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2015 NFL First Round Mock Draft 1.0

Updated on March 13, 2015
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Winston the best player available for the Buccaneers

With many of the teams who have top ten draft picks looking to take the best talent available, a variety of different positions should come off the board early. Jameis Winston is the best potential franchise piece available to Tampa Bay with the first overall pick, but there is plenty of depth at a few different positions in this draft class. Defensive end and outside linebacker are an area of depth, with this draft class featuring many potential star pass rushers as first round talent. Once again, wide receiver is a position of depth with the first round featuring many big targets who should help to improve red zone offense this coming season. Cornerback is also a position of depth, with cornerbacks who feature similar styles as the players likely to be selected in the first round. Offensive tackle the last position of significant depth, but this draft class may feature another year of running backs being absent from first round selections. With very little differences in some of these players who have worked hard to be regarded as first round talent, there are just a few subtle differences that separate the top ten picks from the rest of first round. Before all the measurable aspects of each player's game are recorded at the combine, here is the first look at what direction each team may go with their top pick in this year's draft.

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1. Tampa Bay Buccaneers:

Pick: Jameis Winston

QB, Florida State University

6-4, 232 lbs.

Even though the Buccaneers need to completely re-tool their offensive line, they will select Winston first overall. In a draft that has depth at multiple offensive line positions, the Buccaneers can devote the rest of their draft to providing their young quarterback with adequate pass protection. Winston's skill set as a pro style quarterback who is an extremely accurate passer, will be too much for Tampa Bay to pass up.


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2. Tennessee Titans:

Pick: Randy Gregory

DE, University of Nebraska

6-6, 245 lbs.

The Titans are in rebuilding mode, and with some impact talent on their offense they will look to help their defense with their first pick. Having the big men anchoring the middle of the defense makes Randy Gregory a great fit for Tennessee as they look to improve their pass rush from a season ago. The impact talent and disruptive length that Gregory provides as a player who can set the edge as well as rush the passer, will be the first step in the right direction for the Titans as they look to start the defensive rebuild.

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3. Jacksonville Jaguars:

Pick: Brandon Scherff

OT, University of Iowa

6-5, 320 lbs.

Jacksonville drafted Blake Bortles early in the first round last year, and they believe he is their franchise quarterback of the future. In games that Bortles played this past season however, he did not get many clean pockets to work with. Brandon Scherff is just the beginning of what the Jaguars are going to do to fix this problem. Taking the best tackle available in the draft should allow Jacksonville to protect the blind side of their young quarterback.

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4. Oakland Raiders:

Pick: Leonard Williams

DT, University of Southern California

6-5, 298 lbs.

The Raiders started to rebuild their defense when they drafted Khalil Mack last year. This time around they are going to take the best impact talent to help anchor the middle of their front line. Leonard Williams will provide the Raiders with an excellent interior pass rush, along with making their defense better against the run. The presence of Williams and Mack, will allow the Raiders to win outside and inside at the line of scrimmage defensively.

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5. Washington Redskins:

Pick: Shane Ray

DE, University of Missouri

6-3, 245 lbs.

With Brian Orakpo becoming a free agent, the focus of the Redskins defensive rebuild will start by drafting Orakpo's replacement in Shane Ray. Ryan Kerrigan and Shane Ray should combine to give the Redskins a very formidable pass rush duo off the edges. With a late season resurgence from Robert Griffin, there is less need for the Redskins to take a quarterback with more pressing needs on the defensive side of the football.

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6. New York Jets:

Pick: Amari Cooper

WR, University of Alabama

6-1, 210 lbs.

Since the Jets have had very little offensive talent for their quarterbacks to work with recently, Geno Smith gets a pass for now. By taking the best Wide Receiver available in the draft, the Jets hope to allow Smith to grow under better conditions. Amari Cooper's impact pass catching talent will complement Erick Decker and Shaq Evans nicely on the Jets 2015 offense.


