What if you scooped the brains out of every NFL Draft expert’s head, transplanted them all into one super-robot cranium and asked it for a collective prediction of the 2016 Draft?
That’s the idea behind Scout’s world-famous Mock Draft Muncher, which skips the brain removal part but does tally draft experts’ rankings and gives each player a score called the Average Draft Position (ADP).
For example, Ohio State running back Ezekiel Elliott has appeared in 38 different online mock drafts, projected as high as the No. 4 pick by Fox Sports to as low as the No. 26 selection by NFLDraftFever.com, for an ADP 10.39. Which means the experts collectively project he’ll be picked close to No. 10.
An ADP doesn’t always align with team needs, so the Muncher is more useful as a “best player on the board” ranking than a team-oriented prediction.
Without further ado, here are the consensus picks at each position in the draft, according to the draft wizards in the media.
No. 1 – QB Jared Goff, California (Los Angeles Rams)
Once picked as low as No. 20 overall (by Rotoworld in March), Goff’s average draft position soared from 7.41 to 2.95 following the Rams’ trade for this spot. The Rams remain coy on who they’ll pick, but most believe Goff is Jeff Fisher’s guy.
No. 2 – QB Carson Wentz, North Dakota State, (Philadelphia Eagles)
Draft gurus agree that the talented, small-school standout will be selected with the No. 2 pick but also that the Eagles took a huge risk in trading away so many picks to get him. It’s a bold strategy, Cotton – let’s see how it pays off.
No. 3 – OT Laremy Tunsil - Ole Miss (San Diego Chargers)
Known by most experts as the safest pick in the draft, Tunsil was the No. 1 player on most gurus’ draft boards for months until the Rams and Eagles got QB-crazy.
No. 4 – CB Jalen Ramsey, Florida State (Dallas Cowboys)
Ramsey can play at safety or corner, and his versatility is one reason his draft stock has remained in the top 5. The other reason is his experience; Ramsey started 40 games at FSU. The Cowboys are hoping San Diego passes on him.
No. 5 – DL Joey Bosa, Ohio State (Jacksonville Jaguars)
Consensus among the draft experts: Bosa is a plug-and-play pass rusher who may not become a superstar, but certainly won’t flop. Jags would rather land a CB or LB here, though.
No. 6 – LB/S Myles Jack, UCLA Bruins (Baltimore Ravens)
Anonymous reports questioning Jack’s recovery from a 2015 knee injury were recently derided by NFL execs as a pre-draft smokescreen to lower his value. The ploy didn’t work: draft experts are confident he’ll be gone before the seventh pick arrives.
No. 7 – DE DeForest Buckner, Oregon (San Francisco 49ers)
You don’t turn down pass rushers this gifted, even if you’re desperate for offensive weapons. If he falls this far and the 49ers don’t trade down, he’ll join fellow Duck Chip Kelly.
No. 8 – OT Ronnie Stanley, Notre Dame, (Cleveland Browns)
A low-risk offensive line prospect (provided the concerns about his alleged lack of passion for football are unfounded), Stanley is the kind of pick rebuilding teams like Cleveland make. He’ll help bolster the Browns’ beleaguered offensive line.
No. 9 – CB Vernon Hargreaves III, Florida (Tampa Bay Buccaneers)
If the world-famous Muncher is accurate, the explosive Hargreaves will play pro ball not far from his alma mater.
No. 10 – Ezekiel Elliott, Ohio State (New York Giants)
Twenty, or maybe even 10, years ago, Elliott would’ve been a top 5 pick as the country’s highest rated RB. He could go a bit higher based on needs, but could also just as easily slip to the low teens.
No. 11 – DT Sheldon Rankins, Louisville (Chicago Bears)
Rankins is a better fit for the Saints with the next pick. Most draft experts believe him to be the top interior pass rusher in the draft.
No. 12 – OT Jack Conklin, Michigan State (New Orleans Saints)
It’s an incredible story: a former MSU walk-on is now just potentially days away from NFL millions. “He’s nasty and loves to finish plays,” says the Washington Post’s John Harris. That said, he probably won’t be going to the Saints, who need all sorts of help on the defensive side of the ball.
No. 13 – DE Shaquille Lawson, Clemson (Miami Dolphins)
Lawson, edge-rusher extraordinaire, will be the first of several Tigers to get drafted this year.
