Dan Kadar has just released his 2018 post-Combine mock draft, and it’s a doozy. The Texans do not hold any picks in the first round this year due to their trade up for an electric franchise quarterback last year (which was totally worth it), so when breaking down Kadar’s mock, I wanted to see who he selected for Houston’s division rivals instead. Spoiler alert - the AFC South just got even better in the trenches on both sides. Let’s take a look:
3. Indianapolis Colts: Bradley Chubb, DE, North Carolina State
If the Colts want Barkley they’re probably going to have to trade up to take him. If they can’t, they can add Chubb to a defense that is moving to a Tampa-2. For the Colts, Chubb can be their version of Simeon Rice, an edge rushing force who brings production. As one of the draft’s surest things, Chubb should be expected to be a double-digit sack player straight away.
My take: The Colts have a monumentally large hole at edge rusher, and Chubb is easily the best one in this class. It’s a weak year for edge players, so managing to land one of the few good ones in 2018 is a lucky break for them. Indy was at its best in the mid 2000s when their offense got early leads and their pass rushing duo of Dwight Freeney and Robert Mathis was allowed to just hunt quarterbacks for the rest of the game, so picking Chubb is the first step to getting back to that formula.
25. Tennessee Titans: Sam Hubbard, DE/LB, Ohio State
Hubbard put on a show at the combine, and has the type of size and athleticism combination to fit on Tennessee’s defense. Hubbard can play on the edge standing up or with his hand in the ground, and he can drop back as a linebacker in certain situations.
My take: The Titans could also use more edge talent to help out Jurrell Casey on the interior. Derrick Morgan is okay, but former second round pick Kevin Dodd has done virtually nothing in the first two years of his career (one sack in twelve total starts), and Brian Orakpo is about to turn 32 years old. Tennessee needs a young edge rusher they can rely on, and they need one now. Hubbard has the physical ability and the motor to grow into that kind of player.
29. Jacksonville Jaguars: Mike McGlinchey, OT, Notre Dame
This is strictly a value choice. McGlinchey could move to the right side and give the Jaguars a nice set of bookends with Cam Robinson at left tackle.
My take: McGlinchey has well-documented issues when it comes to handling speed off the left edge, but with his length and power, I think he could be a natural fit at right tackle while Cam Robinson handles blind side duty. McGlinchey is certainly a better option than anyone the Jags currently have on their roster at right tackle (Jermey Parnell), so any upgrade at that position is an upgrade to the entire offense. Now they just need to lock Allen Robinson up to a long-term deal and this team is good to go for another deep playoff run.
Overall, this was a job damn well done by Kadar - or at least it was when it comes to bolstering the AFC South. Every team (minus Houston of course) plugged a glaring weakness on their roster. If the actual first round of the 2018 NFL Draft shakes out like this in April, this division could be one hell of a battle in 2018. I, for one, can’t wait to watch the bloodbath unfold.