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NFL Mock Draft 2018

By Zach Malamud

Tonight, the NFL is again in the spotlight, as quarterback needy teams look to make a franchise-altering pick, that’ll slingshot their team to success in the next 15 years. Of course, this year’s mock was a fun one, and there isn’t one certain pick in this years draft. Other years there’s always that “oh he’s 100% going there. It’s a lock.” and this year, it’s all up in the air, and the Cleveland Browns will dictate how it goes as they make their first overall pick. Let’s get to it!

1.Cleveland Browns- Sam Darnold, QB, University of Southern California

The 0-16 Browns now have the number one pick for the second year in a row after a winless 2017 season. With the additions of offensive signings like Carlos Hyde and Jarvis Landry, the Browns could possibly take one of four highly rated quarterbacks at number one. Yes, the browns did trade a third round pick for Buffalo Bills quarterback Tyrod Taylor on March 9. However, Taylor will only be in Cleveland for the one year left on his contract while drafting arguably the most accurate quarterback in the draft (Darnold) could really mean a lot of touchdowns for wide receivers, Josh Gordon and Jarvis Landry.


Darnold should be the top pick this year, but does Cleveland think so? (Via AP)

2.New York Giants- Bradley Chubb, DE, North Carolina State

A very unpredictable pick for the Giants with as many as four names being spattered around. But ever since the blockbuster deal that sent defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul to Tampa Bay, the Giants could use a defensive end to add to the 3-4 defense of new defensive coordinator, James Bettcher. Chubb, who has been described as the next Von Miller, is very likely to be a top five pick this Thursday.


3.New York Jets- Baker Mayfield, QB, Oklahoma

Moving from 6 to 3 made a big statement that the Jets were once again looking for a franchise quarterback that could get them back to the playoffs. The injury problems of Mark Sanchez, major busts in Geno Smith and Christian Hackenberg, and undeveloped Bryce Petty, the Jets have not found their guy. An accurate and mobile quarterback in Mayfield could be a great addition to a keen Jets offense who just need the right man at the wheel.


4.(Trade) Buffalo Bills- Josh Allen, QB, Wyoming

After trading Tyrod Taylor, the Bills are looking to trade up for a quarterback. This pick could end up being the best available QB and Josh Allen could be at the top of the list. Allen has a rocket of an arm and with the speedy wide receivers of the Buffalo Bills, they will try to make it back to the playoffs for the second consecutive years after not getting to the playoffs previously since 1999.


5.Denver Broncos- Saquon Barkley, RB, Penn State

After releasing C.J. Anderson, the Broncos still have Devontae Booker. But think how successful Denver could be if they add arguably the top running back in college football. Barkley ended his three-year Penn State career with 51 total touchdowns. Denver finished 27th in the league in points per game last year and to add someone who was as dominant in college as Cowboys’ running back Ezekiel Elliott could help send Denver back to the playoffs.


6.(Trade) Miami Dolphins- Josh Rosen, QB, UCLA

When Ryan Tannehill went down to a torn ACL and Miami signed Jay Cutler who came out of retirement, there was a very slim chance that they’d make the playoffs. Cutler had an iffy season that had Miami 3rd in the AFC East. Rosen, at this point in the draft, is the best quarterback available to them and he just might give some confidence to a struggling Dolphins offense that gave away top wide receiver Jarvis Landry during the offseason.


7.Tampa Bay Buccaneers- Derwin James, S, Florida State

Tampa Bay finished in dead last for most passing yards against per game last season. They have drafted a safety in the past two years and it hasn’t helped them at all. A quick and versatile safety like Derwin James can be the draft pick that could change this secondary. Derwin James most likely will stay in Florida unless he jumps to a higher pick.


8.Chicago Bears- Quenton Nelson, G, Notre Dame

The Bears are praying that this man drops to them with him potentially going to three teams picking right before them. A potential all-pro guard would be a great pick for Chicago who have a great run game in Jordan Howard and Tarik Cohen. But Chicago finished in last in passing yards per game last season so to put Nelson as a pass blocker could finally get the Bears offense rolling for the first time in a while.


9.San Francisco 49ers- Denzel Ward, CB, Ohio State

With Richard Sherman recovering from injury, Jaquiski Tart and Jimmy Ward becoming free agents, San Francisco has a lot of spots to fill in their secondary. Denzel Ward is a perfect fit into a 49ers defense that let up the 8th most points and 9th most yards total in the league last season. The 49ers could finally be the real deal with the pairing of Sherman and Ward as the two starting cornerbacks


10.Oakland Raiders- Roquan Smith, LB, Georgia

Oakland at this point will take the best available. This could be a great pick to add another pass rusher to an Oakland defense that let up the 7th most passing yards in the league last year. To pair Smith with Khalil Mack and Bruce Irvin, Oakland fans or soon to be Las Vegas fans could be in for a treat.


11.(Trade)Indianapolis Colts- Tremaine Edmunds, LB, Virginia Tech

With no real certainty of who the Colts are going to pick, it most likely is going to be defense. The Colts defense let up the 3rd most total yards in the league last year and while Andrew Luck is dealing with injury problems arguably the top linebacker in the draft could fit perfectly fine as a starter in a struggling defense.


