The end of the season marks the time to bring you our first NFL 2022 Mock Draft of the year!
With the Super Bowl done, we can now say it is officially draft season!
We have been bringing you scouting reports on the top prospects over the last few months, but with the season over and the draft order set, it is time for Owain to bring you his 2022 mock draft 1.0.
Here is our first mock draft of the season and we are excited to see all the twist and turns over the next couple of months.
***This mock drafts does not include trades that will inevitably occur come Draft Day***
As always, we will keep you updated here at Ninety-Nine Yards right up until Draft Day. Let us know your opinions on twitter @NinetynineYards.
Who is your team taking?
Jacksonville Jaguars – OT – EVAN NEAL – Alabama
The Jacksonville Jaguars really need to protect franchise QB Trevor Lawrence better. Evan Neal is a gigantic human being standing at 6’7″ and weighing 350 Lbs! With Cam Robinson set to be a free agent, the Jags can move forward with an athletic freak to protect Lawrence for the foreseeable future.
Detroit Lions – DE – AIDAN HUTCHINSON – Michigan
Dan Campbell has changed the culture in Detroit and Aidan Hutchinson fits right into it. A homestate kid who dominated college football. He can be a tone setter on this physical defence.
Houston Texans – DE – KAYVON THIBODEAUX – Oregon
There is a couple of ways the Texans could go. Here, they go for the high end player at a premier position. With Lovie Smith being hired as Head Coach, the defensive style he runs will rely on putting pressure on opposing quarterbacks. Kayvon Thibodeaux has what it takes to take the Texans defensive front to the next level.
New York Jets – S – KYLE HAMILTON – Notre Dame
The Jets get the #1 player on Owain’s big board! A generational talent, Kyle Hamilton is built to be a premier NFL safety, who has it all. You name it. He can do it.
Jets fans will remember the last time they drafted a safety highly, which didn’t end so well. Don’t fear, Hamilton is a different animal and will revolutionise the Jets secondary.
New York Giants – OT – IKEM EKWONU – NC State
The indication from the Giants is that they have failed quarterback Daniel Jones. If they are going to help him in 2022 they will need to protect him better. Left tackle Andrew Thomas was improved in 2021, pairing him with Ikem Ekwonu, the Giants have 2 bookends for the future. Ekwonu also has inside/outside versatility.
Carolina Panthers – QB – MALIK WILLIS – Liberty
This QB class is not up to the heights of years past. But, that doesn’t mean it doesn’t have talent. If you are willing to take a gamble on a player who has awesome traits and a high ceiling while dealing with the fact they may not be ready to start on week 1 in their rookie season, Malik Willis may be your guy
The Panthers have thrown everything at trying to get better at the position. Whether that be Sam Darnold or the resigning of Cam Newton. With Matt Rhule on the hot seat heading into 2022, there is every chance they take one last shot at the position.
New York Giants (via CHI) – DE – GEORGE KARLAFTIS – Purdue
The Giants ranked 26th in QB sacks in 2021. After attacking the offensive side of the trenches with the 5th pick, they turn their attention to the defensive trenches with pick number 8. George Karlaftis is a powerful defensive end who combines strength, size and physicality. He would be a great addition to the Giants pass rush.
Atlanta Falcons – CB – AHMAD GARDNER – Cincinnati
The Falcons have found a gem in AJ Terrell. Here, they get a lockdown corner to play opposite him. Ahmad Gardner hasn’t allowed a touchdown over his college career at Cincinnati and while the Falcons have a lot of holes to fill, they add a player who can make the Falcons defence instantly better.
Denver Broncos – OT – CHARLES CROSS – Mississippi St
The Broncos have been papering over the cracks at right tackle for years. While Cross is naturally a left tackle he proves tremendous value here and fixes the Broncos problems on the line. While you will consistently see a quarterback being mocked here, this pick is subject to the assumption that the Broncos make a play in free agency.
New York Jets (via SEA) – IOL – KENYON GREEN – Texas A&M
The Jets love drafting big guys highly. Here the Jets get a versatile lineman who fixes their problems on the right side of the line. Kenyon Green has experience playing across the offensive line and the Jets could feasibly play him at right tackle if they needed, but slotting Green in at right guard makes this line stronger.
