NFL mock drafts show part of the big picture story. Big Boards offer additional context.
Along with the brand new mock draft, we present an updated NFL Draft big board with a ranking of the top 50 prospects ahead of the April 25-27 draft.
It goes without saying that this is the height of the misinformation portion of draft season. Even if one speaks with all 32 general managers there’s no guarantee of receiving the honest truth across the board. That said, there’s no couching every insight or opinion here. Readers are smart enough to understand the information below, from the sourcing to the rankings, is a snapshot of the draft process.
Not every rumor or take received made this page. For the ones that did, including thoughts on the Redskins’ plan, Dwayne Haskins and risers/fallers, read on. Also make sure to check out the latest two-round mock draft, which includes bonus third-round selections for the Redskins and Ravens.
* There’s a clear momentum shift with the first round quarterbacks both in terms of the number and order.
The apparent slider is Ohio State’ Dwayne Haskins. In terms of falling outside the top two QB prospects in this class, the draft community is catching up to NBC Sports Washington’s stance. Drew Lock began appearing ahead of Haskins in mock drafts since the Mar. 12 version, but both were off the board by 11*.
The intrigue now involves a possible drop for Haskins should he get past the Bengals (11), Dolphins (13), Redskins (15) and the Giants’ second first-round choice (17). Limited starting experience (one year at Ohio State) and heavy foot issues are the primary concerns.
(* Little secret about mock drafts. Sometimes the slotting is based on convenience. We believe player X will go in the first somewhere, but the fit isn’t always obvious. This is especially true with quarterbacks since only a select few teams need one.)
The potential dip, however, also involves the rise of Duke’s Daniel Jones. Actually, Jones isn’t really on the move, but NFL voices are speaking up more about the perception gap between teams and media types.
“The buzz on Jones in the first and possibly fairly high is 1000 percent real,” an NFL source told NBC Sports Washington.
Jones, tutored at Duke by head coach and former Peyton Manning mentor David Cutcliife, doesn’t wow on tape, but his subtleties standout out the evaluators.
“Jones is a good player,” a former NFL general manager told NBC Sports Washington. “Big kid. Not the strongest arm. Great anticipation on his throws from the pocket. I don’t think he'll ever be great, but can be a solid NFL quarterback.”
* There's a strong belief growing that the Redskins would like to take a TE with three-down potential high in the draft. That's doubtful at 15. Iowa's TJ Hockenson, the top TE option, seems unlikely to get outside the top 12. Alabama's Irv Smith is a second-round candidate, though good chance he goes by 40.
We don't need sources to know Jay Gruden's feelings on the topic. At the recent NFL owners meetings, the Redskins head coach openly discussed the team's lack of a 3-down option in response to a question about play calling.
“Last year we tinkered around with two different two tight end sets, actually we had three. We had Sprinkle and Vernon, Sprinkle and Jordan, and Vernon and Jordan. It's kind of a pain in the neck when you have all these plays,” Gruden told reporters. “If you're going to feature the running game it's probably going to be Sprinkle more so, then Jordan and Vernon are standing next to you."
Washington’s Drew Sample and LSU's Foster Moreau are late Day 2/fourth round candidates.
* Oklahoma guard/tackle Cody Ford is typically slotted in the 20-30 range. That's the likely call based on the overall board. However, there's 14-16 pick upside. Atlanta might look OL if Clemson DT Christian Wilkins is gone. The same with Carolina at 16, according to a league source, unless an edge rusher like Florida State's Brian Burns remains available. The Panthers signed free agent center Matt Paradis this off-season, but still need more in front or Cam Newton.
* Ford mentioned in this range is notable with the Redskins' obvious need at left guard. So is a visit from another highly regarded lineman.
Kansas State OL Dalton Risner is scheduled to visit with the Redskins in Ashburn Monday for a top 30 meeting. The All-American tackle likely moves inside to guard on the NFL level though right tackle or even center is possible. The 6-foot-5, 312-pound lineman offers power and impressive athleticism as shown during his three seasons as a starter and an impressive Combine showing.
However, his sweet spot is likely in between Washington's first two selections with one source saying Risner should be off the board by 45. One former NFL front office executive told NBCSW he views Risner as a Day 3 selection, but there's a larger consensus of him landing early in Day 2.
