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2020 NFL Mock Draft: 6 Wide Receivers go in Round 1

With the 2020 NFL Draft going down later this month, check out Matt De Lima's first mock draft, where six WRs come off the board in the first round.

1. Cincinnati Bengals: Joe Burrow, QB, LSU

I’m always a bit scared of the one-season wonder. The transfer portal has shaken up how the QB position plays out with guys finding a new landing spot to get their shot. Burrow was otherworldly for one magical season. There’s no denying his potential given what he showed in his passing accuracy and artful defiance to make the big play. Can he save Cincinnati?

2. Washington: Chase Young, EDGE, Ohio State

While I think Young is every bit as talented as all the scouting reports say, there will be growing pains. My personal evaluation is that defense is about 80% play/ball awareness. You just have to have a nose for the football whether you’re the plug-the-gap middle linebacker, deep safety or a pass rusher. Young benefitted from often being the biggest, most athletic guy on the field in college. It’ll come, but I feel strongly that he will need some seasoning. If there’s one team that has shown no ability to develop a player, it’s Washington. Take from that what you will.

Betting Crystal Ball (odds via DraftKings Sportsbook): Defense (-400); Offense (+350)

VIDEO: SI Big Board: No. 1 Chase Young

3. Detroit Lions: Jeff Okudah, CB, Ohio State

Long and lean, Okudah is exactly how you would build your corner on Madden using the Create a Player feature. Tall for a corner (6-foot-1), lean (205 pounds), fast (4.48 40) and explosive (41-inch vert and 135-inch broad). He was a blue chip recruit coming out of high school and followed that up with exceptional play at OSU. He’s aggressive enough to jam at the line—will probably need to add a —and quick enough to recover if he missteps. I expect him to be a shutdown corner almost immediately for the Lions.

Betting Crystal Ball: Defense (-670); Offense (+470)

READ MORE: Which Team Will Draft Jeff Okudah?

4. New York Giants: Tristan Wirfs, OT, Iowa

Wirfs looked very good at the Combine and although he may not be a pure mauler, his smooth movement, solid base, quick feet, and Iowa pedigree are too much to ignore. The first tier of offensive tackles is stacked, so I could see three going in the first 10 picks.

Betting Crystal Ball: Offense (-167); Defense (+137)

5. Miami Dolphins: Tua Tagovailoa, QB, Alabama

The consensus here seems to be between Tagovailoa and Justin Herbert. I don’t necessarily think there is a wrong answer between both players. I understand the durability concerns, but you don’t draft a player based on the here and now. You draft what you think he can become and it’s no comparison between the two QBs: Tagovailoa simply outclasses Herbert in every facet (except raw arm strength).

Betting Crystal Ball: Offense (-770); Defense (+520)

READ MORE: When Will Tua Tagovailoa Be Selected?

6. Los Angeles Chargers: Justin Herbert, QB, Oregon

Herbert is a good QB with a big arm. He feels the pocket well and keeps his eyes downfield. The red flags for me are inconsistent ball placement and off-the-wall decision-making. Look, if NFL teams weren’t absolutely desperate for a good QB, he’d be a late second-round pick. This is the world we live in. I think this kid is a gamer though, loves competition and in some ways, he will probably remind a lot of people of his predecessor, Philip Rivers. Big shoes to fill, yet expectations should be modest from the start.

Betting Crystal Ball: Offense (-500); Defense (+370)

7. Carolina Panthers: Isaiah Simmons, LB, Clemson

Simmons’ seemingly unreal talent would be a great start to replacing Luke Kuechly. I don’t know if he’s really a MLB, but just get the guy on the field! I do feel Simmons is a tweener who could probably play about eight different positions. That said, I see him playing an “in the box” strong safety type of role, which would allow him the flexibility to cover guys in the slot, blitz, drop back in coverage and play sideline-to-sideline.

Betting Crystal Ball: Defense (-250); Offense (+200)

8. Arizona Cardinals: Jedrick Wills, OT, Alabama

Protecting Kyler Murray should be priority No. 1. Wills is your classic mauler. “The first guy off the bus,” as I’ve heard them called. Again, I feel this OT class is so good at the top that Wirfs, Wills and Thomas are almost interchangeable.

Betting Crystal Ball: Offense (-278); Defense (+220)

9. Jacksonville Jaguars: Derrick Brown, DT, Auburn

Speaking of the first guy off the bus, Brown is a bowling ball made of muscle. Don’t mess with him. He’s also surprisingly spry with the ability to throw-in spin moves and pass-rushing techniques to go along with his expected talent for clogging running lanes. Jacksonville has to rebuild their defense. Pass-rushers and ball-hawking cornerbacks make the biggest splash among fans; however, a big beefcake like Brown occupying double-teams and moving the offensive linemen’s internal organs is where it really all starts.