12.(Trade) Cleveland Browns- Minkah Fitzpatrick, DB, Alabama

This might be the least surprising pick of the first round if the Browns were to trade number four with Buffalo. The 0-16 browns most likely will have the best offseason in the NFL if they get their QB at number one to pair up with Carlos Hyde, Jarvis Landry and Josh Gordon. Switching over to defense with Myles Garrett, Minkah Fitzpatrick and Jabrill Peppers. The Browns could finally be the real deal this season but we will have to wait and see if they get this opportunity.


13.Washington Redskins- Vita Vea, DT, Washington
Washington are coming off an awful season from their defensive lineman. They finished in last in the category after letting up almost 135 rush yards per game last year. They definitely should be looking at a defensive lineman and the best defensive tackle in the draft would be the perfect option for this struggling defense.


14.Green Bay Packers- D.J. Moore, WR, Maryland

Green Bay could trade back but are really excited about the potential of Moore and what he could do if he is paired up with Aaron Rodgers who also has new signing Jimmy Graham as a top target in one of the best offenses in the NFL. Once Aaron Rodgers got hurt last season, Green Bay really had no chance to make it to the playoffs with backup quarterback Brett Hundley looking not ready to take that prestigious position. Jordy Nelson is in Oakland and Mike McCarthey can’t go wrong with another target for Rodgers.


15.Arizona Cardinals- Will Hernandez, G, University of Texas El-Paso

Last season, Arizona quarterbacks got sacked 52 times which was tied for the third most in the league. And the way to stop that is another offensive lineman. Hernandez would be the perfect choice for the cardinals to try and get back to being a top offensive team


16.Baltimore Ravens- Leighton Vander Esch, LB, Boise State

Baltimore will most likely pick the best available guy and Vander Esch showed teams why he should be around a mid-first round pick. He was unbelievable at the combine and Baltimore might have the next Ray Lewis to pair up with Terrell Suggs while he is still there.


17.Los Angeles Chargers- Lamar Jackson, QB, Louisville

The Chargers have been known for planning for the future at the draft. Philip Rivers is now 36 and both head coach Anthony Lynn and GM Tom Telesco have praised 2016 heisman trophy winner Lamar Jackson. A future duo between Lamar Jackson and Melvin Gordon could give the Chiefs and Broncos who gave up some key defensive guys during the offseason a run for their money in a couple of years.


18.Seattle Seahawks- Josh Jackson, CB, Iowa

With one of the best cornerbacks in the league in Richard Sherman leaving for their rival 49ers, Seattle needs someone to help their lately struggling secondary. Josh Jackson is the top option for Seattle so this will probably be an easy decision the Seahawks. Jackson does have some speed concerns but don’t think that will change this pick.


19.Dallas Cowboys- Calvin Ridley, WR, Alabama

Everyone remembers 2 years ago when Dallas drafted Ezekiel Elliott when he was projected by most to be picked out of the top. Also, the shocker of the offseason with the Cowboys releasing pro bowl wide receiver Dez Bryant after spending 10 years in Dallas. Ridley had over 2,750 receiving yards with 224 receptions in his 3 years at Alabama under Nick Saban. Ridley would be the perfect pick for a Dallas team who definitely need a wide receiver.


20.Detroit Lions- Derrius Guice, RB, Louisiana State

Detroit came in dead last when it came to rushing yards per game last year. They don’t have a great running back in Ameer Abdullah and Theo Riddick is more of a passing option for Matthew Stafford. The Lions could use an explosive running back that can help a key missing piece in their offense.


21.Cincinnati Bengals- Billy Price, C, Ohio State

The Bengals had the second least rushing yards per game last season. That really hurt rookie Joe Mixon while Giovanni Bernard and Jeremy Hill were basically invisible almost all season long. Price was the starting center at Ohio State when Ezekiel Elliott was breaking tackles left and right. Price could help change Cincinnati’s horrific run game and get them past the wild card round for the first time since 1990.


22.(Trade) Cleveland Browns-Mike McGlinchey, T, Notre Dame

Cleveland could be back for a potential 3rd first round if they can make that trade with Buffalo for the number 4 pick. Cleveland has never really had a great offensive line and now with star left tackle Joe Thomas retiring after 11 great NFL seasons, Cleveland could draft a tackle about a month and a half later and be ready to roll. McGlinchey would be a perfect pick to replace Joe Thomas but once again we will just have to wait and see.


23.New England Patriots- Courtland Sutton, WR, Southern Methodist University

With Ridley and Moore already off the board, New England could be looking for a wide receiver to replace Brandin Cooks with the pick they received from the Rams in the Cooks deal. Sutton finished off his 4-year career at SMU with over 3,000 receiving yards and a speedy receiver could never go wrong with the G.O.A.T.


24.Carolina Panthers- Christian Kirk, WR, Texas A&M

Ever since the Panthers drafted Cam Newton in 2011, they have drafted three top wide receivers while Steve Smith Sr. left for Baltimore. Those 3 are Kelvin Benjamin who is now in Buffalo, Curtis Samuel who had an ok rookie season and Devin Funchess who has probably fit in the best of the three. The panthers didn’t stand a chance in Super Bowl 50 against the Broncos and need an impactful players to get them back to the Super Bowl after two ok years.


