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Nikki's Round 1 Draft Predictions

Waiting All Week for Thursday Night

The 3rd & 3 Podcast Annual Draft Competition is underway and hopefully you read Jason's Predictions on the point system because I have no idea how it’s actually all working and Math is definitely not my strong suit but I trust my co-host has it all figured out. After you read Jason’s predictions make sure you also check out Damian's Predictions to get the full picture on all of our Round 1 Draft Predictions.

What we should have done is a prop bet on how many times Roger Goodell gets booed. Maybe next year. Full disclosure my Draft Predictions do not include any trades, the draft board is complicated enough and I really don’t know how people like Mel Kiper and Todd McShay do this for a living and come up with 500 different versions of their Mock Drafts without losing their minds. #credit

So onto my completely unrealistic trade- less Draft Prediction’s

Nikki’s Picks

1. JAX - Aidan Hutchinson DE Michigan. They don’t really NEED another edge rusher, but Hutchinson has been billed as the best prospect in the draft. I just don’t think you pass that up.

2. DET - Travon Walker DE Georgia. Now to be clear I do think if they like one of these QBs they have to go get him. No, I don’t think it’s a reach. Not if that’s your guy however it’s the Lions and they will probably ignore this. So, if Walker is here I think they take him.

3. HOU - Ahmad Gardner CB, Cincinnati. Looks like it’s between him and Evan Neal which I am hoping the Giants get Neal so hopefully Houston goes for Gardner which apparently they are very high on him & he is their target but who knows if that’s true.

4. JETS - Kayvon Thibodeaux Edge Oregon. I mean the Jets desperately need to upgrade their pass rushers. They haven’t had a great edge rusher in I don’t even know how long it’s been? I know we have all seen this kid all over the board, but I think Jets need to grab him.

5. NYG - Evan Neal OT/G, Alabama. He’s a day 1 starter and a major upgrade for this OL unit which the Giants absolutely have to do if they want to give Daniel Jones any chance at all for success. And #GiantsNation is sick to death of seeing the OL repeatedly be ignored.

6. CAR - Malik Willis, QB Liberty. I mean who has whiffed more on trying to get a QB via trades than the Panthers? No one. Seems like their GM is high on Willis and their owner has stated that he wants the team to make a home run with this pick. There’s upside here. Knock on him is that he doesn’t see the field well but he’s mobile and has a huge arm and Sam Darnold ain’t it.

7. NYG - Derek Stingley, CB LSU. Looks like the Giants will trade Bradberry which I understand but I am sad about that. If that’s the case I have them going CB here because they will absolutely need one now. Injury concerns here but man if this kid can stay healthy, I can’t wait to see what he does.

8. ATL - Garrett Wilson, WR THE Ohio State - billed as OBJ 2.0 and the Falcons really need to upgrade this position. Their WR unit is depleted so I think they have to address this position and give Mariota some help.

9. SEA - Jermaine Johnson, DE FL State. So Pete Carroll said that finding edge rushing help would be essential for the success of their team. But they haven’t done much there and you need a dynamic edge rusher in this division. Johnson has good speed off the edge and Pete Carroll is right, it will be essential for their success.

10. JETS - Drake London, WR USC. I guess Joe Douglas kind of showed his hand here because he did offer this exact pick for DK Metcalf. So I have to assume they will strongly consider WR here. Since I already have Garrett Wilson off my board to Atlanta I have the Jets going Drake London.

11. WAS - Jameson Williams, WR Alabama. Torn ACL aside he is still one of the best WRs in this class. They are gonna have to give Carson Wentz some help out there too. I know it’s not too popular to draft a guy who probably won’t be available until Oct but I think he has the potential to develop into a legit WR1.

12. MIN - Trent McDuffie, CB Washington. They have got to strengthen their CB position. It’s been way too up and down for too long and if your going against Aaron Rodgers 2x a year you have got to get the CB position upgraded & it will be with McDuffie who has great cover skills.

13. HOU - Jordan Davis, DT Georgia. Big guy who will add a lot athleticism to the Texans Defense and is pretty much a one man wrecking crew on the field. He’s pretty speedy for 6’6 340lbs & he ran the 40 in 4.7 seconds.

14. BAL - Ikem Ekwonu, OT NC State. On my board all the teams who are in need of tackle position passed and went skill thus leaving Ikem to the Ravens. The only other team I could see grabbing him are the Falcons but again I think they go WR and Ekwonu falls to the Ravens which would be a perfect fit for him and they really need it.

15. PHI - Devonte Wyatt, DL Georgia. Kid put on a show at the combine. Quick off the snap and powerful once he gets going. I know they need to address the WR position as well but I don’t think there is any harm in beefing up your DL.

16. NO - Chris Olave, WR The Ohio State. I think they strongly consider going WR because it was a little lacking last year. Olave is a good mix of size and speed and I think that will fit the Saints offense nicely.

