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GZL 2022 Let's Mock It Top 16 v1
By Garth Pearce
Special to gzl-football.com

The draft class is now on site and people can start digging deep into their scouting, so time to mock up the draft as it sits with all trades considered at RFA stage:

1.1 - CB Marlon Humphrey
With Cam newton being shopped and Cameron Hester not a young chicken the Seahawks could start with the standard QB at #1, however reading their trade block needs I reckon they go with Humphrey to succeed Mathieu with another tall, fast corner. Although they did trade out their #1 receiver in Rock Pritchett to get this pick, so they may target a wide receiver candidate to better suit Cam Newton.

1.2 - DE Myles Garrett
Both DE's are aging in Minny so the best pass rusher in the draft would be a no-brainer here for the Vikings. Garrett is a rare physical specimen, combining top end speed and acceleration with strength. He could be developed into an out of this world player, but much like Angel Roasrio from a few drafts ago, the Vikings aren't big on training camp.

1.3 - WR Ja'Vonte Nix
The Mariota experiment is over in Detroit and that means the passing game needs a boost. Nix is the a tall fast option that reminds Lions fans of Megatron, so growing him alongside newly acquired Archer could give them a long successful duo in the passing game under the tutelage of Christensen.

1.4 - WR Mike Williams
If you've got a Teddy passing the ball he needs a solid target, which Williams gives. He's not super-fast but can be worked up to a respectable level to go with his 6'3" frame, plus his strength and agility give him the edge over Courtland Sutton I feel.

1.5 - OT Cam Robinson
The Skins are in desperate need of some more pass rush, especially as Couples is getting old and needs a successor, but they also need better protection for Goff. Robinson shores up a patchwork offensive line and gives some long term stability for Goff to operate behind. Their other option here would be Powers for the aforementioned pass rush.

1.6 - MLB Zach Cunningham
With no inside linebacker worth starting the Steelers are set with Cunningham here who I feel has an advantage in Height and speed over Foster to get the nod. Foster may be 6 points stronger but he's also 6'1" and 4 points slower. The 6'4" of Cunningham is a better option in the middle.

1.7 - MLB Rueben Foster
Moving out of the unaffordable 1.1 they save at least $6M in salary and have more options to counter their morale woes. With Benardrick McKinney not able to be resign due to morale they need to replace him ASAP, and Foster proves a good option to do so. They may also look at an OT if they don't franchise tag Bo Schneider to retain his services, otherwise a DT to help plug the interior D-line.

1.8 - HB Leonard Fournette
Justin Herr is back at the helm in Jacksonville after a season's hiatus and gets to address a problem position ever since Bull Griggs was traded out. Fournette brings a lot of size (230lbs) for his 95 speed and has GZL ready hands and break tackle to succeed. Some may think his speed is a detractor but when you look at the likes of Dalvin Cook (91 SPD) he's also 30lbs lighter which could be a big deciding factor. WR, OT, CB, OG and MLB are also options that could use more talent.

1.9 - CB Marshon Lattimore
The Legend John Stanley is the new man at the helm of the Saints and has the chance to make a big impact right out of the gate. He has a few viable positions of need (WR, CB, OLB, DE & OG) and I feel that judging by his history in San Diego he won't go past a good secondary. Lattimore has decent height and speed that can be progressed to a pro level whilst his awareness and hands are high enough to make an impact from day one.

1.10 - DE Ja'Bar Powers
Bryan is still looking to move up from this position to acquire another top end talent and I reckon by the time draft day comes along he would have succeeded (he has the pick fodder value of #3 or #4). I wouldn't be surprised to see that move up be targeted at the top receivers in the draft to replace an aging AJ Green, but I don't think they'd settle for Sutton, instead opting for another elite pass rusher in Powers. With a monstrous top end speed and first step to match he'd be dynamite paired with Clowney. How the Bears keep adding top end talent like this I never know.

1.11 - OG Ethan Pocic
Bryan Mellon latches on to a good thing in Miami ( I should know, I drafted a few of their guys) but I feel that Match Eligible FA will have a big impact on their needs (potentially CB, WR & OT). They are still spoilt for choice with this pick but at the moment Pocic fills a big void at OG (yeah, not sexy), coming in with a skill set that matches the top end OT talent.

1.12 - HB Dalvin Cook
Another new GM to pick the mind of in Gary Cohen, but he might like a real running game in KC. Cook has a nice balance of athleticism and skills, but does his weight at 203lbs make Gary pause on this pick? A new talent at wide out may be beneficial to Foles' game along with a fresh injection of top end talent on the O-Line.

1.13 - DE Derek Barnett
The Dolphins currently have hybrid/3-4 defensive ends and new management may be more inclined to a pure 4-3 pass rush which Barnett begins the conversion. If they can't retain both Slay and Gilbert from FA look or a replacement corner here or even a new wide out.

1.14 - QB Mitch Trubisky
Is Drew Powell really the guy to lead the Ravens? History says no and Trubisky gives them the next generation to build around. He doesn't have a cannon of the arm but can be progressed to a level that suits the league (if you want the cannon, go for DeShone Kizer). His awareness is already outstanding for a rookie and will help with the growing pains. If they could land Fournette or Cook here I reckon they'd consider it, but even Christian Mcaffrey is close in skills to Cook, so maybe him.

1.15 - WR Courtland Sutton
With their QB situation settled you think it's time for a legitimate #2 target behind Julio (who at 32 needs a successor anyhow) and Sutton gives them a nice option of height with decent speed. They could go the other side of the field with a corner to pair with Bell as there ae still a couple of nice options on the board for that position

1.16 - MLB Raekwon McMillan
Paul Willis returns to his old stomping ground and is faced with the prospect of replacing an aging Trent Richardson. I feel that Richardson can keep going or another year (Ingram managed it), but their patchwork at MLB needs attention. McMillan has a nice balance in the middle with no obvious flaws, although they could get creative and draft OLB Carroll Phillips and move him inside for some serious speed.
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