Washington Commanders – QB – MATT CORRAL – Ole Miss
At some point the newly named Commanders are going to have to bite the bullet and draft a QB. The lack of aggressiveness to fix the position is one of the reasons that they are drafting so low in the order. The team is ready to insert a rookie quarterback and would be an ideal situation for whichever quarterback they opt for.
In Matt Corral they get a player who has immense arm talent who has the ability to create out of structure and while he isn’t quite a dual threat he has more than enough athleticism to pick up yards with his legs.
Minnesota Vikings – CB – DEREK STINGLEY – LSU
If Derek Stingley is still available at 12 the Vikings won’t be able to sprint the card in quickly enough. After an exceptional freshman year Stingley’s college career has been plagued by injury and a lack of game time. If the Vikings get him back to the quality of his freshman season, this is an absolute steal and sorts out the cornerback dilema in Minnesota.
Cleveland Browns – WR – GARRETT WILSON – Ohio St
The Cleveland Browns need to sort out the receiver room. With OBJ off the books the position looks sparse. Garrett Wilson has WR1 upside and will be a reliable target for Baker Mayfield. A solid all round receiver, he is super athletic, has YAC ability and creates great separation.
Baltimore Ravens – DT – DEMARVIN LEAL – Texas A&M
The Ravens have a big need in the middle of the defensive line. With expiring contracts and imminent retirements, it is a position that Baltimore will need to address. Demarvin Leal fits the type of mold that the Ravens like to draft. An explosive player who they can develop. A year to learn from Calais Campbell will do wonders for Leal whose athletic upside will see him be able to play on all 3 downs.
Philadelphia Eagles (via MIA) – CB – ANDREW BOOTH – Clemson
Here the Philadelphia Eagles add a dynamic corner to their secondary. Drafting a corner has been a priority for the Eagles for a few years now and in Andrew Booth they finally get a player who provides extreme value in a player who can start from day 1.
Philadelphia Eagles (via IND) – DE – DAVID OJABO – Michigan
While David Ojabo would be a developmental prospect, he starts day one on an Eagles defence. The ability to develop Ojabo on the job provides extreme upside.
LA Chargers – OT – TREVOR PENNING – Northern Iowa
With Bryan Bulaga being injured for the 2021 season, the problems for the Chargers at right tackle got exposed. Storm Norton did not impress stepping in and with the amount that can be saved against the cap, it is rumoured that Bulaga’s Chargers career could be over.
Trevor Penning is a day one starter in LA and between himself and Rashawn Slater the Chargers have 2 excellent tackles to protect Justin Herbert for years to come.
New Orleans Saints – QB – SAM HOWELL – North Carolina
The Saints are in desperate need to find the successor to Drew Brees. But, their cap situation is not conducive to lurring in a veteran. Although, the Saints do have a way of escaping some of the cap hell they are in by restructuring some contracts, getting cheaper at the quarterback position for the next 5 years would certainly be helpful.
Step in Sam Howell. A quarterback who has a good enough arm and can throw the ball with zip or with touch, playing behind a great offensive line. Howell would be in a great situation to succeed.
Philadelphia Eagles – WR – TREYLON BURKS – Arkansas
Quarterback Jalen Hurts had a better than expected year in 2021, but if the Eagles are to truely find out if they can commit to him for the future they need to add more weapons around him. Treylon Burks is an explosive dynamo and adds something different to the Eagles receiving core.
Pittsburgh Steelers – C – TYLER LINDERBAUM – Iowa
The Steelers offensive line was not good in the 2021 season. They were inconsistent in pass protection and in run blocking. Averaging just 2.9 rushing yards and just 5.4 in passing yards, that is bad enough to rank them bottom 5 in the NFL.
The Steelers invested in the running game last year by drafting Najee Harris. By adding Tyler Linderbaum the Steelers fix their issues at the center, they can move Kendrick Green back to guard and Linderbaum is the type of prospect who will open up opportunities for Harris.
Although the Steelers of course have a hole to fill at QB, with 3 now off the board, they could look to kick that can down the road.
New England Patriots – CB – TRENT MCDUFFIE – Washington
Trent McDuffie fits the mold of a Patriots corner. He brings physicality in bounds and would free up the Patriots secondary to play more dynamically. J.C. Jackson was one of the top corners in the NFL last season and pairing him with McDuffie would be an ideal situation. It would allow Jalen Mills to move into the slot and suddenly the Patriots defence looks potent and powerful.
