There's a _____ percent chance that the Cardinals take Kyler Murray No. 1.
I said it Monday
: 99.9 percent. I'm not changing until I'm proved otherwise. Now, if Arizona general manager Steve Keim really is
pulling off the smoke screen of the century, we're going to see some chaos Thursday night.
So that means Josh Rosenwill get traded. Which team is most likely to land him?
The two teams I keep hearing are the Giants and Dolphins. The Redskins, previously thought to be in the mix, aren't as likely to land the former UCLA quarterback, but I have heard some chatter about the Chargers acquiring Rosen to be Philip Rivers
' heir. Stay tuned.
What are the chances four quarterbacks go in Round 1?
I'll go a step further than my first answer -- it's 100 percent. Murray, Ohio State's Dwayne Haskins
and Missouri's Drew Lock
could all go in the top 10, if teams trade up. Then there is my guy Daniel Jones
, the Duke quarterback who is likely to go in the top 20. Jones is rising.
The safest pick in this draft is ____________.
Iowa tight end T.J. Hockenson
. Simply put, he's just a complete player. Hockenson plays with toughness and is an incredible athlete with a 6-foot-5 frame. The team that drafts him can line him up inside or outside and then just watch him put up yardage after the catch.
Which team is most likely to trade up in this draft?
Keep an eye on Washington at No. 15. The Redskins need a quarterback. Could they get their guy if they moved ahead of Denver at No. 10? Remember: Most draft-day trades are for teams trying to move up for quarterbacks. Watch Washington closely.
Which team is most likely to trade down?
I'd say there's a chance the Jets, who are picking at No. 3 without a need at quarterback, trade out. They'd love to move down, but the question becomes how far? I keep hearing they like Houston defensive tackle Ed Oliver
, Alabama defensive tackle Quinnen Williams
and Kentucky defensive end Josh Allen
. Those three won't be on the board long. And what if Ohio State's Nick Bosa
drops to No. 3?
Who are the hottest names in this draft?
The new name I keep hearing in the top five is Oliver. I wouldn't be shocked if he went as high as No. 3 to the Jets. Michigan inside linebacker Devin Bush
is another hot name for the top 10. Teams really love his speed and playmaking ability. For guys rising on Day 2 of the draft, I'll give you two prospects: Michigan State's Justin Layne
, a lanky corner who had a strong scouting combine, and Penn State's Miles Sanders
, who could be the second running back off the board. Both could go in the top 40 picks.
Which prospect will be drafted higher than most think?
McShay: Darnell Savage Jr.
, who had a great combine, is likely to go in Round 1 now. If you don't know about the Maryland safety yet, you should. Another name to watch: Boise State running back Alexander Mattison
. I've heard a lot of buzz
this week about him, and he has risen from late Day 3 pick to potentially going in the third round.
Which prospect will go lower than he should?
It's Dwayne Haskins
, who might drop out of the top 10. He's the No. 7 player on my board, and I think he could be a star in the right situation. Now, he's not a finished product and he'll need some time to reach his ceiling, but that ceiling is extremely high.
Which prospect will be overdrafted based on what you've seen on tape?
Cover your ears, Mel, because it's definitely Daniel Jones
. Sure, he has good size and athleticism, but his accuracy nosedives when he gets pressured, and he doesn't have a big arm. I grade him as a Day 2 future backup -- the No. 6 QB on my board -- but he's being talked about as a first-round franchise quarterback. I just don't see it.
Over/under 6.5 defensive players taken in the top 10 picks?
Give me the under, because I'm expecting trades into the top 10 to get quarterbacks.
Over/under 2.5 wide receivers in the first round?
Under. You'll probably see Oklahoma burner Marquise Brown
and Ole Miss combine warrior DK Metcalf
go, but neither of them is a lock. Expect a run on the position on Day 2.
Which school will have more players selected in the first round: Ohio State or Clemson?
Clemson is going to have three -- defensive linemen Christian Wilkins
, Clelin Ferrell
and Dexter Lawrence
-- and I think Ohio State likely gets only two, in Bosa and Haskins.
Will a running back be picked in Round 1?
I'd say there's a 70 percent chance. Alabama's Josh Jacobs
is really the only candidate. Sanders is a Round 2 guy, and there will be value at the position in Rounds 3-5. But as for Day 1, there are a few teams that might spark their run game with Jacobs on the back end of the first round. I'd keep an eye on Oakland at Nos. 24 and 27.
Which first-round pick has the biggest range?
I have heard Michigan's Rashan Gary
going as high as No. 10 to the Broncos all the way to No. 28 to the Chargers. There's no consensus. His tape at Michigan is inconsistent, but he's such a physical specimen that I lean toward the top 15 here.
Which combine breakthrough is now a first-round lock?
