2018 NFL Mock Draft: Mid-April Update

INDIANAPOLIS, IN - MARCH 02: Penn State running back Saquon Barkley looks on during the 2018 NFL Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium on March 2, 2018 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
INDIANAPOLIS, IN - MARCH 02: Penn State running back Saquon Barkley looks on during the 2018 NFL Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium on March 2, 2018 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images) /

We are getting down to the last few weeks to produce a 2018 NFL Mock Draft and things really haven’t become any clearer.

The rumor mill is spinning, but there isn’t much concrete information being handed down. That’s why it’s still extremely difficult to produce a solid 2018 NFL Mock Draft. One of the biggest reason this draft is so mysterious is because of the quarterback class.

It’s difficult to get a handle on what quarterback is preferred by which team. The trade factor is an other reason things remain fluid.

This promises to be one of the more interesting drafts in recent memory. We could see plenty of surprise picks and big-time trades. The movement won’t only be at the top of the draft as we should expect plenty of action at the end of the 1st round.

Below is my latest projection for the first two rounds of the 2018 NFL Draft:

1. Cleveland Browns- Sam Darnold, QB, USC

The Browns are going to take a quarterback at No. 1 overall. It’s now a question of which player they prefer. Darnold seems like the safest pick for this franchise based on personality fit and upside.

2. New York Giants- Saquon Barkley, RB, Penn State

The Giants fan base doesn’t handle losing well which means Dave Gettleman needs to quickly turn things around. Adding a major offensive weapon like Saquon Barkley would spark the turnaround.

3. New York Jets (Ind)- Josh Allen, QB, Wyoming

Allen would benefit greatly from sitting behind Josh McCown for a season. McCown is known for his ability to work with young quarterbacks. Allen has the raw talent to develop into an elite NFL quarterback.

4. Cleveland Browns (Hou)- Bradley Chubb, Edge, NC State

Barkley is already off the board so the Browns nab an elite edge player to pair with Myles Garrett. Chubb is a hard-nosed player that will quickly become a fan favorite.

Related Story: Cleveland Browns Team Needs

5. *TRADE* Miami Dolphins (Den)- Josh Rosen, QB, UCLA

The Dolphins are in the quarterback market and would be a great fit for Josh Rosen. He would be able to step in and provide an immediate replacement for Ryan Tannehill.

6. Indianapolis Colts (NYJ)- Roquan Smith,LB, Georgia

This might be a bit of a surprise, but the Colts need to find some leadership and playmaking on defensive side of the ball. Smith is someone who works sideline to sideline and will bring an edge to the Colts defense.

7. Tampa Bay Buccaneers- Denzel Ward, CB, Ohio State

Tampa Bay needs help in the secondary and a top-notch coverage guy in Denzel Ward. The trio of Ward, Vernon Hargreaves and Brent Grimes is a sold group.

8. Chicago Bears- Quenton Nelson, OG, Notre Dame

Chicago is a bit of a wildcard in this year’s draft. They have several needs they could address at this pick, but they could also look to trade down. Nelson would make a ton of sense because of the team’s need at guard.

9. San Francisco 49ers- Tremaine Edmunds, LB, Virginia Tech

The latest development in the Reuben Foster story creates major question marks at the linebacker position. San Francisco could quickly solve that problem by grabbing the explosive Tremaine Edmunds.

10. Oakland Raiders- Minkah Fitzpatrick, DB, Alabama

Oakland needs defensive playmakers and Fitzpatrick fits that bill. He’s a ball hawk who is always in place to get his hands on the football.

11. *TRADE* Denver Broncos (Mia)- Vita Vea, DL, Washington

Denver moves down a few spots, picks up extra picks and adds a dominant force in the middle of the defense.

12. Buffalo Bills (Cin)- Baker Mayfield, QB, Oklahoma

The Bills need to come out of this draft with a long-term quarterback option. However, it’s hard to peg which one best fits their franchise. They have the ammo to trade up, but they could stay put and see who falls into their lap.

Mayfield would be an interesting fit and someone the Bills fan base may embrace.

13. Washington Redskins- Derwin James, S, Florida State

This would be a huge win for the Washington Redskins. James is a freak athlete capable of making plays all over the field.

14. Green Bay Packers- Jaire Alexander, CB, Louisville

Alexander is a feisty comeback prospect who doesn’t hesitate to attack the football. He is someone who is a major turnover threat.

More from With the First Pick

15. Arizona Cardinals- Mike McGlinchey, OT, Notre Dame

The Cardinals feel like they are re-tooling, but it feels more like they are rebuilding. McGlinchey would be a safe pick and someone capable of immediately helping along the offensive line.  He and D.J. Humphries could be a solid tackle duo.

16. *TRADE* New England Patriots (Balt)- Marcus Davenport, Edge, UTSA

This is a projected trade where the Patriots land a high-upside pass rusher. Their defensive line needs edge players capable of getting after the quarterback. Davenport is raw, but would obviously benefit from working with Bill Belichick.

17. Los Angeles Chargers- Rashaan Evans, LB, Alabama

Evans is a plug and play linebacker prospect who can make an impact on multiple levels. He is a strong run defender, holds up well in coverage and can rush the passer. This would be a great addition to the Chargers defense.

18. *TRADE* Carolina Panthers (Sea)- Calvin Ridley, WR, Alabama

Carolina needs to add more weapons to help Cam Newton. In this projected trade, they land a polished route runner in Calvin Ridley. His combine numbers weren’t great but he plays with more explosiveness.