17. LAC - Trevor Penning, OT Northern Iowa. They have had a pretty active offseason. They are in win now mode which is clear from their offseason moves. But they have to figure out their right tackle situation. Bryan Bulaga was cut and hasn’t been replaced yet. Also Penning is massive in size and has the athleticism to go with it.

18. PHI - Kyle Hamilton, S Norte Dame. I think there’s a good chance he falls this far. His pro day wasn’t great and rumor has it some teams aren’t really sure where to use him. Safety or linebacker? Well either way the Eagles need both so it seems like this might pan for out Philly.

19. NO - Tyler Smith, OT Tulsa. Great athlete with strength. If the Saints are targeting this position I think it’s great value here.

20. PIT - Kenny Pickett, QB Pitt. Rumor has it the Steelers like Malik Willis. They may trade up. Steelers don’t do that too often though. On my board I have Kenny Pickett still available and I think he won’t have to travel too far for his next stop. I also think if any team has the goods on Pickett it’s the Steelers.

21. NE - Andrew Booth Jr, CB Clemson. He just feels like a great fit for the Pats right? Moldable, athletic, fluid, explosive and decent route anticipation. I think as he gets more experience and more consistent with time he will absolutely be one of the better CBs in the league. And they need to upgrade their secondary anyway.

22. GB - Treylon Burks, WR Arkansas. Breaking the 20 year streak! I’ve seen him compared to an Anquan Boldin type and I love that for GB. Rodgers will love that. IF GB doesn't go WR Rodgers head will surely explode.

23. AZ - Boyle Mafe, DL Minnesota. 7 sacks, 9 hits and 26 hurries in 2021.He had a fantastic pro day and Cards did let Chandler Jones & Jordan Hicks walk so they need pass rushers.

24. DAL - Zion Johnson, OL Boston College. They have room to upgrade their interior OL. He played left tackle at BC and worked at guard & center. He’s versatile and probably a Day 1 starter at a couple different positions which I think is huge for the Cowboys and will piss off TB since they are high on him. Supposedly.

25. BUF - Devin Lloyd, LB Utah. I know a lot of people have them going Cornerback and I could see that too but every linebacker on their team except for Matt Milano has just 1 year left on their contracts. Sure Buffalo could re- up some but it seems like your gonna have to address the linebacker situation in a year anyway.

26. TEN - Desmond Ridder, QB Cincinnati. I have a feeling the Titans will move on from Tannehill after the 2022 season and save a cool 17.8 million against the cap. They will need to draft a QB either this year or next year anyway but it makes more sense this year. Let Ridder learn the offense for a year before taking over. I know, what a concept. A QB sitting and learning behind a vet.

27. TB- Nakobe Dean, LB Georgia. Rumor has it TB is hoping to get Zion Johnson but I have him going to the Cowboys so let’s go the other way for TB and go linebacker. By the way Dean played on the best Defense in the country and was a huge part of Georgia’s success. Bucs defense needs an upgrade at Linebacker and even though his size comes into question I think the talent will outshine that.

28. GB - Nick Petit-Frere, OT The Ohio State. Packers cut Billy Turner and Dennis Kelly is a free agent so from where I'm sitting I don’t see a viable option at right tackle and clearly they need to protect Aaron Rodgers. Seems like this could be a great move for them.

29. KC - George Pickens, WR Georgia. I mean I guess they could always move up and get a better WR but I don’t think they will or really even need to. Obviously Pickens won’t replace Tyreek Hill but he’s got WR1 potential. He got great size and does a good job of tracking the football which I think will be a great fit with Mahomes.

30. KC - George Karlaftis, Edge. Their defense got better as the season went on but they didn’t really do a great job of getting after the QB. And in the AFC you need to be able to do that. Looks like they are saying Karlaftis needs to play with more consistency but what steal here of you can get him.

31. CIN- Tyler Linderbaum, C, Iowa. One of the best players in the draft class however Center is the least-drafted position in the first round. I wouldn’t be surprised if Linderbaum fell to RD2 but I could also see someone like a Pittsburgh forgoing the QB position and grabbing this kid. If he’s there I think Cincy has to take him.

32. DET - Jahan Datsom, WR Penn State. Kid can play anywhere on the field and will probably be a good compliment to Brown and Chark. This had to be one of the most underwhelming receiving corps in league history!! I think the Lions turn it around and add start adding more talent to the WR position.

I am sure a trade will be thrown in there somewhere because there is ALWAYS a trade and I do believe my co-hosts nailed it trade wise. Mostly though I am just hoping my Giants get it right this year and this fan base can finally look to some brighter days ahead. We have suffered enough. #NYGNation

We would love for you all to weigh in on your draft thoughts and play along with us! See you all Thursday! #NFLDraft2022

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as a Giants fan I would be happy with Evan Neal as (it sounds like) he is the highest rater OT in the draft. Interesting on Thibodeaux going to the Jets. That move makes sense, which is why it's unlikely the Jets do it lol

Agree there will be reaching for QBs earlier than anticipated...

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