The NFL draft is an exciting time for NFL teams and fans alike. Anywhere you look, there is a 2020 NFL mock draft. The draft is where teams find their future and look to build their franchise into a competitive one. Other teams look to add to their already talented roster to make a final push towards the super bowl. Regardless, the NFL draft brings tons of speculation and predictions with it. While the season is still underway, there is always time to look ahead at the next stars of the NFL and where they might land in April.
2020 NFL Mock Draft:
1. Cincinnati Bengals – Joe Burrow, QB, LSU
The Bengals need to reboot their franchise and there’s no better way than drafting a franchise quarterback. They will take care of that in this 2020 NFL mock draft. Burrow dominated Oklahoma in the first round of the College Football Playoff and continued that success against Clemson in the National Championship. Burrow cemented himself as the clear first overall selection and unless Chase Young is irresistible to the Bengals front office, Burrow will replace Andy Dalton in Cincinnati.
2. Washington Redskins – Chase Young, DE, Ohio State:
The Redskins have used the first round of the draft to reinforce their front seven with the drafting of Da’Ron Payne, Jonathan Allen, and Montez Sweat. Now the Redskins will have the cornerstone of that defensive front with an elite pass rusher, Chase Young. Young will provide the Redskins with the ability to force pressure on the quarterback and help their secondary improve.
3. Detroit Lions – Jeffrey Okudah, CB, Ohio State:
The Detroit Lions have a pro bowl cornerback already in Darius Slay, but the rest of their secondary has been lacking recently. The Lions have always struggled to find a proper second cornerback to play opposite of Slay. They drafted Jalen Tabor in 2017 hoping to find the answer, but unfortunately, they will be looking again in 2020. The Lions drafted T.J. Hockenson in last year’s first-round and need to focus on defense in this draft. Okudah will bring more talent to the Lions’ secondary and help improve the quality of the defense overall.
4. New York Giants – Jedrick Wills, OT, Alabama:
The New York Giants have steadily been building their offense through the draft the last few seasons. They found a star running back in Saquon Barkley, have multiple weapons in the passing game through Evan Engram, Darius Slayton, and Sterling Shepherd, and drafted their quarterback of the future in Daniel Jones.
Now, they will finish the offense with the re-formation of their offensive line. Jedrick Wills is a strong offensive tackle who can be the cornerstone of an offensive line for a long time. Pairing Wills will other potential draft picks and free agents could be the final piece to the Giants offense and could set up Daniel Jones for long-term success in New York.
5. Miami Dolphins – Tua Tagovailoa, QB, Alabama:
The Miami Dolphins have struggled to find a quarterback they can truly get behind. The fanbase has been waiting for the Dolphins to establish a franchise quarterback who can give them hope for the future. Luckily for Miami, this year’s draft has multiple quarterbacks who can make an impact for a franchise and the Dolphins can get a top tier quarterback at pick number five in Tua Tagovailoa.
Tua had an incredible career at Alabama before an injury brought an end to his career with the Crimson Tide. Now, Tua will transition to the NFL and join the Dolphins on their path back to competitiveness. he Dolphins have two more first-round picks in this draft to potentially put more pieces around Tua to help him grow and develop as a Dolphin.
6. Los Angeles Chargers – Justin Herbert, QB, Oregon:
After seeing the Bengals and Dolphins make their moves for young franchise quarterbacks the Chargers follow them through. The Chargers have seen Phillip Rivers‘ better days and need to establish their long-term future at the quarterback position while they can. Herbert had the opportunity to be a top quarterback in the previous draft but decided to return to Oregon and had another great season with the Ducks.
Herbert, coming off an outstanding performance at the Senior Bowl, can step into the Chargers’ offense on day one and have the ability to succeed due to the high volume of weapons their offense carries. This includes Keenan Allen, Mike Williams, and Hunter Henry. Herbert will find success in LA with the Chargers seemingly set on moving away from Rivers in 2020.
