Live EventBooze Ponies vs. Uptown Balls | Match 88, Season 4 - The Dozen Trivia LeagueStarting Soon
Father's Day Collection | T-Shirts, Hats, Polos, Crewnecks, Q-Zips and MoreSHOP NOW

Advertisement

Liam Blutman's 2024 NFL Mock Draft 1.0

Katelyn Mulcahy. Getty Images.

Bonjour. Good morning or evening. I'm not sure what hour of the day you're reading this at but I welcome you with open arms to the mind of Liam Blutman. Thank you for boarding this journey with me as we dive headfirst into NFL Draft season. For those who don't know me, I'm just a guy who thoroughly enjoys every ounce of college football and the entire process of the draft. Ever since I was a little kid racing home to see my fellow ginger, Andy Dalton, selected on day two, I've been enamored with the event. I hope to bring you a quality first true mock of the cycle that not only helps educate you on a few prospects but also sets the tone for some of my bolder picks to be the new normal in the near future.

Advertisement

For a very quick rundown on how I like to mock… There's a healthy dose of predicting picks from a front office sprinkled in with making picks how I would if I were GM. I like using recent draft history, I don't put all that much stock into team needs, and I detest player comparisons. So I'll throw a few non-player comps out there, just a few.

1) Chicago Bears (via Carolina Panthers) - QB Caleb Williams (USC)

  • Ranking: N/A

  • Strength: Ability to extend plays and create greatness out of nothing. Some of his highest highs come from making jaw dropping plays out of thin air.

  • Weakness: Finds himself in trouble too often because of that. Super confident in his abilities, to a point where it hurts him because he’s trying to make absurd plays when there is nothing there at all. The play is over, move on and play for another down. 

  • Pokemon Comp: Eeveelutions

If I were in Chicago's front office, I'd be making a strong pitch to send this pick away and return a king's ransom. However, it's unlikely that'll be the case and highly likely da Bears swing for the fences with Caleb who brings a loud personality both on and off the field.

2) Washington Commanders - QB Jayden Daniels (LSU)

  • Ranking: N/A

  • Strength: Worked very hard to improve his game and became a big time deep ball thrower. Showcased terrific ball placement en route to winning the Heisman.

  • Weakness: Feels like he’s addicted to taking big hits, can often be seen on the wrong side of a disastrous hit that can only be described as, cartoonishly silly.

  • Fun Fact: Appeared on a podcast called Pardon My Take and didn't understand the "Which city would you want to live in?" game at all.

I'm lower on Daniels than the vast majority of people. I worry that there will be a rough transition period for him.

3) New England Patriots - Drake Maye (North Carolina)

  • Ranking: N/A

  • Strength: Always gives his pass catchers an opportunity to make a play.

  • Weakness: Was often pressed in chaotic situations. Felt like things were hectic quite a lot for him at UNC. Will be nice to see him in a more stable environment in the NFL.

  • Fun Fact: Is already rich.

Maye would be the obvious choice at two for me. He's suffering greatly from prospect fatigue causing people to question his talent… that's a mistake. The kid is going to have a long and successful NFL career.

4) Arizona Cardinals - WR Marvin Harrison Jr. (Ohio State)

  • Ranking: WR1

  • Strength: Ability to levitate, allowing him to make absurd contested catches against sticky coverage

  • Weakness: Having to overcome the hype and expectations.

  • Pokemon Comp: Moltres

Arizona's top priority since the summer has been adding Marvin to a young roster with plenty of promise. It'd wild they'll be able to do that at No. 4!

Advertisement

5) Los Angeles Chargers - OT Joe Alt (Notre Dame)

  • Ranking: OT1

  • Strength: Fluidity in movement, elite footwork. Played TE for a long time, helps him out heavily.

  • Weakness: Needs to showcase consistent power in hands/arms

  • Fun Fact: Joe’s dad John played OT for the Chiefs from 1984-1996, he’s in the Chiefs Hall of Fame

One of my favorite players in the class is blessed with an opportunity to help keep Justin Herbert healthy and lead him to the promised land. (Winning a playoff game)

6) New York Giants - WR Rome Odunze (Washington)

  • Ranking: WR2

  • Strength: Three-level threat. Wins at all areas of the field.

  • Weakness: Lacks top end speed

  • Fun Fact: His dad has multiple burner accounts and just tweets people all day about why his son is greatest player to ever exist.

For as long as Daniel Jones is under center, I'll question the quarterback position and advocate that the G-Men go find a new man for the job. Shockingly, barring an unforeseen shift, it'll be Jones again. So you might as well go get Daniel a nasty receiver… one that might be begging for a new QB in the 2025 Draft.

7) Tennessee Titans - OT Olu Fashanu (Penn State)

  • Ranking: OT2

  • Strength: A 3-star recruit who developed into a top 10 prospect at a rapid pace and still has plenty of room to grow with youth on his side.