No. 14 – OLB Leonard Floyd, Georgia (Oakland Raiders)
He’s a talented speed rusher, but even experts from the same media outlet disagree on his value: CBS’ Rob Rang thinks he’s a No. 20 pick, but CBS writer Dane Brugler predicts Floyd will be gone at No. 11.
No. 15 – WR Laquon Treadwell, Ole Miss, (Tennessee Titans)
In a down year for receivers, College Football Metrics thinks Treadwell could go as high as No. 9. Tennessee might not be the best fit for him (the Titans have needs on both sides of the trenches), but it would be fun to see Mariota get another weapon.
No. 16 – OLB Darron Lee, Ohio State, (Detroit Lions)
Ultra-fast and uber-confident, Lee helped his stock by running the best 40 time (4.47) among linebackers at the NFL Combine. Middle linebacker, however, is a much more pressing need for the Lions, who may go with Alabama’s Reggie Ragland instead.
No. 17 – MLB Reggie Ragland, Alabama (Atlanta Falcons)
Ragland’s a run specialist who’ll attract only teams with schemes that fit his style best. Many recent projections have him somewhere in the 16-21 range.
No. 18 – OT Taylor Decker, Ohio State (Indianapolis Colts)
The Colts have drafted offensive linemen in each of the past five seasons and, according to the Muncher, could try to find a reliable Andrew Luck protector again with Decker.
No. 19 – Paxton Lynch, Memphis (Buffalo Bills)
A few draft cynics dragged Lynch’s overall average down over the course of the last two months, but many speculate that he’ll go higher now that reaching on first-round quarterbacks is in vogue.
No. 20 – CB Eli Apple, Ohio State (New York Jets)
A handful of recent mock drafts have Apple slipping as low as No. 25. The Jets (who are more likely to focus on bolstering their linebacking corps) probably won’t be the team to stop him if he starts to slide.
No. 21 – DT A'Shawn Robinson, Alabama (Washington Redskins)
If the muncher is accurate, the NFL Draft will see a run on defensive linemen beginning with Robinson.
No. 22 – DT Jarran Reed, Alabama (Houston Texans)
CSN is among the most bullish on Reed, calling him “a prolific force in the ground game, [Reed] chased down runners and shed blockers all season and during Senior Bowl week.”
No. 23 - DE Noah Spence, Eastern Kentucky (Minnesota Vikings)
Off-field troubles early in his college career haven’t helped Spence’s draft position, but FOX Sports thinks Spence, a former four-star recruit, could go as high as No. 12. Writes Pete Schrager: “He's answered the questions off the field. I believe his name is going to be called a lot earlier than many expect.”
No. 24 – CB William Jackson, Houston (Cincinnati Bengals)
Once viewed as a likely second-rounder, most experts believe this 6-foot, speedy cornerback from Houston will go much sooner. A 4.37 at the combine certainly helped his first-round credentials.
No. 25 – DE Kevin Dodd, Clemson (Pittsburgh Steelers)
“This isn't a great year for edge rushers,” NFL.com’s Lance Zierlein says, “but Dodd has high football character, size and projectable qualities that lead me to believe he can be a quality NFL pass rusher.”
No. 26 – WR Josh Doctson, TCU (Seattle Seahawks)
An incredible athlete (41 inch vertical), Doctson isn’t a good fit for the Seahawks at this position, but look for him to come off the board somewhere in the second half of the first round.
No. 27 – DT Andrew Billings, Baylor (Green Bay Packers)
Billings, a huge gap-plugger, is a popular projection for the Packers given B.J. Raji’s retirement.
No. 28 – WR Corey Coleman, Baylor (Kansas City Chiefs)
“His explosion and burst is second to none in this class,” claims Pro Football Focus, but they and others point out that he’s prone to drops and lacks the size that would normally elevate him higher in the first round.
No. 29 – CB Mackensie Alexander, Clemson (Arizona Cardinals)
Alexander had zero interceptions in two years, but he also allowed just 29 percent of passes his way to be completed.
No. 30 – Will Fuller, Notre Dame (Carolina Panthers)
Fuller might have been the fastest wideout at the combine this year (4.32), but the Panthers would rather take Mackensie Alexander than Fuller after they let Josh Norman sign with the Redskins.
No. 31 – Robert Nkemdiche, Ole Miss (Denver Broncos)
Supremely talented but with questionable desire, Nkemdiche has been selected by as high as No. 9 (NFL Draft Fevnull