Southern California quarterback Caleb Williams is flushed from the pocket by Laiatu Latu of UCLA during the second half at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum on Nov. 18, 2023, in Los Angeles. Williams is expected to be the No. 1 pick in the 2024 NFL draft.

Southern California quarterback Caleb Williams is flushed from the pocket by Laiatu Latu of UCLA during the second half at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum on Nov. 18, 2023, in Los Angeles. Williams is expected to be the No. 1 pick in the 2024 NFL draft. (Sean M. Haffey, Getty Images/TNS)

As the first night of the NFL draft approaches, there remains a ridiculous amounts of quarterback intrigue.

It’s difficult to muster full and total conviction even at the very top of this mock draft, given the lack of consensus among decision-makers on the order the leading quarterbacks will be selected. The flow of information — or even quasi-information — has been limited, and good luck finding a war room that has a complete read on how this is going to play out.

With that caveat out of the way, here goes:

1. Chicago Bears

QB Caleb Williams (Southern California)

In the words of Spandau Ballet, “I know, I know, I know this much is true.” It gets iffy from here.

2. Washington Commanders

QB Jayden Daniels (LSU)

It’s a coin flip, but ultimately I’m reading tea leaves of the Marcus Mariota signing coupled with the Kliff Kingsbury hiring, which point to this prospect’s blend of athleticism and upside.

3. New England Patriots

QB J.J. McCarthy (Michigan)

All the recent bluster out of New England about being open to trades — and I warned you that was coming — will be for naught. This kid is a winner, evaluators I know love him and he’s probably more NFL-ready than …

4. New York Giants (TRADE with Arizona)

QB Drake Maye (North Carolina)

The Vikings will be trying to make something happen, too, and the Chargers’ No. 5 selection might be the spot where a trade actually happens, but Arizona could make this deal and remain in the top six, its preference.

5. Los Angeles Chargers

OL Joe Alt (Notre Dame)

The massive left tackle would allow Jim Harbaugh to have the trenches manned the way he likes, building a hulking line to protect Justin Herbert and run the damn ball. Harbaugh lost out on bringing Alt to Ann Arbor, Mich., but he can bring him to Malibu.

6. Arizona Cardinals (TRADE with N.Y. Giants)

WR Marvin Harrison Jr. (Ohio State)

He’s been linked to the Cardinals throughout this process, and for good reason. I wouldn’t be shocked in the least if they remain at No. 4 and take Harrison there.

7. Tennessee Titans

WR Malik Nabers (LSU)

Several evaluators I spoke with believe the Titans prefer this pass-catcher to the other splendid options at the top of the draft. But if Alt is still on the board, then I’d expect him to be the pick.

8. Atlanta Falcons

Edge Laiatu Latu (UCLA)

I’m hearing teams increasingly are increasingly comfortable with Latu’s medical history — he had a serious neck injury in 2020 — and love his explosive upside. I’m playing a hunch that the Falcons go this way over Alabama pass rusher Dallas Turner, although I might kick myself for not projecting Turner here (like seemingly everyone else has). Also, I’ve heard the Falcons — and especially their owner — love Washington quarterback Michael Penix Jr. I’m just sayin’ …

9. Chicago Bears

WR Rome Odunze (Washington)

The big three wide receivers, all of whom could be total game-changers, will all be gone within the first 10 picks. Caleb Williams will have no excuses about the cast of pass-catchers around him.

10. New York Jets

TE Brock Bowers (Georgia)

The record-setting tight end has been linked to the Jets by everyone and anyone — much like with Turner with the Falcons — but sometimes, it just is what it is.

11. Minnesota Vikings

QB Michael Penix Jr. (Washington)

The Vikings can’t get too cute here and not come away with a top quarterback prospect. As mentioned, they might move up and grab their guy in the top five, but with Denver and Las Vegas picking right behind them and both in need of a quarterback, it’s go time.

12. Pittsburgh Steelers (TRADE with Denver)

CB Quinyon Mitchell (Toledo)

The Steelers are now a trade-making franchise, and maybe they use draft capital to land a veteran wide receiver in a deal, or move up to grab a receiver in the draft. But they’ve been trying to find a top corner for quite some time, and getting their pick of any in the first round would be an interesting approach.

13. Las Vegas Raiders

Edge Dallas Turner (Alabama)

They could easily search for assistance on the offensive line, where they need plenty of help. But Raiders GM Tom Telesco came from the Chargers, where he knew it required bookend pass rushers to try to compete with the Chiefs in the AFC West. Coach Antonio Pierce is a former linebacker, and Maxx Crosby can’t be a one-man gang forever.

14. New Orleans Saints

OL Olu Fashanu (Penn State)

The left side of the Saints’ OL is in tatters and their first rounder from 2022, Trevor Penning, can’t play. They want to try to win something with Derek Carr this year, and to do that, they need help up front.

