BSR Sports Staff: Bi-Weekly 2022 NFL Mock Draft V1
Written by BSR Sports Department on March 7, 2022
Picture courtesy of Sporting News
The BSR Sports Staff NFL Mock Drafts are making a return in 2022! If you’re new to this, here’s how we do it.
There will be four bi-weekly mock draft articles posted as we approach the 2022 NFL Draft. There will also be a Live Mock Draft just prior to the draft, so stay tuned for that! Onto the picks!
1) Jacksonville Jaguars- Evan Neal: OT, Alabama (David Profusek – Sports Staff)
Last year in the draft, the Jags went with arguably the best QB prospect ever in Trevor Lawrence first overall. His rookie season was not as storied as his college years at Clemson. Disfunction within the Jacksonville organization played a part in this, but so did issues on the O-Line.
Lawrence was constantly under duress and barely had a fighting chance to stay upright throughout the 2021 campaign. If T-Law is your future, you need a top-tier tackle protecting his blindside. Evan Neal is the best prospect for that purpose in this year’s draft. Neal is big, strong, and has lots of upside. He may not be the consensus best prospect in the draft, but you need to protect your franchise guy and he provides a great starting point.
2) Detroit Lions- Aidan Hutchinson: EDGE, Michigan (Paul Keren – Sports Staff)
Hutchinson is a rare combination of size, ability, effort and production. The Heisman runner-up broke Michigan’s single season sack record and earned first-team All-American honors. The Lions ranked second-to-last in team pass rush win rate and third to last in sacks last season. They are obviously in need of a pass rusher, and Hutchinson will be able to provide that immediately.
3) Houston Texans- Kyle Hamilton: S, Notre Dame (Ryan Struhar – Sports Director, Host of Sports Nerds)
The Texans need help on both sides of the ball. Houston fielded one of the worst statistical defenses in the league last year. Adding a player like Kyle Hamilton will give them much needed help in the secondary.
4) New York Jets- Kayvon Thibodeaux: EDGE, Oregon (Gabe Collura – Sports Contributor)
Sure, the Jets need a lot more than just an edge rusher. HOWEVER, Thibodeaux falling this far is criminal. I think a lot of recency bias will lead to Aidan Hutchinson being selected over him. The Lions will be sorry they passed him up. New York was 4-13 in the first year of the Robert Saleh era and adding a player like Kayvon Thibodeaux to their roster instantly improves their defense. Saleh will love the pick as a former defensive coordinator. Like I said, the Jets need a lot of help, but they must go with the best available player on the board.
5) New York Giants- Ikem Ekwonu: OT, North Carolina State (Dom Pagura – Sports Staff)
The New York Giants have brought in a phenomenal offensive mind at head coach in former Bills offensive coordinator Brian Dabol. Daniel Jones enters the year in a make-or-break scenario, where expectations to have a successful season are the highest they’ve been in some time. They could be even higher pairing Ekwonu with tackle Andrew Thomas. With a ferocious approach to free agency and a huge building block on the offensive line through the draft, the G-men should feel pretty satisfied if this plays out.
6) Carolina Panthers- Kenny Pickett: QB, Pittsburgh (Jake Matson – Sports Staff)
Whatever the Panthers tried to do last year with PJ Walker, Sam Darnold and Cam Newton clearly didn’t work. At this point, the team is in major need of help on the offensive side of the ball. While there are other holes that need addressing on this Carolina team, finding a new signal caller should be at the top of the list. Despite all the deliberation with Pickett’s hand size, he’s still by far the most talented passer in this draft class.
7) New York Giants- Derek Stingley, Jr.: CB, LSU (Dom)
The Giants already got a huge piece on their offensive line in this draft in Ekwonu and could go for another big tackle like Cross or Penning. However, it makes too much sense for the Giants to go defense here. Stingley Jr. brings a very impressive skill set to the table that can bolster any defense from day 1. Pairing this young corner with likes of James Bradberry, Jabrill Peppers and Xavier McKinney would be a great start to the draft for the Giants.
8) Atlanta Falcons- Ahmad Gardner: CB, Cincinnati (David)
“Sauce” Gardner is a stud coming from a Bearcat secondary which was dominate throughout most of the year. He has size, ball-hawking ability, and did not allow a single touchdown throughout his entire college career. The Falcons get a big boost to their secondary to pair with last year’s star rookie AJ Terrell.
9) Denver Broncos- Malik Willis: QB, Liberty (David)
The Denver Broncos have been trying to find a long-term successor to John Elway for decades. Drew Lock and Paxton Lynch have clearly been misses, and the pressure is on in the Mile High City. Denver will go with Liberty product Malik Willis. He has the strong-arm NFL scouts look for and the mobility many GMs like in today’s young signal callers.
