Robert Garcia’s 2018 NFL Draft Mock Draft

I have hit my denouement, as it is time to release my Mock Draft. Before we go over the picks let’s take a look at some things I expect to see today.

I believe trades will be the stars of the show with quarterbacks being the focus. I expect the moves to start between picks four and six. I also believe we could see as many as eight offensive linemen drafted in the first round. This is the best interior line draft I can remember.

Ascending: Quarterbacks, as if you really needed me to reiterate that but don’t be surprised if Josh Rosen slips out of the top 10. I think Arkansas interior lineman, Frank Ragnow, ends up somewhere between picks 25 and 32. UCLA offensive tackle Kolton Miller will also end up in the first round and Notre Dame’s Mike McGlinchey will go higher than I expect ending up in the top 15 picks.

Descending: Cornerbacks, starting with Mike Hughes out of Colorado. There are off-field questions dating back to his days at North Carolina. Iowa’s Josh Jackson could also slide out of day one. Running backs could be missing tonight. Saquon Barkley is a top five lock but after that, LSU’s Derrius Guice is said to have maturity issues, while there are durability questions surrounding Georgia’s Sony Michel.

Player I have too high: Mike Hughes, CB, UCF

Player I have too low: Kolton Miller, OT, UCLA

Time to take a look at my 600 ESPN El Paso Mock Draft. I don’t project trades so this thing will blow up around pick six.

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1. Cleveland - Sam Darnold, QB, USC - There’s a buzz that the Browns are going with Baker Mayfield but I’m not buying that. Darnold is the safest and best option at quarterback. Cleveland can’t afford to screw this pick up.

2. NY Giants - Saquon Barkley, RB, Penn State - THE best player in the draft, the Giants view Barkley as a dynamic three-down back that should give Eli another versatile weapon on offense.

3. NY Jets - Baker Mayfield, QB, Oklahoma - I hate this pick, I even hated putting it in my mock but there’s too much chatter surrounding Mayfield and the Jets to ignore. I’d take Josh Rosen.

4. Cleveland - Bradley Chubb, DE, NC State - This an easy pick for the Browns, what will be hard is resisting trading down. Chubb is a day one starter and a great bookend opposite Myles Garrett.

5. Denver - Quenton Nelson, OG, Notre Dame - John Elway will be looking to trade down. I’m not buying the quarterback talk. Denver goes with the best player available and adds protection for their 36 million dollar investment.

6. Indianapolis - Denzel Ward, CB, Ohio State - The Colts have holes everywhere! This is too high for any of the remaining edge rushers, so the pick is simple. Ward has the ability to shut down one side of the field.

7. Tampa Bay - Derwin James, DB, Florida State - James has the ability to be the best defensive prospect in this draft. Injuries have slowed his development but his talents at safety transfer extremely well to the NFL.

8. Chicago - Roquan Smith, LB, Georgia - The Bears are smiling from ear-to-ear. Smith is one of the top elite talents on defense in this draft. He should be an immediate starter and impact player.

9. San Francisco - Minkah Fitzpatrick, DB, Alabama - John Lynch knows safeties. Fitzpatrick has a high football IQ, a ton of playing experience and is equally adept in pass and run coverage.

10. Oakland - Mike McGlinchey, OT, Notre Dame - This is a little rich for me as the Raiders have big issues defending against the run but the Notre Dame right tackle has been climbing up the first round.

11. Miami - Tremaine Edmonds, LB, Virginia Tech - If healthy, Ryan Tannehill is a playoff quarterback but he hasn’t been healthy. Miami could select a potential replacement but they are in a “win now” mode. Edmonds helps them do that quickly.

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12. Buffalo - Josh Allen, QB, Wyoming - Buffalo will most likely have to trade up to make this pick happen. The strong-armed Allen fits well in the cold environment in Buffalo. He just won’t have a lot of support around him.

13. Washington - Vita Vea, DT, Washington - The Redskins ranked dead last in rush yards allowed per game last season. Vea is a huge wide-body who helps strengthen that front seven immediately.

