This has been all but guaranteed the minute that Tua Tagoviloa broke his hip. Barring a monster trade, the Bengals will stay put and grab their franchise QB. Burrow could have pulled an "Eli Manning" but has said he will play for whomever drafts him and he is a local product.
Ian Rapoport reported last week that the Bengals have been meeting with him weekly since the end of the season which is good news for a team that needs it. Burrow lacks the arm strength of an elite player but has everything else you could ask for. He set the record for the widest margin a player has ever won the Heisman by and the number of TDs thrown in a season.
Chris Ransom posted a film cut of Joe Burrow on the Draft Utopia Youtube channel. You can watch it below.
There were initially a few rumblings that maybe the Redskins would trade out, but then Charlie Campbell of WalterFootball reported at the end of February that the Redskins would prefer to stay at 2 and select Young. Charlie got seven picks in the first round correct last year more than anyone else so I'm taking his word here. Chase Young is the consensus top rated player on most boards and reminds a lot of people of a cross between the Bosa's and Jadaveon Clowney. If he stays healthy, he will be a Pro Bowl pass rusher.
TRADE ONE: Detroit Lions trade pick 3 to the to the Miami Dolphins for 5, 39, and a future pick. Detroit's pick at 3 is worth 2,200 points on the trade value chart. Miami's pick at 5 is worth 1,700 points with 39 being worth 510 points so Miami has just enough draft capital to satisfy Detroit by moving 5 and 39 while keeping their 2021 picks. However, Miami gives Detroit a 2021 third round pick which will be worth at least 200 points on the trade value chart as long Miami finishes in the bottom 16 once again which they should even if they move up for a quarterback in this draft.
Detroit has 5, 35, 39, two third round picks in 2020 and two third round picks in 2021 which they can use as capital for a third second round pick in this draft if there is someone they really want. Miami gets a quarterback at 3, still has a second round pick thanks to the Kiko Alonso trade with New Orleans that sent 56 to Miami, and still has two first and second round picks in 2021 thanks to the Tunsil trade with the Texans giving them the flexibility and luxury of moving a 2021 third round pick making this trade beneificial to both teams.
This is where the fun begins. The Lions let the world know early in the process that they are fielding calls and "open for business". They were mostly linked to the CB from Ohio State Okudah throughout most of the process but there is some late rumblings about them liking Brown from Auburn.
It is hard to say who moves up but I think it will probably be the Chargers or Dolphins moving up for Tua or Herbert. I had Tua going here from the beginning, but late odds on who the second QB taken will be went from Tua as a massive favorite to, now, even money and that lends me to believe that Herbert will go first.
Armando Salguero of the Miami Herald reported back in Ferbruary that the Dolphins prefer Herbert to Tua due to injuries. Last week, Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald pointed out that nobody has done more work on Herbert than Miami. Matt Miller of Bleacher Report stated what Jackson thought back in January. Daniel Jeremiah of NFL Network changed his pick from Tua to Herbert despite having Tua graded higher. So, my guess is Miami and Herbert.
Chris posted a film cut of Justin Herbert VS Auburn. Herbert did good in this game despite having four injured wide receivers. Most people who observed the game are giving Herbert crap for not winning or not having 300 passing yards, but a lot of his issues from bad throws either stem from missed assignments from the wide receivers or just bad decisions that Herbert made throughout the game.
Draft Utopia also had a press conference with the 2020 Senior Bowl MVP. Click this Justin Herbert Interview to listen to Herbert in Mobile.
TRADE TWO: New York Giants trade pick 4 to the Los Angeles Chargers for Picks 6, 71, and a future pick. New York's pick at 4 is worth 1,800 points on the trade value chart. Los Angeles can sent 6 worth 1,600 points and 71 235 points to give the Giants 1,835 points on the trade value chart. The Chargers throw in a 2021 third round pick to sweeten this deal since the Giants traded their 2020 third to the New York Jets for Leonard Williams.
Just like the Lions, the Giants' GM Dave Gettleman said the team is "open for business" in regard to trading the No. 4 pick. Whichever QB does not go 3rd probably goes here much the same way the Bears moved up for Trubisky. If the Giants stay put, I think the pick is going to be their top rated OT as Ralph Vacchiano, SNY reported early April that they are leaning towards OT over on of the premier defenders.
The Giants will still get one of the top rated OTs if they trade down only 2 picks and the Chargers move up and make sure they get their franchise QB of the future. The Chargers have been linked to Tua and Herbert as well and would be ecstatic with either one. They claim Tyrod Taylor is not a stop-gap QB (Peter King) but I have a hard time believing that, namely due to how much work they have spent on looking at the young QBs (not to mention Taylor's lack of ability to be a franchise QB for years).
