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NFL Mock Draft 7.5: The extreme, trade-heavy version


NFL Mock Draft 7.5: The extreme, trade-heavy version

Through seven mock drafts this season and umpteen others over more years than I care to count, I've never included a made up trade. It's not that I don't see the rumors or haven't imagined all kinds of swaps on my end. It's just that projecting which players go to which teams is already random enough. Coming up with fake trades or shock value picks, that's a bridge too far.

Until now. My next true mock draft will come out Monday. This is an extreme version of that with all kinds of deals and all kinds of prospects rising and falling. Even there, I didn't just go insane (With the first pick, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers select Tim Tebow), but tried pondering what surprises could legitimately happen and had them all happen at once. Cool? Cool.

All trades are based on the current draft order as of Friday morning.

1. Buccaneers: Jameis Winston, QB, Florida State - Every angle and hot take surrounding the former Heisman Trophy winner is extreme already.

2. Chargers (from Titans): Marcus Mariota, QB, Oregon - I'm legitimately buying this deal for both sides. The Chargers fear Philip Rivers leaves in free agency next offseason and the Titans haven't had a legitimate veteran quarterback for some time. Unless Tennessee wants USC DL Leonard Williams, expect a trade with somebody.

3. Jaguars: Kevin White, WR, West Virginia - Last season the Jaguars were super sneaky about their interest in Blake Bortles. With all the focus on defenders Leonard Williams and Dante Fowler, perhaps we could have another sneak attack.

4. Bears (from Raiders): Leonard Williams, DT, USC - Chicago's defense line isn't the special. As a dual threat, Williams might be so the Bears jump ahead of the Redskins.

5. Saints (from Redskins): Dante Fowler Jr., DE/OLB, Florida - Difficult call for Scot McCloughan considering Fowler's edge rush upside, but everyone thinks the Redskins GM wants more picks most of all, right? New Orleans needs a pass rusher. For the best one, swapping firsts, trading their second an a late round choice is the price.

6. Browns (from Jets): Amari Cooper, WR, Alabama - Cleveland needs to change the hapless narrative. Providing the offense with a playmaking receiver does that, at least until the next Johnny Manziel update. New York enters the draft with six selections, but that includes two in seventh. More needed, hence a trade down.

7. Raiders (from Bears): DeVante Parker, WR, Louisville - The Browns just took Oakland's target, but David Carr still gets a new pass catching toy.

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Fellow dance student of Ravens' Alex Collins fatally shot in Florida school shooting

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Fellow dance student of Ravens' Alex Collins fatally shot in Florida school shooting

On Wednesday, February 14, a horrific school shooting claimed the lives of 17 innocent people at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla. 

The tragic event impacted people far and wide, and hit especially close to home for Ravens running back Alex Collins.

The former Arkansas star was born in Plantation, Fla., a suburb of Fort Lauderdale and went to high school just 15 miles south of Douglas High School. 

In the offseason, Collins took Irish dancing lessons to improve his footwork, and following the act of terror, the Ravens' tailback learned that one of his dance partners had been killed in the mass shooting.

17-year-old Cara Loughran attended The Drake school of Irish Dance with Collins in addition to two other Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School students and was fatally shot by the gunman on Wednesday afternoon. 

Collins took to his Twitter account to issue this heartfelt message.


“The school shooting yesterday hit home,” Collins wrote.

“We received confirmation a few hours ago we lost one of the girls, Cara Loughran. Two other girls saw and experienced unspeakable tragedy. My heart goes out to these girls, all their families and their teacher Chrissy.”

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Baltimore Ravens to take on Chicago Bears in Hall of Fame game

USA Today Sports

Baltimore Ravens to take on Chicago Bears in Hall of Fame game

BALTIMORE -- The Baltimore Ravens and Chicago Bears will launch the NFL's 99th season by playing in the annual Hall of Fame game on Aug. 2.

The Ravens' first appearance in the Hall of Fame game, which launches the league's 2018 Enshrinement Week. Former Baltimore linebacker Ray Lewis is among the inductees, along with former Bears linebacker Brian Urlacher.

Lewis, who played 17 seasons with the Ravens, and Urlacher, who played all of his 13 seasons with Chicago, both were elected on the first ballot.

Lewis joins Jonathan Ogden as the only Ravens in the Hall of Fame. Both were selected by Baltimore in the first round of the 1996 draft.

The other members of the Class of 2018 include Bobby Beathard, Robert Brazile, Brian Dawkins, Jerry Kramer, Randy Moss and Terrell Owens. All will be inducted on Saturday, Aug. 4.

This will be the record-tying fifth time that the Bears will play in the Hall of Fame game. They won the previous four, most recently 27-24 over Miami in 2005.