On today's solo episode, Ryan discusses his mock draft with the listeners! He also covers breaking news from around the league and makes corny key puns. Enjoy the newest episode of the podcast!
In this episode of the Play Action Podcast, the host discusses the latest news in the NFL, including updates on players like Delvin Cook, Michael Bidwell, Mack Jones, and Joe Mixon. He also talks about potential trade deals involving Aaron Rodgers, Odell Beckham Jr. signing with the Baltimore Ravens, and Devin White requesting a trade from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Later in the episode, the host shares his mock draft, predicting the top picks for teams like the Carolina Panthers, Houston Texans, and Arizona Cardinals. He also discusses potential picks for teams like the Indianapolis Colts, Seattle Seahawks, and Detroit Lions. Hello, everybody, and welcome back to another episode of the Play Action Podcast. Today will be just a solo episode, just scheduling-wise, a special guest just wasn't going to work today and I needed to get some content out there on the long-awaited Play Action Podcast Mock Draft. So, I don't want you guys to be sitting here for hours and hours, I want to spend almost a whole episode just talking about this mock, so we're not going to have a quick question today. I will quickly go over the news as we get into this episode. All right, so, quickly, let's get into the news here before we actually get into our mock. So, first, report on Delvin Cook. Apparently, he is going to be back at 100% after his surgery and is expecting a bounce back here. This is key for the Vikings, but Cook might even get traded or released, so that's a situation to monitor. Michael Bidwell, the owner of the Arizona Cardinals, has been accused of cheating by former head coach Steve Wilks, as well as others, in a lawsuit, so probably expect some draft picks to be lost here from the Cardinals, so if you're a Cardinals fan, it's just not great for you. Apparently, there's a report, we don't know if this is true, but there's a report that Mack Jones has been shopped this offseason and a trade is still possible, so monitor the Mack Jones situation. Do the Patriots want him as their quarterback? We'll have to see. Jeffrey Simmons and the Tennessee Titans agreed to a four-year, $94 million contract to keep Simmons back in town for the foreseeable future. I believe he was going into his last year of his contract. This is probably a smart move if you're the Tennessee Titans. Joe Mixon was recharged of aggravated menacing. The Joe Mixon legal situation continues. He was charged with this as, apparently, maybe an incident of road rage, but he pointed a gun at somebody and threatened to shoot them. These charges were dropped and have now come back up, so monitor the Joe Mixon situation. We'll have to see how this goes. Apparently, the Packers and the Jets are very close on an Aaron Rodgers deal. It could happen at the latest on draft night, and the Jets still believe that Aaron Rodgers is going to be their quarterback, so we'll have to see when that deal gets done, but right now, it doesn't seem like it's a matter of if, it seems like a matter of when. Odell Beckham Jr. signed with the Baltimore Ravens, and so it seems Odell signing with the Ravens, I hope, will entice Lamar Jackson to come back. Lamar, I think it will end up enticing Lamar to come back. There's a report that he plans to be throwing balls to Odell, so it sounds like this is going to bring Lamar back. And then Devin White, linebacker of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, requested a trade from the Buccaneers. He said he's frustrated with contract negotiations and how the team is, the direction the team is going. So, we'll have to monitor that situation, and then Jeff Okuda, cornered previously of the Detroit Lions, was traded from the Lions to the Falcons in exchange for a fifth round draft pick. I don't know what the Lions are thinking, maybe they just plan to take a quarter of the draft, they've already signed two quarters in free agency, maybe they just realized Okuda wasn't part of their long-term plans. I don't know, I thought he played pretty well last year, so a fifth round draft pick, I think this is a great steal for the Falcons, who are quietly, like, becoming a really good team. So, we'll just, if Desmond Ritter turns into something, this team could be, probably win the division, because this division's bad, but maybe they could even win a playoff game, we'll have to see. This will be interesting to watch with the Atlanta Falcons. Now, I'm going to take a quick break just to get the mock draft all together, and then we will get into that. And we are back to talk about this mock draft, the PlayAction Podcast mock draft. So again, I do these mocks all the time, and I'm very glad I get to share this one with you guys. So, the Carolina Panthers now have the number one pick after that trade that I've mentioned on this podcast so many times, because it was such a blockbuster deal, and the Panthers are on the clock at number one, and I've been taking quarterback C.J. Stroud out of Ohio State. Stroud, I'll probably have a rookie rankings show before the draft starts, but C.J. Stroud is not my number one quarterback, but he is the number one pick, because