2024 NFL mock draft: QBs go 1-2-3-4, trades galore in latest first-round forecast

USA Today

The 2024 NFL draft is less than three weeks away, and teams are conducting pre-draft visits with prospects as they look to finalize their draft boards.

Our NFL Wire editors are back with another first-round mock draft — and we even included the teams without a first-round pick as they made their top realistic prospect for Day 2.

With the draft just a few weeks out, we had some fun with this mock draft, which features four quarterbacks selected in the first four picks, the Denver Broncos and New York Jets making big swings to trade into the top five and seven total trades in the first round. It’s chaotic, much like the NFL draft itself.

Here are our latest first-round projections, along with the top available prospects for teams without a first-round selection.

1. Chicago Bears (from CAR): QB Caleb Williams, USC

Aug 26, 2023; Los Angeles, California, USA; Southern California Trojans quarterback Caleb Williams (13) moves the ball against the San Jose State Spartans during the first half at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

You can lock in this selection for the Bears at this point. After trading Justin Fields to the Steelers, Chicago made it as clear as possible that they’re going to draft Williams with the first overall pick. The Bears have spent this offseason building an ideal situation for their incoming rookie QB, which includes the additions of Keenan Allen, D’Andre Swift and Gerald Everett. They also have an improving offensive line and a top-10 defense looking to continue their dominance from the end of the 2023 season. Chicago has already spent extensive time with Williams in this pre-draft process, including hosting him for a Top 30 where he got a head start learning the offense and dining out with Bears brass and some of his new teammates. Just submit the card now. Alyssa Barbieri, Bears Wire

2. Washington Commanders: QB Drake Maye, North Carolina

Oct 14, 2023; Chapel Hill, North Carolina, USA; North Carolina Tar Heels quarterback Drake Maye (10) looks to the bench as his team plays the Miami Hurricanes in the second half at Kenan Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Nell Redmond-USA TODAY Sports

The consensus remains that LSU QB Jayden Daniels lands in Washington. That’s what Commanders GM Adam Peters wants everyone to think. While Washington may indeed go with Daniels, and it would be an excellent pick, Maye’s upside is too much to pass on. The Commanders have built a strong QB infrastructure this offseason and that’s perfect for Maye. If Washington doesn’t feel confident to start him in Week 1, that’s fine. Marcus Mariota is perfectly fine to start in the short term if the Commanders want to bring Maye along slowly. Bryan Manning, Commanders Wire

3. New England Patriots: QB Jayden Daniels, LSU

Quarterback Jayden Daniels 5 as the LSU Tigers take on Texas A&M in Tiger Stadium in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, November 25, 2023.

The Patriots could learn a thing or two from the Houston Texans, who seemingly went from pretenders to contenders overnight after drafting quarterback C.J. Stroud with the No. 2 pick last year. If the Patriots hit on a quarterback, the four-season long nightmare they’ve endured would finally come to an end. Jayden Daniels was the last man standing in the top-three quarterbacks of this mock draft, and it’s the easiest pick the Patriots will ever make. The former LSU standout is the most NFL-ready of all quarterbacks and the most versatile offensive threat on the entire draft board. Jordy McElroy, Patriots Wire

4. Denver Broncos (from ARI): QB J.J. McCarthy, Michigan

Jan 8, 2024; Houston, TX, USA; Michigan Wolverines quarterback J.J. McCarthy (9) passes the ball against the Washington Huskies during the third quarter in the 2024 College Football Playoff national championship game at NRG Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Thomas Shea-USA TODAY Sports

Trade details:

  • Cardinals receive Nos. 12, 121, 2025 first rounder, 2025 third rounder
  • Broncos receive No. 4 

The Broncos attempted to trade up to No. 5 in the NFL Wire’s last mock draft, but the Chargers accepted an offer from the Vikings instead (not surprising given it’s a division rival). So Denver jumped all the way up to No. 4 in this mock and made a deal with Arizona. Broncos coach Sean Payton is said to be “enamored” with McCarthy, and there’s been much speculation that Denver could trade up to get him. The Broncos met with McCarthy at the NFL combine, attended his pro day and had a private workout with the QB prospect. Meanwhile, Payton has said trading up is a “realistic” option for Denver in the draft. The Broncos now have their Russell Wilson replacement. Jon Heath, Broncos Wire

5. New York Jets (from LAC): WR Marvin Harrison Jr., Ohio State

Oct 7, 2023; Ohio Stadium, Ohio, USA;
Ohio State Buckeyes wide receiver Marvin Harrison Jr. (18) catches the ball during their game against the Maryland Terrapins on Saturday, Oct. 7, 2023.