25.Tennessee Titans- Marcus Davenport, DE, University of Texas-San Antonio

Tennessee had a very productive season all around that got them to the divisional round in the AFC. But they still let up the 8th most passing yards in the league last year so another pass rusher wouldn’t hurt. Davenport could be projected to go earlier but based on the competition he faced in a really unknown conference, these projections can still be wrong. This would be a great pick for a titans team who really doesn’t need much this offseason.


26.Atlanta Falcons- Taven Bryan, DT, Florida

Atlanta will probably go for the best available and they can add to their stellar defense from last season by adding another defensive lineman. It was disappointing last year when they went home after losing 15-10 to the 1st place Eagles who were without star quarterback Carson Wentz. Both defenses had great game and the Falcons could continue this with Bryan.


27.New Orleans- Harold Landry, DE/LB, Boston College

The Saints will probably be looking for the best available at this point in the draft. Landry is a versatile player that can help New Orleans get back to the playoffs. New Orleans wasn’t able to shut down opponents defensively in big games. Wide receiver Cameron Meredith was signed during the offseason so the offense doesn’t need much work with Drew Brees in charge.


28.Pittsburgh Steelers- Rashaan Evans, LB, Alabama

Pittsburgh doesn’t need much but with Ryan Shazier out for probably all of this upcoming season the steelers could use another linebacker just to be safe. Evans who was great last season under Nick Saban can be a total game changer just like Shazier is for Pittsburgh.


29.Jacksonville Jaguars- Connor Williams, T, Texas

Jacksonville could still use a little more help on offense as the defense looks perfectly fine after an unbelievable season last year. Williams had a rough 2017 at Texas but it shouldn’t affect his draft status by looking at how great he played 2016.


30.Minnesota Vikings- Frank Ragnow, C, Arkansas

Minnesota are in need of an extra offensive lineman and Ragnow didn’t allow a sack during his time at Arkansas. Such a dominant offensive lineman definitely deserves to be a first round and could be a great fit for the Vikings who are trying to get back to the playoffs.


31.New England Patriots- Mason Rudolph, QB, Oklahoma State

Planning for the future after TOM BRADY already!! Yes, the patriots got rid of backups Jacoby Brissett and Jimmy Garoppolo last season. This could be one of the great qb draft classes for a while and why not take a shot on Mason Rudolph who could be one of the most underrated players in this draft class.


32.Philadelphia Eagles- Jaire Alexander, CB, Louisville

The Super Bowl champion Eagles had a lot of problems in their secondary against NFC East wide receivers last season. Alexander is very strong and could stop these receivers from doing too much damage by joining one of the best defensive teams in the NFL. One of the reasons for them winning the super bowl.


2016 NFL Mock Draft

By Ryan Crawford

Welcome to the 2016 NFL Draft. Just like 2015 it looks like quarterbacks go 1 and 2 and the top talent slides a little. Without further adieu, lets get this party started.


  1. LOS ANGELES RAMS (from Tenn) – Jared Goff – QB – California

This is a pretty easy choice for the average draft prognosticator, as the Rams did not trade up to the number one spot so they could draft defense or a tackle. They want to make a big splash as they move to LA and they feel Goff is the natural choice to lead the franchise to the west coast. Les Snead and Jeff Fishers job security will be tied to Goff’s development and overall success but they feel they have a good defense and plenty of offensive weapons to put around him. There are many who feel that Carson Wentz is a more natural fit for their offense but it seems clear that the Rams have settled on the California kid with the big arm and a high ceiling.

  1. PHILADELPHIA EAGLES (from Cle) – Carson Wentz – QB – North Dakota St

Like the Rams, the Eagles did not move up to this spot to take anyone other than a  quarterback. Wentz is the clear-cut choice at number 2. These two QB’s are really 1 and 1A and ewrrword is the Eagles are more in love with Wentz anyway. He’s big and strong, makes every throw and can avoid trouble with his legs. The only question has become whether Sam Bradford will be there with him for the first year or two. Looks like the answer to that is probably not.

  1. SAN DIEGO CHARGERS – DeForest Buckner-DT-Oregon

Once the Rams and Eagles jumped up to be in position to grab the two quarterbacks, the Chargers ended up in the enviable position of being able to choose the best player in the draft who was not a QB. In the weeks leading to draft night the prevailing sentiment was that although they already had two tackles, Laremy Tunsil would be too good to pass up. However word has filtered out in the last few days that the Chargers are thoroughly smitten with DeForest Buckner and he clearly plays a need position for the team. Unless this is an elaborate smokescreen to get a team to give up a couple of picks to move into that slot, I am going to take the bait and give Buckner to the Chargers. What does make sense to me would be if Jacksonville or Baltimore wanted to jump Dallas for Jalen Ramsey then the Chargers could get a pick and still grab Buckner at 5 or 6. Unless Dallas loves Buckner too?? Hmmmm…

  1. DALLAS COWBOYS – Jalen Ramsey-CB-Florida State

No matter which way they go the Cowboys should get a great prospect. To me the most natural fit for them is Ramsey. He and Tunsil are generally regarded as the top two talents in this draft and he fills a big need for the Cowboys at the same time. He can play safety or corner and can match up positionally based on the opponent that week. I could see teams trying to jump to number 3 or 4 to get him. In the end I think he is the Cowboys pick. On another note the Cowboys can use a running back in the draft and I’m sure they like Ezekial Elliott but I think the chatter of picking him at 4 is purely a smokescreen to hide their true target.

