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The Eastern Echo Tuesday, May 28, 2024 | Print Archive
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Prediction: Post-Superbowl NFL Mock Draft 2.0

Eastern Echo Sports Columnist Caleb Burlingame breaks down picks 11-20 in the upcoming NFL Draft.

This article is part two in The Eastern Echo NFL Mock Draft, click here to go to part one. 

In case you don’t recall, two weeks ago I put out part one of The Eastern Echo’s NFL mock draft. I went in-depth about the first ten picks off the board, and saved picks 11-20 for this article, and picks 21-32 for a future article. Without further ado, let’s get back into it.

Pick 11 - New York Giants: Jaylen Waddle, WR, Alabama

As I said in the previous article, the wide receiver class this year is deep. These receivers are arguably going to be the stars of the next ten years, and Waddle is no exception. Waddle has been tearing it up at Alabama for the past three seasons and would be a great addition to an offense that is carried by Saquon Barkley. 

Getting Daniel Jones his receiver of the future while taking some of the weight off of Barkley would be massive, and would cover one of the Giants’ greatest position weaknesses.

Pick 12 - San Francisco 49er’s: Caleb Farley, CB, Virginia Tech

It is no secret that the 49er’s are facing an issue at the cornerback position for the upcoming season. 49er corners Richard Sherman, K’Waun Williams, Ahkello Witherspoon, Jason Verret, and Jamar Taylor will all be unrestricted free agents, which puts the 49er’s in a bind defensively.

With Patrick Surtain off of the board, Farley is the next best pick at the cornerback position. If the 49ers can resign at least one corner to pair with Farley, they’ll be okay for the short term.

Pick 13 - LA Chargers: Kyle Pitts, TE, Florida

Could we be seeing the next Brady-Gronk duo come alive if the Chargers pick Kyle Pitts? I think so. In 2020, Pitts had 66 targets, 43 catches and zero drops. Justin Herbert will be looking to take the next step next season, and Pitts will help him do that.

Book it now, this tandem could be an absolute problem for the rest of the league in years to come.

Pick 14 - Minnesota Vikings: Kwity Paye, DE, Michigan

If you look at the Vikings on a broad level, they have a lot of holes. Minnesota couldn’t seem to defend against anything last year, and although Paye is raw in terms of skill, he’s insanely fast and hits like a truck. Paye only recorded 11.5 sacks in four years, but his presence was felt every single snap when Michigan played.

This pick makes sense, especially since the Viking’s trade for Yannick Ngakoue didn’t go according to plan. I could also see Greg Rousseau being picked here, but since he opted out of the college season, I went with the pick that had more recent play.

Pick 15 - New England Patriots: Greg Rousseau, DE, Miami (Florida)

As said in the previous pick, Rousseau will probably come off of the board at 14 or 15, depending on who the Vikings pick. Rousseau opted out of the “COVID-19 Season”, but is still a monster of a player. Rousseau stands at 6’7 and weighs 253, and could register 10+ sacks in a few seasons. If the Vikings don’t take him, New England should. Bill Belichick would have a star on defense.

Pick 16 - Arizona Cardinals: Jaycee Horn, CB, South Carolina

The Cardinals are very similar to the 49er’s in terms of the cornerback position. They have several cornerbacks on the way out, including Patrick Peterson, which puts them in a clear position to draft a corner. Since Surtain and Farley are off of the board, Horn is the clear next best corner.

Pick 17- Las Vegas Raiders: Azeez Ojulari, Edge, Georgia

When thinking about this pick, I figured that the Raiders need to go defense. They have struggled to put pressure on QB’s in previous seasons, and Ojulari would fix that. Ojulari is quick and athletic, and wins at the line of scrimmage with a fast first step. Ojulari has a nice upside and isn’t a bad pick at 17.

Pick 18 - Miami Dolphins: Christian Darrisaw, OL, Virginia Tech

The top two things the Dolphins need in this draft are a wide receiver and an offensive lineman. I have the Dolphins taking Devonta Smith at three, and now they need to protect the guy that’s gonna throw to him. Tua Tagovailoa will still be getting his first steps in the NFL, and will have to be protected in order to succeed.

Darrisaw is one of the best lineman in the draft, and fits the role perfectly

Pick 19 - The Washington Football Team: Rashod Bateman, WR, Minnesota

When Michigan played against Minnesota this year in football, one guy I was amazed by was Rashod Bateman. Bateman is lighting fast and runs routes almost perfectly. Washington has a bit of an identity problem at QB, and whether or not they go with Smith or Heinicke, they’re going to need another receiver.

Washington WR Terry McLaurin has bloomed into a star, and with Bateman by his side it’ll open up many opportunities for this offense to shine. 

Pick 20 - Chicago Bears: Mac Jones, QB, Alabama

Oh Chicago. You can never seem to figure it out at quarterback can you? As a Lions fan, I take great pride in saying that the Bears are in for a world of hurt next season. Mitch Trubisky and Allen Robinson are set to hit free agency, and although Jones isn’t the best prospect for a day one starter quarterback, he has potential.

Jones has good accuracy and is a good decision maker. For this Bears team, you could pick almost anyone at the point in the draft and they’d probably go fill a hole that they have.

That’ll wrap up part two of this series! I will finish out the first round sometime in the near future, so be on the lookout.