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2018 NFL mock draft 3.0: Bills believe in Josh Allen; Cowboys move up for a WR

Among the big changes from the last mock:

  • Josh Allen rockets up the board while Baker Mayfield falls out of the top 10
  • The Cowboys make a move which will put some pressure on Dez Bryant
  •  The Browns go for the Saquon Barkley luxury pick
(Amber Matsumoto/Yahoo Sports)

1) Cleveland Browns: Sam Darnold, QB, USC
Analysis:
Darnold is silky navigating the pocket, can skate around pressure when necessary and is accurate whether he’s set or on the run. He’s the safest quarterback in the draft and Cleveland can’t afford to take unnecessary risks when it comes to selecting their next franchise quarterback.

2) Buffalo Bills (from Giants): Josh Allen, QB, Wyoming
Analysis: His long ball has made him one of the darlings of this year’s draft but his accuracy issues will give NFL executives pause. Because the Bills’ QB will need to navigate Western New York winters, they roll the dice on Allen’s cannon versus the touch and accuracy of Josh Rosen. Bills Mafia waits patiently in the wings with billy clubs.

Go big or go home. The Bills might be thinking big in the form of Wyoming QB Josh Allen. (AP)

3) New York Jets (from Colts): Josh Rosen, QB, UCLA
Analysis: Rosen is accurate, has prototypical size and the right demeanor for the Big Apple. With Eli Manning giving the N.Y. media zero personality, it’s going to have a ball with Rosen.

4) Cleveland Browns: Saquon Barkley, RB, Penn State
Analysis: There’s no way the Browns pass up on Barkley twice.

5) Denver Broncos: Vita Vea, DT, Washington
Analysis: Vea isn’t Saquan Barkley but the Broncos are still getting one of the best pound-for-pound athletes in the draft. Vea is the type of disruptor at the line of scrimmage who makes lives easier for the backers and cover guys.

6) Indianapolis Colts (from Jets): Bradley Chubb, DE, N.C. State
Analysis: 
The Colts fall back to sixth and still scoop the best pass rusher in the draft like a smooth criminal.

North Carolina State’s Bradley Chubb is projected to be one of the top defensive players selected in April’s draft. (AP)

7) Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Minkah Fitzpatrick, DB, Alabama
Analysis: 
The Bucs need help all over the secondary, so might as well select the dude who can ball out at every position.

8) Chicago Bears: Quenton Nelson, OG, Notre Dame
Analysis: The pick isn’t sexy but Nelson should make life much easier for Mitchapalooza and the Bears’ offense.

9) San Francisco 49ers: Tremaine Edmunds, LB, Virginia Tech
Analysis: 
Even though the 49ers finished 2017 strong, their roster needs a lot of playmakers and Edmunds is all that and a bag of chips.

10) Oakland Raiders: Roquan Smith, LB, Georgia
Analysis: Everyone and their momma projects Smith going to the Raiders. Pop on the tape and you’ll see why. Derrick Brooks 2.0.

11) Miami Dolphins: Baker Mayfield, QB, Oklahoma
Analysis: If Mayfield can help Dolphins fans forget about the black hole they’ve had at quarterback since Dan Marino retired, they’ll let him grab his he-cookie and plant all the flags his heart desires.

12) New York Giants (from Bills via Bengals): Denzel Ward, CB, Ohio State
Analysis: This would be an improvement since the Giants’ secondary was hot garbage last year.

13) Washington Redskins: Derwin James, S, Florida State
Analysis: Washington selects a player that reminds the team of one of the most dominant defenders to ever don their uniform. #RIPSeanTaylor

14) Green Bay Packers: Jaire Alexander, CB, Louisville
Analysis: 
It doesn’t matter if Aaron Rodgers is healthy yet the defense continues to get burned worse than Lindsay Lohan in Dubai with no sunscreen.

15) Dallas Cowboys (from Cardinals): Calvin Ridley, WR, Alabama
Analysis: All of a sudden, the Dez Bryant drama just got REAL.

