The 2018 NFL Draft is always one of the best things to come out of the offseason and it is expected to be loaded with talented players once again.
The Cleveland Browns, once again, dominate the early picks with two picks in the first 5 selections and will look to turn a corner this time around – let’s hope this time they do. There’s lots of talk that they might draft a Quarterback AGAIN but they’re a team that needs a lot more than another QB.
So, with this in mind, we have a look at the potential top 10 draft picks for the 2018 season and we’ll “start the clock” on Cleveland Browns:
1. Cleveland Browns – Sam Darnold, QB, USC
Majority of mock drafts you’ll see have Sam Darnold (QB) as going Number 1 overall, and therefore will be selected by the Cleveland Browns. To be honest, our predictions are no different. He’s a smart kid and has played his football in a strong conference through College. That might not be enough to warrant going number 1 overall, but Cleveland, even though they love changing Quarterbacks, need someone to be the face of the franchise and Sam Darnold is that guy.
2. New York Giants – Josh Rosen, QB, UCLA
The New York Giants had a really bad season in 2017, and one that I certainly wasn’t expecting. They have a lot of needs including, Offensive Tackle, Quarterback and Running Back, and have already had a big shakeup with new faces in management taking the franchise in a new direction. But, at Number 2, the Giants should select Josh Rosen.
There is always an interesting debate as to who should go first and second when two Quarterbacks head the top of the draft but in Rosen, the Giants have an NFL ready QB that is wired to be successful in New York under new Head Coach, Pat Shurman, who will put him under his wing and turn him into the Pro everyone is expecting him to be.
3. Indianapolis Colts – Saquon Barkley, RB, Penn State
Saquon Barkley is one of the most exciting players in this draft and the Colts could do with a star Running Back with Frank Gore not getting any younger and Andrew Luck in need of a backfield friend to help him throw it less. Barkley has been likened to Ezekiel Elliot, and although I don’t usually like comparisons if he can produce anywhere near as well as Ezekiel did in his first season, the Colts will be a very different team with Andrew Luck coming back from injury in 2018.
This is a good fit!
4. Cleveland Browns (via Houston Texans) – Minkah Fitzpatrick, DB, Alabama
Now the Browns have their QB, it’s time for them to sure up on the other side of the ball and take, arguably, the best prospect in this draft. Minkah is a special talent and has the attributes to become a leader of this defense if given a year or two to play and get amongst the best players in the league.
He’s athletic, talented and loves football. If Minkah Fitzpatrick goes past the 5th pick, I’ll be very surprised.
5. Denver Broncos – Calvin Ridley, WR, Alabama
Assuming Denver sorts their Quarterback issue out before the draft, which I strongly believe they will, they will want to give their new Quarterback some new shin toys to use on his offense and one of those will be Calvin Ridley. I think, if Denver gets Kirk Cousins, then this pick will almost definitely be Calvin Ridley because he will help the offense move down the field.
If the Broncos look elsewhere for their QB, I still see them drafting one of the best Wide Receivers in this years draft class.
6. New York Jets – Josh Allen, QB, UCLA
Josh Rosen has very good mechanics and completed A LOT of his passes (63% of passes last season) and I see him going at 6. The New York Jets have some draft pick collateral and might even try to trade up, potentially to 3 where the Colts sit but I still see them going for Rosen as the next best QB to go. The Jets might decide to stick with Josh McCown for one more year at QB and this will allow Rosen to sit behind taking in everything he needs to learn but this would be a good pick for the Jets.
It was a tough call between Josh Rosen and Baker Mayfield but I think the latter is potentially one for Miami to pick up at Number 11, unless the Buffalo Bills decide to trade up. The New York Jets are one to watch in this draft because I see them trying to move their picks about.
7. Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Quenton Nelson, OG, Notre Dame
Jamies Winston didn’t have the step-forward season everyone was expecting last season and Tampa Bay need to protect their Quarterback if they’re going to get him to produce in 2018. So, Quentin Nelson helps strengthen their offensive line and helps Winston and the Running Backs.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers have some very good players on their roster but are missing a few key players to really help them get to the next level – Quentin Nelson is one step in the right direction. If he can play as well as he did for Notre Dame last season, he makes this team better.
8. Chicago Bears – Christian Kirk, WR, Texas A&M
The Bears are another team that I think are a few pieces of the puzzle away from making a good push next season. In fact, if they have a good draft and free agency, they make the playoffs. One player that really helps be part of this puzzle is Christian Kirk.
Calvin Ridley goes earlier but Kirk has undoubted talent at WR and will help Mitch Trubisky take the next step in his young career. Trubisky has his aomple help at Running Back but he needs a bit of help at WR, especially since Alshon Jeffrey left the franchise.
9. San Francisco 49ers – Denzel Ward, DB, Ohio State
The 49ers are going to use this draft to bolster their offense and really give Jimmy Garoppolo and offensive-minded Head Coach, Kyle Shanahan some weapons to create a lot of different looks in 2018 but their first pick of 2018 will be used defensively. In 2017, the 49ers drafted a corner and I think they’ll do the same in 2018 by getting Ward at 9. If Ward is still on the board here then it is a no-brainer to select him.
San Francisco 49ers are likely to be busy building their offense during free agency, so watch them being aggressive here, and should everything go to plan for them during the offseason, they’ll get a new shiny corner at this spot.
10. Oakland Raiders – Bradley Chubb, DE, NC State
The Oakland Raiders could go a number of ways with this pick but if Bradley Chubb is still on the board at 10, you’ve got to pick him up here. The Raiders have needs at OT, DT & CB but Bradley Chubb has the ability to be the number 1 DE in any system you put him in. If Cleveland manages to address their Quarterback situation in Free Agency (which I think is unlikely) then Chubb has the potential to go at No.1, that’s how good a prospect he is.
If that happened, it could be frightening playing up in Cleveland with Chubb and Myles Garrett. But, assuming this doesn’t happen, the Oakland Raiders get a great chance to get a very good football player to start Jon Gruden off on the right foot.
The NFL draft is always full of twists, turns and excitement and we’d love to hear who would be in your top 10. Leave your thoughts in the comments or contact us on Social Media – we love a chat!