Trade details:

  • Jets receive No. 5
  • Chargers receive Nos. 10, 72, 2025 second-round pick

In trying to simulate the Jets potentially continuing their aggressive offseason, knowing this is a make or break season, the Jets banked on a team trading up to No. 4 for JJ McCarthy, allowing Marvin Harrison to fall to No. 5. Knowing the Chargers are a prime target to trade down, the Jets take advantage and flip a third this year and a second next year to secure Harrison and create the new young dynamic duo of Garrett Wilson and Harrison while also having Mike Williams in the mix this season. The Jets need another wide receiver, so why not swing for the fences at this point? Being able to hang on to their first round pick next year helps, but at this point, Joe Douglas isn’t too worried about future picks. If this season goes south, Douglas won’t be making any future picks for the Jets anyway. Billy Riccette, Jets Wire

6. New York Giants: WR Malik Nabers, LSU

Malik Nabers (8) runs the ball after a catch as the LSU Tigers take on the the Army Black Knights in Tiger Stadium in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, October. 21, 2023.

The Giants weren’t left with many choices with the top four quarterbacks and one of the top wide receivers off the board. Luckily, Malik Nabers may turn out to be the best wide receiver in this draft class and would provide the Giants precisely what they’ve been missing since the trade of Odell Beckham Jr. – a true game-changing WR1. They can still land a developmental quarterback in the later rounds, potentially improving two offensive positions without having to surrender their much-needed draft assets. Dan Benton, Giants Wire

7. Tennessee Titans: OT Joe Alt, Notre Dame

Jan 1, 2022; Glendale, Arizona, USA; Notre Dame Fighting Irish offensive lineman Joe Alt (76) defends against Oklahoma State Cowboys defensive end Brock Martin (9) in the 2022 Fiesta Bowl at State Farm Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

There have been no shortage of trade-back scenarios involving the Titans in recent weeks, but that is not something this team should even come close to entertaining if Alt is on the board in this spot. Tennessee has had the worst left tackle situation for each of the past two years and desperately needs to beef up the position for second-year signal-caller Will Levis. Alt will take care of that need for the next decade, at least. Mike Moraitis, Titans Wire

8. Atlanta Falcons: EDGE Dallas Turner, Alabama

Sep 30, 2023; Starkville, Mississippi, USA; Alabama Crimson Tide linebacker Dallas Turner (15) pressures Mississippi State Bulldogs quarterback Will Rogers (2) as he throws in Davis Wade Stadium at Mississippi State University. Alabama defeated Mississippi State 40-17. Mandatory Credit: Gary Cosby Jr.-Tuscaloosa News

Atlanta still has holes to fill at cornerback and edge rusher and both positions are in play here at pick No. 8. After failing to find a trade partner, the Falcons select arguably the top defensive player on the board in Alabama EDGE Dallas Turner. Last year, defensive lineman Calais Campbell and linebacker Bud Dupree tied for the team lead in sacks. Since neither player has landed a contract in free agency, the Falcons must find someone to get after the quarterback early in the draft. Turner had 11 sacks and 33 hurries for the Crimson Tide in 2023. Matt Urben, Falcons Wire

9. Chicago Bears: WR Rome Odunze, Washington

Oct 22, 2022; Berkeley, California, USA; Washington Huskies wide receiver Rome Odunze (1) catches a pass against the California Golden Bears during the second quarter at FTX Field at California Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Darren Yamashita-USA TODAY Sports