10) New York Jets- Jameson Williams: WR, Alabama (Gabe)
This pick is very high risk, high reward for Gang Green. Jameson Williams is obviously going to be coming off a substantial knee injury he sustained against Cincinnati in the Cotton Bowl, but I have a lot of faith that he can get back to 100%. If he can? Look out, AFC East defenses. This dude has BURNER wheels, and he’s a threat to score every time he catches the ball. Isn’t it remarkable that he couldn’t get starting time at Ohio State?
11) Washington Commanders- Drake London: WR, USC (Jake)
While the Commanders desperately need a quarterback, this draft class doesn’t appear to be heavily stacked in that category like it has been in years past. Instead, Washington snags a receiver to draw some attention away from Terry McLaurin. Drake London will be another solid weapon on this offense, and Washington needs to go all in on a quarterback away from the draft.
12) Minnesota Vikings- Treylon Burks: WR, Arkansas (Ryan)
The Vikings this offseason hired their new coach and a new GM. Now they need to know if Cousins is the guy. The addition of Treylon Burks gives Cousins another massive weapon on the outside. The potential of the offense is through the roof, especially with another top 15 pick at receiver.
13) Cleveland Browns- Garrett Wilson: WR, Ohio State (Ryan)
Losing OBJ was bad enough, but Jarvis Landry’s future is now up in the air. With some uncertainty around Baker Mayfield’s standing with the Browns organization, they need to get him weapons to encourage a bounce back year. Garrett Wilson has a remarkable catch radius and underrated speed, and he would be a perfect addition to the Browns offense.
14) Baltimore Ravens- Trevor Penning: OT, Northern Iowa (Paul)
Trevor Penning is a huge tackle out of Northern Iowa and can help the Ravens as Alejandro Villanueva struggled mightily last season. Penning has great size and length; he can improve in the pass game, but he MOVES people in the run game and that is the Ravens’ claim to fame with JK Dobbins coming back. By picking up a guy like Penning who can play opposite of Ronnie Stanley, they can get back to their league leading rushing offense.
15) Philadelphia Eagles- Devin Lloyd: LB, Utah (Gabe)
Linebacker is a pretty substantial position of need for the Eagles. I honestly expect Lloyd to be off the board by the time the Eagles pick at 15, but they’d be thrilled if he drops this far. As more of an inside linebacker at Utah, last season alone Lloyd had 111 tackles to pair with eight sacks. TWENTY of his tackles were TFLs, and he added four interceptions. Devin Lloyd is a game changer.
16) Philadelphia Eagles- Chris Olave: WR, Ohio State (Gabe)
Receivers are absolutely flying off the board in the first edition of this mock draft, and for good reason. Howie Roseman and the Eagles organization seem to be content (although, not thrilled) with Jalen Hurts as their quarterback. Last season, Philly traded away one of their biggest weapons in Zach Ertz. Hurts didn’t have too many options to work with offensively. Snagging Olave changes that. A guy that blossomed into a stud receiver at Ohio State, CO2 is one of the crispest route runners I’ve ever had the pleasure of watching. He isn’t the fastest guy, but his release and route running ability allow him to get free anytime.
17) Los Angeles Chargers- Jermaine Johnson II: EDGE, Florida State (Ryan)
The Chargers ranked in the bottom half of defensive stats last season. Adding a player like Jermaine Johnson will certainly help improve that defense. Johnson has great explosiveness and is great at rushing the passer, something the Chargers need with Joey Bosa’s seemingly endless health problems.
18) New Orleans Saints- Matt Corral: QB, Ole Miss (Jake)
With Jameis Winston hitting free agency and Trevor Siemian not looking like an option as a starter, that leaves only Taysom Hill and Ian Book in the Saints quarterback room. Taysom Hill is mainly the Saints’ gadget guy, so picking up a signal caller should be a priority. There is some doubts with Matt Corral following his injury in the Sugar Bowl, but at 100% he’s an electric dual threat quarterback.
19) Philadelphia Eagles- George Karlaftis: EDGE, Purdue (Gabe)
Karlaftis is one of the best defensive players to come through the Boilermakers’ program in a long time. At 6-4, 275 pounds, he has the size you need from a pass rusher. Speaking of the pass rush, Karlaftis excells at it. He recorded 14 QB hits and 5 sacks in the 2021 campaign, even dealing with several double teams. He’s an excellent defensive addition for the Eagles.
20) Pittsburgh Steelers- Tyler Linderbaum: IOL, Iowa (Paul)
Linderbaum is one of the best interior offense linemen in the draft, and the Steelers are in big need of any position on the line. Linderbaum is very athletic and has great awareness. He stands out with his leadership and the Steelers need a leader on the line as they were ranked in the basement of the league in rushing offense. The offensive line as a unit was one of the worst in the league. Picking up Linderbaum will start the re-haul.
