2022 NFL Mock Draft: Burroughs Edition 3.0 Post NFL Combine
With the NFL Combine in the books, there are many players who have dramatically improved their draft stock due to outstanding performances. I will be linking the notes throughout this post, so keep an eye out for them. In this 3.0 edition of my NFL Mock Draft, we have a third different player going first, players rising into the first round, and a number dropping out of the first round. Who are the biggest risers? Are there teams reaching for players based on needs? I will answer all your questions and more right here. If you want to compare this mock to my last, click here.
#1 Jacksonville Jaguars- Evan Neal (OT, Alabama)
Yes, I have named Ikem Ekwonu the best OT coming out of this year’s draft. I believe he is the most NFL-ready out of the tackles, but Evan Neal has the most potential long-term. Neal had a very successful college career at Alabama, and playing against top-tier competition most of his career will help him transition into the NFL and hopefully anchor an offensive line in Jacksonville. With there not being too many big-name tackles in free agency, I believe Neal is the pick to start this 2022 NFL Mock Draft.
#2 Detroit Lions- Aiden Hutchinson (EDGE, Michigan)
I think in every mock so far, I have had Hutchinson staying in state and going to the Detroit Lions, and it makes sense. The pick isn’t tackle here, only because I wouldn’t invest in a line that is underrated as it is. Plus, with their pick of Sewell last year, they should invest elsewhere. The Lions finished 30th in the NFL in team sacks with a mere 30. The Lions can dramatically improve their pass rush by getting either of the top EDGE rushers in this draft class, but I believe the intrigue to keep Hutchinson in the state of Michigan (plus merch sales) will lure Detroit into this pick.
#3 Houston Texans- Kayvon Thibodeaux (EDGE, Oregon)
The front office of the Houston Texans is thanking their lucky stars that the board has fallen this way so far. While Hutchinson might be the more NFL-ready, Kayvon Thibodeaux might have more long-term potential and that should excite Texans fans. Who knows what’s going to happen with Deshaun Watson, so the Texans should be looking to add the best defensive player available, and that, by and large, is Thibodeaux. The second coming of J.J. Watt in Houston?
#4 New York Jets- Kyle Hamilton (S, Notre Dame)
Is there a player better suited for a team than Kyle Hamilton to the New York Jets? The fit is nearly perfect. Hamilton comes in as a swiss army knife that could use the help in the secondary, especially with Marcus Maye likely departing in free agency. Hamilton is a unicorn for the position, and while, yes, he did not have the greatest 40 time at the combine, I simply do not care. He checks all the boxes, has all the intangibles and the football IQ to be a leader on this defense for the next decade. If the Jets look anywhere else with this pick, it won’t be a good look for them.
#5 New York Giants- Ikem Ekwonu (OT, NC State)
The New York Giants have a major issue going into the 2022 NFL season: their Quarterback stinks. Daniel Jones did prove me wrong though, he did finish out the year. I guess if the Giants are all in on Jones, might as well draft the best tackle in the draft class to protect him. Ekwonu can play inside at Guard or outside at Tackle, and that flexibility will pay out on spades for new head coach Brian Daboll as he tries to figure out how to fix this offense. Giants fans are loving this so far.
#6 Carolina Panthers- Charles Cross (OT, Mississippi State)
The reason I have the Panthers picking Cross here is that I have a feeling they will find a way to land Deshaun Watson via trade. If this team does find a way to land Watson, you have to use those resources to protect him at all costs. Watson ran for his life in Houston, you don’t want him doing that here. Cross can move well and will only get better in pass protection, something this offense will look to do if they do in fact add Watson. If Carolina doesn’t land Watson before the draft, I like Malik Willis here.
#7 New York Giants- Ahmad Gardner (CB, Cincinnati)
With rumor going around that the Giants might cut James Bradberry…for whatever reason…it would only make sense to draft his replacement. Boy, do they certainly do that. Ahmad Gardner is widely regarded as the best CB in this year’s draft class, and he is the first one off the board. Gardner is a playmaker who is determined not to let a single pass get by him, and his toughness will translate well into the NFL. Personally, I think this is a great trade-down spot for the Giants, but since I am not adding trades, Giants go with Gardner.
