March Madness is in full swing and Opening Day has come and gone, but there’s always time for talking football. The Pro Days are just about wrapped up, and a month after the combine, the big boards have a general consensus on the top prospects. Here’s The Big Lead’s NFL Mock Draft, two months before the lights shine on Roger Goodell in Nashville.
No. 1 Arizona Cardinals- Kyler Murray, QB, Oklahoma- While Josh Rosen still possesses a lot of potential and the Cardinals have insisted they aren’t looking to offload their 2018 first-round pick, new head Kliff Kingsbury called Murray one of the best dual-threat QBs to ever play football. So take that as you will, but we take it as nothing short of a guarantee. Pairing Murray with David Johnson is certainly not the worst idea in the world, and Murray’s transition will be made easier by teaming up with Kingsbury once more. The Heisman Trophy winner goes first in a weak quarterback draft.
2. San Francisco 49ers- Nick Bosa, EDGE, Ohio State- Bosa is the best player in this class, and if the Cardinals do what everyone thinks they will, the Niners take Bosa without a second thought. Paired with DeForest Buckner and Dee Ford, the Niners will instantly have one of the most dangerous defensive fronts in the NFC, and won’t need to rely on a recovering Jimmy Garoppolo to put up big numbers.
3. New York Jets- Josh Allen, EDGE, Kentucky– The Jets will likely trade down, but if they don’t, they take a talented, pure pass-rusher and give their young defense another cornerstone. Jamal Adams & Co. showed signs of quality defense last season, and having an above-average unit will take a lot of pressure off Sam Darnold. Ideally they add an elite weapon for Darnold to throw to, but no wide receiver is talented enough to go this high in this year’s draft, so they stick with defense.
4. Oakland Raiders- Quinnen Williams, DT, Alabama– It doesn’t exactly take a draft guru like Mike Mayock to realize Williams is the real deal. He possesses a rare combination of quickness and strength to hold the middle and rush the passer. The Raiders need a new No. 1 guy on the defensive line, and Williams is exactly who they’re looking for. Mayock won’t overthink this one.
5. Tampa Bay Buccaneers- Devin White, LB, LSU- White has been talking a big game leading up to the draft, and has both the tape and athleticism to back it up. The Bucs will have a new-look offense with Bruce Arians at the helm, so they’ll need to make sure things are humming on the other side of the ball, and White is a day-one starter, as well as a potential game-changer next to Lavonte David.