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2024 NFL Mock Draft: Picks that Make Teams More Fun

Georgia Bulldogs tight end Brock Bowers
If the New York Jets took former Georgia tight end Brock Bowers with the No. 10 pick, would it help or frustrate QB Aaron Rodgers? Mandatory Credit: Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports

Mock drafts can be put together in many ways and accomplish different things. Some mocks account for what an analyst would do with each pick. Others try to predict what the NFL will do. Either way, it’s serious work.

This is not one of those mock drafts.

The only goal for each pick in this mock is to make a team more fun. That’s it. Team needs, player value, etc., will still be considered, but the most important question will be: does this make the team more fun?

2024 NFL Mock Draft To Make Teams More Fun

1. Chicago Bears

Caleb Williams, QB, USC

There’s nothing to overthink here — the fun move and the expected move are the same.

Caleb Williams is the best quarterback in this draft, and his fit with the Chicago Bears in Shane Waldon’s offense is better the more you look into it. Williams is better than given credit for in structure, and his out-of-structure creativity is unmatched in this class. 

2. Washington Commanders

Drake Maye, QB, North Carolina

The Washington Commanders opt for the tall, big-armed quarterback who can also run. Drake Maye had some accuracy issues during his final college season, but that wasn’t the case in his standout sophomore season, so the hope is he can develop more in the right situation.

He has experience in an Air Raid system, which would fit with offensive coordinator Kliff Kingsbury. Plus, his big arm will play in an offense with Terry McLaurin and Jahan Dotson.

3. New England Patriots

Marvin Harrison Jr., WR, Ohio State

The New England Patriots could use a quarterback and will eventually need one for the future. But are the 2024 Patriots more fun with Jayden Daniels throwing to Kendrick Bourne and Pop Douglas or with Jacoby Brissett throwing to Marvin Harrison Jr.?

>>READ: 7 Best Route Runners in the Draft

We’ve seen Brissett be a more than capable quarterback, and Harrison Jr. is a clean receiving prospect who excels everywhere. He will be a key piece in building the foundation around whoever the next quarterback is.

4. Arizona Cardinals

Rome Odunze, WR, Washington

The Arizona Cardinals need a wide receiver, so we’re pairing Rome Odunze with Kyler Murray. Odunze slides in over Malik Nabers because of his role. Odunze can play more as an X receiver, and his big body is something that could be more impactful for the current Cardinals’ roster.

>>READ: 7 Best Deep Threats in the Draft

Odunze’s combination of size and speed will play well on the outside. He's closer to receivers Murray has had success with in the past. The Washington product is smooth on all three levels of the field and led college football in deep targets and receptions last season. 

5. Los Angeles Chargers

Malik Nabers, WR, LSU

Justin Herbert gets the most explosive receiver he’s ever played with in this scenario.

Malik Nabers is a big play waiting to happen, and that’s been the biggest missing element of the Los Angeles Chargers’ offense during the past few seasons. The Chargers are 17th in explosive pass rate since 2021, per TruMedia.

Nabers’ 7.0 yards after the catch per reception and 69 percent positive play rate against zone coverage in 2023, per SIS, make him a threat to reach the end zone whenever the ball is in his hands. That also translates to deep speed, giving Herbert a dynamic top receiver to kickstart the new receiving corps.

6. New York Giants

Jayden Daniels, QB, LSU

One of the knocks on Jayden Daniels is that he’s a one-read-and-run quarterback. Brian Daboll got the New York Giants to the playoffs in 2022, building a one-read-and-run offense around Daniel Jones.

Getting Jones on the move created so much space for the quarterback and eliminated his two biggest weaknesses — throwing dangerous passes into tight windows and taking sacks.

Daniels doesn’t have the tight window issue, but the sacks were a problem, even in his Heisman season.

Even if Daniels is 2022 Daniel Jones plus the willingness to throw deep (Jones has the lowest rate of 20-plus air-yard throws in the past two seasons while Daniels just put up an 88th-percentile deep accuracy and 100th-percentile deep completion rate season for a college prospect), that’s an exciting NFL player. Daniels' traits suggest he could be much more than that.