#8 Atlanta Falcons- Garrett Wilson (WR, Ohio State)
With Calvin Ridley suspended for the 2022 NFL season for betting on games while he was away, the Flacons now have a massive hole at receiver. Garrett Wilson is on the board and is the best receiver in the class. Seems like a match made in heaven. Wilson had a great showing at the NFL Combine, and he sees that pay dividend here as being the first receiver off the board and being taken in the top 10. With how first-round receivers are trending in the NFL nowadays, Wilson has massive potential in this Atlanta offense. The first receiver is off the board in this 2022 NFL Mock Draft.
#9 Seattle Seahawks- Malik Willis (QB, Liberty)
With the massive news this week of the Seahawks trading Russell Wilson to the Denver Broncos, obviously they have a clear need at QB. I want to go on the record and say that I don’t think any of the QBs in this class should go top 10, I think the Seahawks see Drew Lock and realize that he isn’t their bridge QB to next year’s class. Don’t get me wrong though, Willis is a gem and I think he is going to pan out well in the NFL he has all the tools. Seattle sees those tools and tabs him as their franchise QB going forward.
#10 New York Jets- Derek Stingley Jr. (CB, LSU)
Jets fans might’ve gotten worried when they see Gardner off the board here, but don’t worry. The addition of Derek Stingley Jr. will still bring you a clear, bonafide CB1 with massive upside as a lockdown corner. Stingley missed all of last year rehabbing an injury, and I think that hurt his draft stock just slightly. His pro day will be huge for him, but even with all that being said he still finds a way into the top 10 of this 2022 NFL Mock Draft. The Jets have set up their secondary for the next decade.
#11 Washington Commanders- Jordan Davis (DT, Georgia)
So long is the need for a QB in Washington, much to the dismay of one Karl Heiser.
The prospect of adding a receiver to this team given the board was tempting, but with Jordan Davis sitting there I just couldn’t resist. Would it be a reach to say Davis had one of the best NFL Combine performances in history? The Commanders don’t have a clear need right now, but with Matt Ioannidis potentially leaving next year in free agency, this pick gives the Commanders flexibility to either let Davis get a limited amount of reps and learn, or let him loose and move Ioannidis for some draft capital. Either way, no brainer for Washington.
#12 Minnesota Vikings- Andrew Booth Jr. (CB, Clemson)
The Minnesota Vikings are pounding the table right now that Davis came off the board the pick before them, but a nice consolation prize is Andrew Booth Jr. There is a lot of first-round talent this year at the Cornerback position, and Minnesota does have a need at the position. When Patrick Peterson might be your best Cornerback, you need to upgrade. This was a question mark pick for me in this NFL Mock Draft.
#13 Cleveland Browns- Travon Walker (EDGE, Georgia)
With the Amari Cooper trade today, the need for a receiver in Cleveland is no longer a need. Jadeveon Clowney had a nice season for the Browns last season, but 9 sacks for him won’t cut it. Travon Walker is a monster. He had a great showing at the combine, and for this NFL Mock Draft, Cleveland is getting a steal. Walker could very easily find himself going inside the top 10. His stock has a rocket strapped to it and is only going up from here. Another massive performance at his pro day at Georgia could very well boost Walker into that top 10 range, but for now, 13 to Cleveland is the pick.
#14 Baltimore Ravens- Trevor Penning (OT, Northern Iowa)
With the Baltimore Ravens losing Alejandro Villanueva to retirement, the Ravens should value protecting QB Lamar Jackson over anything else. Penning has length, good movement for a guy his size, and will bring a nasty side to this line that could use a little ugly on it. Ravens fans might not like the pick because picking tackle in the middle of the first round is never sexy or splashy, but this fills a need immediately, and Penning becomes a day 1 starter.
#15 Philadelphia Eagles- Jermaine Johnson (EDGE, Florida State)
If Howie Roseman ever wants to clear his reputation of being god awful, he HAS to nail this draft this year. This is a start. Jermaine Johnson is a prime example of these off-season workouts boosting draft stock. Johnson had a GREAT Senior Bowl, and scouts have been keeping a much closer eye on him since then. One of these two picks could be traded, but this Eagles team needs an infusion of youth and talent, so maybe hold onto all three and just nail them.
#16 Philadelphia Eagles- Chris Olave (WR, Ohio State)
Two Ohio State receivers in the first round in this 2022 NFL Mock Draft.
