NFL Mock Draft

1. Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Jameis Winston

As of now it seems like a lock that the Bucs will rely on Jameis Winston to become their franchise quarterback.

2. TRADE Cleveland Browns via Tennessee Titans

Marcus Mariota

The Browns are desperate for a franchise quarterback and Marcus Mariota may be that man, although many, including myself have questions about his transition to the NFL.

3. Jacksonville Jaguars

Dante Fowler Jr

The Jaguars need an outside edge rusher and Fowler fits perfectly because he can rush the passer and defend the run.

4. Oakland Raiders

Amari Cooper

The Raiders need weapons for Derek Carr and Amari Cooper is the best weapon in the draft, although they may be lured to Kevin White due to his size, strength, and speed.

5. TRADE Atlanta Falcons via Washington Redskins

Leonard Williams

Leonard Williams is the best defensive player in the draft and the Falcons have showed in the past, Julio Jones, that they are willing to trade up to pick a franchise player.

6. New York Jets

Vic Beasley

The Jets need an outside edge pass rusher and Vic Beasley has the potential to become an NFL star.

7. Chicago Bears

Kevin White

The Bears need a wide receiver after trading Brandon Marshall and White could develop into a wide out like Larry Fitzgerald.

8. Washington Redskins via Atlanta Falcons

Shane Ray

The Redskins are able to accumulate a few picks and draft one of the best edge pass rusher who they wanted to draft at 5.

9. New York Giants

Brandon Scherff

The Giants have an incredible array of receivers, but without a steady offensive line Eli will not be able to put the ball into the hands of his play makers

10. TRADE San Francisco 49ers via St. Louis Rams

Danny Shelton

The 49ers experienced many losses on defense this offseason due to retirement, but Danny Shelton may be able to become the nucleus of a new defense.

11. Minnesota Vikings

Trae Waynes

The Vikings have a need for a corner back and Waynes recently jumped up many draft boards due to his world class speed and success at Michigan State.

12. Tennessee Titans via Cleveland Browns

Randy Gregory

Although the Titans traded down in the draft, they may still be able to net the pass rusher with the most potential because of his freakish athletic ability and size.

13. New Orleans Saints

Bud Dupree

The versatile outside linebacker has been flying up draft boards because of his pass rushing ability, which the Saints lacked last season.

14. Miami Dolphins

DeVante Parker

The Dolphins made many big decisions and spent a lot of money this offseason, but they still lack a true number one receiver to help Ryan Tannehill.

15. St. Louis Rams via San Francisco 49ers

Marcus Peters

The Rams have a great front seven, but the addition of Marcus Peters could elevate them to an elite all around defense.

16. TRADE Arizona Cardinals via Houston Texans

Todd Gurley

If the Cardinals do not trade for Adrian Peterson, they may draft Todd Gurley, who is expected to be one of the next great running backs.

17. San Diego Chargers

Andrus Peat

The Chargers are in a dilemma due to the Philip Rivers situation, but now they must protect him and allow him to work from the pocket, if they will win this season.

18. Kansas City Chiefs

Ereck Flowers

The Chiefs have lost a few offensive lineman the past few seasons, which is a major concern because they love running the ball in order to use the play action pass.

19. Tennessee Titans via Cleveland Browns via Buffalo Bills

Kevin Johnson

The Titans were able to draft a pass rusher with their first pick and should consider a shut down corner like Kevin Johnson in order to surely elevate their porous defense.

20. Philadelphia Eagles

Landon Collins

The LSU star safety has slightly fallen since the draft process, but he still remains the best safety in the draft and should be a solid pro.

21. Cincinnati Bengals

Arik Armstead

The Bengals’ defensive line is aging, but the addition of a stud like Armstead will quicken the rebuilding process up front.

22. Pittsburgh Steelers

Byron Jones

The Steelers’ secondary was negatively affected by free agency, but through the draft they should be able to remake their defense so it is feared.

23. Detroit Lions

Malcolm Brown

The Lions lost their two best defensive tackles this offseason and desperately need a player like Brown that can fill holes and plow lanes for their pass rushers.

24. Houston Texans via Arizona Cardinals

Breshad Perriman

The Texans lost their best player in franchise history, but the addition of Perriman alongside DeAndre Hopkins should form a formidable 1-2 on the outside.

25. Carolina Panthers

DJ Humphries

The Panthers are in need of a tackle that can block for Cam Newton and Humphries has shown the ability to protect during his years at Florida.

26. Baltimore Ravens

Phillip Dorsett

The Ravens lost their big play receiver when Torrey Smith left for San Francisco, but the addition of the fastest receiver in the draft should be able to replace Smith’s production.

27. Dallas Cowboys

Melvin Gordon

Although the Cowboys lost the best running back in the league last season, Melvin Gordon easily has the talent to replace most of Murray’s production behind the best line in the league.

28. Denver Broncos

La’el Collins

Since Collins has started for LSU, he has used his enormous size to protect their mobile quarterbacks and pave lanes for their impressive running game.

29. TRADE New York Jets via Indianapolis Colts

Dorial Green Beckham

Although they have made many maneuvers this offseason, they could use another big play wide receiver. Even though Green Beckham did not play this season, he has the most potential of any wide receiver in the draft.

30. Green Bay Packers

Jalen Collins

The Packers are very close to a Super Bowl and may only need a potential shut down corner like Collins to give Rodgers his second ring.

