The NFL draft is underway. (Jerry Lai/USA TODAY Sports)

The next generation of NFL stars enters the league with the 2015 draft. Get comprehensive analysis of the league’s premier offseason event, including the latest rumors, Round 1 breakdown and more.

[Draft grades: Pats, Seahawks, Jets ace Round 1]

Latest News | Draft prep | Film study | Redskins coverage

Maske’s Best Available Players

Round 1 Analysis


1. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Jameis Winston | QB | Florida State

It has been clear for some time that Winston would be the Buccaneers’ pick, although there appeared to be some wariness within the organization about making him the franchise’s centerpiece after his off-field issues at Florida State. He is regarded as more NFL-ready than Marcus Mariota because of the pro-style offense in which he played in college. The Buccaneers had to get a franchise quarterback and cannot afford to be wrong. Now they must cross their fingers and hope that they indeed were right. It will be interesting to see if they trade current QB Mike Glennon later in this draft. — Mark Maske

[Fantasy: Can Winston help owners in Year 1?]

How he fits: Winston has a high football IQ that not only allows him to recognize and beat different coverages, but identify blitzes and change his protection at the line of scrimmage. The latter will be key in helping him stay protected behind a Buccaneers offensive line that struggled to keep quarterbacks upright last season. But he also has the ability to extend plays in the pocket and the arm strength to find big targets like Mike Evans and Vincent Jackson down the field. – Mark Bullock


2. Tennessee Titans
Marcus Mariota | QB | Oregon

The Titans now potentially have their franchise quarterback by selecting Marcus Mariota. But will they keep him? Just because Tennessee has chosen Mariota doesn’t necessarily mean that the Titans won’t turn around and trade him as the night progresses. There is plenty of interest. The Eagles apparently have tried very hard today to get him. The Bears have been in the running. The Browns reportedly offered both of their first-round picks but were reluctant to give up more than that. The Chargers probably are out of it after reportedly telling Philip Rivers that he won’t be traded. But it’s not certain that the intrigue is done. – Maske

[Fantasy: Will Mariota provide instant impact?]

How he fits: Ken Whisenhunt knows the importance of a strong running game that should help support Mariota as he transitions to the NFL. His quick decision-making and ability to progress through multiple reads should allow him to get the ball out of his hands quickly to the Titans’ young play makers Justin Hunter and Kendall Wright. – Bullock

[Fancy Stats: Neither Winston nor Mariota will be great pros]


3. Jacksonville Jaguars
Dante Fowler Jr. | OLB | Florida

The Jaguars pass up the draft’s top defender and maybe its best player period, in Leonard Williams, to take its leading pass rusher, Dante Fowler Jr. Williams now is likely to remain available for the Redskins at No. 5, if the Raiders indeed take a wide receiver (Amari Cooper or Kevin White) fourth. The Redskins should receive some decent trade offers. – Maske

How he fits: Fowler has a prototypical frame to fit in as a much needed pass rusher for Jacksonville. He can be Gus Bradley’s version of Bruce Irvin in Seattle, giving defensive tackle Sen’Derrick Marks some help pressuring the quarterback. – Bullock


4. Oakland Raiders
Amari Cooper | WR | Alabama

Just about everyone figured the Raiders would take a wide receiver to go with second-year quarterback Derek Carr. The question was whether it would be Cooper or Kevin White. They go with Cooper, probably the more polished player. – Maske

How he fits: Cooper is the most polished receiver in the draft. His solid hands and strong route-running should translate instantly to the NFL level. He’ll be a reliable target for second year quarterback Derrick Carr. – Bullock


5. Washington Redskins
Brandon Scherff | OT/OG | Iowa

That’s a mild surprise. Scherff is clearly the draft’s top offensive lineman. And yes, the Redskins certainly needed to upgrade the offensive line. But there are questions about whether he will be a guard or a tackle in the NFL. If he plays guard, that’s not getting full value out of the fifth overall pick in the draft. Leonard Williams was available. That should have given the Redskins a chance to trade down and take Scherff or a pass-rusher a little bit later. – Maske

How he fits: Washington desperately needed help on the offensive line. Scherff should be given the chance to start at right tackle, but could eventually kick inside to guard. He’s dominant in the run game, which the Redskins need as they transition from zone blocking to power blocking. – Bullock


6. New York Jets
Leonard Williams | DE | USC

The Jets are the beneficiaries of Leonard Williams’s mini-drop to the sixth overall pick. They didn’t have to move up to get the player widely regarded as the top defender in the draft. – Maske

How he fits: The Jets defensive line gets even stronger. Williams is the best player in the draft and will partner up with Sheldon Richardson and Muhammad Wilkerson to make one of the most fearsome defensive fronts in the NFL. – Bullock


7. Chicago Bears
Kevin White | WR | West Virginia

The Bears make it two wide receivers taken in the first seven picks of the draft by choosing Kevin White, three spots after the Raiders took Amari Cooper. White can be a game-breaker right away as a rookie. The Bears have held on to Jay Cutler (despite reports that they offered him to the Titans in their bid to move up for Marcus Mariota) and now they give him some help. – Maske

[Fantasy: Will White form dynamic duo with Jeffery?]

