2020 NFL Mock Draft: Joe Burrow moves into top 5

Welcome fans of struggling teams to another NFL mock draft. For those of us who support teams that look extremely uncompetitive, this is a good way to find something to get excited about in a lost season. This is already my third mock draft of the year. I expect wide receivers to dominate round one and a healthy number of corners to go as well. The race for either Tua or Burrow might be on, but there is a lot to like about other elite prospects in Chase Young, Andrew Thomas and Jeffrey Okudah.

The draft order is being determined by the Super Bowl odds after Sunday of Week 9 from Caesar’s Sportsbook. Tiebreakers were decided by strength of schedule. Obviously, this draft order is subject to a lot of change still, but after nine weeks of the NFL season, this is where all 32 teams stand. Don’t get mad at me for where your team is picking. It’s time for this November mock draft to get underway.

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1. Miami Dolphins (20000-1) – Tua Tagovailoa, QB Alabama
Miami comes into the draft with three first-round picks and they have to use one to address the quarterback position. Tua Tagovailoa is still the best quarterback in college football. He has tons of big game experience on his resume. Tagovailoa is pro ready as well, even if he doesn’t have elite arm strength. When it comes to traits, he has incredible accuracy and can use his legs to make plays outside the pocket.

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2. Cincinnati Bengals (20000-1) – Joe Burrow
No one has been worse against the run this season than the Bengals, but they also have no future at quarterback. Andy Dalton may be under contract through 2020, but that shouldn’t stop Cincinnati from drafting their heir apparent. Joe Burrow has seen his draft stock skyrocket to the point where he will almost definitely be a top-five selection. He is the front-runner for the Heisman currently and has looked very strong against an incredibly tough schedule at LSU. We will get a chance to see Burrow play Tua and company next week as well.

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3. New York Jets (20000-1) – Chase Young, EDGE, Ohio State
The Jets need a lot of help on both sides of the ball. While Andrew Thomas should definitely be considered here, Chase Young is too good to pass up. Choosing to nab the best player in the draft seems like a good way to speed up a rebuild. After trading away Leonard Williams, New York could definitely use a new pass rusher. Young is a beast with the potential to be even better than the Ohio State defensive linemen that came before him. He would offer a terrifying duo with Quinnen Williams along that defensive line. There is no question the Jets need the help there with just 13 sacks as a team this season.

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4. Washington (10000-1) – Andrew Thomas, OT, Georgia
Trent Williams ended his holdout, but is still refusing to play this year. It is a lost season in D.C. and this team will definitely have finding Williams’ replacement high on the to-do list for the offseason. Andrew Thomas might just be the best way to do that. He is the most talented and most polished tackle prospect in this class and he should slot in as the starter from Day 1. Washington invested in Dwayne Haskins last year and now it is time to help keep him upright.

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5. Atlanta Falcons (5000-1) – A.J. Epenesa, EDGE, Iowa
This has been a horrible season for the Falcons, who should be shocked to be drafting in the top five given the expectations for this group entering the year. No team in the league has fewer sacks (7) than Atlanta this season. Adding A.J. Epenesa should help turn that around right away. He is excellent with his hands and has the size to be a great NFL pass rusher. His numbers have been down this year, but he has a lot of potential and previous production to make me think he will transition well to the NFL.

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6. New York Giants (1500-1) – Jerry Jeudy, WR, Alabama
After a promising start, Daniel Jones’ inaugural season has gone sideways. New York certainly has holes defensively, but it cannot pass up on the opportunity to take the top receiver in the draft. With Odell Beckham Jr. in Cleveland, the receiving corps for the Giants this year features a 31-year old Golden Tate, a banged up Sterling Shepard and a promising Darius Slayton. Jerry Jeudy would immediately become the best receiver in that group and create a fun offensive trio with Evan Engram and Saquon Barkley. Someone fittingly, he has drawn comparisons to Odell Bekcham Jr.

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7. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (1000-1) – Jeffrey Okudah, CB, Ohio State
Surprisingly, Tampa’s front seven has been one of the best in the NFL this season. The Buccaneers are allowing the fewest rush yards per game and second fewest yards per attempt this season. However, the secondary is giving up the second most yards per game. Jeffrey Okudah gives Tampa a lockdown corner of the future. He has the makings of an elite press corner given his agility and instincts. Okudah is a sure tackler in space as well.


8. Arizona Cardinals (1000-1) – Isaiah Simmons, LB/S, Clemson
Heading into the year, I really thought this team needed another receiver, but it seems like Arizona has invested well in players who can contribute at the position in the future. Plus this is a deep receiver draft. Instead, the Cardinals add a defensive playmaker in Isaiah Simmons. He is a converted linebacker playing safety now, but still operates heavily down in the box. Simmons is one of the most reliable players in this Clemson defense and offers the versatility NFL teams are after.


9. Denver Broncos (500-1) – CeeDee Lamb, WR, Oklahoma
Cortland Sutton seems like a receiver Denver can rely on, but after that it lacks proven players to contribute in this passing game. DaeSean Hamilton has shown flashes, but Emmanuel Sanders is gone and leaves a big hole in the offense. Taking CeeDee Lamb is a great fit for a team that needs a player capable of making things happen after the catch. There might not be a receiver in college football better at making plays in space than Lamb right now.

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10. Oakland Raiders via Chicago Bears (400-1) – Derrick Brown, DL, Auburn
Oakland has made some serious strides this year on offense, but the defense is still lagging behind. With Clelin Ferrell already on board, the Raiders can opt to bring in an interior pass rusher with great size in Derrick Brown. He is part of arguably the best defensive line in college football and he is the most complete player on it. Brown would be a welcome addition to this defense. The Raiders have another first round pick to continue to reshape the defense, so it can afford to go best player available.