14. Green Bay - Jaire Alexander, CB, Louisville - The Packers could take a look to trade up to grab Fitzpatrick but Alexander is a great consolation prize if they don’t. He has some durability issues but when he is on, he is damn good.

15. Arizona - Josh Rosen, QB, UCLA - Rosen gets to stay close to home and to play in a controlled environment. He will have a great running back to lean on, as he is expected to compete with Sam Bradford.

16. Baltimore - Lamar Jackson, QB, Louisville - Ozzie Newsome drops the mic as he goes out with a bang and flips the Raven’s franchise into an exciting direction with one of the most electric players in the draft in Jackson.

17. Los Angeles - Da’Ron Payne, DT, Alabama - The Chargers were really weak between the ends on defense. Payne is the next great Alabama defensive tackle who just happens to play his best on the big stage.

18. Seattle - Marcus Davenport, DE, UTSA - Davenport has tremendous raw potential. While it wasn’t displayed during Senior Bowl week, the Seahawks should be the right team to develop that talent.

19. Dallas - Calvin Ridley, WR, Alabama - Think Marvin Harrison part two. Ridley is a great route-runner with legit deep speed. The Cowboys could reach for Courtland Sutton but Ridley is the best option and player at wide receiver.

20. Detroit - Harold Landry, OLB/DE, Boston College - Matt Patricia is going to re-build the Lions defense. While he would have loved to have started at defensive tackle, Landry is too good to pass up as an edge rusher.

21. Cincinnati - James Daniels, C, Iowa - The Bengals offensive line has taken some hits these past two off-seasons. Daniels comes in as the best pure center prospect in the draft and as a day one starter.

22. Buffalo - Will Hernandez, OG, UTEP - All off-season the comparisons to Richie Incognito have been there for Hernandez. Now he gets to replace him and become a road grading run blocker for LeSean McCoy.

23. New England - Kolton Miller, OT, UCLA - Miller will need some time to develop but he has same kind of physical traits and skills of departed left tackle Nate Solder. He better develop quickly or Tom Brady is done.

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24. Carolina - D.J. Moore, WR, Maryland - The Panthers could look at corner or tight end but Moore is too good a value to pass up at the 24th pick. He should be a great weapon to pair with Cam Newton.

25. Tennessee - Sam Hubbard, DE/OLB, Ohio State - It’s a reach for me but new Titans coach Mike Vrabel has a history with Hubbard. He played at the same school and at the same position as Vrabel. Harold Landry could also be an option here.

26. Atlanta - Taven Bryan, DT, Florida - The Falcons lost Dontari Poe to free agency; the addition of Bryan should help ease that loss. Bryan has a great first step and is an athletic talent at defensive tackle.

27. New Orleans - Dallas Goedert, TE, South Dakota State - Seriously, does Drew Brees need another target to throw the ball too? Goedert could remind Saints fan of the Jimmy Graham days. He’s no blocker but is a legit threat as a pass catcher.

28. Pittsburgh - Raashan Evans, LB, Alabama – The Steelers are hurting at linebacker with the loss of Ryan Shazier. Evans fills the void. The linebacker is another Alabama prospect who plays his best in the biggest games. 

29. Jacksonville - Hayden Hurst, TE, South Carolina - The Jaguars add a legit run blocking and pass catching threat in Hurst. He is a bit older than a normal rookie at 24 but should contribute quickly.

30. Minnesota - Frank Ragnow, C/OG, Arkansas - If you invest 84 million into your quarterback, you better be able to protect him. Ragnow was banged up this season but he is a versatile lineman who has a ton of starting experience.

31. New England - Leighton Vander Esch, LB, Boise State - There are some questions about a cervical issue Vander Esch had two years ago but there weren’t any questions last year about his play, as he put up insane numbers in his first year as a starter.

32. Philadelphia - Sony Michel, RB, Georgia - The rich get richer as the Eagles get another dual threat out of their backfield. Michel has all the physical abilities to be great, he just needs to answer the durability questions surrounding him.