The free agency frenzy has settled down and the draft is around the corner. At BillsMafia.com, I decided to predict how the first two rounds could shake out. To make things interesting, I predicted some trades that could go down in the first round. So, without further ado, my 2015 NFL Mock Draft. Enjoy
Pick No. 1, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
QB Jameis Winston, FSU
The Buccaneers look past Winston’s off-field issues and see a potential franchise quarterback to pair with last year’s top pick, Mike Evans.
TRADE- Pick No. 2, St. Louis trades 1st, 2nd, future 1st to Tennessee
QB Marcus Mariota, Oregon
The Rams traded down from No. 2 in the 2012 NFL Draft, acquiring enough depth to make a move back up to the spot three years later. The Rams traded Sam Bradford to the Eagles, and are potentially a quarterback away from making a playoff push in the weakened NFC.
Pick No. 3, Jacksonville Jaguars
EDGE Vic Beasley, Clemson
Gus Bradley finds his “Leo” end in Vic Beasley, an undersized but productive pass rusher who blew scouts away at the combine. He’ll be an instant upgrade to a young team in need of pass rush help.
Pick No. 4, Oakland Raiders
DL Leonard Williams, Southern California
The Raiders pass on West Virginia’s Kevin White in favor of the local star, Leonard Williams. Williams is a powerful, disruptive defensive lineman that can play end or tackle in Jack Del Rio’s scheme.
TRADE- Pick No. 5, New Orleans trades 1st, 2nd, Future 2nd to Washington
EDGE Dante Fowler Jr., Florida
The Saints’ championship window is closing quickly and without necessary cap space to find a difference-maker in free agency, New Orleans makes a bold trade to acquire Dante Fowler, a versatile and relentless pass rusher that should bolster one of the worst defenses in the league.
Pick No. 6, New York Jets
WR Kevin White, West Virginia
The Jets hired Todd Bowles, a defensive-minded coach and revamped their secondary by bringing back Darrelle Revis and Antonio Cromartie to pair with Buster Skrine. The team traded a late-round pick for Brandon Marshall, but Kevin White has the potential to be a much-needed game-changer on offense.
Pick No. 7, Chicago Bears
CB Trae Waynes, Michigan State
Chicago’s defense needs an overhaul and while the team used last year’s first-round pick on a cornerback in Kyle Fuller, the secondary is still the team’s weakest position group. Tim Jennings is likely playing his last year and Trae Waynes brings length and physicality to a premier position.
TRADE- Pick No. 8, Miami trades 1st, 4th, future 2nd to Atlanta
WR Amari Cooper, Alabama
The Dolphins parted ways with Mike Wallace and traded for Kenny Stills, but the team needs to surround Ryan Tannehill with as many weapons as possible. Amari Cooper is an elite route runner with reliable hands and would be an impact player from day one.
Pick No. 9, New York Giants
OL La’El Collins
The Giants need help on defense, but with the No. 9 pick they take La’El Collins, a left tackle out of LSU that also projects to guard. Collins is a high-upside player that should give Eli Manning some more confidence in the pocket.
Pick No. 10, Tennessee Titans (from St. Louis)
NT Danny Shelton, Washington
After trading down and picking up some much-needed draft capital, the Titans pick up Danny Shelton, a monster nose tackle to anchor Ray Horton’s 3-4 defense.
Pick No. 11, Minnesota Vikings
OL Brandon Scherff, Iowa
Minnesota’s offensive line struggled mightily in 2014, so the Vikings take the versatile Brandon Scherff with the No. 11 pick to protect their franchise quarterback Teddy Bridgewater.
Pick No. 12, Cleveland Browns
WR Devante Parker, Louisville
From the outside perspective, the Browns are a disaster- Johnny Manziel is in rehab and Brian Hoyer left to sign with the Texans, while Josh Gordon is suspended. The team moves on, selecting Devante Parker, a fluid and underrated wide receiver that has a bright future.
Pick No. 13, Washington Redskins (from New Orleans)
EDGE Shane Ray, Missouri
The Redskins lost Brian Orakpo in free agency, so they replace him with Shane Ray, a high-motor speed rusher that complements Ryan Kerrigan nicely.