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11. Tennessee Titans (300-1) – Justin Herbert, QB, Oregon
Ryan Tannehill has been a nice surprise as a fill-in starter for the Titans, but he is not a long-term solution. Tennessee might have some reservations about drafting another Oregon quarterback after Marcus Mariota, but Justin Herbert is definitely the best passer remaining. He has struggled at times in big games, but his physical talents and past success make him a first-round caliber quarterback. He will certainly need a bit of work to fix some of the technical issues in his game, but he has the arm and smarts to succeed at the next level.

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12. Cleveland Browns (200-1) – Alex Leatherwood, OT, Alabama
This hasn’t changed at all. Cleveland needs all kinds of offensive line help, particularly at left tackle. Alex Leatherwood might be a little green at the position, but he is learning on the job and faring extremely well for Alabama. He started at right guard last season before he took over for Jonah Williams at left tackle this year. Leatherwood has not missed a beat. He has the potential to develop into a great blindside blocker. We will learn a long more about him as he faces some great defensive lines down the stretch.

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13. Detroit Lions (200-1) – Trevon Diggs, CB, Alabama
Detroit needs defensive help in the worst way. The secondary is giving up the third-most yards per game this season and wasting what has been an impressive year from Matt Stafford. Trevon Diggs would give Matt Patricia a tall corner capable of pressing at the line. He has the athleticism and length to become a top-tier corner at the next level. He is a solid tackler who also has three interceptions already in his senior season. Diggs should be able to contribute right away.

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14. Los Angeles Chargers (75-1) – D’Andre Swift, RB, Georgia
This has not been the type of season most expected from the Chargers. There is chatter about Los Angeles finding the quarterback of the future, but they have to address the very clear issue plaguing the offense in the present. It can’t run the ball consistently. Melvin Gordon will be gone at the end of the year. Time to grab a potentially game-changing running back in D’Andre Swift. The Georgia standout is a complete back with very little mileage from his time in college. Swift is also a great receiver out of the backfield. He should help get this team playing more balanced offensively.

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15. Miami Dolphins via Pittsburgh Steelers (75-1) – Tyler Biadasz, C Wisconsin
After taking Tua Tagovailoa, Miami can start to build up the offensive line in front of him. Tyler Biadasz is an extremely polished prospect who should be able to start at center from Day 1. He is a rock in pass protection and does a nice job as a move blocker in the run game. The Dolphins have a pair of young guards they like in Michael Deiter and Evan Boehm, with Deiter actually being a fellow Wisconsin product. Miami could certainly target a tackle, but with Andrew Thomas and Alex Leatherwood off the board, taking the best interior lineman bodes well for the future of that offense.

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16. Jacksonville Jaguars (75-1) – Henry Ruggs, WR, Alabama
You know what they say, speed kills. Henry Ruggs has top-end speed that would rival any player in the NFL. Jacksonville can use the first of its two first-round picks to help add that game-breaking element to its offense. Dede Westbrook has been good, but he has not had a whole lot of help from his fellow receivers. Ruggs would immediately help the development of Gardner Minshew and open up so much for this offensive system. He could have a Tyreek Hill-type impact.

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17. Oakland Raiders (60-1) – CJ Henderson, CB, Florida
Oakland already jettisoned one former first round pick it had at corner. Gareon Conley is now suiting up for the Texans. Clearly, the secondary could use a boost. CJ Henderson looks the part of a lockdown corner and has the athleticism to develop into a true number one option. He has long arms and closes well to the football in coverage. He still has to work on his press play, struggling to jam receivers at the line, but he should be capable of contributing right away.

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18. Carolina Panthers (40-1) – Tristan Wirfs, OL, Iowa
So far this year, Carolina has quickly realized the value Christian McCaffrey has in this offense and Cam Newton has been banged up. That points to bolstering the offensive line in the draft. Many think Tristan Wirfs has left tackle potential, but I feel he would be better as interior lineman. Greg Van Roten will be a free agent at the end of the season, creating a void at left guard. Wirfs could slot there from Day 1 and maybe even develop into a tackle down the line. He brings a nastiness in the run game that would only help McCaffrey’s effectiveness.

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19. Jacksonville Jaguars via Los Angeles Rams (25-1) – Krisitan Fulton, CB, LSU
Jalen Ramsey is gone and it is time to go about finding a replacement. Using one of the picks it got for Ramsey, taking Kristian Fulton should help fill the void. Fulton is not Ramsey and probably never will be. He is a tough, determined corner with a nose for the football. He comes out of a school known for producing great secondary players as well in LSU. This is his first full year as a starter, so it would definitely be nice to see a larger sample size. What we have seen though is extremely promising.

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20. Seattle Seahawks (20-1) – Yetur Gross-Matos, EDGE, Penn State
Seattle is in desperate need of a pass rusher. With only two sacks on Sunday, the Seahawks got torched by Jameis Winston. Yetur Gross-Matos has the potential to develop into a double-digit sack guy. He has heavy hands that allow him to control opposing linemen and has the size to handle himself against NFL-caliber tackles. The Penn State star also has an incredible motor and checks the character box as well. Seattle would be getting a well-rounded player.

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21. Miami Dolphins via Houston Texans (35-1) – Grant Delpit, S, LSU
Miami grabbed a quarterback and an interior lineman, now it’s time to help the defense. After trading away Minkah Fitzpatrick, the Dolphins could use another dynamic safety. Grant Delpit has struggled at times with tackling this year, but he is impressive at diagnosing plays and in coverage. His skillset makes him a really nice option to cover tight ends at the next level. He should be a fun pairing in the secondary with Xavien Howard for years to come (unless they trade him too).