7. Carolina Panthers – Jordan Love, QB, Utah State:
Similar to the 2018 NFL draft, many quarterbacks find themselves being called to the stage in the top ten picks of the draft. Jordan Love may be a slight reach at number seven, but the Panthers need a quarterback more than any other position right now and Love is the best quarterback still available for them.
Cam Newton has shown that his health is too serious to rely on him long-term and Kyle Allen is not a viable option for a long-term starter either. Jordan Love had a solid career at Utah State and should be able to work with new Panthers coach Matt Ruhle and develop into a solid starting quarterback in Carolina.
8. Arizona Cardinals – Isaiah Simmons, Utility, Clemson:
The Cardinals are the team that breaks the streak of quarterbacks despite taking a first-round quarterback in back to back drafts prior to the 2020 NFL draft. The Cardinals instead decided to take the most intriguing prospect in the entire draft.
Isaiah Simmons is an athletic utility type player who can play anywhere you need him on defense. Simmons played a lot of outside linebacker and safety with Clemson, but he can even lineup as a defensive end or a cornerback if needed. Simmons will be a strong player for the Cardinals defense as their offense looks to improve with the young talent already in place there.
9. Jacksonville Jaguars – Jerry Jeudy, WR, Alabama:
The Jaguars are the first team to select a wide receiver in a draft known to have a deep class of talented receivers. Jerry Jeudy is an extremely talented receiver who can play on the outside and be a team’s true number one option. Pairing Jeudy with D.J. Chark gives any quarterback an opportunity to succeed in Jacksonville. Especially when paired with their strong running game led by Leonard Fournette.
10. Cleveland Browns – Andrew Thomas, OT, Georgia:
The Cleveland Browns had high expectations in 2019 that they ultimately couldn’t live up to. A lack of protection for Baker Mayfield was a primary cause of this underperformance. Cleveland has a solid interior offensive line but lacks a strong outside presence from their tackles. Insert Andrew Thomas from Georgia. Thomas is a dominant offensive tackle who can go up against the best pass rushers in the NFL from day one.
11. New York Jets – CeeDee Lamb, WR, Oklahoma:
The New York Jets are a franchise that has lacked a strong weapon in the passing game for a few seasons now. Robby Anderson has been the go-to-guy for the Jets in recent times. However, he might be leaving for a better situation this off-season. Sam Darnold won’t progress for the Jets without supplying him with proper weapons. Le’veon Bell is a start, but without a real threat on the outside, Bell is facing stacked boxes and increased coverage in the flats. Darnold needs to open up the offense through the air before Bell can succeed as he did in Pittsburgh.
12. Las Vegas Raiders – Derrick Brown, DT, Auburn:
Derrick Brown is an elite talent who could easily be drafted in the top six of any draft. Due to the need for quarterbacks and other factors, Brown fell to the Raiders at twelve in this mock. Brown can make an immediate impact on the Raiders’ defense and give their other young defensive players the ability to also make a greater impact for their new fans in las Vegas.
13. Indianapolis Colts – Kristian Fulton, CB, LSU:
The Colts currently have a few glaring issues on their roster. Those issues contributed to their collapse in the second half of the 2019 season. Cornerback is one of the issues for Indy. Kristian Fulton has been an impressive corner for the national champions LSU Tigers this season. Fulton should help legitimize the Colts’ secondary in the future. Indianapolis has a talented young team with stars on both sides of the ball. Fixing their secondary will go a long way towards their immediate chances of success in the AFC.
14. Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Tristan Wirfs, OT, Iowa:
The Buccaneers had a frustrating season from a statistical standpoint. The Bucs were a top-five scoring offense and had a defensive player of the year candidate on defense in Shaq Barrett. Their quarterback Jameis Winston threw for an impressive 5,000+ yards which led the entire NFL in 2019. However, Winston also threw an abysmal 30 interceptions this season, which ended the Bucs’ chances of entering the playoffs.