  1. JACKSONVILLE JAGUARS – Joey Bosa– DE– Ohio State

I don’t see Jacksonville picking in this spot. I could see them jumping up to 3 or more probably trading down for a couple of picks. Miami for Elliott and Tennessee for Tunsil or Stanley seem to be the most logical trading partners. If they stay at 5, they can decide between Joey Bosa and Myles Jack. I will give them Bosa because Jack’s knee problem might scare them off.

  1. BALTIMORE RAVENS – Laremy Tunsil- T- Mississippi

Well it looks like 2015 all over again when the top rated talent falls to the 6th pick in the draft. Ozzie Newsome always picks the highest guy on his board and you can’t get much higher than Tunsil. The Ravens will be thrilled to plug this guy in for the next 10 years.

  1. SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS – Ronnie Stanley-T- Notre Dame

Ronnie Stanley has steadily risen up the draft board and rumors have him going even higher than 7 to the Niners. The 49ers have been more decimated by injuries, defections and early retirements than any team I can remember so they need to start from scratch. To me that means building up the lines and Stanley is a great start.

  1. CLEVELAND BROWNS (from Phi) – Josh Doctson- WR- TCU

A surprise pick for many draft pundits but after all it is the Cleveland Browns. With Josh Gordon out yet again, the Browns have a glaring need at Wide Receiver and this guy has all the tools. At the end of the day I do not expect the Browns to be picking in this slot but rather a few spots further down. Still, I think Doctson is their man.

  1. TAMPA BAY BUCS – Vernon Hargreaves- CB- Florida

The Bucs need some work in their secondary and would love to get their hands on Jalen Ramsey. That doesn’t appear likely so the 2nd corner on draft lists is Vernon Hargreaves who would be a great fit. Other needs for Tampa are a pass rusher, the offensive line and another wide receiver. Chatter around about them trading down to the middle of the round as well. Tennessee a candidate at 15.

  1. NEW YORK GIANTS – Jack Conklin- T- Michigan State

A big nasty tackle to help keep Eli Manning upright. Doesn’t have the athletic ability of Tunsil or Stanley but will make up for it with toughness and a mean streak that allows him to get the job done. Giants GM Jerry Reece is under a lot of pressure to have a good draft and this guy is a nice start

  1. CHICAGO BEARS – Myles Jack – LB- UCLA

His bum knee caused this drop to 11. Fully healthy, Jack would have easily been a top 5 pick. The Bears check him out medically, clear him and then pounce on him. Another possibility for the Bears is to move this pick in a deal with the Jets for Muhammad Wilkerson but that seems to have lost some steam

  1. NEW ORLEANS SAINTS – Sheldon Rankins-DT- Louisville

The buzz is that the Saints have their eye on Paxton Lynch as a long-term successor to Drew Brees. While I think that Lynch is a good prospect, the Saints defense cannot stop anyone and they cannot afford the luxury of drafting a player in the first round who will sit and learn for two or three years. A more likely scenario is that they pick up a run stuffer who can also rush the passer like Rankins and pick up a QB prospect on day 2 of the draft.

  1. MIAMI DOLPHINS (from Phi) – Ezekiel Elliott- RB- Ohio State

Elliott is the wildcard of the draft. You can see his name in mock drafts going anywhere from the Cowboys at 4 to Texans at 22. When the Dolphins tell everyone they are comfortable with their stable of running backs, they are blowing smoke. I think at the end of the day Elliott will be a Dolphin. We will see what pick they take him with.


Ezekiel Elliott is going to be the wildcard of this draft and can go basically anywhere in the first round (Via AP)

  1. OAKLAND RAIDERS – Shaq Lawson – DE – Clemson

The Raiders are building a ferocious defense with speed and power, which was always the Al Davis way. Adding another player to rush the passer off the edge only makes them more difficult to stop. Lawson is a powerful rusher who makes plays. Corner is another possibility here with William Jackson III the most likely candidate.

  1. TENNESSEE TITANS (from LA) – Taylor Decker -T- Ohio State

The Titans are in the market to move back up into the top 10 to draft one of the offensive tackles to protect Mariota. If they aren’t successful in their attempt they will settle for Decker. Decker is a very highly rated prospect in a deep pool and can be plugged in from the first day of camp.

  1. DETROIT LIONS – Laquon Treadwell- WR-Mississippi

The Lions really need to replace Calvin Johnson and rebuild parts of their offensive line. The top 4 tackles are gone but Treadwell is still on the board. Treadwell is a gifted receiver who plays faster than his 40 time and provides a much-needed big target for Matthew Stafford.

  1. ATLANTA FALCONS – Leonard Floyd- LB- Georgia

Falcons are pleased and surprised that Floyd drops to them at 17. Another pass rusher for Dan Quinn’s schemes should help improve a Falcons defense that was torched in the second half of 2015.

  1. INDIANAPOLIS COLTS – Noah Spence- DE/OLB- Eastern Kentucky

When is the last time the Colts had a good defense? Wasn’t Bubba Smith on that team? This guy can rush the passer and although he had some past issues that gave him that dreaded “Red Flag”, word is he’s past that and checked out clean for all the teams. The Colts have also been linked to Ryan Kelly and the 4 top tackles if they slip down as they need to protect Andrew Luck better than they have been.

