How high will Malik Willis(Liberty University) go in this April’s NFL Draft???

Post-free agency 2022 NFL Mock Draft: Lions take QB Malik Willis at No. 2?
from the Football Outsiders, with Vincent Verhei, and from

With the bulk of free agency and the quarterback carousel now out of the way, the clouds surrounding the 2022 NFL Draft are beginning to clear. It is becoming more apparent now what each team needs (or wants) out of the draft. That, of course, means it is time for another good ol’ fashioned mock draft to see if we can’t satiate those needs with young talent as free agency winds itself down.

1. Jacksonville Jaguars: Aidan Hutchinson, DE, Michigan
The closer the draft gets, the more it feels like Aidan Hutchinson is back to being the No. 1 pick. Between franchising left tackle Cam Robinson, signing free agent guard Brandon Scherff and showing some degree of faith in Jawaan Taylor as the right tackle, the Jaguars are taking on the offseason as if they have a pass rusher penciled in at first overall. Hutchinson is not as electric as the typical first-overall pass rusher, but his blend of quickness, strength, and savvy hand usage should make for a good running mate for Josh Allen out of the gate.

2. Detroit Lions: Malik Willis, QB, Liberty
This should not happen. Malik Willis is too incomplete of a prospect to go second overall, even in a wonky draft class like this. However, if we assume the quarterback “meta” has been boiled down to finding the prospect with the most elite tools and hoping for the best, regardless of anything else, Willis is the most exciting option. Willis would also get to sit behind Jared Goff and take some time to get comfortable, which is something he is going to need wherever he ends up.
(And who was the quarterback, that proceeded Malik Willis at Liberty University??? Yes, everyone remembers Buckshot Calvert….And Liberty also has a current online student who is doing quite well on the NASCAR scene, and that would be William Byron, who won this past Sunday’s race at Atlanta Motor Speedway.)

3. Houston Texans: Kayvon Thibodeaux, DE, Oregon
With an extra serving of first-round picks on the table for the next few years, including this season, the Texans are in a position to draft whatever they want and swing for the fences. Kayvon Thibodeaux, for my money, is still the best player in the class and provides the most upside among this year’s pass-rushers. Thibodeaux can win with speed, bend and power, and even has a little bit of flexibility to drop into shallow coverage assignments. While his hand usage and run defense awareness could use work, Thibodeaux has all the tools to be a menace at the next level.

4. New York Jets: Kyle Hamilton, S, Notre Dame
Kyle Hamilton’s middling 40-yard dash time should not worry anyone. On film, Hamilton has a case as the best player in the class. Not only is his range from the middle of the field mesmerizing, but he has the size, speed and willingness to be a nasty downhill safety, whether that be from depth or in the box. He can also match up favorably against tight ends and any of the league’s non-tiny slot receivers. With the top two pass rushers off the board, the Jets have to just take the best player available in Hamilton and be happy with it.

5. New York Giants: Evan Neal, OT, Alabama
Even on the way out of the Dave Gettleman era, the Giants still need offensive line help. The blindside spot is held down by Andrew Thomas, who quietly came on strong last season, but the rest of the unit could use some help. That is where Evan Neal comes in. Neal last played left tackle at Alabama, but he also played at both guard and right tackle during his career, so moving back to either spot should not be much of a hassle for him.

6. Carolina Panthers: Kenny Pickett, QB, Pittsburgh
Carolina is desperate to find a quarterback. They have been for three years. At some point, the Panthers have to pull the trigger on their own guy in the draft. They feel like the perfect team to overdraft Kenny Pickett. A one-year wonder despite starting for four seasons, Pickett has all the moxie and “backyard style of play” and whatever other nonsense that teams love to cling to. Funny enough, Pickett’s mobility, decent processing and underwhelming arm strength make him similar to Teddy Bridgewater, who was the first installment in Carolina’s quarterback carousel.

7. New York Giants (via CHI): George Karlaftis, DE, Purdue
For whatever reason, George Karlaftis has fallen out of favor over the past couple months, but he should not have. Karlaftis is a heavy yet springy edge prospect with plenty of juice and flexibility to be a terror in the pros. Furthermore, Karlaftis’ heavier build and play style is a good complement for the lighter, quicker Azeez Ojulari, whom the Giants drafted in the second round last year.

8. Atlanta Falcons: Garrett Wilson, WR, Ohio State
The Falcons needed wide receiver help even before Calvin Ridley got popped for gambling violations; now it is mandatory at eighth overall. Whether or not Garrett Wilson should be the first receiver off the board is its own debate, but it would not be shocking at all to see it happen. Wilson brings enticing explosiveness and a knack for finding yards after the catch. He could stand to tighten up his routes and work on his ability to fight press, but Atlanta will be happy with any kind of upgrade Wilson brings to the position group for now.

9. Seattle Seahawks (via DEN): Desmond Ridder, QB, Cincinnati
There is no better way to transition out of the Russell Wilson era than to pick a quarterback who is his antithesis. Desmond Ridder is a smart, calculated passer who wants to win from the pocket. He constantly pushes the limits in terms of finding difficult throws within structure without putting the ball in harm’s way very much. Granted, he can be a little too patient hunting for those deep throws, and his accuracy is nothing to write home about, but as far as finding a quarterback who does the right thing and keeps the train on the tracks, there is nobody better than Ridder in this class. Not to mention, Ridder is a legit 4.52 athlete who can really rip off chunk yardage when he decides to.

10. New York Jets (via SEA): Ahmad Gardner, CB, Cincinnati
Two Cincy players back-to-back! What a draft class! Doubling down on the secondary could be over-saturation, but the Jets’ secondary may have been the worst in the league last year, particularly at cornerback. Ahmad “Sauce” Gardner instantly gives the Jets a long, fiery press-man cornerback who can hold up on the outside. Pair that with Kyle Hamilton, as well as free-agent signing D.J. Reed, and the Jets’ back end looks brand new for Robert Saleh.