Giving Winston more time to make better decisions is crucial for the Bucs so they don’t waste the opportunity they have with Mike Evans and Chris Godwin together on their offense. Wirfs is a good tackle who will give Winston increased protection on the outside.
15. Denver Broncos – Henry Ruggs III, WR, Alabama:
The Denver Broncos are entering a phase with their offense where they have pieces in place and need to find out who is the real deal. Quarterback Drew Lock showed promise late in 2019 and should get his proper chance in 2020 to prove himself to the Broncos. This is why they should supply him with as much as they can give him to find success.
Lock already has pro bowl receiver Courtland Sutton and promising tight end Noah Fant. Giving him a speedy deep threat like Henry Ruggs would give Lock all the tools needed to either succeed in Denver or show Denver they need to keep looking.
16. Atlanta Falcons – A.J. Epenesa, DE, Iowa:
A.J. Epenesa is another talented player who could easily be taken at the top of the draft but falls here due to a number of reasons. Epenesa can cause problems on the edge for any team and can disrupt a running game with ease. Hopefully, Epenesa will be the final chapter in the Falcons story of trying to solidify their edge presence on defense.
17. Dallas Cowboys – Laviska Shenault, WR, Colorado:
The Cowboys have a chance to lose their top wideout Amari Cooper this off-season and that would leave them with minimal options on offense for Dak Prescott. Michael Gallup emerged as a serious threat for the Cowboys, but other than Gallup, the Cowboys’ next best threat is the aging Randall Cobb.
Shenault is a fantastic receiver who could replace what they would lose in Cooper at a much cheaper price tag. Shenault has a solid combo of speed, route running, and speed that allows him to lineup anywhere on the line of scrimmage for the Cowboys.
18. Miami Dolphins – Mekhi Becton, OT, Lousiville:
The Dolphins continue to shape their offense with the selection of Becton. Becton is a solid offensive tackle who can replace the void left by Laremy Tunsil on their offensive line. Beckton could grow a connection with fellow rookie Tua Tagovailoa to help lead the Dolphins into a new era of success.
19. Las Vegas Raiders – Grant Delpit, S, LSU:
Grant Delpit is an impressive talent who showed his skills on the national championship LSU Tigers this season. Delpit has shown that he is capable of disrupting any rushing attack and has all the capabilities in pass coverage to be a lockdown over the top safety. Delpit can even rush off the edge in blitz packages like the best safeties in the NFL. Falling to nineteen would be surprising for Delpit, but landing in Las Vegas would be a great situation for the young safety.
20. Jacksonville Jaguars – K’Lavon Chaisson, OLB, LSU:
The Jaguars are another team to use their second pick of the draft on an LSU defender. Chaisson emerged this season with LSU as a capable defender who can strive in a 3-4 schemed defense that relies on outside linebackers to generate pressure on the quarterback. Chaisson had 13.5 tackles for loss and 6.5 sacks this season for LSU and should fit in nicely on the Jaguars defense who had a down season defensively from the year prior.
21. Philadelphia Eagles – Justin Jefferson, WR, LSU:
It should be no surprise to see a receiver mocked for the Eagles this off-season. The Eagles struggled to keep their receivers healthy this season and when they were healthy, they made it impossible for their offense to get a flow due to constantly dropped passes. Justin Jefferson brings a nice blend of size and speed that will help bring some pressure off of Zach Ertz and Dallas Goedert.
22. Buffalo Bills – Tee Higgins, WR, Clemson:
Higgins is a perfect match for the Bills at 22. They lack a true number one receiver and height at the receiver position. Higgins checks both boxes for Buffalo. The former Tiger stands at 6’4″ and has great catching ability.
Higgins had a fantastic career at Clemson recording 118 receptions, 2,103 yards, and 25 touchdowns in his final two seasons at Clemson. That level of production would give Buffalo’s offense a complete makeover and would help Josh Allen immensely.
