NFL mock draft: Arizona Cardinals' pick changes as pressure for big move takes over

Bob McManaman
The Republic |

Arizona Republic NFL writer Bob McManaman offers his second edition of his 2019 NFL Mock Draft. Follow him on Twitter @azbobbymac.

The NFL draft is April 25-27 in Nashville, Tenn., and once again we take a look at how things could play out in the first round. Last year in my final mock draft, I correctly projected 26 of the 32 players that would be selected in the first round, with three going to the designated team I projected.

My picks are based on observations, team needs, scouting services and various NFL sources:

1. Arizona Cardinals (3-13): QB Kyler Murray, 5-10 1/8, 195, Oklahoma

Oklahoma quarterback Kyler Murray

Comment: Previously, the choice here was former Ohio State edge rusher Nick Bosa and while I still think he might ultimately be the Cardinals’ pick, you can’t ignore all the hype being generated about Murray. He would be a natural fit in Kliff Kingsbury’s offense, but it would be a gutsy move after drafting Josh Rosen 10th overall just a year ago. Don’t discount a possible trade out of the No. 1 slot by Arizona.

MORE: Josh Rosen, Kyler Murray talk heats up after Kliff Kingsbury's comments

2. San Francisco 49ers (4-12): DL Quinnen Williams, 6-4, 289, Alabama

Alabama defensive lineman Quinnen Williams.

Comment: Pick change. I had the 49ers going with Kentucky pass rusher Josh Allen, but now that they’ve added an edge guy in free agent Dee Ford and picked up a stud linebacker in Kwon Alexander, they can improve their interior with the best defensive tackle available in the draft. They pass on Bosa.

3. New York Jets (4-12): OLB/DE Josh Allen, 6-5, 260, Kentucky

Kentucky pass rusher Josh Allen.

Comment: Pick change. Previously, the choice here was Williams, but now that he’s off the board, the Jets go pure pass rusher here and, surprise, pass on Bosa and grab Allen instead.

4. Oakland Raiders (4-12): OLB/DE Nick Bosa, 6-4, 263, Ohio State

Ohio State defensive lineman Nick Bosa.

Comment: The Raiders can’t believe their good fortune and during a very busy offseason for them, add another key player to the mix in Bosa, who will dominate off the edge for years to come. Unless, of course, the Cardinals can tempt Oakland to trade up to No. 1 for the rights to Murray, which could happen. Remember, these two clubs have a rich trade history together in recent years.

5. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (5-11): ILB Devin White, 6-1, 255, LSU

LSU linebacker Devin White.

Comment: Pick change. I’m switching from former Clemson edge rusher Clelin Ferrell to my favorite player in this draft, White, who should dominate side-to-side in Todd Bowles’ defense.

6. New York Giants (5-11): QB Dwayne Haskins, 6-3, 218, Ohio State

Ohio State quarterback Dwayne Haskins.

Comment: No change. Unless they feel the need to trade up to get Haskins ahead of any other quarterback-needy team or work a deal with the Cardinals for Rosen, the Giants land their eventual successor to Eli Manning.

7. Jacksonville Jaguars (5-11): OT Jawaan Taylor, 6-5, 334, Florida

Florida offensive lineman Jawaan Taylor (65).

Comment: Pick change. It’s still an offensive lineman, but now it’s Taylor instead of Alabama’s Jonah Williams. The Jaguars could be tempted to grab one of the many stud defensive linemen still available here or maybe even go wide receiver and take D.K. Metcalf.

8. Detroit Lions (6-10): DE Montez Sweat, 6-6, 260, Mississippi State

Mississippi State linebacker Montez Sweat (9).

Comment: Pick change. Sweat literally crushed the combine and although physicians have detected that he has a heart condition, I’ve heard it isn’t serious enough to knock him out of the Top 10.

9. Buffalo Bills (6-10): OT Andre Dillard, 6-5, 315, Washington State

Washington State offensive lineman Andre Dillard.

Comment: Pick change. I had them taking Houston edge rusher Ed Oliver, but Dillard killed it at the combine and he’s likely soaring up draft boards. He’ll give tons of protection for young quarterback Josh Allen, even though the Bills have already added some new pieces up front.

10. Denver Broncos (6-10): TE T.J. Hockenson, 6-5, 245, Iowa

Iowa tight end T.J. Hockenson (38).

Comment: Pick change. Instead of defensive line, the Broncos go offense and grab a very special tight end who is fast becoming a potential Top 10 pick. It’s a risky move with so many talented defensive players still available. Might they draft a quarterback? They might.

11. Cincinnati Bengals (6-10): WR D.K. Metcalf, 6-3, 225, Mississippi

Comment: Pick change. I had them selecting an offensive lineman here first time out and although there’s a real need for a linebacker, I don’t see the Bengals being able to resist drafting one of the most intriguing players in this year’s class. Metcalf is a beast.

12. Green Bay Packers (6-9-1): CB Greedy Williams, 6-2, 185, LSU

Comment: Pick change. Previously, the pick here was Devin White. He’s long gone and although the Packers have already added multiple new pieces to their defense, here’s   another in the playmaking Williams.

13. Miami Dolphins (7-9): DE Clelin Ferrell, 6-4, 265, Clemson

Comment: Pick change. I had Kyler Murray going here initially, but it appears the Dolphins are going with veteran Ryan Fitzpatrick as their bridge quarterback for now so I have them grabbing a potential elite edge guy in Ferrell.