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22. Indianapolis Colts (35-1) – Curtis Weaver, EDGE, Boise State
I strongly debated going with Jake Fromm here, but I think the Colts have faith in Jacoby Brissett. So instead, Indy addresses the defense by adding another pass rusher. This team has been middle of the road in rushing the passer this season and if it decides not to keep Justin Houston’s hefty cap hit, Curtis Weaver would be a good addition. He is relentless and loves to bull rush offensive linemen. Weaver has been a disruptive force for this Boise State defense for the past three years and should continue doing just that for the Colts.

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23. Minnesota Vikings (18-1) – Javon Kinlaw, DL, South Carolina
Kirk Cousins has answered a lot of questions about his ability to lead this team. However, the defense suddenly seems a lot less capable than it did at the start of the season. Javon Kinlaw would be fun to watch in this 4-3 system. He is a dominant pass rusher at South Carolina right now, regularly drawing double teams and extra attention. Teams wouldn’t be able to do that with Danielle Hunter and Everson Griffin lining up next to him. He also feels like a nice complement to Lindval Joseph. Adding another disruptive defensive player like Kinlaw should take pressure off the offense.

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24. Philadelphia Eagles (14-1) – Paulson Adebo, CB, Stanford
The Eagles desperately need secondary help. Sidney Jones has been unable to stay on the field and the combo of Avonte Maddox and Ronald Darby isn’t cutting it. Paulson Adebo is a feared man at Stanford with the Pac-12 no longer even bothering to throw at him. Rightfully so given his eight interceptions in 21 career games. Adebo could immediately provide some corner depth and projects as a long-term starter. He is a ball-hawking corner who should bring some physicality to this Philly secondary.

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25. Buffalo Bills (35-1) – Laviska Shenault Jr., WR, Colorado
Buffalo has a championship level defense, but it needs to bring its offense up to speed. John Brown and Cole Beasley are nice complements to a top-tier receiver. Laviska Shenault Jr. has shown flashes of being just that in the past two years at Colorado. He moves extremely well for a player that measures in at 6’2″ and 220 pounds. Shenault is really good with the ball in his hands, leading Colorado to use him as a wildcat quarterback sometimes just to get him more touches. He should provide some playmaking to a Bills offense in desperate need of it.

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26. Baltimore Ravens (12-1) – Travis Etienne, RB, Clemson
Baltimore has built an offense around running the ball. While they could probably use another receiver here, it is hard to pass up on an electric running back like Travis Etienne. He is averaging nine yards per carry this season for Clemson and has game-breaking ability. Mark Ingram has been solid this year, but will turn 30 in December. This gives the Ravens another playmaker to deploy in either the run or pass game. Just imagine Etienne running read options with Lamar Jackson.

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27. Dallas Cowboys (11-1) – Xavier McKinney, S, Alabama
It is hard to know what direction the Cowboys will be headed this offseason with a number of crucial pieces of this roster set to be free agents. With its inquiry into Jamal Adams, there is no question Dallas is interested in bringing in some help at safety though. Xavier McKinney is the best one on the board and projects as a future starter. He is explosive and plays downhill. McKinney seems to be a solid cover option, even shifting down in a nickel role sometimes. His versatility makes him a fun addition to this defense.

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28. San Francisco 49ers (8-1) – Walker Little, OT, Stanford
Through nine weeks of NFL play, the 49ers are the lone remaining unbeaten team. Vegas doesn’t have them as Super Bowl favorites though, having them tied for second to win in the conference. There does not seem to be too many needs on this team though. One potential hole that could form would be if Joe Staley retired this offseason. Even if he doesn’t, finding his future replacement wouldn’t be a bad idea. Walker Little went down during the first week of the season with a knee injury, but when healthy he looks like a future left tackle in the NFL. He moves pretty well and shows good bend for the position. At 6’7″, he certainly fits the size profile.

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29. Kansas City Chiefs (11-1) – Bryce Hall, CB, Virginia
Kansas City’s defense has actually played much better in recent weeks, but that does not mean it is fixed. The Chiefs could definitely use some help on the backend. Bryce Hall went down with a serious ankle injury earlier this year, but assuming he makes a full recovery, he has first-round potential. Hall has the size and ball skills to turn into a solid starting option pretty quickly. He has a ton of college experience and would be a nice addition to what has typically been a struggling secondary.

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30. Green Bay Packers (8-1) – Jalen Reagor, WR, TCU
If Sunday’s offensive meltdown against the Chargers wasn’t a clear enough reason the Packers need some help at receiver, I don’t know what will be. Davante Adams finally returned, but that was not enough to propel this offense. Jalen Reagor might just be the solution to Green Bay’s problems. He is an explosive receiver who has a great catch radius given his size. He is aggressive when catching the ball, using his hands to catch it away from his body. Reagor might not be quite as fast as Henry Ruggs, but he might be a more complete receiver ready to compete on Day 1.

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31. New Orleans Saints (9-2) – Tylan Wallace, WR, Oklahoma State
This team is geared up for a Super Bowl run right now and will want to get the most out of Drew Brees’ final few seasons. Michael Thomas is a beast and arguably the best receiver in the NFL, but the Saints could use someone to play across from him. Tylan Wallace feels like a good fit. He is more than capable of taking the top off a defense and does an excellent job winning jump balls. He is also a decent route runner who has the awareness to be a possession receiver. Wallace did go down for the rest of the college season with a torn ACL, but he has shown enough potential to warrant a first round selection.

