Cam Mellor’s 2022 NFL Mock Draft: Matt Corral, Kenny Pickett, Sam Howell land in intriguing spots

Three quarterbacks land in Round 1 of this 2022 NFL Mock Draft -- which has the more favorable landing spot for their future?

2022 NFL Mock Draft | Picks 17-32

A flurry of trades takes place in the back half of Round 1 in this 2022 NFL Mock Draft. Let’s see which high-upside prospects fall into this range.

17) Cincinnati Bengals: Trevor Penning, OT, Northern Iowa

The Cincinnati Bengals made waves last year with their selection of Ja’Marr Chase over Penei Sewell. While that’s panned out to their advantage at times, the need to protect Joe Burrow has become increasingly crucial. They grab Trevor Penning from Northern Iowa, who some project as the top senior offensive tackle in the class. Penning moves around well and is a mauler in both facets.

18) Cleveland Browns: David Ojabo, EDGE, Michigan

With the rise of Aidan Hutchinson complete, so is David Ojabo‘s after he also lands in Round 1. Ojabo wins with speed and spin, fighting off stronger tackles with his hands well. He’s still realizing his skill along the edge, but he possesses more athleticism and speed than most of the other edge defenders in the class.

19) Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Jordan Davis, DT, Georgia

Trade: Bucs send picks No. 30, 62, and 133 in 2022 for Washington’s pick No. 19

The combination of Jordan Davis and Vita Vea on the interior of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ defensive line should strike fear into any offensive line. As large as they are powerful, Davis would complete one of the biggest interior duos in NFL history. And they’re just as talented as they are big to boot. The Bucs give up a bit to grab Davis, but they halt his fall at pick No. 19.

20) Baltimore Ravens: Ikem Ekwonu, OT, NC State

Trade: Ravens send pick No. 25 in 2022 and a 2023 second-round pick for Buffalo’s pick No. 20

After the Bucs move up, so do the Baltimore Ravens. Baltimore grabs the versatile Ikem Ekwonu from NC State, projecting him inside to guard on their line. The Ravens need to protect Lamar Jackson while also giving him a talented run blocker, and that’s exactly what Ekwonu gives them. A physical force, Ekwonu will pancake defenders in the run game just as easily as he’ll keep a clean sheet in pass protection.

21) Philadephia Eagles: Nakobe Dean, LB, Georgia

The Eagles grab their first defensive player in the first round after hitting the offensive side of the ball with Corral and Olave earlier. Nakobe Dean is as strong as an ox and hits like one as well. He’s a true three-down linebacker who can cover, stuff the run, and rush the passer when needed.

22) Miami Dolphins: Tyler Linderbaum, C, Iowa

The Miami Dolphins’ resurgence has showcased their ability to build on talent they’ve drafted. With their selection of Tyler Linderbaum, there is little building to do. Linderbaum is labeled a generational talent for a reason, projecting as a Day 1 starter for Miami. He’s terrific at all levels and makes highlight-reel blocks look like your run-of-the-mill day in the office for him.

23) Los Angeles Chargers: Kenneth Walker III, RB, Michigan State

The first running back off the board heads west as he joins the Los Angeles Chargers. The reigning Doak Walker Award winner in Kenneth Walker III surpasses the other top running backs due to his NFL-level skills. Walker has great contact balance and more than enough elusiveness to get by right away. After two productive years at Wake Forest and an uber-successful season at Michigan State, Walker proved he can adapt to any offense and find success immediately.

24) Detroit Lions: Treylon Burks, WR, Arkansas

What Treylon Burks lacks in various routes, he more than makes up for with his other skills. He’s as fast as he is tall, and he has even better contested-catch skills. Burks will tower over NFL cornerbacks and run right by them all the same. Now, if he only had a quarterback to throw him the ball in Detroit.

25) Buffalo Bills: Drake London, WR, USC

Trade: The Bills received Baltimore’s pick No. 25 and a 2023 second-round pick for pick No. 20

The Buffalo Bills still land their man after trading back. They grab USC’s Drake London after USC’s wide receiver finished the 2021 season injured. London still led the Pac-12 in receiving yards despite missing the final four games and change. London has the best athleticism in the class at receiver, stemming from his basketball playing days for the Trojans. He also has great hands and an incredible catch radius for Josh Allen to utilize.

26) Dallas Cowboys: Kingsley Enagbare, EDGE, South Carolina

Yet another EDGE goes in Round 1 as the Dallas Cowboys get a true pass rusher in Kingsley Enagbare. With Micah Parsons’ emergence, the selection of Enagbare likely sets up the former Gamecock with favorable one-on-one matchups in Dallas’ defense. That bodes well for Enagbare as he thrives in the pass-rushing game.

27) Kansas City Chiefs: Ahmad Gardner, CB, Cincinnati

A true lockdown cornerback, Ahmad Gardner was hardly targeted in 2021. So much so, he set up even more favorable matchups for his teammates to make plays on the ball and ultimately win the Thorpe Award. Gardner is terrific in man coverage and showcased a knack for the football in zone. He’ll lock down the boundary for KC for years to come.

28) Arizona Cardinals: Drake Jackson, EDGE, USC

Drake Jackson lands in the desert as the sixth edge defender in this 2022 NFL Mock Draft. Jackson has some of the best get-off in the class and even better reach. He’ll bat offensive tackles away with his arms and bend around them easily. Jackson has enough potential on his own, but pairing with the talented Arizona Cardinals’ defensive line makes this pick even more delightful.

29) Tennessee Titans: Sam Howell, QB, North Carolina

Sam Howell finally goes, sneaking into Round 1 with the Tennessee Titans. Howell has a tremendous arm and perhaps even better feel for the pocket. He’ll take some seasoning, but his arm talent will always be present. Though he didn’t elevate his cast of characters in 2021, Howell more than proved to be capable of leading a talented group of skill players as he did in 2020.

30) Washington Football Team: Kenny Pickett, QB, Pittsburgh

Trade: The Football Team received Tampa Bay’s picks No. 30, 62, and 133 for pick No. 19

The Washington Football Team grabs their quarterback of the future in Kenny Pickett. They utilized the trade-down method as the majority of teams in the back half of Round 1 are not QB-needy. Pickett emerged as a potential franchise quarterback in Year 5 at Pittsburgh, showcasing a ton of NFL talent in the process. He’ll have to answer hand-size questions, but that’s an afterthought to his ability to make all the NFL throws (plus athleticism to boot).

31) New England Patriots: Jermaine Johnson II, EDGE, Florida State

Jermaine Johnson II heads to New England to join his third team in as many seasons. Johnson transferred from Georgia to Florida State and blew up in 2021. He possesses an innate ability to get after the quarterback and a high motor that never gives up. He’ll be a darling of head coach Bill Belichick as Johnson will epitomize the mantra of first one in, last one out in New England.

32) Green Bay Packers: Devin Lloyd, LB, Utah

The second linebacker taken could ultimately finish as the first LB off the board as Devin Lloyd and Dean will battle it out for LB1 all offseason. Lloyd is as productive as they come and even better in coverage. He’ll patrol the field sideline to sideline with ease and make plays on the ball you didn’t think were possible. Even better, Lloyd is a leader of men and will win over the Green Bay locker room in a hurry.

Listen to the PFN Scouting Podcast

Listen to the PFN Scouting Podcast! Click the embedded player below to listen, or you can find the PFN Scouting Podcast on iTunes, Spotify, and all major podcast platforms.  Be sure to subscribe and leave us a five-star review! Rather watch instead? Check out the PFN Scouting Podcast on our Scouting YouTube channel.

Related Articles