How he fits: Having lost Brandon Marshall this offseason, Chicago moves quickly to replace him with Kevin White. White is a big, strong and fast receiver that will need to work on the smaller details of his game like route-running. But he should make a good long term partner to Alshon Jeffery. – Bullock


8. Atlanta Falcons
Vic Beasley | DE | Clemson

The Falcons get a potentially productive pass rusher, in Beasley, to bolster the defense of their new coach, Dan Quinn. There had been talk about Atlanta possibly trading up for Fowler. Once the Falcons stayed put at eight, they had to choose between Beasley and Kentucky’s Bud Dupree. Beasley benefits from the drop of Shane Ray after his citation this week for marijuana possession. – Maske

How he fits: Atlanta has been crying out for an edge rusher for years. Beasley is, in my opinion, the best pure pass-rusher in the draft with explosive burst and speed. Dan Quinn starts his version of the Seahawks 4-3 defense with an explosive edge rusher. – Bullock


9. New York Giants
Ereck Flowers | OT | Miami (Fla.)

The Giants were practically a lock to take an offensive lineman. Brandon Scherff almost certainly would have been the choice if he’d remained available. He didn’t. The Redskins took him fifth, perhaps a few picks too soon. So the Giants go with Flowers. – Maske

How he fits: Flowers this high is a reach for me, but the Giants need to keep Eli Manning upright to allow him time to find his explosive receivers Victor Cruz and Odell Beckham Jr. Flowers has a slight technical flaw in his kick-slide, which makes him vulnerable to speed rushers off the edge. But his size and length make him an intriguing prospect to develop at right tackle. – Bullock


10. St. Louis Rams
Todd Gurley | RB | Georgia

So NFL teams are still allowed to take running backs in the first round, after all. No running backs went in the opening round of the last two NFL drafts. That drought ends with the Rams taking Gurley 10th overall. He’s coming off a torn ACL but some talent evaluators considered him one of the very best players in the draft. Too soon to take him? Maybe. The recent history of the draft makes it clear that you don’t need to use a first-rounder, and especially a high first-rounder, to get a dynamic runner. But he should be productive if he’s healthy. – Maske

[Fantasy: How soon can Gurley shine?]

How he fits: With uncertainty at quarterback, the Rams opt to look to improve their run game with the best running back to enter the draft in recent years. St. Louis has solid backs in Tre Mason and Zac Stacy that can carry the load until Gurley has fully recovered from his ACL injury. – Bullock


11. Minnesota Vikings
Trae Waynes | CB | Michigan State

The first cornerback to come off the board is Waynes, as expected. He falls just outside the top 10. It’s a solid, sensible choice for the Vikings. – Maske

How he fits: Minnesota has one solid press corner in Xavier Rhodes, but lacks an established starter opposite him. Waynes is another strong press corner with the ability to play zone too. Add Waynes to a secondary containing Rhodes and free safety Harrison Smith, and the Vikings have a strong, young secondary to build around. – Bullock


12. Cleveland Browns
Danny Shelton | DT | Washington

The Browns, after reportedly offering both of their first-rounders in a failed bid to move up for Marcus Mariota, use the 12th choice on Shelton to bolster their defensive front. He’s worth the pick. But if the Browns don’t emerge from the night with a new quarterback, it must be classified as a disappointment. – Maske

How he fits: Cleveland owned the worst ranked run defense last season. Adding a big bodied, dominating presence in Shelton at nose tackle that can take on multiple blockers and still maintain gap integrity at the point of attack is precisely what the Browns need. – Bullock


13. New Orleans Saints
Andrus Peat | OT | Stanford

Trades? What trades? All of the pre-draft trade talk has not resulted in a deal yet. This draft has been relatively ho-hum overall. It needs something big to happen to shake things up.