7. Tennessee Titans

Joe Alt, OT, Notre Dame

Again, sometimes the most fun option and the right option are the same. The Tennessee Titans went out and spent all over the roster to bring in talent. The offensive line remains one of the league's worst units. Will Levis saw the second-highest pressure rate and had the sixth-highest pressure-to-sack rate last season.

>>READ: Top 15 Offensive Tackles in the Draft

Joe Alt led tackles in this class in blown block rate against the pass. Throwing him on the offensive line starts to shore up the position, which could allow Levis more time for the long-developing plays off play-action that he enjoys so much. After all, Levis had the highest rate of deep throws in the league during his starts. 

8. Atlanta Falcons

Dallas Turner, Edge, Alabama

Taking Brock Bowers here would be chaotic fun, but the Atlanta Falcons need more pass-rushing playmakers. There would be nothing fun about needing a 36-year-old quarterback coming off an Achilles tear to throw 45 times per game because the defense can’t get stops.

>>READ: 11 Best Edge Rushers in the Draft

Dallas Turner has the power, explosiveness and technique to be a productive pass rusher and lead a unit that has Arnold Ebiketie and Lorenzo Carter starting on the edge. The Falcons are last in pressure rate in the past three seasons. Turner was second in this class in true pressure rate (straight dropbacks without RPOs, play-action or screens).

9. Chicago Bears

Laiatu Latu, Edge, UCLA

With the top three receivers gone, the Bears are in a similar position as the Falcons. Ask Caleb Williams if he’d rather have a non-big-three first-round receiver or the chance to take a breather when the defense is on the field and not have to put up 40 points per game.

The Bears made a leap in the second half of last season, and it coincided with the addition of Montez Sweat. As good as that addition was, Chicago could still use a second pass rusher to play opposite him.

Laiatu Latu isn’t crazy athletic but possesses enough pass-rush technique to be a threat on every down, especially when defenses have to account for Sweat on the other side of the line. Latu was still first in this class in true pressure rate and third in quick pressure rate.

10. New York Jets

Brock Bowers, TE, Georgia

This can go one of two ways — Brock Bowers is an immediate hit, giving the New York Jets and Aaron Rodgers the type of athletic tight end and middle-of-the-field receiver who can elevate the offense, or he takes time to develop like we’ve seen from other rookie tight ends and that visibility frustrates Rodgers on the field.

It’s a win-win for content. This path to fun is for the observer either way.

>>READ: 7 Best Tight Ends in the Draft

Bowers' versatility and explosiveness should allow him to be an instant contributor in the passing game. Pairing Bowers and Garrett Wilson would help Rodgers and be an incredible duo to build around once the Rodgers era is over.

11. Minnesota Vikings

J.J. McCarthy, QB, Michigan

The Minnesota Vikings are in a spot where they need to come away with a quarterback, and J.J. McCarthy is basically a more mobile version of Kirk Cousins.

His accuracy is good enough with room to grow, but there’s no standout physical trait. Still, that’s more than enough for Kevin O’Connell to mold and control while surrounding the quarterback with Justin Jefferson, Jordan Addison and T.J. Hockenson.

>> READ: What If The Vikings Can't Move Up?

12. Denver Broncos

Quinyon Mitchell, CB, Toledo

With the top quarterbacks gone, no remaining passer is good enough to help the Denver Broncos contend with the other offenses in the AFC. Instead, the Broncos can double down on defense and add a plus corner to play opposite Patrick Surtain. Plus, what could be more fun — from our perspective — than Sean Payton attempting to win games 10-7 with Jarret Stidham?

Quinyon Mitchell has the size and speed, along with fluid hips and ball skills, to be a high-impact player on the outside. Last season, Mitchell had the second-most passes defensed in college football (18).

He was more of a zone corner in college but was under 1.0 yards per coverage snap in man and zone and would be helped with Surtain taking the top receivers on the opposite side. The Broncos were 32nd in DVOA against No. 2 wide receivers in 2023.

13. Las Vegas Raiders

Terrion Arnold, CB, Alabama

The Las Vegas Raiders are in a similar spot to the Broncos.

