Time for what I believe will be our last 2018 NFL mock draft until the fall college football season arrives. Well, no promises on that, but I think this will be it.
Todd McShay released his way-too-early mock draft on Thursday. His next mock draft likely will not arrive until December. He acknowledged he has not watched tape on most of the players in his mock. Instead, his evaluations are based on what he has seen in person or on TV. The draft order is generated by Football Outsiders, who come up with early projected records for the 2017 season.
A year ago, he released the same type of mock draft. His top five picks a year ago were:
1. Cleveland Browns: DeShaun Watson, QB, Clemson
2. San Francisco 49ers: Brad Kaaya, QB, Miami (FL)
3. New York Giants: Myles Garrett, DE, Texas A&M
4. Miami Dolphins: Leonard Fournette, RB, LSU
5. Oakland Raiders: Jalen “Teez” Tabor, CB, Florida
This year, his top five picks are:
1. Cleveland Browns: Sam Darnold, QB, USC
2. San Francisco 49ers: Josh Allen, QB, Wyoming
3. New York Giants: Josh Rosen, QB, UCLA
4. Miami Dolphins: Chris Wilkins, DL, Clemson
5. Oakland Raiders: Clavin Ridley, WR, Alabama
For the next year, quarterbacks are going to dominate the conversation. Which quarterbacks will be dominating it a year from now remains to be seen. Last year, DeShaun Watson, Brad Kaaya, and Minnesota’s Mitch Leidner were in McShay’s first round mock. This year, Watson was a first round pick, Kaaya was a sixth round pick, and Leidner went undrafted. It’s safe to say plenty can change with this year’s QB class.
McShay only had those three quarterbacks going in the first round. There is talk that as many as five or six could go in the first round. Here’s what McShay had to say about each of his three QBs.
Darnold: Watching WR JuJu Smith-Schuster in preparation for the 2017 draft, it was hard not to notice Darnold. He has the mental makeup, poise and arm strength you look for in an NFL quarterback.
Allen: Allen is very physically gifted, but he needs to improve his decision-making and be a little more consistent with his footwork. He has good mobility and the arm strength to make any throw in the book.
Rosen: Rosen is coming off a shoulder injury that knocked him out of his team's final six games last season. He has raw talent but needs to improve his accuracy; he has a 59.7 career completion rate.