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32. New England Patriots (2-1) – Creed Humphrey, G, Oklahoma
If there is an area of need on this team it is along the offensive line. Injuries and inconsistent play have really hurt the Patriots all season long. Creed Humphrey is a rock-solid prospect with tons of experience. He was the lone returning starter this season on the line for Oklahoma. He is solid in pass protection and as a run blocker. He can slot in at either guard spot and give New England a steadier option than anything they’ve been able to find this year.

For more NFL Draft coverage, check out the Aftermath’s NFL Draft Podcast, with new episodes every Thursday.


2020 NFL Draft Big Board: Top 50

With October winding down, we now have eight full weeks of college football action under our belts. While the best is still yet to come, we have already seen a lot from the best college football has to offer. At the end of each month, I set about ranking my top prospects heading into the upcoming draft. There is still a long ways to go, but this acts as a barometer for how players have separated themselves through the first two months of the year. To see how much things have already changed, feel free to check out my top 25 from the end of September.

This class is stacked at receiver and has really good depth at corner and running back. The quarterback group is starting to come together, but maybe doesn’t look quite as strong as we initially thought. Without further ado, let’s dive in.

Ohio State Logo1. Chase Young, DE, Ohio State
There is a drop after the top two prospects. That is mostly because of how dominant these two players are in Jerry Jeudy and Chase Young. Young put up four sacks on Saturday vs. Wisconsin. He is simply unfair to deal with.

Alabama Logo2. Jerry Jeudy, WR, Alabama
Don’t overthink this one. Jerry Jeudy is a stud. He will be a top-tier receiver from his first snap in the NFL. He is even showing he can do it without Tua Tagovailoa.

Alabama Logo3. Tua Tagovailoa, QB, Alabama
Another ankle injury to Tagovailoa is troubling, but Tua has separated himself from the rest of the QB class. There is some potential for Joe Burrow to close the gap some and we will get to see them play head-to-head in a few weeks. Cannot wait for that game.

Ohio State Logo4. Jeffrey Okudah, CB, Ohio State
There are a lot of schools who claim to be DB University. Jeff Okudah is helping Ohio State’s case. He is a great man coverage defender and does an excellent job tackling in space.

iowa_wordmark5. AJ Epenesa, EDGE, Iowa
The production has not been there this season for AJ Epenesa, but the talent still is. He is commanding a lot of attention in every game for Iowa. He has a little bit of J.J. Watt in him, which is a great thing for any prospect.

Georgia Logo6. Andrew Thomas, OT, Georgia
Any team looking for a future starting left tackle will have its eye on Andrew Thomas. He is an elite pass blocker who has performed against top competition. He feels like a lock for the top 10, maybe even the top five.

Oklahoma Logo7. CeeDee Lamb, WR, Oklahoma
There might not be a better receiver after the catch in this draft than CeeDee Lamb. He is super elusive and shows great vision. He is clearly very athletic, even if he won’t blow you away with speed.

Georgia Logo8. D’Andre Swift, RB, Georgia
In the modern day NFL, running backs need to be able to catch the ball out of the backfield frequently. D’Andre Swift has proven he is more than capable. He already has 900 yards from scrimmage in seven games this season.

Clemson Logo9. Tee Higgins, WR, Clemson
This is an elite wide receiver class. Tee Higgins could very well be the top option in other draft years. He is dominant in the red zone and routinely makes big plays downfield.

Wisconsin logo10. Jonathan Taylor, RB, Wisconsin
Up until a meeting with Ohio State, Jonathan Taylor had looked unstoppable. Clearly he is mortal, but that one game should not undermine all the work he has done in his career. The workload is a concern, but he has workhorse back potential at the next level.

LSU Logo11. Grant Delpit, S, LSU
Some questionable tackling has knocked Grant Delpit down the board a little bit, but he is still a decisive playmaker. Safeties have slid in the past few years and that could happen again, but Delpit should be a Day 1 starter.

Auburn_Tigers_logo12. Derrick Brown, DL, Auburn
When you look at Derrick Brown, you might peg him as a run stopper. At 6’5″, roughly 320 pounds, that’s not a bad guess, but he also moves well as a pass rusher. Brown has three sacks this year and is handful for interior offensive linemen to deal with.

Wisconsin logo13. Tyler Biadasz, C, Wisconsin
One of the most dependable prospects in this class, Tyler Biadasz looks like a future All-Pro center. His base is so strong and he clearly has the mental traits needed to excel at the position in the NFL.

Alabama Logo14. Henry Ruggs, WR, Alabama
Nobody can run with Henry Ruggs in football. He is electric in the open field. At six feet tall, he has good size for someone with his speed. Ruggs should be a run player for any offensive coordinator to use at the next level.

Penn State logo15. Yetur Gross-Matos, DE, Penn State
Yetur Gross-Matos made some noise last year and he has followed it up with another solid campaign. His hand usage is excellent and he might just have the best motor of anyone in the nation. Super high-character guy as well.

Clemson Logo16. Isaiah Simmons, LB, Clemson
The biggest question surrounding Isaiah Simmons is what position teams see him at in the NFL. The line between safeties and linebackers is blurring more and more at the pro level. Someone will find a spot for the versatile Simmons in there defense.

LSU Logo17. Joe Burrow, QB, LSU
It wasn’t his best performance of the year, but Joe Burrow put together a gritty performance to beat Auburn. Not every game is going to be super clear cut. Burrow continues to show his ability to adapt and make plays as needed.