Roseman goes 2/2 so far by landing a premier receiver and a perfect running mate alongside last year’s first-round pick Devonta Smith. Olave brings route running and physicality which will complement Smith well and bring a new dynamic to this offense. You have to support Jalen Hurts as much as you can, and as much as Eagles fans are asking for offensive weapons, now you have two new toys to play with in back-to-back years. Now stop complaining.
#17 Los Angeles Chargers- Kenyon Green (OG, Texas A&M)
With how the board has fallen so far, I think this is a clear trade-down spot for the Chargers. Picking in the middle of the first round is always weird, anyways. But, with no trades means we have to find something for the Chargers. While their run defense was awful last year there isn’t really anyone here to help that. So let’s beef up the offensive line and protect the franchise QB Justin Herbert with Kenyon Green. Green has great hands and a good punch, which should help with some of the defensive lines he will be playing against in the AFC.
#18 New Orleans Saints- Jameson Williams (WR, Alabama)
The writing is now on the wall for Michael Thomas. His days are numbered. With Williams not playing until the middle or late part of this upcoming year, this gives the Saints time to find a trade partner for Thomas. The injuries and poor attitude from Thomas won’t cut it anymore, and once healthy, Williams 100% takes over the role of WR1 for the Saints. His speed alone makes him dangerous. Once he starts to learn more of the route tree and fine-tunes his route running, forget about it.
#19 Philadelphia Eagles- Christian Harris (LB, Alabama)
The first real shock of this 2022 NFL Mock Draft, Christian Harris finds a way into the first round and slips into a great system for him. Harris had one of the best combine showings out of all the LBs who worked out, and this should help his draft stock immensely. Tyler Linderbaum was very tempting here seeing that Jason Kelce is nearing retirement, but I think beefing up the defense is a little bit more of a priority. His sideline to sideline speed will show along with his change of direction. A pick towards the future more than right now.
#20 Pittsburgh Steelers- Tyler Linderbaum (C, Iowa)
I get it. Ben Roethlisberger retired this off-season, and the Steelers don’t have a clear replacement. With Kenny Pickett and Matt Corral on the board, picking one of those two guys is tempting. I have issues with both. Pickett and his small hands and Corral with his decision-making. The chance to finally address the offensive line by picking the best Center prospect maybe in the last decade is too tempting to not draft. The Steelers should look to add a stop-gap replacement via free agency or trade for a one-year rental to get to next year’s class. That is where you find your Big Ben replacement.
#21 New England Patriots- Trent McDuffie (CB, Washington)
With JC Jackson likely leaving New England, the Patriots need to find his replacement. The idea of picking a receiver is tempting here, but McDuffie just seems like a Patriot. He has seen his draft stock rise, fall, and now rising again, with momentum being that he is back to being a first-round pick. Fast, long, and has the potential to play slot or man-to-man.
#22 Las Vegas Raiders- Devin Lloyd (LB, Utah)
While Devin Lloyd might not have had the best performance at the NFL Combine, he is still a premier LB off the board in this NFL Mock Draft to the Las Vegas Raiders. The argument could be made that the Raiders should address either side of the line or the secondary, especially after the trade the Broncos made. But Lloyd and his football IQ make him a hard-to-miss prospect. Plus, he did play a little EDGE in college at Utah which will help the Raiders pass rush.
#23 Arizona Cardinals- David Ojabo (EDGE, Michigan)
With Chandler Jones set to hit free agency, it only makes sense to bring in almost a carbon copy of Jones in David Ojabo. Ojabo is extremely long and uses it to his advantage, often using his frame to warp around tackles. I believe he benefitted from playing with Aiden Hutchinson because a lot of the attention went to Hutch, but this will be Ojabo’s chance to prove himself that he belongs with the best of the best in this year’s EDGE class.
#24 Dallas Cowboys- Nakobe Dean (LB, Georgia)
Was it tempting to go Drake London here? Absolutely. Dallas has proven in the past to take a splashy receiver over filling other needs on the roster. But with losing Leighton Vander Esch this off-season to free agency, Dean fills that need opposite stud, Micah Parsons. Even if the Cowboys bring back LVE, Dean would bring that thumper, run-stopping presence to this linebacking core that isn’t met with LVE and Parsons. Safety or Cornerback is also tempting here as well.
