NFL Draft

Post Regular Season Mock Update for the 2022 NFL Draft

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The regular season is over. That means it’s time for an updated mock for 2022 NFL draft!

There’s still plenty to learn as we inch closer to April but we’ve finally got a handle on the draft order for the top half of the first round. We also have a pretty good idea of what to expect for the first two picks. Beyond that, it’s anybody’s guess. Check out how I have things falling for the Green Bay Packers and the rest of the first round. Take a look back at my first and second mock drafts as well.

 

1. Jacksonville Jaguars

Aidan Hutchinson – EDGE, Michigan

Hutchinson has ascended all the way to the top of the draft board with his play this season. He’s long and athletic and one of the top pass rushers to enter the draft in quite some time. He’ll help a Jags team that has holes at basically every position.

2. Detroit Lions

KayVon Thibodeaux – EDGE, Oregon

Thibodeaux is a close second behind Hutchinson. He’s been less productive than his Wolverine couterpoint but has as much raw talent as anybody.

3. Houston Texans

Evan Neal – OT, Alabama

We’re expecting Deshaun Watson to be dealt this offseason, which would net the Texans a ton in draft capital. They can fill needs later in the draft and focus on BPA, which is Neal at this point. Pairing him with Laremy Tunsil would give the Texans a solid set of bookends.

4. New York Jets

Kyle Hamilton – S, Notre Dame

The Jets’ defense is devoid of talent. They can’t cover, stop the run, or rush the passer but Kyle Hamilton can do all of those things. He’s the type of player you build a defense around.

5. New York Giants

Ikem Ekwonu – OT, North Carolina St

The combine will be important for Ekwonu. His measurables may determine his position at the next level. If his length checks out, he’s a day one starter at right tackle, which is exactly what the Giants need.

 

6. Carolina Panthers

Kenny Pickett – QB, Pittsburgh

We’re unsure what direction this offense will move in this offseason. If they choose the traditional pro-style route, Pickett should be an easy choice.

7. New York Giants (CHI)

Derek Stingley Jr – CB, LSU

This is a more appropriate landing spot for Singley. Given his injury history and drop in play, I still wouldn’t be surprised if he were selected in the top 5. His 2019 tape is some of the most impressive we’ve seen at the cornerback position since Denzel Ward.

8. Atlanta Falcons

Charles Cross – OT, Mississippi St

Cross has come a long way this season. He’s developed into a top-tier pass protector and is an easy bet to be selected in the top ten. The Falcons need help along their Oline. This is a match made in heaven.

9. Denver Broncos

Matt Corral

This is not a great class of QBs. I’m aware. But that puts even more of an emphasis on the value of the QBs that actually have first-round grades. Corral is my QB2. He may lack the ideal frame but he’s got everything else that you look for physically. X-rays from his Bowl Game injury came back negative so he should be 100% this spring.

There’s a chance though that the Broncos go an entirely different direction at the quarterback position. Their supposed to be one of the biggest players in the trade market this offseason and will be starting fresh with a new head coach. There’s still plenty of pieces to fall into place but the way things are now, the Broncos should be focused on this QB class. They’re in position to net a new franchise QB.

10. New York Jets (SEA)

George Karlaftis – EDGE, Purdue

After adding Hamilton at pick #4, the Jets go back to the well defensively. Karlaftis would be another day-one starter for Robert Saleh. George Karlaftis is a powerful run stopper and explosive pass rusher. He also brings inside/outside versatility for a defense that currently lacks identity.

 

11. Washington Football Team

Tyler Linderbaum – IOL, Iowa

Liniderbaum steps in and immediately solidifies the center position for WFT. This is a team that needs OL talent like it needs air to breathe.

12. Minnesota Vikings

Kaiir Elam – CB, Florida

Having already let go of their coach and GM, there’s a very real possibility that the Vikings’ front office blows it all up and starts fresh. This could wind up a franchise-altering selection. This pick could also belong to someone else when it’s all said and done. If the Vikings stick with the status quo, they could use help on the backend of their defense. Elam is one of the top players available regardless of position and has CB1 traits.

13. Cleveland Browns

Jameson Williams – WR, Alabama

We’re gonna have to wait on X-ray results following what looked like an ugly knee injury for Jameson Williams. If he’s cleared of any major tear, he’ll be ready in time for camp, possibly in time for pre-draft workouts. If he’s given the opportunity, Williams will prove that he’s the most explosive WR in this draft class.

14. Baltimore Ravens

Kenyon Green – IOL, Texas A&M

This offense just doesn’t look the same since Marshall Yanda retired. Kenyon Green would walk in as the day-one starter at guard with the potential to slide to the outside if that’s where the Ravens like him.

 

15. Philadelphia Eagles (MIA)

Garrett Wilson – WR, Ohio St

Garrett Wilson is by no means perfect. He’s yet to clean up his focus drops and doesn’t have the combination of size and long speed. But his route running is great and he’s electric with the ball in his hands. There’s bust potential here but if Wilson hits, he’ll create a young, exciting 1-2 punch with DeVonta Smith.

16. Philadelphia Eagles (IND)

DeMarvin Leal – IDL, Texas A&M

Leal took a step back in performance this season but his 2020 tape was phenomenal. He personifies versatility along the defensive line and can get after the quarterback from any alignment. He’ll fit in nicely alongside Fletcher Cox, Josh Sweat, and Javon Hargrave.

17. Los Angeles Chargers

Devin Lloyd – LB, Utah

Lloyd is far and away my LB1 in this class. His tape is very impressive and he’ll be productive for all three downs. We like his length and athleticism, and he plays bigger than his listed weight. He should be exactly what the Chargers hoped they were getting out of Kenneth Murray in 2020.