Clemson Logo18. Travis Etienne, RB, Clemson
Clemson is chock full of talented offensive players and rarely does Travis Etienne get his due respect. He is one of the most productive players in college football. He should be a good change of pace back right away.

colorado_buffaloes_alternate_logo19. Laviska Shenault Jr., WR, Colorado
This has been a tough season for Laviska Shenault Jr. He was dominant in 2018, but he struggled out of the gates this year. Against USC, he finally showed up with a big game. At his best, he can be a game-changing receiver with great run after the catch ability.

Alabama Logo20. Trevon Diggs, CB, Alabama
Based on size alone, Trevon Diggs was going to draw the attention of NFL scouts. It also helps he plays for ‘Bama. His 84-yard pick-six Saturday will help as well. He plays with the aggression needed to be a no. 1 corner.

1280px-boise_state_22b22_logo.svg_21. Curtis Weaver, EDGE, Boise State
For the second straight year, Curtis Weaver is one of the most disruptive players in college football. He is an excellent pass rusher with good size and the potential to play in either a 4-3 or 3-4 scheme. If he keeps racking up sacks, 9.5 already in 2019, he might not last this long.

Oregon logo22. Justin Herbert, QB, Oregon
Justin Herbert has not had the type of season most expected of him. He has flashed special arm talent, but his accuracy is a concern. Herbert has not handled pressure well either and seems like he will need a bit of seasoning before becoming a quality starter.

Florida logo23. CJ Henderson, CB, Florida
Scouts will love his frame, but CJ Henderson’s closing speed is generating first-round buzz. The biggest knock is his press coverage, but he excels in zone looks and has long arms to make critical plays downfield.

512px-oklahoma_state_university_athletics_logo_28four_colors29.svg_24. Tylan Wallace, WR, Oklahoma State
With such a great receiver class, Tylan Wallace can get overlooked, but he is a proven playmaker. He high points the ball and will burn corners off the line. He reminds me a bit of Green Bay’s Davante Adams.

South Carolina logo25. Javon Kinlaw, DL, South Carolina
Given the level of competition Javon Kinlaw is facing, he has earned first-round consideration. He has been a great interior pass rusher for South Carolina. Kinlaw regularly faces double teams and loves to compete.

Alabama Logo26. Alex Leatherwood, OT, Alabama
At 6’6″, 310 pounds, Alex Leatherwood is built like a prototypical NFL left tackle. Leatherwood spent all of 2018 at right guard, but has looked very comfortable at left tackle this season. He isn’t the blindside blocker because Tua Tagovailoa is a lefty, but he should be a first rounder.

Stanford Cardinal27. Walker Little, OT, Stanford
This offensive line class took a hit when Walker Little went down in Stanford’s season opener. He moves well in space and has shown a tendency to finish blocks in the run game. Little projects as a future left tackle in the pros.

iowa_wordmark28. Triston Wirfs, OG, Iowa
After watching Triston Wirfs this year, I don’t see how he can play outside in the NFL. He looks incredible in the run game, but he does not move well enough to be a tackle at the next level. If he kicks inside, I think he could have a good career.

Georgia Logo29. Jake Fromm, QB, Georgia
Georgia’s offense has ground to a halt in recent weeks and Jake Fromm deserves some blame for that. He doesn’t have the same type of arm talent to make up for some mental mistakes or missed throws as the other top QBs in this draft.

LSU Logo30. Kristian Fulton, DB, LSU
If you ask me, the real DB University is in Baton Rouge and Kristian Fulton seems set to join the ranks of quality defensive backs joining the NFL. He is athletic and unafraid. The one thing is he likely the third-best player in LSU’s secondary this year, so it is hard to tell how he will fair as the top option at the next level.

Stanford Cardinal31. Paulson Adebo, CB, Stanford
Teams around the Pac-12 have already realized it’s best not to throw at Paulson Adebo. He has eight interceptions over the past two years and the size to deal with taller receivers. If he runs well at the combine, he could go top 20.

Alabama Logo32. Terrell Lewis, EDGE, Alabama
Another player coming off a major injury, Terrell Lewis has put up good numbers this year in his return. He is tops in the SEC in sacks and tackles for loss.

Notre Dame Logo33. Julian Okwara, EDGE, Notre Dame
He can disappear at times, but Julian Okwara can explode for big games on any given day. He has good power and will bully smaller offensive linemen. If he can find some consistency, he should rise up draft boards.

LSU Logo34. K’Lavon Chaisson, EDGE, LSU
I was disappointed with K’Lavon Chaisson early on this season, but I think I might have been too harsh on him coming off a torn ACL. He has shown the ability to be more than just a pass rusher. He is a bit small, but he has great speed.

Alabama Logo35. Xavier McKinney, S, Alabama
With teams looking for versatility in defensive backs, Xaiver McKinney should make a good impression at the NFL level. He is a good tackler who has shown flashes of an ability to hold up in coverage.

Alabama Logo36. Dylan Moses, LB, Alabama
This was a lost season for Dylan Moses after tearing his ACL in camp. Given the injury, he could return to school for another season, but if he comes out and passes medicals, he has shown enough to go fairly early.

250px-tcu_horned_frogs_logo.svg_37. Jalen Reagor, WR, TCU
If you don’t find a way to bottle him up, Jalen Reagor will burn you. He has had a much quieter 2019, but his speed is for real. With a great receiver class to compete with, he is sliding a bit.

Washington Huskies logo38. Jacob Eason, QB, Washington
Without question, Jacob Eason has an NFL caliber arm. He has not shown the decision making or poise to match that. He has been a bit up and down this season, far too inconsistent for me to think he should be a first rounder. Someone will still probably reach for him.