  1. BUFFALO BILLS – Paxton Lynch- QB- Memphis

Leave it to Rex to spoil the Jets plans at 20. Not sold that the Jets were on Lynch as much as others are but I don’t have to be. Only Rex has to be. Lynch is a very good prospect with a cannon and quick feet and the Bills need a top flight QB to compliment their defense. It will take him a year or two to be ready but this pick should pay dividends down the road.

  1. NEW YORK JETS – Darron Lee – LB- Ohio State

Jets need an edge rusher with speed to help the defense and Jets can figure on whichever edge rusher the Falcons don’t choose. Lee has been a demon for the Buckeyes and will fill his role nicely in Todd Bowles’ defense

  1. WASHINGTON REDSKINS – Jarran Reed -DT- Alabama

The Redskins were 28th in rushing yards allowed per game last season and a run stuffer in the middle of their 3-4 defense is a must. Adding a top prospect like Jarran Reed to the mix can only help.

  1. HOUSTON TEXANS – Corey Coleman- WR- Baylor

It’s no secret that the Texans are in the market for a new receiver for Brock Osweiler to throw to. Corey Coleman is a speedster who can stretch the field for Osweiler and open things up for DeAndre Hopkins. A good choice for the Texans

  1. MINNESOTA VIKINGS- Michael Thomas – WR- Ohio State

The Minnesota Vikings are next on line for a wide receiver. Will Fuller is next man up at the position and I originally had him going to the Vikings but he’s a 170 pound burner and Thomas seems to be a better fit. The Vikings are looking for a big physical receiver and at 6’3 and 212 pounds, Keyshawn Johnson’s nephew has the size and the bloodlines.

  1. CINCINNATI BENGALS – Ryan Kelly -C- Alabama

A hot name who is moving up on many draft boards, Kelly is a plug and play guy who could play center or guard in the NFL. The Bengals can use interior linemen to help protect Andy Dalton and generate more of a running game. Kelly makes a lot of sense for the Bengals but he could go earlier.

  1. PITTSBURGH STEELERS – Karl Joseph- S – West Virginia

Many of the so called experts seem to be tying the knot between Joseph and the Steelers. The Steelers secondary is a mess and they have been looking for Troy Polamalu’s replacement for two years. Joseph is next up to fill that huge void in the Steeler lineup. One of the top corners like Apple, Jackson or Alexander are strong possibilities here as well. One thing seems for sure. The Steelers will be picking someone to play in their defensive backfield.

  1. SEATTLE SEAHAWKS – Germain Ifedi- T- Texas A&M

The toughest pick to figure out. The Seahawks have talent everywhere and have picked the best available athlete under this regime. Their top needs include a young corner, help on the offensive line and a speed rushing linebacker to replace Bruce Irvin. Ifedi seems to be drawing the Seahawks attention and he’s the pick here.

  1. GREEN BAY PACKERS – A’Shawn Robinson -DT- Alabama

The Packers are in the market for players that fit into their front seven. The Packers have been linked to 3 Alabama players in Robinson, Reggie Ragland and Jarran Reed but Reed is gone and Robinson can replace BJ Raji. They would love to line up Darron Lee opposite Clay Matthews but would have to move up a few spots to get him and Ted Thompson has a tendency to stay put. Ragland would have been the pick but late reports of an enlarged aorta probably drop him out of the first round

  1. KANSAS CITY CHIEFS – Vernon Butler-DT-Louisiana Tech

The Chiefs are in the market for linebackers, wide receivers and defensive line help. I think it comes down to Will Fuller at the receiver slot and Vernon Butler to anchor the line inside. The choice is Butler.

  1. ARIZONA CARDINALS – Kevin Dodd – DE- Clemson

The Cardinals need secondary help and an edge rusher to help their defense. Dodd is the best edge rusher still available and would be a nice fit for the Cardinals D. Chatter has them trading down to add a pick or two.


Forfeited the pick in deflategate but don’t be surprised if Belichick and company make a draft splash and move into the lower half of the round.

  1. CAROLINA PANTHERS ––Eli Apple- CB – Ohio State

With Josh Norman gone to Washington and three of the top rated corners still on the board, this becomes a choice of not which position, but which corner. Mackensie Alexander and William Jackson would be good picks but we will go with Eli Apple.

  1. DENVER BRONCOS –- Dak Prescott – QB –Mississippi State

While we all know that doing a mock draft is basically educated guessing, this pick is anything but educated. It’s purely a guess and a hunch on my part. Watching Prescott throughout his college career, the thing that I took away was his toughness and his ability to escape the defensive rush. Did I hear someone say Russell Wilson? Maybe that was the little voice in my head but the Broncos do need a QB, right?




Take It To The Bank- NFL Week 16

By Brett Malamud

Congratulations! You made it all the way to the end of the year untouched and into the finals of your fantasy football league. Let’s help you out in completing your journey to the promised land and take home that title! It all starts with making the right decisions and that’s where this week’s column of Take It To The Bank comes in handy. Let’s get to it!

He is…SuperCam!

There’s no reason to think that Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton will be stopped anytime soon. While the Atlanta Falcons have had a dangerous secondary this season, they’ve been shaky over the last few weeks and that’s where Cam comes in. I’m very confident in his abilities to get it done on Sunday.


He got you this far, and now, it’s time for Cam Newton to do his thing for you in the finals (Via USATS)

To Belichick…Or Not To Belichick?