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7. Chicago Bears:

Pick: Dante Fowler Jr.

OLB, University of Florida

6-2, 261 lbs.

Recently the Bears defense has been a fantastic matchup for just about any quarterback in the league. The Bears could change that by getting younger and more athletic at linebacker by adding Dante Fowler. With a high motor in pass rushing roles, and the size to be a running stopping force, Fowler is a great fit for Chicago as they look to make their defense intimidating again.

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8. Atlanta Falcons:

Pick: Landon Collins

SS, University of Alabama

6-0, 222 lbs.

In 2014 when the Falcons focused on stopping opposing running games, they struggled to avoid giving up huge plays in the passing game. When they focused on the opposition's passing attack, they were beaten by the opposition's running game. Adding Landon Collins will help the Falcons to improve in both areas. As a big safety roaming the secondary as an intimidating hitter, Collins will help the Falcons near the line of scrimmage against the run, and deep down field against the pass.

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9. New York Giants:

Pick: Andrus Peat

OT, University of Stanford

6-7, 312 lbs.

The Giants have defensive needs at linebacker, but with the group of impact talent that have assembled in the passing game, they need to focus first on protecting Eli Manning. Andrus Peat should provide the Giants with exactly what they need in order to allow Manning enough time to find Victor Cruz and Odell Beckham on downfield pass patterns. Peat's presence on the Giants' offensive line would help them to win the line of scrimmage consistently when running or passing.

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10. St. Louis Rams:

Pick: Marcus Mariota

QB, University of Oregon

6-4, 215 lbs.

The way last season played out for the Rams with Tre Mason emerging as a legitimate threat, the Rams appeared to be a quarterback away from being a contender. With Marcus Mariota possibly falling to them with the 10th pick, their need will be answered as they look to move on from injury prone quarterback Sam Bradford. The Rams could use more defensive back depth, but with a deep draft at the cornerback position, they can address those needs in the second round or later.

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11. Minnesota Vikings:

Pick: Devante Parker

WR, University of Louisville

6-3, 209 lbs.

Even though the Vikings could use some offensive line help, the pick here is Devante Parker to make life easier for their young quarterback. Bridgewater is very familiar with Parker from their time as teammates at Louisville, and Parker's ability to go up to attack the football will play well on the Vikings' offense. With a similar skill set to current Viking wide receiver Cordarelle Patterson, Parker's presence may inspire Patterson to make the adjustments in his game to become productive.

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12. Cleveland Browns:

Pick: Danny Shelton

DT, University of Washington

6-2, 343 lbs.

With the Browns needing an upgrade at nose tackle to help improve their run defense, they will turn to Danny Shelton with their first pick. Shelton has the impact talent to dominate the middle of the line of scrimmage, along with the explosive ability to create an interior pass rush. The Browns could solidify their defense into one of the elite units in the NFL by drafting a player like Shelton.

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13. New Orleans Saints:

Pick: Arik Armstead

DE, University of Oregon

6-7, 296 lbs.

With the Saints recent signing of top CFL cornerback Delvin Breaux, the Saints will now likely address their need for a pass rusher with their first round pick. Arik Armstead is exactly what the Saints need as a pass rushing down linemen. After struggling defensively last season, the Saints can regain their defensive prowess by getting after opposing passers. Armstead should not only hold up against the run, but also provide the much needed pass rush to make the Saints' defense worthy of respect again.

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14. Miami Dolphins:

Pick: Shaq Thompson

OLB, University of Washington

6-2, 231 lbs.

With the Dolphins taking a step forward defensively in 2014, the needs they still have on that side of the ball became apparent behind their strong front four. Shaq Thompson fills the Dolphins need to upgrade at Weakside Linebacker with their first round pick. Thompson was one of the best defenders in all of college football this past season, and his impact talent would allow him to be a huge contributor as a rangy tackler who can play coverage in Miami's defensive scheme.