As far as the pick, it’s not a bad selection at all for the Saints. Peat is a good prospect at offensive tackle and Drew Brees’s offensive line needed help. But Shane Ray is a top-10 talent and remained available to bolster the pass rush. His citation this week for marijuana possession has him falling through the first-round order. – Maske

How he fits: The Saints need to rebuild their defense, but their number one priority is always to protect Drew Brees. Terron Armstead is one young, athletic tackle playing on the left side right now. Peat is similarly athletic that could be plugged in at right tackle, giving New Orleans bookend tackles for years to come. – Bullock


14. Miami Dolphins
DeVante Parker | WR | Louisville

That’s three wide receivers in the first 14 selections as Parker goes to Miami. He’s well worth the 14th choice. The Dolphins have just exercised their fifth-year option in the contract of quarterback Ryan Tannehill. And now they get him another very capable young receiver. – Maske

How he fits: Having moved on from free agent bust Mike Wallace, the Dolphins opened up a need at receiver. They added Greg Jennings and traded for Kenny Stills, but DeVante Parker brings size and speed to Miami. He’s an explosive playmaker with the ball in his hands and gives Tannehill another target. – Bullock


15. San Diego Chargers (From S.F.)
Melvin Gordon | RB | Wisconsin

A trade! An actual trade! The Chargers moved up two spots to get Gordon. They kept Philip Rivers, and now they give him a runner to occupy some of the attention of opposing defenses. That’s two running backs in the first 15 picks after zero first-round running backs in the previous two drafts. That puts some pressure on the Cowboys. Todd Gurley and Gordon are gone, and Dallas needs a replacement for DeMarco Murray. Does that increase the chances of a trade for Adrian Peterson? – Maske

[Fantasy: Is Gordon golden in San Diego?]

How he fits: The Chargers opted not to trade Phillip Rivers, instead they help takes some pressure off him by adding an extremely productive and versatile running back in Gordon. Gordan can also be a weapon out of the backfield for Rivers to check down to. He replaces Ryan Matthews, who left San Diego in free agency. – Bullock


16. Houston Texans
Kevin Johnson | CB | Wake Forest

The Texans take Johnson over pass rusher Bud Dupree. Johnson had established himself in the minds of many talent evaluators as the second-best cornerback available, after Trae Waynes, and that’s exactly where he is taken. – Maske

How he fits: Houston re-signed Kareem Jackson to a long term contract in the off-season, but their other starting corner Johnathan Joseph is 31 and on an expensive contract. Johnson is the smoothest athlete at corner in this draft, with the quick feet and ability to play inside as a rookie before eventually taking over for Joseph on the outside. – Bullock


17. San Francisco 49ers
Arik Armstead | DE | Oregon

The 49ers trade down two spots and still get the player many (including me) thought they’d get at 15th. The defense needed help, especially after the retirements of Patrick Willis and Chris Borland. – Maske

How he fits: The 49ers defense has been heavily depleted this offseason with losses in free agency and retirements. They needed some young, fresh talent on the defensive line and Armstead is a perfect fit as a defensive end in their 3-4 system. He’s raw, but new head coach Jim Tomsula was a defensive line coach and should be able to coach him up. – Bullock


18. Kansas City Chiefs
Marcus Peters | CB | Washington

This is may be just a little bit too soon for Peters. He is a talented cornerback, for sure. But there were issues to consider after he was dismissed from the team at Washington for clashing with coaches. – Maske

How he fits: Last year’s third-round pick Phillip Gaines is a promising young corner starting alongside veteran Sean Smith for Kansas City. But behind those two the Chiefs have very little depth. Peters might be the best cover corner in this draft with fluid movement skills and good mirror ability. But his off-the-field problems kept him from going higher. – Bullock


19. Cleveland Browns (from Buffalo)
Cameron Erving | C/OG | Florida State

The Browns tried but failed to make a “Wow” move and trade up for Marcus Mariota. Instead, they have made less-than-glamorous maneuvers and fortified their defensive and offensive lines by taking Danny Shelton and Erving. They’re a better team than they were when the night started. But they still have a major issue at quarterback. – Maske

How he fits: Erving is a versatile offensive lineman that found his best position once he kicked inside from tackle to center. Cleveland already has one of the better centers in the NFL in Alex Mack, which makes the Erving pick and interesting selection. But Erving has the ability to play just about any position on the offensive line and could fill in at guard. – Bullock


20. Philadelphia Eagles
Nelson Agholor | WR | USC

Nelson Agholor isn’t Marcus Mariota. Much to Chip Kelly’s dismay, undoubtedly. It is a bit surprising that Agholor goes ahead of Breshad Perriman among wide receivers. But many had suspected he would make his way into the opening round. He joins a wideout corps in Philadelphia that lost a 1,300-yard receiver — DeSean Jackson and then Jeremy Maclin — in each of the past two offseasons. – Maske