I think he fits what the Panthers want to do so well. He can throw just some great passes, and he's very mobile, doesn't use it enough, but I think this is the guy that Frank Reich is going to want in town, despite the reports that they're locked in on Bryce Young. I don't think that's true. I think C.J. Stroud is going to be a Carolina Panther. Now, that leaves the Houston Texans here at number two, and I think they'll take whoever's left after Bryce Young or C.J. Stroud, whoever the Panthers don't take, pretty much. So I've been taking Bryce Young, quarterback out of Alabama, and Young, he is my number one quarterback on my rankings, hint hint. So I think Young's a great passer, he's very accurate, and he's electric in space, even though he doesn't use it enough because of his frame, it's a huge injury risk for him to run, but he's a great improviser, and I think he's the best quarterback in this class based on what I've scouted. So I think Bryce Young to the Texans makes too much sense, and the Texans, another young team that could be something this year, especially with these two first-round picks. Now we have the Arizona Cardinals at number three, and in this mock, I do not have them trading down. I have them sticking at number three and taking Will Anderson Jr., the edge rusher out of Alabama. Will Anderson could very well be the best player in this class, he's a freak of nature athlete, can get to the passer so quickly, and is just an all-around incredible player. Probably would have been the number one pick in last year's class if he had been able to come out that year, because I think he's probably better than Aiden Hutchinson and Trayvon Walker. So Will Anderson at number three to the Cardinals seems like a steal. Number four, the Indianapolis Colts are on the clock, and I think they take Anthony Richardson, quarterback out of Florida. There's been some Will Levis to the Colts reports recently, but Anthony Richardson here just makes a lot of sense. The Colts, there was a report that said they're realizing that they're not a contender. Probably should have realized that a little while ago, and I think they'll take a rookie quarterback, and Anthony Richardson is a developmental prospect. While he's not my favorite quarterback in the world, again, we'll get into these quarterback rankings. I've ranked all 11 prospects that I think could be drafted at the quarterback position. That seems like a good idea for a show coming up, so I'll do that, but I'm not a huge fan of Anthony Richardson. I don't think he's a really special player, but I think the Colts could use a developmental prospect that they believe in. At number five, the Seattle Seahawks. This is the pick from the Denver Broncos, and I think they take Tyree Wilson, edge out of Texas Tech. Tyree Wilson really just fits the scheme of Seattle so well, and fits a position of need, that Pete Carroll will not pass this guy up. Wilson is just an incredible player. I've seen some people even put him ahead of Will Anderson as their top addressor in his class. I don't agree with that, but Tyree Wilson's an incredible player, really fits the scheme for them, and is a position of need, so Seattle taking Tyree Wilson seems like a no-brainer here at this spot. Next, the Lions at number six, this is the Los Angeles Rams pick, and with Jeff Okuda getting traded, it seems like it's very likely they're going to take a corner, and I think they take Christian Gonzalez, the corner out of Oregon. I love Gonzalez as a prospect. He has shown me everything that I want from a corner. I also like DeVon Witherspoon, but I do think that Gonzalez is a little better, and is more of a soft-garner-lockdown type, to Witherspoon's more big-hitter-solid-tackler type, while Witherspoon is great in coverage as well. I don't think he's Gonzalez in coverage, so Gonzalez, I think he's the pick here at number six for Detroit to really shore up a corner group that just lost their best corner. At number seven, the Las Vegas Raiders, and I think they take Will Levis, quarterback out of Kentucky. Will Levis is, he's, I don't even know what to think of Will Levis. He's so hard to scout. There's so many great traits there, and my notes that I will share when we do this QB ranking episode, Will Levis, I see some Josh Allen there. I like, I really do. I see some Josh Allen in him, but I also see some Zach Wilson, and just some inconsistent traits that just are not very good. So Will Levis is so hard to scout. The Raiders hope they can get him there, have him sit for a year, maybe even two, behind Jimmy Garoppolo, learn the NFL, and come out as a superstar in year two or three. At number eight, the Atlanta Falcons are on the clock, and I think they take Miles Murphy, the head rusher out of Clemson. Had a phenomenal pro day. I've always liked Murphy as a prospect. I think he just, it could be something special, and this Atlanta Falcons team has already shored up their secondary, they already have some good weapons to put around Desmond Ritter, and they have a decent offensive line, so it's really keep working on that defense and getting one more guy off the edge to play on that defensive line really just almost completes this defense. So this defense could be something special this year, especially with Murphy on