With the NFL Draft beginning this Thursday night, Nat L. Faybian’s Senior Writer Douglas Love compiles a final four-round mock draft.
33. Arizona Cardinals: Elgton Jenkins, OC, Mississippi State
Get a new quarterback, how about adding some blockers. Jenkins is an intelligent player who knows how to read a defense and make the proper line calls. He has played up and down the line, giving him the ability to better help his fellow linemen identify schemes and blitzes. Best pass blocker in the group.
34. Indianapolis (via NY Jets): Irv Smith, Jr., TE, Alabama
The Colts give Luck another weapon, and the offensive has improved tremendously. Smith surprised a little, by coming in at 6′ 2″, he was a little shorter than anticipated. He ran a good 4.63 forty, but was only average in the rest of the drills. However, Smith comes from a football family and has football smarts. He knows how to create separation and has excellent hands. And he’s a good route runner. He’ll find his way on the field.
35. Oakland Raiders: Rock Ya-Sin, CB, Temple
The Raiders add a corner who can play tight man coverage. A transfer from Presbyterian to Temple, Rock Ya-Sin is the best name in football. Had a good week at the Senior Bowl. Plays aggressively. Likes to drape receivers, but isn’t a penalty waiting to happen. Tough, physical player who should, with good coaching, excel at man coverage.
36. San Francisco 49ers: Julian Love, CB, Notre Dame
Love is a leader on the field. He is thick bodied and not afraid of contact. He’s not going to be flashy, like Greedy Williams, but Love will be steady, consistent and reliable. He is patient and doesn’t over-react. Trusts his eyes.
37. New York Giants: Joejuan Williams, CB, Vanderbilt
Giants take the tallest cornerback in the draft. There just are not that many 6′ 4″ corners. And with receiver getting taller and taller, teams are taking a good long look at Joejuan Williams of Vanderbilt. HC Derek Mason compared Williams to Richard Sherman. Likes to press and plays best close to the line of scrimmage.
38. Jacksonville Jaguars: A.J. Brown, WR, Mississippi
Brown is a big slot receiver, capable of 70-80 catches a year. He is Mississippi’s all-time leader in receiving yards. He can line up anywhere on the field. Reliable hands and knows how to create separation from defenders. May be the most polished receiver in this class.
39. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Jamel Dean, CB, Auburn
Maybe a surprise to some, but HC Arians specifically state his priority was speed on defense. Dean ran a blazing 4.3 at the Combine. He’s a man-on-man cover corner that mirrors very well and rides the hip of his opponent. Dean’s had several knee surgeries during his career, but if his medical evaluation is good, there’s no reason to believe he won’t go this high. Dean, fills two needs, the Bucs get themselves a man-to-man cover corner with top-end speed.
40. Buffalo Bills: Jace Sternberger, TE, Texas A&M
Sternberger has been getting a lot of attention from teams – including the Buffalo Bills. He is very athletic, a former three sport athlete, and takes his conditioning seriously. One of the fastest rising players in the draft. A tight end that can block, run good routes and catch the ball. Solid pick.
41. Denver Broncos: Daniel Jones, CB, Duke
A protégé of coach David Cutcliffe, Jones knows his X’s and O’s. His experience playing in a pro-style offense has helped him prepare for the next level. Has good arm strength, but not top-notch. Releases ball at it’s high point. Could start right away at the next level, but might benefit by not being asked to do too much in his first season. By getting a QB in the second round, Flacco can feel secure in his position while Jones has a season to learn.
42. Cincinnati Bengals: Drew Lock, QB, Missouri
The Bengals pull the trigger on Dalton’s eventual replacement. There are something you just can’t coach, and one of them is arm-strength. Lock has the best arm in the class. Lock’s throwing motion resemble a Major League pitcher. He really torques that elbow and has a lot of range in his shoulder. Has four-years of playing experience against top level competition. Could start right away at the next level.
43. Detroit Lions: Justin Layne, CB, Michigan State
Layne is 6′ 2″ with impressive quickness. A former wide receiver that understands the route tree. Has good instincts and light feet. How shown explosiveness and good closing speed. Has long arms and likes to play man-to-man. Solid tackler.
44. Green Bay Packers: Jerry Tillery, DT, Notre Dame
Tillery has surprising agility for a guy six-foot-six. He’s quick off the ball and can get his pads low rather consistently for a tall man. He’s a long-strider with good backside pursuit. If it weren’t for an injury, Tillery would have gone higher. Great value pick for the Packers.
45. Atlanta Falcons: Darnell Savage, S, Maryland
Savage is a safety that can work in the nickel. So he’d give the Falcons an extra CB with amazing range and downhill speed. He had an impressive Combine, he ran a 4.36 with very good numbers in the broad jump and the vertical jump. Showed light feet and fluid hips. However, what really stands out about Savage is his playing speed. Turn on the game film, and he is consistently the fastest player on the field. Plays exceptionally well downhill. Looks like a first round pick.
46. Washington Redskins: Parris Campbell, WR, Ohio State
Campbell ran a 4.31 at the combine, pushing him up the boards. When you look at the success Carolina is having with Ohio State’s Curtis Samuel, Campbell should go in the first or early second round. Besides running routes, Campbell could also be used on jet-sweeps and bubble screens.
47. Carolina Panthers: Kaleb McGary, OT, Washington
McGary’s strength is in the run game. Let him move forward and use his nasty aggression to maul defensive linemen. He’s athletic enough to projects at right tackle at the next level. He does have a prior medical condition that teams will need to check out before they select him. If all checks out well, McGary should have a bright future ahead of him on the field.
