect him will be. Kyler gets considerably more time to throw to his new pro bowl target in Deandre Hopkins.
- Denver Broncos: CeeDee Lamb, WR, Oklahoma
- Michael Barth: JAX — Derrick Brown, DT
- Liana Bonavita: JAX — Derrick Brown, DT
Denver trades up to get the best receiver in the draft. Drew Lock is pumped. Von Miller is pumped. Everyone is pumped. Mile-High excitement in Denver. Lamb starts off his career with a 1,000-yeard season.
- Cleveland Browns: Mekhi Becton, OT, Lousiville
- Michael Barth: Mekhi Becton, OT
- Liana Bonavita: Mekhi Becton, OT
Hopefully Becton’s 6’7”, 360-pound frame isn’t too difficult for Baker Mayfield to see over. Becton’s size worries me against the speed of the NFL, but if the Brown’s offense can get into any kind of rhythm, Becton will have time to settle in at LT.
- New York Jets: Andrew Thomas, OT, Georgia
- Michael Barth: Jerry Jeudy, WR
- Liana Bonavita: Andrew Thomas, OT
The Jets waste no time scooping up the best remaining OT on the board. He helps protect Sam Darnold and helps open up lanes for Leveon Bell.
- Las Vegas Raiders: Jeff Okudah, CB, Ohio State
- Michael Barth: CeeDee Lamb, WR
- Liana Bonavita: Jerry Jeudy, WR
The Raiders can’t believe it. The best corner in the draft falls to them, and fills in instantly as a starter.
- San Francisco 49ers: Jerry Jeudy, WR, Alabama
- Michael Barth: Henry Ruggs, WR
- Liana Bonavita: CeeDee Lamb, WR
San Fran wanted Lamb, but gladly accepts Jeudy, who will put this WR corps among the best in the NFL alongside second-year man Deebo Samuel. Jimmy G gets his revenge this year with tremendously increased production.
- Tampa Bay Buccaneers: CJ Henderson, CB, Florida
- Michael Barth: Andrew Thomas, OT
- Liana Bonavita: Javon Kinlaw, DT
A lot of fans want an OT here to help protect their new HOF QB Tom Brady, but the Buccs recognize the need for a solid defense to help Brady out as he learns a new offense for the first time in his career. Henderson is fast and physical. He starts week one across from Carlton Davis who was second in the league last year with 19 pass deflections.
- Jacksonville Jaguars: Patrick Queen, LB, LSU
- Michael Barth: DEN — CJ Henderson, CB
- Liana Bonavita: DEN — Henry Ruggs, WR
Jacksonville lacks play-makers on defense after trading away Jalen Ramsey an Calais Campbell. Queen flies around the field, lining up on the short side, and rushing when necessary to try to make up for the loss of Yannick Ngakoue who is probably playing for a different team in September.
- Atlanta Falcons: K’Lavon Chaisson, DE, LSU
- Michael Barth: Javon Kinlaw, DT
- Liana Bonavita: K’Lavon Chaisson, DE
Two LSU defenders in a row. Atlanta’s secondary is fine but their defensive line needs help. Chaisson can line up on and off the line of scrimmage, and fills part of the hole left behind by the departure of Vic Beasley, despite his down season last year.
- Dallas Cowboys: Xavier McKinney, S, Alabama
- Michael Barth: Xavier McKinney, S
- Liana Bonavita: CJ Henderson, CB
Dallas is bummed. They wanted Chaisson’s versatility to line up alongside Demarcus Lawrence. But, the loss of Byron Jones weakens this secondary, and McKinney provides youth and speed needed against the strong-armed QB’s in NY, Washington, and Philly.
- Green Bay Packers: Henry Ruggs, WR, Alabama
- Michael Barth: MIA — K’Lavon Chaisson, DE
- Liana Bonavita: MIA — Josh Jones, OT
All hail Aaron Rodgers. The fastest player in this year’s draft lines up with Davante Adams and Rodgers finally has two Grade-A weapons to throw to. This is well worth giving up a couple of picks. Green Bay fills their most glaring need.
- Las Vegas Raiders: Justin Jefferson, WR, LSU
- Michael Barth: Jeff Gladney, CB
- Liana Bonavita: Patrick Queen, LB
The Raider’s briefly question why the Raider’s passed on Jefferson, who I consider to be the third-best wideout in the draft. Once the fog fades, the Raider’s give Derek Carr a massive upgrade. The signing of Nelson Agholor looks purely like a back-up plan.
- Jacksonville Jaguars: Jaylon Johnson, CB, Utah
- Michael Barth: Kenneth Murray, LB
- Liana Bonavita: Kristian Fulton, CB
The Jags continue to rebuild on the defensive side of the ball. Johnson is no Jalen Ramsey, but he has the skills necessary to be an NFL corner, and fills a need for the team.
- Philadelphia Eagles: Brandon Aiyuk, WR, Arizona State
- Michael Barth: Justin Jefferson, WR
- Liana Bonavita: Justin Jefferson, WR
The Eagles need a receiver. Any Receiver. Aiyuk is physical and has excellent hands. He will have to do very little to impress a fan base that was rooting for 7th string wideouts by the end of last season.
- Minnesota Vikings: Jeff Gladney, CB, TCU
- Michael Barth: Brandon Aiyuk, WR
- Liana Bonavita: Denzel Mims, WR
Personal opinion – Gladney is lock down. Lights out. He’s a little undersized, but makes up for that and then some with his scrappy, competitive play style. He fits in well in Minnesota alongside guys like Harrison Smith, Danielle Hunter, and Anthony Barr.