Betting Crystal Ball: Defense (-121); Offense (+100)

10. Cleveland Browns: Andrew Thomas, OT, Georgia

The timing just never felt right for Baker Mayfield last season. He seems like a timing guy. Of course, he can scramble and make plays; you can’t take that away from him. He also needs to be able to “one-two-three and sling it,” for lack of a better term. Thomas can come right in on the blindside and in time, have a long, purposeful career like former Browns legend Joe Thomas. Here's what Browns Maven Pete Smith had to say about Thomas.

Betting Crystal Ball: Offense (-400); Defense (+300)


11. New York Jets: CeeDee Lamb, WR, Oklahoma

The Jets could really go a number of ways here depending how the top 10 plays out: Corner, pass-rusher, tackle. I think WR makes the most sense given the draft position. Some say Jerry Jeudy is the top WR prospect, but I’m partial to Lamb. Jeudy is like a craftsman with strengths across the board from run-blocking, route-running, hands, you name it. Lamb is just a flat-out playmaker. Get the guy the ball and watch him go to work.

Betting Crystal Ball: Offense (-335); Defense (+260)

12. Las Vegas Raiders: C.J. Henderson, CB, Florida

Oak… I mean Las Vegas has many options here. This pick boils down to the Raiders simply lacking a definitive CB1 on their roster. Henderson’s athleticism and footwork are the big draw. He has a nose for the football and always seems to be swatting at passes. I think pairing him with S Johnathan Abram will form a really dynamic duo in the Raiders’ secondary.

Betting Crystal Ball: Offense (-200); Defense (+160)

13. San Francisco 49ers: Jerry Jeudy, WR, Alabama

Jeudy would be a great fit for the 49ers’ scheme, but will he last this long? Great hands, great acceleration, excellent off the line, can set the edge, runs every route, electric after the catch, you name it. The 49ers eventually found Deebo Samuel to be their playmaker in the postseason, particularly in the Super Bowl, but they seemed to be one good player away on offense to seal the deal. Jeudy would be that guy.

Betting Crystal Ball: Offense (-152); Defense (+125)

READ MORE: Meet Jerry Jeudy -- SI Daily Cover

14. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Mekhi Becton, OT, Louisville

The Bucs have all the flash, but they need to get tougher in the trenches in this draft. At 6-foot-7 and 364 pounds, they don’t come much bigger (or meaner) than Becton. He’s so large, in fact, that I think he’ll have some growing pains—no pun intended—just to learn how to rely more on his technique rather than his physicality. Here's what Buccaneers Maven Luke Easterling had to say about Becton: A massive mauler with a huge frame and impressive length, Becton is a rare athlete for his size, and has the power you'd expect from someone that big.

Betting Crystal Ball: Offense (-148); Defense (+120)

15. Denver Broncos: Javon Kinlaw, DT, South Carolina

Denver needs about a half-dozen new starters. Kinlaw can play the three- or five-technique. The Broncos need to get real about their dynamic duo of Von Miller and Bradley Chubb. We all know they’re great but they’ll be even better with more competent DL who can occupy blockers and disrupt the play.

Betting Crystal Ball: Offense (-200); Defense (+160)

16. Atlanta Falcons: K’Lavon Chaisson, EDGE, LSU

With Young getting all the pass-rushing headlines, Chaisson is flying a little under-the-radar as the second-best edge rusher in this draft. I love his bend on his rush and he flies off the line. I think the gap between him and Young is thinner than where each player will likely be drafted.

Betting Crystal Ball: Defense (-335); Offense (+260)

17. Dallas Cowboys: Xavier McKinney, S, Alabama

The Cowboys have a few needs (DT, CB, slot WR). McKinney, to me, is at his best within seven yards of the LOS. I don’t think he’s the Earl Thomas or Ed Reed type who can play center field. I just love his nose for the ball and he shines when he can play downhill.

Betting Crystal Ball: Defense (-335); Offense (+260)

18. Miami Dolphins: Josh Jones, OT, Houston

In a perfect world, the Dolphins would already have drafted an OT last year to protect their 2020 QB selection. Jones is a reach here, so maybe the Dolphins opt to trade-up by packaging their No. 18 and No. 26 picks to grab one of the blue-chip offensive tackles like Wirfs or Wills.

19. Las Vegas Raiders: Patrick Queen, LB, LSU

I really love the way Queen plays. First and foremost, the guy has an unreal nose for the ball. He’s one of those guys with a visible feel for the game. You’re watching him and it’s like he already knows what the offense is doing. All the technique and coaching in the world can’t teach that. He reminds me of another Patrick: former 49ers’ stud LB Patrick Willis.