Draft Utopia posted a film cut on Tua Tagovailoa versus LSU. Check it out and see why someone may trade up for Tua.
In this scenario the Lions will get their pick of whatever defensive player they want, besides Young. Late rumors have Okudah falling a bit and Albert Breer, Sports Illustrated says that the Lions are taking a liking to the Auburn DT. I would not be surprised if it is Okudah or Simmons but I think they want Brown.
In this scenario, the Giants will have their pick of the litter- any OT they want. Tony Pauline, Pro Football Network says that the Giants are most likely to address the offensive and defensive line at No. 4 than linebacker- which takes out Isaiah Simmons. This is consistent with Ralph Vacchiano, SNY that said that the Giants are leaning toward an offensive tackle over Isaiah Simmons at No. 4 overall. Which tackle do they want? It could be any of the big four and not shock anyone. Wirfs is the consensus number 1 tackle.
TRADE THREE: Carolina Panthers trade pick 7 and 113 to the Jacksonville Jaguars for picks 9 and 73. Carolina's picks at 7 and 113 are worth 1,568 points on the trade value chart with 7 being worth 1,500 poitns and 113 being worth 68 points. Jacksonville's picks at 9 and 73 are worth 1,575 points with 9 being worth 1,350 points and 73 being worth 225 points to get 1,575 points.
Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network reported today that the Panthers and Cardinals want to trade down. Peter King reported this week that the Jaguars want to trade up for a CB. This would make sense as the Jaguars would get the CB they want here. I was torn between CJ Henderson or Javon Kinlaw being the pick for them at 9 throughout the entire draft season. Matt Miller reported that they will draft a CB and a DT in round 1.
TRADE FOUR: Arizona Cardinals trade pick 8 to the Atlanta Falcons for pick 11 and a 2021 second round pick. Atlanta originally moved 16 1,000 points, 78 200 points, and a 2021 fourth rounder worth an estimated 50 points to the New York Jets for 11 which is worth 1,250 points what Atlanta offered via trade. Then they moved 11 1,250 points and a 2021 second rounder 300 points 1,550 points for a pick worth 1,400 points on the trade value chart.
Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network reported today that the Panthers and Cardinals want to trade down. Peter King has stated that The worst-kept secret in the NFL is that the Falcons want to move up for one of the top two cornerbacks in the 2020 NFL Draft. Three weeks ago, Paul Crane, Falcons Radio Network reported that the Falcons were in specific talks with the Jets to move up and get that pick. This checks both boxes. But 11 might not be enough. I think that the Falcons might have to move multiple times to get up high enough to secure one of the two elite CBs which they do in this mock.
Draft Utopia posted a film cut of C.J. Henderson VS Miami FL. Most believe he's the top cornerback not named Jeffrey Okudah.
I had Derrick Brown falling to 7 for most of the process but it looks like he might be taken now. I think the Panthers trade down if he is goine and just draft their top-rated defensive player. Walter of Walterfootball is adamant that they will go DT or CB. For whatever reason, he eliminated Simmons as an option. The Panthers have been pretty tight-lipped the last couple months, but I think he is the best defensive prospect available. An argument could be made that they take Simmons at 7 if they stay anyways.
TRADE FIVE: Cleveland Browns trade pick 10 to the Denver Broncos for picks 15, 83, and a 2021 third round pick. Cleveland's pick at 10 is worth 1,300 points on the trade value chart. Denver's 2020 picks at 15 and 83 are worth 1,050 points and 205 points making those picks worth 1,255 points. Denver has two third round picks in 2020 even without 83 so if they throw in a 2021 third round pick that is worth up to 100 points on the trade value chart to sweeten this deal enough for both Cleveland who now has 3 2020 third round picks and 2 2021 third round picks while Denver still gets the player they want at 10 as well as their second round pick and two third round picks in 2020.
Peter King reported that the Browns will take Andrew Thomas if they cannot trade out. Tony Pauline, Pro Football Network reported back in February how much the Browns love a certain OT they would want to trade back to take. Peter King echoed the sentiment two weeks ago. Dane Brugler, The Athletic said that "The Browns trading back in the first round for Ezra Cleveland would be the "least surprising move on draft day." So, I am going to mock that to happen. It is hard to say who trades up with Cleveland but the most popular search on the web that pops up is the Broncos moving up for Jerry Jeudy. Woody Paige tweeted as much last week.
