2021 NFL Mock Draft: Week 3

This draft cycle will be tougher to predict than most, thanks to an imbalance of games and numerous opt outs. But the show must go on.

I am going to try to do a weekly mock draft. This Week 3 order is based on record (1) and point differential (2). When will I switch it up to the http://www.tankathon.com draft order? Who knows. Soon maybe?

Pick #TeamPlayerNameAnalysis
1QB Trevor Lawrence, ClemsonThis is tough. I do not think Sam Darnold will ever be an All Pro quaterback, but the coaching and roster construction people have done him no favors. Still, Trevor Lawrence is a once in a generation talent. Couple that with the fact that New York will most assuredly have a new coach and front office regime next year, I am going with Lawrence. Worst case, the Jets could get a Godfather haul for this pick. Darnold is simply not good enough to pass on Lawrence.
2QB Justin Fields, Ohio StateSame scenario here. While I do not think Justin Fields is quite as good as Trevor Lawrence, he is not far off. Also, he is leagues above Daniel Jones, who just does not look to have it. Ask yourself, do you pass on a potential monster upgrade at quarterback to take another offensive tackle? It will be interesting to see some of these picks play out.
3OT Penei Sewell, OregonFROM HOU
This would be the perfect pick for Miami. A bookend duo of Penei Sewell and Austin Jackson could help Tua Tagovailoa stay upright and hopefully healthy. If the two quarterbacks were not so good, I would be talking about Sewell as the top overall pick. He is a rare talent at tackle.
4QB Trey Lance, North Dakota StateThe Vikings are stuck with Kirk Cousins through 2022, but that does not mean the team should not groom an eventual replacement, especially with the team struggling as bad at it has. Trey Lance is a top ten pick, but he may not be NFL ready, especially with only one game on the North Dakota State docket this fall. Lance could sit for a year and come out guns blazing like Patrick Mahomes. That would be the hope, of course.
5OLB Micah Parsons, Penn StateThe Broncos defense is full of question marks. Micah Parsons is simply a play maker, and would fill a few needs in Denver. He could work behind or take over for Von Miller, who can no longer stay healthy. He is also versatile enough to play middle linebacker or even pass rusher. Denver will find a spot for him.
6CB Patrick Surtain II, AlabamaThe Falcons defense has been historically bad, contributing to two absolutely catastrophic fourth quarter collapses in a row. Atlanta’s defensive coaches simply need to hand a card that says “HELP” when it comes time to draft. Alabama cornerbacks have been a mixed back in the NFL, but Patrick Surtain II has the talent, experience and bloodlines to become a solid CB1 in the NFL.
7WR Ja’Marr Chase, LSUWould this be not the perfect fit? Ja’Marr Chase might have been the best player on the historic 2019 LSU offense, and is the top wide receiver option in this class. Philadelphia’s receiving group is either old, injury ravaged or unproven. Chase would be an instant WR1 and give Carson Wentz (or Jalen Hurts?) a legit option.
8CB Shaun Wade, Ohio StateBeing the lead dog in the Ohio State secondary is basically a ticket to the first round of the draft. Shaun Wade is right there with Surtain as CB1. There was a point where Cincinnati took a cornerback in the first round on a yearly basis, but the secondary is still weak. With Ohio State playing this fall after all, Wade has decided to opt back in to the season.
9DE Gregory Rousseau, MiamiMake no mistake; Gregory Rousseau was a monster in 2019. 15.5 sacks as a first year redshirt freshman. It would have been great to see an encore season, but Rousseau has taken the year off to prep for the draft. He is still very raw despite the numbers, but that talent is real. As teams continue to pass, others will try to add players to stop him. Detroit has nothing but stop gap options along the defensive line, and should take the gamble here.
10WR Jaylen Waddle, AlabamaSo far, so good for Alabama’s new alpha dog wideout. Jaylen Waddle is a lightning quick slot man who would give the Football Team a legitimate WR1 and a very sure pair of hands. Dwayne Haskins has been terrible, but the talent around him has done him no favors.
11TE Kyle Pitts, Florida8/170/4. How is that for a statement game? Kyle Pitts was a complete mismatch for the Ole Miss defense, and his draft stock arrow has burst through the roof. It looks like the Jaguars are all in on Gardner Minshew, so how would this be for a new weapon?
12OT Alex Leatherwood, AlabamaThis is a “best player available” situation for a roster that needs help everywhere. Alex Leatherwood has spent time at right tackle, guard and now left tackle. That versatility, as well as a ton of experience, should earn him a first round ticket. He may be ultimately ticketed to a guard spot, which could limit his stock a bit.
13WR Rondale Moore, PurdueRondale Moore has chosen to opt back in to the 2020 college football season, which should solidify his first round projection. An exciting slot guy, Moore would be a great addition to a Saints offense that has looked a bit lost without All World Michael Thomas.
14OT Samuel Cosmi, TexasJustin Herbert could possibly be the answer at quarterback for the Chargers. Unlike other young quarterbacks in this mock, the Chargers have solid offensive talent, but must beef up an underwhelming line to help out Herbert’s development. Samuel Cosmi is the Big 12’s top returining offensive lineman according to Pro Football Focus, and has the look of a solid starting left tackle.
