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Caleb Williams announced that he won't play in USC's bowl game, which means that, barring the truly unforeseen, he's likely taken his final collegiate snap. It also means that in 142 days from the time that I'm writing this, he has a great chance to be the first player taken in the 2024 NFL Draft. In mock draft 4.0, I still have Williams as QB1, but I have the Patriots, who currently have the No. 2 pick, moving up one spot to get their quarterback. This also means that the Bears move down, pass on Williams, and are sticking with Justin Fields.

(A quick aside, and this will likely become boilerplate for any and all rebuilding teams who take a young QB: Please -- and I can't stress this enough -- make sure you build around them. Solidify the offensive line, make sure the running game is at least replacement level, and do whatever it takes to find receivers who can win at the line of scrimmage. I know, easier said than done because of the salary cap and the inherent uncertainty of player evaluation and development, but if you want to know what happens when you fail to do any of these things, look no further than the 2023 Carolina Panthers. This concludes the public-service announcement.)

Because you love trade details, here they are:

  • Chicago gets: New England's 2024 first (No. 2), 2024 second (No. 34), 2024 fourth (102), 2025 third
  • New England gets: Chicago's 20024 first (No. 1).

This is based on what the Bears had to give up in 2017 to move from No. 3 to No. 2 to get Mitchell Trubisky. More importantly, this hypothetical means Chicago has picks 2, 5, 34, 71, 102, 104 in the '24 draft.

As for sticking with Fields, at least in this mock draft, here's the thinking: First, this is going to be a talking point for the final five weeks of the regular season because Fields still has to prove he's the guy in Chicago. In part because he wasn't drafted by GM Ryan Poles, in part because the Bears don't want a repeat of 2017, when they passed on Patrick Mahomes and took Trubisky. They have to get this right.

But for our purposes here, let's assume Fields is the guy in Chicago; the team has plenty of cap space so they could pick up his fifth-year option this summer -- if they choose to. They could also let Fields play out the season and reevaluate after the 2025 season. In the near term, by trading down to No. 2, not only does the team continue to add draft picks, it also positions itself to help Fields by taking Ohio State wide receiver Marvin Harrison Jr. And I always come back to how important an other-worldly wideout can be for a young QB -- see what Tyreek Hill did for Tua Tagovailoa, A.J. Brown for Jalen Hurts, and Stefon Diggs for Josh Allen.

Adding Harrison to a room with D.J. Moore, Darnell Mooney and Tyler Scott, along with tight end Cole Kmet certainly makes you think this could be a playoff-caliber team in '24, especially with the Bears targeting an edge rusher with their other first-rounder.

Again, we'll talk this to death in the coming months, but if nothing else, it's fun (and maybe a little instructive) to run through some possible scenarios. And that brings us to QB2 and QB3 in this mock draft.

Do I think Jayden Daniels gets drafted ahead of Drake Maye? No, not as we sit here, but there are people in the league who didn't immediately shut down the idea of Daniels going off the board before Maye when I brought it up. And there's no disputing that Daniels had the better season, and the strides he's made since transferring from Arizona State have been big ones. His game reminds me a lot of Lamar Jackson.

Maye, meanwhile, is a legit talent, no doubt about it, but for me, his comp is a spectrum, where Trevor Lawrence is the ceiling and Daniel Jones is the floor. In other words, you can't throw him into any situation and expect miracles. This isn't revolutionary -- basically, there's only one C.J. Stroud and every other rookie quarterback needs help (this is only a slight exaggeration).

OK, we have four months to sort all this out. For now, let's get to all 32 picks.