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15. San Francisco 49ers:

Pick: Eddie Goldman

DT, Florida State University

6-3, 320 lbs.

With the 49ers front three now either aging or inexperienced, it is in their best interest to draft the best player available at this position. Eddie Goldman provides the 49ers with what they are looking for, as a player with significant size along the front who fires off the ball quickly. Goldman's athleticism and size allows him to play either nose tackle or defensive end in a three front, while providing an interior pass rush wherever he lines up.

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16. Houston Texans:

Pick: Kevin White

WR, West Virginia University

6-3, 210 lbs.

With Andre Johnson having his best days behind him, it is now time for the Texans to draft his replacement in order to maintain what they have in two dynamic perimeter pass catching threats. Kevin White is the answer for the Texans, as he possesses both size and speed to make big plays outside the numbers in the downfield passing game. White's explosive ability in the open field, and his ability to go up to attack the football at its highest point is not unlike the skills that Sammy Watkins showed before being draft last year. At 6'3", White has a similar skillset to Watkins, but his height and catch radius could allow him to produce at a higher rate in the NFL.

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17. San Diego Chargers:

Pick: T.J. Clemmings

OT, University of Pittsburgh

6-5, 307 lbs.

The Chargers have not brought in top notch talent on their offensive line in quite some time. Their problems in this area were made really apparent in the Chargers' 2014 season finale against the Chiefs, when Justin Houston took over the ball game. T.J. Clemmings may be exactly what the Chargers need as a big and athletic tackle with the impact talent to protect the blindside of an NFL quarterback. With good feet and strong lateral quickness, the Chargers could turn to Clemmings to anchor the left side of their line for the foreseeable future.

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18. Kansas City Chiefs:

Pick: Dorial Green-Beckham

WR, University of Oklahoma

6-5, 225 lbs.

After a season where the Chiefs did not have a wide receiver catch a single touchdown pass, they need to take a risk on impact talent at the position in the draft. Green-Beckham has some baggage after getting kicked off the team when playing for the Missouri Tigers, but his impact talent in undeniable. The presence of a wide receiver with this much talent on the Chiefs' offense, will prevent defenses from loading the box to stop Jamaal Charles. If the Chiefs draft Dorial Green-Beckham, he may be the player that is able to break their streak of games without a wide receiver catching a touchdown, in his first game played.

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19. Cleveland Browns (from Buffalo):

Pick: Jaelen Strong

WR, Arizona State University

6-3, 215 lbs.

The Browns have a need at wide receiver even though they did a decent job of creating a passing attack without Josh Gordon last season. Jaelen Strong is another fantastic wide receiver available in this deep class of wide receivers. His size and skills would be a great complement opposite Josh Gordon on the Browns' offense. Much like other great receivers in this class, Strong uses his good size to go up and attack the football while bringing it down from its highest point. This skill sets him apart from the average wide receivers in the NFL right now.

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20. Philadelphia Eagles:

Pick: Trae Waynes

CB, Michigan State University

6-1, 183 lbs.

The Eagles late season performance highlighted the need for Philly to upgrade their defensive backfield. Trae Waynes is a physical defender with plenty of length who plays the football well in the air. Waynes does a great job of getting his head around when the ball is in the air, to avoid getting called for penalties due to his physical style of play. Waynes is not the fastest defensive back, but he possesses above average speed along with displaying a willingness to come up and tackle in run support.

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21. Cincinnati Bengals:

Pick: Malcolm Brown

DT, University of Texas

6-4, 320 lbs.

The Bengals were off to a strong start defensively in 2014, but they experienced some significant midseason struggles to lose out on the division title. By upgrading at the point of attack, they will look to put a defense on the field that is capable of sustaining the great performance. Quality defensive line depth that Malcolm Brown could provide is exactly what the Bengals need. As a tall and athletic down linemen, Brown is a fit anywhere on the Bengals front four, but his strength is run stuffing along with providing an interior pass rush.

