2020 NFL Mock Draft: Tua Tagovailoa to the Rescue in Miami
We've survived the first five weeks of the 2019 NFL season and the teams are already separating themselves into tiers. We can now project some semblance of a draft order for next year. With that in mind, here's our first 2020 NFL mock draft of the season.
1. Miami Dolphins: Tua Tagovailoa, QB, Alabama
Josh Rosen isn't the long-term answer in Miami and Tagovailoa is the best quarterback in this draft. So this is a no-brainer. Tua is an incredibly accurate passer, can hit receivers in stride all over the field, moves well in the pocket and has adequate arm strength. He's a gamer who does what it takes to win and leads from the front. This would be a franchise-changing pick for Miami. Something the franchise desperately needs at this point.
2. Washington Redskins: Chase Young, EDGE, Ohio State
It's time for Washington to get serious on defense, and that's where Chase Young comes in. A prototypical edge rusher at 6-foot-5 and 265 pounds, Young has dominated thus far in 2019. In six games he already has 8.5 sacks and has been a menace for opposing offenses. Washington needs an impact player up front on defense and Young fits that bill.
3. New York Jets: Andrew Thomas, OT, Georgia
The Jets have a terrible offensive line and need to start investing in protection for Sam Darnold. Thomas could be an anchor for New York's offensive line for a decade. At 6-foot-5 and 320 pounds, he's a prototypical left tackle who is extremely strong. He's not a finished product but has all the tools to be the Jets' long-term answer at left tackle.
4. Miami Dolphins (from Pittsburgh): Jerry Jeudy, WR, Alabama
Jerry Jeudy could be the best player in this class; he's an incredible athlete and a top-level receiver in the mold of a true No. 1. He has fantastic ball-skills, is a great route-runner and has elite speed. In this dream scenario, Miami pairs him with his college quarterback.
5. Cincinnati Bengals: Justin Herbert, QB, Oregon
Andy Dalton isn't getting any better and is on the wrong side of 30. It's time for the Bengals to move on. Herbert has ideal size (6-foot-6, 237), a huge arm, solid athleticism and mobility, and should start quickly at the next level. The young signal-caller needs to be more consistent, but he's a prototypical NFL quarterback. Someone might trade up to take Herbert higher than this, but we're not projecting trades. Cincy grabs him here.
6. Arizona Cardinals: Grant Delpit, S, LSU
The Cardinals need some punch on the defensive side of the ball and Delpit would provide that. At 6-foot-3 and 205 pounds, he's a rangy safety who can make huge hits, defend the run and cover receivers one-on-one. He's a force in the secondary and would be a huge addition alongside Patrick Peterson.
7. Denver Broncos: Jeff Okudah, CB, Ohio State
Jeff Okudah has quickly established himself as the nation's best cornerback. He's got great size (6-foot-1, 200), is super-aggressive and seemingly relishes the chance to take on an opponent's top receiver. He has three interceptions this season for Ohio State.
8. New York Giants: Henry Ruggs III, WR, Alabama
The Giants appear to have found their quarterback in Daniel Jones, now they need to get him a No. 1 receiver. Ruggs is just 6-foot and 190 pounds, but he's one of the fastest players I've ever watched film on. He's got blazing speed that can impact plays even when he doesn't touch the ball.
9. Tennessee Titans: Jacob Eason, QB, Washington
If the Titans are going to move on from Marcus Mariota, they couldn't go further in the other direction than Jacob Eason. Eason is big, has a huge arm and is decisive with his throws. At 6-foot-6 and 225 pounds with a howitzer on his shoulder, the upside is worth the risk here.
10. Atlanta Falcons: Kristian Fulton, CB, LSU
Atlanta's secondary has been brutal this season (and last) and could use an infusion of youth. In steps Fulton, an aggressive corner with decent size (6-foot, 200 pounds) and a knack for making plays on the ball.
11. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Tristan Wirfs, OT, Iowa
The Bucs could use an upgrade up front and they get it here. Wirfs is playing right tackle for Iowa and absolutely mauling the opposition. He might be able to shift to the left side, but if not, he's still one of the best tackles in this year's class. At 6-foot-5, 322 pounds he has the size to be an anchor.
12. Jacksonville Jaguars: CJ Henderson, CB, Florida
If Jalen Ramsey is done in Jacksonville, then landing a shutdown corner makes the most sense here. Henderson is as smooth as they come and has the size (6-foot-1, 202) to take on all receivers. He's a pure cover guy, so don't expect a ton of help in the run game, but he's got elite coverage ability.
13. Oakland Raiders: Isaiah Simmons, OLB, Clemson
No one quite knows where Simmons will fit at the next level, but he's a flat-out player and Jon Gruden loves guys like that. He's awkwardly-sized as a 6-foot-4, 225-pound former safety now playing linebacker. Thing is, he can really play all over the field. He's too good to pass up at this spot.
14. Cleveland Browns: Alex Leatherwood, OT, Alabama
Cleveland's offensive line is an absolute mess and needs to be addressed ASAP. Leatherwood is in his first season as Alabama's left tackle after starting at guard in 2018. He's got size (6-foot-6, 310 pounds) and versatility on his side. He'd be a huge upgrade at any spot for the Browns.
15. Los Angeles Chargers: Trevon Diggs, CB, Alabama
Casey Heyward has been fantastic for the Chargers, but they need an upgrade across from him. Diggs is a big (6-foot-2, 207) corner who looks like he could be special in man-to-man coverage. The younger brother of Stefon Diggs, this Alabama corner is also an excellent tackler.
16. Carolina Panthers: Paulson Adebo, CB, Stanford
Carolina's secondary is a mess despite the rest of the defense being pretty solid. The Panthers can address that here. Adebo is a fantastic corner, with long arms, a great work-ethic and a knack for breaking up passes. He's going to be an excellent pro.
17. Detroit Lions: Jonathan Taylor, RB, Wisconsin
Kerryon Johnson isn't getting it done out of the Lions' backfield alone and Matt Stafford needs the pressure taken off him as he ages. Taylor is one of the most productive running backs in college football history and has the size (5-foot-11, 220 pounds), speed and vision to be a top-tier NFL back.
18. Minnesota Vikings: Jake Fromm, QB, Georgia
Kirk Cousins is a mess in Minnesota and it looks like that deal will go down as one of the worst contracts of all-time. It's clear the Vikings need a change, and Jake Fromm is the best quarterback left on the board. Fromm is a solid, all-around quarterback, with excellent accuracy. He doesn't have stellar size (6-foot-2, 220) or arm strength, but he does a lot of things well and rarely -- if ever -- hurts his team. What a refreshing change that will be in Minnesota.
19. San Francisco 49ers: Lamar Jackson, CB, Nebraska
The 49ers have a stellar defense, but there are weaknesses in the secondary. Adding Jackson, a huge corner (6-foot-3, 215 pounds) who can make plays, will be a huge boost at the back end of that defense, especially as Richard Sherman moves on.
20. Indianapolis Colts: Derrick Brown, DT/DE, Auburn
Brown drops this far solely because of needs for other teams. He's a borderline top five prospect and the Colts will snag him here and plug him in as a Day 1 starter. A massive presence on the interior at 6-foot-5 and 318 pounds, Brown is super active. While he hasn't translated his talent to big sack numbers yet, that could come with time.
21. Baltimore Ravens: Javon Kinlaw, DT, South Carolina
The Ravens could use some punch up front on defense, and Kinlaw would certainly give them that. The kid is scary talented and, well, just plain scary. He's 6-foot-6, 310 pounds and athletic. Kinlaw is already an outstanding run defender and has shown flashes as a pass rusher in 2019.
