Each year, Acme Packing Company’s writers combine for a mock draft, pitting each of us against one another as we represent different teams. This year, eight APC contributors pitched in, representing four teams apiece — two NFC teams and two AFC teams, and all from different divisions.
This year’s mock stretches to the end of the second round of the draft, giving some possibilities for how the Green Bay Packers’ picks at 30 and 62 overall could go. Check out the mock as we reveal the first round over the course of the next few days, followed by round two later on this week.
Without further ado, here are the first ten picks for the 2020 APC Mock Draft.
1.1 Cincinnati Bengals: Joe Burrow, QB, LSU (Kris)
While it was tempting to wreck the entire draft and picking someone else here, this is the obvious choice. Joe Burrow will follow in the footsteps of Carson Palmer as the Bengals’ franchise quarterback who was taken number one overall. Palmer never was even part of a team that won a playoff game in Cincinnati so the bar to clear for Burrow will be low. Zac Taylor gets his quarterback while Andy Dalton gets put out to pasture.
1.2 Washington: Chase Young, EDGE, Ohio State (Jordan)
Chase Young might be the best player in the draft so this pick seems like a no-brainer. Ron Rivera likes to build a solid defense and Young would be the key building block for that, but there’s also a chance Young has to sit and wait should Washington receive a godfather offer for the pick, or they pull a Cardinals and draft a different rookie QB. Young has great size and explosion and should make an immediate, if not stronger, impact than former teammate Nick Bosa did in his 2019 rookie year.
1.3 Detroit: Jeff Okudah, CB, Ohio State (Mike)
If Burrow and Young go 1-2, I fully expect the Lions to make a hard push to trade back with the Dolphins or Chargers. Both are in desperate need for a quarterback and the third pick will net the Lions a few extra picks and help rebuild their team more. The best thing is that trading back to the fifth or sixth pick, they can still, probably, get Jeff Okudah. Okudah is the best corner in the draft and the Lions have a desperate need for one after dealing Darius Slay to the Eagles. Okudah has all the traits of a #1 cornerback. He has excellent size and speed. He will be able to play man coverage against the top receiver for each team and, while he might have some rookie struggles, he will excel quickly and become a bright spot for the Lions defense.
1.4 New York Giants: Isiah Simmons, LB, Clemson (Jonathan B)
There were several options here as the Giants have many needs. I was very tempted to go OL here with either Mekhi Becton or Triston Wirfs. Protecting the new QB investment from last year is going to be a need. In the end, the Giants have a lot of needs and it makes the most sense to get the best player you can. With a top four pick the Giants want a game changing talent. Simmons is that guy. Simmons is a linebacker but also a multifaceted player. He lined up all over the field at Clemson. He can rush the passer, stop the run and even play safety. The value is also great as OL depth is far greater than LB depth. There will still be value in the second round for the Giants.
1.5 Miami Dolphins: Tua Tagovailoa, QB, Alabama (Tex)
This one is pretty straightforward. New management and a new coach (well, all of them are in their second year, but still) means a new quarterback to take over under center. In all likelihood, I expect Miami to try to move up for Tua (or maybe even make a run at Burrow) but in this case, getting the Bama QB by staying put at 5 is probably Miami’s best-case scenario.
1.6 LA Chargers: Justin Herbert, QB, Oregon (Shawn)
The Chargers have been confident that Tyrod Taylor will be their quarterback next season, but that doesn’t mean they can’t start grooming another for 2021 and beyond. Los Angeles could pick an offensive tackle here from a large group to help their line in front of Taylor, but it’s hard to resist a potential franchise quarterback at sixth overall and turn their attention to the offensive line in round two.
1.7 Carolina Panthers: Derrick Brown, DT, Auburn (Jonathan B.)
Only the Dolphins gave up more points than the Panthers last year. This team needs defensive help. If Simmons were available in this mock, he would be great here to replace Luke Kuechly. Other than Kawaan Short, the rest of the Panthers line could be easily replaced. Brown gives them a second disruptive force in the front and could help last year’s first rounder, Brian Burns, get more space.
1.8 Arizona Cardinals: Andrew Thomas, OT, Georgia (Peter)
This would have been a no-brainer CeeDee Lamb pick a month ago, but with DeAndre Hopkins in the fold now, the Cardinals need to focus on keeping their diminutive quarterback as upright as possible. For my money, Thomas offers the most complete set of pass/run blocking versatility, experience, and athleticism to go with a nasty streak. TLDR, he’s OT1.He can play in this spread Kliff Kingsbury offense, as well in the more traditional sets Football Ryan Gosling put together for this offense. If there’d been a pass rusher or a cornerback I liked here, I would have considered it as well, but there’s not.
1.9 Jacksonville Jaguars: CeeDee Lamb, WR, Oklahoma (Paul)
With Arizona having addressed their WR issues in free agency, Lamb falls into the Jags’ lap. The Jaguars are in great shape to take the best player available in that they need players at every position, and while DJ Chark is nice to have, the offense is still in dire need of playmakers. Lamb is the best in a great class of receivers, and if you’re going to roll with Gardner Minshew at quarterback, you’re going to need a few Lambs.
1.10 Cleveland Browns: Tristan Wirfs, OT, Iowa (Jordan)
A big WR run might happen in the first round of this draft, but the second strongest position group for the first round is OT. Wirfs is a big athlete with freak athleticism. While he only put up 24 bench reps at the combine, his power here is a much better measurement for the sheer strength he has. Protecting Baker Mayfield should be priority one for Cleveland. They have the weapons and added OT Jack Conklin in free agency so adding a piece like Wirfs can really turn the offense around.
APC 2020 Mock Draft
|2||WAS||Chase Young||EDGE||Ohio State||Jordan|
|3||DET||Jeff Okudah||CB||Ohio State||Mike|
|4||NYG||Isaiah Simmons||LB||Clemson||Jon B|
|7||CAR||Derrick Brown||DT||Auburn||Jon B|
|13||SF (from IND)||Javon Kinlaw||DT||South Carolina||Mike|
|18||MIA (from PIT)||Justin Jefferson||WR||LSU||Tex|
|19||LV (from CHI)||Trevon Diggs||CB||Alabama||Mike|
|20||JAX (from LAR)||Patrick Queen||LB||LSU||Paul|
|22||MIN (from BUF)||K'Lavon Chaisson||DE||LSU||Shawn|
|23||NE||Brandon Aiyuk||WR||Arizona State||Paul|
|24||NO||Jordan Love||QB||Utah State||Shawn|
|26||MIA (from HOU)||Austin Jackson||OT||USC||Tex|
|28||BAL||Chase Claypool||WR||Notre Dame||Jon B|
|29||TEN||Ross Blacklock||DT||TCU||Jon B|
Stay tuned for picks 11 through 20 on Tuesday.