That is the question. The New England Patriots defense has been great all year. They’ve scored 35 fantasy points over their last two games, but head to MetLife Stadium this weekend to take on the New York Jets. This might be the week for you to look elsewhere for another defense because the Jets passing game has been phenomenal between wide receivers Brandon Marshall and Eric Decker with quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick. I’d also bench the Jets defense, even with knowing that wide receivers Danny Amendola and Julian Edelman will be sitting this game out. There’s two reasons for that. Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski.


Gurley Birds: Finals Edition

Did St. Louis Rams running back Todd Gurley propel you into the finals? Gurley fell to me as the 93rd overall pick before I swiped him up, setting up a fun season once he hit the field. Now, he heads into Seattle to take on the Seahawks, who haven’t allowed more than 46 rushing yards to an opposing running back during their five game win streak. Gurley is touchdown dependent for me this week, and belongs as a RB2/Flex play.


Choosing Charcandrick 

In the finals, you have to take the easy matchups when given. For me, this one is simply Kansas City Chiefs running back Charcandrick West against the Cleveland Browns. While there isn’t much explanation needed for this pick, the Browns have allowed the second most rushing yards in the entire league, and West is due for a big day. If you have West on your team, you certainly should start him in your lineup if you want any chance of winning it all.

Brett Malamud is an English Rhetoric Major at Binghamton University. He is the co-founder of His favorite athletes are Derek Jeter and Todd Bertuzzi. You can follow him on twitter at @brettnyy

Take It To The Bank- NFL Week 15

By Brett Malamud

This is crunch time in the NFL and in your fantasy football playoffs. Take a look at these quick last minute tips, and good luck!


Buyers Beware: The New York Giants

Many people are taking the Giants win in this week to shock Carolina, but I’m not. The Panthers are too strong and therefore guys like Eli Manning should be on your bench. Plain and Simple.

The Grass is Always Green

When quarterback Andy Dalton was pronounced as out for this weeks matchup against the San Francisco 49ers, many started doubting the production of Cincinnati offense. I’m not worried about AJ McCarron, and a big time fantasy player such as AJ Green should be starting in all formats. That said, running backs Giovanni Bernard and Jeremy Hill should be starting too.

Dark Horse Candidate: Denard Robinson

Jacksonville Jaguars running back TJ Yeldon is out this week, setting the stage for Denard Robinson. The Falcons have been shaky against the run, and so I’d consider Denard Robinson if you desperately need a running back in this fantasy playoff week.

Don’t Doubt Dougie

Yes, he finally woke up. Seahawks wide receiver Doug Baldwin has been unstoppable over the past few weeks, and this week should be no different. Start him with confidence against a weak Cleveland Browns team.


Doug Baldwin is a must start in your fantasy football playoffs this week (Via RantSports)

Brett Malamud is an English Rhetoric Major at Binghamton University. He is the co-founder of His favorite athletes are Derek Jeter and Todd Bertuzzi. You can follow him on twitter at @brettnyy

Take It To The Bank- NFL Week 14

By Brett Malamud

Let’s take a look at some names that have been active in fantasy over the last week as we head into the fantasy playoff race.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Bortles

The quarterback who is surprisingly a great play this week. You can trust Bortles, who has remained consistent through most of the season. Obviously if you have guys like Rodgers and Newton, start them, but Bortles will help many teams on their playoff runs.

Flying with the Jets

With the fact that the tallest Titans DB stands at a measly 6-foot-1, you can bet that Eric Decker (6-foot-3) and Brandon Marshall (6-foot-4) will both have nice days. I think that the Jets receivers are a great play this week.

Cooper Scooper

That’s about all I can say about Raiders wide receiver Amari Cooper this week as he faces the Denver Broncos. They’ve proven that they’ve had the top defensive secondary all season. Cooper will be benched for me this week, and should be for many of you.

Richard Rodgers…One Hit Wonder?

I know that last week, Rodgers was the hero (both of them actually). But this week is different. Richard Rodgers has been invisible for most of the season, and his 61 yard catch to win the game is simply boosting his stats. I’d beware of him today, even against a weaker Dallas Cowboys defense.

Richard Rodgers made the game winning catch last week, but can he repeat his performance in week 14 against the Cowboys? Probably not. (Via AP)

Richard Rodgers made the game winning catch last week, but can he repeat his performance in week 14 against the Cowboys? Probably not. (Via AP)

Brett Malamud is an English Rhetoric Major at Binghamton University. He is the co-founder of His favorite athletes are Derek Jeter and Todd Bertuzzi. You can follow him on twitter at @brettnyy

Take It To The Bank-NFL Week 12

By Brett Malamud

Over the Hillman
Broncos RB Ronnie Hillman had a day last weekend, racking up 102 yards on 21 carries. Denver will be missing QB Peyton Manning again and so Hillman will make for a great flex play against the Patriots.

Gore Wants More
With Frank Gore in the backfield for the Indianapolis Colts, The team tried to establish the run without Andrew luck under center. That didn’t really work out the way fantasy owners wanted to, but I look for Gore this week to establish his running game and have a big game.

Decker the Halls
Jets wide receiver Eric Decker led the team in routes, targets, and yards in week 11 against the Texans. With so much of a threat to score a touchdown, Decker makes for a great WR2 option this week against a struggling Miami Dolphins team.

