As the 2022 season approaches, teams are working hard in training camp and preseason games to narrow their rosters down. Meanwhile, media and fans are looking ahead, thinking about their team’s future draft picks and how they will make an impact in their first season. These mock drafts will inevitability change drastically, but it is still good to get a baseline. There are no trades, and the draft order is based on the latest Super Bowl odds by DraftKings. (Photo Credits: pff.com)
1) Houston Texans – Spencer Rattler|QB|Oklahoma : With Desaun Watson all but out the door, the Texans are in desperate need of their next franchise QB. With the arm talent and skill set of Rattler, and the value placed on the quarterback position, it is almost a guaranteed selection.
2) Detroit Lions – Sam Howell|QB|UNC : If the Lions are picking this high in the draft, the Jared Goff experiment proved to be a failure. Despite having needs all over their roster, look for Howell to be selected second, forever linking him to Spencer Rattler.
3) NY Jets – Kayvon Thibodeaux|EDGE|Oregon : If Thibodeaux falls to the Jets, Salah and the rest of the organization will sprint their card in. Putting Thibodeuax next to Quinnen Williams would be a nightmare for opposing teams, and it would provide Salah a good cornerstone for his defensive unit.
4) Cincinnati Bengals – Evan Neal|OT|Alabama : Having passed up on Penei Sewell in this past draft, the Bengals have to protect Joe Burrow at all costs. With Jonah Williams and Neal, the pocket will be that much more secured for their franchise QB.
5) Jacksonville Jaguars – Derek Stingley Jr.|CB|LSU : Once upon a time, the Jaguars had a shutdown corner in Jalen Ramsey. They will look to have that again in Stingley Jr. With Shaq Griffin on the other side, the Jaguars can lock up the corner position.
6) Philadelphia Eagles – Drake Jackson|EDGE|USC : Philly was once known for their elite D-line. Fletcher Cox and Brandon Graham are getting up there in age, and they need a young presence to rejuvenate this unit. Jackson would be the perfect solution.
7) Las Vegas Raiders – Myjai Sanders|EDGE|Cincinnati : John Gruden and Mike Mayock are not the best drafters. That is evident in their first few drafts together. Their unpredictably is factored in when I was making this selection for them. They need edge help with Clelin Ferrel not living up to expectations. This pick will hopefully create competition opposite Maxx Crosby.
8) Carolina Panthers – Kyle Hamilton|S|Notre Dame : Undoubtably the most athletic prospect in the entire class, Hamilton will add a much needed free safety in Carolina. Pairing him with Jeremy Chinn will lock up their back half. Chinn being more of a box safety will allow Hamilton to play all over the field.
9) NY Giants – Kedon Slovis|QB|USC : If the Giants do end up picking in the top 10, Daniel Jones will be all but done in the Meadowlands. Although Slovis has a ton to improve on, he has the technique and fundamentals that can be considered a great foundation to mold.
10) Atlanta Falcons – Kaiir Elam|CB|Florida : Corner has been a position of need for a long time in Atlanta. Elam would be the perfect fit and provide some much needed athleticism in the secondary. Having drafted AJ Terrell last year, they can solidify this position for the future.
11) NY Giants (From CHI) – Jaxson Kirkland|OT|Washington : With the Giants drafting Slovis two picks prior, they need to ensure he is protected. Having Andrew Thomas on one side, Kirkland will fortify the Giants line for their new QB.
12) Minnesota Vikings – Kingsley Enagbare|EDGE|South Carolina : Even after signing Everson Griffin just a few days ago, the Vikings need youth on the edge. Inserting Enagbare opposite Daniele Hunter would add a huge boost to this unit.
13) Washington Football Team – Kenyon Green|G/OT|Mississippi State : I know this is a surprising pick, but I truly believe that Ron Rivera and the Washington organization are playing the long game when finding a franchise QB. They are a quarterback away from a playoff caliber team and inserting a rookie could delay that. Brandon Scherff’s status on the team is up in the air. Drafting Green could secure this potential need and fortify their line for their future franchise leader.
14) Pittsburgh Steelers – Carson Strong|QB|Nevada: Ben Roethlisberger is not getting any younger, and Mason Rudolph is not the future of the franchise. I expect Strong to have a Zach Wilson / Joe Burrow type of leap this year to solidify himself as a first round caliber quarterback. Even if Big Ben plays another year, Strong will be waiting and learning to take over the team when his time comes.
15) Arizona Cardinals – Andrew Booth Jr.|CB|Clemson : There are some notable needs on this roster, but none more important than at corner. Patrick Peterson is gone, and Malcolm Butler is not the long term answer. A seamless replacement for Arizona would be Booth Jr. His ability in press coverage to shut down a #1 receiver will be a perfect fit in this defense.
16) Denver Broncos – DeMarvin Leal|DL|Texas A&M : The Broncos defense is one of the best in the league, and it will only get better with Leal. There is always a surprise slide in the draft and that is Leal in this mock. He will be a steal for Denver.