board. At number nine, the Chicago Bears, after they're trained down, are on the clock, and I think they take the falling Jalen Carter, defensive tackle out of Georgia, stays within the top ten as his agent was talking about, and I'm not gonna lie to you, Jalen Carter, he's probably the best overall prospect in this class, but he's had some off-the-field issues. If he can resolve those, the Bears are getting an absolute steal here at number nine. And Philadelphia is now at number ten. The Philadelphia Eagles should take Devon Witherspoon, the corner out of Illinois, Darius Slade nearly had to leave this team, James Bradbury, all these guys, they're having to restructure deals, nearly capped casualties, these guys are not getting younger either, they need somebody that can learn behind these two greats and just become a great player behind them, and that's Devon Witherspoon. He could be the Eagles' corner of the future, well, just happen to be their corner three this year, maybe even four, so Devon Witherspoon at number ten just seems like a luxury pick for these Philadelphia Eagles. At number eleven, the Tennessee Titans, and I think they need some offensive line help, Broderick Jones, the tackle out of Georgia, really just fits the mold, he's that smash-mouth, hard-hitting tackle that Mike Braybill will want to help Derrick Henry, and this guy just fits the Titans so well and is out of position of need, so why not out there for Tennessee, Broderick Jones. Number twelve, Houston Texans, this is the Browns pick that they got through the Sean Watson trade, Quinton Johnston, wide receiver of TCU, not my wide receiver one in this class, not even my wide receiver two in this class, but he just fits the Texans' mold very well, he can go there, probably be the receiver one for this team, and he can go there and play with the rookie quarterback in Bryce Young, who could really just be a stud for Johnson, he's that big body receiver that they want, so I think this is a good fit for Houston. At number thirteen, the New York Jets, I have them taking Peter Skromski, the tackle out of Northwestern, and while some people are saying because of his short arms he's a better fit at guard, I think he plays tackle, I think they're kind of done with Mekhi Beckton at this point, and Skromski's a good replacement for him here at number thirteen to help protect Aaron Rodgers. At number fourteen, the New England Patriots, I think they'll take Brian Branch, the safety out of Alabama, there's really no one in this draft that's more of a Patriots player than Brian Branch, this just feels like such a sure thing pick for them if he's here at fourteen, Branch is probably one of the best safeties in this class, if not the best safety in this class, I think he is, and him at number fourteen can replace Devin McCourty and is truly just a Patriots player, so Brian Branch is the pick here for New England. At number fifteen, the Green Bay Packers are on the clock, and some people might call this a reach, but I have them taking Nolan Smith, the edge rusher out of Georgia, I'm just watching his tape and I'm thinking this is a Green Bay Packer, this is a Packer player, he fits their scheme, he really just does what they want him to do, and he has the last name Smith, which they love their edge rushers with the last name Smith, nah I'm just kidding, but I think Nolan Smith just really fits the mold here for Green Bay and would be a great addition to their defense. Sixteen, the Washington Commanders are now on the clock, and I think they'll take Paris Johnson Jr., the tackle out of Ohio State, now the Commanders could maybe take Hendon Hooker here, maybe they can go take, I don't know, maybe a corner even, I don't know, but I think an offensive lineman, specifically a tackle, is a big need for the Commanders to help protect whoever's their quarterback, whether it's Sam Howell, whether they draft somebody, whether they trade for somebody, whether they sign somebody, I don't know, they're gonna need somebody good to block for them, and Paris Johnson Jr., he's blocked for C.J. Stroud all these years, now he can go block for the Commanders' quarterback. For our number 17, the Steelers, I have been thinking Joey Porter Jr., the corner out of Penn State, this is just a great fit, keep the kid local, and he really fits their scheme, he seems like a Mike Tomlin player, I've seen him mock the Steelers' rivals the Ravens a little bit, but I just think him coming in here and helping this Steelers' corner room that has not been great for quite a while now, he could really help turn things around for the Steelers' defense, which has kind of been in a slight decline year by year over the past few years, since it's absolute dominance led by T.J. Watt, maybe they can get back to form this year with Joey Porter Jr. helping out. Now at number 18, we have the Detroit Lions back on the clock, this is their actual pick, I think they take Brian Brisset, the defensive tackle out of Clemson, great player, really dominated on the defensive line at Clemson, and they have some good edge rushers now led by Aiden Hutchinson, but they need some interior defensive line help, and I think adding Brian Brisset really does help that for Detroit, and Detroit adding two key defensive corner stones could really help