Instead of the typical mock draft format where I try to forecast which players will be selected in which slots by which teams, in this one I make the picks based on what I would do.

My choices are based on a few factors. Foremost is talent. A realistic take of where the team is right now and which direction it’s headed plays a role. Positional value and schematic/coaching fit does as well. Immediate need slightly outweighs the more long-term needs, not blinding them.

These picks are in no way intended to be predictive of what will actually happen in the draft, though some might wind up coming true.

First round

1. Cleveland Browns: Myles Garrett, DE, Texas A&M. He grades higher for me than Jadeveon Clowney did, and the Browns desperately need an instigating pass rusher to help the entire defense. Garrett has the potential to be immediately great. No other player in this draft offers his high-end impact at a key position.

2. San Francisco 49ers: Patrick Mahomes, QB, Texas Tech. Mahomes needs time to adjust to the speed and smaller throwing windows of the NFL, but his upside is a more mobile Matthew Stafford. The Niners aren’t apt to compete in 2017 anyway, so patiently grooming Mahomes and adding more talent around him in the future is the best choice the talent-starved Niners can make. I’m willing to risk his fairly high bust potential for the potential payoff.

3. Chicago Bears: Malik Hooker, S, Ohio State. I never would have signed Mike Glennon, but because he’s there I feel like taking a QB is too much of a loss. Chicago also needs considerable help in the secondary. Hooker is an outstanding cover man, good enough he could line up at corner in packages. Being able to matchup against the considerable passing game talent in the NFC North is the best thing the Bears can do here.

4. Jacksonville Jaguars: O.J. Howard, TE, Alabama. I want to go QB here with my lack of faith in Blake Bortles, but the Jaguars are in an odd spot where they can get a lot better rapidly with even moderate improvement from the incumbent. He gets one more shot and adding Howard gives him no excuses. Howard is the best TE prospect I’ve scouted since Kellen Winslow II, a do-it-all weapon who can make a huge impact right away.

5. Tennessee Titans: Jonathan Allen, DT, Alabama. His arthritic shoulders scare me, but Allen absolutely dominated really good blockers with those shoulders…along with his explosive first step and great hands. If the Titans could get a full rookie contract of five years out of him, he’s worth the risk here.

6. New York Jets: Deshone Kizer, QB, Notre Dame. What to get a team that needs pretty much everything? How about a QB with sky-high potential who has practical experience dealing with high-profile chaos. Kizer will need to learn to play a little faster, but he’s got the arm, the intelligence and the personality to handle the inevitable beatings by both opposing defenses early on and the savage New York media. It says here the Jets will have the No. 1 overall pick in 2018 no matter whom they select here, and I’m not going to bite on the ridiculous hype for the QB class of 2018. At this time last year everyone thought Brad Kaaya was a top-5 pick. How’s that looking now…

7. Los Angeles Chargers: Budda Baker, S, Washington: Baker is smaller than ideal, though weighing over 190 at the Combine was a relief in my evaluation. He’s an impactful safety who can play slot corner if needed. Where he really stands out is at terminating plays, be it a run or a pass, and most of the time he does so before the offense accomplishes what it wants. That’s exactly what the Chargers need.

8. Carolina Panthers: Christian McCaffrey, RB, Stanford. As I said during the Combine, I’m not sold the versatile McCaffrey is the most talented RB in this class. I am sold he has the best chance to maximize his ability and achieve great NFL success, however. His style should blend well with Cam Newton and diversify the offensive attack for a Carolina team which needs a lot of weapons.

9. Cincinnati Bengals: Ryan Ramczyk, OT, Wisconsin. Cincinnati’s offensive line has fallen off precipitously, and Andy Dalton is the kind of QB who needs a strong line to succeed. Ramczyk has high-end technical prowess and strength despite limited big-time experience.

10. Buffalo Bills: Jamal Adams, S, LSU. The current projected starting safeties in Buffalo are Micah Hyde and Jordan Poyer, with Colt Anderson the top reserve. That’s a bigger cry for help than any other positional group in the AFC East outside of Jets QB. Adams plays the same basic role as newcomer Hyde but has far more ability. Buffalo cannot afford a miss here and Adams is a pretty safe pick.

