Carson Zorn’s NFL Mock Draft 2.0

Carson Zorn, Writer

The time has come for another NFL mock draft. My first mock draft came out about two weeks ago and was just a basic, no trades mock draft. This mock draft and my one released next week will include projected trades. This will probably be my most inaccurate mock draft because I’m going to predict a couple of “outlandish” picks and trades. My mock draft next week will be my more official predictions heading into the draft. Anyways, here is my mock draft 2.0.


  1. Cincinnati Bengals-Joe Burrow, QB, LSU

Once again, this is maybe the most obvious pick in the draft. Anyone who is saying the Bengals won’t take Burrow is just trying to be “different” and get clicks. The Bengals need a QB, and Burrow is the best one in the draft, so they will be drafting him first overall.

2. Washington Redskins-Chase Young, DE, Ohio State 

Something tells me the Redskins want to trade this pick away, but won’t. I think Chase Young is way too talented to pass up, and the Redskins won’t make that mistake. Young is truly a once in a lifetime generational talent and the Redskins will be lucky to get him.


PROJECTED TRADE: Detroit Lions trade Pick #3 to the Miami Dolphins for Picks #5 and 26.


3. Miami Dolphins-Tua Tagovailoa, QB, Alabama 

Yes, I think the Dolphins will be too afraid of the Chargers trading up that they’ll beat them to the punch and trade up to the third overall pick. It will cost them one of their first rounders but to the Dolphins, if it means guaranteeing Tua, they’ll be okay with it. The Dolphins need a QB for the future, because Josh Rosen won’t suffice. While there are some injury concerns with Tua that could lead to the Dolphins passing on him, he’s been linked to them for so long that it would feel weird to predict anything else except the Dolphins drafting him.


 4. New York Giants-Jedrick Wills, OT, Alabama

I really have trouble predicting what the Giants will do here. In my last mock draft I had them taking Isaiah Simmons, and now I have them taking Wills. I think both are equally possible, so in this mock draft I’ll predict them taking Wills. I’ll have to completely make up my mind by next week, but my thought process for Wills is: the Giants spent two out of their last three first round picks on a QB and an RB, and they need to protect the QB and open up running lanes for the RB, so why not take the best OT in the draft? Like I said, this pick is still very much so up in the air for me, but I think taking Wills makes a little more sense for the Giants at this point.


5. Detroit Lions-Jeffrey Okudah, CB, Ohio State 

The biggest reason for the Lions to trade down was because Okudah would still be there at five. The Lions gain draft capital and still get the player they want, a win-win scenario for them. This pick is pretty simple: the Lions need a CB, and Okudah is the best CB in the draft. This is the first step for Detroit in rebuilding their defense.


PROJECTED TRADE: Los Angeles Chargers trade pick #6 to the Jacksonville Jaguars for picks #9 and 20.


6. Jacksonville Jaguars-Justin Herbert, QB, Oregon

I said I was going to make some outlandish trades, didn’t I? Do I really think this trade and pick will happen? No. But wouldn’t it be interesting if it did? This trade is more centered on who I have the Chargers picking at 20 as the reason for the trade back for the Chargers, and the Jaguars just happen to be the team picking 20th. I honestly think the Jaguars will give Minshew another shot this year, but maybe they would want a fail safe just in case he doesn’t perform? The Jaguars are in full rebuild mode, and securing a top-3 QB in this draft would fast-track the offensive rebuild process.


7. Carolina Panthers-Isaiah Simmons, ILB, Clemson

If Simmons falls to them I think there’s no way the Panthers don’t take him. Simmons can wreak havoc all over the field, and is a one-of-a kind talent at LB. Also, Luke Kuechly retired in the offseason so the Panthers are in desperate need of a LB now, and if Simmons falls to them at 7, they’ve found their replacement. 

8. Arizona Cardinals-Mekhi Becton, OT, Louisville

As I said before, the Cardinals will want to give Murray more time in the pocket to find his weapons downfield. Becton will instantly be able to slide into that offense and produce at a pro-level from day one. His draft stock has shot up since the combine, and the Cardinals will definitely be happy with getting him at eight.


9. Los Angeles Chargers-Derrick Brown, DT, Auburn

With this pick, the Chargers will secure one of the best defensive players in the draft to bolster their D-Line already dominated by Joey Bosa. The Chargers really don’t need that much improvement on the defensive side of the ball, but adding Brown to their roster would cause any QB to ask for their backup to start against the Chargers.