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22. Pittsburgh Steelers:

Pick: Alvin Dupree

DE, University of Kentucky

6-4, 267 lbs.

With Jason Worilds likely to depart as a free agent this offseason, the Steelers will draft the best player available to them even after signing CFL star Shawn Lemon. The Steelers need to upgrade at cornerback, but with a deep draft they will have corners available to them in the second round and later. Alvin Dupree provides the Steelers with the edge rusher the Steelers have lacked since they cut Lamar Woodley. Like Woodley, Dupree possesses great size as a player who can set the edge against the opposition's rushing attack. Dupree's explosiveness off the edge will be complementary to Jarvis Jones or Shawn Lemon as they get after the passer from both edges of the defense.

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23. Detroit Lions:

Pick: Jordan Phillips

DT, University of Oklahoma

6-6, 334 lbs.

Jordan Phillips is exactly what the Lions need with the team facing the departure of Suh or Fairley in free agency. Phillips has significant size, but is still athletic enough to keep his feet and hands moving to consistently win at the line of scrimmage. His ability to take up space in the middle of the line is underrated, and his presence should allow Detroit to adequately replace the defensive tackle who leaves as a free agent. As a player who brings intensity on nearly every snap, Phillips is always around the football when a play comes to a close.

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24. Arizona Cardinals:

Pick: Bernardrick McKinney

ILB, Mississippi State University

6-4, 249 lbs.

Arizona managed to play spectacular defense despite all the injuries this season, but one area they could upgrade is at inside linebacker. Bernardrick McKinney would give Arizona that big man enforcer in the middle of their defense, that punishes opposing runners inside the tackles. McKinney has the athleticism to play some coverage, but that is not the strength of his game. McKinney's size and strength makes him tough to handle as he shoots gaps on blitzes when the opposition drops back to pass.


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25. Carolina Panthers:

Pick: Ereck Flowers

OT, University of Miami

6-5, 324 lbs.

The offensive line struggled at times for the Carolina Panthers last season, but when they started to come together as a unit, that is when they played their best football. Ereck Flowers has the versatility to excel at either tackle, but he is best fit at left tackle where he can protect Cam Newton's blind side. Flowers is very aggressive at the point of attack and will dominate his block when he stays low. He also has the athleticism to get downfield quickly to make key blocks in the screen game.

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26. Baltimore Ravens:

Pick: Marcus Peters

CB, University of Washington

6-0, 198 lbs.

When Jimmy Smith got hurt, things went downhill for the Ravens secondary. With Smith due back from injury this coming season, the Ravens would do well to upgrade at cornerback across from him. Marcus Peters provides them with the impact athleticism they need in their defensive backfield, despite the baggage he brings with him. Peters is an instinctive player who does a great job of mirroring the movements of the man he is responsible. This allows Peters to close space quickly when playing off coverage, as well as sticking with his man in press coverage. Peters shows a willingness to attack the offensive backfield to make tackles in run support.

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27. Dallas Cowboys:

P.J. Williams

CB, Florida State University

6-0, 196 lbs.

After missing out on Peters, the Cowboys will turn to another instinctive athlete with similar size, in Florida State's P.J. Williams. Williams excels in press coverage as a player who gets his head around quickly to play the ball. He has put on display a variety of techniques to the knock the ball out on would be completions to taller receivers. His field awareness and instincts allow him to make plays as a willing tackler in run support, while his ability to play the ball prevents him from getting called for many penalties. Williams has all the tools needed to play cornerback in the NFL, especially with legitimate safety talent playing deep coverage behind him.

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28. Denver Broncos:

Pick: Sammie Coates

WR, Auburn University

6-2, 213 lbs.

With the anticipated departure of free agent receiver Demaryius Thomas, Denver could find a great replacement in Sammie Coates. While Coates is not quite as big as Thomas, his catch radius is at least as big because of his willingness to making leaping catches with his arms fully extended. Coates above average speed should make him an every down receiver, who is likely to excel in the red zone with his leaping ability and positioning.