20. Jacksonville Jaguars: A.J. Epenesa, EDGE, Iowa

The Jags need a QB, but I don’t see them going that way. Replacing Calais Campbell is a big ask, yet Epenesa fits that mold as a power rusher.


21. Philadelphia Eagles: Justin Jefferson, WR, LSU

The Eagles tried to address the WR position last year by adding DeSean Jackson and drafting J.J. Arcega-Whiteside. I think the position still needs help and Jefferson would fit nicely in the slot.

Betting Crystal Ball: Offense (-167); Defense (+137)

22. Minnesota Vikings: Kristian Fulton, CB, LSU

This feels like a spot where a team might opt to take a seemingly random position and prospect, like a guard or center. Fulton fills an “on paper” need for Minnesota. Speaking of paper, their defensive secondary is paper-thin and will likely require a pick or two to salvage.

Betting Crystal Ball: Defense (-225); Offense (+180)

23. New England Patriots: Jordan Love, QB, Utah St

Your guess is as good as mine since the Patriots always seem to get the guy who falls too far in the draft. Or they trade back five times. Love has his flaws (disappointing junior year) and strengths (size, arm, athleticism). But what I’m looking for in a QB prospect is a guy who elevates the play of the entire offense and Love did that. Here's what Patriots Maven Devon Clements had to say about Love:

If New England opted to take Love at that point in the draft, it would be a steal and a strong competitor for the starting QB job in Foxboro. Love has Patrick Mahomes-like ability, but his sporadic decision-making and lack of experience in the Patriots offense would land him on the bench in Year 1 in the NFL.

Betting Crystal Ball: Offense (-134); Defense (+110)

24. New Orleans Saints: Henry Ruggs III, WR, Alabama

New Orleans may not sling it like they used to but they need a second option to run alongside Michael Thomas. Ruggs is a blazer with 99 speed.

Betting Crystal Ball: Offense (-130); Defense (+107)

25. Minnesota Vikings: Tee Higgins, WR, Clemson

Minnesota waits for a WR and gets one of the more exciting prospects in the draft. Of his 59 receptions last year, 22 went for 20+ yards. I think he’d make a great play-action fit for this conservative-leaning offense.

26. Miami Dolphins: D’Andre Swift, RB, Georgia

With their third pick in the first round, the Dolphins finally decide to think of the fantasy owners of the world. Swift, Wisconsin’s Jonathan Taylor and Ohio State’s J.K. Dobbins are the consensus top backs in this class. It will just boil down to which back makes sense as a fit. What separates Swift for me is his escapability and balance. He seems to pour through running lanes and then SNAP; he will cut and bounce to daylight with ease.

27. Seattle Seahawks: Yetur Gross-Matos, EDGE, Penn St

I’ve got the perfect nickname for this guy: YEET! Just a really powerful player with length. He still needs a lot of polish. Seattle needs help across the defensive line.

Betting Crystal Ball: Defense (-167); Offense (+137)

28. Baltimore Ravens: Netane Muti, OG, Fresno St.

From watching Lamar Jackson have to run around so much in the Divisional Round game against Tennessee, it really cemented their need for help on the offensive line. A WR makes sense as well and would obviously make for a sexier choice, but the Ravens need a guy who can give Jackson some breathing room in the pocket.

Betting Crystal Ball: Offense (-125); Defense (+104)

29. Tennessee Titans: Zack Baun, EDGE, Wisconsin

This feels like a best player available spot for Tennessee. Baun is a difference-maker edge rusher who can do a little of everything well. Undersized, but a legit athlete with serious upside.

Betting Crystal Ball: Defense (-121); Offense (+100)

30. Green Bay Packers: Denzel Mims, WR, Baylor

A huge target for Aaron Rodgers with a knack for coming down with contested catches (20, second-most in college football last year).

Betting Crystal Ball: Offense (-177); Defense (+144)

31. San Francisco 49ers: Trevon Diggs, CB, Alabama

This could also be a landing spot for Fresno State’s Netane Muti. I could also see a corner like Diggs fit nicely here. He’s got length, size and an aggressive style. He played WR in high school, so his ball skills are definitely well-above average. The 49ers don’t have any glaring needs so they may opt to draft the best player available.

32. Kansas City Chiefs: Jeff Gladney, CB, TCU

Gladney doesn’t have that 6-foot stature that’s all the rage at the cornerback position, but he makes up for it with a great all-around game: Strength, foot speed and a ball-hawk mentality.

Betting Crystal Ball: Defense (-152); Offense (+125)


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