What's up BBV. Season is (mercifully) over and our draft spots are set. There will be some changes when comp picks are brought in, but semantics. Let's have fun with a mock draft. It'll be a nice way to take our minds off of Judge and the GM search and we can argue about something else. Now I'm a big trade down guy, but I'm opting against trades this time around. I'm just making the picks. Final note. There is going to be a pick that you guys will look at me sideways for. I'm aware of the other needs, but the board works out a certain way, and this is only one of many scenarios we could be facing. Keep an open mind and roll with it.
1) Ikem Ekwonu, OL, NC State- One of my favorite prospects for us. Ekwonu is a big time talent, and he will be an elite player on this line. We can slot him in at one of the Guard spots and enjoy. Why Guard? Well this next pick is why.......
1) Evan Neal, OL, Alabama- Another great prospect. May not have the chops for LT, but we don't need an LT. Neal is a great option for us to slot in at RT, and just like that our OL has three blue chip talents on it. This will lead a big change in the way this team goes about things and is sure to make life miserable for opposing defenses.
2) Desmond Ridder, QB, Cincinnati- Well here is where a lot of you guys find yourselves out on this mock draft. I'm taking a QB in round 2. Why? Well one reason is that the board was set up, and the best prospects were all of the QBs except Pickett and Corral. The other is, we really do need to consider replacements for DJ either this year or next. Ridder didn't look great against Alabama, but that'll happen. He has shown insane improvement as a senior, and his week at the Senior Bowl will be big time for him. Ridder has arm talent, athleticism, and very high character. He also has a great ability to run the offense and has strong pocket awareness. His precision accuracy can use some work, but Josh Allen has shown that if you want it enough, you can get there. In the 2nd round, a guy that can at least become a starting QB, maybe become a Pro Bowl guy, it's worth taking the pick if the team believes in him.
3) Trey McBride, TE, Colorado State- The simulator GIFTED me the next stud TE. McBride is everything you want. He's a solid blocker, and a tremendous receiving threat. He'll be a legit weapon, and one our new QB will appreciate as he settles into his spot.
3) Quay Walker, ILB, Georgia- Ok, now let's swap to the defense for a bit. It's a pretty good group, but it has some holes. Given the attention the offense got with the top 4 picks, we missed on a lot of great defensive prospects. Lucky for us, we still find a great one at a spot we need to look hard at. Walker doesn't get the recognition of guys like Dean or Davis, but boy oh boy people will learn about him at the next level. Insane athletic ability and size, he's just like Lorenzo Carter in that he is a swiss army knife, except he found a home inside the Georgia defense next to Dean. Walker actually looks like a guy who could play the Jaime Collins role. Line him up in and use him all over the field of your defense.
4) Nolan Smith, EDGE, Georgia- Back to the well with another pass rusher. Smith has shown some good instincts as a pass rusher, and toughness as a run defender. He will add to a young talented room full of a bunch of promising pass rushers.
5) Khalil Shakir, WR, Boise State- I was listening to the Move The Sticks podcast and Daniel Jeremiah mentioned this kid and said he gave him Cooper Kupp vibes. So I had to check him out, and let's just say, if he puts up a good 40 time, we're gonna have to spend a day 2 pick if we want him. Shakir's pure receiving ability is impressive.
5) Tre Turner, WR, VT- Decided to keep adding to this room and turning things over. It is reasonable to look at Shepard and think of him as a post 6/1 cut. Golladay and Toney are in and out with injuries and Slayton has fallen off. We need to shore up our depth at WR, and while a pair of 5th round picks may not do it (WR is low key a need that may be worth a day 2 pick), it should help if the coaching is up to snuff next year (big if I know). Turner brings speed and versatility to the offense, both of which are welcome.
6) Brian Robinson Jr, RB, Alabama- At some point we are going to have to have a discussion about the RB room. No way does it make sense to extend Barkley, and great arguments can be made to trade him. So let's keep adding to the room. Robinson is one of the top RBs for the tide, and while he may not have true 3 down value, in a rotation, he can be the hammer that pounds defenses, and remember, I spent two first round picks on a pair of monster blockers and a 3rd on a TE who is solid in blocking to help pave the way for our runners.
This is my draft. Now again, before you yell at me about the QB, remember, we have to start thinking about the move. It doesn't have to be this year, but within the next 2 drafts, we have to go QB early.