2024 NFL Mock Draft: Ideal selections for the entire first round

On April 27th, the NFL draft will start in Detroit, Michigan, home of the Detroit Lions, who was "America's Team" during their playoff run which ended in bitter fashion in the NFC Championship game. In the first round of this year's draft, 32 college stars will hear their name called and become the rookie class of the 2024-2025 NFL. This article details who each team should pick, if they pick in their original draft position. While there are certainly going to be trades made, (and you can read my AFC East preview article to see what some of those could be); this mock draft plays the draft order straight up.

2024 NFL Draft - Starts April 27th, in Detroit, Michigan
2024 NFL Draft - Starts April 27th, in Detroit, Michigan / Perry Knotts/GettyImages
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Pick 25 - Green Bay Packers - Jordan Morgan - Tackle - Arizona

Green Bay made the playoffs and won a game in 2023; as they appear to have found their third franchise quarterback in a row with Jordan Love. Protecting Love will be a high priority in 2024. Jordan Morgan, a three-year starter at tackle at Arizona, can move to guard if needed. An elite athlete for his 6'6" 315-pound frame, Morgan will need to develop his technique and consistency if he's going to make an impact at the NFL level. But his potential and the value of the tackle position make him a good fit for the Packers later in the first round.

Pick 26 - Tampa Bay Buccaneers - Kool-Aid McKinstry - Cornerback - Alabama

If Baker Mayfield isn't in the Buccaneers future this pick may be a quarterback, and in that case, it should be Michael Penix. But assuming Mayfield remains in central Florida, Kool-Aid McKinstry will add talent and play-making ability to its disappointing pass defense. Tampa Bay was 29th in passing yards allowed and needs a leader in the secondary. McKinstry has good size (6' 1", 195) and has produced consistently at the top collegiate levels. He may not have the flash of the top CBs in the draft but should be a long-time quality starter in the NFL.

Pick 27 - Arizona Cardinals via Houston Texans - Darius Robinson - Edge - Missouri

Arizona is likely to add a key piece to its offense at pick 4 and can add a playmaker to its defense with pick 27. Robinson is big (6'5" 286) and versatile. He can play any position on the defensive front although he may not have size to play long-term inside or the athleticism to be a consistent three-down edge rusher. But he will have an instant impact as a pass rusher and have an instant impact on a Cardinals defense that ranked in the bottom of the NFL in sacks and quarterback pressures.

Pick 28 - Buffalo Bills - Brian Thomas Jr. - Wide Receiver - LSU

The Bills lost in the division round of the playoffs for the third straight year and will have numerous salary-cap casualties in the off-season. one of those losses will be Gabe Davis who was the Bills primary deep threat but never materialized into a true number 2 WR. Brian Thomas Jr. fits the Bills' need for a deep-threat wide receiver instantly and could develop into a more reliable WR than Davis ever was. The Tiger standout had 17 Touchdowns last year and is considered by most as having the top acceleration and maximum speed in the draft.