Las Vegas Raiders – LB – DEVIN LLOYD – Utah
Devin Lloyd is a prototypical linebacker who fits the Raiders perfectly. He will be able to play all three down and was an all round player at Utah in 2021. Devin Lloyd would be the best player available at this point and could be too good to turn down
Arizona Cardinals – DT – JORDAN DAVIS – Georgia
The Cardinals struggled against the run in 2021 and with Corey Peters set to be a free agent, Jordan Davis fills a massive need for Arizona. His unique size would plug the gap through the middle to free up the Cardinals playmakers on defence to do their thing. Zach Allen, JJ Watt as well as the linebacker room get better because of what Jordan Davis can do.
Dallas Cowboys – DE – TRAVON WALKER – Georgia
The Cowboys struggled to fill the pass rushing void when Demarcus Lawrence was injured in 2021. Randy Gregory helped, but he is a pending free agent. Micah Parsons more than stepped up, but even with his versatility Dallas will need to address the position. The drafting of Travon Walker will free up Micah Parsons to do what he does best! As well as add size and athleticism to the defensive line and with Dan Quinn returning for another year, that Cowboys defence now looks frightening.
Buffalo Bills – IOL – ZION JOHNSON – Boston College
Zion Johnson gives the Bills an immediate starter on the interior offensive line. And it is needed! The Bills had their struggles on the o-line in 2021 and while they do have both Jon Feliciano and Daryl Williams under contract for the 2022 season, neither did anything last season to say they are the answer. Zion Johnson improves pass protection and run blocking. He has a high ceiling, but he is pro ready now.
Tennessee Titans – LB – NAKOBE DEAN – Georgia
With the Titans over the projected cap, freeing up some money will be important. Linebacker was a major need, but the signing last year of Zach Cunningham filled the void. He will cost $10 million against the cap in 2022, but if he was to be cut would not leave any dead cap.
Nakobe Dean will be an instant impact player and a leader on defence for years to come. He is also the best player available at this spot.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers – QB – KENNY PICKETT – Pitt
The Buccaneers now need to find a successor to Tom Brady, while squeezing in under the cap. Kenny Pickett is a safe quarterback prospect who can slot straight in to the Bucs offence. He is an improvement on what the Bucs already have and is a player who has good intelligence and is a good game manager.
Green Bay Packers – DT – DEVONTE WYATT – Georgia
The Packers need some help up front on the defensive line and continue to have questions on who to partner Kenny Clark with. Devonte Wyatt has been overlooked as a prospect because of the fantastic year fellow defensive tackle and Georgia Bulldog Jordan Davis had. But Wyatt has great technique, athleticism and explosiveness to be an impact player for the Packers.
Miami Dolphins (via SF) – WR – DRAKE LONDON – USC
Here the Dolphins draft a wide receiver in the first round for the second consecutive season. Last year they got a dynamic, electric playmaker in Jaylen Waddle. But, they also need a big bodied, trusty receiver to play opposite. Queue up Drake London. London will be a trusted weapon for Tua and will be a true possession receiver who will complement Waddle who has been outstanding in his rookie season.
Kansas City Chiefs – DE – JERMAINE JOHNSON – Florida St
Here the Chiefs attack a position of need and a premier position in the first round. Jermaine Johnson was a Senior Bowl stand out and has seemingly cemented his place in round 1.
Steve Spagnuolo’s defence relies upon creating pressure and Jermaine Johnson was one of the best in college football in 2021.
Cincinnati Bengals – OT – BERNHARD RAIMANN – Central Michigan
Joe Burrow was the most sacked quarterback in the NFL in 2021. What he has been able to achieve behind that offensive line has been nothing short of miraculous. The Bengals have their quarterback, they now have his top offensive weapon. It is now time to keep him upright. Raimann could play on either side of the line as well as having the ability to slot inside if needed.
Detroit Lions (via LAR) – WR – JAMESON WILLIAMS – Alabama
The Lions wide receiver room is decimated. Amon-Ra St. Brown had a great rookie year, but will need to operate almost exclusively from the slot. Jameson WIlliams gives the Lions a true #1 receiver. He adds speed and explosiveness to the Lions offence. Knowing they draft again in a couple of picks time early in round 2 at pick 34, they opt to get their guy now knowing the Jaguars pick in between and may also have their eyes on a game changing receiver.
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