We’re now less than a month away from the 2020 NFL draft kicking off, and things have changed since the combine, which feels like it happened months ago. The coronavirus pandemic has ended all pre-draft visits for prospects, and the draft, which was supposed to be showcased in Las Vegas on April 23-25, is closed to the public.
With free agency largely in the rearview mirror, though, below is my post-combine Big Board for the 2020 NFL draft — my top 25 prospects overall as it stands right now — plus my list of the top 10 prospects at every position. You’ll see quite a few changes here. You can also check out my Mock Draft 3.0. Here we go:
Jump to: Position rankings
HT: 6-foot-4 | WT: 264 | Previously: 1
Young, who finished fourth in the Heisman Trophy voting, is a dominant pass-rusher whose 16.5 sacks broke the Buckeyes’ single-season record. He had a phenomenal season and is the clear top prospect in the class. The NFL loves twitchy edge rushers who can get after quarterbacks, and that’s Young. He caught my eye as a true freshman in 2017, and he really came on in 2018, picking up the production with Nick Bosa sidelined; Young finished with 9.5 sacks and 14.5 total tackles for loss that season.
HT: 6-foot-3 | WT: 221 | Previously: 2
Burrow’s final line in his Heisman-winning season: 60 touchdown passes with just six interceptions while completing 76.3% of his passes. Those are unreal numbers. Oh, and he led 15-0 LSU to a national title. I don’t think there’s any doubt now that he has cemented his spot as the top quarterback in this draft. Burrow’s improvement was one of the greatest stories of the season after he started 2019 as a fringe NFL prospect. With a great release, much better accuracy at all levels of the field and enough athleticism to maneuver the pocket to evade rushers, Burrow reminds me of Tony Romo. Coaches rave about his leadership and toughness, too.
HT: 6-foot-1 | WT: 205 | Previously: 4
Credit Todd McShay here: He had Okudah at No. 4 overall in his preseason rankings. When I went back through the 2018 tape, I saw why Todd was so fired up. This is a potential top-five pick with a high ceiling based on talent alone. The problem? Okudah hadn’t picked off a single pass in his first two seasons for the Buckeyes. He had three interceptions in 2019, though, including two picks in a blowout of Nebraska. While Young got all of the publicity for the Ohio State defense, Okudah is a true shutdown corner. His 41-inch vertical and 4.48 40-yard dash time at the combine showed his explosive traits.
HT: 6-foot-3 | WT: 238 | Previously: 5
Simmons is a rare athlete with the frame of a linebacker and the athleticism and top-end speed of a safety. He showed his elite traits at the combine, running a 4.39 40-yard dash, the second-fastest 40 time for a linebacker at the combine since 2006. Simmons is exactly what NFL teams look for in three-down linebackers in today’s game. He has the size and speed to run sideline to sideline to chase down tailbacks, and he has the athletic ability to cover tight ends in the slot. He could even flip his hips and play some safety. He had 104 tackles, seven sacks, three interceptions and 16 total tackles for loss this past season, and he was one of the best players on the field in the loss to LSU in the national championship game.
HT: 6-foot-0 | WT: 217 | Previously: 3
Tagovailoa, who dislocated his right hip and suffered a posterior wall fracture in November, didn’t work out at the combine, but he was supposed to throw for NFL coaches and scouts in April. That’s up in the air now, in which case teams might not be able to see his progress from his injury before they use a valuable pick on him. Tagovailoa’s injury history — he dealt with ankle and knee injuries over the past two seasons — will complicate how teams evaluate him, and while reports about his medicals have been good, each team will have its own report. As a player, Tagovailoa is a top-five talent with elite accuracy and all the physical and mental tools teams look for in a starter. But his injuries make him a wild card in this class.