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What if we're wrong? That's the question I focused on all week as I prepared to write my latest mock draft. As we approach the NFL Draft later this month, there has been an avalanche of acceptance when it comes to the theory that the first four picks could all be quarterbacks.

On the one hand, it's understandable. Quarterbacks are important, and plenty of teams with the opportunity to grab one need one. But then there's the other part of this equation: the one that says we've never seen anything like that happen before. In 2021, the first three picks were all QBs (how's that working out, by the way?), and last season saw three go in the top four, but four straight? That would be unprecedented.

So what if we're wrong? What if we're all caught in an echo chamber about this QB class, and the teams don't feel the same? What if those teams are happy to let the rest of us believe it will happen so they could trade down or see players they want fall to them?

That's the approach I took for this mock. That we're all idiots who know nothing. If you're one of the 5% of people who read this intro, you'll understand what you're about to see. The other 95% can assume I'm a clueless moron. I'm fine with that.

For more draft coverage, you can hear in-depth analysis twice a week on "With the First Pick" -- our year-round NFL Draft podcast with NFL Draft analyst Ryan Wilson and former Vikings general manager Rick Spielman. You can find "With the First Pick" wherever you get your podcasts: Apple PodcastsSpotifyYouTube, etc.

NFL Mock Draft
Round 1
Round 1 - Pick 1
USC • 6'1" / 215 lbs
Projected Team
Chicago
PROSPECT RNK
2nd
POSITION RNK
1st
PAYDS
3633
RUYDS
121
INTS
5
TDS
41
I remain unchanged here. Caleb Williams will be a Chicago Bear. Not only do we know Williams was in Chicago this week for his team visit, but we know what restaurant the team brass took him to. The Bears are dropping any pretense of mystery surrounding the pick.
Round 1 - Pick 2
North Carolina • 6'4" / 230 lbs
Projected Team
Washington
PROSPECT RNK
4th
POSITION RNK
2nd
PAYDS
3608
RUYDS
449
INTS
9
TDS
33
While I'm taking a different approach to this mock with the QBs, I'm not changing the top two. The Bears and Commanders will take a QB. The only question is whom the Commanders take, and I'm going with Drake Maye because he's No. 2 on my board.
Round 1 - Pick 3
Notre Dame • 6'8" / 322 lbs
Projected Team
New England
PROSPECT RNK
8th
POSITION RNK
2nd
Now the fun begins. What if the Patriots don't want a QB? What if nobody is interested in trading up for one here? What if the Patriots decide they'd rather solve the left tackle spot for the next decade and take Joe Alt? There's been plenty of talk about how great this draft class is for tackles. If it's that good, it would make sense for one to go in the top three, wouldn't it?
Round 1 - Pick 4
Ohio State • 6'4" / 205 lbs
Projected Team
Arizona
PROSPECT RNK
1st
POSITION RNK
1st
REC
67
REYDS
1211
YDS/REC
18.1
TDS
15
I've seen smart people speculate that the Cardinals may trade down and trade back up to get Marvin Harrison Jr. That seems overly complicated, and the kind of theory you concoct when you've spent far too much time thinking about the draft. If the Cardinals want Harrison, and he's on the board when they pick, just take Harrison.
Round 1 - Pick 5
Oregon State • 6'6" / 324 lbs
Projected Team
L.A. Chargers
PROSPECT RNK
14th
POSITION RNK
3rd
If things break this way, the Chargers would likely love to trade down with a team racing to get a quarterback, but it doesn't break that way here. A receiver makes sense, given the needs, but I'm holding firm to my theory that Jim Harbaugh will address the LOS first and then get a receiver later.
  Mock Trade from New York Giants
Round 1 - Pick 6
LSU • 6'4" / 210 lbs
Projected Team
Las Vegas
PROSPECT RNK
6th
POSITION RNK
3rd
PAYDS
3812
RUYDS
1134
INTS
4
TDS
50
Wait a second, what if a team did try to trade with the Chargers, but the Chargers were asking for too much to make a deal with a division rival? No problem: the Raiders find a trade partner in the Giants that allows them to come up to get Jayden Daniels.
Round 1 - Pick 7
Alabama • 6'3" / 247 lbs
Projected Team
Tennessee
PROSPECT RNK
7th
POSITION RNK
1st
I've had the Titans going tackle in this spot in most of my mocks, but with two already drafted, they opt to take the top EDGE rusher on their board in Dallas Turner.
Round 1 - Pick 8
Florida State • 6'4" / 260 lbs
Projected Team
Atlanta
PROSPECT RNK
11th
POSITION RNK
2nd
I don't rate this EDGE class all that highly, as I see a lot of potential quality starters, but not guys who strike me as game-changers. That said, Atlanta has a need, and Verse may not be an elite prospect, but he's well-rounded and improves the defense.
