Sports

2018 NFL Mock Draft: Bills trade into top five for QB, Barkley almost falls out of top 10

What a wild start to NFL free agency. Good luck keeping up with all the moves. Not gonna lie: it’s not easy to fully incorporate everything in the context of a mock draft. But we’ll try.

The biggest thing that stood out to me from free agency over the first 24-48 hours was just how many teams will still be involved in the quarterback hunt. Everyone ended up landing with someone in musical chairs — even the Bills found AJ McCarron — but I think the Broncos, Cardinals, Jets, Browns and Bills are all very much involved in the quarterback search.

Buffalo in particular is going to be VERY interesting. It’s been widely expected they will try to move up into the top five to chase a quarterback after flipping Cordy Glenn to the Bengals so they could slide nine slots up in the draft.ย 

And there’s a trading partner there. I’ve detailed how it could happen, but the Bills swapping with the Colts and giving them No. 12, No. 22 and No. 65 (they got it for Tyrod Taylor) in a swap for No. 3 overall. The move would let them slide up and grab their choice of quarterback in this scenario, outside of whoever the Browns took.

The interesting domino to that is the Colts not taking a blue-chip guy and the result being Saquon Barkley almost falling out of the top 10. See for yourself and let’s get ready to really start mocking now that we know what teams are really facing which holes.

2018 NFL Mock Draft: Bills trade into top five for QB, Barkley almost falls out of top 101. Cleveland Browns

Josh Allen, QB, Wyoming: There is an argument the Browns could not take a quarterback after getting Tyrod Taylor, but getting Taylor makes it even easier to stand up at the top of the draft and take a quarterback who you don’t need to play right away. Allen mimicks the Chiefs draft of Patrick Mahomes very nicely.ย 


2018 NFL Mock Draft: Bills trade into top five for QB, Barkley almost falls out of top 102. New York Giants

Quenton Nelson, OL, Notre Dame: Dave Gettleman is going to stay here and take a blue-chip player who can help the Giants right away. It will either be Nelson or Barkley, and after missing out on Andrew Norwell in free agency, he leans for the nasty Notre Dame guard.ย 


2018 NFL Mock Draft: Bills trade into top five for QB, Barkley almost falls out of top 103. Buffalo Bills (via MOCK TRADE with Indianapolis Colts)

Sam Darnold, QB, USC: A really well-played offseason by the Bills here, as a slew of trades and movements ultimately results in them being able to package a bunch of picks, move up and grab their quarterback of the future. Legions of draftniks shriek about Darnold’s tiny little hands in the harsh Buffalo weather.


2018 NFL Mock Draft: Bills trade into top five for QB, Barkley almost falls out of top 104. Cleveland Browns (via Houston Texans)

Bradley Chubb, DE, NC State: Tough choice here between Chubb and Barkley, but the Browns land the best player in the draft at No. 4 and suddenly they are cooking with GAS on their defensive line.ย 


2018 NFL Mock Draft: Bills trade into top five for QB, Barkley almost falls out of top 105. Denver Broncos

Baker Mayfield, QB, Oklahoma: The Broncos signed Case Keenum in free agency and gave him a lot of money but that certainly doesn’t prohibit them from drafting someone else at the top. John Elway’s been all over Mayfield this offseason.ย 


2018 NFL Mock Draft: Bills trade into top five for QB, Barkley almost falls out of top 106. New York Jets

Josh Rosen, QB, UCLA: The Jets definitely can’t be ruled out from taking a quarterback either, despite grabbing Teddy Bridgewater and Josh McCown in free agency.ย 


2018 NFL Mock Draft: Bills trade into top five for QB, Barkley almost falls out of top 107. Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Saquon Barkley, RB, Penn State: This feels crazy. Barkley’s considered a potential top pick in this draft. But if the Colts trade down and the Giants don’t take him, he could fall. The Buccaneers cut Doug Martin and might swoop on this.ย 


2018 NFL Mock Draft: Bills trade into top five for QB, Barkley almost falls out of top 108. Chicago Bears

Tremaine Edmunds, LB, Virginia Tech: It’s easy to see the Bears going defense here and helping Vic Fangio with another versatile weapon.


2018 NFL Mock Draft: Bills trade into top five for QB, Barkley almost falls out of top 109. San Francisco 49ers

Derwin James, S, Florida State: The 49ers are in a position where they can keep grabbing the best player available and James is a stud defensive back who can move all over the place.ย 


2018 NFL Mock Draft: Bills trade into top five for QB, Barkley almost falls out of top 1010. Oakland Raiders

Roquan Smith, LB, Georgia: Imagine how different this defense would look if the Raiders went out and signed Ndamukong Suh and then drafted Smith. Fun stuff.


2018 NFL Mock Draft: Bills trade into top five for QB, Barkley almost falls out of top 1011. Miami Dolphins

Minkah Fitzpatrick, DB, Alabama: What are the Dolphins doing this offseason? Who knows! Let’s give them a gift when a blue chip player falls to them for no apparent reason.


2018 NFL Mock Draft: Bills trade into top five for QB, Barkley almost falls out of top 1012. Indianapolis Colts (VIA MOCK TRADE WITH Buffalo Bills (via Cincinnati Bengals)

Harold Landry, EDGE, Boston College: Chubb is a much better prospect in my book, but I don’t hate the move here down the draft board if the Colts snag the extra picks.


2018 NFL Mock Draft: Bills trade into top five for QB, Barkley almost falls out of top 1013. Washington Redskins

Denzel Ward, CB, Ohio State: The Redskins lost Breshaud Breeland in free agency and Kendall Fuller to trade. They’ve still got Josh Norman but they need corner reinforcements.