There aren’t available quarterbacks who will drastically change the offense (and Gardner Minshew is a better option than anything the Broncos have), so Las Vegas could continue building up the defense.

After Antonio Pierce became the interim head coach, the Raiders' play changed. It wasn't just a bump in production; there was a clear change in structure. Still, there’s a hole at the corner spot opposite Jack Jones.

Terrion Arnold can play man, press and move into the slot. He has length and twitch that shows in his coverage — in aggressiveness off the line and with ball skills with the pass in the air.  He has the versatility to fit with the many coverages Patrick Graham runs.

14. New Orleans Saints

JC Latham, OT, Alabama

Sometimes the way to make a team more fun is to eliminate what makes them the least fun. Derek Carr isn’t going anywhere, so protecting him from pressure would be the best option.

Carr had the seventh-lowest success rate under pressure, and he would throw the ball up for grabs down the field or throw the ball away.

With Ryan Ramczyk out indefinitely because of a cartilage defect in his knee, the New Orleans Saints need a replacement at tackle. JC Latham plays on the right side and is a big body with plus play strength that works well for the run and the pass. Trevor Penning is still a work in progress on the left side, so there is some urgency to get some kind of anchor on the line.

15. Indianapolis Colts

Nate Wiggins, CB, Clemson

Nate Wiggins played the highest rate of man coverage in this draft class (53 percent per SIS). That isn’t a perfect scheme fit for an Indianapolis Colts defense that played the highest rate of zone coverage in the league (83.3 percent). But Wiggins had the second-lowest yards per coverage snap and lowest positive play rate allowed when playing zone in 2023.

Wiggins could use some of his man coverage skills in the Gus Bradley Cover-3 system, taking care of one side of the field. He is a little light but has the upside to change the defense's ceiling.

16. Seattle Seahawks

Cooper DeJean, DB, Iowa

New Seattle Seahawks coach Mike Macdonald gets the most versatile defensive back in the draft. This isn’t just about Cooper DeJean, but what could be done with DeJean and Devon Witherspoon in the same secondary.

DeJean can play outside, in the slot and at safety. Witherspoon can also play all over the defense, and the looks could be completely different from play to play. Seattle's defense has not equaled the sum of its parts in the past few seasons.

Adding the uber-athletic DeJean could be a spark in the secondary, helping a defense that ranked 29th in EPA per play against the pass in 2023.

17. Jacksonville Jaguars

Brian Thomas Jr., WR, LSU

Even after signing Gabe Davis in free agency, the Jacksonville Jaguars need a consistent vertical threat on the outside. Brian Thomas Jr. is big (6-foot-3) and fast (4.33 40-yard dash).

Both qualities show up when he’s on the field. He can be a deep threat but also has one of the best broken/missed tackle rates in this receiving class.

With Thomas and Davis on the outside and Christian Kirk and Evan Engram in the slot, Trevor Lawrence would finally have threats to all three levels of the field, which has not been a part of the passing game during Lawrence’s tenure.

The Jaguars are 20th in explosive pass rate in the past two seasons.

18. Cincinnati Bengals

Keon Coleman, WR, Florida State

There are some concerns in Keon Coleman’s prospect profile. The lack of separation could be an issue. But because of his size and play speed, a power-slot role could be an option that limits some of the risk in Coleman’s weaknesses and takes advantage of his run-after-the-catch ability.

With Tyler Boyd gone, the Cincinnati Bengals need a slot receiver, and the 6-foot-3 Coleman could be a massive presence inside with Ja’Marr Chase and Tee Higgins on the outside. Coleman can also move outside, allowing Chase to bounce around the formation.

If there is a quarterback willing to trust his receivers and throw a ball into tight coverage down the field, it’s Joe Burrow. Coleman could also serve as insurance in case Higgins is traded or let go, whether in 2024 or 2025. 

19. Los Angeles Rams

Jer’Zahn Newton, iDL, Illinois

There is no replacing Aaron Donald, but the Los Angeles Rams could try to keep up the interior pass rush by adding Jer’Zahn Newton. Newton has a quick first step off the line and can push the pocket from the inside. He was first among this interior class in true pressure rate and was relied on to create pressure for the Illinois defense with a class-high 30 percent pressure share.