  • Weakness: For his standards and expectations, 2023 was lackluster.

  • Fun Fact: Volunteered at a local homeless shelter daily.

Finally, Steven Cheah and I have a different pick. I promise we didn't look at one another's mock until they were each completed and ready to be published for the world to see. It'll still be the same position though as I have Tennessee adding a towering figure in Olu Fashanu who can help keep Will Levis on his feet.

8) Atlanta Falcons - EDGE Dallas Turner (Alabama)

  • Ranking: EDGE1

  • Strength: Very good at converting his elite speed off the edge into plenty of raw power.

  • Weakness: Can benefit from adding more pass rush moves to his arsenal.

  • Fun Fact: Declared for the NFL Draft six seconds after Alabama lost to Michigan in the CFB Playoff.

And we're back to Cheah and I having another exact pick. It's a no-brainer though as Atlanta is desperate for a pass rushing phenom and Turner is a budding star.

9) Chicago Bears - WR Malik Nabers (LSU)

  • Ranking: WR3

  • Strength: Flashes late hands at a prolific level.

  • Weakness: Has room to grow with high pointing the ball.

  • Cool Stat: LSU’s all-time leading receiver in yards (3,003)

These days every WR class tends to feel supreme. It's no different this year as a prospect as intriguing as Nabers slots in as WR3 for me. Bears fans can salivate at the thought of Caleb throwing to Malik as he gets guidance from D.J. Moore.

10) New York Jets - OT JC Latham (Alabama)

  • Ranking: OT4

  • Strength: More than ideal NFL frame at 6-foot-6, 360. (Would benefit from shedding a few pounds) Will be a 21 year old rookie.

  • Weakness: Has to cut down on penalties. 

  • Cool Stat: Exactly 874 snaps at RT in both the 2022 and 2023 seasons.

With Mekhi Becton being hurt every other snap, it's become a major need for the Jets to invest in another offensive tackle and hope he can thrive like Becton showed… but stay healthy and on the field.

11) Minnesota Vikings - EDGE Jared Verse (Florida State)

  • Ranking: EDGE2

  • Strength: Hustle and pure power.

  • Weakness: Will be 24 in his rookie year.

  • Fun Fact: Told me he’d posterize me if given the opportunity.

Verse was set to be a lock for the top ten in 2023 but he opted to dominate for another year in college. Respect. There's a remarkably high chance the Vikings take an edge rusher with one of their first two selections.

Advertisement

12) Denver Broncos - TE Brock Bowers (Georgia)

  • Ranking: TE1

  • Strength: Turned his stats all the way up like a create a player in a video game.

  • Weakness: Positional value of TE is very low. predictability of where he lands is tough.

  • Fun Fact: An athletic background that includes playing QB, TE, LB, and basketball in high school.

In my way too early mock I sent Bowers to Denver at No. 15, about ten months later and he's still a Bronco in my eyes, this time at No. 12. While I do believe that the positional value of a TE is a low, all it takes is one time to believe and draft him much earlier than this. I can see him going in the top seven.

13) Las Vegas Raiders - OT Tyler Guyton (Oklahoma)

  • Ranking: OT3

  • Strength: Imposing force with superb speed and quickness.

  • Weakness: Would benefit from more consistent hand placement, use your upper body strength and strong arms to your advantage.

  • Cool Stat + Fun Fact: 0 Sacks allowed on 335 pass blocking snaps in 2023. In January 2023 Jared Verse told me Guyton is the best player he’s ever faced.

One of the very first sentences I told to Steven Cheah was that I love Tyler Guyton and he's going to have a meteoric rise up draft boards. That was in early December, Guyton is consistently moving up boards but… I still don't think people are high enough on the 6-foot-7 tower so I'll plant my flag with the Raiders taking him at No. 13.

14) New Orleans Saints - QB J.J. McCarthy (Michigan)

  • Ranking: N/A

  • Strength: Managing a game, did it so well he won a Natty. 

  • Weakness: Didn’t exactly stuff the stat sheet.

  • Pokemon Comp: Togepi

Paying Derek Carr all that dough will never make sense to me. I opted to send McCarthy here as opposed to Bo Nix or Michael Penix Jr. because at just 21 years old, they have more than enough time to ease him into things and let him learn.

15) Indianapolis Colts - CB Quinyon Mitchell (Toledo)

  • Ranking: CB1

  • Strength: Freak athlete with great length.

  • Weakness: Everyone seeing he only wore a Toledo helmet.

  • Comp: Elmer’s Glue

This is another one of those picks where I plant my flag. I've been in on Quinyon Mitchell for years and have always seen a NFL caliber talent, now everyone else is seeing it too. I'm a big believer in drafting two young corners with extreme talent and tools. If you can get two stud CB's on rookie deals, you've beat the system. More teams should do this, I'm trying to start a movement.

