2020 NFL Mock Draft 1.1

UPDATED: April 23, 2020 • 12:12 AM

1. Cincinnati Bengals: Joe Burrow, QB, LSU
This pick is confirmed and doesn’t need much of a writeup. The Bengals are getting a potential franchise changing quarterback with their first overall pick. Joe Burrow has the mobility, arm talent, and accuracy to succeed in the NFL. His past season at LSU was incredible and games like LSU v. Alabama showed his cool demeanor in crunch time. The Bengals must now ensure they do everything in their power to create an environment that maximizes Burrow’s potential.

2. Washington Redskins: Chase Young, EDGE, Ohio State
An interesting pick to watch for trades, but if the Redskins stay put — Chase Young will be the selection. The Redskins value BPA in the draft and Young is one of the top-2 guys in this year’s class. His talent and ability jump off the screen with his athleticism. He’s capable of beating linemen with both his speed and power. Further honing of his instincts can make him an elite EDGE rusher.

3. Detroit Lions: Jeff Okudah, CB, Ohio State
Derrick Brown is getting some play here and it makes sense when considering need. While I like Brown as a prospect, I feel Jeff Okudah checks off the same boxes and has a higher ceiling. Okudah is comfortably the top corner in the class with his clean technique and physical tools. Watching him play, you see a corner comfortable in press and man coverage. He consistently mirrors his assignment and would be a huge upgrade for the Lions.

4. New York Giants: Jedrick Wills, OL, Alabama
I have a hard time imagining the Giants going Barkley and Jones in back-to-back drafts, then failing to get them any protection. I suppose the real question is which tackle the Giants like. Tristan Wirfs gets mentioned often in this spot and was this close to being the pick (imagine my fingers really close together). But ultimately, I feel like there’s too many questions about his ability to play tackle in the NFL and with the Giants being afforded their selection of linemen — they pick a safer option. I believe Wills can transition to left tackle. He’s a tough and physical blocker capable of handling speed rushers and would be an instant upgrade for the Giants.

5. Miami Dolphins: Tua Tagovailoa, QB, Alabama
The Dolphins are doing their best to not show their hand with the fifth pick. If the Dolphins are comfortable with Tagovailoa’s health, I can’t see how they don’t select him. He has the arm talent, accuracy, and mobility you want out of a franchise quarterback. He’s consistently performed in big games and has incredible upside. And ultimately, the upside is what made me slot him over Herbert. The big question is whether the Dolphins are willing to swing for the fences or play it safe here. If it’s the latter, they’ll select Herbert.

6. Los Angeles Chargers: Justin Herbert, QB, Oregon
Justin Herbert’s a project, no doubt. But he has the tools worthy of being selected in the first round. The arm talent, quick release, and decision making are all there. If Herbert can establish consistency in his game along with improving his throwing on the run and in the face of pressure — he will be a suitable Philip Rivers replacement.

7. Carolina Panthers: Derrick Brown, DL, Auburn
The Panthers run defense was one of the worst last season and they did little to address the interior of their line in free agency. Derrick Brown has an incredible motor and thrives in run defense. While his pass rush numbers won’t blow your mind, he flashes potential with his power and moves as a rusher.

8. Arizona Cardinals: Isaiah Simmons, LB, Clemson
The Cardinals struggled to cover tight ends last season and may look to add a boost to their defense early in the first round. Isaiah Simmons is the most intriguing prospect in the draft because of his versatility. Simmons is just as effective in pass coverage as he is as a blitzer. He has terrific instincts and while he’ll settle in at linebacker mostly — he can also play safety.

9. Jacksonville Jaguars: Jerry Jeudy, WR, Alabama
With the Jaguars committing to Gardner Minshew, they’ll likely add another receiver to pair with DJ Chark. Jerry Jeudy is an incredible talent with some of the best route running ability in the draft. Jeudy is a dangerous threat with the ball in his hands and can take games over.

10. Cleveland Browns: Tristan Wirfs, OL, Iowa
The Browns will look to add another lineman to solidify the tackle spot opposite of Jack Conklin. Tristan Wirfs is a high upside prospect coming from a great background. He has terrific athleticism and a domineering blocking style. He must hone these physical skills for better consistency as a blocker, but he and Becton are the two tackles with the greatest potential.