While there’s no question what the Bears will do at No. 1, the No. 9 pick presents more intrigue. Granted, it all depends on how the board falls. With four quarterbacks projected to go in the top four, the options are limitless, and Chicago could wind up landing a top receiver like Rome Odunze, which feels like a steal. Yes, the Bears already have a dynamic duo in DJ Moore and Keenan Allen at receiver, but adding Odunze to the mix is sure to give this offense a top receiver group in the NFL. More weapons for your young QB is never a bad thing. Plus, it’ll allow Odunze time to develop behind two of the best wideouts in the game. Alyssa Barbieri, Bears Wire

10. Los Angeles Chargers (from NYJ): CB Terrion Arnold, Alabama

Mar 1, 2024; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Alabama defensive back Terrion Arnold (DB02) works out during the 2024 NFL Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

It’s been either wide receiver or offensive tackle to the Chargers with their first-round pick, but cornerback is also a big need. After the loss of Michael Davis, they will need a starter opposite Asante Samuel Jr. and Arnold could fill that void. Arnold has the speed and movement skills to flourish in coverage and the physicality and tackling skills to make plays against the run. Gavino Borquez, Chargers Wire

11. Minnesota Vikings: CB Quinyon Mitchell, Toledo

Dec 2, 2023; Detroit, MI, USA; Toledo Rockets cornerback Quinyon Mitchell (27) breaks up a pass intended for Miami (OH) Redhawks wide receiver Gage Larvadain (10) in the third quarter at Ford Field. Mandatory Credit: Lon Horwedel-USA TODAY Sports

The Vikings aren’t able to trade up for a quarterback so it’s full steam ahead with Sam Darnold. Kevin O’Connell believes his best football is ahead of him so let’s give the offense a defense that can pick up the slack. Cornerback has been a struggle to address in recent years but Quinyon Mitchell can be the solution. His ball production and instincts will give the defense an edge and give the offense more chances to get momentum. Andrew Harbaugh, Vikings Wire

12. Arizona Cardinals (from DEN): EDGE Laiatu Latu, UCLA

Sep 16, 2023; Pasadena, California, USA; UCLA Bruins defensive lineman Laiatu Latu (15) celebrates after intercepting a pass against the North Carolina Central Eagles during the first half at Rose Bowl. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

Trade details:

  • Cardinals receive Nos. 12, 121, 2025 first rounder, 2025 third rounder
  • Broncos receive No. 4 

The Cardinals miss out on one of the three top receivers in the class and perhaps would try to trade up after trading back. However, they still have the 27th pick and it is a deep receiver class. So rather than receiver here, they address their other biggest hole on the roster and that is on the defensive edge. They get Latu, who only had 24.5 sacks and 34 tackles for loss in two seasons for the Bruins. This goes with the assumption that the neck injury that caused him to have to medically retire from Washington before going to UCLA gets the all-clear from doctors. Jess Root, Cards Wire

13. Las Vegas Raiders: OT Taliese Fuaga, Oregon State

Oct 8, 2022; Stanford, California, USA; Oregon State Beavers offensive lineman Taliese Fuaga (75) blocks Stanford Cardinal linebacker Levani Damuni (3) during the first quarter at Stanford Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Darren Yamashita-USA TODAY Sports

Antonio Pierce wants the Raiders to be more physical on the offensive line and that makes Fuaga a perfect fit. He is a plug-and-play right tackle who would bring size and toughness to the unit. With Kolton Miller, Andre James, and Dylan Parham all as established starters, the Raiders rebuilt their offensive line into one of the best in the league. The addition of Fuaga makes them that much better. Marcus Mosher, Raiders Wire

14. New Orleans Saints: OL Troy Fautanu, Washington

Oct 22, 2022; Berkeley, California, USA; Washington Huskies offensive lineman Troy Fautanu (55) prepares to block California Golden Bears linebacker Braxten Croteau (52) during the third quarter at FTX Field at California Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Darren Yamashita-USA TODAY Sports