17) Philadelphia Eagles (From MIA) – Charles Cross|OT|Mississippi State : The main goal here is to protect Jalen Hurts, who I believe the Eagles will stick with for foreseeable future. Cross can be an immediate starter over Andre Dillard and help secure Hurts’ blindside.
18) New England Patriots – Chris Olave|WR|Ohio State : Even with the off-season additions, the Patriots cannot pass on such a versatile playmaker. Olave will thrive on any team he goes to. Whether it is Cam Newton or Mac Jones throwing him the ball, Olave will make an instant impact.
19) Philadelphia Eagles (From IND) – Ainias Smith|RB/WR|Texas A&M : With their third pick in the 1st round, the Eagles take someone who plays eerily similar to someone they used to rely on, Darren Sproles. Smith is extremely versatile and plays all over the field, including running back, slot receiver, and outside receiver, with the skill set to be a returner as well. He could be a perfect compliment to both Devonta Smith and Miles Sanders.
20) Tennessee Titans – Jalen Wydermyer|TE|Texas A&M : Jonnu Smith was a huge loss in free agency this offseason. With a TE of this caliber on the board, the Titans cannot let him slip away. Alongside Julio Jones and AJ Brown, Wydermyer would make their offense elevate that much more.
21) LA Chargers – Christian Harris|LB|Alabama : Lining up next to Kenneth Murray Jr, Harris would be an instant upgrade to the Chargers LB core. Although they are both smaller linebackers, they would both fly around the field making plays.
22) Dallas Cowboys – Trent McDuffie|DB|Washington : There is no question that the Cowboys secondary needs a ton of improvement. Dan Quinn would be thrilled to have McDuffie fall this far. He can line up at any spot in the secondary, and he is also is a great blitzer, something that Quinn would definitely utilize.
23) New Orleans Saints – Ahmad Gardner|CB|Cincinnati : The secondary for New Orleans has been questionable for a long time. Other than Marshon Lattimore, there are no good options at corner. Gardner could easily be the corner to compliment Lattimore, and finally get that position where it needs to be to compete in a pass heavy NFC South.
24) NY Jets (From SEA) – Garrett Wilson|WR|Ohio State : Taking Thibodeaux earlier in the draft helped their defense. Now the Jets are going to help Zach Wilson and the offense with the addition of Wilson. You can never have enough weapons, and that is the philosophy I believe New York follows with this pick. Wilson will add firepower to a WR group that is already pretty good.
25) Cleveland Browns – George Karlaftis|EDGE|Purdue : The rich get richer with this pick. The Browns signed Jadaveon Clowney to a one year deal this offseaon. If he does not live up to expectations, Karlaftis can take over for him on the edge. If they decide to keep Clowney around, Karlaftis can slide to the interior and add to an already loaded D-line; a win-win scenario.
26) Detroit Lions (From LAR) – George Pickens|WR|Georgia : Detriot’s wide receiver room was decimated in free agency this past offseason. Losing Kenny Golladay and Marvin Jones really hurt them, and that is why they will need to help out Sam Howell with a legit weapon. Pickens’ physicallity and huge catch radius will help the rookie QB.
27) Miami Dolphins (From SF) – Zion Nelson|OT|Miami : There is no question that the Dolphins need help up front. Protecting Tua needs to be priority. Austin Jackson had a questionable rookie season, and Nelson being picked here upgrades the trenches. If picked here, I believe he will be moved to right tackle to protect Tua’s blindside.
28) Baltimore Ravens – Zach Harrison|EDGE|Ohio State : Once a feared defense, Baltimore will look to get back to those days with this pick. The way their offense plays, they need a defense that keeps them in games, helping them to maintain a lead so the offense can stay ahead. Harrison is an athletic freak that would fit perfectly at 3-4 outside linebacker coming off the edge.
29) Green Bay Packers – John Metchie III|WR|Alabama : Seeing the Packers drafting a receiver in the first round looks weird, but with the situation with Aaron Rodgers, I could 100% see this happening. They have already brought back Randal Cobb because Rodgers said he wanted him, and drafting a receiver in round one would help keep him happy. Even Rodgers decides to leave Green Bay this coming offseason, Metchie III is a great receiver that will help Jordan Love and take pressure off Davante Adams.
30) Buffalo Bills – Sevyn Banks|CB|Ohio State : Other than Tre White, the Bills corners are in need of improvement. Levi Wallace is solid, but he is more of a slot corner. Adding Banks opposite of White will immediately help Buffalo’s CB room.
31) Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Tyler Linderbaum|C|Iowa : Protecting Tom Brady is the main priority for Tampa Bay. Center Ryan Jensen is not getting any younger, and inserting youth and athleticism at center would keep Tom upright for however long he decides to beat up Father Time.
32) Kansas City Chiefs – Perrion Winfrey|DT|Oklahoma : The Chiefs need to generate more pressure on quarterbacks and more disruption in the run game. Chris Jones cannot do it all and adding Winfrey will help instantly.