By Lance Tominaga, ESPN Honolulu Web Editor.
We continue our 2022 NFL mock draft with picks 9 through 16:
9. DENVER: MATT CORRAL, QB, OLE MISS. Bronco fans are still hoping against hope that Aaron Rodgers will bring his MVP talents to Denver, but it’s looking likely that he’ll end up staying in Green Bay. This team needs a viable QB, especially in a division that features Patrick Mahomes, Justin Herbert and Derek Carr. Enter the 6’1”, 205-lb. Corral, who doesn’t have as high an upside as Malik Willis, but is probably more pro ready. Fans will have to be patient, but Corral could eventually develop into the on-field general this team needs.
10. N.Y. JETS (via SEATTLE): JAMESON WILLIAMS, WR, ALABAMA. Let’s face it: QB Zach Wilson had a pretty mediocre rookie season, throwing more INTs (11) than TDs (9). Still, he showed enough flashes of promise that no one is ready to give up on the former BYU gunslinger just yet. What would help his progress greatly is adding a weapon like the 6’2”, 190-lb. Williams, who emerged as a top playmaker at Alabama after transferring from Ohio State. Some have compared him to Henry Ruggs. Williams tore an ACL in this year’s national championship game, but claims to be ahead of schedule in his recovery.
11. WASHINGTON: KENNY PICKETT, QB, PITTSBURGH. The Commanders know full well that they need to upgrade their QB position. They could go the trade or free agency route (Russell Wilson, anyone?), but it they decide to find their QB in the draft, they could do worse than Pickett. In terms of measurables, the 6’3”, 220-lb. Pickett certainly looks the part of a prototype NFL QB. He has a big frame, mobility and athleticism. He’s also mentally tough. As a fifth-year redshirt senior at Pitt, Pickett also brings experience and savvy to the position. He has a good arm, but not quite Elite.
12. MINNESOTA: AHMAD “SAUCE” GARDNER, CB, CINCINNATI. Just watch Gardner’s highlight videos and it’s impossible not to get excited about this former Bearcat. At 6’2” and 190 lbs., “Sauce” possesses a lanky frame and fluid hips. He is also exceptionally quick to the ball, thanks to his burst and anticipation. The Vikings have several position needs, and cornerback is one of them. This seems like a good fit.
13. CLEVELAND: GARRETT WILSON, WR, OHIO STATE. With Odell Beckham Jr. getting fitted for a Super Bowl ring and Jarvis Landry’s future with the team in doubt, the Browns are woefully thin at the receiver position. Wilson would be a welcome addition to the offense and would quickly become a favorite target of Baker Mayfield. At 5’11”, 190 lbs., Wilson is a terrific route runner and has an innate ability to get separation from opposing defensive backs. He’s has drawn comparisons to Buffalo’s Stefon Diggs.
14. BALTIMORE: IKEM EKWONU, OT, NORTH CAROLINA STATE. The Ravens are looking to fortify their offensive line in the off-season, and the very idea of landing the 6’4”, 320-lb. Ekwonu would have them doing cartwheels. Ekwonu is a bona fide Top 10 prospect with an athlete’s pedigree (his mom ran track and his dad played basketball). He excels as a run blocker and plays with a mean streak. Scouts seem divided whether he’s better suited as a tackle or guard – he’s played booth – but he’ll likely get his first shot at tackle.
15. PHILADELPHIA (via MIAMI): DAVID OJABO, EDGE, MICHIGAN. Ojabo is a 6’5”, 250-lb. mauler who is a Hollywood movie waiting to happen. Born in Nigeria, he matriculated to the U.S. at the age of 17 and didn’t play a down of football until his senior year of high school. At Michigan, he didn’t play at all as a freshman and only sparingly as a sophomore. Last season, as a junior, Ojabo had a breakout campaign and is now considered one of the most intriguing defensive players in this draft class.
16. PHILADELPHIA (via INDIANAPOLIS): CHARLES CROSS, OT, MISSISSIPPI STATE. With their second pick in the first round, the Eagles look to strengthen their o-line. The 6’5”, 310-lb. Cross is considered a plug-and-play tackle with good explosion and lateral speed. His main strength is as a pass protector, which will make Jalen Hurts’ life much easier. There are question marks about his ability to run block, but he’s a perfect fit for today’s pass-heavy NFL.