Fautanu has impressed NFL scouts and coaches at every opportunity, and he offers more versatility than some other offensive linemen at the top of this draft class by being able to credibly play both left tackle and left guard. That brings more value to the Saints than someone limited to just one position. There’s still time for Trevor Penning to figure things out at left tackle, so Fautanu could upgrade the guard spot and allow the Saints to start their five best linemen. They aren’t ready to give up on Penning just yet. John Sigler, Saints Wire

15. Indianapolis Colts: CB Nate Wiggins, Clemson

Nov 25, 2023; Columbia, South Carolina, USA; Clemson Tigers cornerback Nate Wiggins (2) smiles after breaking up a pass to South Carolina wide receiver Nyck Harbor (8) during the fourth quarter at Williams-Brice Stadium. Clemson won 16-7. Mandatory Credit: Ken Ruinard-USA TODAY Sports

The Colts have to improve at the cornerback position in this year’s draft, and the addition of Nate Wiggins would provide immediate help. He has elite speed and brings good length to the position. Wiggins is scheme versatile and has been one of the best cover corners the last two seasons, allowing a completion rate of just 45 percent at 12 yards per catch while recording three interceptions and 14 pass breakups. Paul Bretl, Colts Wire

16. Seattle Seahawks: QB Michael Penix Jr., Washington

NEW ORLEANS, LOUISIANA – JANUARY 01: Michael Penix Jr. #9 of the Washington Huskies warms up prior to playing against the Texas Longhorns in the CFP Semifinal Allstate Sugar Bowl at Caesars Superdome on January 01, 2024 in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)

The Seahawks may seem set at quarterback with Geno Smith starting and Sam Howell in tow. However, the opportunity to pick a prospect at a premium position who’s such a perfect fit for Seattle is too good to pass up on. Penix ran offensive coordinator Ryan Grubb’s scheme at a near-Heisman level over the last two years at Washington, totaling nearly 10,000 passing yards, 67 touchdowns and a 154.2 rating. There are legitimate questions about Penix’s knees but his experience and upside as a potential franchise QB make it a worthwhile gamble. Tim Weaver, Seahawks Wire

17. San Francisco 49ers (from JAX): OT Olu Fashanu, Penn State

Penn State offensive lineman Olumuyiwa Fashanu

Trade details:

  • Jaguars receive WR Brandon Aiyuk
  • 49ers receive Nos. 17, 114

For the record, I don’t believe Aiyuk will get traded by San Francisco. If they did move him though this is the type of deal they’d be searching for. The 49ers could look to replace Aiyuk with LSU WR Brian Thomas here, but right tackle is their most glaring need by a wide margin. Fashanu is a terrific prospect the 49ers certainly weren’t getting all the way down at No. 31. He can start at right tackle immediately, and as an added bonus he can flip to the left side whenever Trent Williams retires. Kyle Madson, Niners Wire

18. Philadelphia Eagles (from CIN): DE Jared Verse, Florida State

Oct 14, 2023; Tallahassee, Florida, USA; Florida State Seminoles defensive end Jared Verse (5) against the Syracuse Orange during the first half at Doak S. Campbell Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Melina Myers-USA TODAY Sports

  • Eagles receive No. 18
  • Bengals receive Nos. 22, 53

After trading Haason Reddick, the Eagles regroup with the best pure pass rusher available in the draft. Brandon Graham will retire at season’s end, and Josh Sweat will be a free agent. Verse earned first-team All-American honor and first-team All-ACC honoree after finishing 2022 with 17 tackles for loss with nine sacks. In 2023, Verse started all 13 games during Florida State’s perfect 13-0 season. He recorded 41 total tackles and 12.5 tackles for loss, and he matched last year’s numbers with nine sacks. Glenn Erby, Eagles Wire

19. Los Angeles Rams: CB Cooper DeJean, Iowa

Iowa defensive back Cooper DeJean (3) catches a punt at Kinnick Stadium on Saturday, October 21, 2023 in Iowa City. DeJean returned the punt for a touchdown and it was later called back after review ruled he fair-caught the punt.

