2020 NFL Mock Draft: Post-Super Bowl Predictions for Top Prospects

Zach Buckley@@ZachBuckleyNBANational NBA Featured ColumnistFebruary 4, 2020

Alabama quarterback Tua Tagovailoa in an NCAA football game Saturday, Nov. 9, 2019, in Tuscaloosa, Ala. (AP Photo/Vasha Hunt)
Vasha Hunt/Associated Press

There are any number of ways to frame the Kansas City Chiefs' 31-20 triumph over the San Francisco 49ers in Super Bowl LIV.

For (at least) 30 different NFL fanbases, though, the most important is this: The offseason is officially here.

While football's stars of today swept through South Florida over the weekend—both for Sunday night's championship contest and the NFL Honors award show the night prior—its stars of tomorrow will soon dominate the digital realm and eventually breeze through Las Vegas for the April talent grab.

Two-plus months might seem like forever, but if your favorite team finds its next superstar, this is more than worth the wait. We'll help hold you over in the meantime with our latest mock first round and a look at three players who can improve their stock on the workout circuit.


NFL Mock Draft 2020

1. Cincinnati Bengals: Joe Burrow, QB, LSU

2. Washington Redskins: Chase Young, Edge, Ohio State

3. Detroit Lions: Jeff Okudah, CB, Ohio State

4. New York Giants: Jedrick Wills Jr., OT, Alabama

5. Miami Dolphins: Tua Tagovailoa, QB, Alabama

6. Los Angeles Chargers: Justin Herbert, QB, Oregon

7. Carolina Panthers: Isaiah Simmons, LB, Clemson

8. Arizona Cardinals: Jerry Jeudy, WR, Alabama

9. Jacksonville Jaguars: Derrick Brown, DT, Auburn

10. Cleveland Browns: Mekhi Becton, OT, Louisville

11. New York Jets: Tristan Wirfs, OT, Iowa

12. Las Vegas Raiders: CeeDee Lamb, WR, Oklahoma

13. Indianapolis Colts: Jordan Love, QB, Utah State

14. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Grant Delpit, S, LSU

15. Denver Broncos: Tee Higgins, WR, Clemson

16. Atlanta Falcons: A.J. Epenesa, Edge, Iowa

17. Dallas Cowboys: Javon Kinlaw, DT, South Carolina

18. Miami Dolphins (via Pittsburgh Steelers): Andrew Thomas, OT, Georgia

19. Las Vegas Raiders (via Chicago Bears): Kenneth Murray, LB, Oklahoma

20. Jacksonville Jaguars (via Los Angeles Rams): CJ Henderson, CB, Florida

21. Philadelphia Eagles: Henry Ruggs III, WR, Alabama

22. Buffalo Bills: Justin Jefferson, WR, LSU

23. New England Patriots: K'Lavon Chaisson, Edge, LSU

24. New Orleans Saints: Kristian Fulton, CB, LSU

25. Minnesota Vikings: Neville Gallimore, DT, Oklahoma

26. Miami Dolphins (via Houston Texans): Terrell Lewis, Edge, Alabama

27. Seattle Seahawks: Jeff Gladney, CB, TCU

28. Baltimore Ravens: Patrick Queen, LB, LSU

29. Tennessee Titans: Julian Okwara, Edge, Notre Dame

30. Green Bay Packers: Dylan Moses, LB, Alabama

31. San Francisco 49ers: Brandon Aiyuk, WR, Arizona State

32. Kansas City Chiefs: D'Andre Swift, RB, Georgia


Tua Tagovailoa, QB, Alabama

Some prospects might wow (or disappoint) scouts during gridiron workouts. That's not where the focus is with Tua Tagovailoa.

Teams already know what he can do when he steps inside the lines. In case anyone needs a refresher, here's what he achieved over the last two seasons at Alabama (one of which was cut short by injury): 70 percent passing, 6,806 passing yards, 11.2 yards per attempt, 76 passing touchdowns, nine interceptions.

But teams already know these numbers. What they're uncertain of is how much Tagovailoa's dislocated hip impacts his NFL outlook. As B/R's Matt Miller explained, it's impossible to peg Tagovailoa's draft position without knowing what his medical reports will say:

"Tua's stock could be much higher or much lower than this in late April. He's coming off a hip surgery that needs time to be evaluated. He's expected to be able to work out and throw for teams before the draft, but how his medical reports come back to teams at the NFL Scouting Combine (late February)—and then, if needed, the medical rechecks in early April—will determine whether teams like Tua's long-term health."

If Tagovailoa's medical reports are fine, and he moves around comfortably during any predraft workouts, he'll be the second quarterback off the board and probably a top-five pick. But if any red flags are raised, his slide could be this draft's biggest story.


Jordan Love, QB, Utah State

There are three high-level quarterback prospects in this class, each of whom will make regular appearances in mock top 10s (as they do in ours).

Jordan Love sits somewhere behind that group, but good luck pinpointing the location. On one hand, he aces the eye test with size, mobility, arm strength and athleticism. On the other, he nearly wiped out his 20 touchdown passes this season with 17 interceptions.

"He's so talented, but he's inconsistent and it's the same thing you see on tape," ESPN's Todd McShay said (via Mountain West Wire). "The only consistent part of his game is how inconsistent he is with his accuracy. His decision-making and his accuracy have got to improve."

Do teams think they can solve this puzzle? Is an executive willing to bet their job on it? That might come down to how Love handles his workouts. Given his wealth of physical tools, it wouldn't take much to feel wowed by him if he's hitting his mark throw after throw.


A.J. Epenesa, Edge, Iowa

If A.J. Epenesa hears his name called near where we project, he probably won't have many complaints. But it is a fairly precipitous fall from where he started the season.

Back in April, Miller took an early look at this draft and saw Epenesa as the No. 3 pick. The hype train kept picking up speed as the season approached, and in a September profile from B/R's Adam Kramer, the question was raised if Epenesa was the next J.J. Watt.

"[Chase] Young is more athletic by a hair and gets more hype," a scout told Kramer. "But I bet Epenesa is the better pro. There's some J.J. Watt to his game."

That comparison probably sounded outlandish once Epenesa recorded just a single sack through his first four games. Considering he isn't the most explosive athlete around, scouts may have wondered how much time he'd realistically spend in an NFL opponents' backfield. He hasn't been featured atop many mock drafts since.

But the football world may have prematurely tuned him out (relatively speaking for a first-round prospect, of course). He caught fire late in the season and was every bit a disruptive defensive force, totaling eight sacks and four forced fumbles over his final five games.

He's big, powerful and technically refined. Get him into some one-on-one drill work, and he might bully enough offensive linemen to zip right back up the board.


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