14. Atlanta Falcons (7-9): DL Rashan Gary, 6-5, 283, Michigan

Comment: Pick change. It’s still a defensive lineman, but now it’s Gary instead of Sweat. Gary, in all truth, might not last this long, but if he falls, he won’t fall much farther than this.

15. Washington Redskins (7-9): QB Daniel Jones, 6-5, 215, Duke

Duke quarterback Daniel Jones.

Comment: No change. The addition of Case Keenum likely won’t dissuade Washington from targeting a quarterback and Jones has the size, skill and smarts to be a very intriguing pick.

16. Carolina Panthers (7-9): DL Ed Oliver, 6-3, 290, Houston

Comment: Pick change. It’s still a defensive lineman, but now it’s Oliver instead of Florida’s Jachi Polite. If the Panthers pass, they could go with an offensive lineman here.

17. New York Giants (via trade with Browns): WR Marquise Brown,  5-10, 170, Oklahoma

Comment: He isn’t Odell Beckham Jr., but Williams is one of a handful of intriguing wide receivers in this year’s draft class and his tremendous speed and agility make him a certain first-round pick.

18. Minnesota Vikings (8-7-1): OT Jonah Williams, 6-5, 301, Alabama

Comment: Pick change. It’s still an offensive lineman, but now it’s Williams, who has fallen out of my Top 10. The Vikings need help here, especially on their interior line, so they might pick a guard or a tackle who can slide inside. Receiver is also in play with this pick.

19. Tennessee Titans (9-7): DL Christian Wilkins, 6-3, 315, Clemson

Comment: Pick change. Previously, the choice was D.K. Metcalf. Now I have the Titans gobbling up another one of this year’s draft’s quality D-linemen in Wilkins, who I initially had going No.10 overall to Denver.

20. Pittsburgh Steelers (9-6-1): LB Devin Bush, 5-11, 234, Michigan

Comment: Pick change. It’s still a linebacker, now it’s Bush instead of Alabama’s Mack Wilson. The Steelers still get a three-down ’backer who can defend the pass and stop the run.

21. Seattle Seahawks (10-6): OT Dalton Risner, 6-5, 308, Kansas State

Kansas State offensive lineman Dalton Risner (71).

Comment: Pick change. Instead of drafting a tight end, Seattle makes sure it doesn’t let its offensive line completely fall apart after some recent departures and does it masterfully with the selection of Risner.

22. Baltimore Ravens (10-6): WR A.J. Brown, 6-0, 225, Mississippi

Comment: Pick change. First, it was running back Josh Jacobs of Alabama, but after they picked up Mark Ingram from the Saints, I’ll say the Ravens once again try to nail down a stud at wide receiver and pick Brown. Maybe they’ll hit with this one.

23. Houston Texans (11-5): CB Byron Murphy, 5-11, 170, Washington

Comment: No change, although it might be a coin flip between Murphy and former Georgia cornerback Deandre Baker. Offensive line is another option with Ole Miss’ Greg Little is still available.

24. Oakland Raiders (via Bears): RB Josh Jacobs, 5-10, 215, Alabama

Comment: Pick change. No wide receiver here this time, but a running back and the only one that goes in the first round.

25. Philadelphia Eagles (9-7): CB Deandre Baker, 5-11, 180, Georgia

Georgia cornerback Deandre Baker.

Comment: Pick change. In my first Mock Draft, I had the Eagles taking Dalton Risner, but now they target a cornerback and Baker is next on my board. Jacobs, the running back, would make for a good pick here if he were available.

26. Indianapolis Colts (10-6): WR N’Keal Harry, 6-3, 215, Arizona State

Comment: Pick change, although it’s still a wide receiver. Instead of A.J. Brown, it’s now Harry, whom I see as a late first-round selection.

27. Oakland Raiders (trade via Cowboys): TE Noah Fant, 6-5, 241, Iowa

Comment: Pick change. Switching from safety to tight end this time and Fant would be a nice addition to Oakland’s offense. I’m wondering, though, if the Raiders would be tempted to draft former Missouri quarterback Drew Lock with this pick.

28. Los Angeles Chargers (12-4): OG/OT Cody Ford, 6-2, 335, Oklahoma

Comment: Pick change. Instead of defensive line, the Chargers go offensive line and add an important piece up front who can play just about anywhere.

29. Kansas City Chiefs (12-4): DT Dexter Lawrence, 6-4, 340, Clemson

Comment: No change, although the Chiefs could go just about anywhere with this pick from corner to wide receiver to center.

30. Green Bay Packers (via trade with Saints): S Deionte Thompson, 6-2, 196, Alabama

Alabama safety Deionte Thompson.

Comment: Pick change. I’m switching from offense to defense with Green Bay’s second pick in the first round, assuming they keep it. Thompson is the only safety I have going in the first round and the Packers can use all the cover help they can get.

31. Los Angeles Rams (13-3): OL Garrett Bradbury, 6-3, 306, North Carolina State  

Comment: Pick change. The Rams have a chance to add a solid prospect to their offensive line and get younger by doing so.

32. New England Patriots: (11-5): TE Irv Smith, 6-2, 242, Alabama

Comment: Pick change. It’s still a tight end, but now it’s Smith, my fifth Alabama off the board in the first round. He’s Rob Gronkowski’s eventual replacement.

Have an opinion on the Arizona Cardinals? Reach McManaman at and follow him on Twitter @azbobbymac. Listen to him live every Tuesday afternoon between 2-5:30 on AM 1060/SB Nation Radio on Calling All Sports with Roc and Manuch and every Wednesday afternoon between 1-4 on Fox Sports 910-AM on The Freaks with Kenny and Crash.

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