The Texans remain patient and still get a gunslinger with their second pick
11. Arizona Cardinals – Darnell Wright, Offensive Tackle, Tennessee
The Cardinals are able to trade back and still get an offensive tackle. Darnell Wright is an athletic tackle with really strong hands who understands how to use his upper body strength to his advantage. He isn’t the athlete Paris Johnson Jr. is in pass protection, but he is still very good and it makes sense for the Cardinals to move down and get more draft capital while staying in position to get a tackle.
12. Houston Texans – Anthony Richardson, Quarterback, Florida
If the Texans are somehow able to stay at twelve and still get a top quarterback in Anthony Richardson, they’ll easily be the biggest winner of the first round. Richardson is a young, inexperienced quarterback who has elite arm strength and mobility along with remarkable pocket presence. His accuracy is shaky right now, but if he fixes that, he can be one of the best quarterbacks in the NFL.
13. Green Bay Packers (via NYJ) – Jaxon Smith-Njigba, Wide Receiver, Ohio State
Jaxon Smith-Njigba is a fantastic wide receiver prospect and the 10th-ranked player on the consensus big board. The Packers usually don’t take skill positions in the first round, but they have a chance to surround their young quarterback, Jordan Love, with an awesome wide receiver who will make his life easier.
The Packers desperately need a wide receiver, and Smith-Njigba would fit extremely well next to Christian Watson. The Packers may go in another direction and target an edge rusher like Lukas Van Ness or Myles Murphy, but this makes the most sense.
14. Pittsburgh Steelers (via NE) – Broderick Jones, Offensive Tackle, Georgia
The Steelers reportedly want to trade up for an offensive tackle and they cannot get one of the top tackles if they stay at seventeen. They need to move up and they do that here, trading up to fourteen with the New England Patriots. Here they take Broderick Jones, who is a phenomenal athlete and a mauler in the run game. He needs to work on his technique in pass protection, but he is a devastating run blocker.
15. New York Jets (via GB) – Peter Skoronski, Offensive Tackle, Northwestern
The Jets moved down two spots after the Aaron Rodgers trade but they’re still able to get an offensive tackle. Peter Skoronski was great at left tackle for Northwestern, but he is undersized and has underwhelming arm length. His physical limitations could make him a guard long term, but he has the skills and athleticism to be a dominant interior offensive lineman.
16. Washington Commanders – Bijan Robinson, Running Back, Texas
If a tackle is available here, the Commanders will likely take them. However, I think they’re also a potential landing spot for Bijan Robinson. NFL teams reportedly love Robinson and it’s hard to imagine him slipping very far in the draft. The Commanders are rolling with Sam Howell as their starting quarterback and the team may be interested in providing him with an elite offensive weapon in Robinson.
17. New England Patriots (via PIT) – Zay Flowers, Wide Receiver, Boston College
The New England Patriots trade back with the Pittsburgh Steelers and get one of the best wide receivers in the class in Zay Flowers. The Pats have been connected to Flowers for a while and there have been reports that Flowers isn’t expected to make it out of the top twenty picks. Flowers is a small receiver, like almost every receiver in the class, but he plays bigger than he is and he is a dynamic playmaker with the ball in his hands.
18. Detroit Lions – Lukas Van Ness, Edge Rusher, Iowa
The Lions passed on an edge rusher at six to take a cornerback. Now they get a big, versatile edge rusher in Lukas Van Ness who has experience playing inside and outside on the defensive line. Van Ness is young, a great athlete, and he has solid production, so there is a chance he goes before this. However, it’s hard to imagine the Lions passing in him if he’s here.
19. Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Anton Harrison, Offensive Tackle, Oklahoma
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are in a weird spot because they have a lot of talent on their roster, but they’re also coming off a disappointing season and they lost Tom Brady to retirement. They signed Baker Mayfield in the offseason and he’s probably good enough for the Buccaneers to be a winning team. However, they need to fix that offensive line if they want to survive on offense.
Anton Harrison has gone under the radar, but I think he will go higher in the draft than many people expect. He isn’t an elite athlete, but he is phenomenal in terms of his technique as a pass protector. The Buccaneers have a lot of options here, but they go with a tackle to fix their offensive line.
20. Seattle Seahawks – Hendon Hooker, Quarterback, Tennessee
The Seattle Seahawks waited to take a quarterback and they are able to get one in the back half of the first round. Hendon Hooker has risen up draft boards recently and now he is expected to hear his name called on day one. If the Seahawks want to plan for the future and get a quarterback, they might be a good fit for Hooker who is an older prospect, but is also a good athlete, with a good arm, and decent accuracy.