16) Baltimore Ravens: Marcus Davenport, DE/OLB, UT San Antonio
Analysis: Terrell Suggs has only so much “Sizzle” left in those legs.

17) Los Angeles Chargers: Da’Ron Payne, DT, Alabama
Analysis: The Chargers’ run defense was poop emoji last year. Major Payne should help them climb out of the toilet bowl.

18) Seattle Seahawks: Josh Jackson, CB, Iowa
Analysis: Jackson played wideout at Iowa before switching to corner. He ran a 4.56 at the scouting combine. He’s a rangy corner that gives WRs hell in press coverage and plays the ball like a, duh, former WR. Remind you of anyone, 12th Man?

19) Arizona Cardinals (from Cowboys): Lamar Jackson, QB, Louisville
Analysis: 
The Cardinals trade down and still select the most electric dude in the draft to pair with one of the most dynamic running backs in the league. Well played, Steve Keim.

20) Detroit Lions: Mike McGlinchey, OT, Notre Dame
Analysis: 
Securing McGlinchey with this pick helps clog one of the many holes on the Lions’ offensive line.

21) Cincinnati Bengals (from Bills): Isaiah Wynn, OG, Georgia
Analysis: The Bengals’ rushing game was slightly less poop emoji than the Lions.

22) New York Giants (from Bills and Chiefs): Harold Landry, OLB, Boston College
Analysis: The G-Men draft a young bull with two hands that can bring that fire off the edge in their new 4-3 scheme after trading JPP to Tampa Bay.

23) New England Patriots (from Rams): Mike Hughes, CB, UCF
Analysis: Something tells me that Bill Belichick is going to address the cornerback situation STAT after getting honey roasted in the past Super Bowl.

24) Carolina Panthers: Mike Gesicki, TE, Penn State
Analysis: 
The most dynamic TE prospect in the draft gets to learn from one of the best TEs in the game.

25) Tennessee Titans: Harrison Phillips, DT, Stanford
Analysis: 
Horrible Harry can hold up as a 3-4 nose or slide over to the 3 tech in a 4-3. Bill Belichick likes to switch to multiple fronts to keep offenses on their toes so expect the same from his disciple, Mike Vrabel.

Maurice Hurst (R) was a load in the middle for Michigan. (AP)

26) Atlanta Falcons: Maurice Hurst, DT, Michigan
Analysis: 
It’s almost a given that the Falcons will select a DT with this pick. At this point, the wind is blowing in Hurst’s direction.

27) New Orleans Saints: Taven Bryan, DT, Florida
Analysis:
After Ndamukong Suh failed to answer their prayers, the Saints anoint a young run-stopper from Florida to augment their upstart defense.

28) Pittsburgh Steelers: Leighton Vander Esch, LB, Boise State
Analysis: 
LVE won’t be able to replace Ryan Shazier but hopefully he can inject some playmaking ability to a Steelers defense that sorely missed Shazier after he went down last year.

29) Jacksonville Jaguars: Hayden Hurst, TE, South Carolina
Analysis: 
The Jags signed Austin Seferian-Jenkins and Niles Paul but that won’t stop them from adding a playmaking tight end to a group of JAGs.

30) Minnesota Vikings: Will Hernandez, OG, UTEP
Analysis: 
You don’t spend all that money on Captain Kirk and not get some beef to protect him up front.

31) New England Patriots: Kolton Miller, OT, UCLA
Analysis: 
Miller has a similar build and skills as Nate Solder. He’s just a hell of a lot cheaper. BB is the ultimate baller on a budget.

32) Philadelphia Eagles: Rashaan Evans, LB, Alabama
Analysis: 
If the Eagles lost the Super Bowl, people would still be talking about how bad Tommy Boy carved up that defense. Evans’ playmaking ability in the run and pass game should help improve that defense so Philadelphia can continue to Fly Eagles Fly!

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