With Turner, Latu and Verse all off the board at this spot, the Rams shouldn’t force a pick on a pass rusher. I considered Byron Murphy II out of Texas, but ultimately decided on a cornerback in DeJean. He’s a superb fit in the Rams’ defense, which is zone-heavy and allows corners to keep their eyes forward. That will allow DeJean to use his ball skills and instincts to create turnovers and breakup passes. Not to mention, he’s an exceptional return specialist, which gives him even more value now with the new kickoff rule. DeJean could go later than this and the Rams no longer have a pressing need at corner after signing Darious Williams and Tre’Davious White, but those are short-term additions and DeJean can be a playmaker for several years. Cameron DaSilva, Rams Wire

20. Pittsburgh Steelers: OL Graham Barton, Duke

Nov 27, 2021; Durham, North Carolina, USA; Duke Blue Devils offensive tackle Graham Barton (62) celebrates a point during the first half of the game against the Miami Hurricanes at Wallace Wade Stadium. at Wallace Wade Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jaylynn Nash-USA TODAY Sports

Center remains the Steelers top NFL draft need and while we were tempted to go with a more traditional pick like Jackson Powers-Johnson but Graham Barton is just too talented to pass up. He has top-tier starter potential at all five spots and should the Steelers find a veteran center post draft, Barton would move into right tackle and allow Broderick Jones to move to the left. Curt Popejoy, Steelers Wire

21. Miami Dolphins: OT J.C. Latham, Alabama

Sep 18, 2021; Gainesville, Florida, USA; Alabama Crimson Tide defensive lineman JC Latham (65) against the Florida Gators at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Five-time Pro Bowl offensive tackle Terron Armstead is coming back on a reworked contract, but he’ll turn 33 this summer and hasn’t played an entire 16- or 17-game season in his 11-year career. The Dolphins need to start prepping for both the future after Armstead and the real possibility that he won’t make it through the whole 2024 season. In Latham, Miami would get a left tackle of the future who can probably step in right away at guard. Adam Stites, Dolphins Wire

22. Cincinnati Bengals (from PHI): DL Jer’Zhan Newton, Illinois

Oct 21, 2023; Champaign, Illinois, USA; Illinois Fighting Illini defensive tackle Jer’Zhan Newton (4) tackles Wisconsin Badgers running back Braelon Allen (0) during the first half at Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Ron Johnson-USA TODAY Sports

The Bengals can’t pass up the possibility of gaining another borderline top-50 pick via a small trade down. Especially not when Jer’Zhan Newton probably tops their board, anyway. Trent Brown has availability issues as a short-term solution at right tackle, but adding another pick in a deep offensive tackle class gives them another shot at developing a long-term solution, too. With Newton, they get some more much-needed interior pass-rush ability to pair with B.J. Hill. The loss of DJ Reader is dramatic, but if Sheldon Rankins and a veteran nose tackle can stand up against the run, the entire pass-rush off the edges will be much better due to Newton’s ability. Chris Roling, Bengals Wire

23. Minnesota Vikings (from HOU via CLE): CB Kool-Aid McKinstry, Alabama

Alabama defensive back Kool-Aid McKinstry (1) gestures in celebration after Tennessee failed to convert a 4th down in the fourth quarter of a football game between Tennessee and Alabama at Bryant-Denny Stadium in Tuscaloosa, Ala., on Saturday, Oct. 21, 2023.

Didn’t we draft a cornerback earlier? We sure did. The NFC North is becoming a pass happy division and defending against the pass will be the key to winning it. Caleb Williams, Jared Goff, and Jordan Love all will be problems so doubling up at corner makes sense here based on how the board fell. Andrew Harbaugh, Vikings Wire

24. Dallas Cowboys: OT Amarius Mims, Georgia

Jan 9, 2023; Inglewood, CA, USA; Georgia Bulldogs offensive lineman Amarius Mims (65) against the TCU Horned Frogs during the CFP national championship game at SoFi Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