What the Buck?
When Justin Forsett left the game with a fractured arm last week, it was obvious that Ravens RB Javorius “Buck” Allen would be a nice waiver wire pickup. But then quarterback Joe Flacco wedding down with a torn ACL. That changes everything for Allen as he looks to lead Baltimore’s offense. He should string together A nice day against the Cleveland Browns.



Brett Malamud is an English Rhetoric Major at Binghamton University. He is the co-founder of His favorite athletes are Derek Jeter and Todd Bertuzzi. You can follow him on twitter at @brettnyy

Take It To The Bank- NFL Week 11

By Brett Malamud 

Here’s some tips as your fantasy football playoff race heats up in week 11:

The Coop Troop

Starting Oakland Raiders wide receiver Amari Cooper this week will be vital to your team’s success, and I’ll even name him my Start of the Week. Cooper has been an extremely reliable option at wideout thus far, and the last few weeks are proof of that. In his last three weeks, Cooper has been targeted 31 times. This number makes it very intriguing to play him, considering the recent success of Raiders quarterback Derek Carr (who should be started as well). The Detroit Lions defense have given up at least 73 yards to seven out of the nine top receivers they’ve faced this season, so Cooper is expected to have a big day.


Amari Cooper is a must start this week against the Lions (Via Getty)

Remember him?

It’s been a while since Danny Amendola was a reliable fantasy wide receiver option. You’d have to go back to his days in St. Louis to compare the hype that he’s been getting this week. Amendola will have the opportunity to return that level after the losses of pass catching running back Dion Lewis and wide receiver Julian Edelman. This obviously gives a major boost to a player like tight end Rob Gronkowski, who will certainly see an increase in targets. I’m looking at Amendola to step up though, especially after having 10 catches last week. I’d definitely play Amendola as a flex this week.

Tony’s Back

This week marks the return of Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo to the starting lineup. Not much to say here. He’s going to have a nice day against a struggling Miami Dolphins team.

Don’t(e) Play Donte 

Indianapolis Colts wide receiver Donte Moncrief is my buyers beware player of the week this week. Of the five touchdowns that Moncrief has this week, every one has been from quarterback Andrew Luck, who is prepared to come back in mid-December. The last time that Matt Hasselback started for the Colts, Moncrief had just one catch. Plus there’s the fact that the Falcons have been great against opposing wide receivers. I’d keep Moncrief on the bench, as you probably have a better option.

Brett Malamud is an English Rhetoric Major at Binghamton University. He is the co-founder of His favorite athletes are Derek Jeter and Todd Bertuzzi. You can follow him on twitter at @brettnyy

Take It To The Bank: NFL Week 10

By Brett Malamud

A short week this week, as I am molding our next MLB hot stove preview. Let’s take a look at Week 10:

The Legs on Langford
Last week, we were treated to a running display by Bears running back Jeremy Langford after an injury in week eight to Matt Forte. Langford finished the game with 72 yards rushing and a touchdown, plus 70 yards receiving. Langford demonstrated that he can be deadly on the ground and in the air. This week, he’ll take on a St. Louis Rams team that has been pretty good against the run, but will be the lead man, as Matt Forte is inactive. Temper your expectations but he’s a RB2 for me, and will get a good workload, even when Forte returns.

What Can Brown Do For You?
Antonio Brown had the biggest performance you could have hoped for, making 17 catches for 284 yards, and two rushes for 22 yards. But doubt sets in as quarterback Ben Roethlisberger was injured and will sit in week 10, setting up Landry Jones to start. Antonio Brown is still a top 10 wide receiver as he’s matches up with the Cleveland Browns.

Tyler On Top
The Cincinnati Bengals are rolling right now. If you have A.J. Green, you’re going to start him. Same with Andy Dalton. But the player that I want to feature is tight end Tyler Eifert. The thing about Eifert is that he only had five targets, and got four of them in the red zone. He only had 53 receiving yards. So while he produced over 20 fantasy points last week, he’s only going to get those high numbers if the Bengals can get in the red zone. The tight end pool is thin and so Eifert is still a good option, but don’t expect him to be great every week.

Take It To The Bank: NFL Week Nine

By Brett Malamud

Digg for gold

Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Stefon Diggs has scored 43 fantasy points over the last three weeks, making him one of the most intriguing names on the fantasy football waiver wire. He’ll take on a St. Louis Rams defense that has a tough secondary. I’m not sure that this will be a huge outing, but Diggs should still be considered as a flex play.

Big Ben’s Back

Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger returned from a sprained MCL injury last weekend, completed 28-of-45 passes for 262 yards, with one touchdown and three interceptions Sunday against the Bengals.. Not such great numbers. I think that this week, Big Ben returns to his old self, and has a big day against an Oakland Raiders defense that has allowed the most passing yards in the league. Look for wide receiver Antonio Brown to have a huge day as well.

Same Face, New Place

Headlines were made this week as the Denver Broncos traded two sixth round picks this week to acquire two time pro bowler, tight end Vernon Davis. This had me intrigued for the main reason that quarterback Peyton Manning loves his tight ends. Let’s take a look back. Julius Thomas had 24 touchdowns from Manning in his final two seasons as a Bronco. I think that can be Davis this season, and am highly attracted by the potential that this trade has. He does have two other tight ends on the roster to compete with (Owen Daniels and Virgil Green), but there’s a reason why Denver traded for him. I say take a number and stash Davis on your bench this week.

