Joe B: NFL Mock Draft No. 4 (4/13/17)

(WKBW) - Two weeks away.

That's all that separates us from the next installment of the event that breathes optimism into every single NFL franchise and fan base. Teams convince themselves that the player they're getting early on will be the one to make an impact, and maybe even bring them to the prominence they so desire.

When in reality, a swing and a miss on one of these guys can set you back a long way.

With the 2017 NFL Draft so close, it's time for the next look at how things can happen through the first round-and-a-half. The Bills have a lot of options, and there have been plenty of rumors about them being interested in a quarterback, but do they take the plunge at 10th overall?

The next set of projections, going all the way through the Bills second-round pick:

(*Note: Mock Drafts are, and always should be, for entertainment purposes only.)

Round One

1)  - EDGE Myles Garrett, Texas A&M

2) **TRADE  (from SF) - RB Leonard Fournette, LSU

- Let's not forget, the Carolina Panthers were in the Super Bowl only 14 months ago. This is still a talented team that has a great quarterback, and they're likely a lot closer to the playoffs than any other team in the Top 10. For all those other teams, a trade up this far -- and to get this player -- just don't make sense. For the Panthers, it does. There have been plenty of rumors that detail Leonard Fournette being the apple of their eye, and that can lead teams to convince themselves to do damn near anything. Most importantly, they get ahead of Jacksonville and make the move with a San Francisco team eager to get out from the 2nd overall pick.

Trade Details: Carolina gets 2nd overall. San Francisco gets 8th overall, 40th overall, 2018 2nd-round pick

3)  - CB Marshon Lattimore, Ohio State

4) - EDGE Solomon Thomas, Stanford

5)  (from LAR) - TE O.J. Howard, Alabama

- Normally a little high for tight ends, but Howard bridges the gap by being able to do so many different things for an offense. He can become an immediate and dynamic weapon for Marcus Mariota.

6) **TRADE  - DL Jonathan Allen, Alabama

- After missing out on Marshon Lattimore, the Jets move down and improve one of their own choices by 65 spots.  The Saints move up and get a defender that can help them all over the line of scrimmage, someone that was originally thought to be a Top 3 pick, and they still own the 32nd overall pick. That's a win-win.

Trade Details: New Orleans gets 6th overall, 107th overall. New York Jets get 11th overall, 42nd overall.

7)  - S Malik Hooker, Ohio State

8)  (from CAR) - EDGE Charles Harris, Missouri

- The 49ers need pass rushers, and Harris has been getting a lot of draft buzz lately. This seems early, but, that's the way things are trending at the moment.

9)  - EDGE Derek Barnett, Tennessee

10)  - S Jamal Adams, LSU

- Unlike any year that we've seen them in the draft, the Buffalo Bills are truly unpredictable in the first round and are really board dependent based on all the needs that they have. You can go right down the list with the non-quarterback needs: wide receiver, tight end, offensive tackle, defensive end, outside linebacker, cornerback, and safety. Plus, based on some expiring contracts and aging players, they have upcoming, sneaky needs at running back, guard, center, and defensive tackle, too. They can quite literally go in any direction, which will likely frustrate some fans that want a firm answer as of today on what they're going to do. However, the one area I do not believe that they're looking to address at 10th overall -- for the time being, anyway -- is at the quarterback position. If they were to trade down and get additional picks, or if one became available at either 44 or 75 that they liked, I could see them taking one. At 10th overall, and with a huge opportunity to add an impact player if they stay put, I think they go for a different position. That said, the draft is fluid, so basically everything is subject to change, that's just how it goes with teams. This time around, though, they end up with Jamal Adams -- a dynamic safety that can do a little bit of everything. He can take Jordan Poyer off the field in the early downs, and then in obvious passing situations, Poyer can come on, and allow Micah Hyde to roam the field at different spots based on the matchup. Adams is a strong tackler, he can play either safety spot, and he'll bring the intangible qualities that Sean McDermott looks for. Multiple draft analysts have waxed poetic about the leadership Adams brings to a locker room, which is just what McDermott is looking to establish -- with multiple players that have that characteristic -- to try and change the way things have been done in Orchard Park.

11)  (from NO) - CB Gareon Conley, Ohio State

12)  (from PHI) - WR Mike Williams, Clemson

- The Browns combine getting the top-rated edge rusher in the draft with selecting the top-rated wide receiver in the draft. Two huge needs for them.

13)  - TE David Njoku, Miami (FL)

14)  (from MIN) - WR Corey Davis, Western Michigan

15)  - ILB Reuben Foster, Alabama

- A tiny slide, but a great fit for Foster with a front-seven that's seen a massive overhaul this offseason -- and it's about time.

16)  - ILB/EDGE Haason Reddick, Temple

- The versatility Reddick provides might just be too tempting to pass on for someone like GM Ozzie Newsome.