11. New Orleans Saints: Solomon Thomas, DE, Stanford. I’m lower than most on Thomas, who despite his considerable explosive testing has some length issues as well as some underwhelming tape. Even so, Thomas can be a dynamic edge rusher with the ability to win inside or out. The Saints are still quite needy for pass rushing and Thomas is the best chance to fix that right away to get one more potential playoff run out of Drew Brees.

12. Cleveland Browns: Mitchell Trubisky, QB, North Carolina. I really want Mahomes here but he’s long gone. I also wanted Baker here. The next name on the plan is Cleveland native Trubisky, a QB with an accurate but aggressive game which Browns coach Hue Jackson should really love to work with.

13. Arizona Cardinals: Jabrill Peppers, S, Michigan. I still believe in Peppers, and here’s why I like him in Arizona: the Cardinals coaching staff will be smart enough to let him play, and master, just one position. The similarly styled safety Tony Jefferson thrived here, and Peppers is a substantially higher-end prospect. There is real risk here, but the depleted Cardinals are in a spot where they need to swing for the fences or else they risk falling far from contention anytime soon. For some other teams in this draft range, I wouldn’t take Peppers until the second round.

14. Philadelphia Eagles: Marshon Lattimore, CB, Ohio State. The first CB off the board is a risk, as Lattimore has suffered with a litany of hamstring issues. He’s also an incredible athlete who plays the aggressive man cover style Eagles DC Jim Schwartz favors at the position I consider the biggest need on the entire roster, both now and going forward.

15. Indianapolis Colts: Haason Reddick, LB, Temple. The new Colts' regime has brought in a lot of LB spaghetti to throw at the wall, but adding a primo talent with versatility like Reddick changes the dynamic. Reddick can play rush end but should transition quite well to an off-ball role either inside or outside.

16. Baltimore Ravens: Corey Davis, WR, Western Michigan. Because I’m not a believer in Breshad Perriman. Because Joe Flacco has to be elite for this team to win, and he can’t be elite without better options. Because Davis has game-breaking talent with the ability to win on routes all over the field.

17. Washington: Taco Charlton, DE, Michigan. Taco isn’t the tastiest meal available, but he helps sate the hunger for defensive line help. I’ll reach here for a “safe” pick which helps diversify the talent spread for a team with a lot of resources spent at WR, OL and CB. Washington cannot afford a complete bust, and Taco’s floor is quite high.

18. Tennessee Titans: John Ross, WR, Washington. Speed kills, and Ross has record-setting wheels. He’s also an accomplished route runner and plays bigger than his 5-foot-10 size in the red zone. The goal is to help maximize Marcus Mariota, and Ross does that as long as his surgically repaired knees hold up.

19. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Forrest Lamp, OL, Western Kentucky. I know Bucs fans desire RB help, but upgrading the blocking will help both Jameis Winston and whomever is toting the rock. Lamp has the potential to be the best Bucs lineman at any spot up front, and quickly. I like him best at right tackle or left guard.

20. Denver Broncos: Garett Bolles, OT, Utah. This is higher than I rank Bolles and I would desperately try to trade back here. Having said that, Bolles brings an intensity and athleticism to a line in need of both. He’s an instant starter, which is important for a 25-year-old rookie and a team whose loaded defense is still built to win right now.

21. Detroit Lions: T.J. Watt, OLB/DE, Wisconsin. Detroit’s biggest team need is adding athleticism to the defensive front. Watt checks that box, but he’s also a very strong all-around football player. He can play off-ball LB in heavy packages but also line up at rush end in NASCAR rush situations.

22. Miami Dolphins: Gareon Conley, CB, Ohio State. This is a case where the player isn’t the biggest need, but Conley is simply too talented to pass up. Teams can never have too much talent at CB, and Conley quietly put together an outstanding resume tape for the Buckeyes as a do-it-all corner. I had Tyus Bowser here but changed it when I realized I hadn’t picked Conley yet. Bowser fit well here but Conley is the higher-rated player.

23. New York Giants: Dan Feeney, OG, Indiana. Feeney reminds me quite a bit of the guard version of Giants center Weston Richburg. Both are blue-collar, physical, high football-IQ tacticians who don’t always win every rep but almost never lose. New York can use that up front, even if it’s not the Giants’ biggest need.