Oklahoma Logo39. Kenneth Murray, LB, Oklahoma
Outside of a rough game from the entire Oklahoma defense Saturday against Kansas State, Kenneth Murray has had a great year. He already has 55 tackles this year, including 7.5 for loss. Murray has a nose for the ball and the athleticism to get there.

250px-tcu_horned_frogs_logo.svg_40. Lucas Niang, OT, TCU
Projecting as a right tackle, Lucas Niang saw his season end early. He will undergo season-ending surgery to repair a torn hip labrum. Niang made the decision to get the surgery now with hopes of being able to participate in the combine.

Michigan State logo41. Kenny Willekes, DE, Michigan State
As a redshirt senior, Kenney Willekes is one of the elder statesmen of this draft class. He is a great run stopper who simply doesn’t have as much talent around him this year. He has not shown the ability to wreck a game by himself, but he will be a useful piece in any defense.

Ohio State Logo42. J.K. Dobbins, RB, Ohio State
Already up to fourth in Buckeyes history in rushing, J.K. Dobbins is on track to pass Eddie George and Ezekiel Elliott before the season is over. That is some great company and after ripping apart the Wisconsin defense, he has earned it.

Utah_Utes_logo43. Jaylon Johnson, DB, Utah
Utah often gets overlooked and so do there best players. Jaylon Johnson does not get much national press, but he is one of the top corners in this draft. He plays with the mentality of a lockdown corner and could very well develop into a good one.

Oregon logo44. Troy Dye, LB, Oregon
He might be on the shelf right now with a thumb injury, but Troy Dye has made a case for being one of the better linebackers in the nation. He has led Oregon in tackles for three straight years. The injury will probably keep him from doing it again, but he is a fundamentally sound prospect.

Oklahoma Logo45. Creed Humphrey, G, Oklahoma
As the lone returning starter along the Oklahoma offensive line, Creed Humphrey has been crucial to the Sooners’ success this season. He is a rock solid interior line prospect who could challenge for a starting spot as soon as he arrives in camp.

Alabama Logo46. Raekwon Davis, DL, Alabama
I don’t know that there is a larger presence, literally, in college football this year than Raekwon Davis. Alabama lists him at 6’7″, 312 pounds. He draws a lot of attention from opposing defenses as soon as he steps on the field. Davis hasn’t been as dominant this year, but his physical tools keep him as a top 50 prospect.

LSU Logo47. Justin Jefferson, WR, LSU
In the midst of a breakout season, Justin Jefferson is flying up draft boards. He might not be the best receiver on his own team, but Jefferson has blossomed in this new-look LSU offense. He can separate from defenders and makes some touch catches.

Ohio State Logo48. Malik Harrison, LB, Ohio State
Ohio State’s defense is stacked with playmakers, but Malik Harrison has still found a way to stand out. He has 9.5 tackles for loss this year and seems to just fly around the field. It’s tough to tell if he is a product of the system or truly an elite prospect though.

200px-illinois_fighting_illini_logo.svg_49. Oluwole Betiku Jr., EDGE, Illinois
One of my favorite players in this draft, Oluwole Betiku Jr. has shown up in a big way in 2019. He is still incredibly raw, but with 11.5 tackles for loss and eight sacks, he is showing a knack for causing trouble. In a year or two, he has the potential to rack up double-digit sacks in the NFL.

512px-oklahoma_state_university_athletics_logo_28four_colors29.svg_50. Chuba Hubbard, RB, Oklahoma State
If you didn’t already know, Chuba Hubbard leads college football in rushing yards this season. He has been a bellcow for Oklahoma State. If he can show some signs of being a reliable receiver down the stretch, he could start drawing some first round attention.

NFL Draft Podcast Episode 6

There is no shortage of drama in football this week as Jalen Ramsey heads west and the College Football Playoff suffered a major shakeup as Georgia went down. Catch up on all of that and check out this week’s studs and sleepers. Plus find out which games to watch and the prospects to watch in each contest. You can find every episode on Spotify, Apple Podcasts or wherever you listen to your podcasts.

NFL Draft Podcast Episode 5

The Aftermath’s NFL Draft Podcast is back for another week, featuring Studs and Sleepers, as well as a new edition of Stock Up/Stock Down. Chris debates Iowa offensive linemen Tristan Wirfs’ best fit in the NFL and talks about the next group of running backs behind D’Andre Swift, Jonathan Taylor and Travis Etienne. Plus, check out which prospect matchups to watch this weekend in a jampacked Week 7 of college football action. You can find the show on Spotify, Apple Podcasts and wherever you get your podcasts.

2019 NFL Pro Potential Power Rankings

For many college football players, the goal is to have success at school to earn a spot in the NFL. Most players who turn pro after college enter the league via the NFL Draft.

Somehow, this is already the fourth year of these NFL Pro Potential Power Rankings. The player pool being considered still dates back five years, meaning the 2014 class is no longer relevant to these rankings. There was a ton of movement this season, including two new teams in the top five and three new teams to the rankings overall.

The goal of these rankings is to quantify the results of the past few NFL drafts and track which schools succeed year over year at sending players to the next level. This is not meant to determine how well those players perform at the next level, as it is much harder to quantify what constitutes being a successful NFL player. This is still one of the most fun projects I have taken on since starting this site.

Previous rankings: 2018, 2017, 2016

The scoring system is as follows:
1st round-10 points
2nd round-7 points
3rd round-5 points
4th round-4 points
5th round- 3 points
6th round- 2 points
7th round- 1 points

Alabama Logo1. Alabama Crimson Tide- 281 points
Previous: 1 (263 points)
Highest Drafted Player- Amari Cooper, 4th Overall, 2015
Somehow, Alabama is actually stretching its lead at the top of these rankings. After sending another 11 prospects to the league, the most of any school, the Crimson Tide comfortable sits at the top of these rankings. It is ridiculous how far ahead of the pack Nick Saban is every year.