17)  - RB Christian McCaffery, Stanford

18)  - CB Kevin King, Washington

19)  - EDGE Derek Willis, Kansas State

- A bit early, but there are always surprises that come along with the first day of the draft. This would be the first of a couple...

20)  - OT Garrett Bolles, Utah

21)   - RB Joe Mixon, Oklahoma

- ... And this would be the biggest surprise of them all. Detroit has been reportedly sniffing around Joe Mixon throughout the draft process, and they might not be able to get him by the time their second pick comes around. There's no debating the talent, but a franchise is going to have to look at themselves in the mirror and ask if they can handle all that comes with it.

22)  - G Forrest Lamp, Western Kentucky

23)  - RB Dalvin Cook, Florida State

24) **TRADE  (from OAK) - QB Mitchell Trubisky, North Carolina

- The first quarterback finally drops, with the Browns knowing that they're likely going to have to get ahead of the Houston Texans to secure the services of Mitchell Trubisky. They certainly have all the draft capital to make a move like this one, it's just a matter of finding the sweet spot in the draft to do so. Top edge rusher, top wide receiver, and now, the top quarterback that has always wanted to play for the Browns. This seems like a home run of a draft for them, to me.

Trade Details: Cleveland gets 24th overall, 88th overall, 168th overall. Oakland gets 33rd overall, 65th overall, 108th overall.

25)  - OT Ryan Ramczyk, Wisconsin

26)  - CB/S Obi Melifonwu, Connecticut

27)  - QB Patrick Mahomes, Texas Tech

- Nope, not Deshaun Watson -- Patrick Mahomes is the second quarterback off the board, and he goes to a great situation in Kansas City with a head coach that knows a thing or two about cultivating raw talents and bringing along quarterbacks to becoming NFL stars. I would be absolutely fascinated by this pairing because it seems like the right situation for Mahomes without having to be forced into the lineup straight away.

28)  - WR John Ross, Washington

- Dallas has been looking at defense quite a bit, but you can't ignore the talent that is available at this spot just because they play offense. Ross would immediately replace Terrance Williams and provide a home run option for Dak Prescott.

29)  - EDGE Takk McKinley, UCLA

30)  - LB/S Jabrill Peppers, Michigan

31) **TRADE  - QB DeShone Kizer, Notre Dame

- And the third quarterback.... is also not Deshaun Watson. Much in the same mold as Mahomes to Kansas City, Kizer goes to a situation -- and a head coach -- that works well with his type of skill set, has had success developing quarterbacks in the past, and doesn't have to be forced into duty right away with a solid starting option already in place.

Trade Details: Arizona gets 31st overall, 136th overall. Atlanta gets 45th overall, 77th overall.

32) (from NE) - RB/WR Curtis Samuel, Ohio State

Round Two

33)  (from CLE) - ILB Jarrad Davis, Florida

34)  - OT Cam Robinson, Alabama

35)  - TE Evan Engram, Ole Miss

36)  - OT Taylor Moton, Western Michigan

37)  - WR Zay Jones, East Carolina

38)  - QB Deshaun Watson, Clemson

- Finally, Deshaun Watson gets scooped up in the second round, but in a low-pressure situation with one of the best quarterbacks in the league to learn from. If he lasts this long, perhaps the Bills would think about moving up the board slightly in the second round to secure his services, but they would be weakening one of their remaining selections. They need plenty of help in the draft this year.

39)  - EDGE T.J. Watt, Wisconsin

40)  (from CAR) - CB Tre'Davious White, LSU

41)  - ILB Zach Cunningham, Vanderbilt

42)  - CB Marlon Humphrey, Alabama

43)  - CB Chidobe Awuzie, Colorado

44)  - OT Antonio Garcia, Troy

- I know what some of you might be thinking: 'But where is the wide receiver?!' Hear (or, in this case, read) me out. One of the biggest swings the Bills took in free agency was at right tackle Rick Wagner, and they were prepared to dole out a large percentage of their remaining cap room just to add him and start him at right tackle. The Bills have also reportedly hosted both Cam Robinson and Garrett Bolles on draft visits, so they're definitely looking to add to the position. On the surface, the Bills have a pretty solid offensive line for 2017. Past that? A rebuild could be coming. Center Eric Wood is in the final year of his deal in 2017. Left guard Richie Incognito only has one-year remaining on his contract past this season and will be 35 years old by the time the 2018 season starts. Plus, we all know about the dire need at the right tackle position. Then you throw in the strengths -- and weaknesses -- of this year's draft class. Antonio Garcia is an athletic offensive tackle that can move, and this is a great spot for someone with his skill-set to get drafted. After Garcia (and the others drafted before him), the offensive tackle position essentially falls off a cliff. The wide receiver and tight end position, however, is strong and deep, and they could even find a starter in the third round. Garcia would push to start right away for the Bills at right tackle, and potentially have one less headache on the offensive line and for the long-term when the 2018 offseason comes around.

Twitter: @JoeBuscaglia

 

 

 

 

 

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