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.