How he fits: Jordan Matthews had a solid rookie season, but Riley Cooper isn’t an explosive threat opposite him. Agholor is a strong route-runner that also offers yards after the catch. – Bullock


21. Cincinnati Bengals
Cedric Ogbuehi | OT | Texas A&M

The Bengals needed depth at offensive tackle. It’s a bit of a gamble to go with Ogbuehi, who’s coming off a torn ACL, over some of the other available tackles. But he was considered a very top prospect before his injury. – Maske

How he fits: With Andrew Whitworth turning 34 in December, Cincinnati takes its left tackle of the future. He’s coming off a bad injury, but with Whitworth still on the roster, Ogbuehi has time to fully recover before taking over down the line. – Bullock


22. Pittsburgh Steelers
Bud Dupree | DE | Kentucky

The Steelers get a promising pass-rusher and, at No. 22, a good value pick with Dupree. Interestingly, they allow fellow pass-rushers Shane Ray and Randy Gregory to continue their plummet through the opening round. – Maske

How he fits: Pittsburgh can’t keep relying on the evergreen James Harrison to produce their pass-rush. Dupree is raw as an edge rusher, but has the ideal frame and athleticism to fit in the Steelers’ 3-4 defense. Dupree can learn behind Harrison for a year or two before taking over the mantle. – Bullock


23. Denver Broncos
Shane Ray | OLB | Missouri

Ray’s wait ends as the Broncos trade up to get him at No. 23. It’s obviously a risky move after Ray’s citation this week for marijuana possession. But there is a significant potential reward for the Broncos. Ray is a top-10 talent as a pass-rusher. – Maske

How he fits: Denver defensive coordinator Wade Phillips loves to send pass-rushers after the quarterback. Ray is an explosive rusher with an incredible burst off the snap. He should sit behind DeMarcus Ware and Von Miller, seeing the field as a situational rusher before taking over for Ware down the line. – Bullock


24. Arizona Cardinals
D.J. Humphries | OT | Florida

The Cardinals signed guard Mike Iupati in free agency and now they add Humphries in the opening round of the draft. They are devoting considerable resources to upgrading the offensive line. – Maske

How he fits: Bobby Massie had been largely inconsistent at right tackle for the Cardinals. Humphries is athletic with quick feet that allow him to keep up with speed rushers on the edge. Humphries should plug in at right tackle on Day 1 before eventually sliding over to the left side to replace incumbent Jared Veldheer. – Bullock


25. Carolina Panthers
Shaq Thompson | OLB/S | Washington

Is he a linebacker or a safety? If he’s a safety, why not take Landon Collins instead? This was a surprising pick and, frankly, not a risk that a mediocre team should be taking at this point in the draft. – Maske

How he fits: He will be an interesting fit into the Panthers defense. He’s a versatile athlete that could play safety or outside linebacker in Carolina’s 4-3 defense. Either way, Thompson’s versatility will prove valuable in nickel and dime sub-packages as he can play linebacker and still provide strong coverage. – Bullock


26. Baltimore Ravens
Breshad Perriman | WR | UCF

Torrey Smith is gone. Steve Smith is not the youngest receiver around. It makes sense for the Ravens to add a wideout, particularly with Perriman dropping a bit. He’s well worth a relatively late first-rounder. But the secondary simply must be addressed at some point. – Maske

How he fits: Perriman can make up for the loss of Torrey Smith as a deep threat with his explosiveness and 4.26 40-yard dash speed. – Bullock


27. Dallas Cowboys
Byron Jones | CB | Connecticut

Jones is a good cornerback and is worth a late first-rounder. But the Cowboys’ glaring need at running back does not get addressed in the opening round. Todd Gurley and Melvin Gordon were taken long before their pick. And Dallas does not send its first-rounder to Minnesota for Adrian Peterson. The solace for the Cowboys is that the recent history of the NFL draft is clear that productive runners can be gotten in later rounds. – Maske

How he fits: Jones is a freakish athlete that jumps out of the gym. But he also has strong coverage skills and instincts. Dallas struggled in the secondary outside of top corner Brandon Carr. Jones could play corner or potentially switch to safety in the future. – Bullock


28. Detroit Lions
Laken Tomlinson | OG | Duke

That’s a surprise by the Lions after trading down. Tomlinson is a very solid player but this might be a little bit early for him. Some had projected him as a second-rounder. What about Malcom Brown? This is a team, after all, that lost Ndamukong Suh and Nick Fairley in free agency. – Maske

How he fits: Tomlinson is an absolute mauler in the run game, playing with size and strength to drive defenders back off the line of scrimmage. But almost more impressively, he’s solid in pass protection, which should help give Matthew Stafford more time in the pocket to find his array of weapons. – Bullock


