The first 20 picks are done, and we’re getting towards the business end of the first round now. If you missed the first two parts, you can find them here. Here’s picks 21-32 of the 2022 mock draft.
21. Buffalo Bills – Tyler Linderbaum IOL Iowa
The Bills get one of the sturdiest picks in the draft here, with Iowa centre Tyler Linderbaum. The Iowa talent could be the most talented and natural offensive line prospect in the whole draft, but nobody really dives head first for a centre in the top 10. Linderbaum just feels like a Buffalo type player to me. Tough, gritty, the fan base will love him. Could be the long term centre, or also be a very good interior guard.
Built strong, and stocky, Linderbaum comes from a background in wrestling, and as a result has excellent hand placement and can fight off defensive pressure. Considered a little undersized at 290lbs, he might need to bulk up just a little, but Buffalo would certainly get a great contribution out of the young centre.
22. Carolina Panthers – Zion Nelson OT Miami
Nelson gained over 70 pounds since the spring of 2019, and this season marked his third as the starting left tackle for the Miami Hurricanes. Miami run a zone run scheme, which fits perfectly for being a run blocking tackle for Christian McCaffrey. Nelson fills a desperate hole on the Panthers offensive line, after locking up their starting right tackle Taylor Moton for the long term. Nelson has great size and impressive athleticism, and could be the future starter in Carolina.
23. Green Bay Packers – Myjai Sanders EDGE Cincinnati
Sanders gives Green Bay something they desperately need in the front 7. Speed. A natural born speed rusher with excellent agility and get off. He fights the hands well, and has already developed the beginnings of top speed rush rip and swim moves. Sanders is extremely long, a 6’5″ prospect with lengthy arms and wins against tackles who can’t deal with his quickness. The Packers would welcome a rusher like this off the edge.
24. Cincinnati Bengals – Jaxson Kirkland OT Washington
If I’m the Bengals there’s no way I’m drafting anything BUT offensive line in the first round. So I’d be more than happy to take best player available here. Kirkland is actually the starting left tackle for Washington, and the Bengals already have former first round pick Jonah Williams in that spot. But I’d happily take Kirkland here with the look to push him inside to left guard.
Kirkland plays with power, sits around the 300lb range, and I don’t see any reason as to why he couldn’t be an elite guard for the Bengals. With so many weapons now in place, turning their focus to the offensive line could really change things for the future of the Bengals organisation.
25. Tampa Bay Buccaneers – John Metchie III WR Alabama
Metchie could be a top 10 pick, depending on how the dominos fall, but with so many teams having to prioritise other areas, this extremely deep receiver class is going to fall into the hands of the playoff teams in the late first round. Metchie is stepping into the number 1 receiver role at Alabama this season, and should become the 5th Alabama receiver drafted in the 1st round in the last 3 draft.
Do the Bucs need him? Not necessarily, but the long term futures of both Chris Godwin, playing on the franchise tag, and Antonio Brown, on a one year deal, I like the idea of bringing in a young talent. Metchie is an elite route runner, capable of creating separation, and has great hands. Could quickly become a favourable target for Tom Brady. High level speed, high motor, and can burn you deep down the field, with little twitches in his routes to throw off defenders.
26. Detroit Lions (via LA Rams) – Treylon Burks WR Arkansas
Burks can walk into Detroit and become WR1 tomorrow. He’s 6’3″, bullies corners every Saturday and plays to his size. Treylon Burks plays largely out of the slot, playing multiple roles, and contributing from various alignments for the Razorbacks. A dominant target, who’s extremely difficult to cover 1 on 1, he might be the best value of the first round. The Lions can sit pretty in the 20s here, having already locked in Kayvon Thibodeax 2nd overall, and get their number 1 receiver for the future of the franchise.
Speedy, physical, and mature in his game, Burks is a dream for Lions fans, and is somebody they could get extremely excited about in a hurry. Is moved around a lot and in motion constantly for the Razorbacks, as they use him to create mismatches against opposing defences. One of my favourite talents of the first round.
27. Denver Broncos – Desmond Ridder QB Cincinnati
Ridder becomes QB4 of the first round, drafted by the Broncos to eventually take over from Teddy Bridgewater. Teddy of course, hasn’t been bad so far this season, but he’s not going to win you any Super Bowls all on his own. Ridder has led a Bearcats team for four seasons now, which has improved year on year with his leadership.
Ridder is a dual threat QB, who can take off at speed, but also rip the ball out in a hurry. Throws a beautiful ball with a clean, fast release. Is more than comfortable running QB options and power runs, where he shows he can run through contact, make a guy miss, break a tackle, and the rest of it. Maybe the missing piece to what is a strong Broncos roster.
28. Baltimore Ravens – Adam Anderson EDGE Georgia
Anderson has Baltimore written all over him. Rushes off the edge from an outside linebacker role, with speed and quickness getting around the edge. The Ravens are still missing some pass rush, and Anderson knows how to use his speed to bend round and underneath the outstretched hands of an offensive tackle. He has four sacks already this season and is developing extremely well as a more regular contributor for the Bulldogs.
29. Dallas Cowboys – Jaquan Brisker S Penn State
The Cowboys have been bleeding guys from their defence for a while now, and need to start filling those holes. Brisker is a converted strong safety who now plays on the free side, and aligns all over the defence for the Nittany Lions. Brisker excels as a single high, can play in tight man coverage, and appears in the box regularly too. He’s a guy that Dan Quinn would love to implement into his defence, and you’d be reuniting him with former team mate and playmaker Micah Parsons.
Brisker has improved tremendously as a tackler, and does a great job coming downhill to fill a gap against the run game in the box. He really is a do it all safety who should absolutely not fall out of the first round. He’s climbing my draft board with every passing week. The definition of a clutch talent and a leader for Penn State.
30. LA Chargers – Jahan Dotson WR Penn State
The perfect compliment to a possession receiver in Keenan Allen, and a go up and get it jump ball receiver in Mike Williams. Jahan Dotson is explosive. In a major way. Top line speed, burns through a defence for fun and has shown up on tape doing just that for multiple years now. He’s not just a burner either. Dotson could easily become a fantastic slot option for Justin Herbert, as well as excelling in breaking for the sideline, or beating a man with fluid route running. Dotson would be a magnificent addition to an already very talented Chargers defence. A little speed in their passing game is about all they’re missing.
31. Las Vegas Raiders – Trent McDuffie CB Washington
One of the most athletic corners in the draft, I’m surprised to see him still available in the 30s. He’ll be a day one guy for sure, with elite athleticism and ability to play both man and zone coverage. He understands the game extremely well, and doesn’t get caught out very often at all. An intelligent player who should be a day 1 starter for the Raiders, who need to sure up their corners.
32. Arizona Cardinals – Isaiah Spiller RB Texas A&M
This Cardinals team has got it figured out offensively, now just imagine what they could do with a genuine threat at running back every down as well. Their backfield is currently a little bit patchwork, and picking at the end of the first round, they’d have the pick of the litter with the running backs.
When Spiller hits a gap and turns on the jets he will flat out run away from you. I love his patience to wait for cut back lanes and gaps, and then the ability to hit those gaps and turn on the jets. Once out in the open field he’s hard to chase down, and possesses excellent balance and juke ability to create confusion before he changes directions. Speed, power, athletic ability, he’d be so much fun in the backfield with Kyler Murray.
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