Ohio State Logo2. Ohio State Buckeyes- 229 points
Previous: 2 (232 points)
Highest Drafted Player- Nick Bosa, 2nd Overall, 2019
It was another solid draft class for Ohio State with Nick Bosa and Dwayne Haskins both going in the first round. The Buckeyes continued its trend of sending massive draft classes with 10 total prospects selected in 2019. Even with Ryan Day taking over for Urban Meyer, there is no chance Ohio State leaves the top two any time soon.

Florida logo.jpg3. Florida Gators- 166 points
Previous: 3 (163 points)
Highest Drafted Player- Dante Fowler Jr., 3rd Overall, 2015
Florida bounced back after an off year in 2018. The Gators 2019 class did not feature any first round picks, but saw a player selected in rounds two through five. Florida is going to need to land some first rounders in the future though if it wants to stay in the top 5.

Clemson Logo4. Clemson Tigers- 158 points
Previous: 6 (139 points)
Highest Drafted Player- Clelin Ferrell, 4th Overall, 2019
This is the type of draft we all knew Clemson was capable of having. With three first round draft picks, the Tigers roared into the top 5 and gave themselves a very good base to build on. Expect Dabo Swinney to continue sending top tier talent to the next level.

Washington Huskies logo.jpg5. Washington Huskies- 140 points
Previous: 11 (112 points)
Highest Drafted Player- John Ross, 9th Overall, 2017
It is time to start recognizing Washington as a top-tier producer of NFL draft picks. The Huskies have had at least one player drafted in the first round in four of the last five drafts. Kaleb McGary becomes the latest to join the group. What pushes Washington into this spot is its success in the second round, with three more second rounders coming in 2019.

Florida State Logo6. Florida State Seminoles- 132 points
Previous: 4 (160 points)
Highest Drafted Player- Jameis Winston, 1st Overall, 2015
It should come as no surprise that Florida State is slipping in these rankings after another tough season in the ACC. The departure of Jimbo Fisher is not going to help matters at all. The Seminoles ranking is heavily tied to its 2015 draft class, which will drop out of consideration in next year’s rankings.

Louisiana State University logo6. LSU Tigers- 132 points
Previous: 5 (155 points)
Highest Drafted Player- Leonard Fournette, 4th Overall, 2017
LSU did produce a top-five pick in Devin White this season. However, White was one of just three Tigers drafted in 2019. While LSU will certainly stay in the rankings producing first round picks, it needs to fill in the gaps in later rounds.

MichiganWolverines8. Michigan Wolverines- 127 points
Previous: 14 (110 points)
Highest Drafted Player-
Michigan put together a solid class to build on the ridiculous class it produced in 2017. Devin Bush and Rashan Gary going in the first round headlined a five-man class. Considering the rate Jim Harbaugh attracts talent to Ann Arbor, the Wolverines should stay in the top 10.

Oklahoma Logo9. Oklahoma Sooners- 125 points
Previous: 18 (90 points)
Highest Drafted Player- Baker Mayfield / Kyler Murray, 1st Overall, 2018 / 2019
Meet the new college football powerhouse in these rankings. Oklahoma became the first school to ever produce two first overall picks at the same position in back-to-back years. Kyler Murray and Marquis “Hollywood” Brown lead a stacked class. The Sooners will continue to rise in the rankings with most of their points being tied to it’s two most recent draft classes.

Georgia Logo10. Georgia Bulldogs- 122 points
Previous: 16 (99 points)
Highest Drafted Player- Roquon Smith, 8th Overall, 2018
Considering Georgia’s success in recent college football seasons, it should come as no surprise Kirby Smart and company crack the top 10. Outside of a very quiet 2017 draft, the Bulldogs regularly send a half dozen players or more to the next level. This season was no exception.

Miami logo11. Miami Hurricanes- 117 points
Previous: 13 (111 points)
Highest Drafted Player- Ereck Flowers, 9th Overall, 2015
This was a quietly solid draft class for Miami. While the Canes did not produce any draft picks before Day 3 of the draft, five players were drafted on Saturday. Miami will certainly hope to land a couple players higher in the draft going forward, but these types of drafts will keep the Hurricanes from dropping out of the top 20.

Stanford Cardinal12. Stanford Cardinal- 116 points
Previous: 9 (115 points)
Highest Drafted Player- Solomon Thomas, 3rd Overall, 2017
Another solid if unspectacular draft class from Palo Alto sees the Cardinal drop from the top 10. Stanford is still very much in the mix, having a player drafted rounds two through six. As long as David Shaw sticks around, so, too, will Stanford in these rankings.

USC logo13. USC Trojans- 114 points
Previous: 10 (114 points)
Highest Drafted Player- Sam Darnold, 3rd Overall, 2018
USC definitely put up a much flashier draft class in 2018, featuring a top-five pick. With a pair of third rounders and a pair of fifth rounders, the Trojans might continue to find themselves outside the top 10. The struggles USC has had on the field reflect the lack of NFL ready talent coming out of Southern California right now.

Notre Dame Logo14. Notre Dame Fighting Irish- 110 points
Previous: 8 (116 points)
Highest Drafted Player- Ronnie Stanley, 6th Overall, 2016
In the past, the this part of the rankings has had very small margins. This year is no different. While this looks like a massive drop for Notre Dame, producing an additional second round pick would have held the Irish at 11th instead of 14th. This class has good depth, with six players drafted overall. Considering the Irish regularly feature in the College Football Playoff, they should bounce back.

