2021 NFL Mock Draft With Analysis

I did an NBA version, so I might as well do an NFL one.

Note: I do not project trades, or even really talk about them. It is hard enough to mock players. Assume 80% of these picks would be moved for Deshaun Watson.

Pick # Team Player Name Analysis
1 15988562013 i QB Trevor Lawrence, Clemson

This was always going to be Trevor Lawrence. Signing an ex-Ohio State coach whose career did not intersect with Justin Fields will not change that. Rejoice Jacksonville fans. You finally have something to be excited about.

2 15291162019 zachwilson QB Zach Wilson, BYU

I do not think Sam Darnold’s NFL book has been written yet, but it looks like his New York chapter will be coming to a close. Whether it’s a new draft pick or a trade for a veteran quarterback. Zach Wilson looks like the clear cut QB2, and a new regime will probably bring in a new signal caller. With a ton of picks, they can and should draft skill players to give him some help, unlike what the old team did for Darnold.

3 15073062018 devontasmith WR DeVonta Smith, Alabama

Yeah, DeVonta Smith is skinny. And..that is where the criticism stops. The Dolphins desperately need a field stretcher on offense. Smith had a legendary season where he became an ultra rare Heisman winning wideout. He also caught passes from Tua Tagovailoa for years. Miami is playing with house money as a fringe playoff team with a top five pick, and can afford the luxury here. It all makes too much sense.

4 299 i OT Penei Sewell, Oregon

The Falcons are going to give the Matt Ryan/Julio Jones a couple more seasons, so I expect the best non-quarterback available. Offensive line is not the biggest need, but Penei Sewell is the best prospect. The most feared offensive tackle in years, Atlanta can play him at guard until he is ready to take over on the outside. That is a good problem to have.

5 403 darrisaw OT Christian Darrisaw, Virginia Tech

I do not often like to mock reaches to bad teams, but sometimes the need outweighs the best player available strategy. As is the case with the Bengals. They absolutely need to build a competent line, especially with Joe Burrow already coming off of a serious injury. I am a big fan of Christian Darrisaw and do not think this is as big of a reach as others might. No, he is not the best talent available. But he will help. A lot.

6 960 i WR JaMarr Chase, LSU

Whether it is Carson Wentz, Jalen Hurts or someone else, giving the quarterback actual talent to throw to would be a good decision. Sure, the Eagles drafted Jalen Reagor in 2020, but JaMarr Chase is the superior prospect. Even with a year off, he should still be a top ten pick.

7 17013982017 i QB Justin Fields, Ohio State

Quarterback is not a lock here, and perhaps the Lions really are excited about Jared Goff, but with Justin Fields on the board, the Lions should go this direction. Comparing Fields to Dwayne Haskins is lazy and unfair. Fields is a legit prospect and deserves to stand on his own merits.

8 f1wggq2k8ql88fe33jzhw641u trey_lance_2019_ndsu_fb_headshot_011_crop QB Trey Lance, North Dakota State

Teddy Bridgewater was predictably mediocre for the Panthers in 2020, and Carolina should be on the lookout for a long term solution. Trey Lance is still a mystery man, but the talent is obvious. He can learn behind Bridgewater for a year before taking over in 2022. Do not be surprised if Mac Jones overtakes Lance, especially here since the Carolina coaching staff is able to see Jones first hand at the Senior Bowl.

9 9ebzja2zfeigaziee8y605aqp-1 i OLB Micah Parsons, Penn State

Denver needs pretty much everything, which makes best player available the way to go here. Micah Parsons did not play in 2020, but showed that he is a complete linebacker who can play anywhere in any scheme. With Von Miller’s status up in the air and holes in the middle, he would be an immediate impact starter.

10 406 slater OT Rashawn Slater, Northwestern

Yes, the Cowboys need defense. However, this team will only go as far as the offense takes them, and would love to keep the offensive line at peak performance. Rashawn Slater looks like a top 15 lock, and can play anywhere on the line.

11 919 i CB Patrick Surtain II, Alabama

Patrick Surtain II never quite lived up to the all world billing he was made out to be coming out of high school, but still has the look of a solid CB1. The Giants need absolutely everything on defense.

12 17994552009-1 horn CB Jaycee Horn, South Carolina

Literally every San Francisco cornerback is a free agent. All of them. Even if they resign a few, this is by far the biggest need on the roster. Jaycee Horn emerged as a fantastic prospect, and has the toughness and physicality to be a solid CB1.

13 644616602020 veratucker OT Alijah Vera-Tucker, USC

The Chargers are always more talented than their record indicates. Perhaps a coaching change will finally unlock the rosters potential. Speaking of potential, the team must do a better job at projecting Justin Herbert, even if it means a slight reach. Alijah Vera-Tucker is quickly rising up the board, especially since it looks like he can play tackle in the NFL.

14 17227042013 i DT Christian Barmore, Alabama

The Vikings are another team that needs offensive line help, but the well is a bit dry here. Instead of reaching, they go with Christian Barmore, who exploded on the scene during Alabama’s championship run. He has the ability to be one of the better all around defensive tackles in the NFL.

