Pre-FA VT/PTSD Mock: A Top-10 QB, Trades Galore, and a Controversial Vikings Selection

Recently, I had the good fortune of organizing a Vikings Territory and Purple PTSD mock draft. I was joined by ten writers; our task was to do an entire first-round mock. My wife, God bless her, chose the draft order by pulling names out of a hat. Included below is our mock draft, complete with brief descriptions for why certain writers chose certain players.

Before proceeding to the mock, allow me to extend my sincere thanks to all those who participated: Josh Frey, Noah Moore, Cole Smith, Will Woodford, Henrique Gucciardi, Mitchell Massman, LeeAnn Lowman, Adam New, Nate Powalie, and Steven DeLuca. Their work can be found on VT and/or Purple PTSD.

With all that said, the mock.

Pre-Free Agency Mock Draft

  1. Jacksonville Jaguars – Josh Frey

OT Evan Neal (Alabama)

The Jaguars need help everywhere, but Jacksonville’s main priority at No. 1 should be protecting their most valuable resource, Trevor Lawrence. 

  1. Detroit Lions – Noah Moore

DE Aidan Hutchinson (Michigan)

Like the Jaguars, the Lions could also throw a dart at a board and land on a position of serious need. With so many holes to fill, they should take the best player available on the board. Aidan Hutchinson is a true blue chip prospect at edge that would give the Lions a player to build a defense around. 

  1. Houston Texans – Cole Smith

S Kyle Hamilton (Notre Dame)

Lovie Smith built a strong defense in Chicago, and Hamilton has the skill set to immediately upgrade a Texans defense that ranked 31st-overall in 2021.

  1. New York Jets – Will Woodford

DE Kayvon Thibodeaux (Oregon)

Surrounding Zach Wilson with talent is of the utmost importance, but the Jets have four other picks in the top 70 to address those needs. Grabbing Thibodeaux here gets them a top-flight pass rushing prospect, and adds to a defense that has some talent to it already. 

  1. New York Giants – Henrique Gucciardi

OL Ikem Ekwonu (NC State)

The Giants need a lot of talent if they want to be a contender again. With two picks in the top 7, they can afford to pick the best player available right now. Ekwonu will need to improve as a pass blocker, but is dominant in the run game and can be a very good player for Brian Daboll’s offense.

  1. Carolina Panthers – K. Joudry 

OT Charles Cross (Mississippi State)

Christian McCaffrey, when healthy, is excellent. D.J. Moore is among the most underrated players in the NFL. I don’t know if they’ll have a talented QB in 2022, but adding on a strong offensive lineman is never a bad choice to complement an offense with skill.

  1. New York Giants – Mitchel Massman 

WR Garrett Wilson (Ohio State)

The Giants front office has made it appear that they intend to stick with Daniel Jones at QB. With pick 5 they took a top offensive lineman to bolster protection for Jones. Adding Wilson gives Jones an additional weapon on the outside that can contribute on day 1.

  1. Atlanta Falcons – LeeAnn Lowman

QB Malik Willis (Liberty University)

The 8th pick might be too high for Willis according to some critics, but he’s just what the Falcons need. This draft is at near drought level for QBs so Willis won’t last. He is a solid pick for a team like Atlanta. Willis is a dual threat with a cannon for an arm and the ability to scramble and run for yards. With Matt Ryan returning in 2022 the team has the luxury of allowing him to learn their system behind the aging vet. 

  1. Denver Broncos – Adam New

CB Derek Stingley Jr (LSU)

With the assumption that the Broncos make a move for a veteran QB, and allow Kyle Fuller and Bryce Callahan to move on. I give them the cornerback who I believe has the highest ceiling. His elite speed and athleticism will matchup with the best wide receivers the NFL has to offer.

