79° Good Afternoon
79° Good Afternoon

Bob Glauber's NFL mock draft for 2015

Florida State quarterback Jameis Winston signals to his

Florida State quarterback Jameis Winston signals to his team against the Oregon Ducks in the first quarter of the College Football Playoff Semifinal at the Rose Bowl Game on January 1, 2015 in Pasadena, California. Credit: Getty Images

The NFL Draft begins Thursday night in Chicago. Newsday football writer Bob Glauber predicts how the first round will play out in his mock draft.

1. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Jameis Winston, QB, Florida State

The Bucs are interested in trading the pick if there's a good enough offer. But they appear sold on Winston, despite concerns about off-field incidents at Florida State.

2. Tennessee Titans: Marcus Mariota, QB, Oregon

The Titans have been linked to potential trade for Philip Rivers, and other teams are looking to move up into that spot if Mariota is there. If the Titans stand pat, Mariota is their best choice.

3. Jacksonville Jaguars: Dante Fowler, OLB, Florida

Jacksonville could consider Leonard Williams here, but Gus Bradley's defense thrives on speed rushers, and Fowler fits that mold.

4. Oakland Raiders: Leonard Williams, DE, USC

The most dominant defensive lineman in this year's draft, Williams is able to make the kind of plays that change games. Oakland desperately needs that type of player on defense, although the Raiders also will consider wideouts Kevin White and Amari Cooper.

5. Washington: Vic Beasley, OLB, Clemson

Washington lost former first-round pass rusher Brian Orakpo in free agency, so there's a need for a top-flight edge rusher.

6. Jets: Bud Dupree, OLB, Kentucky

First-year GM Mike Maccagnan has said he'd consider moving down to acquire more picks, but you can't ignore the need for an outside pass rusher for Todd Bowles' 3-4 defense.

7. Chicago Bears: Amari Cooper, WR, Alabama

Cooper comes off a sensational 2014 season with 1,727 receiving yards. Bears will also consider defensive line here, but Cooper a big-time draw.

8. Atlanta Falcons: Randy Gregory, OLB, Nebraska

There are concerns about a positive marijuana test at the Combine, which could give the Falcons pause. But they are desperate to upgrade on defense, so if they believe Gregory can properly address his issue, they may be willing to take that chance.

9. Giants: Brandon Scherff, T/G, Iowa

Scherff already has the blessing of Giants right tackle Justin Pugh. Scherff would present a major upgrade on the line.

10. St. Louis Rams: Kevin White, WR, West Virginia

The Rams also have a need at tackle and could consider Stanford's Andrus Peat, but White's talent is hard to pass up.

11. Minnesota Vikings: Trae Waynes, CB, Michigan State

The consensus No. 1 cornerback in this year's draft is an excellent fit for Mike Zimmer's defense.

12. Cleveland Browns: DeVante Parker, WR, Louisville

With Josh Gordon's career in limbo because of continued substance abuse problems, Parker presents an ideal target for whoever ends up playing quarterback for the Browns. Cleveland also is in the mix to move up, possibly to get Marcus Mariota.

13. New Orleans Saints: Shane Ray, DE, Missouri

Ray was cited for marijuana possession earlier this week, and the Saints, as well as other teams, could be scared off as a result. There's such a need for improving the pass rush that the Saints may gamble on him.

14. Miami Dolphins: Todd Gurley, RB, Georgia

He's coming off reconstructive knee surgery, but Gurley's rehab has gone well. Miami is in the market for a franchise running back.

15. San Francisco 49ers: Arik Armstead, DT, Oregon

The Niners have been rocked by the retirements of linebackers Patrick Willis and Chris Borland, and the likely retirement of Justin Smith. Time to re-stock on defense, and Armstead has impressed the Niners.

16. Houston Texans: Nelson Agholor, WR, USC

A converted running back, Agholor offers a rare combination of speed and power. Just what the Texans need after bidding adieu to Andre Johnson.

17. San Diego Chargers: Melvin Gordon, RB, Wisconsin

The Chargers have an opening at tailback after Ryan Matthews' departure, and Gordon would be a perfect fill-in for Mike McCoy's offense. Gordon comes off a brilliant 2014 season.

18. Kansas City Chiefs: Breshad Perriman, WR, Central Florida

Andy Reid had enough of Dwayne Bowe and can pair Perriman with newly signed Jeremy Maclin to give the Chiefs some much-needed firepower in the receiving game.

19. Cleveland Browns: Danny Shelton, DT, Washington

Mike Pettine can use help along the defensive line, and Shelton can be the burly nose tackle the coach likes to use for his 3-4 alignment.

20. Philadelphia Eagles: Phillip Dorsett, WR, Miami

Speculation persists that the Eagles plan to move up to get Mariota, but Chip Kelly also needs receivers after saying goodbye to DeSean Jackson and Maclin in the past two years.

21. Cincinnati Bengals: Andrus Peat, T, Stanford

The Bengals just may take up 33-year-old left tackle Andrew Whitworth's challenge to draft an offensive lineman. With the team showing age along the line, Peat makes sense.

22. Pittsburgh Steelers: Byron Jones, CB, Connecticut

With safety Troy Polamalu and cornerback Ike Taylor both retiring this offseason, the Steelers need to re-stock in the secondary. Jones considered a fine prospect.

23. Detroit Lions: Malcolm Brown, DT, Texas

The Lions signed Haloti Ngata as a near-term solution for losing Ndamukong Suh. Brown can be the long-term answer.

24. Arizona Cardinals: Kevin Johnson, CB, Wake Forest

They need a running back, but might wait until later in the draft if Gurley and Gordon are off the board. There's a vacancy at cornerback after starter Antonio Cromartie returned to the Jets.

25. Carolina Panthers: Ereck Flowers, T/G, Miami

The Panthers have been using a patchwork offensive line, but Flowers can go a long way toward stabilizing the situation.

26. Baltimore Ravens: Devin Smith, WR, Ohio State

The Ravens chose not to re-sign Torrey Smith after letting Anquan Boldin go a year earlier. Time to give Joe Flacco another big-time playmaker in the receiving game.

27. Dallas Cowboys: Eddie Goldman, DT, Florida State

The obvious need is at running back after DeMarco Murray's departure. But Dallas may have to wait until later in the draft with Gurley and Gordon off the board. Goldman addresses need for depth along the interior defensive line.

28. Denver Broncos: Cameron Erving, C, Florida

Peyton Manning will be happy to get another good pass protector and smart signal-caller in Erving.

29. Indianapolis Colts: Landon Collins, SS, Alabama

Hard-hitting safety would help Indy address at least one defensive weakness.

30. Green Bay Packers: Marcus Peters, CB, Washington

Ted Thompson might be the smartest GM in football, and getting Peters would be another solid move for a Packers team that doesn't have many deficiencies.

31. New Orleans Saints: Jake Fisher, T, Oregon
Saints need to get younger on the offensive line, and Fisher is a reliable prospect to help protect Drew Brees.

32. New England Patriots: Eric Kendricks, ILB, UCLA

Dont'a Hightower and Jerod Mayo both are coming off surgery, so Bill Belichick can use some depth at linebacker.

New York Sports