15 y71myf8mlwlk8lbgagh3fd5e0 i TE Kyle Pitts, Florida

Mac Jones is definitely an option here, but I just do not see a first round quarterback for the Patriots. Bill Belichick is too stubborn for that. Kyle Pitts was by far the most explosive tight end in the country and would be a great fit for a team that has virtually nothing at the skill positions.

16 kwth8f1cfa2sch5xhjjfaof90-1 i WR Jaylen Waddle, Alabama

Receiver is definitely not the biggest need for the Cardinals, but Jaylen Waddle might be too talented to pass up. Despite all of the recent draft picks, there is not a whole lot behind DeAndre Hopkins. Waddle is electrifying, and should be fully recovered from his injury. A potential steal here.

17 670885212020 i DE Gregory Rousseau, Miami

Gregory Rousseau definitely could have used another year of college tape to show he is worth a top ten pick, but his 2019 season is still enough to punch a first round ticket. Scouts will want to see a better all around game, as Rousseau is very raw, but he would be an intriguing pass rusher for the Raiders, who have not gotten that out of Clelin Ferrell.

18 12 jeremiah MLB Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah, Notre Dame

Miami drafted the top offensive playmaker in this class, and may have grabbed the best one on the defensive side of the ball. Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah is a new school hybrid type who can play several positions on the field. Some coaches do not know what to do with guys like this, but the Miami coaching staff seems to have it figured out.

19 674132272020 i OT Samuel Cosmi, Texas

At this point in the draft I believe that teams with quarterback needs are going to go after the trade or free agent market before drafting someone. The Football Team still needs to replace Trent Williams at tackle. Samuel Cosmi has the talent and experience to become a solid blind side protector.

20 1 toney WR Kadarius Toney, Florida

The Bears are another team that needs a quarterback, but they might also need to replace Allen Robinson at wideout. Kadarius Toney is this generation’s Percy Harvin. Toney himself says he models his game after Alvin Kamara, showing how versatile he is. He is extremely elusive in the open field and a great weapon to have.

21 10 macjones QB Mac Jones, Alabama

The Colts will probably go after another band-aid solution at quarterback, but this would be a good opportunity to find a long term guy. While it definitely helped playing for an extremely loaded Alabama offense, Mac Jones was a former top recruit who did his part in making those other guys better. He may not have the upside of a Zach Wilson, but he could develop into a very good starting quarterback.

22 30 paye DE Kwity Paye, Michigan

Truthfully, Kwity Paye will probably be gone by this point, but if not, the Titans will sprint to the podium. Paye is an absolute freak of nature athletically who is still learning the game, even as a four year college player.

23 15291162019 harris RB Najee Harris, Alabama

With a ton of early picks, the Jets can go after the best back in college football here. Najee Harris was a beast on the ground and catching passes, racking up almost 2000 yards and 30 touchdowns. If the Jets go quarterback, they will not make the same mistake as the former regime and surround him with replacement level talent.



farley CB Caleb Farley, Virginia Tech

Pittsburgh often drafts fallen talent, and it works out more often than not. Caleb Farley is a fringe top ten guy who gets pushed down here. He took a year off but was a real ball hawk in 2019 for the Hokies.

25 17 nixon DT Daviyon Nixon, Iowa

Once a strength, the Jaguars defensive line was a shell of itself in 2019. Daviyon Nixon is best known for a SportsCenter-like 71 yard interception touchdown return. He is also a sack master who can track down ball carriers. Simply put; a complete defensive tackle.

26 5 oweh DE Jayson Oweh, Penn State

After drafting in the top 15 for the past two decades, Cleveland can finally draft for need. Luckily, there are quite a few interesting pass rushing options available here. Jayson Oweh was only a redshirt sophomore, and did not record a sack in 202, but he has the ability to be a plus option.

27 25 moehrig S Trevon Moehrig, TCU

The Ravens once stout secondary sprang major leaks in 2020, especially at safety. Trevon Moehrig is the top playmaker at the position, with seven career interceptions.

28 27 marshall WR Terrace Marshall Jr., LSU

This is a good spot for the Saints to draft some much needed receiver help. They could go with Terrace Marshall Jr., Rondale Moore, Rashod Bateman or others. I am a Marshall fan, thanks to his speed/size combination, and his Louisiana roots.

29 20 bateman WR Rashod Bateman, Minnesota

I was tempted to slot Kyle Trask here, but, yeah, you get it. Perhaps the Packers will actually make Aaron Rodgers happy for once. Rashod Bateman is not a physical freak, but is a great route runner who would finally give Rodgers another reliable receiver to throw to.

30 3 phillips DE Jaelan Phillips, Miami

What a roller coaster ride for Jaelan Phillips. From the top recruit in the country, to a medical retirement, to a transfer, to a possible first round selection. Phillips flashed that immense potential in 2020, racking up 8 sacks. The Bills have talent along the defensive line, but some players are getting up there in age.

31 6 i OT Alex Leatherwood, Alabama

Tom Brady will probably outlast anyone drafted here. Tampa Bay should continue to fortify the offensive line as long as he is around. Alex Leatherwood has a ton of experience and the versatility to play anywhere along the line.

32 9 eichenberg OT Liam Eichenberg, Notre Dame

Offensive line is a sneaky need for the Chiefs, especially with Eric Fisher suffering a serious injury. Coming from Notre Dame, Liam Eichenberg is a well coached, experienced tackle who could step in and start in a pinch.


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