We’ve explored various options in these mocks for Dallas, as the first-round pick isn’t about Year 1 need or impact, but rather finding a cornerstone. With an unsettled future for quarterback Dak Prescott, the Cowboys should look at No. 24 as an asset to finding that solution. Tired of trading up or trading back though, we stay put here and give the QB – whether Prescott or someone else from the 2025 draft – a true talent as an edge protector. Mims could play either left or right tackle, depending on if Dallas wants to shift Tyler Smith out to replace Tyron Smith, or whether they become fed up with Terence Steele on the right side. KD Drummond, Cowboys Wire

25. Green Bay Packers: TE Brock Bowers, Georgia

Georgia Bulldogs tight end Brock Bowers (19) runs after a catch during the third quarter as Auburn Tigers take on Georgia Bulldogs at Jordan-Hare Stadium in Auburn, Ala., on Saturday, Sept. 30, 2023.

Do I think Bowers will actually be available at No. 25 overall? Probably not. Do I think the Packers – who are rich in tight ends after getting Luke Musgrave and Tucker Kraft last year – would take Bowers if he unexpectedly falls? It’s a fascinating scenario, and one I wanted to explore in this mock draft exercise. On one hand, Bowers is a potential blue-chip prospect, and his arrival would provide Jordan Love and Matt LaFleur with another versatile, high-ceiling pass-catcher for the Packers’ young and ascending offense. Bowers is different enough at tight end – especially from Musgrave – to fit in, even if it would take some creativity to get everyone on the field in a meaningful capacity. The Packers have other holes to fill on the roster, and tight end is probably one of the team’s lowest priority positions entering the first round, but Brian Gutekunst has five picks in the top 100 and a lot of flexibility in terms of going after the best players on his board, regardless of position. Zach Kruse, Packers Wire

26. New England Patriots (from TB): WR Brian Thomas Jr., LSU

17. Jacksonville Jaguars – Brian Thomas Jr., WR, LSU

Trade details:

  • Patriots receive No. 26 pick
  • Bucs receive No. 34 and No. 68 picks

The Patriots could have stayed at No. 34 and waited to get a quarterback in the second round, but they don’t have the luxury of being passive after tanking in free agency. It’s time to stop playing games and go after a true difference-maker at wide receiver. Brian Thomas Jr. shockingly slid later than expected in the first round, and the Patriots make a move to reunite the star deep threat receiver with his former teammate and quarterback, Jayden Daniels, at the next level. Jordy McElroy, Patriots Wire

27. San Francisco 49ers (from HOU via ARI): DL Byron Murphy II, Texas

Jan 1, 2024; New Orleans, LA, USA; Texas Longhorns defensive lineman Byron Murphy II (90) celebrates after a play during the second quarter in the 2024 Sugar Bowl college football playoff semifinal game at Caesars Superdome. Mandatory Credit: John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports

Logic states the 49ers would aim to replace Aiyuk with this trade up. However, with Murphy sliding San Francisco opted to pounce on the best DT prospect in this class. The 49ers don’t have a ton of quality interior DL depth, so Murphy would quickly improve their rotation there as an every-down type of player who can bolster a pass rush that needs help with Arik Armstead now in Jacksonville. Kyle Madson, Niners Wire

28. Buffalo Bills: WR Adonai Mitchell, Texas

Texas Longhorns wide receiver Adonai Mitchell (5) catches the ball for an first down against Kansas State Wildcats cornerback Jacob Parrish (10) in the. First quarter of an NCAA college football game, Saturday, November. 4, 2023, in Austin, Texas.