19. Dallas Cowboys- Leighton Vander Esch, LB, Boise State

The Cowboys could go in several directions with this pick, but Vander Esch would provide them with a playmaking linebacker. He can immediately replace Anthony Hitchens and fill in for the oft-injured Sean Lee.

20. Detroit Lions- James Daniels, C, Iowa

This isn’t a sexy pick, but Daniels is a day-1 starter who will immediately upgrade the interior of the Lions offensive line.

21. Cincinnati Bengals (Buf)- Connor Williams, OL, Texas

Williams’ versatility will be very attractive to the Cincinnati Bengals. He is someone who could start out at guard and potentially shift to tackle as he develops. Cincinnati has a need at both spots.

22. Buffalo Bills (KC)- Will Hernandez, OG, UTEP

Hernandez reminded me a lot of Richie Incognito and gets a chance to replace him in this scenario.

23. *TRADE* Baltimore Ravens (NE/LAR)- D.J. Moore, WR, Maryland

Baltimore’s projected trade lands them extra draft capital and wide receiver D.J. Moore. He would give the Ravens a young receiver capable of providing explosive plays. It also doesn’t hurt that he’s a local kid.

24. *TRADE* Seattle Seahawks- Mike Hughes, CB, UCF

The Seahawks are a prime candidate to make multiple moves down the draft. They have a ton of needs and little draft capital. If they can’t strike another deal with this pick, Mike Hughes would be a great add.

25. Tennessee Titans- Sam Hubbard, Edge, Ohio State

Hubbard is an underrated prospect who is ready to make an immediate impact. He’s a savvy pass rusher who also features the burst needed to get after the quarterback.

26. Atlanta Falcons- Christian Kirk, WR, Texas A&M

Atlanta doesn’t have a ton of needs, but they could use a slot receiver like Christian Kirk. He is someone who is a strong route runner and provides big-play ability.

27. New Orleans Saints- Da’Ron Payne, DL, Alabama

The Saints continue to build up their defense by adding the physical Da’Ron Payne. He will fit in nicely alongside the penetrating Grady Jarrett.

28. Pittsburgh Steelers- Ronnie Harrison, S, Alabama

This would be considered a steal if Harrison is still on the board at this point. He is a playmaker who has tons of range.

29. Jacksonville Jaguars- D.J. Chark, WR, LSU

Jacksonville’s defense is in good hands so they need to make this a offensive heavy draft. D.J. Chark is a burner who can stretch the field. He will force opposing defenses to respect his big-play ability.

30. Minnesota Vikings- Kolton Miller, OT, UCLA

This is a future pick that will pay off in  a few years. Miller is a raw left tackle prospect, but has the athleticism to develop into an elite pass protector.

31. New England Patriots- Lamar Jackson, QB, Louisville

The Patriots are going to grab a developmental quarterback in this year’s draft. This would be a very fun pick as Jackson is a unique prospect. Josh McDaniels has enough creativity to get the most out of Jackson’s skill set.

Remember, McDaniels was the one who pulled the trigger on Tim Tebow in the 1st Round.

32. Philadelphia Eagles- Derrius Guice, RB, LSU

Philadelphia features enough roster depth that they can go best player available at this spot. Guice is a physical runner whose hard-nosed mentality is infectious.

2nd Round

33. Cleveland Browns– Joshua Jackson, CB, Iowa

34. New York Giants– Isaiah Wynn, OG, Georgia

35. Cleveland Browns (Hou)– Taven Bryan, DT, Florida

36. Indianapolis Colts– Lorenzo Carter, Edge, Georgia

37. Indianapolis Colts (NYJ)– Donte Jackson, CB, LSU

38. Tampa Bay Buccaneers– Sony Michel, RB, Georgia

39. Chicago Bears– Harold Landry, Edge, Boston College

40. Denver Broncos– Carlton Davis, CB, Auburn

41. Oakland Raiders– Harrison Phillips, DT, Stanford

42. *TRADE* Denver Broncos (Mia)– Dallas Goedert, TE, South Dakota State

43. New England Patriots (SF)– Geron Christian, OT, Louisville

More from With the First Pick

44. Washington Redskins– Isaiah Oliver, CB, Colorado

45. Green Bay Packers– Uchenna Nwosu, LB, USC

46. Cincinnati Bengals– Billy Price, OL, Ohio State

47. Arizona Cardinals– Mason Rudolph, QB, Oklahoma State

48. Los Angeles Chargers– Jamarco Jones, OT, Ohio State

49. Indianapolis Colts (NYJ/SEA)– Michael Gallup, WR, Colorado State

50. Dallas Cowboys– Mike Gesicki, TE, Penn State

51. Detroit Lions– Arden Key, Edge, LSU

52. Baltimore Ravens– Orlando Brown Jr., OT, Oklahoma

53. Buffalo Bills– Derrick Nnadi, DT, Florida State

54. Kansas City Chiefs– Austin Corbett, OG, Nevada

55. Carolina Panthers– Josh Sweat, Edge, Florida State

56. Buffalo Bills (LAR)– James Washington, WR, Oklahoma State

57. Tennessee Titans– Malik Jefferson, LB, Texas

58. Atlanta Falcons– Maurice Hurst, DT, Michigan

59. San Francisco 49ers (NO)– Courtland Sutton, WR, SMU

60. Pittsburgh Steelers– Nick Chubb, RB, Georgia

61. Jacksonville Jaguars– Anthony Averett, CB, Alabama

62. Minnesota Vikings– Ronald Jones II, RB, USC

63. *TRADE* Baltimore Ravens (NE)– Hayden Hurst, TE, Arkansas

64. Cleveland Browns (PHI)– Chukwuma Okorafor, OT, Western Michigan