New 2020 mock draft: NFL Nation reporters predict the first round

You’ve read the latest mock drafts from draft gurus Mel Kiper Jr. and Todd McShay. Now it’s time for our NFL Nation reporters to share their expertise on the 2020 NFL draft as we close in on Round 1 (Thursday, April 23, at 8 p.m. ET, ESPN/ABC/ESPN App).

NFL Nation reporters played general manager for the teams they cover and executed a first-round mock. The results yielded a heavy dose of offensive tackles, cornerbacks and wide receivers. Trades were not allowed. Here are the results:

1. Cincinnati Bengals

Joe Burrow, QB, LSU | Highlights

This one is a no-brainer. The Bengals are looking for their franchise quarterback, as the Andy Dalton era is seemingly at its end. Burrow, who spent the bulk of his childhood in southeast Ohio, is a logical fit. Cincinnati values two of the things Burrow does best: make quality pre-snap reads and deliver balls in timely and accurate fashion. The Bengals have been impressed with Burrow’s leadership qualities and football intelligence. He will be expected to start immediately and take over a franchise that hasn’t won a playoff game since 1991. — Ben Baby

2. Washington Redskins

Chase Young, DE, Ohio State | Watch the pick

The Redskins consider Young a high-impact player who can help transform their defense — they hope in the same way Nick Bosa did with San Francisco last season. The Redskins were dreadful on third down last season despite a strong pass rush. They ranked seventh in sacks per pass attempt but were last on third-down defense. There were a lot of reasons for that, but the lack of an elite pass-rusher also contributed. The Redskins have a strong, youthful core, and Young gives them what they haven’t had: a young player who has the ability to be elite. — John Keim

3. Detroit Lions

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