Having traded Stefon Diggs to the Texans for a 2025 second-round pick, having already lost Gabe Davis to the Jaguars in free agency, and with a salary cap situation that no economics professor would approve, the Bills are in heavy rebuild mode. They’ll need to get their next explosive receiver in the draft, and Mitchell aligns nicely with that need. Last season for the Longhorns, he caught 55 passes on 86 targets for 845 yards (15.4 yards per catch), and 11 touchdowns. Eight of those catches were on passes of 20 or more air yards for 302 yards and three touchdowns. WIth Josh Allen throwing him the ball, Mitchell could easily double that total. Mitchell is a full-field receiver with outstanding route acumen, and speed cuts for days to frustrate and confuse enemy defenders. Doug Farrar, Touchdown Wire

29. Detroit Lions: IOL Jackson Powers-Johnson, Oregon

Oct 21, 2023; Eugene, Oregon, USA; Oregon Ducks offensive lineman Jackson Powers-Johnson (58) signals against the Washington State Cougars in the 4th quarter at Autzen Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Craig Strobeck-USA TODAY Sports

The Lions starting lineup is pretty well set for 2024, but depth and 2025 starters are needed. That’s especially true on the interior offensive line. Powers-Johnson is the best center in this draft class but was good enough to be All-Conference at guard before shifting full-time into the pivot. His powerful style fits Detroit’s gap blocking scheme well, too. Considered some receivers or a safety here but “JPJ” was the best player available. Jeff Risdon, Lions Wire

30. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (from BAL): EDGE Chop Robinson, Penn State

Nov 5, 2022; Bloomington, Indiana, USA; Penn State Nittany Lions defensive end Chop Robinson (44) rushes Indiana Hoosiers quarterback Jack Tuttle (14) during the first half at Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Robert Goddin-USA TODAY Sports

Trade details:

  • Buccaneers receive No. 30
  • Ravens receive Nos. 34, 125

I couldn’t resist the offer to drop back from No. 26 to No. 34 for an early third-round pick (No. 68) from the Pats, but felt compelled to jump back into the first round to land a high-upside edge rusher, giving up a late fourth-rounder (No. 125) to the Ravens. Robinson still needs some polish, but he’s got rare explosiveness and athleticism that would be an ideal fit in Todd Bowles’ defense. At the end of the day, in return for moving down four spots, I jumped up from the bottom of the fourth round to the top of the third round, and still filled my biggest need on defense with a potential steal. I’m still left with four picks on Day 3 to address the offensive line, cornerback, and linebacker. Luke Easterling, Bucs Wire

31. Arizona Cardinals (from SF): WR Troy Franklin, Oregon

Nov 24, 2023; Eugene, Oregon, USA; Oregon Ducks wide receiver Troy Franklin (11) catches a pass for a touchdown during the first half against the Oregon State Beavers at Autzen Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Troy Wayrynen-USA TODAY Sports

The Cardinals have to address receiver in their first three picks and after trading back twice, they need to take one here. Mitchell would have been the preferred target but was selected 28th, but Franklin has size, speed and playmaking, which will complement the route running for Michael Wilson and the shifty feet inside of Greg Dortch. With their two first-round selections, Arizona lands their two most glaring positions of need – the edge and receiver. Jess Root, Cards Wire

32. Kansas City Chiefs: WR Xavier Worthy, Texas

Jan 1, 2024; New Orleans, LA, USA; Texas Longhorns wide receiver Xavier Worthy (1) has his jersey torn while running the ball during the second quarter against the Washington Huskies in the 2024 Sugar Bowl college football playoff semifinal game at Caesars Superdome. Mandatory Credit: Matthew Hinton-USA TODAY Sports

Worthy is the most exciting receiver prospect left for Kansas City at pick No. 32, and could prove to be the defending champions’ next great pass catcher if he falls this far on draft night. The Chiefs desperately needed a deep threat to augment their passing game, and even after they signed veteran Marquise Brown in free agency, Kansas City shouldn’t shy away from selecting a younger prospect in the draft’s first round. While Worthy is far from a finished product, his upside warrants an early selection by a receiver-needy team. John Dillon, Chiefs Wire

Teams without first-round picks

Apr 24, 2019; Nashville, TN, USA; A general overall view of neon NFL shield logo at the Tootsies Orchid Lounce at 422 Broadway prior to the 2019 NFL Draft. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

We didn’t want to leave out the teams without a first-round pick (whether it’s official or due to a trade in our mock draft). So, those editors selected a top realistic option for their respective teams on Day 2.