10. Cleveland Browns-Tristan Wirfs, OT, Iowa

The Browns need to protect the future of their franchise, Baker Mayfield. So, they need to address O-Line with this pick, and luckily for them there is a lot of O-Line talent to choose from in this draft, and Wirfs is the best one available at this point, so they will upgrade their O-Line by drafting him with pick 10.


11. New York Jets-CeeDee Lamb, WR, Oklahoma

Some people think the Jets will go O-Line here, which makes sense, but I think they need a receiving weapon more, and CeeDee Lamb will be able to slide right in that offense and provide Sam Darnold with a number one WR. Add in the fact that the Jets lost Robby Anderson in free agency, and this pick makes a whole lot of sense.


12. Las Vegas Raiders-Jerry Jeduy, WR, Alabama

This pick is a no-brainer. The Raiders are in desperate need of a WR, and Jeudy might just be the best one in the draft. Giving Carr a true number one receiver will truly test whether or not he is the future of the Raiders. I would honestly be shocked if the Raiders don’t take Jeudy here.


13. San Francisco 49ers, Henry Ruggs III, WR, Alabama

The 49ers are one of the best teams in the NFL. They are a very well rounded team. But, they did lose their star WR, Emmanuel Sanders, to the Saints in free agency, so they need a WR. Luckily, this is a deep WR draft class. Even though the top two will be off the board at this point, but there is little difference in the talent levels between the top 3. The 49ers will still be getting an extremely talented WR in Ruggs and he can really open up the offense for Jimmy G. Once Ruggs is paired with Deebo Samuel and George Kittle, the 49ers offense becomes a lot more scary for an opposing defense.


14. Tampa Bay Buccaneers-Andrew Thomas, OT, Georgia

Like I said last time, the Buccaneers made a huge financial investment in Tom Brady, and now, they’ll want to protect him. The Buccaneers will definitely go O-Line in the first round, because Brady isn’t exactly a mobile QB, and if the Buccaneers don’t level up their O-Line, he will get hit. A lot. So, at pick 14, they will secure one of the top O-Line prospects in the draft and start to better their O-Line.


15. Denver Broncos-C.J. Henderson, CB, Florida 

The Broncos need a CB. Their defense is solid, but they weren’t able to keep All-Pro corner Chris Harris Jr. on their team for the 2020 season, so they need to fill that gap, and quick. Thankfully for them, it looks like Okudah will be the only corner off the board at this point in the draft, and they will be able to draft the second best corner in the draft, which is nothing to complain about. 


16. Atlanta Falcons-K’Lavon Chaisson, OLB, LSU

If Chaisson falls to the Falcons at 16, this is almost a no-brainer. The Falcons defense needs help, and they really need to solidify their linebacking core, and Chaisson addresses both of those needs. 


17. Dallas Cowboys-Xavier McKinney, S, Alabama

The Cowboys defense lost some key pieces in free agency, especially in the secondary, so my gut tells me they’ll go secondary here. While the idea of them picking a CB is tempting, I think McKinney is the most talented secondary player on the board at 17, and the Cowboys should pick him. Would it surprise me if they picked CB? No. But for this mock draft, I’ll say they take McKinney.


18. Miami Dolphins-D’Andre Swift, RB, Georgia

Is it more likely the Dolphins go O-Line here? Probably. But I wanted to mix things up for this mock, so I say the Dolphins fill their desperate need at RB with a solid, pro-ready, true workhorse running back, D’Andre Swift. Some, including myself previously, thought Taylor would be the first RB off the board, but that seems less and less likely as time progresses. Will all of the RBs fall to the second round and below? Honestly, it’s more likely than not. But if there is one RB I could see going in the first, it’s Swift.


19. Las Vegas Raiders-Javon Kinlaw, DT, South Carolina

Most people don’t have Kinlaw falling this far in the draft, and if I wasn’t doing this type of mock, I wouldn’t either. But, if Kinlaw is still there at 19 for the Raiders, it would be a mistake for them not to snatch him up. The Raiders are an extremely easy team to run against, and bolstering their D-Line would go a long way to fixing that.