  1. New York Jets – Nate Powalie 

OT Trevor Penning (Northern Iowa)

The Jets have been developing the left side of their offensive line with Mekhi Becton and Alijah Vera-Tucker to protect Zach Wilson. A guy like Penning can help protect Wilson’s blindside, and with his 6’6”, 330-pound frame, his physicality and strength makes him a blue-chip prospect that would be worth a top 15 pick.

  1. Washington Commanders – Steven DeLuca : Philadelphia Eagles – Henrique Gucciardi


  • Washington gets:

16th overall (PHI)

4th round (pick 122)

2023 second round pick

  • Philadelphia gets: 

11th overall

7th round (pick 228)

2023 fifth round pick

CB Ahmad Gardner (Cincinnati)

After an unexpected playoff berth, the Eagles use their haul of draft picks to move up and select the best cornerback in this draft, hoping he will strengthen their pass defense.

  1. Minnesota Vikings – Josh Frey

iOL Tyler Linderbaum (Iowa)

With the Philadelphia Eagles swiping Sauce Gardner out from under their feet, the Vikings turn towards the offensive line. Linderbaum is the anchor in the middle that they’ve desperately needed.

  1. Cleveland Browns  – Noah Moore

WR Drake London (USC)

Vikings fans have seen what Kevin Stefanski can do as a play caller with a pair of talented receivers. Having lost OBJ to the Rams last season, Stefanski will want a quality #2 wide receiver to pair with Jarvis Landry. Drake London, a receiver out of USC who is as technical as he is talented, should fit the mold.

  1. Baltimore Ravens – Cole Smith

EDGE David Ojabo (Michigan)

Ojabo has the raw talent to immediately upgrade a Ravens pass rush that accumulated only 34 sacks in 2021. His upside is intriguing if he can fall to 14.

  1. Philadelphia Eagles – Will Woodford

LB Nakobe Dean (Georgia)

The Eagles continue to revamp their defense. Nakobe is a great athlete, and with the very little depth Philly has at the linebacker position Dean can step in and be a leader at that level of the defense right away. 

  1. Philadelphia Eagles – Henrique Gucciardi: Washington Commanders – Steven DeLuca

WR Jameson Williams (Alabama)

Williams is still on the board at this point due to injury, and rightfully so. But, the potential upside for the 6’2” speedster out of Alabama may be too great for Rivera and company to pass up. Alongside Terry McLaurin, Anthony Gibson, and a healthy Curtis Samuel, Williams could make the Commanders one of the most electrifying offenses in the league.

  1. Los Angeles Chargers – K. Joudry: Pittsburgh Steelers – Adam New


  • LA Chargers get: 

20th overall

84th overall

2023 4th

2023 6th

  • Pittsburgh gets: 

17th overall 

QB Kenny Pickett (Pittsburgh)

Trading up to jump in front of the Saints, to make sure Kenny Pickett stays in Pittsburgh. Pickett will be solid starter from day one, and lands in a great spot to develop his talents.

  1. New Orleans Saints – Mitchel Massman

QB Matt Corral (Ole Miss)

The Saints need a QB if they don’t address it in free agency. Corral has a great arm, can throw from different platforms, and fit the ball in tight windows. He is also athletic enough to make plays on the ground. With a run on QBs, it was time for the Saints to take a chance.

  1. Philadelphia Eagles – LeeAnn Lowman

EDGE George Karlaftis (Purdue) 

The Eagles desperately need someone to come in to help the pass rush. Karlaftis is a smart football player who works harder than almost anyone else on the team. His hunger and passion will make him a fan favorite in Philly. His power, strength, and quickness will make him a coach’s favorite. 

  1. Pittsburgh Steelers – Adam New: Los Angeles Chargers – K. Joudry

iDL DeMarvin Leal (Texas A&M)

I’ve seen some mocks suggest Jordan Davis, but I’m not sure about a run-stuffer in the opening round. Instead, the Chargers opt for someone who they believe can create disruption alongside Mr. Bosa. 