11. New York Jets: Andrew Thomas, OL, Georgia
The Jets have made some steady improvements to their offensive line this offseason, but tackle remains a glaring hole. Andrew Thomas can step in at left tackle on day one. Thomas is a reliable tackle prospect who’s effective against speed and bull rushes. He was also strong in run blocking and excelled at getting to his 2nd level assignment.

12. Las Vegas Raiders: Ceedee Lamb, WR, Oklahoma
Ceedee Lamb would provide some much needed juice to the Raiders receiving corps. Lamb is a well-rounded receiving prospect who’s a terrific blocker. As a pass catcher, he’s a good route runner and has the physicality to win in tight coverage. He’s a playmaker with the ball in his hands who can turn 5-yard catches into 50-yard scores.

13. San Francisco 49ers: Henry Ruggs, WR, Alabama
Henry Ruggs could be a nice compliment to Deebo Samuel. His combination of off-the-charts speed and crisp route running make him a difficult cover. Ruggs is the ideal slot receiver with reliable hands and big-time playmaking ability. While this receiver class is stacked, there’s a reason Ruggs, Lamb, and Jeudy are in a tier above.

14. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Mekhi Becton, OL, Louisville
I’d be hard pressed to see the Buccaneers passing up on upgrading their offensive line with the bevy of additions they made this offseason. Becton is a prototypical boom-or-bust prospect who needs to improve his awareness as a blocker. But his athleticism and sheer size make him a promising lineman. He regularly used these traits to overwhelm rushers.

15. Denver Broncos: Justin Jefferson, WR, LSU
This is high for Justin Jefferson and honestly, it’s more likely Denver trades down a bit to select him. Either way, Jefferson makes a ton of sense for the Broncos. Courtland Sutton has established himself as a number one receiver, but Denver is lacking much outside of him — in particular a security blanket receiver for Drew Lock. Jefferson fills this void thanks to his good route running, and ability to make catches in heavy traffic.

16. Atlanta Falcons: CJ Henderson, CB, Florida
CJ Henderson has been heavily linked to the Atlanta Falcons, which makes sense considering the gap they have at cornerback. Henderson is the clear number two at corner in this year’s class. He has the physical tools and athleticism of a starting defensive back. Henderson’s comfortable reading a quarterback’s eyes, which allows him to break quickly on plays. His coverage is exceptional, and he regularly mirrors his assignment.

17. Dallas Cowboys: Javon Kinlaw, DL, South Carolina
With Maliek Collins in Vegas now, the Cowboys have an opening in the interior of their line. Javon Kinlaw had his share of dominating performances in college thanks to his physical makeup and motor. Kinlaw’s physicality is one of his strongest traits and allows him to clog up the middle.

18. Miami Dolphins: Xavier McKinney, S, Alabama
The Dolphins will probably look for their Minkah Fitzpatrick replacement in the first round. Xavier McKinney is a terrific safety who’s capable of playing corner. McKinney has good vision and closing speed. He’s a reliable tackler and has the smart but aggressive playstyle you want out of a defensive back.

19. Las Vegas Raiders: AJ Terrell, CB, Clemson
The Raiders ranked in the bottom half of the league in passing defense last year. And while Trayvon Mullen showed promise, they don’t have much outside of him. AJ Terrell has good length and experience in both man and zone coverage. As a defender, Terrell was great in run support and has quick closing speed.

20. Jacksonville Jaguars: K’Lavon Chaisson, EDGE, LSU
The Jaguars have lost several key players in their front seven and will need to use the draft to retool. K’Lavon Chaisson is a high character pass rusher with terrific upside. Chaisson already has a nice set of pass rush moves and diversifies his attacks to win matchups against opposing linemen. The next step in his game is to improve his strength as a defender, which is certainly doable.

21. Philadelphia Eagles: Jalen Reagor, WR, TCU
The Eagles need several upgrades at wide receiver and this deep 2020 class couldn’t have come at a better time. Jalen Reagor has incredible speed which can make him a threat on deep balls or short bubble screens. Reagor is a gadget receiver who can be used in variety of ways. He positions himself well on routes and can be an effective return man.

