The deadline for college players to announce their intentions regarding the 2018 NFL Draft is January 15th, which means that the pool of potential talent is finally starting to solidify. It also means that its time for another first-round mock draft by SB Nation’s NFL Draft Editor Dan Kadar.
In this mock, Kadar portends an early run on quarterbacks, with a whopping five drafted within the first thirteen picks, and the Buffalo Bills deciding that it would more prudent to take a best-players-available approach than to take the sixth-best quarterback with one of their two first-round picks.
21. Buffalo Bills: Josh Jackson, CB, Iowa
The Bills will try and get a quarterback this offseason. If you use the outdated draft value chart, the value of pick Nos. 21 and 22 is the No. 7 pick. Conceivably it could work for the Buccaneers at No. 7 since they don’t need a quarterback. If the Bills stick here, they could be in trouble. As we’ve seen, there’s been a run on defensive linemen. That could lead the Bills to fall back on the cornerback depth in this year’s draft. Jackson had a breakout season at Iowa in 2017 and bolstered his stock as much as anyone.
22. Buffalo Bills (via Kansas City Chiefs): Billy Price, C/G, Ohio State
This pick was between two Big Ten players in Price and Michigan defensive lineman Maurice Hurst. Price can play either guard spot or center for the Bills. That could mean replacing the 34-year-old Richie Incognito on the left or Vladimir Ducasse on the right.
I’ve gone on record stating that the only quarterbacks worth trading up for in the draft are Sam Darnold and Josh Rosen. If the Browns and Giants decide that they aren’t interested in a trade, then I’m in total agreement with Kadar that a trade up for Josh Allen or Lamar Jackson should not be attempted. If the Bills decide to stay put and draft BPA, Jackson and Price would be great fits for what the team wants on both sides of the ball. Price would slide in as a starting guard, likely replacing Vlad Ducasse, greatly aiding whomever ends up quarterbacking this team. Jackson would likely replace a departing E.J. Gaines and would be an upgrade, as he has the ball skills and length you want in a zone cornerback. If Buffalo re-signs Gaines, that would change the pick and the conversation.
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I would’ve drafted Mason Rudolph at 21