20. Los Angeles Chargers-Jordan Love, QB, Utah State

This is the big reason I had that Chargers-Jaguars trade going down. I think if the Chargers are going to trade down for any reason, it will be because they are more interested in Love than they are Herbert. Taking Love at 20 gives the Chargers a choice, either start Tyrod Taylor and let Love build for a whole year, or let Love jump in at any point in the season. The Chargers could feel a lot better about letting Love ride the bench because they didn’t spend their sixth pick on him. That’s why I have the Chargers picking Love at 20th.


21. Philadelphia Eagles-Justin Jefferson, WR, LSU

Like I said in my last mock, it would be a mistake for the Eagles to not draft Jefferson if he is there at 21. The Eagles need WRs badly and Jefferson, if drafted, would add a whole new layer to the Eagles passing attack.


22. Minnesota Vikings-Kristian Fulton, CB, LSU

This pick just makes sense for the Vikings. They need a CB after the departure of Xavier Rhodes, and Fulton will fall right into their lap at 22. 


23. New England Patriots-Julian Okwara, DE, Notre Dame

The Patriots are one of the most mysterious teams in this draft, because nobody knows what Bill Belichick is thinking. Could they go QB, LB, O-Line? Nobody knows. So my random guess is they take Okwara to improve their D-Line. Okwara needs a little work but anything is possible under Belichick, and he could instantly turn Okwara into a star.


24. New Orleans Saints-Jeff Gladney, CB, TCU

The Saints secondary was very hot and cold last year. Some games they held WRs in check, and others they got burned for a lot of yards. So, why not improve it a little bit. The Saints have one of the top-3 rosters on paper in the NFL, and adding a CB could make their Super Bowl chances even higher.


25. Minnesota Vikings-Jalen Reagor, WR, TCU

The Vikings need a number 2 WR to compliment Adam Thielen after trading Stefon Diggs. This is a deep WR draft, so they could go a lot of ways here, but I think the Vikings will eventually settle on Reagor and provide Kirk Cousins with another weapon in an attempt to make it back to the playoffs this coming season.


26. Detroit Lions-Zack Baun, OLB, Wisconsin

The Lions haven’t addressed LB in a draft in years, and their trade with Miami gives them the opportunity to. If the Lions do trade with the Dolphins, this pick is a little mysterious but I think it will either be LB or OT, and in this mock, I’m going to say it’s LB.


27. Seattle Seahawks-A.J. Epenesa, DE, Iowa

Assuming Jadeveon Clowney isn’t returning, the Seahawks have an immediate need to fill at DE, and Epenesa will fill that role immediately. The Seahawks have a really good team in the making and improving their D-Line with Epenesa allows for them to take the next step in being a great team.


28. Baltimore Ravens-Patrick Queen, OLB, LSU

If there’s one position the Ravens need some help at, it’s Linebacker, and Queen is maybe the second best in the draft. This pick would be almost impossible for the Ravens to screw up.


29. Tennessee Titans-Yetur Gross-Matos, DE, Penn State

The Titans pass rush could use some improvement, and luckily for them, there’s a good chance they either land Epenesa or Gross-Matos at the end of the first. The Titans really can’t go wrong with either of them and who they pick will be ultimately decided by who Seattle picks. 


 30. Green Bay Packers, Denzel Mims, WR, Baylor

The Packers desperately need a number 2 WR if they want another shot at the Super Bowl with Rodgers still there, and Mims will likely be there at the end of round one. Not many viewed him as a round-one talent until the combine, and some still don’t. But I think the Packers believe in his talent and will draft him at 30.


31. San Francisco 49ers-Ross Blacklock, DT, TCU

After addressing offense earlier in the round, the 49ers will turn to defense with their second pick. Their defense doesn’t need much help, but it’s never a bad idea to find a replacement for DeForest Buckner after trading him to the Colts. 


32. Kansas City Chiefs-Cesar Ruiz, C, Michigan

The Chiefs maintained 20/22 starters from their Super Bowl roster, so there aren’t many improvements that need to be made, but drafting Ruiz could prove beneficial for the Chiefs. They could slide him into any position needing improvement on the O-Line and further protect their future, Patrick Mahomes.


That was my mock draft 2.0. Like I said, it wasn’t the most realistic mock and my mock next week will be my final, and more realistic predictions. Stay tuned for more NFL content in the coming weeks and be on the lookout for my mock draft 3.0 next week prior to the start of the draft.