15. Indianapolis Colts

WR Brian Thomas Jr. (LSU)

Anthony Richardson barely played at quarterback last year, starting just four games as a rookie, but he was electric when he was on the field. GM Chris Ballard tends to like big uglies, but he’ll break tendency to find a big-play guy for Richardson here.

16. Seattle Seahawks

OL Troy Fautanu (Washington)

The Seahawks could go in a multitude of directions, including quarterback. But the strength of this draft is offensive linemen, this kid is versatile enough to fit in different ways and Seattle knows him well from going to school right down the road.

17. Jacksonville Jaguars

CB Terrion Arnold (Alabama)

The Jaguars have been focused on elevating their defense’s back end, although I could make the case for them adding an offensive lineman here as well.

18. Cincinnati Bengals

DT Byron Murphy II (Texas)

He might be the only interior defensive lineman taken Thursday — and I could see the Colts grabbing him, among others — but the Bengals’ D needs a lot of help after a down year.

19. Los Angeles Rams

OL Tyler Guyton (Oklahoma)

If they can keep Matt Stafford healthy and playing at the level he did last year, the Rams will be in the thick of it in the NFC again. I see them leaning into that effort with this pick.

20. Denver Broncos (TRADE with Pittsburgh)

QB Bo Nix (Oregon)

Sean Payton gets his guy — who might have a little Drew Brees in him, maybe — and he manages to do so outside the top 12. If it isn’t Payton and the Broncos, I predict another franchise trades into the 20s to grab that fifth-year option on Nix.

21. Miami Dolphins

OL JC Latham (Alabama)

Miami left tackle Terron Armstead is on his last legs and the Dolphins’ offensive line needs help. Quarterback Tua Tagovailoa, readying for a massive extension, has a long history of concussions; he needs to be protected.

22. Philadelphia Eagles

DB Cooper DeJean (Iowa)

DeJean is a hybrid defender whom the Eagles and others would covet. The back end of their defense continues to give them issues, although there’s a chance Seattle or someone else would pounce earlier.

23. Minnesota Vikings

Edge Jared Verse (Florida State)

It wasn’t that long ago that the Vikings had one of the most potent defensive lines in the NFL. But a lot of talent has left the building, and the division-rival Lions and Packers will tear you up if given too much time.

24. Dallas Cowboys

OL Jackson Powers-Johnson (Oregon)

The Cowboys apparently don’t like to spend money any more, and interior linemen like Powers-Johnson don’t cost as much as other positions when it’s time for second contracts. Teams have found blue chip centers in this area of the first round before.

25. Green Bay Packers

OL Amarius Mims (Georgia)

A huge mountain of a young man to mold, a challenge the Packers — who need a left tackle of the future — could take on. Arizona’s project lineman Jordan Morgan - who some evaluators prefer to the 6-8, 340-pound Mims - is another option.

26. Tampa Bay Buccaneers

OL Graham Barton (Duke)

A plug-and-play center with a great football IQ whom the team needs to replace former stalwart Ryan Jensen, who retired earlier this year.

27. Arizona Cardinals

Edge Darius Robinson (Missouri)

One more pass rusher will probably go in the back end of the first round, and I’m slotting Darius Robinson here over Penn State’s Chop Robinson. The Cardinals taking an offensive lineman here wouldn’t be a shocker, either.

28. Buffalo Bills

WR Adonai Mitchell (Texas)

Buffalo badly needs a wide receiver after trading Stefon Diggs, and either Mitchell or college teammate Xavier Worthy could work here. But some executives I’ve spoken with think the Bills lean toward Mitchell.

29. Detroit Lions

CB Nate Wiggins (Clemson)

He’s more slight than most would like, listed at 6-1 and 173 pounds, but he has some sticky cover skills and world-class speed, and the Lions need help defending the pass. They also don’t seem to get too caught up in conventional thought in the first round.

30. Baltimore Ravens

CB Kool-Aid McKinstry (Alabama)

Veteran Marlon Humphrey — another Alabama CB — has been hurt, and the Ravens love to load up on defensive backs and players from this Crimson Tide program. They also have a pressing need on the offensive line, where Jordan Morgan could fit, or, if you want a really deep cut, Blake Fisher of Notre Dame. (Both Harbaugh brothers taking Notre Dame offensive linemen in the first round just feels like nature healing.)

31. San Francisco 49ers

LB Edgerrin Cooper (Texas A&M)

Plenty of teams have first-round grades on Cooper, and while linebackers are not en vogue anymore, they are the lifeblood of the San Francisco defense. I also seem to recall a stud 49ers linebacker tearing his Achilles in the Super Bowl.

32. Kansas City Chiefs

WR Xavier Worthy (Texas)

The twitchy burner just kind of belongs with Andy Reid and Patrick Mahomes, doesn’t he? The Chiefs are only renting receiver Hollywood Brown, and they need speedy playmakers regardless.

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