No. 15: Indianapolis Colts — Jared Verse, EDGE, Florida State
The Colts are a prime candidate to trade down, but with the quarterback run already underway, Indy elects to stay put and take the best player available. That player? Jared Verse, a powerful pass rusher with 10+ sack potential and a fiery demeanor in the run game.
No. 16: Seattle Seahawks — Cam Ward, QB, Washington State
Drafting Cam Ward on Day 1 doesn’t come without risk. The Wazzu signal-caller is still raw in his mechanics and processing, but the sheer talent alone puts him up there with the Caleb Williams’ of the world.
For the Seahawks, Ward wouldn’t be forced into the starting lineup immediately, as Geno Smith is still under contract and looks like a decent bridge quarterback. When Ward is ready, the Seattle offense should skyrocket league ranks.
No. 17: Jacksonville Jaguars — Cooper DeJean, DB, Iowa
The Jaguars disappointingly missed out on the postseason, leaving them at No. 17 overall in this mock draft. Cooper DeJean, a chess piece in the secondary, would be a wise selection for the defense. DeJean has the hips to stick with shifty receivers and the long speed and range to play deep as the centerfielder of the unit.
Joe Burrow Deserves A Better Offensive Line
No. 18: Cincinnati Bengals — J.C. Latham, OT, Alabama
It should go without saying that the Bengals must keep Joe Burrow healthy to contend for a Super Bowl. J.C Latham, a bruising run blocker from Alabama, is an exciting option. Although Latham still needs help improving his footwork, he has the athletic pedigree to do so.
No. 19: Green Bay Packers — Taliese Fuaga, OT, Oregon State
The Packers earned a playoff berth in Year 1 of the Jordan Love era -- and that came even with uncertainty on the offensive line and skill position group. Taliese Fuaga can solve the former with his mean streak in the run game and untapped potential in pass protection.
No. 20: Tampa Bay Buccaneers — Kool-Aid McKinstry, CB, Alabama
Baker Mayfield, after being cast aside by three franchises, finally found a home in Tampa Bay. That takes quarterback off the “needs” list and places a priority on upgrading the defense, especially the cornerback room.
Kool-Aid McKinstry played college football in the southeast for the Alabama Crimson Tide, making this a short move for the gifted defender. McKinstry is a maestro in press coverage and has the traits to develop as a premier zone cornerback. Versatility in spades.