Florida State's Brian Burns
. The edge rusher's tape is just OK, but it doesn't have the consistency you'd want to see from a top-20 pick. But man, he is extremely athletic. He was in the top six among edge guys in Indianapolis in the 40-yard dash, vertical jump, broad jump and 3-cone drill. You can see that he has a high ceiling, and teams looking for a pass-rusher will love his versatility.
Who's your favorite prospect-to-player comp in this class?
Hockenson to longtime Steelers stud Heath Miller, who spent 11 seasons in the NFL. Miller was a force in the run game and a good pass-catcher. Hockenson isn't Gronk Jr., but he is going to be a really good player.
Brown reminds me a lot of Eagles wideout DeSean Jackson
. While both lack size, their explosiveness is off the charts. Brown is nursing a foot injury
and might go later on Day 1.
Give us the Day 2 pick who's most likely to make a Pro Bowl.
I really like Virginia defensive back Juan Thornhill
, a super athlete and ball hawk who could play safety or corner at the next level. In fact, there's no consensus on his best position -- he'd fill a need for all 32 teams.
Remember the name Deebo Samuel
. The South Carolina receiver is the top slot guy in the class. He's electric when you give him the ball and is built like a running back. And he can contribute as a returner. Sign me up.
You're in a draft room. Who's the guy you're pounding the table for when Day 2 begins?
Kiper: Khalen Saunders
can play for my team. The Western Illinois defensive tackle is a big-time riser after he had a strong week of practice at the Senior Bowl and then showed out at the combine. He has risen from fifth- or sixth-round pick all the way to top-50 consideration.
Ohio State receiver Terry McLaurin
has blazing speed. If a team can get him in the middle of Round 2, I'm all-in. He's the best special-teams player in the class, and with good ball skills and that ridiculous speed (4.35), an NFL team can really develop him into a valuable asset.
Who's your favorite midround sleeper?
Washburn cornerback Corey Ballentine
is underrated, and he'll go in the third or fourth round. He tested well at the combine -- his 135-inch broad jump led all cornerbacks -- and he was extremely productive at a lower collegiate level.
I'm also going secondary, with Boston College safety Will Harris
, who will likely be a third- or fourth-round pick. He closes on the ball well, has good instincts and can match up with tight ends.
Which first-round pick is the perfect fit for a team?
If I'm running Buffalo's front office, I'm taking Alabama offensive lineman Jonah Williams
at No. 9. He could start at guard or tackle for the Bills.
If Arizona does takes Murray, San Francisco gets a perfect fit with Bosa. The Niners need an edge rusher opposite Dee Ford
, and Bosa's instincts, speed and power give him double-digit sack potential as a rookie.
What's the position where teams can get depth throughout the draft?
You're going to see a run on wide receivers to start Round 2, and you could see another to start Round 4. The class is light on elite guys, but there are several solid pass-catchers.
After a flurry of cornerbacks at the end of Round 1 and early in Round 2, there are going to be some really good value picks at the position. Day 2 prospects Layne (versatility), Lonnie Johnson Jr.
(press-man coverage), David Long
(man coverage) and Julian Love
(zone coverage) are all solid talents who can fit nicely with the right teams.
Which prospect needs to go to the right team to excel?
Oliver. He needs to be turned loose as a 3-technique in a one-gap scheme, similar to how the Rams use defensive tackle Aaron Donald
. Oliver was handcuffed as a nose tackle at Houston, but he's powerful and has good first-step quickness. Put him in the right system and let him create chaos.
Which team has to absolutely nail this draft?
Last year it was the Browns, and general manager John Dorsey got his team on track, thanks largely to the 2018 rookie class. I'll go with the Giants this year. They have two first-round picks (Nos. 6 and 17), and GM Dave Gettleman needs to get two impact starters. They also have eight picks on Day 3 to find some diamonds in the rough.
How does Jon Gruden have a good first round?
Honestly, he just has to make his four picks in the top 35. I'd rather have four high-end picks than gamble on a guy to be elite, and there isn't a player in this class worth losing that opportunity. Think about what Oakland has given up to be in this position. The Raiders have needs on the edge, on the interior of the offensive line, in the secondary and in the receiving game. If they hit on even a few of those early picks, it could change the entire outlook of the roster.
The Packers have two first-round picks. What would make Aaron Rodgers happy?
Green Bay's top three needs are all on offense: wide receiver, tight end and the line. Make Rodgers happy by filling two of those needs. Iowa tight end Noah Fant
makes a ton of sense if he's on the board at No. 30.
Which QB-needy team is most likely to wait until 2020?
Miami. The Dolphins just aren't there yet. They need to strip it all down and rebuild completely. And of all the teams in the hunt for a QB, Miami is the most concerning. Once you factor in just a mid-first-round pick, only seven picks overall and serious needs at just about every position, I could see Miami GM Chris Grier riding Ryan Fitzpatrick
for a season and looking at quarterback next spring. You might have heard that that class includes Alabama's Tua Tagovailoa
and Oregon's Justin Herbert