16) Seattle Seahawks - EDGE Laiatu Latu (UCLA)

  • Ranking: EDGE4

  • Strength: High level instincts, brings plenty of juice to the field.

  • Weakness: Medically retired in 2021 due to a neck injury.

  • Fun Fact: Remained at Washington as a student coach before hitting the transfer portal.

With how I view it, there's a large range of outcomes for where Latu can be selected. I can see top eight, I can also see him sliding out of the first round. I'm playing it safe with a mid-first landing spot to a team that is hunting for a game changing pass rusher.

17) Jacksonville Jaguars - CB Terrion Arnold (Alabama)

  • Ranking: CB2

  • Strength: Stellar physical tools, willingness to fight through contact and make his presence felt.

  • Weakness: Took awhile for his game to be respected, most people were dialed in on Kool-Aid all season and not Arnold.

  • Fun Fact: Gifted his high school janitor one of his jerseys for Christmas.

Arnold is a savvy player and the Jags would be wise to select him here. When it's all said and done, I can see him being selected as CB1 and possibly going in the top ten.

18) Cincinnati Bengals - OT Taliese Fuaga (Oregon State)

  • Ranking: OT5

  • Strength: Elite run blocker.

  • Weakness: 29th percentile arm length.

  • Cool Stat: 0 Sacks allowed on 694 pass block reps.

You know it's a great offensive line class when Taliese Fuaga is ranked at OT5. That's no slight to him, it just goes to show how good some of these OT prospects are.

Advertisement

19) Los Angeles Rams - CB Kool-Aid McKinstry (Alabama)

  • Ranking: CB3

  • Strength: Stupendous ball skills.

  • Weakness: Has struggled to keep up with physical wideouts, prospect fatigue is hitting him hard.

  • Fun Fact: Got the nickname Kool-Aid when he was a baby because his grandma stated his smile reminded her of the Kool-Aid Man

Choosing between OT and defense here was a tough choice but I much preferred the idea of the Rams swinging for high upside at corner.

20) Pittsburgh Steelers - IDL Jer'Zhan Newton (Illinois)

  • Ranking: IDL1

  • Strength: Innate quickness, wildly good get-off.

  • Weakness: Positional value of DT and Newton’s height can drive his draft stock down.

  • Fun Fact: Wants to design and build cars after his football career.

Building a defensive front with Newton and Keanu Benton helping take some pressure of T.J. Watt is something Steelers fans should be rallying for. While I dislike going DT in round one, it's nice that Newton brings plenty of pass rushing to the table. When he enters the NFL, we'll have to monitor if his height gets in the way of winning plenty of reps.

21) Miami Dolphins - EDGE Bralen Trice (Washington)

  • Ranking: EDGE3

  • Strength: Speed and violence.

  • Weakness: Average run defender.

  • Fun Fact: Washington’s Defensive MVP in 2022 and 2023.

Yes, I'm sending Miami another vaunted pass rusher. If this team is serious about competing for a Super Bowl, I see no issues with taking Trice and sending him on missions to hunt down Patrick Mahomes, Josh Allen, and all the other top quarterbacks in the AFC. Trice is a big time player that produces on a consistent basis. This pick isn't exactly a need, I'm very cognizant of that.

22) Philadelphia Eagles - CB Kamari Lassiter (Georgia)

  • Ranking: CB5

  • Strength: Highly intellectual.

  • Weakness: Doesn’t have top tier speed, leads to being beat deep.

  • Comp: That kid in middle school who was really good at dissecting the frog and loved every second of it.

I didn't mean to do this but the Eagles go down the Georgia route again. Lassiter fits what they're looking for, a brilliant mind that can dissect a play with ease. He's physical and combative in the run game too, this pick was a no brainer.

23) Houston Texans (via Cleveland Browns) - CB Ennis Rakestraw Jr. (Mizzou)

  • Ranking: CB5

  • Strength: Asserts physical dominance.

  • Weakness: Torn ACL in 2021, plagued by injuries in 2023 including a nagging groin injury.

  • Fun Fact: As a recruit he was turned away from an Under Armour Regional after they told him he’s too small to be let into the camp. Ennis shared, “I got in the car, I cried, and I made sure that any All-American, anybody that stepped in front of me, I was going to make them pay.”

As I talked about a few picks ago, draft multiple young corners and let them thrive on rookie deals. Derek Stingley Jr. is already doing his thing, the plan for Houston is to now add Texas native, Ennis Rakestraw Jr. Who has all the potential in the world… if he's healthy. 

24) Dallas Cowboys - WR Brian Thomas Jr. (LSU)

  • Ranking: WR5

  • Strength: All-around game in a 6-foot-4 body with terrific length in arms and legs.