them this year, and they could be a contender this year, we'll have to see what happens out there in the Motor City. Now at number 19, we have the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on the clock, hit in my last mock, I didn't share this with you guys in the podcast, but I had them trading down twice, here first with the Ravens, then with the Giants, both those teams moved up and grabbed the receiver, I actually have them staying put here and taking Kele Ringo, the corner out of Georgia, while I've seen some people giving him a second round projection, I think he's still a first round player, played great at Georgia, I'm a big fan of this corner class, and Kele Ringo is one of the reasons why, I'm a big fan of him, loved what he did at Georgia, and I think he can carry that over to Tampa Bay, with the rebuilding best player available type mentality now with the Buccaneers. At number 20, the Seattle Seahawks, and I've been picking, not the flashiest pick here, but a pick that Seahawks fans would probably tell you they really need, I've been picking a guard in Osiris Torrance, and he's a guard out of Florida, he was blocking for Anthony Richardson this year, and he's, they need some interior offensive line help, I think this is the only interior offensive lineman that has a chance to really go in the first round of this year's draft, and that's because he's a special player, you watched him last year, blocking for Anthony Richardson when he's running, even great at path blocking, this is a special player that could really help the Seahawks out of position of need, and they're starting to become one of those teams that isn't having many needs anymore, especially after this draft, addressing their two biggest ones. At number 21, the Los Angeles Chargers, and this is still my destination for B. John Robinson, because I don't think Austin Eckler will be a Charger after he requested a trade, so B. John, he's an insane player, a lot of executives have him as their best prospect in this class, it's just he's a running back, and a lot of teams either don't need a running back or don't value a running back. The Chargers, both, if they lose Eckler, they need a running back and they value a running back, so B. John just feels like the perfect pick here for the Los Angeles Chargers at 21, if Eckler says he's coming back and signs a new deal, or just straight up just says I'm playing another year in L.A., then he'll probably follow the draft more and he'll have L.A. probably taking a receiver here, but for now, the Chargers take B. John. The Ravens, at number 22, I'm taking Jackson Smith Ijigme, the wide receiver, out of Ohio State, I do think he's the best wide receiver in this class, I think it's very close between him and Jordan Addison, I think it's more of a coin flip than people are saying, I'm pretty hyped on Addison, but even with the Odell Beckham Jr. news and the new signing, they still need a receiver, and if they draft Jackson Smith Ijigme, I mean Mark Andrews, Rashad Bateman, Odell Beckham Jr. and Jackson Smith Ijigme as Lamar Jackson's weapons, they've gone from 0-10 so quickly in the wide receiver corps, and they might be the best in the league after that, so, I mean, this would be a huge pick for Baltimore, so let's see what they do there, I think they'll take Jackson Smith Ijigme, but corner is a big need, they could take a corner as well, I think if Joey Porter Jr.'s there and hadn't been taken by the Steelers earlier in this mock, he could be the pick for them. At 23, the Minnesota Vikings, now I've been taking maybe a bit more of a surprising pick, but it makes sense if you think about it, Jordan Addison, wide receiver out of USC, you might be saying, wait, they have Justin Jefferson, why do they need Jordan Addison with the first round pick? They have some big needs on defense. Well, Jordan Addison is A, a special player, and best player available, he might be the best player on this board at this point. Second, they just released Adam Thielen, who signed a contract with the Panthers, they need a receiver, and Jordan Addison fits the mold, he could be a special player for this Vikings team, and a number two behind Justin Jefferson's, well, dominating number one. The Jacksonville Jaguars, at 24, I have them taking another bit more of a surprising pick, I think they'll take Cam Smith, a corner out of South Carolina, again, I love this corner class, and he's a big reason why, I think he's a special player, the Jags need a corner, and he can really be a great player for this team, and I originally had him really high up in my rankings, he's fallen a little bit after just a little disappointing end of the season, but Cam Smith, still a special player, and I think the Jags, at 24, grab him and get a good player there. So now at number 25, the New York Giants, and I have them taking a receiver as well, in Zay Flowers, the wide receiver out of Boston College, Zay Flowers, again, yet another special player, a lot of people have had him as their wide receiver one in this class, I disagree with that, but that's something we can debate later, maybe we'll have a Q&A episode, I don't know, we'll have to see, but Zay Flowers, he's not my wide receiver one of this class, or two, or three, but he's still a first round talent in my