2022 NFL Draft Rumors: Do we have a QB1 yet and is Carson Strong in the conversation?

Pro Football Network's Chief Draft Analyst Tony Pauline opens up his mailbag to discuss news and rumors on the 2022 NFL Draft.

Week 10 of the college football season is here, and it brings with it midweek MACtion. With the 2022 NFL Draft always on the horizon, we go back to the mailbag to talk about the latest news and rumors surrounding college football.

2022 NFL Draft Rumors and News: The Tony Pauline Mailbag (11/2/21)

Baylor has a few players who are rising up the ranks of college football and, most recently, in your Risers article as well. A two-part question: A) Is this Baylor team for real, and B) how many draftable players will they have come year’s end?

Is Baylor for real? We’ll find out in two Saturdays when they play Oklahoma. They are undoubtedly on a roll after struggling to get past Texas State early in the year. I presently have five Baylor players with draftable grades on my board, with linebacker Terrel Bernard far and away the highest-rated.

David Ojabo gets talked about every week, it seems. What is his current draft projection if he keeps rising?

David Ojabo was a riser in my recent column and has a third-round grade on my board. He has tremendous upside, yet he’s only done it for half a season and barely produced the prior two years. He has to prove 2021 was the norm and not an exception.

The Tony Pauline Mailbag (11/2/21): Is there a definitive QB1?

Any update on a potential QB1 after Carson Strong dominated on Friday night?

Carson Strong is in a difficult situation. More and more people I speak with agree with the assessment I’ve made the past year: the offense Strong plays in at Nevada is not helping him improve as a passer.

He’s physically superior to any of the top-rated quarterbacks but probably at the bottom of the list when it comes to being NFL-ready.

Does he enter the draft despite not being close to NFL-ready? Does he go back to Nevada for another season when the offense is not helping his game? It’s a “damned if he does, damned if he doesn’t” situation for Strong.

Midweek MACtion has begun in Week 10 — any particular players we should be on the lookout for during MACtion each week?

Safety Devonni Reed of Central Michigan, a player I wrote about several weeks ago. He is getting some draftable grades around the league despite not even being rated before the season.

Related | 2022 NFL Draft Prospects: Updated big board, player rankings, and more

His test against Western Michigan and Kaleb Eleby on Wednesday night will be a big one. Teammate Bernhard Raimann, an offensive tackle, is all over draft boards. Some love him, and some think he’s just average.

What was your take on the Von Miller Halloween party situation that PFN reported following his trade to the Rams? Who won that trade between Denver and Los Angeles?

The Rams are playing great football, probably as well as any team in the league, and adding Miller just makes them stronger. They don’t care about draft picks, and they value players over picks. In that sense, I believe they did a great job.

Tony Pauline Mailbag (11/2/21): Can Kenneth Walker earn the top RB spot?

Kenneth Walker III keeps impressing every week, most recently dominating against Michigan. Is there any chance he can crack the top spot among draft-eligible running backs?

Not on my board. Kenneth Walker III is good, but Breece Hall is a much more complete back as far as ball carrier/pass catcher/blocker, and Isaiah Spiller is much more explosive.

What separates Derek Stingley Jr. from Kaiir Elam, Ahmad Gardner, Andrew Booth Jr., and the rest of the 2022 CB class?

Andrew Booth Jr. is short and not as highly rated as the other three. Kaiir Elam is inconsistent, and Ahmad Gardner struggles making plays with his back to the ball. And though I prefer Derek Stingley Jr., he played his best football in 2019, which will concern next-level decision-makers.

Tony Pauline is the Chief Draft Analyst for Pro Football Network. You can read all of Tony’s work here and give him a follow on Twitter @TonyPauline.

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