24. Oakland Raiders: Kevin King, CB, Washington. This entire Raiders draft will lean heavily on upgrading the wretched pass defense, both in the secondary and the pass rush. King brings length and proven ability to cover both outside and in the slot, with athletic upside to thrive even more in the NFL.

25. Houston Texans: Reuben Foster, LB, Alabama. Inside LB isn’t an obvious need on the outside with Brian Cushing and Benardrick McKinney both in place, but finding an LB who can cover and make plays outside the tackle box is a huge need. Foster is a very impressive all-around LB prospect who can play situationally early before taking over for Cushing. I eschewed QB here in part because I really do like Tom Savage in 2017.

26. Seattle Seahawks: Ahkello Witherspoon, CB, Colorado. This is an example of a very team-specific pick. For some teams I wouldn’t consider Witherspoon before the third round, but his 6-foot-3 length and opportunistic press-man style is a perfect fit for Seattle. Even if the Richard Sherman trade talks are baloney, the Seahawks secondary does need youthful reinforcement.

27. Kansas City Chiefs: Evan Engram, TE/WR, Ole Miss. My comparison for Engram is Anquan Boldin, a big and physical receiver who attacks both second-level targets as a blocker and the ball on intermediate and inside routes. Not necessarily Kansas City’s biggest need but he helps keep the offense humming, and he causes problems for the Chiefs’ AFC West foes.

28. Dallas Cowboys: Tre’Davious White, CB, LSU. Dallas lost four key members of the secondary and at minimum need to replenish the roster. White takes chances but also makes a lot of plays and shows strong effort. Some CBs taken later might wind up with better careers but I like White’s high floor and NFL readiness for a team poised to compete for multiple playoff wins this year.

29. Green Bay Packers: Curtis Samuel, WR/RB, Ohio State. One of the fastest and most versatile offensive weapons in the draft, Samuel played RB at Ohio State but will primarily play WR in the NFL. He fits nicely in an offense which has used the similar Randall Cobb in a variety of roles and gives Aaron Rodgers another playmaking target.

30. Pittsburgh Steelers: Tarell Basham, Edge, Ohio. Maybe it’s the Ohio Bobcat grad in me artificially pumping up the best prospect our school has produced in my lifetime, but even the nonpartisan football evaluator in me loves what Basham can become. I think his twitchy energy fits best rushing the passer standing up from a 3-4 OLB spot, and Pittsburgh happens to need just that.

31. Atlanta Falcons: Taylor Moton, OL, Western Michigan. The big Moton can play either guard spot or right tackle and is ready to do so right away. Atlanta doesn’t desperately need anything, so adding a player who can capably back up multiple spots right now and eventually take over a starting role up front is a nice investment.

32. New Orleans Saints: Chidobe Awuzie, CB, Colorado. New Orleans needs a whole lot of young talent on defense. Awuzie can play any secondary spot except strong safety, fitting best in the slot or lined up outside against receivers who don’t have outstanding acceleration. Just a strong all-around football player with better on-field athleticism than advertised.

