2024 NFL mock draft roundup: Top quarterbacks dominating the last-minute mock drafts

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA - NOVEMBER 18: Caleb Williams #13 of the USC Trojans looks on during the second half of a game against the UCLA Bruins at United Airlines Field at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum on November 18, 2023 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA - NOVEMBER 18: Caleb Williams #13 of the USC Trojans looks on during the second half of a game against the UCLA Bruins at United Airlines Field at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum on November 18, 2023 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

The 2024 NFL Draft commences with the first round on Thursday in Detroit, with all the attention on quarterbacks. This year's draft may be the first time since 1983 that six quarterbacks could be selected in the first round.

Caleb Williams is the frontrunner to be selected first overall and has been since declaring for the draft, with LSU's Jayden Daniels and North Carolina's Drake Maye being projected as the second and third picks.

Here is a list of the top quarterbacks who will eagerly be waiting to hear their names called in Detroit.

More: Latest NFL mock draft picks for top 5 players at 2024 NFL Draft

2024 NFL Mock Draft Roundup: Quarterbacks

Caleb Williams, USC

Caleb Williams, who won the 2022 Heisman Trophy, is the top pick for the No. 1 overall selection in the upcoming draft. The Chicago Bears hold the first pick and, having traded Justin Fields to the Steelers in the offseason, are now in search of a starting quarterback.

Courtney Cronin, ESPN: Chicago Bears, No. 1 overall pick

Cronin writes: "Drafting Williams with the No. 1 overall pick has felt like a foregone conclusion since Chicago traded quarterback Justin Fields to Pittsburgh last month. The Bears are the only NFL franchise to never have a quarterback throw for 4,000 yards or 30 touchdowns in a season and will rely on Williams, the 2022 Heisman Trophy winner, to put an end to their decades-long QB futility. Williams joins a roster flush with Pro Bowl talent."

Bucky Brooks, Chicago Bears, No. 1 overall pick

Brooks writes: "The Bears are all in on the spectacular playmaker from USC. Williams has been the odds-on favorite to land in Chicago since the beginning of the process. General manager Ryan Poles makes it official on Thursday evening."

Dave Richard: CBS Sports: Chicago Bears, No. 1 overall pick

Richard writes: "Ever since the Bears acquired Keenan Allen, a reliable mid-range receiver who knows how to get himself open all the time including on scramble drills, I've assumed Williams was the pick. But others knew long before then because of Williams' impressive athletic profile. I think he'll adapt quickly in an offense built for him by new playcaller Shane Waldron. The intrigue and upside of a young, strong-armed mobile QB throwing to a talented receiving corps will push his ADP into the Round 10 range in redraft leagues as a high-end No. 2 QB. He'll be a near-consensus 1.01 in Dynasty rookie SuperFlex drafts and a top-five pick in one-QB versions."

Jayden Daniels, LSU

The 2023 Heisman Trophy winner, Jayden Daniels, recorded 1,134 rushing yards and led the nation in total offense with 4,946 yards and 50 touchdowns during his final season at LSU. Daniels is expected to be drafted by the Washington Commanders, who hold the No. 2 overall pick.

John Keim, ESPN: Washington Commanders, No. 2 overall pick

Keim writes: "Daniels creates chaos for defenses and not just with his legs. At the NFL's annual meetings last month, Commanders coach Dan Quinn praised Daniels' ability to process quickly in the pocket. Quinn also said he wanted someone who could connect on deep balls, and Daniels led all NCAA passers with 22 touchdowns and a 66.7% completion rate on throws of 20 air yards or more. Don't be surprised if J.J. McCarthy is in the mix, as well as Drake Maye, but Daniels' ability to create will be the difference."

Bucky Brooks, Washington Commanders, No. 2 overall pick

Brooks writes: "Despite a reportedly bumpy start to their relationship, the Commanders and Daniels come together at No. 2, with the reigning Heisman Trophy winner bringing plenty of excitement to the nation's capital."

Dave Richard: CBS Sports: Washington Commanders, No. 2 overall pick

Richard writes: "I'm making an educated guess that the Commanders will run a spread offense with more run-game dedication. Kliff Kingsbury insists on a quarterback with mobility. Dan Quinn knows how hard it is to defend dual-threat quarterbacks. Neither have to worry about Daniels' footwork or mechanics or understanding of spread concepts, he's there already."

