The rules? Kiper and McShay alternated picks to fill out starting lineups, with each roster having 11 starters on both offense and defense. (Sorry, fans of special teams.) They were allowed to draft positions in any order, and they designed their units around whatever scheme they wanted to run on each side of the ball. Versatility was a must for both teams. They drafted all 44 picks live on the First Draft podcast Tuesday and debated their choices along the way.
Which team has the edge at quarterback, wide receiver, pass-rusher and cornerback? Let's start at the top and go pick by pick, ending with what Kiper and McShay think of their teams. Field Yates, who hosts the podcast, was the neutral observer, and he picked his favorite team, as well. Jump to the end to see the complete rosters.
Mel Kiper: I was looking at my team from last year, Todd, and I have to say that I crushed you. Justin Jefferson and Tee Higgins catching passes from Joe Burrow, who was protected at tackle by Mekhi Becton and Jedrick Wills Jr.
Todd McShay: Crushed me? Mel, Chase Young -- the NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year -- would have been all over Burrow in the pocket. And the press coverage from my guys Trevon Diggs and Jaylon Johnson would have been a problem for you.
Kiper: My tackles wouldn't have let Young touch Burrow, and he'd get the ball out quickly anyway. Jefferson would have 14 catches for 204 yards and three touchdowns against your defense.
McShay: Either way, I'm not sure you had the defense to slow down CeeDee Lamb, Brandon Aiyuk, Henry Ruggs III, Jerry Jeudy and D'Andre Swift in space. But I admit, I'm still mad you stole Antoine Winfield Jr. from me in the middle picks.
Kiper: OK, losing team picks first. You're up.
McShay: You might regret that; this isn't the year to give up the top pick.
No. 1 pick, McShay: Trevor Lawrence, QB, Clemson
McShay: I win, right? Lawrence is the best quarterback prospect I've seen in a decade. How are you going to stop him, Mel? What's your plan here?
No. 2 pick, Kiper: Kyle Pitts, TE, Florida
Kiper: You know, I'm going to follow some advice from a draft consultant here. There's no reason I need to take my quarterback now. I'll get him at the end. We don't build one-man teams.
Pitts is the best available prospect on my board. I've never given a tight end as high a grade as I have for Pitts, and I've been doing this for more than 40 years. He is a special talent.