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
  Mock Trade from Chicago Bears
Round 1 - Pick 1
USC • Jr • 6'1" / 215 lbs
Projected Team
New England
PROSPECT RNK
2nd
POSITION RNK
1st
Who knows what fate awaits Bill Belichick, but what seems much more certain is that the 2024 Patriots starting quarterback currently isn't on the roster. If the organization has two (or three) quarterbacks graded in a similar range, it could remain at No. 2. That said, if New England thinks Caleb Williams is special -- and a head above the other passers in this class -- then trading up could be on the table.
  Mock Trade from New England Patriots
Round 1 - Pick 2
Ohio State • Jr • 6'4" / 205 lbs
Projected Team
Chicago
PROSPECT RNK
1st
POSITION RNK
1st
Is Justin Fields the answer in Chicago? No idea. But I do know that the organization hasn't done enough to consistently put him in position to succeed. Of course, salary considerations (Fields is going into Year 4 and a decision will have to be made about his fifth-year option and/or a new deal) and whether Matt Eberflus remains the coach will play big roles in the near-term decisions of this team.
Round 1 - Pick 3
Penn State • Jr • 6'6" / 317 lbs
Projected Team
Arizona
PROSPECT RNK
3rd
POSITION RNK
1st
Kyler Murray has looked sharp since returning from his ACL injury and it's tough to envision any of the rookie QBs in this class coming into Arizona and performing better in Year 1. And while losing out on Marvin Harrison Jr. stings, solidifying the offensive line (last year, the team took RT Paris Johnson Jr. in Round 1), rolling with Murray and building on Jonathan Gannon's first season all feel like steps in the right direction.
Round 1 - Pick 4
LSU • Sr • 6'4" / 210 lbs
Projected Team
Washington
PROSPECT RNK
76th
POSITION RNK
8th
I know that Sam Howell is the Commanders QB and that he's had a solid Year 2 while showing signs of real growth. But there's also a pretty good chance new ownership is looking for a new coach, and often new coaches like to have "their" quarterback too. No player improved more this fall than Daniels, whose game reminds me a lot of Lamar Jackson.
Round 1 - Pick 5
Alabama • Jr • 6'4" / 252 lbs
Projected Team
Chicago
PROSPECT RNK
14th
POSITION RNK
3rd
Yes, LT Joe Alt is still on the board but the Bears are happy with their young offensive tackles, and instead, they continue to rebuild the defense. Montez Sweat was acquired during the trade deadline and he's bookended by Dallas Turner. Last month, Will Anderson Jr. told me on the With the First Pick Podcast that Turner, his former Alabama teammate, has a better understanding of the game at this point in his college career than Anderson did.
Round 1 - Pick 6
North Carolina • Soph • 6'4" / 230 lbs
Projected Team
N.Y. Giants
PROSPECT RNK
5th
POSITION RNK
2nd
Here's how I like to describe Maye: his NFL comp is on a spectrum, where Trevor Lawrence is best case and Daniel Jones is, well, something less than that. For the Giants -- or whoever drafts him -- they have to figure out how to set him up for success because he has a chance to be special. He just can't do it alone (see his '23 season).
Round 1 - Pick 7
Notre Dame • Jr • 6'7" / 322 lbs
Projected Team
N.Y. Jets
PROSPECT RNK
7th
POSITION RNK
3rd
Best-case scenario for the Jets, assuming they're not in the market for a quarterback. Alt is coming off an impressive season in which he answered any questions about whether he can play left tackle in the league (because he can).
Round 1 - Pick 8
Alabama • Jr • 6'6" / 360 lbs
Projected Team
Tennessee
PROSPECT RNK
6th
POSITION RNK
2nd
Latham had a dominant '23 for the Crimson Tide and while he's only played right tackle the last two years in college, in Tennessee he helps rebuild an offense line that has done Will Levis few favors this season.
Round 1 - Pick 9
LSU • Jr • 6'0" / 200 lbs
Projected Team
New Orleans
PROSPECT RNK
13th
POSITION RNK
2nd
The Saints may give serious consideration to life after Derek Carr this offseason, but his contract could complicate things. Instead, I have them bolstering their wide receiver room with Nabers, who had a breakout campaign for the Tigers this fall.