Draft Utopia posted a film cut of Jerry Jeudy VS LSU. Jeudy did very good in this game and its easy to see why a team like Denver would want to trade up for Jeudy.
TRADE SIX: Arizona Cardinals trade pick 8 to the Atlanta Falcons for pick 11 and a 2021 second round pick. How did Atlanta move from 16 to 11 where the New York Jets picked before moving up again to 8? Atlanta originally moved 16 1,000 points, 78 200 points, and a 2021 fourth rounder worth an estimated 50 points to the New York Jets for 11 which is worth 1,250 points what Atlanta offered via trade. Then they moved 11 1,250 points and a 2021 second rounder 300 points 1,550 points for a pick worth 1,400 points on the trade value chart.
I truly think that the Cardinals take their top rated player no matter his position (besides QB of course). It is well-known that Kyler Murray has been pushing hard for the team to draft his old teammate CeeDee Lamb. However with the addition of DeAndre Hopkins, I personally think that they have too many other needs- namely on defense. Most people have the Cardinals going OT but they re-signed both their tackles in the offseason so I doubt it. Kinlaw is the best player available on the defensive front 7 and could immediately help the Cards defense and would be happy to nab him at 8, so at 11 is even better.
Javon Kinlaw has the speed and athleticism to be an effective pass rusher and run stuffer. Kinlaw can play the 0-technique, 1-techinque, 2-technique, 3-technique, 4-technique, and 5-technique. Was easily the best defensive player in Mobile during the 2020 Senior Bowl and has four down ability. Click this Javon Kinlaw Interview to hear Kinlaw's press conference from Mobile on the Draft Utopia podcast.
The Raiders have been linked to no less than half a dozen different WRs during the draft process. If they go anything but WR it will be a surprise. Lamb is the consensus top rated WR on most boards and Peter King says that Mike Mayok "loves" Lamb.
TRADE SEVEN: San Francisco 49ers trade pick 13 to the Kansas City Chiefs for pick 32, 63, and a 2021 first round pick. Pick 13 is worth 1,150 points on the trade value chart. Pick 32 is worth 590 points on the trade value chart and you add the 276 points on the trade value chart that 63 is worth and you get 866 points. Kansas City has to throw in a 2021 first round pick if they want to trade up for Henry Ruggs III.
Of all the projected trades, this is the least likely. First of all, the Niners would prefer to trade down from their pick at 31 not at 13 (Pauline) but Peter King reported that the Chiefs would love to move up and snag Ruggs. So, I am going to mock that to happen and have the Niners sit back and use those extra picks. This pick will likely be a WR regardless of who makes it. The Chiefs would have to part with next year's first rounder to make this happen much like they did to acquire Patrick Mahomes.
Draft Utopia posted a film cut of Henry Ruggs III VS LSU. Henry Ruggs III did good in this game.
The Buccaneers want to put as much weapons and protection around newly acquired QB Tom Brady. They have been linked to the top tackles and the top RBs in the draft and although Peter King hinted that the Bucs want a RB, I think they can wait until round 2 to grab one. Unsure which OT the Buccaneers prefer but my guess is Thomas - who was a stud at Georgia.
Draft Utopia posted a film cut of Georgia's offensive line versus Notre Dame. Here is a film cut of Georgia's offensive line with Andrew Thomas facing Notre Dame.
TRADE EIGHT: Cleveland Browns trade pick 15 and 83 to the Philadelphia Eagles for picks 21 and 53. Cleveland's picks are worth 1,225 on the trade value chart while Philadelphia is worth 1,170. Cleveland could give up 97 instead of 83 to make this trade more fair to both teams, but if Cleveland cannot get Wirfs or Andrew Thomas at 15, then the Browns will draft someone else by taking more for less.
In order for the Browns to really be in position to draft Ezra Cleveland, they would likely need to move back again. Benjamin Allbright, Pro Football Network reported in February that the Eagles want to move up for a WR. In this mock, they are falling off the board left and right. This is to be expected as it is the deepest WR class of all time. So, the Eagles might be nervous that they will not get the one they like. The Eagles have been linked to many of the WRs in the draft. Cody Williams of the NFLSpinZone mocked the double trade down this week in order for the Browns to get the most picks possible and still grab the Boise State OT.
The Jets would be very happy that only 2 of the drafts top 4 OTs are still on the board. I do not know which they would prefer between the Alabama OT or the Louisville one. Becton had a diluted sample red-flagged at the combine - so my previous mock is probably the smarter and safer choice. But Becton's size and ridiculous workout at the combine could tempt the Jets to go with the monster prospect.