2020 NFL Mock Draft 2.0: Jets take a gamble, while the Giants avoid temptation

Our second social-distance stroll through Mini-Mockville includes a different scene that should provide temporary happiness to Giants and Jets fans during these challenging times.
The NFL’s first virtual draft beginning April 23 promises to be a unique experience for all participants.
Here’s a look at how the early part of the draft could unfold in a couple weeks:

1. Bengals: LSU QB Joe Burrow

Joe Burrow
(AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)
The Dolphins are evidently sniffing around to move up and grab the Heisman Trophy winner with the No. 1 overall pick, but Cincinnati takes the wise approach by standing pat to land their quarterback of the future. Zac Taylor will sink or swim with Burrow, who looks ready to be a significant contributor from the jump.

2. Washington: Ohio State EDGE Chase Young

Washington has a long way to go before becoming relevant again, but Young would be a dynamic, game-changing addition for Ron Rivera. Unless a team offers a truckload of picks, it makes too much sense to take Young here.

3. Lions: Ohio State CB Jeff Okudah

Detroit would love nothing more than to slide down a few spots, pick up additional draft capital and still land the best cornerback in the draft. But nobody seems willing to bite for a quarterback, so Matt Patricia stays put and takes an instant game changer on the back end. Nobody allowed more passing yards last season than the Lions, who replace Darius Slay with a potential star.

4. Giants: Iowa OT Tristan Wirfs

While Clemson's Isaiah Simmons is tantalizing at No. 4, Iowa's Tristan Wirf still seems the more likely pick for the Giants.
While Clemson's Isaiah Simmons is tantalizing at No. 4, Iowa's Tristan Wirf still seems the more likely pick for the Giants.(Paul Sancya/AP)
Gettleman is tempted to beef up his porous defense with super freak Isaiah Simmons, but Wirfs could be a bookend, blind-side protector for Daniel Jones over the next decade. Louisville’s Mekhi Becton is a consideration, but Wirfs’ ridiculous athleticism is hard to pass up.

5. Dolphins: Alabama QB Tua Tagovailoa

The Justin Herbert-to-South Beach drumbeat is getting louder with each passing day, but Tagovailoa remains the pick for now. With Ryan Fitzpatrick likely back in the fold, there’s no rush to accelerate Tagovailoa’s hip rehab.

6. Chargers: Oregon QB Justin Herbert

Los Angeles could make offensive line improvements by adding veteran Jason Peters or trading for Trent Williams, so they opt to find Phillip River’s replacement with their first pick. There are fair concerns about Herbert, but the Chargers won’t feel the need to rush him. Tyrod Taylor is penciled in as Anthony Lynn’s Week 1 starter. Herbert could get his chance as the season unfolds.

7. Panthers: Clemson LB/S Isaiah Simmons

Don’t rule out Auburn defensive tackle Derrick Brown in this spot, but it’ll be hard to pass up such a versatile and athletic prospect like Simmons for a Carolina defense in desperate need of a jolt.

8. Cardinals: Alabama OT Jedrick Wills

Kliff Kingsbury has three of the projected top four tackles to choose from. Wills will be a pillar on the right side for Kyler Murray for a long time.

9. Jaguars: Auburn DT Derrick Brown

Jacksonville could certainly use more offensive line help, but Brown instantly helps a swiss-cheese run defense that allowed 5.1 yards per attempt last season.

10. Browns: Louisville OT Mekhi Becton

Cleveland could still land a veteran left tackle (see: Trent Williams or Jason Peters), but Becton provides a possible long-term solution. The 6-7, 364-pounder would cast a welcomed shadow on Baker Mayfield’s blind side.

11. Jets: Trade down to No. 16 with the Falcons

Falcons select South Carolina DT Javon Kinlaw. Atlanta could use help in the secondary, but Kinlaw offers a tantalizing ceiling.

16. Jets: USC OT Austin Jackson

It wouldn't be far-fetched to see the Jets trade down at No. 11 and draft USC's Austin Jackson with the No. 16 pick.
It wouldn't be far-fetched to see the Jets trade down at No. 11 and draft USC's Austin Jackson with the No. 16 pick.(Rick Scuteri/AP)
Joe Douglas picks up Atlanta’s third-rounder (No. 78 overall) and one of its fourth-rounders (No. 143) to slide down five spots. Gang Green opts for the athletic 20-year-old Jackson over Houston’s Josh Jones, who would also be a solid choice to be Sam Darnold’s blindside protector. Although Jackson still has to smooth out some uneven spots in his game, his upside justifies the pick.

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