The 2019 NFL draft is six months away, but the needs of certain teams are already clear.
The franchises currently projected to pick in the top 10 need to fill holes on the interior, and luckily for those teams, offensive and defensive line are two of the most stocked positions in the 2019 draft class.
Arizona is the lone winless team through four weeks, so the Cardinals are in line to select who they think is the best player in the collection of linemen with April's No. 1 selection.
Buffalo, Oakland, San Francisco and both New York franchises are in danger of losing plenty more games in 2018, so they could all be in contention for the No. 1 pick alongside the Cardinals.
2019 1st-Round NFL Mock Draft
1. Arizona Cardinals: Ed Oliver, DT, Houston
2. New York Jets: Nick Bosa, DE, Ohio State
3. Buffalo Bills: Jonah Williams, OT, Alabama
4. New York Giants: Greg Little, OT, Ole Miss
5. Indianapolis Colts: Clelin Ferrell, DE, Clemson
6. Detroit Lions: Andraez "Greedy" Williams, DB, LSU
7. Houston Texans: Dalton Risner, OT, Kansas State
8. Atlanta Falcons: Devin White, LB, LSU
9. Oakland Raiders: N'Keal Harry, WR, Arizona State
10. San Francisco 49ers: David Edwards, OT, Wisconsin
11. Pittsburgh Steelers: DeAndre Baker, DB, Georgia
12. Minnesota Vikings: Dre'Mont Jones, DT, Ohio State
13. Cleveland Browns: A.J. Brown, WR, Ole Miss
14. Philadelphia Eagles: Deionte Thompson, S, Alabama
15. Dallas Cowboys: Anthony Johnson, WR, Buffalo
16. Los Angeles Chargers: Justin Herbert, QB, Oregon
17. New England Patriots: Zach Allen, DE, Boston College
18. Seattle Seahawks: Raekwon Davis, DT, Alabama
19. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Montez Sweat, DE, Mississippi State
20. Green Bay Packers: Jerry Tillery, DT, Notre Dame
21. Denver Broncos: Drew Lock, QB, Missouri
22. Carolina Panthers: Dexter Lawrence, DT, Clemson
23. Washington Redskins: Jamal Peters, DB, Mississippi State
24. Jacksonville Jaguars: Deebo Samuel, WR, South Carolina
25. Baltimore Ravens: Josh Allen, LB, Kentucky
26. Tennessee Titans: Noah Fant, TE, Iowa
27. Green Bay Packers (from New Orleans): Beau Benzschawel, OG, Wisconsin
28. Miami Dolphins: Christian Wilkins, DT, Clemson
29. Cincinnati Bengals: Jeffery Simmons, DT, Mississippi State
30. Oakland Raiders (from Chicago): J.J. Arcega-Whiteside, WR, Stanford
31. Kansas City Chiefs: Amani Oruwariye, DB, Penn State
32. Los Angeles Rams: Brian Burns, DE, Florida State
Draft order based on current NFL records.
Need For Offensive Linemen Could Disrupt Oliver and Bosa Going 1-2
It's clear the teams at the bottom of the NFL standings need offensive line help.
Luckily for the struggling franchises, there's a plethora of talented offensive linemen who have first-round quality in the 2019 draft class.
The SEC duo of Alabama's Jonah Williams and Ole Miss' Greg Little are the two players most likely to top the draft board in April, but there are other players emerging as top-10 candidates.
Kansas State's Dalton Risner and Wisconsin's David Edwards could work their way up draft boards and into the top five over the next few months as well.
Since Houston defensive tackle Ed Oliver and Ohio State defensive end Nick Bosa are still the top prospects in the draft class, Arizona and the New York Jets would be wise to scoop them up with the No. 1 and No. 2 picks.
That leaves the Buffalo Bills and New York Giants with the ability to select whichever offensive linemen they think suits their respective systems best.
For Buffalo, the need to reinforce the offensive line is imperative if it wants to build around Allen for the foreseeable future.
No matter who is playing under center for the Giants in 2019, the team must improve on the interior in order to provide more running lanes for running back Saquon Barkley.
However, a case can be made for the Cardinals and Jets to select an offensive lineman to protect their young quarterbacks, which would then put the Bills, Giants and others in position to make a difficult decision.
Beyond the Bills and Giants, the other two teams in the top 10 projected to take offensive linemen, Houston and San Francisco, rank in the top 10 in sacks conceded.
The 2019 draft presents the perfect opportunity for teams with offensive line needs to upgrade, and because of the high demand, there's a chance the franchise selecting No. 1 could opt to go away from Oliver and Bosa, which would open the door for a trading free-for-all in the top five.
Could Top Quarterbacks Be Selected As Replacements For Longtime Starters?
The 2019 quarterback class won't be as heralded as the group of signal-callers taken in 2018, and there's no guarantee they'll even start as soon as Baker Mayfield, Sam Darnold, Josh Allen and Josh Rosen.
However, there is one situation in which the top quarterbacks in the 2019 draft are selected in the first round to serve as successors for experienced players at their position.
Take the Los Angeles Chargers for example, since Philip Rivers is 36 and they're moving into a new stadium in 2020.
By selecting a player like Oregon's Justin Herbert in 2019, the Chargers would give him a chance to sit at least a year under Rivers before turning over the reins to match the on-field excitement with the off-field buzz of opening a new stadium.
The Giants would be the first team to face this issue in the draft order, but they have more immediate needs on the line to justify selecting a quarterback at No. 4 to replace Eli Manning.
The New England Patriots will be an intriguing team to watch in the quarterback market, and it wouldn't hurt the Green Bay Packers to at least explore the position with two first-round picks.
As of right now, Herbert and Missouri's Drew Lock are seen as the top quarterback prospects, while Auburn's Jarrett Stidham and Will Grier of West Virginia could boost their respective draft stocks as the Tigers and Mountaineers chase the College Football Playoff.
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