2020 NFL mock draft: Projected first-round picks post-free agency
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While the rest of the sports world was frozen due to the coronavirus outbreak, the NFL kept going, giving fans a much-needed distraction.
There was a flurry of moves as the new league year opened, many of which will have a huge impact on the 2020 NFL Draft.
The 49ers jumped into the top half of the first round by trading DeForest Buckner to the Indianapolis Colts, and the Raiders signed six defensive players, including linebackers Cory Littleton and Nick Kwiatkoski.
As such, the first-round projections look a whole lot different than they did when NFL Scouting Combine ended.
NBC Sports Bay Area's Josh Schrock and Dalton Johson alternated picks in their latest 2020 mock draft. No trades were allowed and more than a few not-so-family-friendly phrases were dropped when certain gems were swiped off the board.
1. Cincinnati Bengals: Joe Burrow
Until he pulls an Eli Manning, Joe Burrow will be a Bengal. --Dalton Johnson
2. Washington: Chase Young
School: Ohio State
Washington could do a number of things at No. 2. Quarterback is an option. Trading down is an option. Or they could just take the best player in the draft. Yeah, do that. -- Josh Schrock
3. Detroit Lions: Jeff Okudah
School: Ohio State
There's no real reason to have Isaiah Simmons slide. He simply is too talented to fall. But Okudah is a lockdown corner and fills a major need after the Lions traded Darius Slay.
Put Okudah on one side of the field, and let him lock it down. -DJ
4. New York Giants: Mekhi Becton
Would the Giants really pass on do-it-all Isaiah Simmons? It will be a tough call, but Mount Mekhi can be a foundational piece for the Giants' offensive line going forward. Dave Gettleman knows he has to protect Daniel Jones, so he drafts the 6-foot-7, 368 pound monster from Louisville. --JS
5. Miami Dolphins: Justin Herbert
1. Sorry, Josh. My guy has made his feelings on Herbert loud and clear, and I'm snatching him away. 2. Why would Tua fall?
All of Tagovailoa's medicals have been good so far. But without a pro day and teams unable to do their own tests on him, he could slide down. Herbert displayed his arm at Oregon's pro day before the coronavirus outbreak, and the Dolphins have heavily scouted him. --DJ
6. Los Angeles Chargers: Tua Tagovailoa
The Chargers will be doing backflips if Tagovailoa falls to six. From all reports his hip is in good condition, so the Bolts jump at the chance to get the next face of their franchise. --JS
7. Carolina Panthers: Isaiah Simmons
What a start for coach Matt Rhule. In his first draft with the Panthers, he gets one of the biggest freaks in years. Take Simmons, and put him wherever the hell you want on defense. --DJ
8. Arizona Cardinals: Tristan Wirfs
Landing DeAndre Hopkins allows the Cardinals not to flirt with drafting Kyler Murray's old runningmate CeeDee Lamb. Kliff Kingbury knows he has to protect Murray in order for his high-octane offense to work. Wirfs might be the best tackle in the draft, and he'll make sure Murray stays upright. --JS
9. Jacksonville Jaguars: Derrick Brown
Brown didn't have a good combine at all. But the tape doesn't lie with him. He can alter an offense with his power in the middle of a defense. With the Jaguars rebuilding their D-line, this is a good place to start. --DJ
10. Cleveland Browns: Jedrick Wills
The Browns signed Jack Conklin to be their right tackle, but they still need a left tackle after Greg Robinson decided to play Scarface. Wills is a great pass-blocking tackle, and he'll allow Baker Mayfield the time he needs to get the ball to Odell Beckham and Jarvis Landry. --JS
11. New York Jets: CeeDee Lamb
The Jets need to protect Sam Darnold and could go offensive line here. But CeeDee Lamb and Jerry Jeudy will be awfully enticing. Unless he's stuck in the dirt again, Darnold will love this pick. --DJ
12. Raiders: Jerry Jeudy
Jeudy is the most polished receiver in the class. He has great footwork, is an elite route-runner and can operate out of the X, Y or in the slot. The Raiders loaded up on defense in free agency, so now it's time for Chucky to get a weapon for his offense. --JS
13. San Francisco 49ers (via Indianapolis Colts): Henry Ruggs
And behind Door No. 3 is ... Henry Ruggs aka Mr. 4.27. The 49ers' first choice here likely is Jeudy, but Ruggs shouldn't be far behind. He can be a nightmare for opposing teams in Kyle Shanahan's offense and is much more polished than he is given credit for.
Congrats 49ers fans, you have your guy. --DJ
14. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Jordan Love
School: Utah State
Two years, $50 million for Tom Brady is a price well worth paying. But the Bucs still have to think about life after GOAT, so they take the big-armed signal-caller from Utah State. Love needs some time to sit and learn, and he'll have the perfect opportunity in Tampa. --JS
15. Denver Broncos: Andrew Thomas
It's time to move on from Garett Boles. The Broncos added running back Melvin Gordon in free agency and need to protect young QB Drew Lock. Thomas is the man right here. --DJ
16. Atlanta Falcons: Kristian Fulton
So now the Falcons have to face Drew Brees and Brady each twice a season? Oof. Dan Quinn needs another corner, so he takes the LSU star who only gave up 48 catches over the past two seasons.