Carolina Panthers: WR Ladd McConkey, Georgia

Nov 4, 2023; Athens, Georgia, USA; Georgia Bulldogs wide receiver Ladd McConkey (84) runs against Missouri Tigers defensive back Tre’Vez Johnson (4) after a catch during the second half at Sanford Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

With head coach Dave Canales now behind the controls for quarterback Bryce Young, Carolina’s offense will be heavily predicated on timing. This approach will value wideouts who not only know how to get open, but know how to get open quickly—and McConkey is one of the very best in this class at doing so. His instincts and suddenness as a route runner should make him a fine fit for what the Panthers are looking to do. – Anthony Rizzuti, Panthers Wire

Cleveland Browns: WR Keon Coleman, Florida State

ORLANDO, FLORIDA – SEPTEMBER 03: Keon Coleman #4 of the Florida State Seminoles catches a 40-yard touchdown pass in the first quarter against the LSU Tigers at Camping World Stadium on September 03, 2023 in Orlando, Florida. (Photo by Julio Aguilar/Getty Images)

The overthink is on with Florida State wide receiver Keon Coleman due to his 4.6 40-yard dash at the NFL Scouting Combine. However, his GPS tracking data proves that the play speed of Coleman is extremely promising as he heads to the NFL level. It certainly helps that his age and production profile also match what the Browns tend to look for in the early rounds.

Even after the trade and subsequent extension of Jerry Jeudy, the Browns have two of their other top receivers set to hit free agency in Amari Cooper and Elijah Moore after this season. Given the struggles of David Bell as he enters year three as well, there is room for a talented wide receiver in the room as they begin to get younger and future-cast the wide receiver position. Coleman fits what the Browns look for like a glove. – Cory Kinnan, Browns Wire

Houston Texans: CB Kamari Lassiter, Georgia

There’s good fits and there’s great ones. Then, there’s Lassiter’s fit in DeMeco Ryans’ defense that should send shivers down the spines of receivers and offensive coordinator. The 6-foot defensive back is a hard-hitting, fluid-type defender that flies to the ball and delivers the final strike. He’s aggressive when playing the run and lives by the ‘Swarm’ mentality that Ryans’ preaches daily. The addition of Stefon Diggs makes the Texans’ draft path much clearer. Cornerback is an underrated need past 2024 at both the boundary and nickel. Lassiter could play both and excel regardless of the formation and coverage. – Cole Thompson Texans Wire

Jacksonville Jaguars: CB Ennis Rakestraw Jr., Missouri

COLUMBIA, MO – SEPTEMBER 17: Defensive back Ennis Rakestraw Jr. #2 of the Missouri Tigers celebrates his interception against the Abilene Christian Wildcats in the third quarter at Faurot Field/Memorial Stadium on September 17, 2022 in Columbia, Missouri. (Photo by Ed Zurga/Getty Images)

After ditching their first rounder for Brandon Aiyuk in a trade that mostly mirrors the deal that sent A.J. Brown to the Eagles (that one cost pick Nos. 18 and 101), the Jaguars can turn their attention to defense in the second round and beyond. Rakestraw is the type of physical, downhill, press-adept cornerback that the Jaguars need to add to defensive coordinator Ryan Nielsen’s secondary. Adding a pass rusher – Washington’s Bralen Trice, perhaps? – would also make sense, although cornerback is probably the higher priority. – Adam Stites, Jaguars Wire

Baltimore Ravens: OT Jordan Morgan, Arizona

TUCSON, ARIZONA – SEPTEMBER 30: Offensive lineman Jordan Morgan #77 of the Arizona Wildcats during the second half of the NCAAF game at Arizona Stadium on September 30, 2023 in Tucson, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

During his tenure at Arizona, Morgan played right and left tackle, and NFL scouts believe Morgan is better suited inside at guard. With Kevin Zeitler and John Simpson moving on in free agency, Morgan would give Baltimore flexibility at multiple spots on the offensive line. Morgan generates power and movement in the run game but has the lower-body balance and athleticism to be stout in the passing game against elite edge rushers. Glenn Erby, Ravens Wire

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