Round 1 - Pick 9
LSU • 6'0" / 200 lbs
Projected Team
Chicago
PROSPECT RNK
3rd
POSITION RNK
2nd
Given the picks they've traded away this offseason, I felt the Bears were obvious trade-down candidates to add more picks. However, recent comments from GM Ryan Poles have caused me to reconsider. Reading between the lines, I don't think the Bears love this class at their positions of need, so they add Malik Nabers to a WR corps that already includes D.J. Moore and Keenan Allen. What more could Caleb Williams ask for?
Round 1 - Pick 10
Washington • 6'3" / 215 lbs
Projected Team
N.Y. Jets
PROSPECT RNK
10th
POSITION RNK
3rd
Maybe the Jets go tackle in this situation, but the idea of pairing Rome Odunze with Garrett Wilson was just too enticing to pass up. Their games compliment each other so well, and would give the Jets an incredible array of talent on offense.
Round 1 - Pick 11
Michigan • 6'3" / 219 lbs
Projected Team
Minnesota
PROSPECT RNK
19th
POSITION RNK
4th
PAYDS
2991
RUYDS
202
INTS
4
TDS
25
The Vikings have two first-round picks and didn't have to package them together to move up to get the QB they want. Can you imagine? Opinions on McCarthy vary, but what he's shown an ability to do well lines up with what Kevin O'Connell and the Vikings ask their QB to do. The reason you keep seeing the Vikings connected to McCarthy is because it just makes sense.
Round 1 - Pick 12
Georgia • 6'4" / 240 lbs
Projected Team
Denver
PROSPECT RNK
13th
POSITION RNK
1st
REC
56
REYDS
714
YDS/REC
12.8
TDS
7
This is a best player available situation for the Broncos. They may move up to grab a QB, but it seems unlikely, given their lack of trade assets. Instead, they get Bowers, who immediately upgrades their thinning cadre of pass-catchers.
  Mock Trade from Las Vegas Raiders
Round 1 - Pick 13
Toledo • 6'0" / 196 lbs
Projected Team
N.Y. Giants
PROSPECT RNK
9th
POSITION RNK
1st
I love Quinyon Mitchell. I love his size. I love his length. I love his athleticism. I love his tenacity. I want to get all that out of the way before I say the dumb thing I'm about to say. I love all of it, but am I the only one concerned about a corner from the MAC? There isn't exactly a long list of success stories! The concern isn't enough to keep me from drafting him, but my big dumb brain has big dumb thoughts it wants to share.
Round 1 - Pick 14
Penn State • 6'6" / 317 lbs
Projected Team
New Orleans
PROSPECT RNK
5th
POSITION RNK
1st
I'm constantly caught in an internal dialogue about Olu Fashanu. I have concerns about Fashanu returning to school last season and not improving as a run-blocker. At the same time, he's still very young, and perhaps he needs to get on an NFL roster to learn how to be better at it. Either way, he's immediately one of the 10 best pass blockers at left tackle in the league.
Round 1 - Pick 15
UCLA • 6'5" / 267 lbs
Projected Team
Indianapolis
PROSPECT RNK
16th
POSITION RNK
3rd
It's not the most pressing need for the Colts, but it's a need, and the way this mock has played out, I can see the Colts addressing the pass rush now instead of waiting until later when this class thins out significantly.
Round 1 - Pick 16
Duke • 6'5" / 314 lbs
Projected Team
Seattle
PROSPECT RNK
51st
POSITION RNK
8th
I've heard so many conflicting opinions on Graham Barton that it's hard to know where he'll end up. I'm coming around on him. I don't know that he has elite traits, but he's versatile and doesn't show any glaring weaknesses. He also shows better recovery balance than some of the other highly rated tackles in this class, and it's an important trait to have.
Round 1 - Pick 17
Alabama • 6'0" / 199 lbs
Projected Team
Jacksonville
PROSPECT RNK
12th
POSITION RNK
2nd
I consider myself a charter member of The Terrion Arnold Fan Club, so I'm a little surprised it took this long to see him come off the board in this mock. Don't worry, I shall be writing an angry letter to the author about it!
Round 1 - Pick 18
Illinois • 6'2" / 295 lbs
Projected Team
Cincinnati
PROSPECT RNK
23rd
POSITION RNK
2nd
I watched Johnny Newton play his entire college career because I'm one of maybe 10 people who actively watch Illinois football games on Saturdays regardless of their opponent. In that time, I saw Newton dominate games -- not opposing linemen, games -- from the defensive tackle position far more often than I've seen any other tackle not named Aaron Donald or Jalen Carter do at the college level.
Round 1 - Pick 19
Texas • 6'0" / 306 lbs
Projected Team
L.A. Rams
PROSPECT RNK
15th
POSITION RNK
1st
Byron Murphy II could easily be the first defensive tackle off the board, and I wouldn't be surprised if he goes a lot earlier than this. With Aaron Donald's retirement, taking Murphy (or Newton) here makes sense for the Rams.
Round 1 - Pick 20
Oregon • 6'3" / 320 lbs
Projected Team
Pittsburgh