31. New Orleans Saints via Seattle Seahawks

Jalen Strong

The Saints dealt two of their best playmakers on offense this offseason, but the addition of Strong should lessen the blow and help Brees return to his elite form.

32. TRADE Chicago Bears via New England Patriots

Eddie Goldman

The Bears desperately need help on defense, especially in the front seven so the addition of Goldman will help them return to being a team that lauds itself on its defense.

Western Conference Playoff Preview

New Orleans Pelicans (8) vs. Golden State Warriors (1):

The Golden State Warriors posted one of the best records in NBA history this season. The Warriors are incredible because their backcourt is the best shooting backcourt in NBA history. The Splash Bros are legitimate threats to win the championship because they have great role players, Andre Iguodala, Harrison Barnes, and Andrew Bogut.

The Pelicans are happy to make the playoffs and so are many new NBA fans. Finally, the average fan will be able to see Anthony Davis play on national TV. Davis has transformed himself into one of the five best players in the league and will be the best player in a few years.

Predictions: Warriors win in 5

Dallas Mavericks (7) vs. Houston Rockets (2):

Many prognosticators do not believe in the Rockets because they do not think that Howard is a star and they do not believe in their roles players. However, they won 56 games and James Harden is one of the three best players in the league. Howard and Josh Smith will need to play at a high level if they are going to make a deep run into the playoffs.

Many teams are picking the Mavs to win this series because of Rick Carlisle, Dirk Nowitzki, and Tyson Chandler. However, since the Rondo deal, the Mavs have not been a quality team. In addition, they need to make a lot of jumpers in order to stay competitive with the Rockets. It will be interesting to see who Carlisle will put on Harden because they do not have a defense stopper.

Prediction: Rockets win in 7

San Antonio Spurs (6) vs. Los Angeles Clippers (3):

The Clippers have been one of the most consistent teams in the Western Conference since Paul arrived in Tinseltown. Chris Paul needs to win this series. He has been touted as one of the best players in the NBA this generation, but he has yet to reach a Final. Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan need to play at an incredibly high level to defeat the defending champs.

The Spurs wanted to have home court advantage, but they are right where they want to be since every player on their team is healthy. In addition, they are playing their best basketball and Kawhi Leonard is playing the best basketball of his career, including last seasons Finals. The Spurs will not lose any series, which puts incredible pressure on their opponents.

Prediction: Spurs win in 6

Memphis Grizzlies (5) vs. Portland Trailblazers (4):

The Trailblazers have been a quality team throughout the season, but they are dealing with a lot of injuries, Nicolas Batum and Wes Matthews. The Trailblazers need LaMarcus Aldridge and Damian Lillard to play at a very high level to carry Portland on offense.

The Grizzlies have quietly experienced a lot of success in the playoffs over the past 5 years. The Griz have been successful due to their size inside with Gasol and Randolph. The Griz may have a difficult time scoring, but they will play great defense and it will be difficult to win in the Grindhouse. The deciding factor will be the health of Mike Conley.

Prediction: Grizzles win in 6

Eastern Conference Playoff Preview

Brooklyn Nets (8) vs. Atlanta Hawks (1)

The Hawks enter the playoffs with the best mark in the eastern conference, 60-22. However, the Hawks have many doubters because they lack a true superstar. Fortunately, the Hawks have one of the best teams in the league because they play like a team and are deep.

The Nets narrowly made the playoffs, but finished the season winning 13 of their last 19 games. The Nets were under 500, but are dangerous due to their experience, talent, and Brook Lopez’s latest domination of the NBA. However, they have never melded as an unit and Deron Williams has not played like a superstar since leaving Utah.

Prediction: Hawks win in 5

Boston Celtics (7) vs. Cleveland Cavaliers (2)

Although the Cavs are the second best team in the east, they are favored to represent the Eastern Conference in the Finals. The Cavs have been one of the best teams since the all star break because LeBron has learned to play with Irving and Love, which forms the best big three. The trades for Shumpert, Smith, and Mozgov significantly improved their defense and depth.

Brad Stevens has done an absolutely great job with the Boston Celtics. Although the Celts have dealt their best players, Stevens has been able to turn average players in quality starters. The Celts will not have the talent to play with the Cavs, but they will play incredibly hard.

Prediction: Cavs win in 4

Milwaukee Bucks (6) vs. Chicago Bulls (3)

At times during the season, the Bulls have looked like the best team in the league. Finally, the Bulls are moderately healthy and should play their best basketball of the season. Although they will play incredible defense, they will not be able to win without Rose playing like a superstar and Gasol, Noah, and Butler playing at a high level.

Although it is unlikely, Jason Kidd should win the Coach of the Year because he has led the team with the worst record to the playoffs without their second best player, Jabari Parker. The Bucks have transformed into a great defensive team due to their length, Greek Freak, MCW, and Khris Middleton. Unfortunately for the Bucks, they have the worst record against over 500 teams, 9-27, of any playoff team.

Predictions: Bulls win in 5

Washington Wizards (5) vs. Toronto Raptors (4)

For the second straight season, the Raptors have won the Atlantic Division and possess home court in the playoffs. Unfortunately, they have not been playing their best basketball due to injuries, especially Kyle Lowry. If Lowry does not play at a high level, he will not be able to match Wall’s production.

The Wizards took a big step forward last season when they beat the Bulls in 5 games. During the offseason, they acquired small forward, Paul Pierce, who was made for the playoffs. Last season, Pierce was a key factor in the Nets victory over the Raptors. The experience of winning a round in the playoffs and their toughness should make them a tough out.

Wizards win in 6