UCLA logo.jpg15. UCLA Bruins- 100 points
Previous: 7 (126 points)
Highest Drafted Player-
This was a really rough draft class for UCLA, who produced just one player. It was Mr. Irrelevant Caleb Wilson. One seventh round pick does not inspire confidence. A small 2015 draft class might prevent the Bruins from dropping too much next year, but their spot in these rankings will definitely be in question going forward.

Ole_Miss_Rebels_logo15. Ole Miss Rebels- 100 points
Previous: 21 (77 points)
Highest Drafted Player- Laremy Tunsil, 13th Overall, 2016
Ole Miss had a very underrated 2019 draft class. Three second round picks propel the Rebels to the top 15. Even with program turnover, being an SEC team in a good state to recruit should keep the NFL-level talent flowing.

Texas A&M logo16. Texas A&M Aggies- 95 points
Previous: 15 (102 points)
Highest Drafted Player- Myles Garrett, 1st Overall, 2017
The arrival of Jimbo Fisher should stabilize Texas A&M over the next few seasons. He built a juggernaut at Florida State and can likely take credit for a lot of their ensuing draft success. My assumption here is the Aggies will climb in the rankings while the Seminoles slowly slip.

Penn_State_text_logo17. Penn State Nittany Lions- 93 points
Previous: 19 (85 points)
Highest Drafted Player- Saquon Barkley, 2nd Overall, 2018
Another year, another season without a first round pick for Penn State. Saquon Barkley is the Nittany Lions’ only first round selection since 2010. This year, the impact was minimized as Penn State still had six players drafted, one in each round following the first.

1000px-mississippi_state_bulldogs_logo.svg_18. Mississippi State Bulldogs- 86 points
Previous: Unranked (52 points)
Highest Drafted Player- Jeffery Simmons, 19th Overall, 2019
Welcome to the rankings Mississippi State. A massive draft class featuring three first round selections vaults the Bulldogs into the top 20. It was only a matter of time considering the level of success players have had at the NFL level in recent years (Chris Jones, Dak Prescott, Preston Smith). Now teams are heading back to the well earlier and more often. Mississippi State is here to stay.

Auburn_Tigers_logo19. Auburn Tigers- 82 points
Previous: 17 (92 points)
Highest Drafted Player- Braden Smith, 37th Overall, 2018
Without a player drafted in the first two rounds, Auburn filled up the later rounds. Six total Tiger players heard there name called during draft weekend. Auburn remains one of the only teams in the rankings to not produce a first round pick in the past five years. The uncertainty surrounding Gus Malzahn’s future doesn’t help.

iowa_wordmark20. Iowa Hawkeyes – 81 points
Previous: 23 (67 points)
Highest Drafted Player- Branden Scherff, 5th Overall, 2015
Iowa became the first school to have two tight ends drafted in the first round ever. The Hawkeyes quietly produce a lot of NFL talent without usually being in the regular top-25 conversation. Outside of 2016, Iowa has produced multiple NFL draft picks every season.

Utah_Utes_logo20. Utah Utes- 81 points
Previous: 25 (66 points)
Highest Drafted Player- Garrett Bolles, 20th Overall, 2017
Once again, the Utes produced five mid and late round draft picks. Utah is becoming a traditional NFL factory after appearing in these rankings for three straight years. It is unlikely they climb much higher without starting to produce more top-end picks, but the Utes do more than enough to hang onto their spot.

1000px-north_carolina_state_university_athletic_logo.svg_22. North Carolina State Wolfpack- 79 points
Previous: Others Receiving Votes (62 points)
Highest Drafted Player- Bradley Chubb, 5th Overall, 2018
Name the school with the most quarterbacks currently on NFL rosters. If you guessed NC State, well done. Philip Rivers, Russell Wilson (transferred to Wisconsin), Mike Glennon, Jacoby Brissett and now Ryan Finley all have NFL homes. If you are a young quarterback prospect, this might be a good school for you to consider. Let’s not steal the thunder though of Garrett Bradberry, who became the Wolfpack’s second straight first round pick.

Louisville logo23. Louisville Cardinals- 77 points
Previous: 11 (112 points)
Highest Drafted Player- Sheldon Rankins, 12th Overall, 2016
So it turns out Louisville meteoric rise might have been a fluke. The Cardinals dip back down 12 spots, dropping 45 points, after not having a single player drafted this year. The bottom clearly fell out and Bobby Petrino’s firing does not help matters. Louisville could very well be on their way out of the rankings.

West Virginia logo24. West Virginia Mountaineers- 75 points
Previous: Others receiving votes (65 points)
Highest Drafted Player- Kevin White, 7th Overall, 2015
West Virginia continues to live on the fringes of the top 25. A strong regular season led to a reasonable draft class with two third and two fourth round picks. The Mountaineers had a much better draft class than a year ago, but will they be able to build on it with Dana Holgorsen bolting for Houston?

Wisconsin logo25. Wisconsin Badgers- 74 points
Previous: 20 (78 points)
Highest Drafted Player- Melvin Gordon, 15th Overall, 2015
Wisconsin continues to produce a smattering of NFL-caliber players every year. There is no doubt the Badgers have developed a few very successful players in recent years (Melvin Gordon, T.J. Watt, Ryan Ramczyk). However, even with this top tier of talent, Wisconsin continues to lag behind the elite powers in college football. Deeper draft classes in recent years have certainly helped and it is pretty safe to bet on the Badgers staying in the top 25.

Others Receiving Votes: Missouri (66 points), Michigan State (66 points), Oregon (61 points)

Note: All images courtesy of Wikimedia Commons