The time to pick up Vernon Davis is now (Via Fox)

The time to pick up Vernon Davis is now (Via Fox)

Waiver Wire Pickups

Last week we saw many players go down with major injuries, crippling fantasy teams everywhere. Pittsburgh Steelers running back Le’Veon Bell tore his MCL and PCL, and he is done for the season. DeAngelo Williams is going to replace him, and if you were lucky enough to snag him on the waiver wire, he should be in your lineup right away. Chicago Bears running back Matt Forte suffered damage to his MCL and will be out for a few weeks. Enter Jeremy Langford. I expect him to have a big week against the Chargers on Monday Night Football.

Your Bold Prediction

Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski takes on the Washington Redskins this week, who have allowed the 12th fewest yards per game to tight ends. Of course, they’ve yet to face Gronkowski and I’m predicting three touchdowns today from Gronk.

Brett Malamud is an English Rhetoric Major at Binghamton University. He is the co-founder of His favorite athletes are Derek Jeter and Todd Bertuzzi. You can follow him on twitter at @brettnyy

Take It To The Bank: NFL Week Eight

By Brett Malamud

Happy Halloween! We’ve taking the Take it to the Bank report this week and giving it a Halloween feel with today’s section: Trick or Treat! Use this section as you look to this week and beyond as you set your fantasy football lineups.

Trick: Charcandrick West

Yes, many people had Jamaal Charles in their running back slot and are looking to West to produce. Yes, West had a big game last week, rushing for 110 yards and a touchdown. Yes, I did say to pick him up (and he should be picked up), but I’m not that big on him. This player is not a RB1, and I’m not sure he’s a reliable RB2 option. You can’t judge a book by its cover, and you can’t judge West by one big game. He’ll probably have a good game this week, but don’t expect huge numbers every week.

Treat: Gurley Owners

Gurley owners that stuck through the thick and thin are now grinning at the results. Gurley has been the league’s most productive player, especially in an offense that has become run-heavy. Continue to enjoy Gurley having big games almost every week.

Trick: The Dallas Cowboys

The Cowboys are an interesting story. Yes they took a heartbreaking loss to the Giants last week, letting the Giants return a kickoff for a touchdown just after tying the game. But they also found new life in running back Darren McFadden. With Joseph Randle possibly out for a few games due to violating the NFL’s personal-conduct policy, the Cowboys will look to McFadden, Christine Michael and Rod Smith. Flashback to a week ago when Jason Garrett planned on making Michael the starter. Yeah, so that didn’t happen, and you can look elsewhere for a better running back on your team. McFadden however is a flex play at best this weekend as the Cowboys welcome in the Seattle Seahawks, so don’t be tricked by last week’s big performance.

Treat: The New York Jets

The Jets are another interesting story. The offseason changed everything for them, bringing in cornerbacks Darrelle Revis and Antonio Cromartie, along with wide receiver Brandon Marshall and quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick. Many members of the New York media propelled them to Super Bowl contenders. Then the season came, and Geno Smith got punched in the jaw by his now-former teammate I.K. Enemkpali, sending the Jets predictions out the window. There was no way that Ryan Fitzpatrick could pick up the pieces right? Wrong. The Jets headed into New England last week at 4-1. They played till the final whistle and although they sit at 4-2, look at their schedule. Eight out of their remaining 10 games come against teams that are currently at or below .500 and that should be looked at closely. Fitzpatrick should be looked at if he’s still available in your leagues, and Brandon Marshall and Chris Ivory should be starting in your lineup. The defense should be starting most if not all weeks. If you want that sneaky play, look to Eric Decker, as teams are focused on stopping Brandon Marshall.

Brandon Marshall is a player worth looking at trading for this fantasy football season (Via NYDN)

Brandon Marshall is a player worth looking at trading for this fantasy football season (Via NYDN)

Trick: The New York Giants

While I’d like to stick the entire NFC East in the tricks section, I’m not going to do that because I’m not that mean. But I will stick the Giants in here with the Cowboys because of their fantasy impact. I understand that the team is 4-3, but with a lot of tough teams (looking at you AFC East and Carolina Panthers) coming up on their schedule, it’s not really an ideal situation. I definitely do not trust any of the Giants running backs, and other than Odell Beckham Jr., I don’t trust any of their wide receivers. I’d consider Ruben Randle in deeper leagues, but only if you don’t have other options due to the bye week. Quarterback Eli Manning certainly cannot be trusted in fantasy leagues, compiling just 14 fantasy points in ESPN standard leagues over the last two weeks. I’d look elsewhere for impactful fantasy players.

Treat: San Diego Chargers Tight Ends

So Antonio Gates came into the season off a four game suspension, and immediately made a major impact. Gates had two touchdowns in his first game back, and has had 90+ receiving yards in both games that he has played in. But with a sprained MCL, the Chargers looked to Ladarius Green and he has been contributing all season. Quarterback Philip Rivers loves to throw to his tight ends, and while Gates is taken in most leagues, Green isn’t so pick him up now.

Brett Malamud is an English Rhetoric Major at Binghamton University. He is the co-founder of His favorite athletes are Derek Jeter and Todd Bertuzzi. You can follow him on twitter at @brettnyy