18. New Orleans Saints

Chris Olave – WR, Ohio St

It’s another situation where we need some answers before we’re ready to write anything in stone. Will Michael Thomas be back for the Saints? Who will be playing QB? While there’s a lot that’s unknown, we know the Saints need another reliable set of hands. Chris Olave is exactly that and he knows how to separate.

19. Pittsburgh Steelers

Sam Howell – QB, UNC

Roethlisberger is reportedly out and the Steelers need their next QB of the future. Sam Howell isn’t the perfect QB prospect but there’s a lot you can build an offense around. He’s got a live arm, fantastic athleticism, and the type of demeanor that Tomlin will likely fall in love with.

20. Philadelphia Eagles

Andrew Booth Jr – CB, Clemson

With their third first-round selection, the Eagles can go BPA at a position of need. They need another starter alongside Maddox and Slay. Booth could very well be the guy. He’s got top-ten CB traits and found his groove toward the end of the season.

21. Las Vegas Raiders

Treylon Burks – WR, Arkansas

Plug in the best WR available for the Raiders. They have no outside WR threat. Ironically enough, Burks hasn’t played many snaps on the outside so this may not be the perfect fit, but he absolutely profiles to the outside position. He’s got a great size/speed combination, can go up and get the ball, and is a menace after the catch. We may look back and wonder how Burks fell out of the top ten.

22. Miami Dolphins (SF)

Trent McDuffie – SLOT , Washington

The Dolphins have thrown plenty of resources at the CB position but McDuffie’s likely landing spot is in the slot. He’s the top slot prospect in this class by quite a bit and would fit in nicely under Flores.

23. New England Patriots

Roger McCreary – CB, Auburn

The Pats need another cornerback capable of playing in their man-heavy system. McCreary is that guy. He’s got the frame and mirror-ability that often translates well to the next level.

 

24. Cincinnati Bengals

Kingsley Enagbare – EDGE, south Carolina

The Bengals seem to be enamored with Sam Hubbard for a reason that I’ll never understand. And they have Trey Hendricksen on the other side so they may not see EDGE as a need. But I do, and Enagbare is fantastic. He’s 11th on my big board but I’m not mocking him early until the rest of the draft community catches up.

25. Arizona Cardinals

Ahmad Gardner – CB, Cincinnati

Gardner is an immediate starter for any zone-heavy defense. He has impressive size and instincts and enough juice to run with a good portion of the league. I wouldn’t be surprised if someone in the top half of the draft gives him a shot.

26. Detroit Lions (LAR)

Drake London – WR, USC

This guy climbs the damn ladder! London used to moonlight on the Trojans basketball team and it’s obvious. He’ll be able to win consistently at the next level and is near impossible to bring down.

27. Buffalo Bills

David Ojabo – EDGE, Michigan

If rushing the passer was the only responsibility, Ojabo would be up there with Hutchinson and Thibodeaux. He’s still learning the position and has space to add some more good weight so it’s safe to assume that Ojabo will improve against the run. And he’s an electrifying pass rusher.

28. Dallas Cowboys

Jordan Davis – IDL, Georgia

Davis is an absolute bully. He can defeat double-teams as well as anybody we’ve ever seen and rarely misses a tackle. However, he’s not the most skilled pass-rusher, which lowers his draft stock significantly.

 

29. Kansas City Chiefs

Arnold Ebiketie – EDGE, Penn St

Ebiketie has a nice blend of frame and athleticism and is arguably the best run defender of any EDGE in this class. He’s a day-one starter that still has enough juice to get after the passer consistently at the next level.

30. Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Drake Jackson – EDGE, USC

It may be time for the Bucs to move on from JPP. Drake Jackson could be the target. We didn’t see much of him in coverage but Jackson made significant improvements against the run this season. He also proved to be more consistent as a pass rusher.

31. Tennessee Titans

Nakobe Dean – LB, Georgia

Dean has been cruising up draft boards lately and looked good again last night. But I don’t see top ten or even top twenty talent on tape. Dean also lacks the ideal frame for the position. But he moves extremely well and is a safe bet to make plays in space and in coverage at the NFL level.

 

32. Green Bay Packers

Travon Walker – EDGE, Georgia

Who doesn’t love a little Travon Walker?! The Georgia defender will have the “tweener” label as we approach the draft but that shouldn’t scare the Green Bay Packers. They have a history of moving defenders up and down the line of scrimmage – not only to create advantageous situations for their players but also to get their most talented defenders on the field.

Walker played primarily on the inside in 2019 and 2020 but the Dawgs flexed him outside more often this season. His ability to play off the edge all the way to the 3-tech may be looked at as a positive to some, rather than a negative.

But the tape for Walker is kind of short – he’s played less than 1,000 career snaps. I wouldn’t call him a blank slate though, as those reps came with the Georgia Bulldogs. The fact that he hasn’t played that much and already looks like a pro really speaks to his potential.

Travon Walker has an attractive blend of size and athleticism. He’s 6’5, 275-pounds with serious pop in his hands. He explodes through blockers and ball carriers. But he has the feet to play in space and potentially even drop into coverage.

He’s a beast against the run. Walker can bang with the big boys on the inside and also protect the edge at the NFL level.

Still Walker is a bit of a projection as a pass rusher. He hasn’t had the same amount of success as others in this class with just 27 pressures on 328 attempts through the ’21 season.

But the traits are there.

Walker possesses great length and very strong hands. He’s got the power to bullrush through an NFL anchor and finish his rush attempts at the quarterback. He’s not the most flexible edge-bender but the length is there and he knows how to use it. Walker also displays game-wrecking explosion off the line of scrimmage.

With questions around the Green Bay Packers’ future at the edge position, they may look to add talent to that position group in April. If they’re looking for versatile defender with as much potential as any EDGE in this class, they don’t need to look any further than Travon Walker.

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