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2022 NFL Draft First Round Mock Draft

The 2022 NFL Draft begins on Thursday, April 28th. Below is a mock draft for the first 10 picks in this year’s edition. 

1: Jacksonville Jaguars

Biggest needs: Defense, specifically Edge, S, and LB

Aidan Hutchinson, Edge, Michigan

After a disastrous 2021 season, the Jaguars have the rare opportunity to draft first overall two years in a row. While they could draft just about any position on defense, Aidan Hutchinson is the clear number one prospect. He will give the Jaguars a potentially elite pass-rusher that they desperately need. 

2: Detroit Lions

Biggest needs: Secondary, LB, QB

Kayvon Thibodeaux, Edge, Oregon

The Lions could potentially go just about anywhere with this pick. They have a lot of needs to fill on both sides of the ball. While they have a clear need at quarterback, there aren’t any prospects that truly warrant the second overall pick. Therefore, the Lions should select an elite defensive end. Thibodeaux was the projected number one overall pick coming into the season before having a subpar season, so he still has some great potential. 

3: Houston Texans

Biggest needs: Everything

Evan Neal, OL, Alabama

The Texans truly need every position except for maybe quarterback. In order to figure out if they have their quarterback of the future, they should use this pick to keep him protected. Neal is a freak athlete who has a lot of flexibility on the line. Therefore, the Texans could potentially plug him in at any position they need on the offensive line. While there are other options for them here, Neal might be the best prospect available here. 

4: New York Jets

Biggest needs: Secondary, LB, WR

Trayvon Walker, DL, Georgia

While the Jets’ biggest need isn't the defensive line, after Walker’s combined performance, he demonstrated that he is a can’t-miss athlete. New York could use him all over the field as a real game wrecker. While Ahmad Gardner might be the smarter pick for them, Walker’s upside is just too great for them to pass up. 

5: New York Giants

Biggest needs: OL, DL, CB

Ikem Ekwonu, OL, NC State

Luckily for the Giants, they have a couple of chances to improve in this draft early. They have needs all over the board, but Ekwonu is potentially the best offensive lineman in the draft and he fits the zone blocking scheme of the Giants well. They also need to do everything in their power to keep Saquon Barkley healthy, and Ekwonu would only help with that. 

6:  Carolina Panthers

Biggest needs: QB, OL

Malik Willis, QB, Liberty

After striking out on several quarterbacks in recent years, the Panthers need to try something new. While Willis is likely not ready to start on day one, he has great potential to develop into an amazing quarterback. As long as Matt Rhule and the rest of the Panthers' coaches don’t screw up his development, he could become a perennial Pro Bowler.

7: New York Giants

Biggest needs: OL, DL, CB

Ahmad Gardner, CB, Cincinnati

This is likely the easiest pick in the draft. The Giants desperately need help at cornerback, and Gardner is possibly the most talented player in this draft. He was outstanding regardless of who he was matched up against. He will likely come in and be the Giants’ number one corner immediately. 

8: Atlanta Falcons

Biggest needs: WR, QB, DL, OL

Drake London, WR, USC

The Falcons are in a position where it is basically a requirement to draft a receiver. Now that Calvin Ridley is gone for the 2022 season, Marcus Mariota will need someone to throw to. Even though London might not be the most pro-ready receiver, his upside is something that Atlanta can’t ignore. He has great size, with the potential to improve all-around and become the best receiver in the class. 

9: Seattle Seahawks

Biggest needs: QB, Edge, CB, OT

Jermaine Johnson II, Edge, Florida State

Without Russell Wilson and Bobby Wagner, the Seahawks are in full rebuild mode. Johnson certainly fits that mold. He is a very raw edge-rusher with incredible upside. He has the physical tools to become a top-tier pass-rusher as long as the Seahawks develop his skills. 

10: New York Jets

Biggest needs: Secondary, LB, WR

Garrett Wilson, WR, Ohio State

After taking a flier on their earlier pick, the Jets could use this one to fill a true need. Wilson was great at Ohio State, showing that he is likely ready to contribute. This will only help the development of Zach Wilson who needs more receivers to throw to. 

 

Fan of Minnesota sports, so I'm used to disappointment. Was once mistaken for Ryan Gosling (but I'm more talented). Probably the only Yung Gravy fan you'll meet.

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