With Round 1 in the books now it’s time to turn our attention to Round 2 of DFFs initial 2017 rookie mock draft. As with the first round selections the name of the writer who made the selection is right next to the pick itself, so if you agree or disagree please feel free to reach out to them and share your thoughts on a pick.
2.01 JuJu Smith Schuster, WR, USC (@allpurposeyrd8ge)
I can’t pass up JuJu at this point. He has a good size, speed combination to get behind the defense. Can create separation and gain yards after the catch. Good speed for quick routes. Would like to see more of a “my ball” mentality and better functional strength to fight for contested catches.
2.02 Corey Clement, RB, Wisconsin (@DFF_JohnIDP)
Joe Mixon gave me pause here and I ultimately passed due to character concerns. Freeman and Ross were gone and my guy JuJu vanished before me so I went with a player who I like to be a value in PPR and has a good all-around game.
2.03 Curtis Samuel, WR, Ohio State (@dynoeconomist)
He was the best receiver and running back, yep both, for one of the top teams in the nation this year.
2.04 O.J. Howard, TE, Alabama (@dibari22)
There are still several RBs on the board that I like. Hopefully at least one falls to me in the next round. I think Howard can be a difference maker at a position that’s tough to fill on a week to week basis. He has as much upside as any TE to come out in years. Production wise, I think I’m looking at something between Greg Olsen and Gronk once he gets settled in at the NFL level.
2.05 Joe Mixon, RB, Oklahoma (@pacificscouting)
Mixon is one of the most talented backs in this year’s very deep class. Everyone knows he had an incident and I would guarantee it drops him to the bottom of a bunch of teams boards. That being said talent usually wins out and it’s not going to matter where he is drafted, he will get a shot at a starting job. Mixon showcases very good hands and route running out of the backfield. He’s a very versatile player who runs with a certain tenacity that’s very appealing. Mixon is listed at 6’1″ 226 lbs and has averaged 6.8 ypc along with 13.6 ypr. He’s a very balanced runner with top end speed that makes him a threat on every play.
2.06 James Washington, WR, Oklahoma State (@DFF_BMack)
Let’s get this out of the way, playing in Oklahoma State’s spread offense, Washington runs a limited route tree. That said, there will be some growing pains at the NFL level. He also tends to make catches more difficult than they need to be. However, his ability to regularly produce big plays (career avg of 19 yards per catch) trumps any of those concerns for me. He’s a big, aggressive, acrobatic receiver who has some pleasing nuances built into his route running. He is able to win with his release, get separation downfield despite contact, and win 50/50 balls. Even if it takes some time to become a complete wide receiver in the NFL, he could be used as a deep threat early on.
2.07 Evan Engram, TE, Ole Miss (@andrewmiley)
Is he a small tight end or is he a big wide out? Engram averages almost 100 yards receiving per game and looks like a great Joker in the right offense. I think he could be a Terrelle Pryor type player (without the QB confusion).
2.08 Allen Lazard, WR, Iowa State (@dff_madman)
He may not go pro, and I would never tell a kid what to do, but in the case of that Cyclone offense, the future would be much brighter for Lazard as a pro WR. And I haven’t forgotten how highly scouts ranked him coming out of high school. I recalled the same thing about Stefon Diggs when dyno draft time rolled around.
Editor’s note: Lazard decided to return to Iowa State for his senior year.
2.09 Kalen Ballage, RB, Arizona State (@_codygarrett)
Kalen Ballage is the definition of a physical freak. He has the size, at 6’2” 225lbs, and the strength that goes with it, as evident in his monster run vs UCLA. He has good agility which gives him the ability to avoid defenders and the vision to find the open holes. He also adds tremendous speed, especially for a guy of his size. Ballage is also an excellent receiver and in fact, has gone over 100 yards on a few occasions. I view him as one of the top RBs in this draft class and he has the chance at being an elite player at the next level.
2.10 Cooper Kupp, WR, Eastern Washington (@eyeoftheoracle)
Cooper Kupp is a particularly interesting prospect. He exploded onto the scene totaling 93 receptions for 1,692 yards and 21 TD’s in his freshman year alone and his hype train only picked up momentum from there. He finished his career at Eastern Illinois 402-6,061-68. Yes, you can pick your jaw up off the floor now. Kupp is a phenomenal athlete reminding me a lot of Julian Edelman but much taller at 6’2. He projects to play mostly in the slot in the NFL but can line up anywhere. His landing spot will count for quite a bit, but with his size and ability to create separation through his route running he looks to be particularly valuable in PPR formats. I simply couldn’t take the chance of him slipping any further. I will be looking for an RB in the next round as there are several still on the board.
Two rounds down and just one more to go. Check back with us on Friday for our final installment.