And several analysts have Stroud being the top quarterback chosen and quite possibility top player taken in the draft.
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But new ESPN draft analyst Matt Miller threw a new idea out there.
What if Smith-Njigba gets chosen before Stroud?
Why the New York Jets may prefer Jaxon Smith-Njigba over C.J. Stroud
This is what Miller had to say about Smith-Njigba.
The Bears have not surrounded second-year quarterback Justin Fields with much in terms of a supporting cast, but that will change via free agency and the draft following the 2022 season, once they have more cap space. The electric Smith-Njigba left us with a statement game in the Rose Bowl when he caught 15 passes for 347 yards and three touchdowns as the entire Utah defense failed to stop him. This would be the highest a wide receiver has been drafted since Calvin Johnson in 2007, but Smith-Njigba is the type of talent Fields needs.
Why the Atlanta Falcons could take C.J. Stroud
Miller has the Falcons taking Stroud at No. 5. Here is what he had to say about Stroud:
The first quarterback comes off the board later than expected based on the draft order here, and remember that I’m not projecting trades in this mock draft. Make no mistake, though: Stroud is worthy of the No. 1 pick. The second-year starter battled through early adversity last season before finishing with a dominant win over Utah in the Rose Bowl; he had 573 passing yards and six touchdowns.
Stroud has ideal size (6-foot-3, 215 pounds) and a huge arm that opens up defenses. NFL scouts want to see him use his legs more, but Stroud’s trajectory points to him being an early pick.
Here is what MIller says about Johnson Jr.:
We’re still waiting for the Cardinals to build an offensive line that can keep Kyler Murray upright. This would be a step in the right direction. Johnson is a former top high school recruit who spent last season at guard. He’ll kick out to tackle in 2022, and scouts believe he has the potential to develop into a starting NFL left tackle.
The NFL draft is scheduled to be held in Kansas City, Missouri, on April 27–29.
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This article originally appeared on The Columbus Dispatch: Ohio State football’s Jaxon Smith-Njigba, CJ Stroud in NFL mock draft