#25 Buffalo Bills- Drake London (WR, USC)
Speaking of Mr. London. I think a more pressing need for this Buffalo Bills team might be the defensive line or maybe grabbing a Cornerback, but there isn’t really a guy there I like. Drake London I like for this team. Playing opposite Stefon Diggs would benefit London in a multitude of ways. London is a massive red zone target who uses his body well to sky over DBs and high-point the ball. He comps pretty close to someone like Mike Evans but less physical. Adding another weapon to this Bills offense could prove to be deadly.
#26 Tennessee Titans- George Pickens (WR, Georgia)
The run on WRs begins. George Pickens is a freak athlete who ran extremely well at the NFL Combine and has flashes of pure brilliance. At 6’3 200 lbs, he has the frame and length to excel at the next level. If Tennessee is going to ride with Ryan Tannehill, they have to surround him with some weapons. This team still managed to win games without Derrick Henry, but adding a big-time WR1 to this team takes a little bit of the load off the best running back in football.
#27 Tampa Bay Buccaneers- Kenny Pickett (QB, Pittsburgh)
With the news of Tom Brady retiring this off-season (we will see how long that lasts), the Quarterback position is a massive question mark for this franchise. The defense is solid and the offense has weapons, pending what happens with Chris Godwin this off-season. Kenny Pickett inherits a good offensive line, Mike Evans, and a Head Coach who isn’t afraid to let it all hang out. Losing Ryan Jensen potentially in FA and Ali Marpet to retirement will hurt, but with how the board is set up now taking a QB in Tampa makes the most sense. Pickett is accurate, likes to hang in there to find his guy, and has potential as a running QB as well. Yes, the hand size is a concern. But in a warm-weather state like Florida, that shouldn’t matter as much.
#28 Green Bay Packers- Jahan Dotson (WR, Penn State)
I do not like Treylon Burks, especially in this offense.
I like Jahan Dotson, especially in this offense.
Dotson can fly, running very well at the combine. But the most impressive part of his combine workout was his hands. Dotson was catching nearly everything thrown at him, something we needed to see from him. He will play off Davante Adams extremely well and this will be a deadly 1-2 punch this season in Green Bay.
#29 Miami Dolphins- Zion Johnson (OG, Boston College)
Another prime example of what it means to show out at the Senior Bowl and the NFL Combine. Johnson put on quite the performance as of late and it has opened up a lot of eyes, mine included. Johnson will EXCEL in run blocking and will pick up better techniques in pass block as he continues his NFL career. Miami has to invest in the offensive line and protect Tua Tagovailoa at all costs. Adding Zion Johnson inside will certainly help matters.
#30 Kansas City Chiefs- Daxton Hill (S, Michigan)
I think I have had Daxton Hill in every mock so far going to the Kansas City Chiefs. Plus, with Tyrann Mathieu not on the team anymore, there is a clear need on the back end of the secondary that Hill can fill in spades. His combine performance didn’t necessarily help his draft stock, but I think he will test out better at his pro day at Michigan coming up. He has a bit to work on, but his speed will help his game translate well in the NFL.
#31 Cincinnati Bengals- Ed Ingram (OG, LSU)
Maybe a bit of a reach, but I like Ingram. His combine performance should help his draft stock a lot but first-round doesn’t have to be too far out of the question. Ingram has a nasty streak, a strong base, and is as strong as an ox. Very agile for a guy his size as well. It’s obvious the only route for the Bengals is drafting for the offensive line. Ed Ingram probably starts day one and will make a name for himself.
#32 Detroit Lions- Matt Corral (QB, Ole Miss)
Adding a franchise pass rusher and QB should earn Detroit an A for their first round. I don’t think it’s a secret that Jared Goff stinks. I would not start Corral right away, let him sit behind Goff, and learn what not to do. Corral has a live arm and can be mobile when needs be. Has a gunslinger mentality as well, which is sometimes his downfall. Corral has low-level starting QB talent, and I think that all he needs to be in Detroit is a game manager to succeed right away while he learns how to be an NFL QB. We have to wait and see how he tests out at his pro day at Ole Miss, but as of now, he squeaks into the first round of this 2022 NFL Mock Draft.
Check out our Linktree to view all of our wonderful sponsors as well as our socials!