There are questions about his speed, but he gets the nod over C.J. Henderson as the class's No. 2 corner. --JS
17. Dallas Cowboys: C.J. Henderson
Henderson was a serious candidate for the 49ers at No. 13. Seriously. He has smooth feet and should be even better at the next level. With Byron Jones gone, Henderson can step in from Day 1. --DJ
18. Miami Dolphins (via Pittsburgh Steelers): Justin Jefferson
Justin Herbert throwing seeds to Justin Jefferson? Miami just got a whole lot better on the football field. --JS
19. Raiders (via Chicago Bears): Javon Kinlaw
School: South Carolina
The Raiders took care of their need for linebackers in free agency, though they could still add more help there or look at a cornerback. Instead, they add a dominant defensive lineman here in Kinlaw.
The Silver and Black were extremely active in free agency. Grabbing Jeudy and Kinlaw in the first round would be the cherry on top. --DJ
20. Jacksonville Jaguars (via Los Angeles Rams): Xavier McKinney
Just about everyone from the Jaguars' 2018 AFC Championship Game loss is gone. Jalen Ramsey, out, A.J. Bouye, see yah. Calais Campbell ... you get the picture.
The rebuild on defense starts with Brown at No. 9 and McKinney, a play-making safety, at No. 20. --JS
21. Philadelphia Eagles: Brandon Aiyuk
School: Arizona State
Go get Carson Wentz some help. For all his faults, the former No. 2 pick in the draft was throwing balls to a bag of peanuts last season. Aiyuk is the King of YAC and a big play waiting to happen. --DJ
22. Minnesota Vikings (from Buffalo Bills): A.J. Terrell
With Xavier Rhodes being terrible in 2019 and then getting cut, the Vikings need to make some moves at corner. Terrell is long, rangy and great in man coverage. Yes, he got burned by LSU's Ja'Marr Chase, but he was near the contest point on almost all of the touchdowns he gave up. It happens. --JS
23. New England Patriots: Patrick Queen
It's a new day in New England. Who knows what Bill Belichick will do now, but Queen is a good place to start. The former LSU Tiger is a linebacker built for the modern NFL. He would fit a hole after free agency and soon could be the leader of the Patriots' defense. --DJ
24. New Orleans Saints: Kenneth Murray
The Saints addressed their wide-receiver need by signing Emmanuel Sanders, so they'll bulk up their defense with an athletic linebacker who would be best suited in a scheme that allows him to play downhill and blow up blockers. --JS
25. Minnesota Vikings: Austin Jackson
Riley Reiff is entering the final year of his deal. Jackson should provide depth from Day 1 but could be even more right away. He's light on his feet at 310 pounds, and could possibly play either side of the line. --DJ
26. Miami Dolphins (via Houston Texans): Jonathan Taylor
Herbert, Jefferson, Taylor. That's a three-headed monster that could have the Dolphins in the driver's seat to be the new kings of the AFC East. --JS
27. Seattle Seahawks: K'Lavon Chaisson
Whether they re-sign Jadeveon Clowney or not, the Seahawks have to find ways to disrupt the quarterback. Seattle ranked 31st in the NFL with only 28 sacks last season. Chaisson needs to add weight, but he is bendy, athletic and full of potential. --DJ
28. Baltimore Ravens: AJ Epensa
His lackluster combine showing proved Epenesa needs to go to a team that knows how to utilize what he does best. Almost no franchise has been better at that than the Ravens over the past 20 years. --JS
29. Tennessee Titans: Josh Jones
The Titans lost Jack Conklin, signed QB Ryan Tannehill to a huge contract and gave running back Derrick Henry the franchise tag. This still is a team that will rely on Henry, and the 319-pound Jones can continue that. --DJ
30. Green Bay Packers: Denzel Mims
The Packers lost out on Emmanuel Sanders in free agency, so they'll get Aaron Rodgers another weapon in the athletic freak from Baylor. Mims has a catch radius the size of North America and strong hands that allow him to snag balls at the edge of his range.
He'll be an effective weapon out wide in Green Bay. --JS
31. 49ers: Neville Gallimore
Cornerback? Offensive lineman? Nope. Neville Gallimore.
Sure, he isn't DeForest Buckner, but he did run a 4.79 40-yard dash at 304 pounds. That shouldn't happen. Gallimore has all the traits to thrive in Robert Saleh's defense. --DJ
32. Kansas City Chiefs: Trevon Diggs
The defending champs franchise-tagged Chris Jones to keep their defensive line intact. But they need help out on the perimeter in order to mount a title defense.
Diggs is a converted wide recevier who didn't start playing corner full time until 2017. He's great in zone coverage and shows a good understanding of spacing in zones. Diggs is athletic, rangy and long. He must work on being a better tackler, but profiles as an Aqib Talib-type corner at the NFL level. --JS