Second round

33. Cleveland: Marcus Williams, S, Utah

34. San Francisco: Tyus Bowser, OLB, Houston

35. Jacksonville: Cam Robinson, OT, Alabama

36. Chicago: Deshaun Watson, QB, Clemson

37. LA Rams: Derek Rivers, Edge, Youngstown State

38. LA Chargers: Marlon Humphrey, CB, Alabama

39. New York Jets: Raekwon McMillan, ILB, Ohio State

40. Carolina: Sidney Jones, CB, Washington

41. Cincinnati: David Njoku, TE, Miami FL

42. New Orleans: Cordrea Tankersley, CB, Clemson

43. Philadelphia: Leonard Fournette, RB, LSU

44. Buffalo: Derek Barnett, Edge, Tennessee

45. Arizona: Pat Elflein, OG/OC, Ohio State

46. Indianapolis: Cam Sutton, CB, Tennessee

47. Baltimore: Zach Cunningham, OLB, Vanderbilt

48. Minnesota: Duke Riley, OLB, LSU

49. Washington: Eddie Jackson, DB, Alabama

50. Tampa Bay: Obi Melifonwu, S/LB, UConn

51. Denver: Jaleel Johnson, DT, Iowa

52. Cleveland: Chris Godwin, WR, Penn State

53. Detroit: Kareem Hunt, RB, Toledo

54. Miami: Larry Ogunjobi, DT, Charlotte

55. New York Giants: Jamaal Williams, RB, BYU

56. Oakland: Carl Lawson, Edge, Auburn

57. Houston: Adoree Jackson, CB/RS, USC

58. Seattle: Chris Wormley, DL. Michigan

59. Kansas City: Dalvin Cook, RB, Florida State

60. Dallas: Justin Evans, S, Texas A&M

61. Green Bay: Jarrad Davis, ILB, Florida

62. Pittsburgh: Jourdan Lewis, CB, Michigan

63. Atlanta: Malik McDowell, DT, Michigan State

64. Carolina: Josh Reynolds, WR, Texas A&M

Third round

65. Cleveland: Caleb Brantley, DT, Florida

66. San Francisco: Jordan Willis, DE/OLB, Kansas State

67. Chicago: Zay Jones, WR, East Carolina

68. Jacksonville: Joe Mixon, RB, Oklahoma

69. Los Angeles Rams: Carlos Henderson, WR, Louisiana Tech

70. New York Jets: Mike Williams, WR, Clemson

71. Los Angeles Chargers: Anthony Walker, LB, Northwestern

72. New England: Bucky Hodges, WR, Virginia Tech

73. Cincinnati: Deatrich Wise, DE, Arkansas

74. Baltimore: Quincy Wilson, CB, Florida

75. Buffalo: Fabian Moreau, CB, UCLA

76. New Orleans: Blair Brown, LB, Ohio

77. Arizona: Takk McKinley, Edge, UCLA

78. Baltimore: Isaac Asiata, OG, Utah

79. Minnesota: Taywan Taylor, WR, Western Kentucky

80. Indianapolis: George Kittle, TE, Iowa

81. Washington: Dalvin Tomlinson, DT, Alabama

82. Denver: Ethan Pocic, C, LSU

83. Tennessee: Adam Shaheen, TE, Ashland

84. Tampa Bay: Jalen Myrick, CB, Minnesota

85. Detroit: Eddie Vanderdoes, DT, UCLA

86. Minnesota: Will Holden, OT, Vanderbilt

87. New York Giants: Josh Jones, S, North Carolina State

88. Oakland: Jayon Brown, LB, UCLA

89. Houston: Nathan Peterman, QB, Pittsburgh

90. Seattle: Marlon Mack, RB, South Florida

91. Kansas City: Dylan Cole, OLB, Missouri State

92. Dallas: Tanzel Smart, DT, Tulane

93. Green Bay: Charles Harris, Edge, Missouri

94. Pittsburgh: Alex Anzalone, LB, Florida

95. Atlanta: Marcus Maye, S, Florida

96. New England: Vincent Taylor, DT, Oklahoma State

97. Miami: Tedric Thompson, S, Colorado

98. Carolina: J.J. Dielman, OL, Utah

99. Philadelphia: Isaiah Ford, WR, Virginia Tech

100. Tennessee: ArDarius Stewart, WR, Alabama

101. Denver: Tim Williams, Edge, Alabama

102. Seattle: Dorian Johnson, OL, Pittsburgh

103. New Orleans: Josh Dobbs, QB, Tennessee

104. Kansas City: Rayshawn Jenkins, S, Miami FL

105. Pittsburgh: Davis Webb, QB, California

106. Seattle: Juju Smith-Schuster, WR, USC

107. New York Jets: Trey Hendrickson, Edge, Florida Atlantic

Fourth round

108. Cleveland: Shaquil Griffin, CB, UCF

109. San Francisco: Corn Elder, CB, Miami FL