opinion, and the New York Giants getting in here could be a big steal for them, and making Darren Waller not the only weapon on this team. Now at 26, this could be a bit of a surprising pick for you guys, but the Dallas Cowboys have always been known to make some surprising picks, and those picks usually turn out, so I've been taking Michael Mayer, the tight end out of Notre Dame, and they have a big absence now that Dalton Schultz is gone, he signed a one year deal with Houston, and they have a big absence at tight end, they could use a guy that Dak Prescott could rely on as a surefire short target, and Michael Mayer is very athletic, he can go deep, he's that Mark Andrews type, and Mayer could be a special player on this Cowboys offense. Now at 27, I believe we're at, we have the Buffalo Bills on the clock, and I think they get a huge steal here in getting Lucas Van Ness, the edge rusher out of Iowa, I mean this is a big steal, 27 for Lucas Van Ness, and Lucas Van Ness is not my favorite player, but I think he's very good and a big steal, some people have him in the top 10, I don't think he's that kind of player, I think he's more of a top 20 player, but 27 is still a big steal, they do need edge rusher, that is in need of theirs, and with Vaughn Miller already saying that he might leave to go into the management field in a year or two, I think getting Lucas Van Ness, even though he may not be a huge impact player right away, for the long term value, it's a huge upgrade for Buffalo, and now we're sitting here at pick number 28 with the Cincinnati Bengals, and I think this is another steal, I think Deontay Banks, corner out of Maryland, probably should have gone earlier, and him going here to the Cincinnati Bengals, obviously as a Ravens fan, I don't like it, because I like Deontay Banks, I'm also a Maryland Terrapins fan, I don't like seeing him go to Cincinnati, but it makes so much sense, and it's a great pick here by Cincinnati, to take Deontay Banks, he has all the skills needed to be a true lockdown corner, and I mean, they need a corner, Eli Happel, not getting the job done out there in Cincinnati, and they just need somebody to revamp that corner group, and I think Deontay Banks can be that guy. Now New Orleans, at 29, they got this pick via the Broncos, who got it via the Dolphins, who got it via the 49ers, so a lot of moves have been going on involving this pick, but the Saints have it right now, and I have been picking Isaiah Foskey, the edge, out of Notre Dame, this is a big fit for them, they need some defensive help, their defense that used to be so dominant is getting older, it's getting worse, and they need somebody to help shore that group up, and Isaiah Foskey could be the key to getting this group up to par with the rest of their division, which, you don't have to do much to get there, so, I mean, I did make a pretty good key joke there, I'm not gonna lie. And now at number 30, the Philadelphia Eagles, barely lost a Super Bowl, and now a second first round pick, and I think they take Trenton Simpson, the linebacker, out of Clemson, linebacker is a need for them after they just lost T.J. Edwards, this guy can fill in for T.J. Edwards pretty easily, I think he's a very good player, and the linebacker out of Clemson here, he could just be a younger T.J. Edwards, which is all they really need to get back to the Super Bowl, I mean, they did it last year, so Simpson is the pick here for Philadelphia. The Chiefs round out this first round at 31, again the Dolphins lost their first round pick because of the whole cheating allegations at the beginning of the year, so there's only 31 first round picks in the first round, and the Chiefs have the last one, kinda like Philadelphia, this is more of a luxury pick for Kansas City to improve an already dominant roster, I mean, they were the world champs just this past year, I've been thinking Edward Harrison, the tackle out of Oklahoma, they signed Juwan Taylor to a deal, he could probably be their left tackle, but they lost both of their tackles in free agency, Orlando Brown Jr. and Andrew Wiley, Edward Harrison could be Andrew Wiley, Wiley was not great, and I think Harrison can be something special at right tackle for this unit, so fixing that offensive line that was so great for the past two years could be a big need for Kansas City this offseason, or already has, with signing Taylor, so Harrison is just another piece to the puzzle in keeping this line great. So that wraps up my mock, I'm only doing the first round in this mock, and that wraps it up, I really do hope you guys enjoyed this episode, I love making these mock drafts, on Spotify in the Q&A pages there are going to be questions asking what your listener question is for the next episode, we obviously didn't have one today because we spent the whole episode time talking about this mock draft, but put that down there, and then if you use Apple Podcasts just put it down with your review, and if you do enjoy the podcast leave a review, we do read all those and we appreciate all of them, so I hope you guys enjoyed this episode of the podcast, again I hope you like the mock draft, and we'll have special guests coming back soon, this solo episode won't be a trend, so I hope you guys enjoyed, and I'll see you guys next time.