  1. New England Patriots – Nate Powalie: Arizona Cardinals – Josh Frey


  • New England gets:

No. 23

No. 85

  • Arizona gets: 

No. 21

No. 123

No. 198

WR Treylon Burks (Arkansas)

As DeAndre Hopkins’ injury evidenced, the Arizona Cardinals are in need of another dynamic receiver on the outside. Burks has a long frame and should be able to transfer his electric collegiate production to the NFL level. 

  1. Las Vegas Raiders – Steven DeLuca 

CB Andrew Booth Jr. (Clemson)

Josh McDaniels will begin his tenure in Vegas by selecting a defensive back. Not the sexiest pick, but the Raiders desperately need help in all phases of defense. Booth is a solid cover corner, who will make an immediate impact for the silver and black.

  1. Arizona Cardinals – Josh Frey: New England Patriots – Nate Powalie

CB Trent McDuffie (Washington)

After much deliberation, the Patriots need a cornerback. Stephon Gilmore is long gone, and J.C. Jackson could soon bail in free agency. Sure, McDuffie may have a small frame for his position (5’11”, 192 pounds), but he’s an aggressive competitor and plays well in press, cover and man situations.

  1. Dallas Cowboys – Noah Moore

OG Zion Johnson (Boston College)

With Connor Williams likely on the way out, the Cowboys need a starting-quality replacement at the left guard position. Taking Zion Johnson out of Boston College with the #24 pick could be an instant upgrade.

  1. Buffalo Bills – Cole Smith

CB Kaiir Elam (Florida)

The Bills boasted the league’s best defense in 2021, but the depth at corner was tested in the playoffs. This was capped off by the Chiefs’ game-tying field goal drive with 13 seconds left in the AFC Divisional Round.

  1. Tennessee Titans – Will Woodford

LB Devin Lloyd (Utah)

An all around linebacker, Lloyd is a talent that probably should have gone sooner but due to positional value lands at 26. Tennessee might lose Jayon Brown and Rashaan Evans this free agency, so they replace one or both of them with arguably the best linebacker prospect in the draft. 

  1. Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Henrique Gucciardi: Miami Dolphins – Mitchel Massman


  • Tampa Bay gets:

No. 29

No. 124

  • Miami gets: 

No. 27

OG Kenyon Green (Texas A&M)

The Dolphins offensive line is bad. They ranked 32nd as a group in 2021 according to PFF. The Dolphins trade up to select a tone setter. Green is explosive, athletic, and understands leverage. A good selection to improve a distressed offensive line. 

  1. Green Bay Packers – K. Joudry

WR Chris Olave (Ohio State)

Ironically, the Packers choose a first-round receiver at precisely the time that Aaron Rodgers may be heading out the door. 

  1. Miami Dolphins – Mitchel Massman: Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Henrique Gucciardi

DL Travon Walker (Georgia)

The Bucs will probably face a rebuild now, since Tom Brady retired and they have multiple big name free agents. Walker is a versatile player who lined up everywhere for the Bulldogs’ defense. He adds versatility and can be a staple of the unit alongside Vita Vea.

  1. Kansas City Chiefs – LeeAnn Lowman

DE Logan Hall (Houston) 

He’s a bit of a hybrid of edge rusher and tackle. He is a physical presence but is surprisingly quick. He would help fill in some of the gaps that KC has on defense. After his break out season last year for Houston he has the potential to make an impact as a rookie.

  1. Cincinnati Bengals – Adam New

OT Nicholas Petit-Frere (Ohio State)

Number one priority for the Bengals has to be finding some protection for Joe Burrow. Petit-Frere has played on the left and right side for the Buckeyes, so he comes in as a replacement for the aging Reily Reiff. Though he may be better suited on the left side. The interior will need looking at on day 2.

  1. Detroit Lions – Nate Powalie   

WR Jahan Dotson (Penn State)   

 A speed threat who can catch is becoming paramount in today’s league. And I think that Dotson fits that mold well. He can partner with Amon-Ra St. Brown and provide a 1-2 punch on the outside for Jared Goff to throw to.