110. Jacksonville: Erik Magnuson, OT, Michigan

111. Chicago: Michael Roberts, TE, Toledo

112. Los Angeles Rams: Howard Wilson, CB, Houston

113. Los Angeles Chargers: Mack Hollins, WR, North Carolina

114. Washington: Jeremy McNichols, RB, Boise State 

115. Carolina: Daeshon Hall, Edge, Texas A&M

116. Cincinnati: Stevie Tuikolovatu, DT, USC

117. Chicago: Sam Tevi, OT, Utah

118. Philadelphia: Lorenzo Jerome, S, St. Francis

119. Arizona: Cooper Kupp, WR, Eastern Washington

120. Minnesota: John Toth, C, Kentucky

121. Indianapolis: Alvin Kamara, RB, Tennessee

122. Baltimore: Gabe Marks, WR, Washington State

123. Washington: Vince Biegel, LB, Wisconsin

124. Tennessee: DeAngelo Brown, DT, Louisville

125. Tampa Bay: Jerod Evans, QB, Virginia Tech

126. Denver: Montae Nicholson, S, Michigan State

127. Detroit: Xavier Woods, S, Louisiana Tech 

128. Minnesota: Ryan Switzer, WR/RS, North Carolina

129. Oakland: Brian Hill, RB, Wyoming

130. Houston: Antonio Garcia, OT, Troy

131. New England: Dion Dawkins, OL, Temple

132. Kansas City: Carlos Watkins, DT, Clemson

133. Dallas: Alex Torgersen, QB, Pennsylvania

134. Green Bay: Desmond King, S, Iowa

135. Pittsburgh: James Conner, RB, Pittsburgh

136. Atlanta: Bryan Cox, Edge, Florida

137. Indianapolis: Damontae Kazee, CB, San Diego State

138. Cincinnati: Brandon Wilson, CB, Houston

139. Philadelphia: Rashaad Coward, DT, Old Dominion

140 .New York Giants: Jordan Leggett, TE, Clemson

141. Los Angeles Rams: Jake Butt, TE, Michigan

142. Houston: Keionta Davis, Edge, Chattanooga

143. San Francisco: D’Onta Foreman, RB, Texas

144. Indianapolis: Marquel Lee, LB, Wake Forest

Fifth round

145. Cleveland: D’Nerius Antoine, S/LB, Southern Miss

146. San Francisco: Jylan Ware, OT, Alabama State

147. Chicago: Carroll Phillips, LB, Illinois

148. Jacksonville: Jeremy Cutrer, CB, Middle Tennessee State

149. Los Angeles Rams: DeAngelo Yancey, WR, Purdue

150. New York Jets: Lano Hill, S, Michigan

151. Los Angeles Chargers: Tyler Orlovsky, C, West Virginia

152. Carolina: Antony Auclair, TE, Laval

153. Cincinnati: Chase Roullier, C/G, Wyoming

154. Washington: Kenny Golladay, WR, Northern Illinois

155. Philadelphia: Jalen Reeves-Maybin, LB, Tennessee

156. Buffalo: Zack Johnson, OG, North Dakota State

157. Arizona: Jordan Evans, LB, Oklahoma

158. Indianapolis: Dawuane Smoot, Edge, Illinois

159. Baltimore: Wayne Gallman, RB, Clemson 

160. Minnesota: Demarcus Walker, DE, Florida State

161. San Francisco: Michael Coe, C, North Dakota

162. Tampa Bay: Malachi Dupre, WR, LSU

163. New England: Shelton Gibson, WR, West Virginia

164. Tennessee: I’Tavius Mathers, RB, Middle Tennessee State

165. Detroit: Elijah Lee, LB, Kansas State

166. Miami: Adam Bisnowaty, OT, Pittsburgh

167. New York Giants: Montravius Adams, DT, Auburn

168, Oakland: Aarion Penton, CB, Missouri

169. Houston: Jeremy Sprinkle, TE, Arkansas

170. Kansas City: Storm Norton, OT, Toledo

171. Buffalo: Cole Hikutini, TE, Louisville

172. Green Bay: Nico Siragusa, OG, San Diego State

173. Pittsburgh: Elijah Qualls, DT, Washington

174. Atlanta: Mason Schreck, TE, Buffalo

175. Cleveland: Danny Isidora, OG, Miami FL

176. Cincinnati: Javancy Jones, LB, Jackson State

177. Denver: Chad Williams, WR, Grambling

178. Miami: Gerald Everett, TE, South Alabama

179. Arizona: K.D. Cannon, WR, Baylor

180. Kansas City: Kendell Beckwith, LB, LSU

181. Cleveland: Ryan Glasgow, DT, Michigan

