Who will be the third overall pick in the 2020 NFL draft? With LSU's Joe Burrow and Ohio State's Chase Young looking like virtual locks to go one and two, this is pretty much the first big question to be answered on Thursday night.
The Detroit Lions currently own the pick, and while a trade out of the thee spot is possible, there may not be a team willing to move up that high. Such a move would likely be made for a quarterback, but there won't be a safe quarterback selection on the board after Burrow.
Alabama's Tua Tagovailoa carries significant and well-documented injury concerns, while Oregon's Justin Herbert is an inconsistent prospect with questions of his own. According to Omar Kelly of the South Florida Sun-Sentinel, some teams view Herbert as a late-first-round talent at best:
Of course, as Kelly noted, those teams aren't in the market for a quarterback. Quarterback-needy teams are far more likely to pull the trigger on him at the top of Round 1.
There are two types of teams in the NFL: Those that have a franchise quarterback and those searching for one. Reaching for a signal-caller is a common draft practice, and we're likely to see a few examples of it on Thursday night.
If the Lions keep their selection, Ohio State's Jeff Okudah would make the most sense—Detroit finished 32nd in passing yards allowed last season. However, Auburn defensive tackle Derrick Brown is also under consideration, according to Sports Illustrated's Albert Breer.
Barring an unexpected trade at the top of Round 1, Detroit is likely to provide the first real pivot point on opening night.
2020 NFL Mock Draft, First Round
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, OT, Alabama
5. Miami Dolphins: Justin Herbert, QB, Oregon
6. Los Angeles Chargers: Tristan Wirfs, OT, Iowa
7. Carolina Panthers: Isaiah Simmons, LB, Clemson
8. Arizona Cardinals: Mekhi Becton, OT, Louisville
9. Jacksonville Jaguars: C.J. Henderson, CB, Florida
10. Cleveland Browns: Andrew Thomas, OT, Georgia
11. New York Jets: Jerry Jeudy, WR, Alabama
12. Las Vegas Raiders: CeeDee Lamb, WR, Oklahoma
13. San Francisco 49ers (from Indianapolis): Henry Ruggs III, WR, Alabama
14. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Ezra Cleveland, OT, Boise State
15. Denver Broncos: Justin Jefferson, WR, LSU
16. Atlanta Falcons: Derrick Brown, DT, Auburn
17. Dallas Cowboys: Xavier McKinney, S, Alabama
18. Miami Dolphins (from Pittsburgh): Javon Kinlaw, DT, South Carolina
19. Las Vegas Raiders (from Chicago): K'Lavon Chaisson, Edge, LSU
20. Jacksonville Jaguars (from Rams): Jaylon Johnson, CB, Utah
21. Philadelphia Eagles: Brandon Aiyuk, WR, Arizona State
22. Minnesota Vikings (from Buffalo): Kristian Fulton, CB, LSU
23. New England Patriots: Tua Tagovailoa, QB, Alabama
24. New Orleans Saints: Jordan Love, QB, Utah State
25. Minnesota Vikings: A.J. Epenesa, Edge, Iowa
26. Miami Dolphins (from Houston): D'Andre Swift, RB, Georgia
27. Seattle Seahawks: Josh Jones, OT, Houston
28. Baltimore Ravens: Josh Uche, LB, Michigan
29. Tennessee Titans: Yetur Gross-Matos, Edge, Penn State
30. Green Bay Packers: Denzel Mims, WR, Baylor
31. San Francisco 49ers: Trevon Diggs, CB, Alabama
32. Kansas City Chiefs: Patrick Queen, LB, LSU
Henderson Trending as a Top-10 Pick
If Okudah is the pick at No. 3, there's a chance he won't be the only corner to go in the top 10. Florida's C.J. Henderson is beginning to gather momentum as a top-10 selection, according to Bleacher Report draft analyst Matt Miller:
However, Miller recently noted it could be tough for Henderson to actually squeeze into the top 10.
"This one is more difficult to see unless the Carolina Panthers (No. 7 overall) or Jacksonville Jaguars (No. 9) either select Henderson or trade the pick to a cornerback-needy team, such as the Atlanta Falcons. Those are the only realistic scenarios in which Henderson gets into the top 10," Miller wrote.
Henderson would make sense for both Carolina and Jacksonville. The Panthers lost James Bradberry in free agency, while the Jaguars traded away Jalen Ramsey in the middle of last season.
If the Lions pass on Okudah to take Brown, however, it's not hard to envision the Jaguars or the Panthers moving up a few spots to land the Buckeyes pass defender instead.
Redskins Receiving Trade Interest
It would take a surprising move for either Burrow or Young to not go in the top two. However, shocking does not mean impossible.
The Cincinnati Bengals are unlikely to pass on their shot at a potential franchise quarterback. The Washington Redskins could be a little more receptive to the idea of passing on Young. While Young is considered a rare talent, Washington has young defenders like Montez Sweat, Daron Payne and Jonathan Allen on its defensive front.
Young would be a luxury pick at No. 2. Unsurprisingly, Washington is already receiving calls about trading the selection, according to NFL Media's Ian Rapoport:
Ian Rapoport @RapSheet
Early fireworks? The #Redskins have begun to receive calls from teams interested in trading up to the No. 2 overall selection, sources say. They aren’t intent on moving out of the pick many believe will be #OSU DE Chase Young, but they are listening. Teams are laying groundwork.
If Washington can net an extra first-round pick and then some by trading down a few spots, it could be worth pulling the trigger on a deal. However, it's usually not advisable to pass on a prospect who appears to be a sure thing.
Having more picks won't accomplish anything if the prospects don't pan out.