21) New England Patriots- Nakobe Dean: LB, Georgia (Dom)
The New England Patriots have bounced back quite well in the post-Brady era. Their offense made big strides, but their defense held them back at times. Dean is coming off a stellar season for a championship winning school and is arguably the most intense and game changing LB in college football. Look for the Pats to scramble for the draft card if Dean sits available at #21.
22) Las Vegas Raiders- Charles Cross: OT, Mississippi State (David)
Charles Cross is a young player who has lots of raw talent. The Raiders need help on the O-Line and Cross’s strength and length would develop nicely at the next level being one of the bookends that protects Derek Carr.
23) Arizona Cardinals- Kenyon Green: IOL, Texas A&M (Dom)
The Cardinals put together what seemed like a “win now” team prior to the 2021 season, but a first-round exit has the Cardinals feeling pretty antsy. Drafting an interior lineman like Green is one of the safest picks at this point in the draft and investing in the O-Line for Kyler Murray could help ease his worries going into next season.
24) Dallas Cowboys- Jordan Davis: DT, Georgia (Gabe)
Davis is an absolute freak of nature. At 6-6, 340 pounds, he’s one of the biggest human beings I’ve ever laid eyes on. A lot of concerns with the Cowboys lay on the defensive side of the ball, particularly in stopping the run game. Adding a guy like Jordan Davis on the interior will more than solve that issue.
25) Buffalo Bills- Trent McDuffie: CB, Washington (Dom)
The Bills had high expectations last season but fell short of a divisional round matchup thanks to the Patriots. Corner needs to be addressed, with uncertainty behind Tre White. Micah Hyde, Jordan Poyer, Tre White and Trent McDuffie would be a great wall of talent to get behind with expectations still sky high for 2022.
26) Tennessee Titans- David Ojabo: LB, Michigan (Paul)
Ojabo may be a very raw prospect, but his upside is incredible. He had great production alongside Aidan Hutchinson and can get to the quarterback in a hurry. His game lacks in run defense but he can grow and learn in Tennessee and can play an outside linebacker role for the Titans.
27) Tampa Bay Buccaneers- Jahan Dotson: WR, Penn State (Ryan)
After losing Antonio Brown and potentially losing Chris Godwin to go along with the retirement of Tom Brady, the Buccaneers offense is looking a lot thinner than it has in the last two seasons. They need weapons for whoever will be playing QB and adding Jahan Dotson would do the trick. He has great hands and tremendous speed and was a bright spot on an underperforming Penn State roster.
28) Green Bay Packers- Devonte Wyatt: DT, Georgia (Jake)
This offseason is big for Green Bay for a lot of reasons. One of which is the defensive line. As things currently stand, the Packers only have three defensive linemen under contract for next season. There isn’t much star power aside from Kenny Clark. That’s something that needs to be corrected, which is why another piece from the historically great Georgia defense is coming off the board.
29) Miami Dolphins- Daniel Faalele: OT, Minnesota (David)
So far, this mock has been in love with offensive linemen, and that trend will continue. The Dolphins need someone to protect Tua. Waiting for them is an absolute unit in Daniel Faalele. He’s a 6’9″, 380 lb monster protecting the blindside of the quarterback. His size may bring some concerns, potentially being too large and slow for the NFL, but he possesses great athleticism. This is potentially a risky pick but could pay dividends if he can develop into a top tier tackle in the league.
30) Kansas City Chiefs- Dax Hill: S, Michigan (Jake)
Last season, the Chiefs undoing was once again their defense. If they want to make it to the Super Bowl again, they will need to seriously update the defense both in the draft and in free agency. Dax Hill played a big role in the first College Football Playoff berth in Michigan’s history, and he will be a nice piece for the Kansas City secondary.
31) Cincinnati Bengals- Travon Walker: DL, Georgia (Dom)
Georgia’s championship roster from this past season has some legitimate NFL caliber players entering the draft. One name surprisingly falling down the board in this mock is Travon Walker. His punishing play style and quickness give NFL teams plenty to love, especially the Cincinnati Bengals, who should target O-line help, but will have better luck in free agency to land a more impactful player.
32) Detroit Lions- Sam Howell: QB, North Carolina (Paul)
Jared Goff does not seem to be the long-term solution at quarterback for the Lions. With Howell being the best QB on the board, I see the Lions taking him. Howell had back-to-back amazing seasons for the Tar Heels and was seen as many as a very high draft pick going into the season. However, he took a step back in 2021, having a pretty average season. Howell would come out and say that this irrational play came from trying to do too much on each play. We know he can play well, and I feel sitting behind Goff for a bit will help his career and Detroit moving forward.