23. New England Patriots – Javon Kinlaw, DT, South Carolina:
Javon Kinlaw is a talented defensive tackle who showed consistent improvement while at South Carolina. He recorded six sacks in his final season at South Carolina and has a strong ability to get off the ball quickly. Kinlaw is a powerful tackle who excels at the bull rush and should fit right in with the Patriots.
24. New Orleans Saints – Xavier McKinney, S, Alabama:
McKinney is a versatile player who can play all over the defense and can transcend a defense. The Saints have seen their safeties play inconsistently so far and McKinney could bring them more consistency at the position. McKinney played well for Alabama and could fit into the Saints defense easily at safety, linebacker, or even slot cornerback if needed.
25. Minnesota Vikings – Trevon Diggs, CB, Alabama:
Trevon Diggs is an interesting prospect to mock for the Vikings. The Vikings like to use the higher rounds of the draft to bolster their secondary and Diggs also happens to be the brother of their star wide receiver Stefon Diggs. Trevon played well at Alabama as a significant part of their elite secondary. With the regression of Vikings cornerback Xavier Rhodes, adding Diggs would be a great help to the Vikings’ defense.
26. Miami Dolphins – D’Andre Swift, RB, Georgia:
Miami uses their third first-round selection to add a third piece to their new offense. D’Andre Swift is an elusive and explosive back from Georgia. He will join many fellow Bulldogs who are all starting running backs in the NFL such as Todd Gurley, Nick Chubb, and Sony Michel.
Swift possesses much of the same talent that these backs had out of college. Solidifying their offense with a potential franchise quarterback, running back, an offensive tackle give the Dolphins a blueprint for their future success.
27. Seattle Seahawks – Austin Jackson, OT, USC:
Seattle has had issues building their offensive line for a few seasons now. They lack a strong anchor on the line to lead the group on offense. Austin Jackson has the ability to become that anchor for Seattle given time to develop. Hopefully, the front office heeds the advice from this 2020 NFL mock draft.
28. Baltimore Ravens – Kenneth Murray, OLB, Oklahoma:
The Baltimore Ravens had an incredible season cut short by the effective running attack of the Titans and Derrick Henry. Building their front seven to combat effective running attacks is the best move for Baltimore late in this round of this 2020 NFL mock draft. Murray is another Sooner who played well all season and can disrupt any running game. His coverage skills need work, but his tackling ability is exceptional.
29. Tennessee Titans – Raekwon Davis, DT, Alabama:
Davis is a large tackle that can disrupt plays with just his size alone. Davis is 6’7″ and 310 lbs. The Titans need to improve their defense to keep up with their impressive offense led by Derrick Henry and Ryan Tannehill.
30. Green Bay Packers – Yetur Gross-Matos, DE, Penn State:
Gross-Matos brings an exceptional ability to disrupt an opposing backfield and interrupt any running offense. In his second year at Penn State, Gross-Matos recorded 20 tackles for loss and finished with 54 tackles from the defensive end position. In his third and final season, he showed consistency recording another 14.5 tackles for loss and 40 total tackles. Gross-Matos can transcend a run defense and the Packers are looking for someone who can do exactly that.
31. Kansas City Cheifs – Jonathan Taylor, RB, Oklahoma:
One of the best offensive players in college football lands with the AFC champions at the end of the first round. Taylor exploded at Oklahoma this season for 2,003 yards and 21 touchdowns. Taylor totaled at least 1,970 yards in all three seasons at Oklahoma. He also developed his receiving game in his final year, catching five touchdowns on 26 receptions. Taylor’s production in college is exceptional and he would help finally fill the gap created by Kareem Hunt on the Chiefs’ offense.
32. San Francisco 49ers – C.J. Henderson, CB, Florida:
The 49ers finish the first round of this 2020 NFL mock draft by bolstering their secondary for the future. Richard Sherman is by far the best player in the 49ers secondary. He is beginning to reach an age where any season could be his last. Getting Henderson in the building before Sherman exits is crucial for the 49ers in developing Henderson for the future.