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29. Indianapolis Colts:

Pick: Erick Kendricks

ILB, UCLA

6-0, 230 lbs.

The Colts can improve their run defense by adding a rangy inside linebacker with sure tackling skills in Erick Kendricks. The brother of Eagles star inside linebacker Mychal Kendricks, uses relentless pursuit to make nearly every play he attempts. A force to be reckoned with as a pass rusher who uses short burst acceleration to close quickly on tackling attempts. Kendricks is likely to be the best inside linebacker in this draft class, despite any concerns about his size.

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30. Green Bay Packers:

Pick: Michael Bennett

DT, Ohio State University

6-2, 288 lbs.

After a season in which struggles to control the line of scrimmage on the defensive side led to a slow start, the Packers will turn to Ohio State star Michael Bennett to help solidify their front. In the Packers 3-4 defensive scheme, Bennett is likely to play defensive end. His size allows him to take on double teams successfully, and his athleticism should allow him to provide a pass rush from the defensive end position. Adding Bennett late in the first round would go a long way towards helping the Packers fix their struggles along their defensive front.

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31. Seattle Seahawks:

Pick: La'el Collins

OT, LSU

6-5, 308 lbs.

In a draft class that is deep at offensive tackle, the Seahawks may find that an impact player falls to them at the end of the first round. With an offensive line that is better at run blocking than pass blocking, the Seahawks would welcome an extremely athletic tackle like Collins on their offensive front. Collins has the versatility to play either tackle, but his athleticism may cause the Seahawks to put him at left tackle, while having Russell Okung move to right tackle.

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32. New England Patriots:

Pick: Devin Funchess

WR, University of Michigan

6-5, 230 lbs.

Quite possibly the most underrated player in a deep wide receiver class, Funchess' lack of production at Michigan should cause him to fall to the end of the first round. Playing most of his college career with quarterback Devin Gardner, hurt his chances of producing at a high rate in college. Funchess is a huge red zone threat, with the athleticism to make big plays in the open field. Wide receivers with this combination of size, strength and speed are hard to find.

NFL Draft 2015

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    • Josh Ruga profile image
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      Joshua Ruga 2 years ago from New Jersey

      Kile, thanks for commenting. I have a mock draft 2.0 that is up, and I have Todd Gurley being selected in the first round of that draft. I have him going to Dallas though, not Baltimore. Justin Forsett has always been a good slasher at the running back position in this league, but he needed the right opportunity. The Ravens could go running back in the first round this year, but its not a pressing need where they would need to reach for a running back rather than taking one of the quality runners in the round where teams are going to pick them typically. That being the third round according to recent trends. Also, in Mock Draft 2.0, I have Mariota going in the top five.

    • Kile Taylor profile image

      Kile Taylor 2 years ago from Roanoke, VA

      Good mock draft, but I don't think Mariota will drop to 10, but yo never know. You don't think Todd Gurley or Melvin Gordon will go in the first round? Especially for Baltimore who depends on the run game, and Foresette is a free agent with only 1 great season under his belt and Rice is gone. I know Gurley is coming off an injury, but his upside has no limit and he fits the Raven's run game perfectly.

    • Josh Ruga profile image
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      Joshua Ruga 2 years ago from New Jersey

      I think Mariota has fallen a little bit, and he is a tough fit for teams that do not feature a spread look. As for Landon Collins, rumors the past couple of days have been that the Redskins really like him and would take him with the fifth overall pick. That may or may not be true.

    • Ty Tayzlor profile image

      TT 2 years ago from Anywhere

      Nice first Mock Draft. I don't see Landon Collins being drafted that high but I do think he will be the only first round safety. St. Louis would be an ideal spot for Marcus Mariota to end up, but there are just to many team ahead of the Rams at #10 who need a quarterback.