>>READ: 7 Best Defensive Tackles in the Draft

Newton could play next to Kobie Turner, who had 9.5 sacks next to Donald as a rookie, giving the Rams two dynamic pass rush threats inside.

20. Pittsburgh Steelers

Xavier Worthy, WR, Texas

Whether it’s Russell Wilson or Justin Fields at quarterback, the Pittsburgh Steelers will have a passer with one of the highest rates of deep attempts in the league — Wilson was third and Fields was second in 2023.

Why not lean all the way in and draft the receiver who ran a 4.21 at the combine? Xavier Worthy also doesn’t have the size to consistently work the middle of the field, but neither Wilson nor Fields want to throw there too often.

Worthy isn’t just a vertical speed threat and can catch-and-run on shorter passes. He led college football in punt return yards and could be a Cordarelle Patterson partner with the new kickoff rule in place. 

21. Miami Dolphins

Amarius Mims, OT, Georgia

The Miami Dolphins just missed out on a speed receiver but could go there later in the draft. Part of what makes the Miami offense fun is the speed — the way the receivers run and how quickly the ball gets out. Part of that is an effort to protect the offensive line from sustaining blocks.

That works but can limit the offense when the Dolphins need to pivot to longer-developing plays while trailing late in games.

Enter Amaris Mims. There’s some development needed for a tackle who started just eight games, but he has rare size and athleticism that could play so well with this Miami offense.

The quick passing would immediately limit the downside for holding blocks while Mims gets more comfortable in pass protection. His 340-pound frame in open space with the Dolphins run game would be frightening for any defensive player.

22. Philadelphia Eagles

Kool-Aid McKinstry, CB, Alabama

Darius Slay and James Bradberry are getting old for cornerbacks. Play for each dropped in 2023, too. Kelee Ringo had some flashes in his limited time, but the Philadelphia Eagles could use a potential top corner to play immediately and limit the snaps needed from the two veterans.

>>READ: Top 15 Cornerbacks in the Draft

Kool-Aid McKinstry could fit in the Vic Fangio defense with match coverage skills from Alabama and a combination of off-coverage prowess. He also has high-level play speed, allowing him to close quickly and break on the ball. When needed, he can press and lock down receivers from the snap. 

Georgia Bulldogs cornerback Kamari Lassiter
Georgia defensive back Kamari Lassiter works out during the 2024 NFL Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium. (Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports)

23. Minnesota Vikings

Kamari Lassiter, CB, Georgia

Few teams play more man coverage than the Vikings. Defensive coordinator Brian Flores asks a lot of his corners while he creates chaos across the rest of the defense. No cornerback in this class had a lower positive play rate allowed in man coverage than Kamari Lassiter (19 percent) and just a 27 percent completion rate allowed overall.

Lassiter works better in off-man coverage. He doesn’t always have the strength to impact routes off the line in press, but his technique allows him to stick with routes down the field. He isn’t the most athletic corner, but he can stick with the play and be physical at the catch point, which will play on the outside in a Flores defense.

24. Dallas Cowboys

Graham Barton, OL, Duke

The Dallas Cowboys need help all over the offensive line with Tyron Smith and Tyler Biadasz gone, so they should grab the offensive lineman who could play anywhere.

Graham Barton played tackle at Duke but is expected to move to guard in the NFL and has also prepared to play center. Barton is a great run blocker, which can work well if he’s moved inside, whether that’s guard or center.

>>READ: 7 Best Guards in the Draft

25. Green Bay Packers

Olu Fashanu, OT, Penn State

Olu Fashanu will go higher than this in the real draft, but with the way this worked out, the Green Bay Packers grab a good, young tackle who can immediately slide in at their biggest position of need.

>>READ: 7 Best Pass Protectors in the Draft

Fashanu is another size/athleticism tackle with the technique to hold up in protection. He can move in space, which will also help in the game. He’s also still 21, giving him at least a few years until the Packers believe he’s too old for them.

26. Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Chop Robinson, Edge, Penn State

At its best, the Todd Bowles defense has a flurry of pass rushers who can come from different angles and alignments on any play. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have been hit or miss with their edge players during the past few seasons. They were 21st in pressure rate with the third-lowest rate of sending a four-man rush in 2023.

Chop Robinson still needs to develop a bit of technique as a pass rusher, but his plus athleticism shows up and gives him some cover. Per SIS, Robinson was first in this class in quick pressure rate, while the Buccaneers were 27th. 

27. Arizona Cardinals

Troy Fautanu, OL, Washington

The Cardinals need help on the interior and that’s where Troy Fautanu can slide right in. Fautanu could instantly play at right guard after the Cardinals signed Jonah Williams to play right tackle as Paris Johnson will move over to the left side.

Fautanu also has five-position versatility and could use his fleet-footed play style to fit at center, if necessary. Wherever Fautanu plays, it would help build up the line and bring some more youth in front of Kyler Murray, who, despite his size, wants to be a pocket passer more than given credit for. 

28. Buffalo Bills

Troy Franklin, WR, Oregon

After the Stefon Diggs trade, the Buffalo Bills need a wide receiver. Troy Franklin can be an outside-speed receiver who can bring elements of Diggs and Davis to the field. Franklin has deep speed but can work every area of the field. He was tied for 11th in intermediate receptions in 2023 and spent a career earning more targets than expected.

Franklin fits as an outside receiver, which could help Khalil Shakir and Curtis Samuel in the slot more often. He can also move around the formation and give the Bills' offense a bunch of different looks. 

29. Detroit Lions

Adonai Mitchell, WR, Texas

The Detroit Lions have tried to find a consistent vertical threat. Jameson Williams played more when he was available in the second half of last season, but Detroit still asked a lot of Josh Reynolds. Reynolds left in free agency, and his positional role now will go to Khalif Raymond or Donovan Peoples-Jones.

Instead, let’s get Adonai Mitchell on the outside as a true X receiver. Mitchell’s consistency was his biggest issue at Texas. Still, it will be nearly impossible for him to not give full effort for a Dan Campbell-coached team.

Ben Johnson could get the most out of him on the outside with so much attention focused on Amon-Ra St. Brown and Sam LaPorta over the middle. 

30. Baltimore Ravens

Darius Robinson, DL, Missouri

Give the Baltimore Ravens the productive tweener on the defensive line. It can be that simple.

Darius Robinson isn’t the best athlete, but he’s a long, high-motor defender who can find his way to the quarterback. Robinson is 285 pounds. Last season, he played 43 percent of his snaps on the edge and 35 percent inside.

The Ravens might be the only defense that could get the most out of Robinson's versatility and has a need at EDGE (could slot him next to Justin Madibiuke inside, as well). 

31. San Francisco 49ers

Taliese Fuaga, OL, Oregon State

The San Francisco 49ers need help on the right side of the line, and that’s where Taliese Fuaga plays, whether that be at tackle or guard. The 49ers have Jon Felicano and Colton McKivitz on the right side.

Brock Purdy was effective under pressure but also faced the eighth-highest rate of pressure last season. Allowing him to play from a clean pocket is where the 49ers thrive.

>>READ: 7 Best Run Blockers in the Draft

Fuaga can get on the move in outside zone and has the play strength to excel on gap concepts, which is the perfect mesh for a Shanahan lineman. 

32. Kansas City Chiefs

Xavier Legette, WR, South Carolina

Xavier Legette could be a perfect Andy Reid wide receiver. He’s big (6-foot-1, 221 pounds), fast and explosive. He carried the South Carolina offense last season, finishing with the highest Target Yards Added in this draft class. 

Legette can be used on the move, can win deep with physicality at the catch point and can run after the catch. He could be a big gadget receiver in a Deebo Samuel/Cordarrelle Patterson mold. He’s also a threat to take slants and crossers to the house.

He won't be a true No. 1 receiver, but he brings all the elements of receivers the Chiefs have tried to find and would be a thrill to watch with schemed-up touches.