The NFL draft comes and goes every year, and we all make a big deal over random guys we may or may not have seen. Every year we have the same thought: why are they drafting these non-B1G guys when B1G guys are available. So we at OTE are doing the mock draft in the proper way - one where NFL smarts wise up and only look at the Big Ten.
1. Carolina Panthers: C.J. Stroud, QB, The Ohio State Buckeyes
The Panthers are currently sporting Andy Dalton and Matt Corral as their options at quarterback. Luckily for them, an The Ohio State University product is available, as we all know, OSU QB’s never fail. Easy choice for new coach Frank Reich, himself a product of the Big Ten having gone to Maryland in 1984.
2. Houston Texans: Devon Witherspoon, CB Illinois fighting Illini
The Texans struggle with being in Texas and having the name “Texans.” It’s like calling your cat Mr. Cat or your dog Canine The Dog. It isn’t just stupid, it’s unoriginal and starving for personality. Enter Devon Witherspoon, who’s entire style of play is owning the hell out of whoever bothers to try and catch balls on him. He can bring some pop to the Texas Texans.
3. Arizona Cardinals: Lukas Van Ness, DE, Iowa Hawkeyes
Nothing says success like not starting for Iowa. The Cardinals ace it again.
4. Indianapolis Colts: Paris Johnson, OT, The Ohio State Buckeyes
Paris Johnson never surrenders. When you need someone to hold the line, Paris Johnson delivers. Surrounded? Paris Johnson never gives up. Plus Bjorn Werner has retired, so Paris should be just fine.
5. Seattle Seahawks: Peter Skoronski, OT, Northwestern Wildcats
Hey, the 1-11 Wildcats had a first round draft pick on the roster? How about that. He protected dozens and dozens of terrible quarterbacks in college. Now he heads to Seattle to protect terrible quarterbacks there.
6. Detroit Lions: Joey Porter, Jr., CB, Penn State Nittany Lions
Reading through the draft guide for Porter describes him as having “go-go gadget arms” and also says he is a “flag magnet.” That is a Lion if I ever heard of one.
7. Las Vegas Raiders: Jaxon Smith-Njigba, WR, The Ohio State Buckeyes
A wide receiver and OSU product getting drafted by the Raiders? What could go wrong? Surely, no wide receiver or OSU product drafted by the Raiders recently has had any issues. All smooth sailing for them here.
8. Atlanta Hawks: Deonte Banks, CB, Maryland Terrapins
Hey, the Terps had a first round corner this whole time. How about that? Look at those Terps, putting guys in the league.
9. Chicago Bears: Adetomiwa Adebawore, DT, Northwestern Wildcats
Adebawore is projected to go perhaps at the end of the first round, IF the NFL guys don’t follow our advice. Still, 1-11 Northwestern had not one but two first round draft picks. Which, well...how did this happen again?
10. Philadelphia Eagles: Mazi Smith, DT, Michigan Wolverines
Fun fact: Mazi derives his name from the matzo ball, a fun Jewish soup dumpling. Joey Chestnut holds the record for eating matzo balls, eating 78 in 8 minutes. Mazi Smith can raise his draft stock if he can beat that record. As is, being an Eagle is pretty good. Shalom.
11. Tennessee Titans: Joe Tippmann, C, Wisconsin Badgers
Tippmann is one of eight kids, which brings me to my Prime Directive of Life. Have lots of kids. That way, when one disappoints you, you can just move on to the next. Tippmann’s parents probably don’t even know where three of their kids are.
12. Houston Texans: Keeanu Benton, DT, Wisconsin Badgers
The Texans are back, trying to prove they have a personality. This time they go with small planetary object Benton, who they hope will provide his own source of gravity to the team. Otherwise they have to rely on the Texas Power Grid and are likely to all fall off the earth.
13. Green Bay Packers: DJ Turner, CB, Michigan Wolverines
If there is one thing we at OTE can do to improve the world, it is to spread the word that DJ Turner is not actually named “DJ.” His real name is JuanDrago, and by God we must make sure that announcers say his real name every time they refer to him. JuanDrago forever.
14. New England Patriots: Dawand Jones, OT, The Ohio State Buckeyes
Jones goes by the nickname “Thanos.” Probably due to his Gigantor size, though possibly because he secretly wants to eliminate half of all life. Thanos was right, after all. Feels like Belichick would support this endeavor.