Pick No. 14, Atlanta Falcons (from Miami)
DT Malcolm Brown, Texas
The Falcons need an edge rusher, but without one presenting great value they pick up Malcolm Brown, an interior pass rushing defensive tackle that can play the three-technique in Dan Quinn’s defense. The team signed Tyson Jackson and Paul Soliai last year as part of their transition to a 3-4, but Brown is better suited for Quinn’s one-gap scheme.
Pick No. 15, San Francisco 49ers
DL Eddie Goldman, Florida State
The 49ers defense took a big hit this offseason and with uncertainty surrounding Justin Smith’s future, Eddie Goldman is a solid pickup for a team looking to maintain it’s identity. Goldman can play all over the defensive line and is a player the team can build around.
Pick No. 16, Houston Texans
S Landon Collins, Alabama
Projected by most as a top 10 pick, I think Landon Collins’ best value is in the middle of the first round. A strong safety with some range, Collins is the type of player the Texans need in the secondary to compete with the Colts for the division.
TRADE Pick No. 17, Carolina trades 1st, 3rd, future 2nd to San Diego
OL T.J. Clemmings, Pittsburgh
The Panthers are desperate for offensive line help and with the crop of tackles thinning out, they move up seven spots to nab T.J. Clemmings, an athletic freak with a high ceiling. He’s got the ability to play tackle or guard and should make Cam Newton’s life a lot easier.
Pick No. 18, Kansas City Chiefs
OL Andrus Peat, Stanford
The Chiefs need help at wide receiver, but after losing Jon Asomoah, Rodney Hudson and Geoff Schwartz to free agency, coupled with whiffing on Eric Fisher with the No. 1 overall pick in 2013, they need to fix the offensive line first. Andrus Peat is a reliable tackle that should start from day one.
Pick No. 19, Cleveland Browns (from Buffalo)
EDGE Alvin “Bud” Dupree, Kentucky
The Browns find a freakishly athletic, yet inconsistent pass rusher with the first-round pick acquired in the Sammy Watkins trade. Dupree is a moveable chess piece for Mike Pettine and can rush the passer, play the run and drop into coverage.
Pick No. 20, Philadelphia Eagles
CB Jalen Collins, LSU
The Eagles need cornerback help badly, and Jalen Collins brings size, physicality and athleticism to Philadelphia.
Pick No. 21, Cincinatti Bengals
WR Dorial Green-Beckham, Missouri
Cincinnati is in a purgatory stage, where they have enough talent to make the postseason, but not enough to advance past the first round. They’ve been known to take risks on character concerns and Dorial Green-Beckham with A.J. Green could be the receiving duo Andy Dalton needs to take the next step.
Pick No. 22, Pittsburgh Steelers
CB P.J. Williams, Florida State
Pittsburgh’s secondary is atrocious and P.J. Williams brings attitude and talent back to the Steelers’ defense.
TRADE- Pick No. 23- Indy trades 1st, 2nd to Detroit
EDGE Randy Gregory
Randy Gregory’s fall after failing a drug test at the combine ends when the Colts trade up with the Lions. The Colts need defensive help badly and Randy Gregory could be the steal of the draft with the right coaching. He’s worth the risk at pick No. 23.
Pick No. 24- Arizona Cardinals
RB Todd Gurley
Bruce Arians is known for his vertical offense, but the Cardinals weren’t able to run the ball effectively last season. The team signed Mike Iupati, which hints towards more of a power run game and Todd Gurley would be the perfect complement to Andre Ellington in Arizona’s backfield.
Pick No. 25- San Diego Chargers (from Carolina)
OL D.J. Humphries, Florida
D.J. Humphries is a raw, yet talented offensive line prospect that could be a premier left tackle within a few seasons of coaching, a la Tyron Smith. Philip Rivers is in a contract year and bolstering the offensive line may help persuade him to stick around.
Pick No. 26, Baltimore Ravens
WR Jalen Strong, Arizona State
The Ravens add a big-bodied wide receiver for Joe Flacco here that can make contested catches after losing Torrey Smith in free agency.
Pick No. 27, Dallas Cowboys
RB Melvin Gordon, Wisconsin
After letting Demarco Murray walk in free agency, the Cowboys add a young, explosive running back that should make an immediate impact behind the best offensive line in football.