- New England Patriots: Kenneth Murray, LB, Oklahoma
- Michael Barth: Jordan Love, QB
- Liana Bonavita: Xavier McKinney, S
This absolutely a wildcard pick. I’m basically playing darts in the dark. Murray does not reflect the usual Belichick pick. He’s unpolished, but he’s certainly a force in the middle of the field. New England’s offense won’t be good for a couple of years, so if they don’t trade out of this spot (up or down) I see them taking a risk on a guy like Murray.
- New Orleans Saints: AJ Epenesa, DE, Iowa
- Michael Barth: Trevon Diggs, CB
- Liana Bonavita: Jordan Love, QB
The offense is fine the way it is, so the Saints look to improve their pass rush with a guy like Epenesa. He won’t beat anyone with speed, but presents with the skills of a power rusher with pro bowl potential.
- Minnesota Vikings: Denzel Mims, WR, Baylor
- Michael Barth: AJ Terrell, CB
- Liana Bonavita: Jeff Gladney, CB
Even at 6’2” — 207 lbs, Mims is the second fastest receiver in this draft class, posting a 4.38 40-yard dash. He needs to work on his route running, but that’s what Adam Thielen is for. Mims presents as a bigger Stefon Diggs. The reliable arm of Kirk Cousins will make it easy for Mims to grow as an NFL wideout.
- Miami Dolphins: Yetur Gross-Matos, DE, Penn State
- Michael Barth: Antoine Winfield Jr., S
- Liana Bonavita: D’Andre Swift, RB
35 tackles for loss and 17.5 sacks over his last two seasons at Penn State. Miami’s need to develop as a team will allow Gross-Matos to mature as a pass rusher, but he’s obviously ready to play at the next level.
- Indianapolis Colts: Javon Kinlaw, DT, South Carolina
- Michael Barth: SEA — Yetur Gross-Matos, DE
- Liana Bonavita: SEA — Austin Jackson, OT
Indy trades up to get Deforest Buckner a friend on the defensive line. Kinlaw needs to work on his technique as a rusher, but he’s a natural run-stopper. Add him to Malik Hooker, Buckner, and Darius Leonard … this defense is no joke.
- Baltimore Ravens: Marlon Davidson, DT, Auburn
- Michael Barth: Patrick Queen, LB
- Liana Bonavita: AJ Epenesa, DE
The Ravens don’t need anything on offense, but their defensive line lacks youth. The trade for Calais Campbell and the signing of Derek Wolfe made things a little better, but not in the long term. Baltimore has swung and missed on almost every DT they’ve drafted in recent years – they’re hoping they don’t ask too much of Davidson and that he’s able to give them a productive year as they look to repeat as division champs.
- Tennessee Titans: Terrell Lewis, DE, Alabama
- Michael Barth: AJ Epenesa, DE
- Liana Bonavita: Yetur Gross-Matos, DE
Mike Vrabel loves this pick more than anybody. A former defensive guy, with a defensive mind can’t wait to develop and shape Lewis, who has natural speed and power, into a prolific NFL pass-rusher. Lewis has battled back from several injuries and certainly has the confidence to succeed on a Titans team that was steps away from a completely unexpected Super Bowl appearance last season.
- Miami Dolphins: Jonathan Taylor, RB, Wisconsin
- Michael Barth: GB — Jalen Reagor, WR
- Liana Bonavita: GB — Laviska Shenault Jr., WR
Miami has a new QB, and now they have a new RB. Taylor is the best pure runner in this draft. Dobbins has power, Swift has speed, Taylor has both. He doesn’t have the potential to be heavily involved in the passing game, but then again, neither did Leonard Fournette and look at him now. I’m not concerned about how many carries he had in college, because I watched him run and every single snapped looked like his first.
- San Francisco 49ers: Trevon Diggs, CB, Alabama
- Michael Barth: Noah Ingbinoghene, CB
- Lina Bonavita: Ross Blacklock, DT
San Fran may try to trade out of this spot but if they don’t I think adding Diggs, even though he’s a bit of a project, would be a good move. The younger brother of new Bill’s receiver Stefon Diggs, he’s got speed, but needs to work on his technique. He did show improvement in his final season at Alabama, which is promising. He projects to be a starter, depending on who takes him.
- Kansas City Chiefs: D’Andre Swift, RB, Georgia
- Michael Barth: Cesar Ruiz, iOL
- Liana Bonavita: Cesar Ruiz, iOL
The Chiefs return 20 of 22 starters from last year’s Super Bowl Winning team, so they don’t need a whole lot. They could just take the best player still available, but adding the speedy Swift certainly wouldn’t make them worse.
And that’s it.
Some final notes:
- I would love to see Jalen Hurts’ name called on day 1. I watched almost every game he played over the last three years. He’s special. There is concern about his decision making, something I agree with, but I think the team that takes a chance on him will eventually see it pay off. He reminds me a lot of Dak Prescott – basically overlooked until it was time for him to shine. If anything, Hurts is the kind of guy you want in your locker room.
- When I look at Jordan Love, I don’t see it. I’m sorry. He reminds me of Colin Kaepernick, which is a good thing, but not enough for me to think he’ll go in the first round.
- A part of me thinks we could go the entire first night without seeing a running back. Outside of Miami, there is not team that has a serious need at the position.
- There are reports that the media is so far off when it comes to predicting what will happen on Thursday, and I believe it. This year is just different, for obvious reasons. I am so excited to see how it plays out – more than I have ever been.