15. New York Jets: Jack Campbell, LB, Iowa Hawkeyes
We used to be a proper country and where every draft pick was named Jack Campbell and had a buzz cut and attacked the line of scrimmage with reckless abandon. Then the communist liberals had to go and make the spread offense.
16. Washington Commanders: John Michael Schmitz, C, Minnesota Gophers
Schmitz comes to the Commanders via the Gophers via your favorite boy band. The Athletic draft guide describes him as potentially “functional,” so that’s exciting.
17. Pittsburgh Steelers: Zach Harrison, DE, The Ohio State Buckeyes
The Steelers go with super athlete Harrison, who never lived up to his potential from high school, but was still a pretty successful person by general standards. Geez mom, I think that is pretty good. Lay off already.
18. Detroit Lions: Quan Martin, S, Illinois Fighting Illini
Hmm. Bert lost his defensive coordinator and two members of the secondary to the NFL? Remind me to revise my predictions for Illinois this year.
19. Tampa Bay Bucs: Sam LaPorta, TE, Iowa Hawkeyes
Iowa’s entire offense is getting drafted by the Bucs. It’s LaPorta’s bad luck that he goes to the team just as Tom Brady goes out. Some receivers get Tom Brady, some get Baker Mayfield. Just the way life goes.
20. Seattle Seahawks: Nick Herbig, LB, Wisconsin Badgers
My first though about Herbig is that clearly his parents forgot a letter when they wrote down his name. Herbing is a name. Sherbig maybe? But Herbig feels incomplete. Google tells me it is a German name from the 1200’s. So they were the ones who forgot the letter.
21. Los Angeles Chargers: Brenton Strange, TE, Penn State Nittany Lions
Penn State needs to give this man an honorary Ph.D. so we can call him Doctor Strange the few times he comes off the bench in the NFL.
22. Baltimore Ravens: Cameron Mitchell, CB, Northwestern Wildcats
Another Wildcat? Did Pat Fitzgerald make a lot of bets against Northwestern to supplement his salary? Seriously, what happened here?
23. Minnesota Vikings: Luke Schoonmaker, TE, Michigan Wolverines
The Vikings go slumming for a Wolverine. No wonder it’s cold there all the time.
24. Jacksonville Jaguars: Jayden Reed, WR, Michigan State Spartans
The Athletic’s first knock on Reed is his “unimpressive body type.” I feel personally attacked here so we will move on.
25. New York Giants: Jaelyn Duncan, OT, Maryland Terrapins
Remember Rakim Jarrett? Many years ago Mike Locksley broke the internet, at least in his imagination, by flipping Jarrett from LSU to Maryland. And he is also going pro, though not pro enough to make our list. But two other Terps did? Look at you Maryland! I’m sure you went better than 8-5 last season.
26. Dallas Cowboys: Cory Trice, CB, Purdue Boilermakers
Corey Trice is no relation to Obie Trice. Well, I don’t know that for a fact, just guessing. Whatever happened to that guy? Google tells me he named his daughter Kobie Trice. Nice work. Better than when Eminem named his kid Reece Piece.
27. Buffalo Bills: Sydney Brown, S, Illinois Fighting Illini
Uh, and here we have another Illinois defensive back. Don’t mind me, just seeing if the Illini have anyone left on the back end. Of course, in the Big Ten West, do you need defensive backs?
28. Cincinnati Bengals: Aidan O’Connell, QB, Purdue Boilermakers
Mike Brown is looking at the signing bonus Joe Burrow will command and immediately imagines how many used hats that would buy. Aidan O’Connell is basically Joe Burrow, if you squint a little. He probably likes Skyline Chili, too.
29. New Orleans Saints: Trey Palmer, WR, Nebraska Cornhuskers
Apparently Trey Palmer had the fastest 40 time for wide receivers at the combine. Which is good. The 40 was created by Paul Brown as a rough estimate of how far guys run down the field on a punt. Which is probably what Palmer will be doing in the NFL.
30. Philadelphia Eagles: Ji’Ayir Brown, S, Penn State Nittany Lions
Brown’s nickname is “Tig,” which is short for Tigger from Winnie the Pooh. And the wonderful thing about Tiggers, is that Tiggers are two year starters for a premiere Big Ten program.
31. Kansas City Chiefs: Terell Smith, CB, Minnesota Golden Gophers
The Chiefs round out the first round with a Gopher. Smith spent a lot of time covering Badger and Hawkeye receivers, so if anyone is ready for the NFL, it’s this guy.