48. Miami Dolphins: Jochai Polite, DE, Florida
Polite has been working to rehab his reputation after turning numerous teams off during the Scouting Combine interview process. At one time he was being talked about as a potential first round pick. He has too much talent to ignore and Dolphins will give him a second chance. Flores continues to rebuild his defense, surprising many by taking Polite in the second round.
49. Cleveland Browns: Taylor Rapp, S, Washington
They could’ve gone CB here, but instead take Rapp, one of the nation’s top safety prospects. High football IQ, anticipates well. Well -built and likes to play aggressive. Solid tackler that takes good angles. Didn’t run the forty at the Combine, but came in under 4.0 in the 20-yard shuttle.
50. Minnesota Vikings: Erik McCoy, OC, Texas A&M
McCoy has jumped up draft boards based on his athleticism. He has gradually improved each year with his technique and overall strength. Can play the run and pass equally well. Vikings continue to add pieces to their offensive line.
51. Tennessee Titans: Deebo Samuel, WR, So. Carolina
During the Senior Bowl, Samuel really raised his draft status. Several scouts said that Samuel was playing at the higher level than everyone else. He can also double as a return man.
52. Pittsburgh Steelers: De’Andre Walker, ILB, Georgia
Steelers grab the third best linebacker in the class. Sure tackler with plenty of size and strength making him a better fit on the inside. Likes to get in the mix and lower his pads and hit somebody. Quick to fill the hole. Looks like he could be a good blitzer at the next level and could also slide up to rush off the edge on occasion.
53. Philadelphia Eagles (via Bal): Tytus Howard, OT, Alabama State
Eagles have worked Howard out a couple of times, so the interest is there. This would be a great spot to select him. Tytus Howard is perhaps the second best technician in the class behind Jonah Williams. Shows good pass pro technique. Shows a nice kick off the snap and excellent mirroring skills to drive defenders out of the picture. Will need to improve his strength and may really bloom in his second year.
54. Houston Texans (via Sea): Yodney Cajuste, OT, West Virginia
The Texans take another offensive lineman to help protect Watson. Cajuste has long arms, big hands, and is strong. Has excellent burst off the ball, which shows his background as a high school basketball star.
55. Houston Texans: Darrell Henderson, RB, Memphis
Henderson averaged, something like, 8 yards per carry over his career at Memphis. That’s just crazy. Henderson doesn’t have great speed, but he is fast enough. His real strength is his vision, his ability to read blocks and leverage his angles. The Texans are known to be high on him.
56. New England Patriots (via Chi): Johnathan Abram, SS, Mississippi State
Abram is that guy everyone tags as the “pure strong safety” in this group. He plays exceptionally well in the box, that is true. But don’t be fooled, Abram has played both safety positions in his career. He has shown good fluidity and enough speed to cover the back end.
57. Philadelphia Eagles: Vosean Joseph, OLB, Florida
Joseph shows plenty of downhill speed and lateral quickness. Has good instincts and trusts his eyes. He’s a powerful and physical ‘backer that makes splash plays. Athletic enough to cover any back.
58. Dallas Cowboys: Dre’Mont Jones, DT, Ohio State
Dre’Mont Jones is explosive off the snap and has the agility to make plays at or near the line of scrimmage. He’s not just one who just pushes linemen back, Jones likes to get to the quarterback. He fills a need for the Cowboys and is the best player available at fifty-eight.
59. Indianapolis Colts: Treyvon Mullen, CB, Clemson
Mullen is a 4.44 forty guy that is coming out early. He has good height and a solid frame. Long limbs and plenty of upside. Had outstanding coaching in college.
60. Los Angeles Chargers: Dennis Daley, OT, So. Carolina
Daley is a big bodied mauler that can help the Chargers (and RB Melvin Gordon) in the running game.
61. Kansas City Chiefs: Juan Thornhill, S, Virginia
Physically, Thornhill tested off the charts. He had a 4.42 forty, 21 reps of 225 on the bench, a 44″ vertical jump, and a 141″ broad jump. A former basketball star, his athleticism shows up on film. Will sacrifice his body, but not a thumper. While listed as a safety, Thornhill’s real value might be in the nickel matching up against tight ends and running backs.
62. New Orleans Saints: Connor McGovern, OC, Penn State
The Saints need interior line help. McGovern is not as athletic as Bradbury or McCoy, but he is an intelligent player capable of playing all three interior positions. For not being super-athletic, he plays with good understanding of angles and leverage, keeping defenders at bay. He had made significant leaps every year. Only a junior, his floor is high.
63. Kansas City Chiefs (via LAR): Lonnie Johnson, Jr., CB, Kentucky
Excels at playing man-off. Has nice fluid backpedal and smooth hips. Can mirror receiver, using his long frame to his advantage. Flashes physicality and hit power coming downhill. Tracks ball well in the air. The Chiefs needed to get at least two corners and a safety out of this draft – they’ve made solid moves in the right direction in this round.
64. New England Patriots: Kahale Warring, TE, San Diego State
Warring is a rare combination of size and athleticism. He’s still learning, but growing steadily. He didn’t play football until his senior year in high school. He was an all-league water polo goalie and basketball player at rural Sonora High in Northern California. He also competed on the cross country, swimming, soccer and tennis before trying his hand at football.
Draft talk . . . draft picks, rounds, team needs, and prospects to watch.
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The 2019 NFL Draft will be held Thursday-Saturday, April 25-27 in Nashville, Tenn.