Round 1 - Pick 10
Washington • Jr • 6'3" / 215 lbs
Projected Team
Tampa Bay
PROSPECT RNK
31st
POSITION RNK
6th
Tampa Bay is another team that could be in the QB market since Baker Mayfield is on a one-year deal, but assuming Mayfield re-signs, adding wide receiver depth will be a priority. And there are a handful of players who will be in the WR2 conversation, including Odunze.
Round 1 - Pick 11
Washington • Sr • 6'3" / 213 lbs
Projected Team
Las Vegas
PROSPECT RNK
49th
POSITION RNK
5th
The league has mixed opinions on Penix, who suffered two ACL injuries and two shoulder injuries at Indiana. That said, he's been healthy -- and incredibly productive -- in two years at Washington, has a big arm, and more importantly, throws with NFL anticipation and accuracy.
Round 1 - Pick 12
Florida State • Jr • 6'4" / 260 lbs
Projected Team
L.A. Chargers
PROSPECT RNK
12th
POSITION RNK
2nd
The Chargers hate to pass on Brock Bowers here but they absolutely have to improve the defense. Yes, Tuli Tuipulotu has had a great rookie season, but Joey Bosa is out with a foot injury and Khalil Mack, whose contract expires in 2025, will be 35 next year.
Round 1 - Pick 13
Clemson • Jr • 6'2" / 185 lbs
Projected Team
Buffalo
PROSPECT RNK
19th
POSITION RNK
3rd
Wiggins is a long, athletic, ball-hawking cornerback. He had two interceptions in '23, including the game clincher vs. UNC and Drake Maye. The biggest question he faced coming into the season was his open-field tackling and he made strides in that area this fall.
Round 1 - Pick 14
Florida State • Jr • 6'4" / 215 lbs
Projected Team
Denver
PROSPECT RNK
16th
POSITION RNK
3rd
The Michigan State transfer hit the ground running in Tallahassee, and his combination of size, speed and catch radius -- not to mention return ability -- has firmly put him in the running for WR2 in a deep receiver class.
Round 1 - Pick 15
UCLA • Sr • 6'5" / 265 lbs
Projected Team
Seattle
PROSPECT RNK
11th
POSITION RNK
1st
The biggest issues facing Latu will be if he's cleared medically after a neck injury sidelined his career a few years ago. Because on the field, he has been unstoppable this season.
Round 1 - Pick 16
Georgia • Jr • 6'7" / 340 lbs
Projected Team
L.A. Rams
PROSPECT RNK
23rd
POSITION RNK
4th
Mims struggled with an ankle injury for much of the 2023 season and he's short on experience, but the way his played in his very first college start last January against Ohio State proved that he's a first-round talent.
Round 1 - Pick 17
Georgia • Jr • 6'4" / 240 lbs
Projected Team
Cincinnati
PROSPECT RNK
4th
POSITION RNK
1st
Before you fire off that angry tweet, let me explain. In the last 20 years, 19 tight ends have gone in the first round. Five of those were selected in the top 10 (Eric Ebron, 10th overall in 2014; TJ Hockenson, 8th in 2019; Kellen Winslow II and Vernon Davis, 6th in 2004 and 2006; and Kyle Pitts, 4th in 2021). The other 14 were drafted between No. 19 and No. 32. I mention this because I think Brock Bowers is special. In fact, he's the No. 5 player on my big board. And maybe he's different; he'll be the tight end worth taking in the top 10. But for now, in this early-December mock draft, I have him lasting until pick No. 17. That feels insanely low, I know, but the league has been wary to take tight ends high. Which is good news for the Bengals here. And while Cincy needs to fix the offensive line ... how long have we been saying that? Put another way: remember when they had the choice between Ja'Marr Chase and Penei Sewell? This feels like the a similar situation here with Bowers.
Round 1 - Pick 18
Ohio State • Jr • 6'1" / 206 lbs
Projected Team
Arizona
PROSPECT RNK
20th
POSITION RNK
4th
Egbuka's numbers are down this season, in part because of injury and in part because that's what happens when C.J. Stroud leaves for the NFL.
Round 1 - Pick 19
Ohio State • Jr • 6'4" / 270 lbs
Projected Team
Atlanta
PROSPECT RNK
15th
POSITION RNK
4th
You will not find a player with a higher motor, and when you couple that with Tuimoloau's twitch, speed and power, he's going to be a problem at the next level for NFL offensive tackles.
