2022 NFL Mock Draft: Post-Pro Bowl Projections for 1st-Round Prospects

Joe Tansey@JTansey90Featured ColumnistFebruary 7, 2022

2022 NFL Mock Draft: Post-Pro Bowl Projections for 1st-Round Prospects

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    Vasha Hunt/Associated Press

    Thirty of the 32 NFL teams have their focus on the 2022 NFL draft right now. 

    The talent evaluators of each franchise just left the Senior Bowl, where they collected some new data on the most experienced college football players in the draft class. 

    The top of the draft rankings is not expected to change much in the coming weeks. Alabama offensive tackle Evan Neal, Michigan edge-rusher Aidan Hutchinson and Oregon defensive end Kayvon Thibodeaux are the likely candidates for the No. 1 overall pick. 

    Doug Pederson's arrival to the Jacksonville Jaguars should provide more clarity as to which side of the ball the franchise will approach with the No. 1 overall pick. 

    The Detroit Lions would gladly take any of the remaining prospects at No. 2, and they would love to choose between the top two defensive prospects. 

    Most of the top picks in April should be non-quarterbacks. We may not see a signal-caller's name called until the back end of the top 10, where the Denver Broncos could change the course of the selection process. 

2022 NFL 1st-Round Mock Draft

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    Andy Nelson/Associated Press

    1. Jacksonville: Evan Neal, OT, Alabama

    2. Detroit: Aidan Hutchinson, Edge, Michigan

    3. Houston: Kyle Hamilton, S, Notre Dame

    4. New York Jets: Kayvon Thibodeaux, Edge, Oregon

    5. New York Giants: Ikem Ekwonu, OT, NC State

    6. Carolina: Charles Cross, OT, Mississippi State

    7. New York Giants (from Chicago): Devin Lloyd, LB, Utah

    8. Atlanta: Ahmad Gardner, CB, Cincinnati

    9. Denver: Kenny Pickett, QB, Pittsburgh

    10. New York Jets (from Seattle): Derek Stingley, CB, LSU 

    11. Washington: Malik Willis, QB, Liberty

    12. Minnesota: Nakobe Dean, LB, Georgia

    13. Cleveland: Garrett Wilson, WR, Ohio State

    14. Baltimore: Tyler Linderbaum, C, Iowa

    15. Philadelphia (via Miami): Drake London, WR, USC

    16. Philadelphia: David Ojabo, LB, Michigan

    17. Los Angeles Chargers: George Karlaftis, Edge, Purdue

    18. New Orleans: Matt Corral, QB, Ole Miss

    19. Philadelphia: Kenyon Green, OG, Texas A&M

    20. Pittsburgh: Trevor Penning, OT, Northern Iowa

    21. New England: Treylon Burks, WR, Arkansas

    22. Las Vegas: Chris Olave, WR, Ohio State

    23. Arizona: Arnold Ebiketie, Edge, Penn State

    24. Dallas: Andrew Booth, CB, Clemson

    25. Buffalo: Trent McDuffie, CB, Washington

    26. Tennessee: Travon Walker, Edge, Georgia

    27. Tampa Bay: Jahan Dotson, WR, Penn State

    28. Green Bay: Jameson Williams, WR, Alabama

    29. Miami (via San Francisco): DeMarvin Leal, DT, Texas A&M

    30. Kansas City: Roger McCreary, CB, Auburn

    31. Cincinnati: Bernhard Raimann, OT, Central Michigan

    32. Detroit (via Los Angeles Rams): Sam Howell, QB, North Carolina

Doug Pederson Hire Should Influence Jacksonville's Decision

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    Vasha Hunt/Associated Press

    Jacksonville has made a terrific hire by landing former Philadelphia Eagles head coach Doug Pederson to replace Urban Meyer

    The 54-year-old is a creative offensive mind and led the Eagles to a Super Bowl victory four years ago. He should be the perfect partner for Trevor Lawrence's development, and the coach has some pieces on the roster to make that happen.

    Pederson's influence on the roster could lead to the Jaguars taking Alabama offensive tackle Evan Neal with the No. 1 overall pick. 

    The 21-year-old could provide security for Lawrence for years and shore up one of the most important parts of the roster. 

    Jacksonville needs help on its defense as well, but it can upgrade at those positions in the latter rounds if Neal is the player at No. 1. 

    The selection of Neal would allow the Detroit Lions to take Aidan Hutchinson or Kayvon Thibodeaux at No. 2. The Lions have two first-round selections, with the second coming via the Los Angeles Rams at the back end of the first round. 

    If Neal is the opening name called on April 28, he would be the first offensive tackle chosen at No. 1 since Eric Fisher in 2013. The Kansas City Chiefs made that choicewhen Pederson was their offensive coordinator. 

Quarterback Run Likely Starts with Denver

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    David Zalubowski/Associated Press

    Some quarterbacks will be chosen in the first round, but they will be taken later than we have seen in previous years. 

    The Denver Broncos could control the demand with the No. 9 overall pick, which new head coach Nathaniel Hackett may use to land the team's signal-caller of the future.

    Kenny Pickett, Malik Willis and Matt Corral are the best options at the position. The Denver staff needs to dissect collegiate game film, Senior Bowl performance and NFL combine numbers to determine who would be best at the position.

    If Denver opts for that direction, it could force the Washington Commanders, New Orleans Saints and others to move up in the order to land the other premier quarterbacks. Washington is scheduled to pick at No. 11, but it could get jumped if a team trades up to get its top target. 

    There is always a chance Denver is out of the quarterback market come April. Hackett was the offensive coordinator in Green Bay, and he may be able to lure Aaron Rodgers to Denver. 

    That situation could force the quarterbacks to drop out of the top 10 unless a trade happens. The other franchises slated to pick in the top 10 either have quarterbacks in place, or they could use prospects at other positions to upgrade their rosters.