PROSPECT RNK
33rd
POSITION RNK
2nd
If I could design my ideal center, it'd be Jackson Powers-Johnson. Everything from his size, shape and demeanor aligns perfectly with what I want from the position. He's also much more athletic than his build would have you believe at first glance. He can handle himself in open space.
Round 1 - Pick 21
Clemson • 6'2" / 185 lbs
Projected Team
Miami
PROSPECT RNK
27th
POSITION RNK
4th
The Dolphins could go any number of directions with this pick. Here I have them taking Nate Wiggins, whom I've been moving between No. 1 and No. 2 on my CB board with Terrion Arnold for a month now.
Round 1 - Pick 22
Alabama • 6'1" / 195 lbs
Projected Team
Philadelphia
PROSPECT RNK
25th
POSITION RNK
3rd
Maybe it isn't Kool-Aid McKinstry, but I'll be surprised if the Eagles don't begin their draft by addressing the secondary. It was just too big a problem for them last year.
Round 1 - Pick 23
Penn State • 6'3" / 254 lbs
Projected Team
Minnesota
PROSPECT RNK
22nd
POSITION RNK
4th
The Vikings have added a couple of edge rushers in free agency after losing Danielle Hunter, but you can never have enough. Chop Robinson could be the best pure pass-rusher of the class, and while he's not as well-rounded as others, Minnesota wouldn't need him to be a three-down player right away.
Round 1 - Pick 24
Georgia • 6'7" / 340 lbs
Projected Team
Dallas
PROSPECT RNK
17th
POSITION RNK
4th
Amarius Mims doesn't have the reps of other tackles in the class, but they lack his size, athleticism and potential. This would be a tremendous value for a Cowboys team that needs reinforcements up front.
Round 1 - Pick 25
Alabama • 6'6" / 360 lbs
Projected Team
Green Bay
PROSPECT RNK
20th
POSITION RNK
5th
When I watch JC Latham, the word that comes to mind is "solid." There are some spectacular moments, but it's the overall consistency of Latham's not doing anything poorly that stands out.
Round 1 - Pick 26
Iowa • 6'0" / 198 lbs
Projected Team
Tampa Bay
PROSPECT RNK
30th
POSITION RNK
5th
Iowa has produced plenty of productive defensive backs over the years, some of whom have become solid NFL players. But Cooper DeJean feels different than those who came before him in the program. There's a juice and electricity to his game that stands out, and if it weren't for the broken leg that kept him from being at full strength in the pre-draft process, there would be a lot more buzz around him.
Round 1 - Pick 27
Rutgers • 5'11" / 193 lbs
Projected Team
Arizona
PROSPECT RNK
93rd
POSITION RNK
3rd
Want a late first-round surprise? Look no further than Max Melton, whose name I've heard come up a few times lately as somebody to watch in the first round. He's improved throughout his career and held up well in games against guys like Marvin Harrison Jr.
Round 1 - Pick 28
Texas • 6'4" / 196 lbs
Projected Team
Buffalo
PROSPECT RNK
24th
POSITION RNK
5th
REC
55
REYDS
845
YDS/REC
15.4
TDS
11
Have you looked at Buffalo's WR depth chart following the Stefon Diggs trade? I'd be shocked if the Bills don't select a receiver in the first round. They may even trade up to get one, but I don't think they'll have to, given how deep the class is.
Round 1 - Pick 29
Minnesota • 6'2" / 210 lbs
Projected Team
Detroit
PROSPECT RNK
43rd
POSITION RNK
1st
The Lions have shown they aren't as concerned about positional value when they feel there's a player available at a position of need. Tyler Nubin could be that player. He's my favorite safety in the class and would be an upgrade for the Lions secondary.
Round 1 - Pick 30
Washington • 6'4" / 317 lbs
Projected Team
Baltimore
PROSPECT RNK
21st
POSITION RNK
1st
In most years, Troy Fautanu isn't likely to get past No. 20, but in this draft class, the Ravens could find a potential All-Pro falling into their laps late in the first.
Round 1 - Pick 31
Arizona • 6'5" / 325 lbs
Projected Team
San Francisco
PROSPECT RNK
52nd
POSITION RNK
9th
I do not understand the lack of hype surrounding Jordan Morgan. He has some of the most impressive tape of any OT in the class. The 49ers have to address their offensive line in this draft, and Morgan would be a steal at 31.
Round 1 - Pick 32
LSU • 6'4" / 205 lbs
Projected Team
Kansas City
PROSPECT RNK
18th
POSITION RNK
4th
REC
68
REYDS
1177
YDS/REC
17.3
TDS
17
Tall, fast, and can catch a deep ball? Can you imagine one of those in the Kansas City offense? Brian Thomas Jr. is the final pick of this mock, but he could go much earlier. He didn't run a complete route tree at LSU but didn't need to in his role. There may be an adjustment period, but Thomas has more in his bag than he showed in Baton Rouge.

The 2024 NFL Draft will take place from April 25-27 in Detroit. More draft coverage can be found at CBSSports.com, including the weekly updated draft order and a regularly available look at the eligible prospects