182. Green Bay: Samaje Perine, RB, Oklahoma 

183. New England: Tanoh Kpassagnon, DE, Villanova

184. Miami: Paul Magloire, LB, Arizona 

Sixth round

185. Cleveland: Rasul Douglas, CB, West Virginia

186. Baltimore: Teez Tabor, CB, Florida

187. Jacksonville: Zane Gonzalez, K, Arizona State

188. Cleveland: T.J. Logan, RB, North Carolina

189. LA Rams: Donnel Pumphrey, RB, San Diego State

190. LA Chargers: Stacy Coley, WR, Miami FL

191. New York Jets: Chad Wheeler, OL, USC

192. Carolina: Ryan Anderson, LB, Alabama

193. Cincinnati: Levon Myers, OT, Northern Illinois

194. Philadelphia: Cameron Tom, C, Southern Miss

195. Buffalo:  Treston DeCoud, CB/S, Oregon

196. New Orleans: David Sharpe, OL, Florida

197. Arizona: Nazair Jones, DT, North Carolina

198. San Francisco: Devonte Fields, Edge, Louisville

199. Minnesota: Connor Harris, LB, Lindenwood

200. New England: Sean Harlow, OG, Oregon State

201. Washington: John Johnson, S, Boston College

202. San Francisco: Jordan Evans, LB, Oklahoma

203. Denver: DeAngelo Henderson, RB, Coastal Carolina

204. Tampa Bay: Josiah Price, TE, Michigan State

205. Detroit: Brendan Langley, CB, Lamar

206. LA Rams: Keion Adams, LB, Western Michigan

207. New York Giants: Robert Davis, WR, Georgia State

208. Oakland: Treyvon Hester, DT, Toledo

209. Washington: Brad Kaaya, QB, Miami FL

210. Seattle: Josh Harvey-Clemons, S, Louisville

211. Dallas: Tanner Vallejo, LB, Boise State

212. Green Bay:  Damarius Travis, S, Minnesota

213. Pittsburgh: Kenneth Olugbode, LB, Colorado 

214. Tennessee: Harvey Langi, LB, BYU

215. Detroit: Damore’ea Stringfellow, WR, Ole Miss

216. Kansas City: Elijah McGuire, RB, Louisiana-Lafayette

217. Cincinnati: Amara Darboh, WR, Michigan

218. Kansas City: Jake Elliott, K, Memphis

Seventh round 

219. San Francisco: Cooper Rush, QB, Central Michigan

220. Washington: Eric Saubert, TE, Drake

221. Chicago: Jadar Johnson, S, Clemson

222. Jacksonville: Bug Howard, WR, North Carolina

223. Miami: Fred Ross, WR, Mississippi State

224. New York Jets: Rodney Adams, WR, South Florida

225. LA Chargers: Dieugot Joseph, OT, Florida International

226. Seattle: Ejuan Price, Edge, Pittsburgh

227. Cincinnati: Austin Rehkow, P/K, Idaho

228. Dallas: Zach Pascal, WR, Old Dominion

229. New Orleans: Jordan Sterns, S, Oklahoma State

230. Philadelphia: Hunter Dimick, Edge, Utah

231. Arizona: Jonnu Smith, TE, Florida International

232. Minnesota: Kofi Amichia, OG, South Florida

233. Carolina: Matt Dayes, RB, North Carolina State

234. LA Rams: Jerry Ogukwe, OT, William & Mary

235. Washington: Eric Wilson, LB, Cincinnati

236. Tennessee: Julien Davenport, OG, Bucknell

237. Tampa Bay: Jessamen Dunker, OG, Tennessee State

238. Denver: Aaron Jones, RB, UTEP

239. New England: Aviante Collins, OL, TCU

240. Jacksonville: Ifeadi Odenigbo, Edge, Northwestern

241. New York Giants: Calvin Munson, LB, San Diego State

242. Oakland: Josh Tupou, DT, Colorado

243. Houston: Jalen Robinette, WR, Air Force

244. Oakland: Avery Moss, Edge, Youngstown State

245. Kansas City: Cethan Carter, TE, Nebraska

246. Dallas: Nate Theaker, OT, Wayne State

247. Green Bay: Jeremiah Ledbetter, DT, Arkansas

248. Pittsburgh: Blake Jarwin, TE, Oklahoma State

249. Atlanta: Richie Brown, LB, Mississippi State

250. Detroit: Samson Ebukam, LB, Eastern Washington

251. Cincinnati: Channing Stribling, CB, Michigan

252. Denver: Trent Taylor, WR, Louisiana Tech

253. Denver: Money Hunter, CB/S, Arkansas State