Pick No. 28, Denver Broncos
OL Cameron Erving, Florida State
After losing Orlando Franklin, the Broncos add a versatile lineman in Cameron Erving who can play all five positions.
Pick No. 29, Detroit Lions
DL Preston Smith, Mississippi State
There aren’t many players that can replace what Ndamukong Suh brings to a defense, but Preston Smith is a big, athletic defensive lineman that can kick inside to tackle in nickel fronts. He’ll start opposite Ziggy Ansah.
Pick No. 30, Green Bay Packers
LB Eric Kendricks, UCLA
After releasing Brad Jones and A.J. Hawk, the Packers select Eric Kendricks, a “new-age” linebacker that can cover.
Pick No. 31, New Orleans Saints (from Seattle)
WR Breshad Perriman, Central Florida
The Saints add a big-bodied receiver for Drew Brees here. Breshad Perriman ran in the 4.2’s at his pro day and is an ideal possession receiver.
Pick No. 32, New England Patriots
CB Kevin Johnson, Wake Forest
After losing Darrelle Revis and Brandon Browner, the Patriots look to rebuild their secondary with Kevin Johnson out of Wake Forest.
Pick No. 33, Tennessee Titans- QB Brett Hundley, UCLA
Pick No. 34, Tampa Bay Buccaneers- OL Ereck Flowers, Miami
Pick No. 35, Oakland Raiders- WR Nelson Algholor, USC
Pick No. 36, Jacksonville Jaguars- Jay Ajayi, Boise State
Pick No. 37, New York Jets- EDGE Eli Harold, Virginia
Pick No. 38, Washington Redskins- OL Laken Tomlinson, Duke
Pick No. 39, Chicago Bears- DL Arik Armstead, Oregon
Pick No. 40, New York Giants- LB/S Shaq Thompson, Washington
Pick No. 41, Tennessee Titans (From STL)- CB/S Eric Rowe, Utah
Pick No. 42, Atlanta Falcons- EDGE Owamagbe Odigizuha, UCLA
Pick No. 43, Cleveland Browns- TE Maxx Williams, Minnesota
Pick No. 44, Washington Redskins (From NO)- ILB Denzel Perryman, Miami
Pick No. 45, Minnesota Vikings- CB Marcus Peters, Washington
Pick No. 46, San Francisco 49ers- LB Stephone Anthony, Clemson
Pick No. 47, Atlanta Falcons (from MIA)- WR Devin Funchess, Michigan
Pick No. 48, San Diego Chargers- DL Carl Davis, Iowa
Pick No. 49, Kansas City Chiefs- WR Sammie Coates, Auburn
Pick No. 50, Buffalo Bills- TE Clive Walford, Miami
The Bills signed Charles Clay to a lucrative contract, but Greg Roman’s scheme calls for multiple tight ends that play multiple roles within his offense. Clive Walford is the traditional “Y” tight end that provides value as a blocker when attached to the line of scrimmage and as a big receiver that can attack the seam, high-point and make contested catches.
Pick No. 51, Houston Texans- WR Devin Smith, Ohio State
Pick No. 52, Philadelphia Eagles, RB Ameer Abdullah, Nebraska
Pick No. 53, Cincinnati Bengals- DT Jordan Phillips, Oklahoma
Pick No. 54, Detroit Lions- OL Jake Fisher, Oregon
Pick No. 55, Arizona Cardinals, CB Quinten Rollins, Miami (OH)
Pick No. 56, Pittsburgh Steelers, EDGE Danielle Hunter, LSU
Pick No. 57, Carolina Panthers- WR Phillip Dorsett, Miami
Pick No. 58, Baltimore Ravens- EDGE Nate Orchard, Utah
Pick No. 59, Denver Broncos- DT Xavier Cooper, Washington State
Pick No. 60, Dallas Cowboys- DT Michael Bennett, Ohio State
Pick No. 61, Detroit Lions (from IND) – OL Ty Sambrailo, Colorado State
Pick No. 62, Green Bay Packers- CB Ronald Darby, Florida State
Pick No. 63, Seattle Seahawks- EDGE Hau’oli Kikaha, Washington
Pick No. 64, New England Patriots- OL A.J. Cann, South Carolina