15DT Christian Barmore, AlabamaThe Dolphins roster is still a huge work in progress, meaning best player available here. The Patriots love to pilfer Nick Saban’s athletes, and the Dolphins staff has done the same. Christian Barmore is still a work in progress, but has the talent to line up all over Miami’s hybrid defensive line.
16OLB Quincy Roche, MiamiMyles Garrett will be disrupting offensive lines in the AFC North for quite a while, but he needs help. Quincy Roche, owner of 28 career college sacks and counting, is a terror. He can play linebacker or end, but the important thing is he gets after the quarterback.
17OG Wyatt Davis, Ohio StateIt takes a real special interior lineman to be drafted in the teens, and Wyatt Davis is just that. A complete guard, he could even find his way to tackle if a team needs it. It is always important to help a mobile quarterback stay upright in the pocket, especially if he is undersized like Kyler Murray.
18DE Carlos Basham Jr., Wake ForestWhile scouts may like more upside in their top ten picks, if Carlos Basham Jr. continues to terrorize opposing offenses, he may force his way into that conversation. Basham Jr. surprisingly returned to school for his senior season and continues to rack up the sacks and tough defensive plays. The Cowboys defensive line would love an addition like that.
19MLB Dylan Moses, AlabamaIndications are that Dylan Moses is completely recovered from his 2019 injury. He should be the latest in a long line of first round Alabama linebackers. The Raiders took a flyer on Raekwon McMillan but he is not a difference maker. Moses could be.
20OG Trey Smith, TennesseeI seem to value offensive lineman more than most mock drafters, but I have explained why several times. Trey Smith has fully recovered from his early health issues, and has shown why he was such a highly ranked recruit. Capable of playing any position on the line, he would give that Jacksonville unit some extra beef.
21WR Rashod Bateman, MinnesotaCam Newton looks like he could stick around in Boston, but his supporting cast is pathetic. Rashod Bateman is not an athletic freak, but is perhaps the best route runner and technician in this class. Bateman will opt back in to the season, and with another year in a very talented Minnesota option, should solidify himself as a first round pick.
22HB Travis Etienne, ClemsonI know, I know. It is blasphemy to put running backs in the first round of mock drafts. The position is still well represented on Thursday nights, and Travis Etienne is simply NFL made. The Buccaneers are all in with Tom Brady, and Etienne could be his Kevin Faulk/Dion Lewis.
23FS Paris Ford, PittsburghThe Steelers are set at safety with two former first round picks, but the secondary could still use a bit of help. Paris Ford is listed as a safety, but should be listed as “playmaker”. Already up to a couple of interceptions, he would help replace Earl Thomas on the back end of Baltimore’s secondary.
24CB Caleb Farley, Virginia TechI would have liked to have seen Caleb Farley play one more year, but he has the size and talent to be a shutdown corner in the NFL, and could wind up going much higher than this. The Colts are a talented team, but the secondary still leaves a bit to be desired.
25OLB Baron Browning, Ohio StateIt took a while, but Baron Browning showed in 2019 why he was a top five national recruit. A complete linebacker, he can get after the quarterback as well as stop the run. An athletic freak, he would give the Niners defense yet another stud chess piece.
26DT Jaylen Twyman, PittsburghJaylen Twyman, a probable 2020 first round pick, chose to opt out of the season to prepare to the draft. He draws lazy comparisons to Aaron Donald, since both are undersized pass rushing tackles from Pitt. Twyman would be lucky to be half as good as Donald is, but those sack numbers (10.5 in 2019) are legit. He would be a very nice player to take over the old Jarrell Casey role in Nashville.
27QB Tanner Morgan, MinnesotaThere are enough teams in need of quarterback help that someone other than the top three should break into the first round. Tanner Morgan has been that guy for me, and I am excited to see how he performs when the Big Ten season gets underway. The Mitchell Trubisky era in Chicago is most likely over. On to the next one.
28TE Pat Freiermuth, Penn StateWith the way Josh Allen is chucking the ball all over the field, the Buffalo offense has become must watch football. The receiver group is set, but the addition of a tight end like Pat Freiermuth could put that offense over the top.
29CB Israel Mukuamu, South CarolinaThe rich get richer, as arguably the most talented defense in the NFL gets one of my favorite sleepers in this draft. Mukuamu has a monster frame (6’4) but does not sacrifice much speed. He reminds me of Jimmy Smith of the Ravens.
30WR DeVonta Smith, AlabamaFROM SEA
If the Jets are going to start over with Trevor Lawrence, please, GET THE MAN SOME HELP! DeVonta Smith could be yet another first round Alabama wideout. As a senior in a pro style offense, he would be NFL ready and an instant starter in New York.
31FS Jevon Holland, OregonThe Chiefs are only going as far as their half a billion dollar man takes them, but that does not mean they should ignore the defensive side of the ball. Jevon Holland, a recent 2020 opt out, has the ability to play cornerback or safety. Simply put, he is a playmaker. The coaches will find ways to utilize him.
32OT Dillon Radunz, North Dakota StateTwo first round picks from North Dakota State? It is a shame they will not have a football season this fall, because the team is loaded with prospects aside from Trey Lance. Dillon Radunz is a very athletic pass protector, and could take over for Ricky Wagner in Green Bay by 2022.

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