2019 NFL Mock Draft: Early 1st-Round Predictions for Next Year's Top Prospects

Joe Tansey@JTansey90Featured ColumnistApril 29, 2018

COLUMBUS, OH - NOVEMBER 26:   Nick Bosa #97 of the Ohio State Buckeyes celebrates a sack against the Michigan Wolverines at Ohio Stadium on November 26, 2016 in Columbus, Ohio.  (Photo by Jamie Sabau/Getty Images)
Jamie Sabau/Getty Images

Defensive players should dominate the top of the 2019 NFL draft.

Just like the quarterbacks controlled the conversation for the 2018 NFL draft, defensive linemen should flood draft boards once the selection process heats up in January.

Houston's Ed Oliver and Ohio State's Nick Bosa will be talked about throughout the college football season as two of the best pro prospects, while most of Clemson's defensive line should receive praise as well.

Like there is in every draft, there will be some attention paid to the collection of available quarterbacks, but the 2019 prospects aren't as valuable as the signal-callers selected between Thursday and Saturday.


2019 1st-Round NFL Mock Draft

1. New York Jets: Nick Bosa, DE, Ohio State

2. Miami Dolphins: Ed Oliver, DT, Houston 

3. Arizona Cardinals: Dexter Lawrence, DT, Clemson

4. Cleveland Browns: Greg Little, OT, Ole Miss

5. Washington Redskins: Jonah Williams, OT, Alabama

6. Indianapolis Colts: Justin Herbert, QB, Oregon

7. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Rashan Gary, DE, Michigan

8. Houston Texans: A.J. Brown, WR, Ole Miss

9. New York Giants: Drew Lock, QB, Missouri

10. Chicago Bears: Andraez "Greedy" Williams, CB, LSU

11. Denver Broncos: Trey Adams, OT, Washington

12. Cincinnati Bengals: Raekwon Davis, DT, Alabama

13. Baltimore Ravens: Ahmmon Richards, WR, Miami

14. Oakland Raiders: Beau Benzschawel, G, Wisconsin

15. Dallas Cowboys: DeAndre Baker, CB, Georgia

16. Detroit Lions: Anfernee Jennings, LB, Alabama

17. Seattle Seahawks: Christian Wilkins, DT, Clemson

18. San Francisco 49ers: Clelin Ferrell, DE, Clemson

19. Los Angeles Chargers: David Sills, WR, West Virginia

20. Green Bay Packers (from New Orleans): Martez Ivey, OT, Florida

21. Buffalo Bills: Bryce Love, RB, Stanford

22. Kansas City Chiefs: Cameron Smith, LB, USC

23. Tennessee Titans: Josh Allen, LB, Kentucky

24. Atlanta Falcons: Deebo Samuel, WR, South Carolina

25. Carolina Panthers: David Edwards, OT, Wisconsin

26. Los Angeles Rams: Michael Jordan, G, Ohio State

27. Green Bay Packers: Damien Harris, RB, Alabama

28. Jacksonville Jaguars: Parris Campbell, WR, Ohio State

29. Minnesota Vikings: Isaac Nauta, TE, Georgia

30. Pittsburgh Steelers: Brian Burns, DE, Florida State

31. Philadelphia Eagles: Rodney Anderson, RB, Oklahoma

32. New England Patriots: Will Grier, QB, West Virginia


Prospects To Watch

Nick Bosa

Bosa is expected to be selected near the top of the draft, just like older brother Joey, and he could be the No. 1 overall pick.

While it's still early in the process, some NFL personnel told ESPN's Adam Schefter the Ohio State defensive end is the early favorite for the top pick:

In two seasons with the Buckeyes, Bosa has 63 tackles, 23 tackles for loss and 13.5 sacks. All of his numbers in those stat categories increased during his sophomore season.

Bosa is expected to wreak havoc on opponents throughout the college football season as he tries to improve on the 16 tackles for loss and 8.5 sacks he earned last campaign.

The Ohio State junior will perform under a microscope in the fall given his family pedigree and the numbers he put up at the start of his collegiate career.

If he replicates those stats at a bare minimum, Bosa will be at the top of many draft boards.


Ed Oliver

NFL fans have salivated over the prospect of Oliver joining their team for years.

Oliver declared for the NFL draft in March, a decision we all knew was coming, per Houston's official website.

The Houston defensive tackle won the Outland Trophy and was a consensus All-American in his sophomore year, which makes the hype surrounding his junior season widespread.

Rick Scuteri/Associated Press

Since the Cougars don't have NFL talent at every position like Ohio State, Oliver should be able to stand out in more games.

The attention on Oliver also means opponents will try to double- or triple-team him in order to prevent him from getting to the quarterback.

How Oliver adjusts to the game plans of offensive coordinators through the American Athletic Conference will help NFL scouts further evaluate his progress.


Justin Herbert

It wouldn't be a mock draft if we ignored the quarterback position.

It's too early to identify which signal-callers will find a way into the first round, but it's almost guaranteed the 2019 class won't be as coveted as the 2018 group.

Oregon's Justin Herbert hasn't been in the spotlight much because of injuries, but he has the talent and body type NFL front offices usually drool over.

Chris Pietsch/Associated Press

The 6'6" Herbert has thrown for 3,919 yards in 16 games under center for the Ducks.

Herbert played eight games in each of his first two seasons at Oregon, and if he remains healthy for his entire junior year, he will generate more buzz as the Ducks attempt to return to prominence.

A lot can change between now and April 2019, especially with the quarterback class. But for now, Herbert has an advantage over Missouri's Drew Lock and West Virginia's Will Grier because of his potential.


Follow Joe on Twitter, @JTansey90.


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