Live 2022 NFL Draft updates: mock drafts, date and time and breaking news

Anyone want a quarterback? Or do we just want to talk about it for a moment?

As we continue to roar toward the 2022 NFL Draft, the QB first-round conversation remains…well, cloudy.

Here has Athleticism, this week we’re looking at team-specific fictional drafts with direct insight from our editors in the field. To date, 24 teams have a first-round pick. Only one of those teams, in our last full championship simulation, selected a quarterback in the first round. At No. 6, Carolina picked Liberty QB Malik Willis.

“It wasn’t just Willis’ skills that impressed the Panthers. Like everyone at Willis’ pro day two weeks ago, (GM Scott) Fitterer felt “the excitement in the building” that came from the energy, enthusiasm and rainbows of 65 meters from Willis”, Athleticismnotes Joseph Person. “If you hadn’t noticed – and owner David Tepper certainly did – there was a lack of energy around the organization in the last month of the 2021 season. Cam Newton brought the juice during those heady days of 2013 to 2015 and again last season when he returned, although that turned out to be short-lived.

“There is only one Newton. But Willis, who went to Newton High School in South Atlanta and spent two years at Auburn, has the same kind of charisma and confidence.

The Panthers obviously have a need. Willis is awesome. This choice therefore makes a lot of sense. But what about (checks notes) everyone else who should at least discuss a quarterback? Houston, Detroit, Atlanta, Seattle, Washington, New Orleans, Pittsburgh, Tennessee and more Detroit?

Everyone passed. No Kenny Pickett. No Desmond Rider. Not Matt Corrall or Sam Howell. Our fake Steelers draft (led by fake GM and beat writer Mark Kaboly) talked about it – but went with Devonte Wyatt instead before moving to 32 with Detroit to take Ridder. Saints writer Kat Terrell painted a similar picture, explaining how New Orleans certainly needs to do their QB homework, but ultimately made a similar decision: drafting right tackle Trevor Penning from Northern Iowa was a much more comfortable selection.

Seahawks writer Michael-Shawn Dugar thought about QB early on, but instead went with Mississippi State offensive tackle Charles Cross — a very good player and fit — at No. 9 before making a 30 trade with Kansas City for Ridder. Joe Rexrode’s Tennessee Titans simulation thought of a QB and took none. The draft of Ben Standig’s Washington commanders…same thing. They are not alone.

Will it just be Willis on the first lap, or will there be a race? Time will tell us.

Other notes from our latest set of fictional team drafts:

  • The No Beat writer selected Notre Dame safety Kyle Hamilton in an individual team draft. Of course, this does not mean that we The athletec are weak on Hamilton. On the contrary, our Dane Brugler called Hamilton one of the best defensive prospects in the draft, regardless of position. But Hamilton is a security and, in terms of the job name alone, it may scare people off when you start talking about a top 10 pick. When we did the full 32-team simulation last month, Hamilton slipped to Atlanta at No. 8. Hamilton will be a first-round pick in this draft, likely a very high one. But depending on the needs of the team, the uncertainties and whatever else is happening in the top 10, a Hamilton slip could absolutely be in the cards. Which means someone who doesn’t make the top 10 could possibly end up with a gigantic steal. We’ll see.
  • If you’re interested in what our beat editors think about their team’s first-round selection, here’s the top 10 (keep in mind these were drafts made independently, so there will be some repeats).
  1. Jacksonville (Aidan Hutchinson, Edge), 2. Detroit (Kayvon Thibodeaux, Edge), 3. Houston (Ikem Ekwonu, OL) 4. New York Jets (Kayvon Thibodeaux, Edge), 5. New York Giants (Evan Neal, OT), 6. Carolina Panthers (Malik Willis, QB), 7. New York Giants (Sauce Gardner, CB), 8. Atlanta (Travon Walker, Edge), 9. Seattle (Charles Cross, OL), 10. New York Jets (Drake London, WR)
  • The player who ended up on the most boards in the first round this time around? Texas A&M goaltender Kenyon Green. In our last round of simulations, Green went off the board in Dallas, Tamba Bay and Cincinnati late in the first.

(Photo by Malik Willis: Jonathan Bachman/Getty Images)

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