  • Weakness: Played in the shadows of Jayden Daniels and Malik Nabers. Just one season of dominance under his belt.

  • Fun Fact + Cool Stat: Played both football and basketball in high school. Scored more than 1,000 points in each of his three seasons of basketball.

Jerry Jones gets what Jerry Jones wants. And I feel like he's going to take a strong liking to Brian Thomas Jr. who would look real nice next to CeeDee Lamb.

25) Green Bay Packers - DB Cooper DeJean (Iowa)

  • Ranking: DB1

  • Strength: High level IQ. Super versatile. Return upside as well thanks to wicked twitch and smooth movement.

  • Weakness: Press man coverage.

  • Fun Fact: Chose to play DB at Iowa over QB at South Dakota State.

DeJean brings plenty of versatility to the field, he's a defensive coordinator's dream.

26) Tampa Bay Buccaneers - CB Nate Wiggins (Clemson)

Advertisement

  • Ranking: CB4

  • Strength: 6-foot-2 with great arm length and stupendous ball skills.

  • Weakness: Less than desirable top end speed.

  • Fun Fact: Started “Wiggs Worldwide Foundation” to improve the lives of kids by supporting underprivileged communities. The organization has a major focus on building a better future through mentorship and support for local organizations.

As the days go by, I tend to become higher and higher on Nate Wiggins. There's definitely something here and it's optimal I let you all know, he doesn't turn 20 until late August. I believe we're looking at a steal in the late first, Cheah should be thrilled about my GM'ing skills here.

27) Arizona Cardinals (via Houston Texans) - IOL Cooper Beebe (Kansas State)

  • Ranking: IOL1

  • Strength: An absolute mauler in the run game with plenty of pass protecting upside.

  • Weakness: People have concern about how high his ceiling is/room for growth.

  • Pokemon Comp: Crawdaunt

Cooper Beebe is a certified Liam Guy and I'm super happy to send him home to my beloved Arizona Cardinals. No, I am not a fan of the team. I just really like what they are building and I'm a staunch believer they'll be very competitive in a few years whether Kyler Murray is at QB or not.

28) Buffalo Bills - S Tyler Nubin (Minnesota)

  • Ranking: S1

  • Strength: Range, closing speed, vocal leader.

  • Weakness: Too emotional at times which can lead to penalties.

  • Fun Fact: Dad played football at Eastern Michigan, Mom ran track at Eastern Michigan.

The free throw challenge just ended a few hours ago, I'm very tired writing this but just know Tyler Nubin is going to be a stud at the next level.

29) Detroit Lions - EDGE Chop Robinson (Penn State)

  • Ranking: EDGE5

  • Strength: Strong vs. the pass and run, projects as an every down player.

  • Weakness: Has to put on more weight, sits at about 250 right now.

  • Fun Fact: Weighed 14 pounds out of the womb and got the nickname “Pork-Chop.” Was shortened to “Chop” once he got older and said “I can’t have people calling me Pork-Chop.”

Chop Robinson is ready to bite knee caps. Dan Campbell is going to fall in love with the man formerly known as Pork-Chop.

30) Baltimore Ravens - S Kam Kinchens (Miami)

  • Ranking: S2

  • Strength: Impeccable range. Playmaker, big time ball skills.

  • Weakness: Can lose reps due to being overly aggressive.

  • Fun Fact: Has found ways to give back to the community his entire life whether it’s donating extra clothes to Goodwill or feeding the homeless.

As of late there's been a major flaw in the draft world and that's the decreasing value of the safety position. I'll take a good safety all day long, I'll gladly draft them in the first too. Ravens fans, you'll enjoy my second safety pick of the first round.

31) San Francisco 49ers - OL Troy Fautanu (Washington)

  • Ranking: OL1

  • Strength: Extremely mobile, does a great job of establishing physicality.

  • Weakness: I project him as a guard at the next level, could hurt his draft stock just a bit.

  • Fun Fact: Played volleyball in high school

Fautanu can play tackle or guard, I project him thriving more as a guard. He will probably have a top 20 player grade from me.

Advertisement

32) Kansas City Chiefs - WR Troy Franklin (Oregon)

  • Ranking: WR6

  • Strength: Blazing speed, terrific burst makes him a menace after the catch.

  • Weakness: For a guy his size you’d like him to be a more dependable run blocker.

  • Fun Fact: Doing a behind the scenes “Path to the Draft” on his YouTube channel.

Hey Taylor Swift, get ready to celebrate Troy Franklin touchdowns. I love Franklin and he'd be lethal in a KC offense that desires electricity after the catch. Put this kid next to Rashee Rice and let's have some fun.

That'll conclude my first mock draft of the cycle, I hope you enjoyed and I thank you so much for reading it!