Mel Kiper 2020 Mock Draft: Tua Drops to Dolphins, Herbert Lands with Chargers

Adam Wells@adamwells1985Featured ColumnistMarch 24, 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

One month from the 2020 NFL draft, ESPN's Mel Kiper Jr. has released his latest mock, with some notable changes involving two of the top quarterbacks.

Kiper has three QBs going among the top six picks, starting with LSU's Joe Burrow at No. 1 overall to the Cincinnati Bengals. The Miami Dolphins get their franchise signal-caller at No. 5 with Tua Tagovailoa, followed by Justin Herbert going to the Los Angeles Chargers at No. 6.


Mel Kiper Jr. 2020 NFL Mock Draft Top 10

1. Cincinnati Bengals: Joe Burrow, QB (LSU)

2. Washington Redskins: Chase Young, DE (Ohio State)

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

4. New York Giants: Isaiah Simmons, LB (Clemson)

5. Miami Dolphins: Tua Tagovailoa, QB (Alabama)

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

7. Carolina Panthers: Derrick Brown, DT (Auburn)

8. Arizona Cardinals: Tristan Wirfs, OT (Iowa)

9. Jacksonville Jaguars: Javon Kinlaw, DT (South Carolina)

10. Cleveland Browns: Mekhi Becton, OT (Louisville)


These are two notable changes from Kiper's previous mock draft, which was released prior to the NFL Scouting Combine. Tagovailoa was projected to the Lions at No. 3 after buzz that Detroit personnel liked the Alabama star and speculation about a potential Matthew Stafford trade.

Detroit general manager Bob Quinn vehemently denied Stafford was being dealt. The Lions instead traded cornerback Darius Slay to the Philadelphia Eagles, leaving them with a huge hole in the secondary.

Per NFL Network's Ian Rapoport, the Dolphins' "first call" for a predraft visit was to Tagovailoa, but the meeting never came about before the NFL banned in-person visits because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Tagovailoa is doing his best to alleviate concerns about his surgically repaired hip:   

Tua. T 🇦🇸 @Tuaamann

Practicing social distancing with the long ball today. Feels good to spin it again. #Process https://t.co/BZnBF7Sfdc

ESPN's Dan Orlovsky raved about what he saw from Tagovailoa's brief workout video:   

Get Up @GetUpESPN

"I am shocked at how good Tua looks." @danorlovsky7 loved what he saw from Tua Tagovailoa's recent social media video. https://t.co/Vl94jJ39D1

After Kiper previously had Alabama offensive tackle Jedrick Wills going to the Chargers, quarterback appears to be their biggest need now. Los Angeles addressed its offensive line by acquiring Trai Turner from the Carolina Panthers and signing Bryan Bulaga in free agency.

Rapoport reported the Chargers are "moving forward" with journeyman Tyrod Taylor as their starter in 2020 after missing out on Tom Brady.

Herbert had a terrific 2019, with 3,471 passing yards, 32 touchdowns and six interceptions while completing 66.8 percent of his attempts. He also ran for three touchdowns in the team's 28-27 Rose Bowl win over Wisconsin on New Year's Day.

B/R's Matt Miller's latest mock draft, meanwhile, had the top 10 as follows: Burrow, Young, Okudah, Simmons, Tagovailoa, Herbert, Brown, Becton, Wills, Wirfs.


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