22. Dallas Cowboys: Tee Higgins, WR, Clemson
The Cowboys might be losing Amari Cooper and need a talented wide receiver to play alongside Michael Gallup. Enter Higgins, a big (6-foot-4, 205), explosive playmaker who can wreak havoc on opposing secondaries. He is also a huge red zone threat and has a knack for finding the end zone.
23. Oakland Raiders (from Chicago): CeeDee Lamb, WR, Oklahoma
The Antonio Brown marriage didn't work for the Raiders, but this one might. Lamb is big-time athlete who has exploded this season as Oklahoma's No.1 receiver. Through five games he has 18 catches for 439 yards and seven touchdowns. That's an average of 24.4 yards per reception. At 6-foot-2 and 191 pounds, he has the size and playmaking skills to make an immediate impact in the NFL.
24. New Orleans Saints: Bryce Hall, CB, Virginia
The Saints could use some more depth in the secondary, with Eli Apple's contract set to expire after 2019. Hall has good size at corner (6-foot-1, 200) and led the nation with 22 pass breakups in 2019. He displays great technique but would be even better if he could loosen up athletically a bit.
25. Miami Dolphins (from Houston): Lucas Niang, OT, TCU
The Dolphins traded Laremy Tunsil to open the season and here they get their replacement at left tackle. Niang is massive at 6-foot-7 and 328 pounds and has developed into an outstanding pass protector. He should improve in the run game and has the strength to get there soon. He's played on both sides of the line, so he's got versatility if needed as well.
26. Buffalo Bills: A.J. Epenesa, EDGE, Iowa
The Bills haven't gotten a ton of pressure off the edge this season, let's get them a dynamic playmaker. Epenesa is a strong, big, relentless worker. At 6-foot-6 and 280 pounds, he can set the edge in the running game or get to the quarterback. He racked up 10.5 sacks in 2018 and has two this season despite being the focal point of every offensive line he faces.
27. Los Angeles Rams: Prince Tega Wanogho, OT, Auburn
Protecting Jared Goff should be the top priority for the Rams, so they need to get younger and more athletic along the offensive line. They get a great value here in Prince Tega Wanogho, a 6-foot-7, 305-pounder with good feet, long arms and developing technique. He could play either tackle spot and should improve rapidly as a pro.
28. Philadelphia Eagles: Raekwon Davis, DT, Alabama
The Eagles always seem to be reloading along the defensive front, and Davis is a perfect fit for Jim Schwartz's scheme. He's huge at 6-foot-7 and 312 pounds, but is also super strong and can disrupt the interior of an offensive line with ease. There's a lot more potential to be unlocked here as well.
29. Seattle Seahawks: Tyler Biadasz, G, Wisconsin
Russell Wilson is only going to last so long without upgrades to Seattle's offensive line, and they have a chance to get a good one here. Biadasz is an excellent run-blocker on the interior for Wisconsin who can also pass protect. He needs to continue to improve but this 6-foot-3, 321-pounder is the best interior lineman in the draft.
30. Green Bay Packers: Laviska Shenault Jr., WR, Colorado
Outside of Davante Adams, Aaron Rodgers doesn't have a great receiving corps to work with. This pick would change that. Shenault is big (6-foot-2, 220), incredibly fast and versatile. He's not a polished route runner, but he's the kind of game-changing playmaker the Packers covet.
31. Kansas City Chiefs: Xavier McKinney, CB, Alabama
Yet another Alabama player off the board in the first round. Shocking, I know. The Chiefs desperately need to improve their secondary and McKinney is a talented, rangy corner who can help in run support.
32. New England Patriots: Yetur Gross-Matos, EDGE, Penn State
The Patriots could use another versatile edge player and they get a ridiculous value here. Gross-Matos had eight sacks and 20 tackles for loss in 2018 and has added 5.5 sacks and 7.5 tackles for loss in five games this season. He's a backfield disrupter and the Patriots always need more of those.