"Ford is the player to draft based on upside, but Risner has the higher floor," one league source told NBC Sports Washington. “[Risner] should be a starter soon and a long-term one.”
While 15 for a guard seems a tad aggressive for the Redskins, tabbing a needed guard in the second or third should be a priority.
*I’ve posted 12 NFL mock drafts in the calendar year 2019. All but one had the Redskins selecting a defensive player. Most calls landed on edge rushers (Montez Sweat, Clelin Ferrell, Brian Burns) with Michigan inside linebacker Devin Bush a multi-time selection. The lone offensive player, Hockenson.
None of these players lines up at wide receiver, which is often a popular position choice for mock drafters looking to place DK Metcalf or Marques Brown somewhere. The reasoning behind skipping receiver all these weeks falls in line with a recent comment from a league source.
“It’s weird this year, but there’s no clear WR1 in this class,” the league source told NBC Sports Washington. “Meanwhile between prospects 40-110 the WR depth is so freaking good. I don’t know who the top WR is, though."
Day 2 candidates to consider include Deebo Samuel, Hakeem Butler, Kelvin Harmon and Emmanuel Hall. The 6-foot-5 Butler is scheduled to meet with the Redskins Tuesday and Ravens Wednesday, sources tell NBC Sports Washington.
* Only quarterbacks are coveted more than pass rushers. It’s why many see Burns landing somewhere in the top 15 after he compiled 29 tackles for loss and 14.5 sacks over the last two seasons. The biggest concern for teams is whether the 249-pounder can hold up as a run defender. If not, his value could suffer as a non-three-down player.
*Let’s get to the big board. Consider this a combination of some film review, homework, insight and NFL voices.
1. Nick Bosa, DE, Ohio State
2. Quinnen Williams, DT, Alabama
3. Josh Allen, OLB, Kentucky
4. Devin White, LB, LSU
5. Ed Oliver, DT, Houston
6. Montez Sweat, DE, Miss. St.
7. T.J. Hockenson, TE, Iowa
8. Kyler Murray, QB, Oklahoma
9. Devin Bush, ILB, Michigan
10. Christian Wilkins, DL, Clemson
11. Jawaan Taylor, OT, Florida
12. Jonah Williams, OT, Alabama
13. Greedy Williams, CB, LSU
14. Dexter Lawrence, DT, Clemson
15. DeAndre Baker, CB, Georgia
16. Byron Murphy, CB, Washington
17. Cody Ford, G/T, Oklahoma
18. Jeffery Simmons, DT, Miss. State
19. Brian Burns, DE, Florida State
20. Clelin Ferrell, DE, Clemson
21. Garrett Bradbury, C, NC State
22. Marquise Brown, WR, Oklahoma
23. Johnathan Abram, S, Miss. St.
24. Chris Lindstrom, G, BC
25. Taylor Rapp, S, Washington
26. N'Keal Harry, WR, Arizona State
27. A.J. Brown, WR, Mississippi
28. D.K. Metcalf, WR, Mississippi
29. Noah Fant, TE, Iowa
30. Jerry Tillery, DT, Notre Dame
31. Erik McCoy, C, Texas A&M
32. Josh Jacobs, RB, Alabama
33. Drew Lock, QB, Missouri
34. Dwayne Haskins, QB, Ohio State
35. Daniel Jones, QB, Duke
36. Andre Dillard, OT, Wash. State
37. Rock Ya-Sin, CB, Temple
38. Dalton Risner, OL, Kansas State
39. Darnell Savage, S, Maryland
40. Irv Smith, TE, Alabama
41. Kaleb McGary, OT, Washington
42. Nassir Adderley, FS, Delaware
43. Parris Campbell, WR, Ohio State
44. Chase Winovich, LB, Michigan
45. Oshane Ximines, DE, ODU
46. Deionte Thompson, S, Alabama
47. Mack Wilson, LB, Alabama
48. Hakeem Butler, WR, Iowa State
49. Chauncey Gardner-Johnson, S, Florida
50. Miles Sanders, RB, Penn State
MORE REDSKINS NEWS:
- Five Predictions: Making guesses about the Redskins' draft
- Two More Visits: Washington to host another QB and a lineman, too
- A 'Better' Cousins?: One analyst looks at Rosen's fit in DC