Drake Maye, North Carolina

Drake Maye is a top quarterback pick that does not have his name on a Heisman Trophy. In the 2023 season, Maye threw for 3,608 yards with 24 touchdowns and nine interceptions. He had an excellent 2022 season as well, throwing for 4,321 yards with 38 touchdowns and only seven interceptions.

Mike Reiss, ESPN: New England Patriots, No. 3 overall pick

Reiss writes: "Minnesota offered No. 11, No. 23 and a 2025 first-round pick for the third pick -- a deal that was turned down after consulting with Patriots sources on what it would have taken to move up to this pick. One thing is known: The Patriots are targeting a quarterback. One thing remains a wild card: Which quarterback they believe suits them best. The hunch is Maye's combination of physical traits and intangibles wins out in the end."

Bucky Brooks, New England Patriots, No. 3 overall pick

Brooks writes: "Eliot Wolf scoops up the quarterback with the prototypical size, athleticism and arm talent. Maye's uneven final season at North Carolina does not discourage the Patriots from placing their faith in the 21-year-old."

Dave Richard: CBS Sports: Minnesota Vikings, No. 5 overall pick

Richard writes: "(Vikings give up 11, 23 and a 2025 first-round pick to the Patriots for 3). The Patriots follow through on Eliot Wolf's proclamation that "the more picks we have the better," and the Vikings pay the exceptionally heavy price to get their guy. Maye's tight with Minnesota QB coach Josh McCown and will become tight with head coach Kevin O'Connell, who desperately needs a big-armed passer to feed his playmaking trio of pass-catchers. Maye is arguably best in his class at making anticipatory throws, and has the cannon to hit passes near and over 50 Air Yards."

J.J. McCarthy, Michigan

J.J. McCarthy led Michigan to a national championship, throwing for 2,991 yards, 22 touchdowns, and only four interceptions during the 2023 season. McCarthy showed his resilience in challenging situations, setting a Michigan record with a 72.3% completion rate over the season.

Kevin Seifert, ESPN: Minnesota Vikings, No. 5 overall pick

Seifert writes: "This trade was the cleanest way to ensure the Vikings got a first-round quarterback and true successor to Kirk Cousins. They used substantial draft capital but preserved their 2025 first-round pick. Offers for No. 3 and No. 4, which included three first-round picks, were turned down. Absent this deal, McCarthy could have gone as early as No. 6 to the Giants, which would have left the Vikings competing for the fifth quarterback of the draft at their original No. 11 spot. In terms of coaching and personnel, McCarthy lands in the best spot of all the first-round passers."

Bucky Brooks, Minnesota Vikings, No. 11 overall pick

Brooks writes: "Kevin O'Connell gets his quarterback without climbing the board through a blockbuster trade. McCarthy flourished in a managerial role at Michigan, but he possesses the talent to evolve into a playmaker as a pro."

Dave Richard: CBS Sports: New England Patriots, No. 5 overall pick

Richards writes: "(Patriots give up 11, 34, 68 and a second-round pick in 2025 to the Chargers for 5). In this mock deal, the Chargers make sure McCarthy doesn't fall into the Broncos hands and still get a nice package of picks -- and the Patriots still have a first-rounder to use later on (and a first-rounder next year). Win-win for everyone but Denver."

More quarterbacks in the 2024 NFL Draft

  • Michael Penix Jr., Washington

  • Bo Nix, Oregon

  • Spencer Rattler, South Carolina

  • Michael Pratt, Tulane

  • Jordan Travis, Florida State

  • Kedon Slovis, BYU

  • John Rhys Plumlee, UCF

  • Davius Richard, NC Central

  • Devin Leary, Kentucky

  • Joe Milton III, Tennessee

  • Carter Bradley, Southern Alabama

  • Sam Hartman, Notre Dame

  • Taulia Tagovailoa, Maryland

  • Austin Reed, Western Kentucky

  • Emory Jones, Cincinnati

  • Jack Plummer, Louisville

When is the 2024 NFL Draft?

Where: Campus Marius Park at Hart Plaza in Detroit, Michigan

When: April 25-27, 2024

Cable TV: ESPN, ABC, NFL Network

Streaming: NFL+; ESPN+; fuboTV

How to watch: Catch the NFL Draft this year with a subscription to fuboTV

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This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: 2024 NFL mock draft roundup: QBs dominate first round in final mocks