Round 1 - Pick 20
Iowa • Jr • 6'1" / 207 lbs
Projected Team
Green Bay
PROSPECT RNK
38th
POSITION RNK
7th
DeJean is a big, fast, athletic cornerback who some teams think may end up at safety. That versatility makes him an attractive option for the Packers secondary. DeJean is also one of the best punt returners in college.
Round 1 - Pick 21
Illinois • Jr • 6'2" / 295 lbs
Projected Team
Minnesota
PROSPECT RNK
27th
POSITION RNK
2nd
Newton played on an Illini defense last season that included No. 5 overall pick Devon Witherspoon, and Day 2 selections Quan Martin and Sydney Brown. The defensive linemen will be the next in line to hear his name called early in the draft.
Round 1 - Pick 22
Washington • Jr • 6'4" / 317 lbs
Projected Team
Indianapolis
PROSPECT RNK
129th
POSITION RNK
8th
Fautanu moves in space like he's an athletic tight end while consistently anchoring in pass protection and creating holes in the run game. His NFL future may be at guard, and he's coming off an impressive '23 campaign.
Round 1 - Pick 23
Alabama • Jr • 6'1" / 195 lbs
Projected Team
Pittsburgh
PROSPECT RNK
9th
POSITION RNK
2nd
Alabama thinks Kool-Aid has legit NFL cover skills -- the only question will be his deep speed, and that would be the only reason he'd still be available here. Otherwise, there's a lot to love about his game. Added bonus: he can be an asset in the return game, too.
Round 1 - Pick 24
Penn State • Jr • 6'3" / 254 lbs
Projected Team
Houston
PROSPECT RNK
29th
POSITION RNK
6th
The Texans traded up for Will Anderson Jr. in the spring and he's been as advertised. This time, they stay put and land another edge rusher in Chop Robinson, who is as active a pass rusher as you'll find in college football.
Round 1 - Pick 25
Houston • Jr • 6'7" / 315 lbs
Projected Team
Kansas City
PROSPECT RNK
40th
POSITION RNK
8th
Donovan Smith's contract expires after the season and while Paul is raw, his athleticism will put him firmly in the first-round conversation.
Round 1 - Pick 26
Oregon State • Jr • 6'6" / 334 lbs
Projected Team
Jacksonville
PROSPECT RNK
17th
POSITION RNK
1st
Fuaga had a fantastic season for Oregon State, and while he's excelled at right tackle, some NFL teams think his future may be at guard. Either way, he's a first-round talent.
Round 1 - Pick 27
Georgia • Jr • 6'0" / 180 lbs
Projected Team
Dallas
PROSPECT RNK
30th
POSITION RNK
4th
Lassiter feels like a Dan Quinn cornerback -- he's long and he's physical, both in coverage and in run support. The ball production isn't there yet but that'll come.
Round 1 - Pick 28
Washington • Jr • 6'4" / 274 lbs
Projected Team
Detroit
PROSPECT RNK
26th
POSITION RNK
5th
Trice only had five sacks this season but he led FBS pass rushers in pressuring the quarterback. He's active off the edge and would be a nice bookend to Aidan Hutchinson in Detroit.
Round 1 - Pick 29
BYU • Soph • 6'6" / 325 lbs
Projected Team
San Francisco
PROSPECT RNK
37th
POSITION RNK
7th
Suamataia played out of position at right tackle in 2022 and played every snap at left tackle this season. NFL teams love his size and potential.
Round 1 - Pick 30
Penn State • Sr • 6'4" / 249 lbs
Projected Team
Baltimore
PROSPECT RNK
POSITION RNK
NFL teams are intrigued by Isaac, who has the length, juice and production that translates to the next level. He has 14.5 career sacks at Penn State, including 7.5 in 2023.
Round 1 - Pick 31
Duke • Sr • 6'5" / 314 lbs
Projected Team
Miami
PROSPECT RNK
35th
POSITION RNK
6th
Barton has played only left tackle his last three seasons at Duke, and he was the anchor of that unit, but his NFL future will be inside, either at guard or center.
Round 1 - Pick 32
Texas • Jr • 6'4" / 196 lbs
Projected Team
Philadelphia
PROSPECT RNK
25th
POSITION RNK
5th
Mitchell, a Georgia transfer, is another in a long line of big, physical, fast, twitched-up WRs in this draft class. He plays mostly outside, but did work in the the slot more this season, and the thought of a WR room of A.J. Brown, Devonta Smith and Mitchell is fun to think about unless you're one of the other three teams in the NFC East.