NFL Mock Draft 2022: Neal, Hutchinson go first; Bengals, Lions trade up

Ohio State Buckeyes wide receiver Chris Olave should be a first-round target for the Cleveland Browns in the 2022 NFL Draft. File Photo by Aaron Josefczyk/UPI
Ohio State Buckeyes wide receiver Chris Olave should be a first-round target for the Cleveland Browns in the 2022 NFL Draft. File Photo by Aaron Josefczyk/UPI | License Photo

MIAMI, March 1 (UPI) -- The 2022 NFL Scouting Combine is here, and so is my first mock draft of the off-season. Alabama offensive tackle Evan Neal is the first player I expect to come off the board when the Jacksonville Jaguars announce the No. 1 overall pick April 28.

Look for Michigan edge rusher Aidan Hutchinson to follow as the Detroit Lions' first pick. Kayvon Thibodeaux of Oregon is another elite pass rusher and should be the No. 3 player selected.


Notre Dame safety Kyle Hamilton and North Carolina state offensive tackle Ickey Ekwonu also land inside the Top 5 in my mock draft.

Several NFL franchises enter the off-season with concerns at the quarterback position, but this draft does not appear to be loaded with arm talent.

RELATED Packers, Bucs, Cardinals, Jaguars, Saints to play international NFL games

Pittsburgh's Kenny Pickett and Liberty's Malik Willis are the only two quarterbacks that I see coming off the board on the draft's first day.

Overall, my first-round mock draft features nine offensive linemen, eight defensive linemen, six defensive backs, five wide receivers and two linebackers, in addition to the passing duo.

Hundreds of prospects will be in Indianapolis this week to conduct interviews with teams and media members, participate in drills and be measured for the physical traits and abilities. Scouting combine workouts air from Thursday through Sunday on NFL Network.


Coverage starts at 4 p.m. EST Thursday, Friday and Saturday. Sunday's coverage, which features defensive backs, starts at 2 p.m. EST on NFL Network.

The 2022 NFL Draft runs from April 28 to 30 in Las Vegas.

NFL Mock Draft

1. Jacksonville Jaguars: Evan Neal, OT, Alabama

2. Detroit Lions: Aidan Hutchinson, Edge, Michigan

3. Houston Texans: Kayvon Thibodeaux, Edge, Oregon

4. New York Jets: Kyle Hamilton, S, Notre Dame

5. New York Giants: Ickey Ekwonu, OT, NC State

6. Carolina Panthers: Charles Cross, OT, Mississippi State

7. New York Giants: Drake London, WR, USC

8. Atlanta Falcons: Travon Walker, Edge, Georgia

9. Denver Broncos: Sauce Gardner, CB, Cincinnati

10. New York Jets: Trevor Penning, OT, Northern Iowa

11. Washington Football Team: Kenny Pickett, QB, Pittsburgh

12. Minnesota Vikings: Derek Stingley Jr., CB, LSU

13. Cleveland Browns: Chris Olave, WR, Ohio State

14. Baltimore Ravens: Devonte Wyatt, DT, Georgia

15. Philadelphia Eagles: Trent McDuffie, CB, Washington

16. Philadelphia Eagles: David Ojabo, DE/OLB, Michigan

17. Los Angeles Chargers: Jermaine Johnson II, Edge, Florida State

18. New Orleans Saints: Malik Willis, QB, Liberty

19. Philadelphia Eagles: Garrett Wilson, WR, Ohio State

20. Pittsburgh Steelers: Kenyon Green, G, Texas A&M

21. New England Patriots: Nakobe Dean, LB, Georgia


22. Las Vegas Raiders: Kyler Gordon, CB, Washington

23. Arizona Cardinals: Treylon Burks, WR, Arkansas

24. Dallas Cowboys: Devin Lloyd, LB, Utah

25. Buffalo Bills: George Karlaftis, Edge, Purdue

26. Detroit Lions trade with Tennessee Titans: Jameson Williams, WR, Alabama

27. Cincinnati Bengals trade with Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Tyler Linderbaum, C, Iowa

28. Green Bay Packers: Bernhard Raimann, OT, Central Michigan

29. Miami Dolphins: Tyler Smith, OT, Tulsa

30. Kansas City Chiefs: Boye Mafe, Edge, Minnesota

31. Tampa Bay Buccaneers trade with Cincinnati Bengals: Andrew Booth, CB, Clemson

32. Tennessee Titans trade with Detroit Lions: Zion Johnson, C/G, Boston College

Latest Headlines