2018 NFL Mock Draft: Bills trade into top five for QB, Barkley almost falls out of top 1014. Green Bay Packers

Will Hernandez, OL, UTEP: The Packers could go in a lot of different directions here, but with the investment in the defensive line in free agency, they can beef up the interior of the offensive line and make sure to protect Aaron Rodgers and open up the running game.


2018 NFL Mock Draft: Bills trade into top five for QB, Barkley almost falls out of top 1015. Arizona Cardinals

Lamar Jackson, QB, Louisville: Tough call here. The Cardinals signed Sam Bradford and Mike Glennon but no one thinks they’re locked in at quarterback for the long haul.


2018 NFL Mock Draft: Bills trade into top five for QB, Barkley almost falls out of top 1016. Baltimore Ravens

Calvin Ridley, WR, Alabama: The Ravens signed Ryan Grant and John Brown in free agency early on but that can’t be the extent of what they hope to put around Joe Flacco. Ozzie Newsome loves his Alabama guys.


2018 NFL Mock Draft: Bills trade into top five for QB, Barkley almost falls out of top 1017. Los Angeles Chargers

Mike McGlinchey, OL, Notre Dame: Another way to beef up the protection for Philip Rivers, this is a really nice value add this late in the draft.


2018 NFL Mock Draft: Bills trade into top five for QB, Barkley almost falls out of top 1018. Seattle Seahawks

Maurice Hurst, DL, Michigan: The Seahawks lost a ton to free agency and cuts on the defensive side of the ball, so why not reinvest in the position now? It would be fine if they took an offensive lineman too.


2018 NFL Mock Draft: Bills trade into top five for QB, Barkley almost falls out of top 1019. Dallas Cowboys

Vita Vea, DL, Washington: There’s a little chatter about the Cowboys and Suh, but drafting a defensive tackle would make a lot more sense from a cost perspective.


2018 NFL Mock Draft: Bills trade into top five for QB, Barkley almost falls out of top 1020. Detroit Lions

Da’Ron Payne, DT, Alabama: The Lions can get a big body in the middle of the defensive line to anchor Matt Patricia’s defense.


2018 NFL Mock Draft: Bills trade into top five for QB, Barkley almost falls out of top 1021. Cincinnati Bengals (via Bills)

Marcus Davenport, EDGE, UTSA: The Bengals swapped spots to get Cordy Glenn so here they can have a pass rusher instead of reaching for an offensive lineman in the first.


2018 NFL Mock Draft: Bills trade into top five for QB, Barkley almost falls out of top 1022. Indianapolis Colts (VIA MOCK TRADE WITH Buffalo Bills (via Chiefs))

Isaiah Wynn, OL, Georgia: So the Colts trade down and get a pass rusher and protection for Andrew Luck and help in the run game. Not a bad little move.


2018 NFL Mock Draft: Bills trade into top five for QB, Barkley almost falls out of top 1023. Los Angeles Rams

D.J. Moore, WR, Maryland: After losing Sammy Watkins and likely releasing Tavon Austin, the Rams could use another wide receiver in the fold.


2018 NFL Mock Draft: Bills trade into top five for QB, Barkley almost falls out of top 1024. Carolina Panthers

Connor Williams, OL, Texas: The Panthers have to get more talent on the offensive line with Andrew Norwell gone, Ryan Kalil departing after 2018 and Matt Kalil not looking like he’s going to work out exactly how they hoped.


2018 NFL Mock Draft: Bills trade into top five for QB, Barkley almost falls out of top 1025. Tennessee Titans

Rashaan Evans, LB, Alabama: The Titans have done a nice job of filling holes this offseason, but could still use some help in the middle of their defense.


2018 NFL Mock Draft: Bills trade into top five for QB, Barkley almost falls out of top 1026. Atlanta Falcons

Taven Bryan, DL, Florida: The Falcons are always trying to add upside-filled players who fly under the radar a little bit and this would fit that bill, especially with a need on the defensive line.


2018 NFL Mock Draft: Bills trade into top five for QB, Barkley almost falls out of top 1027. New Orleans Saints

Christian Kirk, WR, Texas A&M: Didn’t think we’d get to a place where the Saints needed wide receiver help more than defensive help, but here we are.


2018 NFL Mock Draft: Bills trade into top five for QB, Barkley almost falls out of top 1028. Pittsburgh Steelers

Derrius Guice, RB, LSU: Running back in the first feels weird for the Steelers, but at this point they have to imagine a world without Le’Veon Bell and that world would begin next year. They did take Bell in the second.


2018 NFL Mock Draft: Bills trade into top five for QB, Barkley almost falls out of top 1029. Jacksonville Jaguars

Mike Gesicki, TE, Penn State: The Jaguars signed Niles Paul, but I’m still comfortable drafting a freak of nature pass catching tight end who can be another weapon for Blake Bortles.ย 


2018 NFL Mock Draft: Bills trade into top five for QB, Barkley almost falls out of top 1030. Minnesota Vikings

Mike Hughes, CB, UCF: Corner isn’t a need for the Vikings, but it takes time to learn Mike Zimmer’s scheme for these defensive backs so they need to prep years in advance for an opening. Nice value here.ย 


2018 NFL Mock Draft: Bills trade into top five for QB, Barkley almost falls out of top 1031. New England Patriots

Josh Jackson, CB, Iowa: Good value here and the Patriots can add another cornerback to a roster that needs help at the position.


2018 NFL Mock Draft: Bills trade into top five for QB, Barkley almost falls out of top 1032. Philadelphia Eagles

Dallas Goedert, TE, SDSU: Losing Trey Burton in free agency means the Eagles would like to get some more depth at the position.

~Source reference~