29. Indianapolis Colts
Phillip Dorsett | WR | Miami (Fla.)

There’s no arguing with taking a wide receiver in the first round, really, after what rookie receivers accomplished in the NFL last season. Dorsett is worth an opening-round selection. But the Colts’ additions of aging veterans in free agency earlier this offseason means that they are out to try to win a Super Bowl immediately. The run defense needs help, and Malcom Brown was available. The offensive line also needs attention. – Maske

How he fits: I’m surprised the Colts didn’t take an offensive lineman to help protect Andrew Luck, but instead they elect to add more targets for him. They already have size at receiver in Andre Johnson and deep speed in T.Y. Hilton. Dorsett is a smaller receiver, but has speed to take the top off a defense and shiftiness to make people miss in space. – Bullock


30. Green Bay Packers
Damarious Randall | S | Arizona State

Randall going ahead of Landon Collins as the first safety taken is a surprise. But he is very good in pass coverage so the Packers clearly focused on that. – Maske

How he fits: Randall is the top free safety prospect in this draft who brings range and instincts in coverage. But his fit with the Packers is an odd one. Green Bay already has last year’s first round pick, Ha Ha Clinton-Dix, playing free safety and Morgan Burnett playing strong safety. Randall could see time in nickel and dime sub-packages, as well as covering the slot receiver. – Bullock


31. New Orleans Saints (from Seattle)
Stephone Anthony | LB | Clemson

The Saints use the pick gotten from the Seahawks in the Jimmy Graham trade to get an inside linebacker who should help to stabilize the defense. – Maske

How he fits: Anthony is an athletic and instinctual linebacker. He has the size to play as an inside linebacker in Rob Ryan’s 3-4 defense. He has great movement skills for a player of his size, but can get caught overpursuing plays. – Bullock


32. New England Patriots
Malcom Brown | DT | Texas

It never hurts to be lucky as well as good. The Super Bowl champs, after parting with Vince Wilfork, get his replacement when Brown falls to them on the final pick of the opening round. – Maske

How he fits: Brown is a talented defensive tackle that should freshen up the Patriots’ defensive line. He probably should have been taken earlier, but the Patriots will be happy to see a player with his versatility fall into their laps. He won’t directly replace the loss of Wilfork, but he’ll certainly help fill the void. – Bullock

Latest updates

Winston brings talent, questions to Tampa

FSU QB won’t have to move far from Tallahassee as he begins his NFL career. (Read more)

Shelley Smith provides draft’s feel-good story

ESPN reporter returns to work after battling cancer, covers Marcus Mariota in Hawaii. (Read More)

Winston stays home, but rolls out red carpet

The FSU QB didn’t attend the draft, but that didn’t stop him from classing up the night. (Read More)

NFL denies La’el Collins’s request to bypass draft

LSU lineman is preparing to talk to police regarding death of former girlfriend. (Read More)

Chicago embraces draft, Goodell defends Redskins name

Liz Clarke reports from the ground in Chicago. (Read More)

Draft Prep
FINAL 2015 Mock Draft: WRs and DEs dominate
Jameis Winston still goes No. 1 overall, but then it gets interesting. (Read More)


Pre-draft position overviews

QB | RBWR | TE | OL| DL | ILB | OLB | CB | S


Top 50 prospects
Check out the top talents on the draft board. Spoiler alert: No. 1 isn’t a quarterback. (Read More)


Draft needs for every team

NFC: East | North | South | West
AFC: East | North | South | West


Post Sports Live previews which teams are most likely to trade their first-round pick in the 2015 NFL draft. (Post Sports Live/The Washington Post)

Most likely prospects to thrive as rookies
Amari Cooper and Todd Gurley could turn heads in their first season in the pros. (Read More)

Prospect profiles

Film breakdowns for some of the draft’s biggest names.

La’el Collins | Brandon Scherff | Leonard Williams

Bud Dupree | Shane Ray | Vic Beasley

Redskins Reads

Five possible scenarios for Washington in first round

For new GM McCloughan, in draft, grit beats glitz

Seven-round mock draft
Version 3.0 of the simulated selections of all seven rounds. (Read More)

What Redskins should do at: QBRB | WR | TE | OL | DL | ILB | OLB | CB | S

The Post Sports Live panel debates what the Redskins should do with their No. 5 pick in the NFL draft. (Post Sports Live/The Washington Post)

Draft resources
Time: 8 p.m. Thursday; 7 p.m. Friday, Noon Saturday
TV: ESPN and NFL Network
Live, sortable draft tracker
Order of picks