22. Minnesota Vikings: Kristian Fulton, CB, LSU
The Vikings moved on from Xavier Rhodes and are now in search of his replacement. Kristian Fulton is an experienced and aggressive defender who is capable of stepping in at outside corner. He reads receivers well and is capable of ripping the ball away for some late pass breakups. Fulton has one of the lowest career completion percentage against (43%) in this year’s class.

23. New England Patriots: Jordan Love, QB, Utah State
Who knows what the Patriots will do? Maybe they roll with Jarrett Stidham, but if they’re not sold on him — Jordan Love makes sense. Love is a raw prospect, but he certainly showed promise through his mobility and arm talent. His focus at the next level will include improving ball placement and reading the field better.

24. New Orleans Saints: Kenneth Murray, LB, Oklahoma
The Saints need another linebacker to play next to Demario Davis. Kenneth Murray is an aggressive defender capable of being a 3-down linebacker in the NFL. Murray was strong as a run defender and isn’t afraid to attack guys as opposed to waiting for the play to come to him. He hits gaps well thanks to his speed which makes him an effective blitzer.

25. Minnesota Vikings: Josh Jones, OL, Houston
Riley Reiff is a solid option at tackle, so the Vikings can take a shot on a rawer prospect to groom as his eventual replacement. If Jones can clean up his technique, he can be an effective tackle. The measurables are there, and his athleticism is clear through his lateral quickness. Jones’s fluid movements allow him to flow to his 2nd level assignments with ease.

26. Miami Dolphins: Cesar Ruiz, OL, Michigan
The Dolphins will want to focus on improving their line for whichever quarterback they take at the top half of the draft. Cesar Ruiz is a versatile lineman who’s capable of playing either guard or center. He’s strong in run blocking and is fluid in moving to his next level assignment. Ruiz was great at assisting in double teams during pass coverage as well.

27. Seattle Seahawks: AJ Epenesa, EDGE, Iowa
With Jadeveon Clowney walking, the Seahawks need to add another EDGE rusher. AJ Epenesa’s abysmal combine performance can be a blessing in disguise for them. Epenesa on the field has the potential to take games over as a rusher. He has a terrific set of moves and can collapse the pocket even when double teamed.

28. Baltimore Ravens: Patrick Queen, LB, LSU
Inside linebacker is one of the bigger needs for the Ravens. Patrick Queen’s still a little rough around the edges — which can be expected from a one-year starter — but he has some intriguing traits. Queen’s quick to close out on plays and was an effective coverage linebacker against both tight ends and running backs.

29. Tennessee Titans: Austin Jackson, OL, USC
Losing Jack Conklin in free agency leaves a huge hole in the Titans offensive line. Austin Jackson has terrific upside thanks to his athleticism and measurables. His speed and footwork aid him immensely as a blocker. He’s effective at running guys outside the pocket. But, Jackson’s technique will be need cleaning up to take the next step.

30. Green Bay Packers: Denzel Mims, WR, Baylor
The Packers will want to add another receiver to play opposite of Davante Adams. Denzel Mims has an impressive size and speed combination. This combo can make him a big play threat for the Packers. Mims has an aggressive style as a receiver and regularly won 50-50 balls. This physicality also meant he was comfortable making difficult catches over the middle.

31. San Francisco 49ers: Jeff Gladney, CB, TCU
The 49ers have no cornerbacks signed past the year 2020, so it’d be difficult to imagine a scenario where they don’t address their secondary in the first two days of the draft. Jeff Gladney is a physical corner who can play in either man or zone coverage. He may be undersized, but despite this he’s a very reliable tackler.

32. Kansas City Chiefs: Zack Baun, LB, Wisconsin
The Chiefs linebacker group has needed an upgrade for a while. Zack Baun is a versatile prospect who can be used either as an EDGE rusher or linebacker. As a rusher, his athleticism helps him win with his speed rushes. As a more traditional linebacker, Baun was effective in picking up tight ends and running backs in coverage.